I Don’t Want to Owe You Anything
We got off the Ferris wheel and headed for the aquarium.
It was not far from the port where the Ferris wheel was located.
As we crossed the bridge over the water, we saw a tanker in the distance.
Everything is completely different between our town, which is mountainous and full of old houses, and the next town over in the big city.
“Rei-san, when you graduate from high school, will you leave town?”
“Me? I’m … sure I will.”
“I’m certain you will.”
It is not impossible to commute from one’s parents’ house to a university in a neighboring town. In fact, Amane-nee-san did so.
However, Rei-san was staying at my home, and there was no reason for her to continue living in the town with the Tomi family.
Rei-san stared at me with her blue eyes.
“But what about Haruto-kun?”
“If Haruto-kun is staying in that home, I also want to stay with you.”
Rei-san’s cheeks were stained with embarrassment.
I scratched my head.
I was embarrassed to be told so straightforwardly.
“Our school is a preparatory school. I was thinking of going to a university in Tokyo.”
“I see. Then, I’ll do the same.”
“Rei-san, you have excellent grades, so I’m sure you have a lot of choices.”
“I haven’t thought about it yet.”
Rei smiled troubledly.
It was the same for me.
I’m only a freshman in high school.
At any rate, I have to do something about my low grades.
“Do you want me to help you study?”
“You don’t mind!? …No, I feel bad about that.”
“I don’t want to owe Haruto-kun anything after all.”
I was surprised and looked at Rei-san seriously.
The first time I met her, she refused me, saying she didn’t want to owe me anything.
I told her that she didn’t have to worry about owing me, and I thought I had convinced Rei-san over time.
I wonder if that’s where the conversation is going to go back to.
Rei hurriedly shook her head.
“No, that’s not it. That’s not what I meant. I was … treated by Haruto-kun kindly, so I wanted to do something for you as much as you treated me.”
“I haven’t done anything for you, Rei-san.”
“That’s not true… even now, you’re going on dates with me.”
We had agreed to go to the aquarium together, and I was looking forward to it too.
So it shouldn’t be something for which you owe me any favors at all.
“Anyway! I’ll help you study! When you took the high school entrance exam, you had Sasaki-san teach you, right?”
“Yes, it was thanks to Kaho that I passed the exam.”
“Then it’s my turn. Be prepared.”
“… It going to be tough and scary. But, thank you.”
When I said this, Rei-san held up her index finger and giggled.
“Then call me Rei-sensei from now on.”
“Shall I call you that now?”
“…I still want you to call me Rei normally when we’re on a date.”
Her honest smile looked very innocent.
I smiled back and looked ahead.
There was a huge silver domed building in front of us.
This strange building was the Port Aquarium, the largest of its kind in the region.