Taking care of my younger sister's too naive of a beautiful yankee high schooler, then falling in love - Chapter 8
Studying at the university every day. Part time job as a private tutor. While I was doing those things, Erika-chan’s face would suddenly pop into my head.
A girl who is honest but has no common sense. When I think about it, I don’t know why such a girl as Erika-chan decided to become a Yankee.
No, I knew very little about Erika-chan.
She was a kind girl who helped Mana when she was lonely. That alone was enough for me to interact with her until now. That’s why I didn’t bother to get to know Erika-chan’s private matters.
——I wonder if it’s bad for an older brother to meddle into the circumstances of his little sister’s friend…
I was sitting in my room at my study desk. Of course, I was alone.
There was no sign of the yankee girls at home today. They had been trying to occupy this place for some reason, but my part-time job changed and I came home earlier, so I guess they felt bad about making a racket here.
For a moment, I felt a little bad for making them feel considerate, and I hurriedly shook my head.
No no, in the first place, it’s my room, why should I be worried about it?
It’s only natural for me to be alone in my room. I don’t need the option of being in a yankee hangout.
They’ll probably come storming into my room again anyway. I’d better get on with what I’m doing while I can.
To refresh my mind, I drank the coffee on my desk. The bitter taste spread in my mouth and drowned out the gloomy feelings inside me.
Then, as soon as I reached for my computer’s keyboard… The house suddenly became noisy.
A storm was coming. Before I could prepare myself, the door was thrown open.
“We’re back~! Tsukacchi, look at this~! I got an amazingly huge stuffed mushroom from the arcade~!”
Runa-chan’s voice. And then, a huge mushroom was thrust before my eyes energetically. The umbrella part covered my vision completely, and I hurriedly tried to push it away.
“Too close!! It’s too close for me to see it!!”
Grasping the soft stem of the mushroom, I tipped it to the side and finally got a clear view. While I was struggling with the mushroom that Runa-chan had pushed on me, I saw Mana and Arisa-chan starting to set out drinks and snacks on the low table…
“No, why do guys have your heart set on partying here!?”
I shouted, and Mana said calmly.
“Isn’t it fine? I thought you might occasionally need some JK essence in your room. I’ll sprinkle it all over the air, so you can enjoy it in peace.”
“What am I gonna do with JK essence sprinkled in the air!?”
My time alone was tragically fleeting.
The silence was easily destroyed by the three yankee girls.
Then I realized… Erika-chan wasn’t here.
I asked Mana.
“She said she was looking for a part-time job and would stop by later. It’s unlikely she will come today, whenever Erika says she’ll come later, she never comes.”
The day I brought Erika-chan home, soaking wet, she said she would take a break from looking for a job for a while. But she’s still on the search today…
“Do you want a part time job that much…?”
I muttered, and Arisa-chan smirked.
“Hmmmm~? By any chance, are you feeling lonely because Erika isn’t here~?”
“N-no I’m not! It’s not like that… I don’t know much about Erika-chan, so I was wondering why she wants a part time job that badly…”
When I said that, Mana, Runa-chan and Arisa-chan looked at each other. And when I saw that Runa-chan and Arisa-chan nodded their heads in silence, Mana turned to me and said…
“Do you want to hear about Erika’s family situation?”
“Eh…is it fine?”
“If it’s Aniki… I don’t think it’s a bad idea to tell you. Erika has always been struggling to find a part time job, so I thought maybe Aniki could help her…”
Runa-chan and Arisa-chan nodded. I could tell that Mana and the others were also worried about Erika’s search for a part-time job.
“Can I ask you to do so?”
I sat down near the low table with the three of them. Then, Mana started talking.
“Yeah. First of all, Erika is in a single mother household. Her father… I don’t really know about him.”
“And so, her mom works at a snack bar. When Erika was little, it used to be a hostess bar. I don’t know about when Erika was very little, but when she was old enough to be aware of her surroundings, her mom wasn’t usually at home. An aunty in the neighbourhood used to make meals for her… Erika’s mom has always had very little concern for her.”
“Oh…she’s lived quite the heavy life.”
I imagined little Erika-chan home alone, and my heart ached a little.
And then Runa-chan said,
“My mother is also in that sort of business, but I always had my grandma at home, so I never felt lonely. I think it must have been hard for Erika, who spent a lot of time alone.”
Then Arisa said while smiling.
“But wasn’t she lucky to have such a nice lady in her neighborhood? All I had were my scumbag parents.”
“Well, we’re lucky enough that we’re allowed to go to high school~” Runa-chan said, “I know. I’m grateful that they didn’t ask us to work after graduating from junior high school,” Arisa-chan agreed.
I knew that everyone was different from me, who had lived a comfortable life. I just happened to be born in a good family, was naturally loved, my selfishness was naturally listened to, and naturally had dreams and hopes.
But, what is natural for me, was unnatural for them.
I asked Runa-chan and Arisa-chan.
“Hey, why did you two become yankees?”
Then Runa said a bit bashfully.
“Eh~ why was it? Because I desperately wanted to make the most of my present day, it just naturally happened.”
Arisa-chan nodded in agreement.
“Yeah, that’s right. When I was fighting with various things, I became a yankee. Yankees are a fighting breed after all.”
Maybe the status of “yankee” meant something like being armed. Even Mana became a yankee in order not to be defeated by her heartless classmates who hurt her.
They become yankees to survive in the present moment.
Yankees have a strong image of fighting with other yankees, but what each of them really fight against may not be other yankees, but something deep within themselves.
When I was silent for a while, Runa-chan slapped me violently on the back.
“My my, don’t make that sort of face! Even though it’s like this, we live a much more enjoyable life than you think.”
“…Do you resent your parents?”
“Eh? No matter what kind of parents you were born to, you’ll always resent them at least once, right?”
That’s true. I sometimes find my parents disagreeable. It’s a path that everyone goes through when they reach puberty.
While I was agreeing, Arisa-chan then said,
“If parents are scum, their children are also called scum, and it’s true that we yankees may be scum in the eyes of the world. But we don’t want to lead the same life as our parents. Our parents have their own lives, and we have ours. We’re fighting to be something completely different.”
Even in the face of adversity, the Yankee JKs continue to take on the challenges of life without giving in. Their resilience was dazzling.
“How cool… all of you.”
I honestly muttered and laughed, and Runa-chan and Arisa-chan looked at each other and laughed.
I didn’t understand why they were laughing at me, so I was just looking at them vacantly. Then Mana said,
“Aniki who can accept us like that is admirable. From now on, please keep thinking of us like that.”
She sounded pompous, but somewhat proud of her words.
The air in the room was calm and everyone was smiling, despite the heavy subject of their family situations.
It was almost midnight.
Runa-chan and Arisa-chan had already gone home, and Mana went to take a bath. I went to the kitchen to get a drink, and then I realized that I had forgotten to lock the front door.
Suddenly, I felt like there was someone outside the door.
I didn’t think it was possible, so I put my shoes on and opened the door. Then… I saw Erika-chan there.
“Ah, sorry…Everyone left, right?”
“Yeah… they left at about eleven, as usual.”
“Is that so~…I was late. What a shame.”
“Did you… find a part time job?”
When I asked, Erika answered while playing with a small stone that was lying on the doorstep with the tip of her shoe.
“They said if I wanted one, I needed to dye my hair black first.”
“… Do you absolutely hate it when it’s not blonde, Erika-chan? I think it’s easier to go with black because you don’t have to re-dye it…”
Erika-chan’s natural black hair was visible on the top of her head. Normally, it would be time for her to dye her hair again, but Erika-chan always dyes her hair only after the black part of her hair becomes much more prominent.
“But if I dye my hair black, wouldn’t I become less yankee-like and be ostracized by my friends…?”
Erika-chan seemed a bit uneasy.
“Isn’t the first thing that matters to a yankee is their spirit, not their appearance? How can you stop being friends with someone just because they changed their appearance? You’re yankees, after all.”
Even though I was not a yankee, I was talking about yankees like I was one of them. I felt a little embarrassed afterwards, and scratched my itchy temples.
Thinking that I would be teased… I braced myself.
But Erika-chan looked at me and gave me a gentle smile.
“Onii-san, you’re cool.”
Erika-chan was smiling in the shining light from the front door, and she looked beautiful. A chilly May breeze blew, making her long blonde hair flutter.
“Onii-san, you’re studying to be a teacher at the university, right?”
“Yeah, what about it? I study at the faculty of education now.
“Then one day, are you going to teach students like me?”
“Yeah, I guess so. Well, my first choice at the moment is to teach high school Japanese, so I guess that’s what I’ll do…”
“I’m sure you’ll be a good teacher. I’m jealous of those who get to be Onii-san’s students.”
Erika-chan’s words made me happy, and I thanked her.
“Thank you. When Erika-chan says it like that, it makes me want to do my best.”
Erika-chan’s movements stopped.
She stared at me as if time had stopped, and after a moment, her pink lips moved.
“Really. Being thanked…is a pretty happy feeling.”
Erika-chan smiled bashfully, and told me “Good night,” before turning to leave.
“Good night. Have a safe trip home.”
I called out to her as she disappeared into the night. Erika-chan did not turn around, but I continued to see her off.
—Just before she turned the corner from my house, I thought I saw Erika looking at me. I couldn’t see what kind of expression she had on her face. But I saw her give a small wave.
I stared at the corner for a while after Erika-chan disappeared from my sight.
I remembered what Mana and the others had told me about Erika-chan’s circumstances at home today, and felt gloomy.
I guess Erika’s home is not a place where she feels at ease. That’s why since a while back, she never says “I’m going home” whenever she leaves.
——Whether I say “I’m back” or not, does it even make a difference?
I recalled what Erika-chan had once said to me, and it was painful.
Now I can guess why Erika-chan said that.
“It’d be nice if she came to visit tomorrow as well.”
If our house was a place where Erika-chan felt at home, I wanted to welcome her.
[PR: Hopefully this chapter didn’t turn out poorly, I did my best to fix all the stuff Chaos messed up on lol. Really wanted to make sure you guys got another chapter even though I’m over here running on 3 hours of sleep XD]
[TLN: oh my god im sorry]