Chapter 24

''Thank you for coming today Mr Izumi.'' said the principal ''Please have a seat.''

Sojiro and Konata sat down in some seats. The principal was accompanied by Nanako who couldn't look Konata in the eyes which Konata found very strange.

'I don't understand, Mrs Kuroi would never go this far...we're gamers and we stick together' thought a confused Konata as she sat down.

''Now then, we all know why we have been gathered here this morning?'' asked the principal.

All four people nodded to show that they did indeed understand why they were meeting up early on a Saturday morning, Konata wasn't used to the hallways not full of students making their way to class or chatting with their friends. Apart from a couple of janitors sweeping classrooms, no one else was there.

''I've gone over Miss Izumi's records and her recent work and I have to inform you that it is bellow satisfactory...way bellow.'' announced the principal ''We have also had reports that Miss Izumi gets all of her notes from her class mates...Miss Kagami Hiiragi and Miss Miyuki Takara

''Surely there's nothing wrong with a little help?'' asked Sojiro.

''Not when they do everything for her'' replied the principal.

''They don't I just use their notes'' said Konata. ''I swear''

''Exactly, you don't do any of the work…you just write down what you're friends have done…we have here an assignment where Mrs Izumi has written word for word what Mrs Takara has done, we know that she has copied because it was handed in a week after Mrs Takara's assignment was.

''Oh Konata'' said Sojiro as he shook his head in disappointment.

''We've decided that in order for Konata to catch up with the rest of her year, she will be taken out of the upcoming Kyoto class trip and placed into a second year class for the week instead'' explained Mrs Kuroi.

''Also if Konata does not shape up soon then we will have no choice but to make her retake the third year again'' said the principal.

''I can't retake the third year…that's not fair''.

''Don't talk back Izumi'' said Mrs Kuroi.

Konata wanted to answer back but the look in her teacher's eyes told her to not do so as it would just land her in even more trouble, she kept her mouth shut and prepared to accept her punishment. All the times she asked for notes from Miyuki and Kagami ran through her mind and the thought lasted for quite some time as she had done it so many times it would be harder to think of a day she didn't ask them for their notes.

''Now then, if we may continue'' suggested the principal. ''There are upcoming exams before the final exams of the year for third year students that decide where they end up going afterwards…these first exams will let us decide whether Mrs Izumi here will be allowed to sit the final exams or repeat the third year again'' explained the principal.

''I'll also need Konata to stay behind after class every day up to the exams to catch up'' said Nanako.

''She will, I'll also run through some of her work with her at home every night'' said Sojiro.

''Very good but be aware that we are being serious about removing Mrs Izumi from the third year altogether'' reminded the principal. ''The board has even considered expulsion''.

The meeting shortly ended afterwards with Sojiro and Konata walking down the hallway side by side, as they walked Sojiro could swear that Konata quickly grasped his hand, he took one quick look at his daughters face and for the first time in so long, he saw sadness and disappointment in her eyes. For the first time in her life, she regretted not doing her own homework.

''Relax kiddo…we'll do everything we can to make sure you don't repeat the third year'' assured Sojiro.

Konata didn't respond to her father, she could only think of how this was along a line of misfortunes that had been happening to herself and her friends the past couple of months. Apart from confessing her feelings for Tsukasa and Miyuki and Kagami getting together, it had all been bad and disappointing, Patricia had been brutally attacked, Konata and Kagami had both been threatened by letters and along with Tsukasa, they had been locked in the gym's storage cupboard over night on Valentine's Day.

The next day, Miyuki and Tsukasa wandered into the classroom and were very surprised to find that Konata was the first one there which had never happened before in the three years they had been friends. Tsukasa couldn't hold back as she hugged Konata and told her that everything was going to be alright but Konata just giggled and thought how cute Tsukasa was being.

''I was so worried when you called last night'' sobbed Tsukasa.

''I'm ok sweetie'' smilled Konata ''you're so cute when your all worked up, you know that?''.

Tsukasa would blush a dark red colour and giggled uncontrollably. Konata just smiled and felt happy that Tsukasa was there with her.

''I love you'' whispered Tsukasa into Konata's ear.

''Right back at you Tsukasa'' winked Konata.

The group then agreed to have lunch on the roof as it was a nice day and they all needed a bit of fresh air. Misao entered the classroom shortly after and Tsukasa kindly waved which took Misao by surprise but she returned the wave before sitting in her seat.

''I wonder if Kagami and fang girl are talking yet?'' wondered Konata

''I don't think so, I think they had a big fall out…Kagami was bad mouthing her last night, I overhead her'' said Tsukasa.

''Oh, what did she say?'' asked Miyuki

''I think it was….sorry guys but I don't want to repeat it…its too rude'' moaned Tsukasa.

'Could it have been the phone call between me and Kagami last night?' thought Miyuki.

''Kagami sure knows how to tear someone apart with her mouth'' sniggered Konata.

''I'm sure they'll work it out soon'' assured Miyuki.

''Oh I do hope so'' hoped Tsukasa ''I hate arguing''.

''I'm going to see Patricia tonight…anyone want to come with me?'' asked Konata as she tried to change the subject.

''Sure'' smiled Miyuki. ''It would be lovely to go and see her''.

''I'll come too'' replied Tsukasa ''and I'll ask sis as well''.

''Thanks guys, I know it'll mean a lot to her…as much as it does to me'' smiled Konata.

Lunch soon followed and despite asking Kagami to join them, only Konata, Tsukasa and Miyuki would have their lunch on the roof that day. The otaku would have the usual chocolate cornet and milk but was more surprised by the lunch that Tsukasa had prepared herself.

''Tsukasa….is that a cornet?'' asked a stunned Konata.

''I…I thought I might give one a try…I hope you don't mind?'' asked a shy Tsukasa.

''Tsukasa…that's so sweet'' whispered Konata.

Konata blushed slightly and decided to have a little bit of fun; she casually dipped a piece of her cornet into the fat end of her dessert.

'If I accidentally lose a piece of my dessert and if it happened to land somewhere on Tsukasa, who would blame me if I wanted to….clean her up a bit' thought Konata.

She then tried to bite into the piece but the chocolate would prove to be too sloppy as it slipped through her hands and flew casually into Tsukasa's face, covering her nose with chocolate.

'Scenario time' thought Konata.

''Oh Tsukasa, I'm sorry about that'' apologised Konata. ''Let me-

''Allow me Konata'' smiled Miyuki as she pulled out her handkerchief and wiped Tsukasa's nose clean of dripping chocolate.

'Damn it, must remember Miyuki's sharpness for the future' thought a disappointed Konata, the thought of her slowly going up to Tsukasa and gently licking the chocolate off her with her tongue filled her head and a cheeky cat like grin appeared across her face.

''Thank you Miyuki'' giggled Tsukasa.

''That's what best friends do'' blushed Miyuki.

Konata smiled and just told herself that there would be another chance on another day. The girls would soon return to the classroom

''Ok guys, you all need to get into groups of four for the upcoming trip in Kyoto next week'' said Nanako ''I want you to fill out the sheets being passed out to you and hand them in by the end of the school day...anyone who fails to do so will be thrown into a random group, is that understood?''

''Yes miss'' replied the class.

''Go ahead guys, I don't mind'' sighed Konata.

''This is unfair, I want you to come and enjoy the sights with me'' whined Tsukasa

''It's ok Tsukasa, we can both go somewhere together in the summer'' winked Konata.

''We…we can?'' asked Tsukasa ''Konata…''

''I guess it will be a chance to get all of your work done'' said Miyuki ''I'll buy you a souvenir so you don't feel left out''.

''You don't have to do that Miyuki'' smilled Konata. ''It's my fault this happened anyway so I'm not going to argue''.

''It still seems so harsh'' argued Tsukasa.

''The worst thing is that I won't see you for a week'' said Konata as she pulled an adorable face which made Tsukasa blush.

''I'll call you everyday…twice…three times if I have to'' promised Tsukasa.

''So cute'' teased Konata

Groups were formed and sheets handed onto the front desk. Later on in the afternoon just as school was about to end for the day, Mrs Kuroi re entered the classroom and handed out sheets about the city of Kyoto and what they would be doing.

''Wait a minute…miss I think there's been some kind of a mistake asked Miyuki as she raised her hand.

''Oh…how so?'' asked Mrs Kuroi

''Well we had a group of myself, Tsukasa and her sister Kagami in a group but we've all been placed in different groups'' complained Miyuki.

''Oh yes, well I'm not having people from other classes in our groups and we have an odd number so I placed you into a group who needed the member'' explained Mrs Kuroi.

''Y…yes miss'' replied Miyuki knowing she couldn't argue against the teacher.

''Ok Tsukasa, I'm placing Mrs Kusakabe in your group…I know you won't have any complaints and will make her feel welcome'' smiled Nanako.

''Yes miss'' said Tsukasa.

The girls all stayed silent for the rest of the school day, all unsure about what just happened and why it was happening in the first place. What possible reason could there have been to split them all into other groups?

With the school day over, Nanako quickly headed away from the school, she drove away and had a stressed look on her face. She would drive for half an hour before stopping in front of a house with the curtains drawn and front door wide open. Before Nanako stepped out of her car, she slammed her fists on the steering wheel and let out a small groan as if she was disappointed with herself for what had happened at school that day.

'I guess that's the end of my gaming life with Izumi…shame too' thought Nanako before stepping out of her car.

She knocked on the front door but got no response, she would knock one more time before deciding to step inside the house herself. The room was dark as the curtains hadn't been drawn and the smell of expired milk filled the air, Nanako had to hold her nose as she fought her way through the off putting kitchen. Entering the living room, she quickly spotted the police officer asleep on the sofa, the bottles of alcohol circled the sofa and there were at least five rows of the stuff. Nanako would cough a couple of times before shaking Yui awake but was taken back as Yui jumped up and slammed Nanako to the ground, her back going against a few bottles in the process.

''It's me Yui'' moaned Nanako.

''Haven't you ever heard of knocking?'' replied Yui.

''Ok Yui… I did my part...Konata's not going to Kyoto and her friends have been split into other groups, now you have to do your part Yui'' Nanako said annoyed.

''Fine, a deal's a deal after all'' replied a drunken Yui as she struggled to get herself up from the living room sofa after collapsing on it after helping Nanako up from the glass filled floor. She grabbed a bottle from the floor and prepared to have a sip to calm her nerves after another sleepless night.

''No more drinking for you'' said Nanako as she swiped a bottle of vodka from Yui's hands ''the deal was if I got Konata of the Kyoto trip that you would stop drinking and talk to her'' said Nanako.

''Whatever'' muttered Yui ''Just let me have one more drink for the hell of it''

''Forget it'' sighed Nanako as she looked around the room, it looked as if it hadn't been cleaned for days. ''Not another drop for you and to make sure, I'm moving in until your back on your feet''.

''You can't just move in when you fucking feel like it''. Belched Yui ''I'm a cop you know!''

''I just did, I don't think you're in any condition to stop me Yui'' smiled Nanako

''Get lost…I don't need you!'' yelled Yui ''I don't need anybody''.

Yui wasn't sure what it was but a sudden surge of anger overcame her and she quickly grabbed the cop by the collar and refused to let go.

''You listen here, because of you I lost a close friend and might have got her to repeat the third year, all because you can't accept Konata for who she is, she's a sweet and caring girl who has always spoken highly of you and you just threw your relationship with her in her face!'' yelled Nanako.

''Who are you to talk to me about my family you bitch'' replied a drunken Yui. ''You don't know how I feel at all…and at least I'm good looking enough to have a husband…who would want to get in bed with someone as lonely as you…it's pathetic''.

She was quickly met by a sharp and stinging slap across her cheek which caused her to moan in pain.

''You make me sick…well you can just sit here and drink yourself to death…I'll take care of Konata because I don't care if she loves another girl and you shouldn't either…it doesn't change who Konata is at all''. Yelled Nanako ''All its shown is what kind of person you are and It makes me sick to my stomach that someone like you is related to someone as sweet as Konata or Yutaka are''.

Yui remained silent as she held her sore cheek, she felt too drunk to fully understand what was going on but all she could think about was that she had been struck and her officer initiative took over her. She suddenly flung up on her wobbly legs and punched Nanako in the cheek, sending her onto the sofa.

''You're under arrest for assaulting a police officer'' declared a dizzy Yui ''I just need to find my handcuffs''.

A drunken Yui started to search for her handcuffs; she checked the living room but was unable to find them anywhere and was barely able to stay on her feet. Nanako during this time silently got up from the sofa and attempted to make her escape; unaware that Yui had heard her and had retrieved a pistol from her pocket. She quickly turned around and before Nanako had a chance to run over and try to knock the gun from her hands, a shot was fired and a shocked Nanako looked down to sees blood pouring from her left leg, a blinding pain entered her and she screamed as she collapsed to the ground.

Still not thinking straight, Yui managed to find her handcuffs and drunkenly handcuffed a bleeding Nanako to the living room radiator before laughing in her face.

''You're…going to jail'' laughed Yui ''Teach you to lecture me on my family''.

''Please Yui….I need to go to the hospital'' panted Nanako ''you shot me in the leg!''.

''Nice try but all you're going to is a cell…clean up after yourself'' said Yui.

''PLEASE YUI!'' begged Nanako ''I'm losing a lot of blood''

''Jeez, it's only a flesh wound'' argued Yui ''I barely touched you''.

''I NEED TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL!'' Nanako screamed, her leg dripping blood as she struggled to deal with the pain as well as the shock of being shot by a drunken police officer.

''Keep quiet…I'm a bit sleepy'' yawned Yui as she tossed the gun to one side and made her way to the sofa, laying on it and curling up into a drunken ball that was unaware of what was going on.

''YUI!'' yelled Nanako but got no response, she couldn't go anywhere for the handcuffs and the blood continued to pour from her leg causing her great discomfort, all she could do was grab a dry newspaper nearby and cover her wound and pray that the bleeding stops soon.

'Izumi…I'm so sorry for everything…what kind of friend was I for letting Yui use me like that…I guess I just enjoyed the company and thought she would change her ways…please don't give up on her and never give up on who you are either, you might not be the smartest girl in the world but you're one of the kindest along with Hiiragi…what's wrong with me, I sound as if I'm about to give up and wait for death's embrace to come upon me' thought a shaken Nanako as she slowly began to black out, her last sight was the living room door opening and footsteps could be heard running in, she had no idea who it was but she didn't care…her eyes fell shut.

''It's all becoming a big problem'' moaned Kagami ''Konata isn't going on the you think Misao had something to do with it?'' she asked Miyuki as they waited by the school gates.

''I thought Misao wanted to hurt Konata as much as she could so It doesn't make sense for her to get her kicked off the trip where she can't be around her for the week'' pointed out Miyuki.

''So it is just because Konata was too lazy to ever do any of her own work...can't say I'm surprised'' Kagami sighed.

''Bit harsh Kagami'' replied Konata.

''If you'd studied Konata then you wouldn't be in this's your own fault'' pointed out Kagami as the four girls headed home from school. Tsukasa and Konata were surprised but happy that for now, Kagami was speaking to them.

''You let me copy your homework all the time Kagami'' pointed out Konata ''the school knows about it''.

''So what...I'm in trouble now?'' asked a concerned Kagami ''I only gave you notes, that's not doing anything wrong and Miyuki has helped you out before as well''

''They said you can't in your sister's group for the Kyoto trip'' said Konata in a disappointed voice ''Miyuki as well''.

''What...we've all been split up?'' asked a sad Tsukasa

''It's my fault'' said Konata ''I relied on you guys too much and I've gotten you all in trouble'' said a down Konata

''Damn right it is, we all have to suffer because of your laziness'' said an angry Kagami ''All those times I told you to study and you ignored me every time''.

''I said I'm sorry Kagami, what more do you want me to say?'' yelled back Konata ''you're not the one who could get suspended if she doesn't improve''.

''Now then, let's not start fighting with each other'' pleaded Miyuki

''Miyuki, every time we get in trouble it's because of her!'' said Kagami ''She's so lazy that we have to bail her out every time''.

''Stop yelling at Konata'' said Tsukasa ''She said she was sorry''.

''Oh here we go, the double team'' snared Kagami.

''Arguing will get us nowhere sis'' pointed out Tsukasa ''we need to stick together''.

''Tsukasa's right, let's not fall out'' said Miyuki.

''Thank you Miyuki'' glowed Tsukasa

''Whatever'' grumbled Kagami as she folded her arms and didn't look at Konata who did the same.

'Is it me or are they always falling out lately?' thought Tsukasa.

The four girls walked on to the train station where they went their separate ways. Tsukasa and Kagami went one way and Konata and Miyuki went others but a minute after they had all gone, Konata came back down her path and after checking that the coast was clear, went down the road that Miyuki had took, hoping to catch up with her which she did a few minutes later.

''Miyuki!'' yelled Konata from far behind her. The pink haired girl heard her voice and stopped to wait for the otaku to catch up with her. They walked on to a nearby park and sat down on a pair of swings. Miyuki was surprised that the blue haired Otaku had followed her and wanted to have a private word, she was unsure what she wanted to say without Kagami or Tsukasa around to hear.

''What's on your mind then Konata?'' asked Miyuki as she started to swing slowly

''Well it's just a hunch that I'm having with Kagami...something doesn't feel right at the moment and it has something to do with her'' said Konata.

''What do you mean by that?'' asked Miyuki ''She has been a little preoccupied with work and such but its nothing that's causing me to worry or to be concerned about''.

''I feel like she's hiding something and it has something to do with Misao...but like I said, it's just a feeling'' sighed Konata

''Yeah...only a feeling'' replied Miyuki.

''...Do you know what it's like to see something you hold dear in a coma Miyuki?'' Konata asked Miyuki

''I assume you mean I can't say that I do know'' answered Miyuki. ''But I will say I think it is a tearful experience to be going through''.

''I feel so helpless and useless around her, like I can't do anything for her at all and it pisses me off'' Konata groaned as she started to go higher on the swing. Her feet kicking the ground as she reached the bottom every time.

''She'll wake up soon Konata'' reassured Miyuki ''besides what does Patricia have to do with Kagami?''

''Miyuki...every time I've mentioned Patricia around Kagami, she's always had the same look on her's like she has some kind of idea who did it to her...I know it sounds crazy and farfetched but I can't help thinking like this'' said Konata. ''I can't sleep at night because of it''.

''You're stressed out Konata...maybe you should go home and get some rest'' suggested Miyuki

Konata stopped swinging and step in front of a still sat down Miyuki, the sun setting in the background as the two girls continued talked.

''I think you have something you're not telling me as well'' said Konata out of the blue.

''Huh...I don't know what you're talking about Konata'' replied Miyuki with a smile ''Like I said, I think you need some well earned rest''.

''I'm sorry Miyuki but I know you and Kagami are not telling me and Tsukasa something...I'm not as thick as you think I am'' said Konata coldly ''so you can drop the cute smile and get serious here''.

''What! We're not hiding anything from you, nothing at all'' said Miyuki in a panic ''Why would you think that?''

''You're lying Miyuki, please tell me what it is'' asked Konata ''I won't tell anyone, I promise…not even Tsukasa''

''Konata, there's nothing that me or Kagami are hiding from you'' giggled Miyuki ''you're being paranoid over nothing''

''I don't believe you and I have seen you both going off for your little chats before, and Kagami and Misao haven't been getting along much lately, I know because she told me today'' said Konata ''Misao said that Kagami has been off with her recently but wasn't sure why''.

Miyuki panicked and didn't know how much longer she could hide it from Konata; she was right on their tails and it seemed like there was no one way out of this.

''W...what else has Misao being saying to you?'' asked Miyuki.

''Aha so you are hiding something, I made that up Miyuki'' said Konata as she took Miyuki by surprise ''I want to know the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth''

'Oh no, I walked into her trap' panicked Miyuki.

''Ummm well you see, it's not what you think'' panicked Miyuki ''Kagami and Misao are're just imagining things''

''Miyuki...stop it'' said Konata as Miyuki babbled on. ''Will it really be that bad if you told me what was going on?''.

''Konata…please stop asking me'' pleaded Miyuki ''It's for your own good to remain in the dark''.

''But why…I thought we were friends Miyuki'' said a disappointed Konata.

''We are Konata!'' replied Miyuki ''But you can't know, if you were to know what I know then I'm afraid to how you would react and I can't let you do something stupid and have you throw your life with Tsukasa away'' said an annoyed Miyuki.

Konata went silent for a moment, a group of school kids giggled as they ran close by…a clock in the park chimed away as they left, leaving the two high school students feeling awkward and unsure whether something good or bad would happen next.

''Who Miyuki…you were there that night…you saw who attacked Patricia didn't you'' questioned Konata.

Miyuki remained silent, not able to look Konata in the eyes.

''You lied to me that night…you said you found her and didn't see anyone else about but you saw who did this run away AND YOU DID NOTHING!'' yelled Konata.

Miyuki still didn't speak; she didn't know what to say or how to defend herself. She just wanted Konata to let it all out and say what was on her mind.

''MIYUKI!'' yelled Konata but she still didn't get a response.

As Konata thought of ways to get Miyuki to talk, she was suddenly pushed to the ground by an arriving Tsundere Kagami who was closely followed by Tsukasa.

''Leave my girlfriend alone Konata!'' yelled Kagami.

Konata slowly pulled herself up and stared directly at Kagami with angry eyes, she couldn't understand why Miyuki and Kagami were keeping her in the dark…there had to be a very good reason why they would do anything to prevent her from knowing the truth….until something suddenly struck her that made sense to her.

''It's someone we know isn't it'' muttered Konata ''It has to be''.

''Enough Konata, you've done enough today'' said an angry Kagami as she comforted an upset Miyuki. Tsukasa seemed unsure what to do in this situation; she felt bad for Miyuki but also wanted to be there for Konata.

''I'm ok Kagami…she has a right to be angry'' wept Miyuki as she stood up.

''She has no right to take it out on you though'' argued Kagami.

''Then tell me the truth'' demanded Konata.

''She's said all she knows'' argued Kagami.

''No….Kagami…this isn't going to work'' wept Miyuki.

''…Miyuki, no'' replied Kagami.

''We have to tell them'' decided Miyuki.

''Oh Miyuki…are you sure?'' asked Kagami ''I'll only say if you think it's the best option''.

''Tell us what?'' asked Tsukasa.

''Don't have much of a choice now…Tsukasa, Konata…myself and Kagami know a lot of things that you might want to know'' admitted Miyuki.

''Tell me Miyuki'' said a cold Konata ''you tell me who hurt Patricia''.

''Konata…I don't like it when you sound like this'' admitted Tsukasa.

''You saw me at the hospital Tsukasa…do you know what it's like to know that she might never wake up again…because some sick and twisted bitch has something against lesbians!'' said an emotional Konata. ''I'm sorry if I sound selfish but our lives are becoming dangerous and I'm, not going to sit back and let anyone destroy what I hold dear…you Tsukasa'' admitted Konata.

''Oh Konata….I love you'' smiled Tsukasa.

''No one hurts my Tsukasa or any of my best friends…I won't let it happen'' said Konata. ''Whoever it is, I will g-

''It was…Misao'' sighed Miyuki out of the blue and it made Konata go quiet as she was in mid sentence. ''Misao was the person I saw the night Patricia got attacked…I'm so sorry Konata'' wept Miyuki as Kagami squeezed her tight and calmed her down.

Konata felt the urge to speak but couldn't find the words….why Misao…what possible reason did the fang girl have for attacking a first year? The Otaku's fists tightened as she felt angry…the thought of Misao laughing or ever feeling happy made Konata's blood boil.

''It's done'' muttered Konata.

''Huh, what's done….what do you mean?'' asked Kagami.

''I don't care what some stupid school says…I'm going to Kyoto and I will avenge Patricia!'' declared Konata.

''Are you insane, wake up you idiot, you could get expelled!'' said Kagami in disbelief.

''I don't care anymore, deep down I hoped it was her…just so I could get my hands on her'' admitted Konata ''She's never liked me and has tried to make my life a misery since…she tried to mess with Tsukasa and that is something I can't forgive''.

''…Konata'' whispered a moved Tsukasa.

''If I have to retake the third year then so be it'' said Konata.

''You don't mean that'' said Kagami.

''I don't know what I want to do with my life yet anyway'' shrugged Konata. ''One more year is plenty of time to decide''.

''Konata….'' said Tsukasa.

''Yes sweetie'' winked Konata.

''Please…I beg of you to listen to Kagami and Miyuki…don't throw your life away…do you really think Patricia would want you to get yourself arrested for her?'' asked Tsukasa.

''I'm going to find Misao…RIGHT NOW!'' yelled Konata as she listened to what Tsukasa was saying but her anger was too big to extinguish by a simple request. She made her way to leave but as she started to walk away…Tsukasa of all people ran in front of her, blocking her way.

''Move out of the way Tsukasa…I have to get Misao'' asked Konata.

''No….I won't let you'' said Tsukasa.

''Move Tsukasa, you don't understand what's going on'' sighed Konata.

''No you don't understand Kona chan…I've been told my whole life that I don't understand things…school friends…my sisters….even Kagami but I never thought you would say that to me and mean it'' said a disappointed Tsukasa.

''I won't be able to think straight, knowing that bitch hasn't paid for what she's done'' argued Konata.

''Violence won't solve anything'' answered back Tsukasa.

''But Tsukasa…'' said Konata

''I always thought that you didn't like me that much in our first year, I always thought that once you met Kagami, I became part of the sideline'' said an upset Tsukasa.

''Wait I….I didn't mean it like that…no one understands how I feel Tsukasa'' said Konata.

''You'd be surprised Konata'' said Tsukasa. '' I was suffering for a year and more…not being able to tell you how I feel…sometimes I felt like I was in a coma…helpless and unable to tell you how I felt''.

''Tsukasa….did you really feel like that?'' asked Konata.

''Yes…but you woke me up Konata and If it was me that got attacked…I wouldn't want you to get revenge on the person by going after them'' admitted Tsukasa.

''Yeah but….-

''But nothing Konata, listen to my sister and think about how she feels about this'' said Kagami ''She loves you more than anything and you would throw her love away, just to get one over Misao when it might not have even been her in the first place''.

''WHAT DO YOU MEAN!'' said Miyuki, Tsukasa and Konata

''Well…what I meant was she might have had some help'' said Kagami as she coughed.

''Help?'' said a confused Miyuki. ''But I only saw Misao that night''.

''I just can't imagine Misao being smart enough to pull it off by herself and there's another piece of evidence that might help us out'' said Kagami

''And…that is'' said Konata.

''Yutaka…'' replied Kagami ''Think about it…Yutaka won't know any of the third year students…it wouldn't take much for one of them to go up to her and give her a fake name'' said Kagami. ''Remember when you called me Konata and told me what Yutaka had told you?''

''But Kagami…that doesn't explain Miyuki seeing Misao that night'' said Konata.

''I'll admit that Misao has something to do with this but what I'm thinking that someone….is pulling the strings'' said Kagami

''But whom…'' said Tsukasa. ''Who would go as far as Misao with this…there's no one else we know like that''.

''That's where I get lost at too Tsukasa'' admitted Kagami. ''I just can't imagine anyone who would hate us that much''.

All four girls couldn't think who this other person might be or what their problem might be at all but they all felt afraid and scared from the prospect of what they had already experienced. Patricia had been attacked by Misao and Konata and Tsukasa had been locked in overnight in a gym locker room. They also knew that the threatening letters were involved in this as well.

''Well whoever it is…they can wait until I deal with Misao'' said Konata ''She's first before this other person''.

''Please Konata…I want you to promise me that you won't come to Kyoto to get Misao'' said Tsukasa.

''But I-

''Promise me!'' yelled Tsukasa.

''Ok…I promise I won't come to Kyoto to get Misao'' promised Konata.

Tsukasa sighed and produced a smile of relief.

''Thank you Konata'' said Tsukasa as she pecked the Otaku on her cheek.

'But there's plenty of other times when I can and will get my hands on that bitch' thought Konata.

As Konata and Tsukasa weren't looking, Kagami decided to smile and feel happy for the couple but quickly replaced her smile with a sigh as the two girls turned around.

''You're lucky you have Tsukasa at all'' said Kagami. ''Not a lot of people would put up with your behaviour''.

''I know I am'' smiled Konata. ''I am very lucky and happy that she's by my side''.

''I'll always be here for you'' giggled Tsukasa.

''Kagami…I'll always be here for you too'' smiled a blushing Miyuki ''I feel the luckiest girl in the world to have someone as beautiful as you with me''.

''Don't…don't be stupid…your making me blush in front of Konata and she'll just make fun of me'' blushed Kagami. ''But I love you too Miyuki….don't ever think that I don't''.

'Konata won't get a chance to get Misao because she's mine to deal with!' thought Kagami.

''Awww is that what Kagami's worried about'' smiled Konata ''Group hug guys?''

Kagami hesitated at first but jumped into action as Konata wrapped her arms around Miyuki and squeezed her tight. A jealous Kagami would then unwrap Konata's arms from Miyuki's waist and replaced her with herself as she hugged Miyuki so Konata just squeezed Kagami instead, despite Kagami's insults as she did so. The only one not in the hug yet was Tsukasa who was happy and smiling from the fact that despite everything that had happened, the four of them were as strong as ever and determined to not let anyone or anything ever drive them apart.

''Room for one more Tsukasa'' winked Konata.

''It's not a group hug without you sis'' smiled Kagami.

''Complete us Tsukasa'' smiled Miyuki.

With a tear in her eyes and joy in her heart, the cute Tsukasa joined the hug and all four girls had their arms around the others. Stood in a circle, they smiled at the others and felt as happy as they had been for quite some time…they all knew tough times lay ahead but were relieved that they would always stand by each other.

''We're going to beat this'' said Tsukasa. ''Together''.

''Together'' said Konata, Miyuki and Kagami together.

The orange background of the sun setting added to the beauty of the scene but unaware that the four girls were being watched by another set of eyes from far off, Misao watched as the four girls said kind things to each other and without saying a word, walked off in another direction and left the girls alone.

''Friends forever!'' the four girls yelled into the sky.

''Kagami…'' said Konata.

''Yes Konata?'' asked Kagami.

''You were only pretending to be mad with me and Tsukasa weren't you?'' teased Konata.

''S…shut up'' replied Kagami.

''You so were…little actress in the making are we'' said Konata as she continued to tease Kagami.

''SHUT UP KONATA!'' yelled Kagami as she tried and to grab Konata but the Otaku dived behind Tsukasa and laughed as Kagami stopped her assault. The Tsundere couldn't help but smile, it was as if she expected Konata to ruin a beautiful moment but she didn't mind. They would argue a lot but they were like sisters to each other….they all were.

''You two will never change will you?'' laughed Tsukasa.

''If you mean Konata will never grow up then no'' laughed Kagami. ''Better watch out Tsukasa''.

''Cheeky Kagamin!'' said Konata

Everyone just laughed and the group would slowly make their way out of the park, all in arms as the group huddled together, all smiling and happy…without a care in the world.

End of Chapter 24

Authors Note

Just to say that this chapter took so long because I have moved out of my house and I am now settling into life at University so I apologize for the long time it took to write this chapter.

Till next time

M.J.W 2011