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17 October 2016 @ 09:33 pm
Fanfic: What does it changes?  
Title: "What does it changes?"
Author: J.J.
Warning: It's unbetaed, and it’s sort of a prequel to the OAV...
Notes: I wanted Sakuma to be in the OAV but since he isn’t that my explanation on why.
"Joker Game" belong to Yanagi Koji. I'm merely using his characters because I love them... especially Sakuma and Miyoshi...
Do I own something here? Oh yes, I own the plot and a sensible heart which would surely break if you give me harsh reviews... so please be honest but nice ok?
Summary: What has happened short before the OAV started.

Yuuki eyed the Lieutenant from his comfortable position in his office’s armchair. Sakuma wasn’t one to waste time after he has relied a communication from the General Staff Headquarters, yet now he looked hesitant, as if there was still something he wanted to say but wasn’t sure how to approach the subject… which wasn’t also like him, as he wasn’t the sort that was shy to make questions or to speak his mind out.

Yet there were things though, that Yuuki knew Sakuma believed he shouldn’t say and it was pretty obvious his uncertain was due to them.

Benevolently, he decided to give the Lieutenant a little nudge and see if this would help.

“So, for a week, you’ll be assigned to participate in Lieutenant Colonel Izuka’s mission as he’s understaffed currently. Isn’t it a good chance for you for a promotion?” he asked.

Sakuma exhaled slowly the way he did when he really actually wanted to roll his eyes but knew that wouldn’t be proper behaviour with a superior officer… because, no matter how many times he was told not to act like a soldier, he simply couldn’t forget Yuuki was higher in ranking than him.

“Lieutenant Colonel… we both know Colonel Muto has no reasons to wish to give me a chance for a promotion,” he pointed out. It was crystal clear that Colonel Muto wanted him out of D-Agency for a short while, though Sakuma wasn’t sure why. He wasn’t being replaced as liaison and it wasn’t like his presence or absence would radically change how things in D-Agency went. Also he was just a Lieutenant with no authority whatsoever to stop whatever the Colonel might want to do so… why?

Yet the Colonel was up on something and he didn’t want Sakuma to be there… but, really, which difference it could make Sakuma’s presence or absence was something Sakuma couldn’t guess…

“So?” the Lieutenant Colonel prodded him with an amused grin that clearly meant not only he had figured out what was in Sakuma’s mind at the moment but also which was Colonel Muto’s plan.

‘So,’ Sakuma told to himself, ‘what does it changes if I’m here or not? Which sort of difference can I make that could be of a hindrance to the Colonel’s plans when the others, apparently, aren’t? One more person wouldn’t really make that much of a difference and even if I’m a soldier and…’ and then it clicked. The problem wasn’t ‘one more person present’ but ‘one person present’. He was the only one who stubbornly respected a curfew that here wasn’t demanded of him.

Whatever Colonel Muto was up to, it would be done by night and he didn’t want anyone to be around to stop it… and since he didn’t trust Sakuma to stand by, he was just temporally moving him away. Sakuma found himself frowning. He knew the Colonel loathed the Lieutenant Colonel and the whole D-Agency but this type of underhanded tricks… they did no honour to the army they served.

“So I take we’ll see in a week,” he replied stiffly. There was likely no need to explain what he had figured out. He was willing to bet a year of his salary that the Lieutenant Colonel had connected the dots as soon as Sakuma had relayed him his orders… or sooner if he had again shadowed Colonel Muto and caught him tattling his plans out to his favourite Geisha.

Yet Sakuma hadn’t managed to avoid letting his tone hint to what he didn’t want to ask, ‘Lieutenant Colonel, you’ll manage to handle whatever Colonel Muto is up to and make sure we’ll meet next week, won’t you?’ and he knew there was no way the man would miss that hint.

“Worried for Miyoshi and the others, are you?” he was questioned and it annoyed him the Lieutenant Colonel hit right the mark. Sakuma didn’t want to be worried. He knew he had no reasons to. They were more than capable to handle things and if they weren’t it was their problem and anyway whose eight spies were insufferable for most of the time and… and for unknown and mysterious reasons Sakuma had somehow grow fond of them and whatever Colonel Muto planned to do to them simply wasn’t fair

“I’m worried they’ll drive to insanity some other poor Lieutenant who doesn’t know them while I’m away. Please, tell them that even if they don’t like it, the army might need them mentally stable,” he decided to reply with a bitter smile, without meeting the Lieutenant Colonel’s gaze for once. Yeah, actually he should worry more for whoever Colonel Muto will involve and that will end up being the scapegoat if things don’t go as planned. Really, all this was disgusting.

Yuuki sighed fondly. In regard to some matters Sakuma would never, never change.

“Not everyone will play fair. Not even the people in the army. Do you still think it’s a cowardly behaviour?” Of course he did, Sakuma had this all written on his face in plain, bold, capital letters. Asking him to voice it though… was a mean question. It meant asking him to express his disapproval on the army Sakuma wanted to serve to the best of his abilities… even when said army tried to ruin him. Sakuma was in an odd position, loyal to the army and yet… in a way… loyal to the people in D-Agency as well. He couldn’t really serve two opposing masters… and Yuuki wanted to ensure that ultimately he’ll be the one who’ll have Sakuma’s loyalty.

For all his faults, Sakuma had potential and…

“A soldier’s duty isn’t to presume his superior officer’s intentions or judge them,” Sakuma stated firmly, as if quoting one of the many standard replies his military training had taught him. Yuuki knew what that answer meant. Yes, Sakuma hadn’t the best opinion of Colonel Muto. He’ll still fulfil his duty to him as a soldier though. Voicing his feelings for the man would be too close to discussing his loyalty to him and so he kept them for himself. He didn’t defend him though and this was telling enough for Yuuki.

“Aren’t you afraid for yourself? Aren’t you afraid they’ll use you as a pawn and then discharge you and that’s why they’re sending you away?” the man prodded then. Yuuki had figured out what his students couldn’t, what Sakuma hadn’t revealed to anyone. Yuuki knew such worry shouldn’t exist in a soldier’s heart but that had somehow wormed its way into Sakuma’s. Sakuma didn’t want to blindly obey to people who could backstab him for petty reasons any longer.

He saw a flicker in the soldier’s eyes, the knowledge Yuuki had found out something Sakuma didn’t want to voice but… that was all.

“When the Colonel will decide to… ‘discharge’ me, he’ll just send me on the frontlines,” Sakuma replied simply. ‘And then he will make sure I won’t come back,’ he left unsaid.

It wasn’t going to be a bad thing. In his books it was much better dying serving his country than being dishonoured. Sakuma knew the Colonel had already decided on that matter, he knew he had already signed the order. All that said order was missing was the date in which Sakuma would be transferred, nothing more. Evidently the Colonel had no idea with whom to replace him as a liaison yet, and that was why he was procrastinating but that was all that was keeping Sakuma still there, rooted in that role that no other soldier wanted.

“This,” Sakuma added motioning to the written order of his transfer, “is merely a temporal reassignment, nothing more.”

“So you might really get the chance to be promoted while at it. Is that what you think?”

“Lieutenant Colonel Izuka isn’t so understaffed he’ll need to promote me if everything goes well,” Sakuma admitted. Actually Lieutenant Colonel Izuka wasn’t understaffed at all. Sakuma wasn’t going to tell the man he checked, because it would be admitting out loud he didn’t trust his superior’s word anymore. He knew the Lieutenant Colonel would figure out anyway, if he didn’t know it already. Sakuma would clearly have no relevant role that might insure a promotion in the upcoming mission. Probably though, saying that he had took part to it would better help to transfer him to some particularly hot frontline once Colonel Muto had gotten rid of D-Agency or something like that. Sakuma wasn’t sure and, all considered, he didn’t really want to know.

“And you still don’t have an interest in our spy training,” Yuuki stated. Sometimes he too couldn’t help feeling frustrated by how Sakuma still would remain loyal to the army despite being able to see its dark sides and risking to be on its receiving end.

“I’m still a soldier, Lieutenant Colonel, prepared to sacrifice at a moment’s notice,” Sakuma reminded him. Maybe the one true master to whom Sakuma was blindly loyal was his own sense of honour, Yuuki wondered, and, if this was the truth about him, then it didn’t matter how many times the army would prove unfit of his loyalty, Sakuma would still do his duty the best he could. Yuuki sighed. It wasn’t like he was going to give up, but he knew that, at the moment, he wasn’t going to obtain anything else and so he simply dismissed him… which resulted in having in his office Miyoshi not much later.

Miyoshi too had his own interests in Sakuma, interests that caused Miyoshi to be aware of everything that regarded Sakuma and that, Yuuki was sure, the Lieutenant deliberately pretended to ignore.

Yuuki didn’t mind Miyoshi’s interests in Sakuma. He was sure it wouldn’t hinder Miyoshi in the accomplishment of his future missions but he doubted Miyoshi would manage to get what he wanted from Sakuma for the simple reason he believed Sakuma won’t allow it to happen.

Despite Sakuma having likely figured out where Miyoshi’s interest lies and, Yuuki could see, being interested in return… that stubborn, stubborn soldier would stick to what he had decided was the right course of action and turn a blind eye on the whole matter. Miyoshi knew as well but, although he wouldn’t force the other, he wouldn’t give up either.

Watching the two of them dance around each other seemed to amuse the other students who gossiped over it and tried to tease the two people involved with not much luck, both of them calmly insisting nothing was going on.

How long this little game of theirs would last, before he’ll sent Miyoshi out of the country for some mission or Sakuma will be sent on the frontlines by Muto? Yuuki had no idea and didn’t plan to share his thoughts with anyone.

So, all he told Miyoshi was that they’ll had to keep ready for whatever little game Muto was planning to play with them.

“Did Sakuma-san figured out things in time, this time?” it was all Miyoshi unsurprisingly wondered. Yuuki nodded and Miyoshi nodded back, looking pleased. “He’s getting better, isn’t he? You were right, he’s promising,” he commented, studying Yuuki. “But he still won’t join, will he?” he added with a frown.

“He still won’t join,” Yuuki confirmed and knew that Miyoshi simply couldn’t understand why Sakuma was so adamant on remaining a soldier even though he had the potential to join them. For Miyoshi, all that Sakuma believed were illusions, and since Sakuma proved he was smart enough to understand this, he should just let them go.

For Sakuma though, his beliefs were part of him, imprinted so deeply inside him he believed he wouldn’t exist without them. Even though he’d gotten aware of the weak sides of them… he saw the pro of them and believed they were more important than the con.

“Should we make sure he won’t end up in troubles in his little trip?” Miyoshi asked his gaze still on him, likely in hope he could figure out his thoughts. Yuuki though, was a way too good poker player to let himself be read so easily.

“No need. Muto wouldn’t gain anything from harming Sakuma.”

“Won’t he try to get revenge on him as well?” Miyoshi insisted. “It’s clear he feels he can’t be trusted if he’s not involving him in this game.”

“The Colonel has a better target at whom to pay attention right now and Sakuma still has his uses,” it was all Yuuki offered. He wasn’t going to explain Miyoshi that getting revenge from Sakuma didn’t really need a complicate plan or anything. As long as Sakuma remained in the army he was a sitting duck. Muto could allow himself the luxury to wait.

Miyoshi tilted his head. He likely figured out Yuuki was withholding information but also that they could wait. Or that he’ll manage to find out before it’ll be relevant. Actually, to Yuuki the fact Miyoshi hadn’t done already was relevant in his own way. Apparently even Miyoshi had things he refused to see.

“Well, if that’s all I’ll go nag Sakuma-san for souvenirs from his trip,” he declared when it was obvious he won’t get anything else from Yuuki.

“I’m sure Sakuma will appreciate it more if you don’t do it,” Yuuki warned him with an indulgent smile.

“Probably,” Miyoshi agreed. “But that would be no fun, would it?” he commented before leaving. Once alone, Yuuki sighed. That game that amused the other students… to him who could clearly see how it would end… it only felt sad. He couldn’t stop it, though, only watch it as it was played under his eyes… till the inevitable end.

JJ's Notes:
Weird bit written so as to explain myself why Sakuma wasn’t in the OAV story. *sighs* Very likely the general plan was not to have him show up any longer after EP 2 as he’s not even in EP 12 which should be placed not much after EP 2… (maybe he was reassigned?) but well, I like the idea he remained around a little longer and so that’s my version of why he wasn’t at D-Agency during the OAV.

Muto, despite his horrid character, apparently didn’t want anyone to be involved in the explosion (in fact his men made sure the spies are out) and Sakuma is the only one who doesn’t get out by night. Hence he temporally reassigned him ‘some other place’.

Also, for who’s interested to know, despite Miyoshi’s nagging, Sakuma refused to agree to bring back souvenirs. He came back with sweets though as, in Sakuma’s books, sweets don’t count as souvenirs and therefore he totally wasn’t giving in to Miyoshi’s demands.