Chapter 18:

Fervour and the Future

One Wish They Never Wanted

Takuma suddenly rushed in with plastic bags full of what was (presumably) his manga. "What book should I get the mangaka to sign?!" he spat at her, causing her to step back.

Without a word, Amelie pointed in the direction of the person he was so excited to meet...

Visibly shuddering and with a straight face, Takuma turned back and picked the first volume off the top of one bag, punctuating his choice with, "We'll go with this one."

Behind him, Amelie procured a marker from the counter and sighed. She stopped when an imposing figure holding a volume of manga - Max - loomed over her shoulder, righting herself in response.

"I thought I was done with you," she whispered, thinking back to the day she'd passed by a convenience store on a chilly June day, only to find Max on the sidewalk with multiple boxes of ice cream next to him. Certainly, this very sight would be damaging for his image if anyone knew about it, so she was sworn to secrecy about it. In exchange, since she'd noted Takuma had left school around this time, she'd roped Max into fixing up their relationship.

"Amelie? The signing's about to start!" Takuma called, snapping her out of her daze. Beyond him, the woman who was meant to be "Hiromasa Mutsumi" was dozing off while Kris...he was nowhere in sight. Again.

She shook her head knowingly and, while Max was distracted by this action, she snuck away with a small laugh.

After all, if it was possible for her and Takuma to believe in the future, then anyone could.
---- End of main story ----