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Chapter 71 – Career Choices pt 2

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Author: Jammin’ Rabbit Original Source: Tamaya Kagiya Artist: Himexin

Sunday.

After the disaster of a study session that was yesterday, Hitomi sat out goals to be achieved by the end of the day— we had to learn something. An easy enough thing to do for me. Mio, on the other hand, was a different story.

Hitomi’s modest home made for an easy place to focus on studying, free from the tempting distractions of my own room filled with manga and novels, a computer, and the urge to go downstairs every once in a while. Most importantly, we barred the greatest distractive factor from coming over— Hana.

However, as soon as we got to Hitomi’s place, Mio made a beeline for the futon. She came to keep us company, not study. Frankly, I wasn’t worried about her academics. They were at a surprisingly agreeable level. She always turned in her work on time, behaved long enough to complete tests, and didn’t particularly struggle at any subject despite being so indifferent and new to this world.

Rika put it best— Mio could excel at anything, if only she cared enough to put her mind to it.

When I really thought about it, I had been going through the motions of life as though training to become a robot. Plenty of people gave it their best in life, only to never get what they want. Most of us were going to end up in the workforce as office workers. That was the life my parents were living now. It didn’t interest me one bit, but I couldn’t deny that our comfortable life wouldn’t be possible without their sacrifice and hard work.

Hana, despite all her eccentricities, made the most out of her new life trying her hand in various occupations. Lewd as they were, she still gave it her all. Like trying to film p̲o̲r̲n̲ and becoming a photographer, both of which she failed but at least made an effort in.

Then there was Kaede, the outwardly shy and modest girl who suffered an abusive boyfriend. She had clear goals of becoming an ero mangaka. Her talent and perseverance in polishing her craft was going to get her far in life.

If someone were to seriously ask me what I wanted to do after high school and college, I wouldn’t know what to tell them.

We were three hours into the study session going over Japanese history when I decided to ask, “What’s everyone’s career plans for the future?”

My question caught their interest even though it detracted from our studies.

“Normally, I would tell you to save it for later. I’ll let it slide since us third years have to think carefully about our futures,” Hitomi said, shutting her notebook.

“Dad and I got into a discussion about taking over the sento,” Rika said.

“Ah. I remember you wanting to take over it early so your parents wouldn’t work so hard. How did that go?” I asked.

I had noticed Rika was a lot less stressed out nowadays. Her workload was still inhuman, and her ability to balance school and work even more so. I used to chalk it up to her getting into a relationship with Hitomi, but it seemed more than that.

“I finally got my parents to agree to passing the sento down to me. After I finish university. So I was thinking about going into business management. That way, I can make our sento the best Hyogo Prefecture has to offer!” she exclaimed.

Hitomi grinned at her girlfriend’s resolve and said, “Of course, I’ll be there to help from time to time.”

“You say that, but I’m pretty sure you’ll be too busy climbing the political ladder,” Rika teased.

“What? Is Prez aiming to become Japan’s next prime minister?” I joked, but evidently they weren’t. “Wait… are you serious?”

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“Prime minister might be a stretch. The National Diet feels a lot easier. I want to push forward laws and policies that improve people’s quality of life, and redirect the soulsucking focus of the work-first mentality by advocating higher wages and mandated paid vacation time,” Hitomi explained.

I was blown away by her answer. She thought as far as becoming a politician to help people.

Mio turned over on Hitomi’s bed and yawned. “Ya know, I can make that happen by twisting your prime minister and diet members’ brain a little. A b̲l̲o̲w̲j̲o̲b̲ here, a f̲u̲c̲k̲ there— boom, they’ll suddenly want to work towards world peace instead.”

“That’s a whole lot of old mens’ dicks I don’t wanna think about…” I gagged thinking about it.

“C̲o̲c̲k̲ and p̲u̲s̲s̲y̲ are all the same to me,” Mio said.

“It’s one thing to coerce people. It’s another to earnestly want to push forward change. Besides, politicians these days are too greedy for that to work. They will break the logic gap in your charm instantly,” Hitomi fired back.

Mio shrugged. “I’ve always said, people would be happier with a good f̲u̲c̲k̲.”

Hoping to not let the conversation get derailed into the topic of sex as was usual for Mio, I decided to pose the same question to her.

“Since you’re living in Japan now, any ideas what you want to do with your life?” I asked Mio.

“How many jobs involve sex?” she asked in return.

I put a hand to my face and sighed. “Should have known better than to hope for a normal conversation.”

“Well… actually, prostitution is legal in Japan. The catch is that it has to be with someone you’re acquainted with— not strangers. It’s why places like soaplands and pink salons exist, ” Kaede, who had been quietly drawing another masterpiece in her notebook, joined the conversation by dropping a knowledge bomb.

“Great! Sign me and Saeko up!” Mio said, excited for the first time since arriving here.

“Why do you keep involving me?” I complained.

“Hey— hold on. You two are not talking about becoming legal prostitutes in front of your student council,” Hitomi glared.

“Y-Yeah! What Hitomi said.” I joined Prez mainly to convince myself that this was a bad idea, since my inner succubus was somehow jumping with joy at the idea. Becoming a prostitute? Me? Forget explaining to my parents I became a girl— they would bury me if they found out my career plan was to be a prostitute.

I might give Mio s̲h̲i̲t̲ about her antics, but at least she had her s̲h̲i̲t̲ together.

“Is there something you want to do in the future, Saeko?” Kaede asked.

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“Geh— I knew this was coming back to me when I first asked it. The truth is, I just don’t know,” I confessed.

Hitomi looked hard at me. I was sure she’s filled with ideas and advice to give, but in the end, it didn’t resolve my motivation issues. At this rate, my career path was a NEET or prostitute.

“Our school has a career counselor you can talk to. But… I hear from other students say that he always came to the same conclusion— salary wage slave,” Hitomi said.

“What… the school should fire him. Maybe he needs some counseling,” I said.

We recommenced the study session after the depressing talk didn’t help me one bit. In fact, it only made me despair.

At some point, Mio fell asleep. I put my jacket over her so she wouldn’t catch a cold. Not that I would know if we succubi could get sick.

Hitomi reached for her cup and realized the carafe was empty. She was about to go refill, but I offered to make us tea instead. While looking for the kettle, I noticed many of the drawers contained mismatching dishware. Dry ingredients were lumped in with plates, and forks and knives were tossed into cups.

I instinctively started rearranging things, making sure to put all the matching dishware together and in places Hitomi could easily find. There were excess ingredients sitting on the counter from a previous cooking session that hadn’t been put away.

“Some of your stuff is going to expire in a few days. Do you mind if I baked us some cookies and muffins?” I asked Hitomi in particular, since it was her stuff.

“Sure,” she said. “I’ll come help—”

“Don’t worry, I can do it myself. I work a lot better alone in the kitchen anyway,” I said.

It took half an hour, and I had a freshly baked batch of cookies and muffins. Even Mio couldn’t resist and awoke to the sweet aroma.

“This is really good,” Hitomi complimented.

Rika agreed, “It reminds me of the cookies Saeko’s sister baked.”

“It feels like Saeko has more girl power than me, even though she’s only been a girl for a few months,” Kaede added.

Mio stuffed her mouth full of cookies and said, “Housewife Saeko.”

I was met with four pairs of judging eyes.

“What… are they too sweet?” I asked.

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“I think Saeko would make a great housewife!” Kaede exclaimed.

“On top of being able to cook, taking care of the house, and looking after people—” Rika nodded.

Hitomi gave the final deathblow saying, “You don’t need to worry about the future. Just be a trophy wife instead.”

“Aaaahhhhhh! We’re not talking about this anymore!” I screamed.

“Sure you don’t need me to drive you home?” Hitomi asked as Rika and Kaede were getting into her car.

I shook my head. “Mio wanted to hit up the town, so I’m going to make sure she doesn’t cause any trouble.”

We flew to downtown Tsukiji looking for a place to touch down and eat at. It was only six in the evening, and if we asked Hatsumi to make dinner, she most likely would. I texted her not to worry, and that we’d pick something up on the way back since Mio was feeling some junk food.

“I can’t believe you guys wanna spend your weekend staring into a notebook. Talk about boring,” Mio groaned.

“We got one more week and it’s summer vacation for a little over a month. Just grit your teeth and bull through. We can even fly back to Okinawa if you want, ” I suggested.

Mio wasn’t the least bit convinced that summer would be anymore fun than it was now. To her, everyday should be a vacation.

“I get that school isn’t important to you, but it is for me. Even if I’m a succubus now, I still want to live as a human. Aside from sailing, isn’t there anything you aspired to do?” I asked.

“Bea never gave me any time to think about that. The Demon Lord bred us to wage war, and that’s what we did. I’m not like Hana or Yumi who got their s̲h̲i̲t̲ together. They’ve been alive for longer than I have, practically adults in comparison.”

Mio was right. Maybe I pressured her too hard. After all I was as much at a loss as she was.

A powerful aura pricked at us, and Mio knew right away where she wanted to eat. We landed in front of a Smile Burger restaurant where the aura was strongest.

“Well if it isn’t our favorite wage slave?” Mio shouted as she skipped up to the counter where Selene was manning the register.

It used to be I had nothing but hate for Selene for turning against us. Seeing her reduced to this, sandwiched between an illuminated fast food menu and cash register, wearing a bright orange and red uniform with a silly burger hat, was both humbling and pitiful.

“Hey, Selene. You behaving?” I asked, trying hard not to laugh.

“Tsk. Mio, Saeko. Come to gloat and mock me? I’ll have you know, I’m leading a respectable worklife of two jobs just to get by. I finally found an affordable apartment in this damn city,” she said.

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“We’re just here to eat, that’s all,” I said.

“Then, may I take your order?” Selene smiled, and her voice went up several octaves, an instinctual act tempered by one who worked in the service industry.

“Uwah… Hearing you talk like that gives me the creeps,” Mio gagged.

May… I take… your order…?” Selene repeated, this time gritting her teeth.

Mio shot me a grin, leaned over the counter, and said real slowly, “I’d like to order a smile, please.”

If I could personify a blender running at max settings, Selene would have fit the bill perfectly. She shuddered so violently I thought she might actually lash out. Fortunately, I was proven wrong.

The corners of her lips creased up to form the most forced, terrifying smile only a mother could love.

“Will there be anything else?” she asked while maintaining her gruesome smile.

“Selene!” The manager popped out from the back, wiping the ugly smile from Selene’s face. “You’re on lunch break after you ring up those two. Also, remember to smile and serve your customers like they are royalty.”

“Yessir…” she grumbled.

Not wanting to bother her any longer, I put my order in for both myself and Mio, and another for Hatsumi in a to-go bag. Mio was going to be the end of my wallet. Everytime we ate out, she would order a metric crapton of food. Fast food and street food were her favorite, which was why she ordered three different burgers, a set of large fries, and a giga-sized soft drink.

I wanted to barf watching her eat.

Selene suddenly stomped out of the employee’s entrance. She took the only other empty table next to us, but saw a mother of two searching for a place to sit and did something I didn’t expect.

“Ma’am! There’s an open table over here,” Selene shouted to the woman and her kids. They thanked her and took the table, but left Selene without a place to sit and eat.

Maybe I shouldn’t have bothered, but I locked eyes with Selene.

“Do you want to sit with us?” I asked.

“Is that the queen’s order?” she asked.

“You can drop the queen— and no, you can refuse,” I said.

Selene sighed and sat down adjacent to me. She meticulously wiped her hands down with a sanitation wipe, stuffed a napkin into her shirt collar and unfolded another on her lap. Then spent a whole minute mulling over her Value Smile Meal before starting on the fries first, one strip at a time.

“I’m gonna be honest. This is a real funny sight to me— three of us sitting around eating like this,” Mio said, pieces of her burger slipped out of her mouth.

“Please, eat with your mouth closed… Think of who has to clean this later,” Selene scolded.

Mio swallowed hard and had to wash it down with soda. She then pointed to Selene’s burger and asked, “You going to eat that?”

“How the hell did I lose to the two of you?” Selene pushed the burger across the table and laughed.

Come to think of it, for someone who had worked in plenty of jobs already, Selene was a good person to get advice from. They might all have been low-skill jobs, but I couldn’t discount the fact that she had been in the workforce longer than most people I knew.

“Is going from job to job what you want to do? I only asked because I’m lost when it comes to my career,” I asked Selene.

“You’re asking a greater succubus who was humiliated and then forced to become a Smile Burger employee about career choice?” Selene stopped eating and stared at me in exasperation.

“She’s been moaning about her future. I’ve been telling her to suck it up and be a prostitute so we can do some actual sucking,” Mio chimed.

“Maybe you’re giving it too much thought?” Selene suggested.

I drew a blank.

For ages I’d been stressing over my plans for the future and the lack thereof, but here was someone telling me I was overthinking it.

“But This is my whole life. Maybe as succubus, you guys have a different viewpoint I have my family and social standing to worry about,” I contested.

“And we don’t?” she asked. “I didn’t just become a Smile Burger employee. You think flipping burgers and taking orders from lowly cattle is what I want to do? A stubborn succubus knocked me down a peg and put me where I am now.”

“I feel like you’ve been turning this discussion on me to make me feel bad,” I said.

“Hey! Your lunch was over ten minutes ago!” her manager shouted from behind the counter.

“F̲u̲c̲k̲ off!” Selene shouted, which I quickly realized was a charm. The manager slunk back and returned to his office. “I only get to do that once a day, otherwise he catches on.”

“Oooh. Big girl’s still got bite to her bark,” Mio remarked.

“If I wasn’t behind on rent, I would have ripped his d̲i̲c̲k̲ and stuffed it down his throat. Maybe I’ll do that next month and find a new job,” Selene grumbled.

“No killing.” I narrowed my eyes on her.

“Too many people are afraid of the ‘ten years from now’ not realizing the days add up to get there. Focus on what you can do now, step-by-step, like how you beat me and Beatrice.” Selene gathered our trays and tossed it into the trash for us.

As she was about to go back to work, I said, “Thanks for the advice.”

Selene chuckled, rolled her eyes, and went back to work.

“I still don’t like her. But… damn, she’s changed. Guess having a job does that to people, huh? Sounds s̲h̲i̲t̲t̲y̲,” Mio scoffed.

What Selene said wasn’t particularly worth remembering. I could randomly pick a line from a Shakespeare play and it would be ten times more profound. The simplicity of her advice was what struck a chord.

Back when Beatrice was plotting to rule the world, I would never have defeated her if all I worried was how to beat her. There were people along the way who helped, I took it one step at a time, and eventually overcame her.

As we’re flying home, Mio had a sudden epiphany.

“Think I’ll give this whole job thing a try,” she said.

“Really? You want to pick up a part time job over summer?” I asked.

“On the condition that you work with me. You gotta accept otherwise I won’t say anything.” Mio grinned. It was a look that spelled trouble if I’d ever seen it.

This was a good chance to get some work experience. Hatsumi didn’t make any vacation plans, and I never really did much during the other breaks, so this was as good a time as any.

“Fine. Let’s hear what you have to say,” I groaned.

Mio put a flyer in my face. Written at the top was a popular Akiba cafe chain with big, bulky text that said: HIRING. However, it wasn’t any ordinary cafe. The group photo was of girls in various maids, nekomimis, magical girl costumes, and more— it was a cosplay cafe.


Be sure to support the author, Jamminrabbit, by subscribing to his Patreon or going to this chapter’s Scribble Hub page and donating to his PayPal!



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