Master Of Rejections But Beginner At Love
School was over.
Kazuma and Yui walked home together as the sun gleamed on them in the early afternoon.
“It's rare seeing you smile while we walk home. No wonder, I guess.” Yui said as she was clearly teasing him.
“What are you talking about?” Kazuma tried to be oblivious.
“Uhm, can I also call you Emma? You can call me Kazuma if you'd like to.” she copied him.
“S-stop it! It's embarrassing! Fine, I give up!” he begged her.
“Okay.” she listened to him despite her saying it in a monotonous voice.
“I have to admit, you sure are a lot braver these past days. I'm proud of you!” she said energetically as she slapped his back.
“Ouch! Don't slap me so hard, moron!” he yelled and rubbed his back.
“But yeah, I guess you're right. I just thought that I should just try my luck and see what happens. After all, I have nothing to lose.” he elaborated.
“Seems like you've had your enlightenment, 'Master Of Rejections'.” Yui commented.
“Ah! How about we celebrate your courage with a trip to Shibuya?” she suggested.
“What? Why sh- Wait a minute. You're suggesting this only because you want me to accompany you while you're shopping right?” he gave her a stern gaze.
“Uhm... pretty please?” she looked at him with puppy eyes.
“Ugh.. Well, fine...” he could not say no to those eyes.
And therefore, they took the train to Shibuya.
Just like always, the streets in Shibuya were busy with all kinds of people roaming there.
“So what do you want to buy in Shibuya, Yui?” Kazuma asked.
“Just a book.” she answered.
“Then hurry up. I want to leave here as soon as possible. Just look how crowded it is now!”
“Can't you just pretend for one time that you're happy? I mean, not every guy has the chance to hang out with such a cute girl like me after school.” she sighed in disappointment.
“What do you mean?” he acted genuinely confused.
“Want another slap?” she burst a vein.
“Just kidding.” he revoked his sarcastic remark as he was sweating from nervousness.
“I hope so.”
Then, they started to walk to the bookstore. Kazuma and Yui walked side by side until Kazuma realized that his shoelaces were loose. So he crouched down to tie them, however, as soon as he looked up again, Yui was nowhere to be seen. They got separated.
“Yui!” he shouted.
No response. He continued to look after her as he walked but still no response from her.
“Ah! Maybe I should just call her!”
Suddenly, someone grabbed his hand.
“Finally found the lost child.”
It was Yui.
“How did you find me?” Kazuma asked.
“How could I not find you after hearing you shouting my name like some barbarian?”
“Then, why didn't you respond?”
“As if I would shout back when we're in a large crowd! It's too embarrassing.” she blushed at the thought of raising her voice in public.
“Y-yeah, good point...” Kazuma agreed hesitantly.
“ I know and now let's go!”
“Uhm, don't you want to let go now?” Kazuma asked Yui with a flustered expression.
“Hm? Oh. Not yet. What if you get lost again?” she calmly answered.
Kazuma and Yui were holding hands as they walked together again. Rather than looking romantically, they seemed like a mother and her son as she walked ahead while dragging him forcefully behind her.
Now, while still holding hands, they entered the bookstore. There, the two began to roam the book shelves and after a while they spotted the book Yui wanted to buy.
“Ah, there it is!” Yui pointed at the book.
However, it was placed on the top shelf. Yui tried to grab the book but failed. She tried again and again but even when she stood on her tiptoes, she could not completely grab the book.
Kazuma, who stood right beside her, only watched and laughed as she failed to get her book. But after a few more tries, he decided to finally help her.
“Here.” Kazuma gave her the book after grabbing it easily from the top shelf.
“What's wrong?” Kazuma was confused as Yui stared at him silently.
“Now that I think about it, you're pretty tall!” she stated astonished.
“You're just small.” he chuckled.
“I'm 158cm! That's the average!”
“Oh, then I'm really tall, huh?” he shrugged his shoulder while grinning sarcastically.
“Tch.” she clicked her tongue.
After paying for the book, they exited the store. Compared to before, the crowd grew even bigger, however, within the crowd were now many rough looking people or rather, delinquents.
This was a fact that did not escape the eyes of these two.
“Everything alright?” Yui asked Kazuma with a stern expression.
“Yes...” he clenched his fist while holding the hand of Yui unconsciously tighter.
“Let's go home.” Yui said.
Despite being his friend, she knew nothing about his past, but she knew that topics concerning delinquents were constantly avoided by Kazuma.
Therefore, she did not pry further as she did not want to see a friend being depressed.
And yet she wanted to know. She wanted to help her friend but at the same time she did not want to hurt him. It was a dilemma.
Yui wished she could muster up her courage to ask him like he could lately. But she could not. She was afraid.
Seeing her face as she was lost in thoughts, Kazuma guessed it was about the delinquents and the connections they had with him.
“Don't worry. I'll tell you someday.” he reassured her.
“...” she could just look dejected.
Even though it was not visible on his face, Kazuma was actually the one who was even more lost in thoughts than Yui.
He was in a deeper dilemma.
What should he do?
In this moment, he was basically surrounded by delinquents. Wherever he looked, he would always see a delinquent.
Therefore, he asks himself the same question over and over again. Should he try to get some information out of them? Would he be able to gain new knowledge about 'The Owls of Tokyo'? Would he be a step closer to his revenge? But it meant, that he had to fight them as he knew that delinquents were people who would not listen blindly to someone else before seeing how much strength the other person held.
This, however, would contradict Kazuma's words. He swore to himself after a certain incident that he would never start a fight again.
So what was more important? Seeking revenge or keeping his promise? Kazuma did not know.
”Uhm, Kazuma? Your hand...” Yui quietly muttered.
“Hm? Oh!” Kazuma let go of his hand as he realized that he unconsciously held her hand too tightly.
“Sorry...” he apologized.
Yui then held his hand again after he let go.
She took a deep breath.
“Don't let go yet.” she said with a determined look as they continued to walk to the train station.
Suddenly, Kazuma felt his heart beat faster for a moment. In spite of being in a place with many delinquents, his heart beat faster.
Was it because of Yui? Was it because of her now determined look on her face? Usually, she was a carefree person who always took nothing serious. But now, she had an expression far from the ones she had usually.
The impression she had was like the time where she slapped Ken across his face. In Kazuma's eyes, she was calm and cool.
Astonished from her other side, Kazuma used her as an example and also took a deep breath.
“Feeling better now?” she asked him.
“Yeah. A lot.” he replied with a relaxed grin.
In the end, he chose to keep his promise. The reason was so simple yet he did not thought about it until recently. It was due to Yui.
He did not want to selfishly drag her into some street fights just to get information.
Kazuma knew that Yui was scared of getting involved in fights, notably when he had the brawl with Ken and his pawns. It was understandable. Who would not be scared during fights?
Thus, he decided to walk home with Yui.
“Are you free this Saturday?”
“I think so. Why are you asking?”
“Then come to my house. I'm going to tell you about myself.” Kazuma stated monotonously.
Yui was clearly shocked.
He knew it was about time to tell her about him. He wanted to tell her everything about himself, his family, the rumors at school and of course his past which led to the death of his parents.