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Chapter 100 Suzu's Past - Part 2


「I didn't understand his feelings at all. At that time, I couldn't think of any other man but him」
 
 After all, there is no one better than him with whom she has spent her life.
 And the girl who was rejected by the other half of her body, the girl who lost the other half of her body, was filled with despair in her heart.
 
「...I don't care about everything anymore. I just drank and slept and graduated from college with just a few credits」
 
 She also indulges in a self-pleasure more times than she could count.
 Before long, Suzu's family abandoned her and her parents began to ignore her, sending her only the minimum amount of money and leaving her alone.
 Just when she thought that she would be left to rot away by herself, Principal Ootori found her.
 He gave Suzu her current job and the log house, and began to take care of her in any way he could. From meals to cleaning and laundry, he has helped and interfered in every way. 
 
**a
 
「I thought, "This is the guy". He was his otouto (little brother), and we used to be good friends. I thought I might like him just one more time」
 
 However, Principal Ootori was already engaged to another woman.
 The engagement took place at the time when Suzu was rotting. In other words, everything happened too late. Still, Principal Ootori was taking care of Suzu even though he had no intention of going out with her.
 And no matter how many times Suzu tried to invite him to do "that", he never did. So――
 
 ――Suzu decided not to believe in anything anymore.
 
 She trusts only her instincts. She spends the rest of the time doing whatever she wants, while doing the minimum amount of work required of her.
 After all, when she asked Principal Ootori for "that", she was rejected, so she continued to pretend that nothing was wrong while feeling hurt somewhere along the way.
 
「It's a stupid life, isn't it?」
「......」
「......」
 
 Suzu laughs self-mockingly and everyone remains silent.
 Then Riko shakes her head, narrowing her eyes sadly.
 
「I'm sorry, I don't know if it's stupid or not. I can't imagine how hard it is for you not to be held by your boyfriend」
「...me too」
 
 Aika agrees with Riko, her eyes moistening.
 On the other hand, Hana sighs.
 
「That's just the way life is. Sometimes we, [Lost Item], are empowered by such experiences」
 
 Suzu's ability, [Cognitive Obstruction].
 It could be taken as an ability to force oneself to create a situation of isolation in order not to be bothered by anyone else. If so, it may have been born relatively recently.
 
「It's the same for me. I can't tolerate the one-sidedness of the principal」
「...You're all so kind」
 
 Suzu wipes tears from her eyes and looks up.
 She then makes eye contact with the only girl who has not yet reacted.
 
「Don't worry, you're not wrong」
 
 Maria smiled.
 
「How can I possibly deny you? I'm sure you're like me in some ways」
「Thank you」
 
 Suzu smiled back at her and then muttered a few words.
 
「Maria-chan, right? I don't think I've ever seen such a bright pink color. Do you have nothing but naughty thoughts in your head?」
「Eh, I don't」
「Oh, you don't deny it...」
 
 This is a useless sidetrack, but let's get back to where it started.
 
「Are Suzu-san and Kurohane-senpai sisters?」
「Yotsuba? Yes, we're blood sisters. We haven't seen each other recently」
「What do you mean, don't you want to see her?」
「It's not like that. But she's not like me... Even though I see her face from time to time, but I've put her through a lot of trouble」
 
 Noblesse oblige.
 Suzu has already abandoned this duty to her. Yotsuba, who still holds her pride in her heart, may not agree with Suzu's way of thinking, and Suzu may feel a lot of guilt.
 On the other hand, Yotsuba may not know how Suzu feels about it, but it must be scary for her because she doesn't know.
 
「Hey, Suzu...san? What are you going to do now?」
 
 Riko asked.
 Suzu nods her head and answers.
 
「Can't I stay here?」
「I don't mind」
 
 Maria immediately replies. The others do not object.
 Some of them may think that one or more people are necessary at this point. 
 
**b
 
「Yes, that's fine. But are you sure you want to keep quarreling with principal? I'm sure he's cooled down a bit, and I'm sure you can make up with him while you still can」
 
 Principal Ootori's basic stance probably will not and cannot change.
 In the first place, according to common sense, Principal Ootori is the correct one.
 However, if Suzu is not satisfied with the status quo - if she wants to change herself and her surroundings, it is not too late.
 If she clearly expresses her desire to be independent and to have a lover again, Principal Ootori will surely be understood.
 For that, she needs to break up with Chihiro, though.
 
「No, it's too much trouble」
 
 But Suzu puts it down to one word and tilts her beer can.
 
「...Oh gosh, what's the matter with you? You're ruining an image of beautiful woman」
「I want to be lazy. I want to be pampered. I don't want the hassle of love. That's just the way I am」
 
 She gets up, walks around to Chihiro, and hugs him.
 
「If I really must have a lover, I want Chihiro-kun. It has to be Chihiro-kun」
「No, Chihiro-kun is no good」
 
 Aika said in a panic.
 She even leaned in closer to Chihiro, forcing him to stop eating.
 Fortunately, Suzu moved out of the way immediately, which was a relief.
 
「I know. I'm just talking about if I'm going to have a lover. But now, I'm just looking for a saffle」
 
 Suzu smiled and looked over at Aika and the other four girls.
 It was a self-defeating statement, but for Suzu, it was not just desperation, but the essence of her life.
 Maybe she has been conditioned by her ingrained habits, or maybe the wounds in her heart have made her innate nature blossom.
 
「So, I'll try my best to get along with everyone. We are all friends who like Chihiro-kun, right?」
 
 She is childlike - and therefore a pure woman.
 Aika touched Chihiro and murmured softly.
 
「I don't mind if you don't take Chihiro-kun, though」
 
 Hana and the others nodded their heads as they glanced at each other.
 
「...Well, that's fine. Do as you like」
「Hmm. I'm fine too. I'm busy right now, so I might ask you to do some of the housework for me」
「Oh, I'm good at cooking and laundry. But I'm not so good at cleaning and tidying up」
 
 Suzu also seems to have no qualms about helping out with household chores.
 The remaining Maria giggled.
 
「As for me, I would recommend you to be Chihiro-sama's slave, not a saffle」
「Oh, that's fine. Will you put a collar on me, Chihiro-kun?」
 
 Suzu looks at Chihiro with expectant eyes.
 
「...Well, once I put a collar on you, I won't let you go so easily...」
「Fufu. Yes, no problem」
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