"Alright men, now that I have your attention, I need to bring up a growing issue regarding street racing."
All the cops in the room, especially those trained to out-race the street punks who were in such a dangerous sport, straightened up.
"In recent months there's been a spate of more and more dangerous antics among the street racers. We've finally managed to pinpoint the cause, unfortunately we don't have any pictures of the racer in question."
The chief pulled up a picture of a racer wearing a helmet and full body gear. There was a picture of a skull and crossbones on the side, painted in orange.
"This is the racer known only as Bones. What little we do know is that this driver is young, extremely skilled, and has more sense than half the idiots we arrest at these things."
"Sir? How can they have more sense if they're street racing?" asked one cop.
"Simple. This racer has been active for four months already and not once have we managed to catch this guy in a speed trap. All the others have managed to be corralled and arrested, but this guy seems to know how to blend in with the regular commute long enough to ditch a vehicle and escape without being seen. All the cars we've recovered that match the description of the one he's using never have any biologicals we can use to track them down, and there's never any security footage that can be used to give us a direction on where they went."
He pulled up a video, taken from a police chopper. It showed several idiots being tricked into heading towards a draw-bridge about to pull up. One fool tried to race up it, but was trapped by the bridge and had to be rescued.
However the chief zoomed in on another racer. One driving a considerably older car. Rather than head towards the bridge, it suddenly did an insane turn that caused it to veer left, towards a different bridge...that car avoided the drawbridge entirely.
Another camera shot revealed the driver to be "Bones", calmly weaving in and out of traffic without causing any accidents, before suddenly turning into a side alley most wouldn't even notice going at that speed, disappearing from view entirely for several moments.
It later reappeared several blocks away, going far slower than before and merging into normal traffic. This picture was from a basic traffic camera and it showed several police cars going away from Bones' car.
The next picture was of a parking garage, where the car had clearly been abandoned.
"As of right now, catching Bones is the street cops top priority. While they have the skill level to pull off insane stunts, the morons trying to replicate them obviously don't."
In another part of Tokyo...
The mystery racer known only as Bones counted the cash they earned from their latest race with glee.
Out of all the times they were stuck repeating their childhood, this was absolutely their favorite timeline. Sure, it was weird having an actual childhood and the fact that her grandparents actually gave a damn about how her life was going. But she wouldn't trade it for the world, regardless of how annoying some of the more 'traditional' classes were.
Fortunately since she moved into the Mugen Gakuen dorms, she had gotten a considerable amount of freedom. It meant memorizing the dorm schedules and learning the teacher's patterns, but for someone trained by Reborn that was easy. A few of the teachers could be easily bribed to look the other way so long as she returned before classes start with no evidence of her late night activities, they could care less.
After all, she bribed them with the good stuff that they would actually like.
Establishing her alibi was ridiculously easy... she visited the same arcade and made sure to wear clothes popular with boys her age. Add in her wig and most people would have trouble placing her among a group of bored students.
However street racing wasn't her only less-than-legal source of income. She would take her wins and find the highest poker table that would let her join. Most of the serious players considered her a trust fund baby that had more money than sense who was having a run of good luck.
Whenever she won big, she would invest in stocks. Her grandfather had introduced her to his stock broker, and as long as she stayed within a certain limit, the broker would ignore anything she did online. It wasn't like a fourteen year old was going to big a major player on the stock market or know anything about trading that would make them a worthwhile investment after all.
She might have had a bit too much enjoyment watching his head explode (figuratively anyway) after she made more money in a six-month period than he did in the past five years.
She was practically raking in the cash, which was the only reason she could pay the chop shops for their 'scrap cars'. Basically old junkers fixed up in a hurry with stolen parts for some quick cash. Every chop shop had one or two they kept around for spare parts.
The fact she kept winning with the scrap cars was enough to earn her extra attention from the street racers.
One more year. That was all it would take to get her license. She fully planned to get one and another for a motorcycle. She had gotten addicted to racing and could see why Skull had loved it so much. The thrill of the near crash was hard to describe.
There was however one small issue that couldn't be resolved using her skills as a mafia boss and dealing with her crazies.
Fan girls. Seriously, how did her minor flirting to cheer up the shyer girls in her grade turn into this?
Haruka was in a real pickle. She had no idea how this mess had been created, but she needed a place to hide. It was hard to tell the more...loose...girls that she simply wasn't interested in studying with them. She knew all too well how damaging a girl's rumor mill could be, and that was when her gender had been obvious.
She was so used to punching her problem in the face (or outright shooting them) that she had forgotten how to deal with this. Usually she brought in Reborn or someone equally terrifying to scare the other party into submission.
Seeing a partially open door, she skidded inside and calmly closed it. Then she ducked behind one of the desks that would hide her effectively.
It took her a few seconds to register there was someone already there.
"Kaioh-sama, have you seen Haruka-sempai? He was supposed to study with us today," pouted Miki, the head of the 'popular' (read: bitchy) girls.
"I'm afraid I haven't seen him," said the turquoise haired beauty. "I did hear someone go into another room nearby."
"Thank you, Kaioh-sama," said Miki with a polite bow.
A few minutes passed and the girl spoke again.
"It's safe to come out now," said Michiru, amused.
Haruka cautiously poked her head out.
"Thank the Kami," sighed Haruka. "Why can't they take the hint I'm not interested in someone who's greatest achievement is ripping other people's self-esteem into shreds just because they can?"
Michiru's estimation of the 'bad boy' Tenoh went up a bit at that.
Haruka settled into a chair.
"Do you mind if I hide in here for a bit longer? Dealing with those parasites gives me a headache."
"Only if you don't mind me practicing," said Michiru.
Haruka really didn't care, as she had acquired a taste for classical music years ago.
She leaned on the desk, happily listening to the other girl play the violin. Michiru didn't seem to mind the audience, since the other person was rather quiet.
"You're really good at that," said Haruka. "Was that Vivaldi?"
"You know classical music?" she asked surprised.
"I like classical music, though my ability to play leaves a lot to be desired."
She only knew a bit of piano, mostly in an attempt to help Hayato get over his issues about his mother's death. She was really a rank beginner, because she rarely had time to practice. But it was a good way to get the Storm to loosen up.
Michiru perked up at that.
"I know where the teachers keep a spare piano," she offered.
"Hmm...practicing an instrument I don't have nearly enough time on with a pretty girl who actually knows how to play an instrument, or having to hide from that pack of parasites...decisions, decisions..." said Haruka with a drawl. "Lead the way."
Michiru chuckled a bit at that. Once Haruka did a few warm-ups on the piano, the two had a great deal of fun simply playing some common practice pieces. It was an incredibly relaxing way to spend the day.
On the plus side, the parasites still couldn't find her even after she left the room.
Some time later...
This had to be fate, decided Haruka. There was no other explanation for why she kept running into Michiru Kaioh by 'coincidence' so often. Once or twice was an oddity, but seven times in the past two weeks? And over half of them was during events that had them spending a considerable amount of time together, such as labs.
Michiru was equally baffled by the occurrence.
She finally decided to bite this particular bullet.
"Kaioh-san, would you be amendable to being friends?" asked Haruka bluntly. While she had acquaintances, she didn't exactly have many she would claim as her friends. She almost missed her crazies, but that meant risking the attention of the Vongola or the mafia in general.
Michiru had an odd look on her face.
"I'm afraid I'm not looking for a boyfriend," she replied.
"I'm not talking about dating. I told my grandparents I'm not interested in really settling down with a partner until I had at least graduated college...particularly considering the loser my mother ended up marrying," said Haruka. "I'm talking more about hanging out and spending time outside school that involves socializing or studying for class."
Her expression cleared up. She smiled at her.
"In that case, I would like that," said Michiru.
Much like Haruka, while she was popular she was a bit of a loner. She could barely tolerate her classmates and the backstabbing was very annoying at times. Having someone she could possibly vent to without it going around the school was something she could appreciate.
Besides, by this point she had realized most of Haruka's flirting was a force of habit, not actual interest.
It was still highly amusing that the two quickly became the new "power couple" of the school, despite not actually dating.
Haruka held up her new license with glee. And it wasn't hard to figure out, why...she could finally join the legal racing circuit, since they had stupid things like age restrictions. It didn't matter she could drive better than half the morons on the track, she had to legally be allowed to drive before she could join it.
She could put down her "Bones" persona, which was becoming more of a hassle than it was worth, and make some real money legitimately.
She didn't know what had crawled up the cops ass and died, but it was starting to piss her off that they seemed to swarm the illegal street races the second they got a hint she might be there.
It was nearly impossible to make any money while dodging them, and any accidents that resulted in the death of a cop would only bring them down on the races in force in retaliation. Something she understood all too well (and the lack of regard for them that came with being a mafia boss), but the other morons didn't.
However there had been a few desperate racing sponsors there that had recognized her potential as driver, and had given her a few numbers to call if she wanted to go pro.
The only headache would be convincing her grandparents. Racing wasn't exactly a female-friendly profession. Maybe if she spun it as a way to get used to the high speeds of a fighter jet? Joining the military was one of the rare professions both of them could agree on at least.
By the end of the month, Haruka had not only secured a probationary contract, but had also been given a special tutor to prepare her for joining the Japanese Air Force.
Apparently her grandfather had highly approved of her being in the military, and her grandmother had agreed because it meant that the odds of her following in the footsteps of her jackass sperm donor were next to zero. Soldiers were considered respectable and it raised the chances of her catching the eye of a well established family of good breeding that might fit her criteria for a proper husband.
(Her main criteria was that they had to either beat her in a fight or survive thirty minutes of her at her worst. Considering she was used to fighting Kyouya, who was called the 'demon prefect' for a reason, that was overkill for most civilians.)
The only catch was that if she was to be a professional racer for a time until she was legally old enough to join the military, she had to pretend she was a boy. Racing was predominantly male and her grandparents didn't want any 'accidents'.
Considering she had already convinced her own school that she was a guy entirely by mistake, she had no problem with this at all.