Mandarin Orange, Kotatsu, And A Found Cat - Chapter 51 The Cat And Distance
After the landlord shocked me, I went into the apartment with Mashiro along with a shopping bag.
I was fine until I got home; it’s just at the last minute, I ran into an oversized minefield.
Before I had a chance to explain, I was misunderstood as being in a relationship with Mashiro, and I didn’t have time to clear it up.
In a way, it was a blessing in disguise that the landlord approved of our living together, but it caused Mashiro a lot of trouble.
“I’m sorry, Mashiro.”
“No…it’s that I left the landlord’s misunderstanding intact…”
“I don’t mind. I’m a tenant, and as long as it’s convenient for Satou-san, I’m fine.”
She didn’t seem to really care and put the things we had bought in the fridge.
For my part, I’m glad that I get to spend time with Mashiro without any worries…
“What shall we have for dinner this evening? If you have any requests, I’ll be happy to answer them.
“Eh, really? Is that too selfish?
“No problem, ask whatever you want.”
She doesn’t usually do this kind of thing, but today seems to be a day when she’s in the mood for requests. I’m not sure.
I’m not sure what she’s in the mood for, but I’m excited by her unusual suggestion, and I’m trying to think of something I want to eat.
“…Nothing in particular.”
Mashiro let out a sigh as she responded to the words that fell out of my mouth.
It was not that I’m not interested in Mashiro’s cooking, of course. On the contrary, Mashiro usually cooks what I want to eat.
Her skill at grabbing my stomach was unparalleled, and she was getting closer and closer to my favorite dishes every day.
I was proud to admit that I didn’t have any particular dislikes or special preferences, but her cooking was interestingly suited to my palate.
That’s why when I was asked what I wanted to eat, I couldn’t think of anything because I was usually too fulfilled.
“I have a lot of ingredients now, so I think I can make something.”
“Hmm…I like anything Mashiro makes.”
“Even if you praise me so much, you’ll only get the same level of food as usual.”
“It’s more than enough.”
I go around and around in my head trying to think of different dishes, but none of them come to mind.
In the end, no matter what I request, she’s never off the mark, but I’m feeling sad because I don’t want to waste the chance to make something that’s already been made.
Before I knew it, Mashiro had finished moving to the refrigerator and was sitting next to me, staring at me happily.
“No, I was just amused to see you looking more serious than ever. Don’t worry about it.”
“M- Mashiro…I can’t help it. I may never get another chance like this.”
“But that doesn’t mean it’s something to be so worried about. Hmm.”
As if she couldn’t take it anymore, Mashiro let out a laugh while holding her mouth.
The relationship between her and me was like that of a mother and her adolescent child, and it made me feel even more uncomfortable.
“What are you going to do in the end?”
Mashiro asked me again, and started counting like some kind of quiz show.
While Mashiro seemed to be enjoying herself, I just tried to think of what I wanted to eat…
The words just slipped out of my mouth. …N-No, what omelet rice?
I severely regretted that I had said a cute food that I couldn’t help but giggle at myself.
As expected, Mashiro’s eyes fluttered and froze at my request.
That’s just as well. Whether it’s my favorite dish or not, I’ve had people make omurice for me in the past.
“By the way, may I ask why?”
“…Because the omelet rice Mashiro makes is delicious.”
“Is that all?”
I wasn’t going to lie, but later I realized that it wasn’t the only reason.
But I was a little embarrassed to tell him the reason, so I slurred my words.
If I had to explain it simply, it would be something as trivial as, “When I was little, I liked the egg dishes my parents made…”
“All right. Then I’ll make omelet rice as the main dish today.”
Mashiro said and turned on the TV to pass the time until dinner.
As usual, the two of us sat on the sofa and watched a program with fun images.
I felt uncomfortable because of the conversation we had just had, but suddenly I felt something warm on my hand.
I looked over to see Mashiro’s thin, white hand gently laying on mine.
When we were holding hands outside, I was able to do it without much resistance. But when she did it in the house, I felt the warmth and softness of her hand. It made me even more nervous.
“What’s wrong, Mashiro?”
“…Satou-san’s hands make me feel safe.”
“Is that so?”
“Yes, very much.”
If she said so, well…I don’t feel too weird. However, to be honest, it was very stimulating when she did that without hesitation.
I don’t have a high tolerance for this kind of thing myself, but it was not every day that a member of the opposite sex wants to hold my hand.
I think of Mashiro as an important member of my family, but of course we’re not related by blood, and she is a beautiful and dainty girl by all accounts.
It was impossible not to be conscious of her when she acted so defenselessly.
I awkwardly squeezed her hand back, trying not to let her know how shameful I felt.