Well, here it is, my willing readers. The epilogue to The Normalcy of Haruhi Suzumiya has finally arrived. Enjoy it.
I have a big confession to make. This was going to sound a bit out there, but I assure you that it is completely true.
I was very excited right now. With my bag slung over my shoulder, and a strange smile on my face, I savored every step towards the SOS Brigade clubroom. The world felt very sweet right now.
The events of the past two days went pretty fast, to tell the truth. A lot had happened in such a small span of time, but I'll try my best to go over it in a clear and concise manner.
Let's start with the trip. After Haruhi and I were found, seemingly unharmed after that avalanche, the trip was cut short, and Haruhi seemed more than happy that she could send everyone home without having to spend all that money for them to see Tokyo. She mentioned that walking around Tokyo sounded boring to her, and she had some other things she had wanted to do instead. Call me crazy, but I had a feeling that perhaps she just wanted to save some of that money for other, more important purposes...
And so, we were all sent home, with people like Taniguchi complaining about how he didn't get his "money's worth". The fact that he didn't actually pay anything and that the only reason he wanted to go to Tokyo is so he could probably sneak off to one of those adult video stores just made me think of him as more of an idiot.
Personally, I was fine with the fact that we never got to see Tokyo. I can clearly remember Eikino-san giving us a tearful goodbye when we were embarking on the buses. I guessed the old man probably had enjoyed our company greatly.
Sometime later, I remembered getting a short voice-mail message from Haruhi. She started spouting out about the next culture festival, which she planned making ten times better than the last. She said that like last time, she planned on having Last Alliance attend.
I still wonder what the hell she did to get those two guys to play with her! Explanations always seem beyond Haruhi.
On another note, just yesterday, before this very Tuesday where I was on my way to the clubroom, Haruhi made a very important announcement to our class. After hearing it, I was pretty sure that she had completely returned to normal.
"I'm am officially resigning from the position of class representative. I realize now that it is getting in the way of my position as Brigade Chief, which is way more important!"
You heard right. Haruhi said that out loud to everyone, leaving most of my classmates surprised and Okabe-sensei relatively stunned. Still, it was more than enough proof that Haruhi's looping normalcy had finally reached its end.
And thank heavens too. To tell the truth, this normalcy of hers was far worse than her bouts of rage back when the Antithesis was still a big problem to us. Of course, I seemed to be the only one who actually saw all this as a good thing. In response to Haruhi's resignation, I remembered Taniguchi saying something along the lines of...
"I knew it! She's still the same freaky girl! Nothing really changed with her! We were all tricked!"
You weren't tricked, Taniguchi. You're just too moronic to see that Haruhi just...
Never mind. He didn't know all the things I knew. Most people didn't.
So...now we've arrived on the topic of today. I still haven't mentioned why I was so excited to get to the clubroom. With my school day having ended, the SOS Brigade clubroom seemed like an old safe haven to me. It was always a safe haven. I just guessed that a time like this was one where I truly appreciated it. Having had cleaning duty for our class today, I had ended up being just a little late in making my way to the clubroom.
I sighed heavily as my hand gripped the doorknob. Everything felt like molasses around me. I already knew that people were inside of this room, waiting for me. People I had currently spent so much time with for the last year and half. People that, truthfully, were probably among some of the most important people in my entire life.
And now....the moment I've been waiting for has finally come. I opened the door.
"There he is!"
Haruhi's voice, despite being very loud and a little obnoxious, was like a comforting bell. While that doesn't make much sense, it seemed that just being able to hear Haruhi talking like she should be was a pure godsend.
I scanned the room, putting on a slightly sarcastic smile. All the familiar faces were here, and seeing each one of them made me happier than ever. Asahina-san was the first to greet me, dressed in her wonderful maid outfit. The aroma of her fantastic tea hit me fast, igniting my senses.
"Welcome back, Kyon-kun! We all missed you!"
Her voice sounded so genuine. I thank Haruhi a thousand times for having such a kind being in our club.
Then, I saw another familiar face. Sporting his usual smile, Koizumi sat comfortably in his usual chair. He gave off a warm aura unfamiliar to me.
"We certainly did. It feels good to that all of us are all together again. It's been too different around here without you."
Wow. I actually believe your words for once, Koizumi. That's saying something.
In the far corner of the room, I could see Nagato, who wasn't reading the book on her lap, but actually staring at me. She didn't blink once, and although her voice was a bit low, I could still clearly hear the one word she uttered.
I have to say...all these greetings were just making me feel a lot better. Not that I was even feeling bad in the first place. I was far from it.
Finally, one figure was directly across from me, a smile on her face as she had her arms crossed. I smirked. Haruhi was wearing something I never actually expected to see her in. She had said time and time again she would wear it, but I never thought she actually would do it.
Haruhi was wearing the exact same maid outfit as Asahina-san. Somehow, I held back the urge to laugh at her. I guessed something like that would just ruin the moment.
"Yes...welcome back, Kyon! You are going to be the first member to be part of my newest decree to the the Brigade." Haruhi said in an excited voice. As I took a seat, putting my backpack on the floor, I couldn't help but stare a bit at Haruhi. I'll be honest. She looked damn hot in the maid outfit.
"New decree? I'd like to hear this."
I chuckled. I would like to hear this very much.
Haruhi walked right past of me, speaking with a very authoritative tone of voice.
"As a former member of the Brigade, the process of rejoining my club isn't just simply being let back in. It has to be interesting! So, I've decided that from now on, if any member is kicked out and allowed back in, the Brigade Leader will be forced to something embarrassing as part of them rejoining."
On another day, I would have just hit myself as the pure ridiculousness in Haruhi's declaration. Shouldn't I be the one wearing that outfit, at least if Haruhi really wanted to make this decree worthwhile? I'll just ignore the fact. Today, it just made me smile.
"I think that looks good on you."
Haruhi turned quickly, pouting at me as she blushed bright red. Asahina-san was already serving myself and Koizumi her freshly-brewed tea, and the wonderful aroma seemed to make the entire situation that much better.
"It does look good on you, Suzumiya-san. You should wear it more often." Asahina-san commented in a sweet voice, as I began to take a sip of her tea. Still fantastic as usual.
"Well...that's besides the point! You didn't let me finish what I was going to say, Kyon. The process of you rejoining the Brigade isn't just the Brigade Chief having to wear something like this! As a returning member, I will expect you to do something just as embarrassing in the future!"
Haruhi's pointing finger wasn't the least bit imposing, despite how much she was trying to make it. In fact, I found it kind of cute.
This all sounded so ridiculous. I should be shaking my head back and forth at Haruhi's behavior. I should be asking myself why I was in this clubroom right now. I should be, but I wasn't.
"So is this the part where I get knighted?" I said nonchalantly. Haruhi smiled wide.
"Not just yet! I had the Sewing Club make something special just for the occasion. I'll go get it!" Haruhi replied, before turning tail and running out the door. Her maid outfit made her just a little slower as it fluttered behind her as she stormed out in a flash. I let a smile creep on my face from that.
A few moments of silence passed, before I turned to face the rest of the clubroom's occupants. I had a good feeling I knew what was going to happen next.
"I'm glad to see that Suzumiya-san's personality has fully returned. It's certainly kept the Agency from falling apart out of panic."
As expected, I already knew that Koizumi had some sort of explanation for me. With both Asahina-san and Nagato here as well, I assumed that they probably had their own interpretations of all the past events as well. I relaxed in my seat. This would probably be a bit long...
"Your esper friends can't keep their cool because of yet another incident?"
It was kind of true, you know. Every time another situation with Suzumiya-san happened, Koizumi would always go on about how worried the Agency was, and how panic was on the horizon. After so many times of having experienced Haruhi causing the near end of the world, I would have expected these espers to get used to it. I guessed I was wrong.
"You misunderstand. This wasn't necessarily another simple incident. As you saw, Haruhi caused an adverse effect on the world this time around. Where there was nothing, strange phenomenons began to surface. It seems that the more Suzumiya-san let herself become absorbed by normalcy, the more the world contrasted by becoming stranger."
Didn't we go over this already? I believed there are other things I wanted to ask.
"You told me this. There are other things that are still confusing me. Maybe you can give me an answer to those things."
Koizumi's smile seemed to get wider, or maybe it was just my imagination. I felt like it was starting to annoy me again. How long was Haruhi planning on taking anyway? This all felt way too convenient.
"The other day...back when I was alone with Haruhi on the mountain...some weird things happened. Weirder than usual."
Koizumi said nothing. He gave me an expression that I got the feeling meant something along the lines of...
"This is Suzumiya-san. What else do you expect?"
"There were two Haruhi's. They appeared right before she went into meltdown mode."
Koizumi did not answer me immediately, and instead rubbed his chin inquisitively. I really hoped the answer he planned on giving me wasn't one he just pulled out of nowhere.
"I'll be honest with you. I don't think I have an answer to that." Koizumi answered in an a seemingly honest tone. He could still be lying though.
I groaned internally, and my brain clenched up. Great. The one thing that had to ruin my day was yet another unanswered question. I knew something like this was going to come along. How could I be so dense?
"You know....I should probably...tell you something..."
Asahina-san's soft voice surfaced behind me, causing me to turn and face the time traveler. She looked like she had a confused expression, or perhaps more unsure. Whatever it was, it seemed like she actually did have something to tell me.
"What is it?" I asked, suddenly concerned.
"It's...It's...nothing..." Asahina-san choked out. I could tell something was wrong. And when something was wrong in this context...well...I didn't really want to think about it much.
The door opened as Haruhi's voice boomed through the clubroom. Still dressed in her maid outfit, Haruhi had something blue in her right hand. It was bright blue, actually, and as usual, I wondered what the hell she had planned.
"What's that?" I asked as Haruhi closed the door behind her. To tell the truth, I was trying to get my mind off of the unanswered questions and Asahina-san's sudden reluctance to tell me whatever it was she was going to tell me.
"Just stand up, Kyon. And close your eyes."
Haruhi sounded serious now. Without further questioning, I simply listened to what she said, getting out of my chair and closing my eyes as I felt her presence move closer. As I kept my eyes closed shut, I could feel her fiddling around with my arm. In fact, it almost felt like she was feeling my bicep. I'd be flattered if I didn't know that Haruhi was definitely not that kind of girl.
Finally, the movements around my arm stopped, and I could feel something light wrapped around it now. Haruhi sounded very satisfied.
"Alright. Open your eyes!."
I did just as Haruhi said, and as I looked at my arm, I was greeted by a bright blue armband wrapped around it. Inspecting the armband, I could see that the words " Brigade Member Forever" were written across it in dark black marker. Besides being blue and having different words written on it, it was just like Haruhi's red armband.
"Welcome back to the SOS Brigade! Don't you think about quitting ever again!"
I smiled wide.
Don't worry, Haruhi. I certainly won't.
Well...I think I have to say something now. At the moment, all was well.
Disaster had once again been averted. I guessed that since Haruhi had changed back to her definition of normal, the many strange things we had seen have probably disappeared by now. Even still, I wondered if out there in the Japanese waters...a giant monster still lurked. I was probably being paranoid again.
But you want to know something? As I waited outside of the school, behind a corner so Haruhi couldn't see me when she finally came out, I felt great. I felt like myself again. I felt like depression or sadness was miles away from me now. It was a good feeling to have.
But even with everything so resolved...there was still something left for me to do. I still could remember telling Haruhi I loved her back on Mt. Fuji. I wasn't lying, and that wasn't a dream. The reconciliation I had been longing for between us was finally in my grasp.
I heard one of the exit doors of North High open behind me. Hidden out of view, I smiled, as I knew now was the time to act. I had specifically told Haruhi to wait for me for a reason.
Looking downwards, I dialed Haruhi's number on my cellphone. What I was about to do could be the stupidest, or smartest thing I've ever tried on Haruhi. If it worked, it would make me very, very happy. And if didn't...
I wouldn't be thinking about that possibility. Call me mad, but I'll just have faith in Haruhi Suzumiya.
For a few moments, I could hear Haruhi's cellphone ringing. Before I knew it, she picked up, and her voice was audible on the other line.
"Where are you, Kyon? You said you'd be waiting for me outside!"
She sounded a little ticked, but it was just too cute. I held in the urge to laugh on the other line.
"Before you say anything else, I wanted to ask you something."
"What is it?"
I sighed slightly. Here we go.
"Well...there's this new movie out in the theaters. I can't complete recall the name, but the title had disappearance in it. It has something to do with an alien girl changing the world or something. Anyway, it sounded pretty weird, so I would guess it would be the kind of movie you'd want to go see. What do you think about that, Haruhi?"
She was silent. For the next few seconds, I could hear nothing. Checking my phone, I wondered if I had accidentally hung up on her.
"What the hell..." I said to myself in a low voice.
"You think you're funny, don't you?!?" Haruhi screamed loudly in my ear, causing me to jump back in alarm, and proceed to fall backwards on the ground. My phone bounced along the asphalt before skidding to a stop.
She found me. Damn it all...
"Didn't I tell you this before? Asking people out on the phone is stupid! That kind of important thing needs to be said in person! What kind of girl do you mistaken me for, Kyon?"
A crazy one. Damn it! I thought that would work!
"Sorry about that then. Maybe I should just get going." I said as I stood up, picking up my backpack and my hopefully still-working phone. I felt a little disappointed all of a sudden.
I turned around. Haruhi was blushing red, her arms crossed as she kept her gaze of of me.
"I never said...I didn't accept. I'm just a little surprised, is all. I expected you to be more forward."
I think this was the point I was waiting for. Watching Haruhi act like an embarrassed school girl was not only funny, but it almost felt satisfying. For once, Haruhi was the one submitting, not me. In a way, this felt just like the kind of compromise between us that I've been waiting forever for. It certainly took long enough!
"Good. We'll go see it tomorrow then."
Haruhi's blush was beginning to disappear now. An awkward silence would develop between us if I didn't break it.
"So I'm guessing I should walk you home now?"
Haruhi's expression changed. A smile formed on her face, and that familiar glint was appearing in her eyes. She moved close to me, and before I could react, firmly grabbed me by the hand.
"Walk? Who said anything about walking? We're sprinting to my house! I've got homework to finish, and you're going to help me with it!" Haruhi declared, before she rocketed forward with the energy of a roadrunner. Now caught in her grip, I had no choice but to attempt to keep up with her inhuman speed.
As we ran, hand in hand, I started laughing.
It's strange. I never laugh like this. Something just compelled me to be happier than usual. Someone was pulling me towards happiness, to be exact. If I hadn't met Haruhi Suzumiya, how much of a boring high school would I have turned out to be?
You know what? I didn't even want to think about it.
The sunset was already starting as Haruhi and I ran. It cast a light glow over Haruhi, who couldn't be more beautiful than she was while running like this. God, I feel so crazy right now.
I laughed a little more.
"What's so funny?" Haruhi said quickly as we ran, with not a hint of exhaustion in her voice. I should expect that from her.
"Nothing. I'm just in a really good mood right now."
Something told me that tomorrow would just be all the better. Despite what I might have previously thought, I think the future waiting for me is a far better one than I could ever have imagined.
Because with Haruhi in the equation, the world just keeps get more interesting every second.
I mean wow! It seems like I've actually reached four consecutive stories. I swear, I never thought this to be possible. I mean, I didn't think I would like an anime so much that it drove me to write so much about it.
But that's all besides the point. I feel like I've reached a milestone now. I'd like to thank you all for reading this story, and I'd especially like to thank Jonbob008 for being the most helpful beta reader I could ever ask for. If it weren't for him, this story wouldn't have been nearly as successful as it now is. Thanks again, friend.
As I said before, I thank all the people who have read my fics too. That Dude In The Shades gets massive props for featuring The Attraction of Haruhi Suzumiya in one of his videos, and I want to thank you all for your helpful reviews. A shout out goes out to Nederbord for his very in-depth reviews, and just about everyone else who took the time to write a review for this story. I couldn't have reached this four-story milestone without your support.
Now, there is still yet another story on the horizon. You may think everything is all fine...but you've yet to see...
THE INFINITY OF HARUHI SUZUMIYA.
What does the future really hold for Haruhi and Kyon? You'll have to stay tuned to find out! :)
Thanks for reading!