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~~Takoyaki~~


With the arrival of lunch time, Yukari left her class to its own devices while she went out to grab something to eat. While part of the class headed for the cafeteria, the students that had brought their lunches began breaking them out and prepared to eat them.

Kagura decided to sit next to Osaka today. The pair gave thanks for their food and opened their homemade meals. Kagura began to eat heartily from her lunch while Osaka merely stared thoughtfully at hers.

Kagura picked up on her hesitation. She looked at the open box. There was nothing that appeared out of the ordinary. It held rice and a set of eight pieces of something rolled into balls. "What have you got there?"

"Octopus balls," Osaka said as she continued contemplating her food. "Don't you think it's wasteful to kill eight octopi just to make one box of these?"

Kagura, used to Osaka's strange questions, laughed. "It doesn't take an entire octopus to make one octopus ball. You can easily get that many from just one."

Osaka stared at her lunch in confusion. "It only takes one?"

"Yep."

"That's amazing," Osaka said in awe. "The octopus must be the most virile creature in all the world if each one has eight bal—"

"That's not what they mean when they call them octopus balls!" Kagura shouted. She couldn't believe Osaka thought of something as absurd as that. If she were that nave, maybe it was time for some….



A set of Azumanga Daioh vignettes
by DB Sommer

Any and all C+C is appreciated. You can contact me at sommer@3rdm.net

Disclaimer: I don't own any of the Azumanga Daioh characters. They are owned by Kiyohiko Azuma, Genco, J.C. Staff, and ADV Films.

Forward: This is more like a series of vignettes with a similar theme rather than one story (like 'Je Ne Comprends…' was). Not all that difficult to understand since the manga and anime were constructed in similar fashion.


~~Like Father…~~


Kaorin entered her classroom, shoulders drooping low. She was depressed as always at being separated from her idol, Sakaki, and being stuck with Kimura-sensei. It was as if the afterlife was a baseball league and she had been traded from her team in Heaven to the one that was based in Hell. No wonder adults always referred to their time as teenagers as being the most miserable of their lives. Of late, Kaorin was in an almost constant state of angst that would make a shoujo character green with envy.

As she looked around the class, she saw a most peculiar sight. There was a little girl, a few years younger than Chiyo, standing next to Kimura. The teacher was in his usual state; mouth agape and glasses permanently fogged. The girl was a pretty thing, with a sedate white dress and a smile whose glow seemed to brighten the room. It made even Kaorin feel happier. That the cherubic young girl was standing so close to Kimura made the situation seem almost tragic.

Kaorin walked up to them. She asked her teacher, "Are you starting to target younger girls now?"

Kimura shook his head. "This is my daughter, Aya."

The girl bowed deeply.

Kaorin stared at the girl in disbelief. "You mean those weren't fake photos of your family you showed to us?"

"Not at all," Kimura said.

Finally finding something not of purest evil regarding her stalker, Kaorin stood directly in front of Aya and tried to make her feel at ease by engaging her in conversation. "Why did your Daddy bring you to school today?"

Aya's smile became wider. "I wanted to see where he worked. When I grow up, I want to be a high school teacher just like him."

How sweet. The girl was normal. It was bizarre thinking something normal could be produced from such an abnormal man. "You seem pretty determined to follow in your Daddy's footsteps. Why do you want to be a teacher so bad?"

"Because I like high school girls too!" She jumped up and latched on to Kaorin, rubbing her face between the older girl's breasts.

Kimura shook his head sadly. "A rival for my Kaorin-chan's affections, and my daughter no less. How tragic."

All Kaorin could do was convulse in terror at the lump that was trying to become a permanent attachment to her chest.


~~Putting in a Good Word~~


Yomi twiddled her thumbs as she peered over the edge of her book, trying her hardest to appear as though she was deeply engrossed in it. Her eyes continued darting away from the pages and in the direction of a pair of guys talking near the door.

A hand slapped her on the back hard enough to knock her glasses askew.

"Whatta'ya staring at?" Tomo asked in her typical, exceptionally loud voice.

"I'm not looking at anyone." The words came out machine-gun fast as Yomi straightened her glasses.

"Sure you were, you were making like you were reading your book but you were staring at Yoshi over there."

Yomi turned bright red. "I have no idea of what you are talking about. I was merely reading my book."

"It's upside down." Tomo took the book out of Yomi's hands and turned it right side up.

"My glasses are smudged," Yomi muttered weakly.

Tomo smirked at Yomi. "So, you're interested in Yoshi. Good for you. I was beginning to think you didn't like guys."

"I like them just fine!" Yomi snapped, then quieted down again.

"So go over and ask him out. I know he's available," Tomo prodded.

Yomi's blush doubled. "I can't."

Tomo laughed. "Too shy, huh? Don't worry about it. Let your best friend in the whole world put in a good word for you so he'll ask you out," she boldly proclaimed.

Yomi looked at her in surprise. "You'd do that for me?"

"Sure. We're buddies, aren't we? You leave things to me. I'll have the problem solved in no time."

Yomi watched as, without the slightest hesitation, Tomo walked over to Yoshi and started engaging him in conversation. She spoke to him animatedly, though Yomi couldn't make out what they were saying since they were just beyond the edge of her hearing.

It was amazing. For the first time in recent memory, Tomo was actually doing something to help her. Yomi returned to pretending to read the book, idle dreams of what it would be like to go out on a date with Yoshi consuming her thoughts. All she had to do was leave it up to Tomo to put in… a… good… word?

"What was I thinking?!" Yomi darted out of her seat and headed toward Tomo, who was doing all of the talking while Yoshi stared dumbfounded at her.

Yomi drew close enough to hear Tomo speak.

"… and she's got a vile temper; you can see it when her glasses gleam maniacally, but she keeps it under control most of the time. You're a pretty big guy, so she wouldn't beat you up too bad. And her thighs are on the thick side, but she's on a diet. Of course, those never seem to work with her, so you'll probably be stuck with them like th—"

The rest was cut off as Yomi brought her arm under Tomo's chin and began choking her while simultaneously dragging her off. "You idiot!"

"Don't hold this against her, she's basically nice…" was all Tomo got out was her supply of air ran out and her eyes began to roll in the back of her head.

Yoshi watched quietly as Yomi dragged the limp Tomo out of the room.

One of his friends came up to him. "What was that all about?"

Yoshi trembled slightly as he stared wide-eyed in the direction the girls had disappeared. "Whoa. I thought Tomo was full of crap like always when she was describing Yomi. But after seeing her in action firsthand, I guess she is violent and unbalanced. It's a good thing I discovered it before I asked her out. I'm not into abusive relationships."


~~Timing~~


Kazuki felt another one of his friends nudge him. "Come on, man, do it."

That was Ryu. He always was the first to push others into things, especially since he never did anything himself.

Other whispered urgings joined Ryu's.

"Ask her out."

"You know she's not dating anyone."

"He won't do it. Just let him be. He doesn't have the guts to ask Sakaki out."

The last statement was what settled the matter. It bolstered Kazuki's resolve, not out of courage, but out of fear of being labeled a coward by the others. He gulped nervously, then headed toward the girl. Her height made her intimidating, but since she was taller than everyone, being shorter than her didn't really matter. And she was so attractive and cool. And taciturn. That was good, because Kazuki tended to ramble. That meant they complimented one another perfectly. And he knew just how to get her to go out with him. After admiring her for months from afar (and it wasn't stalking; it was observing) he had stumbled upon a very important facet of her personality: she had an affection for cute things. It didn't take long for him to find the perfect place to ask her out on a date. There was a furry animal exhibit for a limited time at the zoo. He knew she'd love it. He just knew it.

Kazuki approached Sakaki from behind, fearful that if she met his gaze now, she'd somehow be able to read his mind and shoot him down before he asked her out. It would be the ultimate humiliation. At least this way he would be able to approach her.

Kazuki stopped directly behind her standing form. He felt like falling over. His knees were watery, and all the moisture left his mouth, preventing him from speaking.

He closed his eyes, summoning all of his courage. After several moments, he managed to blurt out, "Would you like to go to the zoo with me?"

A high-pitched, "Sure," was given in response.

Kazuki's heart felt the bliss that only the young in love could experience. He was surprised that Sakaki's voice sounded so perky, though. She tended to speak low and quietly. He opened his eyes…

….and found himself staring at empty air.

He looked all around, spotting Sakaki standing several desks away. The only way she could be so far from him was if she had left the moment he closed his eyes. But then who had accepted the offer?

"What are you looking for?" a voice below his line of vision inquired.

Laughing nervously, he looked down to see Chiyo staring up at him. He looked around, and suddenly noticed everyone watching him closely, the words, "Chiyo-chan", "date" and "pedophile" dominating the conversations.

Tomo suddenly said, "Hey, Sakaki, maybe you'd better chaperone them to make sure Kazuki doesn't try anything with Chiyo. He looks a bit suspicious to me."

Sakaki nodded, shooting Kazuki the closest thing to an evil glare he had ever seen from the girl.

Kazuki felt like breaking down and crying. As of this day, his high school love life was officially over.


~~Sukeban~~


Keiko Onamuri cracked her knuckles as she sat back in her seat and waited for Kimura-sensei to show up and start class. It had been an eventful day for the new transfer student and self-proclaimed "Queen of the Sukeban". Just this morning she had kicked the butts of several would-be tough girls in the school, all but cementing her growing reputation as the most dangerous girl in school. Soon she would have a gang again, just like in the good old days at her previous reformatory. Then she'd be running this place in her iron grip.

One of her classmates approached her, a girl with a tentative gait, like a sheep about to ask a wolf for a favor, all the while expecting to be asked what flavor she was.

Keiko kicked back in her chair, resting it on two legs to show her lack of concern for the girl. "What do you want?"

"You're Keiko Onamuri, right?"

"And if I am?" Keiko wondered if this girl was acting as a herald for someone that wanted to challenge her. Sometimes would-be tough girls tried that, thinking it made them seem important. All it did was make them come across as too frightened to get near her.

"Everyone says you think you're the toughest girl in school," the girl said.

Keiko dropped the chair back on its four feet and stood up. "Who says I'm not?"

The girl became meek, trembling like a mouse. "All I mean is, Sakaki up in Room 2-C is said to be the toughest girl in school. They say no one has ever beaten her. They say she's so violent, her hands are always bandaged because of all the people she beats up with her fists."

"Is that so?" Keiko sneered. She had heard rumors of this Sakaki girl. Keiko had assumed the girl would show up and challenge her to find out who the toughest was. When she never appeared, Keiko assumed they were just rumors, or the girl was too scared to show. Keiko would have been content to let the matter be, but if others were whispering behind her back that Sakaki was tougher, it would be best to quash the rumors and silence their mouths by going to this Sakaki and beating her up personally.

Course decided, Keiko rose from her chair and headed toward the homeroom the girl had mentioned, eager for a fight. By the end of the school day, the last hurdle would be overcome, and Keiko would be the uncontested champion and given the respect she demanded.

Hurrying, Keiko arrived at Sakaki's homeroom before classes started. That was good. It meant she had time to issue her challenge for a fight at the end of the school day. That way Sakaki would have all day to worry about it, making her a nervous wreck when the time of the fight finally arrived.

Keiko walked boldly to the center of the room and shouted, "Where is Sakaki?"

A girl sitting in the seat right next to Keiko rose to her feet. The self-proclaimed sukeban was momentarily taken aback by the height of the girl, who towered a full head above her. Refusing to be daunted, she craned her head upward to issue her ultimatum to Sakaki eye to eye.

And stood there, mouth agape.

"Yes?" Sakaki asked.

Keiko closed her mouth and gave Sakaki a broad grin. "My name is Keiko Onamuri. I hope we become great friends." She grabbed Sakaki's hand, pumped it up and down a half dozen times, then turned and left the room.

Sakaki was left staring curiously at her hand.


Keiko returned to her homeroom, all but dancing on air as she entered.

The girl who had originally brought the matter of Sakaki up dared to ask, "What happened?"

Keiko gushed, "I've met the girl of my dreams. She's so cool, and tall, I'm simply overcome with emotion. She makes me feel like a bud in the spring." Keiko sighed in adoration as hearts filled her eyes. "I'll make Sakaki mine no matter what it takes."

A collective gasp filled the room.

Keiko paid it no heed. She announced, "I'm going to freshen up, so when Sakaki-sama sees me next, it'll be when I'm at my best." She practically flitted in delight as she exited the room.

All the people in class stared in shock at where she had departed. All save one, who glared darkly. A moment later, she rose to her feet and went in the same direction Keiko had.


Keiko regained some of her composure as she entered the girl's restroom and commanded, "Everybody out!"

The trio of girls, recognizing who was issuing the demand, quickly stopped what they were doing and exited at top speed, not even trying to appear that they were choosing to leave under their own terms.

Satisfied the restroom was empty, Keiko hung a plaque on the door that said, "Keiko's Personal Lavatory. Use a Different One." She liked her privacy when using the restroom, and that little warning would ensure she kept some.


Chiyo walked up to the restroom and prepared to enter it when she spotted the plaque. Remembering what she had heard other saying about those that intruded upon Keiko, she decided to use a different restroom. Being a prodigy, she could calculate information quickly, and it was clear from what options she had that this was the best course of action.

She had taken no more than a dozen hurried steps down the hall when Kaorin passed her by. Chiyo tried greeting her former classmate, but Kaorin's attention was fixated on something further down the hall.

Chiyo watched, then drew back in horror as Kaorin prepared to enter the restroom. Panicked, she shouted, "Wait, you can't go in there!"

Unheeding of the warning, Kaorin opened the door and entered.

Chiyo trembled in fright. There was no way Kaorin could stand up to someone as violent as Keiko. She had to do something to help. While she was too tiny to do anything, there were others that might be able to tip the scales in Kaorin's favor.

Chiyo ran as quickly as she could to her homeroom.


Keiko was splashing water across her face when she heard the door to the restroom open. Feeling merciful due to meeting the most perfect girl in the world, she decided to give the intruder a chance to escape with all her bones intact.

It took Keiko a moment to recognize the girl as someone from her homeroom. She wasn't sure of the name. The runt was beneath her notice. Keiko said, "This is your lucky day, squirt. I'm in a good mood, so you turn tail and get out of here right now, and I'll forget you bothered me."

Rather than accept the offer, Kaorin took another step further into the room, her jaw set in determination.

Keiko was taken aback. Who did this little twerp think she was, challenging the Queen of the Sukeban herself? She'd rip her a new one without even trying.

Keiko cracked her knuckles. "Okay, Shrimp. You had your chance. Now you suffer the consequences."

In response, Kaorin took another step forward.


"She's in here!" Chiyo shouted, pointing at the door still bearing the plaque on the outside.

All of Kaorin's old friends were there, Sakaki in the lead with Kagura right beside her. Tomo, Yomi, and Osaka followed close behind.

Despite her concern, Chiyo let Sakaki rush past her and into the bathroom. All of the other followed close behind, making Chiyo bring up the rear. Curiously, the group stopped moving right after they entered, trapping Chiyo outside. With her view blocked off by the larger girls in front of her, Chiyo had to force her way past, body tense in fear at what would have been so disturbing that the group would stop and be struck silent.

Chiyo barely managed to squeeze past between Sakaki and Kagura, then was brought up short as well. The sight before her was something she hadn't envisioned, even in her wildest dream.

Kaorin was perfectly fine, looking in a mirror as she washed her hands.

Tomo pouted. "Aw. She's not mangled. You said she was going to be mangled. I've never seen someone mangled before. This is very disappointing."

Yomi elbowed Tomo hard in the side.

Kaorin finally seemed to take notice of the girls. "What are you doing here?"

Chiyo said, "You came into the bathroom when Keiko was in it. We all thought you were going to die."

"Or at least end up mangled," Tomo piped in.

Yomi jammed another elbow in her side.

Chiyo looked back at the plaque that still hung from the door. "Wasn't she in here?"

In answer, a low moan emanated from one of the stalls, the door closed so no one could see who was in it.

Kaorin shot a glare in the direction of the stall. Almost as if sensing the ire, the moaning stopped. Satisfied, Kaorin turned back to the others. "It was nothing, really. Keiko and I had a difference of opinion. But like two civilized girls, we discussed the matter and came to a mutual agreement."

Another moan came from the stall.

"What's her problem?" Tomo asked.

"Constipation," Kaorin answered. "Why don't you guys tell me what Yukari's been like since I've left?" She ushered the others out of the bathroom, grabbing the plaque as she exited the room.


~~Jaw-Dropping Experiences~~


All of the students in the classroom watched in rapt attention as Yukari merrily walked to the front of the room, intent on making some sort of public announcement. That their teacher was in such a pleasant mood put them on edge. Things that made Yukari happy were apt to make them miserable.

"I have good news today, class," Yukari chirped. "Today's a special day. Your regular schedule is going to be interrupted. You're going to have a special class: Sex Education." A beatific smile was etched on her features.

Tomo raised her hand. "Yukari-sensei?"

"What?"

"Why are you so happy about the class?"

"I won't be teaching it. I'll get all that time off. It's so wonderful." She shuddered in delight.

Tomo frowned. "Aw, I was hoping you'd teach it so you could tell us some really ero-ero stories."

Yukari waved her hand dismissively. "Don't be silly. I'm not that sort of girl. I'm as pristine as the virgin snow."

Tomo appeared surprised. "Really? That's funny. I had you figured for the type that gets asked out a lot because of your looks, but once the guys find out what your personality is like they try to beak up with you, and you use sex to try to salvage the relationship. I guess it just goes to show you can't judge a book by its cover, right?"

Yukari brought the rolled up sheet of papers in her hand down hard enough on Tomo's head to knock her out of her seat.


Yukari had departed the classroom a long time earlier before the school nurse who had been assigned to instruct the class appeared. She separated the boys from the girls, and sent the men to a different class where a male instructor would teach them the finer points of the sexes.

The nurse introduced herself as a matter of formality, since the students saw her frequently. Once that was over, she asked, "Are there any questions before we begin?"

Chiyo raised her hand.

"Yes?" the nurse asked.

"Can a woman really  EXPLETIVE DELETED  her  EXPLETIVE DELETED  with her  EXPLETIVE DELETED ?"

The nurse stared at the little girl in shock. It took her nearly a full minute to shout, "Chiyo-chan, which one of these girls filled your head with such nonsense?!"

"It was Kurosawa-sensei." It was from the time at the beach. Curiously, when Chiyo had asked Kurosawa the same question the next day, the teacher had also appeared shocked by it and never did answer the question.

"I… see," the nurse said slowly as she turned to exit the room.

Chiyo sighed in frustration. How was she expected to learn anything if people wouldn't tell her the answers to her questions?


"I will never go on a double date with you again," 'Nyamo' Kurosawa grumbled to Yukari, trying to keep her voice low so the rest of the faculty in the teachers lounge couldn't hear what she was saying.

"I have no idea of what you're complaining about," Yukari responded.

"When my date asked me to go for a walk in the park, you jumped on his back and shouted, "No, you can't have her, she's mine!'"

Yukari shrugged. "My guy was a loser. Since I bombed out with him, I couldn't let you run off with some guy and abandon me."

"What do you mean, 'abandon' you? I don't have to put up with you sticking around me all the time!"

Yukari brushed off the complaint with a dismissive wave of her hand. "It wouldn't have worked out with him anyway. Let me tell you what would have happened if I let you walk through the park with him. It would have been the same old story. You would have dated him a while, you would have slept with him, he would have knocked you up and dumped you and you would have ended up crying on my shoulder. The way I see it, I saved you a lot of time and hassle. That means you owe me for keeping him from breaking your heart. And I intend to collect. There's this new Thai restaurant you can treat me at."

"I have never been knocked up by any guy I slept with!" Nyamo shouted.

Her cry attracted the attention of the rest of the teachers. Scandalous expressions were etched on each of their faces.

Before Nyamo could stammer out an explanation that no one would believe anyway, the crackle of the public address system filled the air.

"Kurosawa. Office. Now."

Nyamo paled. "Oh my god! That was the principal. And he summoned me to the office in the exact same tone of voice he does to you all the time," she said to Yukari.

Yukari looked at her suspiciously. "Did you do something with a student you shouldn't have? You have been pretty desperate lately. Teacher-student flings are always doomed to fail before they start. And why didn't you let me know you had a younger guy in your back pocket? Is he any good?"

"I am not having an affair with a student!" Nyamo shouted, then buried her face in her hands. "What am I going to do?"

"You can do what I do when I'm called to the office," Yukari suggested.

"What's that?"

Yukari moved closer to whisper conspiratorially in Nyamo's ear. "Remove your bra beforehand and unbutton your blouse as low as you can without actually revealing anything."

Nyamo gulped nervously. "So he'll go easy on me if I give him some fanservice?"

"Nah. When he stares, scream out that he's sexually harassing you. He'll forget all about whatever it was he was calling you to task for and apologize."

Nyamo felt like crying.


Nyamo stood before the principal, a man in his early forties who was ordinary in every way. The look he shot at her from behind his glasses was that of anything but approval. So much for the hope it was a misdirection ploy and he had called her here for something good.

"Yes, sir?" she asked nervously.

The principal braced his elbows on the desk, steepling his hands as he brought them together before his face. "It's my understanding that you had a talk with one of Yukari's students, our little prodigy, Chiyo? It was a conversation concerning the finer points of male and female interaction?"

Nyamo felt her heart sink into the pit of her stomach. While she didn't remember the actual discussion, given the fact she was in a drunken stupor at the time she delivered it, all of the girls had agreed she was… informative. She might have gotten away with it if the discussion had involved just the older girls, but including someone as young as Chiyo-chan was sure to get her in trouble.

"Yes, I did," Nyamo finally got out.

The look of irritation spread from the principal's eyes to the rest of his face. "Really, Miss Kurosawa, what could you have been thinking telling someone so young such things? Have you no sense of propriety? No shame?"

Nyamo accepted the rebuke in silence. She wasn't like Yukari. She had been in the wrong and deserved to be punished.

The diatribe continued. "Even Yukari would have a better sense of propriety than that. And what could you have been thinking, telling Chiyo that a woman can  EXPLETIVE DELETED  her  EXPLETIVE DELETED  with her  EXPLETIVE DELETED ?"

Hesitantly, Nyamo said, "Well, actually, they can."

"Oh please." He snorted derisively.

"They can," Nyamo insisted. While she would accept a rebuke for improper behavior, calling her a liar was something else. "You just have to be really flexible."

"That's preposterous!" he declared. "No woman can be so flexible as… to…."

After a few moments of contortionism, Nyamo unwound her limbs, satisfied she had made her point. "See? It can be done. Good thing I was in gymnastics. My old coach used to tell me I have a Slinky for a spine—"

Her eyes goggled at the sight before her. While she had been in her twisted state, her view of the principal had been cut off. Now that she could see him once more, he had, in the span of a few seconds, been transformed from a normal if somewhat irate middle-aged man to a copy of Kimura, right down the fogged up glasses and detached jaw.

"I've never seen anything like that in my life," the principal got out.

"Uh, yeah, it's a god-given talent." Nyamo was now seriously disturbed. One Kimura was more than enough.

The principal looked around the room. "What are we doing here anyway? I can't seem to remember."

Unsure of how to proceed, Nyamo suddenly had a moment of inspiration that would have done Yukari proud. "You were talking about giving me a raise."

"I'll see what I can do. I'm sure it won't be a problem," the principal said. He rose from his chair, went to the coat rack, grabbed his jacket and put it on. "In any case, it was nice meeting you. Don't bother getting up. I'll see myself out." He walked out, closing the door behind him.

Nyamo was left sitting alone in the office. How unusual for things to work out so well, especially since she had done something wrong. She never got away with anything, and was frequently blamed for things that weren't her fault. She wondered if this was how Yukari felt most of the time.


The principal wandered aimlessly about the halls of the school, his mind still trying to process exactly what it had seen and failing miserably. As he walked, lost in thought, he stopped as he came up in front of someone who was so like him it was as if they were a pair of matched bookends. They stared at each other for a moment, two mirror images of one another.

"Freak," Kimura said, before walking off.

 


Author's notes: And that's it. Far from my best work, but I hoped it might produce a laugh or two. Thanks for reading.

 
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