It was the second day of the culture festival.
Amane’s shift was in the afternoon, and he should be free in the morning…
“It’s been a while since I returned to my alma mater. Still the same as before, it’s all renovated, but the mood hasn’t changed.”
Shuuto stood before the entrance, smiling as he looked up at the campus, muttering to himself. It was summer the last time he met Amane. Next to him, Shihoko clung on firmly, we haven’t been here since the opening ceremony, showing a poised smile as she said so.
They were as lovey-dovey as before. Amane was used to it, but the surrounding stres were fixed upon them. Amane really had the urge to pretend to be unrelated, but of course, Mahiru latched onto his arm, stopping him.
Her caramel-colored eyes became warm, as though imploring for him to give up, and he was pressurized by this.
“…Erm, can we don’t walk around together?”
“Oh dear, you’re saying this when we haven’t met after a few months? You’re a bad boy.”
“We don’t go around with our parents in this era.”
“Of course no…ah, I guess it’s the common rebellious phase if you say you hate to be with your parents.”
“Not that I hate it…it’s that you two stand out too much.”
They already were.
Bias aside, both of them looked rather young, and gave the vibe befitting a couple. It was uncommon to see an old couple being so passionate till this point.
If their classmates saw it, they might end up teasing Amane later, and if possible, he really did not want to be seen with his parents.
Mahiru in turn was the opposite. Her parents never attended a school event, and it seemed she was delighted by Shihoko and Shuuto’s arrival, that she wanted to stroll around with them.
Amane would feel a little guilt to ignore her little wish, given that he knew of her background. He was willing to let her be happy, and endure so……but shameful things were shameful.
“…What do you mean, stand out? You two are already standing out, no?”
Shihoko muttered as she looked at Amane and Mahiru leaning onto each other, smiling away.
Amane had a vague feeling that the smile was an encouragement, joy, urging him to moe on, and his face cringed.
“…But the parents stand out more if both parents and students are walking together.”
“Well, you already stand out. Not much difference. Anyway, you two are already flirting, no?”
“No we aren’t…ah whatever, you probably want to visit some mockup shop. Better hurry up though, our shift starts at noon.”
“Eh, you’re following along?”
“I’m applying the brakes.”
“Maybe not. You two might be the more flirty ones, you know? Right Shuuto-san?”
Shuuto gave a gentle smile, and Amane sighed while putting his hand on his forehead.
Shuuto was unlike Shihoko in that he would never tease others, but he was hard to deal with as he never would oppose nor deny vehemently. Amane would be deemed boorish if he continued to refuse, and in fact, he really could not refute.
“…So, where do you want to go?”
“Well, we’ll only get to see you work in the afternoon? If we exclude that, hmmm…it’s a rare opportunity to be here. Maybe we can go to the arts and crafts shop? The pamphlet says that they’re open.”
“We’ll bring you there. Is that alright?”
In any case, the best resolution was to satisfy his parents demands as soon as possible.
They would gain attention for nothing if they remained, so Amane compromised, put his hand on the back of the giggling Mahiru, gently nudged her as a reminder, and entered the campus.