Ch 15 Betrayal (Souta’s POV)
I walked down the corridor, feeling very angry.
“Why did… you betray me like that…!”
I was betrayed by my childhood friend whom I believed in.
I just saw with my own eyes… my childhood friend Kanae kissed Yukiya on a deserted stair landing…!
On my phone, which I’m clutching right now, I have a picture of the scene that I took on the spur of the moment.
In other words, I was being “cuckolded” by another childhood friend, Yukiya, who was also my precious childhood friend, Kanae!
If I may point out for the record, Kanae definitely had a crush on me. As proof of this, I had heard rumors that Kanae had a thing for me many times, and we went to and from school together every day, even during lunchtime.
That’s it? You might be thinking, what’s the point of a girl of your age staying with the same boy all the time? I’m not an insensitive person.
Once you’ve taken a liking to someone, if you’ve been around them for a long time, it’s your responsibility as a childhood friend to keep thinking about them. There was no way I could allow her to change her mind.
But why is Kanae with Yukiya?
As soon as I raised this question, a flash of lightning, as if it were the will of the world, roared in my mind.
“So, that’s what this is all about…?”
A possibility emerged that would explain everything. It’s a possibility that Yukiya is threatening Kanae in some way.
But if so, it’s hard to point it out head-on. No matter how sincerely I face it, Yukiya will always deny the truth…
If that’s the case, why not force him to admit the truth? As a martial arts master, I can easily overwhelm the physically superior Yukiya.
However, it would be bad if he were to report me to the school or to the police. When people are cornered, they will do even the dirtiest things.
“That’s why I need to be sure…”
First of all, I’d like to confirm the facts and, although I don’t need to ask, Kanae’s feelings.
“Hmm… I don’t have this kind of pattern for me, who is a shady man…”
To be honest, it’s a pain in the ass, but it’s my responsibility as a childhood friend to protect and take care of Kanae, so I have no choice.
Once again, I was aware of my responsibilities, and the anger and distraught I had felt earlier were gone, and my typical calmness returned.
“Okay, so I’m going to probe Yukiya directly, and this time I’m going to give him a thicker nail, but would the same girl from… be better suited to confirm Kanae’s feelings?”
If I were to ask Kanae about her feelings, it might give the other girls an unpleasant misunderstanding. Even in the novels I love to read, such trivial things can cause misunderstandings, so I’m going to be very careful.
Besides, it’s not my image to ask such a thing.
I know that it is my duty to protect my solitary image in Kanae’s mind. That’s why I can’t ask Kanae about her feelings.
But then I would need the help of a girl. As you can imagine, I can’t solve this problem by myself.
“Damn it… is there no other way…?”
After much deliberation, for the first time in my life, I decided to ask for someone else’s help, or rather, my friend’s help.
At lunchtime, on the roof of the school building, I summoned our group.
“That’s why we, the people, have to find out where Kanae’s feelings lie!”
If it were true, I wouldn’t want to go through all this trouble. But I guess it’s my responsibility to take care of Kanae, something I can’t escape.
I suggested the possibility that Kanae had been forced to kiss Yukiya.
“Chris, Rinka, Azaka-senpai… cooperate with me!”
I bent at the waist and bowed deeply to the three of them.
I’ve been keeping others away, but now I’m bowing down for them. Kanae is a real pain in the ass.
“Well, are we going to ask Kanae-senpai how she feels?”
“…I was hoping to hear the answer to yesterday’s…”
Rinka twisted her head with a slightly dissatisfied look on her face, and Azaka-senpai blurted out.
“Oh, um, brother… aren’t both Rinka and Azaka-senpai concerned about your response to their confession yesterday…?”
Chris asked me in a reserved tone.
Yeah, I know what you mean. I’m not an insensitive person. And I’m still holding off on my confession from the two of them yesterday. But that’s why I need Kanae. In order for everyone not to get hurt, I need Kanae to take charge of our relationship and maintain the status quo.
If the current relationship continues, no one will be hurt for a long time. Of course, from my point of view, I would be stuck with Kanae in addition to the three of them, but for the sake of everyone, I’m willing to sacrifice my lonely life and accept it.
As I was renewing my determination in the spirit of self-sacrifice, a voice raised a question.
“Oh, isn’t Kanae-senpai normally consensual?”
“Well, I think it’s natural to assume that they’re together, or close to it.”
“Brother, I don’t think Yukiya would do anything terrible to Kanae…”
I almost sighed when I heard that.
The three of them must have been in a kind world all their lives. That’s why they don’t know how to be suspicious of others. But as a shady kid in a harsh environment, I understand. Sometimes, you have to doubt even your childhood friends!
-It’s hard to convince them, though. Of course, the world I have lived in is different from theirs. It would be cruel to ask them to understand.
I’ll take a step back here.
“Of course, I’m not totally suspicious, but either way, it’s not right to act like that on campus, right? I’m a member of the student council, after all.”
Then I stared at Azaka-senpai.
“Yeah, that’s right! As a member of the student council just like Souta-kun! It’s not like I’m doubting you or anything, but I think it’s okay to do some light fact-checking!”
The student council president, Azaka-senpai, was on our side, and the atmosphere in the room was set in the direction of “Well, if you just want to listen, you can go to…”.
“I’ll check on Yukiya.”
And as I made plans to prepare “something” using the image evidence, I had a strong thought in my mind.
I won’t let anyone destroy our relationship.
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