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Chapter 3: My Sister’s Friend

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Author: Tsukishiro Rin Original Source: Syosetu Character Count: 7258 characters
Translator: Richie English Source: Re:Library Word Count: 5185 words
Editor(s): Richie

The entrance ceremony proceeded smoothly, although there were some unexpected incidents, such as when I was introduced as a guest of honor and, for some reason, asked to take the stand and give a speech. But nothing untoward happened.

At the end, I was taken to the principal’s office and welcomed by the principal. I had even taken a two-shot with the principal and Ayame-sensei.1 I don’t think that a picture with me was that valuable, but it was possible that it’s only for a commemorative photo.

By the time I released my transformation in a deserted location and returned home, the entrance ceremony was long over. The ceremony ended in the afternoon, so I was in charge of today’s lunch. However, I talked at length in the principal’s office, so lunchtime was also long over.

Uuu… Karen might get angry at me for leaving her to starve over lunchtime.
I opened the front door while feeling a little dispirited.

“I’m back,” I announced my return, but no voice greeted mine.
Uuu, was she really angry? Usually, she would only pout at me though…
Thinking that I did a bad thing, I walked straight ahead to open the door to the living room to apologize.

Karen was in the living room, staring at her smartphone on the sofa.

“I, I’m back, Karen.”
“…welcome back.”

Karen glanced at me only for a second before returning her gaze to the smartphone.
Huh? She wasn’t angry?
I unconsciously thought that the normal Karen might be hiding her true feelings, so I started to put together some words.

“Sorry. I had something I needed to do, so I was late. Have you eaten yet?”
“…I have.”
“S, sorry. Karen, I should have messaged you about it.”
“…”

She didn’t reply, only looking at her screen.
So, she really was angry after all?
Thinking that she was merely annoyed, I decided to cook my own lunch.
I walked to the kitchen, opened the fridge, and checked the ingredients.

With my back towards Karen, a voice came out from behind me.

“…Hey.”
“Nn, what is it?”
“…Today, the ceremony, did you come?”

That’s good. She didn’t seem to be in a bad mood.
Feeling relieved that she would talk to me, I answered.

“I came. I saw you clearly.”
“…”

I answered clearly, and I felt a pang of pain when no answer came back.

As I was wondering, Karen, with an accusing tone, replied, “Lie. Today, you didn’t come, did you?”
“Eh, I was there though?”
“Where?”
“Where? At the vi…”

I only then realized, I was at the visitor’s seat, not the guardian’s seat. Moreover, I didn’t come as “Kisaragi Kurona,” but rather attended as “Magical Girl: Magical Flower, Black Rose”.

That’s why she couldn’t find me even after looking out for me.

“…I was in the guardian seat, you know?”
“Lie, I couldn’t find you then.”
“I was there. I’m not really tall, so wasn’t it that you didn’t see me at all?”
“I have been looking at the door since the arrival time for guardians came. However, you didn’t enter at all.”
“Ah, u…”

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I couldn’t say anything.
If she was looking out for me that much, then there was no way to lie about it.

“…I lied. I didn’t look that hard. If I look that hard, people would look weirdly at me.”
“Eh?”

Lie? Why did she lie…

“However, you can’t answer straight to me that you came, so you actually didn’t come, did you?”
“T, that…”

I see, so she was bluffing. She’s a witty one… eh, it wasn’t time to be moved! I needed to come up with an excuse…
However, I, who was not a smooth talker by nature, could not come up with a good excuse at once.

“Haa… that’s enough.”

I didn’t even get to make an excuse. Karen upsettingly stood up and walked out of the living room.

“W, wait!”

I called out to her, but when she looked at me with sharp, piercing gaze, I was speechless.

“If you didn’t come, then just say so from the beginning…!”
“W, wait, Karen! I didn’t come, but I wasn’t exactly absent either!”

I tried to talk her into staying, but Karen wasn’t lending her ear and walked away regardless.
A door slam could be heard after that.
I could only stare, dumbfounded.


The next day.

The second year started their lessons today. Everyone was excited and anxious about their new surroundings, but I didn’t have the spare capacity to experience the mood right then.
The new class assignments had been posted on the bulletin board. After I found mine and a certain other person’s name, I put on my jacket and walked to my new class.
Arriving at the new class, not having the leeway to feel nervous at all, I opened the door roughly. My way of opening the door attracted some attention, but I didn’t care at all.

“Oo, Kurona. What’s wrong, you look flustered.”

A voice called out to me after I opened the door. It was from a childhood friend from my elementary school days, Izumi Shin.
I quickly walked to him as soon as I spotted him.

“S-shin~~~!”
“W, what’s wrong? Why are you crying?”

I didn’t notice that tears had pooled in my eyes until he pointed it out. But, it didn’t matter anymore.

“Ka, Karen was…”
“Did something happen to Karen-chan?”
“Karen-chan now hates me!”
“…Haa?”

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Shin looked at me, flustered, as if saying, “what is this guy talking about?”

“No, what are you even talking about?”
I told him the event.
“And that’s how Karen came to hate me! What should I do!?”
“Wait, wait. Calm down for now. If you don’t explain it to me from start to finish, I won’t understand what’s going on.”
“Uh, yeah. You’re right.”

He had a point, nothing could be said if you only know the conclusion of the event.
When I was about to explain it, the first bell just had to ring then.

“Anyway, let’s do it after school. Today’s class is only half a day anyhow. I will listen to your story on the way when I come over for lunch with you.”
“Okay.”

We stopped the chat after we made a promise. I inadvertently invited him to my place for lunch, but he was going to listen to my story anyway, so I should be able to do this much for him.
As I mentioned earlier, I have gotten along with Shin since elementary school. He had come over to play many times, and we had eaten together many times too. At this point, I’ve already grown accustomed to it.
Anyhow, it’s great that someone would listen to me.
I didn’t have many friends, so no one other than Shin could be invited to talk about something like this.

While I was wishing for school to end quicker, I walked to the blackboard to check which seat I was allocated to, and then walked to my seat.

“After school, would you come quicker…”

I wanted to quickly resolve this problem.
I live alone with Karen, so it would be uncomfortable to leave the relationship as it is.
As I fretted over it, half a day zoomed over. When I noticed, the class, although it was actually just a long homeroom, was over. It was finally after school.

“I had a feeling that you have been in a daze since earlier.”

When I noticed, Shin, who had finished packing his bag, came over to my seat.

“Your head was up in the clouds when you were introducing yourself too, everyone that was with us during the first year was worried about you, you know?”
“Self-introduction? Did I do that?”

I didn’t remember even a sliver of it.

“This is very serious…”
He shrugged his shoulders in amazement.

“Well, anyway, let’s go.”
“Ah, un.”

I grabbed my bag, stood up, and then walked together with Shin to my place.

I think this would be a good time to explain my relationship with Shin a little.
He was a childhood friend from when we were in elementary school. It’s exactly as I said earlier. However, there’s something more to it.
Shin was in the same profession as me. In other words, he was also a hero.

His hero alias is “Crimson Flare.” He has an attractive face and figure, and for a young hero, his power left no want. He is a hero who enjoyed popularity from a broad range of demographics, namely from middle school students, high school students, and ladies.

Moreover, he wasn’t popular only with the general public, but also with people of the same profession. He is the opposite of me, who usually operates solo. Sometimes, I fight with Shin, but if I were to put it the other way around, I never fought beside anyone other than Shin. That’s why I considered him to be really important.

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Considering those facts, it’s the truth that he is more popular and well-liked than Black Rose. At one point, he was featured on the cover of a hero-related magazine.
Anyway, Shin was a colleague of mine, and the only person who knew about my secret by accident.
And that’s the reason why Shin can be invited to talk about matters related to Black Rose.

“So? Why would she hate you?”

On our way home, Shin asked me casually. Realizing that Shin hadn’t caught on to the gravity of the situation, I reminded myself of how reliable he had been, but I was also starting to have second thoughts.

“I can’t talk here. We don’t know if anyone is listening around here.”
“I see, so it is about that.”

After a brief exchange, Shin understood that it was about Black Rose.

After that, Shin didn’t inquire further into the fight(?) that I had, but instead started chatting about silly things. It must be this kind of concern that privacy has been gaining traction in society.
As we talked about silly things on the way, we finally arrived at my currently uncomfortable home.
I tried unlocking the door, but it wasn’t locked and opened effortlessly. It appeared that Karen had gotten home first.

“I’m home.”
“Thank you for the invitation.”
“Eh?”
“What’s wrong?”

We walked into the entryway. There, I noticed that there was another pair of shoes that wasn’t usually there.
The shoes looked new and unfamiliar, and the other pair of shoes beside them were Karen’s. So, whose shoes could it be?

“There are two pairs of shoes…”
“Has Karen-chan invited a friend over?”
“…maybe.”

Karen wasn’t the kind to invite anyone home. I didn’t know why she invited someone, but Karen had never invited someone as far as I know.
In other words… she really was that uncomfortable with the idea of being here with only me in the house…

“Hey hey, why are you beating yourself up? It’s fine to wonder, but let’s stop making misunderstandings, shall we? It will only make the resolution more tricky.”
“Nnn…”

I heeded Shin’s warning and stopped thinking.
He’s right. As long as we didn’t know the real reason, my every conjecture was only my imagination.

We took off our shoes and headed to the living room. Anyhow, we would start off with lunch. This is a very good time for it.
We were heading for the living room. Shin was following my lead behind me with familiar steps.
When I opened the door, there was Karen and a girl I didn’t recognize—

“—!?”

—Actually, I did know her. To be more precise, I recognized her. Although I was Black Rose back then, but we meet again regardless.

“I, I’m home.”
“Hello, sorry for the intrusion! Karen-chan, long time no see~.”

While my heart was being squished to death, I adorned my usual expression.
When we approached the two, Karen lost her vigor, but the other girl greeted us full of liveliness.

“…welcome home. Shin-san, welcome.”
“Sorry for the intrusion! You two, nice to meet you! I’m Amasaki Sakura.”
“Thank you… I’m Kisaragi Kurona.”
“Thank you. We meet for the first time, I’m Izumi Shin. Nice to meet you.”

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She was a girl with chestnut-colored hair and a pretty face. I remembered both her face and figure. I can’t forget her cute face, and considering the impressionable way we met for the first time yesterday, I didn’t think I would be forgetting her anytime soon.
Yes, she was the girl that Black Rose saved yesterday.
Now, I wonder how this had happened. I need to be extra careful not to let my cover be blown.

“…Ah, right. I’m going to cook lunch. Shin, please sit down and wait.”
“Affirmative.”
“Umm, Amasaki-san, would you like to eat too?”
“I invited her over with that in mind in the first place.”
“That’s right, that’s right.”
“Alright. Then, please wait a moment.”

Before I started cooking, I went back to my room first. I needed to change before I cook.
I quickly changed and headed back down the stairs.
After I returned to the living room, the three of them chatted peacefully.
The sight of three charming people chatting together… it’s so picturesque…

While I was daydreaming like that, I headed to the kitchen.
I was cooking for four, and it wouldn’t be nice to keep them waiting, so I wondered if I should whip up something simple instead?
While I was consulting with my mental cookbook, I started taking out ingredients from the refrigerator to start my preparation.

Today’s menu would be yakiudon.2 It is a simple dish that you make by chopping the ingredients, then frying them, and then you mix it with frozen udon that you thawed on the stove.

It is easy and delicious, so I was confident with it.
Quickly cooking for 20 minutes, I brought out two plates of fried udon.

“Shin, there are still two more plates in the kitchen, please help me carry them.”
“N, okay.”

I asked Shin for help, and he cut his chat short and went to help.

“Alright, thanks for waiting. It’s just something simple though, so can you not mind it?”
“O, of course! I won’t ever think of that!”

Amasaki-san flusteredly waved her hand in denial. Her reaction was the exact opposite of Karen’s, so it was a fresh sight.

“Heave-ho, thanks for waiting~.”

Shin brought the other two plates out. Everyone’s share was now on the table.

“In that case, thank you for the meal.”
“””Thank you for the meal.”””

After I clasped my hands and said my gratitude, the other three followed in unison. I wasn’t even taking the lead, it’s a little embarrassing…
I brought a bite of the yakiudon to my mouth to distract myself from the embarrassment.

“Continuing our earlier topic, since when do you two know each other?”
Shin continued chatting with them as he ate his udon.

“It was during the first year of middle school.”
“We just happened to sit beside each other. And so, as we chatted together, we got close!”
“I see. However, both of you seem to be the exact opposite of each other.”
“Maybe it is because we are the exact opposite. It never gets boring around Sakura after all.”
“I also feel calm when I’m together with Karen-chan!”
“Haha, you two get along great.”

Both of them looked bashfully at each other while smiling. Shin was smiling, looking pleased by the sight in front of him.

“Speaking of getting along great, I can say that about you two, you know? Since when do you two know each other?”
“We have known each other since elementary school. We have an inseparable relationship.”
“It is what they also call childhood friend.”
“Stu~pid! I will never acknowledge anyone other than a beauty to be my childhood friend!”
“What kind of reason is that…”

As I was about to object to Shin’s reasoning, a thought struck me, and curious voices involuntarily escaped. The others noticed my reaction and exchanged subtle glances.

“Hold on a second! Thinking about it, Kurona isn’t really my childhood friend, is he?”
“Wa, wawawawawa!!”

Shin began to blurt out something he shouldn’t, prompting me to quickly cover his mouth with my hands.
How could he be so careless! His slip-up hinted at my secret identity as Black Rose. Even if they hadn’t made the connection yet, it certainly looked like I was hiding something important!

I loaded those accusations into my glare at Shin.
Shin noticed the glare and the accompanying message, and he returned the gaze with an apology attached.
If he understood, then that’s the end of it. Don’t carelessly blurt something out again…

I let go of Shin’s mouth.

“As I thought, we have an inseparable relationship. Yes.”
“That’s right, that’s right.”

After our exchange, the other two tilted their heads slightly to one side, looking slightly puzzled. Well, only both of us knew anything about the topic, so I can’t say that I had a choice. I feel sorry for leaving them out of it, but if they don’t understand what happened just now, then it would be extremely convenient for me.

I continued eating my yakiudon as if nothing had happened. Shin also followed suit.

“I wonder what happened just now?”
“Big brother’s face is like a girl’s, so maybe…”
“Ah, I see.”

Somehow, an undesirable conversation was taking place in front of me, but they were moving away from the truth, so it’s okay.

“By the way, Sakura. Didn’t you say you wanted to talk about something?”
“Ah, that’s right! You two, please hear me out too! I just had a bone-chilling experience!”
“Hee, what kind?”
“For some reason, Black Rose saved me!”
“Uhuk, uhuk!”

I unwittingly reacted to the mention of Black Rose.

“Eh, are, are you okay?”
“S, sorry. I’m fine… I just choked a little…”
“His bad side sometimes comes out when he is eating. Please don’t worry about it and continue.”

Shin covered for me like that, and no more questions followed.
…covering for me is okay, but can’t you find another excuse…?

“Ah, okay. Um, yesterday before the entrance ceremony, I overslept, so I ran to school in a hurry.”

I see, so that’s why she was there when I was headed to school myself. She was solely focused on getting there on time; she forgot that new students were supposed to arrive earlier.

“And so, in a stroke of bad luck, I encountered a Phantom, but Black Rose gallantly saved me! The words that Black Rose said to me were so cool! She protected me behind her back, a little apart! I thought we wouldn’t be separated for life, but I didn’t want to trouble Black Rose further, so I readied myself to let her go with a pained heart! However, but! After she beat the Phantom, Black Rose patted me!! ‘It was scary, wasn’t it, it’s fine now,’ she said!! I felt like I was prepared to ascend to heaven then, but she then carried me like a princess and carried me to school—”

Her eyes were twinkling and sparkling; she spoke very fast and very forcefully without stopping and without conscience about it. She explained what she had felt when I carried her like a princess in detail.

Karen looked as if it was a regular occurrence, while Shin glanced at me, looking a little astonished that I went that far. As for me, being the subject of the topic, my face must have been as red as a tomato.

Who would have thought that someone would be talking this happily about something that I did? Anyone who isn’t shy would be boastful after this. Of course, I was neither shy nor proud. I was still a minor, so I had no resistance to this much praise. My face was turning as red as a tomato from all my shyness.

To keep my cover from being blown, I lay face down on the table while listening to Amasaki-san’s speech.

“—after that, I arrived at school on time, but I didn’t care about the ceremony anymore. I just wanted to hang out together with her, get some tea together or something.”

When she said “didn’t care about the ceremony,” Karen clearly reacted to those words. Amasaki-san didn’t notice it, but Shin’s sharp eyes did. He then stole a glance at me.

“However, Black Rose brought me all the way after all, so I thought I must attend. But, something unthinkable happened then! You see, you see, Black Rose attended the entrance ceremony!”

The moment those words came out, Shin then stared at me.
Uuu, I know. I will explain it all in detail later…

However, the clever Shin must have figured out everything even without me explaining the details. Still, I will tell him about my part of the story and how I’m feeling about it afterward.
Amasaki-san, who still hadn’t noticed Shin’s peculiar expression, continued talking fervently.

“Aah, I’m very moved…! A once-in-a-lifetime memory happened during the entrance ceremony! The person who greeted us from the podium was very awe-inspiring…! As expected of Black Rose! Ah, but I’m jealous of the school principal and Nasato-sensei who took two shots with her! I would have gotten one too!”
“Eh, how did you kno….”

I spoke up without thinking. That was at the principal’s office. Amasaki-san shouldn’t have known what had happened in there. Hence, I wanted to know how Amasaki-san learned of it.

“Eh? The principal and Nasato-sensei uploaded the photos on social media.”
“Eh?”
“…Ah, she’s right.”

Shin nodded as he was looking at his smartphone’s screen. I peeked at the screen.

“Wh—, it’s really true…”

In the photo displayed, there was Black Rose, who was smiling sweetly, and the principal, who looked love-struck and had a lewd look on his face.

“And this is Ayame-sensei’s.”

After she said that, Shin operated his phone, and this time, Black Rose was standing a lot closer to Ayame-sensei compared to the previous photo with the principal. She was also smiling sloppily. It was the same smile as the one worn by the principal, really unimaginable.
I mean, Ayame-sensei has the nicest smile I have ever seen, you know!? It’s the best smile you can find in the whole school! This is truly unexpected…

“It’s unfair! I also want to take a two-shot with her! I will definitely get a two-shot with her the next time we meet!”

Amasaki-san huffed angrily, but the feeling wasn’t mutual.
That’s because the photos were spreading very rapidly, and they had also gotten a lot of comments.

“Ooh… it has gotten a lot of views…”
“It’s as you said! It’s Black Rose, you know!? She has no media exposure at all, only a few photos taken here and there, but that mysterious beauty coupled with her popularity will put her in the same league as any top idol! We met thanks to good fortune, but I missed getting a two-shot, something that no one else had gotten yet, you know! She is just as hard to catch as a tsuchinoko at this rate!”

Sorry. It must be a compliment, but I wasn’t happy with that comparison3.
Never mind that! Eh, is Black Rose really that famous!?
I glanced at Shin to confirm this statement. Shin received my glance, and then nodded at me.

“Don’t you know? Black Rose is really famous, you know?”
“From our little friends to the big friends, Black Rose has a wide variety of fans!”
“I, I see…”

This is the first time I have heard of it. The fact that Black Rose is this famous… that aside, doesn’t that mean that the likelihood of my cover being blown is actually higher!? It is guaranteed that anyone who learned that Black Rose, that beautiful girl, is actually a boy who is a sore sight to the eyes, would be hurt. It would destroy many dreams too while at it. The stakes are higher than ever, my identity must be kept a secret…!

…But wait? If you think for a moment, Amasaki-san is a Black Rose fan, and Shin also knows about Black Rose’s real identity, right? In other words, Amasaki-san is over-infatuated with Black Rose, and Shin is cheering me up, right?
That’s right. It can’t be wrong. Shin is both considerate and kind, Amasaki-san is like an enthusiast fan, so they might just want to give Black Rose more exposure.

Geez, so that’s the deal. Okay, okay.

“You made another creative interpretation again…”
“Hm? About what?”
“Never mind…”

Shin sighed after looking at me.
Mm, how rude4.

“Actually, I’m also a fan of Black Rose!”
I could see that already.

“I would even call her ‘big sister’!”
Please pardon me from that at least!
I almost blurted out my thought, so I desperately kept my mouth shut.

“On that note, let’s end this Black Rose talk. Do you guys have anything more interesting to chat about?”
“Eh, why?”
“Nn.”

Shin subtly gestured with his jaw. There was Karen, wearing a terribly sour look.
Ah… I had completely forgotten about her…
W,w,w,what should I do!? She was only in a bad mood earlier, but now she’s completely soured!
I looked at Shin, begging for salvation.

“Eh, Karen-chan, what’s wrong?”
Before either of us could react, Amasaki-san pulled ahead and called out to Karen.

“Nothing. I’m definitely not holding a grudge against that certain someone who didn’t come to the entrance ceremony.”
“Hmm~? What’s up?”
“It’s nothing.”

Karen turned away in a huff. She was probably still upset.

“Hmm? Karen-chan is acting strange.”
However, Amasaki-san complained instead, probably not noticing her sour mood.

“Uh, everyone has eaten their fill, so we’ll be going first.”
Shin suddenly said that and brought his dishes to the kitchen.
He was probably beckoning me to my room to hear what I have to say.

“Uh, okay!”
I hastily played along with Shin and brought my dishes to the sink.

“Ah, both of you, don’t forget to put the dishes in the sink. I’ll wash them later.”
“Ah, yes! That was a delicious meal!”
“…n.”

Amasaki-san bowed her head deeply, engagingly, while Karen gave only a curt response and nod.
I felt sad at her response, but you reap what you sow.
We walked out of the living room and headed to my room.
After we got to my room, I sat on the bed, and Shin plopped down on it.

“So, can you get me up to speed? Why didn’t you come to the entrance ceremony?”

“About that—”

I explained yesterday’s events from the beginning. How I saved Amasaki-san, brought her to school, how Ayame-sensei requested me to participate in the entrance ceremony, and how there was no time to undo the transformation and come back. As a result, Kisaragi Kurona was absent, and Black Rose was the one who participated in the ceremony.

After I finished explaining, Shin sighed a very deep, “HAAA”.

“…I’ll be straight with you. It was a stroke of bad luck… You can’t ignore people in need, and you were pressed for time, but… you can’t explain that to Karen-chan either…” Shin was deep in thought, oscillating “Hmm…”
“What should I do?”
“This is difficult… usually, you find who was at fault and get that person to apologize, but this time, no one was in the wrong…”

His words reassured me. Phew, I wasn’t in the wrong after all.

I didn’t think that I had done anything wrong. If I hadn’t saved her, Karen’s friend would have lost her emotions. If that happened, Karen would be sorrowful. Objectively thinking, Karen, who is actually kind, would have her heart broken and cry when she saw her emotionless friend.

In conclusion, in hindsight, my actions were in Karen’s best interest.
However, because I saved Amasaki-san, I couldn’t participate in Karen’s entrance ceremony this time, and Karen was angered by it.
In other words, it’s a case of the Hedgehog’s Dilemma.
It describes a situation where a group of hedgehogs seeks to move close to one another to share heat during cold weather. They must remain apart, however, as they cannot avoid hurting one another with their sharp spines.

If I helped Amasaki-san, I wouldn’t be able to participate in the ceremony. If I opted to participate in the ceremony instead, I wouldn’t be able to save Amasaki-san, and Karen would be upset.
Either way, Karen would get the short end of the stick.

“Well, let’s not dwell on what had happened. Right now, we need to figure out how to make up with Karen-chan.”
“What should I do?”
“Just rely on others from the start, why don’t you…”
“Uuu…”

Shin commented, amazed.
I mean, there was no other choice. I have never tried to flatter a girl…

“Well, that’s okay. Hmm, but even if you ask, I can’t figure it out.”
“That’s unusual. Shin, you’re popular with girls; I would have thought you’d have it figured out.”
“It’s the other way around. It wasn’t me who was humoring them, it was them who were humoring me.”

I see. So, Shin was the one being served. Damn this pimp!

“Then, what should I do?”
“…I don’t know if this will work or not, but you might need to ask for her help.”
“Her?”
“I’m talking about Midori.”

The moment that name was mentioned, I understood the implication, and color drained from my face.

“N-no Midori! No, no, definitely not!”
“Then just in case, do you have anyone else to ask for help?”
“Uh, that…”

He had a point. My circle of friends is small, and the friends I can ask for help are numerically limited. If you filter them with the condition that they have to understand girls, the number is restrictively few. Actually, there’s no one else other than Midori.

“Besides, you want to make up with Karen-chan, right? In that case, just suck it up.”
“U, uuuuuuuu~~”

As he said, if I wanted to make up with Karen, then I had to bear with it a little.

“I, I get it. I will ask Midori tomorrow.”
“Okay.”
“B, but! Shin, you will come with me!”
“Well, I guess it would be heartless of me to let you go alone to meet that person.”

I was reassured by Shin’s promise.
Midori isn’t a bad kid, but I also can’t handle her.
Anyway, it seems there’s no avoiding meeting with Midori.
I sighed a little to expel some of my depression out of my chest.



 

Footnotes:

  1. Two-shot is when a pair are taking a picture together. I can simply write “take pictures in pair”, but this is the second time I saw this term, so I don’t think it is that rare, and decided to educate the reader on it instead.
  2. Yakiudon is fried udon. Yakisoba don’t usually get translated, so by that reasoning, yakiudon shouldn’t be too. It is not commonly known? Yeah, nothing is commonly known from the get-go.
  3. You only need to know that tsuchinoko is a legendary animal, and it look like a flatworm.
  4. Editor: Well, someone’s in denial.
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Your Gateway to Gender Bender Novels