Male Idol V13c10

Volume 13 Chapter 10 Mayuzumi Shintaro, Let This Feeling Reach You!!

Edited by: Kanaa-senpai

 During my lunch break, on an empty rooftop, I was talking on the phone with Aqua who got suspended.

 ”Shintaro… I got suspended. Haha… How did this happen?”

 I’m sorry, Aqua.

 I’ve seen this kind of thing on the news before, but honestly, I don’t really understand it myself.

 I’m actually more curious about how it happened to you.

 First off, I don’t get why udon noodles were involved. I can’t even wrap my head around that. Maybe other people understand? Am I the only one who doesn’t? Next time, I’ll swallow my pride and casually ask Tenga-senpai or Toa.

 Toa seems to have it together and knows a lot, and Tenga-senpai’s way smarter and more mature than me, so they probably knows the answer.

 ”Oh, um, you know, in times like these, should I tell my mom or something?” “Yeah, I think you should, Aqua. Even though you’re already married, you’re still underage, so it’s probably better to let her know, right?”

 Aqua let out a small groan, seeming a bit worried.

 What’s wrong? Does Aqua have something to worry about too?

 ”It’s not that I mind getting scolded, but what if she ends up crying? I’m a bit weak when it comes to that kind of thing.”

 ”Well, in that case, I think all you can do is sincerely apologize.”

 My chest twinges with pain.

 I thought to myself, ‘Isn’t it hypocritical of you, who has made Mother sad, to say that to Aqua?’

 ”Yeah, um, you’re right… Thanks, Shintaro.”

 ”No, I should be the one apologizing for not being able to do much other than listen.”

 ”That’s not true at all. You’ve helped me a lot with things like this. Really, thank you always.”

 That’s not true. I’ve been helped out way more by you, trust me.

 It’s because of you that I got saved.

 ”Well then, see you later, Shintaro!”

 ”Yeah, see you!”

 I hang up the phone.

 Aqua’s voice sounded a bit down.

 I guess Aqua’s having a tough time with the suspension too.

 I heard from President Atori that this suspension thing is just a way to force Aqua to take a break.

 Otherwise, he would go straight into the new semester without any spring break.

 Aqua has this thing where he keeps piling on work whenever he has a break.

 Last time, he went to Morikawa-san’s show as an amateur, but Aqua probably can’t sit still for too long.

 After hanging up the phone, I head back to the classroom from the rooftop of the school building.

 ”How did it go?”

 ”He seemed a bit low on energy.”

 As soon as I walked into the classroom, Toa came up to me and started talking.

 He was all like, “Why did Aqua call you? What’s up with that?”

 ”Geez, if that’s the case, he should have called me too. Aqua only calls when it’s convenient for him. Does he think I’m just some convenient guy? Shintaro, what do you think?”

 ”Hmm… maybe he just doesn’t want to worry you too much? You know, Toa is got a lot of stuff going on with magazines, TV, and work, so maybe he’s just trying to be considerate.”

 ”Really? Okay, I’ll just go with that then.”

 After that, Toa seemed a bit happier and went back to his desk.

 Then, Kanon-san came over to me.

 ”Mayuzumi-kun, thanks as always.”

 Wait, how did you know that? Kanon-san bowed and apologized, saying, “I’m really sorry. Let’s keep getting along from now on,” and went back to her seat.

 After that, Tsukimachi-san came over to me.

 ”Hey, Mayuzumi-kun, how did it go with Aqua? Yukari-senpai warned me not to spoil him too much, saying he easily gets carried away.”

 ”I think he was just feeling down, so I guess he’s okay.”

 ”Alright, I’ll pass that along. Thanks!”

 After saying that, Tsukimachi-san went back to her desk.

 How does everyone know I was talking to Aqua on the phone?

 Could our phones be bugged or something?

 No, that’s probably not it. I took my seat and had afternoon classes.

 When the class ended and I left the room, Sugita-sensei, our homeroom teacher, called out to me.

 ”Mayuzumi, how’s Shirogane doing? Was he feeling down or something?”

 ”He’s okay, Sensei. He was a bit down, but I think he’ll bounce back soon.”

 ”Oh, I see. Well, that’s good. But if anything happens, let me know right away. Mayuzumi, thanks as always.”

 Sugita-sensei quickly returned to the staff room after saying that she would ask for Shirogane.

 Is everyone misunderstanding something big?

 Even though I wear glasses, I think Aqua, who can do anything, is more reliable than me.

 After leaving school, I got into the car driven by Manager Hanabusa, and we headed straight to the TV station.

 Today, I was supposed to sing the theme song for the drama I’m in on a music show, but Aqua, who was supposed to be the vocalist, disappeared. So, we’re planning to sing a replacement song that everyone can sing together.


 We wrote our names and entered the building through the back entrance. The staff guided us to the dressing room they had prepared.

 Inside the dressing room, Tenga-senpai was there, along with Manager Kaito-san and the rest of the stylist team.

 ”Hey, Tenga-senpai, you’re already here!”

 ”Tenga-senpai, good evening!”

 ”Both of you made it. Now, drink the tea I picked.”

 Tenga-senpai handed me a warm cup of tea.

 Come to think of it, Haruka-san mentioned that they went for a tea-picking experience at the end of spring break.

 ”Wow, it’s sweet and delicious!”

 ”Tenga-senpai, it’s delicious.”

 ”That’s right, that’s right. I wish the other junior could have had some too…”

 Tenga-senpai had a gloomy expression.

 Because of that, the dressing room became slightly darker.

 Contrary to the indescribable atmosphere, we could hear hurried footsteps from outside.

 ”Sorry for interrupting!”

 Ah, when we all turned around, Kohina Yukari-san was standing at the entrance of the dressing room.

 Behind her, the president of Beyond Production bowed and apologized repeatedly.

 ”Hey, Yukari! This is getting really bad, isn’t it?”

 ”It’s fine, it’s fine. You worry too much. Anyway, is Mayuzumi-kun here?”

 ”Oh, yes.”

 Tsukimachi-san was also saying something, right? Is it about Aqua?

 Kohina Yukari-san is coming towards me, step by step.

 ”You know, you should keep your emotions inside more. It’s something you’re good at, right? That way, your character will have more depth and be even better. Also, pay attention to the pauses in your lines and your walking style, and make sure to work on the details. Someone like Mutsumiya Seijuu is really good at that, so she can be a helpful example for you. And Awashima-san is the type who plans out the character well, so it’s good to ask her for advice too. But, didn’t you do well in episode 1 so far? Yes, that’s the end of my advice! Leave the rest of the details to others!”

 ”Oh, um, yes… Oh, thank you very much?”

 Kohina Yukari-san spoke with an incredible force, expressing only what she wanted to say. Then, she turned her attention to Tenga-senpai and approached him.

 ”You, yes you, need to think more about Kuroki Shun and Mayuzumi Shintaro, who plays him! The action was great, but you need to align your everyday mannerisms and make an effort to embody Kuroki and Mayuzumi-kun. Height and physique are somewhat out of your control, but those things can be adjusted with camera work, so pay attention to the details and don’t be careless. However, your action was good. If it wasn’t a stunt, I would give you a passing grade. Alright, that’s the end of my advice! If you want more, ask Nico-san, who specializes in this!”

 ”Y-yes. Th-thank you… very much.”

 While we were all stunned, Kohina Yukari-san slammed the dressing room door shut and returned to her own room.

 Wow. It was amazing, like a storm that could rival Aqua, or something like that. Anyway, it was incredible.

 All of our gazes turned towards the remaining president of Beyond Productions.

 ”Um, well… to summarize, it seems that Yukari-chan wants to improve the overall quality of the project because Aqua-kun’s acting was really good. Yeah… well, then I’ll take my leave too. I’m really sorry. I apologize for intruding! Oh, wait, Yukari-chan, don’t fight with the vending machine! That vending machine over there has been broken since yesterday!”

 I see. After listening to Kohina Yukari-san’s story, it all makes sense now.

 I couldn’t understand why Kohina Yukari-san was arguing with a vending machine, but maybe she gave us advice for Aqua’s sake… I always think that she truly cares about Aqua.

 But Aqua doesn’t seem to appreciate it as much, or maybe it’s just my imagination?

 No, Aqua has this side where he feels embarrassed in front of Kohina Yukari-san, so I feel like he tries not to show it to others. That’s why I thought he must be really grateful when no one else is watching.

 ”Excuse me. I’m going to the restroom real quick,.”

 I left the dressing room and headed towards the direction where the restroom was located.

 On the way, I happened to run into her.

 ”Awashima-san, good evening.”

 ”Oh… Mayuzumi-kun, good evening. Huh? What are you doing here? Are you having a meeting or recording something?”

 Her bright smile naturally made my expression light up.

 Awashima-san and I had acted together in two dramas, including “Heaven’s Sword,” so we had become quite close on set.

 Awashima-san was a perceptive person, always keeping an eye on everyone from the sidelines during the shoot. And if something happened, she would immediately reach out to those around her with kindness.

 ”I was able to make a live appearance on a music program today. What about you, Awashima-san?”


 Awashima-san looked away from me just for a moment.

 What’s wrong? I felt a little uneasy.

 ”I have a meeting for my next drama… I think.”

 Awashima-san’s smile dimmed just a bit.

 Seeing that, I took hold of Awashima-san’s hand.


 I led Awashima-san to a place where not many people go.

 I don’t know why, but I found myself doing it.

 ”Sorry. But… I’m a bit curious… um, I’m not sure if it’s okay to ask, but is there something wrong?”

 Awashima-san smiled slightly as if trying to play it off, then looked a little apologetic.

 ”I’m sorry. I shouldn’t make a younger boy like Mayuzumi-kun worry. I’m such a failure as a senpai.”

 ”That’s not true. Age or gender doesn’t matter when it comes to worries. If it’s okay with me, I think I can listen. Um… I’m good at listening, so…”

 I wish I could come up with more clever words to say, but I’m not the type of person who can give advice to others.

 Aqua, on the other hand, always knows how to say the right things. That person is always so cool.

 ”Well, you know, it’s one of those things that are unique to actresses. And not just as actresses, but for girls in general, the age around 25 is quite a turning point.”

 I tilt my head slightly. Awashima-san is gaining popularity now, so what could be troubling her?

 ”For me, I don’t think I’m cut out for lead roles and stuff. I’m not that type of person to begin with… So, right now, it’s fine, but I’m wondering what I should do in the future. Acting is fun, but the older you get, the more talented people there are. So, I’ve been thinking about various things. It’s something I admire, but anyone can’t become like Mikuni-sama, Reira-san, or Kohina Yukari-san, you know?”

 Come to think of it, I heard something like that from Hanabusa-san.

 Unlike actors, actresses seem to have less demand as they get older. I heard it’s just the way the industry works.

 Awashima-san has Kohina Yukari-san and Kuga Reira-san in her age group, and Tsukimachi-san and Oto-san are coming up from below. Natsuki’s former president’s acting in the drama was amazing too.

 ”That’s why I thought, you know, I’m pretty versatile, so maybe helping out with mentoring newcomers or just assisting the agency’s work could be an option for me.”

 ”Oh, really?”

 I really wanted to tell her that it’s not true.

 But I’m way less skilled than Awashima-san, and I have no experience as an actor.

 Do I really have the right to say such things?

 ”And, you know, something lucky happened. I just got a proposal for an arranged meeting. It’s the son of the sponsor company for the upcoming drama. I wonder how it will go. Haha, it’s actually something to be happy about, but they told me that if I get married, they want me to quit acting.”

 I wonder what expression I have on my face right now.

 When I heard that Awashima-san is going on a meeting with someone, I was so shaken that I couldn’t even imagine it myself.

 ”I see… That’s… congratulations.”

 ”Hehe, thank you.”

 I wonder if those words were really good.

 But I couldn’t think of anything else to say that would make a difference.

 ”Thank you, Mayuzumi-kun. Talking to Mayuzumi-kun made me feel better. I have a meeting soon, so good luck with the music show.”

 ”Yes, understood. See you at the shooting location.”

 ”Yeah, see you!”

 I watched as Awashima-san walked away from me.

 That was all. I’m still a student, and I don’t have the experience or skills to give her any advice as an actress. Even though I get job offers because of Beryl and being Aqua’s friend, I know I’m still an inexperienced amateur.

 So there was nothing I could say to her. And yet, my heart felt incredibly restless.

 ”I… I…”

 Awashima-san’s figure overlapped with her and Aqua’s figure.

 ’Why are you so confident?’

 I had asked Aqua that once before.

 I wanted to know why he was always so full of confidence, while I lacked it.

 I thought that if I knew the reason, I could believe in myself a little bit too. That’s why.

 ’I don’t have any confidence at all. That’s why I’ve been lying to myself all this time.’


 ’Yeah, Shintaro, do you know? If you keep lying until the end, it becomes the truth. No, you make the lie into the truth.’

 ’Make the lie into… the truth…’

 ’Yeah! That’s why I can always become the Shirogane Aqua you guys want.’

 Can I really do that?

 No, I’m different from Aqua. I know I’m not anyone but myself.

 ’I might not seem like that to myself.’

 ’If that’s the case, just think that way on your own.’

 ’On my own…?’

 ’Yeah! Shintaro. I always believe in you. I know Mayuzumi Shintaro is the man who can do it more than anyone else. That’s okay. So, if you can’t believe in yourself, believe in me. Even if you don’t have confidence in yourself, I believe in you. That’s okay. So, do what you want with confidence. And if it doesn’t work out, I’ll be there to get mad with you!’

 Can I believe it? That there’s something within me.

 The cloudy smile on Awashima-san’s face overlapped with the expression my mother had towards me during my middle school days.

 ”Ugh…! It’s like nothing has changed since then!”

 It was none other than myself who said that I wanted to change.

 And yet, I ended up lying to myself because of my lack of confidence.

 But it was a different kind of lie from Aqua’s positive ones. It was a backward lie, a lie to escape.

 After washing my face in the restroom and gathering my determination, I returned to the dressing room where everyone was.

 Apparently, President Atori had joined in while I was away. President Atori, who noticed my presence, spoke up.

 ”Oh, Mayuzumi-kun, about the live…”


 I interrupted President Atori’s words and faced Tenga-senpai, the one who made this song for me.

 ”Can you let me sing today’s song… instead of Aqua?”

 I said, surprising not only President Atori but also Hanabusa-san, Kaito-san, and the whole styling team.

 Tenga-senpai stared into my eyes and slowly spoke.

 ”Can I ask you the reason for that?”

 ”…The lyrics of this song are based on the words Shun, who was a coward before the story began, made to his friends as a promise. But… when I wrote these lyrics, I overlapped myself with Aqua. I thought that if I did that, I could become a strong person like Shun someday.”

 Upon hearing my words, Tenga-senpai showed a small smile.

 ”Alright! Cool! If that’s the case, I’ll leave it to you!! Everyone okay with that?”

 Everyone nodded at Tenga-senpai’s words.

 ”If that’s the case, leave it to me!”

 ”Got it! Let’s all give it a shot!”

 President Atori gathered the entire stylist team.

 ”Because of this, it’s another sudden schedule change, but can you handle the costume and makeup?”

 ”Leave it to us!”

 ”We’re used to this at Aqua-kun!”

 ”I joined Beryl to see this kind of thing. What will you do if you can’t handle it?”

 Thank you all so much.

 I slowly bowed my head.

 ”Hanabusa-san, I have a request…”

 ”Yes, what is it?”

 I asked Hanabusa-san to arrange for Awashima-san to watch the live from the audience seats.

 This song will surely be a source of strength for Awashima-san, who is worried about the future.

 ”If that’s the case, leave it to me!”

 Alright! I’ll take care of the rest.

 No one will fail. Just like how Aqua believes in me, just like how everyone believes in me, I also believe in them.

 We stand on this stage prepared alongside time.

 ”Um, actually, it seems that Aqua-kun is on suspension, so today, Mayuzumi-kun will be singing as a special replacement.”

 Surprised voices rise from the audience seats.

 I step in front of the microphone and slowly look around.

 I’ve sung with everyone before, and I’ve even stood on stage alone, but standing in as Aqua’s substitute suddenly feels heavier.

 Well, he’s an amazing guy, after all.

 He always performs under this pressure.

 Everyone expects great things from Aqua, and yet he always mesmerizes everyone as the best Shirogane Aqua.

 Will I ever be able to become like that? No, I want to become like that too. That’s why I’m standing here.

 ”Good evening, everyone. Have you ever felt like things were just too tough to handle? I know I have. I’ve always felt unsure of myself, and that’s why I wanted to change that about me. The lyrics of this song really capture that feeling. If you want, give it a listen. I’m singing this song for all the people out there: my best friend who is depressed, anyone struggling with something, those lacking confidence, those feeling lost, and especially those who are working hard right now, facing something head-on. I’m singing for all of you. “Mijukuna Kajitsu (Unripe Fruit)” by BERYL.

 As Tenga-senpai’s cool guitar intro started, I took a deep breath and belted out my part.

 Of course, Tenga-senpai’s on guitar, Toa’s on drums, and I handle the bass and vocals.

 ’I’ve found convincing reasons, and I’ve convinced myself that it’s impossible for me.’

 I release my strength through the words I speak.

 It’s okay to be not okay, but I still tell myself the lie that I can do it, even if it’s just for now.

 ’I’ve been running away from reality and from the people I should face, just constantly running away.’

 Playing an instrument while singing is difficult after all.

 But the desire to do it outweighs everything else.

 Because I’ve practiced so much, right? The effort I’ve put in must have amounted to something, it can’t be zero.

 ’I wanted to change from being that kind of person. That’s why I took your hand.’

 As I look around the audience, I see Awashima-san.

 She came to listen. Thank you.

 ’I desperately chase after you because I don’t want to be left behind by that broad back of yours.’

 I look back at everyone once again.

 Each person had a nervous and excited expression as they looked at me.

 So, I gather my courage and show a smile towards the audience.

 It’s going to be alright. Please believe in me!!

 ’Grit your teeth, is this your limit? If you had any naive feelings, you must have discarded them by now. Take a breath, because this is not my limit. Take a step forward, even just a little, and reach out for the back in front of you.’

 As if time that had stopped suddenly accelerated, it twisted and gained momentum.

 Just like since the day I met Aqua.

 ’Even if a torrential rain pours down or a storm-like headwind blows, the fire within me still burns. No matter how desperately I chase after you, the gap between you and me may be widening. But I will keep taking a step forward today, without fail. And someday, I will catch up to you’


 Since I met you, every day has been chaotic and tough, but it’s also incredibly fun.

 I feel like I’m truly living, more so than when I was living like I was dead back then.

 Despite the intense sound, a sense of calmness flows within me, as if time is passing leisurely.

 ’You’ve been running ahead, focused only on what’s in front of you, while I’ve been desperately trying to keep up, always watching your back.’

 At first, I didn’t want to be left behind, just me alone.

 But now, things have changed. I’m here because I want to be.

 ’Are you okay with just being left behind here? Is that really all you want? Show some determination, cling on with all your might. And someday, I’ll reach out and touch that back of yours.’

 I’m enjoying the present moment more than Aqua thinks.

 I used to always believe that I couldn’t do things like writing lyrics, acting, singing like this, or appearing on TV.

 But that’s not true. You taught me that if I keep thinking I can’t do something, I’ll never be able to do anything.

 ”Mayuzumi-kun, I’m sorry!”

 During the interlude, maybe the bass chord snapped because the bass sound disappeared.

 What should I do? Even if we don’t have the bass, at worst… That’s what I thought, and in that instant, I heard the bass sound coming from the speakers.

 Even though we weren’t looking at each other, I felt a connection between me, Tenga-senpai, and that gaze.

 There’s no doubt. It’s Aqua. Aqua is playing behind the scenes. We didn’t actually see him, but somehow we knew.

 Yeah, that’s right. Even if he can’t perform, he’ll still make it happen.

 ’You have your own story. I have my own story. This is my story, no one else’s.’

 Oh… It’s so much fun to challenge things I can’t do.

 I don’t think I’m very good compared to Aqua.

 But I feel like I’m growing little by little.

 So, someday… Yes, someday, I thought maybe I could catch up to you.

 I know it’s reckless. I know that the difference between you and me can’t be filled with just effort.

 But, you’re the one who taught me that it shouldn’t be a reason not to challenge myself, right?

 You’ve always been the one to pave the way.

 ’You only live once. Relish the moment.’ (T/N: english lyric)

 You only get to live once, so it would be a waste not to enjoy it, right?

 ’I want to be who I want to be.’ (T/N: english lyric)

 So, I want to become the person I want to be.

 ’I won’t leave you alone.’

 No man can defeat Shirogane Aqua.

 Is that really true?

 I believe there must be at least one thing I can do better than Aqua.

 At least that’s what Tenga-senpai and I think.

 ’Lift your head up. Are you satisfied with the current situation? You have to carve your own path, right? Forget the reasons and just start running, recklessly. Don’t run away from fighting!’

 Aqua, I want to be your friend. And by that, I mean more than just a regular friend.

 ’Because I want to be your best friend.’ (T/N: english lyric)

 I want to become your true best friend.

 ’Someday, I will definitely stand by your side.’

 Because I want to see the scenery that you see, together.

 ’You can go ahead. I’ll catch up to you.’ (T/N: english lyric)

 So go on ahead, my friend. I’ll definitely catch up to you and join you.

 ’And remember, you just focus on what’s ahead. Don’t look back!’

 Did you get that, my friend?

 So just keep going as you are.

 We, no, all of us in BERYL won’t let you be alone.

 That’s what we’re here for!

 ””””Thank you so much!””””

 As soon as the performance ended, we bowed towards the audience.

 We could hear Aqua’s voice coming from the speakers.

 After the show, I met Awashima-san again at the same place.

 ”Mayuzumi-kun, that was amazing! I’m still so excited.”

 Seeing Awashima-san become cheerful again, my smile overflowed as well.

 I’m glad. Maybe, even with just a little, I was able to cheer her up.

 That alone made me satisfied.



 I stared silently at Awashima-san.

 Just as I was thinking I should say something, I heard familiar footsteps approaching.

 ”Huh? Mayuzumi-kun, what are you doing here?”

 Kohina Yukari-san… Why did you have to show up at this exact moment?

 As soon as she caught sight of Awashima-san, she came striding over just like before.

 ”You know, why do you only do half-hearted supporting roles?”


 Awashima-san’s face showed surprise at Kohina Yukari-san’s words.

 ”Just so you know, you’re one of the people I want to fight, so I’m not going to give you any advice. Just fight me on the same stage already. Don’t become some convenient actress for the casting producer. You’ve already gained enough skill for that. I’m still undecided about Misuzu, but your acting for Tora-uma was amazing. That’s all I wanted to say. See ya.”

 As Kohina Yukari-san turned to leave, she glanced in my direction.

 ”You know, I feel like Mayuzumi-kun spoils that person more than Kanon-san, Marin-san, or Akocchi.”

 Unable to withstand Kohina Yukari-san’s intense gaze, I quickly averted my eyes.

 I wonder if there’s any way I can pretend not to hear, like Aqua does when it’s convenient for him.

 ”But… that song, it’s meant for Aqua, right? It’s great to see the passion in it. Personally, I don’t dislike people who have a lot of enthusiasm. It’s not just that person I’m looking forward to.”

 Kohina Yukari-san said with a playful smile, fluttering her hands. She shouted, “Where is that person!” as she headed somewhere. It was there that she was caught and restrained by the President of Beyond Pro and President Atori.

 I couldn’t help but think that a good woman refers to someone like her, but maybe I’m wrong?

 I turned my attention back to Awashima-san once again.

 ”Ohh, I see… I see. Yeah, I get it!”

 Awashima was probably happy to be praised by Kohina Yukari-san.

 Awashima-san showed a bit of relief on her face.

 ”Mayuzumi-kun, even though there’s a big wall between us, let’s do our best, okay?”


 I said that and showed Awashima-san a smile.

 It’s okay for now. Well, no, it’s not good.

 I gently held Awashima-san’s hand.


 ”From Awashima-san’s perspective, I might seem like a kid, but I’m still a guy. So when I heard about that arranged meeting earlier, I felt a little jealous.”

 I saw Awashima-san blushing and quietly let go of her hand.

 Just a little. Just a little bit because I wanted her to be aware of me.

 ”So, will you please watch over me?”


 That was the best feeling I could express right now.

 I promise to myself that when I gain a little more confidence, at that time, I will.

 We looked at each other…

 ”Oh! There you are!”

 ”Gegege! Kohina-senpaiwhatareyoudoinghere?!”

 Seriously, what are those two doing? Also, Aqua’s voice sounds super weird.

 When Awashima-san and I looked at each other again, we laughed together without caring whose eyes were on us.

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Edited by Kanaa-senpai.
Thanks for reading.

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