Chapter 16:

Sports Day Begins

Game Gyaru

The day had finally arrived. While there was still dread flowing through his veins, this was about as prepared as Hakuta was going to be for sports day. His stamina had greatly improved thanks to the workout routine he shared with Shiuka. He no longer felt exhausted after 20 minutes of song and dance.

Though that was about it when it came to adding onto his nonexistent athletic ability. None of what they did taught him how to throw balls better or lift heavy objects. So hopefully he would have to be pushed hard in the wrong ways.

“Okay, so is everyone ready?” As was the responsibility of the class representative, Ino was also the one in charge of getting people readied and riled up for the day’s activities.

“Yeah!” Everyone around here cheered. Most of the students were excited over the prospect of winning today. When they both had the new star of the baseball team in Itsuku. Along with the physical talent of Ninka, there was no way they were planning on taking defeat.

“I hope you’re ready.” Shiuka whispered over to him. After all the hard work they’ve done together, it was the expectation that he also carry his own weight.

“Definitely.” Despite not originally wanting to hang out with these girls at the arcade due to his own friend’s arrogance. It ended up becoming a blessing in disguse for the pair. Now they didn’t have to pretend not to care about the other when in school. Though that didn’t change their before and after school plans. Nor did it keep him from still being a bit closed off from her.

“Great.” Ino gave off the plan to the class. “Let’s get some victories in the first half, then we’ll have a nice lunch.” After that came the part most people weren’t looking forward to. The five kilometer run.

It would be grueling to get through, no matter how conditioned or fit one was. The reason being it wasn’t just some simple run through the town on normal pavement. Instead, they’d be tasked with essentially hiking up one side of the mountain then dashing down the other.

Their school was positioned by one of the more popular hiking trails in town. So of course the school staff came up with the supposedly wonderful idea of using this for their sports day to set themselves apart from other schools. Though to be fair, at least it meant they didn’t actually run five kilometers. It was more closer to four.

But right now, that wasn’t what they needed to focus on. The students all split out into their groups to attend their respective activities. Unsurprisingly, Hakuta was with his friends, however they were also attached with a specific trio of girls as well. That being Shiuka and her gal pals.

Their first challenge was a baton relay, which unfortunately he was sitting out of. There were only four participants that could do it. Which they chose the clearly more athletically gifted Itsuku and Yuusen to represent the boys. Meanwhile, Shiuka and Ninka were joining them as girls. That left him and their friend, Rouko to sit on the sidelines to cheer them on.

“Well don’t you look disappointed.” She commented on his demeanor as they sat on the bleachers. “Just last week you hated this. Are you really Yamamoto?”

“Yes, I’m still me.” He replied. “You know, a lot can change in a week. I’ll have you know I’ve been training for this.”

“Fufufu, really?” She giggled then grabbed his arm to squeeze at his muscles. “Doesn’t look like it’s working.” His arms were still as flabby as ever as she played with them.

“Not with weights.” He ripped his arm from her in embarrassment. It was a shot to his manhood to have someone tease him on his lack of strength, even if he never tried to improve on it in the first place. “I’ve just been improving my stamina, that’s all.”

“I doubt it’s that much if it’s only been a week.” She didn’t believe him. “But if you’re trying to get stronger… Who’s the girl?” Of course, as before she made fun of the fact he was trying to impress a girl. Hakuta already had a reputation of not appearing to care about those of the opposite sex despite already growing up into a high school teenager.

“No one.” He responded, turning back to watch the runners as they got into position. His eyes wondered onto Shiuka, who was the opening runner for the team.

“Who are you looking at then?” She put her head closer to his to try and see where he was directing his vision at.

“No one.” He repeated again, now returning his gaze onto her.

“Maybe it’s me?” She pointed a finger at herself. “I was just joking at the mall, but I bet you realized how great I’d be for a girlfriend.”

“Definitely not.” It was laughable for her to think he would ever consider it. Really, the chances of him actually falling for a gyaru was less likely than him winning the lottery.

“A shame you just haven’t realized how cute I am.” She peered over to Shiuka just as the race was about to start. “Bet you haven’t gotten a first kiss yet either.”

“Of course not.” He replied, a bit too proud of the fact.

“Hey, do your best Shiuka!” Immediately after answering, she yelled out her cheers to her friends. “And if you don’t win, then I’ll take away Hakuta’s first kiss!”

“What!?” That got him a bit riled up just from her yelling this out for the whole world to hear. “N-n-no, that’s not what you’re going to do.” He looked at at the rest of the crowd, whose eyes were now turned towards the pair just as the announcer called the word, ‘ready’ for the racers.

What was missed was the change in demeanor for Shiuka. She was no longer as laid back as before. There was a new energy replaced with it as she got down and prepared her start to run. Finally, they called go and quickly out of the gate, she left the rest of the runners behind in the dust. The gap between her and second place was massive and would’ve been bigger if she ran the entire lap. However, this was still a relay, so eventually the girl handed it off to the next person, that being Yuusen for the team to complete the race. That boy was genuinely afraid for his life as she came careening down the track towards him. It seemed a mistake would end his life.

Finally, without needing much more effort. The other three racers were able to complete the rest of the baton relay in first place.

“Good job everyone!” He cheered out after seeing them take the win. Their classroom’s chances of winning the whole day were looking brighter after this strong start.

“Now, let’s go see them in the winner’s circle.” Rouko pulled him by the arm to bring him down the bleachers. They’d be able to celebrate with their teammates, even though they didn’t do much to contribute to victory. It was like not doing anything for a school project, but still putting your name on it to take some credit.

“That was easier than I thought.” Said Itsuku, who didn’t have to break a sweat in his leg of the race. That boy got anchor, and they assumed he’d have to push himself to make up for everyone else. Thankfully, they ended up not being the case. “Shiuka’s a lot faster than we all thought.”

“Thanks.” She was exhausted after breaking through all her limits during that run. The girl was barely able to stand up as she chugged water during their conversation. “I’ve been getting a good workout this week. So don’t count me out.”

“I guess that stipulation from Rouko also was good motivation too.” Since he was the second runner, Yuusen was able to hear what that girl yelled out from the crowd. The other two were too far to hear it, so it made no sense to them to see her run so fast and brutally. “About how Hakuta was going to lose his first kiss to Rouko.”

“K-kiss?” The other two who were only now learning about this both were shocked to hear it. Ninka was surprised to hear anyone express interest into a loser like Hakuta. Itsuku was a bit disappointed to hear the girl had turned their teasing towards his friend. Why couldn't it be to him?

“I’m pretty sure she was just joking…” Hakuta nervously tried to explain the situation to them. Though the idea of that girl just grabbing his face and planting a kiss onto his lips did run through his head. “But, how come Shiuka cares about it?”

“Well, uh…” All their eyes landed on her as she felt her body heat up in shame. That was an oddly extreme thing she did for the sake of someone else. Especially since some would assume that person wouldn’t mind getting a kiss. “I just know that… You care about it a lot.”

“You do?” Admittedly, he did. Which was why he was proud to proclaim his lack of experience to the gal’s friend. However, Hakuta had never even mentioned it to her even when they were away from everyone else.

“Totally, you haven’t even tried to kiss a girl before.” When she said it, it sounded a lot less a pure thing and more something that made him sound like a loser. “And you don’t even try. That means you probably means you care about saving it for someone special.”

“True…” It was hard for him to want to talk about this matter in front of everyone. Pretty much every teen would get self-conscious about it with their friends. Though a part of him was happy that she somehow noticed without him saying a single word. She really did notice him, didn’t she? “Look, how about we just forget about my love life?” Still, it was too personal of a thing for him to want to discuss it during sports day. “We’ve still got more events to win, and this time it’s my turn to carry my weight.” 

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