[Ayana’s mom PoV]
It’s a bitter past.
It’s a common story of a foolish woman who thinks about someone, doesn’t act…… and before she knows it, the person she loves is taken away from her.
I met him by chance as a neighbor and gradually became attracted to him as we talked. I was too shy to confess my feelings to him, but I was happy just to be by his side.
But …… my first love never came true.
I secretly wanted to stand next to him someday, and I was deprived of that position by a woman who popped up. I say “stolen,” but this is just a kind of resentment. I still couldn’t admit that fact. I had always been closer to him than she was to him, I had always loved him more than she did,…… and yet he chose her, and that woman seemed to be happy with his love.
[……Why that woman?]
I really couldn’t understand how such a crass, womanly, undignified delinquent could be next to him,…….
But …… I was sure that somewhere in my heart there was a part of me that felt that I deserved it.
The way Mom’s face fell in pain was something I had never seen before.
The words she said, and the picture I saw,……, honestly speaking, I am curious about it. But what does it matter if I hear it? I cannot forget what Mom said to him at the hospital that day. Needless to say, those words widened the gap between my mother and I. I don’t know how my mother felt about it.
It is no use keeping silent like this, I will only tell her what I want to tell her.
“Mom, I was saved by Towa-kun.”
Saved. When I told her this, her body trembled and she slowly raised her head to look at me.
“I used to be so patient. I never disobeyed Mom’s words to take good care of Shu-kun, and I always did as you told me to–except for that one day.”
Mom, you remember that day, don’t you? That day, the day I met Towa-kun for the first time. It was the day my life began to change, the day I met the person I fell in love with.
“The day I was bothered by the thought of going to Shu-kun every single day…… that day, I disobeyed Mom’s words and ran away, only to meet Towa-kun on the other side of the road.”
Mom remained silent at my words. I continued speaking without paying attention to her.
“We had a lot of fun. A world where I did not have to suppress myself and could be myself as I am. That is what I felt when I was with Towa-kun.
I have said this many times before, but I feel that my encounter with Towa-kun was a turning point for me. If I had not had that encounter, I would not have become the person I am today. I would have just accepted the world given to me by the mothers, and I would have continued to kill myself and live my life. …… I honestly feel horrified.
Then, as I spent time with Towa-kun, my feelings turned to love. I loved watching Towa-kun play soccer, and cheering him on was my reason for living at that time–until that day.
……Not that I am going to blame my mother any more. Despite my mother’s words, the crash only happened by accident, and Towa-kun, who was involved in the accident, showed his determination to overcome what happened. That is why I have no right to speak for Towa-kun’s anger and sadness.
However, I wanted to tell her how I felt at that time.
“I knew from that moment on that he was a disgusting child. With a mother like that, it’s no wonder he’s not getting a good education.”
“Those were the words Mom said to me at the time. I never forgot these words …… and even wondered how I could be related to you by blood.”
My words brought my mother to tears this time. Regardless of how I felt in the past, my mother would be able to say with confidence that she raised me with love and affection. But in fact, now I denied it and said something to the effect that I didn’t like being my mother’s daughter. …… When I look at my mother in front of me, I feel a prickle in my heart.
My mother certainly said some terrible words. I don’t know what she’s been up to, but I can’t forgive her for the hostility she’s had towards Towa-kun since the moment we met,……, but even so, the person in front of me is my mother. I am in debt to her for bringing me up this far, and it’s not that she didn’t feel love for me.
“Towa said he would get over the pain and sadness of that time. He kicked a soccer ball in front of me and said goodbye to the past. So I, too, decided to move forward. I knew I couldn’t just stand still forever while the person I love started walking forward.”
“…… getting over the past.”
My mother blurted out.
I don’t know if my words reached my mother. But this is how I feel about my decision. ……To tell the truth, my mother was also included in my revenge target. I didn’t say anything directly to Towa-kun, but I couldn’t forgive her for making fun of Towa-kun’s efforts and Akemi’s love. But when I see my mother who seems to be continuously tied to the past like I am, I realize that I am incapable of hurting her.
I took my gaze away from my mother, who had looked down, and I looked around the living room. The space is too big for my mother and I to live in, and I remember that my father had been gone for as long as I can remember, and I was a little lonely.
(…… I wonder if this space would be warmer if Towa-kun were here)
I remember the words he said to me when I left Towa-kun’s house.
[I don’t want to be in a bad relationship forever. I’ll do my best to talk to Ayana’s mother and get her to accept our relationship as it is.]
Until recently, I would have thought that I didn’t need to care about my mother’s opinion. Of course, if it becomes an obstacle to being with Towa-kun, I would consider cutting ties, but… it’s strange that I have such expectations that my beloved Towa-kun, who saved my heart, will create a future where my mother and I can talk happily together.
A future where me, Towa-kun, my mother and Akemi are talking over drinks …… Fufu, there is no way, right?
I asked and my mother looked up.
“I love Towa-kun. I won’t let anyone interfere with this feeling or deny it…….I love him that much. Please know that.”
This is all I can tell her. I don’t know if time will do the rest ……, but I wanted her to know that this is how I feel.
As I turned my back to my mother and headed for my room, I thought she spoke something but I could not hear her.
[Ayana’s Mom Side]
Just before her daughter’s back was turned, Ayana’s mother, Seina, muttered.
“……And in the end, I was the only one who was spinning my wheels.”
Ayana didn’t seem to hear the words she blurted out, and she headed back to her room without looking back.
Alone now that Ayana was out of sight, Seina reflected once again on her past. She felt that the person she loved had been stolen from her, and her strange pride prevented her from admitting it. She didn’t want Ayana to feel the same way, so she took the initiative and tried to befriend Shu, and this is what she got. From her daughter’s point of view, Seina’s presence must have been very depressing.
As she watched the scene, Seina understood that if she had continued to show that kind of attitude and behavior towards young Towa, who reminded her so much of the person she once loved, it would have been no surprise if her daughter Ayana, who loved Towa, had grown tired of her. She realized that she had failed to understand her daughter at all, and that it was Towa who had been able to understand and help her daughter.
After all, she didn’t understand a single thing about her daughter, and she didn’t realize that the one person who could understand and help her daughter more than anyone else was Towa. ……
She doesn’t necessarily dislike or hate Ayana, as she is her precious child whom she gave birth to and still have love for. However, when she was told that Ayana couldn’t believe that they were related by blood, she was shocked to the point where her heart stopped. Upon hearing Ayana’s story, she realized that she had been foolish and it was her fault for not understanding her earlier.
In a sense, it was as if Shu was also involved in the problem that Ayana and Towa …… were facing.
After being told that much by Ayana, Seina was still unable to answer what she could do from now on.
As she was pondering this, the intercom rang with a ding-dong.
Normally, she would have checked to see who had arrived, but the now exhausted Seina didn’t have the heart to do so, so she went to the front door and opened it. And there he was …….
“…… Oh, hello……. Ayana left something behind, so I’ve come to deliver it.”
Towa, a boy she hadn’t seen in several years, looked timidly back at Seina.