One Day Repeat! - Chapter 1 You, Me, And A Potato
Saturday, September 8 (1st time)
A few hours later. As the train that was taking me home shook and swayed, I sighed heavily for the umpteenth time. The reason for this was, of course, the outcome of my confession earlier that was still lingering in my mind.
“But damn, getting rejected for that kind of reason, huh…”
“Ahahaha! Sayahara-san really doesn’t hold back, does she? ‘Potato face’… Ahahaha!”
“Hey, how long are you gonna laugh about that, Daichi? If you don’t shut up, I’m going to give your face a good punch.”
“I mean, this is the first time I’ve ever seen someone get so… brutally rejected! Ahahaha!”
“You know, the boy you’re talking about, the one who got so brutally rejected, is right in front of you, right? Shouldn’t you be a bit more sympathetic?”
“Ah, that’s right! Since you’re one of a kind, lemme take a picture of you!”
“Stop it. You’re talking about me as if I’m a new breed of panda who’s just arrived in Japan. Cut me some slack here.”
I retorted at my close friend, Karasawa Daichi, as he cackled. In reality, one of the major reasons why I confessed to Sayahara-san today was because he pushed me to do so, yet here he is making fun of me for doing exactly that.
“…But, seriously though. Does my face really look like a potato?”
“Hmm, I wonder. I’ve never thought that… But, I do think that your face kinda resembles mashed potatoes.”[ED:Lmao, that’s worse.]
“So you do think that my face looks like a potato.”
As we had such lighthearted talk, the train suddenly shook as it made a shrill noise. I lost my grip on the handrail, and with it my balance.
“Damn, another problem with the train…?”
“Now that you mention it, the trains earlier this morning were delayed too, weren’t they?”
“Yeah… Actually, now that I think about it, I’ve been having this sort of bad luck all day. They must’ve been signs that my confession wouldn’t go well…”
I muttered to myself as I recalled the events that happened today. The morning program’s fortune-telling section said, “Nothing will go your way today. Be careful when you go out!” First, as I was walking to the station near my house, I was suddenly chased by a stray dog. Then, I found out that the trains were delayed, resulting in me being late for school. Next, I suddenly got the urge to use the toilet in the middle of class, so I had to hold it in as much as possible… And finally, when I confessed to the girl I liked, I was harshly rejected.
Today really is the worst day ever.
“When I get home, I’m just gonna bury my face in my pillow and cry till I fall asleep…”
“Don’t be so sad over a rejection. You’re a man, aren’t you?”
“You idiot. Real men bawl their eyes out when they get rejected.”
I blurted those words out to my friend who didn’t understand a thing as I looked up at the sky through the window of the currently stationary train. The sky was a clear blue, seemingly in stark contrast to the state of my heart.
Saturday, September 8 (2nd time)
“Come on, Kuro! Wake up! You have school today!”
As someone noisily shouted at me, I felt the blanket covering my body being pulled away. I slowly opened my eyes as the sunlight shining in through my window temporarily blinded me. The hell is going on?
“…Mmm? Huh? Isn’t today a holiday…”
“Are you still half-asleep or something? Your high school has classes in the morning on Saturdays too. Did you forget that?”
“Aren’t you the one growing old, Mom? Yesterday was Saturday, so today would obviously be Sunday.”
“Are you still dreaming?! If you think I’m lying, check the TV or the internet!”
My mom left those words behind as she left my room. Huh…?
“Sure, there are times when I forget the current date, but… What the hell is going on? Is this really just my mom messing around with me?”
I muttered to myself as I took my smartphone from beside me and checked the date. Its display showed “September 8 (Saturday) ─ 7:42 AM.” Huh? So it really is true. It’s Saturday today. But if my memory serves me correctly, isn’t that yesterday’s date?
“Huh…? What is this weird feeling…”
Despite being in a state of utter confusion, I decided to change into my school uniform and head downstairs into the living room. There, I found a simple breakfast of fried eggs, wieners, and rice laid out on the table.
“It’s the same menu as yesterday… that being said, my breakfasts are always like this, aren’t they…”
“Why’re you being so rude all of a sudden? Do you want me to kick you out of the house?”
The fried eggs were accompanied with soy sauce, and I heartily ate them while savoring its unchanging flavor. It was considered bad manners to do so, but I used the remote to turn the TV on. The Saturday morning news program was currently showing horoscope predictions.
『And first place goes to all of you Virgos! You will be met with success in everything that you do today! Now might be the time for you to advance your relationships with your special ones! Your lucky item is a green cap!』
“Nice. Hey Mom, your zodiac sign came in first place today. They said that today’s the day to advance your relationships with your special ones. Don’t go having affairs though, okay?”
“Hey, why aren’t you saying anything? It’s making me feel uneasy here. Come on, say something.”
As I said those words, the atmosphere beyond the TV screen suddenly grew grim. It was now time for the Zodiac sign that came in last place.
『Unfortunately… last place goes to all of you Pisces’. Nothing will go your way today. Be careful when you go out! Your lucky item is a golden tortoise shell!』
“Ara, that’s unfortunate, Kuro. Don’t forget to carry a golden tortoise shell in your bag today.”
“I don’t have anything like that, and even if I did, I wouldn’t carry it around with me in the first place.”
I retorted to my Mom when suddenly I realized… Hold on, this kinda feels like déjà vu.
I’m pretty sure this happened too some time ago… in fact, it happened just yesterday. My Zodiac sign (Pisces) came in last place on the morning news, and my Mom made fun of me because of that, so I retorted at her just like the one I did a few seconds ago…
“……? What’s wrong, Kuro? You suddenly got this grim look on your face.”
“No, it’s nothing…”
For a second, I wondered if I should ask Mom about this, but then I decided against it… because imagine. If I told my Mom, “I think I might be experiencing today for a second time,” would she really believe me?
Well then, let’s just start with what I can conclude for now. It looks like somehow, I’ve already experienced September 8 yesterday. The reason for my conclusion is plain and simple… the events that took place today seem to be an exact recreation of the events that I experienced yesterday.
My Zodiac sign, Pisces, being announced in last place. A stray dog persistently chasing me all the way to the station. A train problem causing delays on the line. A sudden urge to use the toilet during second period. And finally…
“…Of course Sayahara-san would be waiting up here.”
She, as lovely as ever, was waiting on the rooftop for “a certain someone who sent her a love letter.” The love letter I put into her shoe locker on Friday seemed to have reached her this time as well. And so, on this second iteration of September 8, at 11.30 AM, she was waiting for me on the rooftop, just like yesterday.
“…So, are you heading out there or not?”
The door to the rooftop was slightly open, and I peeked out at Sayahara-san. Daichi, who was right behind me, asked me that question. Am I heading out there or not, huh…
Obviously I didn’t want to experience the same pain and heartbreak a second time…
“Hah… I just can’t. I can’t confess to her.”
“Geez, you’re so spineless… I guess there’s no helping it. If that’s the case, then I’ll go out there and tell her, ‘The person you’re waiting for won’t be coming, so you can just head home.’”
“…Sorry for putting you up to this, Daichi.”
“No problem man. We’re friends, aren’t we?”
“Alright then, I’mma head out. ─Hey, Sayahara-san! Forget Kamishiro; he’s a spineless, indecisive dullard! Why don’t you go out with me instead?!”
“Damn, Daichi, are you for real?”
Despite joking around a bit too much, he managed to properly convey afterwards the fact that the sender of the love letter wouldn’t be coming, so Sayahara-san promptly decided to head home. And so, time passed and here I was at home, lying on my bed.
“Hah… This day has been nothing but a bundle of mysteries, huh…”
I muttered to myself as I contemplated various things. Everything that happened today was exactly the same as yesterday’s course of events. I felt a bit omniscient, like I knew everything, and it gave me a sense of excitement. However, it also gave me a sense of dread at the same time. Having to take the exact same classes, listening to the exact same lectures from my teachers, as well as listening to Daichi telling me the exact same stories as yesterday was incredibly discomforting. It was as if I was the only person in the world who was removed from the rails of normalcy.
“It was fun and all, but I think doing this once is more than enough…”
And so, I ended my second iteration of today without much problems…
Saturday, September 8 (3rd time)
“…What the hell is going on right now.”
I woke up and checked the date on my smartphone, immediately muttering this to myself… To be completely honest, it wasn’t as if I hadn’t expected this to happen. However… I had tried to be optimistic, since I thought that being overly pessimistic would result in this very situation.
“Damn, are you kidding me… So this is how things turned out…”
─It looks like I’m somehow repeating September the 8th over and over. Is this the so-called time loop phenomena? A time loop confining me to this one day… I can’t get my head around it. It feels so unreal; it’s almost like fiction.
“W-What should I do…?”
To be honest, I still haven’t come to terms with the current situation, but… for now, I’ll just assume that this is the case, meaning that I’ll have to figure out my plan of action moving forward.
And so, after using this third repetition of Saturday to its fullest, I came to the conclusion that I needed to figure out what this “time loop” phenomenon is and how it works. I decided that I’d investigate what kind of rules this time loop operated on. Anything was fine, as long as I gained more leads on this strange phenomenon. For the next few days, I would dedicate my time to investigating and examining various things, which led me to a conclusion…
This “repetition” is a phenomenon that happens on its own, regardless of my will, when the time passes 12 o’clock midnight.
I tried to stay up and stare at the clock until 11:59 PM, but the next moment I’d feel an irresistible drowsiness, like an animal shot by a tranquilizer gun. I’d then wake up in my own bed at home to find that it’s September 8th once more. That was where I’d be returned. I once tried to take a late night bus and head far away, but the result was the same. At 12 o’clock midnight, I fell asleep on the bus, after which I awoke in my own bed.
In short, it’s as if a reset button is being pressed at the end of each day.
It doesn’t matter what I do or don’t do. Right as the date changes at midnight on September 8th, everything I did on that particular day would be reset. Then, I’d restart September 8th once more. Then it’d be reset again. Restart. Reset. Restart. Reset. Restart. Reset─
“I’m so damn fed up with this…”
On the morning of my 8th repetition, I voiced my thoughts out loud. Even if it was fine for now, my heart would eventually break if I kept going through this loop over and over again. That’s why I want to do something about this “repetition” as soon as possible… However, even after having gone through all these repetitions, I still had no idea how to get out of this time loop.
Saturday, September 8 (9th time)
“…So, are you heading out there or not?”
The door to the rooftop was slightly open, and I peeked out at Sayahara-san. Daichi, who was right behind me, asked me that question.
I would always reply with, “Hah… I just can’t. I can’t confess to her.” I’ve done the exact same thing 7 times already. Then, Daichi would go out onto the rooftop for me and send Sayahara-san home. However…
“No, I’m going. I’ll go and get myself completely rejected.”
I voiced my current emotions out loud… Namely, the fact that I had had enough. Making her wait on the roof like this over and over again was inexcusable. I guess I’ll go and get myself rejected every now and then. ─And so, after a very, very long time, I swung open the doors to the rooftop, where the girl I had fallen in love with was waiting for me.
“Ah. Are you the one who gave me the letter?”
“Yes. My name is Kamishiro Kuro from class 2-D. Nice to meet you.”
“Kamishiro-kun… Nice to meet you, my name is Sayahara Kiki.”
I knew that much. After all, this was going to be the second time confessing to her. She had long, black hair tied into a ponytail. Her skin was white, almost transparent even, and the bridge of her nose was well defined. She had a slender figure, and her chest slightly bulged outwards… No matter how many times I looked at her, she always struck me as a person who was too good to be true. And every time I looked at her, it always seemed as if she was personally made by God. Even though I knew I was being blinded by love, I couldn’t help but feel this way.
“Err… So, what did you want to talk about?”
“Ah, umm… T-talk. That’s right…”
Sayahara-san just stared at me blankly, tilting her head to the side in confusion. So, how should I go about doing this… I knew that I was going to get rejected. However, I wanted to try and get a somewhat more favorable response this time around, maybe something like starting as friends first… Perhaps because these were the sorts of thoughts going through my mind, I didn’t think about my response too deeply, choosing to let my feelings guide me instead.
“I’m interested in you because you have a pretty face. —Please be my friend.”
Great job, me. You’re such an idiot. You’re being too honest, fool.
Sayahara-san was visibly upset by my (overly honest) confession of love. I, too, couldn’t stop my heart from pounding at my own mistake… But then, suddenly.
As I let my true thoughts slip out, Sayahara-san gave a small laugh. She then smiled at me.
“Fufufu… What was that? Are you trying to tell me that you like my looks and want to be friends with me?”
“Hahaha… I wonder.”
“Well, you said it yourself, didn’t you?”
“Well, that’s right, but… the nuance was weird, or something like that… can I correct it?”
“No, you don’t have to correct it. I’ve received your feelings, Kamishiro-san. —Fufu.”
Saying that, Sayahara-san smiled impishly. It’s really cute. I’m dying of love.
“But, I see. I thought you were going to confess your love to me, judging from the tone of that letter. …And you said you wanted to be my friend, and nothing more.”
“Wha, wawa, of course that’s all it was!”
A dry laugh broke out. Strange sweat also oozed out. I lied to her just now.
And then, the next moment. Sayahara-san said something unexpectedly and without hesitation. She said something amazing.
“Well, then, I’ll be in your care.”
Wh-What did she just say? This girl, what did she just say?
“I’m sorry, Sayahara-san. So, what does that mean…?”
“??? It is what I meant. If you’re my friend, please take care of me. That’s what I’m saying.”
“…!?” I opened my eyes, ruminating on Sayahara-san’s words. No way, seriously? So, maybe… It’s possible, this…
The second time I confessed my love to her, I didn’t expect it to be so successful!
“Fufu… I thought that was interesting, so I did so. Sometimes people just tell me that they like me, but… you’re the first person who’s ever told me that you like my face. —So you’re someone who can’t lie.”
“We-Well, there’s no lie in that statement…”
“Of course. If you had asked me to go out with you because you liked my face, I would have had to say I am sorry about that…but being friends, I can do that. ”
Bummer! To be honest, I was going to say, “Please go out with me,” the second time too!
As I was getting impatient on the inside, Sayahara-san suddenly pulled out a notebook with a cute mascot on its cover from the pocket of her school uniform skirt. Next, she wrote something down in the notebook in a casual and easy manner, then closed it and turned to me.
“So, Kamishiro-kun. I look forward to being friends with you from now on.”
“Ah, yeah…! Same here!”
When I replied, she smiled and left the rooftop. Her ponytail swayed cutely behind her as she left. Watching her from behind is nice too…
As I watched her back absentmindedly, Daichi came stumbling in from the opposite direction. He seemed to be very excited.
“You did it, Kuro! You’ve gotten close to the Beauty of the School!”
“Ah, yeah… This feels like a dream.”
“But Kuro, you’re still just one of the many friends she has around her, so you’re not much different to her than the rest of them!”
“You really need to stop pissing me off.”
Daichi had a good point, but… this was much better than throwing all my feelings out there and having them crushed. Knowing the pain of heartbreak, I thought so.
However, I couldn’t help but feel that even this wonderful day would eventually become… “A day that doesn’t exist anywhere,” a dozen hours later…
Sunday, September 9 (1st time)
I woke up to the beeping sound of my phone alarm. For some reason, my mother hadn’t come to wake me up this morning. I turned off the alarm on my phone with a drowsy look on my face.
And then I checked my phone again, which was supposed to have September 8th written on it— which was when.
“Eh… No way… It’s Sunday. Sunday is finally here!”
There it was, September 9, Sunday, 7:30 a.m. At last… At last, I was out of this nightmarish repetition! I did it! Chapter one, complete!
But in the end, it was just a coincidence that I was able to progress to the next day after conversing with Sayahara-san — the conditions for getting out of yesterday are still unknown. …Well, it doesn’t matter now!
“Come on, let’s have some fun today… I’ll invite Daichi and go bowling… Hahaha!”
Excited about this new day, I pulled out a change of clothes from my closet.
Monday, September 10 (1st time)
My wrist hurts… I just can’t play eight games of bowling… Baka…
And so it was the next day. Monday. In front of the school’s main gate. I was rubbing my wrist as I walked through the school gate at the usual time. A few meters ahead of me, I saw a ponytail of long black hair swaying. There was no mistaking the back of her head. It was Sayahara-san, who had become a friend of mine the day before yesterday.
“Sa-Sayahara-san! Good morning!”
“Ah, good morning. …The boy who said my face is pretty, Kamishiro-kun.”
“No, don’t bother saying that. It makes my face red when I remember…
Sayahara-san greets me, looking over the notebook she has pulled out of her skirt pocket. She slammed that notebook shut and smiled softly.
“So? What’s the matter?”
“Eh? What’s the matter…? Nothing really; I just saw Sayahara-san, so I wanted to say hello…”
“Oh, is that all? —Then, I’ll see you later.”
“Eh… Eh? Sayahara-san, you’re leaving already?”
When she realized that I was talking to her for no reason, she left me alone and quickly tried to go to the school building. That’s so cold.
“??? Because you don’t have any business with me, do you? Then there’s no need for Kamishiro-kun and I to have a conversation, is there?”
“How dry… We’re friends now, aren’t we?”
“Yes, we’re already friends.”
“We-eell! …Don’t you think we should at least have some small talk in the morning?”
“…That’s certainly true. So let’s talk about something.”
Saying that, Sayahara-san smiled. …I’ve never been able to grasp her personality. It’s not that she’s unfriendly, but she’s kind of cold and… strange.
I opened my mouth to start a small talk, even though I was baffled by Sayahara’s personality, which I was exposed to for the first time.
“Well, uh, yeah… It’s a beautiful day!”
“Yes, that’s true, but what does it matter?”
Here, Kamishiro Kuro, came to the realization of his helplessness that he has never had a conversation with a girl. That’s right. I’ve had almost no contact with the opposite sex, except for a childhood friend in early elementary school.
“…Yes, that’s right! What kind of sweets do you like, Sayahara-san? It may sound surprising, but I like crepes! Girls like crepes too, right?”
“I like chestnut yokan. I’m not a big fan of crepes or those whipped cream types.”
[TLN: Yokan is a type of Japanese sweets.]
“Ah, is that so… Oh, what about music? Do you listen to Japanese rock music? I listen to a lot of it!”
“I don’t listen to it. What I listen to a lot these days is heavy metal from overseas.”
“Heeh, heavy…!? …Uh, what else… Uh, what about movies? I like American movies like ‘Iron Man’ and ‘Spider-Man.’”
“I don’t like them. But I do like CG animated movies, like ‘Finding Nemo.’ And ‘Minions.’”
“Oh, dramas! Do you watch dramas? I watch a fair bit of romantic dramas!”
“I don’t watch dramas.”
Somebody help me.
As I was despairing at my own poor communicative ability, Sayahara-san muttered with a bitter smile.
“Not very exciting, is it?”
“Wha? Isn’t that the kind of thing you think but never say? You would just say it?”
“What? The conversation was too bland, so I thought I should rather just say that… Was it that wrong?”
“U-umm… Well, it’s not that it’s wrong… It’s just a bit too straightforward.”
I mean, did she just say, “too”? Did she just say, “too”?!
As we were doing this, we were already in front of the school building. From here, we parted ways at the shoe box and headed for our separate classrooms.
“See you later, Kamishiro-kun.”
“Ah, yeah… See you later.”
After all the trouble I’ve been through, I’ve been told that she’ll see you again. What a nice girl, I thought, staring at her back and her swaying ponytail… Suddenly, I saw something fall out of the pocket of Sayahara-san’s skirt as she briskly walked away.
“Ah— Sayahara-sa— she’s gone…”
I quickly changed my shoes, and with Sayahara-san disappearing into the corridor, I went to the place where said “something” had fallen, in front of the shoe box, and there it was.
A cute notebook with a deformed ribbon on the cover. Perhaps it’s the title, but underneath the ribbon is a small note that says “For School Life, Part 2.”
“…Well, I can give it back to her tomorrow.”
I thought about it and shoved it into my pants. —But
Unfortunately, I didn’t know at the time that such an opportunity would never come.
Monday, September 10 (2nd time)
“No, this must be a joke. Seriously? …You’re kidding me, right?”
—The time-leap phenomenon hasn’t ended yet.
It was… a painful truth that hit me hard in my stomach. When I checked, I found that Sayahara’s notebook, which I had picked up yesterday, was also missing from my uniform pants.
“…Dang. If this happens, I’m going to have to change my thoughts again—”
I’m still awake, so I think with my head. What I have experienced so far, and what I can derive from it, is the nature of this phenomenon….
First of all, it seems that my body has become unable to go to the next day unless I “clear some condition.” It was the ninth time, on September 8, that I cleared that condition when I made my “second confession to Sayahara-san.”
“…Friends, we can be friends.”
After many twists and turns, I was not able to have a relationship with her, but we became friends… This is a different result from the first time I confessed to Sayahara-san and was rejected outright. I was able to move forward with one relationship with Sayahara-san, which was originally out of my control… or so I thought.
“…Eh? The relationship was advanced…?”
That’s right. In other words, that’s how it is — I got out of the loop when I advanced with my relationship with Sayahara-san.
I need to advance my relationship with her. If that’s the condition, then it makes sense that the day didn’t move forward when I was first rejected by Sayahara-san, or when things got awkward with her yesterday (First Time of September 10th)… However.
“I was able to progress to the next day, even on a Sunday when I hadn’t raised Sayahara-san’s favorability…”
However, I was able to make one hypothesis about that as well — on Sunday, there was no way to advance my relationship with Koyohara-san, so there was no loop. It’s a convenient interpretation, but if it was a loop with the relationship between me and her as the main focus, that could be the case.
Well, these are just hypotheses. They are hypotheticals. It’s just a “maybe” that is in my head. So….
I’m going to have to confirm this.
“Ah, good morning to you, the boy who said my face is pretty, Kamishiro-kun… ”
And so I repeat, for me, the conversation of yesterday. I had the same exchange as last time, until I decided to make small talk with Sayahara-san again— This time, I asked her.
“H-Hey, Sayahara-san. I’ve been told I’m a pretty good listener… What do you think? Is there anything you want to talk about?”
“Yes? Something I want to talk about?”
I would not make the same mistake again. This time, in order to get the conversation going with Sayahara-san, I spent the morning on the Internet. Specifically, I searched the Internet for ‘I’m not good at talking to girls.’ An article came up titled ‘4 points of conversation to make conversations with girls more pleasant.’
So for the first point which was ‘Listen to what they have to say.’
“So is there anything you want to talk about?” I asked, to which Sayahara-san replied.
“I don’t really have anything to say to you.” [TLN: Oof, Sucks to suck potato boy Kekw.]
First point, failed
Not yet! It’s not time to panic! Point number two! It’s time to put into practice the strategy of making people feel closer to you by disclosing your weaknesses first, “Talking about your mistakes!”
“Hey, Sayahara-san, I didn’t stop bedwetting until I was in third grade!”
“S-So sudden… Is that so?”
W-What? Why do you look like that when I’m showing my weakness?
“Hey Sayahara-san. What do you think about me not getting over bedwetting till my third grade?”
“W-What’s that question? I-Is that a new kind of sexual harassment?”
“S-S-Sexual harassment?! W-Why? I thought that you’d enjoy the conversation more if I talked about my bedwetting.”
“It doesn’t, and the thought of it scares me. It’s more of a horror story.”
How strange… I disclosed my weakness to her but why does it feel like she’s distancing herself from me. [TLN: I did this at like 11 at night and laughed too hard.]
Anyway, let’s get back on track… Next, let’s practice point number three, ‘Give an exaggerated response!’ This is a famous technique for being a good listener, and it is said that the speaker will be happy if they receive a favorable response to what they said. Let’s try it!
“No, but… What’s wrong, Kamishiro-kun? You’ve looked restless since this morning unlike the time we spoke before.”
“Restless?! Seriously?! That’s a lieee~!”
“Lies. You’re restless now aren’t you? What’s going on?”
“What?! Really?! That’s not true! Definitely not true at all! I’m A-OK!”
“Are you taking me for an idiot?”
“Idiot?! Of course not! Haha!”
“Please be serious, you’re kinda irritating me.”
Koyohara mumbled with a thin smile on her face. ─ Alright, scratch that out. Point three also failed.
I’m wondering if I’m doing something wrong. …Time for point 4!
The last one is to practice talking about ‘What’s right in front of you!’ For example, if we had a child in front of us, we could say, “Look, there’s a child over there. Speaking of kids, I’d like my son to play baseball in the future…” This is a great way to start a conversation! This is going to work!
So, uh… What’s in front of me, what’s in front of me… Ah!
“Y-Yes? What is it?”
“That dog poop over there is shaped so beautifully!” [TLN: I fucking died]
Monday, September 10 (3rd time)
I made a mistake. I made a lot of mistakes. I got too caught up in an article on the Internet. [TLN: I dunno man sounds like a you problem.][TLN: To the editor that will edit this. It’s 11 at night. I need to do something to motivate myself.][ED:Cool. I didn’t bother editing this for over a week.]
What should I do? Before I test out articles and the sort, I need to raise Sayahara-san’s difficult-to-raise favorability points. I need to learn more about her personality, her hobbies, and what she’s like.
“So… I shall use this entire day to find out more about what kind of person Sayahara-san is…”
The first thing I did to find out more about Sayahara-san was talking to her friends.
To be honest, I’m not very good at talking to girls, so randomly talking to her friends was a bit of a no-brainer, but in the event that I failed, I could just repeat the day and pretend it never happened… During lunch time, I saw the girl who was always with Sayahara-san coming out of the classroom and called out to her.
“A-A suspicious person?”
“That’s a terrible thing to say to a classmate.”
She laughed at my retort. She seemed to be a friendly girl.
She has a pretty face with a hint of makeup. Her eyes are large, and her eyelashes are long. She has a slender body and her chest is huge and bountiful. Her hair was a light brown bob, and she had an aura that told me she was a popular girl who was at the top of the school caste just by looking at her.
“So, what’s up? Are you hitting on me?” [TLN: SEI-CHAN 2.00000 BABY HELL YEAH]
“N-No, I was wondering whether you could tell me about… uh… Sayahara-san. ”
“Ah, so that’s what you want to know.”
She nodded her head as if she was somehow convinced by my words. Wait, why are you convinced?
“In that case, let’s talk a little.”
“Eh? Um… Why are you so willing to hold a conversation with me?”
“There are a lot of guys like you out there who come to ask about the princess, not me. I’m used to it.” [TLN: I wish this was Sei-chan 2.0]
“I-I’m sorry about that.”
“Hmmm. Well it doesn’t matter. If I were a guy, I’d like her, too.”
With those words, she showed me a natural and enchanting smile. To be honest, I think that some of the guys who come to her about Sayahara-san are actually just there to talk to her.
“So? What do you want to know about her? Of course, there is some stuff I can’t say to you, so I won’t be telling you those things, but I’ll tell you as much as I can.”
“Well, I’d like to know…”
Unfortunately, the information I was able to get out of her was only basic information about Sayahara-san.
She is a member of the school band and plays the trumpet there. Her family consists of her father, mother, and sister, and their financial situation is normal. Her grades are excellent and she is very athletic. She has many friends, but she says that she is the only one she can call her best friend. This is not very useful information.
“No no, what did you expect me to say? The secret of the princess? To you who I met for the first time?”
“That’s what I was thinking. No, I’m rather grateful that you’ve told me so much, even if it’s just the basics.”
“Well, then, glad I could help.”
“What’s with your hand?”
“A bottle of juice. You didn’t think I’d let you get this information for free, did you?”
“You have a good personality.”
“I didn’t praise you.”
I pulled my wallet out of my pocket with a face like I ate a bitter bug. I got 150 yen in coins which should be enough and dropped it into her small hands with a clink sound.
“Yes, thank you.”
“No wonder you were so willing to talk about Sayahara-san. You tell me information first, which forces me into a situation where I have no choice but to pay. ”
“Correct. It’s all about give and take in this world, mister.”
She then smiled and laughed. She is quite an interesting girl.
“But honestly… I’d hoped that you would talk about the somewhat cold atmosphere around her.”
“Hmm… So you’re aware of that huh.”
Shimokawa-san seemed impressed by the words I casually let out. It was when I was repeating the same conversation with Sayahara-san that I suddenly realized something.
Sayahara-san is a very friendly person. She smiles and is polite to everyone which also means she’s always on guard.
Somewhat cold. A little dry. She has built a wall between herself and others – none of these are correct, but they aren’t too far off. She’s not a bad person, but for some reason, when she’s talking to other people, I get the impression that she doesn’t really care about them.
“To tell the truth, I’m not sure if I really understand the inner thoughts of Princess Sayahara properly. Of course I know, but I think I’m just thinking that I understand it. I’m her best friend and she should think of me as her best friend too, but I sometimes wonder if that really is the case.”
“Well, I’ve been talking a little too much. I’ll see you when I get a chance.”
That’s all she said, and she walked off down the hallway.
But then, even though Frosty Kawakami was gone, I still felt like the lonely smile she left behind, It was stuck in my retinas.
Monday, September 10 (4th time)
“So long, Kamishiro-kun”
The fourth time all over again. I was hoping that since I had heard so much from Shimokawa-san, I might be able to liven up the conversation this time around, but – well, that’s just the way it is. I parted with Sayahara-san with no progress and a crappy box. Damn it, I want to be a gigolo.
Then again, as usual, I picked up the notebook that Koyohara-san had dropped. A sudden urge made me curious about the notebook.
“Come to think of it, Sahara-san always glances at the notebook before talking to me. I wonder what’s written in it.”
The angels and demons begin to struggle. ‘You should see it. Are you curious about what’s inside? No, you can’t look! That would be immoral! How about just sneaking a peek as a compromise? Hey, who’s the guy with the glasses at the end?’
I slowly turned the pages of the notebook, unable to overcome my curiosity, and for a few tens of seconds, I was troubled by a deathly unimportant fantasy…
Mathematics teacher. Homeroom teacher of Class 2B.
Characteristics: He is almost bald with an M-shaped hairline. Some girls call him “bald mound.
“Hmmm? What the hell is this?”
I continued to flip through the notebook, but what was written in the notebook was “simple data on some of the teachers and students who were involved with Sayahara-san.
As I was reading the notebook with a question mark on my head, I came across this page.
Second year D class。Does he like me?
Characteristics: Short height for a boy (162?). A mole on his ear.
I recently had a conversation with him where he asked me to be his friend. He said, “I’m interested in you because you have a pretty face.” An interesting person.
“Sayahara-san finds me short for a boy? Damn that shocked me.”
I flipped through the pages, which were still blank after my section, feeling depressed. Then, on the last page, I found something that looked like a table of contents.
Teacher with bald spot – page 1
Girls with many moles – page 2
Girls with flashy nails – page 3
A boy with crazy hair… Page 4
Apparently, the page lists the characteristics of each student and teacher so that it is easy to jump to their page… Oh, I see. I’m finally starting to get it.
Maybe Sayahara-san just isn’t very good at remembering other people’s names. That’s why every time she meets me or someone else, she opens up this page where she can search for the person’s name as long as she knows their characteristics, and remembers “who this person is”.
But why can’t she remember me or anyone else well enough that she needs a note? Maybe she has some kind of serious memory disorder…
When I mumbled to that point, I came to one conclusion.., or rather, a hypothesis. Maybe it’s not that Sayahara-san can’t remember…
If it’s true, I think I finally found out about Sayahara-san’s true thoughts.
I think it’s going to be hard to get along with Sayahara-san.
Monday, September 10 (5th time)
“It’s not very exciting, is it?”
“You’re actually saying it out loud? Isn’t that something you don’t say even if you think of it? And you still said it?”
This is the fifth time I’ve had this conversation with Sayahara-san in the morning. And so, just before she and I parted ways in a somewhat awkward way – this time, I summoned up the courage to take things in a different direction than before.
“Hey, Sayahara-san. Do you have time after school today?”
“…Eh? After school?”
Sayahara-san flinched slightly at my forceful words. She thought for a moment and then shook her head.
“I’m sorry. Today I have club activities, so it’s a bit…”
“It’s fine even if it’s after you’re done. I just want to talk to you on my way home.”
“…You’re going to have to wait for a long time though? Is that fine?”
“Yeah, it’s fine.”
“….Well then, I understand. Please be at the school gate around 5:30 p.m.”
“Okay, got it!”
Maybe it was because I had already talked with Sayahara-san four times about trivial things. I wanted to praise myself for being able to ask her out so naturally.
“A-ah, by the way. Before I forget to mention it – Your notebook almost fell out from your pocket.”
“Nn…? Ah, you’re right. Thank you very much.”
And so I parted ways with her, feeling a little uncomfortable at being thanked by Sayahara-san, who had no idea of my misdeeds yesterday.
Time passed and it was after school. At the meeting place, it was time to meet.
“Ah…… Kamishiro-kun. You were actually waiting for me, weren’t you?”
“Yeah, of course I was waiting. I was the one who asked you to come.”
Just like in the morning, the second she called out to me, she pulled out her notebook from her skirt pocket and searched for me. When she recognized me as Kamishiro Kuro, she came next to me.
“My house is that way but, what about Kamishiro-kun?”
“Aah… If that’s the case, then it’s the opposite direction from Sayahara-san. It’s a shame.”
“Well, what should we do? Do you want to go into a restaurant?”
“No, it’s fine. After I take Sayahara-san home, I’ll turn back and return home.”
“No way… wouldn’t that be a big detour?”
“Don’t worry about that.”
So I started walking next to Sayahara-san. ──It’s an ordinary main street. The scenery of houses. Cars passing by. I’m tired of seeing the sun go down. There is nothing romantic about it at all. But just having her next to me was like a scene out of drama for me.
“So? What’s wrong?”
“It’s not that I have something urgent to ask. Just for a bit, I wanted to talk to you── to ask you about something.”
“What is it that you want to ask me?”
“Before that, I have a question for you… Do you have a disease that prevents you from remembering other people, Sayahara-san?”
“…………? No, I don’t.”
Sayahara-san had a strange look on her face. Is that so? That’s good to hear…right?
No, in a way it’s not good at all, though!
“I-is that so?…Then, is the other way the correct answer?”
“??? For a while now, what have you been saying?”
“Hey, Sayahara-san. If I’m wrong, you can get mad at me, but──”
I ignored Sayahara-san’s question and continued. That was the answer to my question about her, which I had arrived at by stealing a look at Sayahara-san’s notebook the previous day, and I asked her──
“Maybe you, are not interested in other people at all?”
Sayahara Kiki gave off a somewhat cold impression. And that served as nothing but proof that she thought that other people were inconsequential.
That notebook with the personal information of so many people. If she had a normal interest in other people, it would be easy to remember. And yet, she couldn’t remember.
If that’s the case, then──she doesn’t want to remember people in the first place.
That’s what the notebook is for. Hence the coldness. I think she is hiding herself and treating others as such.
And then, suddenly, she laughed. It was as if she couldn’t hold back her laughter.
It was like a murderer in a mystery novel when the detective discovers that he is the murderer…Eh, what? I’m a little scared. Is it possible that I’m about to be killed?
“Sa-Sayahara-san? Why are you laughing?”
“Fu-fufufufu… S-sorry, Kamishiro-kun. I’m just a little happy.”
“Huh…? W-what do you mean ‘happy’?”
“Because there’s someone who finally saw through me.”
With those words, Sayahara-san smiled. ──No flower in the world can compare to her smile. It was a beautiful and bewitching smile that made me believe that.
“You’re absolutely right, Kamishiro-kun. I don’t have a single ounce of interest in other people. A more accurate answer would be──Everyone looks like a potato to me.”
She walked up next to me as she said that. She seemed to be in a really good mood.
“From my point of view, they are all the same. It doesn’t matter how beautiful or ugly you are. All human faces are the same, they all look like potatoes. That’s the way it’s always been.”
At that moment, I suddenly remembered what she said to me when she rejected me: “I can’t date someone whose face looks like a potato. I’m sorry.” …I see. So that’s what she meant.
“The only people I can see properly are Yuu-chan and my family. So the girl who says good morning to me in the morning, the person who says to me in class, “Sayahara, answer me,” the girl who invites me to go to club activities with her after school…The boy who said he wanted to be my friend the day before yesterday──they all look like potatoes to me.”
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t hurt. That was to be expected, but to be told so by the person himself was more bearable than I had imagined.
“However, even though they are potatoes, I can still distinguish them to some extent. I would look carefully at his or her face, which looked like a potato, and somehow recognize the features, even if it was only at that moment, and write them down in my notebook. If I do that, I can at least identify the name of this potato as something …Well, that was only after I entered junior high school.”
So even I was barely recognized as among the ‘many others’ like that… As I was thinking that, Sayahara-san impishly smiled at the depressed me.
“You’ve been disillusioned, haven’t you? What a terrible woman. This is why Kamishiro-kun, you shouldn’t fall in love with a girl just because of her looks, ok?”
“……D-don’t make fun of me.”
Perhaps she didn’t expect my response, but Sayahara-san asked back with a puzzled look on her face. However, I couldn’t afford to think that her face was cute. The words just spilled out of my mouth.
“Don’t look down on me too much, Sayahara-san. Do you think I’m… Do you think I would hate you just because you’re like that?”
“Eh…N-no, but… I told you that I see you as a potato and that I don’t have even the slightest of interest in you, right? And yet, I acted like I do have interest in you, and deceived you right? …The one who was deceiving everyone, was me right?”
In the past, Sayahara-san, who often smiled without showing much emotion…made a somewhat sad face and spoke her words as if she were spitting them out.
It was the first time I finally touched the real her.
“You’re deceiving people? Is that really the case?”
“…W-what do you mean, by that? What are you trying to say?”
“You’re not deceiving everyone around you, you’re making an effort to be interested in everyone around you, aren’t you?”
“Wha──D-don’t make it sophisticated! What do you know about me!”
“After all, people like you, if you really ‘weren’t concerned about anyone’, since you don’t care about anyone, it would be the most comfortable thing for you to not be around anyone.”
“But you didn’t do that, Sayahara-san. Because you really wanted to be interested. Even if you lie now, someday…you want to find someone who doesn’t look like a potato to you. Isn’t that right?”
After I got to the heart of the matter, Sayahara-san fell silent. Looking at her stare, I started to cool down… S-something’s wrong with me. Just now, my voice was too much. It’s not like I really wanted to refute Sayahara-san or anything.
It’s not that, it’s just one thing.
I just want to tell her something after I understand the real her.
“…Kamishiro-kun, why are you going so far for someone like me…”
“Because even so, I still like you.”
Ah, I said it. Just when it was calming down a bit, I went ahead and just said it.
To my words, Sayahara-san said “Eh?” with a surprised face. She muttered as if she was absolutely astounded.
“Y-you still think like that, about me…?”
“I’m too embarrassed so, I don’t want you to confirm but…Y-yeah.”
I have a lot on my mind.The fact that you can’t remember my name without looking at your notebook, the fact that you said you wanted to be my friend but really didn’t care about that──There’s a lot to think about.
However, I was in love with her.
I was in love with Sayahara Kiki.
However, I still feel the same…even if it’s surprising, even if it’s not reasonable. And like that Sayahara-san’s reply, was the same as the other day.
“…I’m sorry. I can’t respond to Kamishiro-kun’s feelings.”
I was completely rejected for the second time. To tell you the truth, I was thinking that since we had such a passionate conversation, maybe she would accept my confession somehow.But a confession wouldn’t be accepted on tension, right?
However, the tone of voice that followed was warm. Sayahara-san said, with a different… somewhat worn-out smile.
“However, will you be my friend?”
….That was just what I wanted.
“O-of course! Please continue to be my friend from now on.”
Sayahara-san breathed a sigh of relief and held out her small right hand. I also held out my right hand in response. We shook hands. It seems that although we couldn’t become lovers, she and I were able to reach a place where we were one step closer as friends.
Then, while I was bewildered by the warmth of her hand…suddenly.
Sayahara-san was staring at my face, and then she said in a small voice.
“So Kamishiro-kun has that kind of face.──Fufufu.”
Tuesday, September 11 (1st time)
“…It’s finally ‘tomorrow’.”
I muttered quietly, staring at the display on my phone.
Then I thought back to all the times I’ve gone over and over before today…. I can’t believe it was only three days ago on the calendar that I was dumped by Sayahara-san. That’s how badly I was repeating the day I’d been stuck in.
“…How should I put it, it’s like I’ve been dragged into something strange…”
Not being able to advance to the next day if Sayahara Kiki wasn’t conquered.
Apparently, this phenomenon I’m facing is of such a troubling nature.
“No, I really did it again…”
As I muttered this, the edges of my mouth were inexplicably loose and sloppy.
So that’s it for the second prologue. From here, the story of me, her, and hers begins again──but more on that tomorrow.