Classroom of the Elite Volume 10 Epilogue Part 4
The lack of an expulsion from within Class B. The fact that Ryūen was still here.
I had been involved in both of these two noteworthy incidents behind the scenes.
It was back on the day when I had met with Hiyori at the library and invited Ichinose to my room.
That night, just past ten, the sound of the doorbell rang throughout my room.
I didn’t have many friends who would come to my room to pay me a visit.
I considered whether or not it was Horikita, Kushida, or maybe even someone from the Ayanokōji Group, but in most cases, they would’ve sent me some sort of notification that they were coming ahead of time.
This time, however, I hadn’t been notified of anything. That is to say, the person at the door wasn’t anyone like that.
In which case, who in the world had come to visit me?
“…Well this is a first.”
As I checked the intercom from within the depths of my room, I saw an unexpected duo displayed on the screen.
They seemed like they were cold as they waited for me to answer the door.
“Well… I suppose curfew is only enforced for the upper floors.”
As a general rule, it’s prohibited for a boy to enter a girl’s living quarters after eight at night.
Well, even if you did break curfew, it wouldn’t be a very big deal as long as word didn’t get out. Plus, even if you got caught, the punishment wouldn’t be very severe as long as it had only happened once or twice. In any case, there weren’t any rules that prevented a girl from being the one to come and visit instead.
After deciding to at least respond to them, I spoke through the intercom. Although, I wasn’t exactly welcoming with how I phrased my words.
“…I’d like to talk if you have a moment.”
Of the two of them, the boy began to speak, breaking the silence. He leaned forward and peered into the camera and a close-up of his pupil appeared on the screen.
It didn’t seem that he wanted to have this talk over the intercom.
“Give me a moment.”
I walked over to the entryway and unlocked the door, and upon doing so, it abruptly swung open. The boy, Class D’s Ishizaki, entered my room right away.
If one was careless, the force at which the door had swung open could’ve hurt someone.
“Welcome. You should hurry and come in too. It’s cold out there.”
“Why do I have to…”
Ishizaki’s classmate, Ibuki, voiced her dissatisfaction at my invitation inside.
“Who cares. Just get in here Ibuki.”
Giving in to Ishizaki’s prodding, she walked through the entryway.
The cold air was certainly starting to make its way in, so I hastily closed the door behind her.
After thinking about how we would still feel the cold draft if we talked at the entryway, I invited them further into the room.
“So, what do you need from me, so late at night like this?”
At my question, Ishizaki immediately put his hands together and lowered his head.
“Please, Ayanokōji! Tell us how to prevent Ryūen-san from getting expelled!”
These two had come barging in uninvited so late at night just to ask for such a ridiculous favor.
“Did I mishear you? Could you say that one more time?”
“I asked you to tell us how to prevent Ryūen-san from getting expelled!”
It didn’t seem like I had misheard him.
“Just forget it, Ishizaki. There’s no way Ayanokōji will cooperate with you.”
Apparently, Ibuki and Ishizaki weren’t on the same page. It didn’t seem like she had come along to ask for my help.
“That… that’s probably true, it’s just… I can’t think of anyone else other than Ayanokōji who could do something.”
“It’s not like I care. Oh, by the way, I’m only here because Ishizaki forced me to come along with him. He just wouldn’t stop calling me…”
With a sigh, she exasperatedly showed me the screen of her phone.
There were more than fifty missed call notifications from Ishizaki.
“How could I go and ask him all alone!? He’s our enemy!”
“It’s the same even if I’m here with you. What an idiot.”
“Shut yer mouth…”
Ishizaki and Ibuki proceeded to bicker with each other.
“Well, it doesn’t seem like you were sent here by Ryūen.”
If they were acting, it would’ve been quite the show, but that didn’t seem to be the case here.
“There’s no way we’d be here for that. Ryūen-san… wouldn’t ask us to do something like this. You should understand at least that much.”
Ryūen had already washed his hands of school matters by making it seem like he had been defeated by Ishizaki.
In fact, it seemed like he was already fully resolved to leave the school.
Furthermore, even if he didn’t plan on being expelled, he wouldn’t have reached out to me for help.
There’s no way he’d be willing to do something so shameful.
“Are you sure you don’t want Ryūen gone? He’s done all sorts of things to you.”
Ibuki spoke up again, questioning Ishizaki.
“…Well… a lot of stuff did happen… But, it’s different now.”
“Huh? What do you mean by that?”
“I’m asking you what you mean by ‘it’s different now’.”
“I’ve come to understand that Ryūen-san is important for the future of Class D.”
“I don’t get it. Don’t you know how much we’ve had to go through because of him?”
These two had really come all the way here to see me without being on the same page at all.
Or, to put it more accurately, it was as if they were simply unable to communicate with one another.
“First of all, if you’re gonna argue, do it later.”
At my words, they stopped glaring at one another.
“Ugh. I wanna go back to my room.”
However, they still didn’t stop quarreling with each other. In particular, Ibuki still had a stern expression on her face.
“Don’t say that. You have to help me persuade Ayanokōji too.”
“I don’t wanna.”
“If you’re gonna argue, go do it somewhere else.”
Seeing as how there were no signs of the conversation moving forward any time soon, I decided to try asking something myself.
“Ryūen isn’t very popular, even in Class C. It’s just an outsider’s perspective, but I’m not exactly wrong, now am I?”
“Well, uh… I guess some people may hate him, maybe…”
“What do you mean ‘some people’? Almost everyone hates him. There’s no point in lying about it.”
“Just shut it! There’s nothing wrong with what I said!”
“Ugh, you’re so loud and annoying. By the way, you’re spraying your spit everywhere while you talk, so stop shouting.”
“I thought I said to save your arguing for later.”
If they kept making so much noise in such a small room like this, the sound would be heard in the rooms around us.
I spoke up again, this time with a twinge of anger in my voice, and the two of them seemed to calm down a bit.
Had they realized that they were imposing on me uninvited?
With this, we were finally able to get on with the conversation.
“It would be unreasonably difficult to stop Ryūen from being expelled.”
I spoke bluntly, without beating around the bush.
I felt like my intentions would come across better that way.
“I guess that’s true.”
Having understood what I was getting at, Ibuki nodded in agreement.
However, Ishizaki didn’t seem to be willing to accept it so easily.
“Can’t you do something, anything!?”
At the very least, his motivations were genuine. There was no doubting his drive to save Ryūen.
“You really want to stop Ryūen from leaving, don’t you?”
Other than me, Ibuki, and a few others, most students were under the guise that Ishizaki detests Ryūen.
Of course, that was only a consequence of the incident between Ryūen and I. Even so, it was true that Ishizaki had been tyrannized by Ryūen many times up to this point. I didn’t think that he would come and bow his head to me and beg me to save him when he obviously didn’t want to.
This was probably also due to the emotional connection he had made with Ryūen over the course of the past year.
However, nobody would be struggling if this exam was something that could be overcome with emotions alone.
Ishizaki seemed to need a simple explanation as to why saving his friend was so difficult.
“There are two primary reasons why I think saving him is unreasonable. This provisional exam will be decided by the number of censure votes being used in your own class. Supposing that you, Ibuki, and two or three others don’t vote against Ryūen and cast him a praise vote instead, it’s still pretty likely that he’ll end up with more than thirty censure votes. Secondly, nobody else actually wants to be expelled.”
“B-but, I mean, there aren’t very many people that think we can win and move forward without his strength, you know?”
It’s true that there were probably at least a few students in Class D who recognize Ryūen’s capabilities.
However, by itself, that reason wouldn’t cut it.
That just wouldn’t be enough of a reason to raise the possibility of getting expelled yourself.
“Nobody wants to expel someone. By targeting Ryūen, the most unpopular person in the class, it would cause the least amount of guilt.”
It was just as Ibuki said.
“Even if you couldn’t get out of Class D, you’d still wanna graduate safely, wouldn’t you? It’s not like anyone wants to be labeled a high school dropout.”
Chances are, this type of discussion had already taken place within their class, something that was written all over Ishizaki’s face.
“If you’re being treated as the leader who spearheaded a revolt against Ryūen, then you’ve probably already heard about this, haven’t you?”
Ishizaki nodded. After all, he had probably publicly supported Ryūen’s expulsion due to the position he had found himself in.
“I think that other than Ibuki, Albert, and Shiina, everybody’s in favor of expelling Ryūen-san.”
“So it’s checkmate no matter how you look at it, yeah?”
“Yeah, it’s checkmate.”
I responded to Ibuki’s statement with simple affirmation.
“That’s why I came here in the first place. You’re the one who beat Ryūen-san, so…”
“You want to know if there’s a way to stop the expulsion. Before we get to that, there’s something I want to ask you.”
“Saving Ryūen means that someone else from your class will have to be expelled instead. Do you understand that?”
This was an essential aspect of the exam. I had no choice but to hear how he would answer.
“That’s… That’s true, but…”
“If you really understand, do you have someone else in mind to take Ryūen’s place?”
“N-no, not at all. I don’t think I want to get rid of anyone.”
“Then it sounds like there’s a problem. This exam is designed to ensure that someone gets expelled.”
This wasn’t an exam where you could thoughtlessly talk about wanting to save someone.
“It’s just as Ayanokōji said, isn’t it? If you really want to save Ryūen, why don’t you take the initiative and nominate yourself? If you ask everyone to vote for you instead, you might be able to save him.”
Her cold-hearted idea was pretty much the same as abandoning Ishizaki, but, realistically speaking, it was probably the best option he had available.
Ryūen had accumulated a lot of hatred from his classmates. Even though he was talented enough to think of courageous, clever schemes that an ordinary person couldn’t possibly come up with, once you consider that the class had fallen down to Class D under his leadership, the fact that he was getting cast aside was simply inevitable.
“There’s… really no way to prevent anyone from being expelled?”
“That was everybody else’s initial question too. In the end, they all gave up on trying to think of a solution.”
Ibuki let out a short, dejected sigh.
Rather than bothering to reach out to me for help, Ibuki had understood that it was unreasonable from the very beginning.
“As I said before, this is a complete waste of time. We can’t change Ryūen’s fate.”
Consumed with frustration, Ishizaki punched the wall beside him.
“I think Ryūen had planned on spending the next three years without doing anything. But, he probably changed his mind as soon as he heard about the supplemental exam. He probably thought that he had no other choice but to get expelled. That’s why he decided to quietly sit back and wait for the exam to finish without saying anything, isn’t it?”
Ishizaki didn’t seem to think that Ryūen was doing it as a noble act of self-sacrifice either.
Ryūen simply wasn’t bothering to resist what was coming to him.
“You have to consider Ryūen’s feelings. It’s your duty as someone who follows him.”
Ishizaki clenched his fists, filled with regret.
He really wants to save Ryūen, huh?
No matter how many enemies you have, it’s not a bad thing to have friends who care about you.
He may not admit to it, but Ryūen has some good friends.
An idea started to take shape in my mind.
However, there were a few things that needed to happen before it could be carried out.
“If I had one piece of advice for you…”
“What is it!? It doesn’t matter what it is, just tell me!”
Ishizaki lurched forward, desperately reaching out for any glimmer of hope he could.
But, unfortunately, those hopes of his weren’t going to last for long.
“As things are now, Ryūen’s private points will disappear along with him. If he’s been receiving points from Class A this whole time, then he’s ought to have saved up a least a couple million points by now. Right?”
“Yeah. As long as he hasn’t used them, he should have around that much.”
“There’s no guarantee that his private points will be transferred or distributed amongst his classmates if he’s still holding onto them when he gets expelled. That being the case, you should transfer all of his points elsewhere before his expulsion is set in stone. They’ll be useful for Class D later on.”
If the points were distributed amongst Class D, they would lose their value as a lump sum. It would be better for them to transfer everything into their own pockets now.
I was certain that Ryūen would at least agree to that.
“T-this isn’t what I wanted to hear from you! I want to know how to save Ryūen-san!”
“Give it up Ishizaki. There’s no point in saying any more than this.”
Ibuki reprimanded Ishizaki with a light kick before turning to me and continuing.
“That said, Ayanokōji. I’m not gonna go and pick up the points Ryūen saved up.”
She spoke definitively. Instead of going to Ryūen and begging him for the points, she would rather give up on them altogether.
“Is that so? What about you, Ishizaki?”
“I won’t either!”
They seemed to share the same stance on the matter, although with slightly different reasons behind it.
They were resolved to the idea that, if Ryūen was going to leave the school, then his points would go along with him.
No, it wasn’t due to something as praiseworthy as resolve.
“It’s a pity, but the two of you can’t save Ryūen.”
Ishizaki looked at me, his expression stuck somewhere between anger and regret.
“Listen carefully. The only thing you two can do now is retrieve Ryūen’s private points. This exam isn’t so simple that you can save someone just because you want to.”
“Don’t you fuck with me! You want me to take the points from Ryūen-san and peace out? There’s no way I could do that!”
Ishizaki raised his fist, but Ibuki immediately reached out and restrained him.
“I said to stop this shit, Ishizaki. This guy may look like an ordinary person, but he’s really nothing more than a nasty monster.”
“Even if I’m no match for him, I’ll at least get one hit in!”
“Get over it.”
Ibuki then smacked Ishizaki on the head.
“We came here and asked Ayanokōji for something completely unreasonable. He didn’t even say anything wrong, and yet here you are, lashing out at him for it. Could you stop being such a humiliation?”
Ishizaki had let the blood rush to his head.
It seems difficult for him to stay composed when it comes to Ryūen for some reason.
Neither of them seemed to have any intention of doing anything. Millions of points, completely free for the taking, were simply going to disappear. If they were thinking about the future of Class D, those points were something that they had absolutely no reason not to get their hands on.
If Ibuki and Ishizaki, Ryūen’s closest friends, didn’t want it, then there’s nothing that could be done about it.
“Well, I had really wanted to see the strength of your resolve a bit more, but…”
“…Huh? What do you mean by that?”
“It has nothing to do with you two anymore. After all, you guys aren’t even willing to recover the private points from Ryūen.”
With that, I ended the conversation. However, I was somewhat convinced that Ibuki would get the private points from Ryūen nonetheless.
I’ve been really motivated to finish V10 recently. I also have some good news regarding Volume 11, but I’ll let that speak for itself once the time arises. Expect Part 5 very soon. Far sooner than you’re probably expecting it. (Maybe even tomorrow who knows.) (Lol don’t trust me I’m not reliable.) Thanks for reading, hopefully not on an aggregator site. (cough cough) (I don’t really care. Read wherever you want to read.)