“Don’t give up! Don’t give up, hot-blooded senpai! Is that good enough for you? Didn’t I say you’d confess to her? You said you wanted to show her your good side, didn’t you? Are you lying? Did you have such half-hearted feelings!”
“Haa…… haa…… Kokonoe, go easy on me a little……”
“Stop making excuses! You’re going to tell her, right? What the hell did you come all this way for? Imagine that! You can’t make her like you by making you look so pathetic! Are you sure you want to do this? Another guy is going to take her away from you. Do you want to see Takamiya in another man’s arms?”
“That’s right, give it your all right from the start! Nobody’s ever died from trying!”
“I love you, Suzune!”
Today, I, Yukito Kokonoe, the instructor of the basketball club, continue my hard work.
Physical fitness is the most important thing in basketball. In order to win, one must have the skill, but also the physical strength to be able to move at full capacity for a total of 50 minutes, including the 40 minutes of the four periods and half time.
To be able to handle that amount of exercise, the team needed to start with a basic fitness program such as running, but the Senpais were soft.
There was no way we could win with them. But isn’t it strange that first-year students are shoving third-year students around?
What the hell is going on in this club? The Copernicus in me is turning.
“The only one who seems to be okay is Kouki. It looks like Ito won’t make it.”
“Are they already throwing the towel in the ring?”
“All right, after 5 laps let’s have a match.”
“Oi, don’t be so casual about it!”
“So stop laughing with a straight face, you’re scaring me!?”
I run out of the building as if I were flying ahead of the others. The basketball team is now running around the perimeter of the school building. It’s part of the physical fitness menu, but I’m the one who decides what the basketball team practices. It was unanimous. I don’t understand.
Originally, the school did not put much effort into the weak basketball team, and the advisor, Andou-sensei, was not a specialist in the field, so the whole thing was thrown to me.
I was in a position of power.
“Toshiro, you idiot!”
Yuki was stirring up the seniors to get them excited. Next to me, Suzune Takamiya, a senior who was the love of his life, was cheering for him with a red face. She seemed to have come to observe.
“Come now, Toshiro! Don’t be embarrassed to lose to a first-year student!”
Her mouth naturally broke into a smile. It was unimaginable just a short time ago.
Everything was moving in a slightly better direction, or so I thought.
That is why I have a past that I want to clear up.
Another stain that remained in my chest.
The environment surrounding Yuki is harsh. The price he paid for sacrificing himself to protect me was too great.
That’s why I, us. I can’t just be saved by him forever.
“I have to face …… too.”
“Thank you for coming, Suzurikawa-san.”
“What, something wrong? It’s about Yukito, isn’t it?”
The next day. I called Suzurikawa-san into an empty classroom.
It was a very important story for me, but it was a story that Suzurikawa-san had never heard before, and by telling her, I was sure I would cause her distress again. Even so, I wanted to tell her.
This is the first time we have had a serious conversation together like this.
We are rivals ……, or rather, we probably don’t like each other very much.
But that didn’t matter now. I handed the box in my hand to Suzurikawa-san
Inside was a beautiful amber brooch. It was my treasure, and I had kept it with great care. But I have never worn it. Even though I wanted to put it on, my emotions would not allow me to do so.
I gently patted the watch. This was also because Yuki had pushed me to do so.
“It is beautiful. But what about this?”
“Yuki gave me this.”
“……I see. Are you bragging about it?”
“No! This was actually supposed to be yours.”
“What do you mean?”
Suzurikawa-san tilts her head in doubt. Of course she would.
She does not know what this is. But the truth is that she is the owner of this brooch. I have it. I told Yuki I wanted it.
So he gave it to me. But I’m not the real owner.
This was two years ago. When Yuki confessed her feelings to Suzurikawa-san, he was supposed to give it to her.
“This is ……”
The brooch given to me by Kamishiro. I never thought there was anything left.
I heard from Ouka-san, Yukito’s mother. She said that after his confession, he threw everything away. Memories, feelings, thoughts. He got rid of everything related to me.
I remember breaking down in tears when I heard that. I was so stupid that I was in a state of excitement. I thought that if I left Senpai, we would be together soon. If I had pursued him then, even forcefully, none of this would have happened. My fate after that would have been different. In the end, it was heaven’s punishment.
I was just a fool and got what I deserved. When I realized it, it was too late and there was nothing I could do about it.
I recall two years ago with loathing. I remember that day and what Hiori said to me.
–I would never have made Onii-chan sad.
Yes, she is innocent and honest, and unlike me, she would never make the wrong choice.
Hiori can make him happy. Hiori can do it.
They would be the ideal couple who would be blessed by everyone.
Hiori was longing for it. No, it is the same for me. I know that there is indeed such a beautiful dream story that everyone envies, in which two young children who have been in love with each other since childhood are united.
When Hiori found out that I was going out with Senpai, we got into a fight.
Rumors started circulating that we had sex, and Hiori got mad at me for repeating incoherent and unintelligible excuses, and we didn’t speak to each other for a week.
My mom and dad also took me apart and asked me if I was on birth control.
I was miserable. I wanted to disappear right now.
My mom and dad know that I love Yukito. He used to come over to our house a lot. These days, he doesn’t come to our house much anymore, but Mom and Dad love him.
He was like family, and I had no doubt that we would be together.
I had a big fight with Hiori until recently. Since then, Hiori has become harsh towards me. When I first heard about her feelings for him, I was astonished.
She had been supporting me by keeping her first love to herself, but I had trampled on her feelings. I had no say in the matter, and I had no right to say so, even though my sister put my love before her own.
Even so, Hiori made a move to help me. She is a sister who is too good for me.
“Kamishiro-san, I’m not qualified to have it. If you received it, it’s yours.”
Shiori Kamishiro. When she called me up, I wondered what kind of story she was going to tell me, but the content was unexpected. The brooch in her hand. Was it the one that Yukito was going to give to me at that time?
But I was the one who rejected him. I had no right to receive it.
“Is that all right with you, Suzurikawa-san? Yuki wanted you to have this…….”
“Yes. I can’t take it from you, I rejected him once. Besides, he gave it to you because he thought you deserved it.”
“Is that so……”
“It’s my fault that I didn’t get it. But that is why I will never make a mistake again. I will not lie about my feelings. I will make Yukito turn his head.”
That was determination. For nearly two years, I had been walking in the dark, unable to see the way out. I wandered around in a tunnel, in a hell with no way out. But I kept walking because there was something I could not give up.
I could not compromise even with Hiori. It was because there were words I wanted to tell him again.
Kamishiro-san’s eyes widened. Perhaps she could sense my feelings as well.
“I won’t lose either!”
“You are my rival.”
“Haha, I think I have too many rivals. You know, Suzurikawa-san, would you be my friend if you like?”
“Are you okay with that? I’m not going to give up on Yukito”
“It’s not just about Yuki, I want to be friends with Suzurikawa-san!”
The friendly and heavenly smile. The original Kamishiro’s charm is overflowing.
It’s a far cry from the way she was when she first entered the school. The reason for this is that the presence of Yukito is so significant to her that it clouds her vision.
“Fine by me. From now on, let’s fight fair and square as rivals in love.”
As a friend. If Yukito chooses her, will I be able to honestly congratulate her?
I don’t think so. My priority would be none other than Yukito. That’s the only reason I’ve lived my life from that day. But it’s the same for Kamishiro-san.
Come to think of it, I have neglected the idea of friendship since then.
I had no time to worry about such things. I was so absorbed in my life that I didn’t look around me.
Because there wasn’t a single day that I enjoyed. But maybe now I need to broaden my horizons just a little bit more. So that I don’t lose him again.
I grasped the hand that Kamishiro-san held out to me.
I see. For the first time since that day, I have a friend.
Sunday. A little earlier than the appointed time, Sakurai and the others had gathered in front of the station.
The members of the group were all different, and there was a wide range of faces, both male and female.
In Class B, the school caste had collapsed early on, and the group consciousness had become diluted. Of course, it was because of that man.
Many of them were taken care of in the test. For example, Akanuma and the others in the Otaku group became good friends while Yukito was working on the 1/8 Yuuri-san figure (Archangel Ver 6 wings), a vessel of faith, as a gift to his sister in return for her help with past questions.
All the others are involved in some way, large or small.
On the surface, it was the launch of a test, but the original purpose was something else.
The “Let’s cheer up Yukito Kokonoe” meeting. The initiators were Sakurai and Mihou, but the fact that so many of their classmates had gathered showed the popularity of the Yukito Kokonoe.
Although he seems to be completely unconcerned about it, the environment in which he is currently placed is by no means a good one. Deep down inside, he must be hurting.
Sakurai and the others found out what was going on when Hinagi Suzurikawa, revealed it to them. What were they trying to protect and why? It was too painful a choice.
They also understood that it was because they had easily relied on Yukito Kokonoe. They did nothing, they forced him to solve the problem, and he was left to bear the consequences alone. He did not hold a grudge against anyone, nor blame anyone.
Yukito Kokonoe protected many, but he did not save himself. He sacrificed himself alone.
It was them who made him do so. They pushed him into a corner. Feeling unbearably frustrated by that.
This opportunity was a godsend for everyone who shared these feelings.
“Miki-chan, are your bangs okay?”
“Yes, yes, they’re cute and adorable. I’m starting to get nervous too.”
“What’s with this subtle weirdness in the air ……?”
“Because ……you know?”
Mihou and Takahashi with a bitter smile. Ito is also there. Since Suzurikawa and Kamishiro are also present, they form a very conspicuous and glamorous group, but there is a sense of tension in the air.
Despite expectations, the air was tense. It is no wonder. Today, Yukito Kokonoe had decided to take the invitation and go out together with them. That was a big deal.
“Kokonoe-chan, is he really coming? I can’t believe it, or rather, I can’t really feel it, but how is Kokonoe-chan normally?”
“Even if you ask me that,…… I think Yuki is being normal…..”
“If it’s the same as normal, does that mean we’re going to make it out of here alive today?”
“Is Kokonoe-kun a natural disaster or something?!”
The man who keeps causing disturbances in the ordinary life, Yukito Kokonoe, is now the most famous student in the school. In both good and bad ways. Even when it comes to playing together, one never knows what will happen.
“I wonder what kind of fashion he wears?”
“I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s wearing camouflage.”
“On the other hand, is there any chance he’ll be extremely fashionable?”
“I guess so. But we can’t rule out the possibility that he wears strange T-shirts or something like that.”
“Yuri-san is beautiful and looks like she has good taste……”
The group was still waiting and waiting, when suddenly, Mihou’s phone rang.
“Huh? Yukito–What’s up?”
The chatter stopped immediately. Everyone was listening.
“Haa!? What are you saying…….Aah. And. Are you okay with that? Are you injured? Police!? Are you serious… And? ”
“All I hear are disturbing words…….”
“What did you do, Kokonoe-chan?”
Mihou hangs up the phone. He had a mysterious look on his face. Mihou pondered for a moment what to tell them, but in the end he decided to tell them straight away.
“I’m sorry, but Yukito can’t come.”
“What’s the trouble?”
“He was hit by a college student who was riding a bicycle with headphones on and a phone in one hand. The police are there and they are checking the scene.”
“Is Yuki going to be okay?”
Kamishiro rushed to the scene. Mihou reassured the worried group.
“Yeah, he’s fine. He’s not badly hurt. The police have told Yukito file a damage report, and they’re also talking to the college girl.”
“I’m glad there are no injuries…….”
The awkward atmosphere prevails.
“Uhm, is that really the case? It’s not because he doesn’t want to play with us, is it?”
This is something that everyone in the room has been feeling for some time now.
It’s as if they forced ourselves to prepare this place today. They may have cared too much. Concerns grow as to whether they have made him feel like a burden.
It’s too big an excuse, but whatever he does, Yukito Kokonoe is important to them. Either way, as long as the Yukito Kokonoe doesn’t show up, they can only speculate.
“Surely he wouldn’t be the kind of person who would lie about something like this.”
“Yukito wouldn’t lie.”
“You’re right, I’m sorry!”
“While Mineda was apologizing, Mihou’s phone once again received a call from Yukito
“What is it this time? ……Yukito called. He wants everyone to have fun.”
“Have fun, …… even if it’s said in this atmosphere.”
“Is he always doing this on his days off?”
“It’s not his choice. It’s just his nature.”
“What kind of days has he been having ……”
“I want to ask, but I’m too afraid to.”
The air was heavy with gloom.
“Can’t be helped! It’s a good opportunity, so let’s switch it up and play!”
It is unfortunate that the main character is not with them, but there is one thing everyone has decided to do.
That is to never isolate him and never let him be alone.
Suzurikawa and Kamishiro had a strong feeling, a feeling akin to a sense of mission, that this time they would protect him.
In fact, he had no way of knowing that this was the exact opposite of what Yukito Kokonoe had in mind.
“Yes, that’s right. I’ll ask him about the details at school. Well then, let’s get going.”
“I was looking forward to it.”
“Hihihi …… still mysterious life ……. Hihihi. Mysterious.”
“Eh, Shakado, when were you here?!”
The group begins to walk around. Incidentally, Mineda and the others’ concerns were quickly put to rest.
The bicycle accident involving Yukito Kokonoe was reported on the evening and night news that day, and in the newspaper the next day.
By the end of the week, the school was alerted of the situation.