Chapter 7:

Study Session

A Love So Sweet, I Get Confused

It took another week before Tomo had managed to come back to university. She had made a full recovery from her cold but unfortunately, she had missed significant information and notes for the upcoming exam. So, her and Mitsu were currently sat in coffee shop but it wasn’t Mitsu helping with the notes. No, it was Akio.

All of Tomo’s attention was currently on Akio but Mitsu’s was as well. This past week, Akio and Mitsu remained seat neighbours for the duration of Tomo’s absence. While most people would take advantage of having such a capable student beside them, Mitsu was unable to focus, trying to be cautious as not to allow Akio to look him in the eyes and realise he and ‘Hana’ are the same person. Now he’s in the same boat as Tomo and needed the extra student just as much, if not more, then she did.

He looked up, seeing how intensely Tomo was paying attention, nodding to show her understanding of the notes while the information couldn’t sink in for him at all. He smacked his lips together, trying to moisten them. Maybe a drink would help him. He stood up, asking if anyone else cared for a drink, praying that his wallet might survive with a ‘no’ but thirst had gotten to everyone. While Tomo asked for hot chocolate, surprisingly Akio only asked for some water. “That’s all you want?” Mitsu asked, exaggerating the word ‘all’. Akio nodded, a sincere smile on his face. “Sure, one hot chocolate and a water.”

Today, the coffee shop was having one of its quitter days so Mitsu was straight to the front of his queue. As if today couldn’t get more troublesome, Mitsu groaned seeing his sister greeting him with her best customer service smile. “There’s my hard worker,” She chimed, leaning over and pinching his cheek. Mitsu shook his head, getting Emi to release her grasp. “What can I get for your little study group today?”

Mitsu sighed before giving his order; “A mocha, hot chocolate and water please.”

“Water?” This was the only part of the order Emi repeated. She raised a brow, pushing herself to stand up tall before turning her back to Mitsu. “Go sit back down.” No payment? “I’ll bring them over.”

Deciding to not question it, Mitsu went back to join his study group, being passed by a familiar mop of died orange hair as he sat down. “There’s my girl,” He smiled, leaning over the counter, the guitar situated on his back sitting more comfortable in this particular position. Emi squealed, seeing her long-term boyfriend, Karasu, giving her a loving look. She passed on the order her co worker before running to the other side of the counter, greeting her boyfriend with a kiss. “I thought you weren’t working this afternoon.”

Emi shook her head. “Akio asked to swap so he could tutor Mitsu and Tomo this afternoon,” She explained. “Mitsu’s been struggling in class recently according to Akio so I don’t mind.”

Karasu stuck his tongue out. He wasn’t the happiest when Emi still made sacrifices for Mitsu. Including changing her shifts and throwing out her schedule. “Didn’t you plan to work on more editing tonight?” He asked, sounding worried that Emi was going to be further behind in her work.

“I can stay up later tonight,” Emi protested, a sad smile on her face. She knew that Karasu did like Mitsu but ever since their blow out about career choices, Mitsu has left a sour taste in Karasu’s mouth. Emi placed a hand on Kara’s forearm, trying to reassure him that she would be fine.

“Emi,” Her college called out, placing the order of drinks on the counter. “Order is ready for the table.”

“Thanks for that,” Emi gave a thumbs up before taking the drinks to the table. She called out the drinks as she handed them out. There was Mitsu’s mocha, Tomo’s hot chocolate and then; “A herbal tea for Akio.”

“But I asked for water,” Mitsu spoke up, confused at the drink change.

Akio let out a small laugh, happily accepting the drink. “You’re too kind Emi,” He complimented, making Emi blush. “First shift trades and now a tea.”

“We got to look out for each other,” Emi laughed, walking away, ruffling Mitsu’s hair as she did.

Mitsu whined under his breathe as he tried to fix his hair, looking in the corner of his eyes to see Akio happily enjoying his drink. Everyone just loves Akio, he thought, trying to turn his attention back onto the notes. He looked to see Tomo still looking intensely at her own notes, trying desperately for them to sink in. Akio placing his drink down and using his finger to guide her to the relevant sections she needed. Tomo, Emi, the university, everybody seemed infatuated with Akio. Mitsu knew he had to change this. Make it so Akio could only think of one thing. Hana.