“Yume~, go wake up Mizuto-kun~”
It had been almost three months since the start of our new lives back at the end of March, and we had more or less started to get used to it.
The person slowest to wake up in our house would undoubtedly be my little stepbrother, Mizuto Irido.
Initially, it was Uncle Mineaki’s job to do so, but I suppose our charade of being intimate siblings worked too well, since this was increasingly tasked to me before long.
Goodness…why do I have to wake up that guy? I’m not his nanny, not his mom.
However, I couldn’t just push this task back to mom, who’s so busy preparing for work. I went up the stairs and went into Mizuto’s room.
I hoped that he was awake, but the blanket on the bed was rolled into a ball.
I approached him, peeked around his head, and saw his face breathing peacefully.
His sleeping face was so cute that it made me angrier.
I called out to him, but I was met with light snoring.
I couldn’t help it, so I poked him on the cheek. The feeling I felt on my fingertip had me wondering if it really belonged to a guy.
Mizuto’s eyelashes twitched.
I thought he was going to wake up, but he turned his back towards me. It seemed he was going to fight until the bitter end.
Since he’s going to do that, I too had an idea.
I cleared my throat and put my mouth to Mizuto’s ear.
“(Wake up, Irido-kun!)”
It was indeed my voice from middle school.
Due to a voice change, my voice was higher than it is now. Yes, it’s just a little change of voice. It’s definitely not because I tried to fake my voice in front of my boyfriend.
It’s super effective.
Mizuto slowly turned his face towards me and moaning,
” Aya, i…?”
I formed a faint smile on my lips.
“Good morning, Mizuto-kun?”
Mizuto widened his sleepy eyes at me for quite a while, blinked away, and then—
—He straightened his blanket once again.
“(Goodness, wake up already! You’re going to be late for school, you know.)”
“…………Seriously, enough with that voice.”
When I decided to whisper after him, Mizuto let out a vindictive voice and finally lifted his body sluggishly.
Hmph. I smiled triumphantly.
“Looks like you couldn’t defeat my live ASMR after all.”
“…You know about that term?”
“Higashira-san taught me.”
“……I’ll strangle her one day……”
His speech was somewhat slurred, probably because he was half asleep.
I didn’t know if it was due to low blood pressure, or that he was being a night owl, but he didn’t look decent after waking up.
He’d space out for the rest of his life at this rate, so I took the school uniform from the wall and threw it to Mizuto,
“Come on, get dressed. It’s not a good look when the top ranked student in our year is late, right?”
Mizuto groaned, and started to undo the buttons before his chest.
I was flustered to see his thin, white chest.
“W-wait…w-why are you stripping out of a sudden…!?”
“Huh…? How else am I supposed to change…”
“Well, that’s true! But wait till I get out first!! ”
“We’re already honest with each other. At this point… ”
“You’re still sleepy! Do you understand what you’re saying!?”
I saw Mizuto dither with his hands on his pants, and scampered out of his room.
After a tad while, Mizuto yawned as he showed up at the living room.
He looked a little more awake compared to before.
“Good morning, Mizuto-kun~. Bread is toasted~”
“Good morning Mizuto. It’s a routine already, but can’t you sort out your tendency to sleep in?”
Mizuto gave an unintelligible response to mom and uncle Mineaki as he stumbled about, sitting opposite him.
The tendency to sleep in was a problem too, but there was something else I was more concerned with.
It was his school tie.
The tie couldn’t be any more crooked, and at this point, he might as well not well it. He definitely never looked into the mirror when dressing himself up, nor did he appear to have washed his face. He even had rheum in his eyes.
I was one who was a stickler for the minor details, and would even sort the books on my bookshelf in alphabetical order. Given my personality, Mizuto’s current appearance was more than a turn-off. I’d doubt his mental state if he were to head off to school while dressed like this.
Mizuto finished his toast, and stumbled to his feet. He’s probably headed to the washroom. It’s his morning habit to brush his teeth at the basin before heading out.
And at the same time, I too stood up.
I walked towards the basin, and saw my little stepbrother brush his teeth, his eyes seemingly awake, and yet not.
Mizuto probably assumed that I was going to use the basin too, so he moved aside to leave space for me.
I ignored his action and approached him by the side.
I reached my hands towards his neck while he had his toothbrush in his mouth, and undid the crooked tie.
“Seriously…you can’t do a proper tie?”
“Aren’t you glad that I’m your older sister? No other girl is this kind, you know..”
I couldn’t tell what he was saying, since the toothbrush was still in his mouth.
I seized this chance to tighten his tie, and combed his completely messy hair.
“Guraguragura—ack…! You really do as you please when I can’t talk.”
“Look, I’m making you more socially acceptable when your image is that terrible. I wish that you’ll praise me for that instead, you know?”
“I see. How about I do up your tie as a reward? Try and master a way to breathe without using your throat then.”
It seemed he’s just planning to strangle me.
I looked down at the tie that was in the middle of two lumps on the chest.
“…Hmph. Come and try then.”
I mocked him while practically puffing my chest towards him.
“I’m not scared even if you try to intimidate me with something you can’t you, you good-for-nothing—”
At that moment.
Mizuto suddenly leaned forward, snatched the tie that was on my chest, and yanked it.
And before I knew it, I was yanked towards him.
He looked down at me, at a distance where we could hear each other’s heartbeat.
“So I did.”
Mizuto gave a victorious smirk.
This smirk seemed to penetrate through me, rendering me paralyzed.
“Y-you’re not awake yet, are you…?”
“Yeah, well, maybe.”
Mizuto then brought his face towards me.
The momentary shock caused my shoulders to shiver, but his mouth approached my ear—
“(Thank you for all your care, Ayai.)”
He spoke with the gentle, soft voice—from middle school.
The sweet agitation spread throughout my body, and a current seemingly flowed through my brain. In my shock, I shoved Mizuto away.
I covered the ear that heard those words, and stared back at this little stepbrother who was staring back at me.
Hmph, Mizuto said,
“Looks like you couldn’t defeat my live ASMR after all.”
He wasn’t awake back then, so why did he remember this part so well?
“Now we’re even.”
He patted me on the shoulder, and got ready to leave the washroom.
I turned my face aside, and muttered,
“…We aren’t even, not when I was forced to see you change.”
Mizuto turned around in shock.
“Change, as in?”
I too turned around in shock, and looked up at Mizuto.
“…You don’t remember?”
Mizuto’s eyebrows furrowed further.
It seemed he really didn’t remember.
He didn’t remember that he changed in front of me, but he actually remembered my voice calling him out of bed…
Pfft. I let out a little giggle.
“…Oy, what was that. Explain it to me. ”
“It’s nothing~? I just think the old me is a really guilty woman~”
“What’s with the leer? It really vexes me.”
I evaded Mizuto’s outreached hand and picked up my school bag in the living room.
And then I hurried to the entrance, saying to everyone in the family, including the little stepbrother.