Summary: Shinobu needs Keitaro for something, but has trouble telling him what for. Based on the manga.

Author's Note: This is set in the universe of the manga, not the animé. It takes place sometime after Chapter 39 and before Chapter 43. Italics mean it's the person's thoughts.

Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.

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I can't concentrate! Every time I try to study, all the things that I never notice any other time bother me incessantly. The clanging of the pipes, the whirring of Su-chan's computer, the snapping and mewing sounds that turtle makes trying to catch bugs, the creaking of the floor as Shinobu paces back and forth (what's her problem this time?), Narusegawa's mumbling...I swear she never talks in her sleep when I'm not trying to study! She's subconsciously trying to sabotage my efforts. Hey, I wonder what she said about me. I know I heard my name. Or maybe it was 'Kentaro.' Do I know someone named Kentaro?

No! I can't keep letting my mind wander like this. I need to focus. Focus, Keitaro!

He smacked himself in the head.

When I'm studying with Narusegawa, I always seem to be able to focus.

...On Narusegawa. But she also helps me focus on my studies. She's a good tutor. A very good...

No! I need to focus! I need to purge my mind of all distractions. I can't hear you, pipes! I can't hear you, Tama-chan! I can't hear you, cicadas! I can't hear you, Narusegawa! I can't hear you, Narusegawa-related thoughts! Nothing exists in my universe besides this polynomial.

"Um, senpai?"

"I can't hear you, Shinobu!" Keitaro shouted, spinning around to face his visitor. Then he realized what was going on.

Shinobu's eyes got really big, and she looked like she was about to cry. "I'm so sorry!"

"No, Shinobu! You're fine. I'm just a little crazy right now, what with all my insanity...I mean my studies. What do you need?"

Shinobu looked very nervous. "I didn't mean to bother you. I mean, I knew I was bothering you, but I thought...Well, maybe you could...I mean, I have this..."

She blushed and ran away. "I don't need anything!" she shouted as she sprinted down the hallway.

Well, that was weird. I mean it would be if it weren't Shinobu. I wonder what she wants. Was that an attempted love-confession? No! That's silly. Shinobu's too young to be thinking about boys yet. I'd better take a break to go see what the deal is once I finish this equation. Hey, I think I solved this problem before on a different sheet of paper.

Keitaro dug through his various math-related papers, which were intermingled with English-related papers and drawings of Naru.

"Did that turtle eat my scratch paper again?"

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Keitaro made the short trip to room 201, occupied by Maehara Shinobu. He knocked. There was no immediate response, just sort of a scrambling sound inside, then Shinobu appeared, looking uneasy and embarrassed (to a somewhat greater degree than usual).

"Hello, Urashima-senpai. I'm sorry I disturbed your studies."

"I wanted to know what you wanted me for," Keitaro said.

Shinobu wore the look of a guilty schoolgirl on her face. "Oh, it's nothing you need to concern yourself with. You have more important things to do."

"Don't say that!" Keitaro launched into one of his quasi-heroic speeches. "We all have problems to be concerned with at every time in our lives. Just because I have things going on in my life doesn't mean I can't sacrifice a little time to help you with something that's troubling you. Just tell me what you need me for, and I'll try my best to help you."

"You're strong, right?" Shinobu asked.

"Yes I am!" Keitaro said proudly, not really wondering why that was important.

"Um..." Shinobu stared at him with an indecipherable look for a moment, "...good. You see, I have this problem."

"Yeah, I sort of figured that out."

Shinobu looked defensive. "You understand I wouldn't even think of bothering you if this weren't a matter of life and death."

"Just tell me what's wrong," Keitaro said, getting a little impatient with Shinobu's self-effacing manner. "You can add the apologies and stuff after I understand what's going on."

Shinobu looked flustered, obviously finding it difficult to explain her need for him. She took a deep breath.

"The zipper on my pants is stuck and it won't go down at all and I need your help because no matter how hard I try I can't get it undone by myself and I need to use the ladies' room!" she said in a rapid firing of uninflected words. Keitaro just stared for a moment, slowly comprehending what he had just heard, as Shinobu sheepishly added "Very soon."

"Um," Keitaro began, not sure what to think of this, "Isn't this more a problem for Narusegawa to help with?"

"I didn't want to wake Naru-senpai, because she deserves this rest after losing so much sleep studying."

"Where's everybody else?" Keitaro asked. As much as he wanted the ever-unfortunate Shinobu to have this problem solved for her, he desperately wanted to escape the extremely awkward task it entailed.

"Kitsune, Kaolla, and Motoko-san all went to see a movie. I stayed behind because it looked scary. Haruka-san must be busy somewhere outside; I couldn't find her. Please help me with this."

This is not something I'm qualified to do. This is something that will make me very, very uncomfortable. And what if I can't get her fly undone and her holding-time runs out? That's the last thing in the world I want to see! But how can I say "no" to those big blue eyes? That sweet little girl doesn't deserve stuff like this to happen to her, and what's more, she's counting on me. I wouldn't be right to weasel out of this. Since when does Shinobu even wear jeans? This chapter wasn't very well-written.

"Don't worry, Shinobu!" Keitaro said so forcefully it made her jump slightly. "I'll get it for you."

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Meanwhile, Naru was sleeping in her room upstairs.

"No, Liddo-kun's mine!"

She was mumbling in her sleep. "You're not my friend." She was thrust out of dreamland by a voice (which she was somehow able to hear even though it was from a floor below).

What was that? Did I hear Shinobu, or was that a dream? Hmm...what was I dreaming about? Seta again? Damn, now I can't remember.

"I can't keep this inside much longer," she distinctly heard in Shinobu's voice.

Shinobu is confessing to Keitaro. Good for her.

Naru closed her eyes, trying to get back to sleep.

A minute or so later, while still fully conscious, she heard something disconcerting.

"Hold still, Shinobu. I can't do this if you keep squirming."

"Kyaah! Please be gentle."

This caused Naru to bolt upright.

Did I just hear what I think I heard?!? Is Keitaro getting hentai with Shinobu?

She put her ear to the floor.

I can't make out what they're saying. Just a few words. Nothing too ecchi. Maybe I was just imagining...Wait a second, did I just hear Shinobu say something about being wet? I couldn't quite...

She jumped off the floor when she heard Shinobu audibly yell, "Oh, senpai! Harder!"

Oh no, it's true! Keitaro is taking advantage of Shinobu's crush on him! This is awful! Her feelings for Keitaro are rudimentary and confused and this is just making things worse. Shinobu's going to turn out emotionally damaged now. And how am I going to explain to her parents that a 20 year old pervert stole their daughter's virginity while I napped? Those people hate me enough already. Why am I just speaking long sentences in my mind? I should do something. Shinobu's not ready for a sexual experience. I'd better stop this before she starts to enjoy it.

Naru ran out of her room.

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Being this close to a girl's body makes me so nervous. I wonder if she can tell. Am I sweating? I hope I don't do something wrong. Shinobu's the only girl here who doesn't think I'm a pervert; I don't want to ruin that with an accidental misplaced hand. It seems so strange to be able to feel her warmth and the contour of her...I can't think like that! Even if her body is already adultish, Shinobu is basically a child as far as thoughts and feelings go. I can't think of her as being on the same level as Narusegawa. Adultish body. Hmm...have Shinobu's breasts gotten bigger lately? No! Why did I look?!? I need to focus on my task. But how can I deal with a girl's pants without thinking about the fact that I'm dealing with A GIRL'S PANTS? I just need to do this quick, then it will be over with and I won't have to be near or think about a girl's personal areas until the next embarrassing situation I somehow get into.

"Ow!" Shinobu exclaimed. He had jerked a little too hard. Shinobu was laying on the floor of her room with her arms folded over her chest as Keitaro tried to get the zipper down far enough that she could wiggle out of her jeans, then she could make a dash for the bathroom before she lost control of the situation. But she wasn't laying perfectly still. She was squirming and trembling in response to the pain of containing her liquid burden (not to mention the unfamiliar, uncomfortable sensation of having a boy so close to her body), and kept crossing her legs, uncrossing them, then crossing them the other way, much to Keitaro's chagrin. The button at the top of her fly was undone, and the zipper was stuck about two centimeters from the top. Keitaro could see the top of her panties, a fact which embarrassed her and made him feel like a pervert. If he succeeded he would see more, which would be very embarrassing for both of them, but not nearly as embarrassing as what would happen if he failed.

"Sorry, Shinobu." I thought a quick tug might do the trick.

"It's just that I'm afraid that if you startle me, I might..."

"Don't worry. I'll get this open in time."

"I'm not sure how much longer I can hold it," she said for what seemed like the twentieth time.

"I think it's caught on some flap inside. I need you to reach inside your pants and see if you can pull whatever it's caught on out."

"I don't think that's a good idea, senpai."

"It's a better idea than me using my hand..."

Shinobu clarified. "I mean, I don't want to put more pressure on my front, or else..."

"Yeah, I see what you mean. I think that if I can just get it to go down one centimeter it'll clear the snag and unzip all the way."

"Please hurry!"

Oh no, she's going to lose control! I can't get this undone until she stops moving around, and she can't stop moving around until she's relieved, and she can't relieve herself until I get this undone. If only I could get her to stop moving around. I bet if she weren't laying on the floor she'd be doing a really cute pee dance. I wish...

No! Focus on the task at hand, Keitaro! The place that commands your attention is between Shinobu's legs! Wait, no! Her pants! Pants! Forget what's underneath. I'm fighting a losing battle, here. I won't make any progress until he holds still, and...yeah, the vicious circle. It doesn't help that she's probably really nervous...probably for the same reason I am. Maybe if I can get her to relax she'll hold still and I can...Yeah! That might work!

"Shinobu, I need you to hold still."

"I'm already trying my best, Urashima-senpai."

"Just try to relax. It won't be as hard to hold in if you're not thinking about it. Just distance yourself from the situation. You aren't here at all."

Keitaro could feel Shinobu's muscles becoming slightly less tense under his touch, and she started to close her eyes...

"You are in a boat in the middle of the..."

...But they opened abruptly before they were completely closed.

"No!" Keitaro chastised himself out loud. "Bad mental image! Just...I know! Concentrate on the sounds around you. Not what you're feeling and what's happening. Listen to the cicadas singing, the wind moving through the leaves, the whirring of Su-chan's computer, the snapping and mewing sounds Tama-chan is making. Concentrate on all the calming sounds around you."

At just that moment it began to rain outside.

"Okay, scratch that! Just close your eyes and picture something soothing in your mind. Like the ocean."

Shinobu's closed eyes instantly formed into a tight squint, and Keitaro felt a little bit of warmth in the denim fabric he was working with.

"Wait, no! Think of..."

What's something soothing and dry?

"...Cherry blossoms! Imagine you're among blooming sakura."

Shinobu did, and the vision did indeed carry her away. She no longer felt Keitaro tugging and poking at her jeans, or the sea that raged inside her. Thoughs of cherry blossoms and springtime carried with them thoughts of romance, and soon, without her really wanting to, she was having a vivid daydream.

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It was a warm and pleasant spring day. The birds were singing. Cherry blossoms filled the air like rose-colored snow, and she was standing among the comforting forms of a small forest of sakura.

She wasn't alone in this nice daydream. Keitaro, looking better than he would have if she had opened her eyes, stood before her. He was listening to what she had to say. She also differed from her real-life self. She was how she wished she were; taller, and more confident in poise.

"Urashima-senpai, ever since a little while after my thirteenth birthday I've thought of you very fondly. Not just as a good kanrinin, or a dear friend, but something more. As the months go on, my feeling grows stronger and stronger, and so does my feeling of guilt for not telling you about it. When I think about it, it doesn't seem likely that my feeling for you can amount to anything in real life. You're so much older than me, and we have many differences, and it's hard for us to talk to each other and really convey what our thoughts are. But I beg you to consider me as a girlfriend. It's not in my nature to say things like this, and I feel bad making demands and laying a burden upon you, but I would feel worse if I didn't, and I wouldn't if it weren't the most important thing in the world to me. It doesn't even have to be now. Just please open up to me and let me get close to you, and maybe, when you think I'm ready, we can have a real relationship.

"I know I probably seem like a child to you, but I think you'll notice if you really look that I'm quite mature and capable for my age. I'm also completely devoted to you, and not just going through a simple childish crush. With your permission, I can show you that I'm beyond childish things and am very serious about our future. With your love and support I think that, before too long, I'll grow into the perfect woman for you.

"The others think you're immoral and don't know how to treat a lady, but I've always known in my heart that they were wrong. You're a fine gentleman who would always respect a woman's body and would never urge your girlfriend to spend the night with you. I would be honored to be the one you chose above all the other women in your life to have as a girlfriend. And it would be my greatest pleasure. And it's been my greatest desire for almost a year now. I love you."

A smile came across Keitaro's handsome face.

"A long time ago; before you were born, even; I promised myself to someone else. But when I did that I was just a little kid. I didn't know about love...real love. I didn't know where my life would take me. I've come to realize that my heart shouldn't be bound by what I said back then. It's kept me from seeing the excellent girls around me. Like you. It took me almost a year to realize it, but you're the perfect image of a loving companion, and you make me want to forget all other girls. Even the one I made the promise to, and even Narusegawa. I love her and the others as friends, but they all have their vicious side, and things could never work. But you're not like them You're a gentle little kitten, and I know that inside that flat chest of yours beats the heart of a fine woman. I've changed my plans. I'll go to Tokyo-U., and I'll help you get in, and we'll find happiness. The kind of happiness I couldn't even have imagined when I made my naïve promise. I love you, Maehara Shinobu."

He leaned forward to kiss her.

Suddenly, with a tremendous noise, one of the sakura exploded into splinters. Shinobu was jerked out of her fantasy. She opened her eyes to see the real-life analog.

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Naru burst into the door without attempting to open it properly, causing hundreds of yen worth of damage to Shinobu's room, and kicked Keitaro, sending him flying across the room.

"INNOCENCE-THIEF!" she shouted at the top of her lungs. "HOW DARE YOU TAKE A BLOSSOMING YOUNG MAIDEN'S VIRGIN PURITY!?!"

Keitaro had his fingers firmly gripping Shinobu's zipper, and he pulled it with him when he went flying. The extra force of Naru's attack allowed him to finally get it undone. Unfortunately, his failure to let go also caused him to take Shinobu's jeans with him as he sailed across the room.

Those few seconds were a very frightening experience for Shinobu. She had been attacked out of nowhere, pulled off her feet, had fallen against a chair with nearly enough force to knock her unconscious, then come to her senses to realize her panties were exposed in front of Keitaro, who was looking at her, stunned, from beneath a pile of shards of wood, still holding her pants. Her heart was beating at a frenzied pace, and she didn't know what to do or say. She could feel her face turning red. Then she felt something wet and warm under her left hand. She quickly brought her hand up, and was relieved to find it wasn't blood. But when she looked down she noticed she was sitting in a slowly-growing puddle. New levels of horror and humiliation assailed her mind as she realized what the puddle was. She had been frightened so badly she had peed her panties.

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"What is going on?" Naru demanded, pointing at Keitaro accusingly.

Tears fell from Shinobu's eyes, and were diluted in the pool on the floor. She wasn't sure how to respond to this turn of events. Her usual response would have been to run out of the room crying, but she was already in her room. Then there was the fact that she was half naked. It also might have been wise to move to a dryer place. She decided on her habitual nudity protocol, which consisted of curling up ashamedly, with her knees drawn up to her chin. This really didn't do anything, except make a different part of her panties visible. It was more helpful when Keitaro accidentally walked in on her when she was fully undressed. Now she didn't need to cover her chest, since she still had a shirt on. But she assumed the position anyway.

"What have you been doing with Shinobu, you pervert?" she specified.

"Hey! Don't call me a pervert," Keitaro shot back.

"What else should I call someone who gets excited from watching a young girl have an accident?!?" Naru lifted Keitaro out of the rubble by his shirt collar.

"That wasn't excitement! That was me being dazed from being attacked." Naru threw him at Shinobu's closet.

"But what were you doing with Shinobu?"

Keitaro tried to pull himself up from the floor to look at Naru, but he used the knob of the closet door and, when he inadvertently opened it in the process, he was half-buried in stuffed animals.

"I was trying to help her go to the bathroom," he finally answered, his voiced muffled by a plush turtle.

"Huh?" Naru cocked her head like a parakeet, then squawked, "That doesn't make any sense!" As he tried to get up a second time she brought her foot around to his temple, kicking him sideways into a desk chair.

"I could explain if you'd stop batting me around!" he yelled.

"Hitting you is the only way to make you cooperate!" She hit him again, this time on the shoulder. His arm crumpled and his face was again on the floor.

"I'm innocent!" he pleaded as pieces of wood and glass cut into the side of his face. Tell her, Shinobu!"

Shinobu was crying and didn't reply.

"When I came in Shinobu was on the floor and you were on top of her!" Naru yelled. She assisted Keitaro in getting up by pulling on his hair until his eyes were level with hers. "What were you doing to her!?!"

"Nothing bad! Just trying to get her pants off."

"You insatiable lecher!" She let him go, then punched him before gravity took him all the way down.

There's no escape. No explanation will make her stop hitting me, and she's feeling vigorous right now. Must've been refreshed by that long nap. I can't imagine anything worse than a fully-energized Narusegawa punishing me for imagined molestations I can't disprove.

Just then, things got worse.

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"I thought they went kinda overboard with the last death," Kitsune said.

"That was certainly no way to handle a kitchen knife," Motoko criticized. They and Su-chan had walked into Hinatasou to hear some commotion on the second floor. The usual sort of commotion. Su-chan was sprinting upstairs while the other two were casually heading up to investigate. Hearing Naru shouting, Keitaro screaming girlishly, and things being broken wasn't terribly remarkable in this zip code, and didn't really warrant a dash to the scene in the minds of anyone besides the easily-excited Kaolla Su. The movie was more significant.

Motoko and Kitsune found Su-chan standing outside the doorway leading to Shinobu's room, the door smashed in. She was standing there, transfixed by something, her index finger in her mouth, the corners of her mouth turned up in a sort of grin that told the other girls immediately that she was seeing something naughty, or at least with naughty implications. The distinct, familiar sound of Shinobu crying was audible, along with exclamations from Keitaro along the lines of "Hey! That was my eye!" Motoko and Kitsune walked up to face a sight that was strange even by the standards of a place where a turtle flying through the air with female undergarments in its beak pursued by a girl with a katana and another with devices built upon principles not yet recognized by the world's most prominent physicists wasn't an uncommon sight. Motoko was just stunned, and didn't say anything. Kitsune burst out laughing. The first to speak was Su-chan.

"Wow, Shinobu! That's a lot of pee to pee at one time. You have a large capacity!"

"What happened?" Kitsune suppressed her laughter long enough to inquire. "Did Keitaro ask Shinobu for a golden shower?"

"Golden shower? That sounds tasty," Su-chan remarked, her attempts to understand an unfamiliar term again derailed by thoughts of food.

Naru stopped hitting Keitaro for a moment. Shinobu began to cry more vigorously. Su-chan produced a length of measuring tape from somewhere and proceeded to take measurements of the miniature lake to try to ascertain Shinobu's bladder capacity.

"Say, aren't you a little old to be wearing Liddo-kun underwear?" Kitsune commented, still chuckling. Shinobu failed to find that funny, but it made Keitaro think for a moment.

"Come to think of it, those ARE a little childish for someone approaching 14. Wait, I mean this is all a big misunderstanding!"

He was walking toward the girls in the hallway to explain to them what had happened when he slipped on Shinobu's puddle. He slid forward uncontrollably. Instinctively his hands stretched forward, colliding with Motoko's chest (which had more of a cushioning effect than he would have expected).

"Kyaah!" Motoko screamed. "I'm being raped!"

Keitaro realized what had happened, and what would come next, and took off running. By that time Motoko's sword was already out.

The furious Kendo girl chased after him, because she needed to chastise him to restore her dignity. Su-chan followed Motoko, because chasing after Keitaro was fun. Kitsune followed the two girls, because watching them was fun.

"None who partake of my womanhood shall remain among the living!"

"Don't let her kill me! You'll be accessories."

"What do accessories taste like?"

Naru shook her head and took off after them.

"Hey! Don't break anything while you're punishing Keitaro!"

All this time, Shinobu had remained curled up, almost motionless, amid the debris, in the center of a pool of metabolically processed tea. The fear and humiliation had rendered her almost catatonic. But now, having recovered her composure somewhat, she wiped the tears out of her eyes and stood up. When she did so, rivulets trickled down her skinny legs, and the strange sensation on her tender, ticklish skin made her body momentarily twist out of shape in an exaggerated flinch. She looked down at the source of the flood for the first time (she had been afraid to do so, as if by not looking she could magically make the puddle the result of a leaky roof and not a leaky schoolgirl). Her panties, an immaculate white mere minutes ago, were now mostly honey-colored. For the first time she was conscious of the icky feeling produced by the wet cotton clinging to her skin. Her bladder still tingled from being overstretched.

Feeling that her voice was now unwavering enough, she shouted after the friends who had run out a few seconds earlier.

"Don't worry, I'll clean this mess up!"

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After the incident the afternoon before things had been very awkward with the girls. Keitaro had opted to spend as much time as possible out of Hinatasou, running errands and such. He got back at 3:03 P.M., and by 3:10 he had been angrily confronted by Naru.

"Shinobu has barely spoken or left her room since your perverted adventure yesterday. She didn't come to breakfast, and it was like pulling teeth to get her to eat anything for lunch. I don't think I've ever seen her this depressed, and that's really saying something!"

"Did she tell you what happened?" Keitaro was eager to have his innocence proven. Not that it was likely.

"No, just that it wasn't your fault. But I'm sure it was. She's just easy on you because of..."

That's right! That idiot's still oblivious to her crush on him. Better not let the cat out of the bag.

"...Well, she has reasons. Anyway, Motoko, Kitsune, Su-chan, and I have done all we can to try to cheer her up, and we haven't done any good."

...And I even told Shinobu the story of MY embarrassing accident to try to make her feel better! If that ever leaves this building there'll be some unexplained deaths around here.

"Now it's up to you to make this right," she continued. "The responsibility is yours, anyway," she added in a contemptuous tone.

"But I didn't do anything wrong."

"Lies are useless, pervert."

"If you'd walked in the door like a normal person and calmly talked to me and Shinobu you'd have seen for yourself. But no, you had to act like a crazy ninja. Why do you always feel the need to hit something constantly?"

Naru giggled at the question. "My mom says I've been like that ever since I was two. I mean shut up!" She hit Keitaro.

"You should listen to Shinobu. I didn't do anything wrong."

"You went into her room, took off her pants, watched lustily as she uncontrollably wet herself, and I don't even know what happened before I got there. You don't get much more wrong than that. And, what's more, you didn't even have the guts to try these dirty acts with me or Kitsune or even Motoko. You did this to Shinobu, an innocent, defenseless, suggestible, barely-even-developed thirteen year old."

"She's almost fourteen."

"Shut up! It's not something I'll easily forgive, and it will be even harder to undo the damage you've done to her mind."

"Well what do you suggest I do?"

"Apologize, obviously. And you should buy Shinobu a new pair of panties to replace the pair you ruined."

"I didn't ruin them! She did the peeing. I was trying to help her not pee in them."

I can't believe this pervert. Trying to confuse me after what I saw. I don't understand why I feel so fond of him sometimes. He's an idiotic liar with a sex urge he makes no attempt to control. And now I find out he has a fetish for watching girls pee! I'm putting locks on the bathroom doors.

Naru glared at Keitaro, and her eyes seemed to reflect all the pain and torment he would experience if he didn't do as she ordered.

"Okay, I'll talk to her."

Naru raised her right fist.

"...And apologize!"

"Good! Maybe Shinobu will be snapped out of this soon enough to cook dinner."

"Is that all you care about?!?"

"Shut up and apologize! Just, be gentle when you approach her. She told us she doesn't want to talk to you. She's really embarrassed she lost control in front of you."

"Then why are you sending me to her room?"

"Because she doesn't know what's best for her."

Keitaro wanted to say "And you do?" but decided it wasn't a good idea.

"I'll apologize, but I can't handle the other part."

"What, buying her a new pair of panties?"

"Yes. I can't just go into a store and ask for panties!"

"Why not?"

"I'll get sued by Clamp."