Yukihana kun and I have changed. No, we decided to make an effort to change. That alone was probably a big step forward.
The next day, Yukihana kun’s atmosphere changed a little. I don’t really understand, but that was the expression of a man who made up his mind.
Now it was before the morning assembly, so the homeroom teacher had not come. That’s why this is the perfect time for my classmates to surround Yukihana kun. And so the usual scene began.
[You’re here again, Yukihana. I told you, people like you shouldn’t come to school.]
[That’s right !]
[Hm, what’s up with you?]
The boys start threatening him by hitting and shaking his desk. The girls are giggling at him. Then they do something to Yukihana kun, who continues to ignore them, which is the usual course of events.
The leader of the group grabs Yukihana kun’s pencil case and sets his sights on the trash can.
[Hey, let’s play basketball. Whoever scores from afar is the winner…….]
The boys laugh for a moment and try to leave their seats, but it was a different scene than usual. Yukihana kun grabbed the boys’ leader’s arm.
“W-what the hell.]
The boy holding the pencil box, perhaps startled by Yukihana kun’s unusual behavior, shrugs a little. Then, Yukihana kun said……
[That’s enough. You scum.]
[Hurry up and return that pencil box. The teacher will be here soon.]
The whole class was surprised to hear Yukihana kun fight back. But perhaps they weren’t intimidated enough, the boys around him started laughing. I, on the other hand, was ready to move at any moment.
[Hey, don’t get carried away. Don’t you realize how much trouble your family is causing to society?]
[You should stop yelling in the morning. Your breath smells so bad that it stinks up the classroom and is a nuisance.]
The leader of the group, a boy, was so agitated that he clutched the pencil case tightly. Yukihana kun doesn’t run away from the situation and confronts it from the front. The next moment, the fire had already started.
[I’ll beat you to a pulp and make you cry. It’s too late to apologize !]
[Come at me, scum !]
And from there, it developed into a fight involving the entire classroom. It was that leader boy who fought with Yukihana kun, and the other boys were trembling and went to the corner. They probably didn’t have the guts to fight. However, desks were pushed out of the way and chairs were thrown about, so it could have happened at any time.
I wonder if I should just continue to watch them fight. Frankly speaking, I feel that what I do from this point on will affect my very way of life.
As I was thinking this, a decision was being made in front of me. Yukihana kun had hit his back against the wall of the classroom and was grabbed by the neck. That was indeed too much.
The scene of that time reappears in my mind.
[Don’t lie to yourself.]
The words of that big brother echoed in my mind. The next moment, I was running. I don’t know if this is the right thing to do. But for now, please allow me to affirm and believe in my actions with all my might.
(Ah, I see. I……)
I hated myself for not being able to do anything. I couldn’t stop my parents from arguing and ended up divorcing without taking any action. I hated myself for not doing anything at that time.
And as it was, I accelerated and hit the boy who was the leader with all my might. Tackle ! …..It’s not what you’d call it, it’s an awkward body slam.
The impact from an unexpected direction made the boy fall down unintentionally. I managed to stay on my feet and hide my trembling arms.
Yukihana kun, on the other hand, seemed to be okay, rubbing his neck and looking at me. Why? He made that dumbfounded face, but I was so elated that I didn’t care about that.
[Hey, Nanase. What are you doing !]
Not only the leader boy, but many of my classmates thought so. Yukihana kun, leaning against the wall, was probably thinking the same thing. There are only a little more than half a year until graduation anyway. So, I’m not going to lie to myself, I’m going to express my heart’s content.
[No one wanted to stop it, so I stopped them. I hate classes like this !]
[W-what are you talking…..]
[It’s not just Yukihana kun. My sports cap and recorder are missing, and every time I refuse a boy’s confession, the girls says bad things about me.]
Over the past few years, I actually tolerated a lot of harassment myself. There were times when I felt like my heart was about to break and I thought about talking to my mother or a teacher. But I couldn’t take action because there were people in front of me who were being treated worse than me. But today is the end of that.
[If you hurt Yukihana kun any more, I will protect him. I don’t want any more unpleasant things in my eyes !]
[Hey, even you.]
And just as I was making my decision, several male teachers rushed in. Apparently, people from other classes who had heard the commotion in the class had rushed into the staff room to report it.
[What are you guys doing !]
[All those who were fighting, go to the hallway !]
And so the situation was temporarily settled. My classmates were unable to say anything because of the teacher’s strong words. The boys who had been in a rage just a few minutes ago became quiet like a scaredy cat before I knew it.
Then Yukihana kun, myself, and a few of the boys went to the staff room to talk separately. I, of course, told them honestly what I had seen, and I think Yukihana kun did the same. Above all, Yukihana kun has his tattered textbooks and other items with him, so I think he has a certain amount of credibility.
As I left the staff room and made my way back to the classroom, Yukihana kun was waiting for me. As usual, he was expressionless, but his eyes were somewhat worried as he turned toward me.
[Why did you help me?]
It’s natural to wonder, after all. For Yukihana kun, all the people in his class are enemies. I took his side today, but it doesn’t change the fact that I have always been silent. However, it seems that my slightest action reached Yukihana kun’s heart. Or should I say, it swayed him.
[I did what I did because I didn’t like it. I have no regrets.]
So we went home that day without going to class. Naturally, my parents were called and they scolded me, but in the end they hugged me while crying. I hope Yukihana kun was also hugged by a warm family.
The school then held a parent-teacher conference and apologized, but there were too many students who had been the perpetrators, so in the end it was all swept under the rug. I went to school the next day, but Yukihana kun was nowhere to be found.
The atmosphere among my classmates deteriorated, but it was better that the harassment and bullying had stopped. The only thing that worried me was that my homeroom teacher was very ghastly. I can see now that he was sick in his own way as a newcomer. I felt sorry for him, but I hope he will make the most of it in the future.
I’m confident in my athletic ability, but at that time I could only do an awkward body slam. And that boy got up right away.
(I wonder if I should start learning something)
I was reading a shounen magazine at random, thinking like that. There, various characters were performing numerous tricks. But I don’t have the grip or arm strength, and I don’t need to be violent. However
(I could do a kick or something like that.)
On the page that is just now open, there was a character fighting using footwork. He is getting into the enemy’s stronghold to save his friends, and at the end he is attacking them with his legs covered in flames caused by friction.
Kicks are said to be twice as powerful as punches, and you might want to watch a video to practice. Then I did some light strength training at home and started practicing kicks with a pillow.
And I went on to graduate and go to a public middle school a little further away. In the end, Yukihana kun never came to school on graduation day, and I thought I would never see him again, but we met again earlier than I expected. Yes, he had gone on to the same middle school. And in the same class.
[ […..Ah.] ]
Or rather, we were seated next to each other. Yukihana kun, whom I hadn’t seen in a while, had a completely different atmosphere. I felt his body, which had always been small, had become leaner and more toned. It’s no wonder that he is now called a talented boxer.
A year or so passed, and we gradually grew closer. Perhaps it was because we had experienced so much together in elementary school that we were able to communicate with each other.
Moreover, I was scouted as a model when I was walking around town. At first I refused, but at my mother’s urging, I decided to try my luck at show business. To be honest, it wasn’t going well at the time.
By the way, I never hung out with Hisui, but just talked with him when we met. Or rather, it’s interesting to talk with Hisui because he has a surprising gap.
[You and I have both changed.]
[you’re right. Hisui, you used to be a crybaby.]
[Huh? I’m not.]
[Fufufu, well, I’ll just leave it at that.]
After a brief chat, the rest of the time was spent doing my own thing. It seems that Hisui is learning martial arts at home from the adults. Training to deal with people with deadly weapons with his bare hands.
Unlike him, I haven’t learned, but I think I’m good enough to put a man on his feet with a kick.
[Come to think of it, what’s up with your way of talking?]
[Yeah. I was influenced by a manga I’m reading right now. Isn’t it cool?]
[I still don’t understand your sensibilities.]
In this way, we enjoyed our middle school life more peacefully than we had in elementary school. At that time, I was caught up in silly ties, but now I have made many friends in the truest sense of the word. And it seems that it was the same for Hisui. His middle school life was not bullied or harassed, and he was able to properly attend school until the final graduation ceremony.
Incidentally, after Nanase and Hisui enjoyed their middle school life, they both went on to the same high school, but they did not know it until after they entered the high school and sat next to each other.
What is engraved deep in our hearts is the view of the sunset in that park. And the words of that boy.
That scene moved us.
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