A week after Amane decided where he would work, he received news from the owner Itomaki. She prepared his uniform and his future shift. He would work four days a week, three work days and a Saturday.
As Amane was in his second year of high school, he had to prepare for his exams. This arrangment was also similar to those with club activities, and would not affect his studies.
The exams would be held the following year, and Amane had no intention to slack on his studies. The work arrangements should be fine for him.
“I’m starting work today. Go back for now.”
Amane said to Mahiru on the first day of work, right after school.
His heart ached a little once he saw her clearly forlorn face, but he could only keep it to himself. After all, it was to be expected, since he was working for Mahiru’s smile.
“Ahh~ you’re starting work today, Amane? Do your best~”
“Don’t tail me.”
“How can I trust you when you paused like that.”
Chitose, listening intently next to them, was a little suspicious, but Amane took his precautions. She probably would not follow him.
“…I don’t mind once I get used to this, but don’t come over until here. It’s embarrassing if I don’t serve the customers well.”
“You didn’t do well during the cultural festival? I thought you were rather skilled.”
“That’s so-so, and thanks to Kido’s training.”
“…I suppose I should be able to visit you there soon, Amane-kun. You have quite the impressive learning ability.”
I am looking forward to it, Mahiru earnestly prepared to send Amane off. He scratched his cheek, and then patted her soft flax-colored hair.
She was shocked, and widened her eyes. He looked at her face, his face too smiling.
“Yep, I’ll try my best to get used to it as soon as possible, and hurry home soon.”
“…Please do. I will wait for you no matter how late you will be though.”
“Of course, I’ll work hard while looking forward to dinner.”
They whispered these words as their classmates had yet to know that they were living next to each other. Chitose and Itsuki overheard this conversation, the former smiling away, the latter catcalling away, so Amane gave the latter a gentle backhand.
It did not hurt, but Itsuki exaggerated the contact as he tumbled back onto Chitose. Chitose observed the bashful Mahiru, you’re heavy Ikkun, saying so as she shoved Itsuki aside. It seemed Itsuki was still sad about it.
Amane laughed once he saw them, and Mahiru too giggled. Itsuki was a little awkward, and jabbed at Amane’s flank as retaliation.
After they ended the conversation reluctantly, Amane left school for his workplace.
He was assigned to work on the same day as his schoolmate and workplace senior Kayano, as this was his first day at work.
He waited to meet up with Kayano at the school entrance, and they went together. Kayano might not be a talker himself, for he remained silent until they reached the train station.
They needed to take a train ride to the workplace, but it was two stations away, near the school. In fact, it was not too far away from his own house, no further than Itsuki’s and Chitose’s place. Mahiru probably would not be tired waiting for him at home once he got off work.
The workplace was not too far from the station, and there should not be much inconvenience.
“Your house is within walking distance from school, Fujimiya?”
Amane did not have a seasonal ticket, and needed to top up the value of his IC card, so Kayano asked.
“Yeah. I live in an apartment close to school.”
“That’s good. It’s close, and you get to sleep a little more.”
“I’m rather comfortable if I’m waking up to go to school, but Mahiru wakes me up…”
Amane usually would have some time before going to school, other than the weekends, and that time had only increased ever since Mahiru started making breakfast for him.
He could wake up on his own even without her calling him, but he had her do so, so that he could open his eyes to her voice every day, enjoying the blissful moments. Such selfish thoughts would remain at the bottom of his heart.
That’s surprising, so Kayano noted softly.
“I thought you would be somewhat reliable.”
“I guess I’m looking decent recently if you’re saying that. I’m actually a good-for-nothing.”
His private life was no longer erratic as compared to the past, but he often relied on Mahiru. He really could not consider himself reliable.
Of course, Amane would not leave everything to Mahiru, and he would do anything he could. He would profess however that he was a little tardy.
He was introduced to Kayano during the cultural festival. Since Kayano found Amane reliable, it seemed Amane’s efforts were decent.
“I think your standards of good-for-nothing is different. Well, Ayake herself might be worse…”
“Look at her. You see that she’s reliable? She’s a complete lazybum of a slob at home. I don’t have the right to say her though.”
“I can’t really imagine that.”
“She’s reliable outdoors, but if I don’t pay attention, she’s lazier than me. She’s taking care of me outdoors, but indoors, I’m the one doing that.”
“…I think she’s just flirting with you.”
Kido did have her moments, but she should be a strong, considerate, reliable girl. She worked hard to not show her tardiness outdoors, and only showed it to her boyfriend. She probably was just fawning around.
Kayano blinked away, and awkwardly looked diagonally down.
“…Wait, am I being lovey-dovey now? Sorry.”
“I-it’s fine. I don’t mind…”
Amane too awkward averted his eyes once he saw how embarrassed Kayano was.
I might be the same too, being all lovey-dovey without knowing, so he thought, and pursed his nearly quivering lips out of shame.