“Fujimiya, you helped me out yesterday.”
Amane arrived at school the next day, and froze as Kadowaki suddenly spoke to him a little too naturally.
Though they had some interaction yesterday, he never expected Kadowaki to thank him just for that little thing.
Unlike when he was surrounded by the girls, Kadowaki was smiling as heartily as he could. Amane, being approached by Kadowaki, could feel some stares around him, and felt really unbearable.
He hated the attention, and was a little intimidated to be faced with such curious stares.
“Ahh, you don’t have to worry about that. Looks like you had it tough too.”
Kadowaki looked into the distance, and Amane answered with sympathy, “Well, a popular guy sure has it tough.”
Kadowaki himself knew he was popular, but was not proud of it. He was popular with the people around him, and the boys jealous of him did not really despise him.
Perhaps one reason why he was so popular was because of his courtesy to thank others, even for the little things.
“Anyway, you helped me out. Just want to thank you.”
“It’s fine. We should help each other out when we’re in trouble.”
He did not help Kadowaki out just for a favor, and he did not think he did anything worthy of being thanked.
Don’t fret, he chuckled, and Kadowaki then smiled with some relief.
The surrounding girls started a ruckus upon seeing that earnest smile, and Amane could only show a wry smile, thinking that that smile should be directed at the girls.
“Did anything happen between you and Yuuta?”
After Kadowaki left, Itsuki, who seemed to have noticed, approached Amane.
‘Yuuta’ here was Kadowaki’s given name. Itsuki was on better terms with everyone, was amicable, and could cook up the mood. Obviously he got along with Kadowaki.
Amane sometimes was amazed and troubled by how Itsuki of all people was willing to be his friend
“Eh, he received too many chocolates, and was at a loss of what to do. I just handed over my shopping bags to him…”
“Ahh, guess he received more than expected. Managed to deal with them, somehow.”
Itsuki too had seen the masses of chocolates and the goodwill of the girls, so he understood after hearing Amane’s explanation, and gave a wry look with some pity mixed in.
Back then, both of them felt that it would be tough for Kadowaki to bring so many back. It was not surprising for Amane to lend him a hand.
Amane felt that he merely helped a little, and there was nothing to thank for.
“That’s all. Nothing too impressive.”
“I guess that’s just like you…but well, you got shopping bags prepared…why does it look like you’re raising a household? Feels like you’re a housewife when you’re looking at the supermarket ads on your phone.”
“Well I’m a guy. But, I guess I was affected by something…”
One had to wonder if he should call it Mahiru’s fault, or that it was thanks to her.
They had to share the ingredients costs, so Amane would sometimes surf the web for ads to save as much as possible. Sometimes, he would suggest to Mahiru to make cheap things like those seen on the ads. To Itsuki, he was basically a slave to the household.
Perhaps what he was doing was more akin to a housewife than a master of the household. However, the cooking was still left to Mahiru.
“Sure is great to have a partner who can take care of the house.”
“She’s not a partner…what about Chitose?”
“Chii? Well, she, if she doesn’t act on any strange impulses, yeah…she probably still can’t do it.”
“You’re saying that she capable of not doing anything crazy?”
“…That makes her cute too, right?”
“Oy don’t look away.”
For good or bad, Chitose was the haphazard thrill-seeker.
If she did things normally, she was capable to doing housework at the level of a typical high school girl; if she suddenly had a sense of mischief or a change in mood, she was capable of many things.
“Well, seems like she’ll be a little more obedient when we get married.”
“How long until your dad agrees…”
Itsuki’s father was rather strict about dating, a rarity at this time. He would not meet Chitose, and was displeased about them dating with the plan to get married in the future.
In contrast, Chitose’s parents were really welcoming of Itsuki. Isn’t it usually the opposite? …Amane was dumbfounded when he knew of it.
“Well, I’ll try to convince him when I’m an adult. Like, does he want to see a grandchild?”
He was not going to listen to his father regarding this, and merely shrugged at it, but his eyes were full of seriousness, and he was indicating that he would fight until the very end.
He showed thus far how much he loved Chitose. Amane felt it was impressive for Itsuki to consider marriage in high school, and was supporting them.
“…Well, you’re not going to give up until he gives up. Do your best.”
“Oh. You too.”
“You and her…right?”
“…She and I don’t have that sort of relationship.”
Don’t guess randomly, he said as he turned his face aside, only to hear Itsuki’s elated giggle next to him.