“Maria Akizuki told me.”
“And what did you do after finding out?”
“We went to school first, and later looked for him when we had the chance.”
“Why did you not inform your parents or your teachers?”
This was a good point. I thought for a moment.
“Because we hoped to bring him back before it became a bigger issue.”
“I see. But it could be construed as an attempt to hide it from us. You disagreed with the Board of Education’s decision and acted out against it, right? On those grounds, you…”
Hiromi whispered something in Masayo’s ear. She answered, “I understand.”
“…on to the next question. You went searching for Mamoru Itou during independent observation period. Who went with you?”
“Maria Akizuki and Satoru Asahina.”
“I see. So the three of you went looking for Mamoru Itou. Did you find him?”
I was confused. Satoru had come back the day before and should have been questioned already. What had he said?
“What’s wrong? It might be your first time here, but this is an official court of inquiry. You must tell the truth.”
Masayo’s voice was severe and a wave of uncertainty went through the room. Hiromi spoke.
“Satoru Asahina has already testified that you found Mamoru Itou. That Mamoru had fallen off his sled and hurt his leg. He said he left you and Maria to nurse him and came back first.”
Satoru hadn’t mentioned the queerat.
“Chairman…” Masayo looked disapprovingly at Hiromi.
“It’s fine. This court was formed to establish the truth. Trying to trick her into contradicting herself is not the goal.” She continued so quietly that it was hard to hear. “So, was Satoru Asahina telling the truth?”