We sealed the deal with a handshake. Andou became too happy that she decided to treat me for lunch. Or was she planning something?
This girl is really scary. She even wants to use someone to drive the guy she likes into a panic.
"By the way Onoda.."
"How do you know?"
"What do you mean?"
"Is it that obvious that I like Ogawa?"
Ah. Right. It's only rumours. To think that I guessed what's on her mind, she must've thought she was easy to read. I'm like her, I'm an observer. Maybe because she's like me that I find her this scary.
"No. I only guessed."
"I don't believe you."
I just shrug as an answer. There's no point answering unless I want my words to be nitpicked by her. To someone like us, it's better to talk less and smile more. Not to let them know what we're against or what we're for.
"Ah. Nanami. Why did you go without us?"
Suddenly someone's voice rang from behind me. Yeah, I know they'll find us here.
I understand. This is what she has planned. This troublesome group. I already prepared myself to get mixed up with them when I accepted Andou's offer, I guess I'll just deal with this calmly.
"Eh? Who's this?"
"Onoda. He's that guy who angered Ms. Miyazaki."
The three who showed up were those who I expected. Ogawa, his best friend Tadano and the childhood friend Mori.
Our table was empty aside from me and Andou who sat in front of each other. The girl sat next to me while the two guys sat at Andou's sides.
Just by the seating arrangement, it's easy to guess the real situation.
"Ah. Onoda, it's our first time talking. Nice to meet you."
The girl next to me, Mori said.
The two guys have been glaring at me since earlier. Ah, well, it's Tadano who's clearly showing a huge mass of hostility towards me. Too bad, he's not the guy Andou likes. And none of the two will be able to take her. I'm here now. I'll steal her from them and maybe this girl beside me too.
This girl clearly likes Ogawa, she sat next to me on purpose just to be directly in front of him.
"Ah yes, nice to meet you."
"So, why are you here with Nanami?"
Tadano asks. He thought I'd get intimidated by him. Though he's not part of the delinquent group, he has an attitude like them if it concerns Andou.
"Don't scare him Daiki. Ah. Nice to meet you Onoda."
Ogawa stops Tadano then greets me.
All this time, Andou is silently watching, smiling there as she eats her lunch. This girl. I'll make sure you won't forget me when I get my hands on you.
"Well, Andou said she will treat me to lunch. And nice to meet you two."
Hearing my answer the three look at Andou, calmly sipping from her drink.
She then laughs.
"Isn't he interesting? I think I like him."
What the hell? This girl really wants me to put in the line of fire. Had I not had a bulletproof from their gazes, I might've already left dead on this table. But yeah, this is the deal. To have a new rival for Ogawa.
"What?! You like this guy?"
Ogawa stood up in surprise. His gaze alternated between us.
Tadano slammed his fist on the table, gathering the looks of those around us.
"C-calm down you two."
Mori tried to ease the situation but looking at her, her eyes were smiling. Andou said she likes me so she thought she now has a chance with Ogawa.
"Really? Thanks. I think I like me too."
I answer with a smile.
It garners more laughter from Andou.
"See? He's this interesting. Am I right Hina?"
The two calmed down hearing my answer. They probably thought I'm just joking so their wariness lowered. But still, it's still there. I'll probably get tangled up with them for the next few days. I wonder, how to not stand out while dealing with this group?
"H-he's clearly not ordinary."
"Huh? But I'm just being normal? Do I look like an alien?"
"Well at the very least, You're a humanoid alien."
Ah. This girl. She doesn't want me to be on the sidelines. Whenever I try to step out, she will pull me back.
"He's clearly an interesting guy. But I can't get along with him."
Tadano says. He looks like he wants to stand up and leave but he can't take it to leave Andou either to me or Ogawa.
"I could say the same but Andou likes him. He's surely not a bad guy."
Ogawa says. What is this? Why are you agreeing with her now? Aren't you both at each other's throats?
"That's nice Kazuo, we finally have something we can agree on."
Andou smiles which immediately makes Ogawa turn red.
This lovestruck guy. Now I wonder why is he chickening out at confessing to this scary girl.
Now that I think of it, his attitude right now feels like those harem protagonists. So that's his type? Harem Protagonist Type. Their denseness and indecisiveness make me puke. Probably there are more harem members hidden to my sight, not just Andou and Mori. This is the first time I'm interacting with them so I clearly lack information.
Now that I realized that my secret desire is different than I first thought, this is probably a chance to steal a whole harem of one guy. Ah. That's too exciting to think about. I better work at identifying who those are. Andou thinks she's using me but I'm using her too to get a lot of information from them. I'm just one guy who's the same as her, she can't get that much from me but on the contrary, I'm getting a lot from her group of main characters.
"Alright. I'm going back. Thanks for the treat Andou. Don't forget what you said."
I stood up immediately once I finished eating. It's better to back out for now than become Andou's weapon any longer.
I leave that last sentence to let them fall in thinking about what I meant. Especially Ogawa. I couldn't care less about Tadano. Mori will probably think about it and I might see an immediate response from her. If I have to guess, she's thinking me and Andou have some sort of secret.
"Alright. See you Onoda."
Andou waves and smiles. At least she looks satisfied with my performance. Haa. My head still hurts and I had to deal with that troublesome group. I want to sleep somewhere. But the next class is PE, I can't sit that one out.
There's still time before the lunch break is over. I want to hear Akane's voice if it's impossible to see her right away. After what happened, I just can't wait until I go home to see her. What is this feeling? I want her to clear this up. It's unknown to me and I can't really get it no matter how I run my mind. This is why I'm getting this headache. Haa.
I start looking for a quiet place. I'm going to call her.
Luckily I found one secluded spot. It's located outside the School Building, on the side of it is a little space that can be used by anyone to cover from the shade. There's a vending machine next to it but it's broken and is still pending repairs.
At least, the other students have better hang out spots so there's only a few who're passing by the place.
I take my phone out and dial Akane's number. Ah. This is the first time I'm taking the initiative to call someone. This girl. She became this special to me after that realization.
Me wanting her doesn't come from my secret desire but from something I can't understand. I had this feeling that only she can clear this up.
After a few dial tones, the call connects.
"Hello? Ruki? What's this? You're calling me? Is this real?"
Akane's cheerful voice leaks out from the phone. Just hearing her voice let a smile formed from my lips. I felt a bit of relief and it eased up this headache even just a little
"What? Ah, it's really you. I'm happy. Happy that you called me. Have you eaten yet?"
This silly girl. You can't believe I will take the initiative to call you? You sound like a wife that was waiting for her husband's call from abroad.
"Yes. Don't mind me. I just suddenly thought that I wanted to hear your voice and talk to you."
"Ruki. You know, I'm smiling right now. I'm in front of my friends eating our lunch and now they're teasing me, asking why am I smiling like a silly girl in love."
"I can imagine."
Yes. Her smiling silly. She had that too earlier when she said her feelings reached me.
"So, what's the occasion? I know it's strange. This is the first time you called someone?"
"Nothing. I just want to hear your voice. I want to see you. I want you."
There's no use withholding what I really wanted to say with her. She knows me.
"i***t Ruki! Don't make me blush. Are you calling just to tease me?"
"No. I'm serious. Since when am I joking?"
"Right. You're someone who seldom jokes or rather I can't remember when was the last time you tell a joke."
"You, living with me. I'm not against that anymore. In fact, I want you to stay with me starting today."
"W-what? Are you serious? Ruki. What happened to you? You're not like this when you left earlier. But I'll be honest I'm really happy right now. I might shout if I don't consider where I am. Can you hear these girls beside me?"
Yeah, they're whistling and teasing her. What the hell? Though I still don't get the emotion she's throwing at me but I know myself, I really want her to stay with me. She's mine.
"I just had a sort of realization. I'll tell you later."
"Okay. Tell me all about it later. Ruki. I love you."
"Yes. Later Akane. I'm satisfied now."
The call ended there. I know it might sound bad that I didn't respond to her 'I love you', but I can't lie to her. And she doesn't want some lip service from me. I still don't get that emotion or this unknown feeling I have that made me want her.
Though the call with Akane eased my headache a bit. It's still painful.
I guess I'll visit the infirmary again.
I left the side of the School Building and made my way back to the Administration Building.
Like always there's some students and teachers walking about. I now know the way so I didn't bother anyone and just went to the stairs.
If this headache doesn't stop, I might sit out the first PE class of high school. That's bad. We'll do the PE class together with another class. If I recall correctly it should be Class 3. The class with that beautiful girl they're talking about who's dating someone. I still haven't seen her nor know her name so I can't judge. At least, she's a possible target and that's what is important. This secret desire of mine is like an ocean, no matter how many I steal, it just won't get filled up completely. It will always look for more. But each sensation I get from my success, especially that from Satsuki earlier is really fulfilling.
Ah. I can't wait to add more. Andou and Mori. The other harem members too if there's any. Kanzaki and Shio, these two probably needed more time to make up their mind. Who else? Ah. I keep forgetting those from my previous middle school, they'll start showing up next week if I don't do anything.
And Akane. No, she's different. She's a special case. Only her is this special.
Making my way up the stairs, I ran into someone. Yes. Why do I always have to run into someone? I only want to get medicine for my headache, you know?
Shio is there. Coming down from upstairs. She unconsciously blurts out the nickname she gave me. This beautiful teacher of mine might be a bit of a klutz. If someone heard her, it would create misunderstandings. Luckily for us, we're the only ones here.
Hearing my response, she realized her mistake. She tried to cough once to compose herself again.
"What are you doing here?"
"You went there earlier, why will you go again?"
"This time. It's for me."
I answered as I pointed at my temple. That's where it really hurts.
"Huh? Why? Are you sick?"
I suddenly see a hint of worry from her eyes.
"No, just a headache. I'm going to get some medicine for it. I don't want to sit out on PE."
"I see. Let's go, I'll come with you. Ms. Hayashi isn't there right now."
Huh? She's still not back? Is she irresponsible or something?
"Thank you, teacher."
I smiled at her then continued my climb to stand next to her. I wanted to hug this woman, if not only we're in public.
Shio grabbed my arm and led me to the infirmary.
Once there, she lets me sit on the chair while she searches for the medicine for headache.
"You know Onoda.."
I hear her voice while she's still searching there. She doesn't want to talk to me face-to-face? Maybe.
"I'm still thinking about what you said."
Ah. I knew it
"Don't worry about it, teacher. I'm already satisfied to have that moment with you."
Shio finished her search and handed me a bottle of medicine.
"Here. Take one. I'll get you water."
I take the bottle from her and get one tablet.
"Here. I'll go now. You know the way out don't you?"
She's averting her gaze to me. She doesn't want to look me in the eye.
I took the water she offered and drank the medicine.
Before she turned around, I chased for her hand and grabbed it.
"As I thought. I really want to steal you Shio."