Chapter 14:

A Date With the Art Girl

Pandora's Box

The day I had been dreading all week finally came. It was a bright and sunny Saturday afternoon. I was nervously standing at the entrance of the local mall dressed casually in jeans and a red T-shirt.

"I don't see the issue. It's just one date." Red said as he paced around in front of me.

"Well... The thing is...I've never actually been on a date before." I said.

Red's expression didn't change in the slightest.

"Is that supposed to surprise me? I think anyone would make that assumption just at the sight of you."

His assessment of me was harsh, but true.

"Are you going to at least help me or are you just going to insult me?"

"I wouldn't be here if I wasn't. To be honest though, you can probably just be yourself. I doubt you'll have to do much to impress the art girl... Just don't leave your beverages unattended around her."

Red and I continued waiting around. It seemed like Kanna was running a bit late. I started to think maybe she wasn't coming. Then suddenly out of nowhere, a random girl approached me.

"Good afternoon Hako-senpai!"

The girl had long straight blue hair and was wearing a light blue sundress that came just above her knees. Her sapphire colored eyes had a kind aura in them as she stared at me. I had to admit in regards to looks, she was probably easily in the top 10 most attractive girls I've ever seen.

"Um... Do I know you?" I asked.

"What do you mean silly? It's me."

"... KANNA-CHAN!?"

"Teehee, how could you not recognize your future wife?"

My face suddenly turned red from those words. She had made comments like that to me before, but now it seemed to hit different.

"N-no I didn't. D-did you change your hair or something?"

She giggled.

"It makes me happy that you noticed! I was so excited about today that I went to the salon and bought this new outfit. My mom even helped with my makeup this morning."

Red had a smirk on his face.

"Aren't you lucky. Maybe you'll find a girlfriend after all. I was starting to think I might be the one stuck sweeping your ashes into a dustpan."

Maybe he was right. This might be my opportunity to turn things around in the girl department. I suddenly felt a surge of confidence.

"If you're ready, Kanna-chan, come with me," I said, holding out my arm.

"Of course senpai!"

With a giant smile across her face, she wrapped herself around my arm, as I began escorting her through the mall. At that moment, she was probably the happiest girl in the world.


My first date ever went nearly perfect. The two of us got lunch together at a cafe in the mall, where we casually chatted. Then we walked around and looked in all the different stores. I even managed to win her a stuffed bee from the claw machine at the arcade. Kanna didn't try anything crazy nor did I need any help from Red. She just acted like any ordinary girl and I was able to just be myself around her.

I'll admit though, this new Kanna seemed to draw a lot of gazes. Everywhere we went, people were checking her out. I can't blame them, this transformation of her's made her look like a model.

Eventually I wanted to get away from all the people, so I suggested we take a stroll through a nearby park. Kanna, of course, happily agreed.

We walked side by side along a dirt trail that circled around a decent sized pond.

She stopped for a moment and she turned to me and smiled.

"I had a lot of fun today, senpai!"

I faced her and smiled back.

"I'm glad to hear that. I had fun too."

She looked away suddenly like she wanted to say something.

"What is it?" I asked.

"Oh, nothing. I was just thinking about how today was literally a dream come true."

My heart started to palpate as if it was going to throw itself out of my chest. This was a suburban park, so traffic could be heard from not too far away, but at that moment it was as if I was in an invisible box with her. All background noise and even scenery seemed to fade. Everything became suddenly tranquil.

"I always wondered something, Kanna-chan. I'm an awkward plain looking guy with almost no friends. Why do you even like me in the first place?"

She giggled as if that was a silly question.

"How couldn't I? Ever since I first met you at that school orientation. I admired how kind and reliable of a person you are."

She was referring to when we first met. At the end of last year, it was the student council's duty to tour students from the incoming freshman class around campus. Mei was supposed to do it, but of course pawned it off on me. The orientation I gave wasn't really anything special or memorable, but apparently it left an impact on her.

"That's really kind of you. I never realized I gave you that kind of impression."

"In my eyes you're the perfect man... Just so you know though, I'm still suspicious of your relationship with that Akari girl and even those student council girls. I have no intention of letting any of them beat me."

Lucky for her, I doubt any of those girls have any interest in me. Deep down I felt a bit guilty. I never realized until now how sweet and beautiful Kanna really was. She can be a bit quirky at times, but she's not a bad person. Maybe I misjudged her after a-.

"What are you doing!?" I asked, surprised?

It was like the invisible box I was in shattered.

"Wow! This is really neat!"

She had picked up a dead pigeon off the ground and was inspecting it in her bare hands. I couldn't believe what I was seeing.

Red suddenly popped out of a bush he was watching from.

"What the-!" He exclaimed.

"Uh... Whatcha got there, Kanna-chan?" I said.

"Oh, sorry, it's just that I'm really into taxidermy. This little guy is going to look adorable, mounted up in my room."

Her eyes had a crazed look in them as she said that.

"That' interesting... "

I was at a loss for words.

She then proceeded to shove the pigeon into her purse.

"He should be safe here."

I reached back and noticed there was something stuck to my back.

"Kanna... What's this?"

"Teehee, I guess you caught me. I might have 'accidentally' stuck that airtag on you earlier today."

It seemed that I misjudged misjudging her. To be honest, I was a little scared. How could a girl with so much potential be completely nuts?

I stayed fairly quiet for what remained of our date. She was on cloud nine and was completely oblivious of my change in attitude. Eventually at the end of our date, I brought her to the subway and bid her farewell as she boarded.

Now that she was gone, I just just stood for a moment in shock over what I had witnessed.

Red came up to me,

"I can't believe she actually did that. Doesn't she know those things have diseases?"

I looked down at Red.

"I feel conflicted. How can such a pretty girl be so nuts?"

"Well, on the brightside she'll get you that endorsement. At least you got something out of this."

Maybe Red was right. Still, I just needed to go home and be alone for a bit.

N.J. Ecalus
Taylor J
Mario Nakano 64