Classroom of the Elite Volume 10 Chapter 3 Part 5
After leaving the classroom, I immediately headed toward the front entrance of the school.
On the way, I happened to come across Class A’s Sakayanagi Arisu. I could see Kamuro standing beside her.
On guard, Kamuro’s body stiffened up.
However, as usual, Sakayanagi didn’t show any changes. She kept herself composed with relaxed, calm movements.
The contrasting reactions between the two of them were a little interesting.
“What a coincidence. Ayanokōji-kun.”
“Indeed. Is there something you need with Class C?”
The two of them appeared to be headed toward Class C.
However, rather than answering me, Sakayanagi brushed off my question with a smile as she asked me one instead.
“Where are you off to now?”
“I have plans to meet up with a friend at Keyaki Mall in around half an hour.”
“Is that so? It seems that you’re living your life to the fullest. If you don’t mind, could you spare me just a little of your time?”
Sakayanagi took out her cell phone and checked the time.
Had she come this way just to meet up with me? No, that would be difficult to imagine.
It was still only ten minutes past four.
Even if it took several minutes to reach Keyaki Mall, there would still be over ten minutes left until 4:30.
“Are you fine with standing as we talk?”
“Yes. Though, we’ll attract attention if we talk here. How about we move someplace else?”
I also wanted to avoid standing out as much as possible.
It would’ve been different if it was with a classmate, but Sakayanagi was the type to attract attention whether she wanted to or not.
Since she was definitely aware of this herself, we began moving to a less populated location.
Matching Sakayanagi’s slow walking pace, time passed by as we moved through the building.
“At any rate… Ayanokōji-kun, Masumi-san. Don’t you think this supplemental exam is far too unreasonable? They’ve decided to force expulsions on us just because nobody has been expelled yet. Setting up an exam like this one… Thinking about it rationally, it’s ridiculous.”
“Totally. Mashima-sensei’s usually pretty composed but even he’s been giving off a sorta shaken vibe recently.”
It seemed like the other teachers weren’t satisfied with the supplementary exam either.
Sakayanagi and Kamuro continued to talk.
“There is a reason for that.”
“What, you know something?”
“It’s a personal matter that I’m a bit ashamed of, but my father was suspended from his position a few days ago.”
“Suspended… Your father… If I’m not mistaken, he’s the board chairman right?”
Having known about Sakayanagi’s father already, Kamuro pressed for more information.
“I haven’t heard about it in detail, but it seems that quite a few unfavorable things have come out regarding my father. The father I know is not the type of person who would dirty his hands with those sorts of matters. Of course, I can’t rule out the possibility that I, as his daughter, simply didn’t know about it, but… it’s also true that someone may have planned all of this in order to force Father out of his position.”
On the surface, these words had been spoken to Kamuro, but in reality, they were probably meant for me. If Sakayanagi’s father really was innocent, it wouldn’t be surprising if ‘that man’ had a hand in all of this.
The impression I had of Sakayanagi’s father may not have been a misunderstanding after all.
“That said, this is something that has absolutely nothing to do with students like us. It’s nothing but simple, idle chatter.”
It seemed that Sakayanagi didn’t see her father’s forced suspension as anything worth paying attention to.
“Even so, what does any of that have to do with the exam?”
“Don’t you think it’s possible that the school hastily prepared the exam… all for the sake of forcing a certain someone’s expulsion?”
Kamuro glanced over at me for an instant before immediately returning her gaze to Sakayanagi.
“I’ve tried not being bothered by it until now, but you… Why have you been keeping your eye on Ayanokōji?”
Kamuro asked as she walked beside Sakayanagi.
“Oh? You’ve tried not being bothered by it until now, have you?”
“…Of course I have.”
Kamuro denied Sakayanagi’s implications, but the look on Sakayanagi’s face was one that seemed to fully understand everything.
However, instead of pressing the matter any further, she returned to Kamuro’s question.
“I simply know him from a long time ago. Is this answer not acceptable enough?”
Contrasting with Kamuro’s concern, Sakayanagi answered nonchalantly.
Considering the fact that she hadn’t told Kamuro anything before, it was a fairly revealing answer.
It was also possible that she was trying to gauge my reaction. If I were to react poorly or carelessly interrupt their conversation, then it could end up being exposed as a weakness.
Well, in reality, I didn’t really care.
“So you’re saying that the two of you just coincidentally reunited here? That’s such a slim possibility though.”
“Yes. The possibility is indeed slim. Right, Ayanokōji-kun?”
While I had never once been acquainted with her before coming here, there technically wasn’t anything incorrect about what she said.
Back then, our knowledge of each other was definitely one-sided.
“Then, is he really a difficult person to handle? Sorry, but I just don’t see it at all.”
Just as Sakayanagi had done earlier, Kamuro got straight to the point.
In some sense, perhaps the two of them really were similar.
“You’ve become quite inquisitive lately, haven’t you? Up until now, I don’t think you’ve ever thrown me this kind of question before.”
It appeared as though the few times I’d made direct contact with Kamuro had given her some ideas of her own.
Perhaps this had sparked some kind of uncontrollable curiosity within Sakayanagi as well.
“You can ask anyone and they’d probably be thinking the same thing. You’ve never been so fixated on someone like this before.”
“You came across to me as a particularly indifferent person who didn’t like to interfere with other people’s affairs. That was why I had no reservations with asking you to keep an eye on Ayanokōji-kun, but… you’re quite hopeless, aren’t you?”
Sakayanagi sounded a little surprised, while also a bit delighted in some respects.
I had thought she was only saying this to see my reaction, but she just might have been asking these mean-spirited questions because she was interested in Kamuro’s responses instead.
As they talked, we arrived at our destination.
“Nobody will bother us if we talk here.”
We had arrived at the special building. It certainly was quiet, given that it was after school.
“Well, Masumi-san. I apologize, but please head on back to the dorms without me.”
Sakayanagi apparently had Kamuro walk all the way here simply because she wanted a conversation partner.
Sakayanagi ultimately decided to send Kamuro back home without saying too much about me at all.
Kamuro turned and walked down the stairway without resisting, making me wonder if she knew it would turn out this way all along.
“Was that okay?”
“Yes. Wouldn’t you have found it troublesome if I went and revealed something?”
If I showed any signs of weakness here, I’d be giving her a chance to take advantage of it.
Furthermore, there was no need to give Sakayanagi any extra information.
“I see that I’ve been recognized as your enemy. I suppose I’m willing to accept that for the time being.”
My response and the reasoning behind it were so obvious that Sakayanagi understood the meaning behind my words without any issues.
“Going so far as to have Kamuro head back without you, what are you looking to talk to me about?”
We had spent a lot of time coming out here, so there wasn’t too much left until my meeting with Hirata.
I urged her to get to the point.
“It’s about the promise we made with each other.”
“I agreed to face off with you during the next special exam. That is, this exam.”
“Yes, that was certainly the plan. However… if it’s alright with you, I would like to put it off until next time. This supplementary exam isn’t a competition between the classes. Rather, it’s a screening process for us to evaluate our own peers. The only way we can influence the other classes is with praise votes, and we can’t attack one another even if we wanted to… So wouldn’t it be fine if we postponed our match until next time?”
In other words, she was here to tell me that this particular special exam didn’t count since it wasn’t a befitting scene for our competition.
“Are you willing to accept this proposal?”
“Make whatever decision you want.”
Since I had given her the response she was looking for, Sakayanagi respectfully expressed her gratitude.
“Thank you very much. I had been wondering what I would have to do if you didn’t agree. Now, I’ll be free to focus my attention on Class A’s internal politics. Though…”
“Because we’ve agreed to a ceasefire, I suppose I’ll tell you something in order to gain your trust. For this exam, I won’t do anything that would put you at a disadvantage. That is to say, I absolutely won’t cast you any censure votes.”
She gave her word, restricting her own actions moving forward.
“In the unlikely event that I were to interfere with Class C somehow and negatively impact your results… I wouldn’t mind accepting my loss. It would be perfectly acceptable for you to refuse to have a match with me during the next exam.”
“If my classmates were to focus their censure votes on me, there wouldn’t be a next time in the first place.”
I’d then be expelled. End of story.
“You are certainly right about that. Either way, please have some peace of mind. That’s all I’m trying to say.”
Her words were more than just courteous, but I guess these were the steps she needed to take in order to gain my trust.
“Perhaps it’s possible that your subordinates betray you before our match can even happen.”
“Fufu, you’re quite the funny one.”
Nearly every student in Class A was part of the Sakayanagi faction.
She was confident that the class wouldn’t dare attempt to remove its own leader.
“I had already decided who would be expelled as soon as the exam was announced.”
“You decided early on who’d be removed? Sounds like the right decision.”
Sakayanagi was able to make this decision precisely because she sat at the very top of her class.
“So, when do you plan on telling your class who it is?”
“I already told them all a long time ago. Had I waited until the last minute to inform them, it would’ve only caused anxiety in its own way. By making it known ahead of time, it’s easier on the rest of the class, don’t you agree?”
It would be unbearable for the student slated to be forced out of the school.
However, the rest of the class would be able to avoid falling into disarray.
“Do you know who it is I’ve chosen, if I may ask?”
“Who knows. I don’t have the slightest idea.”
Despite having stated otherwise, I had a fairly good idea.
“A reasonable choice?”
“He’s the former leader of Class A who opposed me earlier in the year. There’s no need for two people to stand at the top of the same class, after all.”
Katsuragi is a calm and composed person.
He most likely understood that he’d be the scapegoat the moment he heard the details of the exam.
He had seemingly accepted his fate without resistance.
There were still some students who continued to follow Katsuragi like Yahiko, but they were greatly outnumbered.
“I know you’ve seen him as an enemy since the beginning, but I was under the impression that he had stepped back from trying to lead the class.”
Even among Class A, Katsuragi ranked high in terms of overall excellence.
I felt it would be a pity to lose him, but it seemed that Sakayanagi felt differently.
“Among my friends, many already hate him. They simply can’t agree with his conservative way of thinking. With that being the case, I can raise morale by showing him the door instead.”
She appeared to be making a trade-off between losing out on combat power and boosting the morale of the class as a whole.
“Is it alright for you to be telling me this? About who you’re targeting?”
“It’s not like you’re going to do anything behind the scenes to protect him right, Ayanokōji-kun?”
It didn’t seem like I’d get any results that would make it worth the effort.
“What are you planning to do with Class C?”
“Who knows. I won’t be taking part in it. I intend to leave all the decision-making to my classmates.”
“When it comes down to it… it’s as simple as removing one of the annoying ones, or even one of the incompetent ones.”
Sakayanagi seemed to be enjoying herself as she thought about it.
“There’s no need to think about what Class D intends to do. They’re clearly going to rid themselves of Ryūen-kun.”
I didn’t have any objections for her.
For Class A, there were no particular advantages to lending Ryūen a hand.
Class A most likely wanted to see him expelled, even if it meant giving up a chance to get rid of the binding contract he had made with Katsuragi.
“Though, I have no idea what Class B will do. For this entire exam, I’m looking forward to seeing who gets expelled from that intimate class the most. Though, perhaps Ichinose-san has come up with something interesting?”
“Sorry. It’s about time I go.”
She was free to have as many delusions as she pleased. It’s just that I would much rather she do it on her own.
“You’re right. We can leave our conversation here for the time being. After all, the next special exam begins next week.”
The distinctive noise of her cane striking the ground resounded throughout the hallway.
For a split second, Sakayanagi’s gaze turned to the surveillance cameras set up near the ceiling.
The movement was so subtle that I wouldn’t have been able to notice it if I hadn’t been watching her closely.
I wasn’t able to determine whether it was intentional or just a random, casual glance somewhere else.
“Well then, our match will be decided by the final special exam of the year, just as we had originally planned. It’s a promise.”
I responded with a small nod before leaving the special building.
This part was cool! I liked it at least. Anyways, Part 6 should be posted somewhat soon. I’ve got a good bit of work to do on it, but it’s getting done. Part 7 seems shorter than Part 6 too so that will be the end of the chapter. I’m strongly considering taking a break from Youkoso for a week or so after finishing Chapter 3 so I can do an Instant Death chapter. Honestly, you can expect me to do so. I’ve been putting it off for quite a while now. Shouldn’t take long though!
Otherwise, I feel like this part is like, mega-high quality. Not sure why I feel it with this part in particular, but I feel like it’s just such a polished piece and I’m really proud of it.
Anywho, please let me know if you see any issues with this part in the comments and thanks for all your support!