Episode 35: Walking Race
“Ohohohohoho. We’re already getting our clubroom? So so exciting!”
There was one energetic girl who was expressing her joy by violently waving her arms in the air. The rest of us nodded in agreement while keeping far enough away to not get hit.
Once school had ended, Sensei called out to me again. “Fujisaki and friends. I will show you to your clubroom, so come to the teacher’s lounge later.” It was exciting news, only hampered by the one complaint Honoka threw out. “Why are we bundled together as ‘and friends’!?”
The hallway was filled with other students, walking this way and that while talking freely amongst themselves. Meanwhile we had gathered in front of a classroom since the people on duty had to clean the classroom.
The spot where we had gathered was in front of the next door multipurpose room. It’s a good spot for five girls to get together and talk. Although Honoka is making a bit too much noise for it to qualify as just ‘talking’.
“What should we bring? What should we bring?”
With her eyes shining like gems, she was shooting off one suggestion after another for what we should fill our clubroom with. “Playing cards, manga, games”
“It’s not going to be our secret base.”
“Hehehe—. But I’ve really been looking forward to this.”
After my tsukkomi, Honoka broke out into a large grin and laughed. It’s her cute way of acting like a mischievous young boy that makes her so charming.
“It’s supposed to be a spot meant for us though right~? Then I wonder how freely we’re allowed to use it, like eating and drinking in there”
“Oh? If we’re allowed to boil water, can maybe we can have some tea—?”
“A tea party after class……”
“That does sound nice. I can picture it already.”
As Saki set her beautiful, pale finger on her thin chin and voiced her thoughts aloud, Honoka offered a suggestion that Yuzuriha and I thought sounded wonderful.
Just imagining it, the scene where class has already come and gone, and I am drinking tea at a table surrounded by beautiful girls……could there be anything better? I’m already looking forward to it.
“According to the club rules listed in the school’s handbook, any kind of cooking that required pots or kitchen knives is only allowed in the home economics room with the proper supervision……so we should be fine brewing tea.”
Ranko calmly settled the matter.
“Well—. You’re well informed.”
“The school has its handbook listed on its homepage online, so I downloaded and read it all last night.”
“Y-You looked up all that……thank you.”
I patted her shoulder. “I will be a member of this club as well,” is how she answered with her eyes closed and a loose smile on her face. She’s an honest girl, and it makes me happy to know that she’s looking forward to this too.
“Well we should get going soon. Don’t want to keep Sensei waiting too long.”
“Woohoo! I can’t wait!”
Honoka pumped her fist into the air and jumped up with a mysterious amount of energy. Yuzuriha did her part as well, listlessly raising her own hand and quietly repeating Honoka’s words.
“No no! Can’t wait! Sensei’ll go ‘Rawr Rawr’! Super pissed! Bad end!”
“Another rap? And we’re not going to get told off for not coming right away.”
“That’s right, rap! I’m an amateur rapper! Live or die energy! Yow!”
She’s forcibly pushing forward with her rap style. And Yuzuriha is egging her on by clapping and cheering along.
“If that’s true, then shouldn’t we get going?”
“We wouldn’t want Sensei fuming at us.”
Ranko calmly ignored Honoka’s rapping and focused instead on the content of her words. Meanwhile Saki put her fingers behind her head, mimicking devil horns as she painted the image of an angry Sensei……such a cute princess.
“All righty then—! It’s a race to the teacher’s lounge—!”
Honoka and Yuzuriha were hyped up and ready to burst with energy. They both bent over and got into a pose like they were ready to start running down the hall.
“You know you aren’t supposed to run in the halls right?”
“I know that—, so ready? Then get set, and go!”
The sudden start took us all by surprise, but despite how she made it sound, Honoka didn’t break out into a sprint.
“It’s a walking race, so it is safe!”
She steadily moved forward while proudly declaring her devised theory. I mean, I guess she’s right. One foot is always firmly planted on the ground, and you couldn’t really call what she was doing running.
Most of us were too shocked to move, but there was one person who caught up to her in a single breath……
“Hm? You think you can take me on—?”
“I’m confident in the strength of my legs, and I am taller than you.”
Ranko threw aside any semblance of maturity and joined in on the race. Wasn’t she claiming how much of an ‘adult’ she was before though?
The three of us remaining slowly followed after them, moving just fast enough that they wouldn’t leave our sight. Honoka managed to use some fancy footwork and quick steps to gain a lead on the stairs, but Ranko’s long stride allowed her to shorten the distance once again.
“Hey, wait up you two.”
My words fell on deaf ears. The two of them had become neck and neck, entering a red hot battle that blocked out any interference from the outside world. They kept exchanging glances back and forth like a couple of schoolyard children.
They rounded the last corner and entered the home stretch towards the teacher’s lounge. It was there that Honoka suddenly picked up the pace, pressing forward without giving her legs any break. Ranko meanwhile had hesitated and slowed down to safely round the corner from the outside.
“Behold this Honoka’s splendid cornering! Is this as good as my win!?”
With the finish line in sight, Honoka spun around and began walking backwards to further assert her victory. It was impossible for her to lose――or so she thought,
“Oh, what did you win?”
until a calm, measured voice caused her to spin back around. The goal was right there in front of her, but Honoka didn’t have it in her to belch a victory screech. Ranko’s feet had stopped in place, and while the three of us watched on, she stared at the wall and pretended not to know any of us.
If you’re confused as to what could cause us freeze up like this,
“Even if you’re not running, you still need to be careful not to run into somebody.”
We had successfully made it to the teacher’s lounge, but even though we weren’t late, Honoka still ended up getting chewed out by Ms. Shibuya, our homeroom teacher and the advisor to our photography club.