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When the meeting was over the presidents of the targeted clubs approached me with thanks. Yup, yup, to a culture club the School Festival was their only chance to shine, after all. Completely unlike people who just manned refreshment booths for fun! Just how much time do you think I’ve put into my Bea-tan doll!
For a while I thought I was going to get another lecture from Fellow Stalking Horse, but in the end he never said anything. I guess he decided to turn a blind eye this time.
Anyway, it was time to get to the Handicrafts Club. Recently I got an email from Beatrice.
‘Have you finished the Bea-tan doll?
Bea-tan looks forward to it!
You have to make me really cute, okay!
Bea-tan wants to see soon~
Do your best, Reika-tan!
~ From Beatrice’
I was feeling the pressure now.
Never would I be able to tell Umewaka-kun that I turned her into the Cerberus…
Not only was I the President of the Handicrafts Club, I was also the vice-rep of my class. Thanks to that the day of the School Festival was going to be hectic for me, since worrying about the food and tea and costume etc. for our café fell to me as well.
The menu we were using was decided when I brought samples of the teas I bought in Taiwan and had some of the more knowledgeable members of my class try them. Who would have thought that my xiaolongbao trip to Taiwan would come handy in a way like this~
I wonder how Ichinokura-san was doing, anyhow. Since that day I was declining his invitations in consideration of his girlfriend so I wasn’t too well-informed. Maybe I was being ungrateful after all the delicious food he treated me to. Mao-chan had asked me to come to the Petite Pivoine a number of times, so I supposed I could visit her and ask how his life was going.
I immediately headed to the Petite Salon. Walking through the primary section’s school building I could hear song and music from here and there. Instead of the School Festival, the primary school held the Learning Presentation instead, where the students would do things like hold plays or sing in a choir, or present the results of their research for the parents to see.
I worried that Mao-chan would be busy as well, but she mentioned earlier that she would be at the salon today.
I picked up my pace a little when I bumped into Katsuragi Boy turning the corner.
“Ah! It’s you!”
“My, why if it isn’t you, Katsuragi-kun. Long time no see.”
He had gotten quite a bit taller compared to the year before when I last met him. It wasn’t going to be simple to hit his head anymore. What a shame.
“Why are you here!?”
“Because I have business here, obviously. I seem to meet you quite often in the hallway. Don’t tell me I have a stalker?”
“As if! Who would bother stalking you!?”
“A noisy fellow as always, aren’t you. Well? What are you doing here? Ahh, wait, don’t tell me. Your grades were so bad that they had to drop you back into primary.”
“None of your business!”
“I see. Well then, gokigen’yoh.”
“Ah-! Hang on!”
I tried to leave but he called out to me.
“What’s the matter?”
“You better not be getting close to Enjou-san.”
Katsuragi Boy frowned.
“The girls in middle school are gossiping about it. Apparently you two are close…”
Close!? With whom!? Excuse me, but I don’t remember ever getting close to him.
“I can’t say I know very much about these rumours, but Enjou-sama and I are hardly in the relationship you’re worrying about. Please continue pining for him as you have been.”
“The reason you always seem so fixated on him is because you secretly harbour feelings towards him, correct? I personally don’t see why you feel the need to hide it from me. I pride myself on tolerance to minorities.”
“Fuck off! Stop coming up with weird shit on your own!” he screamed with a bright red face, “I just can’t stand letting somebody like you loiter about him! And I’m not a homo either!”
“Ah yes, of course. Don’t worry, I believe you.”
“What’s with that tone! You don’t believe me at all, do you!?”
Uhuhu, what should I do? This Bird Boy was too amusing. He was so fun to tease.
“To begin with, a woman like you-!”
“What are you doing?” called a cute voice.
Yukino-kun was standing behind me.
But Yukino-kun ignored my happy call, and stepped between the two of us with a harsh expression before suddenly holding his arms up at Katsuragi Boy.
“A boy shouldn’t be bullying girls!”
“Uh, I wasn’t bullying this…”
“You were bullying her! I heard you shouting at her! A boy should always treat girls gently!”
“Y-Yukino-kun!” I cried.
Oh my god! Yukino-kun was protecting me! I was so moved! I’d never been protected like a boy like this before. Oh my god!
“Let’s go, Reika-oneesan!”
As I suffered from a phantom nosebleed, Yukino-kun gallantly pulled me past Katsuragi Boy by the hand.
“Eh, but…” muttered Katsuragi Boy.
He seemed to still be in quite a shock about Yukino-kun being angry at him. I kind of felt bad for leaving him like that. To begin with, I wasn’t being bullied for one thing.
But Yukino-kun must have thought that I was scared of Katsurabi Boy because as he led me away he turned his head to comfort me with a smile.
“Don’t worry! I’m here to protect you so everything’s going to be okay.”
I decided just to leave the misunderstanding alone.
This is the result of how you usual behave, Bird Brain. Accept it already.
Anyhow, if inside Yukino-kun’s head I was some delicate girl, then I wanted to stay that way. He said he would protect me! That was the first time anybody outside of my family had said that to me!
I ended up smiling goofily all the way to the Petite Salon. So much that I ended up worrying Mao-chan. Sorry, that must have been creepy, right? Time to snap out of it. I hardly wanted the cute kids of the Petite Pivoine to change their impression of me.
“Yukino-kun, you are acquainted with Katsuragi-kun?”
“Yes. Sometimes he comes over to my house.”
“I don’t really get along with him though…”
“About earlier however, I was not in fact being bullied by him, you know?”
“Yes. He is simply a loud person by nature, so he is easily misunderstood. Still, you made me very happy when you said you would protect me. Thank you, Yukino-kun.”
He seemed a little bashful to hear that. What a good boy!
Apparently he was going to be playing the piano for the Learning Presentation. An angel playing the piano! That was something I had to see!
Speaking of seeing, Yukino-kun and Mao-chan were coming to our high school section’s School Festival too. Maybe I would see them. But as Enjou’s little brother, a visit from Yukino-kun might cause a pandemonium. If that happened, it would be my turn to repay the favour from just now!
Mao-chan said that she would be visiting the School Festival with Ichinokura-san. Unfortunately for him, he was still being called Ojisan… Do your best, Ichinokura-san! Hold out for the day you become Haruto-niisama again!
Sakura-chan invited me out the next time I was free. According to her, my negligence had resulted in some girl buzzing around Akizawa-kun. Uwahh…