“Good morning Amane.”
Amane’s parents were waiting for him at the living room.
Breakfast was being prepared, and that includes Amane’s share. Dishes could be heard being prepared in the kitchen, and a familiar flax color could be seen. Mahiru was probably making omelettes.
“Hurry and sit down now. Mahiru-chan’s making breakfast for you now.”
It took Amane a while to arrive, for he had to cool himself down in various ways. Thus Mahiru, who should have spent much time tidying herself, was already making breakfast.
it might be better for Amane since they agreed to have omelettes, but a little more restraint would be prudent.
“You two are really on good terms.”
“…Well we’re dating, that’s very normal, right?”
“You say so, but this is beyond boyfriend and girlfriend. She is acting like a young wife.”
The moment Shuuto suddenly said so while looking towards Amane, one could hear a plate dropped in the basin.
Luckily, it did not shatter, but surely it was because Mahiru was greatly rattled.
“Ara, Mahiru-chan, are you fine?”
“Y-yes, the plate is not broken. I apologize for dropping it…”
“That’s fine~ everyone makes mistakes.”
This mistake was caused by them, but Amane never mentioned this, and ignored Shihoko’s leer towards him.
“So, did something happen yesterday?”
Mahiru made omelettes for Amane, sat down, and the quartet had breakfast.
Shihoko went straight for the haymaker the moment Amane had a mouthful in his mouth, and the latter froze.
He slowly chewed since it would be bad to talk while talking, and once done, he said,
“…Why do you think so?”
“We realized you two were a little different once we got back, so our guess is that something happened.”
“Don’t underestimate your parents. We’re able to see how our son has changed.”
Amane intended to act as normal, but it appeared his parents has seen through them.
They looked a little worried, but he had crossed the hurdle. It was in the past, and nothing to worry about.
“Nothing much. I just met Tojo. Had a few words with him.”
“Ah, so that’s how it is…problem is solved, I suppose?”
“Well yeah. I’ve overcome this. I don’t think I’ll be frustrated by them again.”
“You’re acting more like a man. That’s a good thing.”
Shuuto seemed really relieved to know that Amane was fine.
Back then, Amane caused his parents much worry, which lasted till this day. Amane did buck up a little after he started high school, but it seemed this was still a concern to his parents.
While Shuuto looked a little more relieved, Shihoko seemed a little dumbfounded to hear Tojo’s name.
“That Tojo hasn’t changed at all. Well, his parents are decent, and he’s still in his rebellious phase.”
Shihoko had vast connections due to her personality and work reasons, so many that it was pointless. Amane could not imagine the adults having such relationships, but perhaps it was because he did not know.
Of course, since she interacted with the locals, that would mean Tojo’s parents too.
Amane did meet Tojo’s parents before, and recalled they were really as kind as their appearances would imply. They actually apologized for what their son did, so he did not have any feelings about him.
“Who knows. I don’t have anything to do with him, and I don’t care. I probably won’t meet him again.”
“Your virtue is that you let bygones be bygones, Amane…if you remained despondent, we would have regretted calling you back home.”
Even though the agreement was that Amane would return to his hometown biannually, Amane’s parents seemed worried about Amane.
“Well, I’m the one who decided to come back…and since we met, I guess we sorted out everything. It’s all good.”
Amane felt that this encounter was a good thing.
It was better for him to meet it head on than to have shivers in his heart, and grow from it. This proved that Amane was completely healed inside.
It was because of Tojo and the others he did not meet again that he got to meet Mahiru. He might really have to be grateful for them, though they might be unhappy about it.
Shihoko showed a kind smile once she saw Amane devoid of worries.
“Children do grow after all. You were on the verge of breaking down back then, and it was worrying…but I guess there’s nothing to worry about now.”
“Love makes people stronger after all.”
“Don’t say such an embarrassing thing…”
“But it is true though?
“Hahaha. I’m glad that you finally found yourself a partner, like me and Shihoko-san.”
Mahiru, who was listening silently, shriveled. Shuuto and Shihoko looked elated.
“Do rely on Amane when you need to, Mahiru-chan. I’m worried when you’re always taking care of him.”
“N-not at all. I-I have been relying on Amane-kun all the time. He is the one supporting me.”
Amane felt he should be the one saying these words, but Mahiru looked towards him bashfully, for she might really think so.
“That’s good…and don’t rely completely on Mahiru’s efforts, Amane. Do help each other out, you know?”
“I get that. I’ve always been by her side. Of course I’ll definitely help her.”
Amane intended to continue helping Mahiru as they live together, even without anyone reminding him so.
He did not want to be someone who completely relied on others and not consider the burden caused. Truth be told, Amane would be a good-for-nothing without Mahiru, but he did not want to be a good-for-nothing, personality-wise.
And just as he received Mahiru’s aid this time, he would support her if she suffered, and hold her hand.
This is what it means to live together, Amane remembered these words to heart as he looked at his parents, and hoped to remain so.
Finding that person he could rely on might be his biggest blessing in life.
He did not stand by Mahiru’s side half-heartedly. He looked aside, and found her lushing and shivering.
She appeared to be on the verge of tears, but in fact, she was about to explode from the shame.
Once her eyes met Amane’s she immediately lowered her eyes. Clearly she was getting restless due to the shame she felt.
Despite that, Amane could not let her escape, so he held her hand under the table. She jolted, and held his hand back to cushion the impact.
“Oh my, how adorable. I would have enjoyed myself if not for the fact that I have to work.”
Shihoko beamed once she saw Mahiru being in that state.
As she said, she probably would dote on Mahiru if not for work.
“Hurry off to work.”
“So you’re going to make out when we’re gone?”
It seemed Amane would be teased no matter what he did, so he simply affirmed boldly. The hand he was holding shivered, its grip not weakening however.
Amane felt Mahiru was probably delighted.
He would have flatly denied it in the past. Thus, Shihoko was shocked by his honest admission, only to smile thereafter.
“Why that’s bold of you to say so.”
“That’s good. it’s springtime for you, Amane.”
“But it might get hot like the summer.”
“You two don’t get to say this when you’re always in summer.”
“Since you’re born by us who are always in summer, how about you join us?”
Shihoko chirped away, smiling as she seemingly blessed them. Amane gave a bitter look, but he decided it was not worth it, since Mahiru did not seem unwilling, and he gave up, turning his head aside.