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The Red Scarf

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Kiyotaka had always been a fan of superheroes. Sure, it was a little childish to idolize fictional characters but he couldn't help it. Superheroes were the very icon of justice and order, everything Kiyotaka stood for, so of course he was going to love them. Not only that, but people also looked up to and loved superheroes. He could see nothing wrong with being a superhero, and he wished there were superheroes in the real world. He even wished he could be a superhero. He used to run around with a blanket tied around his neck like a cape when he was a child, and saved the entirety of the city in his mind several times.

When he got older he stopped running around with the ‘cape’ and became much more focused on his studies, but the little superhero was still there, saving the world one dream at a time. That tiny superhero influenced him a lot. He took kendo and martial arts as if to stop all the villains he encountered. He often thought about being a real superhero. That way, people would love him even if they didn’t know it was him. For the kid with no friends, that was enough.

By the time he was in Hope’s Peak, he had almost completely locked up the tiny hero in him. Then one day one of his classmates gave him a long red scarf, one that reminded him of the blanket he had used as a child when he went off on his adventures to save the world he had made up in his head. The little kid inside him woke back up, and at that moment he decided, no matter how stupid this idea was, he was going be the hero.

Kiyotaka patrolled around the city area, looking for ruffians and thugs. He heard a lot about these types of people on the news all the time but for some reason when he was searching he found absolutely nothing! Its not that he wasn't happy that in that moment no one was breaking the law, he just found the timing peculiar. Just his luck you know? The time he tried to fix something, nothing was broken. He decided to get up on the roof of some small buildings. He managed to maneuver the area with little difficulty. The rooftops were mostly flat and close together in the city.

Then he heard it. Someone shouting. He made his way quickly to the alley where the shouting came from. He stopped at the roof top above it and looked down to see two of his classmates, Chihiro and Aoi, being cornered by some thug. He pulled up his jacket hood, another gift from a classmate after he had made a comment on his own stylish jacket, and the bright red scarf to hide his face. The only thing visible was his deep red eyes, fiery with passion. He took out his wooden kendo sword as a weapon, in case things went sour.

This was it, this was his chance. He was going to jump in and be the amazing hero! Finally he could be something people liked! It wasn’t till the very moment after he jumped from the ledge that he thought, 'What on earth am I doing?!'

He landed on a closed dumpster behind them all with a metallic thump and only stumbled slightly. All three of the previously mentioned looked over at him as he jumped off the dumpster. He prepped his sword but stayed in his place, taking a kendo stance.

"Who the fuck are you?" The ruffian spat out, turning around and cracking his knuckles. Chihiro and Aoi backed up against the wall some more in fear of the man. Kiyotaka opened his mouth to reply but stopped. That’s what he forgot. He forgot a freaking secret identity.

"I’m…I’m The Ruby Soldier! And you will leave these two alone!" Kiyotaka shouted and he lunged towards the man and swung his sword. The thug tried to block and swing a couple times at Kiyotaka but it became clear quickly that fists weren't really meant to fight against swords, even if said swords were of the wooden variety. Kiyotaka hit the man a few times before he escaped to the road. He thought about giving chase but decided against it when his classmates ran up to him.

Aoi was suddenly in his face. “Hey! Just who are you?” She exclaimed while pointing in his face. Kiyotaka stuttered a bit. He honestly wasn’t expecting to get this far to even save someone. So he clearly didn’t plan to when someone was asking what was his deal. He was about to say something when Aoi suddenly brightened “That was totally AMAZING! You really saved us! Thank you!” Chihiro was smiling rather brightly as well.

There is was, the only reward Kiyotaka wanted for his deeds. The admiration and praise, the love for doing something good, the stuff they wouldn’t give him if they knew who he was. It was selfish, he knew that, but he couldn’t help the feeling of happiness and accomplishment. “No problem ladies, Just helping out!” Kiyotaka said while trying to sound as unlike himself as possible, while not too embarrassing. He glanced at there faces quickly to look for suspicion. They both looked to excited to notice anything off, or anything familiar. Good for him at least. He then turned away from them “I must go now though! Farewell! And be safe!” With that, he jumped up on the dumpster he landed on, grabbed onto the fire escape ladder and made his escape. Once he was sure he was safe from discovery he stopped and thought over what he just did.

"That…was the stupidest thing I’ve ever done….”

It was true. Looking at this from a logical angle, it was incredibly stupid, but Kiyotaka couldn't wipe the grin from underneath his scarf. The rush he had gotten from that encounter was unmatched by anything he had ever done.

And he couldn't wait to do it again.

"And then he ascended the fire escape and disappeared! After that, me and Chihiro made our way back to the school!" Aoi finished up telling the story, using hand motions and the such to elaborate at parts. Chihiro nodded along and added details here and there, but mostly let Aoi tell it since she made things sound much more exciting. Their classmates gathered around listening intently.

"So this guy just jumped off a roof when he showed up?" Sayaka asked, very interested in the story. Aoi nodded enthusiastically and elaborated further. "How brave of him!" Sayaka finished, just as enthusiastic as Aoi.

Kiyotaka was among the crowd of students. He feinged shock and awe as the story was told, as his cover would be blown if he had for some reason known it all before the words left her lips. At this point he decided to speak up. "And very foolish! Jumping from a roof could have severely injured that man!" A collective groan sounded from the current listeners. It was to be expected that Kiyotaka would attempt to apply rules and safety to something fun like this. For a moment Kiyotaka pondered their reactions to him being the man they had begun to praise.

"Jeez... you sure now how to ruin everything, even superheros.." Mondo had spoken up. He and Kiyotaka had never seen eye to eye, and its doubtful they ever will, even there titles of Hall Monitor and Gang Leader clashed. Kiyotaka was about to retort, but Mondo continued "Actually no, you cant ruin superheros, they're too cool for even you to ruin." After a moments hesitation, Kiyotaka had to force himself to turn away before he could grin widely at his words. There was no way Mondo knew about what Kiyotaka was, but it had still felt like he was complementing him of all people! He quickly reminded himself it was meant to be an insult to him and regained his composure.

Excitement buzzed among the students they traded comments and opinions about the new vigilante known as "The Red Soldier" and Kiyotaka wanted nothing more than to scream his secret out to them, but he stayed silent and sat in his corner of the table, listening to the praise that was directed at him, even if no one knew that last part. Slowly his classmates left, one by one and sometimes two to three. Finally, as the last two left the room, he heard them say one last thing. "Red Solider huh? He sounds super cool!" And with that Kiyotaka smiled to himself, in an empty room.