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Writer: 日日日 (Akira)
(Wonder Game) Ibara Saegusa CG.png
Location: Bustling Street
- 10 or so minutes later -
Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

Yes, yes, hello! Saegusa Ibara speaking~!

Oh my, what’s the matter, Your Highness Hiyori? You were supposed to head there before me, was there some kind of trouble?

Hmhm? How troubling, and here I thought that Your Highness Hiyori, who can generally befriend anyone, would even be able to get along with the former “Oddball”, Sakasaki Natsume-san…

Just kidding, I saw this coming just a bit!

The atmosphere on-site is fairly hostile? My goodness, I understand how you must be feeling! No, there's no need to worry, this merely means we'll have to adjust our strategy!

Fufun. If anything, the fact that Sakasaki Natsume-san doesn’t even try to hide his animosity for ex-fine members means that the other party hasn’t seen through our tactics yet--

If they had guessed our ulterior motives…

When taking my research on Sakasaki Natsume-san's personality and disposition into account, I believed he would try to befriend us, even if only outwardly.

However! Considering how he's not trying to do that means everything is proceeding in our favor. It's more reassuring than anything else!

There’s no need to provoke him any more than necessary, but please continue to disturb his peace of mind at the current pace!

I’m leaving it in your capable hands! Now then, please excuse me until we meet again later ♪

(Fu fu fu, it’s entertaining to see just how much everything on the board is progressing the way I imagined. However, we can’t let our guard down just yet--)

(First, I rejected the proposal that Aoba Tsumugi-san put his heart into planning back during old fine’s time in order to replace it with my own scheme.)

(I was betting on the chances of His Eminence Tenshouin Eichi still agonizing over it even now.)

(This gamble is the one I judged to be the most perilous one in all of this.)

(However, His Eminence is only human. Despite this "Wonder Game" proposal having entirely different contents, I was able to push it through without problems simply because it had the same name as the previous one.)

(Surprisingly enough, it was accepted exactly how I devised it, and I wasn't even forced to make any revisions.)

(Maybe His Eminence thought, “This time I will make sure to grant Aoba-san’s wish exactly as he intended it”?)

(With this, the first move in order to secure victory has been made. The rest will be easy if we can bring His Eminence under our control. We will be able to rule the board however we see fit.)

(As for Sakasaki Natsume-san, he is still stuck with resentment from days long past, and his anger costs him his otherwise levelheaded thought processes... Our enemies won’t even be promoted[1] to players.)

(The possibility of Sakasaki Natsume-san and His Eminence overcoming the long-held animosity between them just to join forces at this point is exceedingly low, anyway.)

(But if it came to that, it’d be a bit of a nuisance.)

(Aah, I was right to choose Switch as our adversaries!)

(They seem to harbour suspicions like, “Why us of all people?”, but the reason is “Because you’re the easiest to defeat”, of course!)

(To put it more precisely, “Because I already know exactly how I can conquer you”!)

(Nevertheless, due to their affiliations with the former fine and “Five Oddballs”, the degree of praise and popularity we’ll gain from defeating them is unequivocally high!)

(They’re sleeping lions, and those are, historically speaking, the best kind of prey! I’ll coil around them, use my fangs to inject them with my poison, and enjoy eating them all up~!)

(Assault! Invade! Conquer!)

(Historians may look back on us unfavourably after this incident, saying things like “How could they do such a terrible thing”!)

(But I don’t care about that in the least!)

(I’ll discard the shadow for the substance! Ah Hahaha, I am really so glad that I’m the ultimate scumbag….☆)

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

Ah, Saegusa-ku~n ♪

What’s the matter? You seem to be in a good mood!

The last of the participating idols for “Wonder Game” have been collected, so the driver is telling me the bus is about to depart~.

It looks like you're in the middle of work from what I can see, but let’s return to the bus as quickly as possible, okay ♪

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

Ah, yes! That’s not a problem! I was merely taking care of some trivial work while waiting for the remaining idols to arrive, since it was taking a while!

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

Fufu. What a dedicated worker you are~, as expected of the young businessman who’s the talk of the town.

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

Ahaha. Rather, with how many skills I lack, I'll never catch up to my seniors unless I spend every free moment working.

Being the president of a company might sound high and mighty, but in reality it just means that you’re a convenient errand boy who’s gotta do everything himself.

Well, whatever. I'm at a good stopping point with my work, so let’s walk to the bus. Much obliged for coming all the way here to get me, Aoba-san.

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

Don’t worry about it. I was the unreasonable one, requesting the bus to let me accompany them to greet the other idols, so doing odd jobs like this is the least I can do.

I just hope I can be useful... or am I just a nuisance?

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

Far from it! You’re exceptionally helpful!

Not only did you offer the Yumenosaki facilities as the location to hold “Wonder Game”, but you’re even participating in the reception by choice!

Your endeavours are indubitably deeply moving and reassuring to the other idols participating in "Wonder Game"!

I hope to gain valuable insight from observing such a magnificent senpai's demeanor up close!

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

Oh stop it, it’s embarrassing to be praised so much! There’s nothing someone like me could teach to youngsters like you at this point, Saegusa-kun...♪

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

(...Hmm. People are usually happy when they get praised. Aoba Tsumugi-san seems just as unsophisticated and ordinary as the advance reviews said.)

(But something feels off… Hm~m, what is this feeling of discomfort?)

(Is Aoba-san really merely accompanying us on this trip on a whim in order to help pick up the other idols?)

(Or could it be a diversionary tactic in order to sound us out…?)

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

Wawah!? Aah, that startled me, I tripped over this part on the ground that kind of sticks out~ ♪

This flight of stone steps looks like it was made to prevent accidents, so I'd look pretty stupid if I stumbled on it and and injured myself!

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

(Hm~m… He looks like nothing but a simple half-wit to me, though… If this is all an act, he is one hell of an actor.)

(I must be overthinking this. I guess even I get a bit over-sensitive before a rare, crucial match such as this.)

Tsumugi Aoba School Dialogue Render.png

What’s the matter? Let’s hurry, Saegusa-kun, we are running late with the schedule!

Ibara Saegusa School Dialogue Render.png

Aye-aye… Even if you don’t remind me, I am we~ll aware of our schedule.

(Well, for now… I'll stay vigilant, because the better things seem to go, the more you have to watch for pitfalls.)

  1. At this point I feel like I have to explain this. Ibara keeps making references to the “board”, which would be a chessboard in the context of Wonder Game, but here he uses a shogi term for promoting your pieces in the game. Shogi is more specifically themed after the military, so it’s a fitting expression for Ibara to use.
Translation: Bakemonoremy
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