“A–mane.” Once he heard the doorbell and the cheeky, high pitched voice, he realized the situation, and clutched his head.
He was grateful that Mahiru would drop to cook lunch on Saturday, and thought it was a blessing from the heavens.
In fact, the carbonara she made was really delicious. The thick sauce and the black pepper matched perfectly, and it was really delicious.
It was not Mahiru’s fault, actually. Yes, she really was not at fault.
The fault was that he was told to stay at home, and did not notice why──along with this blood-related lady who loved pulling her surprises and the extraordinary.
“…Erm, Fujimiya-san? It’s not the delivery…”
“Nope. Mom took the key and went past the gates…”
Thinking about it, he was at fault for taking his mom for real when she would have wanted to observe him no matter what.
There was no way his mo would not be up to something.
“Most likely, mom wants to see if I’m doing well these days…she’s not telling me in advance because I’ll try to slip it past her.”
“I feel conflicted by how you look like you agree, but this isn’t important.”
The problem was, how would he deal with Mahiru who was here.
If she was at the gates, he could have Mahiru return home. However, since she was at his door, he could not do so. But if he led her in, she would surely meet Mahiru, and there would be a misunderstanding. Mahiru too would not wish for the same.
What shall I do? While he wondered, the intervals between the doorbell rings shortened.
“……Sorry Shiina, go into my room. Please.”
“Hold this. I’ll try to get my mom outside, and then you go home. Sorry about this, but please.”
He really had no choice but to hide her.
Lunch was made, but they had cleaned up the place, so that was fine.
The shoes could be hidden inside the shoe cabinet, and he would bring her blanket and other personal belongings into the room.
While she was in his room, he would offer some food once his mom was done inspecting, and she probably would agree to that. He would however refuse her if she demanded to inspect the room.
He would ask to make dishes using ingredients not in the fridge, and they would go shopping together. That would be the moment Mahiru would escape, or so he planned.
I don’t have a choice here, so he told Mahiru, handed her the extra key and begged her. While she was troubled, “Y-yes.” She nodded.
They were not using the storeroom, but in this season, it would be really cold without the heating.
There was heating and a fluffy cushion in Amane’s room, so she would not be sitting on an empty floor, aching all over in the cold.
“…I shall leave it to you then. I’ll deal with my mom…”
Amane was already tired before he even met his mom. Once he went towards the entrance, Mahiru silently slipped into his room.
Once he was sure she entered, he opened the door unwilling.
“Oh myーAmane, you’re late. I thought you were sleeping, but you look very lively.”
Immediately appearing before him was his mom, whom he had not seen since summer vacation.
She was his mom, but her appearance defied her age, and she was still wearing that usual cheerful look back home. One would say that it was not simply her appearance defying her age, but her actions too.
“Yeah yeah I’m fine so can you go back now?”
“Is that how you treat your mom? I spent hours to arrive, you know? How about some reward?”
“Thank you very much for taking the long trip here, please go back.”
“Still saying such things now? You really aren’t cute, unlike Shuuto-san.”
“I’m a guy, why do i have to be cute?”
Ack, so he felt like vomiting, but his mom──Shihoko did not have her mood ruined, “Still in the rebellious age.” as she merely giggled away, accepting it.
“May I come in?”
“Wait, I haven’t said anything.”
“The rental is paid by Shuuto-san and me, you know?”
Once she said that, he had no room to refuse, and he could only open the door with a scowl, inviting Shihoko in.
Of course, he walked along the wall where the bedroom was, stopping her from entering as he led her to the living room.
“Say mom, call before you drop by. I’m an adult.”
“Oh my, if I didn’t drop by for a sudden spot check, I would not have seen if my son’s doing well, you know?”
“Grr…you see, it’s fine here. All packed up.”
“Of course. It shocked me. You don’t do this at home, Amane, but you’re pretty capable yourself. I never expected that.”
Shihoko scanned the living room, nodding away as though she was marveling.
Of course, he worked together with Mahiru to clean up the apartment, and managed to maintain it like this due to her advice and reminders. It was all her contribution, but he could not mention it to Shihoko at this point.
“Your skin looks good. Looks like you’ve been taking proper nutrition.”
He averted his eyes, for that too was thanks to Mahiru.
“Looks like you’ve been cooking…huh, two persons’ worth?”
She pointed her manicured finger at the cutlery.
Two people ate lunch, so there were two plates. He was careless not to have noticed it, but Shihoko seemed fine with that.
“A friend visited.”
But that was not a lie.
He was uncertain, but they were already on the level of friends, so his words were not wrong, it seemed. He never said the gender though.
He tried his best not to look rattled as he answered. “Hmm.” So Shihoko answered, seemingly unconvinced as she looked over to the living room.
Somehow, he managed to bluff her, but he was dripping cold sweat.
“Well, passable…it does not feel like a boy is living alone.”
Shihoko looked around, asked a few questions, got a few answers, and surmised thusly.
In a certain sense, it was to be expected. Mahiru had her hands in most of these things.
“There’s nothing to worry about now right, mom?”
“Yes. It really shocked me. You couldn’t do anything when you’re at home. Looks like you’ve grown.”
“…Well I can grow.”
From whose mouth do those words come from anyway, so he quietly reproached himself as he answered. “You’ve worked hard there.” so Shihoko beamed.
He did not appreciate the compliments, for it was not him who did so.
But he could not say the truth, and could only endure and beg her to return home.
At the very least, she was done checking on him.
Maybe she’ll go back without asking me to cook for her──but right when Amane had this thought.
“And now I’ll check the bedroom.”
The final bombshell landed, and he widened his eyes.
Check the bedroom. In other words, his room…the bedroom.
Of course, Mahiru was inside it. If she was found, he could easily imagine how his situation would end up much worse than his initial plan for them to meet.
“Hey what. You can’t go in even though you’re my mom.”
“Oh, is there something unsightly in there?”
“A normal high school boy would have one or two unsightly things in there.”
“You’re admitting to that, huh.”
“Yeah I admit it, so don’t go in.”
This would be where he would stop her with all he got. Even if his pride was shattered, he had to hide Mahiru’s existence until the very end.
At this point, if Mahiru was spotted in Amane’s room, Shihoko would surely be having happy delusions, and that was something he wanted to avoid no matter what.
He was stubbornly refusing to let Shihoko through, basically shouting no as he stood before the door. Shihoko quickly deduced that there was something hidden inside the room. “You’re hiding something from mom~.” she beamed as she loomed in.
I’m really sorry, but I need to stop you even if I have to be forceful, such was his attitude as he faced off against.
But there was a thud in his room.
“What are you hiding inside?”
“…Nothing to do with you, mom.”
“So you say. I see.”
The smile got wider.
It had a irresistible pressure, and whenever he saw this smile, Amane found himself in much discomfort, his desire to refuse greatly worn down.
It was a force of habit, something he could not change.
Gu, while he groaned, Shihoko seized the opportunity to put her hand on the door.
Uh oh. It was too late to regret.
Shihoko went around Amane to check on the sound, and opened the door.
And beyond the door──was a pretty girl leaning by the bed, cupping a cushion on her knee.
Her eyes were closed, her breathing steady…basically, Mahiru was asleep.
Napping was a common instance.
She was in a warm room with heating on, and just had lunch. These two conditions were prime for her to fall asleep.
Does she usually sleep in a boy’s room? For a moment, he had such a thought, but since she had deemed him as innocent, Mahiru might have accidentally fallen asleep.
She could not be blamed for this though. It was boring to wait foolishly without making a sound, and some things just happen.
The reason why he had his head cupped was because his mom Shihoko barged into his room at this moment, and witnessed her in this state.
Truly, there was a misunderstanding.
If he was in someone else’s shoes, Amane too would have misunderstood, thinking that they were on such good terms, she could be sufficiently careless to sleep in his room.
His face twitched as he glanced aside at his mom, and found her eyes dazzling as she stared at Mahiru. “Oh my oh my.” so her heart started to blurt out, or perhaps he was just over imagining things.
“Oh dear Amane, you found such a cute girlfriend! You really can’t be underestimated!”
Kyaa, she squealed with a voice unbefitting her age, and his head started to ache.
She had completely misunderstood, and was completely excited.
Typically, no parent would be that excited to see her son bring a girlfriend home.
But she was definitely so excited because she loved cute things.
Well, it was true Mahiru had the appearance of a really pretty girl.
She was completely defenseless as she slept, her usual facade shed, and most importantly, her expression and actions clear to see.
The speckless face was in a relaxed, peaceful state.
He was used to it, but every time he saw Mahiru, he found her pretty face exquisite, extremely adorable. The innocent sleeping face was so defenseless, so adorable that he had the urge to pat it.
The way she hugged Amane’s cushion strongly whetted the kind of desire Amane really did not want to talk about.
To Shihoko, the girl who was so pretty that the already familiar Amane had to admit so, appeared to be her son’s girlfriend (for the moment).
It was likely this was the reason for her excitement.
“So you didn’t want mom to enter because your girlfriend is inside? Goodness, you’re becoming a man before I know it!”
“Not at all! Absolutely not! She’s not my girlfriend, not anything!”
“Ahh, you don’t have to find excuses now, you know? Mom’s not going to object to anyone you choose, Amane.”
“Eh no that’s not the problem here! We’re not dating! Not at all!！”
“You say you’re not, but she’s in your room, you know?”
“That’s because you suddenly popped by! Even if she’s in the living room, you would have misunderstood!”
“Well, the main issue is that if you never intended to, you wouldn’t have invited a girl into your house. If the girl doesn’t like you, she wouldn’t be in your house, right?”
Upon being pointed out, he tried to think of a retort, but could not think of any.
As Shihoko had mentioned, Amane normally treats his house as his own territory, and would not be willing to invite others in.
Initially, he let Mahiru in because of the turn of events, but ever since that, leaving aside the cooking, Amane let Mahiru into his house because he was interested in her personality.
（Well, I can say that I like her.）
Even without talking about her appearance, Amane really did like the girl Mahiru.
She had a conflicting personality she typically would not show in school, vicious, blunt, and yet dishonest; she looked aloof, yet she loved to care for others; she never minced her words; whenever the unexpected was pointed out, she would panic and show a look befitting her age; a few rare times, she would show an innocent smile. At this point, Amane felt these were all of Mahiru’s charms
It could not be described as love, but at the very least, he found her to be a really attractive girl.
“I like her as a friend, but don’t think it as love for the opposite gender. Also, she doesn’t have interest in me.”
They were not so close for him to agree with Shihoko. To be honest, Mahiru might not be happy about being misunderstood, that she had feelings for Amane.
“Oh my, you can’t say that though? You’re not getting a little uppity just because you think you understand the complex feelings of a girl, are you?”
“How many times, mom, must I tell you we don’t have that relationship…Shiina, please, wake up…”
Even after saying all he could, Shihoko kept talking about love, and Amane could only put his hand on his forehand.
He really wished she could wake up earlier.
The prayer might have worked, or perhaps she woke up because of the commotion.
Mahiru slowly lifted her eyelids, making a sweet sound as she lifted her face.
Her flax-colored hair slid off her shoulders.
Her caramel-colored eyes were blurry and moist, such defenselessness left Amane unable to stare at her.
She looked up at Amane with sleepy eyes, probably aware that she was not completely awake, and he averted his eyes slightly.
“Shiina, forget about how you fell asleep, please help me clear up this misunderstanding.”
“Hey hey, girlfriend, your name?”
A fluffy Mahiru reflected on the meaning of those words, and Shihoko approached her without restraint, grinning away like a goody-goody.
Mahiru herself was confused after waking up, and faced with such an unfiltered smile and cordialness, her eyes were looking flustered.
“Nice to meet you. It’s important to introduce each other, you know!”
“Eh, M-Mahiru Shiina…”
“My, Mahiru-chan, such an adorable name! I’m Shihoko, you can call me by my name.”
Mahiru was pressed into giving her name, and she looked towards Amane, giving the “Save me, Fujimiya-san” look. Amane himself was hoping that someone else would save him, and because he could not help, he shook his head to refuse.
He knew his mom really well, that once she lost control, there’s no stopping her.
Seeing how there’s exceeding interest, it appeared she wanted to have a full conversation with Mahiru for the first time.
Though she might not have noticed that the important Mahiru was looking troubled.
“Oh! So you’re recognizing me as mom?”
“Fujimiya may refer to Amane and me. Hey, Amane.”
“Mom, you’re troubling Shiina.”
“Amane, you can’t be calling your girlfriend by anything other than her name, you know?”
Amane frowned, for Shihoko really was not listening to him, but Shihoko did not appear to mind as she continued to grin. She was either a bold one, or thick skinned at least.
“Actually, Fujimiya and I-I,”
“Which one are you referring to~?”
“…I-I do not have that kind of relationship with A-Amane-kun.”
Mahiru was clearly flustered by Shihoko’s taunting words, but she did her best to deny it
With Shihoko prompting, Mahiru said his name after much trepidation, shooting a few looks at him. Shihoko in turn beamed away now that she got Mahiru to call Amane’s name.
“Oh, will this be how the relationship goes in the future?”
“Eh, e-erm, that is not.”
“Oh dear, am I being a third wheel over here?”
“E-erm, please let me explain! I do not have this kind of relationship with Amane, kun. Just eating together. Amane-kun cannot cook after all.”
“You make a good bride, Mahiru-chan. Our Amane here has to live alone without knowing how to do housework. If this is so, please continue to support him.”
He felt Mahiru was doing her best.
But it was impossible to fend off against Shihoko’s momentum and explain.
Shihoko’s eyes were glittering more than ever once she knew Mahiru had been dropping by regularly, cooking for him, eating together with him.
At this point, Amane could not stop Shihoko. The only one who could would be his father Shuuto.
“…Give it up, Shiina. My mom’s not going to listen once she gets all excited.”
Amane was at the point of enlightenment, and could only give up and explain, staring slightly at his mom who was out of control.
“Speaking of which, mom’s shocked to see that you got such a pretty girlfriend, Amane.”
Amane was too tired to deny it, and he remained silent with Mahiru, who did not know what to do.
Shihoko took silence as consent…or rather, no matter what they say, she would think they were hiding their awkwardness. With curious eyes, she stared at Mahiru intently.
“How is it, Mahiru-chan? Is Amane doing well now?”
“Eh…well actually…I do not think he will die…”
“Say something nice already.”
“But when I first came to this house, it was so empty.”
“Don’t be so harsh now. Look, it’s clean now, right?”
“But that is because I helped to clean up.”
“Well yeah, yep, got to thank you for everything, from food to cleaning to whatever.”
He really could not lift his head to Mahiru when it came to these.
It was because of her presence that he lived a comfortable life till this point, and he would have kowtowed and thanked her without hesitation, but he would not because she did not want that. However, he did intend to work hard every day to repay Mahiru.
But it was just that Shihoko took these words in a not-too-good direction.
“Well, Amane, you’ve been letting Mahiru-chan help out all the time, and not just this once? What a troublesome kid you are…it sounds like you’re living together.”
“That’s not it!! How did you end up thinking that’s the case!? She just lives next door!”
“Oh my, this is a fated encounter! It’s nice isn’t it, Amane, you have such a pretty and capable girl taking care of you.”
“I can’t deny that she’s pretty and capable I have to argue about this being a fated encounter.”
“Romantic, isn’t it?”
“That’s not what I mean! I’m saying that we’re not dating!”
Shihoko definitely was thinking Amane was trying to hide his embarrassment, while the latter’s cheeks were about to twitch.
She always took events as food for her amazing delusions, and the son who had been tormented by such a mom countless times let out the heaviest sigh in months.
And Mahiru, overwhelmed by this astounding pressure, looked back and forth between Amane and Shihoko, clearly at a loss of what to do.
“Mahiru-chan, Mahiru-chan, I may be a parent biased to her son; our Amane here is foul mouthed and dishonest, but he’s really straightforward and gentlemanly here, so you can take it that you bought a good item. He doesn’t have any experience with the ladies, so you need to carefully control him, Mahiru-chan.”
“What are you saying now mom, shut up.”
The last half was clearly unnecessary.
“But I’m saying the truth here. Actually, why didn’t you look for a girlfriend in the first place. It’s nice that you look similar to Shuuto-san; maybe it’s because you look boorish?”
“Stop being a busybody.”
“Maybe you should show Mahiru-chan your cool side?”
“I’m not going to, and she doesn’t want to see that.”
“Here we go again. Ahh, Mahiru-chan, shall I doll him up in a way you’ll like? Amane’s pretty handsome if he cleans up a little?”
Mahiru saw Shihoko grin away as she nudged at him, and gave a blank, confused smile.
In a certain sense, Shihoko was truly terrifying to intimidate the usually poised Angel this much.
“Mom, you’re really troubling Shiina. Hurry up and go back already.”
“You’re all grown up now, aren’t you? Wanting me to go back.”
“Seriously, I beg of you. Look, Shiina’s looking troubled.”
“Don’t ask her now. She’ll definitely be courteous. Just go back now, we can discuss this later.”
“Well, since you said so much, fine. It’s true that I’m disturbing your sweet time with your girlfriend…you really don’t want me disturbing your time together, huh?”
“Whatever you think of it. Just go back already.”
He was too tired to deny it, and Mahiru too must be tired from how Shihoko was being all excited.
He looked over to Mahiru, and found her a little tired.
He made up his mind to comfort her as he waved his hand, ushering Shihoko out of the door. The latter looked a little displeased, but she did not say she was going to stay, probably out of concern, though in a clearly different direction.
“Ah, Mahiru-chan, let’s exchange numbers. Do tell me of how our Amane is doing later.”
Finally, Shihoko established a relationship that had Amane begging for mercy, and he put a hand on his forehead.
Mahiru obediently exchanged numbers over the phone, going along with the flow.
There was no doubt that Shihoko would start to meddle with Mahiru.
“We’ll leave our Amane to you now.” So she held Mahiru’s hands with a Cheshire cat’s grin, and Amane decided to send a message to his dad, “Please leash mom a little.”
“I am tired…”
“Sorry that a tornado dropped by.”
Shihoko did not stay for long, but they were already worn out, seated side by side on the sofa.
Amanae was slouched into the sofa, covering his face as he let out a long sigh. Mahiru was a little more cautious, but her usually straightened back too was more arched than usual.
She, who was usually the most poised of all people, was completely worn out by Shihoko. He did not know whether to be terrified of Shihoko, or to apologize to Mahiru as the son.
“I’m really sorry for sending her back without resolving the misunderstanding.”
“No, well, not much was lost…”
“No well, there’s damage…it looks like she’s really interested in you, Shiina…she’s going to bother you with lots of things now…”
He caused Mahiru problems again thanks to that, and was really apologetic to her.
Shihoko saw her son’s girlfriend (even though it was a misunderstanding), and she really loved cute things, so she was really interested in Mahiru, and would really take care of the latter, to busybody levels.
“It looks like Shihoko-san really cares about you, Fujimiya-san.”
“That’s the nice way of putting it, but she’s annoying…”
Not that she was being a complete idiot, but the affection she showed was something he did not want.
Amane too was at fault for being too careless, so he could not say much about this, but even he too felt she was a busybody.
He was really grateful for his mom’s feelings, but to be honest, she was a hassle and someone he wanted to keep his distance from.
“…That is nice.”
Mahiru muttered, and Amane looked at her.
“Your mother is quite boisterous, but she is kind.”
“That’s just noisy and a busybody.”
“…But that is fine too.”
She was not being simply courteous, she was showing an envious look. She muttered with a fleeting tone, and lowered her eyes.
Looking over, her face was melancholic, on the verge of shattering upon contact. Anyone would have found her fragile.
She did not simply look tired, but also feeble and fleeting. . She seemed to have felt Amane’s stare as she suddenly lifted her head, smiling.
She regained her usual expression, as though nothing had happened, and in a rare gesture, reclined into the sofa.
“Mahiru-chan, huh? ”
“…What’s with that out of a sudden.”
“No…it has been a while since someone called me by my name. They usually call me Shiina.”
Amane was surprised to learn that nobody addressed the super popular Angel herself, but it was probably because everyone was too intimidated to call her by her given name.
She was the flawless Angel at school, and nobody dared to call her so.
Also, there were a few who called her by her nickname, though she herself hated it.
“If not your good friends, then your parents.”
“My parents will not call me so. Absolutely not.”
A frosty instant reply.
He inadvertently looked over at Mahiru’s face, and found it to be devoid of color.
It was emotionless, as though they were stripped bare, a non-living thing even. Due to the perfect face before him, he had a moment when he thought she was a doll.
But that lasted only for a moment, for once she noticed Amane’s stare, she locked away the stoic look, frowning as though something was troubling her.
“…Anyway, it is rare to begin with.”
She quietly muttered, and let out a sigh.
He could tell that Mahiru was on bad terms with her parents.
She would occasionally show a frosty look whenever her parents were mentioned. She never went out to eat with her parents, hated her birthday, and from what she said, one could imagine she had family issues──but he never imagined her parents not calling her by name before.
『…That is nice.』
One had to question her feelings when she muttered that.
He naturally called out the name he never once did.
The caramel-colored eyes blinked once.
It was unexpected, so she appeared to be spacing out, showing an immaturity hidden beneath her usual demeanour and expression. It would be appropriate to say she was taken aback.
“Anyone can call you by name, right?”
“…Well, you are right.”
So he quipped stiffly, and after a while, a faint smile appeared.
The relieved smile formed ripples in his heart.
She whispered his name, and the ripples grew wider.
Just moments ago, Amane did not pay much heed as Mahiru only used it when talking to his mom…but when she addressed him so, he felt a swirling itch, something in his heart.
“Please don’t call me that outside.”
“…I know that. You in turn should not let it slip outside.”
“I get that. It’s a secret.”
He dared not look directly at a smiling Mahiru.
“Yeah.” so he tersely answered, looking to the side while pretending to change posture, evading that smile.
Ever since the sudden strike from his mom on Saturday, there was a change in the manner Amane and Mahiru addressed each other, but nothing else really special.
Neither did the relationship suddenly improve, but as they started addressing each other a little intimately, Mahiru’s attitude had softened, somewhat.
On Sunday evening, Mahiru showed up a little earlier, her face showing some awkwardness, or worry.
Amane let her in, but he did not know why she was giving such an ambiguous attitude.
He wondered if she was having issues with him calling her by name, but she had no hesitation calling his name, so there seemed to be something else
Both of them sat on the sofa. Amane looked towards Mahiru, and found her pull out a handkerchief from her apron pocket.
While he was wondering what was going on, she opened the neatly folded handkerchief, and pulled out a key wrapped inside it, reflecting a dim light.
He had some impression of this key, for it was the one he gave her the previous day.
“I am returning this key, since I did not do so last night. Erm, I forgot about it, so I missed the chance to return it to you…I am really sorry.”
It appeared she was concerned about the fact that she took the key home without returning.
Once he understood why she was acting so strangely, he looked towards the key on the handkerchief.
Thinking about it, he realized Mahiru would practically drop by every day to cook dinner. While Amane would open the door for her, there were some times when he would take the long road home, and not be at home, so she would have to wait outside for a little while.
It would be too harsh to make someone wait at the entrance, let alone a female.
It was said the greatest enemy to a female’s body was the cold, and putting himself in her position, he would not have felt comfortable either.
Well, since Mahiru would drop by every day, it would be easier for him to hand her the key.
“Well, I guess it’s fine that you keep it.”
“You can return it when we have nothing to do with each other.”
Truth be told, if Amane left the key to Mahiru, it would mean she would have to take care of him for a while, but she looked back at him worriedly, for he did not receive the key.
“Or rather, it’s troublesome for me to go open the door every time.”
“Your true voice is leaking out.”
“It’s not like you’re going to misuse it.”
“You say so…”
At least a month passed ever since he got dinner from her and had her cook at his place, and he thought he understood her personality well.
She had common sense and a good conscience, and her personality was not devious.
Even though she had the key, she would not hand it off to someone else, or slip in while Amane was not around. She was someone trustworthy.
“Well, you find it a hassle to press the doorbell every time, right?”
“Even if you say so, it feels like you are being too careless.”
“I gave you the key because I trust you.”
Mahiru’s eyes widened once she heard these words, speechless, and then she frowned.
The skepticism on her face was accompanied by a different unknown emotion.
But Amane merely handed the key over to Mahiru, all the save the hassle. If she really did not want to, he was willing to take a step back.
Mahiru in turn looked back and forth between the key and Amane──before she sighed.
“…Understood. I shall borrow it for now.”
“Amane-kun, I don’t know if you are being magnanimous or careless.”
Goodness, so she said with some spite, and Amane responded with a wry smile.
“That’s my style.”
“This isn’t for you to say about yourself.”
Hmph, so she pointed out coldly, only for Amane to smile brighter than before.
It appeared they were already on sufficiently familiar terms for him to have such useless conversations.
But since she permitted him to use her given name, it would be strange to say they were not on familiar terms.
I really had enough of this person, so her eyes implied, but they were filled with some warmth, rather than looking aloof.
And she knew that Amane was just joking around.
“I shall take it then. I do not care if anything happens to your house.”
“…Like if I pop by to clean up your house.”
“I’ll be grateful for that.”
“What if I stuff the fridge full of food?”
“Then I’ll get to enjoy breakfast, and there’s more things to eat for dinner.”
Mahiru’s little jokes were really peaceful, or even music to his ears, what he wanted. Nevertheless, the muted reactions had her a little unhappy.
The threat did not seem like a threat, it emphasized her kindness, and really was something to smile about.
“I feel that I have been treated as a fool.”
“I didn’t do that.”
It appeared if he continued to tease her, she would kick up a fuss. While he really wanted to see her pout, he sheathed his smile and stared at Mahiru.