Checkmate – The Killer’s Anthem – Chapter 5

Location: Front Gate

Arashi: But that’s okay, I’ll keep you company. I’m feeling cold because I’ve been standing here this entire time, so I feel like working up a sweat.

Arashi: Let’s practice together

Arashi: It’d be so lonely to do it alone

Izumi: Okay. Then it’s decided. I doubt anybody from my unit will come, but if someone does I’ll introduce you

Izumi: You should still at least say hi – they’re your other group members?

Arashi: Well, even if you say “your other group members”… you’re the one who dragged me into this by force. I haven’t fostered a sense of camaraderie at all?

Izumi: Isn’t it more convenient to just join us? A crumbling castle is better than being out in the open.

Izumi: We’re not so much an idol unit as we are something like a cooperative or a guild.*1

Izumi: Not only are we not tied down, but you can get some benefits if you join

Izumi: You’ve got nothing to lose by just registering with us for now. I also used to be in the modeling industry…I understand how hard it is to break into the idol business from a different field

Izumi: You’ll be pretty out of your comfort zone so you’ll probably hesitate at first at this change in environment

Izumi: I guess I’ve been in this field longer, so I reached out to you because I’m worried about you.

Arashi: How patronizing… geez, that part about you hasn’t changed.

Arashi: Haha, well there’s no point in me being stubborn, I’ll keep you company then.

Arashi: I like having privileges but I don’t like feeling obligated, so I’m not going to work for the ‘unit’, okay?

Izumi: I know, you’re the type that won’t lift a finger for anyone besides yourself

Izumi: You’re really such a terrible brat… but I guess I have confidence in your abilities

Izumi: Right now, I want to increase our strength even if it’s just a little bit, I’ll have you contribute to our cause

Izumi: We have to somehow revive our swollen, slowly rotting unit

Arashi: You say “we”…But I really don’t feel like it.

Arashi: I don’t even clearly remember the name of this unit I belong to, was it “Othello” or something?

Izumi: It was up until last year. Our leader changed this year so it’s now “Backgammon”

Arashi: It sure changes a lot. Wasn’t it “Chess” or something initially?

Izumi: Yeah, I think it’s the second oldest active idol unit in Yumenosaki Academy. I mean, I don’t know for sure and it doesn’t really matter anyway.

Izumi: Seems like Leo is obsessed with that initial unit, Chess…

Izumi: He was the only one vehemently against it when they decided to change the name.

Arashi: “Leo”?

Izumi: He’s the same age as me and in the same unit. You’ve never met him?

Arashi: Hm~  Could he be that kid who is with you all the time? Long hair, looks like a girl…

Arashi: In my heart of hearts I’m relieved, aww, Izumi, you’ve made a friend~

Izumi: We aren’t really friends. How do I explain this? He’s like a cat who was abandoned in the rain and I took him in because I just couldn’t leave him there.  

Arashi: Ooh~? You two seem like great friends (giggles) ♪

Arashi: Izumi, darling…when you’re with this ‘Leo’*2, you have the same lovely expression you used to have back in the old days

Izumi: Huuh? Don’t I always have a top tier, perfect expression?

Izumi: …Ack!?

Ritsu: …

Izumi: …W-what’s up with this dude?! Is it a dead body?! Gross, I totally stepped on him!

Arashi: He should be alive?

Arashi: I know he is because I’ve been by the school gate this entire time, but he sort of came staggering in and laid down here. Maybe he’s taking a light nap?

Izumi: Outside? Also, I can’t believe you came across this weirdo and just let him be?

Izumi: You should be more mindful of other people! Wouldn’t it be terrible if he were sick and had fainted?

Izumi: Hey! Are you okay? Should we call an ambulance?

Ritsu : Uugh…? So loud, what do you want…?

Ritsu: Leave me alone, I’m fine… You’re disturbing my sleep

Ritsu: I’ll murder any fool that disturbs my sleep

Izumi: What?! I was just worried about you! The hell is up with this guy, he’s pissing me off! You’re probably a first year aren’t you? Is that how you behave towards a compassionate upperclassman like me?

Ritsu: Mm~… I am a first year but, I was held back a year so I think I’m the same age as you

Ritsu: Just leave me alone… The sunlight is really intense today, it hurts…

Ritsu: I plan to lay here in the shade until the sun completely sets

Ritsu: I wanted to get Maakun*3 to gimme a piggyback ride back home if he happens to pass by here but…

Ritsu: I haven’t seen him at all, I think he’s busy

Izumi: Hm, I don’t really get what you just said but

Izumi: Like, you said it hurts? If you don’t feel good I can carry you to the infirmary?

Ritsu: Ugh~…. Thanks for your kind offer, but I’m okay

Izumi: There’s no way you’re okay. Look, I’ll carry you? Four eyes, come help out!

Arashi: Oh nooo~, I told you not to call me “four eyes”

Izumi: But you hate your name, right? Then I gotta use a nickname then

Ritsu: Oh really? Me too~… We’re the same then, four eyes♪

Ritsu: (chuckles) Now that you’ve been introduced, ’tis only polite to reveal my own identity*4

Ritsu: Ugh~ But what a pain. If I mention my last name here at this school I’ll get weird reaction

Ritsu: But, well, I’ll be courteous. My name is….Ku…Ma… Ritsu

Izumi: Hm? What? Kuma?

Izumi: I don’t really understand what’s going on, but if you’re in pain don’t speak! Hush now…Kuma?

Arashi: Oh my, what a cute nickname! You can call me “Naru”~ I’ve recently started not to dislike my name that much?

Izumi: Okay, okay, save that for later! We have to hurry to the infirmary now!

Ritsu: Ugh~….What’s with them~ I don’t get what’s going on, but what a loudmouthed pair.

Notes:

*1 Kanji is “union” but the katakana is “guild”

*2 Arashi uses Izumi’s “Leo-kun” and adds -san to it “Leo-kun-san.” The emphasis here is he calls Izumi “-chan” but uses -san on this unknown person, which reflects the familiarity he has with Izumi.

*3 For those who haven’t read other stories, Maakun is Mao (Mao-kun, but the o is dropped and the a is extended as a cuter, lazier way to refer to Mao).

*4 It’s hard to convey since I haven’t translated anything with Rei in it yet but he’s using some Rei diction