Chapter 7-1

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VOLUME 1

[Last Discussion ~ The Retrospective Student Council]

“It’s bad to be wrapped up in the past! You should focus on the future and walk toward it!”

As usual, the president stuck out her small chest and proudly spoke as if she were reciting something she probably read in some book.

I didn’t really understand, but once again, I was being stared at…… I’ve got a bad feeling about this…

“U, umm…?”

I glanced upward at the standing president. After staring at me for a while, she seemed to have thought of something, and this time she began sending looks at the Shiina sisters and even Chizuru-san that they also didn’t understand. Of course, everyone tilted their heads in confusion.

The president briefly made eye contact with each of us, then loudly made a declaration.

“The first, Chiki Chiki ‘Let’s Deepen Our Friendship’ Meeting~!” (1)

“……huh?”

On her own, the president jumped around trying to raise the excitement. As for us, we were totally hung out to dry. Minatsu’s jaw dropped unconsciously.

“Wh, whut?”

“Hey Minatsu! You’re the mood maker, so get everyone excited!”

“Uh, hm. Y, ya~y?”

“Mafuyu-chan too.”

“Eeh? U, um um…… clap clap.” (2)

Mafuyu-chan timidly clapped.

Those two…… Even though they didn’t understand what she meant, for the time being they went along with the president’s orders.

I made eye contact with Chizuru-san. However, even though those two couldn’t recognize the situation, in the end, as usual, the consensus was to watch over her until she calmed down.

When the president was satisfied with the Shiina sisters’ attempt at creating excitement, she finally began writing up today’s agenda on the whiteboard. Only the sound of the felt-tip marker squeaking echoed throughout the room.

And then……

“Social congregation?”

Chizuru-san stared at the board and muttered. The president said, “That’s right!” as she energetically turned around.

“I think we should have a social congregation today!”

On the board behind the president brimming with confidence, clearly written in big letters was “social congragashon.” It looked like she didn’t know how to spell “congregation.” (3) Her odd way of writing it quelled the tense atmosphere.

“Again, why is it a social congregation now of all times?”

Chizuru-san placed a hand on her forehead and sighed. Originally there was probably work piling up that needed to be done. Well even so, she didn’t unsparingly deny the president, but that was Chizuru-san’s way of doing things.

Speaking of the president, she acted as if she completely missed noticing Chizuru-san’s distress, and with a smile on her face, began talking about her plan. Her expression seemed to say “Isn’t it a great idea?”

“I happened to think about it, but we student council members here don’t really know anything about each other, do we?”

“Don’t know anything? But aren’t we always chattin’ together?”

Minatsu tilted her head in curiosity. The president waved her index finger with a “Tsk tsk tsk.”

“How naïve, Minatsu. Indeed, we do chat a lot. But, think again. We can make simple judgments on each other’s characters, but we don’t really understand each other.”

“What do you mean?”

“Basically, the one I know as ‘Minatsu’ is Shiina Minatsu, the athletic high school second year who speaks like a guy. That’s all I know.”

“So what’s the problem? Isn’t that normal?”

At Minatsu’s remark, Chizuru-san, Mafuyu-chan, and I all nodded. In reality, to be friends with someone, you don’t really need any more information than that. I don’t really have any more information than that, not only with just the student council members but also with the classmates I’ve been with for the past year. At best, I also at least know their hobbies, likes, family structure, and blood type. However, only having that degree of information wasn’t any problem in human relationships.

However, the president wouldn’t give up on it. She hit the desk hard. She tried to convince us while saying things like “social congregation.”

“That’s no good at all! If it’s a regular friendship, then its fine! But we’re the student council! We’re the elite group who stand and carry the school! The chosen warriors! In short we’re comrades-in-arms! (4)”

“What are we even fighting?”

“Things like strife in society and rules made by adults!”

“Wow, we’re fighting such a hot-blooded youth-like battle.”

That’s the first I’ve heard of it. Apparently the student council was such a heated group.

“That’s right! That’s why, when covering each other’s backs as fellow comrades-in-arms, not knowing each other well enough is a huge problem! So we’ll have a social congregation now!”

“…………”

The president declared loudly, and we each sighed in our minds. In the meantime, I ran a simulation of whether or not I could finish up today’s work alone, and then asked the president a question.

“So? What do you want to know about everyone Prez……? Wait, I see! I get it!”

“…? What do you get, Sugisaki?”

“Prez, I greatly approve of this plan!”

I was so excited that I forgot about my simulation. This time the president was the one who seemed curious.

“Ah, yeah. I’m glad you approve but…… umm?”

“Prez! Basically…… basically it’s alright for me to ask about your measurements, what kind of men you like, and things like that right?! Such a great plan!”

“That’s not it! Why would it be that way?!”

“So things like, ‘What would be the best place for a first date?’ or, ‘How do you expect a confession? Do you want to be the one to confess?’ right?”

“Rather than a social congregation, isn’t that just Feeling Couple? (5) Moreover this is one to four!”

“If you say so, I’ll also work my pants off!”

“You don’t need to! For numerous reasons!” (6)

“Eeeh?”

Crestfallen, I dropped my shoulders. The president looked at my sorry state and wearily continued.

“So basically it’s totally not how Sugisaki said it was…… As for me, it’s…… yeah, talking together about things like our pasts –”

Just as the president had said it, the student council room was suddenly wrapped in a sense of tension. Chizuru-san looked down, the Shiina sisters hid their expressions, and I looked away from the president. Soon the president realized her own slip up and hurriedly started to smooth it over.

“Ah, w, well, th, there’s no need to talk about things that deep.”

The panicking president was hard to look at. Everyone else and I understood that we should back her up, but no one said anything immediately.

We…… never talked about it properly, but it seemed like we each had our own pasts we didn’t want to go into. It wasn’t just us, but most people probably had one or two things that they didn’t want to talk to anyone about. But in the case of these student council members, it looked like more than a few were more painful than average.

I’m sure the president knew about that too, so she probably said it by accident. The social congregation also probably wasn’t meant to pry deeply into that particular area.

I managed to convince myself of that and forced out an awkward grin.

The president also tried to give a reassuring smile but…… the atmosphere wouldn’t easily go back once it stiffened like this. Everyone thought that they needed to quickly reassure the president, but no matter what they couldn’t bring themselves to.

The president looked like she was about to cry, and I sighed….. The president, in her own way, planned this social congregation so that she could become better friends with all of us. And yet it turned into this situation…… It was a bit too much.

(I guess it can’t be helped……)

As the harem lead, I had to do something about this. For now, if I could buy some time …… I’ll get everyone to relax again.

To break through this awkward atmosphere, I stood up with full force.

“Sugi……saki?”

While the president, then everyone watched me closely…… I cracked a smile, and then…… I began to speak.

“In truth, I have a beautiful younger stepsister and a beautiful childhood friend! That’s right…… see, my supposed two-timing was with them. Ahaha……”

For the time being, the atmosphere changed…… into a delicate situation.

***

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TRANSLATOR’S NOTES
(1) Reference to Ureshino Akihiko’s Chiki Chiki series. The title of each work in the series starts with “Chiki Chiki,” much like how Kurimu used it.
(2) She said “pachi pachi” which is the sound of clapping. So yes, she actually is saying clapping noises. While clapping.
(3) The second sentence seems redundant, seeing as its clearly spelled wrong, but the Japanese was somewhat different. The word was “shinbokukai” written as “親睦会” normally. However, Kurimu wrote the “睦” as “ぼく”(boku). The second sentence says how she probably didn’t know how to write the kanji for it, so she just spelled it out in hiragana instead.
(4) In Japanese “senyuu (comrades-in-arms)” is shorter than “erabareta senshi-tachi (chosen warriors),” rather than the same length.
(5) Feeling Couple is, in essence, a Japanese matchmaking site. More specifically, it’s apparently an online game in which lets people find a match.
(6) The original was a pun. Sugisaki says “hitohadanugimasu” which means “I’ll help out,” to which Kurimu responds “nuganakute kekkou yo!” meaning “it’s fine if you don’t!” At the same time, the verb “nugu” used in part in both sentences also means “to undress.” So the double entendre is “I’ll help/strip,” hence the translation.

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