“Good morning, Yuyo.”
“Morning, Minori...” I greeted back languidly.
It’s Saturday, and there are classes scheduled for this weekend. Our school has half-day Saturday classes every other week. The timetables for Saturday classes are announced during homeroom on Fridays.
Considering my mood today, I just wish there wasn’t one today.
“It’s still our first subject, but you sound as if you’re already on the last one. Are you alright?” Minori asked.
“Naah… It is just that I’m feeling drained for no particular reason.”
“Did you stay up late last night?”
“No... Besides, I get this feeling a lot for who knows how long. Anyway, enough about me. Is there anyone else interested in joining the student council?”
“We haven’t heard from anyone yet. Our adviser’s also asking around to see if anyone’s interested.”
“Heh~ It would be great to have someone join us this semester. We’ve got a lot on our plates with the election coming up.” I sluggishly muttered as I rested my head on my desk.
What’s up with me? Why am I down in the dumps for no apparent reason?
“Don’t worry. We will definitely find someone. Cheer up, Yuyo.” Minori smiled and caressed my head before returning to her seat.
Aww~ She’s really nice. It’s comforting to have such a caring friend like Minori.
“Morning, Yuyo!” Kyashii took the seat next to me.
“Oh, Kyashii. Morning...” I lazily replied.
“What’s going on with you? You’re looking gloomy.” Kyashii asked, her eyes filled with concern.
“Nah, nothing. Just a mood swing, I guess. What is it?” I can tell by the look on her face that she has something to say.
Besides, every time she took that seat next to mine, it meant that she needed something. Otherwise, she should just be standing next to my desk.
“Well, it’s weekend. I’m going shopping with Hana later today. You wanna tag along?”
I really don’t feel like going anywhere after class. Aside from my lousy mood, Nazumi-san and I have never been close, and that’s something Kyashii is well aware of. Inviting me may not be necessary, so I wonder why she’s even asking me.
I stared at Kyashii with lazy eyes.
“What... You don’t want to?” Kyashii’s eyes narrowed as she pouted at my reaction.
Her response made me laugh in silence. I don’t know if it’s just my quirk, but I find Kyashii adorable when she’s upset over petty things. Her tantrums never fail to amuse me.
“You know I’m not really close to Nazumi-san, right?”
“So?” Kyashii raised an eyebrow at me.
“What do you mean by so? I get a little uncomfortable shopping with someone I don’t know well, and I’m assuming Nazumi-san feels the same way.” I said, lifting my head from my desk.
“But I’ll be there with you two, so that should not be an issue,” she insisted.
How do I put this? Kyashii can be quite insensitive at times.
“It's still uncomfortable. Maybe I’ll go if it’s just the two of us.” It’s just an excuse I came up with since Kyashii won’t let me off the hook so easily.
Besides, the two of them will probably take their time shopping, it’s unlikely that Kyashii will consider it today.
“Really?!” Kyashii’s eyes sparkle with excitement. “Then, do you want to hang out with me after Hana and I get our stuff? You won’t have to wait too long,” she asked with anticipation.
“. . . .”
Ah-re?? This is not what I had in mind. She’s actually going for it?!
I’d feel terrible if I say no to her twice, and looking at how excited she is, I just can’t turn her down.
“S-Sure... Let me know when you’re done shopping with Nazumi-san.”
That’s it. I just threw in the towel in the end.
"Yay!" A triumphant smile adorns her face as she clapped her hands in delight. "I'll send you a message later," she said in a cheerful voice.
I just smiled as I watched her return to her seat. That's how simple her happiness is sometimes.
Oh well, if that makes her happy, then it won't definitely hurt to hang out later, right?
Hmm? I guess my mood seems to lightened up a little bit. Looks like I'll have to thank my pushy best friend after all.
It’s break time, yet this terrible mood I felt this morning has not dissipated. I'm struggling to concentrate on our lesson. At this point, all I want to do is slump here at my desk.
“Shibasaki-san, an underclassman is here to see you,” my classmate informed me from the main door.
“Huh… Me?” That's odd. Who could it be, and why are they looking for–
“Shibasaki-senpai!” There's the familiar face with a cheerful tone waving at me from the main door.
What is Laughing-san doing here? And why does she sound like she's so friendly-dilly to me?
I approached her with a puzzled look.
“What is it this time?” I asked sluggishly. It's hard to deal with someone I barely know when I'm feeling like this.
Laughing-san becomes flustered for a moment but quickly returns to her cheerful demeanor. “Are you in a terrible mood, senpai? You seem rude to me.”
Ops! I didn’t mean to come across that way. It was a spontaneous expression on my part. This is embarrassing! I’d better get my act together. Remember, this is an underclassman. Be a good role model, Yuyo.
“My apologies. I wasn’t trying to be rude. I’m sorry if I came across that way. I was not just feeling very well.”
“Senpai! Are you alright?” Her hand reached for my forehead without warning, causing me to reflexively back away from her!
That caught me by surprise! I never would have guessed that!
What’s with her touching me when we barely know each other? She also seems surprised by my response but smiles nonetheless.
Why is she acting familiar to me?
“I'm fine. Thank you for asking.” I regained my composure.
“I am glad to hear that, senpai,” she said with a smile.
“Anyway, what brings you into our classroom? Does it have anything to do with the student council? If that is the case, I suggest you ask Minori instead, but she’s not available right now, so you may have to wait.” I said it all at once.
Seriously, I just want to end this conversation and return to my desk to slump.
Laughing-san opened her mouth slightly, as if surprised, but that quickly turned into a smile. “Ohh... It doesn’t have anything to do with the student council, senpai,” she responded.
“Huh? Then what is it? I presumed that you’re here to ask about the student council application, but if it’s not the case, may I know what can I help you with?”
“Is everything about the student council to you, senpai?” She asked with an amusing expression on her face.
Her question was not incorrect. It's as if I've been programmed to anticipate that anytime some students I hardly know approach me, the conversation would inevitably revolve around the student council. It's something I get a lot throughout my first year.
“I cannot think of any other reason why you would be looking for me if it were not for the student council.” I flat replied. I'm not sure whether this is good or bad, but this underclassman seems to be catching my attention.
“Oh, it’s nothing important, senpai. Here...” She held out her left hand, holding a packet of gummy candies.
Is that candy pack for me? Or does she want me to pass it on to someone on her behalf?
“Uhh… To whom should I give this?” I asked instead as I couldn’t think of anything else to say. I never had someone give me candies before, so I’m not going to assume this is for me. Should that be the case, she could just say “for you” right away, right?
The shocked look on Laughing-san’s face was unmistakable. What?
“Se-Senpai? Are you not into sweets?! Don’t you like gummy candies?” she asked in a depressed and embarrassed tone.
“Ah! No, no! It’s not that I don’t like gummy candies. I just thought you wanted me to give it to someone else. You didn’t specifically say that this is for me, so I just asked.” I quickly explained.
But why is she giving me candies? This isn’t a prank, is it? This sure feels strange.
I then heard a familiar sound when I first met Laughing-san. This time, the laughter is light.
“What?” I asked as I furrowed my brows. Truth be told, I’m losing my ability to use keigo because of this girl!
“Nothing, senpai. I’m sorry,” she smiled after laughing. “This is for you, senpai. I simply wanted to thank you for your hard work on the student council. I hope this isn’t too much trouble for you,” she continues to extend the candy packet.
Despite my reluctance, I accepted it with an awkward smile. I got confused over that reason. I’m not sure if I will buy it.
Even so, is that even a good enough reason to give your upperclassman some treats?
“Uhh… Thank you for this. That’s extremely thoughtful of you. But you don’t have to because it’s my duty. Moreover, Minori is the one who puts in the most effort. Doesn’t she deserve this more than I do?” I have mixed feelings about this.
“Well, senpai, you see. I’ve already-”
“Yu-chin! Here you are! I’ve been looking for you...” Tomoka launched a hug attack from my side. “Oh, what’s this? Am I bothering your little chat with a cute underclassman here?” Her smile extends to Laughing-san, who looked surprised when she saw Tomoka.
“Oh, no, not at all, senpai. I was about to take my leave. It won’t be long before the break is over,” Laughing-san smiled casually at Tomoka. “Then, I’ll be going now, Shibasaki-senpai.”
“Thank you once again for this. I appreciate it a lot.” I replied.
She nods and smiles before she walks away. I suppose she's a nice person after all, isn’t she?
“Eh? Did you gain a fan among our underclassmen now? It looks like the number of my rivals keeps increasing, huh?” Tomoka grinned as she shot me a teasing look. “But you’re too bold to cheat on me right in my face, Yu-chin!”
“Quit it. That underclassman isn’t a fan, and she’s just trying to be nice. You’re really good at putting your own spin on everything. Get off me already.” I gently smacked her head resting on my shoulder.
“Ow-ow! I could use this as grounds for divorce, you know,” she teased as she unwrapped her arms around me.
“I’d appreciate it if you could file it right away. I’ll be waiting.” Tomoka followed me as I walked back to my seat.
“How mean! Now that you’ve just gained a new admirer, you’re willing to leave me?” she wailed. Urgh! She’s into this again. “Anyway, could you share some of those candies with me, or is it too much to ask since it’s a special gift?”
Something special? Why is that?
“I don’t mind at all. You know that I don’t have a strong taste for sweets. Here, open it yourself if you wish. But don’t eat all of it.” I tossed the candy packet at her.
“Just like that?” Tomoka looks baffled.
“What? Didn’t you say you wanted some?”
“Yeah. But it was given to you by someone. Isn’t this supposed to be something special?”
Huh? What is she talking about? I don’t think I’m following it at all.
“Is that how things are? But you’ve asked for it and I’d like to give you some as well.” I don’t think it’s a big deal if you let someone open a gift you received.
It’s not like I’m going to disregard it. And I’m grateful that someone felt the need to give me a gift even if I don’t think I deserve it.
“Aww~ You must really love me, Yu-chin!” Tomoka hugged me and rubbed her cheeks against mine.
“Yeah, yeah. Please stop it already and open the gummy candies. Breaktime is about to end.”
“Yosh! Thank you so much, Yu-chin!”
Somehow, I noticed Kyashii seemed to be watching us intently. Does she also want gummy candies?
I suppose I should offer her some then.
“Tomoka, take your fair share. I'll give some to Kyashii as well."
“Got it!” and she poured nearly half of the candy pack onto her palm.
“I said fair, you greedy gummy candy monster!”
Tomoka handed me the nearly empty pack while laughing.
Oh, whatever! Let’s just go and give some to Kyashii.
“Would you like some?” I offered Kyashii.
As Kyashii rested her head between her palms on the desk, she stared at the candy pack for a moment before turning her eyes towards me.
“Why are you giving me an opened pack?” she asked in a flat tone.
“Huh? You seem to be interested in it while Tomoka’s feasting on it back there.”
“I’m not! Someone gave you that, right?”
“Yeah. It was an underclassman, although I’m unsure of the reason for it.”
“She didn’t tell you?”
“She did. As she put it, it’s an appreciation for my hard work in the student council. But it just seems odd to me, don’t you think so too?”
Kyashii opened her mouth and was about to say something but decided not to.
“What is it?” I asked.
“Nothing. Anyway, I don’t want that,” Kyashii shifted her gaze in front of her. She seems as if she’s sulking or something.
“Are you upset about something?”
“Oh? I’m not!” she grunted. Her tone certainly gave her away.
“Oh yes, you are. That tone. Why are you upset? Is there something wrong?”
“Nothing. Make sure that you don’t cancel our plans for this afternoon!” I get a piercing glare from her.
Uhh? Why am I even getting these glares again? “Why would I do that? Just send me a message beforehand.”
“Okay,” she responded without even looking at me.
I decided to get back into my seat. What’s going on with her? I initially thought she was fine this morning, but now she seems to have caught my poor mood.
Argh! Having to deal with such a variety of personalities has totally sapped my energy.
*keigo means the polite or formal way of Japanese speech.