Chapter 6:

6. in the end sugar salt needed to take a piss and due to what happened to the ramen we strongly suspected it'd be unwise to do so under such extreme temperatures so we had to go back and i didn't want to die like major tom anyway so the story ends when a

the color of shattered dreams

It's unfortunate that the only way to run away for good is to die. That's the thing, though; I don't want to die. To be reborn? Sure. By this, I mean a proper renewal, without memories, trauma, or attachments, instead of... this.

"So, Saki Haruko—"


The director rolls her kawaii moe eyes. "On top of tuition fees, you have a hefty sum to pay for property damage. Between jailtime and joining this academy, I think the better option is easy to discern, isn't it?"

I still have my arms over my chest. Shio has been crying next to me for what feels like hours. At least she took a piss once we teleported back, or... well, did so close enough for one of the patrolling (?) magical girls to find us (teleporting, not pissing). I offered the dildo as a peace offering, and when that failed, threatened to snap it in half again. We then got rudely escorted back into the kawaii moe director's office. And now I'm about to go back to school against my will, or... well.

Let's be clear. If I really wanted to—same applies to everyone else—I could one day leave a note saying 'goodbye forever' and run away from civilization. I don't have to get off my bed every day. I don't have to look for a job. I don't have to contribute to making the rich richer and the poor poorer, but I will, nonetheless, because it is cozy to belong.

Thus, I'll go back to school under Sato's tutelage. I'll be supervised at all times because I'm 'dangerous'. I'll find increasingly more creative places to smoke, because that's how bad habits work, right? Lamenting my circumstances, yet comforming.

Maybe someday I'll paint something so good I'll be immortalized in history books, but for now, I'm nothing but a man in a girl's body, hundreds of thousands of kilometers away from home. It's not running away, though. It's not. Memories hold me captive.

"It is," I reply, because it might be, someday. "I'll send a message to my parents."

"Feel free."

Oh, if only.

Mario Nakano 64
Steward McOy
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