After a while, we gently parted from each other. We had bared everything, and it left us feeling embarrassed and unable to say anything.
We had truly exposed everything, more than simply being naked.
Sitting side by side on the bed, we couldn’t bring ourselves to start a conversation, and time continued to pass.
“Um, so… I think we should probably leave this place now”
“Yes, you’re right”
He tried to broach the topic while avoiding eye contact, and that’s when we heard a knock on the door.
Both of us noticed it, and I turned towards the door and opened it.
“Ah!! You’re here!”
Karen-senpai, Moegi-senpai, and Aoi-senpai were standing there. I didn’t know what kind of expression to put on, so I turned my gaze away. I was afraid of what they might say to me, so I felt nervous.
“You idiot! We were worried sick!”
Karen-senpai hugged me tightly. Aoi-senpai and Moegi-senpai had tears in their eyes as well.
“Don’t you dare disappear like that again! You idiot!”
Both of them also embraced me. Strangely, tears welled up in my eyes too, and Izayoi-kun was crying as he watched us hug.
We found her and returned to the modern world after hearing rumors. It was said that a new adventurer had suddenly been promoted to S-rank, which was quite bewildering for me.
The distinct feature of this new adventurer was a silver-haired, blue-eyed beauty carrying a man on her back. We deduced that it must be her, so we headed to that location, asked around, and eventually found her. When we did, we were overwhelmed with worry and a mix of emotions.
Kohaku-chan cried while pouring her heart out. She didn’t want to lose him, feared she might be betrayed, and all these emotions had spiraled out of control. She broke down in tears, feeling weak.
Both Kohaku-chan and he apologized for their selfish actions. Kohaku-chan repeatedly expressed how sorry she was for her selfish behavior, and he also apologized for suggesting the harem idea. They both kneeled and hit their foreheads on the floor.
Karen-chan and Aoi-chan were both furious and exasperated. Well, I was a bit angry too. We were all wondering why they didn’t communicate their worries or concerns if they were suffering so much. While we acknowledged that he wasn’t entirely at fault, we reminded him of his responsibility in this situation.
But Karen-chan mentioned that we also bore some responsibility for not noticing her transformation and not doing anything sooner. Aoi-chan suggested that if we couldn’t trust each other, we should take the time to get to know each other better. I reassured them that I intended to stay with them no matter what.
Then Kohaku-chan cried again, like a baby, loud and uncontrollable sobs. After consoling her and calming her down, we decided to return home together.
As we walked back, Kohaku-chan and Karen-chan were at the front, examining what looked like some kind of ID cards related to adventurers.
“Is this an adventurer license or something? Show me.”
“Yes, here you go.”
“Hmm… it looks more like a license to explore another world than my parents’ faces…”
Kohaku-chan and Karen-chan chatted while looking at the cards. Aoi-chan was standing next to them, equally intrigued by the cards.
I walked behind them with him. After this incident, he must be thinking about a lot of things.
Although things seemed to have ended safely this time, I couldn’t help but wonder if this was really the end. Would we all peacefully become his girlfriends and live happily ever after? Or was this just the calm before another storm? I couldn’t shake the feeling that there might be more challenges ahead.
In the dark, pitch-black abyss, I found myself facing someone. Although it was difficult to see clearly in the shadowy darkness, I could sense the presence of someone who resembled me.
“Why did you believe…? I understand that he is trustworthy. But that doesn’t justify believing in everyone.”
“What do you mean…?”
“Everyone trusted and worried about you so much. I realized that, and even though it’s hard to believe, trying to have faith in them is essential, and it’s a sign of sincerity.”
“What are you trying to say…?”
“I’m sure you understand it too, don’t you?”
When I spoke to the shadow, she responded with a frustrated and uneasy expression. In that moment, I could finally see her face in the dim light.
She had captivating hair that blended black and purple hues, and her eyes were a beautiful mix of pink and purple. However, her appearance was strikingly similar to mine, though with slight differences—her eyes drooped a bit, giving her a slightly younger appearance, like that of a second-year middle school student.
“Indeed… You are me, aren’t you?”
“I am selfish. That’s why I can’t be satisfied with one-sided love. I want to truly love him, and everyone loves him too. I… I get frustrated when I see those seemingly beautiful answers, and if everyone is satisfied with them, it’s as if… I become an ugly, dirty, unnecessary, impure thing. What will become of me? Should I just quietly watch from the sidelines?”
At that moment, the distance between me and her grew wider and wider. It felt as though we were once the same, but we had become distant, separated entities. It was a final separation, and from that point on, I would no longer see her.
We were sitting in his usual house, wearing our usual pajamas, in our usual bedroom with futons spread out. Kohaku-chan apologized to us once again.
“I’m really sorry for causing you all so much worry.”
“You don’t need to apologize anymore,”
Karen-chan interrupted her and stopped her from continuing with her apologies.
“Don’t keep making that gloomy face forever. Especially you, my sweet Izayoi. When Kohaku looks down, it brings my spirits down too. Got it? Even if you still think you caused trouble, we’ve forgiven you. Apologizing repeatedly doesn’t make you virtuous or anything. So, just be yourself.”
“So, stop being gloomy! Your specialty is showing off your chest and taking the upper hand as usual, isn’t it?”
“I don’t have that specialty…”
She still seemed to be dragging herself down. It wouldn’t be easy to return to her usual self so quickly. She was probably still wondering if she was allowed to return or if she should reflect and be quiet for a while. However, thanks to Karen-chan, a smile began to return to her face little by little.
Gradually, the usual atmosphere started to return, and we chatted about trivial things before going to sleep…
Or at least, that’s what was supposed to happen. I woke up in the middle of the night for some reason. I didn’t know why. Maybe I felt like someone was standing up at night. I was sleepy, but I opened my eyes slightly.
It was dark, and I couldn’t see well, but…
“Ko-Kohaku-chan? Why are you here so late?”
I couldn’t see her clearly, but I thought she was… naked. And then she immediately left the room. Kohaku-chan, what are you doing? I thought. But when I looked to my side, she was sleeping next to Karen-chan.
Eh? I suddenly felt frightened. Why was there someone here at this time of night? Could it be a ghost?
Wait, why am I so scared all of a sudden? What should I do? Aoi-chan is sleeping next to me, but if I wake her up…
Aoi-chan was also surprised!?
She noticed that I was awake, and in a flash, I could feel her emotions. She wanted to ease the fear immediately.
“Come in my futon!”
In the same futon, we hugged each other, trying to comfort each other’s trembling bodies due to fear.
“Is that not dangerous?”
“No, we didn’t see anything. It was just a hallucination.”
“Yeah, you’re right. Is something like that even possible?”
“It happens sometimes, I guess.”
“I see. Well, let’s go back to sleep.”
I woke up with a renewed determination. While there were various things happening with Kohaku, it wasn’t just about her. If I was going to be in a relationship with all of them, I needed to care about everyone equally. I had to express my love even more sincerely than before and alleviate any anxieties.
I was determined to convey my feelings sincerely, overflowing with love…
Starting today, I decided to begin anew and noticed that my own futon was elevated. Maybe it was a common rom-com development where someone sneaked into my bed. Blushing would be easy in this situation. Well, I’d probably be embarrassed. But here, I should express my love wholeheartedly.
First, I decided to lift the futon and show my affection in any way possible. I realized that talking and communicating were the only things I could do. I didn’t consider myself insensitive, but that didn’t mean I understood everything.
I would learn more, communicate more, and pile it all up to achieve true happiness. I would grasp this harem…
As I lifted the futon, at the same time, the door to the room also opened. Inside the futon was a naked beauty, and at the door was another beauty. Both had similar facial features.
“Good morning, darling…”
“Good morning, Izayoi-kun. It’s almost time for breakfast…”
I would seize happiness from here…
End of Travel to another world arc