Wakaba could not speak.
She could not even look at Daiki’s face.
She kept looking down and could not speak to him.
It was because she thought that he saw her arm being pulled by Ren.
Chika and Ren talked a little, but Wakaba could not talk to him.
She did not even talk to him.
She didn’t know how she felt about Daiki.
She was shocked that he did not speak to her.
She almost cried.
Wakaba was beginning to realize her own feelings, but she was forcing herself to keep a lid on her feelings.
Daiki and Wakaba are similar to each other.
Shion noticed something was wrong with Daiki as soon as he returned from his break.
“Daiki, are you okay?”
When asked, he would smile and say he was fine.
To Shion, he didn’t look okay, but if Daiki said so, there was nothing she could do.
The festival was in the middle of the day, so Daiki went back to his work.
He was worried, but decided to wait and see for now.
Wakaba did not feel happy about the festival after that.
Ren and Chika also noticed her condition.
“Are you okay? Wakaba?”
Chika and Ren asked worriedly.
Wakaba also felt bad.
“I’m feeling a little sick.
I’ll be fine after a little rest!”
she told them.
“We’ve already had a good time today, so let’s tell everyone and go home first”
“I’m sorry, I’ll go home alone.”
“I can’t let you go home alone.
I will take you home, so Shiraishi, go join the others and have fun until the end.”
Chika told him to leave first.
On the way home, Chika was concerned about Wakaba from start to finish, but all Wakaba could do now was to return the conversation.
When she finally reached home, she said
“I’m sorry about today.
I still had some time left, but I had to go home.
I’m sure things will get better after some rest.”
Wakaba told her.
“Is everything really alright?
Take a good rest and call me as soon as you feel better, okay?”
Chika told Wakaba and left.
Wakaba entered the house and sat down without even taking off her shoes.
“I’ve put Ren-kun and Chika to a lot of trouble…
What am I doing…”
She was depressed.
Thinking about Daiki
What’s wrong with me…”
She looked up and talked to herself as if she was talking to Daiki.
Wakaba had finally begun to realize her feelings for Daiki, but her feelings for him were completely different from hers.
On the morning of the festival, Daiki had a bad premonition.
He didn’t know what it was, but he felt as if something bad was going to happen.
He did not feel better when he was on his way to school.
When he arrived at the school, Daiki was getting ready with his classmates.
Shion and the other students changed into cute costumes, and all the boys were excited.
Shion was especially popular and was surrounded by everyone.
Shion came to Daiki and asked,
“How do you like this outfit?”
Daiki said honestly,
“It looks great on you!
It fits Shion perfectly!”
Shion looked happy when he told her.
Talking with Shion was strangely soothing.
He felt like he could enjoy the festival.
While preparing for the festival, they checked the time for breaks and waited for the festival to start.
Finally, the festival was about to begin.
Daiki’s class was in a classroom, and since it was a café-style takoyaki restaurant, no one came right away, but as time went by, it became busier and busier.
By the time lunchtime came, the seats were full and everyone was working together to cook takoyaki and serve drinks.
Local friends also showed up from time to time.
Wakaba and Shiraishi were still nowhere to be seen.
Daiki was a little relieved.
When things finally calmed down, Daiki decided to take a break.
He hurried out of the classroom and looked around the other classrooms.
He was enjoying the festival while checking his surroundings so as not to run into Wakaba and the others.
The end of the break time was approaching and it was time to go back to the classrooms.
Daiki was caught off guard.
He was enjoying the festival, but he also thought that he would not have to see Wakaba and Shiraishi.
Shion called him to tell him that recess was over, and as he was heading back to the classroom.
They walked down the hallway talking and Daiki headed for his classroom.
When they reached the end of the hallway, Shion told him she was going to take a break and walked away from him.
He was just thinking how nice of her to come all the way here with him when he was approached by a voice.
Chika called out to him.
Daiki’s movement stopped.
Behind him, Wakaba came walking with her arm pulled by Shiraishi.
Daiki’s chest became painful at once.
Daiki desperately endured the pain in his chest, trying to keep it normal.
“Daiki, where have you been?
I have been looking for you.”
Daiki managed to keep his composure as Chika said to him.
“I was just taking a break.
Did everyone come separately?
Where is everybody?”
He told them.
“We were separated from everyone else on the way.”
Ren joined the conversation.
Daiki could only reply.
He was still holding Wakaba’s arm.
Daiki could no longer bear the sight of Wakaba.
“I’m sorry, it’s time for me to go.
And he went into the classroom as if to escape.
After that, it was hard for him to concentrate on his work, and he caused trouble for everyone in the class.
Everyone was worried about him, but all he could say was that he was fine.
The festival somehow came to an end.
Everyone went to the party and made a lot of noise.
Shion was next to him all the time.
Somehow Shion seemed to be aware of how Daiki was doing.
Having Shion nearby made him feel at ease.
However, he suddenly remembered.
To forget what he saw today, he made more noise than usual.
Shion joined the launch with him, but she was worried that Daiki seemed to be acting more cheerful than usual, so she decided to stay next to him and keep an eye on him as much as possible.
But thinking that he would be back to normal tomorrow, she decided not to worry about it for today.
All the time in his mind, Daiki could see Shiraishi holding Wakaba’s arm.
After the launch was over, Daiki remembered his father’s words as he walked alone.
“Don’t realize it until you regret it…”
And he had always regretted what he had done.
Whenever he saw people holding hands, he felt pain in his heart.
“I had decided to support Wakaba…
I’m so pathetic…”
He lamented to himself.
If he could have shed even a single tear, he might have felt better.
Daiki could not cry even now.
The days after that became depressing, but he tried to act more cheerful than usual so that everyone would not worry about him.
Shion was always concerned about Daiki.
Daiki was also aware of this, so he was conscious of not worrying Shion as much as possible.
However, before he knew it, he could no longer put on any face other than a smile, as if a smile had stuck to his face.
More than before, he could no longer express his feelings outwardly.