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Chapter 156 Interval Two - Part 1


 Mishuku Hana was a few meters away from the answer button a few minutes before the winner of the third event was decided.
 She was following the strategy decided by Lucille's initiative, and was in the role of guessing the answer to the question by summarizing the information gathered by the other four participants.
 She also had changed her clothes to a detective look. Combined with her own glasses, she looks intelligent. Thanks to the effect of [Pretending], which she [Looting] from Ayase, she is in the best condition for brainwork such as deduction.
 
「...But, I still don't have enough information...」
 
 She looks at her smartphone, which she uses as a notepad, and sigh. With the wall of the school building behind her, she avoids the risk of being seen, but so far there is no sign of interference.
 The following is a summary of the information provided by Lucille and the others.
 
 ・Red ball- "A", "M"
 ・Blue ball - "B", "Y", "A"
 ・Orange ball - "B", "I"
 
 There is a duplication of "B" and "A".
 But the colors are well separated, which is unfortunate considering that Marika's guess that each color is a different set is correct.
 ...Also, the possibility of Japanese text cannot be ruled out.
 The ratio of vowels to consonants is too good. If it is a Japanese sentence, the total number of characters would jump up compared to the English sentence. It is possible that not even 10% of the sentence has been confirmed yet.
 Hana have even tried to search for the word with an English vocabulary application, but she can't make a good guess.
 At least one or two more balls are needed.
 
**a
 And now, Chihiro has been attacked by Kaname and Saki, which has slowed down the search.
 Of course, he's doing a good job of attracting both of them by himself, and Hana is worried... not resentful... but concerned.
 
「It would be different if there was at least a hit-and-blow system」
 
 By then, she can narrow down the answers based on the number of hits and so on. However, she has just witnessed a student from Shibakkou Academy answering the question, and she has confirmed that no information other than correct or incorrect answers can be given.
 
 ――After that, there is another way to guess the answer from the answers of other teams.
 
 The other teams should be able to prepare their answers with a certain degree of confidence based on the information they have obtained. The letters and words they used are also valuable information.
 Either the information from the allies or the wrong answers from the enemies. Hana waits for either of them.
 And then.
 Ping! A small sound comes from her smartphone.
 On there, a small window appears on the screen. It seems to be a message.
 
『Thanks』
 
 A thank you.
 Hana tilted her head for a moment to see if the concierge function was malfunctioning or something, and then she realized another possibility.
 She wondered if such a coincidence could happen at this moment.
 Rather, it would be more natural to think that someone has used his/her ability to send a message to her - a provocation through hacking.
 
「Damn it!」
 
 It was a mistake to use the electronic terminal as a memo.
 Hana jumps up and looks at the entrance to the school. Just then, she saw a female student coming out of the school building. She is one of the representatives of Shibaryuu Academy.
 But Hana is too late.
 The third event, also requires not to attack the students coming out of the school building. Otherwise, the strategy of exploiting students who came to press the "answer" button to get information would be in effect.
 In other words, the female student answers cannot be stopped.
 She smiled at Hana and pressed the "answer" button without any obstruction.
 
「「Boys, be ambitious!」「
「That's right!」
 
 Boys, be ambitious!
 It seems that the correct answer was a witty or intrusive phrase, typical of a high school event.
 Probably, she not only hacked Hana's terminal but also snooped on other schools' phones and e-mails. If she could get the information of four schools, perhaps it would have taken her a long time to answer the question.
 Sigh... She lost the information war. She has lost completely.
 
 Now, the three schools are equal in the competition.
 And the game will be decided in the fourth event.
 
**b
* * *
 
 
「Thank goodness you're all right」
「Thank you. Although it's a pity that we didn't win, it was a good timing for me」
 
 Chihiro met up with the members in front of the entrance to the school, and smiled at Kamishiro's words.
 In the end, he never got to hear what Kaname was going to say. But in any case, if the game had gone on any longer, it would have been a battle. It was a good thing that he didn't waste his time.
 Besides, it is difficult to deal with Kaname and the others during the game.
 And for now, Chihiro and the others decided to take their chances, and to move on after the game.
 
「Damn it, even though I just took those things floating in the air on the rooftop...」
 
 Among the Shibakkou Academy students, Chihiro heard Minamoto swearing.
 Was the staff using their ability to make them float? So, there was a ball prepared in a terrible place.
 
『At any rate, it's fortunate that Shibatsuru Academy didn't win』
「Yes. Now, the school with two wins will be the winner」
 
 The next event was announced to be held on the field, and there was a 20-minute interval.
 Immediately after the dismissal, Lucille exhaled and looked back at Chihiro.
 
「So, Chihiro, what are you going to do about that first-year student over there who almost killed you?」
「What do you mean?」
「Attempted murder is definitely a penalty, isn't it? Don't you have to report it to the staff?」
「...But, in fact, I'm safe」
 
 He glanced at the students of Shibatsuru Academy.
 The atmosphere seems to be a bit chilly. Kaname and Saki are looking mysterious, Madoka and Tsukasa are looking troubled, and Shizuru's expression is stiff.
 But then, he heard a sigh in his head.
 
(Nii-san is a soft guy, isn't he? Especially for girls. Well, that's one of your good points)
 
 But at the same time, it is a fatal flaw.
 After all, to increase the winning rate of the competition, he should do everything within the legal range. He knows this in his head, but he can't hurt Kaname and Saki.
 They are victims brainwashed by Kaito. He can't help but think so.
 
 Yotsuba who was listening to Chihiro and Lucille nodded her head and quietly said.
 
「I understand what Izumi-kun is trying to say. But you know, I can't just stand by while my friends are almost killed」
 
 There was anger in her eyes.
 It was as if she would swallowed someone if they made eye contact with her, as if she would kill them with her emotions alone.
 
「I don't like it either, but maybe it was just a joke, right? Then, if it's okay with Izumi-kun, it's okay, isn't it?」
「Kamishiro-kun says the same thing even if he is the target, huh....? Are all our men idiots?」
 
 Kamishiro and Chihiro exchanged a look at each other at Hana's venomous remark.
 Well, they couldn't argue with her.
 
「Anyway, I can't overlook the fact that there was a clear threat to your life. No matter what Izumi-kun himself says, I can't change my mind」
「...I understand」
 
 "If this is what you really want, use the effect of [Domination] on me".
 Seeing Yotsuba's implicitly, Chihiro nodded his head.
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