Suzuri Kurenai Behind the Dauntless Smile

 

“Shall we rendezvous? Keep it a secret from everyone.”

I boldly said so, got up from my seat, and turned my back away from Joe.

Then, I went away, pretending to marvel at the interior decorations.

“…Haa~…”

I let out a sigh so soft that nobody else could hear,

But,

“—Suzurin!?”

“Ugh!”

Someone suddenly put a hand on my shoulder. I turned around to find Aisa and Yume-kun  smirking at me with mischievous glowing eyes.

“We saw that~? Did you say anything to Joe-kun~?”

“You just sighed, didn’t you!? Were you nervous!? What did you say!?”

“No, wait, that’s…!”

ONORE! They’re like hyenas! I just tried to look cool there!

“Oh my~? Your face is red now, you know~?”

“You’re so cute, president~!!”

“S-shut up shut up shut up! Nothing happened, really!”

What if Joe finds out!? Ah goodness! The air conditioning’s hot here!

 

Yume Irido Sengoku love and marriage

 

We left Kitano Ijinkan street, took the subway from Shin-Kobe Station, switched several train rides to arrive at Arima and took several trains to Arima Onsen.

“Look, Yume-chan! Lawson isn’t blue!”

“Woah, it’s true. It’s like McDonalds’ in Kyoto.”

We exited the station and were greeted by a brown Lawson sign, which was a strange sight to us. For some reason, we got excited. Was it because of landscape preservation?

We left the station and walked up the slope by the river, spotting some stores with old architecture with a long history, and large buildings resembling hotels in the distance. The vibe of a hot spring resort was increasingly amplified.

On the way there, we passed by a large bridge over the river. I looked up at the landmark sign, and found the words ‘Taikō Bridge’ written on it.

“Taikō, as in…Toyotomi Hideyoshi? “

I suddenly asked the president, “Yes” and she nodded.

“It’s said that Toyotomi Hideyoshi often visited Arima hot springs. See, this place isn’t too far away from Osaka, is it?”

“Ah…”

“They call this a therapeutic bath. The couple often visited this place.”

President said as she pointed at the plaza next to Taikō bridge. The plaza we had passed had a statue of Toyotomi Hideyoshi sitting on a pedestal in the square, which I had casually passed by.

“It seems that further down, there’s also a bridge called Nene Bridge.”

“Nene—Toyotomi Hideyoshi’s wife, I guess?”

“Yes. There’s a statue of Nene over there. It’s said that she and Taikō were looking at each other from far away.”

As President said, we went further down and found a bridge with red railings along with a statue of a woman in a kimono next to it, looking towards the Taikō.

“They’re like Orihime and Hikoboshi. They’re looking at each other across the river…”

“Political marriages were the norm during the Sengoku era, and it’s rare for two to be married out of love—it was said that the family was strongly opposed due to the difference in status.”

“I see…”

Family opposition—in that era, family was more important than anything, and despite all that, they somehow got married because they loved each other, huh…?

“Well, after that, Hideyoshi rose to prominence and added more concubines.”

“Eh?”

“It was said that as he was too frivolous, Nene angrily complained to Nobunaga.”

“Ehhh~?”

She’s strong.

As to be expected of the wife of the Ruler of the country, she really acted differently. She’s so different from me, who only knew how to dawdle…

Being a little curious, I searched it up on the phone, and it seemed Nobunaga actually wrote a letter about her complaint. Simply put, it said ‘that bald rat won’t find a wife as good as you. Don’t be jealous, stand tall and be the main wife’, or something like that.

Don’t be jealous, stand tall…

I glanced back at Mizuto and Higashira-san who were behind me.

Higashira-san was snapping photos on her phone, clinging onto Mizuto’s shoulder and looking at them with him. Arms aside, they might even end up touching faces. Given how close they were being, those who didn’t know—or even those who knew—might assume they’re a couple.

Jealous, huh?

No, I might say it’s envy.

Why did I feel like I lost to another girl in terms of distance, even when we’re living under the same roof? I was already used to it, but sometimes, or all the time, I couldn’t help but doubt—and feel restless—in my mind.

I too was fond of Higashira-san, and I knew how important she was to Mizuto.

There’s no reason for me to order her to stop approaching Mizuto… I knew that.

I understood, but sometimes, I just felt, envious.

Why couldn’t I stand in that position…anyway.

…No, my brain would become mush the more I bothered over it.

Let’s just enjoy the trip. That should be fine.

 

Isana Higashira The everlasting battlefield

 

“Isana, aren’t you supposed to be there?”

We arrived at the inn, picked up the luggage we had sent over beforehand, and first thing first, we were going to bring them to our rooms.

Yes—the boys to the boys room, the girls to the girls room.

This unworthy me, Isana Higashira, truth be told, was biologically a girl.

I would be bothered by stuff like menstruation and such, but well, it’s great that I get to see boobies all the time, and I used to accept that I’m a girl. It’s just that this time, I felt it’d be better to be a boy.

“Ohhh~! It’s great! Great! Now I’m reminded of the school trip.”

“Aisa, first thing first, check your luggage. Leave the fun for later.”

“President, can I put it over there?”

B-being with those I don’t know…

There’s Yume-san and Minami-san around, but it’s a little too much of a hard mode for me to sleep in the same room as people I just met today! I recalled the study camp during summer, and looked around meaninglessly, feeling restless.

I could have bothered Mizuto-kun if he’s around! It’s embarrassing that I only knew how to bother others, but I wouldn’t be suffering this much if my personality could change and such.

“Higashira-san, have you checked your luggage?”

Yume-san gently spoke to me, “Ueahh, haa…” and I replied in an overly suspicious manner.

Yume-san didn’t seem to mind though.

“Do speak up if you don’t have enough of something. We need to check with the frontdesk.”

I nodded hard, but deep inside, my heart was increasingly heavy. At this moment, I couldn’t say that I was missing anything, since for me…the task of talking to people was overly difficult. I couldn’t help but think that missing a luggage or two might not be bad after all.

Luckily, I wasn’t missing much in the luggage. I had some change of clothes and books, that’s all. I didn’t think they would go missing no matter how I messed up.

But I started checking my luggage while seated in a corner of the Japanese-style room. Mom stuff them in for me, stuff like my clothes, phone and tablet charger, and underwear—

Huh?

Why did I have something I had never seen before…what’s this? This red cloth…

I fumbled around and pulled it out; it’s a bra.

“Ueh?”

It’s a damn lewd bra with transparent laces. Wh-what’s this? That’s too transparent, isn’t it!? Wouldn’t the nipples be exposed…!?

It’s true that I had changed most of my bras due to various reasons, but I didn’t remember having such an erotic one. Wh-why was this…!?

“—Hohooo~?”

I heard a voice behind me, and turned around in shock.

Minami-san gave a mysterious expression as she looked down at the lewd bra I was holding.

“You’re holding onto something very interesting~, Higashira-san?”

“N-no, thi-this is…”

“Hmm~? What’s wrong~?”

The moment I tried to bluff, the twintail senpai (Asou-san? Right?) looked very interested as she approached.

And she widened her eyes once she saw what I was holding.

“Eh!? What’s that!? So erotic~! And big~!”

“You actually brought your winning underwear, Higashira-san!”

“No-no…! That’s not it! I-I don’t know when this got in here…!”

“Eh~? Then did your luggage mix up with someone else’s? If it’s this size, is this, Ranran…?”

 “Higashira-san, lend me that for a bit~”

“Ah.”

Minami-san snatched the bra before I could respond, and read the tag hanging on the bra.

“FUOOEEEEE!?”

And then she looked up at the ceiling.

“Wh-what what!? What’s wrong, Akki!?”

“………H75………”

“Huh?”

Minami-san’s expression was increasingly vacant as she showed the tag.

“FUOOEEEAAH!?”

Asou-senpai recoiled too and looked up as though she got hit.

“Eh…Ecchi, cup…?”

“Ecchi cup, what…?”

“Ecchi…?”

“Ecchi…?”

Both of them looked down at my chest in unison.

“”…Ecchi…””

That’s not what it meant.

It’s ecchi looking, but it’s not ecchi cup! It’s H-cup!

“Eh? Wait a sec Akki. What’s the underboob difference if it’s H?”

“I remember it’s about 26 or 27cm…”

“Eh? Eh? So the underboob’s 75…then the upper circumference is over 100, right?”

“I-it’s not that much…! I last measured it at 98cm—”

“”98!?””

Th-there’s a stereo reaction once they shouted. Please don’t scare me like that…

Minami-san and Asou-senpai observed my boobs in detail,

“…I don’t think anyone else needs this bra…Ranran! Tell me your bra size!”

Asou-senpai turned around and spoke up, and once she heard that, Asuhain-san answered with an annoyed look,

“…F60 or so.”

“””F60!?”””

This time, I joined the battle too.

60cm? Not the waist, right? The chest, right? No matter how short she was…F60…I’d never heard of such a size before…

Asou-senpai cupped her head like her world was turned upside down.

“Ughh…! Akki, I feel my head breaking…!”

“Pull yourself together, senpai! Don’t lose to the sugoi dekai!”

It seemed those two suffered a critical hit. On the other hand, I stared blankly at Asuhain-san’s boobies. So lewd…

Asuhain-san seemed embarrassed as she hastily escaped, and I then looked back at the fancy lewd underwear Minami-san was holding.

Given the size, it had to be mine. When did this thing…?

I looked down at my bag and noticed a paper slip at the bottom of my clothes

I took it out and found that it was a message for me.

“’I passed you a cheat item. Use it well. From Mom.’”

…Mom…you pulled a fast once while packing my luggage…

Which mother out there will pimp out her daughter’s first time!?

“Everyone!! If you discover any winning underwear, please report!!”

“We’ll judge you fair and square.”

“Also, this unworthy Aisa Asou brought a pure black!”

“EeEEEEEhhh!? Senpai, you’re complaining about others!?”

And before I knew it, I found myself involved in the battle with Minami-san and Asou-senpai, to the point where I didn’t have the time to be shy.

On a side note, the president’s underwear were all lewd.

“In life, there’s no day without a battle.”

“”We can tell!!!!””

 

Aisa Asou Somewhere I belong

 

“Farewell for now, senpai…”

“That’s too deliberate, you idiot.”

I stuck a tongue out at senpai’s usual aloof reaction, and met up with the girls.

We went to the hot spring streets in the afternoon, so naturally, the boys and girls were split. The local produce and food was nice, but for us girls, hot springs are the best! There’s no mixed bath, so we had to split.

Well, there’s the occasional need to split. It’s to prepare for tomorrow’s operation…but if I got the time, I wanted to take a stroll with senpai—so I thought.”

“It seems like there are cheap public baths. Let’s go there first.”

Suzurin had researched everything perfect, and we followed her down the streets lined with wooden buildings. The impression I had of a hot spring street was where couples would be in yukatas, walking around, but surprisingly, everyone’s clothes were rather normal. It seemed to be difficult to walk in geta because there were so many slopes around. Suzurin explained this to us beforehand.

“Speaking of which, Aisa, you’ve been working very hard today, haven’t you?”

Suzurin gave me a leer full of intent.

“Hmm? What?”

“You’re being unprecedentedly aggressive today. I didn’t expect you to drag Hoshibe-senpai along so boldly.”

It seemed she was talking about the morning. For some reason, I felt like my honor was ruined when she mentioned it like this.

“Sorta~ I’m a little serious this time.”

“Serious…is that so?”

Yumechi asked this time. My cute kouhai and disciple asked in a dignified manner.

“I mean, senpai’s a third year right? He’s already done with his exams, and he’s going to have the free study period in the new year, so who knows when I get to see him—I thought I’d show him my charm~ or that sort of feeling right.”

“Just be honest. ‘I’m scared that he’ll forget me after he graduates’.”

Nonsense! How could that senpai who had no luck with women forget such a cute kouhai like me?

…That’s what the old me would have said.

“Well…I guess, that’s part of the reason too.”

I admitted honestly, and Suzurin looked shocked, so shocked that her vexingly large eyes were blinking away.

“You’re…really serious this time.”

“I told you, didn’t I?”

Till this point, I never thought of wanting a specific person to fall for me.

I might have wanted to be as popular as I could. I wanted anyone and everyone to praise me. It’s because I had such a desire that I started going on SNS, wooing various guys while acting mature…really, with anyone. Everyone else didn’t matter, but this one—I probably never had such a thought before.

If it’s love, I felt like I had lost, so that’s why I felt so awkward—but there’s a fear and desire I wanted to hide in my heart no matter what.

I didn’t want senpai to be taken by anyone else.

I wanted senpai to only look at me.

I didn’t care how badly he treated me. No, I wanted him to treat me badly. Just me. Just to me.

At this point, I couldn’t bear it if the place I belonged was elsewhere.

…When did I start to think this way—

“—Well, look at me, you singles! I’ll teach you how to conquer a man during these three days!”

“You just set a beautiful failure flag”

“Don’t say such ominous words!”

Joe-kun, you can’t just act like it’s none of your business just because you aren’t graduating!

“…Do your best senpai…I’ll really support you, for real.”

“Yumechi~! Thank you~! My kouhai treats me best after all!”

I hugged Yumechi firmly, and she gave a wry smile.

…For a moment, I felt like her expression showed that she was thinking about something, and also somewhat serious—but I thought it was just me, so I quickly forgot about it.

 

Yume Irido Girls don’t normally talk about this, but we got abnormal people here

 

—Serious.

Akatsuki-san said, ‘I might get a little serious this time.’

Asou-senpai too said, ‘I’m a little serious this time.’

They tried to bluff by saying ‘a little’. They tried their best not to show their true feelings, but they probably were determined to some extent.

Why did they start to get serious? Asou-senpai wanted to remain next to Hoshibe-senpai even after he graduated, but what about Akatsuki-san? I couldn’t tell if there’s any special period between them, but it’s definitely not unrelated to Kawanami-kun.

Both sides looked very cordial at this moment, but even then, she wanted to ‘get serious’.

What about me—I asked myself this question countless times.

Could I…really get serious?

Did I…really have the need to get serious?

“—Yume-chan~! You’re too slow at stripping~!”

I recovered from my thoughts to see a completely naked Akatsuki-san before me.

She stood there fearlessly with her hands on her hips, her towel hanging on her shoulder.

“Akatsuki…shouldn’t you cover yourself a little?”

“Why~? We’re all girls, right~?”

Nihihi, she leered in a perverted manner. No, that might be the case, but there wasn’t a need for such an imposing pose, right?

We were both standing at the female changing area, and were about to enter the bath, so naturally, we had to strip. But I was just thinking about stuff… and I didn’t really have any experience with bathing with others, so I just hesitated in front of the locker.

I turned my body to the locker, trying my best not to be seen as I hastily pulled my shirt off—but it seemed nobody else felt this way.

“You’re embarrassed because you think it’s embarrassing! Of course you need to go completely naked!”

“You mean you just wanted me to show you, right!?”

“Sorta~” Minami-san would sometimes say stuff that’s unbefitting of a fellow female… No, I got a feeling that she’s joking, and there have been fewer instances recently.

“I’ll be off first then.”

Akatsuki-san wasn’t the only one entering boldly.

President Kurenai didn’t hesitate while being completely naked, her bare butt facing us as she went to the bathroom.

For some reason, I was inspired as I looked at her back.

It’s a fact that I just saw the naked body of that president Kurenai. The white fine skin’s so pretty that I got goosebumps…and more importantly, the manner in which she stood, walked and posed were so natural, it’s no wonder that she was the center of attention.

And in fact, Akatsuki-san too narrowed her eyes at the President’s butt.

“President-san is…small, but she has a nice body. She got normal sized breasts, but that’s why the ass stands out—”

“Stop.”

I put my arm before Akatsuki-san’s eyes. In the near future, it might be the norm to wear our bathing suits in public baths.

“Speaking of which, Akki, don’t you have a nice figure yourself?”

So said Asou-senpai, who too was completely naked and had her towel over her shoulder.

Senpai sized up Akatsuki-san’s body.

“Slender, little, tight in the right places…have you been exercising?”

“I do help out with club activities once in a while~…anyway.”

This time, it was Akatsuki-san looking at Asou-senpai, leering away.

“Paisen. Don’t you have quite the nice model-like body yourself? Why do all the useless stuff!?”

“Don’t call it useless! I do it because I want to!”

Asou-senpai, having removed her clothes filled with landmines and vast vanity beneath her bra, had a tall, slender and flat body that resembled that of a model or a competitive swimmer.

She’s naked, but she looked artistic rather than lewd. I couldn’t help but be reminded of a naked woman painting or the Venus de Milo. The tautness of the waist was miraculous for a girl.

“Paisen, you haven’t been participating in club activities, right? What’s with the waist that looks like it’ll snap!?”

“Fufu, right, right!? I thought my chest would grow if I shrink my waist. I really worked hard on this!”

“As to be expected of you! Respect respect respect!”

Once she got praised by Akatsuki-san who suddenly became her disciple, Asou-senpai made several poses, and Akatsuki-san formed a camera with her hands “Great! Great! Snap snap!” she started shouting.

Higashira-san looked bewildered as she stared at senpai, and started whispering at my eye,

“(Erm…Yume-san, they…)”

“(See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil, Higashira-san.)”

Higashira-san didn’t know about Asou-senpai’s vanity, so the outlandishly deformed body shape might have been shocking to her. “Hawa~…” she looked at the hillocks before her.

Speaking of which…it’s no wonder rumors were abound that the student council’s full of pretty girls. Asou-senpai or the President had nice bodies. Higashira-san and Asuhain-san aside, Akatsuki-san often exercised, and she had a healthy body shape.

The specs around me were too high.

I felt a little intimidated to be bathing with such a group of people…so I thought as I reached behind my back, undoing the bra hook.

“…Hey, Akki…”

“…Yes, paisen…”

“…Someone like Yumechi…”

“…Yes, someone so serious and innocent…”

“…Has such an erotic body after stripping…”

“…It’s really infuriating…”

I felt a chill strike me, and hurriedly covered my chest with the towel.

“Somehow, she’s the lewdest looking of us all.”

“Yume-chan’s the lewdest even without stripping, senpai!”

“What are you saying!?”

Please don’t show such malicious looks towards your kouhai and friend!

Kyaa~! She’s angry~! The two of them cheered like kids and ran off to the bath. Seriously… those two really had quite the synergy. It’s tough.

I prepared to take a bath too. The remaining two—Higashira-san and Asuhain-san hadn’t finished stripping. Higashira-san had her bra left on her upper body, while Asuhain hadn’t removed her blouse.

“What’s wrong, both of you? …Are you two embarrassed?”

Speaking of which, Higashira-san did say something to the effect of “it’s embarrassing even though we’re all girls”—was Asuhain-san such a person too?

Asuhain-san had her hands on her button, her lips pursed.

“I-I’m not embarrassed. It’s obvious that we get naked in a hot spring. I’ll be right there. Please go ahead, Irido-san.”

“I see… alright then.”

Don’t act so feisty during such situations. I smiled, and Asuhain-san started to undo her buttons.

The other person, Higashira-san, only had a bra on her upper body, and her skirt was halfway down, her arms wrapped behind her back as she seemed to be embroiled in a tough battle.

“I-it’s fine…this bra is new, so the hook position is still…”

“Are you alright? Should I remove it?”

“P-Please do…”

I went behind Higashira-san’s back, put my hand on the hook that’s on her white back.

This bra…had three layers. The belt could be adjusted depending on the bra size, and it’s already at the loosest position… wait, could they be even bigger?

Feeling a little terrified, I gently undid the hook, and then—

—Boing!

I felt like I heard this sound. No, that’s impossible. The breasts expansion wouldn’t make such a sound once freed from the bra due to gravity. No, but, just now, that…

“Phew. Thank you very much~”

“S-sure…”

I felt like I just saw something terrifying, and escaped to the bathroom.

…Speaking of which.

We had already met for half a year…but I had never seen Higashira-san’s naked body before…

 

Yume Irido Four Fruits

 

“Bwoah~! The water’s golden~!”

Akatsuki-san stared at the hot spring water and squealed excitedly.

Was the water golden or tea brown? Anyway, I couldn’t see the bottom. I washed my body, slowly soaked it from the toes, and put the towel in my face onto the edge of the hot spring.

“Phew…”

So comfy… we walked quite a bit today, so I felt like my body was eased all over. It’s embarrassing to have others see me relax, so it’s nice to let the translucent water cover my chest.

“Haa~, such bliss…”

“Senpai, you’re like an old man.”

“What’s wrong with that~? It’s a hot spring~. Did you know, Akki? The hot springs here are recorded in the Nihon Shoki, you know?”

“Nihon Shoki? So it’s beyond mythical now?”

“Nihon Shoki describes the age of gods only in the first two of all thirty volumes, you know?”

President Kurenai had a towel on her head as she said something straight out of Wikipedia.

Asou-senpai put her chin between the tea brown water.

“Anyway, bliss is good~ the gods lived here before, so probably…”

I could no longer see the ‘I want to conquer Hoshibe-senpai!’ enthusiasm she had before. Or maybe she’s just conserving her energy.

Akatsuki-san was sitting at the edge of the hot spring, and turned to look behind.

“Speaking of which, where’s Higashira-san and the other?”

“They should be here soon.”

Speak of the succubi.

The two girls walked over from the changing room, through the steamy mist.

Higashira-san was a little taller than me. That’s why Asuhain-san looked a lot smaller next to her.

But her presence remained unhindered.

As to why—

—Boing—nn—boing—nn—,

“E-erm…what’s wrong?”

“Why are you looking?”

Asuhain-san turned aside while trying to escape from Higashira-san’s eyes as the latter looked from above.

And then Higashira-san tilted over in seemingly pursuit.

And for every move they made, those things shook…causing ripples—

—Boing—nn—boing—nn—,

“”””………………””””

 

We all went silent while facing the incoming four fruits.

We knew they were big. We knew they were soft, because we touched them.

But—the white skin and the shapes that could be restored no matter how they shook were absolute unknown territory.

Both Higashira-san and Asuhain had such large and heavy bonkers, but they didn’t lose at all. To what? Gravity.

Were they bell curves or what? It’s like they accentuated the roundness of Higashira-san’s underboobs. Asuhain-san on the other hand had bowl shapes, pretty semi-spherical shapes, their roundness striking. They’re too bowlish to be called bowls.

Such amazing pressure. Before I knew it, I found my eyes heaving up and down like a machine as I followed the bouncing boobs.

“Kept you waiting~”

Higashira-san knelt down before us and said in a relaxed manner. The moment she bent over, I saw the lumps of the bell curves stretch downwards.

Next to her, Asuhain-san took out some hot water from the bath and poured it into a pail. The droplets of hot water refracted light, shining upon her little body.

“Alrighty.”

Higashira-san did the same. The moment she raised the pail over her shoulder, I saw the breasts rise along with her arms, and they deformed with a bounce.

I looked up from the pool and saw the expanding base and the beautiful curves that were like a math equation, and the hot water droplets dripped down them.

“…? Erm, is something wrong…?”

Higashira-san and Asuhain-san finally noticed our expressions.

However, I couldn’t answer.

I could only worship the miracle called the human bodies.

Until one person… one brave warrior dared to challenge the miracle.

“Higashira-san…”

Akatsuki-san seemingly groaned.

She inched towards Higashira-san along the edge of the pool, and said with a dead serious expression.

“Can I… touch those raw boobies?”

“Ueh?”

Higashira-san was confused, and blinked away.

On the other hand, Akatsuki-san was basically worshipping as she stared at Higashira-san’s fruits.

“It’s not because I’m being perverted… it’s just that I… as a human, think that… if I could just touch them, something would change… something like that!”

“What…do you mean…?”

“Certain things that I couldn’t change until now… fate… destiny… life… certain things that couldn’t be fathomed by human capabilities…”

“H-huh…?”

Sometimes, I just felt that Akatsuki-san was a genius.

For at this moment, I too agreed with her sentiments.

“Higashira-san, me too…”

“Ehhh!? Yume-san too!?”

“J-just two pinches! With my fingertips! Can I!?”

I hastily backtracked my request, but Higashira-san felt something was amiss.

“Ranran… come here.”

“…I don’t want to.”

“Please! Just a little while!”

“I refuse! I have a bad feeling about this!”

“Ran-kun…can you come here for a moment?”

“Et tu President…!?”

Even Asuhain-san was getting begged by pious worshippers.

A common scene in manga would be something like…’Eh~!? You haven’t grown any bigger~?’ or something of that sort. In fact, that scene never existed.

The reality’s… harsher than that.

The massive objects had faith residing in them. One could understand from the Great Buddha statue in Nara. Thus, only those who had great faith could touch those big boobies.

Higashira-san looked troubled for a while, and looked aside in embarrassment.

“S…………since you said so…”

We were permitted.

Akatsuki-san and I exchanged looks, and we nodded.

“Then.”

“One on each side.”

“Eh!?”

I took the right and Akatsuki-san took the left as we reached out.

We put our fingers on the white skin that’s dripping in steam. We didn’t exert strength at all, but just the mere touch caused our fingers to sink in.

“…Oh…” “…Ohh…” “Ohhh, ohhh.” “Oh, ooooohhhhhhh?”

We marveled in excitement, amazement and confusion as we moaned.

What is this…!? What is this! What is this!?

No matter how our fingers sank in, no matter how they were deformed, they would bounce back to their original shape.

They’re beautiful. Not just in appearance and sound, but even in touch.

“Fuaah…! A-A little gentler, pleace…–hyaa!? N-not the nipples! Stop stop!”

Yep. Nipples are a no go. Let’s try to avoid writing about them.

As per Moses’ Ten Commandments, You shall have no other gods.

Just the description of them being ‘pretty and cute’ would suffice.

“…Haa~…”

I let out a sigh that was more comforting than when I soaked in the hot spring.

“I feel like my life’s about to change starting tomorrow…”

I looked up at the ceiling blankly, and Akatsuki-san started rubbing her own chest with the hands that had groped the Great Higashira-san herself. She probably wanted to transfer some gene involving pretty boobies onto herself.

Higashira-san looked worn out as she sank her divine body into the tea brown hot water.

“Haa…do girls do this amongst each other…? I thought this only happens in manga…”

“Well~…”

“Who knows~…”

Akatsuki-san and I averted our eyes. We then saw Asuhain-san get captured by Asou-senpai, blushing away as President Kurenai rubbed her breasts with a grim look.

Usually, such things wouldn’t happen..usually speaking…

“Now I know for the first time. Mizuto-kun had been holding back the entire time~”

“”Eh?””

The moment we heard those careless words, Akatsuki-san and I looked at Higashira-san in unison.

“W-wait a minute. What do you mean? Did you…”

“Did you get touched by Irido-kun before, Higashira-san?”

“I did.”

That-that guy! He acted so innocent! He said they’re just friends! Somehow he loves to touch those boobies!

“Ah, no, it seemed like an accident though? He immediately moved his hand away.”

“Accident…hm~…”

“Then he’s just a lucky pervert~! Good for him~”

I’d been living with him for more than half a year, but I never encountered such an accident before, you know? He never touched my chest once, even including the one and a half year we dated!

“Well, you’re already together, so one or two accidents do happen~. I don’t mind.”

That’s why I mind.

“…Say, Higashira-san—”

—Have you seen Mizuto naked?

I barely managed to swallow the words that were about to rise out of my throat.

That’s dangerous, too dangerous. I nearly ended up being nosy about their relationship. I nearly caused conflict unnecessarily.

…But she definitely never saw him naked. Yep. They never had the chance to bathe together. It’s just me. I’m the only one who knows about Mizuto’s most important part…fufu…fufufu…

“Speaking of which, Minami-san.”

Higashira-san soaked her big boobies in the hot water, and only showed the upperboobs like a whale.

“You’re the childhood friend of that frivolous guy, right~ You probably had one or two ecchi scenes with him, right?”

“Ah.”

Are we seriously asking about that—I was quietly rattled.

I never actually probed into the relationship between Akatsuki-san and Kawanami-kun. They had been so physically close with each other, and for more than a decade, so it’s obvious this happened once or twice. Maybe they weren’t accidents, but deliberate…I didn’t have the guts to ask such explicit stuff about my friend.

I suddenly tensed up and peered at Akatsuki-san’s face.

Akatsuki-san gave a long meaningful smile.

“Who knows~ do you think we did?”

“I feel that’s a reply to be expected of someone who definitely did something.”

“Well then~ but you don’t want to know right? Stuff like…how do I pretend not to notice any awkward scenes involving him.

“I think you basically admitted this.”

W-what? What awkward scenes…can you be more specific?

And while ignoring me, Higashira-san asked vaguely,

“Minami-san…I might hazard a guess or two…”

“Hm?”

“You have experience, right?”

I froze up.

It’s just me. Even though we’re in a hot spring. Glass shattered.

Experience.

Even I understood what that meant.

Did the feeling of being naked and liberated cause her to cross a line she usually wouldn’t or something? Higashira-san unwittingly crossed a forbidden territory.

It’s natural to assume though. We gave her love advice, and we had love experience. And beyond that—she had a boy so close to her, so it’s no wonder that she was doubting.

For me, if we’re talking about the time Mizuto and I dated, or when we were living together—it was probably a certain moment.

I suppressed my incessantly throbbing heart in the hot water and stared at Akatsuki-san’s expression.

“Experience, huh…?”

Akatsuki-san gave a troubled smile, and then said,

The answer was,

■■.

—’Yes’, or ‘no’.

That answer would be a secret only to us.

 

Mizuto Irido Handmade Handcuffs

 

“These croquettes are delicious.”

“Good thing we had a light lunch.”

“Kurenai’s plan catered for this. She really can use her skills for fun.”

“Oh, they’re selling cider. I’ll check it out.”

Us boys were strolling down the hot spring street, mainly to eat. We did whatever we wanted individually, so it’s pretty much a bunch of ragtags, but at the very least, we all agreed that we didn’t intend to bathe several times a day.

We walked down the shop with some of the famous croquettes in hand, and found a corner with lots of people sitting on the ground under the eaves.

It was a footbath.

It appeared to be free. People passing by took off their shoes and socks, soaking their feet in the stone tub.

“Huh?”

While I watched on from the sideline, looking at this street where there’s pretty much a hot spring everywhere, I suddenly saw someone seated there, suddenly looking back at us.

“Oh, isn’t that you, senpai~?”

“Ahh? What, you girls?”

Asou-senpai turned around. On a closer look, I found President Kurenai, Asuhain-san, Minami-san, Isana and even Yume had their feet in the stone tub.

We subconsciously approached them, and Asou-senpai suddenly spoke to Hoshibe-senpai excitedly.

“Senpai, have you guys been to any hot springs?”

“Nope. We didn’t since there’s one at the inn.”

“So you’re just eating and walking around? As to be expected of boys. Aisa and the others went to take a bath~”

Now that she mentioned it, the glow on her hair and skin were…no, didn’t notice. I usually wouldn’t observe such things, so I couldn’t really tell what the difference was.

“In that case, how about a foot bath?”

Said President Kurenai, who had put away her stockings and was putting her feet into the hot water.

“There’s enough space now. Four people should be fine, right? “

So she said to Hoshibe-senpai, as she left some space between her and Asou-senpai for one more one more person.

…I see. An assist?

Minami-san probably understood what was going on as she said with great enthusiasm.

“Sure why not? Come here, Kawanami and Irido-kun! There’s no footbath at the inn right?”

“Oh, that’s right! We’re at the hot spring street after all!”

Kawanami received the pass and immediately responded by quickly taking off his shoes and socks, rolled up his pants, and sat down next to Minami-san. Someone from the boys’ side invited the others, and was sitting next to a girl, so others would be encouraged to do the same.

The childhood friends really synchronized well at such moments.

“Well, let’s rest and sit around.” Hoshibe-senpai said as he sat down next to Asou-senpai. Haba-senpai and I couldn’t just stand there…maybe that’s what Haba-senpai wanted to do, but President Kurenai dragged him over while she remained seated.

The boys all sat apart between the girls like we’re in a nightclub or something…so I quietly sighed, thinking that I should look for Isana, and went towards her, but,

“Over here”

At this moment, Yume left a seat for me.

Next to her, Isana inched aside, leaving a space.

Once I sat there, I would be sandwiched between Yume and Isana…but if I ignored that position, I might end up revealing my thoughts, and it’d feel humiliating in some way..

Checkmate.

Really, they checkmated me. I quietly surrendered as I sat between Yume and Isana, soaking my bare feet in hot water.

Yume peered at me from the side and said,

“How is it? Does it feel good?”

The warmth of the hot water seeped into my legs little by little. It felt like half the fatigue that had built up in my muscles melted away, and really felt good..

“Well, it’s been a long time since we’ve walked around like this all day. I don’t really understand the difference between this and a normal bath though.”

“A hot spring is definitely more comfortable, right? The hot water is golden and cloudy—right, Higashira-san?”

“That’s right… hafuu.”

Isana let out a little yawn. Her eyes were a little blurry as she kept blinking away.

“Sleepy?”

“We woke up early after all~…and we just took a bath~ …”

“The hot spring is fine.”

“That’s because you Yume-san and the others wouldn’t let me sleep at all… “

“D-don’t make it sound so lewd…well, it’s true that we did some lewd stuff though.”

What happened in the hot spring…

Isana was really groggy and slowly tilted her body towards me. Our shoulders touched, and I could feel warmth akin to a hot water bag. I guessed it’s because they had taken a bath in the hot spring. On closer look, maybe it might be just me overthinking it, but her hair’s fluffy, and her cheeks were soft like a baby.

“Don’t sleep for real. It’s hard to hold up your head without a backrest.”

“Do your best~…”

“No, oy.”

Finally, her head rested on my shoulder. The fluffy hair hit her cheeks and neck. The special fragrance after a fresh shower came right at me. I had no choice but to put my arm around her shoulder as a backrest.

“Am I supposed to be a pillow …”

“It’s all because of what you usually do. Don’t just give girls a lap pillow.”

In response to Yume’s reproachful tone, “I didn’t do that, she made me do it.” I retorted. I definitely never said that I consciously made the decision to give Isana a lap pillow.

“Well, I get that feeling. Hot springs are relaxing.”

“Is it that relaxing?”

“You usually take a short bath, don’t you? I like to bathe.”

Yume stretched her legs in the hot water and lifted them slightly. The calves that were exposed from the water surface glistened with wetness. My eyes were drawn to the white skin that was different from mine, devoid of any hairs. I then looked down at the knees that were showing under the hem of the skirt, and then at the thighs, before I resolved myself to let my eyes flee back to my knees.

“Since it’s a rare chance, how about you enjoy the hot springs? You’ll have nice, soft skin.”

Yume said, and her lips that had some balm on it smiled.

On a closer look, I found that Yume’s skin was smooth like a baby, with a burning redness…no, actually, I was pretty much used to it, since I had seen Yume right out of the bath so often. It’s nothing unusual, but—

“…Do you want to see a bouncy and tender me?”

“Hm. A little bit.”

The conversation was a normal and natural one.

But my pinky on the mat was gently touched by Yume’s.

Bikuri, I felt an electric jolt at that touching part. It’s just an accident, right? I just overreacted slightly—

“You have such nice skin and a cute face. Are you going to become a girl if you keep bathing in hot springs?”

However, there was no separation.

Yume’s pinky, which I touched, stroked my pinky back with her fingertip.

“…Is this a scene out of some old manga?”

“Speaking of which, I think that happened before. I saw it on Netflix too.”

It started with the fingertip. After that, it passed the first joint, and then she played with the second joint.

Finally, it reached the base of my pinky finger and entered the gap between my pinky and ring finger, interlocking our pinkies together.

“Anime in the past is very long, and it feels like time passes by quickly after watching…”

Yume’s pinky burrowed deep into the grab, and seemed to be fiddling with something between my fingers.

It seemed like she wanted to seek something. I might be mistaken, but I just couldn’t shake off that explanation in my mind, and it numbed my brain cells little by little.

I had to try. Was she just fooling around, or—

My ring finger slipped between Yume’s fingers.

“—Ah.”

I thought I heard a very soft sound.

Somehow, although I couldn’t confirm it with my eyes—I could hear…something like a moan right next to me.

Yume’s slender fingers felt more moist than I remembered. I stroked the side of her middle finger, and I rubbed her fingers as though I was scratching them, just as she did. Suddenly the ring finger, which was slightly, really only slightly in the way, moved aside—and like it yearned for my touch.

I felt a wire snap in my head.

My fingertips, one by one, stroked Yume’s fingers from root to tip. After this, my palm slowly left the pinky and covered Yume’s entire hand.

The surrounding noise faded out of my mind.

I could feel Yume’s hand in my palm, and indeed, it was moist, smooth, and small. I didn’t think my hand was much bigger than hers, but her hand was wrapped in mine, and only then did I reluctantly realize why I was a man, and she was a woman.

I slid my hand towards her wrists, wanting to seek out more. It’s really slender. The ring finger climbs from the wrist to the back of the hand, and easily catches it. I felt like I was putting handcuffs on her. When I did so, she had nowhere to run to.

Thump thump, I could feel Yume’s pulse from my fingertips.

I didn’t know when it started, but we weren’t talking anymore.

 

Kogure Kawanami There’s no way my childhood friend can be so cooperative

 

Alright!

I slammed the ‘yes’ button yes button in my heart while being surrounded by this dense, sweet and sour atmosphere.

Irido siblings aside, Asou-senpai was also pressing her shoulder onto Hoshibe-san to launch a decisive attack, while the Student Council President was fiddling her bare feet with Haba-senpai’s feet in the foot bath. The only thing I hated was that Higashira fell asleep while resting on Irido…

I took the trouble to get the boys and girls to sit next to each other. Great that the girls will play along, but the guys, including Hoshibe-san, were all very passive people for some reason.

“You look like you’re enjoying yourself.”

Akatsuki chimed in next to me.

“Well, everything’s going well after all..”

“You really have no boundaries, huh~. So any couple will do?”

“No way. I’m not interested in the frivolous cheerful couple over there. It doesn’t work if there’s no sense of innocence to them.”

“I see~ So the student council’s perfect for you?”

“Don’t act like you understand. Speaking of which, since when did you get so well acquainted with the girls of the student council?”

“I was on the cheerleading squad during the sports festival. We’re on good terms, you know? I know a lot even when everyone doesn’t~”

“What…?”

It was an obvious bait, but I had to bite.

Of course, there were various rumors about the current student council that had become a pretty girl group. It’s true that every member’s tight-lipped, and proper intel circulating among the students’ intelligence network the students has been very little.

Akatsuki leered away.

“Do you want to know about the student council’s love affairs?”

Yes.

…But it wouldn’t be wise to take the bait that easily. She’s going to be hoarding the intel regarding the relationships in the student council.

“Don’t underestimate me. I do have some intel myself.”

“Like?”

“Like when Asou-senpai made bento for Hoshibe-san at the sports festival…or when the Student Council President and Haba-senpai disappeared together at the culture festival.”.

“Hmmm…that’s it?”

“What?”

“Girls~really can talk about anything once you become friends with them, you know?”

Anything, you see?

I couldn’t help but cast a fiery stare towards Akatsuki, “Hee hee hee.” And she gave a suspicious laugh. D-damnit…! It’s illegal that she’s a girl…!

“Do you want to know? You want to, right? If you want me to tell you~this lady shall be merciful enough to tell you one big secret as a service, okay?”

“Ugh…”

“Huh?”

Akatsuki leaned her shoulder over and waited while pricking her ears. Dammmiiiittt….!!! I really hate this, but this would be where all pride had to be abandoned …!

“Pl-please, tell me …”

“Hmhmph~!”

Akatsuki gave a completely fake smile. Arrrrrrrgggggghhhhhh~~~~!!

“Then, don’t tell anyone.”

Akatsuki gently beckoned me to lean over. I leaned over and put my ear at her mouth.

Akatsuki’s breath tickled my outer ear, and then she murmured softly, shaking my eardrums.

“(I guess Asou-senpai…will be confessing to Hoshibe-senpai during this trip.)”

My eyes widened and I looked at Akatsuki’s face again.

It’s the same leery smile as before, but she didn’t appear to be joking.

“… Really?”

“Really really.”

I squinted my eyes at the twintail senpai sitting next to Hoshibe-senpai.

Speaking of Aisa Asou, she’s infamous amongst us for taunting boys and capturing them since her first years. This much was still fine, but the issue was that such beauty was a powerful weapon. And as a price, it seemed she wasn’t particularly liked by the girls.

That’s why nobody heard about who she was gunning for. The given reason was that she’s aiming too high, but at this moment, the most convincing explanation would be that she’s aiming for the ex- Student Council President’s Tōdō Hoshibe.

Hoshibe-san too had outstanding grades and was once part of a sports club, and given his height, he’s lowkey popular. It seemed he didn’t have a girlfriend because he found it a hassle, but people thought of it as being high-spec or ‘cool’. He might be the ideal male body.

There’s Aisa Asou, the embodiment of male popularity, and Tōdō Hoshibe, the embodiment of female popularity—if these two were to get together, it would be the birth of a super couple, probably…

“Senpai senpai! Take a picture-!”

“Ah…? What a hassle.”

“Then I’ll take it without permission!”

“Do you know what image rights are?”

“Here, smile~!”

“…Don’t post it on the internet.”

Asou-senpai put her hand on Hoshibe-san’s shoulder under the guise of taking a selfie, and her breasts were pressed to the limit.

That distance…that attack…clearly wasn’t just a simple teasing…it felt like it’s for real…

“It’s real, right?”

I saw Akatsuki say so smugly, and sensed something was amiss..

“What are you… up to?”

“What do you mean~?”

“You’re always bashing me for being a stalker or something, so why are you giving me so much leeway? Why are you willing to give me this kind of information when you’re always bashing me as a stalker or something?”

Akatsuki Sus.

She’s definitely planning something given how she’s doing such beneficial things to me.

“Because I’m friends with Asou-senpai. I want to support my friend’s relationship. See, if I tell you, won’t you be better able to assist?”

The reasoning made sense… but somehow, it felt like a premanufactured answer…

I couldn shake off this feeling that something was amiss, but before then.

“Everyone. We should leave. It’s bad to keep occupying this place…”

The Student Council President said, “Okay~” and Akatsuki stood up.

I didn’t get the chance to ask further, and Akatsuki shouted “Higashira-san, wake up~. You too, Yume-chan, let’s go!” She called out to the girls, and Higashira rubbed her eyes, “Ah, yeah…” while Irido sounded listlessly. I had no chance to interrupt.

“Senpai~! See you at the hotel~!”

I could only watch the backs of the girl group leaving towards the hillside.

It felt very strange today…what’s with her…?

“…Haah…”

After the girl group left completely, Irido let out a deep sigh..

Was it just me, or did his face look redder than usual?

“What is it?”

“Nothing…”

Irido gave a vague answer, and started wiping his legs wordless.

“We should leave soon.”

Hoshibe-san said so, and we left the footbath.

 

Tōdō Hoshibe Can you stop?

 

We had a walk around the hot spring town until the sun set, and returned to the inn to take a bath. It would be free time until dinner.

I put on my yukata and sat in the lobby lounge, playing with my phone. It’s nice to go for a walk with my kouhais, but I needed my alone time. It’s nice to be alone and enjoy the mood of an inn, which is atypical of a high school student.

“Senpai?”

Supposedly—but.

I barely responded to the familiar voice and lifted my head to see Asou’s familiar smile peering at my face. It’s a familiar smile, a deliberate and flattering expression.

“What are you doing? You’re alone in a place like this”

“Nothing at all.”

“Fufu. It’s so unlike you.”

With that, Asou slowly tugged at my sleeve and gently swayed her body.

I pretended not to see her, and she went before me, bending down, peering at my face, and waved her sleeves in front of me again.

“Senpai? Senpai~? Say something~”

…Goodness me. She’s quite the insistent one.

Asou’s wearing a yukata like me. She’s waving the sleeves of the red haori.

Plain clothes were usually a landmine for her, but merely switching to a yukata gave her a fresh feeling. Now that I had a proper look at her, she’s decent at least.

I twist my lips sarcastically.

“Nice horse costume you have.”

“You mean the cutest in the world?”

“Revise your N5 Japanese.”

“I thought that’s what you mean.”

Look, there’s a limit to how much you can mistranslate stuff.

Asou sat down next to me without asking for permission. I didn’t have the chance to escape as she slid her ass next to me, and we were so close, our shoulders were touching.

And then,

“Good work, senpai♪”

She whispered into my ear as though she’s blowing at it.

I tilted my head aside to escape.

“For what?”

“Leading the kouhais has been very difficult, right?”

“I don’t know how I’ve been working hard. That Kawanami’s been dragging me around instead, you know?”

If he hadn’t been around, and just the three of us, I would be the leader…Kawanami’s a proactive guy, which made things a lot easier for me.

“That first year Kawanami-kun managed to lead with good vibes, but you’re impressive yourself. You’re good at taking care of others, right senpai?”

“Don’t praise me. I feel like I’m being bluffed when I’m praised by you.”

“I’m serious.”

And unwittingly.

I heard not a teasing voice, nor a flirty one, but a serious voice.

For a moment, I was confused as to whose voice it was. I turned aside to see the familiar face of my kouhai there.

“Say, senpai, I really mean it, you know? I really think—you’re great.”

“Oy, what’s wrong? The weird way you address yourself in third person…”

“Because, if I don’t talk to you seriously once in a while, you won’t be able to accept me seriously, right?”

Saying that—Asou overlapped my hand with hers. It’s like she’s grabbing it.

“You’re amazing, senpai. You’re smart, athletic, and have a keen eye for others. And… no matter how annoying I am, you never shooed me away.”

“…You know, I really have the urge to.”

“But you don’t really mean it, right? If you really wanted to break away from me, you wouldn’t have returned to the student council room after retiring, right?

“……”

The reason why I continued to show up in the student council room after I retired was because I was worried if my kouhais were working properly.

Having said that… I wasn’t worried about my own successor, Kurenai. When I made her vice-president, I had a feeling she’s more like a president than I was. I knew she could do a better job than me.

Instead of her, I was more worried about—

“I… might have mentioned this before, but I’m the oldest sister in the family…ehe, you understand, right? I’ve always taken care of the younger ones, so I really want to be doted on.”

“…So you’re treating me as your aniki!?”

“Yes. A reliable onii-chan. Are you happy?”

“Like hell I can be happy. I’ll be worn out having a little sister like you. “

“Then.”

Asou’s hand exerted a little more force.

“Then—you don’t want to be my onii-chan?”

…That’s.

Then, what would happen…if I didn’t act as one.

No…what was I thinking? In any case, I never wanted to be her big brother to begin with. It’s just that when I saw her eyes, that serious face, it’s like she’s hinting at a certain thing—beyond that..

“—Huh~? Senpai, what weird things are you thinking about?”

“…Huh?”

I then noticed that the world was seemingly changed as Asou’s expression reverted back to a mischievous one.

“So if you don’t want to be onii-chan—that means you want to be…a man…!? Is that what you’re thinking?”

“…Not at all…”

“Oh my oh my? Don’t you sound a little anxious? Did I guess it right?”

“Shut up!!”

I shoved her shoulders hard, and she stood up with a giggle.

“Then, Aisa will be off first…! You can be a little more honest, senpai!”

Asou left happily.

I had my elbows on the armrests as I held up my face, watching her leave. There’s an ambiguous and confusing mood tormenting my heart.

Seriously, what’s with her…

Was she joking around or serious?

Aisa Asou The most joy is when in love

 

“Niheh~.”

“””…………”””

My cheeks felt fluffy as I enjoyed the sumptuous dinner that was brought to me.

Was it because it’s delicious? That too.

But more importantly, what made my food appetizing was senpai’s face that’s etched in my mind.

“Niheheh~”

That face of someone who’s caught off guard! He’s actually looking forward to having such a relationship with me! Seriously! He’s always acting so aloof, but senpai’s still a boy after all! There’s no need to face it~!

“…Aisa”.

Suddenly, Suzurin put down her chopsticks.

“Hm~? What is it?”

“That’s enough.”

“What~?”

“Boast away.”

Immediately, Yumechi, Ranran and Akki turned to look at Suzurin.

“P-President? Are you sure?”

“Don’t do that!! We’ll ruin this delicious food here! “

“As expected of you, president. You’re so understanding~!”

I didn’t know what’s going on, but it seemed they were being rude.

Suzurin put her cheek against her hand that’s propped by her elbow..

“If you continue eating while leering away, food will not taste good. Take this chance to reveal it so that it can be a snack for us, alright?”

“Eh~? What are you saying~? Aisa doesn’t~understand~♪”

“Alright, fess up. What happened between you and Hoshibe-senpai!”

Kyaa~ scary~♪ Why are you so angry~? Things aren’t going well between you and the guy you like?

“If you want to hear it so badly~ well, it’s embarrassing, but I’ll say it, okay~?”

It’s really embarrassing though! I really wanted to keep this a secret between me and senpai! Everyone wanted me to say it! I really had no choice!

So I told them about what happened with senpai just now.

“—Right!? Isn’t senpai cute? Speaking of which, it’s troubling that it’s so fun~”

“””……”””

What’s going on? Why were Suzurin and the others exchanging looks in silence?

H-huh? Where’s the “Kyaa~!”? Shouldn’t they be making all kinds of catcalls at this moment?”

“You smiled so lecherously, I thought you kissed…”

“I thought your confession succeeded …”

“Somehow you’re still able to smile like that after such little progress, senpai.”

R00d!?

“Bless me already! I got that senpai to hide his embarrassment, you know!? That’s a big win!”

“Pardon my rudeness, but I guess it’s just you who’s thinking he’s hiding his embarrassment, senpai. Like, since he said ‘shut up’, he probably thinks you’re annoying.”

“Get out of here with your facts and logic—!!”

Ranran’s always like this! She immediately shoved reality down my face! She’s just a kouhai!

“Well, even if he is hiding his face in embarrassment.” Suzurin said. “You really are a loose woman to be leering and all just from him hiding from you. Wouldn’t you be to the moon if it escalates any further?”

“It’s one thing if it’s just leering.” Akki then continued, “You grin away when things are going well, get dejected when things don’t, but looking all bitter is a hundred times worse than grinning away.”

“That’s a good point….there’s nothing more annoying in this world than a psychotic woman.”

“Exactly!

“Who’s a psycho!?”

Like, I had confidence in my psychology! I had a strong will that didn’t care about how much the other girls hated me

“W-well, progress is good.”

Ohhh, Yumechi, my good disciple is still nice to me!

“Like, nothing happened over the past year, right? It’s no wonder you’re happy from the reaction!”

“Ugh… Such thornful words…!”

Ahh yes…nothing happened over the past year…I looked like I had an interest in seducing men, but for a whole year…I’m sorry, but it’s just my looks…it’s better than being a real bitch, right…?

“Ah, she’s dejected.”

“I-I’m sorry senpai! I think it’s fine to be cute!”

“Hic, hic…really…?”

“I think it’s cuter like this than to act strangely calm!”

“… Do I usually act strange and calm …?”

“Ah, no, that…!”

That’s what you think, right!? You call me master, but that’s what you really think, right!? Uuu, girls are really scary…

“Don’t be so distraught, Aisa.”

Suzurin moved her chopsticks again.

“It’s a lot better than a year ago.”

“Are you comforting me!?”

“Was Asou-senpai so bad a year ago?”

Yume asked, tilting her head. She’s making it sound like I was bad enough already, right?

“It’s worse than bad. She cornered Joe just because of a little matter. Like, why was someone like her in the student council? I went directly to talk with the general affairs senpai who recommended Aisa.

“We were really on bad terms back then~! Ahaha!”

“That’s not funny. I really wanted to get rid of you back then.”

“So why did it end up like this?” Akki asked, “Both of you don’t seem to be on such bad terms now.”

“That’s self-explanatory.”

With that, Suzurin gave me a meaningful look. I had a bad feeling about this.

“For good or bad, people change all the time—it’s because of love.”

“Ahhhh! It’s true that Asou-senpai seems like the type to change for a man!”

Akki, you’re always saying such rude things to your senpai too!

I turned my head away angrily.

“You’re making it sound like I liked him first. It’s senpai who approached me first though! “

“Well, it’s true that you were always avoiding Hoshibe-senpai initially.”

“Eh? Really?”

Looking at the surprised Yumechi, Suzurin showed a faint smile.

“Well, it’s pointless to tease such a self-centered person. Actually, it’s hard to deal with her back then. Aisa might look like that, but she couldn’t handle those really manly guys. She’s only able to deal with those she had an advantage over, honest guys.

Pfft. I heard a little spurt of food.

I looked over at where the sound came from, and found Isana-chan sitting there, eating quietly.

Isana-chan noticed the stares gathered on her, and panicked.

“I’m sorry! It’s okay! I didn’t think it’s anything like a cliché Otasa princess!”

“You said it already, you know?”

Akki retorted, and Isana-chan appeared flustered, but that wasn’t a bad thing per se. In fact, that’s right. I did have the vibe of an Otasa princess. Except for the body!

“Well, that’s why she didn’t interact with Hoshibe-senpai to begin with. But if you think about it, Hoshibe-senpai’s the kind of person to really take care of others—and Aisa wasn’t so hopeless, so I guess Hoshibe-senpai did occasionally talk to her and check on her situation. That’s when I noticed…”

“Hold up. Why are you making it sound like I’m a very loose woman?”

“Aren’t you?”

Don’t say that with such a calm face! This woman~…!

“…There was that one moment. Really, I always felt he was annoying until then!”

“Eh? Then tell us about it. What was that moment?”

Uh oh. Did I just dig my own grave?

Suzurin gave a faint, meaningful smile.

“Don’t you like to speak fondly of the past? Go wild with it then.”

…I guess it’s different from boasting that I conquered him. It’s more like, well, showing weakness…

“Hey, don’t you all want to listen?”

“I want to!”

“Let’s hear it!”

Yumechi and Akki looked at me expectantly, and I realized that I had nowhere to run.

With a sigh, I begrudgingly recalled back to about a year ago.

“…I remember it’s during the sports festival—”

 

Aisa Asou My true self

 

I wanted someone to look at me.

I was an elementary school student when I noticed this desire I had..

It started from a play during the literature festival. As you can see, I was a woman with a decent face, so naturally, I was the lead actor.

I stood on the stage in the sports hall, and acted as the heroine for the story, praised my classmates, applauded by all the parents…and then I realized after I returned to my usual daily life.

It wasn’t enough.

I knew that I would be happy with all the stares gathered on me, and I felt so restless and unbearable without their stares.

—Why didn’t everyone look at me more? Everyone’s been looking at me until yesterday!

And so, yes, it might be the origin story of a girl pursuing her dreams, like say, joining a theater company and seriously training as an actress. But I didn’t have the vigor or passion to do that. I just spent every day in a daze with a sense of dissatisfaction.

Even in middle school, I did stuff like writing poems, putting on weird makeup, doing everything weird an ordinary middle school student would have done—if I had any talent, I would be on some live video, finding places that could satisfy my desires. I didn’t go that far though, and it showed that I reached my limit.

So when I entered high school, I could only try to woo those honest looking guys.

I didn’t know why that senpai recommended me to join the student council. After all, there’s that girl who joined at the same time, Suzuri Kurenai. Compared to her, I didn’t have as much potential, and I would only be a side character next to her.

So—just maybe, it would be fun to tease Joe-kun.

Joe-kun probably wouldn’t have reacted in any interesting way. The interesting one would be Suzurin. That genius girl was basically the embodiment of leadership, but she’d be furious if I wooed Joe-kun. It’s stupidly funny. I thought that she, the protagonist in this world, would only be thinking about me, and so I had to try.

Ah, it’s not yuri. Let’s say this first.

It’s… well, like sending harassing text to someone who’s very popular on social media. Even if it’s just a little, the idea of trolling someone and being in control left me a little satisfied. I basically used the greatness of others to cover up my own inferiority, and it’s a very twisted sense of self-encouragement…

I was such a prick.

But before I knew it—he saw through it.

—Asou, be a little more serious.

I suppose it was when the events of the sports festival were mostly over.

The first major event ended well, and everyone’s feeling accomplished. I was about to leave after we were dismissed, and senpai said so to me.

I thought he was talking about student council stuff, so I was a little displeased.

—… I think I’m still doing my job pretty seriously!

—Yeah, you’re capable. You can handle anything with ease. Except for getting along with Kurenai.

My heart jolted. I felt like my chest was unwittingly pierced.

And so, as if to protect myself, a fierce anger came up.

—She’s the one having issues with me, you know? Why are you telling me off?

What do you know?

That’s what I thought back then. What did he know? He never paid attention to me. He always acted so lazy, never thought about talking to me—could he not act like he understood me?

At this moment, the senpais seemed to have everything under control, and didn’t seem to worry. Moreso after they added Suzurin into the student council. He’s on Suzuri Kurenai’s side. How would a mere person like me understand?

However,

—The attention gained through shallow means will only be worth just as much.

Bullseye.

–Are you satisfied with that? If so, forget what I lectured you.

It’s like he saw through every critical spot in me.

—…Please excuse me.

I ran away. I was about to cry because I was deeply hurt by such precise reasoning. My pride wouldn’t allow me to cover my weakness with tears, so I could only scamper from there.

I was angry! I was angry! I was angry!

After forcing back the tears, I just felt utter rage in my head. Why did I have to be lectured why him? Even if he is the president, a senpai, did he have the privilege to do that? We never interacted decently, but he started off with such a condescending attitude!?

Be more serious? I was being fully serious!! Why did I train my body to maintain my shape!? I wouldn’t have put that many pads! I didn’t dare to relax at all!! What would a mere virgin know about girls!!?

“—Onee-chaann~! Dinner~!”

It was already evening when I returned back to my senses. I returned home, jumped onto the bed, and it took several hours for the anxiety and anger to dissipate. What’s this? I was shocked at myself. Did I spend that much time just insulting senpai in my mind?

The scary thing was that I was in the same state the next day.

Whenever I had an opportunity, I would be agitated by remembering what senpai said, and as soon as I met senpai at the student council, I had the urge to find fault in him like a mother-in-law. When I occasionally talked to him, I would answer nonchalantly, but inside, it was a maelstrom of cursing and swearing.

What was being serious?

Before long, this was the only question in my head. What did it mean to be serious? He didn’t have to do anything, and yet he said such a thing to me?

It’s true that I‘m a coward, that I would only go after those weaker than me. But if I actually became serious, wouldn’t it be bad. I would end up bullying the weak ones more. I did intend to slow down. If Joe-kun had somehow been serious to me, my relationship with Suzuri Kurenai would be overly horrible,right? That’s why–

If I get serious.

I would target someone higher than me—my superior.

Like say…a big guy whom I was bad at dealing with, like senpai.

—Sen~pai~! What are you doing?

You’re the one who got me serious. You’re the one who said that.

Let’s show you Aisa’s serious self.

I wanted someone to look at me.

It started off with that kind of desire.

But—at this moment, it’s not someone.

It’s you(omae). It’s you(anata). It’s senpai.

I want you to look at me.

Look at me.

This is my true character.

 

Jouji Haba I’ve been a Fool

 

“Ah? My love life?”

It was after dinner, and we were just chilling, playing games on the console Kawanami-kun had brought.

Kawanami-kun started to talk about it while sorting inventory on the screen.

“Yep. Aren’t you quite popular, Hoshibe-san? You got a few girlfriends, didn’t you?”

“You’re not asking about now?”

“Asou-senpai would have shooed her away if you have any.”

I didn’t really stand out as I merely added my cash on the blue tile, but deep inside, I was shook.

Hoshibe-senpai’s love history.

The student council didn’t really mention that before Asou-san ended up like that. We didn’t hear such idle chat ever since he became the student council president—but there’s a rumor that he used to date the previous general affairs officer senpai—I didn’t know anything beyond that though.

He was a first year when he was participating in club activities, but he was considered an ace.

And since he was this tall, there was no way he wouldn’t be popular.

“Girlfriend, huh…”

Hoshibe-senpai showed no reaction as he took an attack from the poverty god.

“I had one back in middle school. For a short while though.”

“Heh~!”

Kawanami-kun exclaimed with interest.

Mizuto Irido, the other first-year, had already finished his turn and picked up his bunko again. He already grasped the concept even though it’s his first time playing, but he’s being like this.

“What kind of girl was she? Who confessed first?”

“She’s just normal. Not really cute nor ugly, just an ordinary girl. She confessed, and said that she liked the way I attended club, but…”

“But?”

“I got dumped as I only cared about club activities.”

Kawanami-kun looked bewildered.

“Can I laugh at that?”

“Sure. It’s a funny joke, right?”

“But that’s the way it is with girls. There’s a big difference between what they say and what they really want…sometimes I can’t help but think, you think I have telepathy or something?”.

“I guess. If you actually thought it through, how would I have the time to play after school and club activities. Would the daily number of hours increase just because of that?”

“It’s not only girls, lots of people think that way. Maybe they don’t think enough…and what happened to that ex?”

“She used to be one of those spectators for our club activities, and after that, she disappeared. Was it awkward for her, or was she disillusioned with me…?”

“That’s rather selfish of her to be disillusioned.”

I naturally thought of this person whose face and name I didn’t know. A hero sweating hard during club activities every day. The closest idol to her, not through TV or the internet. She could reach him just because she admired him. She was infatuated with him, and mustered courage—and found him easier to reach than she thought.

But.

Her position didn’t change.

“—It’s foolish, isn’t it? She got out of the background, and misunderstood.”

I couldn’t help but mutter to myself.

Her folly, her sadness left me restless.

“Everyone has a position they should stand at. Those that overestimate themselves will only be hurt by their own shortcomings…”

He seemed to be muttering to himself. It’s like he was fine with whoever heard this. No, maybe that’s why he said this.

But, Hoshibe-senpai said,

“… lWell, that’s right.”

He seemed to be digesting this memory.

“Back then… there were lots of girls who watched me from afar… but she’s the only one who actually confessed.”

He said the words with a flat inflection, and therefore, it wasn’t a lie.

“I felt her courage was amazing.”

…That might be the case.

I was a fool that couldn’t even be one.

 

Jouji Haba Even if I couldn’t believe it

 

“10pm, before the vending machine in B1.”

I was told to go to the place as per the one-sided message, and sneaked out of the boys’ room, using my absolutely faint presence.

The basement of the inn was also the game corner. There’s only a faint glow out of the machines, probably because it was late at night, and I couldn’t sense anyone at all.

Aside from– the bunny girl standing next to a vending machine before me.

“————————”

Huh?

Bunny Girl… yes. I thought for a moment that I was mistaken, but there’s a bunny girl over there. To put this way, the face shone upon by the vending machine was a familiar face.

Kurenai-san….

It was the very person who had called me, the one hailed as a genius ever since school started, the charismatic student council president all students admired. She was wearing a very revealing bunny girl outfit for some reason..

And of things, the back was exposed to me. If I looked from up front, I wouldn’t know where to look, but since it’s from the back, the white back’s exposed, and the suit was eating into her butt. Obviously it’d look lewd no matter where I looked.

Kurenai-san’s not tall, had a rather normal bust, but for some reason, her ass was a little big.

She probably had something to hide, something only I could know. Maybe it’s because of her bone structure, but even though she’s small, she had childbearing hips, so her body looked very feminine.

That Kurenai-san was wearing a bunny girl outfit or something… along with a bodysuit eating into her and black tights. The tights really emphasized her nice hips, and I really wished she could keep her back turned to me—

“—!?”

The moment my eyes inadvertently met Kurenai-san, my heart started to race.

D-did she find out that I was staring at her back and ass from far behind…

It suddenly got awkward, and I really had the urge to run away from here immediately. Kurenai-san definitely anticipated this to begin with, and turned her head to me, saying,

“What are you standing there for, Joe? Hurry…come closer.”

She knew. Kurenai-san knew after all. She knew I couldn’t help but give her a lewd look.

I gave up struggling and walked towards Kurenai-san. The closer I got, the brighter her white back was. I couldn’t hide it any more, so I turned my head away.

 

Kurenai-san giggled.

“My my, where are you looking at? There shouldn’t be anything there, no?”

“…I’m sorry.”

“What are you apologizing for? I really don’t know.”

Kurenai-san pressed the button of the vending machine and, “alrighty” and she bent down to reach for the pickup opening. Yeah, it’s like she’s deliberately pointing her ass at me.

That’s a really massive gravity. My mind wanted to look elsewhere, but my eyes were just drawn to that ass that’s shaking like bait. The curves were emphasized by the tight suit, and there’s a faint color of skin through the tights. The closer I looked, undoubtedly, it’s calling for the beast in me.

No more.

I needed to know my place.

I purged the wilding monster in my head, restraining it as though I was beating it up. Kurenai-san finally raised her upper body and turned her body towards me.

“Looks like… you are enjoying it?

The image of Kurenai-san’s bunny girl before me was also extremely destructive. The suit clung onto her like a corset, showing her slender waist and the size of the breasts clear. Maybe the suit didn’t suit her, since there was a bit of showing popping out from the chest area.

“…Why are you dressed like this—”

“It’s a punishment game. The rule is that the winner decides a cosplay outfit for the loser to wear. That’s why I’m like this, and since it’s a hassle to change, I came here…”

“…You’re lying, right? I just noticed it, but isn’t there a discarded yukata over there on the bench? You put on the yukata after wearing the bunny girl outfit, didn’t you?”

“Fufu, as to be expected of you. You really have a keen eye.”

Kurenai-san shook the long ears on her head as she went to the bench to pick up the yukata she had taken off.

“Well, have a seat. It’s tiring to keep standing.”

She just picked it up, and showed no intention to wear it.

I sat down on the bench obediently, “Here,” and Kurenai-san handed over the can of juice she had just bought. She didn’t forget to emphasize her chest. The fabric there was a little translucent, and I was worried the contents would spill out. Luckily, it seemed she had expected that..

Kurenai-san sat down next to me and rubbed the juice in her hands like she was playing with a warmer.

“This outfit is very popular with some of the girls. According to them, ‘the buttocks are erotic’, it seems.”

Who was it? Who did such an unnecessary thing? It’s definitely Asou-san, right?

“I see. I suddenly understand why they say a girl’s weapon isn’t just her breasts. Let’s try it.”

Kurenai-san glanced at me, grabbed my shoulder quickly before I could react, and put her mouth to my ear.

“(—Do you wish for me to bear your children?)”

My face froze up, and Kurenai-san moved away from me, giggling. laughing.

I couldn’t help but sigh.

“…Why are you doing such an uncouth thing only only to me…”

“No matter how innocent the girl is, she does become uncouth before the boy she likes. Don’t you feel excited when an honor female student says such lewd words? That’s what the reference material says.”

“How many times have I told you to throw away those references?”

It’s very disturbing when everything on it was true.

“Ah, by the way, we’ll have to wait till graduation from high school before we can have babies. A few ‘prior practises’ should be fine here, you know?”

“Girls aren’t the only ones who hate dirty jokes.”

“I would have listened if it’s a usual time, but it’s pointless to remind me today.”

Kurenai-san smiled teasingly and hooked her fingers on her bunny dress chest.

“How long has it been since you last showed that eager look… you have such lust, but you want to keep me pure. Isn’t that unfair?”

“…Uggh…”

I couldn’t say anything. I couldn’t withstand Kurenai-san’s onslaught just for today.

Kurenai-san flicked the fabric on her chest as she basically teased me.

“On a side note, the fabric is unexpectedly hard. The chest part is the only one that doesn’t come off easily. Do you want to try it?”

“…No I don’t…”

“You’re so stubborn. You had been curious about the gap between the suit and the chest the entire time. You can watch all you want and not just remember it, you know? Now then.”

Kurenai-san tugged at her chest excitedly as she leaned forward. I tilted my body away to evade her..

After that, I reached my limit.

I ended up lying on the bench, and Kurenai-san was pinning me down. Usually, an ordinary person would retreat, but Kurenai-san held down my waist with her kneecaps, and was literally riding on me.

I looked up at the smiling Kurenai-san and said,

“Kurenai-san… please move aside.”

“No.”

Kurenai-san’s ass landed on my lower abdomen. “Omph!” I let out a groan, and she giggled happily.

“I’ve decided not to let you escape today. I’m not letting you go until you give in to your desire.”

“…What’s so fun about this anyway? If you know that’s how I view you, wouldn’t you feel disgusted?”

“I’d feel disgusted if it were other men. But I’m glad if it’s from you.”

“Why? Aren’t I just a jerk who lusts for you?”

“Because…you always looked at others from the sidelines, but you never talked about yourself, didn’t you?”

“……”

“Whatever that is, I’m happy as long as you are. Finally…I feel like I’m at the same place as well.”

…It’s just your imagination..

You and I are people of different worlds.

Even if it’s not—

—Someone like you can’t possibly reach the background where I’m at.

“Say, Joe.”

Kurenai-san pressed her palms onto my face, and rubbed my temples.

“You may think that I’m someone who can easily do everything… but I do have some things that I can’t do if I don’t work hard, you know?”

“……”

“Like, even now, I’m still trying my best to endure my embarrassment. I feel like fire’s shooting out of my face if I do so. And after saying so, I’ll regret it, wishing that I haven’t.”

She just lied. She said so with such a nonchalant face and voice.

…I too knew that she’s not someone who could lie like this.

“Every time I say I like you, I need to muster all my courage, Joe. You may not think so, but I’ve been serious. So, once in a while—will you respond to me?”

—I felt she had lots of courage.

Hoshibe-senpai’s words, which I had just heard, echoed in my mind.

Senpai complained about his ex-girlfriend’s words and actions, but he respected her courage alone. There’s no love, but they did date before, and I guessed it’s because of this respect.

Kurenai-san has been attacking me like this so far, and I dismissed it the entire time. It’s because I wasn’t qualified. I wasn’t qualified to stand next to her, who’s dazzling under the spotlight and acting like the main character. I didn’t want to hurt her just because of this misunderstanding, this joke. I rejected her because of this.

But wouldn’t that be the same as trampling all over her courage?

Did I have to keep hurting Kurenai-san because I didn’t want to hurt her?

…No, actually, I knew. If she was just fooling around, she wouldn’t have attacked me so many times.

But I couldn’t believe it.

Thus far, I took for granted that I always lived alone. Thus far, I took for granted that I would be ignored. Thus far, I took for granted that I naturally wouldn’t be in anyone’s sights.

But—for the first time, someone looked straight at me.

She’s such a beautiful person—how could I possibly believe it.

“…Kurenai-san, I–“

I still couldn’t believe it.

But—if I had to muster my courage.

Then I had to muster my courage too.

“—Actually, about your…I desire.”

Kurenai-san widened her large eyes and stared at me.

I looked at her face, and my brain was about to explode. A second later, I regretted it. It would be better if I hadn’t said it. I wanted to disappear right away. But Kurenai-san refused to let me go.

“…Fu, fufu. “

She let out a little giggle and shook her shoulders.

Then, she grabbed my face with both hands and stared into my eyes as if I wasn’t allowed to escape.

“How so?”

“…Yes?”

“What do you desire about me?”

“…Can I not say it?”

“No way…or else, I won’t let you go.”

Spare me already. I had the urge to cry, but I felt it was impossible to escape from Kurenai-san.

“That… back, was very white. The shoulder blades, the shoulders, areas I normally couldn’t see… “

“Hmm. What else?”

“Th-the ass, er…the clothes sinking into there, and such…”

“Yes. What else?”

“The breasts…are almost, like, visible…”

“What else?”

Kurenai-san’s body pressed even closer as she questioned me further. Her soft limps expanded softly on my chest, and she gently flew at my neck. There was a sweet scent out of somewhere, seeping into my brain marrow and numbing it.

Thus I was left with no choice.

More than words, more than attitude, more than any more eloquent evidence-

“…Ah?”

Kurenai-san let out a confused and shocked cry as she looked at her ass.

She noticed the sensation that hit her there.

“This is…”

“I-I’m sorry…”

I couldn’t help it. I couldn’t hide it when I was in such a posture.

Kurenai-san’s face became increasingly red the more I looked at her.

Her body shook, and cold sweat trickled down her neck.

“Jo-Joe…erm…”

“Y-Yes…?”

“…I used up all my courage… for today.”

“Eh?”

While I was confused, Kurenai-san quickly got up from my body and hugged her yukata to her chest.

“I-I’m really, really sorry! Bye!!!”

She was then gone with the wind.

I sat on the bench and watched her leave while half-seated up…pondering with my brain that still had some numbing sweetness.

…So cute.

The mere memory of the blushing Kurenai-san was so cute, it could wreck my brain.

 

Suzuri KurenaiThe ‘this can work’ reflection committee

 

I quickly put on the yukata and returned to the girls’ room, finding only Ran-kun there.

“Ah, welcome back, President. Where have you been?”

“I went out to buy something to drink.”

I answered calmly while walking towards the wide veranda by the window.

I sat on a chair facing the window, and took a sip of the juice I had just bought and hadn’t opened.

—It definitely can worrrrrkkkk~~~~~~~!!!!

Inside my mind, I was cupping my head..

That could have worked! I got that mood down! If I hadn’t chickened out just now! I-I was so shocked! I understood why! Tha-that cutest Joe up till now sud-suddenly…! Woooooooaaaaaaaaahhhhhhh!!!

Why! Me! I wouldn’t get nervous about other stuff, but why at such moments! I finally managed to act calm, but wouldn’t I just be a naked maiden now!?

This could definitely work…it definitely could…well, the location is a little…no, that’s right, there wasn’t anyone around, but it’s still a public place…it’s a little…yes, I’m still a human with a conscience. I got to choose my places well, yes…but it definitely could work…

I really had the urge to sleep today…so I thought as I collapsed onto the blanket. The bunny girl outfit beneath the yukata was just too much of a nuisance.

…What should I wear next time?

So I thought as I reached my hand to the fastener in the back.

 

Mizuto Irido Once the cork is unscrewed

 

“…Hm?”

After we ended the game in the boys’ room, I wondered if there was any good place to read books in the inn, so I wandered outside, only to see some familiar faces.

“Ah, Mizuto-kun.”

“……”

Isana and Yume were sitting on the sofa in the quiet lounge. Isana looked up from the tablet on her lap to look at me, but once Yume noticed me, she looked away a little awkwardly.

“What’s wrong? Did you get shunned from the boys’ room?”

“…No way. It’s just free time for us all.”

Although I was concerned about Yume’s appearance, I answered Isana’s question anyway.

“What about you girls?”

“Us too~. There’s lots of things to do in the inn, and I wanted to look around, so I came along with Yume-san. Right now, I’m just checking out the photos and drawings I took in the museum.”

“Hmmm.”

She’s good enough to show her work to others? Feeling a little curious, I had a look at Isana’s tablet.

“Ah…I-I’m going to the toilet!”

Yume suddenly stood up as though she’s shot by me, and scampered away. She went in the opposite direction from the toilet.

…I recalled what happened in the foot bath.

In hindsight, I didn’t know the meaning of that, but it was like a daydream.

It felt like I crossed the line that I had been calmly protecting till this point because of a momentary impulse, and a guilt-like anxiety lingered in my heart…

“Mizuto-kun, sit here~”

“…Sure.”

For the time being, I shook aside that anxiety and sat down next to Isana where Yume was sitting earlier. I hesitated for a moment when I sat down because of Yume’s lingering warmth on the cushion.

“This Ijinkan was really nice. Doesn’t this composition feel really emo?”

Isana, oblivious to my thoughts, suddenly pressed up against my shoulder and showed me the tablet screen.

…Uh oh. I felt like it’s one of those days.

The smooth hair stroking her neck, the thin white neck, and the cleavage showing from the yukata folds left me a little more curious than usual. Was it because of this trip that’s not a typical routine—no, it’s definitely because of the foot bath that vaporized my sanity immediately.

Isana didn’t know anything at all. As usual, she clung onto me like she’s fooling around. She had a soft body unlike a man. My ears felt ticklish as I listened to her.

“But it’s hard to draw an illustration out of it. I don’t know how each part is structured at all. I guess I have to learn, right? It’s troublesome…”

“…Can’t you just research what you need? You’ll get bored if you start studying anyway, right?”

I tried to push my blazing feelings aside as I spoke like usual.

It’s okay. This is us, the distance we had always felt. There’s definitely no problem…

And right when I was trying to figure out how to quell the frenzy that was rising from somewhere.

Tap tap, she suddenly touched my shoulders and chest.

“Wai…o-oy, what now?”

I asked as I shushed my rattled emotions. “Ni heh heh,” Isana laughed happily.

“I’m relaxed by you after all, Mizuto-kun~”

Saying that, she suddenly pressed my face with her hands.

The moist palms clung to my skin as though they were glued.

“I was a little nervous to be with unfamiliar people. Please let me recover.”

“…Don’t make it sound like I’m a save point or something.”

“To be precise, you’re a respawn point?”

…Should I go back? Eventually.

Isana gently pinched my face. I wanted to nudge her aside, but I was in a precarious situation where I was worried about touching any part of her body, and didn’t dare to move at all..

“Mmmmm?”

Isana looked confused when she saw me like this.

“Why aren’t you resisting at all today? Mizuto-kun. I’m going to kiss you, you know?”

“Don’t…the yukata fabric is too thin, I’m afraid of touching something…”

“Eh~? I’m already touching you. It’s fine for you to touch me all you want, you know, Mizuto-kun?”

How is this fine!? Look at what’s dangling from your chest before you talk!

“Hmmm~…?”

Isana frowned in surprise as she brought her face towards me. I turned aside, wanting to escape, but there’s a limit to how far I could move when my cheeks were being pinned.

“Somehow… you seem so cute today, Mizuto-kun?”

“H-huh?”

“Is my sadism stimulating me… or is this a chance for me to bully…”

Wait, oy! This one’s thinking of something really bad!

“Ehhh!”

Isana wrapped her arms around my neck and hugged me!

The soft huge objects felt like they were collapsing on my chest. They felt like water balloons bursting, no resistance, just entering my mind right away. She’s not wearing a bra!!

“(Your body’s a little stiff, you know?)”

A faint murmur reached my ear.

“(Have you awakened to my boobies? If Mizuto-kun’s sanity can melt away… I guess this is the power of Arima hot springs after all)!”

Pushy pushy. Isana pressed her chest with bemusement. I was flabbergasted that no matter how they collapsed, they regained their original shape..

“(Uehehe~. I get such pitifully few chances. Let’s have a commemorative hug! Okie dokie~)”

“Hey, stop…!!!~~~~~~!!!”

Was Isana upset because I usually wouldn’t respond to her? On this day, she seized this chance to get back at me repeatedly.

 

Ran Asuhain I didn’t think it would be like this

 

“~~~!!!”

I hid in a corner of the corridor, and just kept shivering.

A minute ago, I saw familiar figures in the lounge where few people were at. When I realized it was Mizuto Irido and Higashira-san, I saw the beginning of their escapade..

Like, it’s one thing if their shoulders were just touching…! B-but, touching faces, being so close, hugging…! Nobody’s around, but we’re in a public place!

Mizuto Irido and Higashira-san had an extraordinary relationship, and it’s obvious looking at them. They might deny it, but a man and a woman being so close definitely had an extraordinary relationship.

Higashira-san always looked so shy and obedient, and Mizuto Irido definitely pressured her, or so the vague impression I had… but when I looked at the situation in the lounge, Higashira-san was the more aggressive one…

I-It just felt weird! She kept looking at my breasts for some reason in the bath! But I didn’t think such an obedient looking person would be so indecent…! I was too stupid to think for a moment that we had a common frustration over our bodies!

…Were they what people called lovers? They were so close. All worries and hesitations were gone, and their hearts came together…

It might be my first time observing one up close. I could see couples while walking on the streets, but well, they just try to act coy in front of others. Would couples act like this while nobody’s looking…

…I didn’t feel envious, nor did I yearn for it. I was just curious, as though I had seen a caged animal, and I didn’t really want to be like them.

I just had a doubt.

If Mizuto Irido hadn’t done such a thing, would he have become first in our year?

It’s like the first semester midterm exam. If he redirected his thoughts on Higashira-san towards his studies, would he have surpassed Irido-san?

…I wanted to be number one. Once wasn’t enough. I always wanted to be number one.

I could give everything else up for that. Was being a lover such a good thing…?

…I didn’t understand.

I couldn’t understand.

Irido-san, Asou-senpai…President Kurenai probably could understand.

“…………”

No, how could it be?

How could President Kurenai view the one standing next to her as a male and do such mind-melting stuff?

 

Kogure Kawanami Expelled from Paradis

 

“Yooo~! I’m here to play~huh~?”

While I was cooped under the futon, playing with my phone, Akatsuki suddenly showed up in a yukata at the entrance and looked around the room.

“You’re alone, Kawanami? Where are the others~?”

“Free time. Well, everyone else here are solo players…”

Hoshibe-san too might play along while we’re together, but he’s usually the type to keep to himself. There’s no need to talk about Irido and Haba-senpai here.

Well, maybe it’s not just because of personalities that we’re so relaxed.

I looked up at Akatsuki while lying on the bed,

“You’re alone too? Have the girls been dismissed?”

“Sorta~ they’re off working hard?”

“Nihihi, well, that’s how it’s going to be, isn’t it?”

The only reason we were dismissed was because we didn’t know when Haba-senpai disappeared. That fact’s confirmed by whatever the Student Council President whispered to Haba-senpai back at noon in Starbucks. They’re most likely flirting away somewhere.

“Gross. You’re leering away.”

Akatsuki stood next to my pillow, and looked down at me like she’s staring at garbage.

I stared at the hem of Akatsuki’s yukata that shook before me.

“I can see your pantsu.”

“How would you? I’m not wearing them.”

“…Seriously?”

“Just kidding~ ♪ Were you looking forward to it?”

Akatsuki stared at my face and smirked. I was a little peeved.

“No way. I was just scared that a weirdo no-pantsu girl just came running out openly.”

“You won’t know even if you aren’t worried. The hem’s long. Isn’t it fine if the pantsu line won’t show?”

“…Oy, wait a minute. You’re wearing it, right?”

“Do you want to confirm-?”

Akatsuki teasingly lifted the hem of her yukata, showing her white thighs. At this point, I wasn’t going to be rattled because of that little, but I felt like I’d be trapped in quicksand if the topic continued, so I abstained from commenting.

Akatsuki sat down next to my head.

“How’s the Kobe trip?”

“I really enjoyed it, you know? I didn’t think I’d get to see the student council’s love mode up close.”

“Thank me for that. I invited you after all.”

“Ah, yes, yes.”

Then, after some time when we merely fiddled with our phones.

“…Say, are you really just happy to see others be in love?”

“What’s with that all of a sudden? Didn’t I say this many times already?”

“Don’t you feel envious?”

“No. My own love affair was a mess. You know that best.”

“I guess… if you’re fine with that, good for you.”

“…?”

Feeling a little odd, I looked up at Akatsuki’s face again.

Her face, as young as a middle school kid, left me with a tinge of melancholy within me.

“… Hey. You’re being weird today.”

I felt like something was off since noon. There’s something different from her usual self—but I just couldn’t say what it was. It’s a little discomfort, like when pebbles are in the shoes.

“No biggie.”

Akatsuki said with a calm face.

“I feel like I was tempted by a serpent to eat a forbidden fruit.”

“…Such smart talk is so unlike you.”

“Shut upppp~. I want to act cool once in a while too!”

The serpent tempted people into eating an apple, huh? I remember it’s in the Bible? Adam and Eve act the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, and were expelled from paradise—

—Knowledge of good and evil, huh?

“You finally got such common sense after so long? I wouldn’t have suffered so much if it had been ten years earlier.”

“—You’re right.”

I joked casually, but I didn’t expect her to give such a heavy response, and I was shocked by it…

Akatsuki pulled her legs back and cupped her knees, looking as though she’s about to sleep on it as she looked at me, saying,

“Say, Kawanami, how about you get a new girlfriend?”

“…Huh?”

I could only blink my eyes as my mind failed to understand what was going on.

The faint smile on Akatsuki’s face looked like all emotions were stripped and discarded…

“I feel like I can’t see an end to this. It’s either I get along with you, or break up with you, but if I just drift around, unsure of what’s to come, we’ll end up with an irreversible situation. So seriously, get a girlfriend.”

“…So you say, but why didn’t you just get yourself a boyfriend and be done with it?”

“Didn’t you get in my way? I proposed to Irido-kun.”

“Ah…”

Speaking of which, it seemed that did happen.

“Pick someone who’s single! Guy or girl works either way now!”

“No way~I can’t find anyone I’m fond of more than Yume-chan.”

“…Then don’t force me to get a lover or something.”

Even if there’s no end in sight, that’s still fine, right?

Wasn’t it fine to be drifting?

It’s true that I ignored all kinds of people. I couldn’t cure my body constitution, and I never told my pops and the others of our past relationship. She probably harassed me thinking that it’s fun.

But, wasn’t this fine? It’s not like people would die. It’s like a game, no character’s going to say that they couldn’t survive if they didn’t clear all the quests. Even if I did, I wouldn’t be able to get money and XP..

It’s fine not to solve them.

I could just leave the problem hanging or something. It’s fine not to see the end. I was fine with that. I couldn’t think of whatever she said was irreversible.

—What’s wrong with that?

“I can’t keep this up.”

Akatsuki stated clearly.

This wouldn’t work if we kept it up.

It’s not a good thing for us to remain like this.

“You wouldn’t have such a constitution if I had been a normal girlfriend. That’s the negative legacy I created. If anyone falls for you, you would have left it on others. I… can’t accept this. You can’t play it cool and face others, and they can’t smile and continue talking to you. Are you still fine with this status quo?”

—As long as this constitution remained in me, somebody would cry for me.

I couldn’t say that I was overthinking it. I wasn’t so slow either. The one who’ll like me would probably appear later on in life.

I rejected all of this.

Because of the wound Akatsuki left behind.

“You might think it’s fine. Maybe you’ve come to terms with it, figured out how to enjoy life in a way for yourself, and think that’s good and all. But what about those who like you? You end up getting dumped for no reason because of me. And I’m the cause of it all, yet I’m still able to stay by your side and all as a childhood friend—I can’t accept this at all.”

“…Well, maybe.”

What Akatsuki said was probably correct.

I might have been thinking only about myself.

I might not have knowledge of good and evil after all.

“—I’ve decided.”

After muttering, Akatsuki suddenly sat on my stomach.

“O-oy?”

“I used to think that it’s fine as long as you feel you’re fine. But now I understand that I have a mission to accomplish.”

Akatsuki held down my shoulders, and her round cute eyes were filled with a serious glint—she said to me.

“Kokkun—actually, I still do like you.”

“Ngghhh…!?”

The forbidden memories flashed through my mind for a moment. The memory that I had to accept and left as scars within me started to harken my mental pain without restraint. A terrifying chill shook my body, and my overly sensitive body had hairs standing all over.

I was allergic to goodwill—feelings of love.

“I want to cure it.”

Watching my reaction, Akatsuki declared as if nothing had happened.

“If you still don’t want to have a girlfriend after all that, fine by you. I’ll personally cure this constitution of yours that I created. I won’t leave it to anyone else.”

While my vision was faltering in disgust, Akatsuki smiled.

She looked as though she was relieved.

She looked as though she had made up her mind.

It was a calm, fearless smile.

“Hey, Kokkun?”

The sweet voice somehow reminded me of a blade.

“—Do you know what exposure therapy is?”

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