I Know That After School, The Saint More Than Just Noble - Ch. 2: Study Session With The Saint
After school the next day.
At a family restaurant in front of the nearest station. Yamato and Sayla met for a study session.
Yamato was the first to arrive, and Sayla came about twenty minutes later.
“Sorry, did you wait?”
Sayla was a little breathless when she asked. She probably got lost while running to the restaurant.
“I just got here, too. I had to stop by the staff room today.”
…This was a lie, but it was also Yamato’s way of showing consideration.
Yamato’s selfish reason for choosing to meet at the site was to avoid running into his classmates, so it was only natural for him to show this level of concern.
“That’s good. Let’s go in, then.”
Sayla urged him to enter the family restaurant.
The restaurant was not so crowded so Yamato and Sayla were shown to a table for four near the wall.
“What should we order?”
As soon as they sat down facing each other, Sayla immediately opened the menu and asked him with a heartfelt buzz in her voice.
“Hmm, I think I’ll just have the drink bar. If I eat something, it’ll make me sleepy.”
“I see. I’ll just order something.”
Sayla pressed the call button, and a waitress came to take the order shortly after.
Sayla pointed at the menu.
“Margherita pizza, crispy potatoes, authentic doria, shrimp cream gratin, and two drink bars.”
“That’s quite a lot. And they’re all greasy foods.”
When Yamato muttered to himself, Sayla seemed to have no choice but to order more.
“And I’ll add a Caesar salad.”
“You don’t have to force yourself to add that.”
“Yamato said so, and I kind of felt like it, and I thought I’d eat once in a while.”
He had thought that her taste in food was surprisingly childish, but once again, he was worried about her eating habits.
However, Yamato kept his mouth shut as he felt that saying more would indeed make her seem depressed.
After the waitress recited the order and then left, Yamato and Sayla left their seats to get drinks.
“Which one should I take?”
As soon as they arrived at the drink bar, Sayla poured coke and filled up half the cup, and then folded her arms in thought.
Was she going to mix drinks?
“…I’ll just have a simple iced tea.”
“Iced tea goes very well with Coke.”
“No, I won’t mix them.”
Sayla was not particularly disappointed and added grape soda to her cup, apparently having thought it through.
It was a safer combination than he had expected, Yamato thought.
“And then this and this.”
It was only the beginning that was safe. She added various drinks at random, and when she finally added melon soda, her cup was full.
(That was the one that’s absolutely not fitting…)
The drink was black, with a purple or green tinge, and didn’t look very tasty.
Despite this, Sayla seemed to be somewhat satisfied.
“Alright, I’m done. Is Yamato okay?”
“…Yeah, let’s go back.”
When they returned to their seats, the waitress was bringing them their Caesar salad.
“You can eat too, Yamato. Don’t worry about the money.”
“No, it doesn’t work that way. In fact, since you’re going to be studying with me, I’d rather pay for everything.”
“I asked for it because I wanted to eat it, you shouldn’t worry about it.”
“Well, at least split it with me.”
Sayla nodded reluctantly in agreement, then sipped her homemade drink.
It seemed that Yamato’s premonition had come true, and Sayla’s face twisted slightly.
Perhaps as a palate cleanser, Sayla began to share her salad.
“If we’re splitting the bill, Yamato has to eat a lot too.”
With that, Sayla handed him a small plate full of salad.
“Shirase, you have to eat, okay?”
She said that, but she only put about half of her own small plate. She didn’t want to eat that much salad. Her taste buds were still those of a child.
Yamato looked at her, but Sayla didn’t return his gaze and started rummaging through her bag.
He followed suit, taking out his textbooks and notebooks from his own bag.
“Come to think of it, the main purpose of this was to study.”
“Let’s start with Math B.”
Math B was Yamato’s weakest subject. He can easily get high scores in the humanities, but he has trouble remembering the sciences, and if he doesn’t take the proper precautions, he will end up with disappointing results.
“Sure. The scope was up to page 40 of the textbook, right?”
“Yeah. I can’t seem to get into the area of figures and equations.”
“The coordinate plane one. If so, let’s use the problem on this page as an example. So, first…”
So, the study session started immediately.
As soon as it started, Yamato was surprised.
The reason was that Sayla’s teaching style was very similar to that of their math teacher.
It was not about tone of voice, attitude, or gestures. It was a simplified version of what the teacher had said in class, pinpointing the bare essentials.
There was no extra information at all, making what had seemed like a complicated math problem seem so simple. He was sorry to the math teacher, but Sayla’s explanation was much easier for Yamato to understand.
“—I finished the practice problems.”
“Ah, you got all of them right. Nice work.”
“It’s thanks to Shirase. Now Math B is going to be no problem.”
“Good. Well, let’s have some food first.”
To tell the truth, even though Sayla had already ordered everything, Yamato had forgotten to eat due to his eagerness to study.
Perhaps it was because he had concentrated so much into his brain in such a short period of time, but he felt that his body was craving for nourishment. Yamato then began to gobble down the food.
“Phew. I ate a lot.”
He had planned to fill his stomach a little, but he ate so much that he probably didn’t need dinner.
Sayla, who must have eaten the same amount of food, had ordered a strawberry parfait for dessert, and Yamato learned that the concept of having a separate stomach for sweets actually existed.
“By the way, Shirase is really good at teaching. To be honest, I was surprised.”
“Really? I was just reciting what I learned in class.”
“I think it’samazing that you can do that. How much do you usually study?”
“I don’t study at home.”
With a puzzled look on her face, Sayla tilted her head.
Yamato was shaken and asked further.
“Well… uh, when are you studying? Maybe you go to a cram school or something?”
“I don’t go to any cram school. If it’s just a test, I can do most of it by listening to the class.”
In other words, Sayla averaged over ninety points on her regular tests just by listening to the class.
Even though the Ao Saki Metropolitan High School has an average deviation, it was not so lenient that she could be a top achiever in regular tests without any preparation and review if she was normal.
Sayla was a genius for being able to do that.
Yamato was dumbfounded by her sudden confession, but then he heard a noisy voice coming from near the entrance of the store.
He looked over and saw that a few girls in Ao Saki High School uniforms had just entered the store.
(It’s my unlucky day… I knew it wouldn’t be enough to move our destination one stop.)
He didn’t recognize their faces, so he guessed they were from another grade — probably freshmen. It was just a hunch, but he felt uncomfortable as a senior.
Sayla called out to him curiously. She didn’t seem to be paying any attention to the girls who had just entered the store.
Sayla had taken the trouble to make time to teach him how to study. Yamato reminded himself that he should not lose his concentration and changed his mind.
“Sorry, it’s nothing. Can you teach me chemistry next?”
And so they moved on to the next subject.
“Hey, isn’t that the saint of the second year class?”
“Uwww, waa. She’s with a boy.”
“Eh, seriously? That looks interesting.”
The girls who had just entered the restaurant seemed to have noticed them. Although they were seated a good distance away, they were making a lot of noise and looking at them with overly curious eyes.
To be honest, it was awkward on Yamato’s part. It had probably already started spreading on social media, but Yamato at least hoped to keep things peaceful at least for this occasion.
But that wish was unlikely to come true.
On their way to the drink bar, the girls went out of their way to walk past Yamato’s seat and boldly take pictures of him with their phones. They did the same on their way back to the bar, and Yamato began to turn his head down in awkwardness. It would only be a matter of time before he was talked to.
Just then, Sayla poked him with a mechanical pencil.
“Are you focusing?”
Yamato nodded honestly as he was faced with a simple question.
“…It’s not that I’m bothered or distracted. I’m sorry, I know Shirase is teaching me how to study.”
“I see. Then wait a minute.”
With that, Sayla stood up and went straight to the girls’ seats.
What was she going to say? As Yamato listened impatiently, he heard Sayla’s voice.
“I’m having trouble concentrating on my studies, so I’d appreciate it if you wouldn’t look at me.”
Straight to the point. When Sayla said this in a gentle tone, the girls all shook their heads in agreement.
Sayla thanked them and then came back with a face as if nothing had happened.
As Yamato was thinking that the situation was resolved quite easily, he heard a high-pitched voice coming from the girls. They seemed to be excited and very happy.
What expression did Sayla have on her face when she warned the girls? I was curious, but unfortunately, Yamato could not see her face.
“What kind of magic did you use?”
When Yamato asked her about it, she looked puzzled and said, “Nothing. I was just asking them to stop looking at me,” In other words, she was unaware of what she did.
The high-pitched voice from the other side continued, “She had such a nice face, that Saint!” and “Her voice was great too!” and “She’s so cute in person! I’m totally a fan now!” …So it seems that the rumors about Sayla being popular with girls are true.
“Shirase really is a popular person…”
“Huh? I don’t really know.”
“It’s amazing how unaware you are.”
Her unconsciousness was beyond stunning, and Yamato even respected her for it.
So Sayla asked with a curious look on her face.
“Is Yamato that unattractive?”
Yamato had just sipped his iced tea but suddenly spit it out.
“Ah, what a waste.”
“Whose fault is it? Whose!”
Yamato wiped the table with a tsk and coughed to get his mind back on track.
“Hmph. …I could see that, I never had been popular.”
“Hmm. I see.”
It was a complicated feeling to be so easily convinced, but the important thing now was how to end this topic. Therefore, Yamato turned to his chemistry textbook.
“It was time to end the chit-chat. Let’s resume our studies.”
“Yeah, all right.”
Sayla seemed to have recovered her mind, and the study session resumed.
Two hours passed.
As Yamato’s concentration began to wane, they decided to call it a day.
After paying, they walked out of the restaurant and saw the night scene already spread out. It was a bit new to Yamato, as he didn’t usually come to this station.
“Hmm, I’m tired.”
Sayla mumbled to herself as she stretched out next to Yamato.
“Good night. Thank you for today, it was very helpful.”
“That’s good. There are only three days left until the midterm test, right? Let’s work hard every day until then.”
“O-Oh. I’d appreciate your help…”
Yamato was about to ask her if her own studies were okay, but then he remembered that Sayla wasn’t the type to study for tests in the first place, so he stopped talking.
Despite some unexpected interruptions along the way, today’s study session was very productive for Yamato.
After all, in just a single day, Yamato was able to get through two of his weakest subjects: math and chemistry.
[TLN: Is he not Asian?]
As Yamato was deciding to ask Sayla to help him review his best subject tomorrow, he suddenly noticed that Sayla was staring blankly into the distance.
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw an unpopulated arcade.
“I don’t mind stopping by for a breather.”
When Yamato called out to her, Sayla immediately turned her gaze to him.
“Yeah. I’ve been soaking up all this studying. It’s good to have a little something to do.”
“Okay, let’s go.”
Sayla took Yamato’s hand and started walking away.
She had her normal poker face expression, but Yamato could tell she was somewhat pleased. She must have been itching to go.
“But it’s late. Only an hour.”
There was a pause before she answered, but he decided not to worry about it.
For now, he just wanted to focus on having fun with Sayla.
Three days had passed since then, and the day of the midterm exam had finally arrived.
The atmosphere in the classroom had been tense since the morning, with some people reading their textbooks and piling them up, others crying out to their classmates, and the rest giving up and doing nothing. All of these were scenes unique to the pre-testing period.
Under such circumstances, a rather cheerful voice echoed through the room.
The voice was, of course, that of Eita.
With that, the tense atmosphere in the classroom instantly eased.
As Yamato was admiring the presence of the class leader…Eita came over to talk to him.
“Hey, Kuraki. Are you pretty confident?”
“So-so, I guess. Well, I think I can do better than usual.”
“Oh~, you’re very confident.”
Yamato hadn’t meant to sound so confident, but he was more positive than he usually was because Sayla had been teaching him for the past few days.
As an aside, Sayla was sitting by the window with her cheek resting on her hand. In other words, she was in her normal posture.
Looking at Sayla’s figure, Yamato replied to Eita as if he was giving him a hint.
“Are you that confident, Shinjo? I know it’s a little late now.”
“When this is over, the sports festival is next. Whether I’m confident about the test or not, I’m just waiting for it to be over.”
Not only did Yamato not quite understand what he was saying, but Eita also seemed to be distracted from the test. Yamato wondered if Eita was the type of person who dismissed the results of tests from the beginning.
“Maybe it’s none of my business, but I think you should at least get some decent grades.”
“Oh well. I borrowed some notebooks and studied, and I think I can handle the test. I just can’t help but look forward to the sports festival.”
“That’s fine then.”
From Yamato’s point of view, as someone who was not very good at sports, the idea of looking forward to the sports festival didn’t occur to him, nor can he sympathize with it.
However, Yamato admired Eita a little for the way he enjoyed school events.
“Well, I’m sorry to bother you before the test. Let’s both do our best.”
After Eita left with a bright smile, Yamato looked around the classroom and saw May staring at her textbook with a serious expression.
“Goodness, everyone’s behavior before a test is different.”
The only person who was completely unchanged from usual was Sayla. In a way, she was the most different out of all of us, but that was just like her.
And while Yamato was thinking about that, the bell rang.
Switching his mind to exam mode, Yamato prepared for the start of the midterm.
The midterm exams at Ao Saki Metropolitan High School are held over four days.
The days seem long before they start, but once they’re over, it feels like it passed in a blink of an eye.
And so, on the last day of the midterm test, Yamato successfully completed the last subject.
It was well worth the effort. Not so much fatigue, but he felt a tremendous sense of accomplishment.
This was because Yamato continued his study sessions with Sayla even during the testing period, and he was well prepared for the next day.
(I can’t wait to see the results. I’ve never felt this way before.)
Yamato was not the only one who felt like that.
After the exam, the classroom was in a state of festivity. Everyone was in a state of revelry, trying to dissipate the frustration of studying day after day.
Plus, it was only mid-morning. Because of the test schedule today, they could leave school before noon. In order to make the most of this opportunity, the school was overflowing with students who were making plans to have fun during their dismissal, and others who were brimming with motivation for their first club activities in a long time.
At that moment, Eita, standing in front of the podium, shouted out.
“Hey everyone, good work on your tests! Tomorrow, we’ll resume practicing for the sports festival!”
As Eita shouted, his classmates (with the exception of a few who were not good at sports) responded by shouting, “Ohhh!”
The date of the sports festival was exactly two weeks from now. It was certainly a good time to start practicing hard.
However, Yamato was not able to get over the atmosphere. Instead, he was thinking about his future hang-out schedule with Sayla.
After the end of homeroom, Yamato was getting ready to go home when he sent a message to Sayla, “Now that the test is over, why don’t we stop by somewhere?”
Then, Sayla came up to him with a bag in her hand.
“All right, then let’s go.”
The way she smiled at Yamato was so cute that he almost fell in love with her. But they were still in the classroom, and the stares of the people around him were painful.
“…Well, better hurry up.”
Yamato also picked up his bag and left the classroom with a fast pace alongside Sayla.
Then, Yamato and Sayla came to a fast food restaurant located a short distance from the school.
It was lunchtime and the restaurant was quite crowded, but perhaps because of its location, there were no students from Ao Saki High School in sight.
Each of them ordered and sat down in a row by the window on the second floor.
“It is pretty crowded. I’m glad there are seats available~”
“Seriously. All right, then—”
““Good job on the test!””
They toasted each other with L-sized drinks and then naturally laughed at each other.
While smiling at Sayla’s bite into the oversized burger, Yamato decided to cut to the chase.
“By the way, Shirase, do you have any place you want to go for fun? I heard a lot of places the other day, but if I had to narrow it down to one, I was wondering which one would be best.”
Then Sayla squirmed, chewed, and tilted her head thoughtfully.
Once her mouth was fully emptied, she uttered a thought that seemed to come to her.
“I think I want to go to the pool the most right now. It’s been so hot lately.”
However, going to the pool meant wearing a swimsuit.
The thought of Sayla in a swimsuit made Yamato feel awkward, so he decided to keep it to himself for now.
Since she had asked for it, there was no way Yamato could refuse. It was too early in the season to go into a regular cold pool, but it should be no problem if they went to a warmed pool.
Yamato tried to remain as calm as possible and naturally tried to accept the proposal.
“Sure, it’s hot again today. If that’s the case, we should go to the public pool on the weekend.”
“Oh, by pool, I don’t mean a regular one.”
There, Sayla started to play with her phone and immediately showed the screen to him.
What he saw on the screen was a “night pool” facility in the city.
Unlike the public swimming pools in the neighborhood, this one was decorated with vivid colored lights and seemed to be a glamorous and fashionable facility. The images of young people in flashy swimsuits made it seem like a different world to Yamato. He was so shocked that his brain froze.
As Yamato remained silent, Sayla poked him on the shoulder and called out to him.
“Y-Yeah, my bad. It was too much of a shock.”
“You didn’t like it that much?”
“It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s just that… I don’t like these facilities.”
Yamato also knew about the existence of the night pool facility itself.
It was a swimming pool facility that could be used at night, but Yamato’s prejudiced image of it was that it was a place where so-called “party people” would gather or a dangerous facility that was exclusively for “young people.” He had never actually visited such a place before, so he had this preconceived notion.
That was why Yamato showed resistance, and Sayla’s shoulders slumped in sincere disappointment.
“I see. Then it can’t be helped. I wanted to go with Yamato.”
Yamato’s heart ached as he watched Sayla’s sullen expression.
Yamato reminded himself that it might not be right to deny it out of his mind and decided to ask for details.
“…Well, have you ever been there, Shirase? To this night pool and stuff.”
“Never. But when I looked it up, it seemed to have a nice atmosphere and it piqued my interest.”
“It looks interesting… It looks like a place where dangerous people hang out. It’s a place where you can find people who are looking to pick up girls like those who have been involved with you before or something like that.”
“Is that so? From what I’ve seen on the information site, it seems like a lot of girls get together to hang out and it’s also frequently used by couples.”
“Well, that would be awkward…”
Yamato was aware that this statement was shameful. However, he felt that he could not simply give in at this point. It was a kind of self-defense instinct.
“So why don’t we go there and if it’s awkward, just leave?”
“No, that would be a waste of money… This place is pretty pricey, right? After all, why not just use a regular public pool?”
“I don’t know, I just don’t feel comfortable in a public pool.”
Sayla was also quite stubborn.
As the two sides continued to battle it out, Sayla finished the second of her extra-large burgers and then popped her hand in the air as if she had a flash of inspiration.
“It’s okay if it’s a night pool, as long as there are no weirdos and it doesn’t cost a fortune, right?”
“Well, if there is such a place… maybe you know somewhere?”
If there was such a dream-like facility, Yamato would be wishing for the best. Yamato’s heart swelled with anticipation as he wondered if there would be a private pool for the rich.
“Well, it’s settled then. Let’s get going tonight.”
“That is pretty sudden. Well, I have time and nothing to do, so why not.”
“How about we meet in front of the school gate at 8:00 PM?”
“Shouldn’t we meet at the station?”
“No. If we meet at the station, we’ll have to take a long way around.”
It seemed to be in the vicinity. It was convenient because it wouldn’t cost any train fare.
“It’s pretty close. What kind of place is it?”
“You’ll have to wait and see.”
Sayla then smiled meaningfully as she said that.
Yamato had a bad feeling about this, but decided to chalk it up to his imagination.
“Okay. Now that we’ve decided on our plans for the night, what should we do after this? We can kill some time somewhere, or go back early.”
“I have to go back to get my swimsuit, and I want to sleep, so let’s split up.”
“…Before we go any further, we’re not going to do an all-nighter, okay?”
“I know already. Yamato is so serious sometimes.”
“I’m basically always serious, not just sometimes.”
They finished their lunch, arguing about such things.
After leaving the restaurant, they walked to the station and parted ways when they reached the main street.
“I’m looking forward to the pool.”
On the verge of parting, Sayla said happily.
The innocent smile on her face was so adorable that Yamato almost felt his cheeks soften.
Hiding his mouth, Yamato agreed with her. He was looking forward to it, but he was already nervous, imagining Sayla in her swimsuit.
“I’ll see you later tonight.”
“Yeah, see you later.”
They waved to each other and went home.
Yamato was very excited to finally be able to do something summer-like.