I Was Hired As A Tutor By A Cute Little Devilish Junior - Chapter 44 Sense Of Distance
As soon as the day’s classes ended, I ran out of the classroom at once.
I ran through the school entrance before any of the other students, and down the street to catch the earliest train I could, which I usually never did.
Normally, I would have gone home with Shiina again today, but I called ahead and asked her to take the day off.
I felt really sorry for Shiina, who seemed to be unhappy. So I told Shiina that I would make it up to her at the next tutoring session.
She agreed to it, but with a cute little devilish smile, she whispered, “I’ll expect you to make it up to me.”
I had to think of something before the next session, but I didn’t have time.
The reason why I was running to the station right now was for Kanade, who was sleeping at home.
Recently, Kanade has been acting weird.
From the point of view of others, it might appear normal, but from my point of view, it was as if a natural disaster was about to happen.
It was a strange thing for me to say, but Kanade was an extremely spoiled girl to me.
She followed me around no matter what I did, and never left me. She was such a brocon sister.
But about a week ago, after Kanade came home from a trip with her friend, her attitude changed drastically.
All the pampering touches she had with me were gone, and even when we talked normally, the conversation became awkward and distant.
And this morning, Kanade had a high fever and missed school.
Of course, at that point, I was planning to miss school too.
She had been behaving strangely until then, and I knew that I was the cause of it.
But when my mom said, “I’ll take good care of you, so you should go to school,” I had no words to reply.
So, I got through the class, which seemed longer than usual, in agony, and here I am heading home at full speed.
I boarded the train at the last minute, just as I rushed into the station.
Once I arrived at the nearest station, all I had to do was run. The sun was still shining brightly and sweat was beading on my forehead, probably because the days were getting a little longer as summer approached.
Wiping my sleeve messily, I ran to the door. There was an unfamiliar girl standing there, wearing a familiar uniform.
When I got closer and took a closer look, I saw that it was Kanade’s friend Momoka-chan.
I knew that if I approached her from behind, sweaty and breathing disorderly, I’d be sent straight to the cops, so I took a moment to compose myself and catch my breath before calling out to her.
“Hiya. Ah, Onii-san?”
“I-I’m sorry I startled you.”
“N-No. It’s just that I reacted strangely…”
Even though I look like a normal student, if Momoka-chan forgot about me and screamed at me, I would be a criminal to others.
I took a breath and felt relieved.
“What are you doing here, Momoka-chan?”
“Well, I heard Kanade-chan had a fever, so I brought her some school papers.”
“I see. Thank you for coming all the way.”
“N-No. Then, could I ask Onii-san to give them to her?”
“You’ve come all this way, so why don’t you go up? Kanade will be happy if Momoka-chan comes to visit her.”
“Are you sure?”
“Of course. Don’t be shy.”
“S-Sorry to disturb.”
I opened the front door and led Momoka inside.
As I took off my shoes, I said, “I’m home,” to which Mom’s voice answered, apparently from upstairs.
She was probably in Kanade’s room taking care of her.
I continued to lead Momoka-chan, a well-brought-up girl, upstairs, where she kept her shoes on the edge of the stairs.
I walk up the stairs, past my room with its cute Kanade’s hand-made plaque, and knock on the door at the far end, only to hear Mom’s voice instead of Kanade’s, opening the door.
“Welcome back, Riku. Ah, we got a guest?”
“Mom, you haven’t met her before. This is Kanade’s friend, Momoka-chan.”
“N-Nice to meet you.”
“Ara~, so you’re Momoka-chan. I’ve heard about you from Kanade. Come on in, come on in.”
Mom was happy that Kanade had made a friend and welcomed her with open arms when she saw Momoka-chan.
Kanade was asleep in bed with a cold pita on her forehead.
She had been in a lot of pain in the morning, but now she was sleeping with calm breathing, probably thanks to Mom’s constant care.
Mom was talking to Momoka without making too much noise, while I moved right next to Kanade and held her hand.
As I was thinking that I hadn’t even touched her hand like this recently, she grabbed my hand back.
I feared that I might have woken her up, but fortunately it seemed that she was just talking in her sleep, and she started to sigh in her sleep again while still holding my hand.
As I stroked Kanade’s head with my other hand, my eyes fell on the clock.
“Mom, did you prepare dinner yet?”
“Ah, it’s already that time. Riku, can you take care of it?”
“Yeah, I’ll take care of it.”
“Thank you. Have a good time, Momoka-chan.”
I watched my mother leave the room in her slippers, leaving me, Momoka-chan and Kanade in the room.
Of course, there were only a few things that Momoka-chan and I could talk about, so the atmosphere was somewhat tense.
However, Kanade had been pushing herself until she herself fell ill.
And Momoka-chan must have been somehow involved in the reason why she started pushing herself so hard.
I decided to make a bold move and ask Momoka-chan about it.
“Yes, what is it?”
“I know this is a weird question, but did Kanade ever tell you about me?”
“…Well, um…yes, I heard.”
I could kind of guess from her reaction.
“I understand that it’s not my place to interfere, but…”
“Onii-san, are you looking at Kanade-chan in a s*xual way?”
The tea didn’t squirt out of my mouth like it did when I went to Satsuki’s room a while ago, but that wasn’t the problem.
I had thought that Momoka-chan might have had some doubts about our relationship, but I hadn’t expected such words to come out of her first question.
“Okay, Momoka-chan seems to have misunderstood, so I’ll make it clear that Kanade and I are related by blood, and we don’t have that kind of relationship.”
“But from what Kanade told me, that’s all I can think of…”
“By the way, what did she tell you about…?”
I asked her fearfully, Momoka-chan took a moment to remember her conversation with Kanade, and then she began to speak softly.
“Umm…You always stick with her at home.”
“You both always took baths together, and washed each other.”
“Also spend time together in bed until morning.”
“I also have an older brother, but I thought the distance between you two was strange…”
“I’m sorry. I can’t deny that there are some questionable things either.”
It was a perfectly normal scene of the Murakami family’s daily life, but it was surprising to hear it mentioned again, one by one, by someone else.
However, I could easily imagine Kanade proudly talking about such things, and I couldn’t help but smile a little with my cheeks drawn together.
Maybe Momoka-chan had told Kanade about it, judging from the way she said it. The distance between us is not right, I thought.
Momoka-chan was the first friend Kanade has ever had outside of me and Satsuki.
So she must have taken what she said to heart and was concerned about the distance between us.
I had thought that Kanade might have disliked me for some reason, but now I was relieved.
I had to tell Momoka-chan that it was different from what she had imagined, but I was puzzled over how I could explain it to her.
However, when I looked at Kanade’s hand, which was still in my grip, the answer came to my mind.
“You know, Momoka-chan. It’s true that Kanade and I may be unique in the eyes of others. But that’s our way of expressing our love for each other. Of course, we are slightly different from normal siblings. So, if you can, please don’t say too much to Kanade, it would be very helpful.”
“Momoka-chan is an important friend to Kanade, and she may cause you a lot of trouble, but can you please continue to be good friends with her…?”
“Of course. Kanade is my precious friend too. I also feel relieved after talking to Onii-san.”
“I see, I’m glad to hear that.”
I stroked Kanade’s head again, relieved.
I felt like she was looking better than before, and Momoka and I laughed a little as Kanade said “Nii-san…” in her sleep again.