“Show me the results.”, Kotaro Nakayama uttered.
His sharp words pierced Kirari’s heart.
She felt that he was right.
She felt unworthy of herself for being satisfied with her efforts.
“At the end of the day, did you think a ‘romantic comedy’ that tries to compromise with someone like me wouldn’t make you look like a fool? That is what makes you weak. You should be scraping your feet more and more… If you continue on like this, you’ll remain a pathetic and miserable sub heroine, you know? Are you willing to end up like that?”
–She didn’t want to.
She can’t end up as a sub heroine, that was unforgivable.
Kirari even changed herself to be the best.
“If that’s where you want to end up, I’ll make an exception for you. Unfortunately, I considered you a friend in middle school. And in that goodwill, I’m giving you a reason to live. Wouldn’t that be nice? A fitting end for a sub heroine, right? So, rejoice. Smile at me, like you always do. Smile and flirt with me so as to not spoil my good mood.”
The boy continued to sneer at her.
Kirari’s thoughts would not be conveyed, no matter how loud she yelled.
Because the results weren’t there.
Her anger had reached its peak.
She was about to burst into tears with emotion, but she desperately held back and squeezed her voice out.
“Kotaro Nakayama… look at me, take a good look!”
She didn’t want to lose, she thought.
“I’m going to prove to you… that I’m not a sub heroine!!!”
She swore she would not do what this boy demanded of her.
This was Kirari Asakura’s resolution.
“I finally understand. I am ‘me’… the same as I was, the same as I am now. I will always be ‘me’!”
She is who she is.
No matter how much her appearance changes, how much her personality twists, or how much her thoughts shifts, Kirari Asakura is still Kirari Asakura.
She had always lived her life exactly as she desired.
She had always been serious about what she loves.
That was it. Regardless of what happens, Kirari will always be Kirari. When she realized this, she declared it loudly and proudly.
“I’ll make him say ‘I love you’… I’ll make you fall in love with me, Ryu-kun! I’ll make you look back at me! I’ll make it impossible for you to ever again deny my feelings for you!”
She shakes the boy off as she says this. He stumbled and collapsed to the ground.
Kirari shouts again, this time looking down at him.
“Keep your eyes on me… and watch me…!”
She’ll never again be a fool.
She wasn’t about to let him deny her of her story.
She put that determination into words and glared at the boy.
This was a battle. She had said what she wanted to say. She even slapped him. She hurt him. So now it was his turn, Kirari braced herself.
She was prepared to take the beating.
She was the one who extended her hand out first.
She was convinced that she had no choice but to be violent.
She was aware that she had gone too far.
It was clearly excessive, and it wasn’t his fault in the first place.
Kotaro Nakayama simply rejected Kirari’s thoughts.
Kirari was upset simply because he shook her off when she had tried to cling on to him.
But that didn’t matter.
She felt great, having released the emotions she had been bottling up for so long.
From here on out, he’d begin his counterattack.
He would bring up how unreasonable Kirari had been, then retort with violence and inflict pain onto her.
But that was okay. This was a “battle” that Kirari had blown up at him.
As a result, she was prepared to endure the pain.
But the boy…
He didn’t do anything.
He one-sidedly accepted Kirari’s violence without retaliation.
“If you want to get back at me, then go ahead.”
He wasn’t mad, that much was clear.
No, on the contrary… His demeanor appeared to be somewhat happy.
“…I’m not sure what you mean.”
She had prepared for what was to come, but it was a letdown.
This is why he was so difficult to work with. Kirari sighed and moved her gaze away from the boy.
Otherwise, she wouldn’t be able to stand her own ugliness.
Compared to her, he was much more composed and rational, rather than howling and lashing out like an animal.
Kirari felt so ashamed of herself after seeing him like that… she couldn’t be there any longer.
As it stands, she turned on her heels.
She walked away from the back of the school building without saying anything.
――I’ll make you happy, I promise.
With a flame of passion burning in her heart, she kept moving forward.
There was no longer any hesitation in her steps.