My childhood friends reign at the top of the school caste. - Chapter 11
After school, I was at the corner of the field. I’m meeting up with someone. I don’t know if he’ll come or not, since I made the appointment unilaterally.
After a while, two boys came over.
“Hey! Did you wait long?”
No, not really.”
“I see. That’s good. And I’ve brought him here like you asked!”
“Thank you, Kouki.”
Yes, one of the two boys was Koki. And the other one is the one I asked Kioki to bring me this morning.
“It’s no problem. Now, do you think I should go away for a while?”
“Sure. I’m sorry, but can you leave us for a moment?”
“Understood!” Koki quickly moves away. Koki’s footwork is as light as ever.
“I’m sorry I called you here so suddenly.”
“You were an acquaintance of Kouki, huh?”
“Kouki went to the same elementary and middle school as me.”
“Is that so… Well, what’s the story?”
“Oh, it’s about Saturday. Hayashi-kun.”
The other person who brought me here was Keisuke Hayashi, with whom I had an altercation on Saturday.
I remembered that Hayashi-kun was in the soccer club, so I hurriedly asked Koki to bring him over. I didn’t think he would have come if I had called him.
“What, you’ve come to complain?”
There is a reason why Hayashi-kun was so reserved.
On Saturday, after Erika and I left the karaoke bar, Erika told me that she knew about the person who was left in the room.
I heard that after that, the atmosphere was at its worst and they broke up soon after. At that time, we parted with Hayashi-kun and she pointed out and complained one-sidedly, “That was indeed not good,” “He has a bad personality,” “I’ve always thought he had a bad mouth and attitude,” and so on. He must have had some thoughts on the matter on a daily basis.
Today, Hayashi-kun, who is usually a noisy boy, was quiet.
I sensed from the atmosphere that some of his classmates knew about this. Perhaps the other three had spread the news to their close friends. Since Erika was involved, not many people took Hayashi’s side, and everyone kept their distance.
By the way, Erika herself probably didn’t spread it. I know she’s not the kind of person who would do such a thing.
After learning about Hayashi-kun’s situation and actually witnessing it, I felt kind of sorry for him, so I’m trying to talk to him now.
He’s not trying to be a victim, but it’s natural to feel defensive when I call him out.
“I’m not complaining. I just don’t want to leave any loose ends.”
Hayashi-kun was still wary. Erika and I are close friends, and if you say anything weird to me, you’ll further ruin your class reputation.
“I’m sorry that we left you with a weird atmosphere.”
Perhaps it was not what he had imagined, but Hayashi-kun looked surprised.
I’m sorry.” “Why… Why are you apologizing? I’m the one who’s at fault, no matter how you look at it. I know what I’m talking about! I made fun of you on Saturday, your attitude, your language, and I even made fun of you for being plain and gloomy….”
Even though I knew that, I couldn’t honestly apologize considering my behavior and attitude that I had been in a good mood. That’s probably what he’s thinking. He’s been spending his day being scared of the repercussions.
“You feel sorry for me, don’t you? Otherwise, you wouldn’t have to care about me, right?”
Sympathy… that’s one thing. But that’s not all.
“I think you’re thinking too much. You feel sorry for yourself, don’t you? I’m sure I had some part in it, so why don’t we just apologize to each other and be done with it? If you are aware of your attitude and language, you can fix it from now on. It’s a fact that I’m a simple and shady person.”
Looking at him, I sensed that Hayashi-kun was not unwilling to apologize. If that’s the case, then you can put the other person’s faults and your own faults in an appropriate order and give him a quick and easy way to settle the matter.
“It’s okay. I’ll tell Erika and the others.”
“Are you okay with that?”
“I said it’s no problem. What do you want to do, Hayashi-kun? Are you okay with this?”
“…I hate it. It was only one day, but it was hard.”
You can’t help but be concerned about what people think of you. I’m sure people like you are not used to it.
“Ninomiya, my bad. I’m sorry. I won’t make fun of you anymore and I’ll change my attitude.”
“Yeah, I also was at fault. Let’s just forgive each other and be done with it.
He said, “Thank you,” and thanked me many times. At the same time, he may have forgiven me and asked me to be his friend. I had no reason to refuse, so I accepted. For starters, from now on we will call each other by name.
Besides feeling sorry for him, I didn’t want this little incident to become a problem in the classroom, but it all worked out, so I was happy.
Then Keisuke went to his club activities and I went home. When we parted, Keisuke said, “Etsuji, you’re a good guy,” and left.
“I’m a good guy… huh.”
Since I was in elementary school, I’ve consulted with many people. I just wanted to help them, and I felt like a hero for meeting their expectations.
But lately, or maybe not so long ago, a thought has crossed my mind.
But lately, or maybe not so long ago, a thought has been popping into my head: “-don’t you just want to seem like a good person?”
“Huh? Have you finished talking yet?”
“Ah, That’s good.”
Kouki, who had been away, came back.
“I didn’t know anything. Looks like Keisuke’s left first.”
“Aah… you’re not listening to me?”
“Hmm? Ah I want to know this, we were talking, and it was something you didn’t need to hear or didn’t want to hear, right?”
“That’s about it.”
Koki is a light-hearted guy, but he’s not stupid. This is true not only in his studies, but also in his relationships and his understanding of situations. The fact that he is trusted by so many people is proof of this.
“Besides, I know Keisuke. I can guess what’s going on.”
“He’s a good guy when he’s in front of us,” said Koki.
“You have to go back, don’t you Kouki?”
I felt bad for calling out two people who were in the club, but I was in no hurry as I was not in the club.
“I’m going to go now,” he said as he ran off, but came right back with, “Oh, by the way.
”Did you forget to say something?”
“Didn’t you say we should hang out sometime?”
That’s what I said this morning.
“Apart from that, I’m going to hang out with some guys I’ve become friends with in high school over the next break. You can come too if you want, Etsuji.
I felt a small, small needle-like sensation in the back of my chest, as if something was pricking me. It’s like something I felt back then…
“Hmm, who’s coming?”
“Mostly people from my class, but each of us will bring someone we know. I don’t know how many people will be there, but it’s going to be a lot of fun. I’m sure you’ll be able to get along with all of them.
“It’s next Sunday, though. I’m sure there will be a lot of cute girls there too.”
“What do you think?”
“Sorry, I’ve got other plans that day. I can’t make it.”
“Oh, I see…”
The way Kouki nodded his head, I could tell he was really disappointed. It’s the same old thing.
“It can’t be helped. I’ll invite you back! I have to leave.”
With that, Kouki ran off again. This time, he didn’t come back.
Kouki probably didn’t have any other intentions. He probably had no ulterior motives, he just wanted to play with me, that’s all. I may have seen Kouki’s surroundings as shining, but to him, there was no difference.
There is no such thing as calculation or profit and loss, and he can easily get along with anyone. I myself would like to continue to be friends with such Koki. That feeling will never change. And yet…
Kouki has been shining even brighter since entering high school. Not only Kouki, but also Sayuri, Erika, and Rikiya. That glow will continue to grow.
The brighter the dazzle is-
The darker the shadow becomes.
I come to my senses. The black haze flickered again. Now that I’m in high school and talking to Sayuri and the others again, I’m sure I’ve put a lid on that haze.
This is bad… I’m becoming despicable.
“No, no, no. If there’s a next time, I’ll join you!”
I turned my back to the school and walked away, not knowing to whom I was addressing my words.
E/D Note: hmm…