One Week of Evil -- Chapter 4 "Thursday"

After us three were scolded from start to finish in that place, we trudged along toward my house while pushing the bicycle. But we understood without exchanging any words that inside each of our chests hopeless feelings were whirling about. True, for grade school students, the greatest terror was... a phonecall from the homeroom teacher. Feeling as we were, we wouldn't be able to enjoy the game, so the three of us sat down in a circle in my room to prepare for the phonecall that would surely come tonight from our homeroom teacher. And so began our 'meeting' to come up with a good excuse.

Completely at a loss, it was nearly one hour into our urgent meeting and nobody had come up with a brilliant plan, nor did we play the game at all. I saw off my two friends who were hanging their heads, but compared to those two I was strangely getting accustomed to being scolded, and couldn't excuse their fallen spirits. They couldn't hide their disturbance at all, to the point where Yocchan left behind her important game. I've said it many times but it's a grade school student's terror to be scolded by parents or teachers, even more frightening by far than something like Jason from "Friday the 13th." In particular, preparing myself for three days' worth of capital punishment, I was seriously starting to consider running away from home.

When night fell and both my parents came home, the telephone ringer sounded and I thought I could feel my heart flinch, but it was someone unrelated to my worries. Even when it turned 9 PM the homeroom teacher still hadn't called.
"Perhaps she was done scolding us a while ago?" I thought, and decided I'd call to check in with Yocchan and Macchan. And just as I thought, they each said that no phonecall came. Just like that our spirits regained their shine, and anxieties from only a moment ago were completely wiped away when it seemed as though the homeroom teacher wouldn't file a complaint at all.
"Well, I'll see you tomorrow!" I said while hanging up the telephone, feeling as though I could sleep at ease.

In class the next morning the three of us met face to face, and after confirming once more that no phonecall had come, we felt relieved. The extent of the damage was small in comparison to what the teachers witnessed. We remembered a few uncomfortable feelings from then, but in the morning when homeroom period was over, my classmates spoke of yesterday's incident with smiling faces, and a touch of humour.
Everyone was chatting pleasantly with Yocchan.
"You made those teachers really mad!!" they started with their abusive language. "They got so mad about two people riding the bicycle! Ah, was it three people riding? Ahaha."
Similarly, having been scolded for three days in a row, I was also accumulating anger toward the homeroom teacher.
"That's right, so why was only I scolded three days in a row? Especially the day before yesterday when it wasn't even my fault, it was really me they got angry at!!"
Everyone around me also nodded their heads to show approval. Meanwhile, Macchan had started drawing some sort of caricature.
"Done! Look at that!!"
Smiling, she showed everyone a clumsy caricature of the homeroom teacher's face, which she taped up afterward inside the locker for cleaning supplies.
Then Yocchan said, "Everyone look!" and she struck at that caricature on the locker with all her might. And laughter erupted once again as this time Macchan dealt a jump kick. One by one, everyone who saw the picture started to hit and kick it repeatedly.
"Great, let me too!!" I too jumped on the bandwagon and whacked the caricature right in the mouth.
And then, 'snap'!! It seemed like the homeroom teacher opened her mouth in a sneer... my fist pierced right through her open mouth. Without realizing that the locker door had been made of plywood, I put a hole through it. After a momentary silence, like being pulled by a wave, the spectators bustled away. Myself, Yocchan, and Macchan who were left behind by the others stood still without doing anything.
In my mind I thought, 'This is terrible... first period is beginning...What can I do??' and I was turning pale as Yocchan clapped her hands together.
"I thought of a good thing! How's this~?" she said, and took the pierced caricature of the homeroom teacher off the locker, stuffed it face-down into the hole, and covered it up with the cleaning schedule.
"Ohh! Nice idea!!"
Now it wouldn't be found. By some odds, we'd made a hole that now couldn't be seen. The way it seemed was that if nobody let the secret leak up until graduation, there'd be nobody to blame. Yocchan looked like God for a moment. Myself and Macchan applauded to her, just as our homeroom teacher was coming into sight with a clattering sound. Having overcome the crisis in a hair's breadth, we returned to our own seats in order to not be counted as absent, and from our desks took out textbooks. Now it was first period.

In any case, us three couldn't help but keep the hole in the locker on our minds, and at every break we thought about fixing it. However, even at best, the power of grade school students could not possibly be able to do it. Still, being silent about it would surely be the best way to bring us peace of mind. I was fearful in my innermost thoughts, but thought I'd tell the others not to let the secret out. The cleaning schedule we'd put up a while ago should be made stronger, which we'd do with some coatings of cellophane tape.

I hurriedly ate my lunch after fourth period and when heading to go play in the gymnasium as usual, the homeroom teacher called out to me.
"Hitoshi, come here for a moment," she said, beckoning me to her.
"Yes, what is it?" I was doing all I could to pretend being calm, but my heart was pounding so strongly it seemed it would burst open at any moment. In a matter of seconds before reaching the peak, inside my head various thoughts repeated themselves. 'There's no way, is there? The secret couldn't have been leaked right? Could it have been leaked this quickly? It's okay...' and I kept trying to behave as usual.
I looked up as the homeroom teacher spoke to me with a grim expression.
"Hitoshi, don't you have something to say to your teacher?"
"Eh? But I don't have anything..."
At that time my tension had reached its peak but even so, I did my best to stare into the homeroom teacher's eyes.
"Well, come with me," she said, bringing me to the janitorial locker without hesitation. And she stopped right in front of it.
"What is this?" she questioned me, peeling off the cleaning schedule. "Eh? Did you lie??"
The gaping hole was unconcealed and laid bare before my eyes. My homeroom teacher repeated the same words once again. "What is this?"
There was nothing else I could do. Nothing but telling the truth. Inside my mind, I was apologizing to Yocchan and Macchan.
"Well, the truth is..." and I was going to say the real thing, but the homeroom teacher interrupted me.
"This, you did this Hitoshi, didn't you! Yoshihiro and Masaru came to tell me!!"
"Ah? What??" Inside my head everything was becoming pure white.
'Those idiots...' I thought, while turning to look over my shoulder. At some point Yocchan and Macchan had come, bowing their heads with tears.

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