Baka to Tesuto to Syokanju:Volume7.5 Me and Lottery and The Pot of Darkness

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Me and Lottery and The Pot of Darkness[edit]

Me and Lottery and The Pot of Darkness

A few days ago, we had a sports meeting.

During one of the sports events, the summoned beast baseball tournament, we really betted on our lives and fought to the very end.

At that time, Fukumura-san collapsed as he caught the pickoff from Himeji-san, at that time, Fukumura-san was knocked to the ground after Takahashi-sensei’s hit, after that, Fukumura-san got hit by Takahashi-sensei’s hit.

After sacrificing our comrade, we finally won the match.

But that victory—to us, was the start of another test.


“Aki-kun, what is this?”


In my house’s living room, ane-san passed over the package the school sent over to me and started interrogating.

I tried my best not to look at her and answered, softly,

“…It’s some slightly pervy reference book.”


Really—this is another great test.


“I see. So then, what’s this?”

“…It’s a slightly embarrassing reference book.”

“I see. And this?”

“…It’s a reference book for me to become an adult.”

As we continued on, ane-san’s face started to give off a gentle smile.

To the bystander, maybe she might look really calm now as she remained still, but as a younger brother, I knew very well that that was an attacking expression. If I continued to agitate ane-san, my life will be immediately terminated by her. Now’s a time for a change in fortunes, I guess?

“…”

I slightly pondered for a while. In this situation where I need to make a big decision, I need to find someone to talk to. It’ll be great if I can have someone I can talk to in this situation…

‘Do you want to listen to my suggestion for this kind of thing?’

Oh my? Isn’t this the devil in my heart? It’s been a long time. I’m a little insecure that it’s the devil who came up, but it doesn’t matter now as long as I can talk to someone—

‘Wait a minute. If you don’t want to talk to the devil, you can talk to this angel here,’

Sooi!

‘Uoh! The angel that just appeared got sent flying the sky like a PET bottle!’

The angel in my heart, I think I told you not to appear again.

‘An, anyway, ane-san’s feeling extremely agitated right now. How about we think through the possible scenarios to prevent agitating her?’

I see. Going through a simulation in the mind to expect what will happen. That’s a good idea.

“Aki-kun, do you have anything you want to say to me?”

Ane-san asked me. How should I answer? I have to think through I carefully.


Scenario 1 ‘Play Dumb’ “They should be mistaken.”

“Really?”

“Mn, I don’t know why I would have those things.”

“But the slip that came with the package has the words ‘these are things confiscated from Yoshii Akihisa’.”

Nope. I can’t play dumb and say that the teacher messed up when the explanation slip came over as well.


Scenario 2 ‘Admit my own mistake’.

“I’m sorry. It’s my fault.”

“I see.”

“I’m really sorry.”

“Then grit your teeth and get ready to die.”

My ane-san isn’t someone who will forgive others immediately after hearing an apology.


Scenario 3 ‘Push the blame to Yuuji’

“Actually, it’s all Yuuji’s fault.”

“I see.”

“I was framed.”

“I don’t want to hear your excuses.”

You shouldn’t have asked in the first place then.


No matter whether I play dumb, admit my own mistake or push the blame to Yuuji, it seems that I won’t be able to escape from ane-san’s demonic clutches. In other words, the only answer that can allow me to survive is something other than this answer.

Okay, in the case, I’ll use the fourth choice to answer ane-san’s question.

I lifted my head and looked straight into ane-san’s eyes, took a deep breath, and said to her,


“It’s ane-san’s fault.”


‘Pushing the blame onto the person who’s fuming now!?’

‘That’s the worst answer you could think of.’

‘What were you thinking? How did you think of this answer…’

I just found out that I chose the worst possible answer. Though it’s normal to be shaken when I’m facing an unprecedented crisis, I still couldn’t hide the shock that I chose the worst answer.

Thinking about the terrifying corporal punishment that would happen on me anytime now, I became so scared that I can’t control my trembling—

“? Arre…?”

Unexpectedly, ane-san didn’t do anything really tragic to me.

“Haa…really, you…”

Ane-san said this and sighed. Ah, seems like she was willing to forgive me. This is a one in a million chance. Let’s use this chance to apologize honestly!

“Well, ane-san, I’m sorry. I did reflect on—”

“Kneel and bow down first.”

I stand corrected. She has no intention of forgiving me at all.

“Eh…ane-san, shouldn’t the classic line be ‘get over here and sit down’, right? ‘Kneel and bow down’ seems to be someone weird somewhere.”

“I afraid that I can’t help but kiss you once you lift your head.”

“…”

The floor feels so icy, so cooling, so comfortable.

“Aki-kun, ane-san never said that you can’t read these books at all.”

Ane-san picked my reference books up and says,

“I’m just saying that if you want to read it, you must be prepared to die.”

I guess this means that same thing as ‘you can’t read them at all’.

“Really, it can’t be helped that guys will be interested in these things, but there’s an age limit to reading these kinds of books. You need to wait till you’re of an old enough age to read. You have to endure it before that.”

“Uu…ane-san, you’re too serious…”

“Of course. I’m not just Aki-kun’s older sister, I’m your guardian too.”

Since you’re my ane-san and guardian, you shouldn’t be saying things like ‘kiss you’, right?

“Anyway, are you reflecting on this?”

“Yes, I’m thoroughly reflecting on them.”

“From today onwards, you shall follow the rules of society and study hard like a good student, okay?”

“Yes, I’ll study hard.”

“Will you live a healthy and orderly normal lifestyle?”

“Yes, I’ll live a healthy and orderly lifestyle.”

“Is ane-san the person you love the most in this world?”

“No, not to that extent.”

“…”

“OW! IT HURTS! ANE-SAN…! A SLAP’S REALLY…!”

“But you…really, Aki-kun’s troubles are really bothering me…”

“That’s not true. I’ll live my life seriously like a good student.”

“Really? Then why do you want to take back these ero-books?”

“Eh? Because these are reference books.”

“…”

“OW! IT HURTS! ANE-SAN…! AN ELBOW TO THE MOUTH IS TOO…!”

“Here, Aki-kun. Hold this too.”

“Yes…”

On a warm and sunny Saturday, as my reference books (Ero-books) were discovered, I was forced to accompany ane-san on a shopping trip as a gofer as punishment.

“Uu…it’s really heavy…”

“It won’t be considered punishment if it’s light.”

Though we’re shopping, ane-san wasn’t buying things girls like to buy, like clothes or little ornaments, but daily necessities and electrical appliances. Thus, the trolley in front of me is really heavy.

“That’s right, ane-san, why did you buy the steam oven?”

I looked at the largest electrical appliance in the trolley as I asked ane-san.

Don’t we have one at home already?

“I just like the exterior design of it. I don’t intend to use it for something.”

Ane-san’s answer really puzzled me. She just liked the exterior design? Would people deliberately spend money to buy a steam oven? Ah, I got it. Speaking of which, I think the TV program I saw yesterday introduced some ‘simple and delicious baked cheese and chicken ‘. The method is to put the cheese and tomato paste on the chicken breast, steam it, and finally, add some lime or lemon juice on it to add to the flavor…That’s really a simple and delicious meal.

“I guess. The exterior design’s really nice.”

“Yes, I like it too.”

Actually, this dish doesn’t need a steam bowl to make, since the normal microwave in our house can do the job as well…but I guess I shouldn’t tell ane-san after all. It’s rare that she wants to cook.

Seeing ane-san working so hard, I really want to smile, but just when I was thinking about that, ane-san put fingers below her chin and muttered to herself while pondering.

“…The ingredients required are lime and cheese, and…”

So she wants to get the ingredients for the baked cheese and chicken. The ingredients listed on the program were lime, cheese, tomato paste and chicken breasts, four items—

“…Pig’s blood and chicken breast…” Uh oh. This person must have mistaken pig’s blood for tomato paste.

“Erm, well…ane-san…”

“…Lime, cheese, pig’s blood and chicken breast…”

Ane-san continued to focus on those ingredients as she ignored my voice completely. Really, even if ane-san wants to cook something and hide it from me, at least she should note down what ingredients she needs.

“Ane-san!”

I tried to call ane-san again. This time, she finally noticed me.

“Ahh, sorry, I was thinking about something. Is there something?”

Ane-san deliberately acted as if there was nothing wrong.

Since she wanted to work hard alone, I should pretend that nothing happened. However, I have to find a way to tell her the difference between pig’s blood and tomato paste.

“It’s a little sudden, but the red of the meat sauce is made from tomato paste. Do you know that?”

“Tomato paste?”

“Un, the type where they boil and press through.”

That’s definitely not the red made from pig’s blood.

“I see. I really had a lesson today.”

“Ahaha, that’s because ane-san lacks knowledge about cooking.”

I laughed as I ended the topic about food.

I gave a hint already; will ane-san realize that the red from that dish wasn’t from pig’s blood but from tomato paste?

“Let me see…the ingredients are lime, cheese, pig’s blood and—shears.”

DAMN IT! NOW SHE MISTOOK CHICKEN BREAST FOR METAL BAT BECAUSE HER ATTENTION WAS DIVERTED!

They sound similar to chicken breast[1], but ane-san’s really scary for mixing food and metal up. Looks like I have to remind her first.

“An, and also, ane-san…shears are metallic. They’re not ingredients.”

“Of course. Shears are to be used for cutting metal boards or metallic wires. They contain metal, but they’re different from the types humans need. Besides, the metals the human body needs to take in, iron, zinc and magnesium, and these aren’t to be consumed directly through the mouth.”

“U, un, that’s right. So please don’t treat shears as an ingredient.”

Ahh…I chose to say so much at this time. Now she would choose lime, cheese, tomato paste and chicken breast, right…

“Let me see. The ingredients are knives, beef, pig’s blood and shears…”

It’s over. These things can’t be used to cook baked cheese and chicken, but an unbelievable murder scene!

“Ane-san…I, I want to have chicken for dinner tonight. Can we buy lime, cheese, tomato paste and chicken breast…”

“I don’t mind, but what do you want to do with these ingredients?”

I really want to return those words back to you!

“Anyway, can we go to a supermarket first?”

“Okay, but before we leave this place, I want to check out the hardware area.”

“No need for that. We definitely won’t need to use hardware as ingredients.”

I forcefully grabbed ane-san’s hand, pushed the extremely heavy trolley with one hand and headed to the cashier.

Even if ane-san’s a real idiot at cooking, at least she wouldn’t put hardware into food…but a little added security won’t hurt. Besides, this is heavily related to my life.

“Oh yes, Aki-kun. Once we’re done with the shopping in the supermarket, can you follow ane-san to buy some underwear?”

“Eh…that, that’s a little…”

Even though we’re family, I can’t just accompany ane-san to an underwear shop! No, it’s because we’re family that I can’t go there with her. To this ane-san of mine who lacks common sense, the underwear shop may be just one stop on a shopping trip, but to me, that’s a shameless game. I can’t agree to that no matter what.

“You don’t want to?”

“I’m a guy after all. If it’s not urgent, you can go on your own, ane-san.”

“Sorry, but I really need it.”

“Heh? Really?”

“Yes, actually, before I bathed this morning, I took all my underwear to wash.”

She washed all her underwear before bathing? And now she needs to buy some urgently. Don’t tell me it’s because…

“Ho, hold on a minute! Don’t tell me, below ane-san’s clothing—”

“Are you talking about the underwear? If that, then I definitely—zchuu!”

“THEN WHAT!? WHAT’S AFTER ‘DEFINITELY’!?”

“Ara, this alarm clock’s really cute.”

“I DON’T CARE WHAT HAPPENS TO THE ALARM CLOCK! HURRY UP AND ANSWER MY QUESTION! ARE YOU ‘WEARING IT’ OR ‘NOT WEARING IT’!? I HAVE TO USE THIS ANSWER TO DECIDE WHETHER I SHOULD TREAT MY OLDER SISTER AS A PERVERT!!”

Ane-san, treat it as I’m begging you. Please answer ‘I’m wearing’! Or else I’m going to be labeled the ungodly title of a ‘pervert’s little brother’!

“Of course I ‘wore it before’.”

“THERE’S A PERVERT HERE!!!”

PAST TENSE! WHY MUST IT BE THE PAST TENSE! IT’S A GOOD THING SHE’S WEARING PANTS NOW, OR ELSE I WOULD HAVE FAINTED IF SHE’S WEARING A SKIRT!

“You’re really noisy, Aki-kun. Don’t you feel ashamed at all?”

“NO! SHOULDN’T ANE-SAN BE ASHAMED ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE ALTOGETHER!?”

I WANT TO RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY FROM THIS PERSON HERE!

“Aki-kun, I was just joking.”

“Eh…joking?”

“Yes. Since I’ve been scolding you a lot recently, I thought I should joke around with you for a bit to ease your feelings.”

Ane-san smiled as she said that. That was a joke? I really couldn’t laugh at that one…I nearly believed it!

“Did I scare you?”

“More than scared, I think it was more like ‘so it was like that’ feeling…”

“How rude. Wouldn’t ane-san be like a pervert if you put it that way?”

“The ‘like’ is unnecessary, but it doesn’t matter now…”

Anyway, at least I can finally heave a sigh of relief and continue shopping.

After buying everything I need and settling the bill, the shop assistant passed me a few coupons. What are these?

“Are these lottery coupons? That’s great, Aki-kun.”

“Ah, yes.”

It seemed that as this was the 7th anniversary of the shop’s opening, so I could get lottery tickets once I bought a certain amount of stuff. Really, it feels like I earned something when I don’t even know of it.

“Then let’s go try it.”

“It’ll be great if we can draw something.”

After letting the shop assistant put aside our stuff for safekeeping, ane-san and I walked towards the the lottery area near the cashier. There were about 10 people queuing up for the lottery, and the shop assistants were dressed in traditional festive clothing in front of the lottery booth, shouting energetically.

“Congratulations customer! You've won the 4th prize, '3,000 yen worth of metal bats'!”

I guess any ordinary person who won this prize would be thinking that they didn't win anything at all.

“Dear customers, please don't be discouraged. The top prize '100,000 yen worth of metal bats' and special prize '500,000 yen worth of metal bats' weren't drawn yet!”

What's going on with this shop? Are there no other prizes other than metal bats? Did they not check on the customers' needs? Even the delinquents from the countryside don't need that many metal bats, right? Just when I was ready to leave the queue waiting for the lottery, I noticed the other prizes.


5th prize: Udzuki onsen 2-person's chalet ticket.

6th prize: Seafood deluxe set.

7th prize: 10,000 yen worth of shopping vouchers.


Shouldn't these prizes be in the front.

“There seemed to be a lot of prizes.”

“It's great if we could get those shopping vouchers before we bought these.”

The onsen chalet trip that was designated as the 5th prize seemed to be the biggest. On thinking about, that customer who got 4th prize just gave a wry smile and left without accepting the prize.

“It'll be great if we could draw the onsen chalet trip.”

“That should be for couples, right?”

“Really? I think that it's alright for us siblings to go there.”

Go for an onsen bath with ane-san? That sounds good. Soak in an onsen, eat delicious food, now that will be wonderful. I also want to take my hardworking ane-san to an onsen everyday.

“Here's the coupons, ane-san.”

“Nope. Aki-kun, you can draw them all. Ane-san will just watch from the sidelines.”

“Eh? Is that good?”

“Un. I'll be watching.”

As ane-san refused, the 10 tries were in my hand. Okay, I have to get the 5th prize no matter what!

After queuing for a while, the person in front of me got some tissue paper and left. It's now my turn.

“Will the next customer step up please~”

“Sorry to bother you.”

I handed the tickets to the assistant in charge of the lottery, and put my hand onto the handle of the spinning lottery press.

“1, 2, 3...10 tickets altogether. You can draw 10 times.”

I close my eyes and concentrate. Here I go!

Tissue, tissue, metal bat, tissue, tissue, tissue, tissue, metal bat, tissue...

What the heck! Drawing the 4th prize occasionally made me really mad.

Standing in front of the small pile of tissues (naturally, I refused the metal bats), and took a deep breath.

“The final chance...watch me!”

I forcefully spun the lottery press for the last time, and the press let out sounds of little beads colliding. I spun it hard, and saw a blue bead drop out from the hole. Oh? What prize will this ball be?

“Congratulations, dear customer! You have won the 6th prize, the seafood deluxe set!”

The shop assistant took the bell that was beside the lottery press and shook it. RING! Oh! The seafood deluxe set! Now I really got a huge prize!

“The seafood deluxe set can be prepared for you immediately. Do you want to bring it back, or should we deliver it to your residence?”

The shop assistant asked me. What should I do?

The seafood deluxe set looks really heavy, and if possible, I hope that they would deliver it to my house. But in that case, I have to wait till tomorrow to receive it. It's rare that ane-san will be resting at home tomorrow. If I bring it home today, I can prepare a sumptuous meal for ane-san.

“I'll bring it back then.”

“Okay.”

I did intend on borrowing a trolley from them to bring the steam oven back. Now I might as well bring the seafood deluxe set home.

“Wow, the 6th set's already so good.”

A customer who was watching from afar let out this sound. I see, so that's the aim of this shop. If that customer queued up and saw the list of prizes, he would feel the same as me. Thinking about these useless things, I dumped everything we bought just now onto the trolley and turned to leave this shop.

“Akihisa-kun?”

“Hm?”

On our way home, I was pushing the trolley forward, only for someone behind me to call my name. Who's that?

“Ara, isn't that Mizuki-san? Hello.”

“Hello, Akira-san, Akihisa-kun.”

“Hello, Himeji-san.”

I turned around to look, and standing in front of us was Himeji-san, who was giving off a girlish presence with her neon green top and skirt. The comfortable looking casual clothes looks cute on her.

“Akihisa-kun, did you come out to shop today?”

“Ah, yes.”

The trolley I'm pushing now has a steam oven, some daily necessities and the seafood deluxe set just now. Speaking of which, we really bought a lot of things today.

“Wow...you bought a lot of things. Are you going to cook a feast?”

“No. Aki-kun won it in a lucky draw.”

Ane-san said as she pointed at the Styrofoam boxes that had all sorts of seafood inside. After seeing so many things, anyone would definitely think that there's a feast or something.

“Oh yes, Mizuki-san, where are you going?”

“I'm going to buy ingredients for dinner.”

As she said that, Himeji-san raised the bag she had in her hand slightly. It's really like Himeji-san to prepare her own bag when buying things.

“Speaking of which, you're in charge of dinner tonight, Mizuki-san?”

“Yes. I'm in charge of dinner, but daddy and mommy are out, so I'm just making my own share.”

Oh yes, I think I remember now. Himeji-san's a lone daughter.”

“You're having dinner alone, Mizuki-san? Will your parents be back late?”

“Ah, yes. They went to attend a friend's wedding far away, so they will be back late.”

Speaking of which, Himeji-san can only watch the house alone before her parents come back. I've often heard some shocking social news these days, so it's worrying that a girl's watching home alone.

Just when I thought about that, ane-san seemed to think the same thing. She asked Himeji-san,

“Mizuki-san, in that case, why don't you have dinner with us?”

“Eh?”

Himeji-san couldn't help but blink.

“It's too dangerous for a girl to be alone. How can I leave you like that after knowing your situation?”

“Eh? But that's...”

“Come along, Himeji-san. I just happened to win a seafood deluxe set. It's impossible for ane-san and me to finish all these up.”

As expected of a prize that's used for a lucky draw, the seafood deluxe set was too much. Raw seafood can't be kept for too long. It'll be great if Himeji-san can come over to help finish the food.

“I'll be bothering you in that case...”

“No need to worry. We don't feel bothered at all.”

“That's right. We can't finish that much seafood, so just come over and help us finish it up.”

Ane-san and I try our best to persuade Himeji-san, who's been refusing us,

“The, then I'll help myself then...”

Now Himeji-san finally nodded her head and agreed. Good, very good. It's rare to get good ingredients. If Himeji-san would come over to enjoy this food, it would be all the more reason why I should show off my skills. I must do my best today and make a good meal for ane-san and Himeji-san.

That's right, that's what I intended.

“Well, Akihisa-kun...”

“Hm? Himeji-san, what is it?”

“Since I'm going to your house, then, at least let me prepare dinner for tonight.”

But the situation developed in a bad way.

“Wha, wha what are you saying, Himeji-san? Ho, how, how, how can I let the guest do this?”

“But if I don't do so, I'll feel really bothered...”

But if I let you prepare dinner, my life will be at stake!

“Think about it, you're definitely not used to the utensils and stuff in my house, so you may get hurt accidentally...I think it's better to leave it to me—”

“In that case, I'll bring my utensils over.”

“No no no. There's no need for such trouble. I'll handle dinner tonight.”

“No, Akihisa-kun cooked for us when we went to your house for the study meeting. So it's my turn to cook.”

Himeji-san sounded gentle, but nobody can change her will.

Just when I was really exasperated over this and wondering how I should advise her from cooking—

“Okay, okay, you two, knock it off. In that case...”

Ane-san spoke up to stop us. Has she thought of a good idea?

“—In that case, both sides should step aside. Tonight's dinner will be prepared by Mizuki-san and me. How about it?”

“THAT'S THE WORST POSSIBLE SITUATION I COULD THINK OF!!!”

THERE'S ONE MORE KILLER COOK HERE!

What should I say? This situation is completely out of my control!

“Akira-san and I will be making dinner tonight? In that case...”

Himeji-san didn't refuse ane-san's proposal. I'm begging you, Himeji-san! You should insist on your own thoughts!

“We, well, you two...I don't mean it that way...”

“Then it's decided, Mizuki-san, I'll hope to learn from you later.”

“Ye, yes. I'll be in your care, Akira-san.”

Not good. They're not listening to me at all.

“I'll get the ingredients now.”

“Ahh! Himeji-san hold on!”

Himeji-san never even listened to me as I tried to stop her, and hurriedly ran to a nearby pharmacy. EEEHHH!? ISN'T SHE GOING TO BUY INGREDIENTS!? WHY MUST SHE HEAD TO THE PHARMACY!? ISN'T THIS TOO WEIRD!?

“Okay, I should get some ingredients too.”

After saying that, ane-san went off to the store. That's too weird! Why are these two's basic sense in 'food' completely wrong!?

“...”

After both of them left, I was left alone with the trolley.

A combination of Himeji-san and ane-san...to be honest, I don't think I can stop them.

My mind suddenly remembered the terrifying feeling when I was forced fed with Himeji-san's rice balls.

The scene of Yuuji and Muttsurini betraying and stuffing the poison into my mouth flashed in my mind.

Why must I get stuck in this painful experience I had to go through? I shouldn't be the only victim, it's time for Yuuji and Muttsurini to suffer.

After thinking for a while, I finally came to a conclusion.

In that case, I'll at least,

“Uu, phone, phone...”

I took my handphone out from my pocket and searched out my bad friend's number.

“Hello? Is that Yuuji? I won something good in a lucky draw, but it's impossible for ane-san and me to finish them up, so—”

At least I can get a few bad-lucked people to die with me. Good friends are to go through thick and thin together.

“Akihisa, we're here~”

Yuuji's voice came from the speaker. I'm really touched that he came here as promised.

“Welcome. You guys all came over.”

I opened the corridor entrance and welcomed everyone. Once the door opened, I found my usual good friends, Yuuji, Hideyoshi and Muttsurini standing at a door.

“It's rare that you'll have such good stuff. I'm somewhat feeling sorry for just coming here to eat.”

“It feels a little thick-skinned for me, but I'm rather happy to enjoy a bowl of soup.”

“...I'm looking forward to eat.”

“There's too much here, so it's a great help that you guys could help finish it with me.”

Even with so many people, there's still enough food. They didn't need to mind at all.

“Sorry for intruding.”

“Same here, sorry to bother you.”

“...Excuse me.”

“Here here, hurry up and come in.”

I tilted my body aside and let them into the house, put my hand behind the door to close it, and didn't forget to lock it.

“Mu? What's wrong? Is there a need to lock the door?” “Ahaha, security's been bad recently.”

For added precaution, I hooked like the chain lock on the door. This move is extremely important, enough to delay them long enough when they run away.

“...Akihisa, I'm starting to get a bad feeling about this.”

Yuuji, who was standing at the front porch, seems to be hesitating over whether he should move forward.

“As expected of Yuuji, your primitive instincts are as sharp as ever.”

“What do you mean, Akihisa and Yuuji? Didn't we come here to enjoy a seafood meal? It's not like we're having some poisonous meal—”

As Hideyoshi spoke halfway, the door leading to the living room opened.

The person who appeared in front of us was...


“Ah, Sakamoto-kun, Kinoshita-kun, Tsuchiya-kun, hello.”


Dressed in an apron, the killer cook, Himeji-san was standing there.

“...UU!!”

“You're running away?”

Yuuji immediately turned around and tried to run to the corridor, but having expected this, I raised my leg, BAM, and hit it low against the wall of the front porch to block Yuuji's escape.

“A, Akihisa, you bastard!”

“Yuuji, it's now a one way trip to Hell. Don't think you can escape!”

Nobody's going think of escaping this trip to Hell. If we must curse, we shall curse all you people who came here excitedly thinking that you're going to enjoy a great meal!

“A, Akihisa! Don't you find that doing this to your friends is too cruel!? I was wrong about you!”

“...(Nods head frantically)!”

Hideyoshi and Muttsurini looked sad and angry. That's right, every guy present here knew the terror of Himeji-san's cooking, so it's expected that they would have this kind of response. However...

“It's alright, I understand. Even though you guys say so, you guys aren't willing to see me suffer on my own, right? Shouldn't we go through thick and thin as friends?”

I trust this group of guys.

“You could have just died alone!”

“I don't think anyone who'll do this is a friend!”

“...The Devil!”

The completely dishonest friends actually said such heartfelt words. How stupid. Even if they said so, I have picked up the true feelings you people couldn't hide at all.

(((Akihisa, we'll kill you...)))

You guys will die together with me!

“Akihisa, you bastard. You're thinking about taking revenge for that incident during the sports meeting, right?”

“...Too heinous!”

“That has nothing to do with me, right?”

To be honest, I was hesitating over whether I should have gotten Hideyoshi involved in this, However, we're a four man gang with a great relationship with each other. I really couldn't bring myself to exclude Hideyoshi.

“Ara? Sakamoto, you guys are here? Hurry up and come in.”

Just when I was quarrelling with Yuuji and the rest, ane-san come over from the kitchen.

“There's really too much seafood, so I called everyone to come over to finish this.”

“This idea's not bad.”

With so many people eating, the serving each person will have will reduce a lot. If the situation's good, maybe I could save my precious life.

“In that case, shall we call Minami-san, Shouko-san and Aiko-san over for dinner? Everyone played together at the seaside before. It's not too bad to invite them over, right?”

“Eh? Can I?” As ane-san said a lot of vicious words before, I thought that she would be really angry if I called other girls over, especially since I got those secret reference books confiscated from me. I have to be especially careful now.

“You can. After seeing Aki-kun's actions, I should...perhaps ane-san restricted you too much and caused a negative effect. You can invite girls to our house to play as long as ane-san's around.”

Ohh! An unexpectedly happy outcome even after she found so many reference books. That's great!

“But your life will be in danger if there's any lewd things like physical contact or peeping. You have to remember that.”

“Un, I can expect that without ane-san reminding me.”

Of course, I knew that my ane-san isn't going to say such nice things.

“Yuuji, can you call Kirishima-san?”

“Ah, I remember she said that she had something on today...”

“I called Shouko-chan already. She said that she'll be here in a while.”

“That's too fast already, Himeji!”

Then, we confirmed that Minami and Kudou-san were alright. Now the members of the 2 day 1 night seaside trip are all gathered together.

“Oi, Akihisa, what do we do now?”

“Even if you ask me, I...”

Yuuji, who's sitting on the sofa in the living room, raised his chin to point at the kitchen. I wanted to enter the kitchen to invigilate to prevent them from adding some suspicious things into the food, but ane-san and Himeji-san chased me out with the reason that 'the kitchen's a woman's battlefield'. It would be an apt description if this can be used to measure the number of casualties.

“Well, Akihisa-kun...”

“Hm? Wha, what is it, Himeji-san?”

Himeji-san poked her head out from the kitchen. What happened?

“I'm looking for something...”

Something? Ahh, I got it. Since it's someone else's kitchen, Himeji-san probably doesn't know where the utensils or seasonings are at. And besides, ane-san doesn't cook often, so of course she doesn't know.

“Ok, what are you looking for?”

I nodded my head and got up as I prepared to head to the kitchen. What does she want? A steamer to steam prawns or oyster? Or a large pot to boil soup—

“Actually...I'm looking for instant glue.”

At this moment, the very definition of food crumbled from the base up.


“Not good...I'll definitely die here today...”

“Damn it...I still have lots of things I haven't done yet...”

“...I want to live, live a little longer!”


On hearing Himeji-san's words, a burial-like atmosphere started to swarm around my bad friends. Everyone, don't give up! Now that we know of the existence of instant glue in this, we can find a way to avoid this tragedy!

Thus, I told Himeji-san in a warning tone.

“We, well...Himeji-san, I guess you should be clear that you can kill people if you add instant glue into food. It's really dangerous—”

“What are you saying, Akihisa-kun? Wouldn't it be bad if I add instant glue into the food?”

Himeji-san looked puzzled as she answered. Wha, what, so it wasn't to be added into the food...

“Tha, that's right. It'll be bad if you add instant glue into food! Everyone knows that!”

“Yes. Fufu, Akihisa-kun's really weird.”

On seeing that Himeji-san's smiling, the burial-like atmosphere in the living room gradually vanished. That's great. Since Himeji-san still had such common sense, there should be no problems, right?

I heaved a sigh of relief, and now, there's only a little doubt in my head. Hm? In that case...

“Why do you need instant glue?”

“Ahh, I wanted to make French seafood stew, but the pressure cooker broke right down the middle, so—”

“““I'M GOING BACK!!!”””

“ARGH! HOLD IT RIGHT THERE! DON'T YOU DARE ESCAPE!”

Damn it, these idiots are leaving me behind!!

I chased after them to prevent them from leaving the trip to Hell. However, Yuuji opened the door and was about to run outside—

“...Why must you leave when I just arrived?”

“UWAAAHHH!! PLEASE, SHOUKO! LET GO OF ME!”

The moment he stepped out of the house, Yuuji was caught and grabbed tightly by Kirishima-san, who just arrived.

“Kinoshita, Tsuchiya, where are you going?”

“Muttsurini-kun, even if I'm here, you don't have to be so embarrassed that you must leave, right?”

Hideyoshi, and Muttsurini were cut off too. Such idiots, leaving me behind and running away? Things aren't that simple.

“Minami, Kirishima-san, Kudou-san, welcome. Here here, hurry and come in.”

“““Pardon us for intruding.”””

Yuuji was long caught in Kirishima-san’s grasp, and I grabbed Hideyoshi and Muttsurini’s hands tightly and dragged them back into the house. The trio who were brought back looked like prisoners who failed in their prison break.

“Aki, here’s a souvenir.”

“…I brought a little something from my house to Akira-san.”

“I brought something too.”

The girls all brought different gifts. Actually, they didn’t need to spend so much effort, but in this situation, they aren’t as used to this place as Yuuji, who I knew for quite a while.

“I’m really grateful to you people.”

I thanked them as I received their gifts. Besides the fruits like oranges and grapefruit, Kirishima-san gave me what looked like some high-class grape wine in a wooden box. I have to be careful not to let Himeji-san or Kirishima-san drink this wine…

Everyone walked into the living room. Would it be too packed with too many people here?

“Ah, everyone’s here. Hello.”

“Welcome.”

Ane-san and Himeji-san invited everyone in. Minami and the rest greeted them, and everyone randomly chose a seat.

“Mizuki, what did you intend to do?”

Minami sat on the sofa and asked Himeji-san.

“I wanted to make French seafood stew, but…”

“But what?”

“I failed a little, so I have to redo it again…”

Himeji-san muttered sadly.

Who would have thought that the ‘little failure’ Himeji-san said would be a complete destruction of the pressure cooker?

“Arre, Mizuki, don't be so disheartened. Anyone can fail.”

“...Failure's the mother of success.”

“I don't really understand cooking, but you can definitely succeed next time.”

The girls encouraged Himeji-san in an understanding manner. I really want to encourage her too, but if it's cooking, I may end up endangering my own life if I say something wrong. I guess I better watch myself and be quiet.

“But there's no time. How can we prepare such food now that needs such a long time to prepare...”

Himeji-san said in regret. At this moment, Kudou-san look around at everyone and suggested,

“In that case, why don't we have hotpot?”

“Eh? You're saying...hotpot?”

Yeah. We have so many people, so a hotpot based on seafood should be good. There's no need to spend too much time preparing the food, and everyone can enjoy it. The problem is—

“Hotpot? I understand, I'll prepare it now.”

The problem is that this hotpot's going to be made from the hands of a killer chef.

“Ah, Himeji. Hotpot's my speciality, so just leave it to—”

“No, Sakamoto-kun, you and the rest can just wait for the start of the meal!”

Yuuji's proposal was instantly rejected.

“But Himeji, you just need to boil the soup for hotpot.”

“Why is Kinoshita-kun saying that as well? The soup's very important.”

It seems like she's determined to prepare dinner no matter what as she wasn't letting us guys help. Yuuji, Hideyoshi and Muttsurini were chased out of the kitchen by her. Uu...now, what do we do...

“How about we have some dark hotpot?”

At this moment, ane-san suddenly raised this mysterious proposal in a mindless manner.

“Dark hotpot?”

“Yes. I heard that amongst all hotpots, the dark hotpot's the best kind.”

“No, ane-san, that's...”

That's not true—just when I was about to say this, I suddenly thought.

Hold on...this may be a good idea!

Even if us guys stand up and say that we can prepare a dish in a short time, Himeji-san will feel troubled and would insist on cooking. As long as Himeji-san's around, it'll be futile no matter what kind of food we cook.

But it'll be different if it's dark hotpot. Since we're going to add all our current ingredients, it will have nothing to do with Himeji-san's help. If it has nothing to do with her own culinary skills, she can't possibly create some dangerous dish. Maybe...maybe we can really come back safely!

I shot a glance at Yuuji, Hideyoshi and Muttsurini. They seemed to have the same idea as well as everyone gave the same look. No matter what, we have to make this dark hotpot the dinner for tonight. Great! Then it's decided!

“Well...Akira-san, dark hotpot's a little different from a normal hotpot...”

“This idea's good! I think that the dark hotpot's a rather good suggestion!”

“That's right! Dark hotpot's the hotpot amongst hotpots!”

“...Dark hotpot's the best!”

“As expected of ane-san! This is really great!”

We shouted out in agreement and deliberately shut off Minami's voice. It's definitely the correct choice to have dark hotpot today. It's not our bad intentions; this is for Minami's precious life's sake as well!

“I'm interested in dark hotpot as well, and I've never tried it before.”

“...Me too. It doesn't seem to be a bad idea to try it out.”

Kudou-san and Kirishima-san added on. You two really helped out a lot!

“Ah, but our house doesn't have a cassette gas stove...”

At this point, I finally remembered something important. My house's cassette gas stove was spoilt a while back, and we haven't bought a new one since then. But this is a life-and-death situation. It seems that I can only ask ane-san to buy one...

“Akihisa-kun, I can get a cassette gas stove from my house if you need to. My house's nearby anyway.”

“Eh? Really?”

“Of course. I intend to bring some other things over as well, so I can bring them all in one go.”

Himeji-san proposed happily. In that case, I'll just ask her to bring it over.

“Then, before Mizuki comes back, I'll make a few appetisers. Aki, can I use these ingredients?”

“Mn, you can.”

Minami asked as she pointed at the box with lots of seafood inside. This is really a proposal I really wanted. It's rare to have so many good ingredients, so it's a waste to use them for the dark hotpot.

“...In that case, I'll help out as well.”

“I'll help out too~”

After Minami said so, Kirishima-san and Kudou-san followed. I don't know how's Kirishima-san's culinary skills, but since Yuuji didn't stop her, at least it won't be fatal. Kudou-san definitely won't add some weird things inside as well, so there shouldn't be any problems with leaving it to them.

“Minami-chan, I might need to spend some time, so if you need to do something, you can start on your own without me.”

“Is that so? I understand then.”

“I'm going back then.”

After Himeji-san said that to Minami, she ran towards the entrance in small steps.

“I'll prepare the soup base for the dark hotpot then.”

“A, ane-san! I'll boil the soup base later, so just sit over and rest for a while!”

I continued to try and stop ane-san, who intended to walk to the kitchen.

In the end, Minami, Kirishima-san and Kudou-san all entered the kitchen. Himeji-san went back home to get some stuff, and the rest are just waiting for the execution in the living room.

“Everyone, sorry to keep you waiting. The appetiser's done.”

“...Sorry for keeping you waiting for so long.”

After we waited in the living room, Minami and Kirishima-san brought a large plate as they walked towards us. What kind of appetiser did they prepare for us?

“As there's grape wine, we tried to make seafood cold dish.”

“““WWOOOOHHH!!!”””

The entire plate was filled with fresh fish, and the fish was surrounded with lush green vegetables. There's also the beautiful lines of sauce on it. This fish should be the one drawn from the lucky draw, right? I remember that this fish wasn't sliced...

“Minami, did you slice this fish?”

“No, I was in charge of the sauce and the arrangement. The fish was—”

“I sliced it.”

“Wow, so Kirishima-san did that?”

The fish that was arranged aren't inferior to the sashimi sold outside, as every single piece was sliced to perfection. I had never known that Kirishima-san can cook.

“...Because this is a part a bride has to learn.”

Kirishima-san explained shyly.

I see. She always dreamt of being a bride when she was young, so she worked hard to learn how to be a good wife. Kirishima-san's really hardworking, and passionately devoted.

“There's sashimi, steamed oysters and seafood salad~!”

Then, Kudou-san served up a large plate. The plate has steamed oysters with the shells on and a salad that's laced with shrimp and cuttlefish.

“But then again, I was just in charge of washing the vegetable and arranging the dish~”

“No no no, this is already impressive enough.”

There's such appetizing food on the table. The most important thing about eating seafood is the freshness, and we have to savor the food before the cold dish becomes warm.

“Well, it's a bit bad to Mizuki, but we better start first.”

Minami took off the apron and then sat on the carpet. Kirishima-san and Kudou-san found their seats as well.

“Shouldn't we wait for Himeji-san.”

“We can wait for her...but if we do that, Mizuki will be troubled that she kept us waiting. That's her personality after all.”

“That's true. Himeji-san did say that 'you can start first' before she left. I think we should just follow what Minami said.

“Then, I'm a little sorry to Mizuki, but let's tuck in.”

“Let's have a toast first then. Didn't Kirishima-san just give us a bottle of grape wine? Why don't you open it and drink it, ane-san?”

I don't really understand wine, but since it's white grape wine that's iced, it should be suitable to go along with these dishes.

“That's true, but it's a little awkward when I'm the only one drinking.”

“It couldn't be helped then. We're all underaged here.”

“Yeah. Why don't we replace wine with juice?”

“Ah, Kinoshita, hold on a minute! We just prepared some drink as well. I'll bring them over.”

Minami said as she stood up. Speaking of which, she just borrowed a juice blender from me. So she wanted to make fruit juice.

“Here we here. This is my specially-made fresh fruit juice.”

Minami took out a few glasses of fruit juice from the kitchen. They sure looks good. Minami herself said that she had no confidence in cooking, but she should be rather good at that, right?

“Then, cheers!”

“““Cheers!”””

After everyone called out 'cheers' in unison, I slowly brought the cup to my mouth. The sweet and sour taste of the freshly squeezed juice is about to reach my mouth. This glass of fruit juice should have lots of assorted fruits in them, and I smelt lots of different aromas in my nose. It's rare to get a chance to drink freshly squeezed juice. I have to enjoy this.

Tilting the glass, I took a sip of fruit juice and swirled it with my tongue twice. The fruit juice in my mouth let out a rather familiar taste, but it was a taste I never tried before.

The strong taste that's full of intensity.

“....”

The intense flavor of...Tabasco.

“IT'S HOT! IT'S TOO SPICY! ARE YOU DELIBERATELY BULLYING ME NOW!?”

It was so hot that I couldn't help but roll on the floor. Why must Minami do such a cruel thing!?

“Because my hand naturally reached for the Tabasco the moment I thought of Aki.”

“What? So Akihisa's drink was the only special one.”

“Shimada's really thoughtful about Akihisa.”

“...It couldn't be helped that your hand naturally reached over.”

“WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY IT COULDN'T BE HELPED! AND THIS SORT OF GIRL'S ROMANCE THINGY ISN'T CUTE AT ALL!”

“I was too careless! So tonight's enemy isn't just Himeji-san!

Anyway, get me something I can drink! Hurry up and give me something I can drink!

“Yuuji! Hand me your fruit juice!”

“No can do, Akihisa. Wouldn't it be an indirect kiss if I let you drink my fruit juice?”

“What are you saying now!? You don't care about this in the past, right?”

This damned bastard! He must be feeling happy after seeing me in such pain, right!?

“Th, then, Muttsurini can do too!”

“...I refuse.”

“Wait a second! Muttsurini, have you been deliberately keeping your distance from me recently!?”

That was a misunderstanding! I was only joking when I said that Muttsurini looked cute in a girl's outfit during the sports meeting!

How about Hideyoshi...but this will really end up being an indirect kiss. This won't do. And I can't drink the other girls' drinks!

“Aki-kun, what's wrong?”

At this moment, ane-san said to me in the same calm tone as ever. Damn it, I don't care whether she's my ane-san at this time! I'm facing an emergency here!

“Ane-san, get me something to drink now!!”

“A drink? I got it.”

After saying that, ane-san gulped down the glass of wine in her hand. No, wait, you're mistaken, ane-san! I didn't ask you to drink—eh?

“NOOOOOO!!!”

Ane-san suddenly grabbed my head, and her face gradually closed in on me. Hold on a minute! What is ane-san intending to do!

“(Gulp) Didn't you want to drink?”

“I DIDN'T ASK YOU TO FEED ME WITH YOUR MOUTH!!!”

What is ane-san thinking! Will she really make me drink with her mouth if I don't resist?

“I...I see...feeding through the mouth...”

“Oi, Shouko, hold it right there! Don't slip the Tabasco into my drink.”

Unable to do anything else, I could only groan as I ran to the kitchen, gulp a large mouthful of clean water to wash the terrifying Tabasco taste away. Really, Minami actually did such a terrifying thing! Now I can't taste the delicious looking dishes on the table now!

After rinsing my mouth a few times, I silently wait for the intense taste in my mouth to fade away. At this moment, Minami brought a cup over as she approached me.

“Here, Aki, this is your real fruit juice.”

“Eh? Oh, thanks.”

I received the cup Minami passed to me and timidly took a sip out of it. This cup doesn't have any strange taste inside; it's a fruit punch with a nice sweet taste.

Minami watched me as I enjoyed the fruity taste, and gave a smirk of mischief.

“Aki, have you reflected on it?”

“Hm? What?”

Reflected? Did I do something bad? I don't remember doing anything to Minami...

“Really, I can tell from your expression that you don't understand what I'm talking about, right?”

“Muu...sorry.”

“Oh well, it's not like Aki's slow-wittedness isn't some rare thing. Really, I'll just tell you then. What made me angry was that—”

Minami pointed at me, puffed her cheeks slightly and pouts,

“—You actually asked Mizuki out first and not me!”

“Eh?”

Unexpectedly, this was what Minami said. For a while, I could only react while not understanding what's going on?

Did she think that I left her out of my good friends' list? But I didn't specially ask Himeji-san alone. I just so happened to meet her on the way home after the shopping trip.

“That's how it is. It's nothing actually. Let's go back.”

“Eh? Ah, un...you're right.”

Recently, Minami seemed like she would say some things with cryptic meanings behind them. What should I say? It's like...some words that would make me have some expectations...perhaps I'm thinking too much, I guess?

I thought of this as I return back to the living room. Seeing me all teary in the eyes, Yuuji couldn't help but laugh.

“Akihisa, how was the special fruit juice? Seems like you were rather excited WWWAHHHH IT'S SPICY!!!”

However, just when Yuuji lifted his glass and took a sip, he immediately spit the drink out.

“...Yuuji, do you want my drink?”

“DA, DAMN IT, SHOUKO! DID YOU SWITCH MY FRUIT JUICE WITH AKIHISA'S!?”

Nice going, Kirishima-san!

“Really, I say, why are you guys always so noisy.”

“...Not calm at all.”

“But I like this. I like it like this~”

On the other side, Hideyoshi, Muttsurini and Kudou-san were all watching. Kudou-san, the reason why you're so happy is because you were just watching. The bad things haven't happened to you yet.

I happily watched Yuuji suffer as he rolled on the floor in minute and returned back to my seat. At this moment, ane-san reached her hand out and tugged at my sleeve.

“Aki-kun, sit over here.”

“Eh? Ane-san?”

Damn it, is she going to tell me off again? Did I make her angry for being all noisy before we started?

“Aki-kun, sit here.”

And then, I was pressed down by ane-san onto her thighs...HOLD ON A MINUTE!

“WHA, WHAT KIND OF JOKE IS THIS, ANE-SAN! I'M ALREADY A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT. FOR YOU TO HUG ME LIKE THIS IS...fuu...”

“Good, good, Aki-kun's a good kid.”

Once I'm hugged by ane-san, I'll lose all my strength.

“““...”””

Seeing me being all weak, everyone present was shocked and speechless. No, it's not like that! Everyone, don't look at me like that! I'm not in love with my sister!!!

“The foods' nice, and the wine's good.”

Ignoring everyone's gazes, ane-san continued to put the wine and food into her mouth. What's going on? I didn't notice it for a while, but how is it that the bottle's only half-filled with wine...

“Ane-san, don't tell me you're drunk?”

“Speaking of which, I may be a little drunk.”

No, it's not just 'a little'. Even if it's my ane-san, she couldn't do this in a conscious state in front of everyone. She won't do this stupid thing if she wasn't drunk to a certain extent.

“Shall I get you a glass of water?”

“I see, that's great.”

I jumped off from ane-san's thighs, went to the kitchen to fill up a glass of water, and returned back to the living room.

“Ane-san, here.”

“Thanks.”

After handing the glass of water to ane-san, I chose a seat that's furthest away from ane-san and sat down again. I won't be able to take this if she do something ridiculous in front of everyone.


Pata (the sound as ane-san got up from her seat)

Tatatatata (the sound as ane-san walked over to me)

Oumph (the sound of ane-san hugging me)

“““...”””

Everyone gave me cold observing looks.

Not good... from tomorrow onwards, my nickname will become 'siscon'.

“Sorry, I'm late—Akihisa...kun?”

“I'm sorry, Himeji-san. I understand that you may have lots of things to say, but please just imagine that you didn't see anything.”

Himeji-san brought the cassette gas stove back, and widened her eyes in shock the moment she saw me being hugged by ane-san.

In the end, until ane-san slept, everyone continued to watch me, not looking away from me at all.

“Alright, it's about time to prepare the ingredients for the hotpot.”

Himeji-san put the cassette gas stove she brought from home onto the table.

After keeping aside the appetiser, it's now time for the main course of tonight's dinner—the dark hotpot.

Like usual, allow me to explain the rules of this dark hotpot.

1.The ingredients must be edible.

2.Any food that's taken with the chopsticks must be eaten down.

3.Everyone can choose a food to put into the hotpot (except for the kelp that's used for the soup base).

Normally, we should prepare our own ingredients and thrown them in, but we didn't have much time today. Thus, we'll use all the ingredients we have at my house. At least there won't be anything deadly inside.

In other words, the only thing that will endanger our lives is—

“Oh yes, I brought some hotpot ingredients besides the gas stove☆”

—The terrifying thing that will endanger our lives is right in front of us.

Don't be careless, concentrate hard. This game is a matter of our own lives!

Himeji-san smiled as she opened a 10cm sq rectangular box. Is that the ingredient (?) she brought...

“Everyone has to choose an ingredient and put inside the hotpot. We just need to make sure not to let others see what we put in. Understand?”

“...Un, it won't be interesting if someone sees it.”

“Understood. I'll start then~”

After saying that, Kudou-san, who's the first one to put the ingredient into the hotpot, walked into the kitchen. After her were Minami and Kirishima-san.

“I'm next then.”

Hideyoshi looked somewhat nervous as he got up. After a while, he brought something back as well.

“...My turn.”

Next would be Muttsurini and Yuuji. They chose their ingredients before returning to the seat.

And now, it's my turn.

“...What kind of flavor will it turn out to be?”

“It seems a little scary.”

“Really? I'm rather looking forward to it~”

As the girls continued to talk happily without understanding the situation, I turn my back on the guys who are feeling abnormally tense, and walked towards the kitchen.

“Let's see. What should I choose...?”

Standing in front of the basin, I pondered alone for a while.

Right now, we have to face the dark hotpot, and the action I should choose is way too simple. That's to find a way to dump the ingredient (?) Himeji-san throws in into Yuuji or Muttsurini's stomachs, that's all. Once I do this, I can let everyone else survive.

“But they must be feeling the same way as me.”

No matter whether it's Yuuji or Muttsurini or even Hideyoshi, they will think of sacrificing others to protect their own lives. They won't feel regret over protecting their own lives even if it means sacrificing their friends. That's an important lesson we learnt as we went through this path.

“Okay, first...I should check what everyone choose.”

Even though it's almost a secret as to what everyone chose, but if the stuff that was here yesterday disappeared, I will know what everyone chose. Anyway, let's start from the shelves.

—After checking through the shelves, below the basin, the seasoning rack...hmm, I got it.

The things that disappeared were—

1.Tabasco (New and completely untouched).

2.Tabasco (Opened)

3.Tabasco (Seasoning powder pack that came with pizza delivery)

“THEY'RE ALL A BUNCH OF IDIOTS!!!”

Unexpectedly, everyone loved chilli so much, and I couldn't help but cover my head and shout.

Why did everyone choose Tabasco!? Aren't there any other ingredients to choose from!? What sort of weird interest is it to boil some big red soup!!!

“Akihisa-kun, what's wrong?”

On hearing my horrific cry, Himeji-san called out from the living room. This is bad, if I panic now, I'll be checkmated by them.

“Nothing. I'm alright.”

After recovering, I regain my thoughts and stood in front of the fridge.

“Yuuji and the rest must have chosen stuff from the fridge...”

I guess the people who chose Tabasco were Minami, Kirishima-san and Kudou-san. Putting Tabasco into a dark hotpot will make it some spicy and horrifying food. They chose such a shocking ingredient...most likely, they don't understand that this dark hotpot concerns life and death, and made this peaceful and casual choice. As for people like Yuuji and me, who often had to endure classes of killer cooking in our everyday lives, we wouldn't do that. As for why, that's because even if we added Tabasco, we can't save our own lives. These guys must have made this decision with the intent to make someone else other than themselves eat the ingredient Himeji-san put in. If I don't consider that, I definitely won't be able to survive after eating this dark hotpot.

I took a deep breath and reached for the handle of the fridge, opening it at one go. Let's see, what ingredients are less than before?

“—Spring onion, radish and tofu.”

In terms of ingredients, these will look like a logical choice, but there's an intent to harm others.

As for spring onion...I remember that there's a medicinal effect. In other words, the person wants to use spring onions as defense to protect his own life. Even if it's to play safe, if something really happened, he would only hope for the anti-toxin effects the spring onion brings. I see. This choice shows that even if it's only a 1% chance, he will try his best to increase his chances of surviving. From this choice that's not offensive at all, I guess Hideyoshi chose spring onion.

And now, let's think of the radish that other person took away. Looking at the state of the vegetable knife and the basin, it doesn't seem like they were touched. In other words, the radish that were taken away will be thrown in with it's original triangular shape. I have two less radishes in my house. What's the situation? How can I use radish to let myself live if I choose it?

“Radish...not sliced...triangular-shaped...if I use it...”

I got it! He wants to use the triangular side of the radish to send the ingredient Himeji-san puts in to someone else! Considering that the hotpot's located in the middle of the table and everyone's seats, Himeji-san can't possibly reach out too far, but put the ingredient in front of her. Now the ingredient will slide to someone because of the triangular shape. He probably thought that us members of the killer cooking class would try our best not to touch such dangerous ingredients and choose to pick our own ingredient—things in our area, only for us not to notice that the dangerous ingredient Himeji-san puts in will roll into our areas. Rule two clearly states that anything we pick up with our chopsticks has to be eaten. In that case, this guy just wants the dangerous stuff to be handled by others. This guy...how did he come up with such a dangerous and offensive strategy? This method will only endanger us, who know of the terror of Himeji-san's cooking, and allow him to survive. That guy who thought of this plan must be laughing inside.

Unfortunately,

“This thinking's way too naïve...”

Thinking of such a method is too naïve, and overly stupid. As for why it's stupid, that's because this strategy only considers that what Himeji-san will put into the hotpot is a ball-shaped item.

But I'm doubting whether that's even a solid object. Didn't Himeji-san just say that before she went to get the gas stove? 'The most important thing about the hotpot's the soup base'. Based on Himeji-san's insistent personality, it's more likely that she would add some fluid that will mix the flavors in the soup base up instead of something that won't affect the hotpot. In other words, what Himeji-san will put in may be some basic ingredient like kelp that can be used for a soup base. I can understand that from the preservative container she brought from her house. The person who thought of such a surface-deep situation is way too naïve...so the radish shouldn't be taken by Yuuji. My guess is that Muttsurini chose it.

“In that case, Yuuji chose tofu.”

In that case, I know the ingredient my greatest enemy Yuuji chose. Once I know this, I can sort of understand his strategy, and I can guess what that guy's thinking.

“In that case, I'll choose this.”

I took out that thing from the fridge and sliced it a few times with a vegetable knife.

Next, I just need to find a good place to put this thing in.

The hotpot let out a 'psst psst' sound that sounded appetizing.

The gas stove that's set right in the middle of the table had a large claypot on it. There's nothing inside the pot besides the kelp that's used as the base of the soup. I guess...the most wonderful taste of this pot will be at this moment.

“I'm turning off the lights now~”

As Himeji-san said that, pak, the room became dark. Inside the living room that had the curtains drawn, only the flames of the gas stove was swaying gently. A war is about to break loose.

“I'll put my ingredient in first~”

Kudou-san said in a cheery voice, and at the same time, she dropped something into the pot that let out a 'plop plop' sound that echoed throughout the room. Normally, I should be thinking worriedly “did she put some mochi[2] inside. No , it sounded like a fluid, so it's something else...” but I don't mind today. Besides, I'll be really happy if it was mochi.

“My turn next.”

“...Me too...”

Then, it's Minami and Kirishima-san's turn. Looking at the current situation, there wasn't anything strange inside the claypot. Tabasco? That's not scary no matter how many times I see it added in!

“It's my turn to add it in next.”

“...I'm next.”

After that, Hideyoshi and Muttsurini took action. It seemed that Hideyoshi was holding onto chopsticks as he added one thing after another, and Muttsurini stealthily added something else into the pot. I was right!

“I'm next.”

Yuuji then took out something. It seemed that he was arranging them in a line with his hands. Since he put it in with his hands, it's likely that what he chose was tofu. I'll win this time!

“I'll put mine next.”

After checking that Yuuji put in all his ingredients and retracted his hand back, I put what I chose into the pot. The reason I waited for Yuuji to stop completely was so that I can make sure that the positioning of the ingredients can't be changed through human means.

“I'm last.”

If possible, I really want to cover the pot up and treat it as if it never happened. I guess the members of the killer cooking class must be thinking the same way. But no matter how we cried or begged in our hearts, Himeji-san put what she chose into the claypot mercilessly.

Ploop, ploop...

On hearing that sound, Himeji-san probably chose something that's more like a liquid or jelly.

“...Uu!”

I could feel Muttsurini freeze for a moment. It's too late to regret it now! Go to hell for doing something so reckless without thinking it through!

“Okay. Now, let's turn the fire on and let it simmer.”

Yuuji turned the switched of the gas stove.

There's only a small light in the room, and the silent time came again.

Like what I expected, Hideyoshi cared about defending himself. Muttsurini failed. Thus, Yuuji's the only enemy left.

I watch the flame of the claypot and repeated my battle strategy inside my head.


~Akihisa's side~

Yuuji probably thought this way as he chose the tofu. Once the ingredient Himeji-san throws in dissolves into the soup, it will threaten our lives. In that case, he just needs to block the soup off and let someone be the victim. To complete this mission, he needs to use the tofu and block my and Himeji-san's ingredient off his food, forming a sealed reservoir. His plan must be to push the poison over to me. The reason why he insisted on not putting too much soup inside the claypot is because he's afraid that the cooked tofu will float and form gaps.

In that case, I'll just use Yuuji's strategy against him!

Yuuji will use the tofu to seal Himeji-san and me off. Using that, once I put this ingredient X outside this area, I can be assured of my safety. Also, I'll use konjac[3] and tofu (what Yuuji put) in front of him to form another reservoir. This is another measure for Yuuji.

Of course, if I do this, the soup that flows into Yuuji's area will just be normal soup, and it will be meaningless. It'll be over once the dangerous ingredient flows over to my side.

At this point, I have to make use of the rules of the dark hotpot. Though everyone can choose only one ingredient, there's another ingredient inside the claypot—the kelp that's used to boil the soup.

To let the dangerous ingredient fall into Yuuji's area, I will take the kelp that's heated and curled up and put it in front of Himeji-san's area. With that, the ingredient X (jelly-shaped) will all flow into Yuuji's area, and can prevent everyone else from getting hurt! Yuuji you idiot! Enjoy being trapped in the defense you created!

In this fight for survival, the last one who'll survive is—


~Yuuji's side~

Fooled ya, idiot! Damned Akihisa, so he actually created a sealed off area with the konjac like what I expected. He didn't even think why I chose the konjac without choosing the tofu that will crumble easily, and why I remained silent even though the kelp's all cooked? It's because Akihisa didn't think about this at all that I called him an idiot!

Akihisa's in charge of the kitchen, so he will know what I choose no matter what. Since he knows, that guy will do something to me, and because of that, I must checkmate him back.

First, I left the konjac behind, chose tofu, and poked a few holes in it. These tofu blocks are to separate Akihisa and me. Akihisa must be thinking that the tofu's out of the safe zone and lower his guard. He will naturally reach his chopsticks out and pick the stuff in front of him without know that the tofu wall has a few holes, and I just need to pick food from outside Akihisa and my area.

In this battle of survival, the last one standing will be—

BTS vol 07.5 186.jpg

“—ME!”

“—ME!”

As we waited for the hotpot to boil, time gradually passed.

“It's about time. Turn off the fire.”

After a while, as Yuuji said this, the flame of the gas stove shut off, and the living room descended into darkness again.

“It's finally time...”

“...I'm so nervous.”

“I don't know what kind of taste will it be~”

Though nervous, the girls voices were still full of expectations.

“Then let's open it.”

Minami reached out to grab the cover of the pot and opened it. At that moment, the spicy flavor of Tabasco scattered through the air and reached our noses.

“““Ugh...”””

The girls frowned as they seemed to smell it. This should be their just desserts.

“Then, the dark hotpot game begins officially now!”

“OKAY! LET'S EAT!”

To motivate ourselves,we deliberately increased our volume. I poked my chopsticks inside to grab the food. Now's the important part. I have to be careful not to poke the tofu and konjac that's used as the protective wall.

“Humph, Akihisa, we're facing a dark hotpot, but you're looking rather relaxed.”

“Speaking of which, aren't you the same, Yuuji? It doesn't seem like you know what tragic fate will befall you?”

I continued to search for the food inside the hotpot as I jostled with Yuuji. Fufufu, you big idiot. Did you think that you could use the tofu wall to protect your measly life? In front of this konjac wall I created, you can only feel endless bounds of despair!

Thinking through the painful look Yuuji will soon show, the tip of my chopsticks seem to touch something. This should be a safe zone, so let's take this.

“Akihisa, are you really going to eat that?”

“You too, Yuuji. Don't regret once you pick it up.”

As we decided on our food, Yuuji and I jabbed at each other again. I have to hold my chopsticks tight to prevent the food from dropping back into the pot.

Watching myself so as not to let the food fall, I intend to pick it into my mouth at one go. Ready—

Dloop ← Corroded konjac.


““...””

…..............................................................................What?


My thinking process was short-circuited.

No no no, that's impossible. Something must have gone wrong. Maybe it's because the living room was too dark that I couldn't see clearly. Besides, no matter what, such a thing is impossible!

I decided to pretend that nothing happened and put the piece of konjac back into the claypot.

Fuu...I took a deep breath and again grabbed the thing into my bowl with my chopsticks.


Dloop ← Corroded konjac.


““THE IMPORTANT WALL OF DEFENSE WAS ACTUALLY...!””

“Wha, what's going on? Aki, Sakamoto? Why are you shouting!?”

In the midst of the darkness, the scream Minami made scared Yuuji and me.

Why did the konjac melt? What kind of chemical reaction is that? It's just a hotpot. Why is there a chemical reaction!?

“That Himeji's really scary! So our little tricks couldn't win her...”

The defense wall was actually destroyed. Her thinking can't be put on the same level as our childish tricks of trying to survive! She wasn't someone we could deal with right from the beginning!

“Aki, what happened?”

“No...Minami, don't think too much about it...we're already the side who's going to be taken away...”

“I'm serious! What happened?”

There's no need for Minami to know this. At this point, it's too late to understand.

“F, fine, if you don't want to say it, then I'll...

Just when Minami was about to reach her chopsticks at the claypot—

“Shimada, hold on for a moment.”

Yuuji spoke to stop Minami, and then clasped his fingers together and said with an extremely stern voice,


“Our Father in Heaven...”


“What kind of joke are you pulling, Sakamoto!”

“Minami! You have to pray earnestly too! I don't want to see my friend die at all!”

Hideyoshi and Muttsurini seemed to have clasped their hands together as they prayed silently. We're all feeling the same way.

“--Amen.”

“““--Amen.”””

Everyone drew a cross in front of their chest. It's now the time of judgement.

Gradually getting used to the darkness in front of me, I took up my bowl and chopsticks and looked through the darkness.

A strong pungent smell could be smelled through the hot air that's floating. What's going on? My eyes seem to hurt the moment they touch the hot air that's coming out from the pot. I can't even stop my tears.

“A, Akihisa! Why do I feel that the hot air that came out from the hotpot seem to be purple!?”

“UWOOOAAHHH!! MY EYES! MY EEEYYYYEESSS!!”

“Calm down, Akihisa! You'll create a huge tragedy if you accidentally flip the claypot!”

Yuuji exclaimed as he grabbed my wrist.

It's true that if I flip the claypot accidentally, the terror inside it may spill on the human body or even cause some irreversible and terrifying consequence. Yuuji's right. The thing that shouldn't exist is this hotpot.

“Really, what are you playing around with, Aki?”

“...You're too noisy.”

“Why are you often so cheery, Yoshii-kun and the rest~”

The girls at our table didn't seem to notice the abnormal situation that's happening at the table. No, that shouldn't be the case...

“If you find that it's tough to pick them up with chopsticks, why don't we use a scoop?”

Perhaps knowing that there's tofu and konjac amongst the food, Himeji-san suggested using a scoop, and so, everyone ended up having a scoop to pick the food out from the claypot, and we start to walk up the stairway to heaven one step at a time.

“...I'm tucking in.”

Kirishima-san raised her bowl and took a sip. Now, what sort of reaction will she have?

“...It doesn't taste as weird as how it smells.”

“SHOUKO! YOUR VOICE'S ENTERING MY BRAIN DIRECTLY! IS YOUR SOUL IN YOUR OWN BODY!?”

I seemed to see something white behind Kirishima-san. That's way too dangerous!

“Stop fooling around, Aki! It's better to eat now, right? I'm tucking in.”

“Me too~”

This time, Minami and Kudou-san put the chemical weapons into their mouths.

““AARRRRGGGGGHHHHHH!!!””

“Eh!? Isn't it strange to scream once you put the food in! Wouldn't people normally think that it's either 'good' or 'bad'?”

Both of them collapsed onto the table, not moving at all. Not good, they lost consciousness!

“Mi, Minami-chan!? Shouko-chan!? Aiko-chan!? Wake up!”

Himeji-san frantically called them.

“Ugh...wha, what the heck. This taste is too...”

“...Doesn't taste like food at all.”

“Even, even I can't de...”

The three girls shook their heads and slowly got off. Great, it seem that they're still alive.

“Ugh...really, this terrifying experience actually happened to me...”

“...This is a near death experience.”

“This is the first time I tried this flavor~”

Minami and the rest took their drinks and washed away the taste of death in their mouths.

Once they calmed down slightly—

“Okay, now it's your turn to eat now, Muttsurini-kun~”

Kudou-san said.

“...Uu (Shakes head violently)!”

Seeing that the topic suddenly switched to him, Muttsurini immediately panicked. It's obvious that he would be so terrified after seeing three friends lose consciousness at the same time.

“Ahaha, you don't have to be so scared, Muttsurini-kun. This is nothing.”

“...It's not nothing!”

“If there's really a need too, I'll help you do CPR☆!”

“...Uu!”

“So hurry up and eat up. Ah~”

“...Uu (Shakes head violently)!”

Kudou-san was about to send the bowl of soup to Muttsurini's mouth, and beside me--

“...Yuuji, ah~”

“STOP JOKING AROUND! I'M NOT EATING THERE! AND I DON'T WANT YOU TO DO CPR ON ME EVEN IF I'M UNCONSCIOUS!”

“...There's no need to be ashamed, we kissed before.”

“WHA, WHAT ARE YOU SAYING!? THAT WAS ON THE FOREHEAD, IT DOESN'T COUNT! AND THAT'S BECAUSE YOU MADE ME DO THAT AS PROOF OF APOLOGY!”

“...Don't say anymore, ah~”

Sitting beside me, Yuuji was trying his best to resist Kirishima-san. Anyway, as for the kissing incident I just heard, I'll ask more about it during our FFF court.

“Hey, Aki...”

Because I need to focus on the messenger of death that's slowly approaching me.

“Ah~”

Minami brought the bowl to my mouth. Damn it...she wants me to fall unconscious because she tasted that terrifying feeling of hell!

“Do, don't say that, Minami! I don't want to die yet!”

“What are you saying! Hoping that you won't be involved in this? I won't allow that to happen!”

“Even if you say that, I...”

“Stop yapping and open your mouth!”

I tried to wrestle with Minami. Seeing her like this...did she think that the ones who put that disgusting ingredient into the hotpot was us guys? That's a grave mistake! We're the one protecting everyone!

“Okay. Here, ahh~”

The terrifying and dangerous food is slowly approaching my mouth. It'll be bad if this keeps up!

BTS vol 07.5 196.jpg

“No, wait, if I fall unconscious, will you do CPR on me, Minami?”

I wasn’t careful and let such ridiculous words slip out of my mouth. I’m doomed! Everyone was spouting gibberish, and even I…

I got into a position as I got ready for Minami’s attack (or rather, humiliation), but what I got was an unexpected response.

“Eh? We, well, that, how, how should I put it.”

That’s strange? Minami looks rather panicky. Ah, I know! There was a little misunderstanding between Minami and me before.

Thinking that this is way too awkward, I just couldn’t say anything as I just remained there silently and blankly.

At this moment, Minami said shyly,

“...We, well…if…if Aki wishes for it…”

Hm? If I wish for it?

“—E, even if you’re not knocked unconscious, I can…”

“Ehhh!? Minami, what are you saying?”

Wait a second! Let me calm down first. If I feel all elated here, maybe I will lose all important clues. CPR…that’s right. Minami never said she would do it mouth-to-mouth. Maybe she will flip my body when I’m unconscious and stamp hard on my back…

“M, Minami-chan’s too sneaky! You’re cheating!”

“Here, Aki, open wide. Ahh!”

“UGH!”

Just when I was thinking, Minami quickly dumped the hotpot soup into my mouth at lightning speed. Damn it, she got me!


“Here, Muttsurini-kun, have some.”

“…U…gu…!”

“…Yuuji, open wide.”

“UGH!”


My friends who were not far away seem like they were forced to open their mouths, and they had something stuffed into their mouths.

She got me…my, my consciousness…


“Well…Minami-chan, let’s play janken. The winner will do CPR on Akihisa-kun…”

“Tha, that can’t do. Aki only asked me. You heard that.”

“Too sneaky…Minami-chan, didn’t you kiss Akihisa-kun before…”


Not good…my consciousness…

“…Yuuji, it’s now my turn to save you.”

“Muttsurini-kun. How does the dark hotpot taste?”


My consciousness…


--Didn’t fade.

“That’s strange? I’m completely alright.”

“What the heck. We’re all fine.”

“…I feel fine too.”

“Hm? That’s true. This hotpot’s spicy, but even I feel that this isn’t lethal.”

Yuuji and Muttsurini, who were forced to eat this dark hotpot, and Hideyoshi, who ate some on his own, seemed to be all fine without any abnormalities. What the heck. We were scared for nothing then?

“I see. So we unknowingly developed some resistance?”

“Besides, we had all sorts of terrifying things stuffed into our mouths.”

“…Really a complicated feeling.”

I took a scoop of bright red soup, and there’s a few blocks of tofu and konjac that’s meshed together with the Tabasco, and then eat the radish and spring onion inside. It’s thanks to everyone adding stuff into the hotpot that Himeji-san’s terrifying ingredient was greatly weakened.

This level of cooking can be considered cute. It’s just some numbness to the tongue and limbs.

“Wh, why are you all alright!? The taste of this hotpot’s extremely terrifying!”

“…I can’t understand at all.”

“Yoshii-kun, do you guys have a taste problem?”

Seeing us all peaceful here, Minami and the rest were all shocked and stunned.

“Arre? Where did everyone go to?”

“Are you awake now, ane-san? It’s quite late already, and everyone went home.”

After the dark hotpot meeting, I was washing the dishes in the kitchen when ane-san, who was sleeping in the other room, came over. To be honest, I didn’t expect ane-san to sleep so deeply because she got drunk. As my parents could drink a lot, I thought that ane-san’s tolerance shouldn’t be bad…maybe it’s because she’s been sick recently?

“Akira-san, you’re awake? Does your head hurts?”

“Thanks, Mizuki-san. The alcohol’s wearing out. I’m alright.”

Himeji-san, who stayed behind with me to wash the dishes, poured a glass of water and passed it to ane-san. After she drank it, ane-san turned to Himeji-san.

“Speaking of which, is it alright for you not to be back home this late, Mizuki-san? Wouldn’t your parents be worried?”

“It’s alright. My house’s nearby, and my parents aren’t back yet, so I don’t have to worry about the time.”

Just when Himeji-san was about to reach out for the empty glass ane-san drank from—


Prrr!! Prrr!!


The handphone ringtone could be heard from her pocket.

“Ah, sorry. Seems like it’s my call. Let me pick it up for a while.”

Himeji-san nodded slightly, and then turned to pick the phone up.


“Hello hello? Okaa-san, how’s the wedding ceremony? Me? I’m okay here—eh? So, so that’s how it is. Are you alright? Un, un…”


Himeji-san seemed to be shocked as she raised her pitch slightly. What happened? From her tone, did someone have an accident or something?

“Really? No, don’t worry, I’ll be fine. Un, un, really…what rare chance. Okaa-san’s as carefree as ever…okay, I understand. So be it then.”

After putting down the phone, Himeji-san turned around. It seemed like the phone call just now wasn’t some good news…

“Himeji-san, what happened?”

“Ah, it’s nothing. It’s just that my parents can’t get back immediately.”

“Eh? Is that so? What happened to them?”

“I heard that there was a strike at the airport, and the planes couldn’t fly…”

“Flights terminated…Aki-kun, can you please turn the TV on.”

“Un. Got it.”

I did what ane-san told me to do and turned the TV in the living room on, switched the channels, and found a live news feed from a foreign country.


“Nakanishi-san, this means that the airport can’t be used, right?”

“Yes. As the airport personnel are all unhappy, they are protesting for better work conditions. It seems that it can’t operate normally for the time being, but there should be no worries about a riot.”

The screen’s showing the tourists who were bemused that they couldn’t leave the country and the workers who were raising their banners in protest.

“Is it this country?”

“Yes. My parents went to the wedding of an old friend…”

Himeji-san said that her parents went out for a banquet. So they went overseas.

“But at least it doesn’t look dangerous. That country’s security’s rather good.”

Ane-san said this as she watched the news. Really? It’s great that the security’s good. This may be the best thing out of this.

“Yes. Okaa-san even said ‘it’s a rare chance, so before the airport starts operations, I’ll stay and sightsee with otou-san.’”

“Ahaha, Himeji-san’s mom’s really so optimistic.”

“Okaa-san’s such a carefree person…”

In that case, they can only wait until the strike stops. It’s good that Himeji-san’s parents are fine.

In that case, the problem now is—

“Mizuki-san, what do you intend to do?”

“Well, I can’t do anything in Japan…so I can only wait for them to come back. But all flights were terminated. I have no idea when they’ll come back.”

“Ahh, that’s not it, Himeji-san. Ane-san’s not asking that.”

“???”

“Mizuki-san, you’re stay alone before your parents come back?”

“Ah, yes. I’ll be alone at home during this time.”

Himeji-san has to live alone. That’s a little, no, very worrying…it’s too unsafe for a girl at this age to be alone, especially since security’s been bad recently…

Just when I was thinking about what to do,

“How about you move over to our house first before your parents come back?”

Ane-san suddenly asked. EH? EEEEHHHHHH!!!???

(Ho, hold on a minute, ane-san! Can this really do?)

I frantically grabbed ane-san’s shoulders and whispered to her. Of course, I wanted to let Himeji-san move over to live with us for the time being after knowing of her situation—but I never expected ane-san to say this. Didn’t she often say that she would object to any impure relationship or something? And now that she invited Himeji-san. Is this really okay?

(What’s not alright? This is for Mizuki-san’s good.)

Ane-san answered me without a single doubt, and then adds on,

(Or does Aki-kun prefer the ane-san who’ll sit by and watch even after seeing this situation?)

Ane-san gave a mischievous smirk as she said this.

(That’s not true! I like ane-san like this the most!)

(Ane-san’s happy that you’ll say that.)

If not for Himeji-san in front of us, I could have given ane-san a big hug. My ane-san may lack common sense, but she’s really a kind and understanding person!

Just when I’m really touched by ane-san’s actions, Himeji-san timidly said to us,

“Well…I understand your kind intentions, but this will trouble you. I can’t…”

“No, we don’t feel troubled at all because Mizuki-san’s a good girl.”

“Yeah. And if Himeji-san shifts over to live with us, your parents will be more relaxed.”

“Even if you say that…”

Himeji-san should be worried about having to live alone, but she wouldn’t nod her head to agree to our proposal.

“And I still have most of the seafood ingredients I drew. If you don’t hate it, how about you finish them off with us, Himeji-san?”

“Ho, how can I possibly hate it?”

“You don’t? Okay, then it’s decided.”

After getting Himeji-san affirmation, things were decided like that.

This may be a misleading question, but I’ll close one eye at that. It would be another matter altogether if she really doesn’t want to live with us, but Himeji-san didn’t look like she was really against it.

“Ah, tha, that, I…”

Himeji-san seemed like she didn’t know what to do as she hesitated for a long time before saying in a concerned manner,

“In that case…I’m sorry, but I’ll be disturbing you for a few days…”

After saying that, Himeji-san bowed to us. How polite!

“We need to learn from you here, Himeji-san. If there’s anything troubling you, you can tell us anything.”

“Mizuki-san, you may be worried about moving in with a boy of the same age, but I’ll bear responsibility for that and watch Aki-kun’s actions, so you can relax.”

“Ah, no, there’s no need. If it’s Akihisa-kun, I’ll…”

“To be specific, if there’s any incident, I’ll break one of Aki-kun’s fingers.”

“Wa, wait a second, ane-san!”

“And once there’s no more fingers to break, I’ll snap his back.”

“DON’T SAY SUCH THINGS, ANE-SAN! THAT’S BASICALLY DECLARING MY DEATH!”

And thus, after the sports meeting ended, I will be living together with Himeji-san.

Himeji-san entering my daily life; how would that turn out…

“Th, this girl’s impolite and incapable. Please take care of me!”

Anyway, at least I know that Himeji-san’s someone who gets flustered easily.


Notes[edit]

  1. Chicken breast (鶏ささみ, torisasami) and shears (金鋏) kanabasami.
  2. Mochi (餅) is a Japanese rice cake made of glutinous rice (not to be confused with gluten) pounded into paste and molded into shape.
  3. Konjac (蒟蒻), elephant yam.