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Kisshouin Takateru

My sister has been acting weird.

The other day she went out somewhere, but the moment she came home she stuck to me. My sister always fawns on me, but that night was different. Because she’d been clinging to my arm with her face buried, I couldn’t see her expression. Still, I could tell that she was down. After a while, my clothes felt cold. She was crying. I wanted to find out what happened exactly, but my sister can be surprisingly stubborn. So I pretended that I didn’t notice, and just lent her my arm.

I’d been busier lately, so I didn’t get home as early. Because of that, we had less time together. Even though it was something sad enough to cry about, my sister wouldn’t speak. Maybe she’d been lonely. So I decided at that moment that it might be better to make the time to come home a little earlier. My arm started feeling heavier, and when I turned to look, I found that she had cried herself to sleep. I would have felt bad waking her up, so I went to get a blanket for her, but when I draped it over, her stomach grumbled. She was chewing in her sleep too. …Apparently she was hungry. So I went to prepare food, so that she could eat the moment she woke.



Since that day, for some reason my sister has been really lecturing our father. She casually whispers things in his ears like, “The Heavens see through all” or “Bad news travels quickly” or “Heaven knows, Earth knows, you know and I know”. Well, to be honest, my sister has always treated him like this, and she’ll say stuff like this on occasion, like she suddenly remembers to. But its frequency has been increasing. Even though she says “Otousama. I believe in you, Otousama.” with a serious expression, it seems like she doesn’t at all. And being a father who isn’t trusted at all by his daughter, naturally he feels down. She even came up to me and said, “You’re the only one I can rely on, Oniisama. Please rehabilitate Otousama for me.”

Little Sister… Our father is right behind you…

Apparently in my sister’s mind, our father is an unbelievable villain. I heard him mutter “I wonder if it’s her rebellious phase…” …How pitiful.



But lately, her weird behaviour has taken another strange turn.

She sighs a whole lot, and will suddenly grasp at her chest in pain. A disease!? A spasm!? Or so I thought as I ran over in panic, but she just said something weird like “This is a maiden’s affliction.” I was still worried about whether it actually was some disease, but at dinner she was eating happily as usual, so I figured that she was alright. As for my father, in order to raise her opinion of him, lately he’s been diligently buying all sorts of rare pastries and cakes and fruits for her. And she’s been dilligently eating them all. Well, I’m glad that she’s healthy.



This one time, she whole-heartedly plucked petals. She would pluck at them, and sigh, then pluck at them and sigh again. Only after a number of flowers were left bald did she stop, after one final, big sigh. Then after that, she silently cleaned up the pitiful remains of the flowers. Had she simply been really stressed?



Most recently, it happened while my sister was doing homework. One of her answers were wrong, so to rub it out, I picked up the rubber from her pencil case. And then she screamed “AAAAHHH!” like it was the end of the world. After snatching it in panic from my hand, my sister dropped her shoulders in gloom. Just what was going on with that rubber?

“Oniisama, you’re too much…”

After leaving behind those mysterious words, my sister picked up all her things and left my room. What the? And Little Sister, are you fine with leaving that answer wrong?



“Wasn’t that flower fortune telling?”

I spoke to my friend Imari about her. She consulted him about something quite passionately, when he came over to play the other day. Even when I asked her what it was about, she just replied “Nothing at all”, and wouldn’t reply to me. …No fun at all.

“Flower fortune telling?”

“What, you’ve never heard of it? It’s pretty common, isn’t it? That thing where they go, ‘He loves me. He loves me not.’ as they pick at petals and stuff. Don’t you remember the girls doing it, back when we were kids?”

“Aahh, I think I did hear something like that.”

Flower fortune telling, huh. Seeing my sister rend petals with ghastly vigour, that kind of maidenly idea never came to mind. Rather, I had wondered if she had some sort of grudge against them.

But flower fortune telling, huh. Wasn’t that a love fortune? Love?

“…Imari. What did my sister talk to you about?”

“Eehh, well, nothing big…”


“Ehh~ I mean, I already made a promise with -chan, so…”


“Come on, Takateru, even you have heaps of stuff your sister doesn’t know, right? GUHOH-!”

Silence, fool.

As warning, I gave him a second punch. Even though he started coughing and spluttering, he still wouldn’t talk.

I sighed.

“Professor Kumesuke’s wife. At the Academic Meeting”

“UGEH-! How did you know about that-!?”

“What did my sister talk to you about?”

“…It’s what you suspect.”


“Who is it?”

“I don’t know. I tried asking, but she wouldn’t tell me. Ah-, but she did say something about Romeo.”


Are we still talking about a real person here? Could it be that my sister has an imaginary boyfriend? Considering who we’re talking about, it’s certainly possible. Perhaps my sister has a foreign boyfriend that only she can see.

“Also she started talking about giving handmade cookies as a present, so I told her it would better not to.”


Ah-! I remember! Just a while ago, my sister made my father and I eat cookies. Because of my mother’s diet, she doesn’t eat sweet things at night. The cookies were burnt bitter here and there, but the rest of them were sweet, so perhaps you could say that my sister’s cooking was slowly approaching the average person’s. The cookies on my father’s plate were far more burnt than mine. He asked, “Oh, were these choc chip cookies?” causing my sister to grow sullen. Dad, those cookies might be pitch black, but there’s no chocolate in them at all. They’re plain cookies. My father wordlessly washed them down with his tea.

“So it was that huh.”

“Oh! Do you know something?”

“I guess.”

In order to give cookies to the person you like, you used me as a lab rat, huh. Burnt foods are bad for you, you know. Know our father’s grief.

“Well? What are you going to do?”

“Nothing at all, of course.”

“Oh? I thought you’d try and stop it.”

“As if.”

Well, I will check to see that he isn’t a weirdo though. If somebody was tricking a lady of the Kisshouin house, and planning to do bad things to her, I’d be troubled. As long as that isn’t the case, I’m fine with anything.

“After all…”

I can’t even imagine that absurd little sister actually succeeding in her romance. To begin with, I’m not even sure he’s real. Hmm, she mentioned before that she wanted to see the zoo in Hokkaido. Once it’s done, I’ll take her there.

But Little Sister, if you really have fallen in love, maybe you should hold back on our father’s tributes. After all, your face is getting a little round.

“The Heavens see through all” or “Bad news travels quickly” or “Heaven knows, Earth knows, you know and I know”. All of these are Japanese sayings.

The first(天網恢恢疎にして漏らさず) is literally, “Heaven has large meshes, but nothing escapes.” and comes from Lao Zi’s 「天網恢恢,疏而不失」.

The second(悪事千里を走る) is literally, “News of misdeeds spread across a thousand li.” and comes from the Beimeng Suoyan’s “Good deeds do not go beyond the door, evil deeds spread a thousand miles” or in Chinese, 「好事不出門,壞事傳千里」.

The third(天知る、地知る、我知る、人知る) is literally, “The Heavens know, the Earth knows, I know, and you know.” actually comes from a quote from an Eastern Han official by the name of Yang Zhen(楊震). When a man named Wang Mi visited Yang Zhen at night and attempted to bribe him 10 catties of gold, Yang rejected the gift. Wang Mi persevered, saying that nobody would know. Yang Zhen famously retorted “Heaven knows it, God knows it, I know it, and you know it. How can you say that no one knows it?” or in Chinese, 「天知,神知,我知,子知。何謂無知!」 shaming Wang Mi into leaving.

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