Part 46: Mission 12 - Prologue
Summer vacation draws to a close, with the excitement of the Culture Festival looming large in Kaname's mind.
Sousuke tells her that if it's excitement she wants, she should head to the border between the African Cooperative and the United South African Organization - and she replies that the gap between his idea of "excitement" and an average high schooler's is about the size of the space between Earth and Mars.
But there are more immediate concerns, including a bevy of new transfer students.
Leading off is Kabuto Kouji, a motorcycle hobbyist, followed by Nagare Ryouma the one-time soccer star.
Kyouko is very taken by the pair of hunks, though she notices something in their eyes that belies their age.
Kaname groans and suspects that this new semester is going to be far more "exciting" than she would have wished.
Kazuma notes that the Wärter are now in full swing, operating out of G-Island City.
He seems vaguely derisive of Kouji and crew's insistence that they can handle both academics and piloting, noting that he had the A-B-C's of being a trailer pounded into him via on-the-job training.
Indeed, Taiga offered him a shot at school too, but Kazuma's self-proclaimed dislike of formalities dissuaded him.
His plans of having massive amounts of free time are abruptly shattered by Noin and Mao barging in and dragooning him out of bed, military-style and with incredibly salty language from the Mithril sergeant (Who immediately snaps at him for not calling her "sir").
Apparently Bless directed them to properly drill his son, and they tell Kazuma that he may have good instincts, but he's also got a hell of a lot to learn.
Mao in particular seems quite prepared to drill his ass into submission and thereby forestall any kind of untimely death.
Softening her tone slightly, she warns that having two babes for drill instructors is just going to make his training all the rougher.
Kazuma already regrets not going to school
As it turns out, the gang is pretty much all transferred into the same school, albeit into different age-appropriate classes.
Apparently it was Sousuke's suggestion to his superiors that everyone enter a school so close to the Bay Tower base, and he's glad that everyone seems to be enjoying themselves.
Akito has actually joined a nearby ramen stand (and not doing a good job at it angering a hungry Boss), and relates that the Golion folks and all are also doing various part-time work.
The ramen is served but Hayato quickly dubs it the worst Ramen on G-Island (and Boss gets even angrier for having waited for this); Akito tries to explain the crummy food by saying that he had to make it all himself after the manager went down sick, but even for that he seems to have screwed up.
Sousuke is the only person chowing down, convinced at least that the ramen isn't poisonous.
When Akito presses him to know whether it tastes good, Sousuke changes the subject and asks him what the deal was with him following Yurika onto the Nadesico.
He claims to have no grasp of why one would fight for a woman, but Kaname cuts him off and hustles everyone away.
So quickly, in fact, that they neglected to pay their bill, much to Akitos despair.
Honerva is quite amused at the tongue-lashing Ashura received in the wake of his failure in battle.
She claims to have interesting info that could let Ashura bring Kouji to the most painful, humiliating end imaginable.
Ashura may be in a bad mood, but is still willing to hear Honerva out.
The student council president has a number of favors to ask of Kaname, claiming that he's got his hands full with the Culture Festival coming up.
First on the list is a problem with the rugby team, who was so obscure that Kaname didn't even know her school had one.
Both the captain and the rest of the team are inveterate crybabies, and the team hasn't logged a single victory in over a decade.
It seems only natural that they get disbanded, but the captain blubbers that he loves rugby as much as he loves the flowers and birds and clouds.
President Hayashimizu doesn't want things to end on this note, especially since the faculty seem to have ignored student self-governance in handing down their decision, so he made a deal with the principal.
There is to be a practice game between their rugby team and that of a formidable nearby school - victory will postpone the team's death sentence for a year, loss will carry it out immediately.
The team has no hope of victory, and is hemorrhaging members who can't stand up to the rigors of tackling or scrums.
The plan is to make Kaname the new manager and have her recruit players to fill the roster back up.
Kaname is obviously unenthused, but there are two more jobs for her as well.
First is figuring out how to protect the Culture Festival from neighboring schools' delinquents and second is figuring out some kind of display to please all the local residents.
And she's going to have some help: Sousuke, who's been deputized especially for the occasion.
Of course she enlists help from the rest of the Wärter, who are concerned about how sissified the remaining original players are.
With their girly clubhouse decor, tea breaks, and run-down uniforms, they hardly cut a convincing figure.
Mao apparently has a plan to whip them into shape, which leaves the other two jobs to worry about.
Kaname perhaps unwisely leaves everything up to Sousuke, letting her concentrate on other stuff.
Meanwhile, Yurika has gotten a part-time job at the same ramen stand as Akito, claiming that she's studying for when she and Akito have their own shop together some day.
Unfortunately, the ramen hasn't improved much, and Hayato only slightly pulls his punches when saying that Akito's fare isn't worth paying for.
The next mission is quite a short one but it's also very fun. I can probably get it all done in one update. See you all then!