unit name: Banner –>

“Looks delicious.
I’ll have it, please.”

With that, she handed me a tray with two identical slices.
“Thank you for buying it! Let me know if it’s good! Oh, but if you don’t think it is, keep it to your heart.
I’ll get depressed if you tell me directly…”

“Got it.”

It’s almost lunchtime again today, so I walked to the place I came to love recently.
It was that same square I went to with Momiji the first day.
A garden that wonderful should be full of people, but as time went by, the number of visitors decreased.
Despite first-impressions being of a breathtaking view, you eventually get used to it.
And since it’s a bit far from the main building, it’s really not seen as an option by many.

Stepping in, I saw no soul there.
I’m usually the first to leave the classroom, so that might’ve helped.
I sat on one of the benches around the empty plaza, overwhelmed with a feeling of freedom.

The only sounds were from the meandering wind and the lively birds.
This, by far, may be the best place for lunch all around.
Filled with wonder, I was about to take the first bite out of the bread, but students began to arrive, albeit in glimpses.

I, myself, prefer having some alone time in my personal space, but that doesn’t mean I hate the background hustle and bustle of people.
All I hate is being in a classroom where I feel uncomfortably alone, or in a cafeteria where shoulders touch, but I’m still far from people.

Munch.

Damn.
This bread is on a whole other level.
I bought two loaves on the spur of the moment, so I’d like to have the second one be something different for variety’s sake.
All in all, I’ll tell the lady at the bakery her bread is delicious.
If I don’t, she’ll think it’s bad.
As I thought about it, the first one was already gone.

Ah, she’s here today.

A girl sat on another bench far from mine.
Her hair was dyed, perhaps bleached, and it seemed to shine on its own.
With eyes that pierce, she exuded an aura that basically screamed ‘leave me alone.’ While it was easy to imagine her being some sort of delinquent, I got the impression she wasn’t.

When I first saw her in this plaza, I couldn’t help but glance as she sat at a bench next to me.
It was also that same girl who gave up her seat on my commute to the entrance ceremony.
She had noticed my staring and returned a sharp glare, to which I quickly looked away.

After that happened, she stopped sitting in a place near me, so I ended up being extremely aware of her, so I could make myself as unnoticeable as possible.

A few groups of people sat on other benches around, and some even sat on the lawn.
However, I was most concerned by the only solitary person I routinely saw there, perhaps because I felt a strange sense of kinship with her.

—Oh well, that doesn’t mean I want to get involved.
And I’m scared of her, to boot.

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