Mysterious Racer X (Haruka Tenoh)

From Radiant Heart MUSH

Mysterious Racer X (Haruka Tenoh)
Date of Cutscene: 27 August 2023
Location: The Track
Synopsis: Haruka has been offered a way to race despite her age. It'll never work, though. Right?
Cast of Characters: Haruka Tenoh

Haruka Tenoh was, on some level, convinced this was not gonna work. It hadn't been a problem for her until now, though. Or rather, it had been a problem, but like most problems, Haruka found it easier to just ignore it alltogether. And like most problems, that just meant eventually it came back around and hit her in the face later.

On the way to the track, she convinced herself that it was a joke, and there was no way the plan would seriously work.

Then they suited her up, including a visored helmet that was extra dark on the outside, to hide her facial features. They were actually serious about this 'ghost racer' idea of theirs.

So she convinced herself paradoxically that she wasn't going to win the race or place, so it wouldn't be an issue here. Of course, even running away from a problem couldn't convince Haruka to not race as fast as possible, as well as possible. In the moments within her car, she no longer thought of anything else but driving, but racing, but pushing herself and her machine to the absolute limit. So she only had a realization of what happened after she passed the checkered flag, as the first car to do so, and began the slowdown laps. It was like the way you didn't really noticed how damned hot it was in the car until you weren't racing and all you wanted to do was get a shower. Now all she wanted to do was take the agreement back. And somehow still race. Wants didn't have to be rational.

She pulled in and... the team owner rushed out. "Just a moment, he needs water, before you go all throwing him in the air." the man said, hurridly pushing Haruka behind a wall so the man in the same exact suit could come out momentarily.

"This is so stupid." Haruka said as she pulled her helmet off, eyes wide. "There is no way they're going to..."

And yet, nobody came around the corner looking at her. Nobody called anything out. They seemed to be celebrating the 'racer' out there and commenting on his driving skills.

"...this cannot actually be working." she said to the man who came back to shake her gloved hand.

"You can't actually be that good." he replied, his own shock evident. "Even better than you were on the track the first time! I just wanted us to not lose sponsors but you actually took first?!" he boggled.

Haruka panted and grabbed for a water bottle, drinking half of it and dousing her head with the other half. "Is that a problem? I can't get a cut of the winnings if I don't, you know, win." she replied, finding some degree of her standard cockiness. "And if you didn't want to win you shouldn't have put me behind the wheel."

"No, no, this is wonderful!" the man said excitedly. "Here, get out of that suit before somebody sees you, and text me your bank account information. You'll get your cut. Can you keep doing this?!" he asked.

Haruka wanted to say no. Ghostracing. Ridiculous. The whole idea was stupid. Insane. Like the plot of a manga. She was going to get caught, eventually. She looked at him.

"Just tell me when the next race is." she said. Because it was a stupid idea. But it meant she got to race. Against people. And win. And there was no possible way that was going to happen outside of a stupid idea, anyways. She'd just have to make this stupid idea keep working. Or, drive it until it broke down.