Episode 1 – About The Case Where I Was Threatened After I Helped The Girl I Often Saw On The Train

Source

https://kakuyomu.jp/works/16817330649941556887/episodes/16817330650193350811

Inside a train that sways with a clattering sound. The boiling air among the people stings with disgust.

I can endure such an air because she was there.

She always gets on the train at a certain station. A beautiful girl with white hair. She’s probably a foreign exchange student or something. Her eyes and nose are quite well-defined, and she has a cold atmosphere.

Her eyes are a little sharp and her facial expression rarely changes.

I don’t talk to her. I don’t want to get close to her or anything like that.

……Of course, this is partly because I have seen other students who have tried to talk to her and have been immediately turned down. Anyone who approached her, male or female, was either pushed by her atmosphere or……rejected for doing something like hitting on her, and moved to another train.

Now it’s just me and her who were in this train

There are other reasons…..how should I put it? She lives in a different world, I guess. She’s like an idol or actress or some other celebrity on TV.

I don’t have the confidence to go talk to a celebrity I like even if she were right in front of me.

First of all, women are said to be able to tell by the way they look at you. I would be terrified of a man who stared at me all the time and tried to talk to me.

So, I just watch from afar.

Such days…..continued for a long time.

One fall.

I wonder if it’s because I always watched her. I immediately noticed something unusual.

Her expression is stiff. No, it was always stiff. Anyway, something was different.

Was there something wrong with her?

As I was thinking that. I noticed something else.

…..A middle-aged man’s hand was under skirt.

–Sexual assault.

Even if I try to stop him. There’s too many people.

……Overlook it? No, that would be a bad idea.

That’s right. I’m usually (selfishly) energized.

I ignore my noisy heart. I exhale once.

“There’s a pervert !”

I shouted.

At that moment, the old man jumped up and down on his shoulders. He quickly left. People around him looked annoyed, but didn’t try to stop him. I wonder whether I should yell, “That’s the guy right there,”…..but I stopped when I saw her face.

She looked at me. She was shaking her head.

◆◆◆

“Well, you know. I heard there was some kind of pervert on the train near here this morning. You know anything about that?”

.”…..No, I don’t know.”

 My friend Makizaka Eiji said this as I looked away from him.

“Really? You didn’t know? Well, it was rumored that he was on the train where your girlfriend rides. Didn’t you know?”

“…..I don’t know.”

“Well, that’s all right. If you don’t know, you don’t know. You wouldn’t do that, would you?”

“Of course I wouldn’t…….”

I told Eiji about her. …….Even so. As long as she’s beautiful.

“Rather than that. Why don’t you get a girlfriend?”

The conversation has changed, huh……. It’s not about I can’t get one, it’s just I don’t want to get one, I think you’re mistaken.”

“Sigh. Do you want to spend your youth without having a girlfriend in high school for once?”

“The presence or absence of a girlfriend does not determine one’s youth. …..Well, I think it would be more fun to have one. But for me having fun and studying properly is enough. But I think it’ll change once I have someone I like.”

But, sadly. Unfortunately, I don’t have anyone I like.

“Hm? What about that girl on the train?”

“She’s from a different world. I like idols and actresses, but I can’t fall in love with them. The word “impossible” is always in my head. In the first place. If she’s that pretty, she must have a boyfriend or two.” “It would be a problem if she has two….. But well, I know what you meant.”

I nodded to Eiji’s words.

“…..I don’t think she has one.”

“Did you say something?”

“No, it’s nothing. More importantly, do you want to go to karaoke today?”

“Oh, that sounds good. I want to go.”

“Sure.”

A lot has happened, but I guess I’m back to my normal life again.

–That’s what I was thinking at the time.

◆◆◆

Clatter, rattle, rattle.

While being swayed by the train’s movements. I was fiddling with my phone.

At that moment. I felt a tap from someone.

It must have been their luggage. I didn’t really care.

But I was tapped on the shoulder again.

“….Hey.”

It must’ve been my imagination. I fiddled with my phone again.

Tap, tap.

“Um. Excuse me.”

“Y-yes? You’re talking to me?”

I unintentionally let out a silly voice. When I turned around, there was–

That girl was standing there.

Her hair and skin was white as snow. Her eyes have a beautiful blue color and her eyelashes were long.

Her face was sharp and dignified. Her expression doesn’t change from usual. I think she’s both……beautiful and cute.

“….Um.”

The sound of her soft bell-like voice brought me back to consciousness.

Oh no. She’s staring at me.

“……What is it?”

Somehow I managed to squeeze out my voice. I tried not to look at her voluptuous body, So I kept my eyes fixed on her eyes.

I was surprised to see how tall she was. She’s not that much different from me. And also..

–She’s close to me. There are a lot of people on the train. When we look at each other, we’re so close that I could kiss her if I just put my face closer.

Well, I won’t do it. It’s the same level as molestation.

“Um……you helped me out the other day. I wanted to thank you.””

“……Ah, that time…..? Don’t worry about it,…..”

I thought I was used to using honorifics since I had talked to teachers and others from time to time, but I couldn’t get my words to work

But somehow, I still managed to say so.

“…….No. I was really……scared. The people around me didn’t help me, but instead looked at me with…..dirty eyes.”

“……I see.”

“That’s why. Thank you, very much.”

Saying that. She bowed her head. It was the first time I had ever been thanked by a girl, so I didn’t know what to say,…….

“Y-you’re welcome?”

I replied.

Hearing that……she giggled.

It’s a little different from her usual dignified face. A smile that emphasizes her cuteness.

Oh. So she can smile like that.

“….Oh, I’m sorry. I never heard the words ‘you’re welcome’ so much. But I don’t dislike it when people accept my thanks.”

“W-well, I’m glad to hear that……?”

“Yes. Also, you can speak normally. I used honorifics out of habit, and I’m also a first-year high school student…”

“…..Oh, thank you. ….No, I mean, thanks. I’m a freshman too.”

It occurred to me. I’m not sure why I’m having this conversation with her.

……Somehow. I broke into a cold sweat.

If this continues, I feel like my daily life will change.

“Well, I guess I’ll leave it at that,…….”

Let’s keep our distance and go back to my days of just watching her from afar.

There are still few people around now, so I should be able to move around.

It’s not too late.

“Wait.”

But my thoughts were stopped in vain.

Because she grabbed my sleeve.

With a thud. My heart jumps. But that was just a one-time event.

Seeing her expression. My expression changed.

The look on her face…

“Please, I need a favor. Please.”

She looked like she was in pain.

“……What is it?”

I answered with as gentle an expression as possible.

Seeing me like that. She showed a relieved face.

……Today I saw many of her different expressions. Could it be that today was my lucky day?

Even though I don’t believe in fortune-telling. I was thinking about that.

“So, uh…..about the favor…….”

Although she choked on her words, she looked me in the eye. 

“While I’m on the train. I want you to….stay by my side.”

That’s what she said.

For a moment, my mind went blank.

Why?

Why is that?

I squashed the questions in my head. I reset my thoughts.

Then an answer emerged.

“…….Could it be. You’re afraid of men or something?”

I said that. She nodded……with a mysterious look on her face.

It’s no wonder. A woman who has been sexually harassed……or a man, is afraid of the opposite sex. Or even the same sex.

There are those who don’t like to be touched, and there are those who wouldn’t want to be touched even if they were dead.

She was more on the latter side. That’s all I’m saying.

“……..Before, I was touched by a stranger. I became afraid when I’m on trains and…even a-at school. I was afraid of the way men looked at me. …..I was also afraid to leave the house in the morning.”

……I see. It looks pretty serious.

But one question remained.

“……Why me?”

–Yes, that’s it. I’m a stranger at best, I’ve only helped her once.

“….Honestly. That option is too risky. Maybe you’re just lucky. I’m just a stranger, that man that you’re scared of.”

I don’t know why I am so desperate.

Is it because I’m afraid that my daily life will be disrupted?

“I want you to think about it again. Maybe you should ask your female friends. Or a man you can trust.”

“….I don’t have any.

But she cut me off.

“You’re all I have.”

Her voice reached my ears clearly.

“…….I’m ashamed to admit it. I don’t have any friends I can trust. So this is the gamble of a lifetime.”

She puts her hands on my chest with a thud.

“Time will tell someday. It may be true. But because of that ‘someday’. I might miss out on some great opportunities. ……Relationships, or studies? Maybe even an exam. ….Or it could be something else.”

……Is this a threat?

“I don’t mind if you take it as a threat. ……Even so. I have to erase this fear.”

There was a hint of guilt on her face.

……There must be a reason.

“And. The reason why I chose you. The reason is simple. Unlike other people, you don’t look at me other than my face. ….You look me in the eyes and talk to me like this.”

Even though I was surprised….I nodded at her words.

“……I understand. I’ll stay by your side while you’re on the train.”

There’s no reason to refuse.

“.,…Thank you, very much.”

When I nodded, she looked relieved….and smiled.

And then, she let out a voice.

“I haven’t introduced myself yet.”

“……Come to think of it.”

She cleared her throat. And looked at me in the eyes.

“My name is Shinonome Nagi. ……I know I look like a foreigner, but I was adopted by a certain couple, so that’s why I have this name. Other than my body, you may take me as Japanese.”

–Shinonome Nagi.

I wonder why. Even though she has the appearance of a foreigner.

Her name really suits her.

“My name is Minori Souta.

“Okay, please take care of me from now on. Minori kun.”

Saying that, she timidly grabbed my hands.

Then she—Shinonome Nagi, smiled.

It was a soft smile that I had never seen before. It was a warm smile.

From that day on. My daily life changed drastically.

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