Chapter 10:

Aina Pare is a Shipsexual Part 2

The Mildpowered Virgins of Novylion High

On Thursday, 23rd April, one day after I had two conversations with Jitsu-senpai, I was dying to talk to Pushpako-senpai. Everything – and I mean everything – depended on what she would say to me. It was all so confusing. I’d gone over in my head every single moment I’d seen Pushpako-senpai and Puna-senpai together the previous week but I couldn’t make heads or tails of any of it at all. It was as if my memory and my perception had been blocked. Bookmark here

And Jitsu-senpai had seemed so innocent and pure and cute at first but I was doubting that too. What were his true motives? What did he want? What if he hates Pushpako-senpai? What if he’s the villain in this story? Ahhh! I spent fourteen years of my life inventing all kinds of situations in my head but, when it comes down to it, I can’t even get to the bottom of a simple love triangle. I’m so ashamed. I don’t even deserve an impressive or grand death. I only deserve a humiliating death that everyone will laugh at. Bookmark here

‘I should just jump off a one-storey building and die!’ I screamed that out loud too. My lips really are loose. I can’t even contain private thoughts inside my head. What if the problem’s in my brain? What if my brain is so small that it can only hold a certain number of thoughts at a time and any more and it just overflows? Why am I worrying, though? I’m always the first one at practice. It’s not like anyone heard—Bookmark here

‘Hey, don’t do that! I did it and I was in the hospital for seven whole months! My Papa won’t even let me climb anywhere until I’m eighteen!’Bookmark here

‘Eep!’ I shouted in surprise. I looked behind me and there was a short girl who couldn’t have been taller than five feet and three inches just standing there. She had messy shoulder-length hair and was wearing round glasses, a loose-fitting sports uniform and a big smile. And she looked so pretty and beautiful and cute as a button. I just wanted to hug her and call her my little sister. Bookmark here

‘Whoa, you got scared? Cool! I’m a monster! Nom-nom-nom!’ Oh goodness! I was dying of a cuteness overload! She’s a monster! Gosh, she’s adorable! Bookmark here

‘Hey, are you lost, little girl? My name is Aina Pare. Can I help you in any way?’Bookmark here

‘I’m not a little girl! I’m a big boy.’ Waahhhh! Now I wanted to nom-nom her. Bookmark here

‘Sure you are. My bad.’Bookmark here

‘That’s right.’Bookmark here

‘So, what’s your name?’Bookmark here

‘Jajanshu Mamanpade. What’s yours? Oh wait, you told me right now but I wasn’t listening sorry so tell me again.’Bookmark here

‘Aina Pare is my name. What are you looking for, Jajanshi?’Bookmark here

‘Jajanshu. I’m a boy, remember?’Bookmark here

‘Of course you are!’ Little girls at that age are so dreamy and innocent. I wish I could go back to that age too where you could be a monster one day and a superhero the next and a boy the day after that. Or she really does want to be a boy. That’s cool too. It’s good to see our society progressing so much.Bookmark here

‘What are you looking for, Jajanshi— I mean, Jajanshu?’Bookmark here

‘I joined the school yesterday and I came today to roam around and see all the basketball and volleyball and football and everything and this big, mean sensei comes to me and he says what are you doing here these are the high-school practice grounds and I say I am in high school and he says show me your ID and I said I don’t have my ID. It’s at my house. Then he started shouting at me and he was saying he will take me to Madam Principal’s office and I said I just went yesterday she is so busy why do all the teachers here want to disturb her. It’s only because she is so kind she doesn’t say anything, you know? I bet she’s so tired of all the teachers just bringing all the kids to her all the time. And what for? The problem’s between you and me. I think we can sort this out. A man who doesn’t want to deal with his own problems is no man at all, my Papa says. And then I saw sensei was turning red and I think he was going to hit me so I ran and I’m here and I’m hiding.’Bookmark here

What? This is the bravest or stupidest thing I’ve ever heard any student do in our school. Did she really say it or imagine it? Bookmark here

‘Uh… What sport do you play, Jajanshu?’ Bookmark here

‘I love playing tag and hide-and-seek and the napkin game where you run in circles. I don’t remember the name it’s been so long and I haven’t played that one. Ooh! That’s a good idea. I’ll tell the kids at the park next time.’ She must be really small then. Must not even be in middle school. Just looks a bit older than her age. Bookmark here

‘I don’t think those can be called sports. They’re more like children’s games.’ Bookmark here

‘Really? I didn’t know. What sport do you play?’Bookmark here

‘As you might have guessed from where I’m standing, I play volleyball.’ Bookmark here

‘What’s volleyball?’Bookmark here

‘You don’t know what volleyball is?’ Who doesn’t know what volleyball is? It’s not the most popular sport. Maybe it’s not even in the top five. But I bet it’s in the top ten. It has to be in the top ten. Is it normal to not know what volleyball is? Is it actually a really obscure sport that no one knows about? Have the past three years been a lie? Bookmark here

‘In volleyball, you throw a ball over a net and then the other team hits it back at you and it goes on like that.’Bookmark here

‘What?’ Bookmark here

‘Well, I guess my explanation isn’t that good. How does one explain volleyball? I’ve been playing it for so long but no one’s ever asked me to describe it, to be honest. What is volleyball, indeed?’ Bookmark here

‘Is that the net?’ She was pointing towards the net.Bookmark here

‘Yeah. That’s the net.’ Bookmark here

‘Ah ha ha. I want to play volleyball too. Can I play with you?’Bookmark here

‘I’m glad you’re interested. But you can’t play with me. Like sensei said, this is the high school practice court. Only people fourteen and above can play in this court. But we have a junior team too. You can join that if you want. You want me to show you the way there?’ Bookmark here

‘I told you I’m a big boy. But OK I am not fourteen yet. I’m only thirteen. I’ll turn fourteen on 17th May. Then can I join?’ Bookmark here

‘Ha ha. That’s a nice joke. But we have to be serious now. Everyone else will be coming here in a few minutes and I have to start warming up and whatnot.’Bookmark here

‘I’m not joking! I’m Jajanshu Mamanpade from class IX-A. I don’t have my ID right now or I will have shown you. Why don’t you believe me, Aina? We’re in the same standard. You are not in my section but. What section are you in?’Bookmark here

‘I’m in VIII-B. I’m not… Please stop with the kidding. We need to get serious. There is no way someone so small as you is a IX-class student.’Bookmark here

‘Am too. And how are you so big and tall and old and you are still in VIII? Don’t judge a film by its poster, Papa says.’ Bookmark here

‘You’re telling me you’re really in IX-A?’Bookmark here

‘Yes.’Bookmark here

‘IX-A… What a coincidence. Jitsu-senpai is in IX-A too.’Bookmark here

‘Wow. You know Jitsu? Hagesh and Umito and everyone were talking about him all day yesterday.’ Bookmark here

He knows Umito-senpai? That Umito-senpai? The guy everyone started calling the Dynamite Pirate when he blew up a firecracker in the bathroom? The guy who cleaned up when he fell in love with a princess, only to be dragged down by his past. And when the princess’s parents found out, they sent her away to a boarding school somewhere far away? Bookmark here

‘I don’t know Jitsu-senpai too well. I only met him yesterday for the first time.’Bookmark here

‘Oh right! I thought I had seen you before. So you’re the junior he’s going all lovey-dovey for? You should call me senpai too, by the way. Papa says it’s important to respect your elders.’ Huh? This small girl is my senpai? She must be joking. But how does she know so many seniors? And… What did she just say about me and Jitsu-senpai? Bookmark here

‘He— he’s not getting lovey-dovey with me! It’s not like that at all.’ Was I blushing? How do you know if you are blushing? Bookmark here

‘He he. Of course you are. They were talking about it for soooooo long. It was like you both are going to get married tomorrow. La la la.’Bookmark here

‘M— married?! Don’t be stupid, alright? We’re not even of legal age.’Bookmark here

‘So you will marry him when you become eighteen?’Bookmark here

‘Shut up! Little girls shouldn’t talk about this kind of stuff.’Bookmark here

‘Who’s a little girl?’Bookmark here

‘You’re a little… tiny… small… miniscule… girly girl!’Bookmark here

‘I’m a boy top to bottom.’ Bookmark here

‘Yeah, you’re not fooling anyone with that long hair. Boys with long hair get expelled in our school. They get sent to Madam Principal’s office.’Bookmark here

‘Again with Madam Principal’s office. Why does everyone like Madam Principal’s office so much? Is it because it has an air conditioner? I already went yesterday so I won’t go today.’Bookmark here

‘Oh. Yeah, you did mention that.’Bookmark here

‘And I’m also your senior. Call me senpai. S-E… S-E-N… Well, you know the spelling!’Bookmark here

‘You’re telling me you’re a IX-class student and you don’t even know how to spell? What a joke. At least get a little smart before lying to me, little girl.’Bookmark here

Before this idiotic conversation could go on for too long, the gym door was slammed open by the fat frame of Bamunda-sensei. He was huffing and puffing and his eyes were red with rage. ‘Where’s that insolent little girl?!’ Bookmark here

‘Ha! I told you you’re a little—’ When I turned my eyes to the girl, she was lying on the ground and she looked like she’d been in an awful accident. Her right leg was swollen like a potato, her right arm looked like a hippo had stomped on it and face was covered in red and blue bruises. What the hell had happened in the one second that I looked away? Had a ghost appeared out of nowhere, attacked her and left immediately? Oh no, did I try to murder the girl in a fit of unconscious fury? What was going to become of me? Am I actually that serial killer who’s been running around at night and I just don’t know it? I’m going to go to jail for this, aren’t I? I’m sorry, mother. I didn’t mean to become like this. I didn’t mean to bring shame to our family.Bookmark here

‘What’s going on here?! What happened to her? And why are you crying, Aina-kun?’ Bamunda-sensei’s anger had turned to astonishment, which, in turn, had turned to complete befuddlement. Bookmark here

‘I’ll have to go to jail, sensei! Please save me! I didn’t do anything bad consciously.’ Bookmark here

Bamunda-sensei was so confused he couldn’t even begin to say anything. Bookmark here

‘Sensei, I fell down. Nobody hit me,’ the little girl muttered. Thankfully, sensei shook me into action and we rushed her to the infirmary. Bookmark here

‘What’s your name?’ he asked the girl when she’d be laid down on a bed in the infirmary.Bookmark here

‘Jajanshu Mamanpade.’Bookmark here

‘What class are you in?’ Bookmark here

‘IX-A,’ she said. Bookmark here

‘This is no time to crack jokes.’ Bookmark here

‘Go to IX-A and ask Hagesh or Umito or anyone. I really am from IX-A!’Bookmark here

‘Oh, so your big brother is in IX-A. I’ll go get him. Aina, you’re the student health officer in the volleyball team, right?’Bookmark here

‘Yes, sensei,’ I said.Bookmark here

‘Apply first aid until the nurse comes in. She’ll be here in ten minutes, most probably.’ Bookmark here

‘On it, sensei.’ Bookmark here

Sensei rushed out and I started searching for bandages, ice packs and a splint. But as soon as I started to hold her leg, it started healing. And fast. Her arm and her face were getting better too. Within two seconds, she looked like new. I was stunned. I couldn’t move an inch. Did the ghost that attacked her regret his actions and cast a healing spell on her? Or was this my doing? Am I an angel who can heal people instantly? Had I always possessed the Miracle Touch and simply not known it?Bookmark here

The girl yawned and got up. ‘Ah, I’m hungry— Oh, sorry. Excuse me.’ You see, in my shock, I had neglected to move my hands from over her leg and, when she got up, I accidentally touched her— I mean, his crotch. Yikes! No! Ahhhhh! I touched a boy’s… I touched a boy’s… Uuuueeeeee! Oh no! What will he think of me now? And I’ve been talking to him so loosely. What if he thinks I’m interested in him? What if he thinks I’m interested in him… that way? Bookmark here

‘Got anything to eat?’ Bookmark here

‘Huh?’Bookmark here

‘I think I’ll faint if I don’t eat something in the next minute.’Bookmark here

‘Ah… Ah…’ I started aimlessly looking around in the infirmary. I opened all the drawers, desperately searching for any kind of a food item. Anything to distract him from what just happened. I found a packet of glucose powder. ‘Will this do?’ I asked him.Bookmark here

‘Yeah. That’s perfect.’ Before I could look around for some water, he tore the packet open and swallowed it whole dry. It was a big one too. ‘Ah! That feels good.’ Bookmark here

‘How did you heal so quickly?’ I asked.Bookmark here

‘That’s my guṇa. I can fake a bunch of illnesses.’ Bookmark here

‘Oh. That makes sense. Stupid me. I thought I had turned into an angel or something.’ Bookmark here

‘Hahahaha! That’s so funny. You, an angel?’Bookmark here

‘Is it that unbelievable?’Bookmark here

‘Come on. I’m teasing you. I know you’re a really good person. You have a pure heart.’ Bookmark here

A good person… A pure heart… I was definitely blushing now. ‘What makes you say that?’ I asked.Bookmark here

‘You were taking care of me so good and treating me and you were going to help me before that too. I’m sorry I scared you but sensei was going to kill me he was looking like a real monster.’ Bookmark here

‘That’s fine, I guess.’ Why is he being so nice all of a sudden? Maybe he’s good at heart too. And it looks like he didn’t notice that I accidentally grabbed his dick. Bookmark here

‘And you believe I’m a boy now, right?’ he asked, grinning ear to ear.Bookmark here

If I was blushing before, I had turned into a tomato now. Bookmark here

‘Hahaha! Don’t worry about it. I won’t tell anyone. I’ll keep it secret.’ Bookmark here

‘I’m sorry. It was an accident. But please don’t tell anyone. What do you want in return for keeping it a secret?’ What if he wants money? Worse, what if he’s got lewd thoughts and he makes me do things that will haunt me for the rest of my life? I don’t want to be exploited by a man who looks like a little-sister character. At least he could have been an ugly bald man. Bookmark here

And then an ugly bald man walked into the infirmary. He was just as short as Jajanshu. Bookmark here

‘Yo. You alright, Jajanshu? Heard you got injured,’ said the bald man.Bookmark here

‘I’m totally fine. I was just escaping that scary sensei.’Bookmark here

‘You got in trouble again? Man, you’re on a streak.’ Then he finally noticed me. ‘Oh! I didn’t see you behind the curtain. I’m Hagesh Malumaru, Jajanshu’s classmate. Nice to meet you. I apologise for Jajanshu if he troubled you in any way. He just joined our school yesterday so he’s not really used to how things work around here. I’m teaching him, little by little.’ Bookmark here

‘Classmates? What class is that, again?’ Bookmark here

‘IX-A.’Bookmark here

‘I’m sorry. I’m confused. Have all the IX-class students been hit by a shrink ray or something? Did this happen at night? Because I didn’t notice anything strange until yesterday evening.’Bookmark here

‘That’s very rude, you know. Commenting about someone’s height when you’ve just met them. What standard are you in?’Bookmark here

‘VIII standard.’Bookmark here

‘Call me senpai, first of all. And learn some manners. And introduce yourself to your seniors when you meet them.’Bookmark here

‘But just look at him, senpai,’ I pointed towards Jajanshu. ‘He looks like a VI-class girl and you’re even shorter—’Bookmark here

‘Shorter?! I’m an entire inch taller than him.’ Bookmark here

‘Really?’Bookmark here

‘Jajanshu, come here. Stand next to me.’ Jajanshu got up and stood next to him. And he was right. Jajanshu was shorter than him.Bookmark here

‘Oh. That’s my mistake, senpai. Sorry for that. Maybe because he’s so thin and you’re so bulky and well-built that my perception was distorted.’Bookmark here

‘You… like my body?’ Bookmark here

‘Yes. As a sportsperson, I can understand how hard you must have worked to get into that shape.’Bookmark here

‘Gosh. Well, if you say it like that…’ He was blushing. Cow’s teats! What exactly is wrong with me? I bet even the best psychologist in the world will have lots of trouble finding out. I’d met three male seniors in two days. One I had called myself a whore in front of, one I had sexually harassed and one I had accidentally flirted with. Good show, Aina. Good show. Bookmark here

‘Hagesh, you can go back to the class.’ Jajanshu had stepped in and he was gently directing Hagesh-senpai to the exit. ‘I’m fine. I just have to wait for the nurse-ji to come and she has to fill a form because she’s the… What did sensei call you?’Bookmark here

‘The student health officer,’ I replied.Bookmark here

‘Yes. That.’Bookmark here

‘I could just sit here. I won’t disturb anybody, you know,’ said Hagesh-senpai.Bookmark here

‘Nurse-ji won’t like it if so many people are around me and I’m not even hurt. She will send us to Madam Principal’s office like all the other teachers do too because they don’t know how to deal with their own problems.’ Jajanshu had started pushing Hagesh-senpai out. And, surprisingly, he was succeeding. Bookmark here

‘Alright, alright! I’m going. Just don’t do anything funny… without me.’ A shiver ran down my spine. Bookmark here

‘There. That’s done.’ Jajanshu looked relieved. Bookmark here

‘There’s no form I have to fill,’ I said. Bookmark here

‘I know. I thought you looked uncomfortable. Don’t be scared. Hagesh is a really good guy and I’m sure you’ll be good friends but we can’t talk about what we were talking about in front of him.’Bookmark here

Oh. About the secret. What was he expecting of me? What would I have to do to keep his mouth shut? Would I have to shut my mouth over something? Eww. No. No. No. ‘Just… don’t do anything erotic to me,’ I said. Bookmark here

‘What does erotic mean? And why will I do it to you?’Bookmark here

‘It’s… What do you want from me so that you’ll keep the secret a secret?’ Bookmark here

‘What secret?’Bookmark here

‘That I… brushed my hand against your… sensitive area. Accidentally, of course!’Bookmark here

‘What are you talking about?’Bookmark here

‘You know… I touched your reproductive organs. Accidentally.’Bookmark here

‘Huh?’Bookmark here

‘What do you want me to say?! I fondled your cock and balls and I totally meant to do it! They’re quite big, by the way.’ Shut up, you potty-mouthed pervert! You’ll dig your own grave someday!Bookmark here

‘If someone asked me if that happened I will say it did not happen because it did not happen. And there is no secret because it didn’t happen.’Bookmark here

‘It just— Oh. Oh! It didn’t… happen.’Bookmark here

‘Yeah. You see what I mean? There is no secret because it didn’t happen.’ And then he winked. He’s more clever than I thought he’d be. Bookmark here

‘But you’ll have to keep my secret OK?’Bookmark here

‘What secret?’Bookmark here

‘Don’t use my own line on me.’Bookmark here

‘No. I really don’t know. What secret?’Bookmark here

‘Exactly. Nice.’ Bookmark here

‘I really have no idea.’Bookmark here

‘My guṇa stupid.’Bookmark here

‘Your guṇa is a secret?’Bookmark here

‘Yeah. I’m not supposed to tell anyone in the school that I can fake illnesses like that. I can only say it to close friends who I know won’t tell anybody else.’Bookmark here

‘Close friends?’Bookmark here

‘Yes you’re my close friend now. You are a kind person. I can tell. I think I can trust you.’ For the first time in history, a boy had friendzoned himself. I didn’t know what to say to that.Bookmark here

‘Thank you, Jajanshu. I don’t have a lot of friends. It means a lot to me.’Bookmark here

‘Jajanshu-senpai.’Bookmark here

‘You’re younger than me. And there are no honorifics between friends.’ Bookmark here

‘Wow cool! But can I call you Ai-chan?’Bookmark here

‘Sure!’ I giggled. ‘I’ll call you Jajan-chan then. How about we go outside? Nurse-ji will scold us if she sees us both sitting all fine and dandy here.’Bookmark here

‘Yeah. I really liked a garden I saw yesterday. Can we go there?’Bookmark here

‘OK.’Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.