“Shinonome chan, you’ve changed. Quite a bit.”

When I was having my clothes picked out for me. The staff suddenly said something like that to me.

“…..Is that so?”

“Every part of you has changed. The biggest change is your…..atmosphere.”

Atmosphere. I don’t really understand what she meant by that.

I wonder how I’ve changed. The staff told me.

“I’d say you’re much softer than you were before, you know? ……And also.”

The staff put her mouth close to my ear.

“The distance between you and him has shortened quite a bit. ……Like, you don’t want someone else to take him from you. …..”


I jumped unintentionally.

……She found out.

“…Y-you’re lying, right?”

“……Lie, huh?  Maybe you didn’t even realize it? You were holding his sleeves the whole time he was talking to me.”

“Eh !?”

I-is that so? ……I did pull his sleeve during the conversation.

“Maybe you’re not conscious of it. ……By the way, are you two dating already?”

“W-we’re not.”

I somehow denied it. But I was surprised at how small my voice sounded.

“Hm, hm, is that so?”

The staff nodded as if she was convinced. I don’t know what she was convinced of, but…….

If it’s with this person. I wonder if I can talk to her a little bit about it.

“U-um. Can I ask you one thing?”

“Hmm? What is it? Ask anything.”

I looked at the staff.

“A-about love. What is it like?”

I asked.

The staff gave me a puzzled look and……she laughed.

“Love, huh. It’s a bit difficult.”

“I-I’m sorry. I asked something strange.”

“Ah, it’s okay. I don’t mind. …But love, huh. Right.”

First. The staff held up her finger.

“For example. You feel your heart pounding when you’re with him.”


I nodded, and the staff held up her second finger.

“For example. you think about him all the time.”

“…..I see.”

I nodded again. The staff held up her third finger.

“For example. Do you want to be with him forever?”

“Uh, ah…..”

After hearing that much. I managed to endure it….or so I thought.

I covered my burning cheeks with my hands. Seeing that, the staff grinned at me.

“Are you reminded of something?”


It was fine until then. Recently, when I’m with Minori kun, my heart is pounding. But it’s not uncomfortable. I didn’t understand many things.

Even when I got home, I kept thinking about Minori kun. I thought about what we would talk about on the phone today, and as I did so, my cheeks relaxed.


No, not good. When I close my eyes, I think about Minori kun.

…..But. If it’s like this, then I had no choice.

“……Excuse me.”

“What is it?”

It’s not good. It may be very different from the future I originally hoped for, but…

Halfway will end up being the worst outcome.

Both me and Minori kun will end up hurt.

–That’s why.

“There’s something I want to talk to you about.”

I want to change. I have to change.

I really thought so.


“H-wow about this one?”

With a “whoosh”, the curtains opened. Shinonome’s appearance had also been renewed.

A pure white, thick blouse and a long brown skirt.  Simple but not plain. …..Probably because Shinonome’s figure already stands out too much.

“I-I think it looks good.”

“Geez, not that. Look, don’t be shy !”

“U-um,……,you don’t have to force yourself to praise me.”

“No, I’m not forcing myself. Um, it’s cute. It’s not the usual eye-catching style, but calm. But, you’re naturally eye-catching. I think you look cute and mature.”

When I said that, Shinonome said, “I-I see.” and laughed…..ehehe.

“Then I’ll buy this and……the one from earlier.”

“Yes. Be right–“

A voice that didn’t suit a fashionable clothing store rang out. …..And then,  Shinonome bought the clothes.

“Fufu. It was worth saving my pocket money until now.”

“…..Sounds like you’ve saved up a hell of a lot of money.”

I said so without thinking. Shinonome smiled proudly.

“I still can play with you a lot more, Minori kun. I have enough left over to cook some dishes. Please rest assured.”


Shinonome and I split the cost of the meal. If I were to be honest, I should be the one to pay, and I’ve told her so many times. Shinonome didn’t listen.

[We’re going to eat together. Let’s not put the burden on either of us.]

…………. Thanks to those words, I can afford to pay back the lunches she makes for me every weekday. At the same time Shinonome was making a face saying [I’ve done it.].

“Well then, Shall we go?”

“…..Come to think of it. Isn’t today a tea ceremony day?”

As I recall, it was last week. I think the teacher said she had to take a day off because of a fever or something.

“It seems that the teacher’s child has a contagious cold. She’s off until today. ……,But I need to do a little self-study. I can’t go to Minori kun’s house today. I apologize.”

“No need to apologize. You’ve been very helpful and I can’t take that for granted.”

While chatting like this, we boarded the train. But still…..

“There seem to be a lot more people here today.”

If you look around, there are a lot of businessmen in suits. It’s not like it’s rush hour to get home…..but I Think it was late enough for them.

“Sorry ,Shinonome, I’m going to change my position a little bit.”

“Ah, yes. I understand.”

Usually, we line up side by side. Today, I will have to face Shinonome.

……Because there are many men nearby. Shinonome still feels scared of them.

It seems she has gotten better than before, but she still gets nervous and……looks a little frightened when near men.

Therefore, when there are many people like this, I change my position to protect Shinonome.

Shinonome’s face is right in front of me.

Pure white skin and blue eyes like the bottom of the ocean.

Her hair is whiter than her skin and it’s very silky. Her slight sweet smell tickles my nostrils.

……Keep calm, me.

I tried to open my mouth to say something while enduring the pressure from my back.

The next moment.

“Whoa !”

“Kyaaaah !”

The train swayed violently. Just like the other day.

And then, I was hit hard on my back. I fell forward and…..

Somehow, I managed to hold on with my arms against the wall. But it hit me so hard that I frowned at the pain.

“A-are you okay !?”

“Y-yeah. I’m fine.”

Even though I managed to get my expression back and said that…Shinonome seemed to have seen through me.

Shinonome looked a little angry.

“…..That makes it look a lot more painful.”

She looked at my arm. …..Then she looked at me again. 

Her face was a little reddish.

“Minori kun.”

She called my name. She opened my mouth as if she had made up my mind.

“Please move your arm.”

I was puzzled by her words.

“N-no, wait. But I have to do this……”

“I don’t mind. …..Please lean your weight on me.”

Shinonome told me straight away. I’m confused ……I don’t know if it’s a good thing or not.

“……Please hurry up. Your side will be hurt, you know?”

Shinonome said a little jokingly. I also unintentionally let out a laugh.

“….Then, I’m going to move.”

“Yes. …Come at me.”

I’m moving my slightly sore arm–


The train shook again. At the same time, my back was pushed hard.


Shinonome’s face. Right in front of my eyes.

Her eyes are reflected in the entire field of vision, and her nose touches mine.

…..Our faces were so close that our breath was on each other’s.

Just like that–

I shifted my face just in time.

Something soft touched my lips for a moment….on the contrary. Something soft touched my cheek.

Just like that, I managed to put my face next to Shinonome’s face.

My whole body is in close contact. The sweet smell of the air penetrates through my nose and shakes my brain. I can no longer think straight.

……Her strong insistence, it was being crushed by my chest.

“……. …….”

I should apologize, but I can’t open my mouth to speak. The sweet smell made me feel as if even my mouth was sweetened, and my heart raced as if it were about to burst.

It is completely obvious to Shinonome. She should’ve found out.

At that moment. I felt a strange sensation.

I heard my heartbeat doubling, and I realized the meaning later.

Shinonome’s heart was also beating violently.

Ba-dump. I could directly feel her heart beating fast.

This is bad. Thinking that, I raised my lowered arm and tried to touch the wall…


“….Not good. I can’t–“

Shinonome’s arm. She put her arms around my back.

“Ugh, I’m going to make it so you can’t move.”

Such a voice reaches my ears softly. A creeping pleasure ate away at my spine. My whole body was wrapped in warmth.

“S-still, this is……”

“B-but. If I don’t do this, Minori kun. You’re going to push yourself… and.”

Shinonome’s voice sounded like a soft bell. It felt like my eardrum had melted. It shakes my heart and my brain.

“…I don’t mind. Touching with Minori kun.”

I thought from the bottom of my heart that it was good that I was in a position where Shinonome couldn’t see……my face. I let go of her arms. ……Gently, turn it around my back. After Shinonome twitched. She chuckled.  

“Maybe I’m quite timid….I’m really excited. I feel a little relieved.”

“……I see.”


“…..Me too.”

When I whispered softly, I heard Shinonome’s breath sound.

Then I heard a small laughter.

My heart was beating faster……than ever before.

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Diana Kurosawa
Diana Kurosawa
1 month ago