Chapter 1:

It Was Too Good to Be True

My Ideal Student Council Life Doesn't Exist After All

The sensation of standing in the middle of a stage is one of the most frightening
experiences I've ever had and yet, my mind can't help but replay that experience
over and over again. Bookmark here

I vividly remember placing my sweaty hands on the wooden podium while my eyes wandered across the large number of students sitting in front of me. The whole time I was up on that stage, I could not focus on a single person as it felt like if I did, their stare would be like a laser piercing through my body.Bookmark here

The teacher in charge of the elections at the side of the stage gave me a subtle nod, signaling that it was time for me to begin with my speech. It was worrying that they
did not notice the clear anxiety on my face as I sweated bullets, but nonetheless, I
was forced to turn back to the crowd and begin.Bookmark here

Except, there was no beginning, only an awkward silence. In one of the most
important moments of my life, my mouth failed to function. The presence of a script
would've helped me immensely, but unfortunately, I lost it earlier that day thanks to the terrifying creature known as a washing machine. Bookmark here

It ripped my papers up into shreds without mercy, and now because of that, it feels
like my chances of being elected as the student council secretary have also been
shredded. Bookmark here

I continued to stand there, unable to speak a single word. Murmurs started to form among the crowd as the sweat on my face trickled down and sploshed against the
creaky stage floor. Bookmark here

At that moment I clenched my hands into a fist and thought to myself. Bookmark here

Was this really the fruition of all my hard work from the past few years?  Bookmark here

Was my determination to finally make a change this weak? Bookmark here

I screamed 'no' in my mind, and as if it were a trigger, my mouth started to project
my voice again. I had started to introduce myself and my goals, but despite finally
being able to talk, it was probably too late.Bookmark here

After all, if the shakiness of a newborn deer's legs could be translated into sound,
that would be how shaky my speaking was at that moment. Normally I would've
stopped then and there to recollect my words, but that wasn't feasible anymore as
the only thing keeping me talking was adrenaline and if I let go of that,
my chances of becoming a secretary would drop to zero.Bookmark here

As I finished my speech, I bowed to the audience and made my way to the side of
the stage where the exit was. I couldn't bring myself to look at the teacher standing
there as I hurriedly walked off to a place where I could be alone in sadness.Bookmark here

The tension and sorrow of that scene continued to replay in my mind like torture
until suddenly, the snipping sound of scissors cut my dream into pieces as I opened
my eyes in shock.Bookmark here

The scissor was right above my face. Had I rose up in a hurried fashion, I would've
probably left this world. I pushed the hand holding the scissor safely away from me
as I gave a stern look to the perpetrator. Bookmark here

It was none other than my 10-year-old little sister, Naname, who giggled in response to my displeased look. Bookmark here

"It was Mom's idea, she said if you didn't get up after 5 minutes I'm allowed to start
cutting you up," she said with a bright smile. To emphasize her point, she started
swinging around the scissor as if it were a magical girl's wand while doing a little
dance. Her brown hair tied into twin tails fluttered along as she twirled.Bookmark here

"I hope you both know doing that is extremely illegal," I said while getting up. I was
still drowsy from the unpleasant dream I just had but sadly, I had to get ready for
school because the bell waits for no one.Bookmark here

After no more than five minutes, I left my room and walked down to go eat breakfast with my navy blue school vest, white uniform, and red necktie equipped. As I took a seat at the dining table and prepared to eat, I was halted by Naname who started to pull at my hair from behind.Bookmark here

"How come your hair color is a bit darker than mine? Aren't we siblings?" she asked.Bookmark here

"Well, not even twins have the same hair color sometimes, it's normal. Also, can you
just let me eat in peace? You're already done eating anyway." Bookmark here

I rubbed the hair on the back of my neck down as she let go and grinned
mischievously. Bookmark here

"I'll be off then, do your best at school too onii-chan!" Bookmark here

I mumbled a goodbye while chewing on my breakfast as I watched her leave. Her
pink, sparkling shoes dazzled in the morning sunlight as she ran off. Bookmark here

Do my best? I sure wish I did that two days ago...Bookmark here

After finishing my own breakfast, I left my house and started to walk towards school. Yesterday's rain made the walk much less enjoyable, with mud and puddles
everywhere along the concrete sidewalk. Bookmark here

As I walked past the school gates, I started to feel jittery all over again. Ever since
that incident onstage, I became paranoid of others. Thoughts about people mocking me or people looking at me in pity always lingered around in my mind, and it was
hard to drown out.Bookmark here

As reached my shoe locker and swapped my brown trainers for the school's indoor
shoes, I felt a light tap on my shoulder. I quickly turned around, thinking that
someone finally decided to mock me to my face but instead,
it was my childhood friend: Masumi Sakuragi.Bookmark here

As soon as I turned to see her face, I immediately noticed the deep breaths she was
taking, her slightly untidy orange hair, and her glistening white skin, dampened by
her sweat. Before I could ask her what happened, she looked me in the eye and
pouted.Bookmark here

"Seiichi-kun, you're still thinking about what happened with your speech right?"Bookmark here

"What? I don't know what you're talking about..." I lied, shocked that she could see
through me that easily. Bookmark here

"Don't give me that! I can clearly tell you're still kicking yourself about it. I saw you
walk into school and called you three times and yet, you didn't even hear me."Bookmark here

It was very odd to see Masumi pouting. Usually, she would be all smiles and cheerful but today, it looked like I really ticked her off. Realizing that nothing good would
come out of being oblivious, I sighed and told her the truth.Bookmark here

"Ok, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I really am still thinking about it. After all, it was my big
chance and I blew it. Isn't it natural to be disheartened for a few days?"Bookmark here

In response to my honest answer, Masumi smiled cheerfully.Bookmark here

"It's completely normal for people to think back to a mistake and dwell on it, but you shouldn't use that as an excuse to be so gloomy. After all, instead of being so
somber, you can spend that time thinking of how you're going to do better right?"Bookmark here

She poked me straight in the chest as she awaited my reply. I couldn't help but
smile, after all, her positivity has always been something I've greatly appreciated,
especially now.Bookmark here

"You're right. I'll try my best to be optimistic from now on" I replied
saluting. Bookmark here

Noticing that I probably cheered up because of her, Masumi couldn't help but beam as she saluted back at me to keep the bit going. She seemed to be so happy that
even her short side-ponytail rose up in glee.Bookmark here

From then on, I started to feel a bit better about myself as the world started to have a bit more color. It was as if the rain clouds in my mind were slowly starting to
disappear until suddenly, at the end of the last class, the unexpected happened.Bookmark here

The school bell rang and as I prepared to leave the class with Masumi, the door
swung open to reveal a very tall student looking straight at me. His shining, blue
eyes stared right at me as if he could see my soul. His blond, short hair made him
look like some foreign prince you'd see in fantasy manga.Bookmark here

As he made his presence known, some of the girls in my class started to swoon and squeal. It appears some sort of school idol has appeared before me.Bookmark here

"You, with the brown, side-swept hair and green eyes, you're Seiichi Haraguchi aren't you?"Bookmark here

As the blond student singled me out, I could feel the rest of the classroom also
staring at me, especially the girls who were squealing. They were staring at me with
a level of envy I've never felt before...Bookmark here

"Yeah, that's me. Who are you?" I asked nervously.Bookmark here

Immediately after I said that, some of the stares fixated on me became filled
with malice and wrath. It seemed as if not knowing who this student is was like
a crime punishable by death. Bookmark here

"My name is Marcel Ishimori, second-year, and I'm the student council's new general affairs manager. It's a pleasure to make your acquaintance," he said in an angelic
voice. He shifted his hand through his curly hair and then gave me a handshake as
he continued to stare into my eyes with a piercing gaze.Bookmark here

Marcel then turned to Masumi who was standing right beside me and gave her a
smile and a wink much to her confusion. Bookmark here

"Sorry mademoiselle, I'll be borrowing him for a while," he said to her, and before I
could do anything about it, he ended the handshake to grasp my wrist and dash out
of the classroom. Bookmark here

He ran through the hallway, elegantly dodging all the students who were exiting the classrooms with me in tow. He was running so fast that if I didn't keep up myself, I'd
probably skid across the floor like a sled.Bookmark here

After a short while, we ended up stopping in front of two large antique, wooden
doors. They were completely different from the steel, sliding doors of the regular
classrooms.Bookmark here

Wondering what kind of special room we've stopped in front of, I read the golden tag beside the doors. Much to my surprise, these were the doors to the student council
office, the land where all my hopes and dreams resided.Bookmark here

"Sorry to pull you out like that Seiichi-kun," Marcel said whilst panting. "There's a
urgent matter regarding the student council that I'd wish to talk to you about."Bookmark here

Marcel then unfastened the top button on his school uniform and started pulling his collar up and down to get some air. While he was doing that, I noticed something
around his neck that was previously concealed. It was red and metallic, just like a
dog collar...Bookmark here

Those weren't the most of my worries though as I started to grow more paranoid
the more I pondered what the urgent matter could be. Bookmark here

Haunting memories from that stage fright two days ago resurfaced. Did I
somehow cause a big problem during that terrible speech? Am I going to get in
trouble for wasting the student council's time?Bookmark here

Before I could apologize, Marcel continued to talk in the same angelic tone.Bookmark here

"You see, the new student council secretary elected two days ago handed in a letter of resignation earlier today, thus, the council has decided that you, our second
choice, will fill in that vacant position."Bookmark here

For a few seconds, I couldn't believe what I was hearing was real or not. Me, the
second choice secretary? Even though I bottled up my speech completely, I'm being
asked to become the new secretary of the student council?Bookmark here

"Well, Seiichi-kun? Will you take the job?" Marcel asked, looking at me in a
benevolent manner.Bookmark here

"Yes! I will!" I exclaimed, without a shred of hesitation. Bookmark here

It was a miracle come true. Even though I messed up my speech, I ended up
getting the job anyway. I've finally reached my goal of having an ideal student
council life. A life, where I could be useful to others at last.Bookmark here

I eagerly put my hand on the lustrous, golden door handle and after receiving
Marcel's nod of approval, I opened the door to enter the holy land that is the student
council office.Bookmark here

The first thing I noticed as I stepped into the office was that a bone was flying
straight at me. It seemed to have been thrown with vicious force as the speed
it was coming at me with was incredibly quick.Bookmark here

Before I could react or protect myself, Marcel leaped in front of me and caught the
bone mid-air with his mouth. He then landed in a crouch with both of his hands on
the floor, looking like a sitting dog.Bookmark here

"Good job doggy, you've earned your treat" a female voice spoke.Bookmark here

I turned in the direction the voice came from and saw that at the end of the room,
there was a large, wooden desk with two big, black swivel chairs behind it.
Seated in those chairs were two almost identical students with red armbands. Bookmark here

Their faces looked the exact same, but one had middle-length,
straight chestnut hair, accompanied by a hairclip; while the other had long, straight
black hair, accompanied by a ribbon. Bookmark here

I squinched my eyes to read the four kanji imprinted on both of their armbands.
Much to my surprise, they read 'Student Council President'.Bookmark here

Wait a second, why do they both have a president's armband? Isn't there only
supposed to be one?
Bookmark here

As I stood there baffled by what I have witnessed, Marcel spat the bone out from his mouth onto the floor and stood up.Bookmark here

"Let me introduce you to the student council members Seiichi-kun. Those two lovely, second-year ladies seated at that desk in the back are my masters and the student
council co-presidents" Bookmark here

Masters? Co-presidents? What kind of student council did I agree to join?Bookmark here

Marcel then turned to a smaller desk in front of the co-presidents' desk where a
scary-looking individual was working. He was slightly muscular and tall with fiery red hair, which you could tell was dyed because of the visible black roots. I looked
further downwards to realize he also had a dog collar around his neck.Bookmark here

"This is Katsuhiro Miyazawa, also a second-year student and the student council
treasurer. Together alongside myself and now you Seiichi-kun, we are the
stupendous servants and marvelous masochists of the student council!" he
exclaimed, with sparkles in his eyes. Bookmark here

Much to my surprise, the individual named Katsuhiro didn't react at all, instead, he
just kept staring at his computer on his desk with a nasty look. He seemed to be
completely absorbed in whatever he was doing, or perhaps he just decided
completely ignore Marcel...
Bookmark here

Before I could react to what I just heard, the two student council co-presidents
walked over towards me and looked me in the eye with seemingly unnerving
intentions. Bookmark here

The hairclip-wearing co-president spoke up first. "My name is Haruhi Uemura..."Bookmark here

"...and my name is Haruno Uemura" the ribbon-wearing co-president continued.Bookmark here

"Since you've joined us as our new secretary, starting today, you are now our dog,"
they spoke in unison, all while staring at me.Bookmark here

Haruhi then moved her arm which was behind her back forward and extended
her hand to me. She was holding the same red dog collar I saw Katushiro and
Marcel wearing. Bookmark here

"Welcome to the student council Seiichi-kun, we look forward to working with you,"
they said, with an incredibly sinister smile on both of their faces.Bookmark here

At that moment, it felt like my brain was starting to go numb. I couldn't believe these S&M weirdos are actually part of a student council, an organization I've idolized for
so long...Bookmark here

I sighed tiredly. This insanity is probably why the previous secretary quit. At this
point, I shouldn't even ask how I became their second choice option.Bookmark here

With the miracle being a hoax and my student future looking bleak, I thought to
Bookmark here

Perhaps my ideal student council life doesn't exist after all...Bookmark here

Taylor Victoria
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