It was finally PE class. Ben could release some nonexistent stress on some exercises he can't do. PV Sita in hand, he walked out of the boy's locker room planning to have it in the value box the coach offered in case a locked locker wasn't enough.
Just as Ben's hand reached the box, his hand hesitated to drop the nine-inch long game system. Could he really trust a random plastic box next to the coach's chair? Before he could make up his mind, a slam knocked him to the side.
"Stop it, Valk!" cried a voice.
Ben turned to find Sarah yelling back at a hallway tucked away to the side of the gym.
"I just want to see if it fits!" claimed a girl with dirty blond hair half the length of Sarah's.
Sarah's face grew bright red before yelling back.
"P-put that back!" she ordered.
Ben peered over to find the girl running out the hallway holding a snow white bra. He could feel his face heat up as the girl yelled back.
"Okay," she said giggling.
Sarah let out an exhausted sigh before turning to Ben.
"Sorry about that," she apologized," a friend of mine tired to... do something."
Ben avoided eye contact hoping to not look more a perv than he already let on.
"Uh, i-it's fine," he said speeding away to his exercise spot.
After half an hour of hiding from the coach, Ben followed the hoard of sweaty teenagers back into the locker room. He approached his locker to find a broken combination lock hanging off the handle. Ben scrambled over to the lock and examine it. It apparently got forced open or somehow broken. He threw it aside and opened his locker hoping nothing got stolen.
"H-hey Ben," Austin greeted taking down his sweatpants,"S-something wrong?
"Uh, yeah," started Ben searching his bag's pockets," someone ripped my lock; let's hope they didn't take anything too bad."
"W-who do you think did it?" asked Yuri talking off his shirt.
"No idea," answered Ben putting his bag aside and taking his jeans out
He looked through the pockets hoping at least his phone was safe. He gave a small grin as he set down the safe phone; without that, he can kiss his attendance goodbye. However, when he dug in the second pocket, where his PV Sita usally sat, it was empty.
"Damn it," Ben cursed pulling down his shorts.
"Something missing?" Austin assumed closing his locker.
"Yeah, my PV Sita," Ben answered pulling up the jeans.
"What's that?" Yuri asked," a lucky charm?"
"Don't worry about it," Ben shrugged putting on his normal t-shirt," you just need to know it's gone now."
"Well, let's find it!" suggeted Austin slinging his bag over his shoulder.
"How?" Ben asked," it's the end of the day."
"We'll ask around tomorrow," continued Austin," I mean... someone here must have taken it."
"Why do you care so much?" asked Ben.
"I-I just want to help a friend," answered Austin his shifting his eyes.
Ben shrugged as Austin continued to talk about plans to question everybody in the gym. It wasn't a bad plan in any sense, Ben just decided to take the simpleton's route and look around the gym for the system; maybe even ask about the couch about a new lock. As the two left the locker room, the final bell rang leaving Ben no time to do any of the objectives planned. Looks like Ben had two days before looking for his PV Sita.
Ben walked to the main school doors to have Sarah catch up next to him.
"Hey, Ben," she greeted," I'm still sorry about bumping into you earlier."
"It's fine," he said a scowl on his face.
"Geez, what's with that face?" Sarah asked.
"I'm making a face?" questioned Ben his expression softening.
"You were," giggled Sarah," now answer the question."
"Oh, well, my PV Sita kind of got jacked," Ben answered pushing the door open for the two.
"That's not good," Sarah guessed," you seem pretty calm about this. Well, aside from the face."
"It was out of batteries, so whoever took it would have to buy a charger," he reasoned.
"Well, you got to do something," Sarah argued.
"I plan to ask around tomorrow," Ben answered.
"And I'll help!"
Like that'll make a difference.
It was a new day, meaning Ben had a new day to ask around and get some form of info. How hard could it be?
However, today's schedule called for odd classes day; meaning the students had first, third, fifth, and serveth-period. This knocked out asking the boys in Ben's sixth-period gym class directly. However, he did have some classes with kids in said gym class, so if he asked them if they knew anyone wanting a PV Sita he was bound to narrow down the suspects.
Despite the easy direction and goal, it seemed like a big hassle for Ben. Why couldn't the robber just come up to him? Though obviously unrealistic, it would take the bad part of a mystery out.
In the third period, he had class with two boys from gym, giving him a chance to put his plan. After constant doubt, Ben finally approched the two.
"H-have you two seen a missing PV Sita from the gym?" Ben asked.
"Wh-what's a... PS Vita?" one of the boys asked.
"Yeah, I don't know what the hell that is either," the other boy added," why?"
"Uh, no reason," answered Ben speeding away.
Glad one of many upcoming awkward interactions was finished, Ben pulled out a small notepad and began scribbling notes.
"What's that for?" Sarah asked suddenly leaning over his desk.
"For the hunt," Ben answered crossing off two names," helps keep track of supects and info."
Ben flet a pang of annyance as he talked. Having Sarah in every class every day was going to be something to adjust to, but for now, it may help.
"You get anything," he asked.
"It's only third period," reasoned Sarah," not much I could do, Ben."
Ben rolled his eyes before shoving the note pad back into his pocket.
"You're really taking this far, huh?" realized Sarah.
"Well, if I don't get this by Wedensday then I'm paying two hundered dollars, somehow."
"T-two hundred!?" Sarah cried," why so much?
"My brother is forcing me to find it or pay him back for buying it for me," answered Ben his voice nonchalant," can't blame him, honestly."
"Don't worry, Ben," assured Sarah with a new found determination," I won't let that brother of yours extort you for money!"
Ben gave a weary glance back at Sarah. If Ben was being honest, that wasn't much money; he had nearly five hundred in savings, so he'd just dip into that. Granted that was great, but it was far from the end of the world.
Nonetheless, Sarah seemed quite set on trying to help, so naturally, Ben didn't rain on her parade.
The last period of the day finally came. Luckly, Ben had this class with two other boys from the gym. As he sat down at his desk, he went over his notes and supesct list.
So far, he knocked off more than half of the list giving his sneaking suspsion that it wasn't taken at all even more credit. However, there was still four supsects unproven. The four were Austin, Yuri, and the two other boys he had class with today.
As Ben coninuted to study his note pad, Sarah walked to his desk with a triumphant smile.
"I got some info," she said.
"Okay," Ben acknoledged flipping to an empty note page," let's hear it."
"Apparently, one of the sophomres on the other side of the locker room heard a loud bang coming from the cornor," she explained," that may be when your locker was broken into."
"If that's the case, then the thief would've taken it with plenty of witnesses," Ben concluded," and it had to be someone with a locker near mine."
"What makes you think that?"
"Well, if the thief was caught breaking into a lock, he could make the exucse that he forgot his combonatoin."
When Ben finished writing his thoughts on the note pad, he fliped back to the suspect list and crossed off the two other boys; their lockers were no where near Ben's. That only left Yuri and Austin; their lockers being on either side of Ben's.
"Wait," started Ben looking up at Sarah," you know a boy sophmore?"
"Well, it's just a boy my friend knew," Sarah explained," I talked to him at lunch while you helped David get his phone back."
"Oh yeah," Ben started giving a small grin as he remembered David's attempts to getting his phone back from a football player that was apperntly David's friend," Well, thanks for the info, it really helped."
Sarah grew a small smile as her face grew redder.
"N-no problem," she muttered before speeding off to her desk.
Ben shrugged and looked down at the two remaining names on his list. He began to think about the motives of the two could have.
Yuri really hated Ben's guts for some reason, so stealing something from Ben would make for a good revenge scheme or something. Austin, well, the two were somewhat friends. Ben and him would talk in the locker rooms and in gym, he even offered to help find the Sita. Then what would his motive be? Maybe Austin was jealous and wanted the Sita for himself? Ben couldn't really see Ausin as the stealing type, but greed can drive men mad.
Either way, Ben had some questioning to do tomorrow - his deadline.
Ben was the last in the locker room, but that didn't mean everyone was gone. The boys like to talk and goof around in the locker room before leaving. Knowing this, Ben knew Yuri and Austin would still be there dressing.
Ben approched the two trying to look casual.
"Hey," he started," can I talk to you two?"
"Sure," Ausin answred.
"Why?" Yuri questioned.
Ben knocked on his locker as he turned to Yuri.
"This," Ben answered," my broken lock."
Yuri gave an akward chuckle as he turned to the boy behind him.
"Uh, Ian," he called," h-how was your day?"
"Y-yeah, Caleb," called Austin to a boy beside him," that test was unfair, huh?"
"Guys," started Ben grabbing Yuri's and Austin's collar," are you hiding something?"
The two turned to Ben avoiding eye contact.
"I may have broken your lock," Yuri and Austin admited in unison.
Yuri and Austin looked at each other's wide eyes.
"Yeah, he did it!" they claimed in unison.
"Okay, calm down," said Ben gently waving his hands," let's have Yuri explain, first."
"Well, Ian kind of pushed me into the locker," Yuri started," and I guess I somehow broke the lock when I fell, or something - it all happened kind of fast."
"I barly pushed you," a boy Ben assumed was Ian interjected," and you fell like a sack of bricks!"
"Shut up," Yuri spat," I was just caught off gaurd."
Ben tried to process how a fall to his locker could've broken his lock. A lock couldn't have fallen off by the vibreations, so Yuri must've grabbed onto it while falling.
"Anyways," Ben started turning to Austin," how did you break it?"
"Uh, well, I tripped on my shoelace and grabbed your lock trying to catch myself," Austin explained," but it didn't break, it was just a bit loose!"
So they both grabbed it.
Ignoring how comedically coincidental this whole situation seemed that still left Ben's missing Sita.
"Where could have that Sita went to?" Ben thought aloud.
"What did that look like again?" Yuri asked.
"Black and long," Ben answered.
Yuri and Austin gave a snicker
"Wait, didn't you take that outside in the gym?" Yuri finally asked.
"Oh yeah," remembered Ausin," you did have something in your hand when you left."
Ben pulled his shirt on as he thought back.
Austin was right; Ben was holding something when walking out to the gym. He suddenly remembered Sarah bumbing into him when his hand was hover overing a plastic box.
Ben ran out of the locker room and made for the coaches desk. As he stoped at the desk, Ben scowred the contains finding a lack of a box.
"What is it, Locke?" Coach Kewick asked turning in his chair.
"Uh, where's the val-?"
"Oh, by the way," the Coach started reaching down to under his desk," you dropped this Monday."
The coach revealed a wide, pitch black, portable game system. Ben's eyes began to widen with his smile as he took the system.
Ben found it oddly funny how he didn't think of the box before leaving.
"Y-yeah, I did," Ben mindlessly said observing the system," uh, was it really here for two days?"
"Yeah, in the box," Kewick replied brining a plasitc box on top of his desk," kind of forgot about it till now. You can put it back in the box if you want; just pick it up before getting dressed."
Still not trusting the locker, Ben nodded and slowly placed the Sita into a phone filled box. Just then, Sarah ran up next to him.
"Hey, Ben," she started glancing at the box," oh, did you find your system?"
"Yeah," said Ben giving a chukle," I guess I droped it into the box and forgot to get it back."
"Geez, you're forgetful, huh?" giggled Sarah.
"Apparently," shrugged Ben.
As Sarah coniuned to giggle, a girl suddnly took hold of Sarah from behind.
"Hey there, cutie," the girl said.
"Stop saying that, Valk," giggled Sarah.
"But it's true," the girl insisted," espically with that outfit."
Sarah and the girl apparently named Valk continue to talk while Ben decided to walk away to his spot.
While glad his PV Sita was safe and sound, Ben felt somewhat disappointed. All that questioning and forced interaction had him muster up all his courage and willpower; to have it all go to waste actually hurt. At least he could use this as an excuse not to talk to Sarah for the rest of the day.