‘Kon’ the sound of water-filled bamboos (Shishi-odoshi) reached my ear. (T/N: If you’re curious, search it up 😛 Basically stuff that’s used to scare birds; usually found in Japanese-style mansions. As in those rich people mansion but in Japanese-style.)
Opening my eyes a little bit, an unfamiliar ceiling enters my sight. Smelling the unique odour of a Japanese-style tatami mat, I turned my head to the side, vaguely seeing a golden folding screen with a dragon painting on it. Finally, my brain caught up, and with a gasp, I jumped.
A pounding headache assaults me, and I pressed my hand against my head.
If I’m correct, the last thing I remember before I lost my consciousness was the sight of Hazama-san’s face. Perhaps, the cloth used was soaked in some sort of sleep-inducing chemicals.
Hazama-san… For what purpose would he…
Seeing that I’ve been placed in a soft futon laid out in the room, with the temperature being just right, it doesn’t seem as if I’ve been mistreated. Or maybe this is an abduction. It doesn’t change the fact that I’m anxious since I don’t even know the purpose (of my abduction).
Suppressing the pain in my head, I got up to search for my smartphone and other belongings.
“Manaka-sama, have you woken up?”
The paper door slid open, and the one that entered was the person who’s responsible for bringing me here; Hazama-san.
“I apologize for using such crude methods.”
“Please excuse me. Manaka-sama really needed to come over alone.”
“But, Takatsuki-kun would have come with, if he had known… No way, why?”
“To use such a lie on me…”
Though I asked that of Hazama-san, I could generally guess. The golden folding screen, I’ve seen it before when I went to Ryu-san’s, it’s also the same one Takatsuki-kun’s parents had at his place. Therefore, this place must be related to Takatsuki-kun’s parents. That must also be the reason why I’ve been called here alone, without Takatsuki-kun knowing. Also, Takatsuki-kun’s orderly Hazama-san obeys that person…
“… Is it, about Takatsuki-kun’s grandfather?”
“… Yes. The chairman has something to tell Manaka-sama.”
“Something, that you wouldn’t tell Takatsuki-kun?”
“So it’s like that…”
I knew it, after all I had a conviction from when I was deep in thoughts.
Surely, at some place I don’t know about, right now Takatsuki-kun is trying his best to admit to his grandfather’s people and group about our relationship, is what I thought. But, I knew it, it’s impossible, isn’t it…
Well, that’s to be expected. This is the perfect in everything, be it sports or studies, graceful Takatsuki-kun. The most excellent successor for this group’s future, Takatsuki-kun. For him to have a lover who’s just a nobody with no worth, just a simple commoner, and moreover, a guy. No one wouldn’t oppose such a decision.
Perhaps, Takatsuki-kun’s grandfather wanted to tell me to say my farewells to Takatsuki-kun. Rather than persuading Takatsuki-kun who wouldn’t budge no matter what, it’s probably easier to persuade-threaten me who would actually listen, no, if they’d told me earlier, ordered me earlier, then I’d probably have done it immediately.
“The chairman is waiting. If you would please?”
Hazama-san slid open the paper door, guiding me to go inside. I, in accordance to his guidance, left the room.
“Please, be at ease. No danger will befall you, Manaka-sama. This Hazama, in the stead of the young master, will protect you even at the cost of my own life, Manaka-sama.”
Hazama-san said reassuring words in my ears. But you know, Hazama-san. Hazama-san’s claim makes me happy, it makes me happy but, even if you made such a claim, there will always be dangers around, potentially dangers in which one could lose one’s life, you see. To say that means that there’s a possibility that a life could be lost in said dangerous situation. W-w-will I be okay, I wonder…
My cold gaze was warming up, melting away, and I took a few steps forward, arriving behind Hazama-san.
“Through this room, if you would.”
The room I passed earlier had a modern, high-class, circular and huge sliding paper door. Hazama-san kneeled and called out to the person inside, “I’ve brought Manaka-sama.” Feeling that it wouldn’t be good if I stay standing, I hurriedly got down on my knees too.
Said an authoritative, grim yet powerful voice, and I tremblingly got up, please excuse the intrusion, and entered behind Hazama-san who opened the door.
I surveyed the room I entered.
Okay, I’m gonna die~. I’m so dead~. It’s impossible~ this is absolutely impossible~. Yes, I’m gonna die~. The End~. Please look forward to Manaka Yuu in the next life~.
50 tatami mats are laid out from one end to the other in the large, spacious room, dozens of imposing and stern men sat on either side, in the front row sat several grim, old men executives. And in the middle, sitting remarkably like a shogun on a Japanese cushion, is a person.
Perhaps, that person is Takatsuki-kun’s grandpa….
Hm? But, it’s weird. He didn’t look like the usual old men I’ve seen before, he doesn’t feel like one. No matter how I see it, he looks like a cool, 40-year-old old man. There’s nothing to indicate that he’s an old man at all.
Hm? He’s the grandfather, right? Not the father, right? I mean, I’ve been told that the father has already passed away. He looks somewhat like Ryu-san, though his eyes are like Takatsuki-kun’s, must be a relative, right…. He’s not… the grandpa… right?
“Chairman, I’ve brought Manaka-sama.”
Hazama-san lowered his head towards the person in the middle.
Yup, it’s the grandfather, alright~. A grandfather that seems to have allegations to youth and longevity magical practices~. (T/N: Like cultivating into an immortal… Or something…)
T/N: The ‘~’ wavy lines are just Manaka dragging out his words, like saying ‘okay~’ or something. This chapter is shorter, thank you Author qwq.