It had been a month since Yuigahama confessed to me. It was weird at first but after some time passed our relationship melded back to how it was before.
At least that's what it seemed like from the outside. However, inside, it was different. Things would never really go back to how they were and we knew that. Things became somewhat complicated. Not because I rejected her or because I essentially shattered her heart, you also broke a piece of mine Yuigahama. Although, I'm not sure she realizes just how difficult it was to say no to her. No, the hardest part was dealing with the person currently sitting diagonally from me. Separated by a six-foot table. The sunlight creating a halo around her. Truly mesmerizing. Always reading her books, like me. Except her choices of literature were more refined, while I enjoyed light novels that dealt with fantasy more than the classical sense of the word 'Romance'. Yes, this girl was none other than Yukinoshita Yukino.
Ever since I turned down Yuigahama's advancements, Yukinoshita was also acting strange around me. Although that's to be expected. I mean, her best friend confessed to the guy she liked and was turned down, which also happened to be the same guy she herself held interest in. Yes, I realize how pretentious that sounds but it's the truth. Hell! The feeling is mutual! You hear my inner monologue Yukinoshita?! Stop ignoring me please! It's difficult right now because I want to talk to her about this and I know she doesn't want to hurt Yuigahama further. I don't either. But I also know Yuigahama would never forgive us if we never muster up the courage to talk to each other about this. I could never forgive myself. Slap me Yuigahama! Knock some sense into me! But now it's been a month and currently today it's only us in the clubroom. Perfect chance.
"It's getting warmer, huh?" I say not looking away from my book.
"Indeed. Make sure to wipe the sweat stain from the chair when you leave."
What's this? Making fun of me? Are you suggesting somehow my body just profusely sweats without me doing anything physical and sitting idly in an air conditioned room? Even I thought that was gross.
Wait. This is the first quip since a month ago! I'm happy!
Happy? What the hell is wrong with me?! Am I an 'M' or something? What have you done to me Yukinoshita?!
I give an audible chuckle that catches her attention.
"Did I say something amusing?" she gave me a puzzling look.
"Not really." I said focusing my gaze at her while I rested my chin on my palm.
"Oh." She quietly said looking away. A small smile forming.
Hadn't seen that in a while either. Crap I think my heart just skipped.
She really was amazingly beautiful and she knew it. The problem was that she didn't trust people. Her social circle was small and she liked it that way, crowds made her uncomfortable after all. But somehow I became a part of that circle. It took a lot of work to stay in it and in the beginning I didn't even know I wanted to be a part of it. But before I knew it, I was the closest one to her and I didn't hate it. Once we had trust in each other it changed everything between us. We bumped heads on things but at the end one thing was still the same. We cared about each other.
It took me too long to be honest about my feelings for her and now it was time to take action. Before long we would graduate and there was no guarantee we would stay in each other's lives, Yuigahama included. No, nothing was certain so I had to grow a pair and tell her the truth.
Damn I really have changed since I was forced to join this club. Is this what you wanted Sensei?!
"I've been getting tired of my books recently." I stated. Once again not looking away from my book.
From my peripheral I could see her turning her head towards my direction.
"hmm. Well that's to be expected. After all, you only read…" I now turned to her as she paused and stared at the book I was currently reading.
"Certain…literature?" She said as her head cocked to the side.
Why are you saying that with a question?! Of course it's literature! It's amazingly well written! Don't look down on my hobbies!
"Ahem…" I attempted to clear my voice to hide my irritation.
"Well then. Do you have any books you could recommend then?"
She was a little taken aback by my question. Her mouth even dropped down a bit. A tint of red surfaced from her cheeks.
Oh. Does asking for book recommendations do it for you, Yukinoshita?
"Yes. I suppose I could." She stared at me for a bit and then delicately grabbed her chin like she did when thinking about something.
"Tomorrow. I could bring a few books…If you'd like."
Why are you getting nervous for?! You are making this more embarrassing than it was meant to be. I hadn't even gotten to the real question yet.
"Well, I was wondering if you would go to the bookstore with me and help me choose one…like today…right now…"
Holy crap this is a lot harder than I thought. But considering how I was. This is a big step.
Yukinoshita now had her jaw drop as far a lady like herself would let it without looking…well, un-lady like.
"Hikigaya-kun..." is also she managed to say before going silent again.
"No, well. I-I mean, if you don't want to that's…fine" I said dejected and turning away from her.
What the hell am I saying?! This is no time to get cold feet Hachiman! Be a man, dammit!
"huh?" I said still not looking at her.
"I'll go with you to the bookstore."
I managed to look up at her.
She was completely turned in her chair and was facing directly towards me. A smile across her face and her cheeks a bright shade of red.
"Really?" smooth Hachiman. Make her feel more embarrassed.
"Yes. We can go right now…together." a soft smile still on her face.
Now or never. I'm going for the final blow. I took a deep breath.
"Then…how about we make it a date?" I fucking said it! This is it. Either I get rejected and have to transfer out of this school during my third year. Or I become the happiest guy in this damn school! I worked to get to this point but now it's all up to her.
"hmm. A date? I think I would only go on a 'date' with a boy, if he were my boyfriend."
She said going back to her thinking pose.
"Ah." Is all I could say. A pathetic and hardly audible sound that regurgitated from the depths of my bowls.
Did I just get rejected?
Time to call my parents and ask for that transfer. Wait. No. that wouldn't be enough. I would need to move towns. Better yet just become a shut in and never show my face again. Probably get an identity change while I'm at it.
No! Wait. That's not it.
"umm…are you asking…" I couldn't even finish my sentence. All I knew was that I was just staring at her as my face became so hot I swear you could cook and egg on it.
"Geez…are you going to actually make me directly say it? That's cruel Hikigaya-kun." She said in a quiet voice. She herself turning an even brighter shade of red.
I couldn't process this. I was prepared for everything but this! She turned this confession around on me. She completely caught me off guard. My brain was churning like crazy now. I didn't know what to say. Although the answer was pretty obvious.
While I stood there trying to remember how to talk. Yukinoshita became impatient.
"Well? Give me your answer Hikigaya-kun. Will you be my b-boyfriend or not?" She said now crossing her arms and closing her eyes.
She stuttered! Damn that was cute.
Alright enough idling Hachiman!
I took a deep breath and gave her my most confidant answer I could muster in this situation.
"Yukinoshita Yukino! Yes! It would make me the happiest man alive if you would let me be your boyfriend!" I yelled. Maybe a little too loud as Yukinoshita jumped back a bit.
Even that was cute. Stop it Yukinoshita or I won't be able to hold back!
She blankly stared at me for a moment before she began to giggle. With a soft smile on her face she looked up at me.
"Yes. That would also make me happy, Hikigaya-kun." She sweetly said.
If I could melt, I would be a puddle right now. My heart couldn't handle this. I was so damn happy right now. I just want to hold you right now Yukinoshita. Hold you and never let go.
"Well then. I should go hand Sensei the clubroom key so we can head out." She said cutting my thoughts off before they became more… adult like.
Yukinoshita swiftly began to move around the clubroom, cleaning up the tea set.
"I can help with that" I said not wanting to just stand there and look. Although that was fine with me too.
"That's alright. Why don't you just wait for me in front of the school gate. This will only take a moment."
I nodded. Packed my things and gave her an awkward wave that she responded to with a small wave back and a smile as I headed out.
I stood there outside in front of the gate and waited for her. It was a short wait as I felt a gentle tap on my shoulder. I turned around and there stood Yukinoshita. She really was beautiful. The way the sun helped her white skin radiate was spellbinding to say the least.
"Should we get this date started?" She asked with a teasing smile.
"Y-yes." I really need to work on not stuttering so much in front of her.
We slowly began to leave the school grounds. We didn't get very far before I gave into my impulses. I reached out my right hand towards her left hand and grasped it. This surprised her because she stopped and looked at me, again cheeks a beautiful tint of red.
"Too much?" I asked not wanting her to feel uncomfortable. This is the first time I've ever attempted this with someone. I was about to pull away when she responded by giving my hand a tight squeeze.
"It's not too much, Hikigaya-kun." She said, an embarrassed smile on her face. She really made my heart skip.
I smiled back and nodded, holding her hand, not wanting to ever let go as we started to walk towards the bookstore.
This is how our first date started.
Our romantic relationship would be a strange one, as expected.