St. Catherine’s has a robust and trained school security department. They are staffed 24/7 and well equipped to deal with any situation.
During the recent fight among the students on school grounds, security was on hand to quickly take control of the situation without incident. The students received medical attention and were transported safely to the infirmary, while one was taken to St. Joe’s hospital for intensive medical care.
While this situation was atypical, it was handled effectively. The parents or legal guardians were contacted and briefed of the situation.
All students will be disciplined, and we will work with each to ensure that they understand what society expects of them regarding proper behavior.
—Excerpt of a St. Catherine’s Boarding School press release
Kato woke up to the alarm. He waited for Tachibana to turn it off, then he remembered. So, he reached down to the desk and turned it off. He sat there for a bit wondering how Tachibana was doing. He also wondered who his next roommate would be. Will he be a seme or an uke? I sure hope he’s a nice guy, Kato thought to himself. He hoped Takahashi got a nice roommate too. He fell back to sleep.
He woke up again and noted that twenty minutes passed by. He was going to have to be careful in the future to not oversleep. He jumped up, went to the bathroom to clean up and then ran to the chow hall.
“You’re later than usual,” Murata noted.
“Yeah, overslept that alarm. It’s too quiet in my room now. I’m used to waking up to the alarm and Tachibana-san turning it off and then making a bunch of noise that keeps me from falling back asleep.”
Kato looked over and saw Takahashi sitting alone. He wondered if those three classmates were part of the war.
“Hey, did you hear what happened yesterday?” Kato asked.
“Was Nakamura-san involved?”
“No. We talked about it, last night, and he told me that, while he respected their choice to go to war, he asked them to respect his choice to stay out of it. He did say that he would say nothing about it to anyone, including me.”
“I see,” Kato said.
“Yeah, I’m glad he didn’t join them. He would be in segregation for a month. I would have been very sad.”
“Know the feeling.” Kato smiled.
“He promised me that he would protect himself and me, and that was the extent of it. He’s always been nonviolent. Just wants to live a quiet and simple life, and with me as a part of it.”
Kato wondered what that last part meant. Has their relationship gone to the next step? he asked himself.
“I see Takahashi-san is still here,” Murata noted.
“Yeah, he was prepared to fight but he was worried about me, so he backed down.”
“He cares for you more than you realize.”
Kato looked at Murata for a few moments, then looked at his food and kept eating. He had an inkling of what Murata was saying but it frightened him a little. He was suddenly very unsure of the situation. What if it comes to it and I still turn Takahashi down? Will our friendship end right then and there? Or will it cause a rift between us and we slowly drift part? Kato lost his appetite.
Sister Mary laid the cane across Takahashi’s back. “Stop it, Takahashi-san!”
Sister Mary struck Takahashi for the fifth time. Takahashi grunted a bit but stood firm, facing the door of the classroom.
Kato simply did not understand why Takahashi would continue to do this. What possessed him to want to call her such bad names and get struck over and over. He wanted to cry out but the one time he attempted to, Takahashi looked straight at him with his wolf-like glare, fangs showing, causing Kato to swallow his words. Doesn’t he understand that this hurts me too? Kato pleaded to whoever might be listening.
Sister Mary, after ascertaining that Takahashi was done misbehaving, said, “Go to the infirmary, now!”
He looked at Kato once, then left the classroom.
Kato was speechless again. The wounds he got last week wouldn’t have healed yet, and now he received five fresh ones. He wiped the tears away from his eyes. He didn’t want Sister Mary to see him crying for Takahashi.
Sister Mary turned to the class and asked, “Now, where were we?”
Kato could hardly pay attention to the rest of the class.
At break, Kato went to the restroom. He felt somewhat safe knowing Handa wouldn’t be around for a while. Still, he knew that one month and Handa would be back. He sighed as he entered the restroom.
Takahashi was messing with his cowlick again in the mirror. Kato’s heart jumped into his throat as he rushed over. He was about to hug Takahashi again, but he was interrupted.
“Wait, wait!” Takahashi exclaimed.
Kato stopped dead in his tracks. He looked at Takahashi.
“I just took one hell of a beating. I’m sore as fuck. Be careful.” He turned and faced the mirror above the sink and began working over the cowlick.
Kato walked up to the side of Takahashi and stood there, looking at their reflection in the mirror.
Takahashi’s eyes met Kato’s eyes in the mirror. He smiled. It was always a nice smile that Kato was extremely fond of. He felt a little pang of envy of the wife that Takahashi would have someday. That thought hurt, somehow.
“What?” Takahashi asked.
“Why do you do that?”
“I assume you mean Sister Mary.”
Kato looked down at the sink. “Yes,” he spoke softly.
“Someday, I may tell you. But not today.” Takahashi spoke firmly. Then he put a wet hand on Kato’s hair and started to mess it up.
“Wah!” Kato exclaimed. “What are you doing?”
Takahashi laughed. “I was helping you to fix your hair. You always do it to me.”
“Oh, here let me help you then.” Kato wet his hands and made motion to help Takahashi “fix” his hair, but Takahashi started laughing and ran as Kato chased him around the restroom.
“Hey, hey, I’m an injured boy. You gotta be careful,” Takahashi laughingly reminded Kato as he was cornered.
“Uh huh.” Kato was laughing. “Good excuse.”
“Okay, okay, I give up,” Takahashi threw up his hands in a gesture of peace while he grinned.
“You better.” Kato grinned back.
They both finished washing up and left the restroom.
World Lit was boring as ever. Kato sarcastically imagined that there were precisely four people that were alive today on the surface of Planet Earth that enjoyed this book; and they were all awful people. It was hard to stay awake in his room reading this, but to have to sit in this class and read a chapter while not falling asleep and getting in trouble with the instructor was excruciating. Somehow, he endured, and lunchtime came.
Kato looked over at Takahashi eating alone and wished he could join him. He didn’t want to violate any seme/uke rules by doing it, unnecessarily pissing him off, so he ate at his own table with Murata.
“I won’t be here for dinner, Kato-san,” Murata informed.
“Nakamura-san is making dinner. We’re swapping tonight too.”
“That sounds nice.” Kato looked over at Takahashi, but their eyes never met.
“I wish I could eat at Nakamura-san’s table too,” Murata said, as if he was reading Kato’s mind.
Kato turned and looked at Murata then looked down at his own food. “Yeah.” Kato had lost his appetite again. Long ago were the days that any food made him happy, all except the times Takahashi made him food.
After Japanese class, Kato waited for Takahashi so they could walk to the Sports Complex. He resolved with himself to not pick a fight with Takahashi at all. He wanted to enjoy these fifteen minutes for once.
He greeted Takahashi with a friendly smile and Takahashi returned the greeting.
“How’s the back?” Kato inquired.
Kato was just about to give voice to his snide comment about Takahashi bringing it upon himself, but he remembered his goal to not fight. “I hope it heals quickly.”
“Well, I do it to myself.” Takahashi laughed.
Kato simply smiled. “What sport do you have today? I forgot.”
“Oh, your ankle good now?” Kato worried a bit.
“Yeah, no more swelling. I’ve been working it and massaging it for a speedy recovery. I will probably still wrap it for extra support for today’s game.”
“My offer still stands for helping you massage it.” Kato smiled.
“Anything you can do to put your hands on me, eh?” Takahashi chuckled.
“I meant your ankle,” Kato said as he smacked Takahashi in the arm.
“Hey, I was not implying anything!” Takahashi protested. “You went there all by yourself.”
“Me? You’re the pervert here.” Kato protested.
“Oh yeah? Who likes to stare at me when I’m naked?”
Kato turned beat red from embarrassment and quickly looked around to see who might have overheard it. Thankfully it was just them two. “Shh!”
Takahashi grinned then burst out laughing and that infectious laugh was caught by Kato and he laughed along too.
They walked for a few minutes without talking, each lost in their own thoughts. Kato was the first to break the silence this time.
“I enjoy these walks with you, when we aren’t mad at each other and fighting,” Kato confessed.
“Me too,” Takahashi said.
“What are your plans tonight?” Kato asked.
“Seme game night. Though I think there will be more talk about what happened Wednesday than games played.”
“Ah.” Kato said. He wasn’t sure why, but he was disappointed that Takahashi’s plans didn’t include him.
“Kato-san, wanna swap tomorrow night?”
“Yes,” Kato blurted out.
“Well,” Takahashi grinned. “That eager to see me naked again, eh?”
Kato rapped Takahashi on the arm again. “See? I told you that you’re the pervert here. I was simply examining the body of a healthy human male, no different than Michelangelo who made David. It’s simple appreciation with absolutely no perviness to it.”
Takahashi laughed. “Perviness? Is that even a word?”
Kato grinned. “Yes. If you look it up in a dictionary, your picture is shown as the example.”
Takahashi reached over and grabbed Kato and started tickling his ribs. “I’ll show you perviness then.”
Kato yelped and took off in a run and Takahashi chased him. They ran to the front gate of the Sport’s Complex and both laughed while they tried to catch their breath.
Takahashi smiled and said, “I will see you after class.”
Kato replied, “Okay, pervert. See you!” Takahashi grinned and started to make a move toward Kato who yelped playfully as he turned and sprinted away.
Kato played racquetball good and hard today. His heart was full, and he was happy for some reason he couldn’t fathom. He was just in a good mood and it seemed nothing could bring it down. He probably lost more games than he won but it didn’t matter. He was looking forward to walking back with Takahashi.
Kato waited for a very long time until he was the last student to head back. Takahashi never showed up. He began to worry endlessly. Takahashi was missing at dinner too. Murata didn’t know anything. He asked around during the showers and nobody knew anything either. He ended up going to bed that night wondering what happened to Takahashi.