CHAPTER 9 SAKURA MANA PART 2

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Haru-kun was nowhere to be found at the usual meeting place.

Was he sick or something?

Haru-kun rarely missed school, but not entirely.

So I didn't mind that much but…

Haru-kun didn't show up the next day, or the day after that.

 

『When they grow up, they'll probably have a girlfriend or something before we know it.』

 

I thought about that annoying line again.

Had my fears come true?

I was afraid to find out for sure, but I knew there was nothing I could do without knowing for sure, so I headed to Haru-kun's junior high school.

 

I was sure that a “Beautiful Older Sister” shouldn't ambush him.

But I felt that if I didn't talk to him now, we wouldn't be able to be together anymore, so I kept waiting in front of the school gate at the junior high school.

However, Haru-kun did not appear.

I wanted to stay until he came out, but for some reason, people started gathering and it became noisy, so he left.

 

Even so…I was a high school freshman and he was a junior in high school .
We are leagues apart, so when I looked at them as a group of junior high school students, they all looked like children.

They were no different from elementary school students.

I couldn’t see them as an object of romantic interest at all, but Haru-kun was different.

In the end, it doesn't matter how old we were, it doesn't matter if we were older or younger, it was okay because it was Haru-kun.

 

The next day, and the day after that, I continued to wait while ignoring the children who spoke to me; but I could not find Haru-kun at all.

Could it be that he was avoiding me?

For the first time, the thought of that possibility made the blood in my body run cold.

I need to go to a more reliable place to meet him!

Nervously, I ambushed Haru-kun in front of his house.

After a while, Harukun shows up.

I felt happy to see Haru-kun for the first time in a while, but felt sad that he didn't make eye contact with me.

 

“…Are you busy lately…?”

“No…”

“Are you feeling sick…?”

“I'm in excellent health.”

 

…Are you in love with someone else…?

 

I wanted to ask him, but I was afraid so I tried to change the subject.

 

“…did I do something to offend you…?”

“?”

“Then why don't you come see me anymore…?”

“??”

 

This was bad.

I’m going to cry.

Tears slowly welled up in my eyes.

Then Haruki-kun became impatient.

 

When a girl starts crying, you would get impatient even if you don't like her.

As I was desperately trying to hold back, Haru-kun's expression, which had been flustered, suddenly changed.

It was as if a good idea had occurred to him…as if he had realized something…

 

“I love you.
I will always love you!”

“Eh…?”

 

It took me a while to look him straight in the eye and understand what he said.

EH!? EEHH—!!?

I'm happy, but I'm extremely happy, but why all of the sudden!?

I panicked, but I had to act like a big sister! *Huff*

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“Do…”

“Do?”

“Do…you want me as your girlfriend…?” (Fix this line on chapter 5)

 

I thought I was trying to sound older, but…I sound too arrogant!!!

I’m so stupid!

 

I knew it! I wondered what I would do if he said, “No, I’m good!” but Haru-kun gave me his usual…wait no, more-than-usual smile.

 

“YES PLEASE!!!”

 

The world brightens up as if a light had shone from the sky.

Ah~ Haru-kun, you are my angel!

 

And so we became boyfriend and girlfriend without incident.

We finally made it this far. 

We have been together for some time now, so there has not been a drastic change, even so our relationship has made our days more enjoyable.

 

We started calling each other by our first name, and I would learn a little bit of naughty things that I'd heard on TV, in cartoons, and from people around me!

Haru-kun…Haru’s reaction was also cute.

I don't mean to tease him, but I'm so happy that he was thrilled with me when I tend to act like an older sister.

 

When I became a high school student, I often heard from my friends who had girlfriends that they were pursuing male-female relationships.
(Seggs)

It may be wrong to ask Haru, a junior high school student, to do the same thing, but I've become interested too…

I've been playing the big sister for a long time now, but I'm wondering if Haru might push me to do that kind of thing? I thought so selfishly.

It was so embarrassing!

Haru, who was always so sweet and smiling, came on to me in a serious, yet desperate, can't afford it kind of way! I was so excited to have this fantasy…

Come on, make it real! Otherwise my fantasies will get more and more extreme! Because of that my mind was in turmoil for a while.

So I tried increasing the physical contact and showing my skin in an inviting manner, but Haru did not attack me as much as I wanted him to.

Why so–!?

In the end, I took the first step by acting like an older sister, but I want Haru to do his best from that point on.
(Fix this part(Haru’s pov) this part on chapter 3)

I was really embarrassed!

 

Then when I went to college—

My friends began to talk more and more about my romantic relationships.

Perhaps it was inevitable since I was the only one among my close friends who did not have a boyfriend, but they persistently talked about it even when I told them I was not interested.

Don't you guys have too much time on your hands?

 

All of my friends seemed like troublesome relatives who were pushing me to go on blind dates, and because of that I was getting pretty stressed out, so I finally told them, “I have a boyfriend!”

I thought this would clear things up, but sure enough, when some people found out that Haru was in high school, they started talking about it.

‘High school students are just kids, and that boy isn't even good looking, he's just normal!’ I was once told.

They went all the way to see Haru.

They were too scary and annoying!

‘Isn't there someone more deserving?’ I was also told that.

The man I love is the one who deserves me!

I want you to leave me alone.

 

“Hey, I have a good idea…”

 

One suggestion that came to me after I became increasingly frustrated during my time in college was from a girl I had become friends with after I started college.

The girl's idea was that I should pretend that I was dating someone who was having the same problems as I was, and shut them up.

The person in trouble was the boy's older brother.

I have seen him before and he was indeed a handsome man.

I have no interest in him at all, just that he was beautifully sculpted.

 

He was one year older than me, popular but doesn't have a girlfriend.
But just like mine, he was having trouble with people around him because they were too noisy.

I was sure that this senior would be a good wall.

I didn't like the idea of calling anyone other than Haru my boyfriend, even if it was a lie, but I accepted the proposal because I didn't want it to get any more extreme than it already was, since there were even people who went to see Haru.

I promised him that the only time I would lie or pretend to be in a relationship would be in college, and I don't think the story would ever reach Haru’s ears.

Not wanting to cause unnecessary worry, I decided to deal with the situation without telling Haru.
(Are u dumb?)

 

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“Eh? You want us to meet outside?”

 

In order to pretend that I was dating a senior, we had lunch together in the college cafeteria on rare occasions, and he asked me to pretend that we were on a date outside.

 

“No thanks.”

 

I immediately said no, but my senior friend said, ‘That's strange because you are not together on our days off and I haven't heard anything about you guys going on a date!’ They were suspicious of me.

Why not just lie about it? I suggested, but he pushed me away because it would be quicker to show them once we were on a date.

I told him, “Just this once, okay?” but that was a big mistake.

 

On the day of the fake date, Haru said he would be at his home for the day and I knew he wouldn't find out about this.

I didn't need to get dressed up to go out with someone other than Haru, so I wore my normal clothes to college.

My senior noticed this and said, “Let's go shopping for clothes.” But I politely declined.

The senior must be wealthy because he drove a luxury car and tried to give me gifts everywhere I went besides clothes….parents, huh?

Haru wouldn't be spending his parents' hard-earned money on splurges and girls!

Ahh~ I already miss Haru so much!

It was not fun at all, and it was hard to pretend to be friendly with my senior friends because I didn't know where they were watching.

I did get over it though by thinking about Haru!

 

Looking back, I wish I had been honest with Haru about the situation from the beginning—I really think I was so stupid.

 

『Be happy with someone who is worthy of you.
Thank you for everything.
Goodbye.』

 

My mind went blank when I saw the message that came from Haru in the middle of our date.

 

“…He saw me…!!”

 

I knew immediately.

 

“He must be nearby!”

 

I ran out of the store and looked for Haru.

 

Calm downI should be able to find Haru in no time!

 

I looked around as if praying, and there he was!

 

“Haru! …Eh?”

 

Beyond Haru, I saw a car that was strangely pulling over to the edge of the road.

It would have run off the road and onto the sidewalk if it continued on its course, but it did not correct its position.

I was worried that it might be dangerous.

The car was getting closer and closer to Haru, and It was still acting strangely.

If I don't do something…it will hit Haru!

 

“HARUUU!!!!”

 

I shouted as hard as I could, but Haru was staring at his phone screen and didn't notice.

AHH THIS WAS BAD! I thought.

I ran up to him as fast as I could, but…I couldn't get to him in time!

 

*Screeeeeech* The sound of brakes echoed.

 

Haru took his eyes off her phone and looked up…

 

*Crash**Crash**Crash* There was a roar that made me want to cover my ears.

I closed my eyes unintentionally, but…but I had to make sure Haruwas okay as soon as possible!

I clenched my trembling hands and headed for the crowd that had already formed.

 

“……….”

 

What I saw right away was red.

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The smell of iron mixed with the smell of cars made me realize immediately that it was not paint but blood.

Then, At the center of that blood was—

 

I found myself choking up.

 

“No way…this is a lie…Haru! HARU!!!”

 

Haru, who was wearing a restaurant uniform I have never seen before, was dyed in bright red.

I jumped and touched Haru and because of that my hand was also wet red.

 

“Stop! You better not move him!”

 

Someone pulled my arm and dragged me away from Haru.

 

“Did you call an ambulance!?”

“I already called one! They'll be here soon, but…”

“Should I give him CPR!?”

“No, that is…”

 

The people around me were dealing with the situation, but all I could do was stare at Haru.

 

“Haru…! Haru…!!!”

 

He wouldn’t move no matter how much I called out to him.

 

“This isn’t real…Haru please answer me!!!”

 

I screamed, but Haru didn't move.

The siren of an ambulance could be heard in the distance.

Please help Haru, quickly!

I thought so, but he still wouldn’t move.

 

Suddenly I spotted something in a pool of blood near Haru's wounded hand.

It might have fallen from Haru's hand.

I grabbed it unconsciously and found that it was a strap of a cat character that I claimed to like.

It was attached to a bottle of milk tea in a campaign right now.

 

Maybe…he bought it for me?

Even though he doesn't like milk tea?

It must be so.

He always bought me sweets or magazines that he thought I would like.

“I found this!” That was what he would say while happily giving it to me…

I couldn't resist clutching the bloody strap that I didn't even know what color it was.

 

“UWAAAAHHH!!!!”

“Hey! You can’t! You shouldn’t move him!”

“Haru! Haru, wake up! Please wake up!!!”

 

I don't remember much after that.

I got into the ambulance together with him, and while I was waiting at the hospital, Haru's father and mother came over.

Then, I don’t know how but I found myself at home…

 

Haru left me, and I could not be there to say goodbye.

 

I didn't feel like going to college and took a break for a while, and my Senior and friend came to my house to check on me.

But I didn't want to let them up to my house because I didn't want to see my senior's face again.

So I tried to deal with her at the door and ask her to leave, but she was insistent that she would stay behind with Senior because he was worried about me.

I got more and more frustrated, and when I asked them to leave more forcefully, my friend said,

『Since you just lost your boyfriend, why don't you go out with Onii-chan, for real?』(I want to punch her so bad.)

In an instant, the blood rushed to my head.

What did you say!? I don't want anyone but Haru!

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This time I yelled at them, and pushed them out of the way as if hitting them to make them leave.

 

I really am an idiot.

I finally realized it. 

The two of them had been trying to fill the hole from the beginning, trying to get my senior and I to go out with each other.

“Maybe it's…” when I heard what they said earlier, I questioned my other friends to confirm it.

I fell for their lame ploy and went on a date with him; and lost my precious Haru.
(Deserve hehe)

 

“I was such a b*tch, and betrayed Haru…”

 

It was my fault.

 

If I hadn't been in that place…If I'd had our usual Sunday…If we'd been together…

 

It was really all my fault.

 

“…I should apologize…”

 

I went to see Haru's mother.

I told her everything, saying that it was my fault that Haru had died.

 

“What are you talking about! It wasn't Mana-chan's fault!  It's the driver's fault! If I said anything, Haru, who really loves you would scold me, you know?”

 

Mother said so and laughed.

She was kind.

This was hard for me because she was really kind…

This would have been easier if she had blamed me and yelled, “It's your fault!”

 

After leaving Haru’s house, for some reason I wandered over to the scene of the accident, which I thought I didn't want to go to.

There were many offerings of flowers, sweets, and juice at the place where Haru's life was cut short.

Haru, who was friendly and kind, had many friends.

As expected of Haru, he was a popular person.

As I stood there thinking about this, a child passed by and pointed to the flowers and asked his mother, who was with him.

 

“Mama! Did anyone die there? Is there a ghost?”

“H-Hey…!”

 

The mother looked at me, bowed her head awkwardly, and left.

Hey Haru, have you become a ghost?

I laughed even though I knew it was rude.

But kids say what they think, so it can't be helped.

Besides, I don't care if he was a ghost, I just want to see Haru…

 

I caress the cat strap I've been clutching since Haru disappeared.

Hey, did you know?

I'm really more of a dog person than a cat person?

Haru said I was cat-like and said I was cute, so I just kept pretending to be a cat lover…But, I prefer a friendly and charming dog like Haru than a cat.

I've been meaning to say that someday, but I guess I will never get a chance to say it now…

 

When I closed my eyes, I felt lightheaded.

My head was dizzy from lack of sleep and crying all the time.

I wondered if I could sleep here, since it seemed like I was close to Haru.

While I was thinking about that, I heard a voice nearby.

 

—Can you listen to my request?

 

Who?

It was the voice of a young child, but it was very polite and elegant.

 

—If you will listen to me, I will grant your wish.

 

A wish?

I only have one wish.

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