"Let me show you some real power" Is what I said, but it wasn't my place to say that, nor will it ever be.
If what I discovered at that moment was power, then I'd squandered any right to it as soon as I prepared to use it against the Zen End trio. As needlessly violent as they were, there was another solution to the problem that was much better than fighting fire with fire. I just didn't see it.
"What do you think you're doing?" The ringleader of Zen End said timidly, to which I gave no reply. Even though I was about to overstep my bounds and play the judge, jury, and executioner all at once- when someone who has 'power' asks what another person is doing coming at them with even more 'power', silence is the only appropriate thing to return. Because they're using their own false self-projection of strength to justify abusing others, silence is all they should get. I believed that.
I still stand by that, but it's an ironic philosophy for me to hold since the one who was projecting a false sense of strength onto themselves the most in that situation was me.
My inhales and exhales became louder and grew rapidly in succession as if they were cultivating a grand finale where my breathing would halt, and release some sort of finishing blow. That wouldn't have been bad, but you can't deal the finishing blow if you haven't dealt the first one.
I went gung-ho about this situation, so I had no idea what I could truly do. All I knew was that I had to do something. I spread out the fingers on my right hand and positioned my right arm to the left side of my body. I felt a light breeze gather around my fingertips. Violently, like throwing a thoroughly stirred hornet's nest, I flung my hand and arm outward to the right, across my body. What I produced was not the light breeze I felt on my fingers, but a powerful explosive gust that sent the three Zen End members flying to the end of the hall. Whether it was their bones or the wall, something cracked from the slamming impact.
Ms. Kamiya was nowhere to be seen. I was expecting her to either try to stop me, which made sense considering that keeping their students in check is a teacher's obligation, or sit back and watch. Maybe she was feeling devious, or even devilishly curious, and wanted to sit back and watch the action unfold from the safety of the faculty room. That is, however, one of the last places I'd consider safe. The room itself and all the equipment in it were ancient. Everything about it looked brittle and worn down from use. I wouldn't need a destructive force to wreck it. The 'average joe' Takuya from a day and a half ago could have busted the door down just by breathing in that general direction. Given that the faculty room was liable to fall apart at any moment, Ms. Kamiya's decision to suddenly disappear was understandably logical. But where did she go?
"What tremendous power. That's beyond any- argh..." The Zen End leader abruptly stopped mid-sentence to cough up blood, then continued.
"...thing a human could do. I can't begin to understand how this is happening, but you have so much power, and here you are using it on people weaker than yourself. Does that not make us the same?"
She wasn't entirely wrong, but she wasn't close to being right. There were many things incorrect with her argument.
"And how do you feel about that? How do you feel about this power that I'm crushing you with?" I asked. I posed the question in an intimidating and inviting manner, so she knew I was deadly serious but still expected a legitimate answer.
"To be straight, it pisses me off. You piss me off. I hate you. It disgusts me that you look down on us and take whatever pent-up negative feelings you have out on us without considering how we feel, especially when we've done nothing to you."
Oh boy. I pulled out the reflective object I conveniently had in my pocket and tossed it at the three girls. The leader caught it and shot me a confused glare.
"A mirror. Take a good look."
"What are you getting at? Why give me this?"
"I'm saying you should stop throwing rocks from a glass house. You complain that I stand here and beat down on you from above just because I can when you were doing the very same a few moments ago. Therefore,"
The yellow in my eyes burned even more intensely. The gravity at the end of the hall where the three were sat down in pain increased exponentially. The floor underneath them cracked. Chips began to pop out from the smooth tile.
"You have no right to complain about this."
"Oh, yeah. Didn't you say that it was the natural right of the strong to exercise their power on those beneath them? Then, you should have no problems with me doing just that to you, since I'm stronger, right? Will you accept my natural right to send you to oblivion? Or were you only saying that to justify your own actions? That's a rhetorical question. We both know the answer. Honestly, the simplest thing you should've thought about was to not hurt others if you're not okay with getting hurt yourself. Didn't they teach you that in kindergarten? Maybe you're not the attentive type, but I think saying that you lack common sense fits better."
I had lost track of my thoughts and went on a tangent.
"And since I'm ranting, you piss me off for not possessing a shred of guilt about what you did to that poor guy. You put him a few steps away from death's door, and those wounds on his cheek will probably never fully heal. Even worse, he didn't do a thing to deserve those scars. I'd force all three of you to apologize, but he understandably made a run for it as soon as I showed up, and I'm sure the last people he wants to see or hear from are you pieces of shit. I bet he'd be thrilled that you're getting treated the way you treated him. Personally, I'd like to pay you back for more than just what you did to him because I know he wasn't your only victim, but I won't since I only have my intuition to base that on- I know I'm not wrong, though. You can sit there and accuse the pot of calling the kettle black all you want, but there's a key difference between you and I."
In hindsight, it was a childish way to phrase it, but it still needed to be said. Most people can look back on just about anything and find some fault in hindsight, so it's not like I severely regretted my choice of words.
"You started it."
This was not a playground spat between two grade-schoolers; it was a dangerous trio being knocked down a peg. If it was as trivial as the former, pinning the blame on your buddy, and your buddy pinning the blame on you is to be expected. In reality, I couldn't claim that someone was at fault without solid proof, which I had just witnessed more than enough of.
When it comes to trivial matters like two kids fighting over who dropped the ice cream, no one wants to get involved, because they recognize how pointless the issue is. They also recognize that giving attention to a pointless thing does not make it more important. It makes it even more pointless. Teachers get involved with little arguments between children because it's their job, not because they want to. They understand it's meaningless.
The situation at hand, however, was not trivial. It was quite a problem. It was such a problem that I understood there was no time to sit around. Someone had to do something, even if that person wasn't within their rights to, or else there would be casualties. So of course, as the last person who had the right to act, I stepped in.
"If you hadn't attacked him unprovoked, and you just went about your business, you wouldn't be paralyzed from the waist down right now. Simply put, you reap what you sow. By the way, heads up."
While their bodies were on the verge of temporarily giving out, and they could barely manage to speak, I received a muffled "Huh?"
As if to answer her inquiry for me, the cracked tile floor beneath them finally gave out. The Zen End trio plummeted through, falling from the second floor to the first.
I marched forward, preparing to jump down with them and finish what they started. Whether or not they would've died isn't knowledge that I possess (they probably would have) , because I was told "Stop! Don't move!" by a boisterously loud female voice. Her voice was stern, even sterner than Ms. Kamiya in lecture mode. The stranger's voice was loud, serious, and rough. She was like a drill sergeant more than anything. I thought it was odd how many new faces I was meeting that day.
I turned around to get a look at them, and sure enough, it was no one I knew. Maybe I just knew no one. Well, I do, but only a few people. The point being, I'd never seen this person before. I hesitated because their sudden shouting caught me off guard, but I wasn't going to stop because some random person told me to.
"Why should I stop? You haven't been here the whole time. You didn't see what they did to that guy, who did nothing to deserve it."
"I don't care whether they were beating him up because they felt like it or because he attacked first. It doesn't matter to me. I'm telling you to stop because I'll expel you if you don't."
That was quite an empty threat coming from someone who doesn't have the authority to do such a thing. I was confident she couldn't expel me even in her dreams because she was wearing a student uniform. She wasn't faculty, staff, or administration. What could she do, I asked myself. Then I noticed the pin below her collar.
I had no clue what the pin was for or what it signified. I had just noticed it. "How is a student going to expel me? You don't have any authority."
When I said that, the last thing I expected to do after was eat my words.
"You've got some nerve telling the student council president she's got no authority. I could have you out of here in an instant. That's why I'm giving you a choice. Stop, or get expelled. I, Tenjouin Atsuko, will not allow you to run amok in my school."
Tenjouin Atsuko, the iron-hearted, cold-blooded student council president. The proper term would actually be 'dictator' and not 'student council president'. If Zen End, the lackeys beneath her lackeys, were a threat to this school, then Tenjouin Atsuko was a cataclysmic threat.
"But you'll allow those three to run amok in your school? And since when is this your school? The student council doesn't have that much authority. They can't proceed with any plans without the chairwoman's approval."
"I'm afraid the council does have that much authority." Said a voice over the loudspeaker system.
"What are you doing? And how'd you respond to him, when there's no way you can hear us talking from up there?" Tenjouin asked belligerently.
"I just guessed, and I'm filling him in since you introduced yourself so poorly. Hi, Takuya. I'm the chairwoman of the school, Nishioka Manami. That's Tenjouin Assuko- sorry, my mistake. Tenjouin Atsuko, student council president. Due to circumstances that would be better explained in person, she's taken control of the academy, and I've been confined to my office every day when I come in. Because of her, a whole bunch of people like those three Zen bitches or whatever have been running around and stirring up chaos. I know it's rude of me to ask since you don't know me, but could you get Atsuko out of the way? You'd be doing both me and yourself a huge favor."
"I'll give it a shot, but only because she'd expel me even if I did stop like she asked me to. She'd probably do even worse than that." I replied. It wasn't very hard to figure out someone like her. Tenjouin has god-complex written all over her face.
"Ha! How about that, Atsuko? You've barely known each other a minute, and he already saw right through you!"
"Shut up, hag! Act your age!" Tenjouin angrily shouted at the nearest intercom speaker.
I turned to look at Tenjouin. "It's as you heard. I'll have to refuse."
"Then I guess I have no choice but to expel you." She replied, feigning disappointment.
Within the blink of an eye, Tenjouin reached behind her skirt and produced a handgun, which she pointed at me.
A gun? Seriously? She was able to bring that onto school property? Even the student council president shouldn't be allowed to pack heat on campus! Oh, dear. I knew the situation was bad, but it was even worse than I thought. I didn't have any of the facts, but it was evident that a school run by Tenjouin was a sinking ship that's also on fire, that's also missing half of its crew, that's also making a beeline towards an iceberg.
"You're expelled." She coldly exclaimed while I was facing the barrel of the gun. I didn't know what I did to make the strong wind that knocked back the Zen End, but even if I were to somehow recreate that, there was no way it would be strong enough to push back a bullet. I didn't want to die, but I was surprised that I even got this far without a plan, so I was sure there was something I could do. I didn't know what that was until I saw her. Slowly approaching Tenjouin from behind was Ms. Kamiya in her kaiju appearance. With one hand, she put a finger over her lips, signaling me to not alert Tenjouin of her presence. Her other hand was stretched out, preparing to strike Tenjouin with nails the length of claws. Even with a finger over her lips, her face and body language still spoke to me. "Give it a try."
I hoped that if Ms. Kamiya was right, the kaiju within me wouldn't be totally useless.
Tenjouin fired a shot from her gun. I hyperfocused on the bullet as it flew straight at me. As it traveled closer to me, the bullet appeared to gradually slow down, eventually almost to a complete stop. Whether the bullet got slower or I got faster was of no concern to me. All I saw was an opportunity. I quickly swung my arm out and knocked the bullet away from me. During that window of time, my arm had disfigured into one similar to Ms. Kamiya's kaiju form, then returned to normal afterward.
Instead of firing another round, Tenjouin stood in silence for several seconds, until she finally spoke.
"Such power. I've never seen someone so elegantly strong. Never in my life have I missed a target up until now. It's... yes. Such talent is worthy."
[Transformation #01: (Kaiju Grasp) Added to Index.]