We headed toward the station, taking the most crowded street possible. I don’t know if it was because I both kept my training to a minimum, or if it was just nerves.

And as the station became within sight, I gradually slowed my running pace. It would not be an exaggeration to say that I’m indeed relieved to have reached this point. It was hot, and everywhere I looked, there were people.

“Phew. It’s been a long time since I’ve run this fast.”

Nanase didn’t lose her breath at all while saying that. Her hair, which was supposed to be neatly arranged, started to show flickering split ends due to being beaten by the wind.

After ensuring the safety of our surroundings, we decided to talk again while leaning against the wall at the end of the street.

“What were you doing?”

“Well, I was thinking that if Senpai was going to get hit, I might as well punch him first…..”

“You’re a brainiac.”

Nanase seems to have acted out of concern for me, and Nanase has a refreshing expression as if she doesn’t regret it at all. Also, it was a kick, not a punch.

It’s a little tedious to talk like this, but I guess I have to listen to what she has to say. Why did she bother to follow me? Depending on the reason, I would have to take various countermeasures.

“So, why were you following me around?”

“Ah-……I knew you had noticed.”

Apparently, she admitted that she was following me. Nanase starts mumbling about what happened a while ago.

“I wanted to ask Senpai something, so I was chasing after you. I was trying to find a good time to talk to you calmly because you seemed to be worried about being seen.”

It’s true that we talked about that in the morning. Even so, I was amazed that she’s doing something like this. She’s like Kisaragi 2.0.

“Then, Senpai suddenly entered the back alley, and when I chased after you, you were out of sight.”

“……What a funny girl.”

“Hahaha, you’ll get nothing from praising me, Senpai !”

No, I was being sarcastic. I mean, even if I got lost, how wide was the alleyway there?

Nanase was a little embarrassed, but continued talking. Yes, here comes the important part.

“I couldn’t find Senpai, so I gave up and went back the way I came, but then I heard someone’s voice. And when I looked in that direction, I saw a group of men who looked like they had a bad reputation, and when I blinked, Senpai came out.”


In other words, it would have been better if I left immediately without staying there. If I hadn’t bothered to wait for Nanase to return and disappear right away, I wouldn’t have been involved in such a strange situation.

(Again, I made the wrong choice again.)

I’m getting sick and tired of myself. Why do I make bad decisions? No, I know the cause, but it’s the fact that I know it that irritates me. Why do I have to bear such a burden?

(No, first of all.)

I have to solve Nanase’s problem first. That’s why I’m going to ask Nanase about what she said earlier.

“So, what did you want to ask me?”

What did she want to ask me? If it’s about the preview of the movie, it’s already done, and if it’s about my step sister it’s strange for her to come to me.

I’ve never met this girl before middle school. That much is certain. That’s why her behavior made no sense to me.

“Ah, yes. I’ve been wanting to ask you this for a long time, but is it possible that Senpai is……”

‘That’s when Nanase tried to say.


I accidentally made eye contact with someone coming from the other side. A quiet girl who usually spends most of her time next to me, not talking much. Yes, it was Yukihana.


And what a windfall it was, she was coming towards me on her own. The fact that she has a large paper bag in her hand suggests that she is on her way home from a bookstore. She was probably on her way home from buying a new issue of a manga or novel.

Nanase also noticed the shift in my gaze and looked at Yukihana. Then she tilted her head and asked me.

“Oh, Senpai, do you know each other by any chance?”


I dare not answer. I don’t know if Yukihana knows Nanase, but I don’t know how she would react if she thought we were close. But there was no doubt that it would be troublesome.

Then Yukihana approached me and said something to me.

“……So you have a friend.”

“Is that the first thing you would say?”

That’s a bit too much, don’t you think? She is a bit like my step sister in some ways. I’m sure the words she just said were sarcastic, but the way she said them was very similar to my step sister’s.

It’s hard for me to be so emotionally drained not only at home but also at school.

“Senpai, who is she?”

“We’re just classmates.”

“Oh, you seem to be very close.”

There was someone here who unintentionally said something sarcastic to me. apparently, the girls around me share a common hobby that cuts my heart.

“Hello, I’m Natsume Nanase. Nice to meet you, beautiful Senpai.”

“……Nanase, Natsume?”

The moment she heard that name, Yukihana’s eyes widened. Apparently, she knew the name. Or rather, I mentioned the name before hearing the impression of the preview of the movie last time.


Yukihana stared at me with a stern look in her eyes. I’m sure she has a lot of questions she wants to ask. But I didn’t dare run away from her gaze.

I’m sure that she has some questions about the previews and other things, but she never brought it up, probably due to her self-confidence. And then, just in case , she introduced himself.

“Yukiahana Ruri. That’s my name.”

“Yes, it’s nice to meet you !”

I’ve heard that girls make friends quickly, but I’m surprised by Nanase’s ability to close the distance in an instant. As you can see from Kisaragi’s case, Yukihana is also the type who values ​​her own personal space, but Nanase’s ability to communicate smoothly without making her feel uncomfortable is probably abnormal.

“Are you on your way home, Yukihana senpai?”


In addition, Yukihana nodded back with a rather grand attitude, perhaps because she is younger than her. At least I feel more at ease than when I talk to my step sister and Kisaragi.

I noticed that Yukihana had begun to proselytize to Nanase about a book she had probably purchased. I mean, she’s bought so many of them.

I also looked at those books from a distance.

(Suspense for supernatural powers. And, um, Onee shota?)

It’s a horrifying genre for me. I didn’t even want to think about it, let alone imagine it. Hiding my nausea, I tried to quietly leave the place.

I thought I had a chance to disappear naturally from here.

But Nanase and I had forgotten all about it.

“Hey, there you are ! !”

[ [ [….Ah] ] ]

The three of us let out a weak, unison voice. Yes, the men that Nanase kicked earlier chased us. I never thought I would be so dumb as to chase after me without hesitation.

(It’s also tiring to deal with idiots.”

Nanase’s face was drawn and I could see on her hand that she was panicking again. And Yukihana, next to her, for some reason also had this supremely disgusted look on her face.

And in an instant, the guys from earlier standing in front of us. The man who had been kicked in the face by Nanase and fainted was also revived while holding his nose. It seems that only his physical strength is healthy.

“Oh, oh, you did us good earlier. But we’re not the kind of guys who can be underestimated. We’re going to need you to lend us your face for a minute.”

The men were quiet, but still showing their anger.

“You picked a fight with us. You know what that means…..”

They were eager to give us a hard time, but for some reason they shut down in mid-sentence. And then.

[ [ [….Eh?] ] ]

They suddenly let out a bare voice and backed away. Nanase and Yukihana are at the end of their line of sight. No, it’s more like they were surprised to see Yukihana instead of Nanase.

“……What are you doing?”

In a completely different way than before, Yukika said so in a dark tone. The moment they hear this, the men start to panic. It was an incredibly strange scene.

And then

[ [ [Eh, what…..young lady, why are you here !?] ] ]

“Y-young lady?”

Nanase’s face twitched at those words as she’s surprised. Yeah, I wasn’t expecting this either.

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