Translated and Edited by: ynlucca.
Sakura shares a neuron with a goldfish.
“A psychological test…?”
“Oh, could it be you’ve never done one before, Shirayuki-san?”
“Yes, I’ve only heard a little about it. Due to my family’s strict educational policy, we weren’t allowed to touch such games.”
“I see, so this is your first time! Then, by all means, let’s do this together! A psychological test is a fun game where, by answering a few questions, you can decipher the inner psyche of the other players. I’m sure that by playing this we’ll be able to know each other more!” Sakura skipped happily while explaining.
“So, a deep dive into the other players’ inner psyche, huh… Sounds interesting,” For some reason, she shot a glance at me and expressed her approval.
“Come on, come on! Kuzuhara-kun, hurry and come over here!” Sakura urged me to go while tapping on the visitor’s couch, however—
“—Sorry, I’ll pass.”
“Psychological tests are just made for entertainment, and they work via the Barnum effect. That means they use vague expressions that apply to almost everyone, with the objective of giving the reader a sense of satisfaction.”
I don’t believe in fortune-telling, astrology, or pseudo-psychology at all. Four years ago, for example, I had my ‘best year’ in terms of fortune. That result also came up with tarot cards, divination, astrology, family name-based forecast, the whole shebang.
That same year, our family business filed for bankruptcy, my parents went through a divorce, and we began living in extreme poverty. Yui also suffered from a 40ºC fever in that time span… Oh, and did I mention my dad got hit by a garbage truck? Thankfully, he’s fine now, but still…
Anyhow, that year was supposed to be the best year of my life, but it turned out to be the worst year of my life.
I stopped believing in any of those things after what I’ve gone through.
“Good grief, Kuzuhara-kun… You’re still as cynical as always. While it’s true many of these ready-made products on the market do raise some eyebrows, this one is special! It’s real, for sure! After all, it’s ‘The Only Psychological Test in the World’, written by my great-grandmother!”
“Your great-grandma… Did she do some kind of psychological study?”
“Nope. My great-grandmother was a venerable princess, wait… She was a treasure hunter—no, that was my grandpa… Oh, I remember! She was a Miko, a priestess with immense spiritual power!”
Her story was outrageous and too outlandish to be true.
“Shirayuki, is that true?”
“Yes. Sakura-san’s family is full of eccentric people,” Sakura nodded bitterly to my question.
I could actually see that being true. This realization downs on me—Certainly, such colorful people could only come from her family, after all.
“Anyway, this psychological test is 100% real! If you try one question, you’ll see how great it is. Let’s do it together, Kuzuhara-kun!” She said while shaking my shoulder.
“Okay, okay, okay… If you manage to get one question right, I’ll go all in.”
Which is harder? Participating in her little game, or convince the rare creature that she is? — You don’t need to answer, it’s a no-brainer.
“Yay~!” She bounced happily, her cowlick also doing the same.
Tugging my hand, she moved me to the visitor’s couch.
“Heh, don’t lie to me, okay? Answer seriously, you got it? Don’t overthink it either, just answer what comes to your mind first.”
“Well then, let’s go! — ‘One holiday, you went to the zoo by yourself. The crowd was so crammed, you moved to a less populated area. What was the first animal you saw?’”
“I see, I see… Let’s see what you got,” she said, reading the results of her diagnosis. “So, how’s this — ‘If you thought of a black hippopotamus, you are a very rigid person. If you were more honest, life would be easier for you.’”
Silence befell the room for a moment.
“Oh. My. God! It’s perfect!” Sakura happily clasped her hands together.
“You’re certainly right,” Shirayuki nodded, interested.
Well, I guess you could say it’s not too far off the mark. It’s probably just a coincidence, but in this particular case, I could say it’s a reasonable answer.
“So, Kuzuhara-kun, you’re going to do a psychological test with me, okay?”
“Fine. A promise is a promise.”
While I don’t believe in these kinds of tests, I’m not that reluctant in participating.
I can’t exactly say Shirayuki, Sakura, and I know each other very well, so it’s important to deepen mutual understanding in order to ensure smooth coordination of the student council going forward.
Aside from Sakura, the one who came up with this game, Shirayuki is more into it than I thought…
In any case, this game could turn out to be useful.
“Cough, Before I go any further, let me just state I have not read any of the questions beforehand. I usually tell itty bitty fun lies, but trust me, this time is for real!”
Sakura then skimmed through the magazine pages like a flipbook animation.
“—There we go!” She pointed her thumb at a random page. “Well, let’s go? — ‘You’re running on a road on the dead of night. There’s an unidentifiable dark figure creeping up behind you. So, who’s running away with you while holding your hand?’”
I don’t think too much about it, so I just follow my gut to figure out the answer.
… It’s Shirayuki.
I could swear Shirayuki’s gaze met mine for a moment.
“So, have you decided?”
“More or less.”
“Then, let’s follow this order: Kuzuhara-kun, then Shirayuki, then me! Stop thinking and follow the drums! Kuzuhara-kun, go on!”
As I was about to say it, I felt a jolt of electricity course through my brain.
Wait, will this be okay with Shirayuki…?
What I’m looking for with this little experiment is a better understanding between the members of the student council, but what if the answer to this question is either ‘you like this person’ or ‘you dislike this person’?
Instead of making us three get along, it would just make things awkward.
So, while it may be against the purpose of the test, it’s better to avoid giving one of us three as the answer to any question.
“It’s… My sister came to mind.”
“It’s… My head butler, Tanaka,” Shirayuki’s eyebrows twitched when she said that.
“This hesitation in both your voices is kinda weird, but… Meh, it’s fine. By the way, for me, it’s my dog, Lauren.”
… You’re running while holding your dog’s hand?
Moving past that, once we all gave our answers, Sakura flipped the page, and the answer was—
‘The one running away with you hand-in-hand is the one you love.’
I gasped with the sudden reveal, eyes wide.
T-That was dangerous… This is one hell of a landmine…
This is the kind of thing that dampens the atmosphere even more than if the answer would be ‘person you dislike’.
For what it’s worth…
I shot a quick glance at Shirayuki, and our gazes met for nanoseconds—again.
The first time it happened, I could swear I was imagining things, but now I’m sure I wasn’t.
Could it be Shirayuki likes m—
—No. No way.
It’s Shirayuki I’m talking about here, and I’m just me.
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