Nishimiya’s going to Tokyo? Ishida’s exhausted!!
Chapter 60 – “What”
I’ve decided to think about this calmly.
Why is it that I can cheer folks like Sahara and Ueno on, but I can’t do the same for Nishimiya?
“You shouldn’t go to Tokyo because it’s a scary place and you’re deaf.” I realized that I wasn’t saying what I truly thought from the moment I opened my mouth.
In other words, I simply didn’t want Nishimiya to go.
It’s selfishness, plain and simple.
If you’re that concerned about Nishimiya-san, then why don’t you go to Tokyo with her?
Why is that…?
I can tell from the look on your face.
It’s not like there’s anything in particular you want to do, right?
Don’t think about the money; just do what you want to do.
Is it Nishimiya-san?
From: Nishimiya Shouko
Subject: Sorry about yesterday
“I’ve thought a lot about what was said yesterday.
In truth, I think that a part of me may have been fascinated by Tokyo.
But I can’t go there just because I find it fascinating, right?
I have my sister to think about, and I think my family and yours would be a bit lonely if I went.
I can get qualified anywhere, so maybe I’ll try it here instead of in Tokyo.”
Oh… I’m feeling really guilty now…
Really? Nishimiya-san was thinking about going to Tokyo, huh?
I think it’s a waste of an opportunity for her to change her mind, though!
Geez, have you sent her a reply?
No, not yet. I’m not sure how I should respond.
Maybe you should tell her that you’re going with her?
My mom said the same thing. I give up.
You said you were going to a college nearby, right?
Yeah… It’s not like I want to do anything in particular, though…
I’m still unsure… and I’ve always thought that I’d stay close to home.
I always get nervous when Mom’s taking care of customers. I always wonder if this customer’s gonna be weird, or think about how that last customer was scary.
I’m the only guy in my house, after all. It’s always been on my mind.
I’ve never thought about leaving home.
Aren’t you guys a little worried, too? Like about what career you want?
I’m majoring in film! I’m trying to persuade my folks as hard as I can!
Fufu, you sure are stubborn, aren’t you, Nagatsuka-kun?
What? You wanna fight about it?
No, I meant that in a good way.
You wanna be a teacher, right, Mashiba-kun?
Yeah. I’m going to Kuise University.
But I’m still not entirely sure if I wanna be a teacher. I just felt as though I’d found the kind of dream that fit me, that’s all.
We may be high schoolers now, but we’ll no longer be anything once we graduate. That’s why I think we have to figure out what we want to do as soon as possible.
What college are you going to, Kawai-san?
The same one you’re going to.
You like me that much, do you?
Do what YOU want to do, okay?
That’s what I want to do. It’s just how I am.
I see. Then do your best, okay?
Dude, Mashiba-kun, if you aren’t interested in her, you’ve gotta tell her! What exactly do you think of her, anyway?
Hm? I love her.
Yeah, almost as much as little kids.
So I guess that would put her third in line.
She’s still pretty high up on the list, though. I love kids too.
What is it?
What gave you the idea to become a hairdresser?
Doesn’t it look fun? Snip, snip.
Oh, that’s right. Take a look at this.
It says that Yuzu-chan won a citywide contest.
Isn’t that impressive?
Oooh. It’s the one Nishimiya submitted.
Yuzu-chan’s here, so could you grab the jellies from the fridge?
‘Sup, Yuzuru. Congrats for winning.
Indeed. Please, have a seat.
W-wait, you’re going to school now?
The winter uniform looks good on you!
Much obliged. Sit, if you will.
So here’s my first test. As you can see, my score’s terrible.
Oh, wow. You’re right about that.
I’ve barely managed to hide it from Shouko and my old lady.
They’re definitely gonna kill me. It’ll be the afterlife for me. You’ve gotta help me, buddy!
Alright. Looks like you’ve finally decided to go for it.
Yeah. It’s about time, right?
Can we tackle my homework first?
(She’s holding a math textbook)
Yeah, I’ll take a look at it. Why don’t you try the problems on your own, first?
And you have to use that here.
I’m trying to persuade my folks as hard as I can!
We’ll no longer be anything once we graduate.
It’s just how I am.
Yuzuru, Nishimiya said she’s not going to Tokyo.
I’m still in this pitiful state, so she couldn’t possibly go, right?
She gave me a chance to go back to school. With that picture…
They actually gave me a lot of praise at school today. It was a bunch of folks I didn’t know. So I’ve gotta live up to their expectations.
Well that means you’ll have to get 100% on your next test, right?
You sure? It’d be better if I got a 30, otherwise she’ll be relieved and go to Tokyo for real, you know?
Yeah, I’m okay with that.
Would you be okay with that too?
In that case, would you mind if I switched sides to encourage her to go to Tokyo?
I got a reply back from Nishimiya.
“Thanks. I’ll take my time and think about it,” she said. And she also said she’d be rooting for my dreams too.
My dreams, huh?
It seemed to be so far off that I never gave it any thought.
But Nishimiya will no doubt do what she’s set out to do, and so will the others. So where does that leave me?
What will I become, I wonder?
The boy ponders and struggles. And time moves on.
The story heads towards its climax. Continued in Issue 50.