Chapter 2:

Almost there

Chuuni club seeks World Record

As they signed the forms and discussed the artifacts and items they would bring starting the next day, I was dumbfounded. I was beyond surprised at how my problem was solved or the confusion and coincidences necessary to make this work.

"Surely it must be the work of the Devil," I thought without much thought. Anyone in my position would accept this, sign them up, and then call it a day, but, miserably, I wasn't that kind of person, so I was in a pickle.

"OK. Thank you for participating," I said to relieve the tension, and it surely did.

"Where are we meeting tomorrow, DM?" asked one of the glasses-wearing boys, who you could tell were twins, even if they claimed they weren't.

"DM?" I thought out loud, which caused me to get suspicious looks from the new members.

The other brother smiled evilly, "What? I need to know what 'DM' means. Is this a roleplay club?"

My facade was about to fall when the boy who summoned them all asked them to calm down by putting himself in the middle of the conversation, which left me at a disadvantage.

"Maybe she's new to this. We should not judge those who are starting, Saburo. We didn't all grow up playing, you know?"
He saved my tiny humanity again.

The brother, identified as Saburo, grumbled and looked up, angry. The other just stayed silent as he felt his gaze stab like a merciless knife, repeatedly… and mercilessly, making me much more nervous than when they let me perform my first and only line last year.

The stage was without a single piece of scenery. We invested the entire club budget in prince and mermaid disguises and depended on the improvised choir... since the members of the Choir Club refused to help us!

"Riding thoughtfully, the young count got lost," they sang as if it was a melody played by medieval bards.

Our narrator, the only boy in the club  ̶̶ sorry, senpai. You were so unnecessary and dispensable from my life that I no longer remember your face or name ̶̶  He continued: "A cuckoo that followed him like this sang to him."

Then, I showed up in a costume worthy of the hands of a kindergartener who looked like a chicken: "Coo, coo."

And while the girls in the choir did the best they could  ̶̶ with miserable few rehearsals because they always justified themselves by saying that they were not from the school choir (bleh!) ̶̶  : "Come with me, the mermaid of the sea awaits you. From your eyes... prisoner, you will be the one he loves."

After that, I was vilely replaced by a piece of paper on a stick. That... was... everything.

AGH! It gives me so much anger, sadness and chills just remembering it!

"Then we'll see you tomorrow in the school auditorium after class," said the girl accompanying the brothers. "See you tomorrow, chibi-senpai." 

Those adorable words were a shot straight to my heart. Now the guilt felt heavier because I imagined the sad face of…   ̶̶ checks the registration forms ̶̶   Yumeko when she found out that I was not what they expected.

But as soon as they left… IT GOT OVER! I had the forms, and there were already five of us; the Theater Club was saved! Or… at least for a month… That's what I thought.

"This doesn't work," the Student Council President told me as he dropped the forms on his desk.

"WHY!? The forms are real. The guys came to my space to sign up voluntarily, and I did not falsify or force any members to join," I replied as I slammed my hands on his desk.

"So you admit it," he replied dryly and resignedly, so I evaded the topic.

"ANYWAY! I need to know why you tell me these four forms are useless." I raised my voice, but karma immediately knocked over the tower of polyhedral erasers that the President was tacking together, sticking one of them into my palm hand.

"BE MORE CAREFUL! THAT'S DANGEROUS!" he said as he cried over the collapsed sculpture of himself.

"President, don't you think you are being a bit inflexible towards his younger sister?" said the new vice president of the Student Council, who quickly attended to my hand while my idiot older brother only cared about his damn eraser sculpture.

"Mommy…" I said in a dramatic voice since my brother's childhood friend has always been like a second mother to me, the kind that they always portray in dramas that if they are so good, they kill them when you are enthralled with their character. The girl just smiled and patted my head, playing along.

"Mio-san, you are always spoiling her a lot, that's why she is so spoiled even at school," my brother replied resignedly, who looked at Mio as if he were the one being scolded. "You and my mother are going to ruin it with so much care."

"What's wrong with pampering someone who is willing to face the world and do whatever it takes to fulfill their dreams? I think that having a defined goal and such a will to achieve goals at such a young age is something great, Abe-kun," replied the young woman who gave off a maternal air.

"But Mio-san is so mature," I told my brother as if we were two old ladies from the neighborhood praising the newly married wife.

"Sometimes it frustrates me to think that we are the same age," he whispered, playing along.

"Bella-chan, all you need is one more person," Mio interrupted the thread of ladies' jokes.

"But there are now five members: the four new members and me," I stated confidently.

"The President of a club is not counted as a member," replied who, in my opinion, only filled the President's chair with all his ego.

I couldn't help but be shocked at the revelation. The relative loophole was sucking my soul because it was used against me as a trap card. In despair, I ran away without saying anything to my acquaintances at the Council to escape to my comfort place. While my shoes squeaked in the hallways and the sound of the impact of the sole in the hallway echoed like someone being whipped, I opened the door of the audiovisual club with angry tears and ran towards the legs of the person I was seeking for comfort. Between plaintive cries and hopeless sobs, I hugged tightly to the leg of the person at the audio control panel, clinging to his calf as if my life depended on it.

"DADDY!" I squealed as I rubbed against the knee of who was my best friend. "Please don't do things that could be misinterpreted. Remember that they just installed new cameras in the school rooms. Anyone can use it as an excuse," the boy who knew what part of his shoulder to squeeze so I would let go of him grumbled at me.

"Join the Theatre Club, please!" I begged, still kneeling on the ground.

already told you: no. Being a phantom member doesn't suit me. Besides, I already belong to the Audiovisual Club and I don't know anything about drama... Aside from seeing you cry all time," he explained while sighing since it was not the first time we had this conversation.

"Just do it until I manage to find a fifth member!" I said as I went from malicious to religious pleading, "PLEASE! They will close the club, and I haven't been able to do anything about it! "I promise to offer cheeseburgers once a week as a tribute until the matter is resolved."

He looked at me firmly, but I knew he would agree if he found me adorable enough… pathetic to some. Usually, this is how our friendship works. It's not that I've used it on several occasions, but I often get my way with Hiro because of his lack of desire to face conflicts. So, after sighing, he extended his hand. I gave him the form for the club, and after filling it out, I disappeared as I arrived.

That afternoon, I felt my pressures had only been reduced by half. All the euphoria I had the day before collapsed when I decided to make the minimum effort to find out what the first-year boys were referring to. My eyes became dry after spending hours reading an incredible amount of material before the computer until my head almost exploded. I even forgot to eat dinner; I needed every available space in my body to fill with information from what seemed like 20 years of work.

Sleepy, hungry, and with terrible circles under my eyes, the next morning, I felt fully armed to face what would be the most fearsome adversaries I had ever faced: the new members of the club.

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