Chapter 21:

Strange

Skipped a Beat


*Phone buzzingBookmark here

Takahashi: … I restarted again… *sighBookmark here

So, it doesn’t matter if Sachi lives or not, I restarted anyway. Bookmark here

What now? What is the reason behind these restarts? And I remember, the first time, when I went from second to first… why did I skip that first year? I don’t know about that either. But if I can figure out how to escape this loop, what happened in the past won’t matter.Bookmark here

It’s 07: 38 right now, I should just get up and see what happens. If I can’t find out anything, at least now I can save Sachi in second year, then I’ll restart… and keep repeating it until I figure out how to escape… I don’t know how many restarts it will take, but I guess this is the best option…Bookmark here

(A year later)Bookmark here

Something strange happened… something I haven’t done in a long time… I started feeling bad for Aoi, that she liked me but I rejected her so many times and that I tried so hard to avoid getting too close to her so that she doesn’t catch feelings for me. But this time, I tried getting close to her… and at the end of last year, she confessed… and I had actual feelings for her… so I accepted. I don’t know what I’ll do when Sachi comes. But I would feel bad for Aoi if I left her for Sachi… Bookmark here

This doesn’t feel right… I’m regretting everything I did this year… I won’t do it again. It happened, that’s fine. I’ll wait till second year comes, save Sachi and then restart. I won’t do this ever again.Bookmark here

This year too, they felt like I was gone somewhere during winter vacation. And this time, I agreed with them, like yeah, I feel like that too, weird. They don't talk about it after that so it's not a problem for me.Bookmark here

Tomorrow 1st April 2019. Right now, it’s 22: 51. And I’m going to sleep.Bookmark here

*Phone buzzingBookmark here

Takahashi: it’s morning already… huh… WAIT… 2018?Bookmark here

It… is 2018 again… I restarted to first year after first year… this is the first time I restart like this. What did I do this time that I have never done before… fell in love with Aoi? Is that why I restart? Ahh… I don’t want to believe that but… if this is true… if falling in love restarts me back to first year… then I can’t fall in love with Sachi either… AAAAHHHHHHHH I HATE THIS… I don't want to live anymore, but if I kill myself, I restart… I don’t want to stay away from Sachi either… I'm stuck. Bookmark here

I'm… I have to. I can't keep restarting. I have to stay away from her… but how?Bookmark here

When she comes to school, I'll act like I don't know her… what then? She becomes friends with Aoi and Hina… Even if I try to avoid her… She'll come to me. But still, I can try just staying friends and complete high school. Don't know if I can do that… Will have to spend a year and find out. Bookmark here

(A year later)Bookmark here

This year went just like every other first year did. They are my friends right now. They felt like I was gone somewhere. I agreed with them this time too. And Aoi didn't confess. Nor do I have feelings for her. Bookmark here

It's… ugh, whatever, I'm going to sleep. Bookmark here

(2nd April)Bookmark here

Sachi is entering the classroom…Bookmark here

"...Takahashi?" (Sachi)Bookmark here

"You are?"Bookmark here

Takahashi: Acting like a stranger with Sachi hurts…Bookmark here

"I'm Sachi"Bookmark here

"How do you know my name?"Bookmark here

"We were in the same middle school"Bookmark here

"Oh… I see… sorry, I didn't know about it"Bookmark here

"It's okay, I didn't expect you to know me..."Bookmark here

Sachi: maybe I shouldn’t ask him about what I felt last year… but I am certain it was him…though I remember he didn’t come but… AAAhhhh this feeling is so confusing, maybe it was a dreamBookmark here

"Okay..."Bookmark here

“You… I have seen you somewhere” (Aoi just entered the class) Bookmark here

“Oh… You are the one that came with Takahashi last year… or I think you did. who are you?” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“I… had the same feeling, that I went somewhere with Takahashi. I’m Aoi, you are?”Bookmark here

“I’m Sachi… and I feel like you came to my apartment with Takahashi at the end of last year”Bookmark here

“Yeah yeah, exactly. Takahashi felt like that too”Bookmark here

“Really?” (Sachi)Bookmark here

Takahashi: I didn’t think of this… I should just say that yeah, I didBookmark here

“Yeah, I did”Bookmark here

“But you don’t even know me… Weird” (Sachi)Bookmark here

“Yeah, really” (Aoi)Bookmark here

I shouldn’t have agreed with them…Bookmark here

(Weeks later)Bookmark here

Yeah… I couldn't stay away from her. She becomes friends with Hina and Aoi and I can't avoid her because it's rude and they'll ask what's wrong…Bookmark here

Also, she asked how I changed so much, so I told them what happened in middle school. This time Eiji was here too. This didn’t happen in the park this time. Bookmark here

The way things are going right now… she'll confess during the cultural festival; I'll reject her this time… but I don't know if I can. First time when she confessed during the cultural festival; she knew about her death, so she said it was fine if I rejected her. But now if I reject her, it'll hurt her feelings. And I can’t reject because I have feelings for her too… this is so fucked up. Next Time I restart; I'll stay away from everyone… Bookmark here

(27th December)Bookmark here

I… accepted her. I don't care, I'll restart at the end of this second year and next time, I'll stay away from everyone. Bookmark here

I was thinking whether I should save her or not. So, I decided I won't. Because honestly, I don't feel anything now, when I think of her dying. Because I'll restart anyway, and then I can… Wait, if I'm planning to stay away from her… how will I get on the train with her… No, the plane, she takes the plane if I don't tell her to take the train. I don't have the money to buy a ticket… money is not the problem; I can do part-time jobs to earn enough for going to and coming back from Kyoto. But will it work on the plane too? What if I can only save her if she takes the train with me? Stop overthinking… no point in thinking about it now, I'll see what happens when the time comes.Bookmark here

Right now, they would probably be at the airport, I'm home… yeah, I didn't go. What's the point? I'll restart anyway. When I start to have feelings for Sachi, there's no point in doing anything after that. I'll restart. So, I'm just going to wait till this second year ends. Then I'll stay away from everyone. Bookmark here

(31st March)Bookmark here

This time for sure, I will stay away…
I'm going to sleepBookmark here

*Phone buzzingBookmark here

… Yeah, I'm back 2018! I wonder what fucked up shit you have for me this timeBookmark here

Aoi, Hina and Eiji become friends with me because I had good grades… so I’ll try getting average to low grades, not failing though. And for second year, I can act as a stranger with Sachi… I hope I can. Bookmark here

Something that happens every time I restart is that my feelings for Sachi also restart. Like, when I wake up in 2018, I don’t feel like I love her, but in my memories, I know how much important Sachi is to me, so I just can’t ignore her. and even when I didn’t feel anything, thinking about her made me sad every time. Thinking when this first year ends so that I can see Sachi in second year. But this time, I have to avoid talking to her as much as possible. so that I don’t fall for her. Bookmark here

This is basically me saying goodbye to her. because I probably won’t get to talk to her after third year… but I’m fine with it, I can’t just keep repeating. Even if I don’t grow up or get older, I’m dying from inside. I don’t care much about anything now, just Sachi is what keeps me going. But now, I’ll change it, I’ll escape the loop and live a normal life. And forget about her. This time for sure.Bookmark here

(A year later)Bookmark here

Okay… I’m alone… yeah. But at least now I can go through second year without getting close to Sachi. And it’s not like I didn’t talk to them at all. They did try talking to me, like they asked that how I got highest marks in the entry test if I can only score average or below in tests and exams… well. I just said luck. Bookmark here

But then at the end of 2018, they started feeling like Aoi went out somewhere with someone… yeah. They couldn’t figure out who it was even though Aoi was able to remember Sachi… I don’t know why this happens so I can’t understand it either. But the year ended just like that. I never got their number this year. Bookmark here

I finally feel like I’m getting somewhere. I might be able to escape it now…
It’s 22: 32, I’m going to sleep.Bookmark here

(2nd April)Bookmark here

Sachi is entering the class… I shouldn’t even care about her right now, but I was waiting for her since I came here…Bookmark here

“… Takahashi?” (Sachi)Bookmark here

Takahashi: Same reaction, every single time…Bookmark here

“Yeah?”Bookmark here

“Do you know me? I was in the same middle school as you”Bookmark here

“No”Bookmark here

“I see…”Bookmark here

Sachi: I shouldn’t ask him about what I felt last year… though I am certain it was him…but I remember he didn’t come but… AAAhhhh this feeling is so confusing, maybe it was a dreamBookmark here

“You… I have seen you somewhere” (Aoi just entered the class) Bookmark here

“Oh… You are the one that came with Takahashi last year… or I think you did. who are you?” (Sachi)Bookmark here

Takahashi: oh shit, this might be bad. What if Aoi starts to remember that it was me… Bookmark here

“I came with Takahashi? I do remember that it was someone I knew but… I’m not friends with him or anything. I’m Aoi, you are?”Bookmark here

Takahashi: that kind of hurt…Bookmark here

“I’m Sachi, and I’m certain that it was Takahashi, but he doesn’t even know me”Bookmark here

“Weird…”Bookmark here

“Takahashi, do you remember anything?” (Aoi)Bookmark here

“No, I don’t know what you guys are talking about”Bookmark here

“I see…” (Aoi)Bookmark here

And yeah, even if I’m not friends with them anymore, our seating arrangement is always the same… which means that Sachi will be behind me, Aoi in front, Eiji on my right and Hina in the top left seat of the class. I don’t think it will be easy to ignore Sachi like this… but I can’t give up now… it’s really hard going through a whole year. I can’t repeat again and again.Bookmark here

(A year later)Bookmark here

Who was I even kidding? How can I have ignored her if she was right there Infront of me. I’m seriously an idiot for believing in myself… That’s it, I don’t care about what happens, I’ll keep repeating and repeating and… how long? I can’t get out of this… but the time I spent with her was way better than trying to ignore her then my feelings for her… it hurts A LOT, when you have feelings for someone you aren’t meant to be with. Bookmark here

Bookmark here

I’ll restart tomorrow. And I don’t have any way I can avoid her… so I’ll keep restarting. First year, friends with Aoi Eiji and Hina, second year, getting closer to Sachi, fall in love and then go to Kyoto with her to save her, wait till second year ends and restart… at least I won’t have to feel what I felt all this year. Bookmark here

Real Aire
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