Meito: "Done. Don't worry about it, it doesn't seem like it will be difficult to repair."
Junko: "Repair is not enough... I want to make it better..."
Meito: "All right! We'll make it better! It'll be the most awesome bicycle ever made!"
She finally tilts her head in my direction. Is she looking at me, or through me? I don't quite understand, but at least I managed to get some kind of reaction.
She nods after a while.
Junko: "I'll be going... Later, Oda-senpai."
So we said, but we both need to go to the main building now. Why is it always so awkward when I'm around Junko? I follow her from a certain distance until we reach our respective lockers and we part ways.
Sometimes I wish I could do something for her, I wish I could break the shell that separates her from the rest of the world.
But in the end I don't think I'm really cut for helping others with their problems and their lives. I would probably just worsen the situation, so I just deal with her strange behavior without questioning. The other club members are the same.
Come to think of it, it wasn't hard to imagine she didn't make any friends among her classmates. She probably talks to them a lot less than she does with the club members and none of us really understand her.
In the beginning I thought it was because she's the only female member of our circle, but considering her interests and her personality, she's probably even worse at dealing with other girls.
I slide open the door of my classroom and I find everyone already sitting in front of their desks. I think I barely made it on time. I hear footsteps coming from the corridor, it must be Nagaoka, that teacher is always precise like a clock.
I quickly move to my seat before it's too late. Hitomi, who's just on my left, grins at me.
Hitomi: "Just in time, useless man."
Meito: "Shut up, it's not my fault. I had to deal with Teramoto and her groupies."
It's just my luck that I ended up next to her. Sumomo on the other hand is quite far and I can barely see her beyond the bulky frame of the local fat-ass.
Oh well, I guess I should be content that we are classmates, and besides I doubt I could concentrate if I had her in my field of vision all the time. Not that I can focus on the lessons anyway though...
The real problem in the end is Hitomi, who seems to enjoy distracting me at every single occasion. And of course Nagaoka never scolds her, just me.
Hitomi: "Liar! I've seen you going inside the lab with Andou-chan, you two all by yourselves."
Damn! I forgot you can see the lab quite well from the window of this classroom.
Hitomi: "Did you kiss her?"
Meito: "What's with that all of a sudden?!"
Hitomi: "He's here."
I swear she calculated the timing with absolute precision! I turn to the door just in time to see Nagaoka sending a disapproving stare right to me.
One of these days, Hitomi... one of these days...
I automatically follow the instructions of our class rep. while trying to subdue my anger. I just hope Hitomi isn't giving any wrong idea to Sumomo. The last thing I want is for her to think that I love someone else.
Wait... why am I worried about that? It's not like it would change a damn thing since I already gave up on Sumomo...
It's a complicated feeling...
Did I really lose any hope after all? Deep inside I still wish for things to change and for a chance to make my move. Although rationally I should just be a good friend to Sumomo and nothing else.
In that case, why would it be wrong if I dated another girl? It's not like I promised her anything.
But inside my heart that just feels wrong, it would be the same as betraying her, even if logically I shouldn't feel that way at all!
In the meantime Nagaoka is taking attendance. I can't say we like each others at all, which is very bad, because from the start of this year he's my homeroom teacher.
You might have already realized it at this point, but I'm considered a problem child in this school. I wonder why, I think I'm quite a good guy.
Just because my grades are bad, it doesn't mean that I'm a delinquent.
Just because I often skip school, it doesn't mean that I'm a delinquent.
Just because I yelled at a teacher in an occasion or two, it doesn't mean that I'm a delinquent.
Just because I got caught exchanging fists with that idiot Baba, it doesn't mean that I'm a delinquent.
I seriously don't understand. Teachers are really strange people...
I absentmindedly get through the boring lessons without actually listening to anything of what they say. I sometimes wonder if I'm really the odd one for not being able to keep my mind focused on someone who talks for more than five minutes straight.
If we are just supposed to listen passively, wouldn't it be easier to just read a book? It could save a lot of time and trouble. Except I'm bad with books too...
In the end I'm just not cut for studies at all. Lucky I only need to endure one more year and I'll be as free as a bird!
I wonder what will happen then. Will Hitomi keep clinging on me? I plan to move to my own place, so I guess that we will go on our separate way. That means I will sever every tie with Sumomo as well.
It's a very sad thought, but in the end it's better that way. I'm just hurting myself by staying so close to her and yet remaining so far.
One more year. One more year and everything will change, but until then I'll just put on hold all my problems and enjoy the good side of my high school life. One more year of Sumomo.
Class after class, time relentlessly creeps away, and before I realize it, it's already lunch break. Hitomi, naturally, kept bothering me the whole time. "Lend me this", "lend me that", "what did the teacher just said?"
As if I knew! I wasn't even listening!
Hitomi: "Stupid useless man..."
Meito: "Still pouting from back then? Why can't you just take care after yourself like everyone else?"
Hitomi: "But I was doing it for you! I know how you space out so I wanted to keep you focused."
Meito: "As if there was a chance I could buy that!"
Hitomi: "Meh... your distrust in me really hurts, you know?"
Meito: "Who do you think I am? I know you way too well to fall for your cheap tricks..."
Sumomo gingerly stands up from her seat and joins us.
Sumomo: "What are you guys talking about?"
Hitomi: "This useless man is useless. We need to do something quickly!"
Sumomo: "Then, let's eat lunch together!"
I'll never cease to be amazed at how quickly you can make Hitomi drop a topic for another.
Meito: "Then, I will gladly join you."
Hitomi: "Nobody invited you!"
Meito: "What?! Didn't Sumomo invite me as well?"
Hitomi: "You got it all wrong! She was talking to me, and just me!"
Meito: "That's a lie! Sumomo, say something!"
Hitomi: "If you put it that way, she'll tell you to join us out of pity."
Meito: "What? But... but..."
Sumomo: "A-hem... please... calm down..."