“For this. Not this way……”

“Oh, so that’s what it is ! Thanks, Shinonome chan !”

“No problem. You’re welcome.”

We moved on to the study session. There’s still time until final exams, but there’s no harm in preparing for them.

I’ll take care of Eiji mainly. And Nagi was in charge of Nishizawa and Hayama.

We studied for about two hours, and when lunchtime approached, Nagi stood up.

“Well, it’s time for lunch and I’m going to prepare it. Is meat and potatoes okay?”

“……Eh? You’re going to make it, Shinonome chan?”

Nishizawa and the others looked surprised at those words. It had already been decided like that since the beginning, so I’m not surprised.

“Yes. I thought about delivery before, but now is a good opportunity.”

“Yay ! Thanks !”

“Whoo ! I’m so excited !”

Nishizawa and the others shouted with joy at Nagi’s words.

“I’m going to help Nagi. You three wait here.”

“Okay !”

With that, I headed to the kitchen with Nagi. Today, the fusuma sliding door connecting the living room and kitchen is closed.

Nagi looked at me as she took out potatoes from the vegetable drawer.

She smiled at me.

“Today I’m going to make meat and potatoes that I learned from Souta kun’s mother. …….Please, rest assured, okay?”

At those words., I looked into her eyes.

….She saw through me.

It’s Nagi who cooks, not me. I was just a little jealous…..the fact that I was being treated by someone else.

“I…..only cook food for my family and Souta kun.”

Nagi said as she put down the potatoes. She approached me.

“….Hm. Please.”

Just like that, Nagi lowered her head a little. 

“A-are we going to do it now?”

“If I miss this today, I feel like I won’t be able to do it anymore. Please.”

As I mentioned earlier. They can’t see it from the living room through the sliding doors. …..Although it can be said that only one sliding door separates us.

They’re still talking in a low voice, but they’re close enough that I can hear them if they speak normally.

I gently lifted my hand.

…if they can’t see it, it shouldn’t be a problem.

I went straight to Nagi’s head. I put my hand on top of her silky hair.


As I gently stroked her head, Nagi let out a happy voice.

A soft, sweet smell wafts through the air. Nagi’s hand was gently placed on my chest. Lately, Nagi has been placing her hand like this. I’m not sure if it’s a good idea or not, but I’m sure it’s a good idea. [Because I can hear Souta’s heartbeat and calm down.] She said.

…For me, it’s embarrassing that she can hear the sound of my heart. When I saw Nagi happily saying that, I couldn’t refuse.

Then I stroked Nagi’s head. Her silky smooth hair doesn’t tangle on my fingers.

I didn’t dislike this kind of thing. …Or rather, I like it.  To see Nagi trusting me defenselessly.

I stroked Nagi’s head while relaxing my cheeks.

“Hey, Shinonome chan. I just want to ask you–“

Hayama opened the sliding door and peeked.

Nagi and I couldn’t take time to separate from each other. We just froze.

It was as if time had stopped.

I fell into such an illusion.


Not only me and Nagi… but also Hayama froze, and silence came.

“Hikaru chan, what’s wrong–?”

With that voice, time finally started to move.

I took my hand from Nagi’s head and looked at Hayama. 

Nagi’s hand was still on my chest. I couldn’t turn around.

I looked at Nagi. ……Nagi was looking at me with teary eyes.

It’s like she’s saying [You don’t want to continue?].

[Are you serious?] I asked her with my eyes and she nodded her head.

When I put my hand back, Nagi’s eyes narrowed happily.

“No, you’re not going to continue.”

At the same time, Hayama almost lost her mind.

“……? Hikaru?”

“Ah, no, it’s nothing. Just wait a minute.”

Hayama told Nishizawa so. She closed the sliding door.

Instead of going back there, she came into the kitchen.

“…So? What on earth is the situation? What is this?”

“This is. ……How do you say it?”

When she saw Nagi, she nodded his head. She finally took my hand

When I tried to let go of my hand,…..she looked at me sadly, so I just left it as it was.

“I would like to ask you to keep what you just saw and what we are talking about confidential.”

“Okay, okay. I understand.”

Hayama nodded at Nagi’s words. Seeing this, Nagi started talking.

“I noticed something when I met Souta kun. Actually, I’m quite a spoiled child.”

“…..I see?”

Hayama was clearly not convinced. I nodded, thinking that it’s best to swallow it for the time being.

“That’s right. There were many twists and turns, and having Souta kun stroke my head…I came to like it. When we were together, I started asking him.”

“……Though it’s not just the two of you right now.”

“I-if I finish now, today’s portion will be over. It would  not be a waste.”

Nagi answered with her face bright red. I stopped my hand involuntarily and looked at Nagi who looked at me. Nagi’s gaze suddenly met mine.

“Souta kun? What’s wrong?”

“… Not at all. Nagi can do it as many times as she wants.”

“I-is it okay !?”

Nagi raised her voice in an unintentional way. Eiji and the others seemed to be able to hear her voice, but fortunately they didn’t care.

“Ah, I’m sorry I spoke out so loud.”

“……No, it’s all right.”

I moved my hand and stroked her head. Her slightly uneasy face loosened.

“Oh, and. Are you sure?”

“Hmm? Ah, of course. There were no limits to begin with.”

When I said that, Nagi’s face brightened….. but she immediately showed a difficult expression.

“W-wait, but. If there’s no limit, I’m afraid I’ll ask about ten times in a day…”

“I-I see.”

As expected, ten times a day is a lot. …But, I wouldn’t say no.

“I don’t dislike patting Nagi’s head,……no, I rather like it. I guess it can’t be helped.”

As I said so. Nagi lifted her head.

“Well, then. I’d like to have it twice a day, up to twice a day. I’d like to ask for it !”

Her expression seemed a little impatient. I couldn’t help but smile.

“Yeah, I got it. …If you want to increase it, tell me again, okay?”

“Yes !”

When I stroked Nagi, who smiled happily, her cheeks gradually loosened.

“Hey, have you forgotten about me? The two of you are passionate.”


Nagi and I exchanged glances at Hayama, who poked her head out from the side…and laughed.


“Eh, amazing, it’s delicious”

“Oh, so good.”

“It tastes amazing. Yeah, it’s really delicious.”

Nagi’s meat and potatoes were well received. Of course it’s delicious for me too. …it tastes nostalgic.

“Fufu, I’m glad. It was Souta kun’s home-style meat and potatoes.”

When Nagi said so, Eiji and Nishizawa choked.

“Ngggghhh…..gohoo. C-come to think of it, you did meet Souta’s mother.”

“You mentioned something like that too. ….Eiji’s family didn’t tell me about the home style cooking, though.”

Hearing those words, a question arose in me as well.

“Come to think of it. When did you hear that from my mother? When did you get the recipe for meat and potatoes?”

“Eh? After we exchanged contact information, she sent it to me, you know? …..The meat and potatoes is one thing, but the fried chicken that time, too. And curry, too.”

Before I knew it. No, it wouldn’t be strange if my mother did that.

Well, it’s delicious, so there’s no problem.

While thinking that, I was eating the potatoes. Nagi suddenly remembered something and raised her voice.

“Oh, that’s right. I’d like to ask everyone…or rather. If it’s okay with you, there’s a place I want you to come to.”

“A place you want to come?”

“Yes ! We’re still having a meal, so if you’ll excuse me for a moment.”

Nagi said so and picked up her bag. From inside, she took out a piece of paper and four long and thin ticket-like items.

The large paper…..looked like an advertisement for something.

“Actually, in mid-November,…… the weekend after next. There will be a performance of the Japanese dance that I’m learning. My teacher, of course, will be there, as well as myself. ……So the performers will be given tickets to invite their family and friends. What do you think?”

“I’ll go. If Nagi is going to be there.”

Reflexively, I replied.

At the same time, Nagi’s anxious face relaxed with relief.

“Oh ! I like this kind of thing too. I’m going.”

“Eiji, you like this kind of arts and entertainment, don’t you? Then me too !”

“I think I’ll go too. Since Shinonome chan is going to be there too.”

Eiji and the others said so. I didn’t know Eiji was interested in this kind of thing.

Hearing what the three of them said, Nagi smiled happily.

“Thank you ! I know it’s before your final exams, but please enjoy yourself !”

Seeing her smile, I couldn’t help but smile too.

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