In general, no police officer wanted to be on duty during Halloween. It was a huge amount of extra work, whether one was assigned to a quiet, residential neighborhood to keep an eye on the children running around, or to a huge street party with people all over the city to make sure that nobody drank more than what they could handle.
But Masayoshi had been getting so many ideas lately, ranging from fairly regular Halloween activities that he’d have liked to try with Gotou if the responsibilities of being a superhero hadn’t taken over the past year or so of their lives, to things that Masayoshi was clearly under the impression couples just did, and that any refusal to go to a theme park on a date or to wear matching costumes had something to do with his emotional state and not the simple fact that two grown men doing such things was embarrassing enough for him to not want the entire planet (and it would certainly be the entire planet, given how popular Masayoshi seemed to have become after saving the Earth) to talk about it.
And since Gotou had enough self-awareness to know that he’d eventually give in if Masayoshi kept insisting about how it was something he really, really wanted to do, the Halloween shift happened.
Gotou squared his shoulders and took out his notebook.
Jaywalking — no point in writing it up, the crowd was too big and there was practically no traffic anyway. Smoking in public — ticketed. Littering — taken care of with a reprimand. Sent a couple of teenagers home — they argued for a bit but ultimately complied when they couldn’t provide identifications.
And now there was a crowd forming on the other side of the street. Initially, he thought about letting it go since they were only a street or so away from the area that had been closed off for the party, and they really weren’t bothering the people around, but as the minutes went on and they still hadn’t dispersed, it became clear that he at least had to go check on them.
He wished he could say that he was surprised to see that the whole thing was being caused by people hoping to get a picture with Samurai Flamenco, but he just wasn’t.
“Listen, everyone! If you’re going to be taking pictures, I need you to move to the designated area!” Direct orders from a police officer did stop more people from gathering at the spot, but it didn’t do much to get those already there to move. On his end of the crowd, Masayoshi was also trying to get everyone to at least act more orderly, but he clearly wasn’t having much success either. He cleared his throat. “Anyone who’s still here in five minutes will get a fine!”
That, and Masayoshi’s insistence of not blocking the street finally seemed to do it, and the crowd began to disperse. Once the amount of people was down to a manageable amount, he dragged Masayoshi to a smaller side street to avoid a repeat of the situation.
“Gotou-san! So this is were you got assigned.”
“Halloween parties get really unruly in this area, so the police was sent to keep an eye on things, just in case. What are you doing here?”
“I had a photoshoot nearby so I thought I’d stop by and make sure people weren’t causing trouble.”
“And it didn’t occur to you that Samurai Flamenco showing up in a place like this would just cause more trouble?”
“Oh, no, no! they think I’m dressed up for the party. I saw… five people wearing Samurai Flamenco costumes on my way here.” Despite the way he was flailing his arms in an attempt to assure him that, yes, he had given some thought to this, Masayoshi sounded so entertained that he had no doubt he’d have heard all about it later in excruciating detail if they hadn’t ran into each other. He figured Masayoshi would have stopped getting fascinated at some point between the signings and the toy line, but he still did. “And a group of Flamengers, too.”
”We’ve received reports of suspicious activity from Club Wave.” As soon as he stopped talking to hear what dispatch was saying, Masayoshi stepped closer so he could listen as well, putting a hand against his arm so he wouldn't try to step away in the middle of it. “It’s probably nothing, but could you go check?”
“Gotou here. I’ll go take a look.”
Before he could even think of telling Masayoshi that it was probably just people being too loud and bothering the surrounding businesses, Masayoshi had already started running in the direction of the club.
“I know where that is. Gotou-san, let’s go!”
“Just in case, let’s go talk the manager before we leave.”
They were about to set out to do exactly that when the lights suddenly turned off, and when they came back on a short moment later, the woman wasn’t alone anymore — she was being held in place by two reptilian looking monsters, and the biggest one had even snatched the microphone away from her.
“We’re Dynamic Dino and Sizzling Snake, and we will be terrorizing you tonight!”
The people at the tables were getting louder now, and the expression on Masayoshi’s face quickly changed from confusion over what was happening to the one of determination that he showed whenever things got serious.
“I will take care of the monsters. Gotou-san, please get everyone out of here.”
He nodded, and the two of them made their way towards the stage as fast as they could. Masayoshi wasted no time jumpin onto it to try to get the woman out of harm’s way, while he stopped in front of the tables, where the crowd watching seemed to have finally realized that there was something wrong and were beginning to stand up.
“I won’t allow you to ruin the night of people who came here to have fun. Stop in the name of justice!”
“Everyone, stay calm and head to the nearest exit.”
Gotou didn’t get to do much, though, because as soon as people started heading towards the door, a woman came running from the opposite side of the stage and immediately started trying to pull him away from the tables. Having someone scared holding onto him was hardly new, but she didn’t look particularly afraid, and she was wearing a shirt with the club’s name on it, which mean that she was most likely part of the staff.
“What’s happening? You’re way too early, you were supposed to let them finish the introduction.”
“…You’re not the actors, are you?”
"I'm a Hidenori Gotou, a police officer."
The woman let go off him and took a step back.
"I'm... I'm the club's manager."
He had a good idea of where the conversation was headed.
Back at the stage, both the young woman and the two monsters had broken character and were now bowing apologetically. He couldn’t hear what Masayoshi was saying since he had lowered his voice to a normal speaking volume, but judging by his expression, he was torn between lecturing them about how imprudent they had been to pass off a sho as real, and trying to get them to stop apologizing.
He pinched his nose and let himself be lead to the side of the stage, where the manager's tone immediately became softer. At least she hadn't opted for screaming at him for interrupting their event.
“We’re really sorry, officer, we didn't mean to cause trouble. You and Samurai Flamenco are welcome to stay, whatever you order will be on the house.”
The next day, Gotou woke up to the sound of his phone’s alarm, and he immediately started going through his messages to see if there was anything that needed his attention before he started getting ready. He scrolled all the way back to the last one he had sent, where a photo of Masayoshi handing a rather flimsy-looking trophy to a couple that were dressed as characters that he vaguely recognized as being from one of the tokusatsu shows Masayoshi had made him watch, was attached.
Masayoshi really is a professional now! He almost looks like he was there to be the host.
Go-chin, you should enter together next year. I bet you could get the first place (*´︶`*)