Chapter 4:

The Fated Meeting...

The Struggles from the Happy Girl Next Door

"Kiyota!"Bookmark here

A voice called out my name as I made my way towards the café, I looked over at where it had come from and saw Natsumi standing there all the while waving at me.Bookmark here

I waved back at her and made my way towards her "Hey there" "It's been a while"
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"Yeah, it has been" "I'm glad that we're finally reuniting like this~"Bookmark here

"Yeah... Back home, it was relatively quiet. Almost too quiet without you"Bookmark here

"You make it seem like I'm the reason that your place was always loud..."Bookmark here

"It kind of was..." I swallowed my words and glanced over at the store "Shall we?"Bookmark here

"Yeah, I'm pretty hungry"Bookmark here

"I see..." A sigh escaped my breath and as we entered the establishment, we were immediately led to an empty table. We each glanced through the menu and as soon as we knew what we were having, we placed the order and simply waited.Bookmark here

"So? How was the move?"Bookmark here

"It was all right. When I was unpacking everything, I couldn't help but notice that I had a lot more then I remembered that I had"Bookmark here

"Now you know how it feels"Bookmark here

"Yeah, but you at least had someone help you with unpacking. I did everything myself"Bookmark here

"Yeah, yeah"Bookmark here

She gave me a simple wave and glanced out the window of the café "You know something..." "I've always wanted to experience life on my own, but to be completely honest with you... It's lonely not having anyone you're close with near you"Bookmark here

"Don't you're friends live relatively close to you?"Bookmark here

"They do... But it's just not the same as when I was close to you"Bookmark here

"..."Bookmark here

"Didn't you feel the same? Didn't you feel like something was missing?"Bookmark here

"Well..." The day she moved, I didn't mind it at all, on the contrary, I was glad that she was fulfilling her dream of living on her own, but as time passed by, I noticed the little things that made it fun being near her.Bookmark here

The times when we would hang out in the city, the times she would drag me through the mall and how we would mess with one another, all of that was something that I too, missed.
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"But now that you're living close by, I can pester you all I want~"Bookmark here

"Please don't..."Bookmark here

She giggled at my words and out of nowhere proceeded to pull out her phone "Let's take a picture to commemorate our-"Bookmark here

"Not happening"Bookmark here

"Come on~! Just one"Bookmark here

"..."Bookmark here

"I know that you don't like to take pictures, but let's just do it. It's not like it'll hurt you or anything"Bookmark here

A sigh escaped my breath and I just nodded "Fine..."Bookmark here

"Thank you~"Bookmark here

She got up from her seat, sat directly next to me and pulled me in. Since I was already used to this clingy side of her, I simply let her do as she pleased.Bookmark here

"Smile~"Bookmark here

I did as I was told and once she took the picture, she stared at it for a bit and slapped me on the back "See? You're getting better at smiling"Bookmark here

"I don't know why, but it bothers me even more hearing you say that"Bookmark here

She giggled once more but instead of actually heading on back to her seat, she stayed right next to me.Bookmark here

After a minute or so afterword, our waited arrived with our food, we both gave thanks and proceeded to eat to our hearts content.Bookmark here

"It's delicious~"Bookmark here

"Don't talk with your mouth full"Bookmark here

"Sorry~"Bookmark here

I let out a sigh and glanced out the window for a bit "I wonder if Yukari was meeting up with someone today... But even then, that doesn't explain the bruise on her hand and those noises... That couldn't have been her dad moving around in the bed and bumping into the wall..."Bookmark here

"Something wrong, Kiyota?"Bookmark here

"It's nothing" I continued eating and as I did so, I noticed that she had a bit of food on her face "Clean yourself"Bookmark here

"Huh?"Bookmark here

I grabbed my napkin and wiped away a bit of food that was on her face "Thank you~"Bookmark here

"How did you even manage to live on your own acting like this?"Bookmark here

"I only act like this with you and you know that"Bookmark here

"Yeah, but you should really try to do these things on your own"Bookmark here

"Yeah, yeah"Bookmark here

After some time passed, the both of us finished eating, but instead of making our way out of the café, we simply decided to talk with each other for a bit before heading on out.Bookmark here

"By the way, did you finally manage to meet your neighbors?"Bookmark here

"Yeah, I did" "The lady from downstairs is a bit too kind, but she's a nice person overall. The landlady treats me like her own son and the neighbors from next door..."Bookmark here

As I tried to think about what to say about them, nothing came to mind. The only thing that appeared in my mind was how pissed off her dad looked seeing a stranger with her daughter.Bookmark here

"I only met the daughter. She goes to the same Uni as us"Bookmark here

"She does?! What year?"Bookmark here

"If I'm right on it... She should be in her second year of Uni"Bookmark here

"I see... So she's two year's younger then us" She glanced over at me and started poking my cheek "And is she pretty, cute, sexy~?"Bookmark here

"Why are you even asking that?"Bookmark here

"I'm just curious~" "You haven't dated anyone in quite a long time. The last person was that girl from high school, right?"Bookmark here

"... Yeah"Bookmark here

"So?"Bookmark here

"What?"Bookmark here

"Is she cute, pretty or sexy?"Bookmark here

Seeing how persistent she was being, I let out a sigh and tried to think back on her all together. Of course, she was pretty, she was also cute, but there wasn't anything sexy about her.Bookmark here

"I'd say she's pretty and cute"Bookmark here

"I see... I wish I could get the chance to meet her"Bookmark here

"I hope you don't..."Bookmark here

"Why~?! That's too cruel~!"Bookmark here

"You'll just make things uncomfortable"Bookmark here

"I promise that I won't"Bookmark here

"Yeah, yeah"Bookmark here

Once we were ready to head on out towards the city, I paid for our food and thus we made our way towards the nearby mall. She had told me prior that there were some things that she needed to get and since I could probably use some more things for my apartment, it was a relatively good moment to head on out shopping on my behalf as well.Bookmark here

"What do you need exactly, Natsumi?"Bookmark here

"Hmm?" She glanced over at me and started pondering to herself "Well... I need some materials for school, I was thinking off getting a few pieces of clothes and then some underwear"Bookmark here

"..." "Was that last thing really necessary for you to tell me?"Bookmark here

"Of course, that way, I can get your opinion on it"Bookmark here

"Not happening"Bookmark here

"Come on~!" "It's not that embarrassing"Bookmark here

"Speak for yourself"Bookmark here

"You're going to do it whether you like it or not"Bookmark here

"..." I let out a sigh and thus the both of us made our way towards the first store on the list. We each went our separate ways inside getting whatever we needed. Once we were ready, we met up at the front of the registers and proceeded to pay for our own things.Bookmark here

The next stop was the clothing store, she insisted on me accompanying her to which I agreed without even thinking about it.Bookmark here

"Is there anything specific that you're looking for?"Bookmark here

"I wanted a new outfit, but I don't know what to get exactly"
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"Why not go the same route and choose a blouse with some jeans?"Bookmark here

"That's too plain" "I want something more eye catching"Bookmark here

"I see..." I glanced around the women section and my eyes laid upon some one piece dresses "How about something like that?"Bookmark here

"Hmm?" She glanced over at what I was pointing towards and upon seeing the dresses, she suddenly grabbed my hand and started dragging me towards them "They're beautiful~"Bookmark here

"Is this something you could use on an outing?"Bookmark here

"Yeah, I like it a lot" She glanced through the ones they had in stock and ended up picking out a white one piece dress with frills sewed on the ends "Do you think this would look good on me?"Bookmark here

"Why not go ahead and change into it?"Bookmark here

"You have time for me to do that?"Bookmark here

"Yeah, I wasn't planning on doing anything today"Bookmark here

"Perfect~" She grabbed it and the both of us started heading towards the changing rooms "Wait right here"Bookmark here

"Yeah, Yeah"Bookmark here

Once she entered the changing room, I let out a sigh and started looking through my phone, as I did so, an email arrived about a new book I was looking forward to buying that was released today.Bookmark here

"I wonder if the bookstore has it in stock"Bookmark here

"How do I look?"Bookmark here

I glanced back and I was completely awestricken by how it looked on her "I-It looks good on you..."Bookmark here

"Really~? Then I'll get it"Bookmark here

With a single smile, she made her way back inside the changing room and started changing back into her clothes.Bookmark here

As I took in a deep breath, a sudden voice called out to me "Kiyota?"Bookmark here

"Hmm?"Bookmark here

I glanced upwards and standing before me was none other then Yukari with some clothes of her own.Bookmark here

"What are you doing here in the women's section, Kiyota?"Bookmark here

Her gaze fixated on me, I couldn't help but look directly at her "I'm here with a friend"Bookmark here

"I see..."Bookmark here

"Is something wrong?"Bookmark here

She seemed worried about something, but I couldn't tell what exactly, before I could even ask if she was all right, she spoke up "Kiyota... Is she-"Bookmark here

"I'm ready to go~"Bookmark here

Before she could say what she wanted, Natsumi stepped out with a smile on her face, but upon seeing the scene before her, she stood there in place and glanced between the both of us "Did I interrupt something?"Bookmark here

"Well..." I glanced over at Yukari and then back at Natsumi who was staring at me "What do I say? I wasn't expecting any of this to happen at all!"Bookmark here

That single moment of Yukari walking up to me. The answer I gave her and Natsumi coming out in that single moment was the start of something that would change my life and make me see what had happened in my apartment complex.Bookmark here

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