Cover page: “The first cultural festival. First time becoming a committee member.. With only you here, I feel that I can do anything. Will I able to do it as I strive hard..?” Narration: “The first time I took the initiative to touch your back. I felt your warmth transferred to my forehead. It would be great if time stopped like this.” The alarm clock is ringing. Rika wakes her younger sister up and asks if this is okay, she kept on sleeping even if the clock is ringing non-stop. With a drool on her mouth, Makoto is suddenly wide awake. Rika asks if she slept on the floor while working on the costume. Sitting up, Makoto asks what time is it. She says that it is around 7:30pm. Makoto screams that she has to hurry. Rika happily asks if the preparations are going smoothly. Makoto happily says, ya. Makoto quickly gets ready and complains about her messy hair. Rika happily looks at her. And, it is one day before the cultural festival day. In the class, they are amazed over the Alice outfit that Nanami wore. The theme for their cosplay is Alice in Wonderland. Showing the others in costumes, Nanami says that there are also three different colored Alice and also, other characters would also appear. A couple of guys are in Ace Heart Card and Madhatter with a watch costumes. Makoto and Uki comment that it is really well-made. Ace Heart Card tearfully cry about Committee Nanami [in charge of costumes] is very strict with the clothes. Nanami says that they did well and it is okay for them to cry. The guys happily thank her for praising them. Then, someone shouts that section A is spying on them. The section A complains that section B is cunning over their prize [which includes Rika]. In charge with the battle of words, Uki shouts back section A’s club is using DJ machine which was lent borrowed from the brother of Yoshioka [guesswork from 吉岡] so, they are the ones who doing things ‘under the counter’. The section A guys angrily shouts how did she know. Uki sticks out her tongue and tells them not to belittle the girls’ information network. While Makoto tries to pacify Uki, they overhear Saya [guesswork from 沙也] asking Adachi [guesswork from 足立] to help her with the paper chain decoration and Adachi obliges. The other girls ask Saya how come they are suddenly calling each other by their first names. Makoto is surprised when shy Saya admits that she is currently going steady with Adachi since the day before yesterday. A girl asks her when it started. Saya says that it was late when they finished preparing so he walked her home and during that time, he asked if she wanted to go steady with him. The other girls squeal over this and that they are the first couple of their section.
While they were chatting, Makoto thinks that it is really great, a love couple. She starts to wonder where Iriya had gone to. Then, she overhears the girls wondering out loud that to celebrate this, how about they confess to Iriya and it has been a long time since someone got rejected. This cultural festival is an opportunity and there are many people who have their eye on him. The other girl groans over this. Makoto suddenly says that she is going to see the situation at the corridor. Then, everyone is surprised when Makoto became dizzy and falls down on the floor. The others ask if she is alright. As Makoto apologizes, Kishino offers to take her to the clinic and carry her there if she can’t stand. His friends cheer Kou [guesswork from 宏] on. [Kishino] Kou exclaims that this isn’t the time to be noisy. Elsewhere in school, Yusa happily shows off to Iriya his outfit for tomorrow. Iriya is a bit speechless over the flashy white suit outfit with ruffles and a rose. Yusa happily says that he wanted Iriya to be the first one to see it so he ran all the way there. Iriya says no, for him to run through the corridor he thinks that he definitely isn’t the first one who saw him. Bending down to Iriya who is painting something, Yusa asks what he is doing. Iriya says that he is making publicity picket signs and if he did this in the classroom, he might dirty the finished costumes. He suggests that Yusa don’t get too close either or else, he’ll get dirty. Yusa says okay. He comments that their committee member is quite enthusiastic than what he imagined. Standing up, Iriya says yes, and for her to particularly do her best, she is really super cute. Yusa angrily groans over that reaction. Putting the paint brush in the paint can, Iriya says thanks to that, there are guys who say that they want to chase after her so it is a bit troublesome. Yusa shouts if that is for real, that idiot?! Iriya angrily says that he’s too rude. “Ah- but thinking about it, this is also inevitable. Because of my selfish willful reason, I’ve made her wait and created this current ‘sitting on the fence’ situation. If there is a more unyielding and more serious guy who appeared, there is also the possibility for her to be taken away. I want to become strong..” Recalling Makoto also telling him that she wants to become strong, Yusa mutters, “..you guys are so similar..” Iriya asks what. Yusa shouts that it is NO-THING!! “Whether you are strong or weak, I still like you!! It’s true--!!” Iriya asks why he is angry. Then, a guy arrives and calls out to Iriya. The guy was distracted by Yusa’s outfit that he asks how come Yusa is dressed up like that. Yusa asks what he meant by that. Iriya asks him what had happened. The guy says that it is bad for Makoto collapsed.
Iriya rushes to the clinic and exclaims if Makoto is alright. With Uki and Kou standing at the side, Makoto is sitting on the bed. Makoto sheepishly tells him that she just felt dizzy because of lack of sleep. Iriya says is that so. Makoto apologizes to Kou for she’s very heavy. Kou says that it is no biggie. The school doctor says that even if there is no trace of a fever but Makoto ought to go home first because being like that, it will be bad if she didn’t rest up for tomorrow. Makoto tries to protest that the preparations.. Iriya says that it is already almost complete and what’s left is early morning confirmation. The doctor suggests that as a precaution, find someone to bring her home. Raising his hand, Kou volunteers. Makoto tries to protest. Holding her bag, Kou says that Uki still has club work and Nanami is still checking the costumes so she can’t leave just yet. “No need to worry. And, is this all of your belongings?” After a pause, Iriya holds Kou’s shoulder and tells him to let him bring Makoto home. Kou says that if Iriya stays he can still direct the others on what to do so it is alright, he’ll—Grabbing Makoto’s bag from Kou, Iriya answers, “I’m sorry but I don’t want some other guy to bring her home.” Makoto and Kou are surprised. After recovering from his surprise, Kou asks, “..what is this. It simply as if Iriya, you likes Kisaragi!” Iriya turns to him and smiles. He replies, “Yes. What about it?” While Kou is stunned, Iriya tells Makoto to come, he’ll bring her home. The doctor pats Kou and wishes him good luck [gambatte]. Uki just looks at stunned Kou. At some stairs outside, Makoto is calling for Iriya that it is okay for him to walk her up to here, so quickly go back to the others. Iriya says, is that so. Taking her bag back, Makoto asks if that is really okay, for him to say that. Iriya asks, “Say that..?” Makoto blushes. Iriya says that her face is so red but she doesn’t seem to have a fever. He touches her forehead. Makoto thinks that her face is red because he.. Iriya says, “It is definitely because you are tired. When you go home today, properly go to sleep first so that you’ll have energy for tomorrow.. Ah *turns around* That’s right, want to re-charge?” Makoto imagines an electric socket behind his back. Makoto playfully hits Iriya for teasing her. Iriya laughs and apologizes to her. He sadly smiles and says, “..Sorry, in the end, it is still no good. Being-like-this. I will properly work on it so can you wait for me again for a little while. *Makoto looks surprised* It really makes one anticipate tomorrow.” Makoto looks surprised while watching Iriya walks away.
Comment: That is pretty much a confession but it seems that Iriya is not yet ready to go steady with Makoto. What he is doing is indeed risky for while Makoto waits for him, some other guy might snatch her away. It also makes Makoto uneasy for there are some other girls who are also waiting to get Iriya. Of course, now, she knows that he has feelings for her. And, Iriya’s edge is he treated her special ever since before the other guys notice her. It is indeed a bit logical to be stronger first rather than just jumping into a relationship one isn’t ready for. Though, what is the ‘turning point’ when Iriya can say that he is ready? He seemed to have genuinely showed his true self to Makoto and the others in the latter part of the chapter. Also, Makoto isn’t like those other girls especially since Makoto knows his past. Somehow, I’m thinking that they would go steady as the climax of this cultural festival arc. I wonder if Kou will start spreading the gossip about Iriya liking Makoto. That will stir everyone up. =P Scans by all★wink汉化组
Quote of the day:
A hidden connection is stronger than an obvious one. ~ Heraclitus of Ephesus