True Nature (Ayana)

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True Nature (Ayana)
Date of Cutscene: 22 April 2016
Location: Seishou Middle School
Synopsis: Ayana studies extra hard for a test, but her hard work doesn't pay off. In desperation, she falls back on her true nature.
Cast of Characters: Ayana

Today was the big day. A week ago, Ikiko had promised her kisses as a reward for doing homework, and an "extra reward" if she managed an eighty-five percent on her Science test.

Ayana had always maintained she wasn't stupid--and if her Mathematics grades were anything to judge by, she was right. She aced Mathematics with ease! The problem is, she just didn't care at all about science, history, economics, or social studies.

Except Home Economics, but they let her cook in that class.

But with her girlfriend's affections on the line, Ayana found herself highly motivated to perform well. She spent a whole extra hour studying every night after dinner.

But as the test approached, Ayana grew increasingly distressed. No matter how hard she tried to study, she just couldn't seem to understand the way the elements of the Periodic Table interacted with one another.

Chemistry: the bane of all foxes, and Ayana especially.

Sitting in her seat near the back of the class, Ayana couldn't help but wring her hands in worry. She was nervous enough that at least one of the girls in class was giving her funny looks--no doubt because that girl happened to be able to see the fox ears over her head, which Ayana was presently doing a bad job of keeping hidden. Most of the students in class assumed she was just wearing a headband on days like today. This girl could see them moving--twitching nervously.

As the papers were passed back from one student to the next, Ayana's heart skipped a beat. Did she pass? The eighty-five percent would be amazing, but she was sure she couldn't have possibly gotten that. All she wanted was to pass.


"I'm very disappointed in several of you," the teacher was saying as he handed the papers out. "Very few of you did well on this test. I wonder whether any of you really even studied," he chides. "Some of you didn't even pass."

That didn't help Ayana feel any better.

The teacher laid her paper face-down on her desk, and Ayana stared at it with even more trepidation.

Some of the students groaned as they received theirs.

"You're going to need to know this material to know what comes later in the year," the teacher continued. "I expect all of you to be reviewing this material during the long break. It's likely you will fail this class if you don't."

Ayana couldn't bring herself to turn it over. When the bell rang, her ears perked up suddenly, and she looked about, startled like a deer in the headlights. As the students began filing out of the room, the Kitsune realized she didn't have much choice. She had to pick up the paper, had to see just how she'd done.

Taking a deep breath, Ayana turned the paper over.

4/20

Twenty percent. Ayana could do the math instantly in her head. She knew what that number meant.

Failure.

Not just failure to meet her extra special rewards, but complete and utter failure. She'd worked so hard! She'd tried so desperately! How could this have happened!?

Tears began to well in the kitsune's eyes as she read the number over and over again, then began scanning the test over, trying to figure out how she could possibly have done so poorly.

"But I studied so hard," she whimpered to herself, then looked up at the teacher. Inspiration struck her, wild and crazy inspiration. She could make him change it. It wouldn't be hard. Grasping the little swirling glass ball at her throat, Ayana rushed towards the front of the class as the rest of the students finished filing out.

"Arashi-sensei," she begged quietly, still crying, "Please can't you change it to a seventeen?" she begged him. "Pretty please?" The gem in her hand began to glow, as Ayana poured her will into the charm. "I studied extra hard, and doesn't that count for something? I promise I'll study even harder next time, and over the long break, if only you'll change this to be a seventeen."

The poor man didn't really stand a chance. He wasn't magical; had never been magical. The power of the kitsune was utterly foreign to him.

A little bit of manic darkness crept through Ayana as she reached out to touch him, sapping some of the teacher's energy by accident. Gloom; such a dangerous power to use, and not one she intended.

"Please?" she begged as she touched his arm.

Tired from the drain, and charmed by Ayana's powers, Arashi-sensei let out a sigh and reached for her paper. He looked it over carefully, then said, "Tasogare-san, I know you studied very hard. I know that this is your second year taking the class, and I don't want you to fail again. But you must promise to study even harder over the break. Perhaps you should find a tutor," he suggests. "Hisakata Sora-san, maybe. She's very smart."

Ayana's ears immediately laid flat back against her head at the mention of her rival's name. "Yes sensei," she whimpered. "I'll ask Sora-chan to tutor me, if only you will change it to a seventeen."

Desperate times call for desperate agreements.

"Very well," the teacher said, and reached up to change the number to a seventeen. "But I will be watching your grades very closely, Tasogare-san," he said sternly.

It was then that the tears broke, as Ayana very suddenly leaned on the professor and hugged him tightly, then took the paper out of his hands and rushed away before he could change his mind.

Now all she had to do was lie to Ikiko.

Oh dear.