The Plan of Suspect X - Part 2/2
Perhaps convinced by Kaburagi-san’s explanation, Detective Kumano didn’t pursue the matter with the students further. Instead, he leaned forward slightly with his elbow on the counter.
“We are looking for these three. Code named; Time Lady, Burning Gal, and Freezing Knight.”
The rough-looking Detective Kumano said three names you’d expect to find in American comics while showing me pictures of three men in black. I understand he’s being serious. However, I couldn’t help but find this situation slightly funny.
Guess reality’s gotten just a bit more interesting, it seems.
“Try to recall if you have ever witnessed or heard rumors of these three individuals?”
After pretending to think hard for a few seconds, I shook my head. I put the ground beans into the siphon and poured hot water.
“So who are they? Are they regulars here?”
Detective Kumano kept his unmoving gaze on me as he pressed me further. Well, the gender, height, and the numbers seem to match perfectly with the people here (actually they are the culprits). That being said, it might seem premature to decide solely on these facts, so for the time being he was prodding a little bit.
Behind Detective Kumano, Detective Yasui was leering at Kaburagi-san while reaching out an arm around Kaburagi-san’s shoulder, only to be slapped away.
You filthy peasant! To think of Her Ducal Highness as being someone easy to touch. How uncouth!
So, what is this? Is Detective Kumano playing a “good cop” and Detective Yasui a “bad cop” here?
I have often heard that alternating between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ characters can effectively shake someone up. Don’t know how much truth there is to this.
Detective Kumano’s voice softened upon seeing me frown.
“There’s no need to defend them. We’ll keep your secret, and if necessary, the police will protect you as well.”
Ooh, here comes the hook. Did you think I was being threatened by a mysterious group with supapowa.
But too bad for you, we have already read your investigation notes and it’s laughable how you are asking around the same thing everywhere.
“… The two girls are regulars.”
I gave a short, partial affirmation. It would be too unnatural to deny they weren’t regulars here. Considering, what Kaburagi-san had said earlier, she had to be a regular. And it would be only natural to include Touka-chan in list of regulars, seeing how chummy she was with Kaburagi-san. On the other hand, Shouta-kun looks like he was destined to be found in such shady establishments. I guess it’d do good to ignore him and treat him like a curious passerby.
“The signboard says CLOSED though.”
“… I like customers with strong curiosity.”
In fact, there are a lot of interesting people who come in even when they see the CLOSED sign. Although to be fair, most of them are drunk so they are equally annoying as well.
That being said, he is digging more than I thought. Can’t blame him though. As long as there are suspicious faces gathered in a suspicious shop, suspicion is inevitable.
Can I really dodge his questions?
I put two cups of coffee on the tray, but Ig came down from my head, grabbed one, dragged it around, and started to carry it towards Kaburagi-san at the end of the counter.
It’s good that you want to help, but…try not to pour it all over Kaburagi-san…ok.
As I watched her in apprehension, Ig stopped in front of Detective Yasui, not Kaburagi-san, and tapped at his suit’s sleeve with her tail to get his attention.
That’s Kaburagi-san’s cup. Oh well…She is an animal after all. I can’t entrust waiting people to her.
“Oh, is this for me? You’re a clever monkey. Aren’t you.”
Detective Yasui was about to pet her because of his love for small animals, when Ig emptied the cup’s content all over him.
Oi monkey! What are you doing!?
No, come to think of it, Detective Yasui was wearing perfume!
“Ahhh! You damn monkey!”
“Cut it, Yasui!”
Detective Kumano stopped Detective Yasui, who hurriedly took off his black stained suit and whirled it around to chase away the laughing Ig, with a shrill voice. Ig used that opening to quickly escape into the living space behind the counter and disappeared.
The two detectives, who seemed to have been taken off guard by the small animal, firmly declined the cleaning fee I gave them (Detective Yasui tried accepting, but Detective Kumano refused) and left the bar.
The two students, who seemed to have been shocked by the sudden visit from the police, didn’t stay there for long and went home. As expected, they didn’t have any desire left to set up the surveillance cameras right after being pressured by the police.
I went to pick up Baba, who was at Kaneyama Tech, and called an emergency meeting. I had to discuss how to treat the detectives who had meddled too much with our betrayal event
The entrance to Amanoiwato was firmly locked. We sat around the table and began the meeting. Ig was absorbed in a TV program, so she would be quiet for a while.
Hearing about the situation a while back, Baba’s eyes sparkled with great interest.
“You mean REAL detectives came here. I wanted to see them question you in person.”
“Gimme a frikin break. If they see a silver haired elf loli roaming around here, they would no doubt suspect me. I don’t want to be marked as a pedophile. I nearly stopped breathing when I saw their police badge, ok. It’s really bad for my heart.”
“You are afraid even with your almighty psychokinesis and your invincible barrier? Though admittedly, it never hurts to be extra careful.”
Baba shrugged. She thinks my psychokinetic barrier is invincible to everything except PSI drives. But she’s wrong. My barrier can’t block Poison gas. And I can’t use psychokinesis when I’m sleeping. So, I could be easily assassinated while asleep. You know, I’m not a Demon King, after all.
Next to Baba, Kaburagi-san raised her hand.
“I mentioned it earlier, but we don’t have a strong connection with the police. It’s difficult to order an individual detective to cancel the investigation. I think it’s necessary to change our method of entering the secret underground base just in case they get a warrant to search the bar.”
“How about voice recognition?”
I see. So, the entrance to the underground base would opened when we say a password. Is that it?
“That was quick. There are other candidates like a keypad or biometrics, you know?”
" ‘Open sesame’, is definitely going to be a lot more fun.”
“… Well, alright.”
Kaburagi-san was convinced. Although Baba didn’t explicitly gave her approval, she didn’t deny it either. Well, if she looked at the real thing, her attitude would definitely change. Baba’s world was lacking in subculture, and there was bound to be difference in our respective cultures. As a result, she wasn’t aware of the charms of this gimmick. However, when in past I showed her similar gimmicks, her eyes lit up every time, which convinced me that her sensibilities were the same as those of us Earthlings.
Next, I suggested my idea. It was something I thought up just now but it shouldn’t be a bad idea.
“I want to pull both of those detectives to our side,”
“You want to increase our numbers? I won’t object… no, I see, you want them as our moles.”
“We already have the top-brass. Now you want to control the on-site personnel as well?”
“I see… I see. They’ll betray the police, leak their investigation details to us and turn a blind-eye to our activities. That’s a good idea.”
I nodded. It was a great help that our female camp was able to comprehend things so quickly.
Detective Yasui is especially petty and will likely betray without any qualms. He seems to be a person who would switch sides if given enough cash. (personal bias)
Rather than using my psychokinesis or sending Kaburagi-san to the Metropolitan Police Department to obtain information, it would be easier to prepare a collaborator from within the police who would voluntarily bring in vital information. Rather than “Don’t let them investigate”, “Turn the investigator into our ally” was a foolproof way to protect ourselves from an investigation.
The meeting ended with unanimous vote to the plan for turning the detectives into our ally.
From here on out, in parallel with the “Betrayal Event” will begin our new plan.
Next chapter on Thursday.