After the exams came the most important event of the year, the cultural festival.
Amane’s school had a heavy focus on this event that required the participation of all students, and thus each class was given an ample budget, and there were exciting events every year.
“So let’s decide what our class will be doing!”
Of course, all the students would decide what their class would do. The atmosphere certainly was lively.
Standing at the podium excitedly was Itsuki.
He, who loved such festivals, would obviously volunteer to be part the festival committee, but one had to be amused by how he actually got chosen.
“Hm hm, so, what we’re doing for this culture festival. Before that, I’ll like to point out that there’s a fixed number of classes allowed to do food stalls. Basically, every class is planning to do food, so competition will be intense. We better get ready for it.”
Of course, there was a fixed number of food stalls to be allowed.
F&B stalls were very popular, for they often were good chances to run a business, and every class might want to run one. This would mean there would only be food stalls, and thus a limit was imposed.
Also, there was no way to satisfy the demand fully, due to hygiene concerns and space in the cooking classrooms.
“So check out the documents passed down. There’s quite a few things listed that we might need to spend on, but we actually have them. Check through everything, even those that aren’t written that can be suggested. Anyway, let’s suggest stuff that can be done under this budget…hmmm, if there’s anything to suggest, let’s raise hands and speak up.”
Once Itsuki said so, the students started raising hands frantically.
Their eyes were dazzling, and the importance of this activity was obvious.
After all, the culture festival was a highly anticipated grand event.
But I just skipped it last year.
Amane was not as enthused as a student should be, and went through the cultural festival just like that. Back then, his class elected to sell handmade products, so he did as asked, and tended to the stall during his time.
He stared at the exuberant classmates from afar.
“Me me! I I recommend a cafe that’s always a must for this festival!”
“Hmmm, that’s expected. Just an ordinary cafe?”
“How about a maid cafe?”
“Think about it, Shiina-san’s in this class…it’ll definitely suit us.”
The voices started to trail off at the end as they all looked towards Mahiru. Amane was a little peeved, but not to the point where he wanted to say something.
“Hahaha, I wonder if you guys considered the budget, but that’s the enthusiasm I want. Let’s add it to the list then.”
The boys got active at the idea of Mahiru in a maid outfit. Amane gave them a dumbfounded look, and then met Itsuki in the eyes.
The latter answered back with a ‘is this fine’ stare, and Amane looked unwilling.
He did have issues, at the very least.
Mahiru usually stood out, and was often the center of attention.
Her cuteness had risen to another level recently, and her in a maid outfit would surely garner crowds, which she would have trouble dealing with.
On the other hand, this would guarantee sales. Mahiru’s existence was a sufficient advert, and the boys would surely swarm in just to have a look.
As for the person herself, she showed an awkward, unspeakable smile once she was talked about.
It was to be expected, for it was not a comfortable feeling to be taken as the center of attention.
It was merely a suggestion however, and a courtesy to not nitpick at it. Amane would refuse if Mahiru really disliked it.
“A maid cafe is really more male oriented, but we have to consider the budget before that. Alright, next…”
Itsuki led the class further, and everyone suggested a haunted house, curry and udon, stalls that sold the usual stuff for a cultural festival. The blackboard was gradually filled with white words.
But everyone’s…or rather, the boys’ interest seemed to be on the maid cafe, for there were some hushed chatter.
“Shiina-san in maid uniform though…”
“But that Fujimiya’s around…”
“Don’t worry, Fujimiya’s a guy too. He’ll definitely want to see his girlfriend in maid clothes.”
Amane heard that, but unfortunately, he disagreed.
It would be a complete lie to say that he did not want to see that at all, but he did not wish to parade her around as a trophy. He did not want to insist on her wearing it, knowing how tired she would be.
Amane glared at them, and they hastily looked away once they noticed.
Mahiru giggled as she probably noticed, and Amane’s eyes relaxed a little.
“Say Amane, any suggestions?”
Itsuki suddenly asked, and Amane looked over in annoyance.
“You look like you have something to say.”
Amane did have something to say, but not to him. Nevertheless, the mere mention had his classmates looking at him, and he would ruin the mood if he did not.
After wondering what he should do, he chose what seemed the easiest to him.
“…If I have to put it, maybe we can investigate some local history and create an exhibit.”
The class quieted down once he said his idea.
It was awkward, like a dampener.
“…I think it’s good though. Once we investigate all we have, we’ll show a little exhibit, and then we get the free time to go around and enjoy the festival. We don’t have to worry about the time, and can visit any class we want.”
I see, such a sentiment echoed in the class once Amane changed his explanation.
Amane did not think the students would be interest in local history, and he just wanted some free time after their preparations.
A food stall would be popular, but it would definitely require lots of time, manpower and labor. Money would be involved, and they had to tend to the stall, which would make things difficult.
An exhibit for example could be set up during the preparation phase, and only one or two persons would be needed.
A cultural festival had two days, one for each person, would not take up an hour, and manpower and time-wise, would be very efficient.
The most important thing however was that it would not generate revenue. Visitors could stand wherever they wanted.
An exhibit would be easier for those who had no confidence in their service skills, looks, and culinary expertise. Amane was completely aware of this as an example.
“Say, it’s really just like you.”
Itsuki did not hold back on how dumbfounded he was, and Amane merely stated his thoughts, turned aside, and shut up.
Mahiru too looked over, her eyes basically stating, it really is just like you, Amane-kun. Amane felt awkward, but he could only sigh as he could not retract the words he said.
“Ehh, so the top vote goes to the maid cafe, so it’s decided alright?”
For the time being, they decided on the maid cafe, which got the most votes from the boys.
“I’ll report our decision to the student council, and we’ll draw lots. If don’t win, we’ll choose the haunted house that came second. We’ll also have to find someone who can get us the clothes, since the budget definitely won’t be enough. You can ask anyone who knows about such stuff. Just remember that if we can’t settle this, we’ll just set up a normal cafe.”
The host Itsuki exhibited his natural cheerful personality and capabilities as he swiftly stated what was needed, before leaving the classroom, probably for the student council.
The mood in the classroom seemed upbeat, buzzing. Amane sighed as he had a hand under his chin, and then he noticed Mahiru approaching me.
“What about you?”
“You say…but we’ve decided. Not like we got a choice here.”
Mahiru showed a wry smile, and Amane felt angsty even though they had no choice.
“Remember to voice your unhappiness if you don’t want it.”
“Not that I am unwilling…but Amane-kun, you dislike maid uniforms?”
“Not exactly like or dislike, and I think it’ll suit you. The apron already does.”
“I-I see…I shall do my best.”
“You don’t have to force yourself.”
“I shall wear it to make you happy, Amane-kun.”
Mahiru then showed a beautiful smile. The boys behind started giving victory poses behind, and Amane made sure not to give a numb smile.