"H-How did you find it?"
Makoto Naegi stared at the piece of paper in his hands, not believing in his own eyes.
"We have your most precious object in our possession. You must follow our rules if you ever want to see it again."
But, even more surprising than the note, was the person giving it to him. In front of him, amused expression on her face, stood the one and only Kyoko Kirigiri, someone he thought he was good friends with.
"Does that actually matters right now?"
"B-But...Why Kyoko? You have no reasons to do that to me. And who's this 'we' you mentioned on the note?" Makoto had no doubt she was the one who wrote it. It was her handwriting after all.
"You will understand everything eventually" She gave him that small, almost inperseptiple, smile "For now I'll explain the rules to you. In order for you to have your most precious object back, you'll have to find numerous clues hidden in different places inside this academy. The last clue will lead you to your precious object. It's like a game of Treasure Hunt. You are also forbidden of interacting with any other student during your search. Do you agree with these rules?"
Makoto's mind was running wild. "Hows" and "whys" going back and forth through his head. But he still maneged to murmur a small 'yes' to his detective friend.
"Good. Are you feeling okay? You're looking rather pale. Can I give you your first hint?" This time he only nodded "Alright then. You will find your next hint behind a detective."
He immediately turned to look at her back "Not me. Not literally anyways. Well then, I wish you the best of luck Makoto. Goodbye."
With that she was gone, leaving the not so lucky boy alone in his room. Why is she doing this? he thought Who's this 'we' she mentioned? Why me?
After mopping for some time and cursing his bad luck, Makoto decided that he didn't have anything to loose anyway, so why not? Getting out of his room he remembered Kyoko's hint. Behind a detective, hum? The only other detective he knows is Shuichi, but he can't interact with other students. He stopped by her door. He was tempted to enter her room and say he refused to play this game, but knew he didn't have the balls to do that.
With a sigh, Makoto took a last glance at the door before turning to leave. Wait a second! He looked back at the door, or, more precisely, at the name plate on the door. That's Kyoko, but not literally. Like she said! When he removed the name plate from it's holder, a piece of paper fell to the ground and Makoto would be lying if he said he didn't feel a bit proud of himself right now.
He opened the paper containing his clue and read it:
"I see you found your first clue. That's good. Congratulations. You'll find the next one in a peculiar object that has a name that should not be there and is located at a room associated with cleaning."
It's Kyoko's handwriting again. This one is kinda hard, though. Let's see. Cleaning. The restrooms? Could be. The trash room? Maybe? Not sure about that. The kitchen? He should check that just in case. Maybe the bath?
He decided to look at the man's restroom first. He was NOT going to the girl's restroom. At all. After finding absolutely nothing in there he went straight to the cafeteria. He was really unsure about the trash room being the right place, so he would go there last.
Huh? The cafeteria door is locked That's weird. They only lock it during night time. Oh well. Gonna check the bath now, I guess.
Still suspicious about the cafeteria, Makoto make his way to the bath but stops shortly. Right beside the door to the public bath was the door to the laundry. How could he forget about the laundry!?
Heading inside he immediately finds the "peculiar object with a name that should not be there". That swimsuit with 'Hagakure' written on it. Why Hiro had it, he may never know, but that's fine. He's not sure he wants to know. Reaching for the garment, Makoto gave it a little shook and, sure enough, a piece of paper fell out.
"Dude, you totally found it! And I made sure to hid it pretty well too. Anyway, your next hint is somewhere musicians love to hang out. Heh, hard one right? I'm good at making riddles. So yeah, good luck dude!"
Speaking of Hiro... Count on him to make an easy clue. Heading to the music room Makoto started wondering how many of his classmates were behind this game. Kyoko would never associate with Hiro alone for something like this. Maybe all of them were behind this. Opening the doors to his destination, Makoto suddenly realized that Hiro didn't specified where in the music room the hint could be. But, the piano was the only thing there so...Yes! It's here.
"You're doing great Makoto! Although Hiro didn't give you much of a challenge, right? Anyway, imagine the biggest jerk on our class. Your next hint is in his favorite book. Good luck! And don't worry about who's behind this. Things will work out in the end."
Sometimes Sayaka scared him. Maybe she's really an esper.
At least her clue was easy. Biggest jerk? Byakuya. His favorite book? That gory one about Genocide Jack's victims.
"Just for the record, I was blackmailed into this. Your next hint is somewhere I really relate to Toko. They both stink."
Ouch. That was brutal. That's Byakuya for you. Don't worry, deep down I know he cares for us. I kinda doubt it. But anyways.
He found his hint by the incinerator on the trash room.
"I don't really know what to write. For the first time in years. Um, let's see..."
The rest is just a bunch of scrawls.
...What? That can't be my hint. There's no hint in there. Looking at the back of the paper he found the rest:
" Sorry 'bout that, Big Mac. Gloomy's sneezes are epic. So, for your next hint you have to go to the place Godzilla Tits loves more than she does donuts. Easy one right? With love, your friendly neighborhood serial killer."
To the pool then...
"Ignore everything Toko wrote! Well, at least the Godzilla part. The next hint is where Mondo and Taka discovered their 'bromance'. You should know about that better than anyone."
Shiver. To the sauna then...
"Yo Makoto! Yes, yo Makoto! Bro and I decided to give ya the hint together. Because Bro couldn't think of a place to hide it! You didn't have to tell him that, Bro. Sorry Bro. So yeah, you'll find the next one in a place Chihiro hangs out a lot. Since she's trying to get stronger!"
Great, to the boys changing room then...
"Hello Makoto. Sorry for doing this with you. But I have to. Your next hint is at the art room. Hifumi hid it in there. Between the statue's chest. He's kinda weird. Oh, I should have written a riddle, shouldn't I? Sorry.."
It's okay Chihiro. To the art room then...
"Greetings and salutations Mr. Makoto Naegi. I, the Alpha and the Omega, am here, in your presence, to give you the hint to the Golden Treasure. You will find it on top of the Table of Destiny inside the cave of the Dark Witch. Good luck in your journey, Hopeful Warrior. May the luck be ever in your favor."
...Wow. Just, wow. In the rec room's pool table, then...
"Hifumi is such a fool. I'm not going to waste my time with this. Take a gamble, Makoto. What does Sakura drink as if it's water?"
The proteins at the chemistry lab...
"Makoto, I came up with this plan in order for you to exercise more. I'm joking, but the idea is not out of my head. If you want the next clue go to the place Leon is sent to every week."
The Headmaster's office, then...
"Hey, dude. This was a sad choice, I know. Can't believe the Headmaster still keeps me in here, honestly. So many broken windows. But anyways dude, you know that classroom they used for a play last year and no one managed to wipe the 'blood' off? It reminds me of Mukuro for some reason. Yeah, your next clue's there. Good luck man."
To that creepy classroom, then...
" You must be brave like a soldier. Don't be a chicken, like your hint."
...To the hen house, then?
"Go to the cafeteria, you hopefucker bastard!"
That's just like Junko. No hint at all. All for the sake of despair, I guess.
Heading for the cafeteria, Makoto wondered if it was over. He was tired of walking and wanted nothing more than to lay on his bed and sleep for days.
He turned the door handle. It's unlocked now. He should have figured. He opened the door to-
-a heart attack. Every single one of his friends were there, wearing party hats and holding balloons, huge grins on their faces (except Byakuya, but he was forcing not to smile). There was a lot of delicious looking food on the tables, and a big cake decorated with clover petals. Oh, right. It's his birthday. How could he forget?
"Happy birthday, Makoto!"
"Did we surprise you?"
"Look how pale he is! Hahaha! Yeah, I think is safe to say we surprised him! Hahahahaha!"
"This was priceless!"
"Can we eat already?"
He was dazzled, in the middle of his classmates as they hugged him, wished him a happy birthday and gave him presents.
"I-I don't get it. What about my most precious...?"
"Oh, that was Junko's idea. She thought it would be funny to see you running around on a wild goose chase trying to find something you might think is important." Sayaka explained "We didn't want to go through with this, since it's kinda mean, but not one had a better idea, so..." "You're welcome" he heard Junko saying in the distance.
"We don't even know if you have a 'most prescious object' really. We just figured you'd freak out when reading the note and take it seriously. It worked, though." Hina said with a grin.
"Thank God you're such a naive motherfucker, right Makoto?"
In the midst of his confusion he failed to notice a girl walking towards him.
"I'm sorry about that." Kyoko apologized, a tiny smile on her lips "You looked so confused and alarmed when I gave you that note, I couldn't help but feel a little bad. Although, your reaction was really amusing as well. I just hope you can forgive us for that little prank."
Makoto looked at her in wonder "Well, I can easily forgive you all. I mean, you guys arranged a surprise party for my birthday! There's just one thing I must ask of you."
"And what would that be?"
"Did you ever find an explanation to that, um, swimsuit?"
There was a pause.
"You better off not knowing."
Then she was gone, and Makoto was left with his own imagination. Nothing good came from it.
"Okay bitches. Time to get this party started."
"Sis! You're not doing this right! Way too robotic. Listen and learn. OKAY BITCHES! TIME TO GET THIS PARTY STARTED!🎉👏"
"Um, Junko, the emojis are optional, right?"
And that's how Makoto celebrated his seventeenth birthday. Surrounded by his friends in the school cafeteria, while they danced, ate, laughed and fought. And he had this huge grin on his face, thinking about how lucky he is to have such great friends in his life. Now Makoto can truly say that these crazy people, who loved and supported him more than anyone in the world, are his most precious possession.
The party was over and Makoto Naegi was back in his room. He was happy, but so so tired as well. Not only did he run around the school (a five store building, mind you) and attended a party afterwards, he also had to stop Junko from spiking everyone's drink.
All he really wanted was to lay down and never get up. But something still needed to be checked.
"I can't believe the first thing I thought of when I read 'your most precious object' was this thing"
Opening his socks drawer and fumbling around for a bit, he let out a sigh of relief when his hand found the object he was looking for.
"No one can know about this. It would be the end of my social life. I've stalled enough. Tomorrow you're going to the incinerator. It's a promise."
Placing the thing back in his drawer, Makoto headed to bed, already looking forward to be free from the fear having that weird stuff bought him. Resting on top of his socks, the Kokeshi Dynamo waited for it's fiery end.