Title: My feelings for him are overflowing
I was swallowed up in a muddy stream of emotions
—I couldn’t breathe.
It felt painful.
Things continuing like this might be really bad.
Normally, my breathing just calms down with time, but this time it feels worse than normal.
Plus, my vision was covered in darkness, yet those people’s faces kept flickering in and out.
Other than those faces, I couldn’t see anything.
I couldn’t see Fuyu-kun’s expression.
I can’t see anything, Fuyu-kun.
I called out.
“….I-,…..It hurts…..It hurts a lot, Kamikawa-kun, Kamika—……wa-kun.
I held out my hand, trying to reach out to him.
I could barely see him at all.
“Those words” just tightened their grip on me and refused to let me go, making my breathing become more and more painful.
(If this continues, my breathing might just stop.) It was at the very moment I thought this that–
“Shimokawa-san, pull yourself together.
Take slow deep breaths—-Shimokawa, Shimokawa!”
I could faintly hear Fuyu-kun’s voice.
I tried to find him in my hazy consciousness.
Where? Where are you, Fuyu-kun? I searched for him by instinct.
I firmly stretched out my hand, and, this time, I heard his voice loud and clear.
I felt a pleasant warmth in my palm.
I felt him catch me.
It was like I was surrounded by him, cuddling with him.
He had hugged me, but there was no room for embarrassment at this point.
But Fuyu-kun is worried about me—-As I looked at his desperate face, I began to feel relieved.
In this one moment, I was the most important thing to Fuyu-kun.
As I realized that, I felt my anxiety disappear–-I felt satisfied.
I have no recollection of how we made it to the park.
By the time I was fully conscious again, I was on a park bench, leaning against Fuyu-kun.
My hands were in his grasp.
The way he was so worried about me pained me.
“Hey, um….Shimokawa-san, I’m really sor—”
It felt wrong for Fuyu-kun to apologize to me.
It was me who had decided to be so reckless.
I had been way too conscious of Yayoi-sensei.
Just thinking back on it, I felt really embarrassed, which made my body heat up.
I mean, Fuyu-kun had been doing so many things with other people that I didn’t know about.
That had made me feel—In fact, I still felt—frustrated.
And so, out of desperation—I let my emotions overtake me and uttered something without thinking.
Fuyu-kun made a puzzled face and tried to ask me what I meant.
Well it’s too late to stop now.)
“Just now, when you called me by my first name, I was really happy, you know.
If you actually think of me as your friend, Kamikawa-kun, could you call me by my first name?”
Fuyu-kun made a clearly troubled expression.
But I couldn’t back down here.
My inner greed was telling me to get even closer to Fuyu-kun.
Calling him “Fuyu-kun” in my mind wasn’t enough for me anymore.
“My first name.
If you genuinely think of me as your friend, I want you to call me by my first name.”
(Why am I being so pushy? What should I do if he hates me?) I cast my eyes downward.
I realized that way too late.
He had only come to help me because Yayoi-sensei had told him to.
It was pretty much something like pity.
There was no reason for him to go so far for me.
I raised my face.
He called out to me, smiling.
There was no sign of denial or rejection.
There was just his unchanging acceptance of me.
I could feel myself getting overly emotional again.
(That isn’t good.
I don’t want to be weak.
I don’t want Fuyu-kun to have to worry about me)
I tried my best to face him with a smile.
“Thank you, Fuyu-kun!”
(Am I smiling?)
I looked at Fuyu-kun who was smiling, looking even happier than me—And I suddenly wanted something else.
Even though I had already been so selfish, I wanted even more.
I felt so shameless.
But he had grabbed my hand and accepted me.
He had helped my breathing return to normal.
So I resolved myself and decided to tell him what I wanted.
My heart was beating quickly, and I felt so embarrassed I could die.
“Fuyu-kun, can I ask for one more thing?”
“Hm? Well if it’s something I can do, sure, I’ll do it.”
“Then, lend me your hand—-”
My face felt hot.
I couldn’t even look him in the eye.
I was so embarrassed that I wanted to immediately run away.
But, if I ran away now, nothing would change.
And, more than anything, I had realized.
Within this short period of time, I had felt it so many times—
—-I need Fuyu-kun.
Whenever we go outside, can I hold your hand? Uh….Um….whenever I hold your hand, it becomes less painful for me to breathe, so, um…you might think of me as weird, but…if we could—”
As I spoke, my thoughts were thrown into disarray, and I felt like the logic in what I was saying had completely gone out the window.
But it’s true.
This tiny distance between us, so small that I can feel his body heat….His comforting presence right beside me….It’s probably because Fuyu-kun is here that I can stay calm and breathe properly.
And, without a response, he touched my hand.
I looked at him.
He was smiling.
My heart, which had been pounding so painfully, gradually calmed down.
My breathing had settled down as well, so much so that even I was surprised.
I could feel his body temperature.
It felt like it was only the two of us in this vast world.
I could finally feel my blood returning to normal.
It circulated inside me, bringing my body temperature back to where it should be.
I had barely managed to squeeze it out and tell him.
And, when I did, he wholeheartedly accepted me.
I felt so happy.
Inside me, I could feel Fuyu-kun becoming a larger, even more important existence to me.
I took another deep breath.
It seems like I’m fine.
Once again, I felt how important Fuyu-kun was to me.
“……Thank you, Fuyu-kun.
I’m probably okay now.
I can breathe perfectly fine.
But it’s only because of your hand.
I’m only okay because we’re holding hands, so can we hold hands on the way back too?” I asked him.
“Uh, um, sure.
I stared directly at Fuyu-kun.
(I want him to call me by my name.)
“—–Yuki, if you’re fine with that, then of course that’s fine.”
Fuyu-kun looked quite embarrassed.
He had accepted me, and now he had even understood what I was trying to say.
Fuyu-kun really was amazing.
“Oh, that’s right.
Do you have a second?” Fuyu-kun asked me this, seeming like he was trying to hide his embarrassment.
But he was still holding my hand.
It felt like I was being escorted by him.
From his pocket, Fuyu-kun took out a small bag covered in cute wrapping.
I blinked, surprised.
My thoughts couldn’t keep up.
He took the small bag and placed it in my hand.
“Well, you’ve treated me to all this delicious food, so I feel like all I’ve been doing is receiving stuff from you Shim—-Yuki.
I wanted to get something for you.
I consulted Kaizaki about this, but I was scolded for picking something too expensive.
So this was picked—”
I was surprised at the mention of my childhood friend’s name.
I really did want to go back to school after all.
Because, in a place that I was unaware of, Fuyu-kun was becoming closer to other people, and I was afraid of that.
“He helped, but, in the end, I was the one that decided on this.
If anything, I feel bad since it’s so cheap, but I couldn’t come up with anything else.”
Hearing Fuyu-kun’s words, I felt relieved—I felt happy, so happy that I wanted to spin around in joy.
Fuyu-kun spent a bunch of time thinking about something to get me.
On top of that, in the end, he was the one that made the final choice on what to give me.
I was in a state of bliss.
“Fuyu-kun, could you open it for me?”
I was never going to let go of his hand.
Obviously, part of the reason I didn’t want to let go was because of my breathing.
But, more importantly, I just didn’t want to be separated from Fuyu-kun, even for a moment.
He smiled wryly and began opening it up.
What came out was a phone strap with a white cat on it.
Plus, it was a character that I liked, one that I often used on LINK.
“Well, it’s because we’ve been contacting each other a lot lately.
I thought that it might serve as a good luck charm.
I even prayed to Lulu, hoping for your attacks to not be as bad.”
(I want to hug Fuyu-kun right now)—Somehow I managed to restrain my impulses.
(I’m so happy, I’m so happy.
If I slip up for even a moment, I won’t be able to control my emotions anymore, and I’ll start crying tears of happiness.
But I know that, if I do, Fuyu-kun will be worried about me, so I’ll do my best to suppress my emotions.)
Fuyu-kun attached the strap to my smartphone case.
I felt the strap with my fingers.
I could feel even more of Fuyu-kun, so I felt really happy.
(I’ll take care of it.
I will definitely treasure it—)
That’s what I muttered to myself in my heart.
“But, you know what? You pushed yourself a bit too hard today.
We can take your rehabilitation slowly, a little at a time.
Considering what you’ve gone through today, you’ve probably been under a lot of strain.”
I nodded meekly.
I had made Fuyu-kun worry about me.
I felt bad about that, I really did, but you know what, Fuyu-kun?
“But it’s okay.
Because you’ll be there for me, right, Fuyu-kun?”
“Well, I’ll do as much as I can.”
“That’s more than enough.
When you’re here, Fuyu-kun, I feel like I can breathe just fine.
Straight to the point.
And it’s true.
That is what I really feel.
When Fuyu-kun is with me, it becomes easier for me to breathe.
And, instead of responding to what I said with words, Fuyu-kun squeezed my hand.
I could feel his presence even more.
But also, thank you.
I can breathe because you’re here.
I wanted to tell him that over and over again.
I sat in a daze on my bed, looking at the phone strap.
I’ve been doing this ever since I got back.
Being able to feel Fuyu-kun’s presence more makes me feel happy.
I heard that he had his part-time job today, so I tried refraining from sending him LINK messages, though I did really want to tell him “thank you” over and over again.
Fuyu-kun had gradually come to play a bigger and bigger part in my life.
And, on top of that, I was also aware of the fact that I was gradually becoming more selfish.
—Suddenly, I got a notification on my phone for a LINK message.
Seeing something unbelievable, I blinked in surprise.
It was a message from Fuyu-kun—
fuyu: I’m going to go to my part-time job now.
I think I put too much strain on you today.
I’m really sorry.
Please rest well.
fuyu: But I think you’re amazing.
You’re really trying your best to move forward.
That being said, don’t push yourself too hard, okay?
I suddenly realized that I had been unconsciously hugging my smartphone.
(The reason I can face forward, the reason I want to move forward—All of it is thanks to you.)
I quickly started to reply.
Flicking my phone screen, I desperately tried not to mistype as I endured my quickening heartbeat.
I don’t want him to figure out how nervous I am or how fast my heart is beating.
I don’t even know what these emotions are—Lie.
That’s a lie.
The truth is even I recognize what these feelings are.
But, for right now, I’m fine with staying friends.
I tried to control the greedy, selfish “me.”
yuki: Thank you so much for today.
However, I don’t want to worry you, so I’ll try not to overdo it.
yuki: Also, if you think I’m amazing for facing forward, it’s all thanks to you, Fuyu-kun.
Do your best at your part time job, okay? Make sure you don’t push yourself too hard either.
See you tomorrow.
I’m waiting for you.
That’s how I replied.
I received a stamp with a dog on it saying ‘OK.’ In response, I sent him a stamp of a white cat with the words ‘fight!’ on it.
My message changed to “read,” but the conversation stopped there.
Fuyu-kun needed to get ready to go to his part-time job, so I was well aware that he wouldn’t be able to check my messages all day.
Despite that, I felt a warm feeling form in the depths of my heart.
I hugged the cell phone strap, trying to confirm that it was still there.
–And, all of a sudden, I heard some brisk, noisy footsteps coming up the staircase.
For what it’s worth, he did knock.
I smiled wryly before saying “you can come in.”
My door opened.
The person that appeared was my younger brother Sora, who was wearing a giant, innocent smile.
Saying he’s innocent sounds like a positive thing.
However, this year he’s just become a middle schooler, and it’s still kind of difficult to believe he really is one with how childish he is.
“Huh? Onee-chan, that strap is cute, isn’t it.
Did you get it from your boyfriend?”
He dropped this bomb of a statement on me from the middle of nowhere.
Becoming inadvertently conscious of his words, I could feel my face burning up and turning red in embarrassment.
“Hey, Sora, don’t tease me like that.
Fuyu-kun and I aren’t like that, okay.”
Listening to my words, a smirk gradually grew on Sora’s face.
Weren’t you referring to him as ‘Kamikawa-kun’ yesterday?”
“It-, it doesn’t matter what I call him, okay! I mean, we–, we’re just friends!”
“You mean for right now?”
“No! We’re just friends!”
As Sora watched my panicked reaction, he smiled happily.
I puffed out my cheeks and sulked in protest.
“Well, that’s not the main thing I was going to ask about.
Do you think you’ll be able to eat dinner again tonight? Mommy was asking about it in the family LINK group, you know?”
[TLN: He referred to his mom as kaa-chan so I used mommy idk]
“No way, really?”
A message really had come in, so I rushed to respond.
“Judging by how you’re doing, you’ll probably be able to eat right? Your mood’s been a lot better lately too.”
Sora smiled broadly—And he added something to what he was saying.
“All thanks to Fuyu-kun, huh.”
I could feel my face heating up again.
My face was probably completely dyed scarlet by now.
“Sora, stop making fun of me—”
“But you’re so happy that it’s literally written all over your face, you know?”
Sora left the room with a smirk.
I moved to try to throw my pillow at him, but the door was already shut.
I never thought the day I was teased by my younger brother would ever come.
‘Still hot,’ I thought, as I felt my own cheeks and looked at the smartphone lying in my lap..
—-”You’re so happy that it’s literally written all over your face, you know?”
I couldn’t deny it since he was right.
Everyday life with Fuyu-kun beside me was something that made me really happy, and there was no replacement for it.
(I want to know more about Fuyu-kun.
I want to get closer to him.)
And I’ve also gradually gotten more and more selfish.
Trying to suppress these uncontrollable emotions, I tightly hugged the phone strap that Fuyu-kun gave me.
(I feel like my emotions are going to overflow.
I don’t think I can keep holding them back anymore—)
[TLN: sorry been a bit burnt out of life and stuff.
Didn’t help that this chapter seemed a lot longer than usual.
Ty to the people who wished me luck on the sat I did pretty well.
Oh I also changed some of the older dialogue because I realized that I didn’t TL it completely accurately]
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