Recollection Part 8
–After the entrance ceremony and meeting my classmates.
It was after school.
“Ko-kun, can I have a minute?”
As I was getting ready to go home, Kirari called out to me.
She ran up to me, her braided hair swinging, and she had a difficult look on her face, as if something wasn’t quite right.
“Um…well, it’s kind of hard to talk here, so do you want to go to the rooftop?”
“Ah, yeah. Okay …, but I have to tell Azusa and Yuzuki I’m going to be late.”
At the time, I thought it was only natural that we should go home together. So, although I was going to say just one word to them, Kirari shook her head and refused that.
“I’m not sure if that’s necessary. Just let’s go, shall we?”
“Huh? Really? Then, I understand.”
I was curious about Kirari, who was acting differently from usual, so I decided to go along with her as she told me.
“Huh? Come to think of it, is the rooftop unlocked? When I was in middle school, it was locked because it was dangerous.”
“Well, it looks like it’s open to the public. I think it’s unusual nowadays.”
When we went up the stairs, the door to the rooftop was open.
When we went outside, there was still a bit of a cold wind blowing…, and perhaps because of that, there were no students in the building.
Kirari, perhaps taking advantage of the situation, quickly gets down to business.
“Azu-chan and Yuzu-chan, what’s going on with them?”
The first thing she asked me was about the two of them.
“I mean, it’s not like there’s something wrong with them, but it’s like they weren’t the same two people from… middle school.”
“Is that so?”
“…Yes. Because neither of them was the type to be that interested in romance, right? Well, I know they are cute and have probably been favored by the opposite gender on more than one occasion, but … up until now, it all seemed like they were just ignoring it. But today, it was different.”
In middle school, Kirari, who preferred to be alone, recognized three people, including me, as her few friends.
Maybe because of this, she was the one person who knew us better than anyone else.
“I don’t know if it’s because they’re “colorblind”, or … they’re not the aggressive type, but why are they so open to someone named Ryoma Ryuzaki? Isn’t it strange? Those two have hearts in their eyes, don’t they?”
Kirari had noticed.
From that moment on, she had already sensed that something was wrong with them.
Maybe she was trying to warn me.
But at the time, I couldn’t notice any change in them.
“Nothing, they looked the same as usual…”
It was when I told her frankly how I felt.
I remember well how Kirari looked blatantly disgusted at that moment.
“Ko-kun… are you serious about that? It can’t be, because we’ve been together for so long, you can at least tell that the two of them are acting strange, can’t you?”
“… I-I’m sorry. No, I’m not aware of any changes, or even if they were changing, it doesn’t change the fact that the two of them are still very important to me…, so…”
“…So you can choose to do nothing? Do you really think that those two people are attracted to another person of the opposite gender and you still … think that you can have the same relationship with them as you did before? Don’t you think that you want to cherish your relationship with them even more?”
Kirari looked a little sad.
No, that expression was not quite right.
“To Ko-kun, those two are …, that’s all we are to you?”
–I was disappointed.
Kirari was disgusted with me.
“Hmm, I see. …Ko-kun is going to live like that after all, aren’t you?”
She told me the thoughts she must have had about me all this time.
“I really … don’t know what it is about you, Ko-kun. You don’t laugh much, you don’t get angry, and you don’t cry. I can’t tell if you’re enjoying yourself or if you’re having a hard time. You are all passive and don’t try to do anything on your own. And yet, no matter what we do, you’re the kind of person who accepts … them, even now, right?”
She was right on the mark.
No matter what was said or done, Kirari was still an important person to me.
But she didn’t like it.
“Sometimes I wish you would have shown me your feelings,… and since we are friends, I wish you would have been more selfish or told me your desires. If you had done that, we could have had a more … different relationship.”
This is the result of abandoning the idea that one’s feelings are unimportant.
“I guess me and Ko-kun will only be friends forever.”
With that, Kirari turned her back on me.
Of course, I immediately tried to follow her back, but I was more shocked than I thought … that Kirari had been disappointed in me, so I couldn’t move right away.
I was also disappointed.
I was tormented by the trauma I had been carrying since my mother branded me as a failure as a child.
I always acted too slowly at that time, using … various things as excuses.
Because of that, I lost an important “connection”…
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