Chapter 26:

My Enemy is Standing Between Me and My Crush.

My Dad is an Otaku, My Mom is a Fujoshi, and I Wish I Was Dead

It's raining pretty hard, and I don't have an umbrella, so I'm getting soaked.

Why don't I have an umbrella? Because real men don't need them. Only pussies use umbrellas. And it would only get in my way in a fight.

I'm sure you're now curious what I, an ordinary twelve-year-old first-year middle school student, am doing standing in an alcove on a side street near the school in the rain at 6:45 PM on a normal Thursday evening. I'll explain.

I'm here because I'm looking for someone. I know he's gonna come this way and as soon as he shows up, I pop out, yell who I am and why I'm coming after him, and then beat his face in. If what Aniki said was any indication, even though this guy knows how to fight, I shouldn't have much of a problem. I don't mean to brag, but if I do that I'm sure I'll look as tough as I actually am.

Well, I also had to hide because I've circled the block for the third time and I heard the Student Council roams around looking for troublemakers after school (they probably won't in this weather, though) and I don't want to get questioned by the fuckin' pigs or anything like that, but my main reason for hiding was because jumping out of nowhere when your enemy least expects it is cool as shit, dude, trust me.

And besides, I really don't want to go home. That's the last place I want to be at this point. I've got something to do, and I won't go back home until I do it. I wasn't planning on going home today anyways, but now I know I DEFINITELY won't. If I have to stand out here waiting for this guy all night, I will. He's gonna REGRET messing with my brothers.

Man, he sure is taking a long time, though. What is it, 6:50 now? How long is he gonna fucking take? Nerds in clubs are something else, dude.

I crane my neck out to take another peek. Shit, my wet hair's getting in my eyes. Gotta get it out of the way. There we go.

I can see the school gates from here, and every now and then someone will walk out and go left or right. Not a lot of gray pants- all plaid, except for a small handful of middle school students. All my classmates have probably gone home at this point, except for the Student Council, I bet, because they're hall-monitor assholes, and me, because I'm on a mission. That tiny little rich bitch and that bald nerd and the rest of them aren't going to find me here, though. It's a great hiding spot.

I'm not seeing the person I want, though. Nobody really comes down this street- most of them head toward the train station or the bus stop, but occasionally a student will come this way. A lot of the dudes have umbrellas. It gives me a pretty good laugh. They're fucking soft. If this is what every Shinchou student is like, I should have no problem whipping this kid.

Two girls come close to me, chattering about stupid stuff, and I just barely manage to duck back behind some garbage bags. Shit. That was a close call. I was so focused on watching people coming out of the gates that I didn't see them until they were right on top of me. I think they didn't realize, though- they go down the street, yapping like a couple chihuahuas, so loud it drowns out the sound of the rain hitting off their clear plastic umbrellas. Yup, they're clueless. Even if they saw me out in the open, staring at the gates like I was a stalker or something, or if I was in the street dressed in a banana costume, they probably wouldn't even notice me. Girls are really stupid.

Yeah, I know I look like a suspicious person hiding here, but I have a good reason. Shut the fuck up about it. No one's really out because of the rain, so it's not like anyone's gonna call the cops on me before I can find Kouga and beat him up. Except for the Student Council, but I know they're not coming this way. That prissy bitch of a president probably doesn't want to get her shoes wet.

A few more minutes pass- students keep leaving, occasionally one comes down this street. Still don't see the guy I'm looking for, though, and I'm still getting rained on. But on the plus side, it makes me look cool as hell.

More time passes. It's past seven now. The small but steady stream of students has dried up to about one every minute or two. I don't see this Kouga bastard anywhere. No one matches his description. No scrawny kids who look at everyone else like they're trash and absolutely no crossdressers.

Fuck me, did I miss him? Did he go home early today? Did he go home another way? Surely not, right? I can't be that fucking stupid, I planned all of this out and everything!

7:20. Either I'm gonna go home all soaked and Nee-san is gonna yell at me, and then Mom is gonna get home late and yell at me some more, or I'm gonna go find my big brothers and they're gonna laugh at me for being stupid. I can't have that! I slap myself on both cheeks so hard it stings. Keep it together, Ryou, on your strength as a man you're gonna wait as long as it takes to give that asshole what he deserves!

7:23. No one's come out of the gates for a few minutes except for a teacher.

7:24. I hear footsteps sloshing in the rain. Someone's running. I see what looks like a gray skirt flash by. It's another student? She's heading toward the school, though. That's weird. I slip out and peek my head around the corner again, and sure enough, there's a girl in a middle school summer uniform standing outside the gates with an umbrella and holding something. I can only see the back of her medium-length hair. What is she doing, waiting outside for her boyfriend or something? Gross.

Suddenly, three more high schoolers come out of the gate. One's tall with a crew cut, the other's got shaggy bleached hair, then comes a guy with glasses. The girl isn't waiting for any of them, apparently.

One more kid comes out without an umbrella. It's still pouring and he looks like a wet dog. This one's got bangs and looks really disinterested.

What did Aniki say about Kouga? Oh yeah. He looks at other people like he's looking at trash on the ground.

He walks over to the girl and I see him mouth something. She hands him what she had and he unfurls it to reveal a dark umbrella. He forgot his or something? So he's stupid, too. I didn't take mine on purpose.

That's gotta be Kouga. That look, that attitude- it's gotta be him. But the girl waiting for him isn't my sister.

So not only is he an asshole and a weirdo who wears dresses in public, he's also a two-timer? Holy fucking shit, that's low. Why is my sister dating this guy?

I don't even need to wonder if this kid's seen my sister naked. Just the idea that there's a chance is making me want to puke.

I'm definitely gonna fuck this guy up. I swear on all my ancestors' graves.

He's gonna come this way, I know it. I can hear his voice and that other girl's murmuring off in the distance. He's just lovey-dovey chatting with this girl when he already has Nee-san- yeah, for that I'm kicking him in the balls after I finish beating him up. Hard.

Their voices start to break through the rain. First is the girl's. "I seriously can't believe you went off without your umbrella! If I hadn't been here, you'd have gotten a cold or something. I ran most of the way here and nearly got splashed by a taxi! You ought to thank me."

"Heh, sorry, Kaede...did Mom realize?" Man, he even sounds like a total bitch.

"Nope, I did. Niichan, you're hopeless, you know that? Here, dry your hair off."

He isn't a cheater? That's his sister? Not that it makes it any better, but I guess I had the wrong idea...wait, was that the one who ran my big brothers off?! I can beat her up, too! Two for one!

So what if she's a girl? She tried to fight my big brothers- if she wasn't willing to take an ass kicking, she wouldn't have done that! I can pay her back in kind, too!

How close are they? They probably haven't seen me. I gotta peek out for just a second to check. I reach my head around the corner and HOLY FUCK SHE'S HOT.

As soon as I saw her face I knew she's perfect. Her hair is styled and she's got just the right amount of makeup on and she isn't too big and she isn't too small and oh God, think! Get it together, Ryou, you're here to beat up Kouga!

He's close! All I have to do is jump out, yell DIE, KOUGA, YOU BASTARD, and then charge him! I'm bigger than him, I can take him!

But not in front of his sister! I can't do that! If she sees me do that, she'll hate me for the rest of my life! Even though she did try to fight my brothers, I don't want someone so pretty to hate me...

I just can't do it. Forgive me, Aniki. I've let you down. They pass by me and I don't do a thing.

The rain keeps falling. I'm thoroughly soaked. Time to go home and have Nee-san yell at me like a man, I guess. I deserve it- I didn't keep my word to my brothers. Kouga is still out there without the shape of my fist imprinted in his face. I've failed.

Even though the walk home in the pouring rain is long, I'm not worried about catching a cold. Real men can deal with a little water.

Pope Evaristus
Steward McOy