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https://kakuyomu.jp/works/16817330660244416563/episodes/16817330661211127226

When was the first time I met her, Ogi Licia…

………Yes, that’s when I changed schools, so I was in the 5th grade.

I was in the fifth grade when my dad’s company decided to move its home base and I transferred schools.

“Yes~! Everyone, pay attention, we are going to be in this class together from today onwards…Here, introduce yourself.”

“I’m Takiyama Ren. I’m looking forward to working with you.”

“Nice to meet you~”

“Nice to meet you.”

My first impression of the class was that it was a good class, with good overall rapport and no major conflicts.

But I was wrong.

“Okay, Takiyama-kun, you will sit in the window row, first back, right?”

“Yes, I understand.”

The seat next to me was next to a girl who had been on my mind ever since I joined this class.

I was very happy to see her. She had beautiful brown hair, light blue eyes that were different from mine, and enough reason to be interested in me.

“I’m going to be next to you from today on.”

I spoke to the girl sitting next to me.

“……….”

She doesn’t respond.

I was thinking that I might have been too familiar with her out of the blue…

“…………… Licia.”

“Eh?”

“……… Ogi, Licia…”

“Licia…that’s a nice name!”

“………T-thank you.”

“Licia, are you half-Japanese or half-Russian?”

“……… I am half Japanese and half Russian.”

“Oh, I see! Half-Japanese is kind of cool!”

“……… T-thank you.”

I wanted to know more about her. I was not interested in her romance, but in her arms.

“Licia san, what’s up with that bruise?”

Yes, Ogi Licia had many bruises on her arms. Upon closer inspection, I found that she had bruises not only on her arms, but also on her legs and other parts of her body.

“……………”

“Licia?”

“….. bruises.. just fell.”

I felt uncomfortable with her statement as if she was hiding something from me.

And I soon found out what that discomfort was.

I asked her a question in the empty after-school classroom.

“Licia-san…could it be…that you are being bullied?”

“!?”

That reaction… right on…

That’s when my suspicion that she was being bullied became a certainty.

“Who’s bullying you?”

“……………”

“Licia, say something…”

“Why are you…”

“Hmm?”

“Why do I have to say that to Takiyama-kun!?”

“Licia-san…”

“Takiyama-kun, will you help me?!”

“Yes, I want to help you, Licia-san.”

“It’s a lie! It’s a lie! It’s a lie! I can’t believe it! I told the doctor over and over again! But he said he would help me, and he still hasn’t said anything to them! I’ve heard him say many times that he would help me! Takiyama-kun must be just like him and them!”

“Licia-san…”

This must have been her true feelings, no matter how many times she asked for help, no one would help her. She probably can’t trust anyone else because it seems so obvious to her.

I wanted to help her.

“I will definitely help you, believe me on this.”

“……… Really? Can I really trust you?”

“Yes, believe me.”

Later, when I heard what she told me about the bullying, I became incredibly angry. She said that the bullying was caused by trivial things. At first it was things that still seemed cute, such as things being hidden or lost, but it gradually escalated to the point where she found herself being bullied in unimaginable ways, such as being forced to confess to someone she didn’t like, or having bugs put inside her shoe box.

“……… But, Takiyama-kun. You don’t have to help me.”

“Why?”

“If you save me, you’ll be the next one bullied.”

“Licia san, please don’t say you don’t need me. There is no one in this world who deserves to be bullied.”

Takiyama-kun…thank you…”

When I saw Licia start to cry raggedly, I thought that she must have been in real pain because until now anyone who has offered to help her has only said so, and no one has helped her.

***

I gathered the people who were bullying her, whom Licia san had told me about, in my classroom after school the next day.

“Takiyama, what do you want to talk about?”

“I want you to stop bullying Licia-san.”

“Haa? We’re the ones who are bullying Licia? No, of course not.”

“Can you please stop lying to me? Licia san told me everything.”

“Ah~, so you noticed. I was trying to be nice to you since you are a new student.”

“I don’t need you to be nice to me. Stop picking on her.”

“I don’t like it. I’ve found an interesting toy. I’m not going to stop now.”

His comment was so crazy that I wondered if he was really in the fifth grade.

“One last piece of advice. Stop picking on Licia san.”

“I told you! I told you I’m not going to stop! Don’t you understand until you see the pain! You guys, hurt him a little.”

They come at me.

“So this is how it’s going to end up…”

I had no choice but to do it before they did it to me.

I don’t remember the details of what happened after that.

After that, the vice principal came into the classroom and scolded me and the others. But then I told the teacher about Licia san’s bullying, and their parents were called in and they were scolded. By the way, they called my parents too. they were so angry.

***

“Bye. Licia-san.”

“Yes, Takiyama-kun.”

Licia-san had been talking to her parents about the bullying for a while now, and they had decided to transfer her to a new school. They wouldn’t be able to entrust their child to a school with a teacher who wouldn’t respond no matter how much she asked for help.

 

“………Takiyama-kun.”

“What?”

“Takiyama-kun never lied. He helped me. Thank you so much.”

I was thinking how nice it is when people thank you from the bottom of their hearts…

“Я буду продолжать думать о тебе на всю жизнь”

“Eh? What did you say?”

“I won’t tell you. These are my thoughts.”

With those words, she transferred to another school.

“I should have studied Russian…”

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