Chapter 13:

March 18: Calligraphy

One Month to Figure out my Future

The next day, before class started, Hayato whispered to me: “Did something happen again with Rihoko?”Bookmark here

I didn’t know what he was talking about.Bookmark here

“No, why?”Bookmark here

“Look at her, she doesn’t really seem as usual. Do you think it was another argument with her dad?”Bookmark here

That girl changed her mood way too frequently, but I couldn’t blame her for living with an alcoholic.Bookmark here

“Probably.”Bookmark here

“I think you should talk to her later.”Bookmark here

“I’ll see what I can do.”Bookmark here

I waited until the end of the classes because during lunch break she always flees to the club room.Bookmark here

She was still packing her bag when I approached her: “Hey Rihoko, is everything ok?”Bookmark here

“Su.. Sure why you ask?”Bookmark here

“You know you are pretty bad at hiding emotions, right?”Bookmark here

"At least I don't have anything to hide."Bookmark here

She left the classroom right after that. What was I hiding from her? I was completely lost.Bookmark here

This time I decided to go after her.Bookmark here

"Rihoko!"Bookmark here

She was climbing the stairs like there was no tomorrow.Bookmark here

"Rihoko wait!"Bookmark here

I followed her back to the club room where she quickly got in and closed the door behind her.Bookmark here

"Can I come in?"Bookmark here

"What do you want?"Bookmark here

"Figure out what is going on."Bookmark here

"What do you think is going on? I saw you yesterday…"Bookmark here

"Where?"Bookmark here

"I was done working in the club room and while I was walking towards the school exit, I saw you leaving with Megumi."Bookmark here

Oh no, this was a huge misunderstanding and now I had to figure out a way to come out of that situation. It was like when I saw her with Hayato and I immediately jumped to conclusions.Bookmark here

"It is not what you think, she invited me to her house to talk."Bookmark here

"You even went to her house? Lovely."Bookmark here

Yeah, I didn't choose the words appropriately.Bookmark here

"She told me she won't ever bother us again, she was really sincere."Bookmark here

"Even if this was the truth, I find it hard to believe that Megumi would stop annoying us out of the blue. What made her change her mind?"Bookmark here

"The day before, we had a bit of an argument. I don’t know, somehow, I was able to bring her back to reality. I think that triggered her good side."Bookmark here

"So you talk to her on a daily basis behind my back?"Bookmark here

"Listen, can you open the door so that we can have a proper conversation? Do you really think I was plotting something with her behind your back? After all that I did for the club?"Bookmark here

"Well, it's not only that. You know, she is also a cuter girl…"Bookmark here

"I don't see why that would even matter."Bookmark here

Finally she slowly opened the door and slowly peeked from the gap.Bookmark here

"So you two just talked?"Bookmark here

"Yes, and to be honest I did my best to leave that creepy house as soon as possible."Bookmark here

She completely opened the door and then I got in.Bookmark here

"Do you really think we can trust her?"Bookmark here

"After what I heard, I think we can trust her."Bookmark here

"Alright then, sorry for taking it too serious. I was worried I might have lost you."Bookmark here

“Don’t worry, I’m not planning on leaving the club.”Bookmark here

“You really mean it?”Bookmark here

“As I said before, I already committed myself so much to this club, that it would be really stupid to leave everything.”Bookmark here

She smiled and she invited to come check out something on the website.Bookmark here

“I already prepared the post for your review.”Bookmark here

I looked at the monitor and there was a big title “The club Murderer – Review by Satoshi Kamizaki (Literary Club Vice President)”.Bookmark here

“Since when I have been promoted to Vice President?”Bookmark here

“Let’s just say that your trial period is over and you earned this title.”Bookmark here

“I appreciate that, I will try to make a worthily review when I’m done reading the book.”Bookmark here

“That would be great.”Bookmark here

“Are you going back home now?”Bookmark here

“No, I’m still working on other reviews. I have many things I want to write.”Bookmark here

“Just be careful not overdo it.”Bookmark here

“Ok, thanks for the concern.”Bookmark here

“I have some errands to run, I’ll see you tomorrow.”Bookmark here

“Sure, see you tomorrow.”Bookmark here

I wanted to go back to the calligraphy shop to her Rihoko’s name and Miyo’s name done by Megumi’s grandfather. Yes, I know I have trashed on the calligraphy club calling it useless, I still believe it’s a useless skill, but it can produce some cool products.Bookmark here

The day before I saved the position on my phone so that it would have been easier for me to get there. One reached my destination, I opened the shop’s door and once again Megumi’s grandfather was there to welcome me.Bookmark here

“Young boy you really came back.”Bookmark here

“Yes I would like to get two more names done.”Bookmark here

“I’m happy to help you, tell me, which are the names?”Bookmark here

“The first one is Miyo, with the characters for beautiful and generation. The other one is Rihoko with the characters ri (梨) for "pear", ho (穂) for "grain" and ko (子) for "child".”Bookmark here

I knew Rihoko’s name perfectly because she always puts it at the end of every review she publishes.Bookmark here

“Well, well, well, we have got some pretty complicated names today. And who might these girls be?”Bookmark here

In the meantime he got started writing or I should say brushing?Bookmark here

“Miyo is my little sister and Rihoko is the president of my club.”Bookmark here

“You are a lucky boy, surrounded by girls by every angle.”Bookmark here

Well they are all troublesome so I don’t know if I can consider myself lucky.Bookmark here

While I was waiting for the old man to finish, I felt like asking him a question just because he seemed a really nice person to talk to.Bookmark here

“Sir. may I ask you why does your family live so traditionally?”Bookmark here

He stopped brushing and smiled: “I knew this question was coming, it was just a matter of time.”Bookmark here

Was this a good or bad thing?Bookmark here

“Why you ask? Because it’s all my fault.”Bookmark here

“What do you mean?”Bookmark here

“Megumi’s father is my son, and I raised him exactly how he has been raising Migumi. I was always strict with him and I wanted to follow traditions as much as possible. I was blind at the time, too blind to see that it wasn’t worth it. I never knew my son, I had never been a father for him, just a strict master. When Megumi was born, I thought I might have the opportunity to redeem myself, but I was wrong. He started treating her how I taught him and now I can barely see my granddaughter even if we live under the same roof. I tried to explain to him why it was a mistake to follow my footsteps but nothing has worked so far.”Bookmark here

That was quite of a speech, and as I suspected, he was really a nice guy. He realized the mistakes he made in the past and tried to warn his son not to repeat those same mistakes. That’s how people learn, by doing mistakes.Bookmark here

“What’s up young boy, you seem absorbed in your thoughts.”Bookmark here

“I mean… I… I wasn’t expecting this. You changed quite a lot Sir.”Bookmark here

“I guess I did, that’s why I’m no more really welcome at home. I just run this little shop all by myself.”Bookmark here

That was kind of sad, but regardless he kept on brushing and completed the two works really quickly.Bookmark here

“Since I assume you are going to give these two girls as presents, I’ll use cherry wood frames which have a unique color close to purple.”Bookmark here

He applied the frames and handed me the final product into a bag.Bookmark here

“How much Sir.?”Bookmark here

“As I said yesterday, it’s just paper, furthermore we don’t make money from this shop, it’s just to keep me busy.”Bookmark here

“I insist Sir.”Bookmark here

“Ok, but I’ll make a special price. Only 2000 Yen.”Bookmark here

“Fine.”Bookmark here

I paid the 2000 Yen and left the store.Bookmark here

I was ready to go back home and show Miyo her little present. By the way, the day before, I had been able to hide mine from her so I didn’t get to hear her begging for me to her one too.Bookmark here

On my way back, I notice a big black car with tinted windows in front of Megumi’s gate, and shortly after I saw her in her Kimono getting ready to hope on the car. Did she really go around wearing that thing?Bookmark here

“Hey Megumi, what’s up?”Bookmark here

She stopped and locked at me.Bookmark here

“Hi Satoshi.”Bookmark here

She gave a quick glance at my bag.Bookmark here

“Oh so you are coming from my grandpa’s shop? You went there today too?”Bookmark here

“Yes, I quiet like what you grandfather does.”Bookmark here

“I’m happy to hear that, are you going back home?”Bookmark here

“Yes, I assume you have important business to take care of.”Bookmark here

“Kind of. I mostly attend meetings between families. My parents are already there, I’m going to join them.”Bookmark here

“And you have your own driver.”Bookmark here

“Yes I do.”Bookmark here

That’s so cooool.Bookmark here

“You want a ride back home?”Bookmark here

That would be so cool too.Bookmark here

“No, I don’t want to bother you.”Bookmark here

“You don’t bother anyone, come on get in.”Bookmark here

The driver quickly got off and opened both my door and Megumi’s. Everything felt so fancy and expensive. I gave my address to the driver and off we went.Bookmark here

I was locking out of the window when Megumi pressed a button and a little window separating the front seats from the back seat came out.Bookmark here

“We can talk freely now if you want.”Bookmark here

“Oh wow, that’s nice.”Bookmark here

Even though I didn’t really have anything to say, I was impressed by the features of that car. Bookmark here

“Did you speak with my grandfather?”Bookmark here

“Yes, he seems like a nice person.”Bookmark here

“I know, he is the only one who really understands me.”Bookmark here

“Did he ask you if you knew the meaning of my name?”Bookmark here

“Yes, why?”Bookmark here

She had a little laugh.Bookmark here

“He always says that when he has to talk about me to new people. Did you know the meaning?”Bookmark here

“Yes.”Bookmark here

“Oh, now I see why he liked you so much yesterday.”Bookmark here

“Can I ask you something?”Bookmark here

“Sure go ahead.”Bookmark here

“Do you have siblings?”Bookmark here

“No, I’m an only child. Any particular reason why you wanted o know that?”Bookmark here

“I just can’t understand why a family with the obsession of traditions, doesn’t want have a male heir.”Bookmark here

Her face immediately turned very gloomy.Bookmark here

“I… I’m sorry I think I chose the wrong words, I didn’t mean to…”Bookmark here

“It’s fine. I’m sure they wanted a male, but they can’t. My mother had to be operated and she can’t have children anymore.”Bookmark here

No it makes more sense.Bookmark here

“I see, I’m sorry.”Bookmark here

“There are things in life, even they can’t control…”Bookmark here

For the rest of the ride we didn’t talk anymore, and once we arrived at my building, I got off, while the driver opened the door for me.Bookmark here

“See you Megumi.”Bookmark here

“Sure, see you at school Satoshi.”Bookmark here

When I got home I waited for Miyo to come back so that I could give her my gift. I also tried to wrap it is some decorative paper. When I heard the door opening I went towards Miyo hiding the package behind my back.Bookmark here

“Guess who has the best brother in all of Japan.”Bookmark here

“Certainly not me.”Bookmark here

“Oh well, in this case, you won’t receive the gift I bought you.”Bookmark here

“Waiiiiiiit, you have a gift for me?”Bookmark here

“It depends, am I or am I not the best brother?”Bookmark here

“Sometimes…”Bookmark here

“I guess I can accept that. Here it’s yours.”Bookmark here

“Thaaaanks big brother.”Bookmark here

She took the package and hugged me.Bookmark here

“Did you wrap it?”Bookmark here

“Yes.”Bookmark here

“I can see that. Hopefully the what’s inside is better that the wrapping.”Bookmark here

Listen, I tried. I’m not good with handy things.Bookmark here

“Wooow, that’s my name. Who drew it?”Bookmark here

“You know our student’s council president? Her grandfather has a calligraphy shop.”Bookmark here

“Really? Cool! I will hang it in my room. Thanks again.”Bookmark here

“No problem.”Bookmark here

“Did you buy one also for Rihoko?”Bookmark here

Is she a mind reader?Bookmark here

“Yes, I did.”Bookmark here

“Good, I see you are starting to learn.”Bookmark here

“What do you mean by that?”Bookmark here

She didn’t reply but simply walked away while laughing… Bookmark here

Real Aire
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