Chapter 7:

A Smile Like That (Part 2)

Unconsciously Interested

“Yuyo, would you like a bite of my crepe?” Kyashii happily offered me her snack. Bookmark here

She went for a strawberry crepe and a milk tea with a matcha green tea flavor while I indulged in browned cheese waffle and a soda. Unlike her, I am not particularly fond of sweets.Bookmark here

“That doesn’t even seem to be enough for you, so I decline. Thank you very much.” I smiled wryly. She’s aware I’m not fond of sugary confections, so I don’t get why she offers me one.Bookmark here

“Well… I noticed that you were a little less energetic than usual, and sugar helps boost your mood, you know.”Bookmark here

I see... So that’s why. Bookmark here

“Point taken.” I replied, ignoring the thought of taking a bite.Bookmark here

“So here you go.” Kyashii handed me her half-eaten crepe. Bookmark here

Uhh…? Bookmark here

There are times when I am not even sure if she’s being nice and considerate or if she’s just being pushy. Bookmark here

Haah... Anyway, a little bite isn’t going to hurt. I should be glad she’s concerned instead. Bookmark here

I accepted her crepe and took a small bite. But Kyashii is keeping a close eye on me, making me feel self-conscious, so I immediately give her crepe back.Bookmark here

“Thank you.”Bookmark here

“You only had a tiny bite, so it’s fine!” Kyashii smiles sweetly as she munches on her crepe.Bookmark here

I was about to continue with my waffle when I realized I hadn’t offered mine. Since Kyashii offered me her snack, it’s only natural that I should return the favor. Bookmark here

“Kyashii, want to try my waffle too?”Bookmark here

Kyashii’s eyes brightened as she nodded repeatedly. Bookmark here

“Feed me!” Kyashii said, flashing a big grin.Bookmark here

“Huh…?!” What's up with that? “Nope... Eat it yourself!”Bookmark here

“Don’t wanna. You feed me, Yuyo.” Her smile refused to fade. Bookmark here

She really does a fantastic job of being a needy friend. And I'm already anticipating her trump card - the best friend card!Bookmark here

“Not happening. Besides, you didn’t feed me, so why would I do it?” I shoved my plate towards her. Bookmark here

“Aww…~ I didn’t realize you wanted me to feed you? You should have told me.” Kyashii teased.Bookmark here

“What?! No…! What I said makes perfect sense. You didn’t feed me, so there’s no reason for me to feed you.” I glared at her. Bookmark here

Jeez! Kyashii has a knack for catching me off guard with my own words. I need to think more carefully about my responses next time.Bookmark here

“There’s a reason behind this, Yuyo. And that’s because I want you to feed me. What’s the harm in feeding your best friend?” She flashed a sneaky smile.Bookmark here

There you have it! She pulled her trump card on me once again. Bookmark here

The best friend card seems to maintain its winning streak since she uses it wisely in her own favor. It seems I’ll need to devise a counterattack against it! Bookmark here

Though, if you think about it, she had a point. The act of feeding your best friend is quite normal. I have seen a lot of people do it. Bookmark here

The problem is I don’t feel comfortable doing it with Kyashii, but I can’t tell her that. Gaah…! Bookmark here

“You better stop pulling out that best friend card on me, you sneaky one. Fine…! I’ll do it. Lean forward.” I said with a glare.Bookmark here

Yatta!” The smug Kyashii leaned forward and opened her mouth. Bookmark here

My hand gets tensed when I put a piece of waffle into her mouth. I watch her as she savors it with a triumphant smile.Bookmark here

“You’re such a high-maintenance friend.” I sighed.Bookmark here

“Yummy! Thank you, Yuyo!” she ignored my remark. Bookmark here

Shaking my head, I continued eating while watching her constantly smile. Bookmark here

Man… She’s such a handful one.Bookmark here

Bookmark here

Having finished our snack, I noticed her lively smile had vanished, as her attention was riveted to the top of my left shoulder. Bookmark here

When I turned around to see what she was staring at, I saw a familiar face approaching us.Bookmark here

“What a pleasure to see both of you here, Shibasaki-san and Mikami-san,” Ezaki-san greeted us warmly as he stood next to our table. Bookmark here

Kyashii just nods and stares relentlessly at Ezaki-san. Bookmark here

“Ezaki-san, hello. What a fortunate coincidence.” I returned his smile. “Are you already out for dinner?” I asked, noting that he was wearing casual clothes.Bookmark here

“Ah… No. I was already here when both of you came in. We couldn’t miss two beauties entering the café, so I just came by to say hello,” he smiled, flitting his eyes between Kyashii and me. It may just be me, but that smile seems a little mysterious to me. “I was with some friends,” he pointed at a group of young men seated catty-corner from us. Bookmark here

They wear different uniforms, which is why I didn’t notice earlier that a classmate was there. Bookmark here

“I believe you are referring to a single beauty, and that’s Kyashii.” I reacted to his flattery. “Moreover, I thought you didn’t have friends?” I asked with a grin. Bookmark here

I must say, I have no problem teasing this guy.Bookmark here

I heard him laughing softly. “You remembered, huh? So, I don’t have friends at school, but I have some close friends outside of school. Although it is not as close as the friendship you share with Mikami-san here,” he turned to smile at Kyashii. Bookmark here

Kyashii gave Ezaki-san a casual smile, but she’s still staring at him intently.Bookmark here

Hmm, she might be crushing on him? In the same manner, Ezaki-san stares intently back at Kyashii. Bookmark here

Uhh… Has this turned into a staring contest? Bookmark here

Wait… Are they both attracted to each other now?Bookmark here

Haah… Bookmark here

What an awkward situation this is. Bookmark here

As I was trying to think of something to say, I noticed the time on my phone. Bookmark here

Oops! It’s starting to get late. I still need to get groceries, or else my brother will nag me.Bookmark here

“I’m sorry, Ezaki-san, but we need to get going. I still need to make a trip to the grocery store.” My apologies for interrupting your staring contest, guys. Bookmark here

I glanced at Kyashii, who looked as if she had returned to the real world.Bookmark here

“Ohh… I apologize for holding you up. Then, I’ll excuse myself, Shibasaki-san, Mikami-san.”Bookmark here

“It’s fine, really. We’ll catch up at school… Then, see you later, Ezaki-san,” I replied with a smile while taking Kyashii’s hand since her movement seemed too slow. I had to hurry.Bookmark here

“Of course,” Ezaki-san cast a quick glance at my hand holding Kyashii’s before he turned to face her and smiled. Kyashii followed suit. Bookmark here

Yep, it seems they’re into each other.Bookmark here

There’s no doubt that they’ll make a perfect match, given that Kyashii is quite beautiful and Ezaki-san is pretty handsome. Bookmark here

“. . . .”Bookmark here

However… Uhh…Bookmark here

I think something is wrong with me. Bookmark here

The thought of Kyashii and Ezaki-san as a couple saddens me! Bookmark here

Urgh…! What gives? I’m really weird! Bookmark here

Nah… Wait… I’m not weird. Bookmark here

I’m sure there’s a reason for this unwarranted feeling. Let’s be rational about it. Bookmark here

Once Kyashii gets a boyfriend, she won’t bother me to hang out with her as much as she does now, which I find rather disheartening. Bookmark here

Sure, she can be a handful sometimes, but I’m already used to her excessively insistent nature. Dealing with her pushy behavior is almost second nature to me. Bookmark here

So, that might be the case, right? Bookmark here

Yeah… That’s why I’m feeling murky. Bookmark here

Sigh… Bookmark here

This really gets on my nerves since matching up friends is supposed to be fun. I feel like I’m violating some sort of moral code here.Bookmark here

“Yuyo?” Kyashii waves her hand across my face as we walk out of the café.Bookmark here

“Hmm…?”Bookmark here

“You’re lost in thought. What’s on your mind?” Kyashii looked into my eyes with a grave expression on her face. “Or maybe I should ask who?”Bookmark here

“Huh??!” I was totally caught off guard by that question. Bookmark here

Uhh... Bookmark here

Ohh..Bookmark here

“Aahh… I was just thinking of something about Ezaki-san, ha-ha! Nothing important.” I chuckled awkwardly. I have no plans on telling her that I’m thinking of pairing her up with someone else. “Anyway, it’s getting late. You’d better go home. I’ll go grocery shopping by myself.” Bookmark here

Let’s quickly move on to something else so that we don’t have to get into romantic stuff about Kyashii and Ezaki-san. Bookmark here

“What is with Ezaki-san? Do you like him?” Kyashii asked, she's looking stern. Bookmark here

Sheesh… I guess she's not yet done with that matter, huh?Bookmark here

"What do you mean by like? Personality-wise?"Bookmark here

“In a romantic sense,” she said in a flat tone.Bookmark here

I laughed out of surprise as my arms crossed in rejection. “Hahaha! No! Where did you get that? You’re talking about things that aren’t in my realm yet, and you know that.” But Kyashii didn’t seem amused by my response. “Err... Umm… Alright. It’s a no. I don’t like him that way.” I calmly reaffirmed. Bookmark here

Is it just me, or does Kyashii look a bit menacing right now? Bookmark here

“Could you then tell me why you’re thinking about Ezaki-san?” Kyashii asked with a dead-serious expression on her face.Bookmark here

Ah-re? My senses seem to pick up an ominous aura emanating from her. Bookmark here

Hmm...I wonder if she sees me as a potential rival for Ezaki-san? Bookmark here

Ohh…! Bookmark here

Of course! That’s it! Bookmark here

Perhaps that’s what she was thinking, which explains her expression. Bookmark here

Okay... Let’s get this straight before it gets out of hand. Bookmark here

There is no way I want Kyashii to view me in a bad light, let alone as a rival in her romantic life! It’s the last thing I want her to think of me.Bookmark here

“Kyashii-chan~,” I took Kyashii’s hands in mine so she could feel the sincerity of my words. It made her flinch a bit, as she looked at my hands in confusion. Bookmark here

She must understand that I’m not a rival for her affection for Ezaki-san.Bookmark here

“What?” she's staring at me with a cold glare. Bookmark here

Does she really regard me as a rival? Bookmark here

Urgh…! What a pain. Allow me to set the record straight.Bookmark here

With a sincere smile, I clasped Kyashii’s hands and focused my gaze on her eyes. “Kyashii-chan, I don’t have a romantic interest in Ezaki-san, so don’t worry about it. I don’t think there’s a rivalry in those deep feelings you may have for someone. Your feelings don’t get in the way of anything, okay?”Bookmark here

“Ahh…?! Uhh... We-well, I’m not sure I follow what you’re saying, but I think I’m getting the gist of it,” Kyashii mumbled with a bashful smile.Bookmark here

That’s a cute smile. I love it. Bookmark here

So, I’m guessing the coast is now clear? She doesn’t seem to see me as a rival anymore, does she? Bookmark here

“I’m glad.” I tried to release Kyashii from my grasp, but she just gripped mine tightly instead. “Anyway, I wanted to ask you something, and I hope you don’t mind.” Bookmark here

I’m a tad fidgety, but I’m curious.Bookmark here

“What is it?” Bookmark here

“Ahh, right, y-you know, since I’m your best friend– Err...” Ohh, just great…! My subconscious also pulled out the best friend card! Bookmark here

Now that I think about it, isn’t this card really handy? Bookmark here

Kyashii is staring at me, paying attention to whatever I have to say. Bookmark here

“We-Well, it’s just that I’m curious if you have someone you like that way?” I tried to sound natural, but I’m really mortified by my own question! Bookmark here

Not that I have any interest in romance; I just wanted to know since it’s Kyashii.Bookmark here

Kyashii’s hand grew stiff in response to my question. It felt as though her fingers were crushing mine. Bookmark here

I gazed at her intently but she avoided eye contact with me as I awaited her response.Bookmark here

I think I already know the answer from the way she’s reacting. Maybe she’s just embarrassed enough to confide in me.Bookmark here

“Uhm… I think, I really li-like so-someone,” she faltered, almost tripping over her own words, but I managed to catch it this time.Bookmark here

Although I already knew the answer, hearing her say it made me feel strange. Bookmark here

How do I describe this feeling? Bookmark here

Am I feeling dejected? Disheartened? If so, for what reason? It's pretty common in our age to have crushes on others. Bookmark here

“. . . .”Bookmark here

On second thought, it could be that I am feeling this way because I think there's a possibility that Kyashii may get herself a boyfriend soon. In this regard, I feel like the day won't be far off when I don't have to deal with her pushiness anymore. Bookmark here

And that's a sad thing because I will certainly miss her.Bookmark here

I smiled bitterly as I pondered the thoughts racing through my head. Bookmark here

This is not how I should react. Instead, I should be happy for Kyashii. As her friend, I can't let my selfish interests get in the way. I want to support her in whatever she desires in life, especially those that lead to her happiness. When it comes down to it, all that really matters is that she’s happy. Bookmark here

“That’s awesome, Kyashii...” I gently squeeze her palm against my hand. Bookmark here

She peered into my eyes as if she was looking for unspoken words. Is there anything more she wants to hear from me? Hmm…? Bookmark here

Ohh…! Of course, there is! Bookmark here

I must cheer on her. Bookmark here

“I really hope you end up with that person, Kyashii.” I flashed her a gentle smile.Bookmark here

Suddenly, Kyashii’s cheeks turned bright crimson. Bookmark here

Oh boy, she’s really into that person, isn’t she?Bookmark here

“A-ahh… Y-yeah. T-Thank you, Yuyo. I hope so as well.” she looked down, embarrassed.Bookmark here

She’s really adorable. I like seeing this side of her. Bookmark here

It might be best to enjoy this while I still can because she’ll soon show someone else this side of her. Bookmark here

“Heeh… Young maidens in love sure are adorable.” I teased Kyashii.Bookmark here

Someone you like, huh? Bookmark here

Maybe someday there will be a time when I will also have someone to like that way. Bookmark here

However, how will I know that I feel for someone that way if that time comes? I find it amazing when people, like Kyashii, understand that they have feelings for someone in a romantic sense. The thing I don’t understand is how they arrived at such a conclusion in the first place.Bookmark here

Hmm…? Bookmark here

“. . . .”Bookmark here

Welp! Forget it… No matter what, it won't happen anytime soon.Bookmark here

“Anyway, it’s getting late. You should get home, Kyashii. Let me walk you to your station.”Bookmark here

“Uhmm…” Kyashii simply nodded as we walked towards the train station with our fingers interlocked.
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-End of Chapter 1-

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Author's Note: Bookmark here

I appreciate you staying with me this far, guys. Thank you for taking the time to read the story.
I hope you're having fun reading it.
Please support this story by reacting and sharing it with your friends who are also Yuri fans (if it's not too much of a trouble for you). Having more readers could inspire more new authors like me.Arigatou gozaimasu~  (≧◠‿◠≦)

Please keep on supporting other Yuri authors as well.
Let's continue to boost the popularity of this genre.Bookmark here

I'll see you in Chapter 2.Bookmark here

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