Author's Note: This is a previously unannounced omake I decided to write mostly on a whim after I got the idea. It's in-season so I'm posting it with less editing then usual. Hope you enjoy it!
Kaname and Kyouko were chatting together as they walked down the supermarket aisle.
"But you'll never believe what he said!" Kyouko exclaimed.
"Oh, I think I can guess...," Chidori responded with a grin.
"Hmm... well, it's just a hunch, but was it, maybe...," Kaname was looking at the ceiling with an inquisitive expression, "'No thanks, I'll take the stairs?'"
Kyouko's jaw dropped. "How--How did you know?"
"Eheheh... I saw a screening of it a few weeks ago."
"Oh, no one important..."
Tokiwa moved closer to Chidori's face and glared suspiciously. "Something seems strange..."
"I would've gone with you, but there were only two tickets..."
"Hmm... definitely strange," she said, further inspecting Kaname's expression, which was turning more and more comical. "What's so funny?"
"Ahahah... you look so funny like that."
"It was Sagara-kun! He finally took you on a date!"
Kaname's expression turned to annoyance. "Of course it wasn't that idiot. Besides, even if he was smart enough to get screener tickets, he'd probably find some war film, not a romantic comedy."
"Well, you'd still go if he did, right?"
"Oh, come on."
"You would! Besides, you like movies with big explosions and stuff in them anyway."
Kaname changed the subject. "Hey, look. Crab is on sale." She pointed at some canned crab on a lower shelf.
"Wow," Kyouko said, her topic having been very successfully squelched, "It's buy one, get one free!"
Chidori squatted down to look at it. "Yeah! Wait, whoa... its regular price is 900 yen!"
"That is a little high..."
"Geez!" Kaname exclaimed. "It's just crab!"
Suddenly, the music in the supermarket stopped and an announcement was made.
"Attention all employees. We have a Code 3. Repeat, Code 3."
"What's Code 3 mean?" Kyouko asked mostly to herself.
Kaname didn't seem interested. "It's probably just a way of saying they need a clean-up somewhere or something."
"But wouldn't they have to say which aisle if they were doing that?"
"...I guess." Chidori didn't seem to mind that her idea had been rather systematically shut down.
"Are you still mad about the crab? It's on sale, so it's not that important that it was 900 yen to begin with."
"Oh! I bet it means they need another register opened at the front or something."
"The Code 3."
"Why are you spaced out all of a sudden?"
Chidori stood back up. "What? Oh, sorry. No reason."
There was a crescendo of heavy footsteps. Kaname and Kyouko both looked towards the end of the aisle. After a moment, two police officers ran by with weapons drawn.
"What the...?" Kaname said.
They heard a voice behind them say, "Aisle 8 clear!" As they turned around, they saw a third police officer moving to the next aisle.
"That's weird," Kyouko said with a bit of anxiety.
Someone had suddenly appeared at the aisle entrance right in front of them.
"S--Sousuke! What are you--?"
"There's no time!" he said quietly but urgently. "Come with me. Now!"
"What? No! Sousuke, you're making troub--ack! Let go!" Kaname was now being half-dragged in the other direction. "Stop! Fine! I can walk myself!" She struggled free and angrily began following Sagara.
"Don't walk. Run! And stay close!" Sousuke turned around. "Tokiwa, if they come, stall them!"
"What?" Kyouko asked, confused. But they were already out of sight.
Kaname caught up with Sousuke, who was standing close to an end-of-aisle display. He held out his arm and pushed her behind him with about as much force as could still be considered gentle.
"Stay here, I'll be right back," he whispered, and then disappeared into the next aisle. He reappeared a second later. "Let's go."
They went down the next aisle which led to the registers with conveyors for groceries. At the end of the aisle, Sagara motioned for Kaname to stop again, and then made a pushing-down motion with a flattened palm. Chidori probably only understood the motion because Sousuke himself crouched down right after. She followed suit, though not without rolling her eyes first.
"Wait for my signal." Sousuke drew his weapon and made a diving shoulder roll into the space between the nearest two register units. He slowly leaned around to look in either direction. Apparently there was some threat, real or imaginary, in one of the directions, because he watched for several seconds before looking straight at Kaname and waving her over.
She obeyed, and ran while staying low to him. They moved to the end of the register where one would claim his or her purchased groceries.
Sousuke pointed to the automatic door. "They probably haven't shut them off yet. We need to go now." From seemingly nowhere Sagara removed a canister-style grenade of some sort and reached for the pin. Before he could remove it, Kaname grabbed his arm. "What?"
"No." That was all she said.
Sousuke glanced back at her once more before putting away the grenade. "Maybe you're right. A discrete exit is best. Go!"
Sagara ran to the door and pointed his gun in various directions. There was no one around. The door slid open and he moved outside where two police vehicles were parked with their blue lights on. Kaname was right behind him. While Sagara kept his weapon close to him, they ran into the parking lot and took cover behind one of the cars.
"The other civilians will think we were just like them and clearing out. We shouldn't have raised suspicion."
Sure enough, as Kaname looked around, the several other people in the parking lot were looking at the entrance and the police cars more than at the two of them.
"What's going on, Sousuke? I have a bad feeling you're responsible for this."
Sousuke took a few breaths and began to explain while watching the store entrance through the car windows. "I was watching the entrance. There was little chance of there being a planted terrorist inside the store already as you and Tokiwa decided to go here on a whim. I--"
"You were watching us the whole time?" Kaname said incredulously.
"Of course. While on scheduled routes it is necessary. I decided to give you as much privacy as possible while you were inside, so I waited on the bench."
Chidori wouldn't have said so, but she had to admit that Sagara had a point about the scheduled routes. If she was still a target, the danger was greatest then. And she was put somewhat at ease by the fact that Sousuke was deliberately leaving them alone at least occasionally.
"I was watching the entrance, when two very suspicious young men walked in. I decided to follow them."
"Suspicious? How were they suspicious in your warped mind?" Kaname said sarcastically.
"They were wearing dark suits and sunglasses and had earpieces."
"...Oh." Chidori couldn't very well say that wasn't suspicious.
"I couldn't let their young age cloud my judgment. I saw both of them very carefully inspecting any female student vaguely resembling your body type. They were pointing and speaking softly to each other. It was time for action. I drew my weapon and began to move in."
Sagara continued dictating while watching the entrance. "Unfortunately, by sheer chance, a police officer saw us at that moment. I explained the situation as briefly as possible, but the two suspicious young men began to flee. I had no choice but to chase them. The officers were probably looking for these men as well. Still, I felt it best to get you out. I just hope the officers are coordinated to take down those two, as they may have been very well trained."
"...I... I see." For once it seemed Sousuke had made rational choices.
"There!" Sagara said suddenly.
Kaname looked through the car windows. There were the two "men" Sousuke had described. They were probably fifteen or sixteen years old. They were walking out looking frightened. Chidori felt her blood pressure rising.
Sousuke tightened his grip on his pistol. "We should be prepared to move if they spot us."
Fwack! Chidori's fan came down with severe punishment on Sousuke's head.
"Look at those two! They're obviously supposed to be those two spies from that movie! It's Halloween, you moron!"
"Yes! Halloween! Hall. O. Ween. You know? That time of the year when people dress up as ghosts and celebrities and video game characters?"
"But how can you tell they're not--"
"What sort of real-life spies would have hair like that?!"
Sousuke looked. One of them had spiky blond hair and the other's was formed into a strange-looking ponytail. "...I hadn't noticed that before."
Kaname scratched her head and made an aggravated noise.
"But still, it's suspic--"
Whack! "You're the suspicious one! All these police are here because of you!"
Sagara looked confused. "No, I'm sure the officer understood--"
The sound of a man speaking through a megaphone interrupted them.
"Everyone please stay calm," the apparently ranking police officer said. "We are currently looking for a young man in a Jindai High School uniform with dark hair. He is armed."
Sousuke's eyes got wide and sweat began to run down his face. "N--Not good."
"I swear, Sousuke, you've really done it this time."
Sagara looked down at his pistol. "I..."
"Would Amalgam or whatever terrorist organization really send people in suits and sunglasses and stuff anyway?"
"...Well, it isn't likely they'd be so obvious."
Kaname sighed and stood up. She waved her hand over her head. "Hey, I saw that guy!" She shouted.
"Chidori!" Sousuke protested anxiously.
"Shut up." Kaname said through gritted teeth while still faking a smile. She jogged out to the police car.
"Miss? You saw him? Which way did he go?"
"You mean the guy with the toy gun, right?"
"What? Toy gun?" The ranking officer turned around and looked at a younger one.
"I'm--I'm pretty sure it was real...," he said.
"What?" Kaname said, chuckling slightly. "No way! It had an orange tip and everything."
Under the ranking officer's scrutiny, the younger one said, "Well... I didn't see it from the right angle to..."
"Yeah, he came up to me and was like, 'Hey, wanna be rescued?' He seemed a little weird at first but he said it was a Halloween dare and he had to do it or he'd have to swim in some lake naked or something. I don't know if he was joking, but it seemed fun so I decided to let him 'rescue' me." Kaname laughed again. "I didn't know it'd cause all this trouble."
"...Well, brandishing a toy gun in public is still a crime. We'll have to take him in. Where is he now?"
"What? Now? I don't know. As soon as we got out he said 'Thanks!' and ran off."
"You didn't know him?"
"No way. I'd never seen him before."
"Could you describe him?"
"Not really any better than what you just said..."
"If I see him again I'll let you guys know, though, okay?"
"...Alright. Thanks, Miss."
"Kana-chan!" Kyouko called from across the parking lot. She ran over. "Where's Sagara-kun?"
"Huh? Sagara? Was he here?" Kaname put her hand up to her mouth and cleared her throat with her back facing the officers. Upon lowering her hand she made a zipping motion across her lips.
Kyouko looked confused for a moment. "Oh, never mind, I thought you said he was meeting you here."
"No, my brother's not even in town right now," she said. "Sorry for the trouble, officers!" Kaname said, waving.
She and Kyouko walked out into the parking lot.
"What was that about?" Kyouko said. You don't even have a brother...
"I'll call you later and tell you about it, okay?"
Kyouko suddenly spotted Sousuke, who was still behind the same car, breathing a sigh of relief. "...Oh, okay. See you later, then."
"See ya." Kaname kept walking for a few more seconds but eventually turned and walked between a van and another car.
Sousuke appeared a few seconds later. "Chidori... You saved me."
"Yeah, you owe me big time for this one."
"Yes. That is definitely true. If there is a way I can repay you..."
"Actually...," Kaname said, looking at the sky. "I guess you could do something."
"Well... hmm..." She paused for a few seconds. "Oh well, I can't think of anything good. Just take me to a movie or something, I guess."
"...Is that all? Surely there's something else you--"
"Fine, don't. Geez. I was just trying to make it easy on you. You can just feel guilty about it instead."
"...A movie it is," Sousuke said seriously.
Kaname had to turn away to hide her smile. She turned around after a moment. "Well, since you also ruined my after-school shopping with Kyouko, you need to apologize to her, too."
Kaname started walking towards her apartment which was still a few miles away. Sousuke caught up with her.
After a minute of walking in silence, Kaname looked over at him. He seemed to be confused, and probably was reviewing what happened.
"There's one thing I still don't understand," he said at last.
"And that is?" Kaname said with mild annoyance that Sagara wouldn't just let it be.
"If those two weren't looking to kidnap you, why were they scrutinizing all the female students like that?"
"...You really just don't get it, Sousuke."
Sagara sighed. "Japanese culture is so confusing."
"It has nothing to do with Japan!"
(End of Hitosawagase, Second Omake)