…What a greaaaaaat story.1
I placed the exhibition program plan I was reading on my desk.
It was considerably dense and coursing through it was some kind of indescribable and freakish aura. If Necronomicon2 was actually real, this was definitely how it would’ve felt…
Written on the cover was “Musical – The Little Prince”. It was an outrageous name that sounded like the precursor to a tennis match3.
The season was autumn. In autumn, there was the Cultural Festival. And the Cultural Festival, where everyone joined hands as an act of unity, was a somewhat dull season for those who adhered to isolation.
I wasn’t intimate or attached enough with my class that I could call it my class, but the class which I belonged to, 2-F, from today onwards began their preparations in earnest.
After some complications, class 2-F settled on a play. It was a decision born from the majority, so I wasn’t in a position to say anything. Wherever and whenever, I was always in the minority.
Idea after idea on what kind of play to perform, the result was a single nominated piece.
And that program was called the “The Little Prince”4.
“The Little Prince” is a novella written by Saint-Exupery. I think there are a lot of people who know of it from its name alone even if they’ve never read it. “The Curry Prince”5 is often mistaken as something related, but it’s actually something else, so be careful there.
The summary goes as follows:
The protagonist, the “narrator”, is a pilot who makes an emergency landing in the Sahara Desert where he meets the “little prince”. Through all forms of discourse, they come to learn what is it is that is truly important.
For something that could be claimed as a globally famous masterpiece, it was a worthy program for high school students.
But if there was one thing different… that would be Ebina-san being in charge of the script…
Right from the get-go, the character settings and summary written in Ebina-san’s plot were already potent enough to break my spirit, but I braced myself and muscled through it. It was only when I came across the lines “the planet that I had gone to had 108 levels, you see!”6 and “a certain pilot and hentai prince” that I stopped reading.
What the heck has that girl been filling her head with all this time…? I looked at Ebina-san in fear and she acted coy and bashful.
“It’s kinda embarassing…”
No, no, no! It really is embarrassing, you know! “Kinda” isn’t anywhere near enough to describe it!
I folded the printout and decided to not involve myself any further.
A gloomy atmosphere hung over the long home room.
“Is everyone about done?”
When most of the class had finished reading over the program, Hayama gave a sweeping look of the class and spoke. Originally, this was supposed to be the class officer’s duty, but for the naïve class officer, he couldn’t help but be frozen from the material that he couldn’t wrap his head around.
“U-Um… so what should we do? If anyone has any questions or sees things that can be improved, then…” asked the class officer.
There was nothing but the latter, you know…
A girl in class raised her hand.
“Will there be any girls?”
“Eh? Why would there be?” said Ebina-san, tilting her head in confusion. Stop right there, rotten Fraulein (as in a rotten miss).
In “The Little Prince”, no human female characters make an appearance. But the rose was written with women in mind, so the girls could work with that. But the rose wasn’t the only role we had to consider, as there was the fox and snake as well. It’s probable we could do something similar to how the Shiki Theatre Company7 performed “Lion King”.
Another hand was raised.
“Will this be okay with public morals?”
“It’s all ages so no problem!”
Who did she discuss the ratings with…?
It looked like the reactions of the class were concerned about how to take the news. Oda and Tahara or whatever and the guys had strained smiles, seemingly having a certain understanding of fujoshi hobbies, while the girls, excluding the few that knew what was going on, were baffled.
In that group of people, there was one person who annoyingly raised his hands going “here, here, hereee!”
“Hey, that sounds good to me.”
Whoa Tobe, being a little desperate with that appeal there, aren’tcha? A boy in love was so simple, maybe lovable, that it was abnormal. But well, I guess everyone was like that. I had an experience like that too back in middle school: I would freak out too much about trying to head home at the time as the girl I liked, but when she called me a “stalker” from behind my back, I was on the verge of tears… I mean, everyone’s on the same boat, right? Doing that kind of stuff, I mean. I wasn’t the only one, right…?
Tobe took scrutinized looks at everyone’s reactions around him and emphasized further. “This stuff is totes the bomb, yeah!? Doing something crazier than a normal play sounds more interestin’ to me!”
My classmates all looked at each other, realizing that was a likely idea, and gave it some consideration.
…Well, he had a point. This was at best just a musical and not some BL novel. I’m sure even the name of the title would give off a different impression too. If the play was going to be a stage for uncultured boys to profess their loves in eccentric outfits, it should look like a skit somehow too.
When doing a performance at an event like this Cultural Festival, the most important standards were it was “hilarious” and “different from others”. Both conditions were cleared with this script. Of course, putting aside the BL components in the script and the beliefs of Ebina-san the writer, shouldn’t this be OK as it is?
“Yeah, I think we can work in that direction too. Besides, it’s not like we can do something serious at an event like this… I can tell at least that much!”
Ebina-san was the type of person who knew how to be discreet. Then again, for a discreet person like her to end up like this, fear came knocking at my door again.
“Well, why don’t we just ignore what’s written here for the character settings for now… and we’ll go with making it funny. Is that okay?” asked Hayama, but there wasn’t a single voice that objected.
Well, it’s a Cultural Festival performance. The decision to do the play in jest than do it seriously was the correct choice. Doing it earnestly would just be embarrassing and failing could be forgiven with “it was for fun”.
It was probably better to do the play in jolly good fun with those components in mind.
“Okay, that’s what we’ll do then,” said Hayama.
He was given a round of applause. It was that moment when the bell rang.
After spending the entire LHR, our class was finally able to decide on a course of action. There were still a plethora of things left we needed to figure out, but we could actually start moving forward.
The Cultural Festival was just close to a month around the corner and this boring festival would be coming this year as well.
With a slight feeling of melancholy, I stood up from my seat.