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Author Topic: Discord (Keyakizaka OS) Her Name is Spelled with Love <BeriMona> [Feb. 14, 2019]  (Read 6175 times)

Offline Shinoki

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Having previously lumped one shots together in one thread with Eccentric (ongoing fic), after taking a poll, I've decided to separate the one shots I write from now on into a separate thread.

Eccentric can be read here with the older one shots.
You can also read these one shots on Wattpad here.

Discord: Table of Contents
A collection of Keyakizaka46 OS

An Afternoon and Bread (PeNaako)*
Waiting (Yuichanzu) + Chinese Cultivation Parody Teaser (TechiNeru) **
Time Runs Out (MonaRisa) + Keyaki Hogwarts (YuukaNen) + War in the Future (TechiMemi)
Steal Your Heart (MonaRisa) + Office Life (DaniMon) + "Are you well?" (Yuichanzu)**
I am Yours, You are Mine (TechiNeru)***
Chasing After Someone (Yuichanzu) +Skirt (Yuichanzu)**
Stabbing with Chopsticks and Love Sickness (TechiPe)
Home (Techi-centric)
Floating Away (YuzuMiko - Zankyaku) + Your Time (MonaRisa)
Seasons (OdaPon)
Bamboo Cutter (YuukaNen)
Coffee Courage Plus (OzeRisa)

*contained in a post that also has Eccentric chapter updates. Scroll down to find the one shot.
**two or more one shots contained in the same post
***can't find the jphip post, so I've linked to wattpad.

TIP: using the title of the one shot, ctrl-f to find and search. (My apologies for making it difficult to go back and find these OS)

Thank You at Sunrise
Too Many Touches to the Side (Yuichanzu)
Meaningless Meaning of (MonaRisa)
Just a Little Bit Today (TechiMemi)
Her Name is Spelled with Love (BeriMona)
« Last Edit: February 15, 2019, 03:26:10 AM by Shinoki »

Offline Shinoki

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Discord (Keyakizaka OS Collection): Thank You at Sunrise
« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2018, 12:46:20 AM »

Thank You at Sunrise

The stars disappeared in the dark, cloudless sky. Stumbling about blindly, she tripped in the field of flowers. Soft, the texture of sunflower petals, she could feel them gently fluttering around, touching her fingers under the warmth of a summer night.

If she opened her eyes, she would see only black. If she closed her eyes, she would see memories of the sun.

So she closed her eyes. Not a question of how long she would wait nor a question of her unwillingness to stop waiting, she asked herself why her world’s light had stopped letting her wait—although she could fully understand.

At that time, the sky was crying for the future. Like finding an angel descended from above, she met a short girl waiting at the station. In a blur, her angel had taken her hand, glancing out of a shy corner of the eyes, and brought her into the light.

She tripped in the beginning, catching her breath at each step. They were running without a care in the world.

Before she knew it, she had started laughing, smiling, and joking. The hand that held her hand, she promised to never let go of it, but it let go of her for a moment instead. So she waited, even if it took an eternity, those few months an eon that extended too long, because she waited for the warmth of her sun.

The smile, the voice, the laughter and energy, of the person she had inadvertently fallen in love with filled her chest.

Her angel returned at the end of summer. For some reason, the smile was lacking, weak and afraid, but they took each other’s hands, and this time, she who had been waiting stepped forward to pull the sun ahead.

Simply because she loved the girl.

Simply because they still had dreams to fulfill, sights to see, moments to cherish together.

However slow they walked, however many stops they made, she was sure that they would share their future. But then, they halted in their steps, and the girl she had fallen in love with slowly untangled their fingers, caressing her cheek and saying to move on ahead first with a gentle push.

She who had fallen in love with the sun tripped forward. Looking back, she only saw her angel’s back. Her hand felt cold, and she could no longer hear the sun’s voice.

Chasing back, reluctantly feeling the time pass, she found the space between them grow more and more. Even as she cried out without a voice to ask what bothered that small girl, their words could not reach each other. And she grasped her heart in misery.

The dream in front of her eyes cracked into a million shards of glass.

She kept her eyes closed because she wanted to keep dreaming. She felt the soft brush of warm fingers wipe away the tears that had leaked from her closed eyes and the gentle breathing of the sun.

She denied the words that she heard, the words that she read, the words that had spread—of goodbyes that didn’t involve herself and her other half together.

The warmth escaped. Her eyes snapped open, her hands extended to stop and grab onto the sun, but she saw nothing and felt only the starting drizzle of a summer rain.

There was the glow of daybreak.

Her heart was still heavy, but bit by bit, she felt it lighten. By the words of the sun who said she loved Yuichanzu, by the dreams and burdens of an angel filled with smiles, and the future that could still change. She looked toward the faraway light.

With a small voice, she said, “See you again,” and stood to walk forward while remembering the one who held her hand.

Offline Shinoki

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I won't stop writing Yuichanzu even after Zuumin becomes a solo talent. A Yuichanzu short about the two meaninglessly flirting on the rooftop.

Too Many Touches to the Side

Without telling anyone, they had started dating a few months ago. Having been friends since childhood, Kobayashi Yui and Imaizumi Yui had realized their feelings for each other, fumbled around, and confessed to each other at the same time. The pair, nicknamed Yuipon and Zuumin, together called Yuichanzu, continued their normal pattern of life.

Little by little, they progressed their relationship. They had passed the hurdle of holding hands even before they started dating, but they had reached the level of kissing and light touching.

On the empty roof together during lunch break, they were chatting and standing at the fence, looking down at their school grounds. There was a soft blanket set out on the ground with bento boxes, but they had already finished eating and set the closed boxes to the side.

Their fingers were gripping the fence as if they needed something to do. Yuipon could feel Zuumin’s warmth beside her, the two girls standing closely next to each other.

The shorter girl, Zuumin, pointed down to a group of boys on the field, “Oh, isn’t that the soccer club?”

Yuipon nodded, “They’re practicing hard right now.”

“They’re pretty cool, aren’t they?”

“Are they?” Yuipon responded, feeling a little bit of jealousy.

Smiling brightly, Zuumin giggled and leaned her head on Yuipon’s shoulder, “Well, the person I like isn’t in a club though.”

Yuipon blushed, having realized that Zuumin had seen right through her. Her heart picked up pace with her girlfriend so close, and suddenly, her mind focused on Zuumin’s smell. It was a smell that she loved.

Zuumin lifted up her head clueless to Yuipon’s thoughts and suddenly pointed upward to a round fluff of white in the blue sky, “Ah, Yuipon, look!”

“What is it?” Yuipon’s eyes followed Zuumin’s finger. The taller girl twitching a little when she felt Zuumin’s hand on the fence suddenly on top of her own.

“Doesn’t that cloud look like Pe-chan’s Aoko?”

“It looks like Pe’s bread more, right?”

Zuumin laughed, “Hahaha, maybe it’s a bread Aoko.”

“In the first place, it’s a cloud bread Aoko, isn’t it?” Yuipon giggled as well.

“Maybe you’re right.” Nodding sagely as if Yuipon’s words were something deep, Zuumin spun off the fence and hugged Yuipon, burying her face in Yuipon’s nape. “A cloud bread Aoko sounds nice.”

“A-Ah… Yea.” Yuipon could physically feel her face reddening. She gulped and tightened her grip on the fence a little bit to calm down.

“Yuipon is really comfortable. Can I just sleep like this?”

“Go ahead.” Yuipon nodded.

However, her inner devil Kobayashi was screaming, “Do you know what this does to our heart!? Just push her down already,” while her inner angel Kobayashi closed her eyes and spoke with a shaky voice, “Keep calm. Keep calm. Keep calm. Keep calm.”

Zuumin tightened her grip around Yuipon’s waist. Hugging tightly, nuzzling Yuipon’s neck, with a murmur of thanks, she took a short nap.

Yuipon’s heart panicked, racing at the close proximity of her girlfriend. No matter how many times they kissed or flirted, she always fell in love with the girl named Imaizumi Yui over and and over again. It was because she was too deep in that she needed to control herself.

As Yuipon took a deep breath, she suddenly felt a kiss on her neck. Her breath hitched for a moment.

Zuumin mumbled with a yawn, “As expected, I can’t fall asleep right now.”

“It’s midday after all.” Attempting to keep her cool, Yuipon responded.

Casually, Zuumin asked, “Yuipon, can I leave a mark?” The shorter girl softly kissed the nape of Yuipon’s neck again and sucked on her girlfriend’s smooth skin.

“Eh? -” Yuipon unintentionally let out a voice. She covered her mouth in embarrassment and looked at Zuumin, flustered.

Zuumin glanced up at Yuipon and said, “I want to kiss Yuipon.”

Yuipon managed to stutter out in reply to the tempo of her heart, “We’re at school right now.” Her cheeks felt very warm. Without doubt, she was extremely weak to the bright existence called Imaizumi Yui.

“If you say that with such a cute expression, I won’t be able to hold myself back.” Zuumin pouted, “I can’t kiss you?”

Just like that, Zuumin conquered Yuipon’s heart. Zuumin had always had Yuipon’s heart. Though it was embarrassing for her to say to words of affirmation, the taller girl responded positively.

Later in the classroom…

“Are their lips a bit red?”

“Ah… that mark on Yuipon’s neck. Zumiko sure is bold. Risa, how ab-”



“My parents are home today anyways, Manaka.”

Offline Shinoki

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Discord (Keyakizaka OS) Meaningless Meaning of <MonaRisa> [Oct. 31, 2018]
« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2018, 12:13:40 AM »
I'm alive once more! Happy Halloween. I hope I can update Eccentric soon too. But for now, a pair of melancholic one shots. The first is a MonaRisa story. The second is a TechiMemi story.

Meaningless Meaning of

She had once pondered to herself on a rainy day that the word for breaking up was the same word for farewell. The verb meant the same as losing, bereaving. Perhaps she thought those things about the marks of ink on paper that meant nothing except to those who understood them because she was sitting in class, the droning of the teacher entering in one ear and out the other like the sound of the rain.

Perhaps it was because she had yet to realize the meaning of the word to herself.

Shida Manaka couldn’t have been more familiar with the patterns, the expressions, the words that came with goodbye. Because she never fell in love before, that was probably why she broke up so many times.

Laughing cheerfully, doing as she pleased like a cat, she didn’t know why, but her yearmates, her underclassmen, even her upperclassmen, they had come up to her with slightly pink cheeks and asked to go out with her. The first time so long ago, her heart raced from nervousness. The second time, she felt confused. By the third time, she started to lose track of count.

They fell in love by themselves. She was too gentle to reject them truly despite the ease of saying unruly sounding words. Thus, they went out.

Yet, she didn’t love them. She didn’t like them. She felt as if each touch, each kiss, each whisper of love was a lie, but she played along because she hated to disappoint their lovestruck eyes. Although she didn’t know who they were looking at.

She never broke up with them. They always broke up with her.

Crying selfishly as if they had been the ones hurt, they threw out biting words and slaps to the face as if someone like her couldn’t be hurt. With their girlish tears running down their face, or maybe their self-righteous glares, or even maybe a pitiful puppy look, they walked away. And life continued, the flippant and cool Manaka and the rest of the world.

Because it was her fault that she accepted their confessions, she accepted their words as well. She did well playing the male role in a slapstick love comedy.

Manaka had never fallen in love before. Somehow, she didn’t expect that she would fall in love.

Watanabe Risa, that was a person who Manaka had known since forever, childhood friends to put simply. Risa was always by Manaka’s side after a break up. The first few times, Manaka had cried, and the cool Watanabe had gently consoled her player friend. Afterwards, they just hung out normally and chatted, Risa sometimes helping hold something cool on the bruising smack to the face that Manaka received.

If Manaka was the school’s popular player prince, then Risa was the cool knight who had never dated before.

“I’d say this to the person I like.” Risa had said once before with a soft smile to Manaka, “I like you. Please go out with me.”

It was a radiant expression that Manaka hadn’t seen before when the two had guffawed like hyenas over stupid things. For a moment, Manaka’s heart had hurt, and she was jealous of the person that Risa would confess to. Only for a moment, she felt that way before she made up her mind that she would support Risa’s love.

“That’s simple, isn’t it?” Manaka had replied, explaining the intricacies of confessions that she had received before.

Risa had never dated because she had someone she liked.

Manaka decided that she would help Risa. Even if Risa wanted to practice confessions on her, she was fine because Risa was someone precious to Manaka, a friend who had become a little bit more and was always by her side.

Perhaps she was afraid. That was why she had pretended ignorance to the emotions in Risa’s eyes. Manaka shrank away from the idea of possibly breaking up with Risa. She didn’t want to lose the person always by her side.

Everything was still thrown into disarray by a kiss.

Her soft lips parting from Manaka’s lips, Risa’s mouth curved up into a smile. Her eyes looked anxious. Yet, Risa said the words that she had always been telling Manaka, “Like I said, I love you.”

Manaka’s breath hitched. She stared into her partner’s eyes. Perhaps her own ears were flushing red a little.

“Not going to give an answer immediately like always?” Risa joked when Manaka failed to do her usual careless acceptance of confession.

“I…” Manaka’s tongue was caught in her throat. She couldn’t respond.

“That expression on your face is really difficult, you know? You should reject me if you don’t have the same feelings. I won’t be hurt. I don’t want you to treat me the same as those other girls.”

“Risa, I…”

“You can tell me the answer tomorrow, Manaka.”

The next day came, but Manaka couldn’t get the words out of her mouth. The next day after, she was confessed to by another girl who she rejected for the first time. The day after that, she made up her resolve to properly respond, tomorrow she said.

Tomorrow never came.

She wondered to herself on yet another rainy day that the word for breaking up was the same as farewell. The verb meant the same as losing, bereaving, saying goodbye to a precious loved one. For herself who had only just fallen in love, she wanted to ask why she could suddenly understand the pain of the ink on paper when she hadn’t broken up with the girl she loved.

The sound of tears mixed with the rain. Perhaps the rain mixed with the sound of the funeral. Perhaps the rain was just her own tears that wouldn’t stop; she had fallen in love with Risa since long ago.

Offline Shinoki

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Discord (Keyakizaka OS): Just a Little Bit Today <TechiMemi> [Oct. 31, 2018]
« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2018, 12:14:20 AM »

Just a Little Bit Today

Twirling a flower about in her hands, Hirate Yurina sat at her dining room table alone. The short haired girl had already changed into her school uniform, but she didn’t feel like going to school today. Her apartment was lonely.

After all, this was the month anniversary of Neru’s death. Neru, who had always been by her side, who she had selfishly fallen for, who she had confessed to too late, had gone ahead too early.

Just like that, Neru had gotten into an accident. Just like that, the stem of the flower in Yurina’s hands bent irreparably.

Ding. Dong. Yurina dropped the flower in her hands. She wondered who would be bothering her right now with the chime of the doorbell. Yet, for an odd reason, she got up from her seat and walked to the door. Not peering through the peephole, she opened the door.

Yurina found a girl wearing the same school uniform in front of her. The stranger had her hair tied in cute pigtails and appeared at a loss for words, fidgeting.

Suddenly, that stranger’s aura changed to one oddly familiar, and that stranger said, “Techi, it’s me, Neru.”

An ugly feeling filled Yurina’s heart. “Leave me out of your pranks.” She coldly replied to ‘Neru,’ starting to close the door.

“Wait!” Yet, ‘Neru’ called out, flustered, with the same gesture that Neru would always do when troubled. She tried to convince the short haired girl, “I’d told you about the ghosts I kept seeing.”

That was right. Yurina pursed her lips. Neru had some sort of spirit sense, and the short haired girl had been the first one let in on that secret. In truth, Neru had often talked about a youkai girl by the name of Risa who Yurina could never see. A flood of memories started leaking past the dam Yurina had painstakingly built in her heart.

“All of Neru’s friends know about that sort of thing.” Yurina still responded.

Neru tried again, “On the day we met, you had been hiding under the slide in the park during a game of hide and seek.”


“On the day of the accident, you had me deal with a spider in the bathroom, ate pancakes for breakfast since it was my turn to cook, and-”


“Confessed your feelings to me.”

Yurina’s breath hitched at that regretful look on Neru’s face. She couldn’t find the proper words to say, so she just said, “Come inside.”

Sitting in the living room, Yurina listened to Neru explain what happened up until the events of just now. Neru had gotten into a car accident to due a convoluted supernatural incident, but by chance, her soul had failed to move on. She had been lucky or unlucky enough to have found herself anchored to the high school girl beside Yurina.

Silence quickly followed Neru’s explanation.

Neru seemed awkward as well. She took a deep breath as if deciding to wrap up something, and she smiled, “Thank you for the confession.”

Neru leaned forward in that girl’s body and gave Yurina a light kiss on the forehead, her cool hands brushing aside Yurina’s bangs.

Neru’s next words felt ice cold, “But, I can’t accept it anymore.”


“I’ve already died, Techi.”

“But, you’ve come back. Even though it’s like this.”

“This body is Memi-chan’s body. It’s because she was kind enough to lend it to me and because she had took my cowardly self along to here that I could meet you again.”


“I’m sorry.” Neru placed her index finger on Yurina’s mouth, shushing her, “I’m glad I could meet you again.”

“I still love you.”

“I can’t accept your feelings that way.”

Yurina knew that she had lost at that moment, so a bitter sigh escaped her mouth before she knew it. “You were always looking somewhere else, huh.”

“Yea. I guess I was.” Neru sheepishly smiled as if asking for forgiveness. “Please fall in love with someone else, someone better than me.”

The short haired girl reluctantly made a noise of agreement. She felt that Neru’s willfulness hadn’t changed even after death. Jumping as she was broken out of her stupor, Yurina felt Neru’s hand on her cheek, still cold.

“Close your eyes for a second.” Neru murmured.

Yurina closed her eyes. Then, she felt Neru’s arms wrap around her in what felt like a last hug. Warmth, there was a bit of warmth, then the hug started to pull away.

“Neru…” The short haired girl finally opened her eyes.

The stranger who greeted her this time appeared apologetic, softly telling Yurina, “Ah, Neru-san’s gone.”

“I see.”

“She said, ‘Thank you. The last thing I wanted to do was to talk to you again, so this is our last farewell.’” The stranger seemed disgruntled. She hissed to the air, “What? Please say it properly,” before sighing, finding no one there anymore.

“She couldn’t have said to my face.”

“Please don’t get mad at Neru-san.”

“I don’t know how to feel about this.” Yurina shook her head. She wasn’t mad. Running a hand through her hair, the short haired girl choked out a dry laughter. “I’ve finally gotten closure. I guess… it wasn’t my fault that the accident happened? But, somehow, I also got my heart broken all over again.”

The stranger rummaged through her skirt pockets and drew out a handkerchief, extending it to Yurina.

Yurina seemed surprised at the gesture, but she shook her head. She wasn’t crying; even if she felt like she was, she wasn’t crying. “Thank you, but it’s okay.” The short haired girl gazed at the stranger, noticing the differences between her and Neru. “What’s your name?” A question spilled out of her mouth. She wanted to know who this stranger was, why Neru had attached to her.

The stranger responded, “I’m Kakizaki Memi.”

“I’m Hirate Yurina.” Yurina reciprocated.

Ultimately, they skipped school. Exchanging words about the girl who had passed away, Yurina and Memi bought flowers to offer to the dead. Memi, who had only known Neru for a month, and Yurina, who had known Neru for years, found themselves talking about different sides of one person.

They found themselves in a graveyard.

Placing down her flowers and praying for Neru’s next life, Memi said to Yurina, “Neru-san talked about you a lot.”

The short haired girl made a noise of surprise as the conversation turned toward herself for a moment, “Huh?”

“Good things, of course.” Memi stated, almost teasingly. “Like about how kind you are, Yurina-san.”

“She likes to exaggerate.”

“I don’t know about that.”

Yurina then turned the conversation around to Memi, “How did you meet Neru?”

Memi fiddled with her fingers as she responded, “Her ghost accidentally attached to me. No, maybe it’s that I saw her.” She made an unique thinking expression. “Or that she had reached out to me when I was troubled even though she was in more trouble than me.”

The short haired girl nodded, gesturing for Memi to continue.

“How do I put it… Her ghost was how she was after the accident.”

Yurina stiffened at the memory of Neru’s body after the accident. She shook her head, however, to inquire, “What about you?”

“It’s nothing much. I wouldn’t want to trouble you with my situation.”

“It’s no bother. Not when I’m the one troubling you. Here we are, even skipping school.”

“I would have skipped anyways.” Memi said, putting on a weak smile. “I don’t know how to face my classmates after saying something that I shouldn’t have said. A month ago, I caused something bad to happen.”

A month ago was when Neru died. A month ago was when Neru met Memi.

“I can see ghosts, just like Neru-san. Because I revealed it at the wrong moment, I caused my best friend to be injured and scared my classmates. After all, my spiritual sense isn’t the same as just seeing like Neru-san. I end up causing the other world to interfere with ours.” Memi looked down. She didn’t want to meet Yurina’s eyes.

Yurina wondered if what Memi said was strange. The short haired girl had no spiritual sense, and often, she felt sad that she couldn’t see what the person she loved saw. Yet, for Memi to be so desolate and alone over that gift, Yurina felt that there was something wrong with the world.

“Do you not like seeing that other world?” Yurina asked.

“To be honest, not really.” Memi shook her head.

Neru had said something else before. Neru had said that the other world was scary at times, but it was also beautiful. She was just unsure if others would accept it, so she kept it a secret.

“It’s a bloody world?” Yurina mused aloud. Unconsciously, she had started to lead Memi out of the graveyard, remembering that Neru had said ghosts congregated in places of the dead.

“Yes.” Memi affirmed. “But, I’m glad I met Neru-san and you.”

“Yea, me too.” Yurina said the same, tasting the meaning of those words in her mouth.

Suddenly, Memi moved. Pulling Yurina closer to her with her small, warm hands, she pushed out against something unseen. A vengeful-looking ghost appeared for a split second before bursting into nothingness again.

Memi bit her lower lip in frustration. She let go of the short haired girl and gasped, apologizing, “I’m sorry. I got you involved in this sort of thing too...” She felt that she should have left as soon as Neru had gone.

“Don’t apologize.” Yurina took Memi’s hand again. It was still warm, alive.

Memi looked Yurina in the eye hesitantly. Yurina’s hand was warm. “Yurina-san, you’re really a kind person.”

Yurina made a face as if she still disagreed with those words.

What else was there to be said?

They shared a moment of silence before Memi saw someone in the distance who Yurina did not. Memi’s eyes widened in surprise before she murmured under her breath that that person had become a youkai.

Memi turned, almost reluctantly letting go of Yurina’s hand.

Yurina felt Memi detach, and she realized that their moment was perhaps over. The short haired girl noticed where Memi’s eyes had suddenly darted over to, and her mouth dropped open, Yurina unsure what to say.

Thus, Memi knew that Yurina had seen.

“See you later.” Feeling that she had no longer a role here, Memi waved goodbye softly to Yurina. Perhaps she wasn’t expecting a response.

“See you later.” Yet, Yurina still called out. Her eyes were looking at Memi.  “Memi.”

Offline Minami-chan

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Thank you very much for the update!!
Notice your absence very much!
You are welcome!

Offline Shinoki

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@Minami-chan: It seems like forever since I've written an one-shot here. Happy Valentine's Day!

Her Name is Spelled with Love

As the rare snow had fallen oddly late this year, the very middle of February while the school year of their final year as high school students began to come to a close, she decided to make snow angels in the white covered grass. The cold quickly seeped through her clothes. Then she spotted blue in the corner of her eyes. Not the blue of the sky nor the blue of their school uniforms, what she saw was simply the blue of her red string of fate.

Watanabe Rika sat up on the snow, and she met the eyes of her classmate, Shida Manaka, exchanging a series of confused blinks.

Shida Manaka with her dyed hair and consistent blue headphones quirked up an eyebrow, cat-like expression exasperatedly asking what in the world the class oddball aimed to do. Extending a hand, the girl who had yet to remove her headphones silently brushed the snow off of her classmate’s clothes and gestured as if expecting a response.

The ever so awkward Rika held out her dog plushie Karaage with one hand. She found her fingers stiff, reddening. She had lost her one glove, the other hand gloved yet not quite warm either.

The girl with blue headphones appeared to sigh.

Upward, Rika’s world suddenly jerked. Her wrist and arm pulled by her classmate, she stumbled to her feet, hugging that girl with the blue sky for a moment for balance. Warm, she thought, watching a fleeting pink brush against her classmate’s cheeks.

Still without a word, Shida Manaka apologized. She took Rika’s hand. Softly, fingers running down Rika’s thin wrist with a feather like touch, taking Karaage and placing him tightly in Rika’s scarf, Shida Manaka gave Rika the heat from her hand.

Rika wanted to see that person’s eyes. Yet, she found her classmate suddenly turning her face away, walking forward as if hurrying into the school building.

The awkward girl opened her mouth as if to talk to her rebellious classmate. She closed her mouth instead and followed in step. After all, class was starting soon. After all, that hand was warm, and childishly, she wanted to hold onto it forever and forever and forever.

Entering the school building, she found an unusual atmosphere lingering.

She couldn't quite pull the name of the occasion from her head. Karaage squeaked with her physical movement of her head against his body snugly tucked in her scarf, voicing out an equivalence of her soundless confusion.

In a stroke of personal genius, Rika mused to herself that Karaage had just answered her question. This feeling hanging around was the incomprehensible feeling in her own heart as well, and she rather did not need an answer to it at all.

Her eyes followed the dangling blue cord from Shida Manaka’s headphones. Perhaps Rika had slowed down as they walked, but the other girl paused in her steps, looking the awkward girl in the eyes, and nodded. Afterward, the two proceeded more slowly, and that blue string swung along more slowly as well.

By the time they entered the classroom, the bell to start the school day was but one minute to ringing.

Without realizing, Rika had lost her moment with her classmate. Shida Manaka’s hand parted from Rika’s almost reluctantly as the two split for their seats. And, a voice cut right through their sweet silence without a care in the world, greeting Manaka and complaining that she was nearly late.

Still, Shida Manaka refused to take off those headphones. She merely elbowed her sporty, pushy friend and gestured rudely in the direction of the class representative, insinuating a special something on this day, causing that friend of hers to sputter.

Ring. Ring. Ring. Class began.

The formalities of homeroom, the boredom of teachers, those words going in one ear and out the next, Rika fingered with Karaage in her lap as she noticed that today she had missed the early morning gossip. Of course, even despite a murder incident from what seemed like so long ago, she had only missed listening to the gossip, not partaking in it. Now at least, she could feel the warmth of someone else’s hand on hers.

Absentmindedly, Rika looked toward Shida Manaka. Shida Manaka who still had those headphones on in the middle of class did not look toward Rika.

Rika rather liked that bored look on the cool girl’s face. Looking, looking, looking, the awkward Rika only stopped looking for a split second when Manaka adjusted her posture. Rika nearly squeezed Karaage to a squeak.

She continued looking.

Shida Manaka looked back.

Eyes meeting, the two could not break their gazes from each other. Rika slowly lifted Karaage before her face as if hiding the blush that had risen. She saw as pink dusted the other girl’s cheeks and as the other placed her hands over her ears covered by headphones as if hiding reddening ears. Rika’s heart raced.

Finally, they were interrupted by the bell.

Deflating onto her desk, Rika once again glanced toward Shida Manaka. However, now in break time, she could only catch glimpses between the gaps left by the headphone wearing girl’s friends’ bodies. Rika held Karaage in front of her, making him give out a squeak, and telepathically questioned him for advice.

She soon figured out what day today was. From the covert chocolate giving to the outright flirting (Shida Manaka’s shameless friend and the class representative, Rika noted), she had had to be an alien whale shark to not notice the romantic day of the year so kindly situated exactly halfway through February. Like usual, Rika received no chocolates.

Placing her face onto the desk, Rika felt coldness. She promptly fished out her cell phone to do something. She brainstormed her mysterious something.

All the while, blue, a blue string, the instinctive brain of the whale shark spotted a color, and mindlessly she twirled the blue about her pinky and giggled. She seemed to have said words. Karaage sent a mental message to her in that instant that the words left her mouth.

Rika lifted her face. Her eyes widened as they met Shida Manaka.

Shida Manaka who always had those blue headphones on still had those blue headphones on. Flustered, a bit embarrassed, the usually sarcastic, sometimes smug, often cool Shida Manaka looked to be at a loss for words. With her headphones on, surely she would not have heard Rika’s words.

Rika looked down at her pinky finger, at the blue string she had taken, and at the headphones, which from the very start of the day had not been plugged into a music device.

The words that she said, the words that Manaka heard, they were simple yet sincere. From Rika’s heart, Rika said, “I love Shida-san.”

Offline Minami-chan

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Thank you very much for the new update.
I did not want to write immediately, to upload the publication a few days later. It seems that it has not been necessary.

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