Chapter 8:


I Became the Manager of the First Galactical Idols

The weekend arrived. Sanae, Risa, and I were nervous and excited to see the girls. Soon, the first one arrived: Astra-san. She knocked on the front door and I received her. We walked into Sanae's and Risa's room—which was about to turn into a dance studio.Bookmark here

"Thank you for coming," I said.Bookmark here

"Thank you for choosing me! I don't have the words to thank you enough," she bowed.Bookmark here

"It's fine, you don't need to."Bookmark here

Sanae and Risa approached us, but someone knocked on the front door again. Aki-san and Umi-san stood together outside. I thought Umi-san was going to be late.Bookmark here

"Please come in," I said.Bookmark here

"Thank you, gentleman," Aki-san replied as she stepped inside.Bookmark here

"You thought I was going to be late, didn't you?" Umi-san said.Bookmark here

She knows.Bookmark here

We walked into the room. They and Astra-san stood together next to the door, whilst Sanae, Risa, and I stood in front of them at the other side of the room.Bookmark here

"Thank you for giving me this opportunity," Aki-san bowed.Bookmark here

"I guess I should thank you too," Umi-san said. "I really need the money. You're going to pay us, right?"Bookmark here

"Yes, but let's introduce ourselves to each other before talking business," I answered. "I'm Kaito Miyahara, fourth-year Business Administration student at Saitama University. I'll be the manager of the group."Bookmark here

"I-I'm Sanae," she smirked with her hand on her hip trying to look confident, but she was obviously nervous.Bookmark here

"And I'm Risa," she smiled.Bookmark here

"They will be your group mates," I said. "Just like you, they want to become idols because…"Bookmark here

Wait, I haven't asked them.Bookmark here

"Because…"Bookmark here

"Because we grew up watching them," Risa continued.Bookmark here

Sanae added, "We didn't watch anything else as kids. We've always wanted to be like them; it's practically been our life."Bookmark here

"Oh!" Astra-san and Aki-san uttered in amazement.Bookmark here

Interesting.Bookmark here

Astra-san, Aki-san, and Umi-san proceeded to introduce themselves. Then I continued.Bookmark here

"Now that we all know each other, I'll briefly explain what this is about. You already know we will be an idol group. Our goal is to make people happy and show them that idols make society better."Bookmark here

And because I needed a final project, but I don't need to mention that.Bookmark here

"Humas can't replace living beings. Their method is rigid and selfish, whilst we'll work together to prove that only living beings can emotionally understand living beings. Humas fulfill desire, but idols fulfill happiness."Bookmark here

Everyone clapped.Bookmark here

"If you agree with our goal, then there's only one step left."Bookmark here

With my glasses, I sent a permission request to theirs. Aki-san was already wearing hers, whilst Astra-san and Umi-san took theirs out of their pockets. They accepted the request and I sent the contract document.Bookmark here

"The contract is the same for the three of you, except for the personal details, obviously. Please take your time to read it and don't hesitate to ask me anything. You can sit on the chairs over there."Bookmark here

They walked past us and sat down. Sanae, Risa, and I stood beside the door.Bookmark here

"What did you think of my speech?" I asked.Bookmark here

"It was great!" Risa answered.Bookmark here

"Not bad," Sanae responded. "It could've been better, but I must admit it was encouraging."Bookmark here

"Great," I replied. "By the way, about your reasons to be idols, did you really not watch anything else?"Bookmark here

Sanae shook her head. "Since Gorō took care of us after he found us, he needed to work a lot to earn enough money. As typical, he gave us and showed us stuff for kids, but we hated everything. He struggled to find something we liked until he showed us a video of idols giving a show. We immediately fell in love, so Gorō played along."Bookmark here

Risa continued, "We wouldn't stop watching videos of idols, but Gorō realized we were alone in this building, so he took us to the café we went to the other day so we could meet people and watch all the videos we wanted."Bookmark here

"We met Kiku there. She would take care of us all the time, so Gorō would take us to the café whilst he worked during the day. You could say it was like daycare for us," Sanae giggled.Bookmark here

"So she's like an aunt to you," I said.Bookmark here

Or a grandma.Bookmark here

"You could say so," Sanae replied.Bookmark here

"And you? You haven't told us much about yourself," Risa wondered.Bookmark here

"Me? I'm boring. My life is boring. Study here, study there."Bookmark here

"Didn't you say you had a bad experience with a business before?" Sanae asked.Bookmark here

"I did. To summarize, I was so enthusiastic about it that I stopped being realistic. The business quickly burned and I was treated as a reject for years."Bookmark here

"Even by your family?" Risa worried.Bookmark here

"Not at all. My parents are the sweetest people you'll ever meet. And my little brother was too young to understand it. My elder sister, however, was disappointed, but didn't treat me differently."Bookmark here

"You have siblings?" Risa smiled. "Will we ever meet them?"Bookmark here

"I don't know, maybe."Bookmark here

"Have you told them about all of this?" Sanae wondered.Bookmark here

"No, I'm waiting until it's certain we are doing it, which is close."Bookmark here

"Hey," Umi-san called.Bookmark here

Does she really have no manners at all?Bookmark here

"What is it?" I responded.Bookmark here

"What do we need Interplanetary Passports for?"Bookmark here

Oops, I forgot to tell them.Bookmark here

"The group will travel to many planets; it will be galactical. That's why the name of the agency is Galactical Idols."Bookmark here

"You didn't tell us about that."Bookmark here

"That's my bad, I'm sorry. Do any of you have problems with that?"Bookmark here

"Nope," Astra-san answered.Bookmark here

"As long as we come back to Earth often," Aki-san replied.Bookmark here

"I guess that makes it more interesting," Umi-san said.Bookmark here

"Good. That reminded me of telling you that we don't have a theme nor a name for the group yet; we'll choose them together. If you accept the contract, that is."Bookmark here

Suddenly, a message appeared on my glasses, telling me that Umi-san had accepted it.Bookmark here

"There you go. I didn't read the whole thing, I only cared about the pay. The passport caught my attention, though."Bookmark here

"I see."Bookmark here

Not even a minute later, Astra-san and Aki-san accepted the contract as well.Bookmark here

"Perfect," I smiled. "It's official: the group has been formed!"Bookmark here

Everyone clapped. I felt a burden lifting from my shoulders; everything was going forward. Yet I still expected an impossible obstacle to appear sooner or later.Bookmark here

"As stipulated in the contract, its effects will take effect next week. Your status will be adjusted from student to employee, meaning that this is your last week at school. Of course, if you stop working and decide to resume your studies, you'll continue exactly where you left. Got it?"Bookmark here

The three of them nodded.Bookmark here

"And, since we'll be working together every day, we should drop the formalities. Just call me Kaito. Are you okay with calling each other by your first name?"Bookmark here

Everyone nodded again.Bookmark here

"Cool."Bookmark here

An awkward silence encompassed the room.Bookmark here

Now what?Bookmark here

"Let's share ideas for the group," Sanae suggested.Bookmark here

"I can design anything we need," Aki said.Bookmark here

"I can make the music," Umi added.Bookmark here

"And I can give lots and lots of ideas!" Astra beamed.Bookmark here

"Are you sure?" I asked. "That would be more work for you. Your job is to be an idol."Bookmark here

"I'd love for my designs to be seen by everyone," Aki answered. "It’s not often that you get the chance to advertise your stuff on multiple planets."Bookmark here

"Same," Umi added.Bookmark here

"And I want to work as hard as I can!" Astra beamed.Bookmark here

I smiled. "I guess it's a win-win situation, then. Let's start with the theme of the group. What do we want to represent with our image?"Bookmark here

Astra raised her hand.Bookmark here

"Go ahead," I said.Bookmark here

"School!"Bookmark here

Thoughtful for a second, I replied, "I saw many groups with that theme. Also maids, princesses, superheroines, nurses, and even metal bands. They are all an option, but let's try to think of something new."Bookmark here

"I see," Astra replied. "Swimwear?"Bookmark here

"I wouldn't mind," Aki smirked.Bookmark here

"I would!" Umi yelled.Bookmark here

"That would definitely sell, but I don't think it's appropriate for the stage," I said.Bookmark here

"Okay, let me think," Astra continued. She closed her eyes and hummed, swinging her head side to side.Bookmark here

"What about zombies?" Risa suggested.Bookmark here

Everyone stared at her, bewildered. She blushed and looked at the floor.Bookmark here

"I-It was just an idea…"Bookmark here

I didn't expect that from her.Bookmark here

"What if we tribute the classical idol style?" Sanae proposed. "They have been gone for a millennium, it would be nice to remind people of the roots."Bookmark here

"Not bad," I replied. "But there has to be something more."Bookmark here

"Why don't we just wear our daily outfits?" Umi said.Bookmark here

Aki responded, "Come on, Umi. We can't waste an opportunity to look fabulous. I wouldn't mind wearing a bikini."Bookmark here

"I already said I would mind!" Umi yelled.Bookmark here

"That's a shame. I can tell you have a nice figure," Aki said, squeezing Umi's waist.Bookmark here

Umi jumped away from the chair. "Don't touch me!"Bookmark here

"Okay, sorry," Aki smiled. "What about leotards? You wouldn't show too much skin."Bookmark here

"Why are you so stubborn about showing off our figure?!"Bookmark here

I sighed. That's how this is going to be, huh?Bookmark here

Astra raised her hand again.Bookmark here

"Yes?"Bookmark here

"Sanae suggested to tribute original idols, but you said it needs something more, right?"Bookmark here

I nodded.Bookmark here

"What if we tribute classical idols and traditional Japanese culture at the same time?"Bookmark here

"Interesting. Please elaborate."Bookmark here

"Well, I just thought about it. Maybe a kimono but with colorful and flamboyant decorations, like a typical idol costume."Bookmark here

Out of nowhere, Aki—sitting next to Astra—grasped her shoulders.Bookmark here

"Astra, you're an adorable genius!" she said with sparkling eyes.Bookmark here

"Eh? Am I?"Bookmark here

"I’ve already imagined dozens of designs! Let's do it!"Bookmark here

It's only been a second!Bookmark here

"So our image will be of the traditional Japanese and idol cultures," I said. "I like it. Does everyone agree?"Bookmark here

"Sounds great," Sanae answered.Bookmark here

"I like it too," Risa replied.Bookmark here

"Doesn't sound bad, I guess," Umi coldly said.Bookmark here

"Then it's decided; our group will represent traditional Japanese and idol cultures. Now, let's choose a name."Bookmark here

Cel T.
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