Yukimura strutted into school with his bag slung over his shoulders. He had learned the technique from Kodaka a long time ago. Although he still had a little trouble with his walk, sometimes messing up and having to correct himself, he had committed the slinging of his bag into his memory so that it was almost second nature.
There were whispers in the hallways. People pointed, whispered, and gasped. Yukimura shook his head. If they were pointing at him, he couldn't express outward surprise. That would only make it worse for him. He learned that from Kodaka as well.
Yukimura walked into his class and sat down. Ever since he had gone through his transformation, he had gotten along far better with his classmates. Therefore, when several guys suddenly surrounded him at his desk, Yukimura was rather taken aback.
"Yukimura, we heard the news. You're going out with the daughter of the school's headmaster?"
Yukimura shook his head. "Where the hell did you get that?"
One of the guys laughed. "Well, I guess it isn't true. I mean, if I were going out with the headmaster's daughter, I'd totally be bragging about it."
"Unless the headmaster doesn't know," pointed out a third boy.
All eyes were on Yukimura again. Yukimura rolled his eyes as the bell rang. "Get back to your desks, people. It's not true. Nothing to see, nothing to hear about."
Yukimura forgot about the incident until lunchtime. When the bell rang for lunch break, Yukimura took out the bento he had made for himself. Although he was undoubtedly a guy now, he was still a good cook from all the tea brewing and snack baking he had done for the club.
It started as a whisper somewhere upstairs in the upper-classmen's classrooms. Eventually, this wave of whispers streamed downstairs until it reached Yukimura's room.
"What's everybody whispering about?" said Yukimura.
Everybody looked at Yukimura and began laughing. Now angry, Yukimura began to suspect it had something to do with the rumors from that morning.
"They're saying your girlfriend's heading to your room right now," said someone.
"What the hell are you talking—"
"Yu-ki-mu-ra!" sang out a voice. Sena skipped into the classroom, holding a bento box covered in a handkerchief.
Yukimura remained frozen in his seat at first. When he finally understood what was going on, he collapsed, letting his head bang against his desk.
"Yukimura, honey!" crooned Sena. "I made you lunch!"
Yukimura kept his head down and quietly ate from his bento. Sena took a seat next to him anyway (one of the boys in the classroom immediately offered her his chair).
"Yukimura, honey!" cried Sena again. "I've got your lunch right here!"
"What are you doing here?" hissed Yukimura.
"Isn't it natural for a girl to eat lunch with her boyfriend?" said Sena, far too loudly for Yukimura's comfort.
"We went on one date," said Yukimura. "Six months ago, you thought I was a girl."
Sena hugged Yukimura, trapping his arm between her breasts. "Yu-u-u-ki-i-m-u-u-r-r-r-a-a, you're so mean!"
"Stop talking so loudly! People are starting to notice."
"Then eat my lunch. I spent all morning making it for you!"
Sena thrust the bento box forward with an eager look on her face. Yukimura accepted it and undid the cloth. He wrinkled his nose as he realized that this was probably the first bento Sena had ever made. Yukimura glanced sadly at his own meticulously made bento, filled with delicious leftovers from the night before, while he put Sena's food in his mouth.
"You know, you shouldn't have to pick up your own food," said Sena. She took the chopsticks from Yukimura's hand, dipped it in the box, and held it up in the air. "Open up."
"Are we seriously going to do this?" said Yukimura.
Yukimura reluctantly opened his mouth and let Sena feed him.
"Now that I did it to you, you've got to return the favor." Sena sat up with her hands in her lap and her mouth wide open. A few guys began whispering rather inappropriate comments. Yukimura simply buried his head in his hands. He wondered if stuff like this was why Kodaka constantly looked pissed.
"Where do you want me to get the food from?" said Yukimura.
"How about your box?" said Sena.
Yukimura's face turned blue as he eyed the bento he had made himself. "Are you sure this isn't an excuse to mooch off my food?"
Sena said nothing. Instead, she wiggled her butt in the seat and opened her mouth up even wider. Yukimura silently took some rice from his bento with his chopstick and extended it toward Sena's lips.
Feeding each other was far more awkward and clumsy than it looked in the movies. Even Sena was surprised by how ungainly the process was. The bell ending lunch break came a little too soon for Yukimura to feel full. He packed up his bento box, jamming it ill-temperedly back into his bag.
"Bye, honey! I'll see you after school!" Sena kissed Yukimura and skipped out of the room.
Once they had the chance, the boys in Yukimura's class began to pester him with questions about Sena. As Yukimura walked through the hallway after class ended, he noticed a large number of boys glaring at him. Remembering that Sena had a giant group of devoted males, Yukimura simply went to his locker as fast as he could and hurried to the club room.
Sena was the only person in the room.
"What's going on?" said Yukimura. "And I'm guessing you're the one who spread the rumor that we're going out?"
"It's not a rumor," said Sena matter-of-factly. "Why are you trying to deny our relationship?"
"Because it doesn't exist, that's why," said Yukimura.
"You seem to think I'm joking," said Sena. She pulled Yukimura onto the couch next to her.
"Even if you're not," said Yukimura. "I was the last person in the school to find out I had a girlfriend."
"Didn't think about asking me first?"
"You're my boyfriend," said Sena. She gripped Yukimura, coming within an inch of his face (again). "There's no 'asking' involved. I'm not letting you get away…like the last one."
Yukimura felt his resolving melting away. As his tongue slid deep into Sena's mouth, he began to wonder if it wasn't such a bad arrangement to be Sena's girlfriend after all.
Sena tucked her nose deep into Yukimura's shirt. "You smell nice."
"Hey, guys," said Kodaka. He waved and threw his bag onto the opposite couch.
Yukimura was still curious as to how Kodaka could take all of this in stride. "Are you really OK with all of this, Aniki?"
"You mean you going out with Sena? You're a full-fledged man now, Yukimura. You can do it if you want. Also, you don't have to call me Aniki anymore."
"You don't have a problem with any of this, Ani—Kodaka?"
Kodaka shook his head. "Congratulations!"
"Hear that?" said Sena. "Your 'Aniki' doesn't have a problem with it."
Sena embraced Yukimura again. The two lay down on the couch as Kodaka watched disinterestedly, sipping a canned coffee from the school vending machine.
Yozora walked into the room. She ignored Yukimura and Sena and headed straight for Kodaka, sitting down next to him. Though still apprehensive, Kodaka allowed her to inch closer, pretending not to notice as Yozora slowly placed her hand on his leg.
"What do you want to do after club…h-honey?" said Yozora.
Kodaka turned to Yozora with an amused look. "You don't have to call me that if you don't want to."
"Shut up," muttered Yozora.
"Are we doing anything after club?" said Kodaka.
"You're awfully bad at this," said Yozora.
"Well, I'm fine either way," said Kodaka.
"You're acting like you don't even want a girlfriend."
"Well, I don't mind one way or another."
"You're so mean!" cried Yozora. Her voice was so shrill and helpless that Kodaka blushed. He took Yozora and cradled her head against his chest.
"There, there," said Kodaka. Yukimura looked up from the other couch and smirked, shaking his head.
Two weeks later, life had settled into a routine. It was now Monday morning. Kodaka walked toward the school as Kobato followed behind. The two of them split and headed toward their respective halves in the school.
"Good morning, Yozora," said Kodaka quietly.
Yozora had appeared from the bus stop. "Good morning, Kodaka."
She grabbed Kodaka's arm, and they walked up the stairs and into the classroom. People barely whispered anymore. However, Kodaka still remembered weeks ago, when everybody began talking about them. Neither of them had, nor had yet, mentioned the relationship in public. However, it became obvious when Yozora remained close to Kodaka in a way that was obviously more than friendly. Kodaka simply let Yozora take over from there.
Kodaka passed Sena in the hallway. She had Yukimura in her hand. In the two weeks that had passed, Yukimura had somehow miraculously mastered his pose, looking extremely bold as Sena held his arm.
"Good morning, Yukimura," said Kodaka. "Sena."
"Good morning, Kodaka," said Sena. A faint shadow passed over her face, which no one else noticed.
"Good morning, Kodaka," said Yukimura. He had stopped calling him Aniki. To tell the truth, Kodaka rather missed his old title.
"Good morning, Yukimura," said Yozora. "Hello, Meat."
Sena crossed her arms and turned up her nose. Yukimura nodded, saying, softly, "Good morning, Yozora-anego."
Sena hopped out of her seat as lunchtime started. Despite having been with Yukimura for over two weeks, she still had a dedicated gaggle of boys that accompanied her, whether out of denial or hope that the relationship would end or indifference to Sena's status as taken. Yozora and Kodaka watched as Sena and half the class rushed out into the hall.
"What a bunch of idiots," said Yozora.
"You should be nicer," said Kodaka with a shrug.
Several hours later, as club ended, Kodaka walked out with Yukimura.
"What do you feel like doing today?" said Kodaka.
"Not much," said Yukimura.
"Wanna hang out at my place?"
This was how Kodaka and Yukimura spent many of their afternoons now. Now that there was no pressing mission to make Yukimura man-like, neither felt any particular rush to go out and do stuff. They went out if they felt like it, but often, they simply sat around and talked, like normal friends.
For the first time in a long time, Kodaka's life was easygoing and carefree. He hoped it would last like this for a long time after, as well.
As you can tell, this is not really the last chapter. Instead, I've split the story in two. A lot of the juicy stuff picks back up in the next part, which will be coming out next week. Don't miss it!