Although the pin was fortunately still in, it was something more dangerous than magic.
The young girl stuck out her tongue
“ ‘Aha’ my ass! What on earth are you carrying?”
Her attitude from up till now seemed to have disappeared, and while smiling forcibly, Flika let out a sulk.
“Don’t you think Tokyo Ikai is a dangerous place for a feeble young girl to live in?”
Looking closely at her jacket, not only hand grenades, but also a number of grips that looked like they belonged to handguns could also be seen.
“What are dangerous are the things that you’re carrying right now. Or rather, don’t tell me—”
“—The one who blew a hole in the wall of the shop, was you.”
Shuuya raised his voice angrily.
Though he was sure that it was the work of a magic user……
The young girl looked down as if she was hurt.
Seeing such behavior, Toushirou gulped.
“Since I was being chased by that so called “magic user”, it couldn’t be helped. For a pure and just citizen to protect herself from dangerous people, don’t you think that arming herself is the only way?”
Her pitiful exterior was rendered useless by those words.
“Please look up in the dictionary the meaning of pure and just.”
Even though he was being pushed to wits end, Toushirou replied instinctively.
—So she’s that kind of girl……!
Most probably, she was being docile because she met them for the first time. It seems like this was her true personality.
Then, he let out a lamenting sigh.
—As I thought, this girl, is completely different from Fleu isn’t she?
He didn’t want to think that they were one and the same.
“It was something that couldn’t be helped. In the first place, between an ill-fated beautiful young girl and a vicious person spewing out electricity, who do you think is in the wrong? It’s obviously that vicious person.”
“Just keep quiet and wipe the cups. And in the first place, you’re no different from a vicious person.”
After her guns and explosives were exposed, it seemed that she had stopped being obedient. While smiling coldly, Flika let out a grumble.
Even though her mouth was in the shape of a smile, her eyes were as lifeless as if she had just heard a boring joke. You could say that her eyes were half closed. More than just unhappy, it looked like there were no emotions in them in the first place.
It was as if she was filled with emotions, and at the same time, it was as if everything about her was completely made up. It felt as though one was talking to a very well made doll.
It was because of such a facial expression that you couldn’t tell whether or not she was angry or that she was simply trying to conjure up a string of excuses.
While grumbling and complaining, Flika was washing plates behind the counter.
—For the repair fees, she had to work to pay them off—
Just that few words from Shuuya, and Flika rose from being a client to a part timer. Although Shuuya was the last person he wanted to hear telling others to work, but it couldn’t be helped.
That being said, the repair cost for the wall that got completely blown up would cost no less than a hundred thousand yen even with the most lenient of estimations.
Such an amount is unlikely to be repaid just by working part time, so for the time being, her working for free is being used as a bond until she pays the retaining fee.
—That being said, will it also be a problem to let her work in that outfit?
Even though the outside is freezing, the heating inside the shop was working. Regardless, she stubbornly refused to remove her coat. Hidden inside was a mountain of firearms. Even though she was a vicious person, it was true that she had been running about, and her clothes were soiled here and there.
This wasn’t an outfit of someone working in a kitchen.
Toushirou called out to Shuuya who was crying himself to sleep inside the shop.
“Shuuya san, I don’t suppose you have a uniform for girls in your shop do you?”
“Ah—…..? There are some in the changing room right? Use it as you please.”
Hearing that same listless voice, Toushirou’s head hurt.
—Why is it that I’m the one who has to worry about all these things and not Shuuya san?
Normally, the employee’s uniform is something that should be handled by the employer himself.
“Ageha san, excuse me for a moment. Flika, come with me.”
Informing the customer, Toushirou led Flika further into the counter.
Entering the blind spot from the customers’ seats, one could see a door affixed with a plate with “Staff Only” written on it, and a flight of stairs that led to the basement. Behind the door was the lounge and the basement was used as a storage for coffee beans and the likes.
Opening the door of the lounge, there was a huge table in the middle that was lined with several pipe chairs. Drinks, sweets and old magazines—a variety of trash lay scattered around. A huge contrast to the dignified interior of the shop, it was like a physical manifestation of Shuuya’s sloppiness.
Along the wall were an accounting computer and a safe, but he had never once seen either of the two functioning properly.
On top of the table, Shuuya was opening up a gravure magazine. Somehow it seems that there was a let up on the repair administration.
“Shuuya san, there’s a girl here for the time being so could you please not open up such books?”
“Shuddap. This is the only thing that can heal my broken heart right now.”
“Don’t come to me if you get sued for sexual harassment alright?”
After closing his eyes like he was deliberating over something, Shuuya shut the magazine as if it couldn’t be helped.
“We…well, I’m a gentleman after all. Such things certainly ain’t good. Yup.”
“What are you, a loser?”
Looking at him with eyes of contempt, Toushirou proceeded into the lounge. Partitioned off by a curtain was a small space created for lockers and shelves, and it also serves as a changing room. Although one of the lockers was allocated to Toushirou, other than using it to store his uniform, he hardly uses it.
Though it was his first time opening a locker other than his own, he found a women’s uniform as soon as he opened the one beside his.
It looked exactly the same as the men’s uniform Toushirou was wearing except for the fact that the bottom was a skirt and the shirt was frilled.
—Flika’s size, is probably an ‘S’?
He took out a uniform and passed it to Flika.
“I think this size should be fine, but if it’s too small please find a bigger one.”
“Though I think it won’t happen, if Shuuya san comes over to peek feel free to shoot him.”
“‘Okay’ my ass! In the first place, why would I be interested in seeing this kid nude?”
As expected, it seemed that he overheard it. Shuuya raised his voice defensively.
“……it’s okay if I shoot him?”
“Please do it after it actually happens.”
Replied Toushirou with a sigh as Flika was about to take out her gun, smiling.
Then, Flika looked directly above her head.
“Does that window there, not have a curtain?”
At the top of the changing room, there was a small window.
“It doesn’t, though it’s made of frosted glass and it’s close to the second floor so no one will be able to peek at you. Relax.”
“It’s also locked from the inside right?”
Even as Toushirou tilted his head in confusion at the seemingly specific questions, he nodded, to which Flika laughed understandingly.
“Well, I’m going to change so could you leave me be?”
“Yeah sure. Please come back to the counter after you’re done changing.”
Informed Toushirou as he left the changing room.
When he returned to the counter, Ageha started tapping the table loudly.
“Another cup of cocoa again?”
“No, even though I’d like to, I wonder how you’re going to actually do it.”
“What do you mean by ‘how’?”
A seemingly pitiful expression appeared on Ageha’s face as she took a quick look at the huge whole in the wall.
“Ah….. As expected, even though it isn’t to the point where the shop has to close down, it seems that the days of beansprouts and rice will continue a little longer.”
Worst comes to worst, it’ll probably be better for Toushirou to be prepared to have his salary be delayed for a month yet again.
—I wonder if I should consider switching jobs or taking on a side job……
However, half of his time was already devoted to a side job that is as an odd job agency. What other side jobs could he take up on top of that?
As if she could tell what was on Toushirou’s mind, Ageha said,
“Surely it’ll be bad if Toushirou resigns. Since Strada which is facing such poverty, I should probably give it some charity. Toushirou, bring me a Panino.”
She probably understood the reality that if Toushirou was gone, she would have no choice but to drink Shuuya’s cocoa. Although it was rare that she would order anything other than cocoa, her attitude was terrifyingly arrogant.
“Yes yes. Ham or bacon, what is your desire?”
“Give me both. Even though it’s small, it should keep your pockets warm I assume?”
Smiling wryly back at the young girl who puffed up her chest with an air of condescension, Toushirou headed to the lounge at the back.
Normally, because orders for anything besides drinks are rare, all the food ingredients are stowed away in the large freezer in the storage room.
Entering the counter and about to walk down the stairs—Toushirou heard a strange noise coming from the lounge.