Why Does Nobody Find Us Attractive?
...Bzzt ...Bzzt ...Bzzt
Still half asleep, Reina slapped her arm around looking for her phone. Eventually, her hand grasped the solid rectangular shape and she turned off the alarm. Slowly sitting up in her futon, she pushes the hair out of her face and rubs her eyes. After stretching out her arms, she gets to her feet and slogs to the washroom to get ready. She put on some clothes, throwing on a large t-shirt and some shorts, then continued with the rest of her daily bathroom routines. Once finished, Reina trudged into the kitchen. She opened the fridge, and after looking through its contents, she took out the milk. The carton was light, so Reina sloshed it around and determined that only a little amount was left. She poured the small amount into a glass and drank it in one large gulp. Scrounging around for any food, she heard the creaks of the stairs as someone walked down.
Reina turned around to see Nikko jump off the last stair. His hair is a mess and he's only adorned with a pair of shorts.
"You couldn't throw on a shirt, jackass? I don't want to be seeing 'this' when I wake up."
Rather than be offended, Nikko struck a pose, showing off his slender figure.
"You should be grateful. Very few have had the honor to gaze upon my godly body."
Reina couldn't help but chuckle at his response, taking a seat at the table to eat a banana. Nikko struted towards the fridge and opened it, but stood unmoving for several moments. Eventually, he slowly turned around to face Reina.
"Reina, where's the milk?"
The haunting, unemotional sound in his voice sent chills down her spine. Looking at him, Reina saw the complete soullessness in his eyes, and it made her hesitant to respond.
"Um, I…, I drank the rest."
Nikko continued to stare at Reina, but he wasn't focused on her, rather he was focused on nothing. He remained still for nearly 30 seconds, then suddenly dropped to his knees.
"No FUCKING MILK!"
Reina flinched at his terrifying bellow. She had no idea what was going on with him, but she did know that she was afraid. Worried for her safety, Reina began to slowly creep towards the front door. As soon as she reached towards the doorknob, the door suddenly swung open. Reina jumped back in fright, but was relieved to see a familiar face.
Juzo entered through the door, setting his bag on the nearby bench. Reina gave him a concerned smile.
“Hey, Nikko’s acting really strange, and it’s kinda scaring me. Could you check on him?”
“Alright, I’ll see what’s up.”
Juzo walked into the kitchen to see Nikko still slumped on his knees. He shuffled up next to Nikko and squatted down to wrap his arm around his collapsed shoulders.
“Hey, buddy, what’s up? You don’t look too good.”
Nikko sluggishly turned his neck to face Juzo and started quickly mumbling.
“She drank it. She drank it all. Why would she do that? Didn’t she know not to do that? Why did this happen to me?”
Juzo patted Nikko’s head in an attempt to calm him down.
“Hey, slow down now. Why don’t you try and calmly explain what happened.”
Nikko took a few deep breaths, then straightened up his posture.
“I just wanted some milk, Juzo. That’s what I do in the morning. But then I open the fridge, and there’s no carton. So I asked Reina. She drank it all, Juzo. She drank all of my milk.”
Nikko broke into tears, unable to keep any composure for any longer. Juzo gave him a few pats on the back, then got back to his feet and approached Reina, whose face was painted in uneasiness.
“Is he alright?”
Juzo took a moment to push his hair back.
Juzo’s disappointment was now obvious, as he buried his face into his hand.
“The man lets you stay over at his house because he knows your situation at home is bad. And how do you repay him? You drink all his milk. You, my friend, are truly human garbage."
Hearing that comment made Reina lose her patience regarding the situation.
"God dammit, all I did was drink some milk! Why are you treating it like I committed a war crime?”
Reina shuffled closer towards Nikko.
“Look, Nikko, I'm sorry, but…"
Out of nowhere, Juzo's phone started beeping, causing Reina to stop.
"Oh, we gotta get to school. C'mon, go and get ready."
Nikko sprung up and headed towards the stairs, acting as if nothing happened..
"Hurry up, Reina. We gotta get dressed."
Reina stood there in shock.
“What the hell! Weren’t you just having a breakdown over your damn milk? Why are you acting like nothing happened!?”
Nikko shook his head at Reina.
“Reina, we don’t have time to chat. Just hurry up and get ready.”
Juzo went and tapped Reina's shoulder to break her from her dumbfoundedness.
“Go on, I don’t want to be waiting all morning.”
The day at school went like any other, carrying on tediously until salvation in the form of lunch break. As usual, the trio gathered at their table in the cafeteria, setting out their lunches on the table. Nikko was quick to start the conversation.
“So, what’s the plan?”
Juzo looked confused at the vague question.
“Plan for what?”
“You know, the plan we came up with yesterday. Sitting around during precious spare time would be a waste, so I thought we should jump straight into the action.”
“Okay, then. Go ask someone out right now.”
“What!? I thought we were gonna help each other?”
“Can’t help unless I know what I’m working with. Don’t you agree, Reina?”
Reina was too involved in her food that she missed the question. However, feeling pressure from the two staring at her, she just agreed and nodded. Happy with her response, Juzo continued.
“Alright, now that we have come to an agreement, go show us what you got.”
Nikko rose to his feet and slammed his hands on the table.
“Fine, I’ll show you losers how you score some girls.”
Nikko strutted towards a group of four girls sitting across the cafeteria. By now, Reina’s attention had shifted towards the boy’s activity.
“What’s the dumbass doing?”
“I told him to try and ask someone out to see his moves.”
“Well, those girls over there are gonna tear him apart. They got ego’s bigger than the damn moon.”
“Ooh, we’re gonna be treated to a show.”
Nikko reached the girls, leaning against the table to get their attention.
“Hey, how are you ladies doing this fine afternoon.”
The girls gave Nikko a disgusted look, but glanced at each other in agreement. A tall, black-haired girl was the one who responded to him.
“Oh, and who is this charming young man?”
Nikko flashed them his best smile.
“Me? Well, I’m Nikko Murano, class 3-2. I was wondering if I could eat lunch with you nice girls.”
“Of course! We’re always happy to accommodate a fellow student.”
The black-haired girl gestured to a chair, so Nikko sat down.
“So, are you going to introduce yourselves?”
Before saying anything, the black-haired girl checked her phone.
“Oh, I’m so sorry. It looks like we have somewhere to be right now. Would you be a dear and clean up the table? Thanks so much.”
All four girls got up, dumping their garbage on Nikko as they walked by. Realizing he’d been played, Nikko slumped back in his chair and sighed. Juzo and Reina walked over to check up on him, silently helping him clean up the mess.
Nikko turned to see Juzo, who was staring at the floor in remorse.
“Nah, it’s alright. At least you got a good look at the master’s moves.”
The last comment caught Reina’s attention.
“The MASTER!? Dude, you just embarrassed yourself in front of the entire cafeteria, and you have the audacity to call yourself the master! Wow, I really underestimated your stupidity.”
Nikko was starting to get riled up.
“Oh ho, you think you can do better? Go ahead then, show me your moves!”
Juzo raised his arms up, trying to stop a scene from breaking out.
“Alright everyone, calm down. To be fair to Nikko, Reina and I will also go display our skills. Okay Reina, you’re up.”
“Wait, why me!?”
“Because you made fun of Nikko. Come on now, you can’t make fun of others if you’re the exact same.”
“Fine, see how a woman’s touch can capture the heart of an unsuspecting boy.”
Trying to take an approach opposite to Nikko, Reina goes to the hall to scout out any lonely boys. Her expedition eventually leads her to a boy by himself by the lockers. Reina turns to the other two.
She skips over to the boy holding her hands behind her back.
"Hi, watcha doing?"
The boy turns over to her with an expressionless face.
"Just getting my gym clothes."
"Oh, you like playing sports?"
Reina was starting to lose her patience.
"Oh, well did you have lunch yet?"
"Would you mind if I ate with you?"
Suddenly, the boy snapped.
"Look, I don't know who you are, but stop bothering me. I know you just want food from me, so take this and leave me alone."
The boy shoves a package of bread into Reina’s arm before storming off. Reina remained still, astonished by what just happened. Nikko wasted no time to get back at her.
“Damn, you may suck at hitting on guys, but you would be an excellent homeless person.”
“Whatever, I just want to go back now.”
Seeing how upset Reina was, the boys just left their jokes to themselves. Juzo was up next, and he made sure to stretch in anticipation for his attempt.
“Dude, are you gonna be okay?”
Juzo looks over to Nikko, who looks a bit concerned.
“Dunno. Why ya asking?”
“Well, I've just been thinking back, and I don’t recall you ever even talking to a girl you didn’t know. Me and Reina have no problems talking to others, but I’m not so sure about you.”
“Yeah, I usually have some trouble talking to strangers. But don’t worry, I’ll adapt.”
“You’ll adapt to social anxiety?”
“Sure, why not.”
Nikko was getting worried about what was about to happen. He turned to Reina for her thoughts, but she was still completely zoned out. Juzo had finished psyching himself up and was ready to go.
However, there was no one near the lockers, so Juzo had to walk around the school to find anyone. He found his targets hanging outside of a classroom, and he finally got his shot. Straightening up his posture, he advanced towards the two girls.
“Hi there, I’m Juzo Kawahara. I’m taking polls from students for a project. Would you mind answering a few questions?”
From afar, Nikko’s jaw dropped.
“My God, this man actually has a working plan.”
Reina raised her head to view the spectacle.
“No, it’s Juzo. It’s definitely gonna blow up in his face.”
“That’s a good point. At least he seems to have an idea about what he’s doing.”
As the two talked, Juzo finished asking the girls his fake questions.
“Alright, thank you so much! You guys have been a big help.”
One of the girls returned his cheerful attitude.
“Yeah, no problem!”
With the girls taking his bait, it was time for Juzo to reel them in.
“Say, since you’ve been a big help, I was wondering…”
Out of nowhere, Juzo whipped out a stack of money..
“... if you ladies would like to join me tonight. I promise it will be a night you will never forget.”
The girls' faces lit up in horror, quickly grabbing their bags.
“Sorry, we have somewhere to be.”
The two sprant down the hall, leaving Juzo bewildered. Nikko and Reina came over to check up on their friend, who was quick to express his confusion.
“Why did they run away?”
Reina was still in a bad mood, so Nikko took it on himself to explain to Juzo.
“So, everything went really well in the first half, right?”
“But then you flashed money at them and told them you would give them a night they would never forget.”
“Well, you made yourself sound like a scummy piece of shit by saying that. The girls probably thought you would hurt them or something.”
Juzo punched the wall, realizing how bad he sounded.
“Goddammit! I was just trying to show that I would pay for them at karaoke.”
Nikko placed his hand on Juzo’s shoulder to comfort his friend.
“Don’t sweat it too much. It was a pretty good first effort, you just gotta choose your words and actions better. Also put that money away. How much is that even?”
Juzo handed Nikko the money. There were ten 1000¥ bills.
“You idiot, you just brought a bunch of small bills to make it look like a lot. Man, you really gotta get yourself together.”
Nikko handed the money back, and Juzo sighed as he pocketed his cash. Nikko walked with Juzo towards their class with his arm wrapped around him, while Reina trudged dejectedly behind.