It’s Tuesday after a day off. Yesterday, I helped old man with a large amount of luggage and he asked me whether I was interested in working part-time at a coffee shop, but I needed to focus on school for now.
When I opened the door, everyone looked at me with disdain. The rumors seemed to have spread.
“Good morning, Yuki.”
“Oh, Shota, good morning.”
Yuki returned the greeting and seemed to be in a good mood.
“Did something happen?”
“No? I thought it was the first time Shota had said good morning to me.”
Now that you mention it, I’ve said good morning to others before, but I don’t think I’ve ever said it to Yuki. I didn’t do it on purpose, but I felt embarrassed to have it pointed out to me.
“No, no, it’s not like that, is it?”
“Yes, it is.”
After talking about it, Yuki looked around.
“Damn, the rumor has been spreading like wildfire…… Aren’t you going to tell them that the rumor is not true?”
“No, it is meaningless if the rumor came from Sumika. Everyone believes Sumika.”
Yuki’s face showed concern. In fact, I think Sumika, who is the center of attention in the class, seems to have the trust of the majority of the people…… Don’t give me that look please…..
“It looks like you’re admitting that the rumor is true by not speaking up. You should say something.”
“No, it’s fine.”
“Yes, it is.”
People who assume that the rumor is true, will not change their opinion unless I’m able to provide evidence, and until then it’s useless to say anything.
After that, the day ended without any particular incident. I thought that Miyamoto-san might come during lunch break, but she didn’t show up. Well, it isn’t strange that she isn’t going out of her way to befriend the guy who is rumored to be a girl stealer……. Well, whatever.
That’s what I thought, but it didn’t seem to be the case. 3 days later it was Friday. Yuki had club activities, so I said goodbye to him. I was about to head to my house whilst I was deep in thought about the Golden Week, when Miyamoto-san arrived.
“Ishikawa-kun. I’d like to talk to you about something, if that’s okay.”
“Ah, sure, but……”.
As usual, talking with Miyamoto-san in the classroom felt uncomfortable, so I decided to change the location.
We went to the back of the school building. Compared to the classroom there wasn’t much privacy and the area was in the open. As we were walking I told her I was sorry for blatantly avoiding her, to which she replied with just “uhh.” We barely talked, so the atmosphere was rather awkward. When she visited me during lunch breaks, she always seemed energetic and proactive, but now she looked like how she did a few days ago when she was looking for her hairpin. Miyamoto-san opened her mouth as if she had made up her mind about what she wanted to talk about.
“Is the rumor I heard the other day true?”
Usually, I think it’s useless to convince someone that I’m innocent when they are certain that the rumor is true, but when she questions the credibility of the rumor and asks me straight-up whether it’s true or not, I think it’s worth the effort to argue against the rumor.
“…… No, it’s not. It seems like that there’s a rumor going around I stole my best friend’s girlfriend, but I never did anything like that.”
“I knew it wasn’t true. I’m glad!”
When Miyamoto-san said that, she seemed to be in good spirits. I’m not sure if it’s the same as the last time I saw her, but I wonder if she had her guard up. This place is also rather conspicuous. I’m not sure if my denial of the rumor was enough to let her guard down.
“I was told a lot of things, but I still couldn’t believe it. ……”
“I’ve been through a lot in the past.”
“Oh, I see. ……”
From her reaction, she didn’t seem to have any desire to hear about the past, so I didn’t think to talk about it with her.
“Would you like to be my friend?”
I was surprised, as it came out of nowhere. But still, a friend. ……. After I acknowledged Yuki as my friend, I was less resistant to becoming her friend as well, but I still hesitated when she asked me.
“Why …… why? Hmmm, because I wanted to ……, maybe?”
I was happy to hear that from someone who believed me, instead of the rumors. I don’t know if this is how friends are made, but from today on, Miyamoto-san and I are friends.