"Shades…? I don’t want to look like an Elite Beat Agent…" Their tier of ‘cool’ was displaced far off to the left compared to conventional Japanese standards of cool. They were pretty cool, but in a distinctly different flavor.
"Do you think… if I grow out my hair…?"
That was an actual idea that he had.
"Good point…" She put a hand to her chin, trying to actually imagine it. With the more dignified air their squad had, an accessory like that would only look out of place.
Imagining Shinta’s suggestion, she immediately shook her head. “Nope. No good. I get that you wanna try being more like Hayato, but it just won’t work like that.”
"R-right… Shiro—…. Rin-san. A-ah…"
'Cool act', she said. Made it even worse. Just trying to act like a prospective squad leader should. Just an act. And now he was blubbering about and couldn't get his words straight. He'd gone in the complete opposite direction.
"Like I said, Shinta-kun. You’ll figure it out one day. Probably not today, but one day." She did feel pretty sorry for him, and while he lacked the natural aura Saionji had when he was serious, she couldn’t deny that he had potential and drive.
"Maybe change up your look for a bit. Buy some shades or something to give you that mysterious edge!"
The startled yelling, followed by a red, flushed face. Caught in the act — how embarrassing.
Almost immediately he turned towards the Cheergirls’ Leader, thrusting his whole upper body forward into a stiff and respectful bow.
She couldn’t help but chuckle at the squad rookie, still as awkward as ever after all this time.
"I keep telling you, there’s no need to be so formal around me. I mean, even if we are on duty right now, it’s not like we can’t let loose around each other, right?"
"Keep up the good work, though. You’ll get the hang of that cool act soon enough."
With a silky, regal tone.
"Hello. My name is Kikuchi Shinta. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance…"
"N-no, that doesn’t quite feel right…"
And a bop on the head from a teammate, followed by an awkward chuckle.
"Uh… Shinta? What are you doing?"
Kurou gave her a glance. ”Here ya go.” He said not trying to hide anything, although with the angle of the shower to the door he was also not going out of his way to show anything off. ”Me in a cold shower. Check the water if you like.”
Still cautious, Rin was almost tiptoeing inside, although her socks made it unnecessary. She reached into the shower, immediately pulling back as the droplets hit her arm.
"Whoa! You weren’t kidding when you said it was cold…" She rubbed the cold spot on her arm. "How can you keep standing in that!?"