By A Slight Mistake

 
 
 

By A Slight Mistake Chapter 6


06.

The result of the achievement test was my sole victory.

There was no need for Internal students to take an entrance exam but I’m glad I studied. I got a little carried away and thought that with this, I can probably aim for a national university instead of Shinonome’s university department, just like Yakumo. External students increased the number of students in high school from 120 into 150.
30 people made it through the narrow gate and were admitted to the famed Shinonome Academy.

The ranking table for 1st to 50th place is posted in the bulletin board. This should include the names of all 30 Extrenal students. In their case, they will have to drop out of school if they fall from here. Shinonome Academy is an exceptional existence known for its elegant school traditions. Obviously, the External students must have aimed for 1st place, but I got a score which doesn’t permit servility.

Full marks in all subjects. It’s perfect.

I want to say, “This great me has no blind spots,” but it’s shameful so I feigned indifference. Ookami is in the 2nd place but there is a 10-point difference between our scores. And Suwa’s name is not included among these 50 people.

“Mizuhime-sama, that was splendid.”
“It is a magnificent score, isn’t it? I am impressed.”

I was called out from all over the place. I responded to those I recognize with a nod.

“Woah~…I lost after all. I was thinking of taking advantage if there’s an opportunity, but there are no blind spots!?”

I heard a lively voice and when I turned around, Ariwara was standing there.

“When you say ‘taking advantage’, are you competing with me?” I asked in sudden doubt, but he just returned a bright smile.

“It’s natural, my lady. I had a rare chance to closely watch your study habits, but even still…”

“But your score and rank went up right?”

Ariwara is in the 3rd place this time. There is a 12-point difference between us, and 2-point difference with 2nd placer Ookami. His position indicates there’s a chance for comeback.

“That’s right. Well, should I aim for the next rank?”

Ariwara grinned and moved beside me.

“…Mizuhime-sama,” a female student nearby timidly calls out to me. “Was Mizuhime-sama close with Ariwara-sama? It doesn’t seem like it during middle school but…”

“Shippuu is on good terms with them.”

“Oh, Okabe-sama…Uhm, they were in the same class if I’m not mistaken.”

Some expressed their understanding when I informed that it happened through Shippuu.

“Then, you will be together with Ariwara-sama and Tachibana-sama from now on?”
“It will be a feast for the eyes.”

Happy voices stirred together with worrisome words. What “feast for the eyes”? I won’t think of it deeply.

Girls’ conversations are determined by the mood of the moment and through speculations. Apart from me, there was someone who secretly bring up their own topic, too.

“…Suwa-sama is not among the placers. Did something happen?”
“Did you not know? Suwa was…”

The matter they talked about in a low whisper was something within my expectations. As I decided to go back to the classroom, Ariwara walked right beside me and whispered into my ear.

“There’s a rumor Miss Shiori rejected Suwa. Miss Shiori’s reputation dropped to the ground.”
“Shiori-sama did?”

I urged him to continue with only a fleeting glance.

“The truth behind the incident 2 years ago became clear now. They aimed for Miss Shiori because of a grudge. Miss Shiori, who did not express her gratitude despite injuring you and Suwa, rejected Suwa of the head family and hurt his feelings. Her reputation dropped to dirt even more because of her egoism. She has no choice but to study abroad until the commotion cools down.”

“…I see.”

“You’re not surprised?” Ariwara asked, probably finding it unexpected when I nodded without even changing my expression.

“About what?”

“Like the truth of the incident or Suwa getting rejected.”

“About the real situation, I knew it was a grudge from the beginning.”

“Huh?”

“If their purpose was money, they should have changed their target when Shiori-sama shouted my name. Back then they still insisted on Shiori-sama and tried to kill me, a witness and a hindrance. They were thinking that killing one or two people would not matter.”

“She called out to you, Mizuhime?”

“You didn’t know? I narrated it to the police so I thought you knew. Back then, Shiori-sama noticed my presence and shouted my name on purpose. Despite telling me to run away, that is.”

“………….”

Ariwara’s expression visibly changed. What, he didn’t know? Was there an information control?

“…I did not like Miss Shiori that much, but what you said just now changed my mind. I overestimated her. I must revise my opinion of her downward.”

“Huh?”

“No, it’s the opposite. Should I say I’ve recognized how cool and manly Mizuhime is?”

“…Is that a compliment?”

“I’m already in great admiration. I fell so in love that I would be fine being a bride if it’s Mizuhime.”

“Is that so?”

Why don’t I feel like I’m being praised?

“However, I refuse. I don’t need a bride or a groom. What I want is freedom and peace.”

“…Mizuhime’s class is shrouded in dark clouds though.”

“Has that guy’s situation deteriorated so much that it’s becoming visible?”

The conversation with Ariwara is so amusing, I can see why Shippuu wants mess around by teasing him. And because he’s smart, even if I don’t express my words clearly, he can easily reciprocate by reading between the lines.

“He has become an empty shell and murmurs things by himself. If he wasn’t the young master of Suwa, he’ll probably get reported.”

“It doesn’t mean he’s bothering people directly, is he? Well no, he’s causing trouble.”

Day after day, the frightened people asking me to do something about Suwa who’s withering away are increasing. However, I think I can do nothing but watch the fire on the opposite shore.

“Ah…well, good luck?”

For some reason, Ariwara encourages me in a questioning way.

“What do I need good luck for…”

“Hmm…a lot of things?”

“Ariwara. Tell me honestly. I don’t want to get involved with something troublesome!”

When I talked about my true opinion without hesitation, “You just got me with ‘troublesome’! As expected! It seems like I’ve seriously fallen for you!”

“If you’re going to send love letters, please mail no less than 10 genkouyoushi pages. My brother will look it over.”

genkō yōshi, a paper used for writing with it’s own sets of rules that must be followed.

“Oh no, you’re really the greatest!! Please make me your bride!”

Ariwara walked into his classroom with a hearty laugh.


There were cherry blossoms outside the window.

Nevertheless, it was the midst of frigid Siberia’s cold air mass inside the classroom. To be frank, I’m already fed up with this human-shaped depression clinging to the desk, creating a stagnant atmosphere and these mass-produced sigh.

During the election for class representative and committee members, the students and even the teacher peeked at my expression for some reason. Even if they know that I’ve never been an officer, it was evident they wanted me to be the class representative or something. And I know that they want me to look after Suwa.

I still come and go to the hospital even until now and there are also times I suddenly need to be absent from school, so it’s difficult for me to attend committee meetings. Even though I seem better on the surface, my wounds hurts very much during rainy seasons and when there’s change in air pressure, especially when there’s a large change in air pressure. My whole body hurts so much that even breathing is painful.

It would be a bother if a situation like that occurred so I informed ahead that being a part of the committee is difficult. They more or less understand the situation so they never said anything but their glances are betraying them. Please do something about Suwa, they appeal.

I pretend not to notice and evasively dodged.

Suwa’s situation is deteriorating day by day. Other than me who’s completely shutting him out, students complaining of stomach ache appear one after another. I sometimes feel sorry for delicate people.

I already experienced being a full-fledged member of the society once. I, who possessed shameless nerve to the point of writing instruction manual for useless coworkers and juniors and nonsensical superiors, was not daunted by Suwa’s subspace. Therefore, I can simply ignore my classmates emitting a “please do something” atmosphere.

However, it’s true that I think it’s gloomy. When I imagined this will last for a year, I feel like kicking Suwa to the sky.

Just as I was thinking of what I should do, I was cornered by Ookami.

“I think it’s unreasonable to ask you something like this but…”

“Then please do not ask.”

“If only I can do that, there won’t be any problem. Suwa obediently obeys Sagara-san‘s words. There is no way left but to rely on you.”

Just how anxious is Ookami to poke his nose in another’s business? Let’s sympathize. However, just sympathy.

“His first love did not bear fruit, but he does not deserve to get rejected like that. Anything is fine, even just a single phrase. Will you please speak to Suwa and get him back on his feet?”

Ookami lowered his head with a distressed expression.

“Recovery is a state of mind. Suwa is doing nothing but wallowing in his wounds. Even if I call out to him, words will not stir up his heart,” I said so and declined, but Ookami did not give up.

Even when the long holidays in May ended and early summer when we enjoy sports arrived, the dark clouds in the classroom did not clear up. Generally, if the classroom is occupied with a stagnant atmosphere even until 1.5 months later, the people asking for a solution one way or the other increases. In addition, midterm exams will start soon.

If this goes on, it will certainly be unpleasant.

Thinking so, I decided to call Suwa.


Footnotes:

1. “30 students passed through the narrow gate…”
狭き門 – literally narrow gate; figuratively means school/position that is hard to enter/get
2. “…a score which doesn’t permit servility.”
i.e. something along the lines of, just because External students are considered better than Internal students, doesn’t mean Mizuhime will take it lying down.
3. “…I can do nothing but watch the fire on the opposite shore.”
対岸の火 – literally fire on the opposite shore; figuratively means somebody else’s problem.
4. “You just got me with ‘troublesome’!…”
I can’t phrase it well but what Ariwara meant was, Mizuhime’s “troublesome”(the word used can also mean “gloomy/depressing”) comment about Suwa just dealt the final blow to his admiration for Mizuhime.
Mizuhime mentioned talking with Ariwara was fun because he can read the “nuances” (original word used in the raw). They were talking trash about Suwa the whole time, albeit in vague sentences, so when Mizuhime outright said the insult, Ariwara was impressed.
5. “…students complaining of stomach ache apear one after another.”
i.e. getting stomach ache when you feel nervous/stressed or you are in an uncomfortable situation