said that the weakness and gentleness of the man is emotional.
-Are you sure?
I sat back down shallowly and rested my head on Tachibana-san’s shoulder.
I can feel her thin body.
I wish I could say something about it, but I feel like I would ruin it.
The sound of the rain outside the window is soothing.
Suddenly, Tachibana-san touches my head with her other hand, as if she wants to caress me.
I’d like to know what you mean by that, so I’m going to ask you.
Despite everything, I was the only one who was nervous.
While Tachibana-san was still expressionless as usual.
-What’s going on?
She had a puzzled look on her face as she asked.
Tachibana-san really seemed to be doing this out of pure curiosity.
-It’s time for me to go home.
Without saying a word, we turned away from each other and thus concluded the club activities.
I got ready to go home and left the club room.
As I opened the door, I heard a bang, as if something had fallen.
It was a plastic umbrella.
It looks like someone was here.
It wasn’t long since they’d left.
-Tachibana-san, do you have an umbrella?
I said as I took the plastic umbrella.
Tachibana-san looked inside her bag, and after a short pause replied.
-I don’t have any.
-I’m glad the umbrella came in handy.
Hayasaka-san looks at the umbrella while saying those words.
-And, you both used the same umbrella, right?
Why are you so curious? I can’t even tell Hayasaka-san half of what had happened between me and Tachibana-san.
She may have passed in front of the club room out of mere curiosity, and seeing that it was raining, and I had Tachibana-san’s company, she thought it was a good idea to leave the umbrella in front of the club room.
So I just told her that we had returned home together using the umbrella.
I didn’t mention anything about the kabedon or about me resting my head on her shoulder.
If I tell her that I get along well with Tachibana-san, Hayasaka-san might get hurt.
Although I think I’m being conceited in thinking this way.
-And how did it go?
-It was a little awkward.
It was hard to walk close without touching each others shoulders.
-It was not necessary for you to leave me the umbrella.
I know it is difficult for her to help me with Tachibana-san.
Kirishima-kun is always helping me, so, for once, I wanted to do the same with you.
By the way… Are you still watching Tachibana-san’s boyfriend’s social media?
-Yes, it has become a habit.
Hayasaka-san knows about this strange habit of mine.
And it’s not something I told him, in fact, that’s how our relationship started.
It was in May, two months ago, when I had not even had a conversation with Hayasaka-san.
My phone had fallen on the station platform.
Hayasaka-san, who was nearby, picked it up and handed it to me.
And at that moment, he saw the screen of my phone showing the image of Tachibana-san.
-Kirishima-kun, do you like Tachibana-san?
To which I nodded at those words.
Surely she had already noticed that my gaze was always on Tachibana-san.
-And I like you too.
I said that to hide my embarrassment at finding out who the person I love was.
-Why are you looking at me like that?
When I asked such a question, Hayasaka-san’s face turned red and she answered jokingly.
-Because, I like you too, Kirishima-kun.
And that’s how our relationship began.
As I was reflecting on it.
The waiter noticed that my cup was empty, and I went back to order another coffee.
-I don’t think it’s a good idea for you to keep doing that, Kirishima-kun.
-Doesn’t it bother you to always be looking at a picture where Tachibana-san and her boyfriend are getting along?
-Yes, that makes it very painful.
It’s bad for your health.
-But, the more I suffer, the more real my feelings for Tachibana-san become.
-Kirishima-kun, I only want the best for you.
Thank you, Hayasaka-san, but I’m fine.
I picked up my phone as I said those words.
I kind of know what’s going on.
I opened the social network page, and saw a selfie of Tachibana-san’s boyfriend doing the Kabedon.
I see… So she was just practicing with me and then doing it with her boyfriend.
It’s normal for her to want to feel that kind of thing with her boyfriend.
-Kirishima-kun, are you okay?
-Yeah, I’m fine.
Just, I’m seeing something interesting.
-You can’t tell me you’re okay with that look on your face.
Hayasaka-san stepped on my foot with those words.
-Can I be honest with you?
-I really like it when Kirishima-kun is depressed about Tachibana-san.
-Hayasaka-san, you’re a little twisted, aren’t you?
There is a part of me that wants to support you, Kirishima-kun.
But there’s also a part of me that’s jealous of Tachibana-san.
That’s why I’m glad when you’re depressed.
She paused slightly and then continued speaking.
-And when I saw her profile, I felt a little relieved.
I knew that I could still be Kirishima-kun’s girlfriend.
-Well, I honestly doubt anything will happen between me and Tachibana-san at the moment.
-Still no chance?
Tachibana-san doesn’t seem to be interested in me.
-I’m sorry, I thought the umbrella would be a good idea.
I feel like a bad girl.
-That sounds great.
We both love each other so much that we want to support each other’s love, but we also want to make sure they don’t leave us.
-Let’s not think too much about that.
Let’s focus on our weekend plans.
That was the purpose of our meeting.
In the quiet of the restaurant, over the sound of coffee being served, we discussed what we were going to do over the weekend.
The only time we could fit it in was on a Saturday morning, so we decided to go out together.
In the afternoon, Hayasaka-san had an appointment with her senpai.
-Don’t you like the idea, Kirishima-kun?
-Y’knoe, since I’m going to leave you and go with my senpai.
-Ah, it’s okay, no problem.
-Kirishima-kun, I don’t like that you are almost not jealous of me.
Is it because I know that you are in love with Tachibana-san? You don’t even know who I’m in love with.
-Well, I guess there’s some truth to that.
The person Hayasaka-san is in love with goes to a different school, so I hardly see him.
-But Kirishima-kun, it’s okay to feel jealous from time to time.
-I will do it next time.
-Eeeh… Well, okay.
After making plans for the weekend, we left the store and walked home holding hands.
Hayasaka-san was enjoying the feel of my hands in different ways of gripping.
-I like to touch Kirishima-kun.
-Do you not think this is too excessive?
-No, it’s not, I still have to keep experimenting.
-You should restrain yourself.
-Hmm? Do you want me to do this?
After those words, the next thing I felt was Hayasaka-san hugging me.
-Hayasaka-san, this is not good.
It doesn’t matter if we are far from school….
I wish you could come to my house again.
-Are you listening to me?
-I feel that the more I touch you, the more I know you.
-For some chimpanzees, skin-to-skin contact is the only way to avoid conflict…
Hayasaka-san’s eyes light up after those words.
I think I said too much.
-Then let’s have a lot of skin-to-skin contact.
Let’s eliminate all our conflicts!
Hayasaka-san said, as she walked beside me and pressed her face against mine and kept hugging me tightly.
The sun was setting and the air smelled like a summer night.
For some reason, my heart was beating fast.
Summer is the time of festivals around the city, and fireworks shows, so perhaps we subconsciously expect something fun to happen.
Hayasaka-san trusts me unconditionally.
And yet, in my conversation with Hayasaka-san….
I lied to her.
The first lie comes when I told her that I don’t know who her senpai is.
In fact, I know him, and we get along very well.
And the second, it was regarding Tachibana-san.
I told her that things were not going well between the two of them.
But the reality is different.
-Tachibana-san, do you have an umbrella?
-No, I don’t.
After a few moments of looking at each other in the rain-swept road, I decided to take the first step.
-Do you want to go to the station with me?
Tachibana-san nods silently.
We walk together, sharing the plastic umbrella as if it were second nature.
I am surprised by her quite natural expression standing next to me.
-You don’t have to be so far away from me.
Tachibana-san lifts the edge of the umbrella with her fingers.
-President, your shoulder is getting wet.
If she says so, I guess it’s okay.
I moved to the center of the umbrella to be more protected from the rain.
As I walked beside her, our shoulders collided.
I guess Tachibana-san is a girl who has never really been in love.
So being so close to each other, it doesn’t represent anything strong for her.
But things are different, she feels more like a love interest, and is learning to feel various emotions.
She seems to be a more sensitive girl than I am, and I am sure she will be more open soon.
I wonder what kind of girl I’ll see when that happens.
-We have done a lot of things today.
-Yes, it was very exciting.
-Yes, President, not bad, you made this little girl excited.
I can smell the fresh fragrance of Tachibana-san beside me.
And on the other hand, I’m sweating.
Being under an umbrella next to her makes me feel uncomfortable and I try to move away a little.
But before that happened, Tachibana-san tugged on my shirt sleeve.
-You’re going to get wet.
It’s like she was telling me to stay close.
So I decided to walk that same distance.
It’s not just our shoulders that collide.
Tachibana-san’s sleeves brush against my arm, as does her long hair.
My attention is focused on that.
Tachibana-san was as carefree as ever.
When we arrived at the station, we got separated as we entered the ticket office because we were going in opposite directions.
Tachibana-san waved her hand at me.
Her movements were quite natural, as was her cheerful expression.
It’s nice to see a girl who doesn’t usually smile.
Tachibana-san turned around and said;
-President, want know something?
-What is it?
-I think I can be a good girl.
-I was worried about you.
Maki, the student council president, said.
It was lunchtime and I was in the club room studying for my final exam when he walked in.
-Kirishima-kun, you’re crazy.
-Because you keep looking at Tachibana’s boyfriend’s social network.
-I’m surprised you’re taking it so well.
I’m not the only one looking at that guy’s profile.
The kabedon photo he took with Tachibana-san was very damaging to many of her suitors.
Now, their mentaly struck corpses lie everywhere in the school building.
-I see that some still refuse to accept the truth.
-They are stubborn, they still think they have a chance with her.
-Was there ever any hope?
-Tachibana-san doesn’t like to be touched, does she? And it looks like her boyfriend hasn’t done it yet.
Today, when her boyfriend reached out to stop her in the hallway, she ducked and dodged him splendidly.
It seems that many people have seen that scene.
-Yet they still have a long way to go just to be her boyfriend.
As we were talking, we heard footsteps approaching the club.
The door opens and Tachibana-san enters.
She was carrying her study material in her hand.
Lately she comes to this place at lunchtime.
-Well, I have to go.
Maki left the club room, and I was left alone with Tachibana-san.
-What were they talking about?
Tachibana-san sits on the sofa and unfolds her textbook and notebook.
She seems to be trying very hard.
She is a girl who is good at music and art, but not so great at other subjects.
Chemistry, world history and mathematics to be more precise.
I came to think that she was a pretty good all-around girl because of her cold expression and meticulous thoughts, but the reality was different.
She is quite different from Hayasaka-san, who always scores above average in all subjects.
After a few moments of reading her book, she began to grumble.
She had become bored with studying and sat down on the couch, only to fall asleep.
Even in her sleep, she looks like a rather elegant and unattainable girl.
But no matter how much I look at her and think about her, I will never be able to decipher what she thinks and feels.
I fiddled with my phone and went back to looking at Tachibana-san’s boyfriend’s social media.
There were all kinds of pictures with her.
And no matter how many you saw, there was not one in which he had body-to-body contact with her.
Many questions invaded my mind about it.
Why wasn’t there any photo where they are touching each other?
Doesn’t she like it even if her boyfriend is doing it?
When she opened her bag in front of the club room the other day, there was a folding umbrella in it.
So why did she hide the fact that she had one?
But in the end, I couldn’t ask her anything, and I just watched her sleeping face.
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