I Know That After School, The Saint More Than Just Noble - Chapter 2
- I Know That After School, The Saint More Than Just Noble
- Chapter 2 - Class Party And The Unfamiliar Guest
Since it was lunchtime, they decided to go into a fast-food restaurant first.
There were nine of them in total, they were divided into two groups, one table for four people and the other table for six.
Yamato was seated at the six-seat table along with Seira and Tsubaki, but he did not feel like asking a lot of questions in front of his classmates.
Instead, Tsubaki was being bombarded with questions from other classmates.
“Ehhh!? Tsubaki-chan is that Kosaka Tsubaki? Wow, you’re a very famous person!”
One of the girls who was listening to the conversation exclaimed loudly. Yamato was also interested in what they were talking about.
“Heh? Is she that famous?”
Eita asked while picking up some fries, and the girl nodded vigorously.
“She is super famous. She’s that ‘beautiful ballerina genius’! She was trending the other day, and she’s really amazing!”
The girl immediately searched for the article on her phone and showed them the image of the article.
There it read, “A new star has emerged in the world of ballet! A ballerina rumored to be a genius, wins competition!” and Tsubaki was shown dancing in a tutu (ballet costume).”
The article was posted about six months ago, and the response at the time was tremendous. Tsubaki was wearing gorgeous makeup unique to ballet in the image, which gave her a different kind of beauty from her usual appearance. It was understandable that this caught people’s attention.
The article made everyone look at Tsubaki with admiration.
But Tsubaki humbly shook her head from side to side.
“This headline is an exaggeration, I’m not a genius. It’s embarrassing.”
Tsubaki blushed and softly denied it.
But she was aware of the fact that she is a “beautiful girl”.
“Wow, how small the world is.”
When Eita said this, everyone around agreed with him.
Yamato was surprised to learn that Tsubaki was a ballerina, but he had no idea that she was so famous that her name was even mentioned on social networking sites, with titles such as “genius” and “beautiful girl”. It really made him realize how small the world was.
However, when Yamato heard the word “ballet,” he felt somewhat caught up.
(Speaking of ballet, Shirase used to do it too, right?)
He had heard from Seira’s older sister, Reika, that ballet used to be one of Seira’s lessons. He wondered if this was a coincidence.
Yamato glanced over at Seira, who was engrossed in her hamburger. By the looks of it, she probably didn’t have the content of the conversation in her head.
Yamato wanted to ask Tsubaki about it, but he was a bit reserved in the presence of everyone else.
Then, Tsubaki turned to Seira.
“If that’s the case, Seira used to be a ballet dancer as well. We belonged to different schools, but I still admire her.”
Tsubaki did not appear to be being sarcastic. In other words, Tsubaki was being honest.
Yamato was also interested in Seira’s ballet figure, which was admired by a genius ballerina. Yamato imagined that the sight of Seira dancing in a tutu must have been truly glamorous.
Mei was the first to catch on. She screamed so loudly that it echoed throughout the restaurant, knocking over a drink container and splashing the contents all over the table, forcing her to wipe the table in a panic.
After wiping the table, Mei turned to Seira and closed the distance.
“Is what she just said true?”
Mei asked, but Seira was puzzled.
“Um, what is?”
(Shirase, did you really not hear anything…!?)
Yamato was stunned, but quickly explained the content of the conversation.
“Kosaka-san told us that Shirase was also a great ballerina. We were just talking about that now.”
“Heh. I don’t do it anymore, though.”
“Yeah, Kosaka-san told us that too.”
“And I prefer ballet dancer to ballerina. I like the sound of it more.”
Yamato was at the mercy of Seira’s unique pace. Everyone was looking at these two as if they were looking at something unusual… Honestly, it was awkward.
“I guess Kuraki-san is good friends with Seira-senpai.”
Tsubaki’s directness in this situation made Yamato feel even more uncomfortable.
“Well, we’ve known each other for a good while.”
“It has been five years since I was able to talk to my senpai properly, and more than ten years since we first met, but we still don’t get along with each other well.”
“H-Heh… That’s quite a long time to have known each other…”
“But we haven’t even had a chance to meet for the past year.”
Tsubaki was smiling, but it felt cold. In other words, it was kind of scary for Yamato.
At that moment, Eita stood up with what could be called salvation timing.
“Alright, is everyone almost done eating? Then, it’s time to go bowling!”
With that proclamation, everyone began to clean up in high spirits.
Yamato quickly put away his tray and left the restaurant with everyone else.
The train ride took more than ten minutes.
When they arrived at the designated bowling alley, they were divided into teams at Eita’s sole discretion.
As a result, Yamato was placed on the same team as Seira and Tsubaki. It was truly an intentional combination.
“I look forward to working with you as teammates.”
“Y-Yeah, same here.”
“I’m in your care.”
Tsubaki was sociable in this situation as well, but Yamato felt uncomfortable when he was in contact with her. He felt a strange uneasiness in his chest.
Yamato felt as if he was being observed, or even judged. But it may be that Yamato was just being overly self-conscious.
In the first place, it puzzled Yamato as to why Tsubaki came to see her at this time. It had been a year since she had seen Seira, but why had they grown apart? There were many things that were bothering Yamato.
However, there was no use in thinking about it all the time. After completing the registration, Yamato, like everyone else, started preparing for bowling.
As Yamato was about to take out the rental shoes for bowling, he asked.
“What do I need to do?”
Yamato was surprised to hear Tsubaki’s voice, which caused him to shout out in a panic.
“Don’t be so surprised.”
Tsubaki stared at the rental shoes with interest. Perhaps this was her first time bowling.
“Is this your first time bowling, by any chance?”
“I see. I think you can rent special shoes here first, and then choose a ball of the right weight for you. I don’t come to places like this very often, so I’m not used to it either.”
“I see. Thank you very much for your kindness.”
Tsubaki bowed respectfully and then turned to the rental shoe stand.
(Haa, what’s up with being nervous when dealing with someone younger…?)
Yamato, disgusted with his pathetic self, picked a ball and entered the alley.
At that moment, Mei spoke to him in a hushed voice.
“What’s wrong? You seem to be moving in a strange way.”
“Because, you know, I’m surprised at Kosaka-san’s sudden appearance.”
“Yeah, that’s the same for me. And to be honest, I’m still having a hard time figuring out how to treat her.”
“But I didn’t know that Saint-san had such a cute friend. And also that Saijo-san also dances. She was probably absolutely beautiful when she danced, wasn’t she! I wish I could have seen it!”
“…Well, Shirase said something about Kosaka-san like they weren’t friends.”
“No, it’s nothing.”
When Yamato asked Seira about her relationship with Tsubaki before, she said, “Maybe it’s different from being friends.”
However, it was probably not something that could be easily talked about.
Yamato reflected on the matter, and tried to cover it up with an affectionate smile.
“Anyway, for the time being, I’ll try to talk to her a lot. I want to get to know her better!”
Yamato nodded his head as if he was worshiping her, wanting to honestly show respect for her aggressiveness.
“Yes, go ahead.”
“Kuraki-kun, why don’t you talk to her more? I’m sure it’s hard for her to be around upperclassmen from another school.”
“I understand. Well, I think you fit the role much better than me and Shirase…”
“Ahaha, I can’t lose then. Well, I’ll see you later.”
Swinging her hand, Mei left.
Then Seira came along just in time to replace her. In her hand she held a thirteen-pound ball.
“Don’t tell me you’re going to throw that…?”
Generally speaking, the weight of a ball suitable for a man is about 11 to 15 pounds, and for a woman, it’s 7 to 11 pounds, so it seemed like a challenge for Seira to throw a 13-pound ball. By the way, Yamato’s ball weighs 11 pounds.
“Yes. The heavier the ball is, the more likely it is to knock the pins over.”
Seira said the most obvious thing in a matter-of-fact manner.
She seemed to have bowling experience, so there was probably nothing to worry about.
“…Yes, that’s right. Well, don’t push yourself too hard.”
A few minutes later. Tsubaki entered.
She was holding a seven-pound ball in her hand. It seemed she was able to choose the right one for her.
…Immediately after, when she checked Seira’s ball, Tsubaki turned on her heel and immediately replaced hers with a 14-pound ball.
Just holding its weight was enough to bring sweat to her forehead. Throwing it would clearly be reckless.
“Umm, Kosaka-san…? No matter how much you look at it, it looks like the ball is too much for Kosaka-san, right?”
“N-No, I’m fine with this. Thank you for your concern.”
This was clearly due to her rivalry with Seira.
When Seira saw this, instead of stopping her, she was impressed. It seemed futile to expect Seira to stop her.
Once everyone was in the room, Eita, the organizer of the event, gave a brief explanation of the rules.
The game was a three-group competition. The groups were divided into lanes and competed for a total score over two games.
The person that comes in last buys ice cream for everyone in the group… This was a battle that Yamato could not afford to lose at any cost. Mainly for financial reasons.
Then it was time to decide the order.
“All right, let’s play rock-paper-scissors to decide. In the order of whoever wins.”
After saying that, Seira was immediately ready to play.
“I don’t care what number I’m in.”
“I don’t care either.”
The two of them also took up the rock-paper-scissors position.
“”Rock, paper, scissors…””
The result was that Seira won overall. Second place was Yamato, and the players were Seira, Yamato, and Tsubaki, in that order.
And so the first game began.
“First it’s me.”
Seira said calmly, and then she set up the ball.
Her upright posture was both beautiful and fluid. She also attracted the attention of the entire hall, not just the lanes next to her.
Soon after, Seira threw the ball with the same brilliant form as a pro.
The ball seemed to arc at first, but the next moment it made a tremendous impact, sending every single pin flying.
Yamato came to his senses as the LCD screen above his head displayed the words “STRIKE!”
“…O-Oh, wow, that’s great. A strike on the first throw?”
Seira, without changing her expression, flashes a V-sign to Yamato, who was stunned in awe.
The other lanes finally resumed throwing as Seira pulled back.
“Okay, let’s do it.”
As the only male member of the group, Yamato was determined to follow Seira’s momentum.
The straight ball, thrown with a limp, just barely avoided the gutter and only managed to knock the pins at the end.
(Kuh, I should have aimed for the middle… It’s not as good as Shirase’s.)
Unconvinced, Yamato went in for the next throw.
Immediately after the throw, an unintentionally pitiful voice spilled out. The ball left his hand and did not follow the ideal trajectory, and only knocked down one pin on the opposite side.
Yamato apologized to his two teammates, both of whom tilted their heads with a puzzled look on their faces. He was feeling sorry and embarrassed. Apparently, neither of them was bothered by it at all.
“W-Well, it’s still early.”
Perhaps because of this, Yamato was also able to fix his mindset.
“It’s my turn next.”
Tsubaki’s expression was somewhat interesting as she stood up quickly.
For her first time, she didn’t show any of the anxiety she had shown in the beginning. The hall’s anticipation was rather high.
She grabbed the 14-pound ball with her white, slender arms, shook her black hair, and dutifully stepped out into the approach.
She was indeed a ballerina genius. Perhaps it was because of her firm torso, but even with the heavy ball in her hands, she maintained her beautiful posture.
She then entered into a brilliant throwing form—
Dun! …And immediately after, the ball fell to the floor with a dull thud.
It rolled across the floor and fell into the gutter, stopping in the process.
Dink. The place fell silent.
The ball was immediately removed by an attendant who was summoned.
In the meantime, Tsubaki maturely brought the seven-pound ball.
“W-Well, it’s still early.”
Tsubaki uttered the same words that they heard just a few minutes ago, and smiled to cover up the awkwardness. …From Yamato’s point of view, he didn’t want them to be doing the same.
Tsubaki’s next throw also sank into the gutter, probably because she hasn’t gotten used to it yet.
The first frame ended on an extreme start, with Seira getting a strike and the other two getting scattered results.
However, it seemed that not all of the other classmates were good at bowling. The only one who was doing well so far, besides Seira, was probably Eita.
(I can’t be too relieved. We might lose because of me…)
It was no wonder that the inexperienced Tsubaki couldn’t do well. But this was not Yamato’s first time, and he was the only male on the team. If they lost because of him, Yamato would not be able to show his face to Seira.
That was what he thought.
“All right, another strike.”
Easily, Seira got her second strike. This was her second strike in a row. Thanks to this, Yamato’s turn came around without time to think of countermeasures.
Even if Yamato continues to drag his feet, Seira alone might win the game.
But that would not satisfy Yamato.
“Hmm? What’s the matter, also why did you call me with a ‘san’?”
“No, umm, I wanted you to give me a lecture on how to throw it…”
“Ah, that’s right.”
Yamato decided that this was not the time to be showy, so he decided to shamelessly ask for help.
Then, Seira stood right behind Yamato and got close to his body.
Tsubaki shouted in astonishment behind him. She was so surprised that she froze with her eyes wide open.
However, Yamato was surprised as well. Something ridiculously soft was hitting his back, and there was no way he could afford to be concerned about anything else.
“Look forward. The form of your throw is important, but your sight is the most important thing.”
“That’s right. Especially if you’re throwing straight. Do you see the triangle in the middle of the lane? It’s called a spat, and you need to keep your eyes on the center of the spat and imagine that you are throwing the ball straight—”
As Seira told Yamato, he threw the ball while keeping his eyes on the triangle in the middle of the lane.
To his surprise, the ball went straight.
The ball hit the center pin and succeeded in knocking down the seven pins.
“Ooh, that’s great! It really went straight!
“Yes. I think it would be more stable if you could link not only your arms but also your legs and hips.”
“I think the last one is basically impossible though… I got it for now, thanks for the help!”
Yamato was deeply relieved that he would not have to drag his feet now.
He tried the next throw by himself, and the ball went right through the middle. Although he could not knock down all the pins, he finally got the hang of it.
Next, it was Tsubaki’s turn.
Tsubaki took a deep breath, readied the ball, looked forward with good posture, and slowly moved into her throwing form—
It was a strike!
Perhaps Tsubaki had heard Seira’s lesson earlier. Even so, she learned very quickly. She even managed to link her legs and hips, something Yamato had not been able to do.
“I see, it certainly seems that sight is important. It’s the same with the center of gravity of the body, but it also stabilizes the timing of releasing the ball.”
Although she tried to appear nonchalant, it was obvious that Tsubaki was pleased with her performance.
“Kosaka-san is a very quick learner. I can’t believe you’ve already taken Shirase’s advice.”
“No, it’s just that the advice she just gave was right on the money. I’m sure we can finally have a decent match now.”
Tsubaki’s eyes were lit up with a clear fighting spirit.
But Yamato had a feeling that it was not directed at the other team.
“Yeah, I’ve got the hang of it, too. I think I’m going to be able to take first place.”
‘Eh? — Ah, yes, right.”
As if to cover something up, Tsubaki smiled.
(Does she think she is playing a game against Shirase…?)
Even if that was the case, it wouldn’t be a problem, because if the two of them scored high, it would lead to the team’s victory.
At that moment, a tremendous impact sound was heard.
That sound was the third strike in a row by Seira — a turkey.
I looked at Tsubaki without thinking, and she was frozen with her mouth wide open.
Tsunk, tsk, tsk. Then Yamato received a poke on the shoulder from Seira.
When he turned around, Seira raised her hands and said.
“Let’s high-five, it’s a turkey after all.”
As Yamato was urged, he high-fived Seira.
Yamato’s hands were touched more forcefully than expected, and they went numb with a tingling sensation.
“You hit me too hard…”
“Ahaha, sorry. I was throwing a heavy ball, so I used too much force.”
Saying so casually, Seira took her seat. Apparently, she did not want to high-five Tsubaki.
Yamato, wondering why, approached Seira’s side and asked in a whisper.
“(Hey, why didn’t you high-five Kosaka-san?)”
“Hmm. Tsubaki wouldn’t want to do that kind of thing.”
“Is that so…?”
When Yamato looked next to her, he saw that Tsubaki was fiddling with her phone. Tsubaki seemed blithely unconcerned and showed no sign of asking for a high-five.
“Look, it’s Yamato’s turn.”
Seira urged him on, and Yamato, still not quite satisfied with the situation, began to throw his next ball.
The first game was over, and at this point, Yamato’s team was in first place by a wide margin.
This was because Seira had scored nearly 300 points. Except for one in the middle of the game, all of them were strikes.
Tsubaki also had a high score of over 150 points, and Yamato barely exceeded 100 points, so at this point the team had an overwhelming lead over the other teams.
“Well, I wasn’t ready for this…”
Perhaps this result was unexpected, but Eita sighed with heartfelt regret.
Although Eita’s team had a high score of one hundred and seventy points by Eita himself, the other two members had not even reached one hundred points, so there was more than a double score difference between his team and Yamato’s team. Since they were also beaten by the other team, they were currently in last place.
However, Eita quickly changed his mind and pointed a finger at Yamato.
“But we haven’t lost yet! The real battle is in the second half, and we’ll be the ones to take first place at the end! You’d better brace yourself!”
Eita bravely announced this and then headed for the restroom.
Then Mei approached him and said excitedly.
“As expected of Saint-san, but you’re also amazing, Kosaka-san! This is your first time bowling, and to suddenly score over 150 points is astonishing!”
For some reason, Mei was as pleased as if it were her own accomplishment. Incidentally, Mei herself was on the same team as Eita, barely scoring over 50 points. …It seemed that she was not good at bowling.
However, Tsubaki, who was praised, replied regretfully.
“By ‘Saint-san,’ do you mean Seira-senpai…? Anyway, I’m not getting good yet. I thought I was getting the hang of it, but I realized that my current control is not good enough to get strikes with a straight ball.”
“Well… Um, that’s great!”
Apparently unable to understand Tsubaki’s words very well, Mei made an appropriate ministerial remark to cover it up.
Tsubaki then came to herself and smiled.
“B-But bowling is fun! At first glance it seems like a simple game, but it is quite profound! I think I’ll try curves next time.”
As if to ease the delicate atmosphere, Tsubaki talked about the appeal of bowling.
Her desperate reading of the air in this way seemed nostalgic to Yamato.
Shortly thereafter, the second half of the game began with the return of Eita.
However, it was already not as tense as the first game. This was probably because the winner had basically been decided already, everyone was also moderately tired, and the exciting mood of the start of summer vacation was beginning to settle down.
Besides, except for Eita, the other classmates seemed to be concerned about whether Seira would be able to score 300 points by getting strikes on all of her throws, or what was called a perfect score.
Thanks to such a relaxed atmosphere, even Yamato’s shoulders were down. By no longer having to worry about losing due to his poor performance, he was rather able to genuinely enjoy bowling.
With such a relaxed mind, he remembered what he was going to do.
“Kosaka-san, may I have a word?”
When Seira’s turn to throw came around, Yamato called out to Tsubaki.
Then, Tsubaki tilted her head curiously.
“What is it? If you want a lecture on how to throw, I think it would be more helpful to have Seira-senpai give it to you…”
“No, it’s not about bowling.”
It seemed that Tsubaki was already aware that she was a better player than Yamato in bowling. That was not wrong and Yamato couldn’t say anything in particular about it, but that was not what he wanted to talk about right now.
“Umm, I just wanted to ask you why you came to see Shirase today, if you have some sort of purpose.”
“Aah, about that? That’s—”
Tsubaki glanced away.
She looked at Seira, who was fiddling with her phone while she was yawning.
“I can’t even take the time to talk to you when she’s only scoring strikes…”
“So we can talk after we’re done.”
Tsubaki smiled at him as if she was planning something, which made Yamato feel nervous.
As he naturally averted his gaze, he noticed that Mei, sitting across from him, was giving him a glare, which made him feel strangely uncomfortable.
When the second game was also over, Yamato and his team took first place in the overall score.
However, there was apparently no prize for being first place but the last place team— Eita’s team — bought ice cream for all three groups.
At a rest spot in the bowling alley. Everyone was chatting and laughing while chewing on ice cream bars on the benches.
“Shirase is amazing, she’s almost the sole winner. And Kosaka-san has improved so much that it’s hard to believe she’s a beginner.”
Yamato was impressed, and Seira replied with a downcast look on her face.
“Hmm, but I didn’t get a perfect score.”
“Your goal is too high… Well, it seems everyone was expecting it to happen.”
The reason being that her arms were tired, Seira changed to a lighter ball in the middle of the game, but the heavy ball seemed to have taken its toll on her.
However, Tsubaki looked even more unhappy than Seira.
Fearfully, Yamato tried to offer some words of encouragement.
“Kosaka-san, good work. In the second game, you increased your score even more, and it was really great. I should learn from you.”
“Ah, thanks. …Though, in the end, I lost.”
“No, this is a team game, and Kosaka-san and Shirase are on the same team. Besides, this was Kosaka-san’s first time bowling, right? Then you can get better from now on.”
(I don’t know why I am giving advice to someone who is better than me.)
But Yamato’s words were not in vain, and Tsubaki nodded her head, seemingly regaining her composure.
“Well, thank you very much. Kuraki-san is very kind.”
“No, not really. Also, we were able to win this time thanks to Kosaka-san.”
“What? But earlier, you said that Seira was the sole winner.”
“That’s a figure of speech…—Anyway! We won, so we should be more than happy!”
Yamato, trying to liven things up despite it being out of character, shouted out, and Seira rose vigorously to her feet.
“Yes. Now that we’ve won, we have to eat the ice cream properly.”
“Ice cream in the summer is very special. It’s even better after a workout.”
The two seemed to be able to change the mood by agreeing with each other.
Eita then said, “All right, let’s go to the game center,” and everyone left the bowling alley.
The game center was attached to a bowling alley, and the purpose of this visit seemed to be to take photos at the photo booth.
Yamato had taken pictures at a class reunion in middle school, so it was not the first time for him, but it had been a while, so he was still nervous.
“A photo booth, it’s my first time.”
At that time, Seira muttered something that made the place freeze.
Yamato had been to the arcade many times with Seira, but they had never talked about taking pictures.
It was partly because neither of them was interested, but also because the idea of taking pictures at an arcade had never occurred to them.
“Let’s take a lot of pictures today!”
Mei said excitedly with a twinkle in her eye.
“Ah, yes. But are we all going to fit in a single one?”
“That…Would be quite stuffy.”
“Well then, let’s split up into several groups.”
At Eita’s suggestion, they decided to divide into groups again.
However, it seemed that the members would be switched several times and the combination would be adjusted so that everyone could be photographed together in the end.
Thus, the first group was—
“This is definitely Shinjo’s harassment…”
In addition to Yamato and Seira, the other members of their group were Mei and Tsubaki. It was a harem-like combination.
The group was given the “okay” sign by the ringleader, Eita, as well as two other boys, and they couldn’t back out of it.
“Ehehe, I’m kind of sorry.”
Mei said in a caring manner, but she couldn’t hide her excitement as it was the first picture she would take with Seira.
“No, it’s not Tamaki-san’s fault, and I’m excited too.”
“It’s the first time for me to take a picture here too, so I’m kind of looking forward to it.”
Yamato thought that the sociable Tsubaki might have taken pictures with her classmates before, but surprisingly, this was her first time. Was she a young lady after all?
“I’ve heard that you can choose from a variety of options, but which one do you like?”
Seira, who seemed to be very curious about the booth, was staring at the LCD screen. Then Mei, who probably had the most experience, took the lead in deciding how to take the pictures, saying, “I have a few tricks.”
The small space was filled with a sweet aroma. Perhaps it was the fact that Yamato was crammed in with three beautiful girls, but he felt a bit fuzzy.
“Kuraki-san, are you alright? You seem to be in a kind of daze.”
Tsubaki asked Yamato with concern. Unlike Seira and Mei, who were engrossed in the screen, she seemed as calm as usual.
“Yeah, I’m fine. I’m just a little nervous because I’m not used to this kind of situation.”
“I see. But if you really feel ill, please let me know.”
Tsubaki then took out a handkerchief and wiped the sweat from Yamato’s forehead. The handkerchief smelled so good that it made him sweat even more.
“…Sorry, I’ll wash it and give it back to you.”
“No, don’t worry about it. Also, it looks like we’re going to start.”
Yamato’s gaze shifted forward, thrilled by the gentle smile he received.
The countdown to the shoot had just begun.
(Kosaka-san is younger than me, but she’s a ‘good girl’, isn’t she? No wonder she’s so popular.)
Yamato glanced at his neighbor while admiring her in this way.
Then, Tsubaki, who was standing next to him, also noticed his gaze and smiled at him. The timing of this unexpectedly cute smile made Yamato blush instantly.
As if to capture such a moment, a shutter sound echoed through the room.
“Hmm, I’m angry, you know? My comrades got crushed to the bone so easily.”
The lineup changed, and Mei, Eita, Yamato, and another classmate were in the middle of a photoshoot. At this time, Yamato was being lectured by Mei.
The cause was the picture that they had just taken with Seira and the others.
The reason was that the first one was a scene in which Yamato and Tsubaki were just staring at each other.
“No, I didn’t mean to…”
“Sure, Kosaka-san is cute, but you have to look at Saint-san over there!”
“Yea, like Tamaki-san was.
“Yes, yes, like me—but don’t worry about me now!”
Mei blushed and pouted. In the picture they took, Mei was so entranced and smitten with Seira that she was probably too embarrassed to remember.
“Well, well, well, let’s leave the lover’s quarrel at that.”
Eita said teasingly, and then he just kept on bumping shoulders with Yamato.
“Wow, you’re too close. That’s creepy.”
“Creepy? Come on…”
At that time, the shutter sound echoed.
And so, their moment of black history was cemented.
The sun was beginning to set. After taking pictures, the class party came to an end.
“See you, everyone! Let’s hang out again, Kosaka-san!”
“Yes, by all means, please join us again sometime.”
Tsubaki exchanged friendly greetings with Mei and the rest of her classmates. It seemed that they had already become completely comfortable with each other.
In comparison, Yamato still has some difficulty in talking to his classmates, which made him feel a little miserable.
In fact, the only other person among the boys that he could talk to properly was Eita.
“Kuraki, too, I’ll be in touch.”
“Yeah. I’ll call you when I have some free time.”
By the time they arrived at the nearest station, it was just the three of them, Yamato, Seira and Tsubaki.
“Hmm, I’m a little tired.”
Seira stretched out and said.
“Right. It’s been a while since I’ve played bowling, but it’s still tiring.”
“It was a good experience for me.”
Tsubaki said with a smile. It seems that it was a fulfilling day for her as well.
“Now, what are we going to do?”
After Seira said that, she then turned to Yamato and Tsubaki.
Yamato tried to interpret the meaning of those words in his own way.
“Finally, we can have a proper talk.”
Yamato guessed that she meant it was time to talk to Tsubaki, but he was wrong.
Seira opened her mouth, not seeming to understand.
“I’m pretty tired, and I was wondering if we should go home and rest, or if we should just keep playing around some more.”
Tsubaki looked confused.
“In other words, do we continue to play until the night, or do we go home, get some rest, and then meet up and play all-night — which do you want?”
Yamato asked her, and Seira nodded her head delightedly.
“That sort of thing. On a personal note, I’d like to go home and take a shower.”
Tsubaki looked as if she didn’t understand what was being said.
It was not unreasonable. Because what Seira was saying was not the normal behavior of an average high school student.
“I’ve told you before, Shirase. That’s not allowed.”
“But it’s already summer vacation. It’s okay to get a little wild.”
Seira said bad things with her innocent eyes straight into his eyes.
The gap in her attitude was instinctively attractive to him, but he managed to muster up the strength of reason.
“…Today, Kosaka-san is here, don’t tell me you’re going to make me go out with her too?”
“Hmm, I’ll stop if Tsubaki doesn’t want to go. How about that?”
Seira seemed to be planning to take Tsubaki out for a late-night journey. This was a surprise to Yamato.
Because Seira had previously said that Tsubaki was not really a friend of hers.
Tsubaki tightened her expression and responded to the question.
“I don’t want to, or rather, I am just confused right now. Senpai, in other words, you are about to start a night out?”
Seira nodded in response to the question.
“Do you understand the consequences, senpai? If I tell your family about it, he will immediately call you back to your house.”
“…If you do that, I’ll be troubled.”
“If that is the case…why are you asking me?”
Tsubaki’s eyes were shaken in confusion.
The same was now true for Yamato, who did not understand Seira’s intentions.
Seira tilted her head and said, “Hmmm.”
“I guess it was because I wanted to hang out with Tsubaki-san properly. Not because of the class party or anything like that. Isn’t that a good reason?”
With an innocent smile like a child, Seira spoke her mind as it was, without making any attempt to make things sound better.
In front of her, Tsubaki squeezed out her voice.
“…It’s not fair, senpai. You’re always so selfish.”
“I’m sorry. I always move at my own pace.”
Seira’s expression as she said this was refreshing, and just looking at her gave Yamato a strange feeling as if his heart was being cleansed.
“I’m sorry to you too, Yamato. I always push you around.”
“…Goodness, it’s a little late for that. It’s really not fair.”
It was strange how, when Yamato was faced with a fresh smile, he no longer cared about anything else. Yamato did not know how to describe it other than calling it “unfair”.
At that moment, Tsubaki nodded in agreement with Yamato with a sigh.
“Fine. If this is the case, I’ll go with you.”
Interrupting the delighted Seira, Tsubaki continued with a serious look on his face.
“I’ll be honest, the real purpose of my visit to Seira-senpai wass to find out what you were doing.”
“To put it simply, it’s to see if you’re going astray or not.”
To Tsubaki, who was stoutly saying so, Seira replied with a face that was devoid of any tension.
“I see. So you came here at the behest of my parents?”
“Well, that’s about it. Are you scared of them?”
“No, I don’t care about them.”
Seira, who answered in this way, did not seem to really care.
Tsubaki, apparently not pleased with this attitude, told her with a sigh.
“I said before, but today I’m going to be with senpai as much as I can. Once again, please take care of me, okay?”
“Yes, I’ll do that.”
Seira lightly agreed, but from Yamato’s point of view, he felt that this was a story that should not be easily put to rest.
After all, Tsubaki was basically a watchdog sent by Seira’s parents. They were about to spend the whole night with such a partner, so he could only see a bad future for himself.
“Hey, why don’t we just call it a night? Since we are now on summer vacation, I think we can have a more meaningful time if we get together during the daytime.”
Yamato, out of a sense of urgency, suggested this, but Seira and Tsubaki both shook their heads.
“I’m still in the mood for more fun.”
“I don’t know when I’ll be able to free up my schedule next time either. I’ve prepared myself now.”
The two of them seemed determined, and reluctantly, Yamato decided to give in.
“So, um… were we going to go home once and get together again at night?’
When Yamato reluctantly asked, Seira nodded with a smile.
“Yes, we will do that. I’ll message you later. You should change into your casual clothes.”
“Yes, yes. Are you going home too, Kosaka-san?”
Yamato asked without any hesitation, and Tsubaki looked troubled and turned her head down.
“I…may not be allowed to go out once I return.”
“Well, that’s true…”
“Then come to my house. I’ll lend you some clothes.”
Tsubaki immediately agreed in response to Seira’s suggestion.
“Well, I will take your word for it and do so.”
After the conversation was settled, Yamato said, “Well then, I’ll see you later,” and was about to leave.
Yamato turned around, and Seira offered a suggestion.
“Let’s go to the photo booth together sometime.”
Yamato was surprised and froze.
The same was true for Tsubaki, who was also surprised, and only Seira seemed satisfied as she left.
Yamato replied in a whisper, aware that he was blushing.
Around the time Yamato arrived home, his phone received a new message.
The sender was Seira, and it was a simple sentence: ‘Meet me in front of the station at 9:00.’
“That’s an early time to go all out at karaoke.”
Was she going to kill time at the arcade like before?
In any case, Yamato had to finish dinner and take a bath while he was at it.
Although Yamato said that much to Seira, the idea of playing all out from the first day of summer vacation was something to get excited about.
“Summer vacation has begun.”
After muttering to himself in his room, Yamato immediately started to get ready.
[EDN: Sorry about a lack of chapters, had to deal with the end of school and a bunch of other projects (#BlameChar)]
[TLN: Kay, Monke.]