Translated and Edited by: ynlucca.
It was the first Sunday of the new school year. Shirayuki, Sakura, and I were going to buy supplies for the student council.
It was 9 AM. As I brushed my teeth, eyes still heavy from sleepiness, I heard the morning news program coming from our TV in the kitchen.
“–And the worst luck for today is… I’m sorry, Pisces, but you’re gonna have one of the three worst days of your life. Be careful, or you might die today! Well then, have a nice Sunday everyone! See you tomorrow, bye!”
… Give me my feel-good Sunday back, Pisces.
Goddamn it, what an obnoxious thing to play in the morning.
I sigh and quickly finish getting ready. I change into clothes for going out, turn the laundry to dry, and work a bit from home with the bit of extra time I have to make some bonus cash.
While doing that, my bad morning quickly turned into a good one.
“–Well then, Yui. I’ll be back in a bit.”
“Yes, yes. Be careful out there.”
Then I took the train to Shibuya and headed to the meeting place, which was in front of Hachiko. It felt a little chilly in Shibuya at the beginning of April, probably because of the wind in the buildings.
Looks like Shirayuki and Sakura haven’t arrived yet…
It was 11:45 AM. Our rendezvous was at 12, so I got there just in time.
With nothing in particular to do and no time in my hands to commit to anything else, I stared up at the sky in a daze.
‘You might die today’, huh?
Nasty things like these usually tended to get stuck in your head. Though, after being distracted with my thoughts for a while, I glimpsed Shirayuki and Sakura’s figures in the distance.
“Kuzuhara-kun, good morning.”
“Kuzuhara-kun, morning! Today is a perfect day for shopping! I can’t contain the excitement!”
“Yo,” I raised my hand slightly as a greeting.
How should I put it… They’re stylish?
Shirayuki’s outfit was indeed befitting of her image. She wore a pristine white turtleneck with vertical lines, a charcoal gray jacket delicately draping over her shoulders. Underneath, a short plaid skirt and black tights – It was a neat, elegant attire that suited her to a tee.
Sakura, on the other hand, wore a bright denim jacket over a pastel pink blouse plus some simple black pants. Overall, a stylish outfit, befitting of her… Colorful personality.
As I thought about these things–
–Sakura stared at me, sort of dissatisfied.
“Is something wrong?”
“Not really… I was just hoping that you’d show up here with some sort of ‘Otaku Fashion’, but… I’m a bit disappointed with how decent you look.”
“Shut up,” I hand chopped her forehead. “Oh, I missed.”
“Bullshit! You hit me!” I chopped her forehead again. “Ow!”
As always, her reactions are funny.
“‘Otaku Fashion’?” Shirayuki tilted her head curiously, and Sakura immediately began to explain what it was.
“I’ll explain! What is ‘Otaku Fashion’, you ask? Mismatched checkered shirts; Jeans with dragons painted all over them; Silver chains dangling on their waist, etc. It’s the kind of fashion that nerds like to wear, and it makes you go ‘Why?’. That’s ‘Otaku Fashion’!”
“I see, so something like that exists…” Shirayuki was impressed.
Oh god, that was close… Thanks, Yui, you’ve actually saved my life this once.
While I was thrilled I didn’t turn into a laughingstock, I remembered yesterday’s incident.
So, this is what happened–
As I organized my wardrobe for the shopping trip, I heard Yui’s voice come out of the living room.
“Big bro, are we going somewhere tomorrow?”
“I’m going shopping with the student council.”
“With the student council… That means Shirayuki-san too, right?”
“Yeah, since she’s the president.”
“Hmm… I see…”
Lying on our old couch, Yui pondered about something. Hey, stop kicking the sofa, brat.
“… Speaking of which, bro, do you have any good clothes for going out?”
“Yeah. Got a set from middle school.”
Our family was poor. Extremely poor.
Of course, I couldn’t afford to buy new clothes every year. That’s why I research a lot, visited a local clothing store, and selected fashionable clothes with long life spans. By choosing a size larger than yours, you could grow into the clothes and avoid buying a new set.
I’d buy the items I prepared beforehand once they’d go on sale. That’d usually happen when they needed to empty their stock, or when it reached the end of the year, etc.
This is how I managed to cut down the expenses spent on clothing, while still maintaining a fashionable wardrobe.
“F-From middle school, huh…” She gulped, quickly standing up. ”I’m worried. Let me see what you’re wearing tomorrow.”
“What? Don’t wanna. I’ve already cleaned and folded them properly.”
“Just let me see what you’re gonna wear,” she gazed at me with serious eyes.
“… Damn. Okay, hold on a second.”
I grabbed the set I’d wear from my wardrobe and changed into it. I then checked the mirror…
A red-and-black checkered shirt, cool jeans with dragons on them, and a silver chain dangling around my waist… I look perfect.
“So, how’s that working out for you–?”
“–Why did you even think this was a good choice?” She shot me down, harshly and sincerely.
“… What’s wrong with it?”
I took a good look in the mirror once again but still couldn’t see what was so bad about my outfit.
“Everything is wrong! You’ve never had a good fashion sense! Move outta the way, I’ll manage this,” as she said that, she began fishing clothes from my wardrobe. “Why do you have skull and crossbones printed on these? Where are you gonna wear a rainbow? Oh… This Flupy shirt might be a bit cute though… No wait, it’s a fake!”
Skulls and crossbones are fine. Rainbows are cool. Oh, the Flopy shirt was fake, huh…
“Oh my God! There’s no way to combine anything with these… Fortunately, there’s still time! Come on, hurry up big bro, let’s buy you some clothes!”
“Wait, wait, wait. We can’t just spend money on cloth–”
“–We’re gonna use my annual savings,” she pulled out a New Year’s gift bag from behind her desk.
“It’s your money. Please use it for yourself.”
In our household, our father gives 10k yen (TL: around 87 USD) as a New Year’s gift. Though there’s no allowance whatsoever, this gift is all we get the whole year.
“But you spend almost everything on me, big bro. You’re always cutting yourself too thin. And what’s more, Shirayuki-san is the prime candidate for being my sister-in-law, so you have to look good or I’m in trouble!”
“A candidate for being your sister-in-law… I told you this already before, but our relationship isn’t like that at all. So it doesn’t really matter what outfit you choose.”
It seems there’s some kind of strange misunderstanding on her part, so I had to correct her.
“Hah, you’re not being honest… Well then, let’s see. Who was it you were talking about recently? Someone full of energy and a chatterbox?”
“You mean the manager?”
“No, no, no. Not the manager, you big dumbass.”
“Yes! If you use these lame clothes, she will make fun of you, okay?”
“… I’d hate that.”
I don’t know why her provocations always make me lose my cool in a flash.
“Okay then, it’s settled! Let’s put some stylish clothes on you for tomorrow!”
“H-Hey! Wait a minute!”
We then went to a very cheap clothing store in our neighborhood, and she helped me pick my clothes.
And in the present–
You saved my a*s for once, sis…
I breathed a sigh of relief, knowing I had escaped the lifelong humiliation of being ridiculed by that girl, Sakura.
After greeting each other, the three of us went to a POLCO store in front of the station to buy some supplies and equipment for the student council.
“Receipt, please… Yes, address it to the Hakuou Student Council.”
Thanks to Shirayuki’s well-planned route and organized list, we managed to buy everything we needed in just 30 minutes. With nothing else to do, we wandered around the store.
I thought we’d part ways immediately after finishing our duties, but Sakura went and said “We’ve come all this way and have a lot of free time, so let’s go shopping together!
”–Shirayuki-san, look, look! A polar bear figurine! Isn’t it just perfectly sized to put right on the edge of your desk?”
“Oh my, it’s adorable.”
“Oh wait, it’s actually a humidifier! It has a humidification function!”
“It’s so small but so technological… Things are so high-tech these days!”
They shopped while chatting happily.
Well… This is fine.
So far, so good. It’s not my place to interrupt them at all. That’d be too bad of me.
“Ehehe, I was just looking for a humidifier, so I’ll get this one! The pricing is also very good!”
No. I can’t overlook this.
“Hey, wait a minute, you wouldn’t wanna use these ultrasonic humidifiers. They may be cheap and cute, but if you don’t change the water every day, mold will grow inside the tank very quickly, and you’d get throat and respiratory problems. Humidification is a constant thing, and it’s best to have as little cleaning work as possible… Then that leaves us with heated, vaporized, or hybrid systems. I’d recommend the vaporized kind, especially since it was released this yea–”
“O-Oh, you’re a tech geek…”
“G-Geez… Can’t argue with that…”
Since I knew quite a bit about the subject, I recklessly began to overexplain… I was talking alone.
“I see. The ultrasonic method has a high possibility of growing mold, and your recommendation is the vaporized kind… You’re very knowledgeable, Kuzuhara-kun.”
Her answer was, definitively, the best one for me. She listened to my boring rambling about appliances, something that is usually looked down upon by other girls.
You’re… Really nice, Shirayuki…
The angel was kind, even to geeks. That’s why she was so popular…
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