| || || |
Demi pushed her bangs from her eyes as she leaned back in her chair and stared at the ceiling. Her mind was reeling. She had been studying hard all semester, and the stress was finally getting to her.
Her eyes fell on a small kid with messy brown hair who was staring at her from another carrell. She gave him a small smile, but he quickly looked back at the book he was holding. She grinned to herself. She'd caught him staring at her before... still, he was a kawaii little guy. Demi wondered vaguely why he wasn't in school, before it hit her that today was a Saturday, and his mother had probably dropped him off at the library to go shopping.
She looked back at her book and read some more.
The boy stared at her from his carrell.
She glanced up, catching his eyes upon her. He looked away.
Demi sighed to herself. Although she was an even-tempered person, this was getting irritating. But the boy suddenly stood up and walked over to her, looking very determined.
"Demi-san?" It sounded surprisingly demanding coming from him.
"Err... yes, I am," she said uneasily. She was easily made nervous.
"I was told to deliver this to you," said the boy. He handed her an official-looking envelope. "It's an invitation," he added.
"An invitation?" asked Demi, her voice quavering. "I'm sorry, but my schedule's so busy with my schoolwork...."
"I've been asked to deliver this to you," said the boy. "It's from Mori Kouran-sama."
Demi laughed. The boy couldn't be serious. "Right," she smiled, reaching out and touseling his hair. "And how would you know a big-time politician like him?"
"Hey!" exclaimed the boy, escaping from under her hand. He looked very cross as he tried to pat his hair back down-- not very successfully, since it was never neat in the first place. "It doesn't matter how I know him, or why I work for him... it matters that you've managed to attract his attention."
Demi had opened the envelope already and was looking over the letter's contents. "Me? Be a referee? Whatever for?"
"I heard someone say he saw your picture in the paper, and he wanted you to participate." The boy shrugged indifferently. "He says that he understands you're busy and have a life and all that, but he really would like to have your help in this tournament he's putting together."
"Well.... the dates are after the school semester is over... but I have to work anyways. To save up enough money for next semester," apologized Demi.
"Read further," suggested the boy. "If you do, you'll see the terms are awfully generous. He's willing to give you a full scholarship for a year, and housing. The apartments are close to campus, and are nice. But only if you cooperate."
Demi shook her head apologetically. "You're a kawaii little thing," she smiled, "But I really don't believe you're serious."
The boy mentally grouched, The others didn't have any problems getting their targets to cooperate... just because they're older... h'mph! Aloud, he added, "The invitation is on Mori Kouran's personal stationery. The contact information is printed on it. If you don't believe it's his, it'll match up with the phone book. Give his offices a call on Monday, and his personal secretary will confirm everything I've said."
Demi gave him a strange look. "But this is so.... bizzarre...."
The boy gave a short laugh. "A lot of bizzarre things go on," he said, trying to look cryptic and not succeeding very well. "But I've done my job. It couldn't hurt, to follow up on Monday. Just think... a whole year's scholarship, in exchange for one week's work. Not to mention the apartment...." He grinned, waved at her, and turned away.
"Wait," said Demi. "Just so I know... what's your name?"
"Koganei," replied the boy. "Koganei Kaoru."
With that, he disappeared into the stacks.
Demi stared at the invitation thoughtfully, then tucked it carefully inside her day planner. It wouldn't hurt to give the offices a phone call on Monday.... it wouldn't hurt at all....