“Hmmm… …… Well, Sugino, something good happened to you, didn’t it? Yes, I can tell. I am the Sugino Meister!”
“When did manager become my Meister?”
“When Sugino was born.”
“You weren’t present at my birth!”

At this time, the manager of the coffee shop “Rest” – Momiji Kaede – put her hand on her forehead as she reads the words “You caught me” in a barbed voice. Every movement is so exaggerated that I feel like a comedian in a variety show.

Her long black hair is currently tied up in a bun, but it is so long that it almost reaches her waist if she takes off her white cocked hat. She looks young enough to be the same age as university student like Shizuka san, but in reality she is 30 – or even if it is in her mind, let’s not go any further. Well, she is a beautiful woman.

Today is Sunday. The time is 4:30 in the evening.

If it were a normal coffee shop, it would be normal to have customers in, but I was busy cleaning the tables and floor as usual. I heard that there were quite a few regulars coming in during the daytime on weekdays, so I guess it balances out.

The manager then interrupted me, “All joking aside,” and I stopped cleaning and looked up.

“You were able to handle a couple of female customers yesterday and today, have you gotten over your weakness?”

The manager asked me with her elbows on the counter.

“It’s gotten better. I don’t think I’ve completely conquered it, but I think I’ll be fine without the manager’s help from now on.”

When I said this, the manager smiled and said, “I’m glad to hear that.”

“The reason for this is the kids from the school that came before? Come to think of it, you were sitting in a strange way, what was that? like a couple or something”
“I heard that they were concerned about me.”

I think the manager’s description of “couples” is not wrong, but this is not the case at the moment. Although it seems like it is just a matter of time.

“It didn’t have to go that far, though. Kohinata is – oh, she’s the other one who was sitting alone, but she doesn’t really talk, and she’s a very comfortable girl for me. So I think it’s largely thanks to Kohinata that I’m getting used to women.”

Of course, it was also thanks to Keiichi, Saejima, Kaoru, Yu, and others.

However, I think the biggest catalyst was Kohinata.
I am not comfortable these days, but my heart often beats fast, but I never feel bad. I am happy.

At the end of yesterday’s workday, she even went out of her way to chat with me, saying “good work,” and I really feel like we’ve become a couple.

I feel like we really are a couple, although I am probably the only one who feels that way.

☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

After my part-time job is over, I go home to my apartment. It is past nine o’clock at night.

Since I’ve been spending so much time with Kohinata lately, it feels like it’s been a while since I’ve had a night alone. I feel at ease, but I also feel like I’m missing something.

I’ve only spent a week with Kohinata, but I feel out of place without her. …… She’s always been a quiet person, so it’s no different whether she’s there or not. It’s strange.

After getting out of the bath, I was lying on my bed surfing the net on my phone when I got a notification for a chat.
I opened the app, thinking it might be Keiichi or Kohinata, but to my surprise, the person on the other end was Kohinata’s sister, Shizuka san.

“What is it?”

I wondered and checked the text: “Tomoki-kun, you’re at home right now, right?”
I didn’t know why she was asking that, but I told her I was home anyway. Then, Shizuka replied, “I have a little delivery for you, so I’ll bring it now!”. And she additionally told me that she would be there in about ten minutes and asked me to come down to the entrance.

“What’s the delivery? Did you get a bunch of fruit from a relative or something?”

I mumbled a few words of doubt as I got myself ready. I’m just going to put on a jersey over my shirt, though.

After all, I guess it’s food-related. …… As a single person living alone, I’m very grateful, but I also feel a little sorry. Should I treat kohinata with something to return?

In fact, you don’t have to go to the trouble of bringing it in this late at night,……, you could have asked Kohinata at school tomorrow and stopped by on the way home. I’m not sure if it’s a fast raw material or what? I already had dinner at my part-time job, though.

Half-excited and half-apologetic, I took the elevator to the entrance of the apartment building.

I waited outside for a minute or two. A familiar car pulled up in front of the condo and Shizuka san waved at me through the window.
Looks like Kohinata isn’t here….. Too bad.

“Good evening, Tomoki-kun, sorry for coming so late at night~.”
“No, no, thank you for taking the trouble. Thank you very much for taking the trouble. I’m sorry if it’s something too expensive.”
“Don’t worry, don’t worry~”

Shizuka-san got out of the car with a goofy smile on her face and opened the back seat door with a “yosho”. Is the luggage too big to put in the passenger seat? Is it too big?

If it’s a heavy load, I might as well take it out, I thought as I stepped into the car and peeked inside, there was a large mysterious object wrapped in a white cloth bag.


I am speechless. I was at a loss for words.

It was wrapped in a large white cloth, but I think it would be more appropriate to call it a wrapping. The top opening was tied with a large red ribbon, and the cloth was covered with star-shaped and heart-shaped stickers.

And what I could not ignore more than anything else was that two legs wearing a pink fabric garment that I had seen somewhere before were poking out from the bottom of the cloth. It was a delivery with a seatbelt on.

I silently watched the scene and tapped the protruding legs. Then the whole bag began to wriggle. Yes, it’s cute.

What do you really want to do, Kohinata family ……?

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