36.1 Even if it Wasn’t as According to the Script
Convinced that he’d be there, Sharina, out of breath, called for him.
“As I thought, you’re here, Riol.”
The courtyard of the school. It was their usual spot during lunch break. Under the big tree, a familiar mop of black hair was swaying in the wind.
“…I thought if I were here, you’d come.”
“In fact, no matter where Riol goes, even if it’s to the end of the sky, I’ll still chase you!”
As Sharina said so powerfully, she sat next to Riol whom was holding his book.
Riol, who paused for a moment, lowered his gaze with a smile.
“I’m sorry, I failed to show you how cool I am…”
As Riol forced those words out, he leaned his head on Sharina’s shoulder.
It was rare for Riol to be dejected to such an extent.
It was exactly at such time when she should spoil Riol the most.
“Riol is always cool.”
“…Even though all I did was run away?”
“Regardless of the situation, Riol’s coolness is without end, as it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be.”
“The fact that you actually meant that is already amazing in itself.”
The entire time she sat in the audience seats, she was frustrated. Not only was Riol’s victory overruled, he was also about to be condemned of foul play. The helplessness of herself, who couldn’t help Riol… Without Tobias’ follow-up, Sharina’s statement would’ve been cast aside.
“…Thank you for keeping your promise.’
However, no matter how bitter Sharina was, the result wouldn’t change. Then, there was only one thing left for her to do.
“Before the match started, you’ve promised to not overdo it. To make your own safety your utmost priority.”
Riol apologized for not being able to show his cool side—
—even though that wasn’t true, because Riol had never been uncool.
“If you were to continue the match, you wouldn’t have been safe. That’s why you chose to decline.”
If Riol’s self-esteem was lowered, she shall do her best to raise it.
That was the only thing she could no—
—no, when doing such a thing, she was probably second to none.
“If I were in your shoes, I won’t have been able to say anything other than yes. Riol, who saw through the teachers’ ploy and deflected it right back at them, is amazing. Riol said he ran away—but to me, it’s splendid avoidance.”
“All I did is spout things.”
“But what you spouted were pure facts.”
With his head resting on top of Sharina’s shoulders, Riol laughed. That simple action allowed her understand everything—Riol’s mood had been restored. His low self-esteem had been raised.
“I love you.”
Sharina inhaled, and then confessed.
From the head which touched her shoulder, she could feel him tensing up.
“I love you. It doesn’t matter what everyone else says. It doesn’t matter even if everyone were to deny it—to me, Riol is the coolest.”
Riol lifted his face.
While peering straight into his dark green eyes, which were hidden beneath his black bangs, Sharina took his hand.
His dark green eyes fluttered, before he slightly narrowed them.
After a few moments, those eye of his reopened. As if all the hesitation had been cut off, said pair of dark green eyes displayed strong determination.
“…I thought it best to withheld my confession until I won the tournament. Because only after becoming the best in the academy would I’ve been deemed worthy of you—such, was my thought.”
He held her hand back, and peered straight into her eyes. Towards that serious gaze of his, Sharina’s breath halted.
“I was hoping to be cooler for you… but if I keep using that excuse as a means of procrastination, I’m the worst.”
‘No, that’s not true, Riol—’ Sharina had managed to stop herself from uttering exactly that.
Those weren’t Riol’s usual words of self-deprecation, or pessimism.
It was a preface to more important words.
“I’m the same… Sharina, you, I’ve always—no, I’m sure it’s from the exact moment we’ve met.”
They gripped each other’s hands even more firmly.
“Riol! Sharina! So you guys are here, after all…”
“Shari! Riol-kun! Are you okay—oh…”
The rushing footsteps of two people echoed. One belonged to their new, dependable, friend, while the other belonged to her childhood friend.
“Oh, no, I feel bad now, I didn’t mean to disturb you guys…”
“Forgive me, I thought you guys were depressed, so I came to look…”
Tobias and Angelica rushed to see Sharina and Riol, who hadn’t only paused at the same time, but were holding hands.
“Then, I will return to the venue, the next match will be starting.”
“I’m going to return, too! I’m sorry, do continue!”
Tobias and Angelica looked at them rather awkwardly, before waving their hands in an exaggerated manner and turning to the right. From their messy hair, it could be inferred that they ran around in search of them. Especially after the fact that Riol and Sharina hadn’t returned for some time.
“Wait, Ange, Tobias!”
Sharina stood up, stopping the two who were about to leave immediately. Riol, who was holding her hand, had to inadvertently stand up.
“Thank you for your concern. Riol and I are fine. Let’s return to the venue together.”
She felt bad for shooing them away, after all, they were merely concerned about Riol. It’d be terrible to just tell Riol to continue.
“Riol, are you okay with this?”
She was glad he tried to say it now. However, there was no need to rush. It was alright if he were to tell her some other day.
“Umm, is it really fine, Shari, Riol-kun?”
“Yes, thanks for coming to look for us.”
“I, I was often told that I can’t read the atmosphere… if you’re annoyed, please be direct about it.” Said Tobias.
“No, you’re just worried by the fact that we hadn’t returned after so long. I also thought that we should go back soon.”
Although they were still stiff, Tobias and Angelica regained their bearings as they started walking side by side. They went towards the venue, where the next match would be held soon.
“Yes! What is it?”
Around the corner of the academy building, after she had repetitively said everything was fine.
Riol suddenly beckoned for her, thus, Sharina turned around.
“I love you.”
Of course, at that moment in time, Sharina’s mind had already stopped—much else her walking.
J, just now—
“—It’s not cool to procrastinate.”
She was stunned for a while, before she finally realized she hadn’t misheard anything. She thought he was going to say it some other day. She thought there was no need for them to rush.
“It’s pathetic of me to worry you like that. But I won’t let you stay in that fog any longer.”
“I love you. I love you, Sharina. I’m sorry it’s this late. I wish I could have say it earlier.”
She couldn’t endure it any longer. Sharina thus hugged Riol.
She was happy—truly happy. She was so happy, she could die!
His words were replayed over and over again in her head, and the joy spread throughout her body. It was as if she was dreaming—except she wasn’t.
“Oo! Good job, Riol! Well said!” Said Tobias.
“Congrats, Shari! I’m glad!”
She heard crackling applauses from both sides. Tobias was excited, while Angelica was clapping her hands in tears.
“Okay, tonight, let’s have a party! It’s on me!” Said Tobias.
“Idiot! In such situation, you have to leave them alone! That’s why you can’t read the atmosphere!”
Angelica slammed Tobias’ back with her fist, before pulling his clothes and dragging him away. Tobias obediently followed her, saying, “I see. Sorry ‘bout that.”
“W, wait, let’s return together, Ange!”
“Wait up, this time, please wait up… I’ve actually used up all my breath… don’t leave me behind.”
Sharina grabbed Angelica’s right hand while Riol grabbed Tobias’ left arm to stop them.
The dark atmosphere created by the incident at the tournament venue had completely vanished.
>Riolu decided to use ‘Confess’ after he had won the tournament
>It wasn’t very effective! The unholy shit of the academy botched it!
>Riolu use ‘Confess’ anyway!
>It was very effective! The translator’s entire being is being turned into mush!
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