EIDBT – May 17, 2011 – Investigation Team, but not stakeout team

Oh man,  do we all suck at doing the whole “subtle information gathering” thing. Long story short, today was a bust, and I’ve just gotten a very disturbing phone call.

After school, we all gathered outside the school gate. Chie and Yosuke were… really into the whole role. Yosuke had just gotten back, and Chie demanded a status update.
“Has the target arrived at school!?”
“Yes, Ma’am! Visual ID confirmed!” … My friends are massive nerds. “Target arrived in-zone near the end of his mess break, with mother-issued rations in hand. Current status: In the bathroom, fixing his hair.” Okay, Yosuke started to scare me at this point. “The target was acting nervous. I left my position before he had a chance to pick on me!” Yosuke, please never have to tail me. I feel like you would murder me then rape the corpse while crying after a day.
“I wonder what kind of plans they made… it didn’t seem like he knew that boy very well.” Yukiko thankfully brought the conversation back to the way normal people talk.
“Well, I think there’s something more subtle–” Chie almost had a moment of lucidity before she cut herself off. “Oh, he’s here!”
Kanji walked to the school gate, and waited for a moment while the slender man approached him. They exchanged a quick “I’m sorry, did you wait long?” “No, I just got here too.” Something made me raise an eyebrow at that. I think it was because those lines are the same ones used at the beginning of every date in every anime I’ve ever seen.
“Wh-what in the world was that…?” I guess Yosuke caught on as well. Chie wasn’t paying attention to that though, because she called out to us.
“Oh, a-anyways! We gotta hurry after them, or we’ll lose them!” We decided to split intro groups. One would tail Kanji, the other would check out his house. Naturally, I suggested that Chie and I team up. Chie didn’t seem to like that suggestion, though…
“I wouldn’t mind going with you, but you’d leave Yukiko with Yosuke? That worries me… for other reasons.” She grabbed Yosuke in a rush and chased after Kanji. I heard Yosuke suggesting that they act as if they were a couple to not draw suspicion.
“Not in a million years! There’ll be no need for that if we stay out of sight.” Knowing those two and how they were just acting, I think that we would have been much better off if Yukiko and I went along after Kanji, but whatever.

As they ran off, I couldn’t help but notice that I was all alone with Yukiko. She noticed this too, and started to fret.
“Oh… U-Um, that leaves us in charge of staking out the textile shop. So… shall we?” We did, with her clinging to my arm the entire way. Or not. It was more small talk and a respectable distance all the way there.

After a while, Yukiko had left to go get some food as I continued to watch the shop. She eventually ran back with some food from the local stands for the two of us. I had takoyaki. I don’t remember what she got for herself.
“Everything seems fine at the shop. I hope it stays that way… Do you think the culprit will come…?” Yukiko seemed kind of nervous about that, so I wanted to reassure her. I told her that I doubted it.
“Our efforts might be fruitless… But maybe that’s for the best. It would be scary if the culprit did show up… But if they do, I’ll do what I can to help you catch them.” I suppose it does kinda make sense that I’d be the one chasing it down, but I expected Yukiko to act just a little stronger. “You all saved my life… I don’t want to be the only one doing nothing.” She put herself down a bit more before she finally caught herself. “I’ve never chatted with a boy my age like this before… Chie, of course, has no problem getting along with guys because of her personality…” Which is why I’m scooping her up early. You’ll get your chance, Yukiko, you just wait. When you’re nice and jealous of me and Chie, I’ll swoop in to mend your battered and eager heart. “But I think she’s had more fun hanging out with you and Yosuke lately.” Hopefully me more than him. “…The same is true for me.” She looked at me over her shoulder in a slightly wistful way. It was… intriguing.
I bet you can all guess what happened next. Once again, I slipped into a kind of trance while the orchestral voices in my head told me that I had established a new social link. Yukiko and I have formed the Priestess Social Link.
I was getting a vibe, so I decided to screw the pretense of needing her contact information for the investigation. I just straight out asked for her number. She blushed like a madwoman, but eventually agreed.
“I can’t always answer, since I help out around the inn… But feel free to call anytime.” She had a terribly mischievous look in her eyes… Maybe I shouldn’t wait after all.

(I can’t actually describe the next scene in-character, but I thought that it was too funny to just ignore. Chie and Yosuke are tailing Kanji [at one point, it pretty much looks like they’re dry-humping doggy-style]. They eventually get distracted by an argument they start having, when Kanji notices them. He confronts them, and Chie lets on that they thought seeing those two together looked like they were on a date. Eventually Kanji is chasing the pair around a gazebo in the floodplains insisting that things weren’t how they looked. It’s also a fairly big introduction to one of Kanji’s major inner turmoils.)

In any case, after talking for a while more with Yukiko, Chie and Yosuke found us, and begged for forgiveness.
“We regret to inform… that our mission failed.” Chie was very solemn.
“There was nowhere to hide.”
I don’t know why it didn’t dawn on me at the time, but we were talking about how we had lost track of Kanji… In front of his family’s shop. Needless to say, he ran into us rather quickly. Fuck, we’re stupid.
We actually weren’t killed, thankfully enough. He did yell at us, but eventually trailed off, saying that something wasn’t our fault… We were all a little taken aback by that.
“Hey, uh… mind if we ask something? Has anything strange happened to you lately?” Yosuke actually asked a pretty reasonable question there. Too bad Kanji wasn’t in the mood to communicate in anything but rage.
“Huh? Strange…? What’s this ‘strange’ stuff, huh!? Are you saying that I’m strange!?” Yosuke tried to back pedal, but Kanji wasn’t having any of it
“You shitheads better get the hell out of my face, or I’m taking you down!” He chased us away, and we sure bolted out of there as fast as possible. I think I heard Yosuke slam into a wall as he was escaping, too. How is your first instinct to run into a WALL?! Oi, I hope we don’t have to face his Shadow. It’ll be scary enough to just stop us all in our tracks, I think.

When we finally caught our breath, we decided that we still couldn’t give up, and that we’d have to check up on him tomorrow. I was fine with that, as long as it wasn’t my ass that was going to be kicked. I’d be comfortable letting Yosuke be the punching bag. We all said goodbye, and walked back a little more scared than we would have liked to be.

When I got home, Nanako greeted me as usual. She also mentioned that it was about to start raining.

Fuck.

Fuck. God damnit. I did not like that one bit. I went to my room to start getting ready for bed, but I eventually got the phone call I seriously did not want to get. Yukiko was on the other end. She had some calls to make for the Inn, so she also called the textile shop. Kanji’s mother had noted that he had left earlier today and hadn’t come back. Not an uncommon thing, but…

Kanji’s missing. And it’s raining. And it’s almost midnight.

…We’re in deep shit this time.

WEATHER FORECAST:

18 19 20 21 22 23
Sun Sun Sun Cloud Cloud Rain/Cloud

(As a short afterward, I can never represent this whole sequence better than hiimdaisy’s persona 4 comic. Just read it here. And if you’re reading this and tomorrow’s entry isn’t up yet, wait for it and read the first few paragraphs, THEN read the comic. Or just skip the last three panels, which is harder.)

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~ by buncythefrog on January 11, 2011.

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