Translated and Edited by: ynlucca.
-san: A polite suffix, but not excessively formal.
-kun: A common suffix among friends and younger people.
-chan: A common suffix among people you’re close with, mostly used for feminine nicknames and girls, since it’s cutesy and childlike.
-senpai: A common suffix and noun used to address or refer to one’s older or more senior colleagues in a school, workplace, dojo, or sports club.
Vastly different from the deep sea environment we were in before, the next thing we saw was a large, vaulted space. Right in the center of it was a large circular pool with tiered seating surrounding it.
“Oh, I think we can see a dolphin show right here!” Yui brimmed with excitement.
“Sounds interesting, for sure. Ah, looks like one will start soon, let’s watch it!”
“It’s my first time seeing one, can’t wait!”
“Same for me. Hmm, I wonder if it’s best we sit in front?”
I can kinda remember going to the aquarium with my family in the past, but this would be the first time I experience a show in such a grand setting. Honestly, it’d be nice to get a bird’s eye view from the upper seats, but it’d also be nice to feel the power from the lower ones.
“I don’t know if I wanna sit closer or further away.”
“Well, I’d love to see the dolphins up close. Maybe they’ll see us, too!”
“Then let’s sit in front.”
There’s a large warning sign that said we’d get splashed with water, but it wouldn’t be enough to get soaking wet. Since this was also her first time, we were both awash with excitement
The seats around us gradually started to fill up and the show was about to start. However, there were far fewer spectators sitting in front like we were. Could it be…
While I humored a thought, a loud voice reverberated through the stadium.
“Hello~! The dolphin show will be starting shortly!”
A woman in a black wetsuit with yellow lines appeared and walked to the diving board of the pool. Seems the performance was finally about to begin. I take a quick sidelong peek to see Yui looking at that lady with her eyes sparkling uncontrollably.
“That lady is so coool! I wanna do a dolphin show too!”
“You get along well with animals, Yui, so I think you might be a swell fit.”
I picture her smiling as she rides a dolphin through the waves. Yup, there it is, a nice image.
“Well, let me first introduce you to the dolphins!” The lady said, calling out the names of each dolphin one by one. They, in turn, swam up as if in response, then glided cutely along the surface of the water, squeaking and squealing in joy.
“So cute~!” Yui also squealed.
“It’s nice to see them communicating, ay?”
Dogs and cats are no different. It’s nice to know people can understand their pets’ emotions, even if they can’t directly communicate using words.
“Now, I’ll swim with them!”
How would she swim with them? I mean, it’s impossible for a mere human to swim alongside dolphins. Would they slow down or something?
While I thought of how it’d work, the lady who just jumped in the water suddenly arose from the surface, then reached great heights. Looking closely, I saw the dolphin had lifted her up by its nose.
“So cool!” Yui shouted along with the crowd.
“That’s amazing!” I couldn’t help but do it too.
We both had no vocabulary to explain what we were feeling, and all we could do was exclaim excitement. The lifted-up lady was still moving above the surface along with the dolphin which, and I know it’s a terrible way to put it, looks like a centaur.
“Now it’s time for the main performance! Watch the dolphins dance along with the water curtain!”
With that call, water fell from the ceiling in small increments, all while forming a circular pattern that draped over the pool. It was literally a curtain made of water. The dolphins then soared high into the air from the pool, dancing as if they had grown wings.
“Wow…!” Meanwhile, Yui was just like a cute child brimming with passion and excitement. I wonder if I’ll feel like this when I become a father.
“Did you like it? At last, the dolphins will say goodbye to everyone who watched them play!”
“Does ‘saying goodbye’ mean they’ll swim like when they were called by name?”
“Hmm, I wonder…”
By the way, nothing flew this way, as if the splashing warning was a lie. Even so, they wouldn’t just write something just in case, which means…
The dolphins then approached the edge of the pool, lifting up their upper bodies out of the water.
“Hmm? What’s wrong?”
“I think we’re gonna—”
Before I could finish my warning, the dolphins hit the surface of the water, causing it to jump out of the large pool as if they had a life of their own. A large mass had caused the splash, and we were right in front of them, so…
The next thing I knew, we were both soaking wet from head to toe.
“Oh my, I think you ended up splashing that couple over there! That’s bad, Ren-kun. Well, that’s all for now! The next performance will be at 7 PM!”
‘Oh my’ my a*s! …Nevermind. In hindsight, it’s completely my fault for not paying attention.
“Yui-chan, are you okay?”
She was less affected than I was by the splash, but she still had water all over her body. Even her beautiful blue hair had taken a darker color due to the moisture. I was worried she might’ve been startled by the suddenness of the situation, so I called out to her.
“…Ahaha! We’re both sopping wet!”
Seems she loved it. While she laughed, I got a towel from a staff member and handed it to Yui. “Here you go. Take the bath towel.”
“Thanks! By the way, that was an amazing show!”
“The end was amazing in a different way though.”
While placing the towel on her head to soak up the water, she grinned ear-to-ear while talking about her impressions. Overall, I think we had a blast, even including the bath at the end. Well, I’m worried she might catch a cold, but she’ll get dry in no time once we get out of here.
After wiping ourselves off, we returned our towels and headed for the souvenir corner. As if in response to our chirpy mood post-show, there were stuffed fish plushies of all sizes and colors, as well as sweets.
“Yuta, look at this! It’s a stuffed moray eel, oh, look! It’s got an arm in its mouth!”
“Oh… How should I put it, that’s wild.”
The image of her being swallowed by a moray eel up to her right shoulder was surreal in and on itself. Maybe the eel is the type that’ll corner you up with tremendous power if you fight it.
“Ah, isn’t this one cute? It’s a dolphin pen stand,” I point to the next item.
“I know, right? It’d look so cute on my desk!”
The dolphin was in the same position as the one in the show when it soared up into the sky. A hole was drilled in the rippling water so that a pen could be held.
“Yui-chan, do you like this?”
“Yup! I’ll buy it!”
“Then, wait a sec.”
I picked up the stand, which stared into my soul with its serious eyes, and headed to the checkout. Would they laugh at me for giving a pen stand of all things as a gift to a high school girl? Unfortunately, the only other candidate was a stuffed moray eel, so I think this one is a bit better, at least.
After paying for it, I returned to Yui only to receive a pouting from her.
“Okay, so this would look great if you could put it on your desk.”
“…Is it okay?”
Her curious eyes switched from the present to me, then to the present… Oh, would you rather have the moray eel? Women’s hearts are too hard to understand, man.
“Oh, if you don’t want it, I’ll get a refund—”
“I’ll take it! I’m happy you got it for me, and I’ll take good care of it, okay?!”
“Nah, just use it.”
“Got it. I’ll treasure it!”
I handed over the parcel in my hand while lightly karate-chopping her head since she suddenly got too energetic.
“…Ehehe, I’m so happy…”
This isn’t a bashful blush, but rather a tinge of red reminiscent of affection. She clutched the gift to her chest with utmost care and a mother’s smile on her face. I’m glad… I thought I made the wrong choice, but it seems she liked it.
“Now, I’ll give you something to look forward to! We’re going on a school trip soon, so I’ll bring something to blow your brains out!”
“Gotcha. I’m looking forward to it.”
“By the way, do you prefer underwear or no underwear?”
“…Come to think of it, there’s a book I’d love to get.”
I decided to digress because answering her question would only lead to something terrible. I felt it in my gut.
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