Volume 3 Chapter 6 Shirogane Aqua, Understanding a Friend’s Feelings
Edited by: Kanaa-senpai
During the school break, I let out a deep sigh. In reality, even after that incident, I didn’t give up on coming up with lyrics. I was hoping for some brilliant inspiration, flipping through the notebook in front of me. But if it were that convenient to come up with something, I wouldn’t have struggled this much.
This notebook contains my impressions of the songs I felt, the words I wanted to use, my own emotions—basically, everything that came to mind. Moja-san said I didn’t have any talent for songwriting, but I thought if I could properly express what I wanted to convey in the lyrics, maybe I could make it work somehow. Above all, I couldn’t just sit still in this deadlock situation. So my policy was to put in every effort I could.
As I stared at the notebook, a figure appeared in front of me.
”Shirogane, you’ve been acting strange for a while now. What’s wrong?”
It was Mayuzumi, my classmate and friend, who spoke up.
”Oh, well… actually…”
At first, I hesitated whether to tell him, as it would violate confidentiality. But if things continued like this, this song would be shelved indefinitely. Avoiding that outcome at all costs, I approached Mayuzumi with a glimmer of hope.
”Since it’s not really private here, would you mind talking on the bench in the backyard during lunch break?”
After finishing our morning classes, as soon as it was lunchtime, we headed straight to the bench in the backyard.
”I’m actually working on lyrics for a new song, but it’s not going well.”
I handed my notebook to Mayuzumi.
”Is it okay if I take a look inside?”
Having someone read it made me feel a bit embarrassed, as if I was being peeped at, but I had no other choice. Mayuzumi took the notebook and slowly read through the written words.
”Shirogane… what is this ‘pew~’ and ‘paaw~’ parts…?”
”Oh, well… um, you know when everything suddenly becomes clear right in front of you? Like things become more visible.”
After hearing my explanation, Mayuzumi held his head, deep in thought.
”I see… by the way, can I use these blank pages?”
”Huh? Yeah, sure.”
Mayuzumi started writing on the blank pages of the notebook.
”Now, what about this small ‘poof’ and glowing part…”
”Oh! You see, it’s a kind of small light. It’s all soft and fuzzy.”
Mayuzumi pondered for a while and muttered to himself, “Hmm, I see… I got it.” He then continued writing in the notebook. For about ten minutes, Mayuzumi and I repeated this conversation multiple times. And then…
”Shirogane, I haven’t heard the original melody, so I can’t say much, but how about this?”
Mayuzumi opened the page he had been writing on and showed it to me.
As I looked at the lyrics written there, I couldn’t help but stand up from the bench. This… no, this was exactly the lyrics I wanted to convey. I took Mayuzumi’s hand and expressed my gratitude.
”Thank you, Mayuzumi! This is it, this, these are the words I wanted to express!!”
”W-Well… if I could be of any help to Shirogane, then I’m glad.”
To be honest, these lyrics are amazing, but they are still incomplete. That’s because Mayuzumi hasn’t heard the original melody yet. If we were to fit these lyrics directly into the original composition, there would still be some sense of inconsistency. So, to eliminate that feeling of inconsistency, Mayuzumi’s assistance is absolutely necessary.
”Mayuzumi, please! After school, could you come with me to Moja-san’s studio… where the producer is?”
I bowed my head to Mayuzumi. It may seem like a direct approach, but it’s the only method I know. Anyway, by bowing my head and conveying my sincere thoughts to the other person, it’s the best way to make them understand that I’m serious. Observing my demeanor, Mayuzumi became flustered.
”Shirogane, please lift your head. If you’re okay with me, I’ll help. Because, um… you and I are, well, friends, right?”
Mayuzumi scratched his cheek with his index finger, looking slightly embarrassed. I was moved by Mayuzumi’s kindness and shivered.
”Oh! Of course! Thank you, Mayuzumi!!”
After school, we immediately headed to Moja-san’s studio.
Moja-san looked at the lyrics written by Mayuzumi in my notebook and let out a thoughtful groan.
”It’s not bad, not bad at all, but as Shirogane said, it’s still incomplete.”
Moja-san stared at Mayuzumi with sharp eyes.
”Do you really want to give it a try? If… if you think it might be a bit too much, it’s fine to decline here. But if you still want to give it a shot, I’ll fully support you.”
Mayuzumi momentarily flinched at Moja-san’s intense gaze but closed his eyes and pondered deeply for several seconds.
”…I’ll do it. Please let me take on this job!”
At that moment, Mayuzumi’s expression was that of a person who had resolved themselves and made a decision. It might be rude of me, but to confirm, I asked Mayuzumi again.
”Are you sure, Mayuzumi?”
In response to my question, Mayuzumi showed a smile. That smile was the brightest smile I had ever seen from Mayuzumi.
”Oh, yes! Absolutely!!”
Mayuzumi lifted his glasses with a flourish and looked back and forth between me and Moja-san.
”The girls in our class… They say I don’t have to work because I’m a guy. They say they’ll support me since they’re taking care of me. Even the teachers tell me that I don’t have to study hard and that they’ll get me into a good school… But somehow, I feel like that’s not right.”
Indeed, as Mayuzumi said, the girls in this world tend to pamper boys so easily. Even my own family tries to offer an easy way out, saying that if pursuing an entertainment career becomes too difficult, I can just lock myself in my room. This world is similar yet different from the world I lived in before. So, maybe that’s fine. But… I believe there are boys who don’t want that. Mayuzumi clenched his fist tightly.
”Shirogane, you work part-time even though you’re a guy. I’ve heard that you occasionally help out as well. You’re juggling three club activities, yet you find time to show up. You study well, excel in sports…
”And despite all that, when I see you, Shirogane, earnestly pursuing your dream of becoming an idol, it makes me think, ‘Can’t I do something too? I have to work hard too,’ because I feel motivated by your efforts and determination.”
As I listened to Mayuzumi’s words, my heart swelled with warmth. I had no idea that Mayuzumi had been thinking about me in such a way.
”Shirogane, please! Let me… write the lyrics for idol Shirogane Aqua?”
”Of course, Mayuzumi! Let me sing the lyrics you create!”
Mayuzumi and I firmly shook hands, and upon seeing that, Moja-san narrowed his eyes and muttered softly.
”…This world is beautiful.”
Moja-san mumbled those words, then shifted his gaze towards me.
”That should be the title of this song, ‘This World is Beautiful.’ It’s quite ironic, don’t you think?”
Moja-san smirked, lifting one corner of his mouth.
”You see, these lyrics can be interpreted as capturing the beauty of this world, the pure love between men and women. The melody follows suit. It has a beautiful piano sound and melody line, but there’s also a depth that resonates deeply in the heart. Nekoyama intentionally incorporated such sounds.
”And if you delve deep into these poetic lyrics, they can also be seen as questioning the current state of this world and the relationship between men and women.”
Mayuzumi and I exchanged glances, then immediately directed our gazes to the lyrics written in the notebook. Indeed, when interpreted according to Moja-san’s perspective, it made sense. Mayuzumi seemed surprised, as if he hadn’t consciously realized it before.
”Well, isn’t it great? Let’s go in that direction with the music video for this song. Mayuzumi, Shirogane, do you still have time? Let’s complete the lyrics, record the song. Will you stay with me till the end?”
We quickly contacted our families. Of course, I informed Ako-san too. Thanks to Ako-san’s help in picking us up and immediately going to Mayuzumi’s family to apologize, we were able to work on the production until the last minute. I reflected on inconveniencing Ako-san once again.
However, Ako-san reassured me, saying that it was good that I had consulted her right away. She told me that as a child, I should rely more on the adults around me and that it was her job to push for what the talent wanted, laughing it off to ease the situation.
I had received help from so many people. Not just Ako-san, but also Moja-san, Nobu-san, Mayuzumi, Toa-chan… and even Mayuzumi’s family this time. Once again, I expressed my gratitude to everyone who supported me.
Sitting in the back seat of Ako-san’s car, I gazed out the window at the scenery outside. It was 8 p.m., and the sight of people walking the streets was sparse. The city lights illuminated the darkness, and the headlights of cars on the opposite lane streaked like shooting stars.
It was a landscape that didn’t differ much from the world I came from. However, what caught my attention was that only women were walking there. When I saw that scene, something ignited within my heart, and I heard the sound of a spark.
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Edited by Kanaa-senpai.
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