After Golden Week, the first day of school.
However, this year’s Golden Week vacations had three days off in between, so if I go today, tomorrow will be Saturday again.
After all, I never played with Tohno san during this holiday weekend.
It somehow felt different to play with these mixed emotions now.
When I heard Tohno san’s sad voice when I called her once more to say no, it made my …… heart ache.
After arriving at school, I change my shoes in front of the shoe box.
Perhaps because I was thinking, I didn’t notice the presence of other students until I looked up after taking off my shoes.
As soon as we look up, our gazes collide with each other.
The other side didn’t seem to realize that I was right behind her, either, and she let out a surprised yelp.
There she was, my former lover, Ichikawa san.
Ichikawa san fully ignores my greeting and hurriedly tries to go and hide something.
…… It’s still weird.
It’s not like Ichikawa san. That may be because she has no reason to be nice to her ex-boyfriend.
It’s not like her to do that.
Was it because she had cooled down somewhat over time, or was it because my brother had told me about her past?
I could now clearly sense the discomfort that I didn’t notice when I was dumped because my mind went blank.
What my brother told me about Ichikawa-san was shocking to me because I had never heard of her.
“W-Was she bullied?”
“Yes, that’s what Aoi chan said”
According to my brother’s story, he met Ichikawa san when she was alone in a park late at night.
A junior high school girl was alone at such an unusual hour, so he couldn’t resist calling out to her.
So Ichikawa san told my brother what had happened.
According to Ichikawa san, she was being bullied at school and everything became so painful that she ran out of the house uncontrollably. And she found himself at an unknown park in a neighboring town.
My brother protected her and took her home.
From there, Ichikawa san became involved with my brother and Sayaka san.
“Yes. So I asked Sayaka and my friends from other universities to take Aoi out to cheer her up. “
“Aoi chan, at first, was pretty wary of me. I think it was inevitable because she was bullied so badly. Even so, I wanted to do something about it, so I went to see Aoi chan many times, and she finally opened up to me.”
“I remember she told me that her parents were away on business trips overseas and were hardly ever at home. I’m sure she was also worried about being alone.”
I was so open-mouthed when I heard that story.
I was shocked that Ichikawa san, that perfect girl, had such a past.
Plus the fact that she knew my brother.
And most of all, I was terribly angry that she had been with him without knowing any of that myself.
“But Aoi chan. After all, she stopped showing up in front of us after about six months.”
“Ahh, I was pretty worried about it. ……”
“So what happened?”
“I didn’t do anything.”
I thought Ichikawa san was going through something hard again, so I stuffed up with my brother. That was in the past, and perhaps it was nothing to think about now, but it was unconscious.
“Relax. It’s …… Well, you know what? She left me a message before she left.”
“Yes, I guess it’s like a thank you and a statement of commitment. And that’s when we stopped meddling any more.”
I was relieved to hear that, and found that the heat that had just swelled all at once was rapidly cooling down.
“Well, I’m relieved, though. I didn’t think Aoi chan would be Youta’s girlfriend.”
“Yeah, yeah! You suprised me.”
I can’t …… tell them. I can’t believe I was dumped just recently.
“Make sure you protect her, okay?”
“Yeah! She’s a good girl, I promise, okay?”
I can’t tell ……. I can’t tell the truth to my brother and his wife who look at me expectantly.
“Nice smile by the way.”
My brother said so when he saw the picture.
I thought so too.
When my brother told me that, I thought that something was quite overwhelming for Ichikawa san now.
Is it related to the story of being bullied in the past?
If there is anything I can do for her.
Is it still meddling that I want to do something to help, even though I am the one who was rejected?
I wonder if I can do as well as my brother.
Concerned, I call out to Ichikawa san again from behind.
Oh, that’s embarrassing. Maybe I still want her to just walk by normally.
Despite my conflicting feelings, Ichikawa san stopped in her tracks.
…… Well, the result is okay.
And if I’d called at the street, she might have ignored me, right?
Ichikawa san stopped and did not look back.
I approach Ichikawa san and call out to her once again.
“Ichikawa san. Are you hiding something from me?”
“——-Ts. No. I have nothing to hide from you.”
The response was somewhat delayed.
That was like an affirmation of my question.
“I may be unreliable and have no redeeming qualities. …… but I want to help Ichikawa san if she is in trouble. I want to help.”
I thought that more and more as I learned about Ichikawa san’s past.
Not by my brother, not by …… anyone else, but by myself. If you are in trouble, I want to help Ichikawa san.
I thought Ichikawa san’s shoulders shook slightly at my words.
I wonder if my words worked.
I can start right now…
“I’m sorry……. Komiya-kun. It’s really nothing. Don’t get involved with me any more.”
“Half-hearted meddling is annoying.”
Again, I could not move from my spot, staring at Ichikawa san’s back as she left.
It’s lunchtime and I eat lunch alone and lonely at my usual place.
As usual, Naka said, “Not again!” What was said, but I didn’t care and came out.
Somehow, I feel that the atmosphere among the girls in the classroom is awkward.
Slowly, I sit down on the stairs and take out a bag of bread.
I opened it and then put it in my mouth.
“Annoying …… damn ……”
I was determined, but I sank spectacularly.
There is no doubt that she has problems, but she doesn’t want me to worry about them. I guess that’s what she’s saying.
But leaving it as it is is not an option for me.
”I don’t have ……but …….”
It is quite heartbreaking to be rejected.
Is it really in her best interest for me to do something?
She doesn’t want it?
“I don’t know. What would my brother do in a situation like this?”
I think of my brother, a man of action.
my older brother helped Ichikawa san during her middle school years when she was suffering.
“I’m going to go talk to her as many times as I have to.”
But that’s the difference between me and my brother. In fact, my mentality has been destroyed by just one rejection.
If I go there one more time and the next time they seriously reject me, I may not know what to do either.
“What should I do…”
I am really different from my brother, it seems.
I heard a voice calling me with my head in her hands.
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