Boogiepop Returns VS Imaginator Part 1

Free Boogiepop Returns VS Imaginator Part 1 by Kouhei Kadono

Book: Boogiepop Returns VS Imaginator Part 1 by Kouhei Kadono Read Free Book Online
Authors: Kouhei Kadono
Tags: Science-Fiction, Mystery, Manga
night recently. It seemed like she was monitoring his behavior pretty closely.
    “And when he does come home in the morning, he just claims to have spent the night at a friend's house? No other details at all? I mean, uh, couldn't that just be what young guys do?”
    “It doesn't seem like he's got a girlfriend! When he comes home, there's always. . . .stains on his clothes. Dark red stains. They might be. . .”
    I gulped a little at this one. “You mean, blood?”
    “But he's never injured! And his clothes never look torn, so. . .”
    “He goes out every night and comes back covered in other people's blood? That sounds like, I dunno. . . like a vampire or something.” I shivered.
    “But if I talk to the police, Jin-niisan might get arrested, and my father's always looking for an excuse to just kick him out. Please, Suema-san, I. . . I don't know what to do anymore!” Kotoe buried her face in her hands.
    This was starting to sound a little dangerous. I get this feeling sometimes. Like a pounding in my chest, like an itch racing all over my body.
    'Come on, Kazuko! You're an exam student! You don't have time to go poking your head where it doesn't belong!' I told myself.
    But. . . once before, I was almost killed by something I'd never seen, and I didn't find out about it until it was all over. It's because of that experience that I have this weird compulsion of mine.
    A compulsion to face off against darkness.
    “Um, Kinukawa-san, why don't you just leave everything up to me, okay?” I'd said, before I could stop myself.

    ***

    And so I found myself alone just outside the cram school's guidance counseling office, which was essentially Asukai Jin's personal domain. I'd sent Kotoe home minutes before. I knew that if she'd tagged along, she'd just have gotten in the way.
    There was not a soul left in the building at this time of day.
    I tried the door and it opened. It wasn't locked or anything.
    (Pretty careless. . . or is there simply nothing in here worth stealing?)
    I went in. I'd been a student here for three months, but this was my first time ever setting foot inside this office. It was tiny and dark.
    'It's like one of those police interrogation rooms from TV,' I thought.
    There was a desk next to the teacher's chair, and a computer on top of that. I almost turned it on, but thought better of it. It was probably password protected anyway.
    (There must be something. . . a clue as to why he's changed. . . )
    I poked around his desk. But there was nothing there but cram school pamphlets and various papers with notes scrawled on them about students' scores for different schools. . . nothing to do with Asukai Jin himself.
    “Hmm. . .”
    Had I underestimated the situation? Was this too simple a way of gathering information?
    “Agh. . . !” I said, flopping down in his chair. I slouched down a bit, but my skirt started rising up, forcing me to twist my body a bit. . .
    And then I saw it.
    There was something white under the desk, crammed all the way towards the back. Like a scrap of paper crumpled into a ball.
    “Mm?”
    It caught my interest, so I dove down to fish it out.
    I flattened it out. It was a page of sketchbook paper with a drawing of a girl penciled on it. The artist's initial guidelines were still left below the face. Clearly a failed sketch.
    “. . . . . . . . .”
    There was something creepy about it.
    I felt like I'd seen it before.
    Like I knew this girl.
    (Who is she?)
    As I sat there thinking, I heard footsteps from the hall.
    (Uh-oh. . . !)
    I panicked. There were no other rooms in this hallway, and the only reason anyone would come down here was to come directly to this very counseling office.
    (What should I do? Um. . . um. . . )
    In hindsight, I should have just left the room casually. After all, the door wasn't locked, and I was a student here, so it wouldn't be at all strange if I had just simply come by for some counseling. I could always say I'd gone, but nobody was there.
    But since I

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