This is a fanfiction by Doughnut Gunso.
The heroics of Silver Red, the masked Ranger, has spread through the community on the next day, thanks to reports from the local press. People were talking about the mysterious hero everywhere, including the prestigious Hakuou Academy.
Although many of the students at the school were highly talented, they were young people – or even children, at the elementary section – whose behaviours were not necessarily different from their more “ordinary” peers. It means that when they talked about the issue, they would like to make their story a bit more exciting than the others in order to amuse the audience. The acts and identity of Silver Red, therefore, had been exaggerated to an unreasonable degree, and by the end of the school day Silver Red had become the leader of a Ranger team who had summoned 5 robots which looked like dinosaurs out of nowhere.
Teachers who had grown up with the Japanese version of Power Rangers, like Kaoru, laughed very hard over the rumours. There had been no attempt to stop the discussion on Silver Red, as apparently it “does not affect their studies”, according to the young chairperson, Tennonsu Athena. “The school is aware that the freedom of speech and expression of the students must be protected,” she added.
She appeared to be an eager contributor to the rumour as well with the following words: “I must, however, stress on that the discussion must be of quality and reason. For example, it is highly foolish to assume that Silver Red is a male. It could have been a woman with a very flat chest.” These words had caused considerable uproar among the students, so now the team of Silver Red varied from a two men team to a team of 12 young girls which was called “Hayata-kun’s Harem”.
Nobody could find Nagi for a comment: she declared to Hayate and Maria that she had suffered a “mental shock”, so she was staying home for a recovery. Maria agreed, because she thought it was a good idea to hide the young lady from the press, who had gathered outside the Sanzen’in Mansion for her comment. They were later chased off by “a huge cat which resembled a white tiger” [sic].
Hinagiku had also been asked for an opinion on Silver Red as well, and as she repeatedly told everyone that she had no idea what they were talking about, enthusiastic pursuers kept on telling her new versions of the Silver Red myth. The Student Council President had no response other than a very awkward smile.
It took her much longer than usual to get to the Clock Tower and the safety of her office on top of it – although she was constantly worried that the Tower might fall apart. As she entered the elevator, she let out a sigh of relief. For some reason, she found herself extremely exhausted.
New surprise awaited her, however, as she walked out of the elevator. Athena was sitting on a sofa, having tea, apparently waiting for Hinagiku.
“Athena!” exclaimed Hinagiku, with no intention to hide her surprise. “Why are you here?”
Athena rolled her eyes. “To tease you, I suppose?”
Hinagiku fired up at once. “Please stop this nonsense!” she demanded. “What was that? ‘It does not affect their studies’? The students are not doing any studies, because they are all talking about Silver Red!”
Athena glued her lips to the tea cup, apparently trying to suppress a laughter.
“And why don’t you simply leave everyone alone to assume that Silver Red is a man? Why did you have to raise the point that Silver Red could be a woman? What did you mean by ‘it could have been a woman with a very flat chest’?”
Athena couldn’t take it any more, and bursted into laughter.
Hinagiku was amused. “Is that really so funny?” she asked.
“You know,” said Athena, half-panting, “by the sound of it, you really could have been that Silver Red!”
There was an awkward pause.
“Em… no,” began Hinagiku in a defensive tone. “I – I wasn’t trying to… well, em…” she failed to finish her sentence as she simply couldn’t say “I wasn’t trying to say that I am not Silver Red”.
Athena rose from the sofa and walked towards Hinagiku. “So, I got it right,” she said sweetly. “You really are Silver Red.”
Hinagiku knew that she couldn’t deny it anymore. “How did you find out?” she asked.
Athena sighed. “Come on. A swordsman like you would never give your swords to anyone,” she said. “Well, not to someone who is in a stupid ranger suit. So if that ranger is wielding your swords, then he could only be you.”
Hinagiku said nothing.
“Although, that makes it even more curious that you indeed lent your wooden sword to Hayate,” Athena added as she glared at Hinagiku.
“W – well, it was not my sword to begin with,” admitted Hinagiku. “And Hayate-kun was dying, so…”
“Hmm…” said Athena, with no more further comment.
There was another awkward pause.
“Say something, please,” said Hinagiku finally, after a long moment of silence. “Don’t you have anything else to say?”
“Well yes, I do,” said Athena, much to Hinagiku’s relieve. “So why are you wearing that costume? Are your fashion sense that bad?”
Hinagiku sighed. “It is a long story…”
“Then make it short,” said Athena, interrupting Hinagiku. “Just tell me why you chose to go after the kidnappers in that suit.”
“Well, I can’t harm the image of myself or the school,” said Hinagiku. “There’s the Student Council election coming. I don’t think people like seeing me chasing criminals like a mad girl… or something.”
Athena thought for a moment. “I guess you have a point,” she said. “But I think you could be making a mistake.”
“What do you mean?” asked Hinagiku.
“Well, put it this way,” said Athena. “If you choose not to face situations like this with your true identity, you will never be able to tell the truth anymore. Your enemies will make sure they take full advantage of your inability to tell the truth regarding yourself.”
“I don’t see I have made many enemies in this school,” said Hinagiku, shaking her head.
“I have made my point, and it is up to you to decide whether you want to believe me,” said Athena. “However, if things turn out like I have predicted, remind me to tell you that ‘I told you so’.”
Taro was having a very bad time. The press had finally traced Silver Red back to the stage show, where they found Taro rehearsing a fighting scene. The rehearsal was cut short as Taro was surrounded by microphones, cameras and questions from the reporters.
“Look, it wasn’t me!” he tried to explain himself for the n-th time, after the reporters kept asking him the same question for the n-th time. “I don’t wield a sword, I don’t have that crazy physical abilities and I don’t have gun fights in a crowded area! It just wasn’t me!”
“So who was that? Why is he wearing your suit? Do you know him?” barked the reporters, who still had a million questions for Taro.
“I don’t know him! I don’t know anything!” exclaimed Taro. “Why don’t you people go and ask Hakuou Academy? They have a girl in pink hair – I heard she is the President – who acted as Silver Red as well! Maybe she has borrowed her costume to whoever you are looking for!”