I had a day where I was pampered beyond measure. Food was brought to me without me even asking, and everything was cleaned up. It felt like I was being treated not like a villainess, but more like a princess…
Karen-senpai was even kinder than usual, and Aoi-senpai’s beautiful voice, reading stories and singing lullabies, brought back my childlike innocence and led to a delightful nap. Honestly, I had already improved quite a bit from my cold, but they were still taking care of me. I feel a bit sorry, but also enjoying this somewhat extravagant feeling of being a princess…
As I ponder such thoughts, the sliding door opens once more. This time, it’s Moegi-senpai.
“Hey there, how’s your condition?”
“It’s gotten a lot better. My fever has gone down too.”
“That’s good to hear. Here, some grated apple.”
She sits down and scoops up some grated apple with a spoon, then brings it to my lips.
“Thank you so much for everything.”
“It’s nothing. Now, here you go, ‘Aaahn.'”
“Ko-Kohaku-chan’s chomping down on my grated apple… gulp…”
“What are you saying!?”
“Just a joke, just a joke. It’s a Moegi joke.”
“I don’t get it!”
Occasionally, this person seems quite perverted. Well, I already knew that, but it’s surprising how she can maintain a proper demeanor most of the time and then suddenly have such a gap in her behavior.
“There’s something timeless about watching a cute kid eat with relish, isn’t there?”
“I can’t relate.”
“Ah! You need to sweat, so why don’t I be your cuddle buddy?”
“Please stop with the sudden jokes. Just give me the apple, please.”
“Sure, sure. Keep on munching!”
“Please stop using that phrasing.”
Well, apples are delicious. When the apples are finished, she hands me a slightly sweet-smelling homemade honey lemon juice with ginger.
“And here, have this too. It’s homemade honey lemon juice with ginger.”
“It’s delicious. Thank you very much.”
The juice warms me up from within. There’s a strong air of being a good wife coming from her… Something else crosses my mind. What does she think of Izayoi-kun?
“Senpai, do you like Izayoi-kun?”
“Eeehh?! So sudden!? Something wrong!?”
What’s with this flustered response…
“Just curious. So, how about it?”
“Uhm, I think it’s normal… I think he’s likeable, but I don’t have feelings for him like Karen-chan or Kohaku-chan…”
“You’re suddenly using formal language…”
“Oh, no, it’s just that you said something so sudden that I messed up my speech!”
“You suddenly raised your voice…”
“…Well, anyway, I really don’t think much about him in particular!”
“Now you’re sounding like Karen-senpai…”
“!? …Ahaha, well then, I’ll take my leave here. Please have a good rest.”
“Thank you very much…”
In what almost feels like a run, she leaves the room. Could it be… Moegi-senpai too… No, there’s no need to think about that now.
After that, I received a call from Natsuko-san and chatted for a while to pass the time.
Once again, the sliding door opens. This time… it’s Izayoi-kun! He comes in with various things like sports drinks and energy gels. I sit up and our eyes meet.
“I’ve heard from everyone that your condition is okay, but I wanted to ask just in case. Are you okay!?”
“I’m fine, so please don’t look so worried.”
Izayoi-kun gazes at me with concern. Having him show concern for me is making me incredibly happy.
“I’m sorry for making you worry.”
“This much is okay! Please don’t worry at all. More importantly, lie down and rest!”
He tells me to sleep, but I already took a nap earlier today, so it’s not easy to fall asleep now.
“You can sleep, I’ll play some background music!”
“Well, I appreciate the thought, but I already took a nap today, and if I sleep too much now, I might not be able to sleep tonight…”
“I see… Then, is there something else I can do?”
“Let me think… Oh! Uhm, I don’t want to inconvenience you, though. So don’t worry.”
“No, I’m actually here to help, so it’s fine! Feel free to ask!”
What’s going on!? I couldn’t immediately understand his words.
“W-What do you mean?!”
“When someone has a cold, they say that it can be cured if you transfer it to someone else, right? So, I thought maybe I could catch it from you and become energetic.”
“Oh, I see… So that’s what you mean…”
“Exactly, so don’t worry about it. Just tell me whatever you want!”
Alright, let’s ask for something! What would be good… Cuddling? A knee pillow? Or maybe just holding hands normally?
Alright, let’s go with a hug!
Crap! I’ve sweated from taking a nap while having a fever… In this state, I’ll make him smell my sweaty odor… Let’s go with holding hands. Yeah.
“Can you hold my hand?”
“Isn’t that more like a reward for me? Are you sure about this?”
“It’s fine! Please!”
Lately, I’ve been finding Izayoi-kun’s forwardness quite exciting. And his hand feels nice and firm. A slight fever isn’t so bad after all… Thank you, slight fever. I’m really happy.
If I were in mutual love with such a kind person… that would be enough. Even if it were a complicated situation… I suddenly thought that. While holding his hand, I spoke.
“Two timing is fine…”
“If you’re this kind and wonderful, just being together is enough for me. So, I accept it.”
I really meant that. And I thought he would smile and agree. But…
“Well, let’s stop talking about that for now.”
He cut off my words. Did he perhaps start disliking me? For a moment, I felt scared, but it’s unlikely. Then why did he refuse?
“Kohaku-san, I’m a scumbag. I’m hopeless. Even though such a beautiful person confessed to me, I’m thinking about having multiple relationships. Don’t you think I’m a scumbag?”
“No, I don’t think that…”
“Honesty is fine.”
“…I guess… I did think you were a scumbag. But, more than that, I like you.”
Certainly, I initially thought he was a scumbag. But now, not so much… not to that extent… No, just a little.
“Thank you. But I have a feeling that you’re holding back a bit.”
“….Is that so?”
“You don’t need to hold back. I’m just saying stupid and unreasonable things. So, please don’t give in to anything. I don’t want you to have any regrets. I want you to tell me when you can truly say it from the bottom of your heart…”
“Also, today you might not be making the most rational decisions due to your fever. So… Let’s set this topic aside for today! Just rest and take it easy!”
“This person has a stubborn personality,” I thought. To put it differently, one could say he is incredibly obstinate and vexing. I believe it’s fine to bend a little. It’s okay to be a bit ambiguous. But I won’t do such a thing. The love is incredibly strong and warm.
Oh, I love this place… Hopelessly…
“True… Let’s forget about what I said earlier. Also, for today, I’ll rest for a bit.”
“Um… Can I continue holding your hand like this for a while?”
Without saying a word, we continue holding each other’s hands. While it might seem awkward to others, I want it to last forever. I wish for it to continue indefinitely.
However, suddenly my stomach growled.
It’s currently early afternoon. Just rice porridge and grated apple weren’t enough… The atmosphere in the room instantly turns awkward. As if the fever has returned, my body feels hot. It’s embarrassing…
“It seems like your stomach is empty…”
“N-No, I-I’m fine…”
“Would you like me to bring you some of Moegi-senpai’s clam chowder?”
C-Clam chowder!? That creamy, clam-flavored soup that feels like you could eat it infinitely!? And if it’s made by Moegi-senpai, it’s bound to be delicious. Even without tasting it, I know. After living together for a while, I’ve become familiar with Moegi-senpai’s cooking skills. Definitely delicious.
But if I affirm it here… I’ll come across as some kind of glutton… First, I had a runny nose, and now my stomach is growling. This is terrible… M-My meticulously built, dignified, elegant, well-mannered, gently affectionate, unassuming and natural, perfect ladylike image is crumbling… Yet, I’m getting hungry. Managing breakfast and lunch with just rice porridge and grated apple is tough…
“I’ll bring it! I’m hungry too! Let’s eat together!”
“A-Ah… P-Please, go ahead…”
Unable to resist my hunger and feeling the pressure to conform, I unintentionally asked for it. Without paying any mind to the fact that my stomach growled, he left the room just like he always did.
“A-Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! I-I’ve done it…!”
Afterward, the regret of going from a perfect atmosphere to the worst, the resentment towards my own hungry stomach, and my own loud complaints filled the room.
There, angels were present. Asura and fallen angels too. Yet, they weren’t particularly surprised upon learning about the defeat of the lion, a one-horned creature.
“Hmph, that guy was the weakest of the Four Heavenly Kings. It’s not surprising he lost.”
The fallen angel said. And then, the next assassin was…
“Asura, are you going?”
Without a word, Asura raised one of it’s four arms. Asura is a peculiar being possessing ninety-nine lives and formidable combat abilities.
“Then, please go whenever you’re ready.”
Asura departed without uttering a word. Although it might not happen immediately, it would likely prepare and head out soon.
“Aren’t you going?”
“I’m fine. My power involves infiltrating people’s minds and destroying them from within. It’s a potent and unique ability, but I’m not yet aware of the opponent’s capabilities.”
The angel answered the fallen angel’s question gracefully. The ability the angel described is similar to the dream-eating ability that Izayoi once defeated.
If, by chance, it infiltrated Izayoi without him realizing it… the outcome would be clear. Both parties would share the unbearable damage of incurable harm.
“I see… If Asura is defeated, I’ll step in.”
“Yes, please do.”
They seemed somewhat underestimating. They believed they were superior, allowing such thoughts to prevail. That’s why the large fried horse mackerel lies at their feet… No, Izayoi who has evolved, is not in that realm. They don’t notice the fried horse mackerel at their feet. That’s why, surely, they will step on it and slip, falling spectacularly.
The time for that is drawing near.
Two days had passed since Kohaku’s condition improved. It seemed that her quick response to the early signs of a cold with a slight fever had paid off. And so, in the living room, I once again decided to… confess to her about the two-timing situation. The day before yesterday, I felt like she hesitated and gave in, so I stopped. Besides, her fever might have affected her decision. Now that her fever had gone down considerably and she seemed more composed, I thought she could make a clear judgment. She had even mentioned that she might accept it if I confessed, so I thought maybe she had a change of heart and might fully accept it.
“Kohaku-san, would you go out with me?”
Well, I knew it would end up like this. How many times am I going to be turned down…
“Honestly, I was okay with accepting it. But you’re just too wonderful, so it’s too precious to settle for two-timing. I want to be the only one. Therefore, for now, I won’t accept the two-timing.”
Ugh… She said that with such an incredibly cute smile… I realized once again that I’m incredibly weak against her sweet persuasion.
In the evening of that day, I was gazing at the sunset from the balcony of my home. It’s not that I’m being sentimental; I’m just lost in thought.
And then, with a sigh…
I shouted out loud. It’s inevitable. The sunset was illuminating me. Not in a hard-boiled way, but as a mere fried horse mackerel.
“Going all in so boldly is embarrassing! And your choice of words! Are you in middle school?! There should be cooler ways to phrase it! The confession to Karen was incomprehensible, and the ‘confession’ was just nonsense! It’s like something out of an isekai trope, and it doesn’t make any sense!”
Reflecting on my recent eccentric behavior and feeling ashamed, I realized that my recent actions have been quite laughable and peculiar.
“Seriously, it’s not all about going all out like that. There’s such a thing as being too embarrassed. And how many times have I been rejected?! Thinking of blowing away rain with a magical technique during a date – is that something a middle schooler would do?!”
And then, I involuntarily remembered my past life – something I really didn’t want to recall!
“Argh, I remembered when I used to think about what to do if terrorists attacked during middle school classes! This is torture!”
It’s a chain of negativity. Embarrassing memories are surfacing one after another.
“I even thought I could dodge bullets if I just stared at the gun barrel! And I considered using the desk as a shield! I even thought I could deflect bullets with the back of my hand! Why is this coming back to me now?!”
I held my head, and embarrassment made my face turn completely red. However, strangely enough, if I let it all out, I feel a refreshing sensation.
“Phew, let’s aim for two-timing again starting tomorrow…”
With a renewed sense of determination, I reset my feelings and started walking again. Whatever may come, I won’t stop. Even if it’s embarrassing, I won’t stop honestly expressing myself. I’ll just do my best to do what I can as my awkward self.