Chapter 64:

Love Stars

Couple That Can't Touch

Finally, Koji finished taking my class. Since we had thirty minutes before the next class began, we met at a bench in front of the cabin. We touched each other's hands and slept as fast as we could, not forgetting to set an alarm this time.

We woke up three minutes later back in our own bodies. Rem had sent a message in the chat group we had made for the camp with the eight of us. She asked us to go to the café inside the cabin.

Everyone else arrived as we arrived. We sat at the table in the corner, the only one that had enough chairs for all of us.

"How's everyone doing?" Narumi asked.

"We've only been here for like three hours," Hisaki answered. "Nothing much has happened."

"I'm just trying to start a conversation, idiot. What does it cost you to answer normally?"

"And I just answered honestly. What does it cost you to be tolerant?"

They glared at each other. Everyone else stared at them, uncomfortable.

The tension between these two has been extreme lately. They need to accept their feelings for each other before something bad happens.

"You shouldn't be yelling, kids," Shimamura-sensei said as she arrived holding a coffee.

"Don't worry, I was already going anyway," Narumi replied.

She stood up and walked out of the café. And something bad happened.

"Is she okay?" Shimamura-sensei asked.

Hisa sighed. "I didn't want to meddle, but you've left me no choice. Go and apologize to her," she said to Hisaki.

"What? Why me? She's the one—"

"Just leave your nonexistent pride aside for five minutes and go!" she scolded.

Hisaki stared at her before accepting it. "Fine."

He stood up and followed Narumi. Not even ten seconds later, Hisa stood up.

"Let's go," she said. Rem stood up as well.

"Where are you going?" I asked. "Don't tell me you're going to spy on them."

"We have to make sure that idiot doesn't screw it up again," Hisa answered. "Are you coming?"

I sighed. "Fine. I need to make sure you don't do something extreme."

"That's the spirit," she smirked.

"We'll be waiting here," Koji said.

Hisa, Rem, and I headed behind Narumi and Hisaki before we lost them. They were already quite a ways ahead on the path, at a perfect distance so they didn't notice us. Hisaki followed for a little before trying to speak to her. We could barely hear them.

"Sae, wait."

"I want to take a walk. Leave me alone."

Hisaki reached for her arm to stop her. As soon as Narumi turned around, we ran to hide behind some bushes and trees.

"I said leave me alone!"


Narumi's expression switched from anger to surprise.

Hisaki continued, "Listen. I'm sorry, okay? I-I don't know why every time I'm with you, I feel like annoying you. I'm nervous when I'm next to you and I don't know what to say. I just know I want to be with you. But something inside me always stops me from saying it, so I end up saying things that annoy you—"

Narumi jumped at Hisaki and kissed him. He was shocked for a moment, yet neither of them tried to step back.

"Yes!" Hisa whispered in celebration.

The kiss kept going for a while before finally stopping. They stared at each other. Both of their faces were red as I had never seen before.

"I should go… to class," Narumi stuttered.

"Y-Yes, me, too," Hisaki replied.

His class is the one that just finished….

Narumi turned around to continue walking down the path, while Hisaki turned around to return to the cabin. Hisa, Rem, and I quickly crouched down to completely hide from him, but I hit something behind me. I turned around to see Shimamura-sensei.

We waited for Hisaki to be at an acceptable distance before talking.

"Shimamura-sensei? Were you behind me all this time?" I asked.

"Of course. Someone had to make sure you didn't have an accident or something."

"That's why you're everyone's favorite teacher," Rem grinned. Hisa nodded.

"I'm glad to hear that. Isn't it refreshing to see the love between two lovebirds blossom?"

"I agree," Hisa replied. "But what about you, sensei? Do you have a special someone?"

"Yeah. Do you have a special someone?" I smiled.

The fact that Shimamura-sensei liked someone had already slipped out of my tongue when talking with Hisa and Rem, but I never told them who she liked. I was trying to make Shimamura-sensei tell them.

"I don't think it would be professional of my part to tell my students about my love life."

"Come on, Sensei. We won't tell anyone," Hisa said.

"We might even be able to help you," Rem added.

"What would make you think I need help?" Shimamura-sensei replied. "Okay. To be honest, I do need help," she sighed. "Promise me you won't tell anyone."

"We promise," the three of us said.

After taking a deep breath, Shimamura-sensei continued, "Alright. I like Yasue-sensei."

"I knew it!" Hisa shouted. "Sorry. Please go on."

"That's everything. I haven't been able to make real progress for years. I just don't know when and what to talk about."

"You never will if you keep waiting," Rem said.

"Exactly," Hisa replied. "And I already have an idea about how to solve it."

Curious, we all listened to her. It was a simple yet effective plan. Since Shimamura-sensei wasn't going to give the next class and she knew Yasue-sensei wasn't either, we decided to take action right away.

We looked for a secluded place in the forest, not too far away from the path. Shimamura-sensei stayed there, while Hisa, Rem, and I returned to the cabin to look for Yasue-sensei.

"Are you sure about this?" Rem asked.

"Of course," I answered. "I've been waiting for this for years."

"There he is," Hisa said, looking at him standing at the other side of the hallway. "I'll tell him. So, if he gets upset, I'll be the only one that gets punished."

Concerned, Rem and I glanced at each other before nodding. We hid behind a corner, while Hisa approached Yasue-sensei.

"Yasue-sensei! Someone twisted his ankle in the forest!"

"What? Is he okay?"

"I don't know, but he seemed to be in a lot of pain."

"That's not good. Please lead me there."


And like that, Hisa naturally lied to convince him to go to the forest. She's a really good actress.

Before walking out of the cabin, Yasue-sensei grabbed a medkit hanging on the wall. I felt more guilty as the situation progressed, but there was no going back. We followed them at a safe distance through the path until they stopped.

"There," Hisa said, pointing into the forest. "Looks like Shimamura-sensei is already there."

"Understood. Ask the receptionist to call an ambulance."

"I will."

As Yasue-sensei headed into the forest, Hisa returned with us. We slowly jogged back to the cabin to avoid suspicions. We stepped inside and sat on a couch in the reception area.

"I can't believe we just did that," Rem said.

"I know," Hisa replied. "I didn't expect him to make such a big deal out of it. He's going to be pissed."

"Let's hope Shimamura-sensei can calm him down at least a bit," I said. "You're not going to spy on them?"

"We are not crazy," Hisa answered. "It's way too risky. And I think it's better to leave them alone this time."

"Only this time?"

"You heard me."

The three of us laughed. We then stayed in silence.

"Now what?" I asked.

"We could go to the onsen," Rem answered.

"That sounds relaxing," Hisa added.

"I agree," I said. "Let's go, then."

We headed to the onsen, undressed, and got in the thermal water. Luckily, there were only a few people, which made it even more relaxing. Among those people, Narumi was sitting alone in a corner. She saw us and looked away. I didn't want to bother her but, of course, Hisa had different plans. She approached Narumi.

"Hey, Narumi. Is everything good?"

"W-Why'd you care?"

"Aren't we friends now?"

Narumi sighed. "I kissed Hisaki."

"Again?" Hisa asked.

"Yes…. Wait. How do you know I did it before?" She glared at me. "Suzuka!"

"What? You never told me not to tell anyone," I replied.


"And what's on your mind, Narumi?" Hisa asked.

Narumi looked down. "I'm… not sure. I wonder if I took it too far by kissing him. Maybe that's not what he wanted. Then I merely ran away like a coward."

"Well, he ran away like a coward as well," Hisa said.

"Really? Wait. How do you know that?"

"Because it's obvious. Look, there's no way he didn't like it. You're just scared that things are going to get weird between the two of you. And yes, they are going to get weird. But don't try to avoid it. Embrace it."

Narumi stared at Hisa before looking away. "I never asked for tips. But thanks."

"You're welcome," Hisa smirked. "We'll leave you alone now. You have a lot of things to reflect on. Enjoy the onsen."

Hisa returned with Rem and I, and we continued to relax for a long while.

Koji finished his class and we met again. I felt sorry for him when I realized he had to take two classes, but I couldn't think of anything I could do to pay him back.

Hisa ran into Yasue-sensei later in the afternoon. Luckily, he was in a good mood, so he simply warned her not to do something like that again. It seemed like Shimamura-sensei finally took steps forward.

The sun was about to set. Koji and I wanted to go watch the stars alone, when the teachers told us that we couldn't leave the cabin nor the tent area once the sunlight was gone. Koji and I were extremely disappointed, but there was nothing we could do.

The evening progressed and we ate dinner. An hour later, it was time for everyone to get in bed. Kawahara and I chatted at times, but we mostly used our phones. I chatted with Koji until he sent a peculiar message.

"Do you still want to watch the stars?"

"Obviously," I replied.

"Let's watch them, then."

"What do you mean?"

"Go to the bathroom but don't go in. Meet me behind it."

"Are you crazy?! There are teachers keeping watch."

"They'll think you're just going to the bathroom. Maybe they fell asleep already."

"I'm not sure. It's too risky…."

"I know, but I want to watch the stars with you. Look, it's up to you. It's obviously very risky and we can always watch them in the future."

"Screw it. Let's do it."

"Understood. I'll go first. Wait five minutes before going."

"Got it."

During those five minutes, I was so nervous that my hands were shaking as I held my phone to see the time. A minute lasted an hour until it was finally time. I couldn't see if Kawahara was asleep, so I gently slid out of the sleeping bag and crawled out of the tent. It was quite dark and cold, but I avoided turning on the flashlight. I carefully walked through the tents and reached the bathroom building. I walked around it and found Koji.

"You're here," he said.

"Yes. Let's go before someone—"

"Hello," Tokugawa-sensei said, pointing a flashlight at us. "May I ask where you two are planning to go?"

I answered, "Tokugawa-sensei! We're just—"

But Koji put his hand on my shoulder. I shut up.

"We just want to watch the stars," Koji answered.

"You can watch them from here. They're above you," Tokugawa-sensei said. "They are quite pretty, ain't they?"

"We want to watch them alone."

Tokugawa-sensei glared at Koji and replied, "Unless you plan to go to the cabin, you can't leave."

They stared at each other. They were at a standstill when another person arrived behind us.

"Is everything okay?" Natsuhiko-sensei asked, worried.

"It is," Tokugawa-sensei answered. "I caught them wanting to sneak out of the tent area."

"Is that true, Suzuka-san?"

"It is. I'm sorry…," I apologized, embarrassed. "We just wanted to watch the stars alone."

Natsuhiko-sensei stared at me. "I understand. But we can't let you leave this late. It's too dangerous. I'm sorry."

"Return to your tents," Tokugawa-sensei ordered.

Defeated, Koji and I started walking away, when Natsuhiko-sensei stopped us.

"Wait!" she said. Thoughtful for a moment, she continued, "Where did you plan to go?"

"Natsuhiko-sensei!" Tokugawa-sensei said. He sounded more worried than angry. "You don't plan to let them go, do you?"

"Don't you think it's a great opportunity for them to bond? They just want to have a peaceful moment together. Vacations might be close but, once university starts, they won't have much free time."

"Yes, but, what if they get lost? Or do indecent things?"

"Then I'll take full responsibility for it. I understand your worries, but they won't do anything. I trust them."

Conflicted, he took a moment to reply, "Fine. Make sure no one sees you. If someone does, you won't tell any of what happened here. Don't leave the main path. You have ten minutes. I'll come for you if you haven't returned by then. Understood?"

"Understood," Koji and I replied.

Unable to believe what had just happened, Koji and I walked away. We walked around the tents to avoid being seen and we reached the main path, which had many lights. Although it was best to stay on it, there was no clear view of the sky. I suggested walking away from the path. Reluctantly, Koji agreed.

Making sure not to lose track of the path, we walked away from it for a bit until we finally found a spot with no trees. The view was hypnotizing. I had never seen that many stars together, shimmering with different colors.

I noticed Koji trembled due to the cold at times, so I gave him my sweater.

Even though the peaceful moment only lasted ten minutes, it was recorded in my memory forever. Nor was it going to be the last time we'd enjoy similar moments.

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