Chapter 6.5 – Akane Hayasaka

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Akane Hayasaka was talking to Sakai in a coffee shop.
They were talking about where they were going on their summer vacation and other trivial things.

—Akane, can you drink black coffee?

—Yes, well, I’m trying to get used to the taste.

—How strange, all you used to do was drink tea….
Who influenced you…?

Saki raises an eyebrow after saying those words, and Akane proceeds to place two sugar cubes in her coffee.

—I never imagined that Tachibana-san and Yanagi-senpai were engaged.

—Yes.
I was very surprised when I heard about it.
I heard it was a mutual decision between their parents.

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—Akane, what do you plan to do?

—Me? I plan to continue.
I’m not going to give up on him… Even if they’re engaged.

—Well, I don’t think you should be in a hurry to decide who you’re going to marry.
And I think it’s wrong for families to force their children to get engaged.
Besides, if you and Yanagi-senpai end up doing well, it means Kirishima-kun will be doing well too. 

—Huh? Do you know?

—Yes, I know.

—I see… even from Aya-chan’s point of view, Kirishima-kun likes Tachibana-san.

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—Then I have to make an effort.
If I succeed, Tachibana-san will be free from that commitment, and she can be with Kirishima-kun, right…? Kirishima-kun… He… Will he be happy? I have to become a good girl for Kirishima-kun.

—Hey, Akane…

—Ah?

—…No, nothing, it doesn’t matter.
So, are you going to the summer camp?

—Yes, I’m going.
Aya-chan was also invited, right?

—Yes, Maki asked me to perform for him.

—Oh, then we’ll all go together, it’ll be fun.

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—…Sure. 

Sakai lowers her gaze, and thinks for a bit before continuing the conversation.

—I’m worried, though I’m surprised that Yanagi and Kirishima are friends.

—Yes, it’s amazing that the two of them are such good friends.

Akane cheerfully tells the story of how Kirishima almost drowned in the river.

—Kirishima-kun is amazing.
He’s kind and brave.
He pretends to be smart, but he’s not.
But he has many weaknesses, which makes him likeable.
And then…

—Akane.

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—… Who are you really in love with?

—With Yanagi-senpai, of course.

—What do you like about Yanagi?

—I don’t know….
A lot of things.
The feeling that he’s a boy who works hard when he plays soccer, how gentle he is, how well people like him, how reliable he becomes.
Don’t you think the same when you see him-…?

Hayasaka-san stops talking and goes blank? Then he blinks several times and opens his mouth again.

—Um, Yanagi-senpai… the reason I like him? Uh, I guess I haven’t recovered from my flu yet… Anyway, I like him very much, and I have to do my best….

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