For some reason, I was walking with Kamishiro. The reason was stalking. I’m the victim.
We stopped by the park and shot on the clay basketball court that had been set up.
I hadn’t felt it in a long time. I missed the feel of the ball.
I clench my hand a few times to check it, but it still feels slightly uncomfortable.
“It doesn’t really matter. ……”
I’ve been running and doing strength training as part of my routine, but mindlessly shooting like this has a relaxing effect on my mind and helps me to organize my thoughts in a smart way. Aerobic exercise is amazing.
“Yuki, I’m done with my preparation!”
“I didn’t think you’d actually follow me ……”
“I’ve been looking forward to it!”
Kamishiro is very motivated, but I was in trouble.
Perhaps she is trying to relieve the stress that has built up from her unaccustomed brain work. A big smile on her face.
Sure, we talked about that before, but didn’t that one mean “I’ll go if I can” Of course, it’s the one I don’t go to. In the first place, today, I am simply distracting myself. I wonder if it’s a good idea to make Kamishiro accompany me in that kind of thing. As I was pondering this for a moment, a voice suddenly called out to me.
“Hey, Yukito-kun, it’s been a long time!”
Names were called from the rear. Several people had gathered. All of them were familiar faces to me.
The person I called “Hyakuma-senpai” was not a senior at school. He is a member of a street basketball team that often practices on this court and is currently a college student. I met him when I was in junior high school, practicing outside, and since then we have played together from time to time.
“Did you join the basketball team in high school as well?”
“No, I’m a shady person, so I’m a homecoming member. I haven’t been able to come to the club much since I entered the school.”
“I see, you are busy, aren’t you? Do you have time today? Let’s have fun!”
“Yes, I’d like that.”
“Is that cute little girl over there your girlfriend?”
“G-Girlfriend….that’s not possible….”
“Y-You don’t seem too upset?”
Kamishiro put her hands on her cheeks and shook her head reluctantly.
I don’t know what to say. I can’t afford to be misunderstood. Well, it would be safe to tell him that we were classmates. I thought, but my light mouth slipped out. Stupid, stupid, you fool.
“Kamishiro is a dog.”
“What are you talking about, Yuki?!”
“Such a maniac play at that age …”
“Y-you got it wrong! Yuki forced me to …… do it—–That’s not what I meant–“
“That’s right. Look, Senpai, she doesn’t have a collar on. It’s a stray dog.”
“Why are you adding fuel to the fire!? I come with a pedigree from the Kamishiro family!”
Ain’t that a dog!
“We’re classmates, as a matter of fact.”
“You’re still the same, aren’t you?”
While Hyakuma was holding back his laughter, Kamishiro protested vehemently. I’m sorry.
“Mou! I’m Shiori Kamishiro. I used to play basketball too, and I thought I’d come here today to exercise with Yuki. ……”
“Heeh, I see! What a good opportunity, so why don’t you join us, Kamishiro-san? We often practice on this court. I guess you and Yukito-kun are fellow basketball players.”
“I see. I’m looking forward to working with you!”
“Alright! I am so excited to have a girl. Let’s split into two teams. Let’s keep it light. Yukito-kun and Kamishiro-san, you’re in that team.”
I feel a little uplifted by the fact that I haven’t played against them in a long time. I feel as if I have forgotten these feelings for a long time. This was neither a physical education class nor a club activity. It was a match for the pure purpose of having fun.
This feeling is “fun” I was glad that I still had such feelings.
“I am tired. I’m losing strength. ……”
“Keep your body cool. Yes, slowly stretch and hold for 10 seconds.”
“Ouch, ouch, ouch. You’re so solid in these areas, aren’t you, Yuki?”
“I’ve had so many problems with people. I know how to take care of myself.”
“I was not trying to be dramatic.”
Practicing with the seniors was a nice change of pace. I was sweaty from working hard for about an hour.
After breaking up with the seniors, we did some cool-down stretching on the spot. As we relaxed our muscles, we could feel them gradually relaxing.
“Are you going home like this, Yuki?”
“My body needs sugar. A crepe.”
“Are you going out to eat? I’m going too!”
After waiting for the sweat to subside, we walked downtown for about ten minutes and quickly found the restaurant I wanted to go to. I am hesitant to snack before dinner, but the orexin secreted from my brain forms a separate appetite for something sweet.
I ordered a crepe with chocolate and caramel, topped with bananas and ice cream. As I was biting into it with a smile on my face, for some reason, Kamishiro, who was standing next to me, was blushing.
“Hey, this kind of thing feels like a date, doesn’t it?”
“I don’t want to go on a sweaty date like this.”
Of course, I’ve never been on a date before, so I don’t know what it’s like.
Perhaps there is such a thing as a sweaty date in the world. My poor imagination could not come up with such a thing. It was the limit of my poor imagination. I am also at the age when I worry about sweaty armpits.
We headed home while eating crepes. Kamishiro is moving forward with a slow pace as if she is regretting leaving behind her last breath.
I couldn’t leave her behind, so my pace naturally slowed down as if I was being caught.
“I didn’t know Yuki had that many acquaintances.”
“I’m a loner yet I’m cheeky, aren’t I? Ihihihihihi”
“With a straight face, you don’t look like you’re smiling at all!”
“But, well, not everyone knows everything about the other person.”
“Right ……. But I want to know more about you! I had a lot of fun today.”
Very. It was like we were back in junior high school. I was glad to be with her.
“It’s been a long time since I’ve had fun with you, too.”
The truth spills out. Kamishiro gasps in surprise.
“Then, then, let’s do it again! I’ll be Yuki’s manager!”
Somehow, I knew it was going to come to that. It is understandable that Kamishiro is so obsessed with the idea. But there is no point to it. Such a relationship would only be unfortunate for her.
“Kamishiro, it was my choice to do that. As long as you weren’t hurt, that’s all that matters. I’ve said it many times, you don’t have to worry about it.”
“I don’t care about that. This is just my selfishness. I want to see Yuki playing again. I want to see you running on the court. I want to see Yuki holding the ball and shooting. This is my selfishness.”
“I’ve said it many times, but I have no motivation. I don’t have a goal I want to achieve.”
“Then, if you find it, will you do it?”
“That depends on the time. I am comfortable at home and I am getting used to laziness.”
“Me too, in the past I was always involved in club activities, so it’s liberating.”
“The seniors are annoying to recruit, but I can understand their desire to draw you in.”
I know how much they want to pull her in. There are many people in need. A physique that is well endowed. Athleticism to make the most of it. Athletic talent that would be at the top of any athletic club’s list. Don’t waste your talent by going home.
Above all, many people are saved by her cheerful personality.
–Just like I once was.
“You used to smile a lot more. It doesn’t suit you, your sad face.”
Parting of the ways. Approaching a crossroads. As I was about to take a step forward to get away from the sad look on her face, something bumped into my back.
“I don’t feel guilty! I want to be with you. I love Yuki! Why can’t I be with you then?”
The hand that is placed on my back conveys body heat.
” The confession I made then was not a lie. But it’s different now. I don’t know why I said that. …… My friends made fun of me, I was embarrassed, I was trying to protect myself, I could only see myself. I didn’t understand anything. That falling in love is such a pain–“
“It wasn’t just the injury. Afterwards, too, why didn’t you tell me I was the cause?”
Kamishiro, who has moved away from my back, turns in front of me. She takes my right hand and holds it delicately as if it were a piece of jewelry.
I’m the one who got injured and betrayed the expectations of those around me, and nothing has changed that.
The cause is a trivial detail. There is no need for her to worry about it.
“I am grateful to you for protecting me twice. Because Yuki protected me, I am able to do this now. I feel guilty, too. I want to make up for it. But, but more than that, …… I’m in love with you. That is undeniably my true feelings. Can’t you tell by this?”
“Your heart rate is elevated because you’ve been exercising—“
“I have cooled down. Embrace it.”
Kamishiro’s expression was serious. No room for rebuttal. There is no room for light talk.
Her heart was beating like a fast bell. It is not only the hand. At that moment, I realized for the first time that Kamishiro’s body was also trembling. No idea. What should I do? How can I convince her? I couldn’t find the words to say to Kamishiro, who was much, much closer to me than before.
“You’ve got cream on you.”
“I was wondering when you would notice.”
“Too much bruising.”
“….I just wanted you to wipe it off.”
I gently wipe her cheek with my finger.
“You told me before. Why you started devoting yourself to basketball.”
Simply because I was heartbroken. It was such an easy reason.
“Then, why can’t I be your reason this time?”
“Kamishiro being my motivation?”
“I want you to look at me. Yes. I want to become. I want to be Yuki’s motivation. Because I can’t end it like this. I don’t want it to end.”
The strength in Kamishiro’s hands was strong. It was more powerful than I had expected, and it held a strong will.
I had not thought that I had forgotten about it, but I remembered. Kamishiro is a gymnastic maiden no matter how far she goes.
She should have a place where she belongs.
“My motivation will be, all-you-can-do sexual harassment”
Saying it myrself like a donkey’s *ss. No excuse for being pointed at as an enemy of women. This is enough to make even Kamishiro give up on me. That’s all I can pray for desperately.
She should give up on the idea.
“If that’s what motivates Yuki.”
Please give up on me.
“—-Believe me. I love Yuki. I’m not lying. It’s not atonement. It’s my wish.”
I grieve to the heavens. Why is it that so many things are not going well?
I knew that Kamishiro was suffering. That is why she and I should never have met again.
The Constitution of Japan stipulates that every human being has the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
The best thing for both of us to have done would have been to forget about each other and stay away from each other. Yet, why did it happen?
“Love” is a vague feeling. It is an illusion that will eventually cool down. I can no longer remember how I felt when I loved Suzurikawa Besides, my mother is divorced.
The divorce rate in Japan is said to be around 35%, but that’s nothing compared to the rate for those who marry with a vow of eternal love. Even if you marry someone with a promise of eternal love, that’s just the way it is. Reality is cruel.
“Which would you prefer, Yukito?”
I was being preyed upon. Apparently, she was going to treat me to a cake.
On the way back home, I inadvertently ran into Himiyama, and before I knew it, she was taking me into her house. She smiled at me and asked me to join her, and when I tried to refuse, she gave me a very sad look. As an advocate of “ladies first,” I had no choice.
“The Mont Blanc on that side, please.”
“Fufu. I’ll have the rare cheesecake, then. I am so happy to see you today.”
Himiyama-san’s home had changed since the last time I saw it. The cardboard boxes have been put away and the décor and interior have been completely changed to a more feminine look.
And for some reason, she was sitting next to me again. She sits so that her body is perfectly close to mine. No doubt, she is trying to seduce me! The aroma of the room is slowly weakening my resistance. I can’t …… do anything anymore. ……
The era is social distance. My personal space should be three times larger than that of others, but it didn’t matter to Himiyama-san. Rather, I was in close contact with her thighs and so on. Himiyama-san was completely a three-density woman.
“Eating alone is boring, isn’t it?”
Why was she using a slightly questioning tone? Was it an invitation for me to come and play with you because you were bored? Himiyama-san lacked the awareness that she was a beautiful woman. I had worked up a nice sweat playing basketball with the seniors, but now I was sweating cold sweat.
“Sorry, I know, I smell sweaty. I was exercising a little.”
“Don’t worry about it. Besides, I don’t dislike it. Students are like that.”
She was in a great mood. Does the smell of sweat make you happy? Does she have a fetish for sweat? The situation was getting critical. If I didn’t get out now, I was going to get stuck in a quagmire.
But it’s no good … it’s moving …
Mom is beautiful, but so is Himiyama-san. Even with 8K resolution, there is not a single blemish. She is at the forefront of the times. Beautiful people will always remain beautiful. It’s unfair, isn’t it?
When my mother came to visit my class a long time ago, she was so beautiful that I couldn’t make eye contact with her at all. There were many other parents there, but no matter how I looked at it, she was the most beautiful one. I felt strangely embarrassed. I was so embarrassed that I couldn’t turn around and just looked straight ahead at the blackboard.
Mom was sweet to me. I didn’t want to bother her. She bought me all sorts of things even though it wasn’t my birthday or Christmas. Thanks to her, I have never wanted anything in particular.
“Yukito, would you like to have dinner with me?”
“I-I’m sorry, but unfortunately, I can’t do that. My mother has prepared something for me.”
“I see. Unfortunate. I know, it was sudden, so it can’t be helped. Can I invite you again next time? Will you come then?”
The answer is no. But I am Japanese, so I couldn’t say no in this situation.
Incidentally, my mother has been working from home, which means she spends much more time at home, so she cooks dinner for me. Until then, I had been the main cook, and my cooking skills had been improving rapidly, but I’m sorry to say that I have fewer opportunities to show off my cooking skills these days.
“What’s troubling you, Yukito? You look so troubled.”
“Come to think of it, Himiyama-san, you used to have a fiancée, right?”
“I’m devoted to Yukito now.”
“I dug a grave. …..”
“I’ll bury you.”
“Thank you. I know this is extremely rude and may offend you, but I wanted to ask you what you think about your fiancée now.”
“Ara ara, you care about me?
I wonder what it means to “like” someone. My mother is divorced.”
“Is there someone you like? Or did she confess her love to you? Wait a minute.”
Himiyama-san walked from the living room to the bedroom. The door closes, and after about five minutes with a rustling sound, Himiyama-san comes out. I involuntarily choke on my Mont Blanc.
“How do you like it? I’m so old and embarrassed.”
“W-Why are you playing such trick……?”
“By your reaction, it seems that you’re ‘not ready’ yet.”
Himiyama-san came out of his bedroom wearing clothes that would kill me. No matter how patient my mentality is, like the agave that blooms only once every sixty years, there is a limit.
“Funn. I secretly bought it. Does it look good on me?”
“I-it looks good on you. It’s so good on you. It has almost collapse my reasoning.”
“Are you going to collapse?”
She whispers in my ear. Like a rock being mined by a boring machine, the mental barriers are being chipped away. Uoooooooooo banishing evil spirits. Dispel evil spirits! It was the vexation that was to be dispersed.
“I’m sorry, please let me go, please!”
I had no choice but to beg with a lowered head. My veins were dying out.
“Well, are you feeling better?”
“I’ll refrain from commenting.”
I look down. No. No matter what I do, it will only be a comment on the bottom of my voice.
“I used to like you. But there were things I couldn’t control, things I couldn’t fill with just liking him. We had to break up. That’s all.”
“Did the feelings ever go away?”
“I guess I gave up on it. So, apart from feelings, there is nothing left but the fact that I used to like him. I think that’s the way it is.”
“I don’t think I understand.”
“There are some feelings that will always remain with you. The feelings of hurting someone do not go away.”
Himiyama-san patted me on the head. Her eyes were somewhat compassionate, yet sad at the same time. I don’t know Himiyama-san well enough to ask her what it was.
“I don’t think you have to think too hard about it. At least while you are a student, I think you are allowed to do so. No one will judge you if you freely put your feelings first.”
“I wonder if there is something like that in me. ……”
Himiyama-san sees me off with regret on my way home. I’m sure she’s a good person, but the distance between us is so broken. She definitely likes me, doesn’t she? I should say to myself, “It’s hard being a popular guy,” but I was the one who had never had a girlfriend in my life.
My son was a little late getting home. He told me that he was visiting Himiyama at her home. Apparently, he was invited. It seems like nothing more than a friendly neighborhood encounter, but I feel it is something more than that. He has bad luck with women. He is unstable and has some kind of danger. It was my fault.
I can’t regret it enough. A child’s character is formed in childhood. I wonder how much love I had given them at that time. When I realized it, it was too late. I was naive because he was my second child.
“I’m sorry. It’s late tonight, so I’ll talk to you tomorrow.”
He was trying to tell me something. He was desperately trying to spell out the words.
“I’m going to be late today, so will you eat dinner with your sister first?”
The fact that I was busy with work and it was an important time for me to get back on track was just an excuse. As I kept repeating such things, I realized that he had stopped talking to me about anything. I even foolishly mistook it for growth.
And part of it was that she was taking advantage of Yuri’s role as his big sister. Mothers and sisters have different roles. I had forgotten that I could never take her place. Yuri was still a child. As a result, Yuri reached her limit and overflowed.
And then the incident happened. After that, Yukito was like a different person. Something was missing. Since then, I began to feel insecure about my ability to treat him properly. I don’t feel that any of my feelings or words are being conveyed correctly to my son. I feel as if his eyes are rejecting me.
On birthdays and Christmas, children usually beg their parents to give them something they want. Yuri also used to say that she wanted something. However, Yukito has never asked me for anything. He even forgot his own birthday. He had no interest in himself. He despises himself. He feels he is not needed.
I was afraid of that, so I bought him things that he seemed to want at any given moment.
But what I really should have done was not that. I knew that.
When I went to visit the class, I froze. While the other kids turned their backs in embarrassment and looked at their mothers as they conversed, Yukito did not give me a second glance, but only looked ahead. No conversation took place until I spoke to him. Perhaps he thought that I was not there anyway.
My sister Sekka was furious with me for being such a bad influence, and she angrily told me that she would take my son away from me. We had an argument, but Sekka’s argument was the most plausible, and I could not refute the fact that I had neglected child-rearing and had not given him enough love. And the child had to live under the care of Sekka for a month. Since then, Sekka has been very concerned about Yukito. Or perhaps she cares too much. Anyway, she is always attached to him and loves him like a cat. Her eyes are also dangerous.
I can’t help but feel that Himiyama-san is just like my sister. It may be too late. But still, I must face my son properly once again. Since I now work from home, I have much more time to spend with my son. I cannot waste this opportunity. No matter how late it is, no matter how much I can no longer communicate with him, as his mother, I cannot pass up the chance to give him my love. No matter how late it may be.
I feel a strange rivalry with Himiyama-san. I am his mother. That is the one thing I will not compromise. A sense of frustration and possessiveness wells up in my heart.
“Why don’t we take a bath together once in a while?”
While my son is bathing, I intrude to wash his back. When was the last time we took a bath together like this? I wash his head. I wash his back. Aah, I can’t believe that just by doing that, I can feel so much love for him—
“My resting place is not even at home!?”
Ara, what’s wrong? My son’s scream echoed in the bathroom.