Chapter 4.5-1: Summer Vacation is Nearly Over

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Ayanokōji's POV

"It's good to finally be back!" Sora said, stretching his arms behind his back.

The seven of us stepped off of the luxury cruise ship, conveniently right back to the school campus.

This school was situated offset from the mainland Japan, on its own tiny landmass within the Tokyo Bay. Consequently, ships could come directly to and from the school without the need for buses or the like to transport the students to a pick-up point.

"I'm so tired..." Lelouch complained, stumbling off the ship.

"It's 2pm..." Sora murmured in bewilderment.

"So?"

"I've stayed up for seven days straight before, and you need to sleep at 2pm?"

"Problem?"

Light, Kururugi and Ryuzaki walked back onto the ground and stood next to us. Simultaneously, we all started walking back to the main school grounds.

Countless students surrounded us, chatting happily and exchanging memories of the trip we'd just had.

"What is it, Shiro?"

Noticing that Shiro was somewhat distracted by her phone, Light asked her what was up.

"These results..." she said quietly.

The school had emailed the results of the Zodiac special exam to all students very recently. It seemed many were still taking it in.

Our Class D had broken even in class points, but Shiro had gained 500,000 private points from Light's plan involving her group.

Class A had taken by far the biggest hit, losing 150 class points and gaining zero private points total. This more or less destroyed any hope Katsuragi had at leading Class A.

"Look," Shiro said, pointing her screen at us.

On it, she appeared to have added the results to each class' current class points, and worked out the new rankings.

Class A: 874
Class B: 825
Class C: 600
Class D: 832
Class E: 296

"Ah, I see... Class A, Class B, and us, are all within 50 class points of each other," Light observed.

"The next special exam will be an important one, then," added Lelouch.

"Out of the top three classes, whoever wins that one will probably be promoted to Class A," agreed Sora with a nod.

In the upcoming battle, Class A will be a troublesome opponent, even for students of my calibre.

During the Island and Zodiac exams, Class A's potential was severely limited by the schism in their class, created by the two opposing factions within it. However, after Class A's two consecutive defeats with Katsuragi in charge, it was clear that most, if not all, of his support would have now switched sides.

Sakayanagi Arisu will be our next adversary. On top of the fact that Class A had overall the highest-ability students, giving her a wide range of units to use, something in my gut told me that Sakayanagi would be different from anyone Class D had faced so far.

And, of course, we couldn't ignore Class C. Although they were trailing the competition by 200 points, Ryūen's presence would remain prevalent no matter what the exam is; one victory for him could potentially shoot Class C right up to the top.

Additionally, as evident from the Zodiac special exam, the school had no qualms with enforcing special exams with rules that clearly favoured classes with forty students.

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