Story: Read or Die/Negima! The Alternates (chapter 1)

Authors: Shanejayell

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Chapter 1


Read or Die: the Alternates!

A Read or Die & Negima crossover!

"Mr. Joker I have terrible news," Wendy rushed into the office, the blonde haired woman barely avoiding tripping over a pile of books as she breathlessly reported, "we've lost contact with Yomiko and the others!"

"For how long?" Joker looked from what he was reading, his expression only mildly curious as the business suit clad man closed his book, slipping a bookmark in place.

"It's been nearly two hours since they were supposed to be on the plane home, sir," Wendy reported, her skirt and matching vest a bit wrinkled. She looked good in her buisiness clothes, true, but she always seemed out of breath and mildly late.

Joker nodded gravely, "Since we don't know if there is a crisis we'll have to give them some more time." He rose suddenly, startling Wendy as he declared, "But as a precaution we'll activate Library special missions team two!"

"Eep!" Wendy fell on her bottom in surprise, the files she had been carrying fluttering down around her. "You mean the alternates?"

"Precisely," Joker nodded.

"But.. aren't they a little green for field ops?" Wendy asked him tentatively as she tried to collect her documents.

"There's no better time for them to become less green," Joker smiled at her then airily said, "see to it, Wendy."

"Yes sir," Wendy hurried out only to trip in a cloud of papers and folders.

Meanwhile, in the depths of the headquarters of the Great British Library a young woman typed away intently, her light purple hair flowing in waves down her face. Her expression was oddly emotionless as she typed, eyes scanning the document as she quickly worked, her all black clothes giving her an oddly gothic look.

"Yue, I found the books that you were looking for," the shorter haired woman said as she rushed into the cubicle with a armful of tomes, her woman's suit a bit dusty, "and they had the tomato milk you wanted too."

"Thanks, Nodoka," Yue Ayase said, her voice softening even if her face didn't, "you've been a great help in this."

"I'm an archivist," Nodoka Miyazaki said cheerfully, "I'm glad to help find the materials we needed." She pushed her darker bangs away from her eyes, "How is it going?"

"The compendium you, I and Haruna are developing for Library Island at Mahora is nearly finished," Yue said gravely. "Once it's incorperated into the Great British Library's database researchers should have a much easier time."

"Uhm, excuse me?" Wendy stuch her head into the small room, mildly astounded at the piles of books and documents, the clutter nearly rivaling Joker's office.

Quite deliberately Yue saved her work, having had some experience with Wendy's legendary clumsiness. "Good afternoon," she nodded to her respectfully.

"He.. hello," Nodoka bowed, her nervous stutter cropping up around a relative stranger.

"I'm sorry to bother you," Wendy took one step inside, her toe jabbed a loaded table and she, the table and the mountain of books all went over in a loud crash.

"Are you all right?" Nodoka raced over to pull books off of the stunned blonde, checking the books over carefully as well as seeing if Wendy was all right.

"Oweee," Wendy rubbed a bruise on her head. She looked at Yue and tried to take on a businesslike attittude, "I'm..."

"You're here to activate us as the Special Missions Team two," Yue said calmly as she tidied up her desk and folded up her laptop.

"How did you know?" Wendy blurted out as she got up, tyding her clothes again and trying to brush off the dust.

Yue put her computer in a backpack as Nodoka looked on in awe. "There's no other reason that the executive assistant of Mr. Joker would be down here," she said, "other than a important manner." She looked up at Wendy, "What's the situation?"

"The Special mission's team has been out of contact for," Wendy checked her watch, "two hours and ten minutes, and we're getting concerned."

"Are they in trouble?' Nodoka asked anxiously.

"We have no communications at all," Wendy said, "we just don't know."

"So the mission profile is to track down and make contact with Yomiko, Nancy and Drake," Yue noted coolly as she slung her backpack in place, "determine if they're in trouble then rescue them or reestablish communications as needed."

"That would be correct," Wendy nodded.

As Yue hefted her backpack over her shoulder she calmly said, "In addition to Nodoka and myself I'd like to activate another agent."

Wendy nodded again as she backed out of the room, "Of course."

Yue flipped her cellphone open, the device looking like a phone dating back nearly a century. As Wendy bumped another table and fell with a crash she dialed, watching Nodoka rush to recover the books, not to mention help Wendy up.

In the lush forest of another part of Japan a figure stopped as she bounded between the trees, feeling the silent vibration of the phone in her pocket. Pulling out a more conventional phone the brown haired woman perched on a branch, her long brown hair flowing in a ponytail down her back. "Yes?" she asked pleasantly, her eyes oddly half closed, almost as if she was squinting at something off in the distance.

"It's me, Kaede," Yue answered promptly, "we need you for a job."

Kaede Nagase smiled cheerfully, "Of course Yue-dono."

A surprisingly short amount of time later Yue and Nodoka were racing to where a private jet waited to go, Kaede standing beside the hatch calmly. "Hello Kaede," Nodoka looked up shyly at the nearly six foot tall woman, she topping out near five and Yue only around four and a half feet tall.

"Welcome aboard," Kaede smiled as she waved them to their seats.

"Ready to go?" Yue asked briskly as she belted in by the window seat.

"The plane will take us to Cairo," Kaede said as she sat by Yue, Nodoka taking a seat in front of her, "we'll have a car waiting there."

"Egypt, wow," Nodoka murmured, shaking her head.

The trip was fast, the jet soaring from a private airfield in Japan to the north west. They landed in the afternoon, all aware of time passing by, then picked up the car waiting for them there. Kaede took the wheel with long practice, "Where to, Yue-dono?"

Quietly Nodoka offered, "Do we know if they acquired the book from Cairo Museum?"

"We'd best check," Yue agreed, "let's go to the museum first."

The trip to the museum was something of a bust, though they did confirm that the manuscript had been picked up by Yomiko and Nancy on schedule. After bodily pulling Nodoka out of the library there they returned to the city itself, soon tracking down the hotel that Nancy and Yomiko had been booked by the Library.

The hotel boasted a five star rating, and it was clearly well deserved. The outside glowed white, shining in the blazing sun while within was beautifully decorated. The style was fake Egyptian, inspired by movies more than reality, with fine cloth draped from collums and statues of animalistic gods at the corners of the grand entry room.

"The man at the counter was open to a bribe," Kaede said with some satisfaction after she strode across the polished floor to their side, "he's confirmed that while Drake Anderson checked out, Yomiko and Nancy are still here."

Nodoka's eyes were wide, "Oh no! They must have returned here with the book only to be ambushed! They're probably..."

"Easy, Nodoka," Yue put her hand on her friend's arm. She looked at her two companions, "The best thing to do is simply go up and check."

Kaede haven gotten the room number when she bribed the manager they headed up, walking down the hall to a door with a 'Do not disturb' sign hung on it. Kaede gently tried the door handle, quickly discovering it was locked.

"Do you want me to break it down?" Kaede asked, taking on a fighting pose.

"Let's find out what's going on inside first," Yue said, rummaging around inside her bag.

"Did you bring a listening device from the Library?" Nodoka asked excitedly.

"Something like that," Yue removed a standard water glass, put the open end against the wall and her ear against the bottom.

Both Nodoka and Kaede faceplaned. "I wasn't expecting that," Kaede muttered.

Yue listened for a moment, her face as blank as usual. Oddly a blush began to color her cheeks, brightening as she pulled away from the wall and briskly put the glass away. "What's going on?" Nodoka finally had to ask.

"I'd say they're fine," Yue said briskly, "though I suspect they've lost track of time. We'll go downstairs and use the hotel phone to call their suite."

"Why not just knock?" Nodoka blinked, moving towards the door.

Yue quickly moved to stop her, "Trust me, you do not want to do that."

Kaede's eyes widened as she added up Yue's blush with her distracted comment. "Are they doing what I think they're doing?" she smirked.

"Huh, huh?" Nodoka looked confused.

"I think so," Yue confirmed then pulled Nodoka close to whisper in her ear exactly what she thought Yomiko and Nancy were doing. "We'll phone an avoid distracting them," she said firmly, "unless you want to go in there?"

"Oh no," the fiercely blushing Nodoka said.

"Are you going to tell Joker about this?" Kaede asked as they got into the elevator.

"No, I don't think so," Yue shook her head, "we'll just tell him they got.. distracted."

"Dwah dwah dwah," Nodoka shook her head, trying to dispel the lewd images Yue's little talk had put in her mind.

"We'd better find her a paperback when we get downstairs," Yue noted as they descended, "that always calms her down."


Notes: I had originally planned to have several book oriented characters from different anime in this group, but I couldn't come up with enough characters from other series. The characters are mostly as shown in the manga and anime, tho I've made Nodoka a bit more book obsessed tha normal.

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