Volume 8 Chapter 36 Yukishiro Emily, Meals Taste Better with Other People’s Money
Edited by: Kanaa-senpai
I froze when I read the email sent by Claire.
”It seems like there are people looking for Emily-senpai during the cultural festival.”
Oh no, are they debt collectors? I almost misunderstood, but it seems that’s not the case. According to Claire, it’s not Yukishiro Emily they’re looking for but rather me as Hagetoru. Those people on the bulletin boards are a pain. If they have time to do this, they should spend it more wisely!
”Well, I guess I have no choice. I’ll go like this.”
I took the Saint outfit out of the closet and changed into it. Oh, wait, there’s some chicken sauce from the reception in the corner! I’m sure I washed it properly in the sink, but it seems like some stains remained. Well, it should be fine like this.
Wearing a Sister’s outfit all the way to the destination is too much, so I changed back into regular clothes once I reached the vicinity of my destination. Then, I changed in a nearby public restroom and headed to Otomezaki.
Looking around, I saw many people heading in the same direction as me. Seriously, every single one of them looks like a pervert! Oh, among them, I spotted someone who seemed like the biggest pervert, and it turns out she was someone I knew very well.
”Wait, I’m not Hogekawa; I’m Morikawa. Who are you already? Oh, Haget—Mmmmm.”
Haha, Hogekawa is truly in a league of her own. She’s absolutely relentless. Can’t she figure out that I’m in disguise? If she’s this bad at catching hints, she’ll miss Aqua-sama’s signs even if they’re right in front of her.
See, for example, Nee-san next to us who has been sending chilly stares at me since earlier. Well, the fact that it scared me so much I retreated all the way into my womb as I got closer to Aqua-sama is a different story!
With just the word “explain,” Nee-san exerts overwhelming pressure. It can’t be helped, so I found a slightly less crowded spot and explained the situation to the two of them.
”Hey, could it be that Hagetoru is an idiot?”
Of all people, I didn’t want to hear that from Hogekawa, who holds the top position in the Idiot Rankings within my circle! By the way, Shumi is in second place!
Nee-san, please stop! Don’t look at me with pity like that!! Well, I guess it can’t be helped. In this situation, should I ask that Shumi for help? I took a selfie of my disguised self and sent it to Shumi. I quickly received a reply.
[Hey, could it be that Hagetoru is an idiot?]
Ugh, seriously!? Out of all things, she had to say the same thing as Hogekawa! Just so you know, Nee-san aside, according to the bulletin board rules, you and Chinposuki are on my side too!! D*mn it! Fine, I’ll get back at you.
The next time we meet, I’ll change the cover of your phone to a picture of me j***ing off to Aqua-sama’s sleeping face!!
”I’m sure this guy thinking about something stupid right now.”
”What a coincidence. Morikawa-san, I have a very bad feeling too.”
Hehehe, I thought I was going to use a picture of Aqua-sama only, but too bad. I might as well include the message “Sorry to disappoint” in the caption.
”That’s why both of you take care. I’m going to join another group.”
”Another group? I have a really bad feeling about this.”
”It’s quite a coincidence, Nee-san. I have a really bad feeling too.”
I waved goodbye to the two of them and headed to the ninja group that I planned to spend today with. Now, was the meeting place here?
”Saint-sama, please take care of me today.”
Whoa!? That surprised me! You shouldn’t sneak up on people without making any sound. This is way too close; it’s beyond close Distance. Also, you should talk normally!!
”Well, you came. Pop—no, I mean, Rin.”
This person’s name is Kazami Rin. She looks like she’s in the fourth grade of elementary school, but she’s actually a fourth-year university student, older than me.
Unfortunately, her level of clumsiness is in the same range as Shumi’s. But among the Twelve bishops, a bunch of weirdos, she’s one of the more decent ones when it comes to conversation.
This isn’t a joke or teasing; seriously, about half of these people can’t hold a normal conversation. It’s not just a matter of social awkwardness; it’s beyond that.
Those so-called artists sometimes focus on something with unfocused eyes and work on it single-mindedly, or when they’re in high spirits, they ooze a foul-smelling liquid from their cr*tches—it’s really beyond the pale.
When I mentioned to Claire that they should be sent to the hospital, she said she’s actually a real doctor. Are you okay? Has there been no medical malpractice at her hospital?
I wouldn’t want to be treated there under any circumstances… she must be a quack doctor.
”Well then, let’s go!”
I grabbed Rin’s hand and headed for the Otomezaki reception. I had to do this to avoid the possibility of Rin, who has no sense of direction, getting lost.
”Hey, look over there.”
”Oh, isn’t that Holy Aqua Religion’s Saint?”
”Wait a minute, who’s the girl next to her?”
”Could she be a secret child!?”
”Huh? Does the Saint has children!?”
”Whoa… I see, that explains why she’s so calm.”
”Yeah, Saints are like mature, refined ladies.”
”Ah, I wish I could be a beautiful lady like the Saint.”
”Although having big breasts is a minus.”
”No, no, from Aqua-kun’s perspective, it’s a plus, making the Holy Aqua Religion’s Saint perfect, right?”
”So, the Saint foresaw all of this, huh!?”
”The Saint is amazing!”
”As expected of the Holy Aqua Religion’s Saint. She’s different from someone like Hagetoru, who’s just here to stir things up.”
”Huh? Hagetoru? Where is she!?”
The student in charge of the cultural festival reception looked at me with a surprised expression, but a teacher-like figure who came out from behind easily let me through.
I have a bad feeling about this. Could it be that the Holy Aqua Religion has infiltrated even Otomezaki?
”The person earlier is one of our believers. Congratulations, Saint-sama.”
Seriously? They were really into it. Come on, guys, please hold back already. It’s getting really dangerous. I have a feeling that one of these days some important person will show up and get really angry, or worse, we’ll receive an order to disband from the court.
If that happens, it’s still better than being targeted by the Public Security Bureau or something as a terrorist organization!
Moreover, these guys have been saying some crazy stuff lately, like wanting to build a castle on the site of Edo Castle. Seriously, “Emily Castle” or whatever it’s called, just the name gives me a bad feeling!!
”Ah, we’ll check your number here.”
I showed the receptionist my wristband number, which I received in place of a ticket, in front of the classroom where Aqua-sama and the others were. Even here, the receptionist looked at me in surprise, as if doing a double-take.
By the way, Aqua-sama’s cosplay host cafe is set up so that those who received invitations from Class 1-A can enter without a problem. Other invitation tickets and general admission tickets are drawn by lottery.
The shift schedule for Aqua-sama and the others has already been posted, so although it’s crowded in the morning, there are some high-level fans who come to sniff out the remaining fragrance in the afternoon.
They’re really dedicated, just as expected of Aqua-sama’s fans. They’re going all out.
”Yes, we’ve confirmed your number. You’re the first-round customers. Congratulations.”
”Yes, thank you.”
As I expressed my gratitude, the ninja followed suit. People might not imagine this from when she’s dressed as ninjas, but this guy has social anxiety. I heard she messed up her initial greeting when she first came out of the deep mountains in the countryside, and she has been like this since then.
She’s not bad person, and she’s good person, but school is a cruel place. If someone messes up at the beginning, they won’t make friends for the next three years! I can say that even though I’m someone who only has friends on bulletin boards!!
”Welcome~ Please take your seats.”
When we entered the classroom, everyone else was already seated. That made us stand out.
”Hey, isn’t that a Sister from the Holy Aqua Religion?”
”She’s beautiful… I can tell even with her eyes covered.”
”Wow, I think she’s as beautiful as Kanon-san…”
”If Kanon-san is a cute girl, Sister-san is a beautiful woman, right?”
”Is it really okay for her to be here?”
”Well… she was also here at Aqua-kun and Kanon-san’s wedding, so it should be fine, right?”
”If things go south, the teachers will stop her at the reception, for sure.”
”Yeah, outside, there are police, public security, and even Self-Defense Force personnel among the civilians handling security, so someone will stop her if anything happens, right?”
Oh… seriously? No one stopped me?! Is the police, public security, and Self-Defense Force of this country okay? They can’t be as clueless as Hogekawa and Shumi, right… Ugh, I had a bad feeling, so I should stop thinking about it for now.
Once we took our seats, a girl who looked like a rich kid from Class 1-A came to take our orders.
”What would you like to order?”
”Um, I’ll have Earl Grey tea.”
”I’ll have… a Tapioca-filled Butterfly Pea Jelly-infused Mocha Chip Cream Frappe with Caramel Sauce… and also pancakes, please.”
Hey, ninja, is that an incantation? And that, you better not leave any of it if it tastes bad! This hagetoru won’t forgive you for wasting your own order!
”I-I can’t believe there are actually people ordering that… Very well, desu~wa.”
I took a sip of water and looked around the tables again. Fortunately, the people at the neighboring table seemed normal. We exchanged slight nods when our eyes met.
When I looked further inside, I noticed the table where Nee-san, Hogekawa, and Aqua-sama’s little sister, Lapis-chan, who had also won the first round, were seated.
Now that I think about it, I had a chance to talk to Lapis-chan after the wedding, and she was a really nice girl. She said she wanted to become a calm and mature lady like the Saint… ehehe, did you hear that, Hogekawa, Shumi? Aqua-sama’s little sister has good taste!
But then, I wish I had a little sister like that… Wait a minute! If I marry Aqua-sama, Lapis-chan will automatically become my little sister, right! As expected of me, I’ve come up with something good.
”Saint-sama? You have a look on your face like Saint Chinposuki-sama, but are you okay?”
Close call, close call. I collected myself and checked the tables around me again.
Ah! I spotted Shumi’s grandma! She must have noticed me because she waved at me.
Wait, huh? She shouldn’t know who I am… Oh, right, we did meet at the wedding and reception, so we’re not complete strangers. I nodded slightly and waved back.
”Look, Mary-sama and Sister-san waved back.”
”Damn, even Mary-sama is an official now…”
”She was also at the wedding, right?”
”It’s only been a few months since it was established.”
”Wow… the speed at which it’s spreading is extraordinary.”
”I heard there are even underground believers, and it was mentioned briefly in the parliament.”
”Before we know it, everyone in the world might become followers of the Holy Aqua Religion.”
The classroom buzzed with excitement for a moment. I’m sure they’re all getting worked up talking about something lewd.
While thinking about such carefree things, I slowly shifted my gaze to the left. Huh!? I froze when I saw the person sitting at the same table as Shumi’s grandma. I’ll never forget that face.
Sumeragi Kukuri… one of the top aristocrats in this world and practically the top. I met her when I was in high school, and she was in elementary school at the time. She still had a faint smile, but for some reason, only with her, I couldn’t shake the fear of not knowing what she was thinking deep down.
It’s not like I have an aversion to her on a physical or personal level, and when we actually talked, she seemed perfectly normal. In fact, there was nothing particularly strange about her way of thinking, and her beliefs weren’t skewed either.
On the contrary, when talking to her, everyone naturally felt empathy and a desire to help her. That’s why it was scary. My broken sensors, which were almost malfunctioning, said that I shouldn’t defy her.
But why are she and Shumi’s grandma… well, considering their positions, it wouldn’t be surprising if there was a connection… As I was lost in thought, someone emerged from the back, and the classroom began to buzz.
”Huh, huh, who? Who is that?”
”Was there a boy like that?”
”It’s Tsukimachi Ayana from the runway!”
”Wait a second, isn’t that Shumi?”
”So, is the last one also a girl?”
”Wow, that kid over there looks cooler than most guys!”
”I’m just going with Shumi.”
”Shumi is super handsome!”
Yeah… both Shumi and Claire look great. Maybe we should mas***bate together sometime. As I was grinning to myself, another person appeared. Initially, I thought it was an extremely tall girl, but when I saw the face, I was shocked beyond belief.
Everyone in the classroom simultaneously erupted into commotion. The noise was so loud that even Aqua-sama couldn’t stand it and covered her ears. Man, I wonder if I could go for Aqua-sama.
Moreover, he has an eggplant-sama between his legs? That would be amazing! And Hogekawa, wipe that drool off properly. You’re still a national broadcaster, so be mindful of your surroundings!
”Saint-sama, you have drool coming from the corner of your mouth.”
I wiped the drool away with the hand towel the ninja lent me. I’ll wash it and return it later.
”Hehe… Saint-sama, while we may not be friends, this is the first time I’ve lent or borrowed a handkerchief.”
Wait a minute, you! If you say such sad things, it’s going to make my heart squeeze! Speaking of which, you mentioned earlier that when you go out for tea with friends, it’s something like this, right… ugh, I get it, I get it. I’ll be your friend for sure, so don’t say such sad things anymore!
And look, Claire over there is a nice person too, so she’ll definitely become your friend. Oh, and even though she doesn’t talk much, Rion should be fine too. And just to be clear, the Holy Aqua Religion is the only place where we can talk to each other.
”Rin… next time, let’s go to a regular café.”
She looks so happy. Despite being older than me, she’s quite cute. I turned my gaze back to Aqua-sama, who was performing a skit with Toa-chan and Mayuzumi-kun while dressed as a boy. Oh, Toa-chan looks cool even in male attire!
”Pray to the God! A-qua!!”
”Idiot, shut up! You’ll expose me to the board idiots!!”
I couldn’t help but interject when the idiots at the neighboring table started making a fuss. Speaking of which, these guys… at first glance, they looked like a normal person, but they’re a believer, huh? Fine, I get it. Don’t have to keep nodding at me like that!! People will think you’re one of us! Shh, shh!
”Here are your orders.”
”Thank you… wait, isn’t that you, Claire?”
Claire placed our tea, pancakes, and the mysterious drink on our table and then sat next to me.
”Emily-san, please behave yourself.”
”Don’t worry, despite appearances, I’m quite reliable. Just think of it as riding a big ship!”
”Ugh, are you really? I’m worried…”
As I observed Aqua-sama, he moved toward the table where Shumi’s grandma and Kukuri were seated, and then he headed toward the table with Hogekawa and Nee-san.
Is he okay? I was carefully watching in case Hogekawa did something stupid, but it turned out that Aqua-sama made a blunder instead. I never expected him to casually mention our recent sleepover… wait a minute.
Could this be a form of counterplay? If he said something like, “Don’t you dare touch Hagetoru,” that would practically be a declaration of claiming me as his woman. Hehe, “she’s my woman…” I wouldn’t mind if Aqua-sama said that.
”If Hagetoru were here, it would make headlines that she’ll attack.”
”I won’t attack!!”
Oops, I was about to make a retort without thinking, but Claire covered my mouth with both hands, so I only mumbled a bit.
”Hey, hey, Emily-san, stop it! If you get too loud, you’ll be exposed!”
Sorry, sorry, it happens sometimes… Well, there are times like these too.
”Pancakes are so yummy.”
By the way, the ninja was calmly devouring pancakes in front of us. Shouldn’t you be the one stopping me? Well, she looks like she’s enjoying the pancakes, so I guess it’s fine.
Anyway, Aqua-sama, after making the declaration that we had spent the night together in front of Hogekawa’s table, caused some commotion at Lapis-chan’s table, and then passed by our table. At that moment, by pure chance, or rather, as if guided by destiny, Aqua-sama’s gaze and mine met.
”Oh, wait!? Why is Sister here…?”
W-what do I do!? Come to think of it, from Aqua-sama’s perspective, he might wonder why I’m here. Probably, Aqua-sama thinks of me as someone from Stars, so it would be unnatural for me to be here.
”Actually, she’s an acquaintance of mine…”
Nice cover, Claire! You’re definitely more competent than the others!
”Thank you for your help at the wedding. Please enjoy yourself today.”
Aqua-sama is amazing!
Even though he’s dressed as a female, Aqua-sama can imp***nate with his voice and gaze alone.
”Oh, by the way, this is another acquaintance of mine, Kazami Rin.”
”Kazami Rin. I’m a fourth-grader at Mary’s. I like pancakes and popcorn…”
When Aqua-sama’s gaze turned towards Rin, it was the same as when he looked at Lapis-chan. Don’t be deceived, Aqua-sama, she may look this way, but she’s older than me! Without noticing, Aqua-sama casually patted the ninja’s head.
”Aqua-san, by the way, Rin-san is a fourth-year university student.”
”Alright, don’t worry… More importantly, pet me some more.”
Hey, wait! Ninja, it’s you! You go over there!! Well, I’ve never been patted on the head before! Grrr… My jealousy pressure must have affected Claire’s stomach because she started clutching it in pain.
”My stomach… hurts… Oww…”
”Claire-san, are you okay?”
”I-It’s okay. I-I can handle this, so please, go help at other tables as soon as possible. Please…!”
Oops, I was so envious that I think my real Hagetoru showed. Well, I want to be patted on the head too! I want Aqua-sama to pat me.
Heck, I’d even like it if he patted not my head but the chest area, or maybe the lower region, or even better, if he patted me with that splendid eggplant-sama.
While thinking about that, I felt like my jealousy pressure was about to surge again, so I eased it for Claire’s sake.
”Are you okay, Claire?”
”Y-yes… I’m just going to the restroom.”
”Don’t push too hard during your ‘business.’”
”My business… Emily-san, you’re an idiot!”
Yeah, yeah, as long as she can say that, she’s probably fine.
By the way, I have a different kind of stomachache. Come to think of it, I didn’t eat yesterday… Grrr, I gave away all the money I earned from that MV gig, and when I was on my way home, I saw a mother, who looked like she was on the brink of death, and I dropped all the money I had for her kids’ school trip.
Well, maybe some people would say I should have just ignored it, but if you see someone who looks like they’re about to die, it’s normal to worry and ask if they’re okay. Moreover, when I listened to her story, she couldn’t work much because of an illness, and she had been waiting at the school until the last minute.
Yeah, well, fortunately, I had just paid at the convenience store, so it was just a matter of enduring not eating.
But then… I’m really hungry now. All that money I gave away… But, you know, if it can make someone happy, that’s even better. So, I don’t regret what I did at all.
However… the smell of those pancakes in front of me! All of it, all of it, it’s flying towards me with that delicious aroma. I want sweets!
”Saint-sama… Let’s eat pancakes together.”
Ninja… You’re amazing. I may have underestimated you a little. If it were Hogekawa or Shumi, they would just eat it without even realizing, with a nonchalant and impertinent expression! The ninja cut the pancakes and speared a piece with a fork, then aimed it toward me.
”Y-yes, Saint-sama. Here comes the airplane.”
”Mmm! These pancakes are delicious!”
Oh no, tears are coming… Pancakes taste this good, huh?
When I tasted the pancakes that Aqua-sama had made, I was equally impressed.
”Rin… you can call me Emily if you want.”
The ninja looked bewildered but then shot me fleeting glances with a slightly embarrassed expression. It’s fine. Go ahead, give it a try. You can even call me Emily-neesama if you want, even though I’m younger.
”Well, then, E-Emily… chan.”
”Hehe… it’s like we’re friends…”
She looked so happy, and thanks to that, I also felt warm inside.
”All right! Rin, since we’re here, let’s check out the other attractions too.”
We headed to the cashier as our time was up. By the way, as rumored on the bulletin board, everything was indeed free. I ordered Earl Grey just in case we did another round today, but I might have done something bad by accepting the pancakes from the ninja.
The reason it was all free was that every time the champagne tower was filled, Aqua-sama would say, “Today, it’s on me, enjoy yourselves.” So, I graciously accepted.
”I-I… it’s the first time in my life that a boy treated me…”
”I get it. I’ve had my wallet out, but I still considered it a good memory.”
”I withdrew all my money just for this day, and my thoughts came to a halt due to the unexpected treat.”
”Ugh, ugh, ugh… I’m so glad I could come today.”
”I’m sorry for the person who missed out. But we had fun for their share too.”
”This is Shirogane Kingdom, desu~wa…”
”As expected, Shirogane Aqua wins.”
”We’re the ones who lose.”
”I don’t mind losing to Aa-sama forever.”
”I’d like to be defeated in bed too…”
When we stepped outside the store, there were people crying everywhere. Nee-san and Hogekawa were crying too, and even that Kukuri and Shumi’s grandma were laughing in surprise. Lapis-chan and the others also looked happy. Well, disguising myself and coming here was definitely worth it.
At that time, I was thinking so carelessly, little did I know that I would come to learn a glimpse of the terrifying abyss within the Holy Aqua Religion through this cultural festival…
Please bookmark this series and rate ☆☆☆☆☆ on here!
Edited by Kanaa-senpai.
Thanks for reading.