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/qst/ - Quests

File: MatsunoIncSplash2.jpg (293 KB, 1000x1000)
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You are Nagata Miho, former HR employee turned idol manager alongside two other newly appointed managers.

Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency located in Tokyo, Japan is where you work.
You manage three idols: Kaiba Aoi, Chigusa Iki, and Enatsu Mari.

Below you’ll find a link to the wiki with all the mechanics, character sheets, and more.

I typically update these after each bi-weekly decision point.

If you’d like to catch up, I recommend reading the story in the wiki.

Alternatively, here's the archive:
Previous thread:


Nagata sends a quick message to Matsui to try and get Kaiba an audition for a part in Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works.
Ufotable Animation is a well-known company with quite a bit of renown, so there’s likely to be a ton of competition.
Then again, Kaiba has been practicing her acting for months now so she should be able to keep up with the other applicants.

It’s only 9 AM at the moment and there’s several hours left before the first new idol comes in for an interview.
Nagata’s second and third idol. The privilege to manage up to three idols was acquired after her successful performance review.
The other two managers, Yukimori Kyoden and Matsuno Kojiro, weren’t that lucky.

Nagata can’t help but wonder what those two have been up to these past few weeks.
She’s been so busy with everything that she barely had any time to keep track of those who should’ve been her competition.

Well, there’s one easy way to find out, but that requires a trip to HR.
It requires meeting up with Kitabayashi Yui. The two of them have barely spoken since the karaoke night.

Nagata sighs, “Well,” she proclaims to the empty office, “I’ll have to face her at some point.”
She begins the short journey to the HR office.

Once there Nagata idles in front of the door, she’s strangely nervous.
Even though she usually doesn’t, she decides to knock.

Perhaps Mori Kotone is in today, rather tha…
“Come on in,” replies the voice of Kitabayashi Yui.

Nagata cracks open the door a bit and pokes her head inside, “Good morning,” she says.

Kitabayashi blinks, “Good morning,” she says, returning her attention to the computer, “Nagata-san.”

Nagata sheepishly walks into the room, “How…” she begins, “Have you been?”

“I’ve been well,” replies Kitabayashi, “Thank you for asking. Can I help you with something?”

Nagata winces. There’s obviously some kind of wall between the both of them.
She rubs the back of her own neck, “Well,” she says, “I was hoping you could let me have another peek at the other managers. To see what they’ve been up to?”

Kitabayashi replies with a flat stare, “Nagata-san,” she says, “I can’t allow non-HR personnel to view restricted company records.”

“Of course,” replies Nagata, feigning a chuckle, “I was just… you know… like last time?”

Kitabayashi offers Nagata little more than a glance, “I do hope you won’t press the matter and force me to put this violation on record?”

Nagata freezes up, “No, ah, that won’t be necessary,” she says, “…I’ll be going now…”

She turns towards the door and makes it halfway there before Kitabayashi bursts out laughing.

“Mihooo!” she cries, between laughs, “I can’t believe you fell for that!”

Face flush, Nagata stomps in place, eyes downcast, “You almost made me cry!” she says, “I was going to walk out that door thinking I lost a friend!”

Kitabayashi recovers from her laughing fit and wags a finger, “Tch, tch, tch,” she says, clicking her tongue, “Like I’d ever treat you like that for real.”

Nagata sniffles, “I wouldn’t have blamed you,” she says, “After what happened…”

Kitabayashi rolls her eyes, gets up, and walks over, placing her hands on Nagata’s shoulders, “Should I be mad because you’re straight?”
She waves a dismissive hand, “Was I disappointed?" she says, "Yes, but I’m not mad or anything!”

Kitabayashi bellows out an exaggerated sigh, “Paaaah, we would’ve been so cute together,” she cries, head tilted towards the ceiling, “You could be making me miso soup every day.”

Relief washing over her, Nagata smiles. This is the Kitabayashi that she knows.
Nagata raises a playful eyebrow, “I see, so that was your endgame,” she says, “Using me as your soup servant.”

“Not gonna lie, that was a pretty big part of it,” replies Kitabayashi, nodding sagely.
She pats Nagata on the shoulders before letting go, “Let’s spy on people, yeah?”

Never before has Nagata been so happy to engage in borderline criminal activity, “mMmm,” she says, nodding eagerly.
The both of them move towards the computer where Kitabayashi sits down.

“Let’s see…” begins Kitabayashi, clicking away at the computer, “I heard that Matsuno-kun acquired himself a fancy idol…”

“Eh?” replies Nagata, “I didn’t know he had auditions done?”

“He didn’t,” says Kitabayashi, “His dad pulled some strings and swiped away a fancy idol from some other agency. Veeeerrrry expensive. The company had to buy out her contract.”

Suppose that’s one of the perks of being related to the owner of the company.

“Can I see her file?” asks Nagata.

“Yep, yep,” says Kitabayashi.
One flurry of keystrokes later, the new idol’s file appears on the screen.
File: WataseYoko.jpg (79 KB, 667x1000)
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Watase Yoko (Age 22, Rank B)

Looks: 66 (77)
Vocals: 75 (88)
Dance: 53 (58)
Acting: 35 (43)
Personality: 39 (61)

Trait: Job-hopper
Quick to leave the agency if a better offer appears.
Requires constant boosts in salary to retain.

Fame: 5 (Celebrity (B))
This idol is recognized in public at times.

Costs $21,000 per month
She hot.
Hot to handle, too. Poor nepo-baby's in over his head with that one, I'd wager
File: YukimoreBudget2.png (81 KB, 1018x810)
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“Uwwwaaa,” says Kitabayashi with a open mouth, “She looks intense.”
She stares at the screen for a long moment, “I bet her nipples are pierced.”

“Yui-chan!” says Nagata with a gasp.

“What? Oh, it seems like she’s pretty famous,” says Kitabayashi, “But since she’s twenty-two she’s probably been at it for a while.”
”Seems like she started at Matsuno Inc. only a few days ago,” adds Kitabayashi.

Nagata nods along. This is the oldest idol she’s seen on file.
”What age idols typically retire?” she asks.

Kitabayashi shrugs, “Usually in their late twenties,” she says, “If no scandals or stuff force them out …haha.”

Nagata leans in towards Kitabayashi and strokes her head briefly, “There, there,” she says, then stops.

“Ah,” says Kitabayashi as the hand is lifted away, “I’m still very sad! More!”

Nagata leans away, her face sporting a undisguised look of disgust.

Kitabayashi pouts, “…how about the other managers…”
Her typing speed is noticeably less energetic.
”Here’s Yukimori Kyoden's budget,” she says.
>pic related
File: MatsunoKojiroBudget2.png (56 KB, 1005x606)
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Nothing seems out of the ordinary.
Then again Nagata hasn’t heard from Ichihara Riko in a while and she’s not sure how to feel about it.
Did Yukimori finally gain a measure of control over her or is she still plotting?

“….and here’s the golden boy himself, Matsuno Kojiro,” says Kitabayashi.
With a final, hard tap of the 'Enter' key, Matsuno's budget appears on screen.
>pic related

Nagata glances over the list of income and expenses.
“Hmm,” she says, “Can you go back to Yukimori’s budget for a moment?”

“Aye, aye,” replies Kitabayashi and does so.

Nagata’s eyes narrow, “Both managers took a job at the same studio at the same time.”

Kitabayashi stretches her arms above her head for a moment, making a small noise, “Maybe it was a group thing. Isn’t that strange for a job to feature multiple idols.”

“I suppose you’re right,” says Nagata, then faces Kitabayashi, “Thanks again, Yui.”

Kitabayashi smiles, “You’re welcome,” she says, “Anything else?”

>1 - Nope, that’s all.
>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi
>3 - Write-in
No further updates today.
I'm hoping to do the new idol introductions tomorrow and close off week 15/16
>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi
Yui-chan is our friend. We need one of those.
>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi
Advice is desperately needed.
no fucking way. those snakes are 2x1'ing us and abusing nepotism

>1 - Nope, that’s all.
>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi
I’m somewhat willing to be talked out of this now that the decision is here.

On one hand, we can request help even without spilling details but I assume Yui has her own life and won’t make it a priority unless she understands it’s not just our nerves taking over. She’s also likely to avoid discussing sexuality (which Kaiba is being gaslit over) unless we give her a reason. On the other hand, she could spill the beans to someone. On the other other hand, if we didn’t have the self-control to avoid peeking at her texts, should we have the self-control to keep our concerns bottled up?
The answer is easy, we don't need Yui anymore.
Kaiba seems to be very happy with the possibility of becoming a senpai so that should get her head away from ErikoDesu55. Telling Yui about our little trolling would just backfire at us at some point, so it's best to play safe
>2 - Confide
She IS from HR after all
>1 - Nope, that’s all.
Actually I change my mind and put my vote in the right format the right format
>1 - Nope, that’s all.
>"Hey, Kaiba, HR told me they know from Tech that you are having too many echanges with some accounts. While replying to your fans is not that big of a deal it would be better if you do so with moderation"

Would something like this make Kaiba stop talking wtih the toxic woman or making an alternative account to keep in touch?
She would instantly make an alt.
>1 - Nope, that’s all.
No, this is a bad idea
>'Hey Kaiba! Yakuza murdered ErikoDesu55 last night and dumped her lifeless body in a river. I ordered them to do that and I will do it again if someone tries to get in the way of my... no, our success. Anyways I hope you get along with your kouhais!'

Kaiba's face when?
>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi

>2 - Confide what you saw in Kaiba’s chatlogs to Kitabayashi

There’s of course the matter of Kaiba’s chat logs.
Whether or not it’s a good idea to share that Nagata has been violating her idol’s privacy is a different matter entirely.

Nagata presses the tips of her fingers together, her lips a thin line, "Well…”

Recognizing the first signs of a juicy secret, Kitabayashi’s eyes nearly sparkle, “…Yes…?”

Nagata looks away, it feels like confessing a crime, “It’s about Kaiba-san…”

Kitabayashi gets up, “Miho, stop teasing and just tell me!” she cries, “My heart can’t take this!”

“I think a fan is trying to be lewd with Kaiba-chan!” shouts Nagata, far louder than she intentioned.
That’s perhaps a bit of an oversimplification, but that seems to be ErikoDesu55’s goal.

Kitabayashi stares for a long moment, “Yes,” she says eventually, “That’s, like, half the fanbase. Probably. No, no. More like most of the fanbase.”

“This fan has been chatting with Kaiba-san a lot and I’m not sure what to do!” says Nagata.

After taking a moment to chuckle knowingly, Kitabayashi shakes her head, “Just have her block him. Really, Miho. I know you’re a big softie, but really?”

“But I think Kaiba-san might be really into it, she’s been responding from her official account each time,” says Nagata, “And it’s a girl!”

Kitabayashi eyes widen, “No way!” she cries.

“Yes!” shouts Nagata, “I think it might’ve been a fan she met at the handshaking event! They’ve been chatting a lot ever since!”

Office chair creaking as Kitabayashi sags wide-eyed into her chair, she quiets for just a moment.
“I never figured her the type,” she says, then side-eyes Nagata, “Then again my … sense for that has been kinda off lately.”

Kitabayashi exhales noisily, “I can’t believe a timid girl like Kitabayashi would come forward and share this sort of stuff with you. The two of you must be close.”

Nagata scratches her cheek, then chuckles quietly, “Eh-heh-he, actually…”

Her face a mask of disappointment, Kitabayashi speaks, “Miho… no…”

The jig is up. Confronted with the moral crime, Nagata blushes fiercely.
”I didn’t mean to!” she cries, “At first! It was just …there on the screen.”
”After I clicked it,” she says quietly, pressing her index fingers together.
File: Admonished.png (534 KB, 512x768)
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“I can’t believe you’d spy on your own idol like that,” says Kitabayashi, shaking her head.

Nagata turns away, “Aaargh, I’m sorry!” she says.

“Now, I, well, I would spy in a heartbeat,” continues Kitabayashi, then points an accusing finger at Nagata, “But I expected better from you!”

“I knooww,” says Nagata, swaying from side-to-side under the torment of guilt, “I’m sorry!”

“How does it feel?” says Kitabayashi, “Knowing you’re as bad as me?”

Nagata’s only response is a whimper.

“On your knees,” shouts Kitabayashi, “Repent!”

The weight of sin and shame too much to bear, Nagata buckles at the knees and uses her hands to hide her face.
It must’ve been years since she was reprimanded like this.

“What has this world come to,” says Kitabayashi as she continues to admonish Nagata, “That I have to talk sense into YOU instead of the other way around.”

Kitabayashi taps a foot impatiently. “Did you really think you could do something like that and keep it a secret?” she continues, “You can’t even call in sick without feeling guilty! …And that’s when you’re actually sick!”

“I’m sorry…” mumbles Nagata.

“Say it like you mean it!” cries Kitabayashi.

Eyes closed, Nagata tilts her head upwards, “I’M SORRY!” she shouts, then returns her gaze to the office floor.

Kitabayashi sighs, “That’ll have to do,” she says, walking over to her desk, “You’re lucky you confessed this to me. Knowing you you’d try so hard to help Kaiba-chan you’d accidentally reveal that you know more than you should.”

There’s a click and a brief flash. (pic related)
Nagata’s jaw drops as she looks up to see Kitabayashi with her phone in hand.

“Don’t look at me like that,” says Kitabayashi, motioning for Nagata to get up, “You’re not getting off that easy. Consider it payment for making me keep a secret and helping you with this.”

“Help?” asks Nagata, hastily getting up and adjusting her clothing, “How?”

Kitabayashi winces, “Let’s just say I have some experience with potential scandals.”
”You said she used her official account, yeah?” she asks.

Nagata nods, “KaibaAoiOfficial”

“We’re on the clock then,” says Kitabayashi, “Social media wasn’t as big back when I was an idol, but even then marketing used my official accounts to promote events and stuff. It’s only a matter of time before somebody logs into her account and clicks on the wrong thing and sees her chat history.”

Kitabayashi walks over to her computer, retrieves Kaiba’s account credentials from the company records, and locks the screen.
“First I need to see the complete chat to see how bad things really are,” she says, “We’ll use your computer to check the chat.”

Nagata fidgets, “But I thought you said looking at her private chat was bad…”

“You’ve already seen it,” says Kitabayashi, “So at the very least we should try and make something good happen because of it. Kaiba-chan’s career could be in danger.”

Kitabayashi ushers Nagata out of the room and they both exit into the hallway and set off towards Nagata’s office.

They walk with quiet determination until Nagata breaks the silence.
“…I’m gonna be seeing that picture you took a lot, aren’t I?” asks Nagata.

“Yes,” replies Kitabayashi, “Yes, you are.”


Once in Nagata’s office, Kitabayashi logs into Kaiba’s account and slowly reads through the chat logs.
Kitabayashi presses her back into the chair and makes a sharp whistling noise.

“What a creep,” says Kitabayashi, wrinkling her nose, “There’s good and bad news.”
”The good news, if you wanna call it that, is that Kaiba-san is probably not a lesbian,” she says.

“How can you tell?” replies Nagata.

“She’s just very lonely, I think,” replies Kitabayashi, “I’ve seen it happen all the time. First in the all-girls school I went to and then later during my time as an idol. It happens in prisons a lot, too.”
”People get isolated away from people they would ordinarily be into and instead turn to whatever is available,” she adds, “Throw in the fact that this girl is swinging Kaiba-chan from highs to lows and I’m not surprised Kaiba-chan is so eager to please her. This EmikoDesu’s approval makes the happy chemicals flow and Kaiba’s not used to those. It probably feels special to her.”

Nagata blinks, “You seem to know a lot about this.”

Kitabayashi sighs, then frowns, “I don’t want to talk about it.”

“So, eh,” tries Nagata, “When you say … during your time as an idol…?”

Kitabayashi nods, “Idols get put on a pedestal, out of reach of fans, and the only people on the pedestal with you are the other idols. Throw in the fact that they usually spend a lot of time together, are forbidden from outside relationships, and you can probably imagine where a lonely girl will turn.”

“Kaiba-san has some new idols joining her soon,” says Nagata, “Perhaps that’ll help with the loneliness, but I do hope nothing has, er, awakened inside Kaiba-san because of this. I shouldn’t be worried for the new idols, right?”

Kitabayashi flashes a smug smile, “Even if it did, I wouldn't worry. She’s not the type to chase after anyone.”

Talking about her idol like this is honestly making Nagata uncomfortable.
”So the good news is that Kaiba-san’s just painfully lonely,” she says, “What’s the bad news?”

“It seems like they’re about to meet,” says Kitabayashi, “That’ll be the end of Kaiba-san.”
”Even the best-case scenario is horrible for her career,” she says, “What if they like each other and kiss? You think Kaiba-chan will be able to walk away from that if you demand they stop meeting?”

“K-kiss?” replies Nagata, blushing like a maiden, “They barely know each other!”

Kitabayashi raises an eyebrow, “You read the same chat I did, yes?” she says, “This EmikoDesu clearly has some kind of plan. Constantly pushing Kaiba-chan, putting ideas in her head and trying to make her think they were her own, being nice and then cold?”

The consequences are nerve-wracking. Kaiba-san doesn’t deserve any of this.
“Yui-chan, what do I do?” asks Nagata, hands shaking.

Kitabayashi taps the desk with a finger to emphasize each word, “They. Cannot. Meet.”
She watches Nagata panic in silence, not mentioning the fact that the worst-case scenario would probably end Kaiba Aoi’s career in an instant.

Arms folded tightly, Nagata paces the room, “It’s in the weekend,” she says, “If there was a special thing going on like the handshaking event then I might be able to keep her from the meeting, but there isn’t one.”

“Then make one up,” says Kitabayashi, shrugging, “You have two new idols coming in, right? Host a 'Welcome event' party somewhere far away from this Sarutahiko Café.”

Nagata pouts, “Wouldn’t Kaiba-san simply go to the meeting afterwards?”

Kitabayashi throws up her hands, “Then plan an event that takes the entire day!” she cries, “Take all the idols, put them in a bus, then move them somewhere else. You can even take the new idol, Watase Yoko, and Ichihara Riko and say it’s a company event. All the idols get to meet each other. Huray.”

Nagata frowns, “That’d be very short notice though… and expensive…”

Kitabayashi clicks her tongue, “Tch, just call it a surprise,” she says, her face stern, “You gonna come up with some ideas yourself or just keep breaking down mine?”
She seems to be taking this all very seriously. Her usual playful attitude is nowhere to be seen.

“Ah,” says Nagata, taken aback by the sudden harsh tone, “I’m sorry…”
”It’s just…” she continues, trembling, “Yui… I’m so scared for Kaiba-san!”

Swivelling her desk chair to face Nagata, Kitabayashi's face is the picture of pity as she opens her arms wide as Nagata hurries forward to accept the hug.
”This is all part of the life of an idol,” says Kitabayashi, as she embraces Nagata tightly, “I know it’s all new to you, but this was my life for several years, y’know?”

“I don’t like it,” replies Nagata, her voice strained, “Why couldn’t this EmikoDesu just be nice?”

“That’d be even worse,” says Kitabayashi, “It would be your job to destroy that happiness. Idols can’t have relationships, remember? Being a manager can be hard, too.”

“I tried to tell Kaiba-san to be careful around people like EmikoDesu in a roundabout way after I saw the chat,” says Nagata, “I didn’t want to say that I peeked at her private chat.”

“Well,” says Kitabayashi, “I still think you should confess what you did, but I can understand that you don’t want to damage her trust. I mean, you already did, but she just doesn’t know it.”

“Yui-chan,” says Nagata, sniffling, “Not helping.”

“Suppose you can tell her that somebody that has access to her business-issued account noticed the chat and made an anonymous call to HR. Which would mean it would get to me and I, with you being Kaiba-chan’s manager, would’ve told it to you,” she says.

It feels a bit like running away, but pinning the blame on a faceless employee from marketing might be an option.

“Or…” says Kitabayashi with a sly grin, “If you do the whole idol ‘welcome party’ and make Kaiba-chan miss the first meet-up, we can keep an eye on the chat and see if there’s gonna be a next one.”

Nagata tilts her head slightly, “And then…?”

Kitabayashi reaches for a notebook on the desk and holds it front of her face, her eyes barely peeking over, “Spy on them,” she says, “Or get somebody to spy on them.”

For the first time since what feels like forever, Nagata laughs, “Yui,” she says, laughing, “Spying on a date? That’s something high school girls do! I’ve never heard of adults spying on people.”

Kitabayashi raises her eyebrows, the lower part of her face still hidden by the notebook, “Exactly,” she says, “That’s because we’re a lot better at it than high schoolgirls.”
She puts the notebook away, ”They shouldn’t meet, but if we can’t prevent it, then we should at least be ready help if needed,” she adds.

That decision will have to wait until EmikoDesu55 suggest a future meet-up date.

Replacement Event on Saturday
>1 - Find a small restaurant within Tokyo to introduce your idols to each other. (-$200, very short event)
>2 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a weekend trip to Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$2,000, long event)
>3 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a day trip to an Amusement Park (-$1,000, very short event)
>4 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a day trip to a nearby beach (-$1,000, short event)
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
>6 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a day trip to an Amusement Park (-$2,000, very short event)
>7 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a day trip to a nearby beach (-$2,000, short event)

Meta Vote on Writing
>1 - Keep using Third Person Perspective
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
>>2 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a weekend trip to Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$2,000, long event)
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
I thought Yui only realized she's into women last year? Maybe she's remembering something another idol did.

>3 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a day trip to an Amusement Park (-$1,000, very short event)

Meta Vote on Writing
With the amount of characterization you've started to give Nagato, I think the 3rd person is better. 2nd person requires letting the players have the most input into her character. Imo.
>1 - Keep using Third Person Perspective
>4 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a day trip to a nearby beach (-$1,000, short event)
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
>2 - Rent a bus and take your idols on a weekend trip to Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$2,000, long event)
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
Huh. She didn't say anything we already didn't knew but I guess that having someone to spy on Kaiba was something good (albeit... unethical? imoral?) to come out of this guilt show.
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
Rare will be the opportunity that we'll get to speak and observe the other manager's idols. We should grab this chance while we can and extract whatever information we can get our hands on.

>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
Anon’s reasoning convinced me, changing my vote, >>5626835, to
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
Might make the idols a bit less inclined to attack us. Or make the other managers paranoid on what we’re accomplishing by inviting their idols and paying for the trip.

>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
>7 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a day trip to a nearby beach (-$2,000, short event)
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
>“I don’t like it,” replies Nagata, her voice strained, “Why couldn’t this EmikoDesu just be nice?”
>“That’d be even worse,” says Kitabayashi, “It would be your job to destroy that happiness. Idols can’t have relationships, remember? Being a manager can be hard, too.”

How long till we encounter a case like this? I would call this foreshadowing, but considering the position of idols, it's a downright inevitability. So maybe Kitabayashi can be another source of advice when telling us how harsh or soft we must be when we face a situation like this.

On a side note, what was Kitabayashi's idol rank, A? S? Certainly was good enough that the company back in the day put its hopes and dreams on her shoulders till it broke the camel's back.
>I thought Yui only realized she's into women last year? Maybe she's remembering something another idol did.
It's mentioned by Yui in Week-9/10 that she first "awakened" to women, because she was battered with a purse by a angry housewife (Yukimori's wife).

Spoiler: Is using consistency "errors" to hint at a character lying / telling half-truths something I shouldn't do? Should I be instead be telling the full truth all the time?
It's a hard question. On one hand, finding these inconsistencies is fun. On the other hand, it only works if we're can be sure it's intended and not just a mistake. I'd say try it and see how it goes.
I'll take this as a confirmation that the purse beating story was Yui joking around.

As an aside, Yui is a bro (sis) and we'll definitely have to set her up with someone who'll make her happy.
>I'll take this as a confirmation that the purse beating story was Yui joking around.
Not so much joking around as it did happen, but (since it was sorta already spoiled) not what made Yui walk down that path
I enjoy placing hints and stuff in the story. Most never got found. There's even info hidden in the wiki since I like alternate reality games (ARGs).
You might've noticed that the story is placed in the past. This is so I can make real-life references that foreshadow or hint stuff yet to happen.
You're going to make KyoAni burn, you mfer?!
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That'd be cruel.
If we take the 3rd person omniscient then, imo, the narrator should always be telling the full truth (i.e anything that isn't a character speech should not contain lies).

Otherwise, having not only the characters but also the narrator as a unreliable source of info would be a PITA.

On a 2nd person narrative though, since it's normally what *Nagato* feels and interprets then you could simply wave inconsistencies as Nagato misremembering things or not paying too much attention on the big picture.
I'm gonna disagree. Even in 2nd person narrative, I think Nagato's perception should be accurate. It's the only thing the players have to go on, and messing with it is best left to psychological thrillers rather than managing simulators.
>If we take the 3rd person omniscient then, imo, the narrator should always be telling the full truth (i.e anything that isn't a character speech should not contain lies).
I think this is a good take. I've only had a character lie or obfuscate things in character speech thus far.

Back when we did 2nd person narrative (and we seem to be returning to that) I only went as far as Nagata being unclear about somebody's motivations or intentions.
I plan to stick to that.

I'll close the vote and keep writing before we get too off-topic.

>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)
>1 - Keep using Third Person Perspective
>I enjoy placing hints and stuff in the story. Most never got found. There's even info hidden in the wiki since I like alternate reality games (ARGs).
Oh man, I have to reread the first thread and come up with crazy conclusions. Though, if there are cultural references to animation companies and such, I am totally going to miss them.

Out of curiosity, QM, will you ever adopt a name and trip?
I’m fine with it. In a case like Yui and purse lady, I can assume a story like that is either true, a joke, or an exaggeration. I figured an exaggeration, a real story that happened and she found pretty hot afterward that she now plays it up for fun.

I probably won’t get many references. Mentally I peg this in the land of “anime” and I always assume there’s a touch of the fantastical even in “ordinary” plots and places. I’m too accepting of weirdness as a result.

Like others said, we should always know what Nagato is thinking. We are Nagato after all! Everything else is up in the air.
No more updates today. This one is taking a while.
I'll post it tomorrow.

>Out of curiosity, QM, will you ever adopt a name and trip?
Feel no real need to. I like the anonymity.
>5 - Rent a bus and take ALL the idols on a weekend trip to an Mt. Fuji + Onsen (-$5,000, long event)

>2 - Return to Second Person Perspective
Though only if this won't temper your own enjoyment. It's no big deal -- it's just what I'm used to around these parts.

It does make it easier to scan for updates in archive.
No update today. Sorry.
No worries. Thanks for the update!
Working on the update, but I can't find a good place to offer a question or prompt, so I just sorta keep going.
That'll happen, sometimes! It's okay to have a long one.
I like those, they make the upcoming decision-making way more thoughtful since we end up having a lot to digest and consider
Keep up the good work, QM
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This might take a while.

If you're that one anon that stayed up last time, don't wait up.
The post will be waiting for you in the morning.
...Well then.
>40159 characters
My God.

As voted on, we’ll be returning to the second person (you) perspective.
I apologize for the whiplash I caused by switching the writing style so often.
Now sit back as I slowly inflate the word count of this set of weeks even further and become painfully aware that the actual management parts of the quest are turning into a distant memory.

Pinching your chin between your fingers, you think it over for a moment.
Allowing all the idols to meet up as suggested might actually be a good idea.
It’ll allow both you and Kaiba-san to get to know the new idols in a casual environment and might even speed them through that initial awkwardness that comes with meeting new co-workers.

You look at Kitabayashi for a long moment, then smile, “You’re right, I’m sorry, Yui-chan,” you say, “These are all good ideas, well maybe not the spying…but the welcome party, at least.”

Kitabayashi places her hands in her side, “Obviously,” she says, confidence radiating from her.
She leans forward, her mouth hidden behind a hand, “Impressed?” she says, smugly, “Fallen deeply in love with me? Ready to elope?”

“Not so much, no,” you reply, “Sorry.”

Kitabayashi snaps her fingers, “Dang,” she says, “Someday.”

You sigh, then shake your head dryly, leaving the comment for what it is.
“Where do you think we should go?” you ask, “Mountains? Beach? Somewhere in the city, maybe?”

Kitabayashi shrugs, “Bit cold for the beach this time of year,” she says, “And taking a group of idols into the busiest city in the world is probably asking for trouble.”

“Mountains it is then,” you reply, “Can’t go wrong with Mt. Fuji, I suppose. Find a place with a hot spring, maybe. Just relax. You think I should ask the other managers and idols, too?”

“Miho,” says Kitabayashi with a small laugh, “You know they’re your competition, right?”She sighs, “That’s so like you, but I suppose you could. You’re all part of the same generation of idols.”

Although you understand the perks of healthy competition, you’d rather wish everybody got along.
There’s no need for bullying, backstabbing, or sabotaging each other, right?
Perhaps meeting eachother face to face will make the other idols less likely to undermine yours.

A deep, deep sigh floods out from Kitabayashi, “Aaaah…” she says dreamily, “Going with Miho-chan to a hot spring… wish I was still an idol.”

You wrap your hands around your body, turning away slightly, “Geh,” you say, frowning, “I might go to HR if you keep at it like that…”

“What a coincidence,” says Kitabayashi.
She smirks, then walks over and pats an empty chair, “Nagata-san,” she says, “Please tell me everything you think this sexy, green-haired woman wants to do to you. Leave out no details.”

You roll your eyes, knowing Kitabayashi would happily continue this back and forth for another hour, you return to the earlier discussion.
“Putting that aside…” you say, with a motion of your hands.

“Putting it aside,” repeats Kitabayashi, mimicking your motion.

“Jeesh, Yui-chan,” you shout, “This is serious, y’know? I want my idols to like each other.”

“Okay, okay,” says Kitabayashi, putting up a warding gesture.

“You think, it’ll be hard to get a place at this time of year on such short notice?” you ask.

“Well, it’s not the busy season and if you simply sell out a little then it should be fine,” replies Kitabayashi.

“Sell out?” you ask.

“Just promise that you’ll ask your idols to mention the resort you end up staying at in an interview if it ever comes up,” says Kitabayashi, with a shrug of the shoulders, “Bit of marketing.”

That doesn’t sound too bad. You might even do the owners of the resort a big favour.
There’s a lot of small hot springs and hotels that dot the surroundings of the mountain and they’re all competing for the same set of tourists.
The best course of action is probably to ask your assistant, Matsui-san, to make a few calls while you ask the other managers and their idols if they feel like attending.

“Thanks, Yui-chan,” you say, “I guess I should get to work!”
You turn and make for the exit, ready to head to your own office.

“You’re gonna tell Kaiba-chan you know about her conversation, right?” asks Kitabayashi from behind.

You look over your shoulder like a deer caught in the headlights, “Y-yeah,” you say, “Eventually. Once all this trouble with EmikoDesu is over with. Yeah. I need to sorta know what she’s up to if I want to have a handle on this whole thing. As her manager, y’know? If she knows she might stick to phone calls or use a different account…”

“Having her private chats in private,” says Kitabayashi in a mocking tone, “How dare she.”
She graces you with a forgiving smile, “I’ll look away for now because this Emiko is such a creep and Kaiba-chan doesn’t know any better, but you better tell her eventually!”

“I know,” you reply sheepishly, “I will.”

“You better,” says Kitabayashi stern, holding up her phone, “Or a certain embarrassing picture is going to do it for you.”
”The Miho I know would’ve never spied like that,” she adds, her face softening, “I won’t let this job change you for the worse. What kind of friend would I be if I did?”

Knowing there’s nothing you can say to excuse what you’ve done, you simply nod and leave.
Talking to Kitabayashi did lessen your feeling of guilt somewhat, but she’s right and what you did was wrong.
You know you’re acting in the best interests of your idol, but does the goal justify the means?
Kitabayashi doesn’t seem to think so and now she’s put a timer on you to come clean.
As the saying goes: If you do something for the right reasons, you’ll eventually do it for the wrong ones.

Still, you feel like you needed that conversation. To talk about the things that have been happening.
All the uncertainty, the dubious future of your idol, the unknown intentions of this fan.
It felt like something had an iron grip on your guts.
Like a weight in your stomach that was getting heavier the more you thought about this whole development.

Talking about these problems doesn’t fix them, but they do seem a bit more manageable now.
As you walk back to your office, you feel all the stress you ware scarcely aware off begin to dissipate, and you walk a little taller.


Once there you get to work.
Matsui Tomo will call to various hotels on Mt. Fuji and try and get you a reservation for eight people, three managers and five idols.
If somebody opts-out, you can always call in and make the change.

You type out a quick email to Yukimori Kyoden and Matsuno Kojiro asking if they’d like to join and to extend this invitation to their respective idols.
Some minutes later, you receive a reply from the both of them.

Matsuno Kojiro mentions that his idol, Watase Yoko, is very eager and can’t wait to join.
Kojiro himself only plans to join himself if Yukimori also joins as he would otherwise be the only man and he says he’s too young to sit in an empty room by himself and drink.

Yukimori tells you in a very polite, office-appropriate way that this invitation is annoyingly short notice.
However, he says he will talk it over with his wife this evening as he ordinarily spends the weekend with his family.
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You glance at the clock. Is it already this late?
Suppose you can ask your new idols about their attendance in person soon enough.
Rolling your shoulder, you become aware of your fatigue.
Walking on eggshells as you try to help Kaiba without tipping her off and getting guilt-tripped by Kitabayashi is tiring.
Hopefully a coffee and something sweet out of a vending machine will help your energy levels.
You set on off toward the break room.


It seems like you weren’t the only person we could use a pick-me-up.
You haven’t met in person, but a young girl with two long twin-drills is currently trying to bully the coffee machine into giving her the beverage she wants.
Though, bullying might be too strong a word for it, she’s practically pleading with the machine.

“Stop adding cream,” the girls shouts, “Please!”
The machine finishes what seems to be the wrong order and the girl grumbles.
She only notices you when she turns to pour the coffee down the drain.

Ichihara Riko is a girl that unceremoniously ended a different idol’s career.
It was chalked up to mistakes and youthful ignorance, but the fact she later skulked around Kaiba’s chatrooms tells a different story.
Naturally, you expected somebody haughty or full of themselves.

The girl in front of you is nothing like that at all, instead she’s struggling to retain eye-contact with you.
”Ah,” she says, “N-nagata-san, right?”

“Yes,” you reply, folding your arms, “If I’m not mistaken, you’re Ichihara Riko, right?”

There are no pleasantries here, you both know what she did.

She nods, then bows a little, “Nice to meet you,” she says, “I apologize for my past behaviour, I’ve been working on myself since and I’m hoping we can leave the past in the past.”

An apology won’t bring back Maki Sumi’s career, but you suppose it’s a start.
You’re not one to hold a grudge, but you can’t get yourself to simply forgive the girl – even if she seems to regret her actions.

Perhaps she’s only sorry because you caught her on her second account and tipped off her manager.
Stil, whatever the reason, she seems far more timid than anticipated.

“Just try and do better from here on out, “you say, then sigh and relax, “I look forward to working with you.”
You glance at the small stack of empty paper cups on the counter next to her, “Coffee machine giving you trouble?”

Ichihara Riko nods, “I’m trying to get an espresso with a bunch of sugar and no milk,” she says, “But the machine is being difficult…”
It’s not a big deal, but you can actually see the girl tremble.

You should tell her to sort it out herself. Or maybe tell her to get Maki Sumi to help her.
That’s what she deserves, right? Somebody’s lifelong dream was destroyed because of her.
But you can’t bring yourself to do it. You WANT to be petty, but you’re just not.
Maybe Kitabayashi was right – you are too soft.

“Let me help you,” you say instead, “The machine can be a pain sometimes.”

Ichihara smiles, but it’s one of relief more than happiness.

The coffee machine is an older model that should’ve been replaced years ago.
Sometimes it gets stuck on the previous drink setup and you need to perform a series of commands to reset it.
It’s one of those things that should’ve been fixed, but the work-around has become so ingrained in the long-time workers that it only trips up newer employees.

Ichihara Riko might’ve been an idol here at Matsuno Inc. for a few months, but she’s only sixteen and probably spends most of her time at school or on jobs.
Still, it’s somewhat odd that you’re only running into her for the first time now.

You explain how to reset the machine and watch her form that tell-tale frown that basically screams ‘Why hasn’t this been fixed yet?'.
But she’ll remember the workaround, will become so used to it that she forgets the initial problem, and eventually pass it on the next fresh employee.
It is the cycle.

“…And there you go,” you say, pressing the final button and watching the espresso drip into the cup.

Ichihara Riko sighs in relief, “I was worried for a while,” she says, “Watase-sama will be happy.”

The new girl? Well, you did learn today the both of them having been working together.

You press some buttons and get some coffee of your own, no sugar with a touch of milk.
“Watasa-san? That’s the new girl, right?” you ask, stirring your coffee, “Are you working together?”
Once again caught in a situation where you know but have to pretend that you don’t.
At least this is safe information now. Something you have a valid reason for knowing.
~Ah, keeping track of the all the lies and the sneaking is so tiresome.

“In a way,” replies Ichihara, then opens her mouth to say something, but instead falls silent.
"I s-should go,” she says, picking up the espresso, “Before the coffee gets cold.”

You take a sip of your coffee and nod, “Alright,” you say, “Do your best.”

Ichihara Riko seems to leave in a hurry.

Ah, you forget to invite her to the welcome party.
Oh, well. Her manager will tell her.
You finish your coffee and then get an energy bar from the break room vending machine before walking back to your office.
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Unwrapping the energy bar as you go, you take a glance at the clock in the hallway.
There’s still a fair bit of time left until your first interview. Enough time to prepare.
Putting the snack into your mouth to free your hands to open a door – you stop dead.

A girl is sitting in the waiting room close to your office.
Her posture is perfect with no clear emotions on her face.

Your eyebrow twitches as the both of you lock eyes while the energy bar is still in your mouth.
There’s almost an hour left until the interview! Why is she here already?

Slow and carefully, like a prey eyed by a predator, you close the door.
You swallow down the bite you’ve taken and toss the rest of the energy bar in the bin.
After wiping your hands on your skirt, you open the door with a smile.

“My~” you say, “Chigusa Iki-san? You’re here early.”

She picks up a small purse, gets up with practiced grace, and bows at the waist, “Nagata-san, I presume?” she says, “It is as you said, I am Chigusa Iki. A pleasure to make your acquaintance.”

“I apologize for my early arrival,” she continues, “It seems I caught you at a bad time. I don’t mind waiting here until the scheduled time. I did not want to risk arriving late.”

You wave her concerns aside, “No need, no need, we can do the interview now,” you say, bowing as well, “I am Nagata Miho, I work as an idol manager here at the Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency and will be conducting your interview.”

Chigusa Iki bows again, “Thank you for accommodating me,” she says.

You walk on towards the door of your office and hold it open for Chigusa, “Welcome to the Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency,” you say as Chigusa walks through the door.

Chigusa Iki bobs her head as she walks through the door, “Thank you for having me.”
She takes in the chair opposing yours at the desk.

“Thank you for this opportunity,” she says, “I understand from Matsui-san that I’ve already been accepted as a prospective idol and this interview is to get to know each other and help you put together a plan for my idol journey, yes?”

“Eh, yes,” you say, “That’s correct.”
The overly formal speech by a sixteen-year-old is throwing you off a bit.
Perhaps it’s just nerves. Surely, nobody can be like this all the time.

“That is a relief,” answers Chigusa Iki, “I appreciate the clarification.”
Her face is still as impassive as ever.

You tap away at the keyboard for a short moment to print the list of questions you had prepared the prior day.
“Can I get you anything?” you ask as you prepare to head out retrieve the sheet at the printer.

“A cup of tea would be nice,” replies Chigusa, “Thank you.”

You return a short while later with the tea and the print-out.

“Thank you,” says Chigusa Iki as you put down the cup.

If there’s an informal record for saying “Thanks” then Chigusa might just hit it during this interview.

“Let’s get right into it,” you say, pouring over the list of questions.
“Out of all career options, why idol?” you ask with a questioning hand, “Surely there are more dependable career options?”

“Growing up idols have always granted me much joy,” replies Chigusa, her face not showing any of that joy as she speaks about it.
“I’ve aspired to be like them for as long as I remember. I’ve taken dance lessons, seen vocal coaches, practiced the violin, and meticulously followed a healthy diet combined with exercises targeting muscles most necessary for a career as an idol.”

“I’d like to provide future generations with the same enjoyment I had, to be there for them even if nobody else is,” she adds, “Being an idol is less a career to me than a calling. This is the only thing I want.”

“~Eh?” you say, somewhat charmed by the straightforward response, “I suppose your parents were taking you to dance classes all the way through elementary school?”

“My grandparents,” corrects Chigusa, “But yes, they have and I am very grateful to them. Everything I am now I owe to them.”

“I see,” you say with a small smile, “Be sure to tell them that!”

Chigusa nods, “I do. Daily. However, my grandparents are very sensitive to praise and have to spend at least several minutes recovering from a compliment. So, I try to spare them somewhat.
“My grandfather in particular will pretend to get mad whilst blushing fiercely."

Was that a joke or just a statement?
She managed to say it without a hint of emotion on her face.
Probably just a statement then?

“Good, good,” you say, spying at the next question."
”What kind of people would you say you like or dislike?” you ask.

Chigusa’s eyes roll up while her head stays in place, like she’s trying to stare at her own eyebrows.
”I like,” she says, after thinking it over for a moment, “Hard-working, responsible people that keep their word and I dislike people that are not like that and don’t keep their word.”

Well.That’s a given. Moving on.

“Okay,” you say, “So, I noticed on your audition file that something went wrong during your audition, can you expand on that?”

For the first time, the mask break.
A wince that lasts barely a second. Almost a twitch.
However, she quickly recovers, though exhales heavily before answering.

“My intention was to play my violin and sing during the audition,” she says, “But it appeared that all the time I spent practicing wore down a string and it snapped during the audition.”
She swallows, “I had to take a moment to recover myself and settle for just doing vocals.”

It was probably a bit more severe than “taking a moment” considering the talent scouts put “Defeatist” down as her observed personality trait.

“Well, setbacks and accidents happen,” you try to say as casually as you can, your finger browsing the print-out for the next question, “All we can do is make the best of it.”

“I understand your point, but I disagree,” says Chigusa, “The accident during the audition was a failing on my part.I take responsibility. I failed to consider the wear extensive use would inflict on my instrument.”
She suddenly stands at bows at the waist, “I have my inexperience to blame. I apologize. I should've been able to provide a greater performance.”

You put forward a set of warding hands, “It’s okay,” you say, throwing in a chuckle, “Let’s move on.”
Chigusa nods and sits back down, “I apologize for acting out.”

You clear your throat before speaking, “What do you expect from Matsuno Inc. during your time here?”

“I hope for your cooperation in making me the best idol I can be and to be brutal and honest with any criticism you may have,” says Chigusa.

Maybe not too brutal and honest you think to yourself.

You nod, “We will aid you to the best of our ability every step of the way!”

“Thank you,” replies Chigusa, bowing slightly.

“Any hobbies?” you say.

“I enjoy playing the violin, dancing, and signing,” replies Chigusa.

“No, I meant like things outside of practice,” you say.

Chigusa cocks her head slightly, confused, “I only do those things and study.”
This is the most emotion she has shown thus far.

“But, like, friends and stuff?” you ask somewhat carefully.

“I am part of a study group,” says Chigusa, “We do homework together and practice for exams.”
She takes her phone out of purse and shows you a chat log of this study group like it is supposed to serve as evidence that she has friends.
It’s a long list of the chat group leader stating a time and place to study and the others saying variations of Yes.

You give her a quick smile and browse the question list.
There’s stuff on here like if she’s willing to put work before pleasure, but it’s become clear that those are the same thing to this girl.
There’s only one real question left to ask her.

“Sadly, an idol’s career doesn’t last forever,” you say, “Have you given any thought or planned towards what you’ll be doing once this part of your life is over? Many idols successfully combine their career with college.”

Chigusa is quiet for a long moment.
”I haven’t thought about it,” she says, “This is all I want.”

“But if you HAD to pick something?” you say.

“I don’t want to think about it,” says Chigusa, “Having a back-up plan feels like planning for failure.”

“Humour me?” you say, almost pleading.

There’s a pause again.
”I suppose I would try to make myself useful,” says Chigusa, “A position where people depend on me. Teacher maybe?”

“I see,” you say, “Thank you.”

The both of you spend a good half hour talking.
Most of it explaining how Matsuno Inc. operates.
How jobs work, where she’ll be expected to go for practice, and who the other idols are that you manage.
Plenty those sorts of things before you arriving at the end of your interview.

“One final question,” you say.
”You are aware that romantic relationships are forbidden as an idol?” you say, “It’s all smoke and mirrors, but you have to seem accessible. Allow the fans to dream.”

“I understand,” says Chigusa, stoically, “I have no interest in relationships, they cut into practice time.”

“…I s-see,” you say, then try to laugh it off, “Well, that makes my job easier!”
You extend a hand over the desk towards Chigusa, “Thank you for time and, once again, welcome to the Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency. Matsui-san will provide you with a business email and get you settled.”

“Thank you,” replies Chigusa as she shakes your hand, “I look forward to working with you.”

“As do I,” you say, then remember something important, “There will be a welcome party this weekend. Lasting from Saturday into Sunday."
"We’ll take a bus from Matsuno HQ to a hotspring in the mountains so you can spend some time and get to know your co-workers and fellow idols.” you add.

Chigusa nods, “Is it mandatory?”

Not the response you were hoping for, but then again it was short notice.
”No,” you say, “Just a friendly get together.”

“I suppose it would be wise to attend,” says Chigusa, “Early-stage networking is vital to one’s career.”
She reaches into her purse and pulls out a paper agenda and pen, before flipping through the pages.
”I’ll adjust,” she says, using a pen to scratch out some stuff and scribble it down elsewhere, “I’ll be there.”

Chigusa gets up, walks to the door, bows, then exits.

You sigh and glance at the clock. More than an hour till the next one.
“At least I have plenty of time to get ready for the that one…” you say to the empty room.
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The time of the next meeting arrives…and goes.
Five extra minutes pass before you hear the footfalls of somebody dashing down the hallway.
The door swings open wildly and reveals a dishevelled looking girl with sweat pouring down the sides of her face.

“I AM HERE!” cries the girl, “DID I MAKE IT?”

You glance at the clock. She’s late.
This probably wouldn’t fly with some of the other managers.
Good thing for her that you’re not those managers.

Judging by her state she clearly made an effort to try and arrive on time, that’s enough.
”Close enough,” you say with a smile.

The girl squeezes her eyes tight and pumps both hands into the air, “YATAA!”
Then collapses to her knees immediately after, panting in exhaustion.

“Ena-tsu. Maa…ha…ri,” she manages between gasps, “Inter…view.”

You send a quick message to Matsui-san to ask her to bring some water.
Afterwards, you get up and walk towards Enatsu Mari, “Are you okay?” you ask, “What happened?”

Still kneeling on the ground with her legs bent outward, she lets out a self-deprecating chuckle.
”I was like watching some videos at home and then I was late,” she says, lightly tapping herself on the side of head with a fist, “Eh-he?”

“Only watched a few, but time went sooooooo fast” she says, nodding knowingly.
Clearly, it’s the fault of the videos for being too entertaining.

Now that she seems to have caught her breath, she continues.
”So I run out of the house, I got on my bike, right?” she says, “Pedal. Pedal. Pedal. To the bus station!”
She seems to be pausing for dramatic effect, “But then I missed the bus!”
”I go by bus, to train, to here,” she says, she seems to talk faster as the story goes on, “But no bus, so instead I pedal, pedal, pedal to the train station.”

It’s honestly exhausting just hearing about it.

“But THEN,” continues Enatsu Mari, “Panic! I left my train card and money at home!”
She clutches her head like she’s reliving the moment, “If I go back I’ll be late for real!”
”Instead,” she says, smirking like mankind’s smartest scientists couldn’t have come up with the idea, “I decide I can just get on my bike again and ride here!”

You lean back a little and glance over your shoulder at her audition form.
Rough guess places Enatsu Mari’s house over twenty miles from here, at the outskirts of the city.
How hard did she pedal? What time did she leave from home?

Matsui Tomo enters and hands the girl a glass of water which she empties in three large gulps.
”Pwoah!” she says after finishing the drink, then explains after seeing Matsui’s raised eyebrow, “You gotta make the noise to let people know it tasted good! Thank you!”

“No problem at all,” replies Matsui.

You gesture towards Matsui Tomo, “This is Matsui-san, she’s the person who spoke to you on the phone and will be working closely with you.”

“Waaaah,” says Enatsu Mari, then quickly bows, like three bows in rapid succession, “I was very happy when you called, Matsui-san! Everybody at home was very happy for me. We even celebrated! With cake and everything!”

“My, how nice of them,” says Matsui, reaching for the cup, “I’ll go and get you some more water and then get out of your way, okay?”

“Okay!” says Enatsu Mari, bowing at the departing figure of Matsui, “Thank you, Matsui-san!”

You wave a hand towards the chair in front of you desk, “Please, take a seat, Enatsu-san.”

Enatsu makes a small sound of acknowledgement and drops herself into the seat, “Woah,” she says, “These are crazy comfortable. The office looks nice, too!”

You sit down in your own chair, “Thank you, Enatsu-san,” you say, “My name is Nagata Miho. I will be your manager here at the Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency.”

“Ah, nice to meetcha!” she says, finishing the sentence with a smile that could force sunshine into a rainy day, “I never had a manager before!”

Her cheerful attitude is somewhat contagious and you find yourself smiling, “Well, that’s a relief. Won’t have to worry about somebody from your past making me look bad by comparison.”

“Eeeeh~” says Enatsu Mari, somewhat disappointed, “Don’t say that Nagata-chan! I’m sure you’ll do great!”

“-chan? Huh? Why, I’m feeling younger by the minute,” you say somewhat teasingly.

“I’m not allowed to?” asks Enatsu Mari, she says as she cocks her head slightly.
You wicked person. Extinguishing her bright attitude like that makes you feel like a criminal.

“It’s fine, it’s fine,” you say defensively.

Enatsu blasts you with a wide-eyed smile, “You can just call me by my first name if you like,” she says.
“Mari or Mari-chan.It means truth and reason, but depending on the kanji it can also mean clever, village, and….” she adds.
She pauses to place her hands together in the shape of a heart, “Love!”

A sense of relief that washes over you. For once it doesn’t have to be a struggle.
It feels like all you have to do is place this girl in front of an audience and she’ll become an idol all by herself.

However, there’s still a list of questions to get through, so you pull yourself together.
You utter a small cough to clear your throat and reach for the printed sheet, “I see,” you say, “Well, Mari-chan. Are you ready for some questions.”

“Yes!” she says, then begins to frown and look serious as if this is something she’ll be graded on.

“Why did you want to become an idol?” you ask.

“It seems fun, no?” she says, like the answer is a given, “They get to do LOADS of different stuff and go all these places and have fans and get to sing and get to dance and star in funny commercials. Like the one with the panda that sells gummies!”

“And if you couldn’t be an idol? What would you do then?” you ask.

Enatsu Mari frowns and folds her arms as she thinks it over, “Probably work with animals. Or on the beach. Or work on the beach with animals. Like a sea zookeeper. My brother says I should keep trying hard at the track and field club, so probably that as well.”

“That’s a lot of things,” you reply.

“It’s no fun to do only one thing!” shouts Enatsu Mari, “I wanna do loads of things. That’s why idol is such a fun thing to do. You get to model, do cool poses, sing, dance, concerts…”
She’s counting off things on her fingers as the list goes on.

“I see, I see,” you say, “It does seem very fun, doesn’t it?”

“It does!” replies Enatsu Mari, fists raised up in front of her chest in excitement.

You glance at your sheet for the next question.
There’s one on hobbies.”So, what else do you do for fun?” you ask.

“I like to ride my bike, practice with the track and field club, play with my little brother and sisters, visit friends, go to the playground with them, walk our big dog, Hancho…”

“Hancho?” you ask, interrupting her, “As in group or squad leader?”

Enatsu Mari nods eagerly, “Uhm!” she says, then moves her hands in a wide arc above her head, “He’s a biiiig dog. When we were younger me and my siblings were only allowed to go somewhere if Hancho came with! We had to follow him. He’s the leader! Hancho!”

Taking a brief moment to entertain the mental image of a big dog leading a line of happy children, you smile.

“What kind of dog is he?” you ask.

“A Great Pyrenees with a big fluffy, white coat!” says Enatsu Mari.

“He sounds like a great dog,” you say, “Any other hobbies?”

Enatsu Mari shrugs, “Just fun things?” she says, “I watch funny videos on the internet sometimes. I play games on my phone, but you can’t play those very long because you have to have hearts to play and those run out super quick and if you wanna play more then you have to pay and I dont have much money so I go outside instead and play with sticks with my younger brothers and sisters. I have to do chores sometimes, too, but those aren’t very fun.”

You nod, “Sometimes things aren’t very fun, but need to be done anyway.”

Enatsu Matsui sighs, “Yeah, like homework and stuff. If I don’t do it then my brother gets angry with me, so I do it. And chores aren’t very fun, but I get to play after and it makes that seem more fun, so it’s fine – I guess.”

“You mentioned your brothers and sisters a lot, but what about your parents, what do they do?” you ask.

“My dad’s a fisherman!” she says, pride radiating from her, “But that means he’s away from home a lot. My mom does cleaning at people’s houses. They both work hard so I feel like I have to work hard, too! They usually get home late, so we take turns cooking dinner.”

“But they’re good parents, right?” you ask.

“The best!” she practically shouts, once again a picture of joy.

You make a mental note to ease Kaiba-san into meeting this girl.
Kaiba-san’s social battery would drain within a minute and she’d probably develop an inferiority complex on the spot.

“Two more questions,” you say, “What kind of people do you like?”

“Fun people?” she says, “People that wanna go to places and have fun. I don’t like being inside. Like when it rains I mostly play games on my phone or watch videos.”

“What kind of fun things do you do with your friends?” you ask.

She takes a moment to adjust her seat, actually opting to put her legs in the lotus position on the chair.
“Well, we used to go and catch bugs and go into the forest,” she says, then her excitement dims somewhat, “Ah, but these days they want to shop for expensive clothes and eat cake in cafés and those are expensive, so I can’t go…”

Having a big, loving family does come with its own set of challenges.
Expensive ones. Everyone needs clothes, food, school supplies, the list goes on.
Shinzo Abe rip salutes this family for single-handedly propping up the birth rate.

“Ehehe,” you laugh nervously, not sure how to respond, “You’ll get paid a salary soon, Mari-chan. So if you keep up the good work you’ll be able to join them as much as you want.”

“Uwaaa,” shouts Enatsu Mari, “That’s right. I get to make my own money.”

“Yes, yes,” you say, somewhat relieved she cheered up again, “Now the last question.”

“An idol belongs to her fans,” you say, “So, you can’t get in any romantic relationships. It’ll be dangerous for your career if you do.”

Enatsu Mari’s face goes beet-red in the span of seconds.
She presses index fingers together carefully, “T-that’s okay,” she says, “I don’t have anyone I like right now anyway.”

That’ll have to do for now.
You lean over the desk with an extended hand, “Very well,” you say, “Welcome to the Matsuno Inc.Idol Agency! I look forward to working with you!”

Enatsu Mari takes the hand and shakes it eagerly, “I’ll work hard!”

“Actually,” you say, “There’s a surprise. This weekend we plan to go on a company trip with all the idols and their managers. We go to a hotspring near Mt. Fuji. The bus leaves from Matsuno HQ and the trip will take the entire weekend. A short holiday.”

Enatsu Mari explodes out of her seat, “Waaaaaaah,” she shouts, “Being an idol is great!”

“I’ll take it you’ll come?” you ask in confirmation.

“For sure, for sure!” says Enatsu Mari.

Afterwards, you direct Enatsu Mari to Matsui-san so she can get settled in.

Once she leaves you sag in your seat.
”Ah~, I wonder if I ever had that much energy,” you say, exhausted, “I regret tossing out that energy bar…”

It’s been a long day and you’re grateful you get to go home at the end of it.
April 17, 2015 (Friday)

There’s only one day left until the company trip.
You receive confirmation from Yukimori Kyoden that he’ll attend after discussing the matter with his wife.
Which means that Matsuno Kojiro will also be in attendance.
Matsui-san has managed to acquire both a bus and eight reservation in a nearby hotel with adjoining hot spring.

There’s nothing much left to do until the company trip.
So, this is a free space where you can suggest whatever you want that Nagata Miho might want to do on this final day before the trip.
She can investigate stuff, talk to people, whatever you want.

>Skip to company trip
No further updates today.
I don't know what to suggest, but I think this could be an opportunity to either delve into our manager's background stuff like family, or the company's history; they got to have some skeletons in the closet, which can be learned from.

Gloomy girl, genki girl, and groomed girl.
Kaiba will either crumble before these two or find some backbone. These gals are basically opposites of her in some respects.
>Riko's pic
okay anons, I can fix her... if evil why cute?
One hell of a trio, huh. A Kantian girl, laser focused on her goal letting zero emotions take over her, the energy of about 300 suns inside of one highschool girl and Kaiba, the "call of the void" personified. This group sure is bound to succeed, no doubt about it.

>Skip to company trip
Not much that can be done, unless we want to spy on Kaiba's chat again but I *guess* that doesn't matter rn since the trip is confirmed
>Sit with Kaiba and go over a bit about the others and what you think they (or she) needs help with. Chigusa will take failure harder than she takes fan interactions, and… Kaiba will need to put up with the inexhaustible ray of sunshine that is Mari.
>Work with Marketing and Kaiba on initial drafts of how to market the other two idols and fit them into an idol group. Mari playing opposite of Kaiba is a no-brainer. Chigusa… will be harder.
Given how exposed she’s been to marketing, I envision that’s a good cuture career for her after she has enough of being an idol. May as well see if any of it has stuck, and encourage it if it has.
>unless we want to spy on Kaiba's chat again
The wiki contains a chat log that I update each passing quest day, but acting on the information will mean you spied again
>The new chat log
Red flags everywhere with that gal.
>new chat log
Holy shit. I'm glad that Kaiba isn't having any of that bullshit anymore.
Alright, the yakuza plan might not be a joke decision anymore.
>I’ve taken dance lessons...
From her stats I can tell that singing is what she likes the most!! And she has tried her hardest on it and that she is frustrated about it. We have to point her to the right direction, which is dancing. Of course, she can definitely complement the two, but she needs a little nudge in order to feel more fulfilled.
I wanna transfer Chigusa over to Yukimori already
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>She pauses to place her hands together in the shape of a heart, “Love!”
>pic related
>chat log
Wait. QM, I have a question: Kaiba sent a screenshot of the email that contained the invitation to the idol trip. Does the email have any information on where we will be staying? Emiko might try something stupid, like... showing up there.

Yeah I know that I might be paranoid but this might be a security hazard not only to Kaiba but for everyone else - if Emiko leaks this shit tons of fans might try to storm the hotel trying to see their idols.
>Go shopping for something cute to wear during the trip. Maybe invite your Assitant or Kaiba. Or meet up with a surprise male character.
We gotta de-stress before the onsen, even though it's supposed to be relaxing... It won't be relaxing amirite... what's best for relaxing besides wasting money!? Nothing!!
>Chat log
Holy shit Emiko has company's e-mail now... now THAT will be bothersome
Y’all are apparently the Yui to my Nagato. I’m not going to look at the chat logs unless Kaiba shares them.
>Spy on chat logs
>Go shopping for something cute to wear during the trip.
>>Invite Kaiba. Discuss the other idols and prepare her for what they're like, as wella s how she's doing
Having read the chatlogs, it's now time, I think, to say "hey, I was alerted to some activity on your official account... Can we talk about this 'EmikoDesu'?
>Talk with Kaiba about her manipulative 'fan'
If we’re going to talk the chat logs, ask Yui to read them for us and summarize them instead of peeping ourself. It’s not actually better, but Nagato should feel less guilty over it.

Besides, not knowing the details makes it easier for us to speak like we didn’t read the logs directly. We asked for details at first, got them, then got too squeamish and had HR summarize the latest logs.
You guys don't understand what makes Kaiba tick. There are many emotions she doesn't understand and is barely experiencing them now, but there is a simple trick that will make everything fall back in place.
>Kaiba, I got a message from tech and they told me they detected suspicious activity in your account. It's company policy to avoid looking at chatlogs unless they have to, but they must see what files are being sent and recieved. They saw that you messaged a picture to EmikoDesu55 that contained company information

BOOM we are not saying we snooped on her mails, we are saying we DON'T snoop into conversations AND we are saying that she made a mistake that may endarger the jobs of both of us. She will feel guilty and it will be justified, since it was a wrong she should've avoided. She knows that sending sensitive stuff is wrong but she doesn't think that messaging is wrong. This way she will associate talking to fans with trouble, so she will avoid it. In fact, the best scenario and the one that is likely to happen is that she will block EmikoDesu55 by her own volition.
I actually like this idea because... It makes sense and unironically might happen since Kaiba DID share sensitive company information that could even be a breach of contract. I'm changing my vote to your write-in.
+1, shift blame onto the imaginary HR technician.
This will escalate if we don't do something soon.
Yeesh. Watase seems to have made Riko her slave. We will need to protect our idols.

That's almost too much kuudere! Did we hire an alien interface?

Are those weird tan lines significant or just an AI artifact?

>The new chat log
It's nice to see Kaiba isn't completely caught into Emiko's web. But holy fuck, that fucking fucker.
We need to be careful she or her ally Keyszzz don't show up at the resort. Note to self: ask Matsui to find some akuza for us

Supporting >>5629598

It's not the first time Kaiba has sent images to Emiko (she sent photos). This will imply the IT read the chat before. Also is spreads the web of lies wider and increases the chances something goes wrong. I'm not sure this is a good idea.
The best thing, I think, would be to tell her that we logged into her account for some legit reason, like some announcement.
And why it's not a good idea: sending photos to fans should be against the company policy, so if the IT reacts to images they should've told us long ago. If Kaiba catches up on that, she'll know we lied to her.
+1 support
>Are those weird tan lines significant or just an AI artifact?
They are supposed to be "light reflections", but even after spending ten minutes in GIMP I couldn't manage to find a nice way to blur them well enough to make them seem like normal art's rendering.
Forgive me, it was past midnight at the time and I was weak.

>Or meet up with a surprise male character.
This actually brings to mind a question I had of my own.

Should Matsuno Inc. exclusively represent female idols?
This doesn't mean male characters / idols won't be part of the story.

Those male characters / idols would simple originate from outside sources like other talent agencies and be met during jobs and the like.
Or ...any other random place, I guess. They're just guys, not some kind of exotic creature.

Going by what Kitabayashi Yui has said, Matsuno Inc. (that female idols have nobody to romantically turn to but each other) has only managed female idols thus far, but perhaps there'll be / has been a policy change.

Meta Decision
>1 - Matsuno Inc. should only represent female idols
>2 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols, but Nagata Miho only manages female idols (Male idols are a new audition)
>3 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols are a new audition)
>4 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols, but Nagata Miho only manages female idols (Male idols have been represented for a number of years)
>5 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols have been represented for a number of years)

With both option 2 and 3 male idols will begin appearing in the office.
They're simply represented by other managers not mentioned in the story thus far.
I should probably also share a map of the full layout of the building.
>(Male idols are a new audition)
audition > addition
>3 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols are a new audition)
New market baybeee!
>3 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols are a new audition)
I am for more drama
I'm all in for male idols, but I don't know if having the perms to manage male idols would make sense business wise. Like... If I were a CEO, I'd give the job of new market penetration to an experienced manager and not a newly promoted one.

Well, I'll be voting

>2 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols, but Nagata Miho only manages female idols (Male idols are a new audition

But I'm curious to see this new addition to the quest/company
This vote is closed
Since I wanna write the new part.
I'll include stuff with a bunch of support like >>5629689
and other stuff I saw suggested that I simply like
>Ah, yeah I knew about the selfie but I let it slide because I am such a good manager :3c
However, I want my lie to say that the problem is the content of the pictures, not that idols are forbiddent to chat with fans nor send images.
>5 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols have been represented for a number of years)
>3 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols and male idols should show up in Nagata's audition results. (Male idols are a new audition)

It'll be a while before this is pops up in the quest though since I've just introduced a bunch of new characters.
I'm thinking after the next performance review. Something along those lines.
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You fuckers really voted for Miho to be hetero. I haven't felt such anger for a long time.
Into the bodybag you go.
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You were too slow, yurianon. One thread too late.
>2 - Matsuno Inc. should represent both male and female idols, but Nagata Miho only manages female idols (Male idols are a new audition)

You stare at the clock: 9:40 AM
The mere idea that you could be soaking in a hot spring at this time tomorrow is enough to bring a smile to your face.

There’s not a lot to do at the moment.

Both Chigusa Iki and Enatsu Mari are starting next week so there’s little you can do for them.
You’ve already talked things over with Matsui-san earlier today that it’s probably for the best to have the both of them start with inhouse training.
Enatsu Mari will be working on her vocals and Chigusa Iki is getting a make-over.

You haven’t really decided on an image for the both of them or discussed such things with marketing, but you’ll get to that later.
You look at the clock again: 9:41 AM.
Geh! Why is it going so slow! Why isn’t it tomorrow yet?

Kaiba should be at her marketing meeting now.
After yesterday’s talk with Kaiba-san you can only hope she followed your advice.

You glance left and right in your private office. Nobody is here, obviously. You’re thinking of spying again…
Even your own body knows it’s a bad thing to do!
Your shoulders went up when you checked if anybody was looking!
You sneaky devil! But you have to know…right?

Just a final peek to see if Kaiba-chan followed your advice!
You won’t make it a habit! You swear!

Slowly, your mouse cursor hovers towards “Kaiba’s Chatlogs” on your desktop…
The door opens and you jolt up like a teen caught watching a dirty video.

“I got you some coffee,” says the smiling face of Matsui-san, both hands carrying a cup, “…Everything okay?”

“Yes, yes,” you say, “Of course, A-hahaha. You just scared me, that’s all.”

Matsui-san raises an eyebrow, “Well, I’d normally knock, but…” she says, nodding down at both of her filled hands.
She places a cup on your desk.

“It’s fine, fine,” you say, “Thank you, Matsui-san.”

Matsui walks back to the door but idles in the door opening where the look of concern she had slowly shifts into a wry smile.
”Alright then,” she says. The door closes.

You sigh.

Kaiba-san was right. Matsui-san is, in a weird way, like a cat.
But if Matsui-san is a cat, then what does that make you?
A struggling bird doing their best to escape while the cat watches you squirm?
You shake your head. Begone thoughts. The guilt is messing with your head.

Matsui-san is your assistant! Stop seeing enemies everywhere!

“Just this one last time,” you say, double-clicking on the Kaiba’s chat logs.
There’s a bunch of new messages. You swallow and lean in towards the monitor a bit.
Although a good try, making yourself seem small and inconspicuous like that does nothing other than making you seem even more shady.

== April 15, 2015 (Wednesday)

[11:08] @EmikoDesuu55: Heyyy, Kaiba-chan
[11:08] @EmikoDesuu55: I just got off the phone with my part-time job and I should be good to meet up this Saturday at Sarutahiko Café.
[11:10] @EmikoDesuu55: knowing you you’re probably nervous and stuff, but I just wanna help you make a better show okay? the show might fall apart at this rate, all my friends say so. Like I said those marketing people are just hiding the truth from you, they don’t want you to know how bad things are. Sharing our suggestions with them won’t help, but don’t worry -- we’ll fix it together~~ (ㅅ´ ˘ `) wear something nice (no sweaters)
[12:10] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan, good news! The stream is actually not doing bad at all.
[12:11] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I saw the graphs myself and everything, it’s actually going really good
[12:12] @KaibaAoiOfficial: So we won’t have to meet up to discuss plans anymore, everything is ok!
[12:55] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan? Hello?
[16:44] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Was a good stream today, yeah :D?
[17:08] @KaibaAoiOfficial: talk to you tomorrow maybe?

[…0 messages not shown.]

== April 16, 2015 (Thursday)

[12:17] @EmikoDesuu55: (ノдヽ) what did I tell you about the marketing people…
[12:18] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Hello, Emiko-chan <3
[12:18] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Manager-san showed me. I can see the stats myself now
[12:17] @EmikoDesuu55: <3
[12:17] @EmikoDesuu55: oh, that’s good to hear, are you okay to meet up Saturday?
[12:18] @KaibaAoiOfficial: actually… I don’t think meeting up is a good idea (ーー;)
[12:18] @EmikoDesuu55: ???????
[12:19] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Turns out the live vlog is doing fine… and, well…
[12:19] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Manager-san reminded me of something scary that happened…
[12:19] @KaibaAoiOfficial: with a fan, I mean…
[12:20] @EmikoDesuu55: I see… you think I’m like that?
[12:20] @EmikoDesuu55: Kaiba-chan, I used a day off and everything…
[12:20] @EmikoDesuu55: we’ve been talking for so long, even on the phone and everything…
[12:20] @EmikoDesuu55: and you still think of me as some random scary fan? (T▽T)
[12:19] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I know you’re different, but still… I’m sorry…
[12:20] @EmikoDesuu55: How cruel…
[12:21] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …some other time maybe? After we talk some more?
[12:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan, please.
[12:58] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m sorry, okay?
[13:25] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …why do you always do this, Emiko-chan, I feel so bad…
[13:29] @KaibaAoiOfficial: you’re not a bad person, right…?
[13:32] @KaibaAoiOfficial: It’s just that I had a talk with manager-san today
[13:35] @KaibaAoiOfficial: that I had to be careful and stuff with online people
[13:35] @KaibaAoiOfficial: how they could make me feel like I’m always putting in the effort…
[13:36] @EmikoDesuu55: THIS WAS YOUR IDEA
[13:36] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Eh? You suggested it!
[13:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I said I was sorry!
[13:37] @EmikoDesuu55: YOU KNOW I LOVE YOU, RIGHT?
[13:38] @EmikoDesuu55: BUT I FEEL LIKE I’M WASTING MY TIME!
[13:38] @EmikoDesuu55: YOU’RE JUST PLAYING AROUND WITH ME, AREN’T YOU? (つ﹏⊂)
[13:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: It’s not like that at all! I really like talking to you!
[13:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: You’re my best friend! I love spending time with you!
[13:38] @EmikoDesuu55: You better show on Saturday or I’m never talking to you again
[13:39] @KaibaAoiOfficial: EMIKO PLEASE DON’T
[13:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: PLEASE (This line x5. 4chan flags it as spam)
[13:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: PLEASE
[13:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: PLEASE
[13:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: PLEASE
[13:45] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan……..
[14:22] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’ll think about it, okay?
[14:50] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Maybe I can ask manager-san if she thinks its okay…?
[14:50] @EmikoDesuu55: She won’t allow it… don’t bother asking…
[14:50] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I just need some time to think, okay?
[14:50] @EmikoDesuu55: See you Saturday
[14:50] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …
[14:55] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …I’ll try

[16:50] @KaibaAoiOfficial: WAIT, I REALLY CAN’T
[16:50] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I swear I got an email from my manager that there’s a company trip!
[16:51] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko, please believe me! I swear! It’s a job thing, I can’t go!
[16:59] @EmikoDesuu55: …Show me
[17:01] @KaibaAoiOfficial: (screenshot of invitation.jpg)
[17:15] @EmikoDesuu55: Tsk. This is just a way for you to weasel out of it >_>
[17:01] @KaibaAoiOfficial: It isn’t. I swear. Next time I’ll be there!
[17:15] @EmikoDesuu55: If there will even be a next time…
[17:15] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ll think about it…
[17:16] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Thank you, thank you, thank you!
[17:17] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’ll let you know how the trip went!
[17:15] @EmikoDesuu55: Don’t bother
[17:44] @KaibaAoiOfficial: :(

[…0 messages not shown.]


You wince. Kaiba-chan is probably a wreck.
A rollercoaster of emotions, even for you – and it doesn’t even involve you!
This EmikoDesu55 must be pretending. She’s not actually in love with Kaiba-san… right?

How does a confession like that affect Kaiba-san? Happy, you suppose. Perhaps confusion.
Or the fact that it was immediately tied to an ultimatum.
That’s cruel – even for EmikoDesu55.

Nevertheless, it seems like Kaiba-san stuck to your advice for now.

This EmikoDesu55 is a danger and the sooner you get her away from Kaiba, the better.
With two new idols coming in, Kaiba-san will hopefully forget about this girl in no time at all.

Put somewhat at ease, you let your shoulders sag, take a sip of warm coffee, close your eyes, and almost choke on your drink.
Hold on. What was that in there? Did this girl accidentally share company information???

You don’t have to be a former HR rep to know how serious this is!
But you are! That makes it worse! Nobody can know!
Should you delete the messages? No, that wouldn’t help. Also, Kaiba-san would notice.
The information is already out there. It would just be erasing evidence…

What to do!? Should you involve Yui-chan again?
No. That’s not an option either. You’d have to admit you’ve been spying again!
She’d be disappointed, but you can deal with being a disappointment if it means saving your idol.
Though that’s only if Kitabayashi Yui would be willing to help you – and you doubt that.
That’s not true, she would absolutely help.

But the cost would be terrible and she’d only do it to help Kaiba-san, not you.
You don’t want to end up sitting on the office floor and getting reprimanded again.
This is also your second offence and Kitabayashi might not even leave at just a harsh talking to.
Simply imaging the kind of things Kitabayashi would do sends shivers down your spine.

No choice. You have to talk to Kaiba-san and tell her how serious this is.
Maybe you can do what Kitabayashi suggested and say somebody else noticed it.
No, that’d be too embarrassing for her! She’d self-destruct!

If Kaiba-san knew a person has been spying on this chat and all the lovey-dovey stuff she said she would hide under the covers of her bed for a week!

Not a person, but a robot then?
Automated network monitoring?

Yes, that’s a thing and you actually make use of it here! Good, that’ll work.
Honestly, the new platform that Kaiba-san uses for chat and streaming might not actually be monitored at the moment, the monitoring only checks a handful of websites and email attachments as far as you know.

But Kaiba-san doesn’t know that! This’ll work! Haha!
Hold strong my web of lies! Only a little while longer. Work hard!

You find your hands tapping your desk. Calm down.
Clock!? 9:45 AM. AAAAAAAA.
Like two hours until the end of Kaiba’s meeting!

At least tomorrow’s hot spring will feel heavenly if you manage to survive today.

Not knowing what to do with yourself and having very little actual work to do you opt to watch cat videos.
Most are cute and funny, but there’s one where a black cat watches a small bird struggle before swatting it out of the sky as it tries to take flight.

You don’t like this one. You click a button to dislike the video.
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Slowly, but surely nearly two hours crawl by. 11:35 AM.
Surely, that meeting is done now.

You try to walk to Kaiba-san’s video room as casually as you can manage and at least two people ask with concern if you hurt your back recently.

Once arrived at Kaiba's ofifce, you knock, but open the door so quickly you might as well not have bothered.

There’s a sharp yelp as Kaiba-san almost bounces in her seat before shakily turning her head towards you.
”M-m-manager-san,” she says, blushing fiercely, “H-hello?”

Uwaaaa. She looks like you caught her committing a crime.
Hold on a moment. That’s probably how you looked earlier today!

“Everything, okay?” you say, “I didn’t mean to scare you…”

Kaiba-san shakes her head aggressively, “It’s okay,” she says with a thin-lipped smile that seems plastered there, “Aaalll good~”

“Good,” you repeat, walking a few steps towards her, “I came by t---”

The sharp noise of a message notification rings through the small office.
Kaiba-san’s eyes widen as if the sound is an alarm that’s echoes through the entire building.

You glance towards the monitor.

A small menu in the taskbar blinks a helpful orange.
Chat - EmikoDesu55.

>1 - Ask about this EmikoDesu55 with a smile on your face. Is it a fan? How great that she’s interacting with her fans like that.
Perhaps you can read the chat? Just genuine interest from her manager. Perhaps you don’t need to use the “network monitoring” plan…

>2 - Something is clearly going on, but it can wait. Go with the “Network Monitor” plan.
>3 - Write-in
>3 - Write-in
"Come with me, please. I'd like to take you shopping for some clothes for our trip this weekend."
If she comes with us, get her comfy, make it clear how proud we are and how happy we are, then then...
"I noticed a lot of activity on your official account, recently, with one user. I want to talk about EmikoDesu55."
Pretend we JUST noticed, don't let on HOW we were made aware except in vague and authoritative managerial "it is the agency's job to know" terms.
If Kaiba tries to dodge shopping, skip right to phase 2. Remember: sympathetic, empathetic, but still STERN. this is a job, for both of us.
>>2 - Something is clearly going on, but it can wait. Go with the “Network Monitor” plan.
Cut the string before it explodes.
Even if Emiko somehow does really love Kaiba, she's a really toxic person.

>Ask about this EmikoDesu55 with a smile on your face.
>Regardless of what Kaiba answers, ask her whether she remembers the rules - no fraternizing, no disclosing company information...
>Kaiba will react at this moment.
>Pretend to notice her reaction and ask to see the chat. Disclosing company information is serious business. Be firm and stern if needed.
>After seeing the chat, forgive and console the probably devastated Kaiba. Search for a solution together.
>After that, we'll be able to discuss Emiko without disclosing our spying.
I don’t think we can hold together long, and the robot thing could be checked on. I’d rather lean on a lesser faceless peon.

>3 - Write-in
>”So… I have some questions, and it’s related to that.”
>”I got a message from IT about your work account being used during unusual times. The flag was that images were being transferred.”
>”They, uh took a peek at the latest image. And saw it was for the meeting we’re on all going on. Which… okay, that’s a MAJOR security problem.”
>”So they let me know so I could look into it. And since this was a surprise I… kinda looked at the messages it was included with to get context. And then a couple random ones in the hope the anxiety would go away. It did not.”
>”Kaiba I’m kinda freaking out here how long have you been talking to her why didn’t you say anything when she was hurting you what’s going oooooon?!” (Allow your nerves to take over so you whine/meltdown appropriately) (Hug her as you go into meltdown mode)

Beat her to the meltdown and do a partial confession of viewing the logs. She’s not allowed to fall apart if we do it first!
>3 - Write-in. We. Are. Shopping. Now.
At midnight.
For those keeping track of the chatlog in the wiki:
>Clock!? 9:45 AM. AAAAAAAA.
9:45 AM was the last time Nagata saw the logs

Holy shit >>5630456 changing my vote to
>Write in: Look, we have to talk.
We have to delete those messages. I am hoping Bitchiko is not smart enough to keep a separate log to use as incriminating info.
Good job on creating trouble QM, you create situations where the implications are rather huge
>3 - Write-In
"Kaiba-san, you have been disclosing confidential information to unauthorized personnel. This is a grave violation of the company's standards and of your contract, which can result in immediate termination. We need to talk, now."
Supporting this in an event of a tie, since this option is similar to my own
Changing vote to this guy, >>5630611
Kaiba fucked up big time.
>3 - Write-in
I'll try and do my best to combine the suggestions above.
However, I'll probably skip the shopping for now since its been 27 (real life) days since the last actual job (Sakura Perfumes).
Also 16 days since the last time Kaiba improved any actual skill.

And we still have to do to the weekend trip event.

I'm trying to find an event / mechanics balance as it is kinda gone right now.

We can always do the shopping after.
The Fate/Stay Night job will be done after the trip I assume? We still haven't rolled for that one
Yes, we also still need to roll for Enatsu and Chigusa's skill rolls .
You sigh, “Kaiba, look,” you begin, then opt to retrieve the chair standing at the other side of the room to sit down.
“An idol company is, at all times, in a love/hate relationship with the media,” you say, adjusting your jacket as you sit.

Kaiba-san cocks her head slightly, not sure where you’re going with this, but seemingly relieved you’re not mentioning the chat.

“Matsuno Inc. can’t exist as a business without companies that are willing to hire idols to star in their shows, commercials, game shows, and such,” you continue, “Those companies hire idols because the fans like those idols and want to keep an eye on them, thereby allowing themselves to be exposed to the products the idols endorse.”

You’re stringing words together as you go, trying to find a way to a way to tell Kaiba-san how badly she messed up without performing the equivalent of a mental suplex on her fragile mind.

“The fans love keeping track of their idols, supporting them, seeing what they’re up to,” you say.

“I’m aware,” replies Kaiba, somewhat confused, “The entire live vlog is just that, no?”

You pull your lips into a thin line. ”Well, yes,” you reply, then go quiet as you try to think of what to say next.
Kaiba-san is blissfully unaware that what she’s been doing are grounds for direct termination.
Most of the idols in this generation are new and don’t have many fans yet, but then again it doesn’t take many fans.

Actually, one of the new idols, Watase Yoko, is quite famous.
Knowledge of her location might cause a few fans to show up.

Or just one.

One fan with a car with too much time on their hands and the knowledge that SOMEWHERE around Mt. Fuji there’s a rented bus carrying his favourite idol to a hot spring that he can take a picture of.
Luckily the email didn’t contain information on the exact location or what you’d be doing.
Point is that if Kaiba keeps leaking this kind of information then she would endanger the other idols and there’s zero-tolerance on that.

It’s a good thing people don’t know yet that Matsuno Inc. signed a bunch of new idols.

You clap your hands together softly, then continue, “You took a different path than most and, honestly, the media hasn’t quite adjusted,” you say, “Usually the only way for a fan to learn about an idol is through interviews and gossip websites run by paparazzi, but your fans see you every day and can even talk to you!”

“Nagata-san,” replies Kaiba, looking uncomfortable, “I don’t understand where you’re going with this…What’s going on?”

Where are you going with this?
Your own mental state is hanging on by a thread. Everything could end.
However, a good manager is the barrier between their employees and outside concerns.
So that the idols can focus on the job.

You clasp your hands together to stop them from shaking.

There’s all these what-ifs raging through your mind.
What if EmikoDesu55 sells all this information to the highest bidder?
What if she’s actually paparazzi herself and this whole thing has been nothing but a way to milk gossip from the agency?
What if she tries to show-up in person at the resort?

Is Kaiba-san’s career going to end just because she wanted a friend?
The chat logs should be purged after this chat, even if it is illegal to remove evidence of something that could harm the company.

As long as EmikoDesu55 doesn’t do anything with the information – it’ll be fine.
Kitabayashi will probably be willing to help you cover any fallout. Maybe.
You can think of some ways to tempt her, at least. If need be. She likes you, right?
She'll help. Yeah, she'll help. Everything will be fine.
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All these concerns, they weigh on you.
Your face goes slack, eyes slowly growing vacant.
Yesterday’s words of Kitabayashi’s bounce around in your empty mind: You’re a big softie
It’s cold in this room, you’re not sure how Kaiba manages it.

How would Yukimori Kyoden handle this?
He seems like the kind of person that would simply do what was needed.

The thick skin required to be a manager is something you’ll have to develop with time.
You take a breath and try to focus your thoughts, locking eyes with Kaiba.

Kaiba’s face is a picture of concern, with her hands defensively hovering before her.
It seems like she has caught on and knows why you’re he--

“Are you okay, Nagata-san?” says Kaiba instead, “Y-you kinda looked like you were about to cry.”

“Eh?” you reply, “I’m fine. I was just …thinking.”
Allowing your worries to stew while watching cat videos for two hours probably wasn’t the greatest idea.
Everyone procrastinates sometimes, right? Besides, Kaiba-san was in a meeting.

What were you doing?
The trip is tomorrow and you’re talking to Kaiba-san at the moment.
Oh, right. You have to lie to Kaiba-san to breach the subject of the chat.

“I was,” you begin, then try again, “…The people from IT, they monitor network traffic for safety reasons and to avoid leaking stuff to the press, they told me you send images to somebody. Images about the trip.”

“Eeeeeh,” shouts Kaiba, blushing, “…People know? Did other people, like, read everything?”

What’s one more lie? This bothers Kaiba-san. You can shoulder it.
"I don’t think so,” you say, “But they forwarded an image to me which had information on the trip on it. Like that it's a trip for idols and managers and that we’re leaving by bus from the office.”
"Can you explain why?” you ask, “You’re sharing company information, it’s dangerous.”

Kaiba-san looks embarrassed, she’s squirming in her seat, “I was just chatting with a f-friend, I didn’t mean to create trouble,” she says, “I had to cancel plans with her and she wanted to know what I was doing instead…”
”Emiko-chan wouldn’t do anything bad with it,” she adds.

Finally. Emiko-chan by name. Check that off the list, that’s safe information now.
You now have cause to discuss it. Though you still don’t have reason to suspect this Eriko of anything bad.

“I’m sure this Eriko-chan is a good girl,” you say, the biggest lie you’ve said today, “But if she tells a friend, who then gossips it to somebody else, and so on, then it might get to somebody bad eventually.”

It feels foul to keep digging up this memory, but Kaiba-san scares easily -- it'll work.
"What if somebody like the man from the handshaking event found out,” you say, “And followed the bus that leaves from Matsuno HQ in his car? That much was in the email.”

Kaiba pales, it seems like things are finally registering with her.

You point at the monitor standing on the desk beside the both of you, “This Emiko-chan you mentioned is EmikoDesu55? The person you shared the image with?”

Kaiba nods severely, “Y-yes,” she says, her mind elsewhere.
She needed to be made aware of the possible consequences of her actions.

You already know what’s in there, but if you get a look with her next to you then you’ll at least no longer have to lie about not knowing and begin discussing the contents of the chat with her without five layers of pretence.

“Can I have a look?” you ask, then quickly invent a reason, “I need to know how much you shared, we might have to hire additionally security.”

Kaiba is hiding her face and curling into a small ball on her chair, “But, I…” says a small voice, “…It’s a sort of private chat...I.. ah…”

This could be a moment where you remind Kaiba about how she shouldn’t have any sort of relationships.
And if she says that she knows then you can counter with the fact that this should be a harmless fan interaction then.
It would be very easy to manipulate her into willingly giving up her privacy.

Sure, that’s just an illusion since you already know, but that illusion is all she has left.
Just break down that final wall and you can start solving problems.

In fact, why be subtle about it?

You can just threaten her livelihood by saying she could lose her job over this.
Remind her that your own job is at stake, too, since you’re her manager and ultimately responsible.
Add guilt to the pile. That’ll surely cause her to cave and consent!

If you want to make it as a manager, you’ll have to be stern sometimes.
Kitabayashi said she didn’t want this job to change you, but it’s unavoidable, isn’t it?
One final push and you’ll make it through the web of lies – victorious.

>1 - If she stuck to the rules she accepted to then she has nothing to hide!
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
>3 - Actually, IT showed the chat already since she uses the official account which is on public record.
>4 - Confess. You spied on the chat and even added access to your own computer afterwards.
Current stress level can always be found in the wiki under character's sheet. (Only idols / Nagata are tracked)
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
>3 - Actually, IT showed the chat already since she uses the official account which is on public record.
Hmm, rereading it kinda reads like I (the QM) am trying to push or discredit certain options while my intention was this to seem like Nagata's thought pattern.
I'll reflect on the effects of the stress mechanic a bit.
>1 - If she stuck to the rules she accepted to then she has nothing to hide!
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?

Voting for either one of those. Kaiba, despite her social inabilities, is an adult already. There are some mistakes that have terminal consequences and the sooner the learns/remembers that, the sooner she can open her eyes for how detrimental Emiko has has being to her.

Thousands of (dollars? yens?) haven been poured on Kaiba and IIRC we still haven't even broke even on her investment - the true, cold reality is that so far she hasn't much going for her besides the vlog - it might be harsh to say this but she is disposable, just like we are... In a Japanese company, especially an idol one, a mistake like breaking NDA wouldn't fly even if it was done by a valuable employee and/or asset and we are neither.

This ordeal might have killed us inside, and it might kill Kaiba too but its the only path forward.
This is too intense!
Options 1 and 2 are both manipulative and in fact very similar to what Emiko does.
Options 3 and 4 will irrevocably break Kaiba's trust and our relationship with her. Forever. And for someone like her it'll be doubly, if not triply devastating. This option should never, ever be taken, even if it seems like a morally correct one and despite whatever Yui wants from us. We must take this secret to our grave.

Ultimately, I'll vote for
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
>You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
Hmmm, nah - I think you're doing fine. I can see why these posts were written as they are: these are thoughts are the result of a extremely stressed Nagata trying to be many things at once while the world crumbles down around her. It's pitiful, but this is what reality truly is - things won't always turn out for the better and the only certainty that we have is that it can always get worse. I commend you for giving us these moments in the quest, managing idols must be one hell of a tough job and so far you are presenting that very well.
Y’know, people kept voting to look at the chats directly when Nagato is clearly taking this hard. Glad to see that’s now reflected in her astronomical stress levels making it difficult for us to get her to approach this rationally.

Should have had Yui screen it, anons. We’re not playing a character know for taking stress well.

So, onto the vote. Nagato is clearly not in her right mind and she’s on the verge of crying. I see this as fine! You’re allowed to be a human in front of employees, especially ones that respect you. You don’t want to make a boss you like cry. It’s an indicator you have well and truly fucked up.

So I’ll say
> 5 - Just start crying.

We can ask again to please see the logs for our own personal sanity afterward. We don’t want anyone to end up like Maki.

If it fails, we can mention the public record and that someone will see it when they go to scrub it. Better us than someone else.
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
This is an OFFICIAL channel. We need to know what's being shared on it, especially after a data breach.
>2 - You could both end up fired! Is that what she wants?
>5 - Just start crying.
Man, I can see where you are coming from but I think that if we started crying in front of Kaiba she'd just kill herself right there just from the implied guilt alone
Sounds like a plan
We have a responsibility, as her manager, to be strong and to offer her steadiness, support, and guidance.

We can cry in private, later, with our not-romantic-sorry pansexual life-partner, over drinks.
Maybe what Nagata needs to find is a man.....
Add the stress of dating to the stress of idol management, and she keels over. So unless Kaiba gets her shit together, we die alone and unloved.
Yui loves us. We just can't reciprocate the way she'd like.
Right, add the stress of matchmaking for Yui to everything
>we die alone and unloved
nah dw, that bartender from the karaoke will be Nagato's husbando.
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In the end, Kaiba being embarrassed for a bit is preferable to her losing her trust in you.
Besides, you’ve already seen it, right?
As long as you keep your reaction tame, you’ll be able to limit the emotional damage you inflict on Kaiba.

“Kaiba-san,” you say as gently as possible, “I’m not sure if you heard, but before I worked as your manager, I actually worked at human resources here at Matsuno Inc.”

Kaiba peeks between her fingers, glancing at you, “Is that how you know HR-san? The green-haired girl?”

“Yes, I used to work with Kitabayashi Yui-san,” you say, nodding, “But that’s not why I mentioned it.”
You make your best effort at a no-nonsense expression, “Because I worked at HR, I know that sharing the location of your fellow idols like you did could put them in harm’s way. Endangering a fellow idol like this are grounds for immediate termination. You could lose your job as an idol over this.”

“Even I, being responsible for you, could lose my job over this,” you add for emphasis.

Whatever embarrassment she still felt is immediately replaced with pure dread.
”N-no,” she says, eyes widening and tearing up, “That…c-cant, please, I didn’t mean to…”

Face stern, you nod, “It’s true,” you say, “The best I can do for you now is damage control, that’s why I need to see the chat. I need to know what else you said.”

Kaiba’s tears are flowing freely now and sitting in her chair is nothing but a scared, little girl.
She makes eye contact with you for a brief moment, nods, props her knees up, hides her face in her arms, and sobs quietly.
Whether she cries because her job is at risk or because she thinks she’ll almost assuredly be forced to cut ties with EmikoDesu you don’t know.

Having her consent to read the private chat you’ve already read in secret, you spend a few minutes slowly re-reading the chatlog to make it seem like you’re reading it all for the first time.
It’s a long, grim tale in chat message format about somebody making a lonely girl feel special only to then constantly threaten to take that feeling away if they put up a fight to any suggestions.

Having read it this morning, most of it is known to you and you try to gasp and frown where appropriate.
Scrolling through this all completely stone-faced would probably seem suspicious.
However, much to your surprise you eventually hit upon a block of chat messages you haven’t seen before.
The timestamps puts them between 10:15 AM and 11:39 AM, with the last message being responsible for the noise that tipped you off on the chat at the start of this confrontation.

These all happened a short time after you read the chat and began watching cat videos.

== April 16, 2015 (Friday)

[10:15] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ve thought about it…
[10:15] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ve been too hard on you… I’m sorry (pained-face emote)
[10:15] @EmikoDesuu55: I was just mad you didn't wanna hang out with me! T_T
[10:16] @EmikoDesuu55: Forgive me <3 ?
[10:24] @KaibaAoiOfficial: <3
[10:25] @KaibaAoiOfficial: of course
[10:25] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I thought you hated me for real!
[10:33] @EmikoDesuu55: Never!
[10:33] @EmikoDesuu55: Don’t you usually have a meeting now?
[10:33] @KaibaAoiOfficial: It ended early and we have the trip tomorrow so no big plans.
[10:33] @EmikoDesuu55: Have fun on the trip!
[10:34] @EmikoDesuu55: You gotta make sure you make memories with the other idol
[10:34] @EmikoDesuu55: Take many pictures and share them with me!
[10:35] @EmikoDesuu55: I know you said on the phone she was shady, but maybe if you’re friends with her she wont try that stuff on you
[10:35] @EmikoDesuu55: and if she does pull something you just tell me (smug emote)
[10:36] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ll ruin her life lol
[10:39] @KaibaAoiOfficial: please dont :P
[10:39] @KaibaAoiOfficial: But thanks Emiko-chan <3
[10:36] @EmikoDesuu55: Do you know what place you’re going yet?
[10:39] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I asked Matsui-san, but she can’t say for safety reasons
[10:39] @KaibaAoiOfficial: All I know is that it’s a place near mt fuji with a hotspring
[10:40] @EmikoDesuu55: DEFINITELY take pictures
[10:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: You want me to get fired? lol
[10:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Not gonna take pictures of the others in the hotspring
[10:41] @EmikoDesuu55: Who said anything about the others? (cute wink emote)
[10:41] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Pff, pervert :P
[10:41] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m kinda nervous since there’ll be a lot of people
[10:42] @EmikoDesuu55: wasn’t it just the idols and the managers like the mail said?
[10:44] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Yes, but new idols are joining that I haven’t met yet
[10:44] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I don’t think they were tagged in the mail
[10:44] @EmikoDesuu55: O_o
[10:45] @EmikoDesuu55: I thought you only had 1 other idol in your gen atm?
[10:45] @KaibaAoiOfficial: three more have joined that I haven’t met
[10:45] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I don’t think they’ve been announced on insta yet
[10:45] @KaibaAoiOfficial: That’s probably why you don’t know about them
[10:46] @EmikoDesuu55: Eh…unannounced idols…?

Had to remove all emotes because 4chan

[10:46] @EmikoDesuu55: I see, I see … well, make sure to get pictures with them, too!
[10:47] @EmikoDesuu55: I wanna know everything that happened!
[10:47] @EmikoDesuu55: Post everything here!
[10:47] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I will after the weekend, I only really use this account during work
[10:48] @EmikoDesuu55: …then use it outside of work?
[10:48] @KaibaAoiOfficial: It’s a work account
[10:49] @EmikoDesuu55: So? Just get the app on your phone
[10:49] @KaibaAoiOfficial: can’t we just text or call?
[10:52] @EmikoDesuu55: T_T
[10:52] @EmikoDesuu55: Not all of us are fancy idols rolling in cash! D:
[10:52] @EmikoDesuu55: My bundle is basically gone two days into the month
[10:52] @EmikoDesuu55: Gotta use wi-fi
[10:52 @EmikoDesuu55: To reach my wi-fu
[10:54] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Dork :P
[10:54] @KaibaAoiOfficial: <3
[10:54] @EmikoDesuu55: <3
[10:55] @EmikoDesuu55: I wanna help in any way I can, so if you have the app I can
[10:55] @EmikoDesuu55: If something happens you can ask me for help!
[10:55] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Okay, okay I’ll get the app
[10:58] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Installed
[10:58] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m glad you’re not mad anymore, Emiko-chan
[10:58] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I missed just chatting like this…
[10:59] @EmikoDesuu55: Dork :P
[10:59] @EmikoDesuu55: <3
[10:59] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Eheheh <3
[11:02] @EmikoDesuu55: Have you bought the clothes I linked you?
[11:03] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Yeah and I’ve been wearing them
[11:03] @KaibaAoiOfficial: But I dunno, it feels weird
[11:03] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m not used to frilly and girly stuff like this
[11:04] @EmikoDesuu55: you’ll get used to it
[11:04] @KaibaAoiOfficial: manager-san said I should just keep being me :P
[11:04] @KaibaAoiOfficial: that I don’t need to dress different or try being a normal idol
[11:05] @EmikoDesuu55: >_> manager-san, manager-san
[11:05] @EmikoDesuu55: but the clothes are cute, right? I think you look cute in them
[11:07] @KaibaAoiOfficial: (⁄ ⁄•⁄ω⁄•⁄ ⁄)
[11:07] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I don’t mind wearing them
[11:08] @EmikoDesuu55: <3
[11:08] @EmikoDesuu55: I hope you wear them to our date as well
[11:08] @KaibaAoiOfficial: >///<
[11:09] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I thought it was just a normal meetup!
[11:11] @EmikoDesuu55: Kaiba-san… I basically confessed earlier, right?
[11:11] @EmikoDesuu55: So it’s not like I can pretend anymore…

[11:12] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …like a relationship date…? as in girlfriend?
[11:12] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …I dunno if I’m ready for that, Eriko-chan
[11:12] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m not even sure I like girls yet…
[11:13] @EmikoDesuu55: Let me help you find out ( ಠ‿<)
[11:15] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Relationships are also illegal for idols, you know that right?
[11:15] @EmikoDesuu55: We can be sneaky~~
[11:15] @EmikoDesuu55: Come on! Makes your heart go crazy fast, no?
[11:19] @KaibaAoiOfficial: >_> <_< >_> they’ll catch us
[11:19] @EmikoDesuu55: Uwwwaaa, but that means you want to, right???
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: …I’m very happy you’re saying these things.
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: really am.
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: feels like a dream that somebody would want to go out with me.
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I didn't think I would ever feel happy like this.
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: ……
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: But I shouldn’t, very dangerous for my career >_>
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Manager-san has said so over and over
[11:20] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I kinda want to try, to see what it's like, but….sorry
[11:22] @EmikoDesuu55: Pffff, manager-san, manager-san
[11:22] @EmikoDesuu55: I bet she’s single and lonely
[11:24] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I’m not sure, I think she is single at least…yeah
[11:24] @EmikoDesuu55: You wanna end up like that?
[11:24] @EmikoDesuu55: Telling others they should be single and lonely like you?
[11:26] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I think she just works too much for dating
[11:26] @EmikoDesuu55: So she wants you to be married to the job just like she is
[11:26] @EmikoDesuu55: We can just go on a single date and if you dont like it then we can stop
[11:26] @EmikoDesuu55: Besides, we’re both girls, right? They’ll think you’re meeting a friend
[11:29] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I guess so… yeah
[11:29] @KaibaAoiOfficial: We can meet just once
[11:29] @KaibaAoiOfficial: But dont do anything weird!
[11:31] @EmikoDesuu55: Like hug you or kiss you or…?
[11:31] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Eriko-chan! I mean it!
[11:32] @EmikoDesuu55: We can just have a coffee somewhere, okay?
[11:32] @KaibaAoiOfficial: That sounds fine
[11:32] @EmikoDesuu55: And if it goes well we can go to the bathroom and… ಠ ‿
[11:33] @KaibaAoiOfficial: !!!!!!
[11:33] @KaibaAoiOfficial: STOP THAT. I’M AT WORK

[11:33] @KaibaAoiOfficial: STOP THAT. I’M AT WORK
[11:33] @KaibaAoiOfficial: What if somebody looked at my screen!
[11:34] @EmikoDesuu55: like you should be chatting at work in the first place :P
[11:34] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I am simply interacting with a loyal fan ^^
[11:35] @EmikoDesuu55: Ooooooo, I see, I see
[11:35] @EmikoDesuu55: I hope you don’t treat all your fans the same way!
[11:36] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Only you <3
[11:36] @EmikoDesuu55: <3
[11:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: alwdjkawdlajwkd
[11:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: manage ra here gotta gog
[11:39] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ll be quiet!


Your stern facade breaks away as you read through these final messages and you can’t help but glance over your shoulder at Kaiba – who had been peeking to observe your reaction, but quickly hides her face between her arms again.

This is a lot.

Most importantly, it seems like Kaiba-san accidentally shared the existence of the new idols with this girl.
Not only is the proper announcement of a new idol vital to jumpstart their career, it’s also a major marketing event for the agency to show that the business is healthy and able to acquire and support new talent.

If ErikoDesu55 truly has malicious intentions and sold off the info for a quick buck, then you she’d do more than just spoil the new idols out of a proper start.
You could then also expect paparazzi to show up in front of Matsuno HQ tomorrow to catch a glance of these new idols.

You might even have to cancel the trip entirely; it could be too risky.
However, people will want to know why you suddenly cancelled and you’d better have a good excuse.
You certainly can’t tell the truth – that’d be the end of Kaiba’s career.
There’s also no doubt you’ll lose face within the company, but that’s the least of your concerns.

The whole intention behind the trip was to covertly waylay Kaiba’s meet-up, but since you’ve now visibly read Kaiba’s chat messages you can try to bar her exposure to EmikoDesu55 in a different way.
Hell, you could even respond to EmikoDesu55 yourself here and now.

Furthermore, EmikoDesu55 seems to try and press Kaiba-san into taking pictures.
There’s nothing wrong with taking pictures of fun, company events, but they shouldn’t be shared with outsiders who can then publish them in something like a gossip article called: “A Steamy Encounter - A Hidden Peek Into Matsuno Inc’s Hot Spring Getaway.”

It seems like this EmikoDesu55 has even been trash talking you as well. The nerve.
“I have friends, y’know,” you say without taking your eyes from the screen, “I’m not lonely.”
You’re really not. You do fun stuff sometimes. Honest. You own a cat. (Which is planned to stay with Yui during the trip)

The shameless grooming continues unabated, EmikoDesu55 seems determined to twist Kaiba-san into somebody conforming to her liking like some sort of dress-up doll.
Oddly, This is the only bit that’s hard to place.

If Emiko’s true intention is to acquire internal info from Matsuno Inc, then why would she risk alienating Kaiba with complaints or suggestions about her appearance?

The entire conversation carries flirty undertones and even a outright confession.
Though you wouldn’t be surprised if it’s completely fake and simply used to emotionally shake-up Kaiba with something a girl like her probably considered monumental.
What is surprising is that Kaiba-san was ready to participate in this farce even if it meant risking her career.

Is she really in love? They haven’t even met!
She might be in love with the idea of love.
Eager to experience something she has never had before.
You might need to move-up an appointment, this girl needs therapy.

There’s also a chance, however unlikely it may seem, that Kaiba-san is actually romantically interested in girls.
Good for her if she is, but idols shouldn’t be dating to begin with, so it should be inconsequential.

That hornet’s nest will have to wait for another time.
You have to try and save Kaiba’s career first.

The Trip
>1 - Cancel it. It’s too risky. If EmikoDesu55 leaks data, there’ll be press everywhere.
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.

The Leak
>1 - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Maybe they can do a rush job for a proper announcement for the new idols.
>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.

Talking with EmikoDesu55 yourself
>1 - Contact EmikoDesu55 using the chat and ask for her intentions and perhaps bargain with her.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.

Kaiba’s Contact with EmikoDesu55
>1 - Outright ban it. Shaken up like she is, she might actually stick to it.
>2 - Allow it, but warn her to never meet up and to no longer engage with fans like she did prior
>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid
>4 - Allow her to do whatever she feels is right. If she wants to risk her career for love, so be it.
>double eyebrows
goddammit, fixed
No further updates today.
Not certain if I'll do an update tomorrow, got easter stuff
>1 - Cancel it. It’s too risky. If EmikoDesu55 leaks data, there’ll be press everywhere.
>1 - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Maybe they can do a rush job for a proper announcement for the new idols.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>1 - Outright ban it. Shaken up like she is, she might actually stick to it.
This is just too intense! I expected Idolmaster, not Oshi no Ko.

>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
I believe Emiko is after Kaiba herself, not the company secrets. The weird grooming might be to shape Kaiba according to her fetishes. I don't think she'll leak the info immediately, though she might do it later out of spite.

>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>5 - Explain to Kaiba that Emiko is stringing her up, with examples right from the chat. Make it clear we're not angry nor judging her. Ban further contact.
Ah, the price of delaying.
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>1 - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Maybe they can do a rush job for a proper announcement for the new idols.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>5 - Explain to Kaiba that Emiko is stringing her up, with examples right from the chat. Make it clear we're not angry nor judging her. Ban further contact.
I maintain that we should've bullied the fuck out of Kaiba when we first discovered the chats.
Emiko works fucking fast.
Agreed, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
Also, our character might freaking keel over from the stress. It’s gotten high.
I think we can mitigate the risk a bit by not picking up people at the studio. Meet up in a different place, or have the bus pick them up at their homes. Justify with convenience.
The trip
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>Arrange another bus and make another email signaling a change in plans for the amusement park due to sudden idol schedule changes. Have Kaiba pass it along. Yui should have some friends that are willing to hop on a bus on Saturday, right?
Best I can do to mitigate it.

The leak
>1 - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Maybe they can do a rush job for a proper announcement for the new idols.
>Tell Kaiba she’ll need to help more as their senpai. They won’t get the initial boost they deserve due to the rush job, so they’ll be leaning harder on her fame.

Emiko and Nagato
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
Nothing to gain for it now.

Emiko and Kaiba
>Tell Kaiba you’re instituting a blanket ban on contact during the trip. Afterwards, she can explain to Emiko that we found out and are banning any further contact unless we meet later.
>”Yui and I have never treated each other like that. I’m more inclined to strangle her for talking to you like this, but I will give her one chance to prove me wrong. Later.”

Final suggestion
>Order a sleepover at your place. It’s bad given the awkwardness, but Kaiba’s parents aren’t supporting her, Emiko is toxic, she has no other friends, her fellow idols don’t know her yet, and she’s gloomy by nature. She’ll be a wreck by tomorrow if she can’t talk to anyone, and that leaves you. Push through and open up about your own past if needed.
At this point, she could be a damn suicide risk. With all the other shit QM has thrown out here, I can’t say it wouldn’t fit the quest.
Yukimori tried shutting down Rika. He failed and we had to get involved. The person who discovered Kaiba was breaking our rules may not have been us, and may not have been as friendly as we were.

At least this time we can wave at how she’s impacted the other idols now and go “there is no excuse”.

The best way would probably have been to have Yui pull us both in for a royal reaming earlier. It would have kept our credibility with Kaiba and Yui could have gone her own past to convince Kaiba to drop this relationship.

Too many anons don’t seem willing to use her though, and we’ve paid for it with stress.
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>1a - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Suggest that they take advantage of it to drum up nyatwry around tge new idols: "Who are Matsuno Inc's new mystery girls??"
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>2 - Allow it, but warn her to never meet up and to no longer engage with fans like she did prior
Now, I'll try to convince some of you guys of changing your votes. You see...

Options A: Our stress is pretty high. Even though the mood for relaxation is gone, the trip might be valuable for lowering even the tiniest bit of stress of Nagata. ...and, you know. This might be a good farewell party for Kaiba and us! We can pretty much get fired soon lmao

Options B: We absolutely cannot tell anyone from the company that there has been a leak, since that's basically dropping the ball and giving up on both Kaiba and Nagata. after all the bullshit that this fucking -100 IQ gloomy girl has put us through, I'm keeping her. Even if we have to brute force her stay.

Options C: No point in contacting Emiko. We aren't with a good hand of cards to bluff or bargain with her.

Options D: Let's think about it for a second: now that Emiko has ammo, the moment that Kaiba cuts her ties with her its the moment she presses the switch - exploding this entire bomb in our faces. Our best option right now is extracting every bit of information of Emiko. Let's play her game, make Kaiba minimize contact and pull the strings closer and closer until we can break this snake's neck.

Therefore, I'm hoping we can vote on:

>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid


Oh well. I was one of the anons that voted for us admitting that we read the chat log and ask Kaiba to break all contact with Emiko back then. I saw 10 seconds in the future us being checkmated, and I tried to convince you guys: I knew that all hell would break loose if we didn't dealt with that ASAP. And I know what you are going to say: that Kaiba could've just kept contact with her from her private account but not only that would be unlikely but if she did do that, the leaks would have less credibility since they wouldn't come from a freaking official idol acc. Hell, she might've not even leaked anything since she wouldn't have received the trip invitation on her personal account but on her company email, which I assume she doesn't have access too on her personal devices.

Once more I'm asking that you guys trust me - I know that I might sound like a schizoid but trust me - Kaiba's professional life (and ours!) is on the line.
>Hope for the best
Frick.... frickety frick. I hope Nagata doesn't get fired but transfered back to HR
>Keep quiet. There hasn't been any leaks lmao
>Don't respond to Bitchiko
>Ban further contact, but DELAY that for now. Take a taxi and accompany Kaiba home, then tell her to avoid talking to emiko until we "get this sorted out" which is delaying even more...
I want to scheme even more... how about we send emiko a message saying
>"Damn, it looks like IT will do some maintenance to the company's intranet while we are going to the trip"
So we can have some excuse for the radio silence... plus we say
>"It seems we will have lunch at the office to break the ice and travel later to get to the Onsen at night"
*drum up mystery around
Sorry, mobile.
>I might sound like a schizoid but trust me
You get my vote! Switching >>5631673 to this.
If this fails, well, then we really got to really start practicing an iron fist in a velvet glove.
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid


The Trip
2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.

The Leak
>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.

Talking with EmikoDesu55 yourself
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.

Kaiba’s Contact with EmikoDesu55
>1 - Outright ban it. Shaken up like she is, she might actually stick to it
>Explain to Kaiba that Emiko is stringing her up, with examples right from the chat. Make it clear we're not angry nor judging her
frikety frick
The stringing the manipulator didn't go forward and the marketers weren't warned. We’ve startled the grass and I fear the snake’s response.
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>Emiko when she strikes
And between the iron gates of fate, we have sown the seeds of time. Soon, we shall sing our (and Kaiba's) eulogy - a poem or song that praises those who have recently died:

Confusion will be my epitaph
As I crawl a cracked and broken path
If we make it, we call sit back and laugh
But I fear, tomorrow, I'll be crying
Yes, I fear, tomorrow, I'll be crying...

It was fun while it lasted, gloomy girl.
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>1 - Mention the possibility of a leak to marketing. Maybe they can do a rush job for a proper announcement for the new idols.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid

If it isn't too late
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.

>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.

>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.

>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid
>2 - Hope for the best. You can’t cancel, there would be too many questions.
>2 - Keep quiet about a potential leak and hope for the best.
>2 - Don’t respond to EmikoDesu55.
>3 - Ask her to minimize contact to string Emiko along so she doesn’t get mad and do something stupid
I don't need another good new quest to die in a fucking week.
Don't panic, anon.
Too late. I'm traumatized.
Good headspace for understanding Kaiba at least!

Man, unfortunately the votes closed earlier but its good to see that some anons had a change of mind or had a line of thought similar to mine.

I have no hopes of Kaiba surviving this last round of votes, we literally decided the worst possible combo - which was doing nothing + aggroing Emiko with the ban. I think that might really be the end...

One anon mentioned Kaiba being on the verge of suicide - I don't know about that, she doesn't seem to be one of those people but I'll admit that that wasn't a possibility I've thought of when I tried to change y'all votes... We'll see.
Stop, you'll drive the anon to suicide instead
Nagato lacks hatred, Kaiba ending herself will make us stronger
To put it simply, I don't believe Kaiba is capable of successfully stringing anyone up.
Nagata is too soft, she wouldn't be able to handle an idol offing herself on her watch - I think she'd quit her job or have a breakdown

She isn't. That's why she would rely on us to string Emiko - and we would rely on Yui, because Nagata doesn't have the... how should I put it? Malice? Cynism? to set someone up to a trap - Yui, however, would be our trapper.
I just noticed I called EmikoDesu55 Eriko at some points.
Might've been my editor auto-correcting the name and I didn't catch it on the proofread.
I fixed it in the wiki.
I honestly thought it was on purpose - maybe an obscure reference to the idol world or somehow an allusion to Riko.

Whatever it is that is going on between Kaiba and EmikoDesu55.
Whether it’s faked, real, mutual, or one-sided – It has to stop, that much you know.
Kaiba has put her own job and yours at risk by leaking company secrets.

You take a deep breath in order to force some calm into your voice.

“Kaiba-san,” you say, in your warmest voice, “This girl is leading you on, manipulating you, lying to you, forcing her ideal image on you, and trying to squeeze any private company info she can from you. Whatever her intentions, they’re nothing good.”

You rapid fire some examples, “Asking you to take pictures at a hot spring? Discrediting the word of anyone other than herself? Constantly tearing you down, but still trying to get you to meet up?”

Kaiba-san sniffles, “…I’m sorry I shared the image and stuff, I’ll be more careful, but Emiko-chan isn’t that bad… She said on the phone that she suffers from mood swings… it’s not her fault.”

And Kaiba-san buys that? Isn’t that downright gullible?
Why is she so blind to this Emiko’s faults? They’re plain to see!
Even if this Emiko-chan actually does have mood swings, that doesn’t mean Kaiba-san should accept a role as an emotional punching bag.

“Give me your phone,” you say.

“Eh?” replies Kaiba-san, seeming shocked.

“You keep saying you talk on the phone,” you say, “I need to know Emiko-chan’s number in case we need to call her and make her sign a non-disclosure agreement.”
“I’m not angry or anything about what you did,” you add, “But the company can’t simply trust an outsider with confidential information.”

Kaiba-san seems somewhat relieved, nods, and hands you her phone.
You pull out your own and make a show off typing over the number into your phone.

It seems like a perfectly valid option and one Kaiba-san, who really seems to want to believe in Emiko-chan, is ready to believe.

You have absolutely no intention of contacting this Emiko girl.
If she has bad intentions, then calling her would be akin to a fish biting down on a hook!
The only reason for this whole show was to glance at Kaiba-san’s recent calls.

They call almost every night. Sometimes for over an hour.
The calls seem to be made through some kind of internet phone-app, but show up in the phone’s default “recent calls” anyway.

Could this be Emiko’s real number or it just some kind of throwaway?
Regardless, you have a number you can try to reach her on if need be, that’ll suffice.
Most importantly, if Emiko leaks any data then you’ll pass this number off to the police and drag her right down to hell with you.

Fingers crossed that it’s a real number!
This Emiko girl has brought you so much heartache and stress.
She should suffer a little, right? Like you have?
That’s not cruel, it’s justice! Justice!

You also noticed an app with the same name as the platform that Kaiba-san uses for streaming and chat.
Might be worth installing it on your phone just to see if Kaiba-san sticks to her promise over the weekend.

You hand back Kaiba’s phone, “Thank you,” you say, with a smile, “I’ll make sure to meet with legal affairs so we can get something drafted.”

“Thank you,” says Kaiba-san, “Nagata-san. Thank you so much…”

Ah, ignorance really is bliss.
The only thing those lawyers will be doing is drafting a restraining order once this weekend is over and any info Emiko has is no longer a threat.
Or suing her if the girl decides to make use of the info.

You flash Kaiba a quick smile, “It’s my job,” you say, feigning happiness, “But Kaiba-san, I’m sure you understand that until this is handled – no contact with Emiko-chan, okay? It’ll turn into a legal matter so all contact has to be done through Matsuno Inc’s lawyers until the matter is handled.”

Kaiba-san seems genuinely disappointed, but nods, “I get it,” she says, “Emiko-chan will wonder where I’ve gone, but I hope she’ll understand after I explain it to her.
After the lawyers are done.”

“Thank you, Kaiba-san,” you say, “Total ban until then, you understand? Nothing at all! The password to the account will be changed. Don’t take any pictures or anything either or they might think you’re complicit and leaking information on purpose. This’ll be over soon.”

Kaiba wipes away the remnants of her tears with the back of her hands, “Uhm!” she replies, making a small sound of agreement.

“Alright then,” you say, walking to the door, “I’ll be off to get this all handled then.”

“Yes,” replies Kaiba-san, “Thank you again, Nagata-san.”

You linger at the door and wave a dismissive hand, “That’s what managers are for!”

Click. The door shuts behind you as you walk into the hallway.
That toxic relationship has to die, but a hard ban with no sensible reason might’ve caused Kaiba-san to warn EmikoDesu55 or contact her using other methods.

Kaiba-san needed that flicker of hope.
The idea that whatever is going on is only temporary.

You begin the short journey towards your own office as you think over the situation at hand.

Once the weekend passes and Emiko’s ammunition turns into duds, you’ll go in for the kill.
Would the Nagata Miho from a few months back have schemed like this?
Probably not, but it’s necessary, right? It’s justified!

You’re confident you’ve somehow plugged the information leak, but the sharpened axe that is the already shared info still dangles above your neck.
The life or death of your career decided by some college girl and her ‘Enter’ key.

The info Kaiba leaked can potentially put hostile eyes on the participants of the trip.
However, cancelling the trip would raise a lot of questions that you don’t have an answer for and revealing the truth would mean the end of Kaiba’s career.

If the trip happens and EmikoDesu55 leaks the information of the trip then you’d be putting the safety of several idols at risk while also opening them up to various potential scandals.
It’d be very easy for a tenacious, ill-willed fan to climb the walls surrounding the hotspring or to simply fly a drone over and take a few creepshots of your idols trying to enjoy a bath.

A nude picture published of an idol before they are even formally announced?
They haven’t even started and yet their chances at a normal career would go up in flames.

Yet, sacrifice Kaiba’s career in an order to save your own?

No, you won’t. You can’t.
She has done some seriously stupid things that would’ve caused many other managers to cut their losses and forcibly retire their idol.

A young girl’s desire to feel loved for the first time in her life cannot mean the end of her dream.
You won’t accept it.

You’re lying, scheming, and hiding more secrets than ever before.
But Kaiba-san, your idol, is now at ease.
She thinks the problems are being solved, while things are actually worse than they’ve ever been.

Your shoulders feel tight and your pace is unsteady.

The gist of it is: The trip needs to happen.
That stupid girl better be grateful if you all survive this!
The things you do for that girl, the lengths you go to.
Any other manager would probably call you insane!
But you’re not, hehe. Everything is alright!

You’re doing it! Handling things like a true manager!

If anyone learns of what Kaiba did, her career is over.
If anyone learns you allowed the trip to happen whilst knowing about the leak, yours is over.
If anyone acts on the leaked info, Chigusa’s and Enatsu’s chances at a normal career are over.

It’s over. It’s over. It’s over.

Just hope for the best.
You’ll push through this with the power of positivity!
Raise your fist and cheer for a brighter tomorrow! Oooooooo!

As far as the leak itself is concerned, you’re confident that acting on it any way would just arouse suspicion.
This might mean sacrificing the idol announcement of your two new idols, but that’s just something you’ll have to risk.

Just hope for the best.
Things might be uncertain, but just because everything seems to be falling apart doesn’t mean it will.
Murphy’s law states that ‘Anything that can go wrong will go wrong’, but who’s he?
Just some negative-minded guy from the United States, right?
Besides, he’s dead now so that shows how well that negativity worked out for him, hehe!

You’ll shoulder all these things and more for Kaiba-san!
That’s what it means to be a manager, right?
To protect your employees against anything and anyone!

You open the door to your office and get inside.

“Ah? Mihooo~, hello,” says a voice.

“Eh?” you say, “Yui-chan?”

“Come to visit? Fufu~ can’t keep me off your mind?” says Kitabayashi Yui, then reaches into a bag, “Ah, look!”
She holds up what seems to be some kind of cat harness and leash, “When you drop off Azuki tomorrow, I’ll take her outs-- Are you okay? You look very pale…”

You glance at your surroundings, you’re in the HR office. The place you worked for years.
“Ah,” you say, then laugh quietly, “I’m fine, I was just thinking and I walked here on habit, it seems.”
Some kind of droplet hits your white blouse, staining it black.

Kitabayashi Yui casts the cat harness aside and quickly gets up, rushing towards you.
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A few more drops hit your shirt.
You wipe at your face, your mascara is running. Tears.
”Eh?” you say, trying your best to save your shirt.
You lean on a nearby desk for support as your legs feel weak.

Kitabayashi closes the distance and, holding you by the shoulders, eases you down to the floor.
Her eyes are wide and her voice is strained, like she’s about to cry herself, “What’s going on?” she says, “Please, Miho! You can talk to me!”

You stare at her with an expression akin to shellshock.
Kitabayashi Yui works for HR.
Coming from HR yourself, you know that HR’s first and foremost interest is the business.
Sharing with her anything that you just learned would make her obligated to defend the interests of the business.
However, knowing Yui-chan she would keep it quiet anyway and by doing so risk her job.
You can’t do that to her.

All you can do is wait.
And hope for the best.

“I’m fine,” you say, “I’m fine.”

Kitabayashi shakes your shoulders, “You’re not,” she screams with tears of her own, “Miho, please!”

As you try to take a breath to explain, you find that the air isn’t coming in.
No matter how fast you inhale, there’s nothing there.
You clutch at Kitabayashi’s shirt, hand shaking, as you race through sixty breaths in a minute with nothing to show for it.
Are you dying? Is this what dying is like?
You can’t die, the trip is tomorrow!
What if something goes wrong?

Kitabayashi places her hands on one of your own, “Miho, slowly breathe in through your nose!” she shouts, “It might feel like your throat is blocked off! It’s probably something like a panic attack, it’ll pass! Breathe slowly!”

Eyes wide and gasping, you do as Kitabayashi says and after a few minutes, that feel like hours, your breathing return to normal.
You thank her for the help, but refuse to give any explanation. You can’t.
In the all the years you’ve known her, you don’t think you’ve ever seen Kitabayashi that angry.

After visiting the ladies room to freshen up, you return to your office and quickly change the password to Kaiba-san’s chat and streaming account and install the accompanying app on your phone and login.
There’s a series of heavy knocks at the door, like somebody pelted it with rocks.
You open it and find a large man from security waiting outside with Matsui-san standing beside him, eyeing you in concern.

Apparently your work day is over and you’re send home to rest.
You plead with Matsui-san for a moment and ask her to keep what happened quiet from Kaiba-san, there’s no need to alarm her.

The large man then herds you away from your office.
Thankfully, you can convince him that you’ll walk to the exit by yourself to avoid making a scene and causing rumours.

Darn it, Yui-chan.
You still had work to do.

== April 17, 2015 (Saturday)

The day of the trip has arrived and you currently find yourself in front of Kitabayashi’s apartment, handing over a cat carrier and a small bag.
”There’s some wet and dry food in there,” you say, “Just make sure to feed Azuki the wet food in the evening or she gets grumpy and will complain – loudly,”

Only somebody like Kitabayashi would open their door in a tank top, underwear, and fuzzy slippers.
She looks into the bag and yawns, “Okay,” she says, then kneels and pokes the car carrier with a finger, “I’ll spoil you lots~”

Azuki, an American Shorthair, purrs in approval.

Kitabayashi rises again, her brow furrows, “Miho, are you really okay?” she says, “I’ve seen a lot of panic and anxiety attacks during my days as an idol, but yours was one of the scarier ones…I was about to call the hospital, y’know? …Try to relax a little.”

Perhaps you do need to find a way to mitigate your stress a little.
After the weekend.

You smile, “Sorry to have worried you,” you say, “But I’m going to a hotspring, there’s probably no better place for me to relax.”

Kitabayashi pouts, “Still wish I could’ve come with,” she says, “Do you want to come in for coffee at least? It’s like 6 AM.”

You shake head, “No thanks,” you say, “I have to go or else I’ll be late.”

Waving goodbye, you hurry back to your car.

Late for being insanely early that is.
Your plan is to park your trusty Renault Twingo near the entrance of Matsuno Inc, where the bus is going to show, and watch the traffic like a hawk.

It’s now cold and early, 6:30 AM. You’re in position.
The streets of Tokyo at this time feel barren compared to the usual traffic.
During your time in HR, you used to go to work with the bullet train, but now you need a car to ferry your idols to and from jobs.

In your passenger seats sits a thermos with oolong tea, you unscrew the cap and have some.
You honestly haven’t really thought about what you’ll do if some paparazzo does show.
But if they show, at least you’ll know. You won’t be caught unaware.

After you were send home, you tried calling Matsui-san to suggest that everybody should be picked up from home as a sort of courtesy service, but she said that the bus was rented on short notice for only a few hours and the distance between those joining the trip would’ve made the request impossible.
Furthermore, she said that if you refused to rest and called again then she’d come over to your apartment and chain you to the bed, then hung up.

Matsui-san can be scary sometimes.

An hour passes as you keep a watchful eye, but there isn’t anybody suspicious.
You pull out your phone and check your email messages, nothing much.
A fancy new icon decorates the home screen, it’s that chat app you installed that Kaiba-san and EmikoDesu55 used.

Despite being by yourself in your car, you glance left and right, then open the app.
You barely feel any guilt for doing this anymore.
There’s a fair few new messages, but it’s a one-sided affair.
It seems like Kaiba-san is cutting contact with EmikoDesu55 for now as promised.

[11:39] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ll be quiet!
[11:51] @EmikoDesuu55: …
[11:55] @EmikoDesuu55: kaiba-chan?
[11:56] @EmikoDesuu55: did manager-san drag you into a meeting or something :P ?
[12:12] @EmikoDesuu55: let me know when you get out
[13:44] @EmikoDesuu55: Hhelloooooo….?
[16:25] @EmikoDesuu55: I watched your stream!
[16:26] @EmikoDesuu55: you seemed a bit down tho, but I suppose that’s on-brand, haha!
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55: kaiba-chan… I know you’re there, I saw the stream…
[17:03] @EmikoDesuu55: why aren’t you responding?
[17:15] @EmikoDesuu55: I’ll call you tonight
[22:31] @EmikoDesuu55: …rejected call \(`0´)/
[22:32] @EmikoDesuu55: …I will have my pillow talk, kaiba-chan~
[22:40] @EmikoDesuu55: DID YOU BLOCK MY NUMBER???
[22:40] @EmikoDesuu55: KAIBA-CHAN WHY???

You adjust your posture and you can feel your grip tightening on the phone.
This’ll be where EmikoDesu55 reveals her true nature and intentions.
Her window of opportunity is closing and she must know it.

Suddenly, the little icon next to EmikoDesu55’s name flashes green – she’s online.
You gasp and quickly close the app.

Hands pressed together, you utter a little prayer, and it seems like god isn’t dead.
No notifications bombard your phone. EmikoDesu55 must’ve missed that you, on Kaiba's account, were online.

Still, although objectively wrong on every level, you could impersonate Kaiba-san if you wanted to.
Alternatively, you could speak to her as Kaiba’s manager and explain the situation.
Or you could simply say nothing at all and only use the app to observe EmikoDesu55’s reaction.

>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and speak to EmikoDesu55 in the chat and try to calm her down
>2 - Give a formal reply stating that Kaiba-san’s social media presence is currently undergoing internal review and she is barred from chatting until then.
>3 - Only use the chat to peek on EmikoDesu55’s reactions
>4 - Don’t use the app at all anymore. She might catch you online.
>5 - Write-in
>uploaded the unedited version
of course
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>It’s over. It’s over. It’s over.
I know how serious the situation is but I couldn't help myself and burst into laughter lmao

Don't worry Miho-chan! At the absolute worst, you WILL drag Emiko to hell! We fall together!
>5 - Write-in
Look up the app in more detail online and try to see if there's any way to turn on an invisible setting.

>Watch reaction if invisible mode is an option
>Otherwise, give a formal reply stating that Kaiba-san’s social media presence is currently undergoing internal review and she is barred from chatting until then.
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Oh c'mon, guys. You all lack guts, slyness, artifice! When playing against the Devil, you gotta one-up his cheats.

Besides, do note (by taking a look at the wiki) that being passive at this situation has only lead to Stress increases. By voting on just observing, you are essentially delaying again - thus, repeating what got us into this mess to begin with.

A trick and a lie.

>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and speak to EmikoDesu55 in the chat and try to calm her down

While pretending to be Kaiba, tell her that the IT guys had a meeting with manager-san about something to do with leaking information. Manager-san decided to cancel the trip and decided to place every idol on digital surveillance - tell Emiko that even then, you two wouldn't be able to meet since Manager-san invited you and the other idols to have a private talk on [insert random location here but somewhere on Tokyo] - you'll discuss a lot of stuff so it will take a while. Maybe, after the meeting, you two can meet!

And then, we send Yui there. The goal here is make her leak false information, or at the very least, don't go to Matsuno's HQ. If her plan was to stalk Kaiba all the way to Fuji or meet with her, she should go along and go to the false location - there, Yui can gather intel on wether she would meet Kaiba alone, in a group, or send stalker fans to harass Kaiba: Yui should not confront Emiko alone, her goal is to spy. Observe.

Afterwards, Emiko will ask why we weren't there: we can just wave some small excuse, even fake another e-mail or fake a Google Calendar appointment whatever. She will bite. That is "the Lie".

Next step is going to be right after the trip - we will bait her with false, but believable, insider info - upcoming jobs, leaked auditions, info about the other idols. Things like that. Then, we'll search the web for articles that match this false information (maybe we can even access 4/2chan and check the archives, why not?) - this will give us the confirmation of wether she's leaking stuff for someone else or just keeping it for herself.

That is "the Trick".
This so much
>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and speak to EmikoDesu55 in the chat and try to calm her down
There's a massive difference between mechanical outcomes and narrative outcomes. This is just categorically insane. Stalling in this manner is already a hell of a gamble on Miho's part, digging in like this is just making matters worse. Frankly, I'd rather use more aggressive legal measures now, but Miho simply isn't that type of person as shown so far. Setting some gaslighting plot just adds unnecessary drama for little to no gain whatsoever, aside from simply proving that Emiko is bad news, something Miho already knows. That being said, doing some deep looking about on various sites to see if someone has posted Kaiba's stuff is something I certainly support.
Kaiba, why you got to make us cry?
>digging in like this is just making matters worse

You're right and wrong - what you're missing is that every option is essentially a bad one, not that we chose can effectively deal with the problem in one fell swipe so the threat will be lingering for the days to come. We technically can't go for legal measures right now since that would basically end Kaiba's career in an instant. I fail to see what anyone hopes to accomplish by essentially doing what we were doing already but on our phone instead of the company's computers: waiting and hoping for the best, waiting and hoping for the best.

Seriously: if we really wanted to do something with the information, we would've confessed the moment we first spied Kaiba's chat and forbid her from speaking to Emiko right there. Most of you guys seem to be gathering information for the sake of gathering information - hell, even now with the bread and butter on our hands, we did nothing: no extra security, not informing the marketing team, no trip cancellation. And *now*, after literal shit hits the fan and Emiko turns into ticking time-bomb, Kaiba gets the ban. Hurray?

Acting, moving forward. This will bring us results, however little they might be - stalling and playing the hide 'n hide game (because we don't seem to be seeking anything) hasn't been proving to be a succesful approach. This bomb will explode: just looking at the timer decreasing isn't gonna change anything.

Now, about the gaslight plan: it will, most likely, fail at some point. But if it does succeed, not only we will have some extra breathing room but the snake will be on our hands - ready to be crushed. And if we fall on a middle-ground between failure and success then hey, Emiko might just lose interest on "Kaiba" and move on. She'll leave unscathed but won't be a threat anymore.
Just a point of order: won't think lead to an elaborate, escalating shadow-war with a manipulative girl dominating our life, probably distracting from our ability to work on the careers on our other idols?

I'll add:
>Check the fansites and chans for leaked info
to the to-do list, though, QM.
>2 - Give a formal reply stating that Kaiba-san’s social media presence is currently undergoing internal review and she is barred from chatting until then.
Dangle some hope for her. Tell her that Kaiba is undergoing normal review and that if you find nothing wrong in her chats she will be allowed to chat back very soon™
We have time to kill, so let’s do this first

>Check the fansites and chans for leaked info
>Look up the app in more detail online and try to see if there's any way to turn on an invisible setting
>Get some cash out from an ATM in case we need to bribe someone to fuck off

After all of these, we can re-asses our next steps.

However, I do see merit in this anon’s approach >>5633644

Not voting for it - but it would work to calm the bomb down (for now)
I'm concerned this will lead to Emiko dialing back her more overtly manipulative and abusive behaviours to the extent that Kaiba ceases to recognize them at all and no longer has any reason to believe us.
>4 - Don’t use the app at all anymore. She might catch you online
There's nothing else to it. Let's not fuck it all up by riling her up, or give her the hint that she got caught. Even a cornered rat will bite.
You're talking big, telling us how we're just stalling, but your plan is stalling as well. It achieves nothing even if it succeeds. All it does is gather information - the very thing you accuse us of.

>2 - Give a formal reply stating that Kaiba-san’s social media presence is currently undergoing internal review and she is barred from chatting until then.
Also supporting >>5633809.

I must say I feel like this storyline is bloating out and consuming the rest of the quest, and I don't like it.
>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and speak to EmikoDesu55 in the chat and try to calm her down
>I must say I feel like this storyline is bloating out and consuming the rest of the quest

It absolutely is.

In hindsight I think I should’ve ran this side-story over several weeks (if people voted as they have) so that there’s space in-between for the other characters, doing jobs, and training idols.

I already have some minor changes in mind to avoid this sort of bloat in the future such as:
>Reducing the in-story time between votes to 1 week rather than 2.
>Summarizing events more often

I enjoy sprinkling in story to add some spice to the quest, but right now it just feels like I dumped a bucket of salt on it.
Week 15/16 (this side-story + new character introductions) is almost as large as all the 14 weeks before it combined.

I plan to do better once this side-story has concluded, regardless of when and how it may end.
>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and speak to EmikoDesu55 in the chat and try to calm her down
>Check the fansites and chans for leaked info
>Look up the app in more detail online and try to see if there's any way to turn on an invisible setting
>Get some cash out from an ATM in case we need to bribe someone to fuck off
>It achieves nothing even if it succeeds. All it does is gather information - the very thing you accuse us of.

Gathering information is a consequence of the plan. The goal is discredit "Kaiba" or Emiko as reliable source of leaked information by stringing Emiko in: if Emiko notices that "Kaiba" is telling lies she might doubt herself on previous acquired information and drop the "project" altogether. Or, if she's working for someone or selling the leaks to someone then Emiko gets discredited for being a liar with false info. Yes, I know I didn't explain it further on >>5633644 but that's because all of this is rather implicit: I didn't felt the need to explain since I thought you guys would just deduce from the implications.

If you fail to see the big picture and how much we would gain if the plan succeeds then I have nothing else to say to you. I'd like to try disarming a bomb and putting this behind us forever, I'm against any form of "let's wait and see" - this is leading us to nowhere and it's a sickening, passive and cowardly behavior that's threatening our characters health. We gotta take matters on our own hands
No updates today.
Should be able to post again tomorrow.
Props for naming the cat Beans.
Cat beans are justice.
>sickening, passive, and cowardly
Chill. It's a collaborative story-game about playing a middle-manager for young celebrities in 2000s Japan. Nobody's life or honor is on the line IRL, and IC it makes oerfect sense that we might be passive and conflict-avoidant; we're a young, soft-hearted Japanese lady just teying her best.
You seem to not take into account Kaiba's reaction to our pretending to be her to deceive someone she thinks is "not that bad" and is her only friend.
>2 - Give a formal reply stating that Kaiba-san’s social media presence is currently undergoing internal review and she is barred from chatting until then.
+1 because this is the most competent choice so far. first two definitely would aggravate emiko or kaiba, three and four would make miho very uneasy. that other plan isnt even worth mentioning
>1 - Pretend to be Kaiba-san and... (x4)
>2 - Give a formal reply stating th... (x3)
>3 - Only use the chat to peek on... (x0)
>4 - Don’t use the app at all anym.. (x1)
>5 - Look up the app in more deil... (x5)
I'm assuming that the people that voted for >>5633625 plan to peek if "offline" mode is an option.
Honestly, it wasn't at first which is sorta why 3/4 are seperate options, but since this is the largest vote, I'll add it.
That's sorta the whole idea behind allowing write-ins, I suppose.

>5 - Look up the app in more detail... (x5)
>Watch reaction if invisible mode is an option
>Check the fansites and chans for leaked info

That was a close call, you’re not even sure what you would’ve said if EmikoDesuu55 caught you online and tried to engage you in a conversation.
Besides, if Kaiba-san gained access to the account in some way or spoke to EmikoDesuu55 through other means and found out you’ve essentially borrowed her identity to chat with her Emiko-chan so you can ruin their relationship – she’d never forgive you.

Still, it would give you some peace of mind if there was a safe way to observe how EmikoDesuu55 is responding to this all.

Tapping away on your phone, you browse the internet to see if the app has a way to be “invisible”.
To be able to chat or read messages without your account appearing as “Online” to others.
Turns out there is, tucked away deep in the settings you find a toggle to enable a “beta” feature that allows you to appear as “Offline”.

Across the road, a van stops. There’s something written on the side of the van, but it’s too away far to read.
The driver’s seat door opens and a man steps out carrying a small device in his hands.
He turns around and glances at Matsuno HQ, back at the device, then smiles and moves to open the sliding door on the side of the van.

They’re here. The delivery person.
Sugar packets ran out a few days ago and it’s comforting knowing you’ll get to add sugar to your tea again.

No paparazzi in sight yet, though.

Your phone buzzes and you glance at the notifications: EmikoDesuu55.
After waiting a few minutes, you quickly open the app and glance at her status: Offline.


You open the settings, enable offline mode, and pin your own status to offline.
Now you can keep an eye on EmikoDesuu55’s messages without worry.

== April 17, 2015 (Saturday)

[07:55] @EmikoDesuu55: i guess something must’ve happened…
[07:55] @EmikoDesuu55: call me when you can, k? (⋟﹏⋞)
[07:56] @EmikoDesuu55: have fun on the trip~


EmikoDesuu55 pops back online and you can only hope the beta feature works as intended.
A new message appears.


[07:59] @EmikoDesuu55: i miss you <3


But is then deleted by EmikoDesuu55 seconds later.

You sigh, you barely know this girl and yet interacting with her is so exhausting.
Her approaches and intentions are all over the place.
At the beginning she appeared nice, then she became manipulative, and now she’s trying to be nice again?
What do you really know about her other than that she’s a struggling college student that can barely seem to pay her phone bill?

One of the first messages you remember from her was when she made an off-hand comment right after Kaiba-san’s first stream.
Kaiba-san cried back then, tears of joy, overwhelmed by all her viewers coming to see her.
You tried calming her down, soothing her to the best of your abilities.

Later she appeared during the handshaking event and whispered something to Kaiba that left her a blushing mess.
She also passed Kaiba-san a note which turned out to contain some contact details.

Afterwards there was a brief back and forth between EmikoDesuu55 and some other individual, keyszz, or something along those lines.
They spoke about starting up some project, but that’s all.

What has EmikoDesuu55 been up to when she isn’t talking to Kaiba-san?

You take our your phone again and your chest grows tight as your mind races through possibilities.
Has she been publishing everything under a hidden blog? Sold the info on?
What do you have to look for? What search term?

You type “Kaiba Aoi scandal” into Google to see what comes up.
There’s dozens of results, but none are actually scandals.

Just clickbait articles like “DOES KAIBA AOI ABUSE CATS?” and then the articles links a short clip of Kaiba’s stream where she mentions that she prefers dogs over cats.
The article then goes on to say that since she prefers dog, she probably hates cats, and you know who else hates cats: people that abuse them.
Ergo, Kaiba Aoi is a cat abusing lunatic.
Over in the comments, a woman, that you guess is in her late fifties from her profile picture, mentions she’ll share this article on Facebook in order to warn her grandson.

There’s also a video channel filled with short clips of Kaiba Aoi talking animatedly about something that happened at work and she makes a movement that causes her breasts to bounce.
The video zooms-in and adds some kind of sound-effect.
You make a mental reminder to tell Matsui-san to send a cease-and-desist warning to this channel.

Beside these “scandals” you stumble upon the website of her fanclub: The Gloomlings.
Their forum is an equal split between threads praising Kaiba, discussing the vlogs, guessing what she’ll do next, and starting witch-hunts to dox people that spoke poorly of Kaiba-san.
One member mentions that they cut together a bunch of audio from the vlogs into something they call a “ASMR sleep track” and that they make use of it every night.
Other members are screaming at this person to share the track, but he refuses.

Not much luck here then.
Perhaps EmikoDesuu55 hasn’t leaked anything yet?
You can’t be too sure though, spending a few minutes on Google isn’t quite enough to settle the matter.

How about the search term “EmikoDesuu55” then?
There are a few results.

Most of which are accounts on various websites that seem abandoned.
Among the top results is EmikoDesuu55’s account on the website that Kaiba publishes her vlogs on.
It seems like she’s most active here, but there’s also a Twitter account.

You open the link to her Twitter and scroll through her tweets.
It mostly seems to be retweets of various promos in order to have a chance at getting free stuff.

At one point, you spot a series of tweets with a name you recognize: Keyszz1.
It’s actually quite recent, the conversation happened only yesterday.

@Keyszz1: @EmikoDesuu55 answer your phone or your DMs
@Keyszz1: @EmikoDesuu55 i swear to fucking god, we’ll kick you from the group
@EmikoDesuu55: i’m busy
@Keyszz1: you said you had notes for the exam
@EmikoDesuu55: i’m not sure yet, need more time
@Keyszz1: the others in the group are waiting you dyke, we need notes
@EmikoDesuu55: fuck you, calling me a dyke
@Keyszz1: you’ve been talking to the professor, right?
@EmikoDesuu55: i barely talk to her, like once a week maybe
@Keyszz1: hand over the fucking notes, so we can move. i need to pay rent
@Keyszz1: you wanna fail the exam and waste weeks of effort?
@Keyszz1: just hand over what you got and we’ll make it work
@Keyszz1: anything will do, anything that hits the professor’s rep
@Keyszz1: college will step in and bail her out
@EmikoDesuu55: just let me work you dick, you’re too autistic for this part anyway
@Keyszz1: …are you trying to fuck the professor again?
@Keyszz1: is that why this is taking so god damn long?
@EmikoDesuu55: fuck off you pin-dicked virgin
@EmikoDesuu55: its different this time
@Keyszz1: you stupid cunt
@EmikoDesuu55: no, i wanna meet with the professor first
@EmikoDesuu55: i think i can get us all higher grades if we wait
@EmikoDesuu55: i might have better notes soon, from other professors too
@EmikoDesuu55: then we can target those instead of this professor
@EmikoDesuu55: project will get a passing grade, trust me
@EmikoDesuu55: professor is busy this weekend and might not have signal
@EmikoDesuu55: ill let you know if i hear anything
@Keyszz1: get fucked
@EmikoDesuu55: im trying

Ah, so she really was in college.

There’s a sudden knock on your car window, making you yelp and fumble your phone – it falls.
Body tight with panic, you glance at the window: It’s Chigusa-san.

After you lower the window, she leans in and speaks, “Good morning, manager-san,” she says.

You try to calm yourself down, “M-morning, Chigusa-san,” you say, then glance at a small digital clock on your car dashboard, “You’re… an hour early?”

Chigusa nods, “I had hoped to set example by being the first person here,” she says, “I will do better next time.”
You can only hope she doesn’t do the same thing with stuff like birthday parties.
She probably does. Awkward for everybody involved.

You pick up your phone and pocket it, “Do you want to wait in the car with me?” you ask, “It’s still chilly at this hour.”

Chigusa bows, “Thank you, that would be appreciated.”

You enjoy some small talk with Chigusa while you wait for the bus to arrive.
Well, enjoy might be too strong a word for it. It’s fairly one-sided.

Over the next hour, the other managers and idols begin to arrive.
This the first time you’ve seen Watase Yoko in person, but she doesn’t seem to be as intimidating as her picture suggested.

You leave your car in the office parking lot and join up with the others.

“Manager-san,” shouts Enatsu Mari, “Hello, hello!”

Kaiba Aoi shuffles up towards you, bowing slightly, “Ah,” she says, “Good morning, manager-san.”

You manage the briefest of introductions before the bus shows up – 9 AM.
Formal introductions will have to wait until you arrive at the destination.

The bus driver informs you that you’ll be going to a hot spring on the outskirts of Mt. Fuji and while not that far, it’s a two-hour drive because of traffic and lacklustre roads.

Those two hours on the bus might be a good time to socialize.

>1 - Sit by yourself and just wait out the ride (skip)
>2 - Sit and chat with Enatsu Mari
>3 - Sit and chat with Chigusa Iki
>4 - Sit and chat with Ichihara Riko
>5 - Sit and chat with Kaiba Aoi
>6 - Sit and chat with Watase Yoko
>7 - Sit and chat with Yukimori Kyoden
>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro

You can write-in questions if you like.
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>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro
Man, their OPSEC is shit.
Are you trying to make Emiko a
complex character? Who really falls in love with her targets? Sorry, it doesn't change what she does. I'll hate her anyway.

>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro
>While observing Watase Yoko
I wonder how she behaves towards Ichihara
So it’s clear that this is code:

notes = blackmail material
professor = idols / Kaiba
higher grades = more money
exam = publishing deadline?
college = idol agency

It’s weird that they’d post this all on Twitter desu.

Where do we know Keyszz1 from?

And it seems like our girl might actually be getting feelings for Kaiba

>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro
>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro
>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro

Short vote since it's just a minor thing, seems pretty one-sided, and I want to try and get another update out today
Regarding the hot spring, how much can I get away with on a blue board?
I wasn't planning on full nude, but I did plan on at least some images of the idols in the hot spring.
>this post is too old to remove
Can't backpedal on removing tension
It is what it is
>8 - Sit and chat with Matsuno Kojiro
>While observing Watase Yoko

Link images hosted elsewhere, with a disclaimer, to play it safest.
Nah, it's totally fine. Just spoiler it. Elf Maiden Quest had a bukkake scene and the jannies did not touch it lol.
It's alright. You can get away with anything these days. Just don't forget images for Nagata too!
>You can get away with anything these days

/vt/ is a blueboard and the jannies there have been pretty restrictive with suggestive pictures (I've been seeing a lot of unspoiled thread pics getting deleted and none of them were nudity per se), so I wouldn't count on that.

Whoever, the horni threads do exist on that same board so I don't know what the hell goes on the jannies head there.

You decide to sit beside Matsuno Kojiro in front of the bus for the duration of bus ride to the hot spring.
The last time you’ve spoken was during the Ichihara Riko fallout. A good, long while ago.

“Good morning, Matsuno-san,” you say, “Mind if I sit here?”

Matsuno seems occupied with his phone, “Feel free, Nagata-san,” he replies.

Enatsu Mari and Chigusa Iki sit close to each other in the back while Kaiba sits by herself near the front and listens to music, her head resting against the window.
Watase Yoko and Ichihara Riko sit side-by-side as well, but any attempt at friendly conversation is shut down by Watase.
Ichihara’s face is short so her face is hidden behind the back of the seat in front of them, Watase Yoko is clearly visible.

Yukimore Kyoden sits by himself, he brought a laptop and is working through his mailbox.

You sit quietly until Matsuno Kojiro puts away his phone.
Sitting next to him like this, you can’t help but notice he’s actually quite tall.
He has forgone the usual three-piece suit for a more business casual look.

After a while Matsuno puts away his phone, then looks at you and smiles, “I haven’t gotten a chance to properly thank you for organising this trip,” he says, then raises his voice, “And of course to congratulate you on signing some wonderful new talent.”

A few seats behind you, Chigusa bobs her head and Enatsu replies with some embarrassed laughter.

You lower your head slightly, “It was really no problem at all,” you say, “I’m only hoping that all the new girls can become quick friends.”

The implication here being that you want to avoid bullying.

Matsuno smiles, “What a wonderful thought,” he says, “I’m hoping for much the same.”He then stretches for a moment and uses a hand to message his neck, “I’ll admit I’m happy you decided on a hot spring for this trip, these last few weeks have left me hella stressed.”


Matsuno notices the look on your face. ”Relax a little, we can be a couple of stiff suits back at the office,” he says with a chuckle, “I think it would be beneficial if us managers get on friendly terms as well, no?”

“That would be nice,” you say.
To be able to go to a hotspring and not mind your behaviour and manner of speaking too much would be a dream.

To finally, for once, let your guard down?
To do away with all the office politics?
That’d be amazing, but you know some things he doesn't.
Unexpected guests may arrive at any moment.

You hear Ichihara Riko’s voice a few seats away, trying to speak quietly, “Watasa-sama,” she says, then whispers something too quiet to hear.
They are several seats behind you, after all.

”Haaaah?” replies Watase Yoko, not minding her volume at all, “You wanna try me? Huh?”
Her voice is a lower pitch than you’d ordinarily expect for an idol.
It’s tone honestly reminds you of the delinquent girls back in high school and there’s a touch of a Kansai accent.

Matsuno Kijro flashes you an apologetic smile, then shrugs, “I hope they warm up a bit to each other in the days to come. They’ve been working together a bunch but haven’t really bonded.”

You remember seeing records for a job at Wit Studio for both Watase and Ichihara.

“I was happy to see that you decided to continue being a manager after what happened to Maki Sumi,” you say, “Have you enjoyed working with Watase-san so far?”

“For sure,” he says, speaking in a tone the others probably won’t overhear, “She’s been great. Very professional in a lot of ways, but if she doesn’t like you then, well, then she REALLY doesn’t like you. She won’t hide it either.”
He then folds his arms, a confident smile on his face, “She’s a pro, that’s all I can say. It’s great working with somebody who has plenty of experience. It was a massive relief that my dad and uncle and we managed to get her to sign with Matsuno Inc.”

“How about your two new talents?” he asks in an effort to keep the conversation going.

You scratch your cheek with a finger and quietly laugh, “…it’s too early to say, we’ve only really had an interview, but I think they’re both very promising and I look forward to working with them.”

The both of you chat for the remainder of the trip.
Exchanging bits of personal info and general interests.

Turns out Matsuno Kojiro lives in an apartment over in the Akasaka district, one of the most prestigious and expensive places in all of Tokyo.
He’s lucky enough to only have to pay for utilities since an acquaintance of his owns the building.
Matsuno graduated from the University of Tokyo where he majored in Business & Management.

He has an interest in western astrology, his sign being Leo, and was happy to find out that yours is Gemini.
You don’t personally hold much stock in astrology, but your sign seemed to have made a favourable impression.

After a long and eventually bumpy ride (Kaiba-san, who had fallen asleep, was woken up when a pothole caused her to hit her head against the window) you arrive at your destination.

Matsudaira Resort is a large, family-owned hotel with its own private, gender-separated hot spring.
It’s run by an elderly man who appear very thankful for your patronage.
The place ordinarily only has a handful of staff, but he called in the help of his grandchildren to ensure everything is to your liking.
There are massages, the hot spring itself, a sauna, a bar for drinks, a breakfast buffet, and more!

The owner, Matsudaira Yoshikata, announces with pride that this hot spring has been in his family for generations and has existed for hundreds of years.
He looks like an ordinary elderly gentleman but radiates youthful energy and has dyed his hair.

While Matsudaira Yoshikata speaks of the extended history of this place, Yukimori Kyoden grunts in dissatisfaction.
Apparently, there’s no mobile phone reception here, but fingers crossed there’ll be at least Wi-Fi inside.

The old man noisily clears his throat to get everyone's attention, “My granddaughter will show you to your rooms,” he says.

The granddaughter bows at the waist, “My name is Matsudaira Haru,” she says brightly, “I will be taking care of you during your stay.”
She’s wearing traditional Japanese clothing much like the grandfather himself.
The clothing pairs with the hotel itself and the rest of the resort, it honestly feels like you’ve gone back in time.

Her gaze sweeps over the guests standing before her as she waves a hand to her side, “If you would please foll-- EH?” she says, eyes lingering on Watase Yoko, “If y-y-y-you’ll please follow me.”

“Meanwhile, I will help you get checked in,” says the old man, looking towards Yukimori, “If Sir would please follow me?”

Yukimori does look the oldest out of you all and he’s a man, so you should’ve probably expected this.
You hold up a quick hand, “I’m sorry, but I made the reservations and have all the papers…” you say.

The old man slowly looks towards, his face carrying a hint of disbelief.
He then turns his attention back to Yukimori who confirms your statement with a nod.

“Ah, my apologies,” says the man as he shuffles towards you, laughing, “My wife used to care of all the paperwork as well, haha.”

“Eh?” you say, blushing slightly as you glance towards Yukimori, “No, no. I’m not hi--”

“If madam would please follow me,” interrupts the old man, shuffling towards the building.

You sigh and follow the owner inside and check your group into the resort and receive directions where to join the others as it seems like the man’s granddaughter hasn’t gotten back.
Shouldering your backpack, you follow the directions you were given.
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>dont look at spoilered image until mentioned

As you near your rooms, you suddenly hear a slam followed by a yelp.
Peeking around the corner you see Watase Yoko leaning over the resort’s employee, Matsudaira Haru, who has back pressed against the wall.
Kabedon? Do people actually do that in real life?
You pull your head back around the corner and listen in.

“Uwa-wa-wa-wa-wa,” mutters the employee, red-faced.

“Seems like ya' know who I am,” says Watase Yoko, “Well, I’m stayin' here with some people and I’m hopin' things don’t get difficult, heh? No pictures or sharin' details with yer' friends, hear?”

“…Y-yes,” mutters the girl.

Watase Yoko slams the wall again, “Hah?!”

The action earns herself a high-pitched yelp from the girl, “Yes, Watase-sama!”

“There’s a good girl~” says Watase Yoko.

You can’t believe what you’re hearing. How can an idol just threaten somebody like that?
It would’ve been a problem if the girl began sharing things on “Line” (Chat app) or something, but still.

That poor girl must be terrified. You peek around the corner again.

Hold up. That girl doesn’t look scared at all. Not one bit!
Oi, oi, oi, oi. There’s something wrong with today’s youth.
She looked so dignified earlier! The kids aren’t alright!
>pic related

The girl receives a head pat for her troubles, and she looks she’s ready to melt into a puddle.
You suppose an idol like Watase Yoko must have a questionable fanbase.

Watase Yoko huffs, then points a thumb over her shoulder, “Get out of here,” she says.

“Y-yes!” screams the girl, walks a few steps, turns around to bow, and hurries down the corridor.
Luckily, she went the other direction otherwise things could’ve gotten awkward for the both of you.

Then Watase Yoko walks away and you wait for the sound of her footsteps to fade before following.

Once arrived in your room, you get settled in and put away your clothes.
You stretch and scout the room for a sign with the wifi password and eventually find it.
Once signed in you check the app and don’t see any new messages from EmikoDesu55 for now.

It’s time to relax. If you can.


Nagata’s current stress is 150. (Very high)
This can always be viewed in the wiki.

You will spend two days at the resort and return home Sunday afternoon.

Time for activities
Saturday: Morning, early afternoon, late afternoon, evening, night
Sunday: Morning, early afternoon

After each selection, the people performing an activity may change up.
For example, Kaiba is having breakfast now, but could be enjoying a massage in the early afternoon.
Some activities may not be available until later in the day.

Decision (Morning)
>1 - Eat a healthy breakfast with some others (Yukimori, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba, -10 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Chigusa Iki, -30 stress)
>3 - Play some games in the lobby (Watase Yoko, Matsuno Kojiro, -10 stress)
>4 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a bit (-20 stress)
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Ichihara Riko, -30 stress)
No further updates today
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Ichihara Riko, -30 stress)

If anything bad is going to happen it will be later, so let’s relax while we can & just grab lunch after
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Chigusa Iki, -30 stress)
>4 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a bit (-20 stress)
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Ichihara Riko, -30 stress)
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Ichihara Riko, -30 stress)
>1 - Eat a healthy breakfast with some others (Yukimori, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba, -10 stress)
two of our idols, socializing over breakfast? Smart play is to see how they get along, and how Kaiba's doing.
>1 - Eat a healthy breakfast with some others (Yukimori, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba, -10 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Chigusa Iki, -30 stress)
>6 - Log into Kaiba's account and delete the email screenshot message.
It has just struck me that if Emiko wants to get hush money from the company, then that screenshot is piss-poor blackmail material. It can only be used to threaten Kaiba to get her fired. So there's every chance Emiko doesn't have it saved.
>1 - Eat a healthy breakfast with some others (Yukimori, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba, -10 stress)

Watase has a peculiar fanbase. I suppose Ichihara also belongs to it, and what I thought to be bullying was actually the fallout of an attempt to get closer.
>1 - Eat a healthy breakfast with some others ... (x3)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Chigusa Iki,... (x2)
>4 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a... (x1)
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot..... (x3)

Need tie-breaker vote
>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot.....

>5 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Ichihara Riko, -30 stress)

Everything else is just appetizers, the main course of this resort is the hot spring.
You know, the others know it, the owner know it, everybody knows it.
It’s time to visit the hot spring and allow it to carry your worries away.

The hot spring part of the resort consists of several area among which a reception with an entrance to the male and female lockers rooms, the locker rooms to stash your clothing and items, a washing/rinsing area, and then the hot spring itself.

As Nagata arrives at the reception area, a young woman just enters the room after ducking underneath a coloured cloth with the kanji for “Women” on it.

“Ah, welcome,” she says as she puts her hands together and then bows, “I am Matsudaira Asa.“
She’s wearing traditional Japanese clothing much like the rest of the staff, but hers are green.
”I just put fresh towels in the locker rooms,” she says with a friendly smile, “Please, don’t forget to wash your body before entering the hot spring.”

Etiquette dictates that you thoroughly wash your body before entering the hot spring and do everything you can to avoid sullying the water.

“Of course,” you say, bowing slightly, then blush in embarrassment, “Are there… eh...”
You haven’t been to a public bath in many years and the idea to put everything on display for people you work with, even if they are women, is an unnerving thought.

“Modesty towels can be found near the exit facing the hot spring, but please avoid taking these into the water with you,” she says, guessing the question from your expression.

“Ah, thank you,” you reply.

“In the event of an emergency, there’s a button on the wall near the entrance, it’ll ring an alarm here and at the receptionist’s desk,” she says with a conclusive tone, “Enjoy your stay.”

You bob your head in thanks and move into the locker room.
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Once all your clothing is securely locked away, you move into the bathing area to wash up.
You showered back home before heading towards Kitabayashi, but since you had to wrestle Azuki into the cat carrier there’s probably cat hairs on you somewhere.

After taking some time to rinse your body and wash any hairspray out of your hair, you’re ready for the bath.
You take a small towel and make sure your delicates are covered before heading towards the hot spring.

You swallow and open up the sliding door.
There was a time when you would brazenly walk into the bathing area in public baths, but those years are long gone.
You can’t help but feel self-conscious knowing there’s somebody else in there.

After taking a few careful steps, you notice a girl in the bath – Ichihara Riko.
She isn’t paying you any mind; she’s just lounging and staring into empty space – her mind occupied by other thoughts.
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You faintly recall that allowing your hair to soak in the hot spring is considered bad etiquette, but Ichihara doesn’t seem to care.
She hasn’t even bothered to take out her hairties.

Quietly tip-toeing your way to the bath, you wrap your small towel around your head.
Hopefully it will contain your hair and perhaps serve as a subtle hint to Ichihara.
You slide into the hot spring and the warm water immediately soothes your body.
Despite your best efforts, a moan escapes you, “Aaaah~”

You really needed this.

Ichihara turns her head in your direction, her expression unchanged, “Oh, Nagata-san,” she says, “Hello.”

“Hello, Ichihara-san,” you say, sliding deeper into the pool and allowing the hot water to raise up to your neck.
”Mind if I join you,” you say, mere courtesy.

“Sure,” she says, “I’m getting out soon. I just hoped to get in before the rush.”

You cock your head, “Wouldn’t it be more fun with the others?” you say, “Get to know the other girls?”

Ichihara sighs, “I’m not here to be friends with them,” she says, “They’re rivals, at best.”
Perhaps it’s the hot spring doing its work, but it seems like Ichihara is tired of putting up appearances.

“What about Watase Yoko-san, hmm?” you ask, “Isn’t it a lot of fun to go on jobs with her?”
You suffer through a brief moment of realization that, with age, you’ve become just like the older ladies that used to lecture you during high school.
In a way it’s incredible that Kitabayashi has manged to cling to her youthful personality.

Ichihara gets up and sighs, done with being interrogated, “She’s a pain, such a pain,” she says, water streams off her body as she gets out of the hot spring, “I’m getting out.”

Seems like you scared her off.

On the bright side, it seems like the entire hot spring now belongs to you!
You glance left. You glance right. Nobody.
Taking a deep breath and removing your head towel, you dunk your head underwater, then pop up again, “Pwoah!” you say, taking a breath.

“Dear customer,” says a serious voice from a distance away, “Please refrain from submerging yourself completely.”

“Yes!” you shout, a shiver running over your spine.

That’s not fair! Ichihara had her hair in the water the entire time!
Why is it always YOU that gets caught!?

You spend the next hour enjoying the hot spring while making sure to take frequent breaks to allow your body to cooldown.


Nagata’s current stress is 120. (High)
This can always be viewed in the wiki.

You will spend two days at the resort and return home Sunday afternoon.

Time for activities
Saturday: Early afternoon, late afternoon, evening, night
Sunday: Morning, early afternoon

After each selection, the people performing an activity change up.
For example, Kaiba is having breakfast now, but could be enjoying a massage in the early afternoon.
Some activities may not be available until later in the day.

Hot spring, sauna, and massages are separated by gender.

Decision (Early Afternoon)
>1 - Eat lunch with some others (Ichihara Riko, Chigusa Iki, -10 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Watase Yoko, -30 stress)
>3 - Play some games in the lobby (Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, -10 stress)
>4 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a bit (Matsuno Kojiro, -20 stress)
>5 - Spend more time in the hotspring (-30 stress)
>6 - Relaxing in their room (Yokimori Kyoden)
>5 - Spend more time in the hotspring (-30 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Watase Yoko, -30 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Watase Yoko, -30 stress)
>4 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a bit (Matsuno Kojiro, -20 stress)
My god... sexo
That's why I voted against cancelling the trip
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Watase Yoko, -30 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Watase Yoko, -30 stress)
We are indeed hot.

>3 - Play some games in the lobby (Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, -10 stress)
Would have been my vite. It's locked, but ut also seems my "observe how our idols get along" strat is unpopular anyway.
I find your desire valid, it is just that we are sitting over 100+ stress and we have already suffered a mental break.
We were going to have a meltdown if we don't go through with the trip.
Next timeslot we should check up on Kaiba. Her stress also was high.

After spending so long in the hot spring that your legs feel like jelly, it’s time to get out.
You return towards the washroom, rinse off the water, and move to the lockers to get dressed.

It’s like you’re a new woman. Completely loosened up.
There’s only one thing that could possibly make this better: a massage.
This trip should’ve served as a welcome party for the new idols, but it’s fine to indulge a little, right?

On your way to the massage parlour, you pass by the lobby where Enatsu Mari and Kaiba Aoi are playing some sort of board game.

Enatsu Mari spies you from a distance, “Manager-san!” she shouts, waving excitedly, “You wanna play?”

Both of them are wearing a grey sweater and Enatsu’s sweater is just way too large for her.
It isn’t that warm of a day to begin with, add a generous amount of altitude to that and it’s downright chilly.
Your best guess is that Enatsu, coming from a big family where they likely borrow clothes all the time, simply asked Kaiba if she could borrow a sweater and Kaiba did not have the mental fortitude to refuse.

They’ve known each other for like two hours.
It probably isn’t so much that they bonded in that time, but more so that Enatsu decided they were friends now and there was nothing Kaiba could do.

You approach them and smile, throwing in a little wave of your own, “Hello, Mari-chan, Kaiba-san,” you say.

“Eh,” says Kaiba, panic clear on her face as she glances at Enatsu, “First name? Already?”

“Yes,” you say, “Mari-chan said it was okay during the interview, right?”

“That’s right!” shouts Enatsu Mari, “It means truth, reason, clever, or LOVE!“

Kaiba fidgets for a moment, but then looks at you with determination in her eyes, then points with a finger at herself, “M-me too then!”

It’s a small effort on your part, so why not.
”Sure, Aoi-chan.” you say with a warm smile.

Kaiba recoils as if physically shoved backwards, she stares at the ground for a long moment, her hair covering her face, “…ehHeHueheuheuheHuUeeueUEeee…”

Enatsu Mari looks on with concern, “Aoi-chan, is something wrong?”

Kaiba echoes forth a laughter so twisted that dozens of miles away a pair of mental health workers reach for a straitjacket without knowing why.
They just feel like it is desperately needed somewhere.

You place a comforting hand on Enatsu’s shoulder, “That sound means that Aoi-chan is happy.”

Enatsu looks at you in disbelief, then at Kaiba, then back at you with pity in her eyes, “Uwaa….”

“Mari-chan, Aoi-chan,” you say, “Aren’t you gonna make use of the hot spring?”
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After a moment of wheezing, Kaiba recovers, “I wanted to, but…”

Enatsu Mari suddenly stands and wags a disapproving finger, “We just ate!” she says, “My mom says you can’t go swimming after you eat. So, we have to wait at least an hour!”

“And that’s why…” says Kaiba, “We’ll be going after this game, I think…”

You nod, “Alright then,” you say, “I’m off to the massage parlour for now, enjoy your game!”

The both of them wave Nagata goodbye as she heads off.


Much like the hot spring, the massage parlour has a separate section for men and women.
You open the curtain, look inside, and immediately close it again. Of all people…

“Come on, don’t be shy,” says a velvety, yet assertive voice coming from within.

“I didn’t know you had to be n-naked for this,” you say, “I didn’t see anything.”
That’s a lie. Everything was on display. Everything.

“Don’t be weird about it,” says the voice coming from the other side of the curtain, “It’s nothing you wouldn’t have seen if we had bumped into each other in the hot spring.”

Well, that’s true, you suppose.
But the location matters, right?
Maybe it was just a moment of panic.

“Fine, I’ll cover up,” says the voice, going quiet for a moment, “There. Happy?”

You carefully open the curtain and once again see Watase Yoko sitting there.
This should’ve been embarrassing for her, too, but she’s just sitting there – smirking.

Seems like she managed to find a towel, but it’s way too small.
It’s more like a modesty cloth from the hot spring than a proper towel.

“Calmed down a bit?” asks Watase Yoko, then gingerly lifts a corner of the towel, “…or do you want …more?”

“I’m fine! Thank you!” you shout.

A sly smile forms on Watase’s lips, “You’re Nagata-san, right? The one that organized the trip?” she says, “I don’t think we’ve had proper introductions.”
Watase rises to give you a western greeting, a handshake.

This unfortunately means the small cloth she was using to cover up immediately falls down.

Be strong, Nagata Miho. There’s a chance she’ll try to walk all over you if you flinch here!
Watase probably doesn’t even care that you’re a manager. She’ll do it!

You grab hold of her hand and try your best to retain eye-contact, but you feel a blush coming on.
It’s not because she’s naked or anything, there’s just this weird vibe in the room.

“I’m Nagata Miho,” you say, trying to keep the tremble from your voice, “Manager at Matsuno Inc. I look forward to working with you.”

Stare her in the eyes, Miho! You can do it! Fighting!

“Watase Yoko,” says Watase, “Likewise.”

Just a few moments more! Until she lets go of your hand!
Watase shifts her weight to the other foot and the light coming from outside reflects on something on her chest.

Kitabayashi was right.
They’re pierced.

Slow and robotically, you look back up.

Never before have you seen a person look so incredibly smug.

“My~ Nagata-san,” she says, “Where are you looking?”

“There was a... You’re the one walking around naked,” you say, but still look away, “Besides, like you said, we don’t have to be weird about it…”

Then Watase laughs, “I’m just messin' with ya!” she says, giving you a playful hit on the shoulder.


You hardly noticed it was gone, but her Kansai accent is back in full force.
Furthermore, when speaking in her Kansai accent, she rolls her R’s like yakuza might.

“I hope you’ll forgive me,” says Watase, “I just wanted to mess with ya' a bit. Honest!”
Still naked, she grabs a hand of yours in both of hers, “I wanted to thank you for taking me on this trip,” she says, then sighs, “Starting a new job is totally exhausting.”

“Besides,” she continues, “It’s important we become fast friends.”

“Oh?” you say, slightly suspicious, “Why’s that?”

She places a hand on your shoulder and gives you a thumbs-up, “We’re the only women old enough to drink!”


“It’s basically required, ya?” she says, waving her hands, “Drinking in yukata after you visit the hot spring? No? We hav’to!”
She folds her arms and nods knowingly, “That’s what being men is all about.”


Watase gently slaps your shoulder a few times, “I felt this earlier, darn girl, your shoulders are so tight,” she says, “A massage is a good start, but a drink to loosen up would do you good!”

Drinking isn’t exactly the healthiest way to cope with stress, but she’s right that sharing drinks in a yukata, which is a bathrobe to begin with, is the prime hot spring experience.
Besides, as long as you don’t go overboard, it might be a good moment to learn more about what happened between Ichihara and Watase.

A resort employee walks in through a door at the other end of the room.
It’s the same girl that helped you back at the hot spring: Matsudaira Asa
With limited employees they’re probably forced to wear many hats here.

“Thank you for waiting,” she says, with a slight bow, “We’re ready for the next client.”

Watase turns and waves, “That’ll be me,” she says, then turns back to you and hits you with the double finger guns, “So, drinks tonight?”

“I’ll think about it,” you say.

Watase shrugs, “I’ll be at the bar this evening, feel free to join me.”

“Dear customer,” says Matsudaira Asa, “The masseuse is waiting.”

“Yes, yes,” says Watase, then quickly turns to follow the employee.
In one quick movement, she swipes the small towel from the floor.

She might have some decency after all.
Unfortunately she simply holds it in her hand as she brazenly walks towards the other room.

Unlike Watase, you decide to keep your clothes on until it’s time for your massage.
A wide-set woman with large hands standing beside a massage table awaits you in the next room.

It’s a tad embarrassing to undress in front of somebody else, but you manage and quickly lie down.
The massage that follows is divine, but you receive a scolding by the masseuse while she works on your body.
She complains that you should be taking better care of your body, but you barely notice her words – completely whisked away in a feeling of bliss.

Half an hour later you sit up on the massage table and your body feels so good you nearly feel dizzy.

The wide-set women folders her arms and smiles at a job well-done.
According to her it’s always satisfying to work on somebody that’s very vocal as you can immediately tell that your work is being appreciated.



You get dressed, gather your things, and walk way with a spring in your step.
Quickly checking your phone for new messages, you see that EmikoDesu55 still hasn’t replied in the app.

Maybe everything will be alright after all.

There’s only one new email on your work account.
You decide to handle that quickly so you can get back to relaxing.

Hello Nagata-san,

how did i get your email? who knows~
my darling Kaiba-chan can be such a klutz sometimes!
but honestly, that innocence is partly why i like her so much
!and if you havent noticed, she likes me too!


It seems like you don’t want Kaiba-chan to be happy.
That makes me very sad, y’know?
I truly want whats best for her…

But here you are, trying to stop us from being in love…
jealous much? its pretty sad, y’know?
just because you’re gonna die alone doesn’t matter everybody else has to…

it doesnt take a genius to figure out what happened when kaiba-chan WHO WOULD NEVER, EVER IGNORE ME suddenly disappears after saying her manager walked in…

i assume you did something
that’s so bad, very bad, nagata-san

but no worries, you can fix it all!!!

simply give Kaiba-chan access to the account again and accept that im here to stay!
kaiba-chan is mine and I’m hers <3
make sure to tell her that we’re allowed to be lovey-dovey and that she has your blessing!
so please let us be together and then kindly FUCK OFF <3

you are probably overcome with emotion and feel really, really, really bad now
but in case you need further motivation, im happy to provide some!!!!

i made sure a good friend of mine is present on the trip you’re on!
and they’ll be taking MANY MANY MANY pictures of your cutie idols at their lewdest if kaiba-chan isn’t able to wish me goodnight!

i bet they have really cute sleeping faces, too!

you have until this evening before I contact my dear friend~
i really like my pillow talk, you see!

Obviously, if I find out you shared this email with Kaiba-chan in any way then I’ll be very mad~
If I can’t have her then nobody can


Kaiba’s girlfriend

PS: dont bother trying to trace this email, ive done this all before

You just wanted to relax. For once. Why.

There can’t be any mole or something here, right?
You kept an eye out before you left and during the ride here!
It’s a bluff, haha. It has to be!

But what if it isn’t?
Doesn’t that mean that it comes down between choosing between Kaiba and Kaiba’s career?
Do you really have to hand your idol over to this deranged lesbian?

What if… you simply tell Kaiba-san?
That would surely destroy her faith in EmikoDesu55 once and for all.
Perhaps you can ask her afterwards to pretend everything is okay, you did send her on a ton of acting classes…

It won’t just be chat though. They seem to talk on the phone every day.
She’ll have to be convincing in every way.
If she can stall for a bit more time then the trip won’t be in danger of getting flooded by press.

Alternatively, you could show it to Kaiba-san and just let everything blow up.
How much ammunition does EmikoDesu55 really have?

A scandal doesn’t have to be the end.
Like Kitabayashi mentioned back during drinking, it all comes down to how you handle the aftermath.

Where’s Watase Yoko?
You’ll take that drink now…

>Nagata Miho gained +20 stress from this ultimatum
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Nagata’s current stress is 110. (High)
This can always be viewed in the wiki.

You will spend two days at the resort and return home Sunday afternoon.

Time for activities
Saturday: Late afternoon, evening, night
Sunday: Morning, early afternoon

After each selection, the people performing an activity change up.
For example, Kaiba is having breakfast now, but could be enjoying a massage in the early afternoon.
Some activities may not be available until later in the day.

Hot spring, sauna, and massages are separated by gender.

Decision (Late Afternoon)
>1 - Receive a relaxing massage (Yukimori Kyoden, -30 stress)
>2 - Clean yourself and stay in the sauna for a bit (-20 stress)
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Matsuno Kojiro, Stress reduction based on drinking)

>1 - Ignore the email. It must be a bluff! No negotiating with terrorists!
>2 - Hand the password to Kaiba and tell her she’s free to date EmikoDesu55. You’re done.
>3 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. Then give her the password and ask her to pretend everything is okay (Acting roll, 1d100+58, DC100)
>4 - Show Kaiba the email and get ready for damage control. A scandal doesn’t have to be the end.
>5 - Before doing anything else, try and find this supposed mole. (Write-in)
No further updates today.
>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Matsuno Kojiro, Stress reduction based on drinking)
>4 - Show Kaiba the email and get ready for damage control. A scandal doesn’t have to be the end.

Wonder if any of the idols or coworkers would know how to sniff out a mole. The only who I think might have experience would be Watase. Huh, would Ichihara be bitter enough and her view of other idols as rivals to doom their reputations?
Forgot to list write-ins, but those are an option as well.
>that pic
Should have gone lesbian.

>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
And afterwards...
>6 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. THEN, discuss with Kaiba what she wants to do, and feels comfortable doing.
We can prep for damage control OR string Emiko along. It's her call. She can even date her... But it will likely mean her career, and we can't protect her from scandal OR heartache if she does that.
>2 - Hand the password to Kaiba and tell her she’s free to date EmikoDesu55. You’re done.
idgaf anymore
This arc fatigue is also starting to hit me.
my only fatigue is with you guys desu, we knew this would happen and yet...
oh well, I legitimately don't care - I like the quest and I'm interested to see what jobs the two new idols will get so I won't be quitting
Agreed. I enjoy this plotline quite a bit, and it's unreaosnable to expe tthat it wouldn't still be playing a role in this teip when we went ahead with the trip KNOWING it would.
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
"S-so nice to see you girls together, haha... Watase get your hands off Kaiba go bother Chigusa!!"
>Everything is okay Miho, everything is okay
>>3 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. Then give her the password and ask her to pretend everything is okay (Acting roll, 1d100+58, DC100)
This part will be shitty... I wonder if Kaiba should write something like "this is so weird, my manager gave me my account back and almost begged me to write back" yadda yadda... also the odds are pretty good, with that good of an acting, we gotta beat a 42 with a 1d100. That's 58% of a chance!! Holy shit that's low
Sex incarnate. We should've gone lesbian indeed.


I won't be changing my vote and I don't care about whatever bad decision any of you might make about this situation, but I'd like to point out one thing:

EmikoDesu55 sent the email, presumably, anonimously. However, she is the only one that knows about the trip. She's the only one that has been having contact with Kaiba and the only one that gave her something on the handshake event (i.e her face is known). In other words, if you wanted, say... get rid of her you'd only need to present Kaiba's chat log to Matsuno's Inc lawyers, forward the email immediately and show the Keyssz1 tweets and she would be gone, forever. By sending the email directly to us, she outed herself and is in position for a check.

Yes, I know what you're gonna say: that out cost Kaiba's career and indeed it would. And that's why I know you guys won't do it, none of you have the balls to sacrifice a chess piece to deliver a checkmate.

That's my last input on the matter. Do what you will with this information.
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)

>2 - Hand the password to Kaiba and tell her she’s free to date EmikoDesu55. You’re done.
I want to see if she will beg us to forgive her and try to fix her mistakes or leave
>none of you have the balls to sacrifice a chess piece to deliver a checkmate
We picked the sweet and empathetic manager, the soft-spoken and gloomy idol, and made a bunch of choices where we focus on emotional support and friendships. It's not a matter of "ballsiness". Most of the player-base just isn't here to play Ruthless Cuththroat Salaryman Simulator.
Even though your arguments are sound, we lose Kaiba either way. We would only save face....
Like I've said, Kaiba is a ticking bomb, we've already been checkmated long ago. We should be focusing on how to damage control the whole situation so we can at least save ourselves and the other idols when shit finally hits the fan.
To be honest, I don't know if just letting her go like that is going to help us in the eventual shitstorm, but whatever I guess
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
>3 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. Then give her the password and ask her to pretend everything is okay (Acting roll, 1d100+58, DC100)

BO3? It's not a job...
She's sexy, but the anons who regret not going lesbian fail to consider that they can lust after Watase without making Nagata also do it.

>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
I wanted to check on Kaiba anyway, and the rest of our idols are there too, this is perfect.

The whole point of checkmating Emiko is to save Kaiba's career, she is not a threat to anything else. Kaiba is the king, not a pawn in this analogy.

>6 Write-in. Use Emiko's dead accounts we've seen to try and track down her personal details. If we know her real name and maybe even address, we could threaten her back.

If this doesn't work
>4 - Show Kaiba the email and get ready for damage control. A scandal doesn’t have to be the end.
We'll also enlist Kaiba into finding the mole. We probably can also enlist Chigusa and Enatsu.
>5 - Before doing anything else, try and find this supposed mole. (Write-in)
We know Kaiba didn't say which resort she's going to, so Emiko couldn't have planted someone in place. This means either it's a bluff, or someone tailed us, or the mole is from the agency.
If someone has tailed us, they'd have to break into the resort to do anything. From the agency there's only 2 candidates, Yoko and Riko, and of those two Riko is the more likely, because she sees the others as rivals and because we know she's been to Kaiba's streams. Still, it's most likely a bluff.
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)

>3 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. Then give her the password and ask her to pretend everything is okay (Acting roll, 1d100+58, DC100)
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)
>3 - Show Kaiba the email. Emiko is a lunatic. Then give her the password and ask her to pretend everything is okay (Acting roll, 1d100+58, DC100)

Roll will be done in a bit.
I'm not entirely sure I'll be able to post the update today, but I'm gonna start on it at least
>3 - Rinse off your body and head for the hot spring (Chigusa Iki, Enatsu Mari, Kaiba Aoi, Watase Yoko. -30 stress)

>4 - Show Kaiba the email and get ready for damage control. A scandal doesn’t have to be the end.

I know it’s too late, but this is how I would’ve voted.

I don’t think she has anyone here…unless it’s one of the staff. But she only knew where we were going like a day beforehand…

High probability that it’s a big bluff

We know her ‘friends’ have pushed her to get blackmail material and this is her Hail Mary attempt
Just watched the first episode of Oshi no Ko that was released today since it was mentioned here.
It's kinda fucked up.
Please don't give the QM any more ideas.
Anon, you're replying to the QM.
...oh God
Without giving spoiler. it's impressive how they pull forth heartache through injustice like that.
I'm reading the manga at the moment, but I hope I don't end up unconsciously borrowing from the material.
Kinda like how you might mimic/copy a writer's writing style / voice if you read a lot of their work.

Then again, I haven't actually read any idol manga or seen any idol anime.
So this might help in the end. First-hand reference is probably better, but we'll see.
>>I hope I don't end up unconsciously borrowing from the material.
you will
Yep. Up at 2 AM and reading this was a massive mistake.
Overlap between character traits of some of this quests's characters and the ones in the manga are making me self-conscious like a motherfucker.
I'd like to say that my years as a D&D DM have zero'd out my self-respect and made me willing to steal anything, but I guess not.

Anything I had planned that vaguely resembles what happens in the manga now feels like a cheap rip-off now.
Trying to be "unique" when creating/writing is a absolute fools errand, but I'd be lying if I said this didn't damage my motivation.

Feels like I'm over here trying to pass of my rat meat as steak while the guy next door is selling actual steak.
Now consciously I know that comparing myself to a skilled writer like that is absolutely retarded.

You don't have kids out there tossing out their baseball gloves because Mike Trout exists.
But god damn does it make me feel like I'm trash that's just wasting everybody's time while something better exists.

It's a great manga though, totally worth reading for anyone on the fence about it.

I'll try to do better
Just throw soem twists and deviations in there. Idol series have a certain formula, though, just like shonen battle manga crib the big calssic ones like Dragon Ball and Naruto, magical girl series rip off Sailor Moon, extended journey series like Inuyasha or EARLY Dragon Ball steal from Journey to the West. In the West, grand dynastic dramas ripoff Arthurian Legends by way of Tolkien or Game of Thrones, sitcoms steal many ideas from Honeymooners or Seinfield, capeshit all owes a huge debt to Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, and Fantastic Four, and THOSE series are riffs on old pulp novels and comics.

It's okay to share things in common with great works. Just put your own stamp on it. Even just being a quest with audience input inherently makes it a LITTLE different -- enough to offer a distinct flavour of experience.

We wouldn't be here if we didn't enjoy it. You have one of the most popular quests on the board.
>I'll try to do better
Have only watched the first ep of the anime (and yes it was great) - but your work on this quest has been excellent as well

The steady build of an emotionally manipulative relationship was well written and thoroughly believable

The exploration of what intense stress does to someone and their self-reflection of ‘how far will I go’ were excellent too

Just keep doing your thing mate
There is no such thing as a completely original work, every human being borrows ideas from something - the universal law about matter (nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed) also applies to intellectual work.

As long as you aren't straight up copying manga panels to put on your quest (even some quotes here and there are fine, some mangafag might do that pointing wojak face and get some dopamine out of it) then you're good to go.
QM we enjoy your work no matter what. Keep it up.
I also would like to point out that I've liked this whole ordeal with Kaiba (although I think that it could be better distributed throughout the weeks with some normal events in-between): I think that Emiko was a nice wake-up call for what this quest can do for those too naive or unaware of deranged fans. My only issue was with the voters (this could've been solved weeeeeks ago and they know it, this one drama only dragged on and on bc people opted to stall and delay permanent solutions) but as someone from somewhere once said, if everyone thought and acted like me then the world would be one hell of a boring place and I'm sorry if I offended anyone - this was probably my intention but that doesn't make it a good intention nor a good thing to do to potential allies in the upcoming quest decisions
Seeking true originality is impossible. There is nothing new under the sun. What you should seek is enjoyment in creating and playing this with people who deeply appreciate your work.
I regret to inform you that I'm censoring some of the hot spring pics.
I don't wanna risk the threat getting deleted on the next update.

Uncensored pics will be in the wiki story.
> I regret to inform you that I'm censoring some of the hot spring pics
>Uncensored pics will be in the wiki story.
Will post update tomorrow.
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I have a question about your page. When I click idols and characters, I see nothing and I am forced to do technomagic to get to their respective pages. What's up with that
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Ah, alright this works
Made some minor changes to the wiki so that each grouping contains a subpage index.

Lost in thought, you wander back towards the lobby.
Perhaps it’s time to share the real EmikoDesu55 with Kaiba.
If nothing else, it might cause whatever is going on between them to stop.

When you make it to the lobby, you find it empty.
At the far end of the room a sliding door stands open, revealing a section of the adjoining bar area.
Matsuno Kojiro sits at the bar, gently swirling the hard liquor within his glass.
Unlike many of the other rooms, the bar room isn’t filled with tatami mats, but is instead covered in lacquered oak flooring that’s probably older than any of the people that walk it.
Though you’ve switched to indoors slippers when entering the build, the groan of the floorboards announces your arrival.

Moving his gaze into the direction of the sound, Matsuno Kojiro raises his glass when he spots you.
“They’ve all gone to the hot spring,” he says.

After a quick word of thanks, you turn to leave.
Matsuno voices some complaints about you not joining him for a drink, but you’re not listening.

You need to be with your idols.
The hot spring is where they are at their most vulnerable.
It’s hard to say whether or not there’s any truth to EmikoDesu55’s words.
She didn’t know about the destination of the trip so she couldn’t have sent anyone in advance.
Then again, it’s not completely impossible for her to have found out in some way or another.

You noticed during check-in that the elderly owner prefers pen and paper over digital systems.
Taking a quick detour to pass by the reception, you take a peek at the books used for check-in.
Seems like nobody else checked in after your group did.

You hastily make your way towards the hot spring, stuff all your clothing in a locker, quickly rinse off your body and hurry inside.
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Every single idol aside from Ichihara Riko is currently enjoying the hot spring.

Chigusa Iki is sitting in a remote corner of the hot spring, eyes closed and trying to enjoy its warmth.
Knowing her she’s probably busy trying to force her skin to absorb as much of the water’s beneficent minerals as she can.
She briefly pops her eyes open to see who entered, but then closes them again.

Kaiba has her eyes fixed on the water.
She probably doesn’t know where to look.
There’s no denying that’s she’s more … out of shape than the other idols though.
She was a shut-in before, but she has a sedentary lifestyle even now.
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Perhaps unexpectedly, Watase Yoko is basically asleep in the pool.
You don’t really know her that well, but considering her image and behaviour thus far you can probably assume where her interests lie.
If she’s relaxing like this despite all these temptations around her, then she wasn’t kidding about being stressed.

Asleep like this she almost seems like somebody you could get along.
When she isn’t sporting her usual angry glare and smug smile, that is.

Enatsu Mari is pouting as she’s being guarded by Matsudaira Haru, the employee that greeted you upon your arrival here and escorted everyone to their rooms.

“It’s a pool, isn’t it?!” shouts Enatsu Mari, arms folded, “Makes no sense!”

“You’re disturbing the other guests!” barks Matsudaira Haru, “All those things you did are a nuisance to the others!”
The girl seems unreasonably angry.

“Hello, Kaiba-san,” you say, slipping into the pool, “Ah, sorry. Old habits. Aoi-chan.”

Upon mention of her name, Kaiba looks up, gets an eyeful of your body, and quickly looks back at the water, “M-manager-san,” says Kaiba, “Hello…”

“Say you know what happened with Mari-chan and the employee girl?” you ask as try to find a rock to sit on.

“Ah, well,” says Kaiba, “Mari-chan basically dove headfirst into the pool, splashing water everywhere, and was being rowdy. It took the girl a long while to get Mari-chan to sit quietly.”

Still doesn’t explain why she’s so angry though.
Remembering what you saw earlier in the hallway, your best guess is that the girl must’ve missed Watase Yoko entering the pool and now the murky waters of the hot spring are hiding everything.
It’s a disturbing thought, honestly, that there are wolves among the sheep.

You sigh and return your attention to Kaiba, only to catch her stealing glances at your chest.
Comparing breasts isn’t out of ordinary, but her hastily looking away implies that wasn’t the reason.
Hopefully this weird relationship with EmikoDesu55 hasn’t done any lasting damage to Kaiba.
It would be bad if any of all that attempted grooming actually stuck.

“Say Aoi…” you say.

Kaiba jolts in place, ripples spreading outwards from her in the water, “Y-yes?”

“Emiko-chan, contacted me,” you say, “By sending an email to my work account.”

“Eh?” says Kaiba, embarrassment forgotten, “What did she say?”
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You take a deep breath, “A lot of things, I’ll show you the full email later,” you say, “But the gist is that she’s trying to threaten end blackmail the company.
She says she wants to full permission to date you.”

Kaiba tries to suppress it, but a shaky smile wins out, “I know that’s bad,” she says, hiding the lower part of her face with her hands, “But that makes me … kinda happy? That’d she would go so far for me?”

Does she not realise how serious this is?
“She isn’t doing it for you,” you say, face stern, “But for herself. She said that if I don’t give you access to the chat account before this evening then she’ll get somebody to take nude photos of all the idols in the hot spring.”

“Eh?” shouts Kaiba, standing and covering herself using her hands, “Shouldn’t we get out and cover up?”

“Kaiba-san, sit down”, you say, looking around to gauge the reaction of the others, “She said she would take pictures if you weren’t able to wish her goodnight and do 'pillow talk'.”

Kaiba blushes and then tries to hide it by dipping under the water.

“Ah! Why can Aoi-chan go underwater!” shouts the distant voice of Enatsu Mari.

“Because I’m forced to keep watching you!” shouts the employee, “Now sit still or you’ll be asked to leave!”

You can’t have her making a scene.
If the others find out what’s going on and share it with HQ then it’ll be trouble.
Knowingly putting everybody’s career at risk? One way trip to the poor house.

Furthermore, there’s no reason somebody like EmikoDesu55 would stick to her word.
You might as well assume that if that mole is actually real then those images have already been taken.
She also mentioned that she would try to have the mole take pictures of the sleeping idols.
Even if you were to stay up all night, there’s no way you could keep an eye on every room at once.

You left the hardest-hitting bit for last.

“She also said that if I shared all this with you then she’ll try to destroy your career…” you say.

Kaiba’s eyes go wide, “Emiko-chan would never do that,” she says, “She’s been trying to help me al this time…it doesn’t make sense…”

“Aoi-chan,” you say, “Can you please just trust me? Haven’t you noticed how she’s always trying to get you to do things for her? Like taking pictures of the new idols?”

Kaiba doesn’t respond, seemingly refusing to believe it.

It didn’t make sense at first glance, but after thinking over the weird exchange between EmikoDesu55 and this other person it quickly became obvious.
They weren’t talking about college, but about their “blackmail” projects.

“It seems like she’s part of some kind of group that try to blackmail idols for profit,” you say, “She probably only wanted to meet up to get more evidence against you. Enough to force a big scandal. Afterwards they send it to the idol or their manager and ask for a big bribe to keep it all quiet.”

Considering that EmikoDesu55 said that she has done this before, but they haven’t been caught probably means the pay-out amount isn’t overly large.
An amount that would be small enough that “making the problem go away” would be preferable to getting the police involved and risking an idol’s reputation.
A group of people that feeds on the idol industry like mosquitos.

“But,” begins Kaiba, “Then why did she want to talk to me again?”

Because she likes Kaiba.Somehow this recluse, gloomy girl has managed to charm this manipulative witch.
There’s no doubt in your mind that it’s largely because Kaiba-san is so eager to please.
Willing to go above and beyond for Emiko-chan.

Obviously, you’re not about to tell Kaiba that.

“Probably to gather more and more evidence against you,” you say, “Don’t you understand Aoi-chan. Unless you cut her off this will never end. Every call, message, and image would add to her leverage.”

She would be nothing more than a death row inmate sharpening the executioner’s axe. Digging her own grave.
The moment Kaiba acts out or EmikoDesu55 tires of her – game over.

“You’d be a prisoner in that relationship,” you say.

There’s a long moment of quiet as Kaiba thinks over your words.

You sigh, “I’m sorry your first…relationship had to be such a twisted one,” you say, “It’s not fair.”Even if it should’ve never been a thing to begin with, you sympathize with what it is likely Kaiba’s first love turning out this way.

“It’s okay,” says Kaiba, a sad smile on her face, “I should’ve known…”

A part of you wishes she’d be more angry. Shouting in rage.
But that’s just the kind of girl Kaiba Aoi is.
When hit by misfortune, she’ll readily accept it as a given.
Like she didn’t deserve any happiness to begin with.

Kaiba sighs and gently moves her hand through the warm water, ripples coasting outwards.
”So,” she says, “What now?”

“You talk to Emiko-chan,” you say.

“Eh?” replies Kaiba, confusion plain to see.

“If you don’t respond then Emiko-chan will send a message to this accomplice of hers – if that accomplice is actually real,” you say, “And then the others will be at risk as well.”
”However,” you add, “Emiko-chan CANNOT figure out that you know. You need to act like you’re completely unaware until we leave the resort tomorrow afternoon. Or else she’ll share everything you’ve told her.”

If the mole is real, then EmikoDesu55 knows where you are and she could easily tip some fans or press about your location.
Whatever ends up happening, this’ll all be over once the weekend ends.

“Thats…” says Kaiba, sliding further down into the pool, “No pressure at all… a-ha…”
Kaiba’s eyes roll up into her skull, slides down, and she disappears under the water’s surface.

”Kaiba-san?” you say, then shout, “Help, I need some help!”
Perhaps you should’ve had this conversation in the locker room.

You place your hands under Kaiba’s arms and hoist her above the water’s surface, but that’s as far as you go.
Without the water to aid you, Kaiba is far too heavy for somebody like you.

The employee immediately dashes for the emergency button that was mentioned to you when you first approached the hot spring.
An alarm will ring at the reception and the entrance of the hot spring.

Free of her guard, Enatsu Mari rapidly closes in with a front crawl, “What happened?” she shouts.

You readjust your grip on Kaiba, “I think she, uh, stayed in too long,” you say, “She suddenly passed out, I don’t know!”

Water dripping from her body as she exits the pool, Watase Yoko races over towards you before leaning over the rocky edge of the pool.
She grips Kaiba around her arms and bodily hoists her from the water with a grunt of effort.

Staff arrive and check Kaiba’s health.
Even Chigusa Iki looked scared for a moment, but it seems like Kaiba is fine.
Together you move Kaiba towards the locker room where you wait until she wakes up.

A few minutes pass before Kaiba wakes and relieved staff and idols make some minor comments before slowly dispersing to give Kaiba some room.
Nobody really feels like going back into the hot spring now and instead decide to get ready for dinner.

Both you and Kaiba are wrapped in a towel.

“Are you okay?” you ask once the others have left, “What happened?”

Kaiba uses her elbows to prop herself up a bit, “I’m not sure,” she says, frowning, “Just… light-headed…. How did I?”

“Watase Yoko-san and some of the staff carried you here,” you say.
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Kaiba rolls over and hides her face behind her hands, “Nooo…”The idea of a bunch of mostly strangers moving your naked body would embarrass anyone.

A few minutes later Kaiba-san has largely recovered.
She gets dressed and gathers her things from her locker.
Seeing as the both of you are the only people here, you resume the discussion you had back in the pool.

Kaiba-san obviously didn’t take the sudden pressure very well, but you simply don’t have time.
It’s already late in the afternoon, with a group dinner coming up shortly.
By the time that ends and Kaiba has the time and space to chat with Emiko-chan without risking anyone glancing at her screen it’ll be evening.

As Kaiba finishes getting dressed, she’s struggling with her hair a bit.
After exiting the pool, her hair, which she still seems to curl daily, is giving her all kinds of trouble.

“I noticed you still curl your hair,” you say to ease the tension somewhat.

“I…” she says, stopping herself from trying to untangle her hair, then continues, “…just like it this way.”

“As long as you do it because you want to,” you reply, “Not because you feel like you have to.”

Kaiba nods and resumes untangling her hair.
You wait until she’s done before you speak again.

“Aoi-chan,” you say, “Take out your phone. I’ll share the password for the app with you.”

Kaiba nods severely, but does as instructed.
A few button presses later, she’s logged in.

“What do I even say, manager-san?” she says as her fingers tremble above her phone.

“Just say something like how I suddenly came up in a panic and gave you permission to talk with Emiko-chan again,” you say.

“But you didn’t seem scared at all?” asks Kaiba.

But you are. You’re just trying very hard not to show it.
How can you not be? However, There's no reason for that fear to spread.

“I know, but if I understand EmikDesu55’s personality correctly then she’ll really like hearing that and will be more likely to believe it,” you say, “It’ll make her feel like she won.”
”Other than that, just act normal, we just need to stall as much time as possible,” you say.

Kaiba swallows, takes a deep breath, and prepares to act out one of the most important roles she’s played so far.

Need one ACTING roll; 1d100+58
DC being 100.
Rolled 30 (1d100)

I'm afraid to roll poorly, but somebody has to roll in the end.
The worst thing is even if the roll succeeds, the problem doesn't go away. Fucking Emiko.
At least we have the hot springs images.
>30+58 = 88
Thanks for rolling.
Rolled 52 + 58 (1d100 + 58)


Man, high DC was high.

Anyway a clever write in could nab us a +12?
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No, but here's an alternative pic of Kaiba that I didn't post because one of the hands was kinda weird.

== April 17, 2015 (Saturday)

[07:55] @EmikoDesuu55: i guess something must’ve happened…
[07:55] @EmikoDesuu55: call me when you can, k? (⋟﹏⋞)
[07:56] @EmikoDesuu55: have fun on the trip~
--- UNREAD ---
[16:35] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan, hello, hello!
[16:37] @EmikoDesuu55: kaiba-chan <3 what happened?
[16:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: (⋆ˆ 3 ˆ)


Looking over Kaiba’s shoulder while she types this is incredibly awkward.
So, you decide to give Kaiba some space and follow the conversation on your own phone.
Luckily, it seems like the platform allows you to sign into and be active on multiple devices at once.

[16:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Manager-san saw the chat…
[16:38] @EmikoDesuu55: uwaaa…
[16:38] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Yeah… She told me to stop talking to you or I’d be fired…
[16:39] @EmikoDesuu55: isn’t it bad that you’re talking to me now then?
[16:39] @EmikoDesuu55: risking your job to talk to me?? <3 (´౪`)
[16:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I mean, I would, but manager-san approached me in the hotspring and told it was totally okay me for to talk to you and even meet up…
[16:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Not sure what made her change her mind, she seemed super scared
[16:41] @EmikoDesuu55: (¬‿¬)

“She wants to brag,” you say to Kaiba, “Ask her about it.”
Kaiba nods.

[16:40] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Emiko-chan… you did something didn’t you?
[16:41] @EmikoDesuu55: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ maaayybeee…
[16:42] @EmikoDesuu55: doesn’t matter tho, we can be together now, right?
[16:42] @EmikoDesuu55: like we can meet and date and stuff?
[16:42] @EmikoDesuu55: and stuff … ;P ah, i wanna do lots of stuff…

Red-faced, Kaiba slowly looks up from her phone and at you.
To Kaiba this must feel like sexting under the disapproving gaze of your parents.
Only it’s worse because it’s your boss from work.

[16:43] @EmikoDesuu55: oh! and you promised to send me hot spring pics :D
[16:43] @KaibaAoiOfficial: I dunno…
[16:43] @EmikoDesuu55: why not? you said it was fine the other day?
[16:43] @EmikoDesuu55: can we call? it feels so much better to do it when you listen in~~

You’re embarrassed on Kaiba’s behalf. Jeesh, what has this girl been getting up to…
Knees shaking, face bright red, and unable to meet your gaze, Kaiba runs out of the locker room.

“Kaiba-san,” you shout, “Wai…”
You were about to give chase only to realize that you’re still wearing nothing but a towel.
Thoughts so preoccupied by this whole development, you forgot to get dressed when Kaiba did.

In the distance, you hear a door slam shut.
The sound came from the woman’s toilets.

You try to get dressed as fast as you can while keeping an eye on the chat.

[16:45] @KaibaAoiOfficial: NOOOOOOOOOOO
[16:46] @KaibaAoiOfficial: PLEASE STOP TALKING
[16:47] @EmikoDesuu55: ???
[16:47] @EmikoDesuu55: what’s wrong? what makes today different?
[16:47] @EmikoDesuu55: …
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55: oh, I see… she’s watching, isn’t she?
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55: hello, manager-san~
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55: yes, kaiba-san has been taking good care of me~
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55: I see you’ve been naughty as well…
[16:48] @EmikoDesuu55 has gone offline.

Hiding your face in your hands, you sigh loudly in frustration.
Kaiba tried the best she could, but something like that was certain to cause her to break character.
It was a good effort, but ultimately it seems like EmikoDesu55 picked up on it.
That question about “listening in” what probably a probing question.
She knew Kaiba’s act would collapse. That’s totally what it was, right?
Man, that EmikoDesu55 sure is clever sometimes, haha! A trick!

Well, if it was real, then… eh…

Your phone pings.
A new email.

ah, manager-san…

why did you have to go and do that? (>﹏<)
now my Kaiba-chan will never trust me again!!!
but it's not her fault… ah my poor kaiba-chan… now i have no more use for her… sigh…

i suppose i have no choice but to tell my good friend to start taking lewd pictures…

if you’re wondering who this photographer is… it’s you!
aren’t I clever, yes? yes? you know exactly where the idols are!
they’re with you after all!

i feel like we’ve gotten really close after the last few messages, so you’ll do this for me, right? right?
the three of us share a kind of special connection, no? i remember seeing you at the end of kaiba’s first vlog, i mean, i wouldn’t mind… the three of us?
pwoaaah… that’ll have to wait though…

you see my friends are totes impatient with me and i have to give them something, yeah?
they need some stuff to work with… (~ ̄3 ̄)~

so you get to decide what idol you’re gonna betray!
and you’ll get to live on knowing you crippled a poor girl’s career!

i want a cute nude picture, maybe like shy-ish? or a picture of them sleeping!
if would be great if… you know how when you’re sleeping in a tanktop and your boob kinda slips out?

something like that would be great!!!

if you don’t send me anything then I’ll simply ignore my project buddies and drop all my chat, phone recordings, and images I have of Kaiba online!!


kaiba’s ex-gf


So there never was a mole...

Sacrifice a different idol’s career to save Kaiba?

Harsh as it may sound, Kaiba-san brought this on herself.
She should’ve just blocked EmikoDesu55 back then, but then again, she couldn’t have known things would turn out like this.

Ichihara Riko did some inexcusable things that ended another idol’s career.
It seems only fair that that same fate is cast upon her, right?
She did seem very sorry about her behaviour when you encountered her in the break room and it seems like she’s trying to be a better person.

Chigusa Iki hasn’t done anything wrong, but she hasn’t started her career either.
If you think about it from the perspective of a sociopath, then her idol career falling apart before it begins isn’t much different than if you had never recruited her to begin with.

Enatsu Mari is incredibly athletic, that’s plain for everyone to see.
Perhaps it’s a blessing to cut her idol career short and send her on a new path – that of a pro athlete?

Watase Yoko is already fairly old for an idol.
She had plenty of good years, right? Some of the other idols haven’t even gotten started.
That doesn’t seem fair, does it? She did invite you to share drinks later today.
If you manage to get her drunk enough and help her back to her room, then it’d be incredibly easy to snap a quick picture, wouldn’t it?
Besides, her personality seems pretty... maybe it'd be a good thing to get rid of her?

And then there’s one final option.

What if none of the idols had to get involved, what if you offer up yourself instead?
You might not be an idol, but the business might still be willing to pay a bribe to keep things quiet.
There’s no doubt this’ll greatly impact you career, but it’s the only way you can think of that spares all the idols.

If the business refuses though then whatever leverage ErikoDesu55 demands of you will probably end up online and work will get incredibly awkward – that is if they don’t outright fire you.
What would you even do then? Try and become a manager elsewhere? Start your own agency?
Might be difficult with that kind of reputation chasing you, but you could try...

EmikoDesu55 is right about one thing though, even if you take what you did to your grave, you doubt you’ll ever forgive yourself.
The cut-throat world of idols may have many people that’d be willing to throw somebody else under the bus, but you’re not one of them.

Ah, your stomach hurts…

EmikoDesuu55’s offer

>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba.
>2 - Try to sneakily take pictures of Ichihara Riko. She deserves it for what she did to Maki Sumi.
>3 - Chigusa Iki is always so focused, she might not notice you sneaking a picture…
>4 - With how athletic she is Enatsu Mari might have a better future as an athlete…
>5 - Watase Yoko said she wanted to go drinking with you… maybe if she gets drunk enough and you follow her into her room…
>6 - Send a mail back asking if Emiko will settle for a staged picture of you instead…

If you choose to vote for trying to get a picture then there’ll be an option later on to decide to sneak a pic, negotiate a picture, or other write-ins.
No further updates today.
Man oh man! Friendship, empathy and stalling sure worked wonders! And so the march of our Requiem starts and I can't help but laugh and be proud of being absolutely, completely and undeniably right. Now, all that remains is the result of our inexorable defeat! Good job, anons! Well played.

>2 - Try to sneakily take pictures of Ichihara Riko. She deserves it for what she did to Maki Sumi.
or, if write-ins are possible:
>7- Try to sneakily take pictures of Ichihara Riko, but don't send them to Emiko - leak them yourself. Afterwards, focus on damage control for Kaiba.

Let Hell burn. We dance along the pyre.
>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba
It's Kaiba's failure and mistakes that lead to this. No one else should pay for her sins.
Our career will take a hit but we can dump most of the damage on Kaiba. She deserves it.
>It's Kaiba's failure and mistakes that lead to this
That's one hell of a warped way of thinking - not even I thought about all of this like that.
Our utter incompetence and Kaiba's autismo led to this. In case you forgot, we knew about the threat that Emiko could pose weeks ago in real life time and days ago in game time. We were already checkmated by then, but bad decision piled after bad decision led to this moment - which only got worsened since we now face a permanent risk to our career thanks to being complacent about the leaked trip. Good fucking luck trying to apply as a idol manager on another company with that stain on your curriculum, and good luck earning the trust of new idols if we decide to open a new agency - not even taking into account all the stress we might gain dealing with damage control or with losing a job.

But oh well. Enough pouring salt on open wounds - I'm curious and excited to see in what circle of hell we will end up in after this.
>7 - If reason cannot be applied, unreasonable means must be taken.
>Write back to Emiko (from a burner account) and try to guilt trip her into rescinding her plan. Describe how happy Kaiba was to have a friend, how she believed in Emiko till the very end, and how much pain will she inflict on Kaiba.
This can't be worse than simply refusing to take the pictures.
By the way,
>1 - Don't take any pictures.
Perfectly summed it up.
>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba.
The whole point of our masterful plan Let's wait for things to fix themselves!! was to bide our time untill the company announces the new idols and then it was to choose between keeping this under wraps or explaining to the company what happened and hope they don't fire Kaiba, with the intent of bringing out the big guns against the mosquitoes.
After all our mistakes, prolonging this situation with a picture? This shit is the plot of my rape blackmail doujinshi.
When should've we stepped in? As soon as we learnt about Kaiba chatitng with fans or a little later... I think all this happened because we pitied Kaiba and feared she would die or something when we forced her to stop replying to this fan... You know, it's 100% our fault, the player, because we KNEW how atenttion starved this girl was
>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba.
You're such a drama queen

>6 - Send a mail back asking if Emiko will settle for a staged picture of you instead
Add on the guilt-trip, too. make it clear how much we care for Kaiba, and how heartbroken Kaiba is thanks to Emiko. Can't hurt.

>2 - Try to sneakily take pictures of Ichihara Riko. She deserves it for what she did to Maki Sumi.
Also, Blackmailing is a crime, we should think about getting the police involved
We could have done better ofc.

But she was still knowingly going against company policies.
I don't like drama but I'll use every opportunity to shove into everyone's faces the fact that I am/was right. It was frustrating writing lines and lines of arguments just to see some anons with negative foresight, rationale and emotional intelligence spouting the worst idea ever known to mankind on how to deal with a groomer blackmailer. Felt like I was trying to teach monkeys how to do PEMDAS
Into the coffin you go, friendship anon - fate wasn't kind to you and yours.
Your version of the campaign sounds optimized, but empty.
>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba.

Get the police and a PR company involved.

We need to frame Kaiba as the innocent victim of a nefarious group of blackmailers who only care about money - even if it destroys lives.

We should also allege that they’ve done this before and we have reason to believe it has led to self-harm amongst targeted idols.

The truth doesn’t matter, they are in the wrong and need the weight of the world brought down upon them

If we have any journalistic contacts at all, now is the time to leverage them
>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba
Your arguments were self-aggrandizing shit, that's the whole deal. You cannot construct arguments at all.
Random thought, but if Emi ruins Kaiba’s career and this becomes publicly known, what are the chances some crazy fan ‘deals’ with her?
The only thing that stopped me from writing in doxxing Emiko to DarkFlightXx in the last vote was the realization that he can't deal with her quickly enough to prevent her leak.
I'm also absolutely intending to write this in as a revenge move afterwards.

>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba
This is where having a Yakuza connection would pay off.
If we got yakuza to do illegal things for us, that would give them blackmail material to coerce us in the future. I really wouldn't want our idols to have to run badger games or worse.
Become the HR yakuza lady. That's a character arc no one will see coming.
I'm putting these rules out here for discussion purposes while I work on the update.
As it stands you would make the roll with 1 extra dice for a total of 2d100


Scandal Mechanics
Scandal management consists of an optional decision and some rolls.

By default, you will roll a 1d100 without modifiers.
You can get an extra 1d100 if you make a good argument that gets included in the update.

You can further increase the number of dice by calling-in or owing people favours.
The "Favour" mechanic has wide applications, but this is just one of them. It hasn't really come up yet though.
You can choose to call-in/owe as many favours as you like, but I wouldn't recommend too many.
Furthermore, somebody you still owe a favour is not like to grant you another one until you return the favour.

These are basically lifelines you should only use when you really want to save an idol and they don't come cheap.
Maki Sumi's scenario (an accidental scandal) would've been a good choice for a roll to owe favours for.
Whether or not you all decide to owe favours for Kaiba’s current scenario is up to you and will be voted on.


Say, you called in one favour and owe another, granting you two extra dice.
You will then roll 3d100 and we'll take highest.

This rolled number will then be put against a series of number ranges.

>81 - 100 - Small chance for great management = Dice+1d2 (Positive)
>21 - 80 - Large chance for decent management = Dice+1d2 (Negative)
>01 - 20 - Small chance for terrible management = Dice+1d4 (Negative)

What do these dice do?
They lower or raise your idol's fame.

>Small chance for a 1d2 dice to increase your fame.
>Large chance for a 1d2 dice to decrease your fame.
>Small chance for a 1d4 dice to decrease your fame.

Small chance for a 1d4 dice to decrease your fame.

As you probably already know, fame affects your earnings. More fame = More money from jobs.
You get fame from events and by performing jobs of a higher rank than you’ve done previously.
Fame should be somewhat easy to come by, but we’ve just spent so much time on this side-quest that it’s been a while since the last job.

One thing you might not know is that fame also affects the RANK of the jobs you get.
A famous rank 5 idol will get more high profile (higher dc) jobs than a low fame idol.

Forced Retirement
An idol that goes below zero fame is considered unemployable and will be forced to retire as an idol.
This is what happened to Maki Sumi.
Retired idols can be let go entirely to pursue their own goals or receive a job within Matsuno Inc.

Returing Favours
At some point you’ll have to start returning favours, here’s some examples:

>They steal a job that was offered to you, probably a high rank one
>They try and make claim on an applicant that showed up in your auditions
>They want to force a job on you, essentially borrowing your idol for 1 week (you get paid)
> Something that particular NPC wants.

You are free to decline any favour others try to “call in” but remember that you won’t be able to gain extra “scandal management dice” until you return the favour.

Accepted Jobs and Scandals

Reputable companies may try to cancel any pending jobs you have with them if the idol they booked with is caught in a scandal.
The likelihood of this increases with higher company morality.
Sleazy companies don’t care you’re caught in a scandal.
This is a 1d100 roll with the DC decided by company morality.

Rarely (if the story allows) you can use the money from your budget to avoid the scandal.
The higher fame your idol, the more expensive the bribe.

This may seem like a lot, but it comes down to this:

Summary for mechanic
>1 - Default roll 1d100 with extra dice granted by QM
>2 - Optionally call-in or owe favours for extra dice
>3 - Roll for scandal management 1d100 + any extra dice
>4 - Roll the resulting fame impact (1d2/1d4)

>I’m not entirely set on scandal management result ranges.
>I’m not entirely set on “Fame impact” dice numbers
>I’m not entirely set on the “forced retirement” fame barrier.
>Accepted Jobs and Scandals rules may be thrown out entirely.
>Would suck to grind to 5 fame and get a 4 on a 1d4 scandal.Though that’d just be double unlucky. You’d have to roll low on the first roll and high on second.Would feel really bad though considering it likely takes weeks of IRL time to get that high.
I feel like we have more than enough material to take that person to court. Let's not even bother playing those shitty games with us and just straight up report it ASAP, without waiting to go home.
Also, we've been way too easy on Kaiba. She's not talented, has been dead weight on the company and might cause us to lose out on a lot of reputation within and outside of the company. I'm done covering for her mistakes. This is the idol industry, not middle school, difficult decisions HAVE to be made sometimes, even if she's "muh big titty depressed waifu". We're running a business here, ffs
>Dead weight
Then send her on more jobs. She has helped build our career, beating out our rivals to get additional idols, has biilt an online following who attend events and buy merch, and she might be appearing in Fate/Stay Night or whatever soon.

I like these. Even the chance of catastrophic failure which, after all, is a real phenomena with a bad enough scandal. Maybe cap how bad a hit fame and can take on a scandal-by-scandal basis, dependign how compromising the situation is?
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I accept your concession.

I agree somewhat: after re-reading all of my points I noticed that they were badly structured, had a lot of grammar errors and some premises were out of order. However, I did manage to change some votes so what this tells me is that my logic is sound, I just need to work on my writing foundations.

>Would suck to grind to 5 fame and get a 4 on a 1d4 scandal
My statistic knowledge is very rusty but, if I did my math right, rolling a <21 (in one single dice) *and* dry 4 is a 5% chance event. If we assume a lot of scandals and bad d100s then, on "average", we will be losing 2,5 fame per scandal.
(the spoiler has a interesting tool, check it)

To me, it seems like a fair deal. It makes sense for the setting we're playing at.

I did that last math by hand but if you're doubting me, you can also check: https://calculator.academy/dice-average-calculator/#f1p1|f2p0

>She has helped build our career
I always wondered if our promotion was due to Kaiba's and our efforts or just... the incompetence of the other managers. I mean, one of them fucking lost an idol and the other one had the girl responsible for that loss. Meanwhile, till the performance meeting we had no controversy. Sure, the vlog was a novelty but even the Marketing team didn't knew how to profit out of it.

>and she might be appearing in Fate/Stay Night
>Studio Bones is a respectable company
Yeah I don't know about that one, chief. I pity your optimism.

Gif related is Miho's and Kaiba's mental breakdown after shit hits the fan but there's no more Emiko to bother them
Got back to the quest after two weeks, and this shitshow happens. I'm not the best at problem solving, so this is all I got. My best option rn would be to show Kaiba Emiko's email to reassure her that there is no mole and to persuade her to screenshot everything in the messages, and make it look like Kaiba was exposing the blackmail group in a stream (hopefully we get to relax enough in the spa). I forgot the incriminating evidence she has on us, so just debut the idols early? I think we'll have to call a favor in with the HR gal or the manager in charge of the other new idol.

Sorry anons can't think of what to do
>make Kaiba look like a heroic figure exposing a blackmailer ring so other idols never fall victim to them and have their dreams cut short
That's... Actually genius, anon.

These were my vote. I now support >>5638973 with their plan.

>1 - Refuse. Just focus on damage control for Kaiba.

Regardless of how much you’d like to help Kaiba, you’re not going to sacrifice anyone else to do so.
Despite your numerous warnings, she took the risk and now she gets to pay the price.
You’ll do what you can to mitigate the damage, but the price isn’t going to be cheap.

A strange feeling of calm spreads through your body.
Suppose it’s really true that a problem only bothers you as much as you allow it to.
You get dressed properly and casually walk to the women’s toilets.
Only one stall is occupied.
You knock on the door of this stall using the back of your hand.

“Kaiba-san,” you say, “We’ve done what we can to prevent a scandal, but we’re changing our approach – we’ll simply brace for impact and pick up the pieces as best we can.”

There’s a small gasp from the other side of the door, “…Is there nothing we can do?”

“There’s an offer, but it’s a price I can’t afford to pay,” you say, deliberately vague.
You’re not sure your heart could take if you revealed that there’s an option to throw another idol to the wolves and Kaiba would want to take it.
The disappointment you’d feel towards her if she thought that way would forever change your image of her.
You’d like to think she wouldn’t do such a thing, but It’s best to never found out for real.

“I considered playing to her guilt,” you say, “But a person that does what Emiko-chan did to you probably doesn’t have much of a conscience to begin with. They only care about themselves.”

The only thing left to do approach this in the most professional, HR-way possible: using the law.
If EmikoDesu55 is so eager to ruin people’s lives, then you don’t mind adding hers to that list.
Under Japanese law there’s a big difference between threatening to blackmail and actually leaking the information.
The latter kind of extortion carries up to a ten-year sentence, while the former hovers around one year.
Guess you’ll get to find out how confident EmikoDesu55 is in hiding her identity.

“Come on out, Aoi-chan,” you say, “We need to get ready for dinner. There are yukatas in our rooms that we’ll be expected to wear.”
“Things’ll get bumpy in the days to come,” you add, “But let’s try to enjoy ourselves for now, okay?”

There’s a sharp metal click as the door of the toilet stall opens and Kaiba shuffles out.
Then she unexpectedly embraces you tightly, her hands grabbing a tight hold on the back of your shirt.
“I’m sorry,” she says, sobbing into your shoulder, “I didn’t know… I've been so stupid... I’m so sorry…”

You pat her on the back, “It’s done, it’s time to move on from this, I won’t let this be the end.”
This last week felt like a month. You look forward to things returning back to normal.

“Don’t respond to her any longer,” you say, “Don’t give her the satisfaction.”

After allowing Kaiba time to vent her frustrations, you slowly let go of her and send Kaiba on her way to her own room to prepare for dinner.
You do the same and wear the yukata that has been left in your room by the staff.
However, you linger for a while and prepare a response for EmikoDesu55’s mail.
It’s probably best practice to not respond to an email like this, these things have a habit of turning up online after all.

You simply do what you think is right.

You might’ve dragged your feet on some things, but in the end you did fairly well, right?
By appointing you as her “mole” EmikoDesu55 revealed she has no way of knowing where you are.
There’s no reason to fear a horde of press stomping their way here on the final day.

She knows Matsuno Inc has some new idols lined up, but it’s an idol agency – it’d be weirder if they didn’t.
Without any names or pictures there’s no way she is actually any threat to Chigusa and Enatsu.

All she has is whatever Kaiba shared with her.
This whole blackmail attempt of her group was more social engineering than anything else.
Trying to dig yourself out of the hole by giving in to their demands would've only end up with you digging deeper.

Instead, you’ve given them nothing.
Let’s see if you can take what she’s got left.
A person like her only cares about herself, so that’s exactly what to target.


Hello EmikoDesu55,

I regret to inform you that we are not willing to participate in your delusions.
Your behaviour thus far has been nothing but shameless as both a fan and human being.

Any previous and pending action taken by you against Kaiba Aoi and by extension Matsuno Inc. will be handled by our lawyers, local law enforcement, and the court of law.

Do not contact me again.

With kind regards,

Nagata Miho, Manager at Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency.



A sane, level-headed person would use this opportunity to slither back to the hole they came from.
But if you’ve come to know EmikoDesu55 in any way at all in these past few days she probably has far too much pride to do that, she’s too high on her own ego.
If she really did run this kind of con several times in the past, then she might ever consider herself untouchable.

She’ll leak the data anyway.

You prepare a quick email and sent it to your assistant, Matsui-san.
Detailed inside is a rough description of what happened without incrimination you or Kaiba.
Roughly: “I caught Kaiba chatting a little too intimately with a fan, made her stop, and now the ghosted fan is threatening to leak the conversations they had.”

Finally, you mention to keep this a secret, but prepare to act if the chat history shows up online.
Prepare messages for marketing, legal, and even a public statement for Kaiba-san to read on her stream if it gets to that.
There’s no reason for Matsui-san to trigger the alarm if nothing ends up happening.

A few minutes later you receive a response from Matsui-san.
It’s a selfie of her holding a glass of wine, staring at the camera with a lazy frown.
“Sure… Hope Kaiba-san is alright.” she replies.

Guess she was doing something else, but she’ll see to it – you know she will.
Having a dependable subordinate is truly wonderful.

You stow away your phone in a pocket inside your yukata.
These garments didn’t always have pockets like these, but you’re glad they do now.

Shutting the sliding door to your room, you make your way towards the dining hall.
Only to find you’re the last one there.
Even Kaiba is already here though she looks understandably nervous.
It’s probably hard to enjoy a meal while your life may be crumbling around you.

Enatsu Mari is waving at you with much excitement, “Manager-san,” she shouts, “I saved you a seat!”
You bob your head in thanks and move towards the offered seat, placing you between Enatsu Mari and Chigusa Iki.

Everyone is seated at a low table and using cushions as seats.
They’re all enjoying various drinks, most non-alcoholic, and making friendly conversation.
The moment you sit down, Chigusa Iki pours you something to drink from a tall bottle.
You nod thanks. Looking into the cup it seems like green tea.
Honestly, you could really use a drink, but this isn’t the time or place.

A glance at your phone tells you it’s 17:30 (5:30 PM).
There’s a bit of time left until they begin serving meals.
The dinner itself will consist of a large variety of sides with some meat, fish, and rice.
People should be able to have a satisfying meal regardless of their dietary preferences.

Ichihara Riko seems to be relegated to pouring drinks for Watase Yoko, mostly melon soda.

Sitting on the other side of Enatsu Mari is Matsuno Kojiro who, judging by his face, hasn’t stopped drinking since you saw him at the bar a while ago.
Even now he has a glass with a bottom of whiskey within hand’s reach.
Enatsu is asking him what kind exciting things Matsuno’s idols have done and he enthusiastically begins talking about some jobs he has done with Maki Sumi.

As the memories slowly creep in, his story slows down, and eventually stops completely.
He shoots a hate-filled glance at Ichihara Riko, reaches for and slams down his whiskey, and excuses himself to visit the bathroom.

It’s not strange for some resentment to linger, but you hope he’s enough of a professional to move past it eventually.

Enatsu Mari watches him leave after the sudden shift in attitude and looks towards you for an explanation.
You wave her concerns aside. Just leave him be.

Matsuno returns a short while later, putting his phone inside the pocket of his yukata as he enters the room.

The kitchen staff begin to prepare the table for dinner.
Before long the table is filled with a large variety of side-dishes and rice.
Once the entire table is set, raising your cup, you call for everyone’s attention.
This whole trip to the hot spring might’ve initially only been a way to stop Kaiba from meeting up, but the new idols still deserve a genuine welcome.

Calling each new idol by name, you ask them to introduce themselves, maybe share some minor details about themselves, and move onto the next until you’ve introduced them all.

“And with that done, I want to wish them all a very warm welcome to the Matsuno Inc. Idol Agency,” you say, then raise your cup, “Cheers!”

Cheers echo from all corners of the large table as everyone raises their glass and then, with formalities done, you all enjoy a nice dinner.

Even Kaiba seems to momentarily forget her worries.
With their stomachs filled, some stretch and decide to retire to their rooms while others remain seated, take a seat at the bar for drinks, or play games in the lobby.


Nagata’s current stress is 100. (High)
This can always be viewed in the wiki.

You will spend two days at the resort and return home Sunday afternoon.

Time for activities
Saturday: Evening, late evening/night
Sunday: Morning, early afternoon

After each selection, the people performing an activity change up.
Some activities may not be available at certain times.

Hot spring, sauna, and massages are separated by gender.

Decision (Evening)
>1 - Engage in small conversation at the dinner table (Yukimori, Matsuno, -10 stress)
>2 - Play some games in the lobby (Enatsu Mari, Ichihara Riko, -10 stress)
>3 - Go to your room and call it an early night (Kaiba Aoi, Chigusa Iki)
>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Watase Yoko, Stress reduction based on drinking)
>5 - Write-in
>You stow away your phone in a pocket inside your yukata. These garments didn’t always have pockets like these, but you’re glad they do now.
Japanese women et pockets in their formalwear? Luckyyyy.

>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Watase Yoko, Stress reduction based on drinking)
>1 - Engage in small conversation at the dinner table (Yukimori, Matsuno, -10 stress)
Manager-to-manager communication.
Miho probably could use a drink right now, but this is not the time to get drunk (and also I don't want to roll for bad decisions)
Let's review everything that we know: I don't believe that getting the police/attorneys involved will help us.

>Our understanding of Emiko:

1 - Emiko the so-called make-up artist (this is important), has a group focused on these things - ergo, she has done this multiple times. Thus, we can assume that Emiko is not the perpetrator's real name and the email she sent us is, allegedly, untraceable. Adding to that, she made Kaiba install a separate app for the conversations: this might've been done to avoid tracing her location, IP etc.

Conclusion: therefore, we don't know WHO she is, nor where she is. We would be shooting at the dark basically. She might've attended the handshake event with a lot of make-up to make her harder to recognize I assume.

2 - She doesn't have a lot of material besides the leaked idols. Her group won't be very happy with so little material and she said herself that she'd sack her friends to leak the chat all by herself.

Conclusion: shit might not hit the fan that hard - this might be circumvented.

> The solution

1 - >>5638973
>make Kaiba look like a heroic figure exposing a blackmailer ring
Yeah except that... she can't expose anyone, as the arguments above have estabilished. Trying to play hero when she was the one being strung would probably require another ACTING roll (exposing someone just isn't Kaiba) and I'd rather minimize our dependance on Lady Luck. But, I see merit on your approach and in previous approaches of sentimental/friendship is magic anon. So, my proposal is:

Tell the honest-to-god truth to her viewers. Kaiba will be blunt and tell how she felt about this whole ordeal, how she just wanted to have a friend that cared about her. We can participate in the livestream too and tell our part of the story: how we chose to keep most of the things to ourselves, how we priotized our idol, going as far as risk our own carreer because, for us, their dreams matter more than our own. We wouldn't be lying nor pretending being someone else, we'd just reveal our side of the story, what we went through our minds and why we did what we did.

Hell, this whole thing is a sob story already and the fans love to see Kaiba's struggles and her efforts towards the idol world. They will (hopefully) understand.

So, my vote (for when we have to handle this) is:
>Tell the truth to her viewers and to everyone else.

>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Watase Yoko, Stress reduction based on drinking)
She seems like a nice gal (and she's hot). Yep, that's my reasoning and nothing else
>We can participate in the livestream too and tell our part of the story: how we chose to keep most of the things to ourselves, how we priotized our idol, going as far as risk our own carreer because, for us, their dreams matter more than our own.
This will reveal that we allowed the spa trip to take place despite the risk, and didn't report to our superiors when we should have. We could lose our job for that. Let's make sure not to suggest we knew the full scope of the danger until AFTER we were at the spa.
>This will reveal that we allowed the spa trip to take place despite the risk
I think this will come to light regardless. Take another look at >>5638106
>[07:55] @EmikoDesuu55: i guess something must’ve happened
>[16:37] @KaibaAoiOfficial: Manager-san saw the chat…
>it doesnt take a genius to figure out what happened when kaiba-chan WHO WOULD NEVER, EVER IGNORE ME suddenly disappears after saying her manager walked in…

These messages will be the main argument of Emiko when she eventually tries to also drag us down to hell together with Kaiba.
I assume that the other employees would figure this out since we had a panic attack at the office a day before the trip so yeah, no point in trying to hide that.
Fair, but I guess we better get ready for severe disciplinary action and/or to start our own agency.
>we don't know WHO she is, nor where she is
Actually, we have some info to go off of, and potentially a lot of info. I'm talking about Emiko's old social media accounts we've googled up. Some diligent cyberstalking might give us her name and address. Also, the cafe she invited Kaiba to must be somewhere convenient for her, so either near her home or work.
Moreover, we could offload the cyberstalking onto angry fans.

>Tell the truth to her viewers and to everyone else.
I thought about such an approach too, and I think it's probably a good idea.
>we better get ready for severe disciplinary action
I forgot to include that in the main argument post but this is where the Favor System comes in:
Although I'd hate to do this, we'd probably have to ask a favor to the CEO. Something that would probably involve nepotism and his nephew. What I assume that can be the worst case scenario is that we end up losing our two new idols to Yukimori (or, worse, losing Kaiba) but it is what it is. Another option is getting a favour from someone else but I have no other idea.

Regardless, I want to use this system in some way to avoid losing our jobs. I think this is a system to help us getting out of Death's Door and there's no better moment to make use of it than now.
>4 - Set yourself up at the bar (Watase Yoko, Stress reduction based on drinking)

Probably won't be able to post the update today, but I wanna get started at least.
>1 - Engage in small conversation at the dinner table (Yukimori, Matsuno, -10 stress)
>1 - Engage in small conversation at the dinner table (Yukimori, Matsuno, -10 stress)

Drinking is a bad idea - we need a clear head tonight and tomorrow
I agree
What is a badger game? :)
>exposing this shit on a stream
I... like this idea
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>“I’m sorry,” she says, sobbing into your shoulder, “I didn’t know… I've been so stupid... I’m so sorry…”>>5639022
>This last week felt like a month. You look forward to things returning back to normal.
>Placing you between Enatsu Mari and Chigusa Iki.
>2 - Play some games in the lobby (Enatsu Mari, Ichihara Riko, -10 stress)
It's not an Onsen trip if we don't play table tennis!!!
I'd say we call for a favour and give up Kaiba to repay it. She will be sad but understanding. And hopefully she gets sent to Kojiro and we get some hot Dom & Sub action with Watase Yoko.
Wait why did I say that? That's silly, why would I want to give up our loveliest idol just to have her mingle with Watase Yoko?
Don't forget to Ctrl+F "Winner" before submitting a vote, might save you face (and time)
Anon, come on what even is this string of posts? Why not condense them into one or two, buddy?

You excuse yourself from the other two managers and make your way to the bar.
Watase Yoko is already there, as she said she would, watching you approach with what is quickly becoming her trademark smug grin.
It seems like she was sure you’d arrive as she already ordered a pair of shots.

“Was worried ya' might sneak off to yer' room instead,” she says, sliding a shot your way and ordering another one for herself.
Ah, both of those were supposed to be for her then.

As the drink slides you way, you stop it with a hand only for part of the contents to spill.
You quickly ask the barman for a cloth to clean it and Watase watches you work with mild bemusement while leaning on an elbow.

Once cleaned up, you carefully smell the shot of hard liquor.
Strong. Far stronger than you’re used to. Maybe you shouldn’t…

“Cheers,” says Watase, raising her shot glass near you so you can cling your glasses together.

“Cheers,” you say, tapping your shot glass against hers.
Well, just one is probably fine.

Watase slams it down in one go.
You, not wanting to be a person that carefully sips a shot, do likewise.

Hissing through clenches teeth, you grimace.
Whatever drink that was burns its way down your throat.

“So, how’s the Kaiba girl doing?” asks Watase, sliding your another shot, “She doing alright?”
She drinks down another shot.

“Yeah,” you say, holding onto the shot for now, “She’s okay. She has a job coming up with a famous studio. I might’ve just been nerves.”
You breathe in sharply through your nose and raise the shot glass to your lips.

“You know she was ogling you, right?” says Watase.
idc, as simple as.

Only half of the shot makes it down your throat, the rest you sputter onto the bar counter.
It burns! You hastily rub the back of your hand over your lips.
After a while of coughing, you recover, “Kaiba? No way,” you say, then raise an eyebrow, “Weren’t you asleep?”

Watase flashes you a sly grin, then wags her head from side to side while rolling her eyes, “Not that asleep,” she says.
She calls out to the barman for another round of shots.

You give the barman a quick wave.
“Just a beer for me,” you say.

The barman nods and sends a half-litre glass of beer your way.

“Quitting on me already, manager-san?” says Watase.

You hold the cold, tall glass between your hands.
”Well,” you say with a light chuckle, “I’m not that young anymore.”

“Could’ve fooled me,” says Watase, eyeing you up and down.

Is she doing this on purpose or just messing with you as she was previously?

“Please,” you say, waving a dismissive hand, “I’ll be twenty-seven soon. That’s ancient in idol terms.”

The two of you talk for a long while as you continue sipping your beer.
The shots you downed in rapid succession are beginning to spread through body, soothing it with a comfortable warmth.

>Stress reduced by 20 (10 stress per shot)

Drinking is probably a bad way to cope with stress.
It’s just too bad it feels so good. Like being wrapped in a warm blanket.
Like you could just drift off…

Watase waves a hand in front of your face, “Hellooo?” she says.

“Huh?” you reply, “Sorry, did you say something?”

“Yah. What’s the last time ya' dated anyone?” asks Watase.
It seems like she switched to mixed drinks.
Some kind of soda combined with rum or the like.

“Eh?” you say, caught off-guard by the question.
You’d blush, but judging by the warmth in your cheeks from drinking it probably wouldn’t even show.

“I mean I’ve tried,” you say with a shrug, “But it never really went anywhere.”
“And I have my cat, of course,” you add, “Can’t just… stay out, you know?”

“Of course,” says Watase, taking a sip of her drink.

The realization that you have a non-existent love life is kind of putting you down.
“Oh,” you say, “There was a guy from my building that I kinda liked. He lives two floors down.”

“And?” asks Watase, “Went anywhere?”

You scratch your cheek, “No, he, eh, works for a, well, black company,” you say, “I haven’t seen him in months, probably should’ve exchanged numbers, but haven’t.”

In some companies massive overtime isn’t just the norm, but outright expected.
People working at these 'black companies' basically live at work and rarely go home for anything other than sleep.
If they’re not already sleeping under their desk at work, that is.

“So, I guess I haven’t really dated anyone in the strongest sense of the word,” you say.

This is depressing.
You take a long pull from your beer only to find it going empty on you.
Truth be told, your vision is already starting to swim a bit, but your room is just around the corner.
So, it’s fine, right? You could even crawl there if you had to.

>Stress reduced by 10 for drinking beer

Against expectations, Watase isn’t doing much better.
She’s slouched over the counter and just sort of watching you.
Watase seemed so confident earlier, but the effects of alcohol appear to have snuck up on her.
Either that or she just has a low alcohol tolerance.

“Tell me about it,” she says, exhaling sadly, “Bein' an idol is miserable at times!”

“I figured that you with,” you say, gesturing at Watase in general, “Like all this and the way you are you… didn’t have those problems.”

Watase sighs, “It’s because of ma' face,” she says, slamming a fist on the counter.

Knowing the beginnings of a story when you see one, you order another beer and slide into the seat next to Watase.

“Y’know, I could be a cute magical girl,” she says, “I’d be adorable, no?”

You blink slowly. Huh?
Where did that come from?
“Yeah,” you say, “Absolutely.”

“But I don’t get those roles,” says Watase, “I always get cast as the evil people. Villains.”

“Like, typecast you mean?” you ask, sipping your beer.

“Yeh,” says Watase, downing the remains of her drink, “Because of my face. Even with voice acting roles! It’s all stupid.”

“So, like, the evil grin and frown isn’t on purpose?” you ask.

“Evil grin? Do I really…? That’s just my face and how I smile, always has been,” she says, “I got into so many fights back in high school because people thought I was looking for one. They called me a delinquent before I knew it.”

“Oooh,” you say, “So it was all a mistake, you weren’t in a gang or something?”

The barman slides Watase a new mixed drink.
“Thanks,” she says, then looks back at you, “I mean, I was, but it sorta happened on its own.”

She sighs again and uses a finger to stir her drink.
“Then when I got recruited off the street as an idol, they took one look at me and decided a aggressive, punk look was the way to go,” she says, “I’ve been acting as my idol persona for so long now I barely remember how …to just be me…”

This is quite the contrast to her usual behaviour.
Is it the alchohol? Is she actually some kind of gentle girl at heart?

“Then the whole ‘Watase-sama' thing that your fans are into is an act?” you say, carefully, “You’re not really into girls that way?”

Watase looks up, raising her eyebrows, “What? No, messing with girls is my favourite part of the job! I made sure that hitting on cute girls was a part of my idol persona. Even if somebody snaps a photo of me with a girl the comments will just be 'wish that was me'. I’m, like, scandal proof.”

You’re about to sue this damn girl for causing you mental whiplash!
The barman gives you a thin-lipped look before walking off.

Using her hands to squeeze down on something invisible, Watase continues, “I like the soft girls the best, you know, like the shy ones? That’s how a girl should be. Just huggable. Cute girls should blush and squirm when you hug them, and like pant when you kiss them…”

Great, you’ve become a sounding board for this girl and her fetishes.
You take a sip of your drink.

Steeling your resolve, you try out a dangerous question.
“Is that why you hang out with Ichihara-san so much?” you ask, “Is she your type?”

Watase looks at you in disgust, “No way,” she says, “She’s like sixteen. I like them older than that, besides she’s a total bitch. Real bad. Like on the first day I met her she said you… ”
A pang of realization hits her, “Ah… forget it…”
Gap moe... she's so gap moe!!!
So she bullies the girls she likes and she also bullies the girls she doesn't. It's a win win! And she only gets away with it because she's so pretty

“No, no,” you say, scooting closer, “Tell. I’ve had my difficulties with Ichihara-san as well, so I’m curious…”

Watase looks away, “I dunno,” she says, “I sorta promised not too. s’not manly to break a promise.”

There's that manly again. What's with that?

Did Ichihara try something?
Back in the hot spring Ichihara mentioned that she thought Watase was a pain.
So if there’s mutual dislike, why are they spending so much time together?

“Come on…” you say, trying to encourage her.

“I dunno,” replies Watase, then grins lusciously, “Maybe if you make it worth my while.”

The implication leaves you blushing.
You glance over your shoulder back at the dining hall and find it empty.
It seems like the other managers went elsewhere in the pat hour or so you've been drinking and the barman still hasn’t returned.

Honestly, you knew this was a possibility the moment somebody like her invited you out for drinks.
You don’t see girls that way though, so there’s no way you would do anything physical with her.
Right? Yeah. Doing something like that would surely be a bad decision.
You can’t allow yourself to be swept away by her.


Time drinking: 1h 30m. Beer downed: 0.5 litre. Shots: 2 Weight: 120lbs
Blood Alcohol Percentage: 0.11% (0.08% is limit for driving)

Bad Decision Points = ((Percentage * 100) * 5) = 55

>1 - You're not playing her games
>2 - Make a bad decision roll (1d100+55)

Do not make the actual roll until the vote is concluded.
No more updates today.
>1 - You're not playing her games
This gal is gay.

Here's the bad decision table for this roll
>00 - 80 - Convince her using words
>81 - 120 - Buy a round of shots
>121 - 140 - Say you’ll owe her a favour
>141 - 160 - Like a small kiss, maybe
>161+ - ??? (Not drunk enough to reach)
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I wonder if you are doing the absolute alcohol formula to get those numbers... Pic related is just an approximation to... unfun stuff.
About your formula, we have
Blood_ethanol_concentration = (Volume_ingested * Concentration_ingested * 0.8) / (Weight * 0.6)
A result expressed in mg/dL that we multiply by 0.001 and obtain the BAC.
>1 - You're not playing her games

>This gal is gay
...Yes? Was that not explicitly stated?
She has based taste, though
>2 - Make a bad decision roll (1d100+55)
I just find her (Watase) funny, I want to see where this will end
>2 - Make a bad decision roll (1d100+55)
>2 - Make a bad decision roll (1d100+55)

Odds are decent - and information is power
>1 - You're not playing her games

We've had enough playing with fire as is
>1 - You're not playing her games
I use this https://www.calculator.net/bac-calculator.html

Vote closes when I get back from lunch
>1 - You're not playing her games (x4)
>2 - Make a bad decision roll (1d100+55) (x3)

>1 - You're not playing her games

You’re curious as to what Ichihara has been up to and what kind of relationship she and Watase have where they both dislike each other, but are still willing to keep secrets to shield the other.

However, your vision is swimming and you’re not even sure you could walk a straight line right now.
With all this alcohol in your system you might find yourself doing something you might regret.
It’s best not to try anything.

You simply shrug, “I want to know, but not that badly,” you say, finishing your drink.

>Stress reduced by 10 for drinking beer.

“Aw,” says Watase, with an exaggerated pout, “You’re no fun.”
“Isn’t gossiping and oversharing part of drinking?” she says, then sighs, “Oh, well. Another shot?”

You stare at the bottom of your own empty beer glass.
All those problems that bothered you seem like a distant memory, hidden far away, deep in your mind.
It feels great. To just relax like this. Unconcerned with what else is going on.
Tomorrow's problems are exactly that -- tomorrow's problems.

Having another drink or two is very tempting, but you have to be careful to not overdo it.
Lest you become known as the employee that gets stupid drunk on company trips.

There's still some stress weighing you down, but it's nothing compared to what it was.
Still though, one or two more drinks might make you feel even better...


Time drinking: 2h. Beer downed: 1 litre. Shots: 2 Weight: 120lbs
Blood Alcohol Percentage: 0.14% (0.08% is limit for driving)
Nagata Miho’s stress: 60 (Average)

>1 - Nah, you’re gonna switch to water.
>2 - One more drink shouldn’t hurt (-10 stress)
>3 - Two more and then you’re done for real (-20 stress)
>4 - Room around the corner? Go all out. (-30 stress)

Short vote mostly for stress management
>2 - One more drink shouldn’t hurt (-10 stress)
You can try to drown one's demons, but those bastards will learn how to swim.
>1 - Nah, you’re gonna switch to water.
The only reason to vote for drinking further is a desire to see Miho acting unwise. I say we've acted unwise enough for some time.
>4 - Room around the corner? Go all out. (-30 stress)
>3 - Two more and then you’re done for real (-20 stress)
>4 - Room around the corner? Go all out. (-30 stress)
Hour passed.

>4 - Room around the corner? Go all out. (-30 stress)
Hangover time!
I was curious to see the consequences of a bad decision roll but if I could've voted for >>5639659 then I'd definetely have picked 1. I just got out from a hangover this sunday and while drinking really helped de-stress, the headache is not worth it imo
Wait a damn second.
>Weight: 120lbs
>120lbs = ~54kg
Miho weights 54 kilos? With boobs like these >>5635641? No fucking way, QM.
Maybe we're short? Japanese women are tiny.
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I don't want to waste time on a hospital arc so I picked the combination of drinks with lowest BAC, but this is as low as it goes.
>1 - Nah, you’re gonna switch to water.
QM, if we want to create an idol band and set up our own concerts, how does it work with the job system?
>QM, if we want to create an idol band
You can, but I wasn't planning to introduce this until after the second performance review (after male idols also arrive).

>Set up our own concerts, how does it work with the job system?
It doensn't. It would be a special event much like the handshaking event.
Should be able to post the update shortly, just hung up on some images.
QM, your voting windows are tiny!

I’d consider extending them if there is going to be a bit of time between updates
I normally leave votes open overnight.
That particular vote was supposed to be a short one with a quick update afterwards, but I didn't expect people to pick the "All out" option.
So the update turned out a big larger than expected.
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“It’s fine, no?” says Watase, “We’re celebrating all the new idols after all…”

Yeah… She’s right. You should be able to indulge for once.

After a while the barman returns and Watase orders another round of shots.
It’s the same stuff over and over.

“To the new idols,” says Watase, raising her shot glass.

You tap your small shot glass against hers, then cheer, “Oooo!”
Both of you unceremoniously down your shots.
Immediately a now familiar warmth fills your cheeks.

It suddenly occurs to you how you’re acting overly familiar.
“Ah,” you say, “I’m sorry for the ‘Oooo', that’s really…”

Watase laughs to herself, “Don’t be,” she says, “We’re celebrating.”
“Besides, it’s cute,” she adds.

Cute? Isn’t it just childish behaviour?
Among friends you might be able to get away with such a thing, but this is a professional relationship.
Doesn’t seem like she cares a lot about such things.
Watase has been awfully forward in a lot of ways.

You roll the shot glass between your fingers, “Watase-san,” you say, “I don’t want to be presumptuous, but you know I’m straight, right?”

Watase raises an eyebrow, “I don’t see how that’s relevant?”

Gosh, that’s embarrassing.
With all these signals you were sure she was into you in some way.
You’ve complimented other girls on things your entire life.
It wasn’t weird for her to say something you did is cute.

You’ve been spending too much time around all these lesbians.
Why are there so many? Now it seems like your perception is messed up.
Normal friends would be nice, yeah.

“Another drink?” you say in an effort to move on.

Watase shrugs, then waves at the barkeep for another round.
Once arrived she pounds hers down without hesitation.

You, however, are a bit slower.
The burning sensation from the previous drink is still there.
Can you keep up with Watase? Should you be trying to?

Well, your room is just around the corner, right?
Getting there should be easy, even if you overdo it a bit.
Slam it down, Miho!

“Pwoah,” you say, lowering the shot glass back down.
Now you really do feel warm all over.
Yet, shivers race down your spine.

“I have to say, Nagata-san,” says Watase, “You can drink with the best of them.”

Mind cuddling around what sounds like a compliment, you smile.
”My~” you say, holding a hand to your warm cheek, “I’m trying my best.”
You’ve never been much of a party animal, but it seems like you can at least hold your liquor.
As you lower you arm down, you can’t help but feel that it’s moving awfully sluggish.

“Say, Nagata-san,” begins Watase, leaning on an elbow with a smile, “Thanks again for organizing the trip, I had a lot of fun.”
“I was having so much trouble fitting in,” she adds, looking sad.

You blink a few times to get Watase back into focus.
“That’s not true,” you say, acting stern, “You’re a, ah, wonderful new girl. You’ll be a great idol.”
“Watase-san is already a famous idol, no?” you add, “You should be more proud…? prouder? … of yourself.”

Watase shoots you a thin smile, as she continues leaning in a propped up fist, “Why I’m so glad to hear you say that, I thought you might hate me after what happened at the massage parlour…”

“Eh?” you say, thinking back to how she was basically swaggering around naked.
“No way! I could n-never hate you, Watase-san,” you say, then open you arms wide for a hug – nearly catapulting the shot glasses off the bar as you do so, “I h-have a lot of respect for hard-working idols!”

Watase rolls her eyes with a smile, but leans in towards you.
She’s a lot taller than you are, she might be almost six feet! Or something?
A lot taller than your five foot two, at least!
The result is almost comical, with you having to reach upwards to wrap your arms around her head.

“When my friend gets sad, I make her feel better like this~” you say, patting Watase’s head.

“I feel better already,” says Watase in a somewhat distracted tone.

The result of what should have been a wholesome action is that because of the height difference you are basically pulling Watase’s face into your cleavage.
After a few moments of rubbing Watase’s head, this unfortunate side-effect dawns on you.

“Ah!” you say, quickly letting go, “I didn’t meant to! Ah… A drink! You want a drink?”
Not waiting for a response, you wave at the barman, “Barman! One more!”

“…Are you sure?” says the faraway voice of the barman.

You glance at Watase, who’s simply observing you with a sly grin.
Is she judging you? She must be, right? A real manager wouldn’t be dismissed so easily.

You slam your fists on the counter and barely feel it, “Come on,” you shout, head craned towards the ceiling, then sheepishly mind your manners, “Please.”

The barman sighs, then prepares and slides two shots your way, “Last ones.”

Your heartrate is up. You can feel it all the way up in your throat.
After receiving the shot glass, you raise it, “Oooooo!”
Watase and you tap your shot glasses together.
For once you beat her to it and are the first to slam down your drink.

Strangely, Watase simply places her shot back on the counter and slides it to the barman – who takes it away.
Does this mean you won? Did she give up?
Eyes pressed closed, you raise both fists to shoulder height and shake your body a little.

You open your eyes and everything’s sliding all over the places.
Hand questing for the counter to steady yourself, you instead find Watase supporting your back and pushing it towards the counter.
Seems like you were about to topple from your barstool.

Everything feels like a dream.
Not in the ‘this is wonderful' sense, but in the ‘nothing feels real’ sense.
Your consciousness is flickering.
Rest. You need just to rest for a moment. Just put your head down.

“Ah~” says Watase with a drunk grin as she watches you lay your head down on the counter, “Insecure office ladies really are the best… ”

You pass out, the last thing you see being Watase Yoko smiling down at you.


Birds chirp excitedly outside your room.
You’d shoot them if you could.
How dare they make such a racket this early in the morning.
You have a terrible headache and each second of birdsong is like somebody tapping away at your skull with a small hammer.

Wasn’t there something important you should’ve kept an eye on?

Honestly, you can’t even remember how you made it back to your room.
Eyes squinting to keep out the light, you look towards the clock in the left side of your room.

Only to find it isn’t there.
In fact, the window isn’t where it should be either.
Were the covers on your futon always this colour?

Somebody moves under the covers beside you, shifting the blanket.
Eh? You completely freeze up.Where are you? What’s happening?

A soft hand slides over your thigh, gradually making its way to your stomach – where it rests.
A different hand slides underneath your body, gripping your side.They pull you in towards them, embracing you in a tight hug.
Something soft presses into your upper back.

A strand of red hair slides over your shoulder as this other person places a small kiss in your neck.

Ah. This feels nice. How long has it been seen you cuddled like this? Have you ever?

>Stress reduced by 10 for cuddling.

“Good morning~” says Watase Yoko with a sly grin.

Reality taps you on the shoulder a few times before then slapping you back into the here and now.
Wait, wait, wait. Your body goes cold as dread envelops you.

“W-what are you doing?” you say with a shiver in your voice.

“Oh, sorry, sorry,” replies Watase, “Instinct.”

“Instinct?” you ask.

“I wake up next to a pretty girl and, well, habits…” she says, still holding on.

Why did you wake up next to each other to begin with?

“W-we… didn’t… right?” you ask carefully.

Watase moves her shoulders backwards in an effort to stretch the muscles, then hugs you tighter.

“Watase-san…?” you ask again.

“Just Yoko will do,” says Watase, as she continues to cuddle with you.

You remember the start of the evening, but things get blurry after that.
Judging from your position you can kind of guess what happened.
Only yesterday you were reprimanding Kaiba for not being careful with her relationships and now look at you.

“Please, don’t tell anyone…” you say, shaking, “If Yui-chan finds out… she’ll be so upset…”

“Oh?” says Watase, “Who’s this Yui-chan? I love it when I take a girl from somebody else…”

“You’ll keep this quiet… right?” you say, panic creeping into your voice.
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“Hmm~,” says Watase, “I don’t know… I mean, nothing happened.”


With some effort you release yourself from Watase’s grip and roll over to face her.
Then you slide backwards a bit as you find out your faces are only inches apart.

Watase replies with a wide grin, then puts some more space between the both of you, “Nothing happened, for real!” she says, pulling the covers towards herself, “Do you really think I would do something to a person that can’t even stand and passes out every other second? That’s not manly at all.”

“Watase-san, please,” you say, shaking your head to force away the headache, unsuccessful, “What happened?”

“You were a mess, girl,” says Watase, matter-of-factly, “Like beyond drunk. I tried getting you to your room, but I didn’t know which one it was or where you kept your room key…So I went to mine.”
“I figured that was better than dragging you towards random rooms and showing off the state you were in to the people inside,” she adds.

Thank the gods for that.
Just imaging Watase Yoko dragging you, bobble-heading drunk, into each of the rooms only to go “Woops, sorry” is enough to make you wince.

“Besides, you also looked like you could throw up at any moment so I figured I couldn’t just dump you in some room and take off,” continues Watase, “I wasn’t doing so hot either, I planned to take out another futon for me, but the moment I laid you down I couldn’t get up and just barely made it out of my yukata before I passed out myself…”

“Well, I suppose sleeping in both a yukata and Juban would be quite hot,” you say.

Watase lifts the blanket a bit as she grins, allowing you a peek underneath.

“You’re naked?!” you shout, then quickly adjust to a loud whisper, “Why?”
Hopefully nobody heard.

Watase shrugs, “I always sleep naked, I just took all my clothes off by habit.”

“That isn’t weird to you at all?” you ask, perplexed, “There was another person…”

“No?” replies Watase, “Why would it be?”
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Your eyes widen and you have a quick look at your own situation.
Relief. You’re at least wearing your Juban, the underclothes traditionally worn under a yukata.
They’re in quite a state though, the belt has come untied – leaving your stomach exposed and the hem has ridden up your leg to allow easy access for intruding hands.

You toss your part of the covers aside and quickly fix your clothing, pulling the belt of your Juban tight to make sure it doesn’t loosen again.

Watase Yoko is lounging on an elbow, watching you, “…I mean, since we’re both here we could still…?” she says.

“No,” you reply flatly, “I think you’ve had your hands on me quite enough…”

In response, Watase Yoko tosses the covers aside completely, “I don’t mind returning the favour,” she says, “Have at it…”

How can she be so shameless like that…

What she did to you earlier was straight-up sexual harassment, wasn’t it?
Not like you can tell anyone without mentioning everything that preceded it.
You sigh. Forget it.

She’s an absolute lecher, but she cared enough to get you into a bed – even if that bed ended up being her own.
It thankfully wasn’t necessary, but you would’ve been grateful that she was there if your body ended up handling the liquor poorly.

You pick up Watase’s clothing and toss them at her, “Get dressed,” you say.
After glancing around the room, you’ve finally located the clock, it won’t be long until they serve breakfast and it’ll be suspicious if the both of you are absent after the other managers saw you both at the bar yesterday.

You put your yukata back on as it is the only clothing you have on hand.
Ah, your head hurts. Your mouth and throat feel like they haven’t seen a sip of water in days.
You would rather just stay in bed for the rest of the day, but instead you have to deal with all this.

Watase is happy to just stay in bed and watch you get dressed.
Once you’re fully dressed, she reaches for her own clothes.

“I don’t get how you can be so calm about all this,” you say.

“Morning after can always be a bit awkward if drinking is involved, no?” she says, sniffing some of yesterday’s clothes.
They pass whatever low standard she has for them and begins to get dressed.

Are you overreacting?
No, normal people don’t behave like this.
This girl is just thinking too little of this.

“Get your phone out,” you say to Watase, rubbing your temples, “We need to share numbers.”

“And here I was thinking you felt nothing for me,” she says in a playful tone while getting dressed.

Can this girl take this seriously, please?
This might be just another day to her, but you’re not about to make the first impression your two new idols have of you being one of some kind of drunk.
Or worse and more likely – one where you sleep around with idols.

“You have to leave first, this is your room after all, and head to breakfast,” you say, “Send me a message when everybody else is there and I’ll pop into my room to change and join you later.”

Watase shrugs, “Sure,” she says, then smiles at her phone as she saves your number, “Feels like I’m back at college. Sneaking around like this.”

You clearly went to different colleges.
You pinch the bridge of your nose, “Just go to breakfast already, I’ll wait here…”

“Yes, yes, ma’am,” replies Watase, “As you say.”
She glances at a nearby mirror, picks something out of her teeth, and heads out.

Might sound harsh, but you’re somewhat surprised Watase went to college while being an idol.
It’s not out of the ordinary but being able to combine all the responsibilities of being an idol with school is quite a feat.

Hold on.
You should’ve probably told her that the both of you reek of booze. Oops.
Well, you’ll freshen up and brush your teeth before meeting up with the others even if she doesn’t.

You sit in Watase’s room and wait for the signal, thinking. This could’ve ended a lot worse.
Excessive drinking to a point that you can’t even control your own body isn’t worth repeating.
At least Watase had some morals and didn’t take complete advantage of you…
And cuddling was sort of nice. Maybe you should try dating again? Men, of course.

If nothing else, you can’t help but be a bit more understanding of Kaiba’s situation.
Affection can be incredibly addictive. Maybe even Emiko’s twisted kind that was withheld on a whim…

Jeesh, what are you thinking?

You really need to find a man before you end up with five cats instead.

Maybe Kitabayashi would be interested in going clubbing or something?
Is that cruel? Asking the girl that was interested in you to help you look for somebody else?
You’re still twenty-six, that’s not too old for clubbing, right? W
here do you even find somebody in your late twenties?

A little jingle sounds, you check your phone.
A message from Watase Yoko. The signal.
You also have an email from Matsui Tomo, but you’ll check that later.

You sneak towards your room, get out of the yukata and into pyjamas, only to walk towards the shared bathroom, brush your teeth, clean up a bit, get into fresh clothes, and head out.


Nagata’s current stress is 30. (Low)
This can always be viewed in the wiki.

You will spend two days at the resort and return home Sunday afternoon.

Time for activities
Sunday: Morning, early afternoon

After each selection, the people performing an activity change up.
Some activities may not be available until later in the day.

Hot spring, sauna, and massages are separated by gender.

Decision (Morning)
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Yukimori, -30 stress)
>3 - Enjoy a final dip in the hot spring (-30 stress)
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No further updates today.
Pic related is some Nagata Yukuta picks that I didn't end up choosing.
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
We're ok stress-wise, so why don't we socialize a bit.

Come have your fill, >>5630032 anon.

>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)

>Maybe you should try dating again?
Hmmm... I wonder...
Would Kojiro do?
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Yukimori, -30 stress)
That's aigh... I wonder if it's healthy if you add a mechanic where Miho starts becoming more tolerant to alcohol. Something that would make us want to choose the booze option when relieving stress because it's easier and easier... then we find out that the game HAD an addiction mechanic us
>>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
There are two things that fuck you up when drinking (that causes hangovers). Dehidration and hipoglycemia. Get some juice in there
>2 - Receive a relaxing massage (Yukimori, -30 stress)

>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
>3 - Enjoy a final dip in the hot spring (-30 stress)
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)

Stress is fine, let’s socialise
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
To think I almost started to think Yoko is alright.

>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
Less stress release, but right now we need to drink a lot of water.
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)
>1 - Breakfast in the dining hall (Enatsu, Ichihara, Watase, Kaiba, Matsuno, -10 stress)

She's 5 foot 2.Which is the average height for japanese women.
Still, 5''2 feels crazy short, but it is what it is.
With 120lbs she's also above the average weight.
So, we'll just say that excess weight is all boobs.
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>she's 5'2
So, she's cuddling material.
>mfw no blonde small stature big tiddy empathetic idol manager gf
why even live, bros...
Don't forget ever stressed on the brink of tears
No wonder why Miho draws in attention from Kitabayashi and Yoko like flies to honey.
With careful grace you move towards the dining area where the others are having breakfast.
Not so much having breakfast as staring at it, people are exchanging uncomfortable glances as Watase Yoko gets an earful from her manager, Matsuno Kojiro.

“First company event and you decide to get blackout drunk?” he asks, “It’s like we pulled a bum from under a bridge and put them at our breakfast table.
We could smell you coming before you even entered the room!”

Watase Yoko simply leans away and rolls her eyes, “I’m here now, aren’t I?”

Matsuno Kojiro glances at the gathered crowd, “It’s time you’d show me some respect as your manager!” he cries, trying to save face.

“Respect?” shouts Watase, slamming a hand on the table, “Why? You haven’t done anything for me and we’re the same age!”

“I got you this job,” shouts Matsuno, getting similarly heated and standing.

“I can get another just as easy,” retorts Watase.

This is a whole other side of Watase.
Her behaviour to you hasn’t been like this in the slightest.

Matsuno runs a hand over his face and groans, “Look,” he says, “All I’m asking is that you condone yourself in a professional manner at…”
He finally seems to notice that the both of them are making a scene. ”We’ll talk about this later,” he says.

“We won’t,” says Watase, clutching her head, “You got a problem? Say it.”

You don’t envy Watase for getting into heated discussion like this when she’s probably as hungover as you.
Not that two people shouting at each other is beneficial to your own headache.

Then Matsuno points at you, “Nagata-san was there drinking with you, but here she is! Dressed proper, doesn’t reek of drink, and ever professional,” he says, “That’s because she knows her limits!”

You manage a thin smile, but inside you’re screaming.

Matsuno sighs, then gestures wildly, “Look! All of Nagata-san’s idols are well-behaved,” he shouts.

You glance at each of the idols.
Chigusa Iki is sipping on tea, ignoring the entire conversation.
Enatsu Mari is holding up her hands defensively, her gaze switching between both parties, not knowing how to make them stop.
Kaiba is... either high or extremely sleep deprived.

“Nagata-san,” says Matsuno, “How do you manage it? Can you talk some sense to this girl?”

“Yeah,” says Watase, “Say something…”

>1 - Keep quiet. Don’t get involved. Hope it passes.
>2 - Jump to the defence of Watase, tell Matsuno he should calm down.
>3 - Agree with Matsuno. She should be more mindful of environment.
>4 - Write-in
No further updates.
Sorry, I didn't have much time today so only a small, bland update.
>You manage a thin smile, but inside you’re screaming.
Pulled into an argument while hungover sounds hellish.

I don't know what to choose. Matsuno is high strung due to losing Sumi and still harbors a grudge against Riko, and Watase has a strong character. We woke up next to Watase so...that seems like a no go arguing against her, maybe she might respect that.
>maybe she might respect that
I meant arguing against her she might respect not keeping quiet.
>3 - Agree with Matsuno. She should be more mindful of environment.
Hypocrisy? I don't know, just because we did a wrong doesn't mean we don't know what is right

>1 - Keep quiet. Don’t get involved. Hope it passes.
>>3 - Agree with Matsuno. She should be more mindful of environment.
>4 - Admit you got hammered, too, and are just hiding it better, in part thanks to Watase. Bow, apologize, promise to do better.
>4 - Write-in
>Admit that you got piss drunk.
>If this is about appearances, I understand the concern because Yoko yes, Yoko is an idol, but if that's the case then she needs training, not an earful
>4 - Write-in
>"Oh, Matsuno-san, I wanted to talk with you about something"
>Take him out of sight of Watase and ask about the technicalities of organizing an idol band until he calms down
If Watase won't use this time to clean up her act enough not to trigger him again when he returns, that's on her.
After that bout of sexual harassment we really should just throw her under the bus, but I'm soft.

We did pick the softest manager after all
>1 - Keep quiet. Don’t get involved. Hope it passes. (x1)
>3 - Agree with Matsuno. She should be more mindful of environment (x 2)
>4a - Admit that you got piss drunk. (x3, counting >>5640911 as same)
>4b - "Oh, Matsuno-san, I wanted to talk with you about something" (x1)

>4a - Admit that you got piss drunk. (x3, counting >>5640911 as same)
Meta vote while I work on the update. (I am procrastinating on actual work)
As mentioned, some of the idols have brothers / sisters.
Now, the "anime" way to refer to these is "Onii-chan / Imouto".
Which, to be honest, feels like a gut punch of cringe.

However, I'm already using "Senpai" and stuff, so I don't mind sinking lower.

How to refer to siblings
>1 - Onii-chan / Otouto / Onee-san / Imouto
>2 - Older brother / Younger brother / Older sister / Younger sister

There'll also be many times where they simply refer to each other by name.
>2 - Older brother / Younger brother / Older sister / Younger sister
Honestly, simply directly translating to English sounds even more cringe to me. Either adapt the speech patterns to English completely, or leave it in Japanese
>Admit that we were drunk
Aaaah, how I missed this! The Bad Voting Curse is back at full force! Good job making Miho look like a irresponsible drunkard (in front of her idols, mind you) a day before the scandal.

>How to refer to siblings
>2 - Older brother / Younger brother / Older sister / Younger sister
Using the "anime" terms in a English written story would feel off. Even the EN localization of Persona, the weebest game I've ever played, uses honorifics, senpai and stuff but still refer to parents in the english way.

Scratching your cheek, you laugh quietly, “Actually, I was pretty out of it myself,” you say, “Far worse than Watase-san…”

Watase smiles, folds her arms, and nods knowingly, “A downright mess,” she says, then laughs boisterously, “I wasn’t gonna say anything, but since you admitted it yourself – yeah, a total wreck.”

You let out an embarrassed chuckle, “Watase-san…that’s…”
Take a hint, please.

“Could barely walk!” continues Watase, then slaps her knee and laughs some more.
Then looks at the other idols, “You girls are lucky, at least your manager knows how to have fun!”
“Unlike some people…” she adds.

Watase-san, please stop talking.

Matsuno clicks his tongue, “There’s a time and place for such things and here and now isn’t it.” He sits back down, “I figured you’d know such things, Nagata-san.”

Enatsu Mari pipes up, “My dad says getting drunk is a privilege of adults,” she says, then reaching for some rice.
It doesn’t seem like she minds either way. She just wants the fighting to stop.

Beside her sits Chigusa Iki, sipping green tea from a clay cup.
She doesn’t say anything, but as far as you can read Chigusa’s limited expression, she seems disappointed.

Sighing, Matsuno refuses to let the matter go, “Even so,” he says, turning to Watase, “Nagata-san, didn’t come in looking and smelling like something coughed out by a bar after closing.”

Watase slams her fists on the table, “Hah? What’s your problem with me?”

Matsuno points an accusing finger, “Your attitude! Your trashy attitude!”

Knuckles whitening as she pulls her hand into a fist, Watase rises to her feet.
She stares at Matsuno with eyes full of hatred, then turns away, “Aaahh… I’m not hungry after all,” she says, walking away.

The mood is definitely ruined.
You sit down beside Kaiba and all of you eat breakfast, the silence only broken to ask somebody to pass along a side-dish.
Matsuno is the first to excuse himself, he pulls what seems to be a carton of cigarettes from his pocket as he heads outside.
You didn’t take him for a smoker, but suppose that’s his way to deal with the sudden stress.

“…Does anyone want to go in the hot spring in a bit…?” tries Enatsu Mari.
You assume she wants to wait a little while since she has just eaten.