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"July 25" (七月二十五日 Shichi-gatsu Ni-jū-go-nichi?) is the seventeenth chapter of the Toaru Kagaku no Railgun manga series, released on August 27, 2008.

SynopsisEdit

Misaka Mikoto is cleaning a swimming pool on a hot day. She thinks back to how they ended up in this situation: she and Shirai Kuroko tried sneaking back to their dorm after the AIM Burst incident but were caught by the Tokiwadai Dorm Supervisor. The supervisor saw their dirty clothes and acknowledged that they had been through a lot, but still insisted on enforcing the regulations. She gave them the punishment of cleaning the pool.

Back to the present, Mikoto complains about how they haven't even finished 30% of the task. Kuroko, on the other hand, is ecstatic as she sees this as a chance to have private time with Mikoto. She offers Mikoto a drink, but Mikoto refuses as she suspects Kuroko put something in it (correctly, from Kuroko's reaction). Two other Tokiwadai students, Wannai Kinuho and Awatsuki Maaya, approach to check the pool filtration tanks (as they are members of the swimming team). Kinuho recognises Mikoto, explaining how the Level 5 had saved her from being harassed by delinquents in the past. Kuroko is suspicious of the atmosphere between Mikoto and Kinuho, especially when Kinuho offers a drink and Mikoto accepts. She wrongly concludes that Mikoto is only being cold towards her. She tries to encourage herself with the knowledge that her esper ability makes her more helpful to Mikoto than anyone else, only to get depressed when Kinuho shows off her own ability (control of water) and Mikoto praises it. Kinuho offers to help with the cleaning after she finishes her own work, and leaves along with Maaya.

When Mikoto notices that Kuroko is troubled and calls out to her, Kuroko sobs and claims she isn't worthy to be at Mikoto's side. Mikoto reassures her, saying that they're partners and will always be together. Kuroko interprets these words as a confession of love, and Mikoto's previous cold behaviour as a test of her feelings. The two of them return to cleaning and Kuroko suggests that they do it in their swimsuits. Mikoto says it would be too much effort to get their swimsuits, so Kuroko reveals that she brought Mikoto's swimsuit with her (causing Mikoto to throw her pool brush at her). Kuroko thinks this is "also" a test and teleports away Mikoto's undergarments, though she's disappointed at how childish they are. Kinuho and Maaya return to see Mikoto shocking Kuroko in retaliation, though Kuroko is seemingly feeling pleasure from it. Dumbfounded, the two swimmers decide to leave and pretend they didn't see anything. Mikoto and Kuroko only finish cleaning the pool after curfew, causing them to be punished again.

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No new locations were introduced in this chapter.

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