maluridae: (only cry when it's all over)
shoe ([personal profile] maluridae) wrote2017-02-28 05:24 am

.:: baton pass! the repayment festival of tears and bonds

Tetora: The situation was simple. Big Sis Anzu came to us asking if Ryuseitai was going to participate in Repayment Fes.

I thought it'd be impossible.

Of course, if you asked me, I definitely wanted to participate. I wanted to repay and thank our seniors who took care of us.

The reason I'm able to live without wavering and with my chest puffed out... was because of Taishou and my seniors in Ryuseitai.

I wanted to show them how fine I've grown and that there's nothing they need to worry about. That's what Repayment Fes is all about.

A farewell ceremony that starts and ends with gratitude.

I wanted to do something like that properly... Parting is lonely, but there's no point in whining.

I wanted to wipe my tears and at least say goodbye with a smile.

But those are my personal feelings. I can't force them onto other people.

Dashing out by myself like I usually do would only cause trouble for the others around me.

So the other day, being in the same class and all, I went to talk to Midori-kun first.

I asked him if he could participate in Repayment Fes, whether he wanted to or not... I wanted to know how he felt.

Midori-kun's reply was the same as always.

"Impossible." "I don't want to." "It's such a pain." "Why me..." — you know? I've been tired of hearing that this whole year. Midori-kun has no motivation at all.

That's out of my hands, though. He only entered the idol course by mistake, after all.

He didn't want to become an idol in the first place.

It was pitiable, having no motivation and yet always getting scolded and urged to do things. That was what you always did, Captain.

You always pretended to be a terrible person who couldn't read the atmosphere, Captain... he didn't want to, but you always gave Midori-kun a loud pep talk and put him up on the stage.

That became a common scene for Ryuseitai.

And Midori-kun... you might have thought that something like that will happen this time too, somewhere in your heart.

But we'll have to part with our happy, "ordinary everyday" forever.

Captain and Shinkai-senpai are graduating. You can't stop that. It's something special. Something that should be celebrated.

From here on out, we have to do everything by ourselves.

We can't rely on our seniors. We can't make them into villains, push responsibility onto them...

... and snatch all the good parts.

That's just shameless. I was the same — I used to always shoved the dirty work and the heavy burdens onto Taishou and the others...

and laughed thoughtlessly — I was an ignorant, idiotic brat.

But we'll have to become the seniors. We'll have to become adults.

We can't just stay kids who fooled around while their kind seniors put them on stage.

But! Midori-kun is always going "No, that's too much of a pain"! "How depressing. I want to die"!

Why are you dissatisfied, when you're so blessed like this!?

Midori: ......

Tetora: When the others, Big Sis Anzu and Shinobu-kun, asked me what I wanted to do about Repayment Fes again...

I just couldn't give up, so I ended up intruding on Midori-kun's home like this.

I thought that if we talked, I could get my feelings through to him... no, I believed that Midori-kun had the exact same feelings that I did. I was sure.

But I was mistaken, and it was impossible to act like you, Captain.

I don't have a backbone. Doing everything for his own sake, even if he'd end up hating you...

I can't sacrifice myself and forcibly pull Midori-kun along.

We talked a little, he refused, and just like that I couldn't say anything else.

I felt pathetic and irritated, and even grabbed him by the collar... and we ended up fighting.

I was always your substitute when you were absent, Captain...

And when I knew that you were going to have me inherit the colour red, I even got a little confidence boost.

But that all got smashed into bits. To be honest, it feels daunting. I can't even settle a dispute among friends. Saving the world is beyond my wildest dreams.

I'm not worthy of Ryusei Red yet.

Chiaki: Nagumo, that's not true.

It was failure after failure even for me, in the beginning. I couldn't do anything right, and it was to the point where just seeing the colour red made me feel like throwing up.

I thought that those tokusatsu shows were downright lies, and these miserable circumstances can't get better...

I cursed those heroes that I loved so much, and there were nights where I just cried myself to sleep.

But I eventually stood up... and resolved all the problems I had one by one. I struggled to become a man worthy of inheriting the colour red.

I don't know if I did things well. There's no other hero who has lost and failed so much.

I'm sure everybody couldn't bare watching, and changed the channel before reaching the climax.

But that is my story. You guys are still the "trailers".

You can recover time after time. Your futures are brilliant. So don't give up, Nagumo.

If you give up, that's when it's all over. After I graduate... what else can I enjoy waking up to every sunday morning?

A world without heroes is the same as if the sun never rose!

Do your best! Don't lose! Don't give up! Stand up, hero!

It's tantalizing that I can only cheer you on from afar! But if I lend you my hand here, it won't help you guys at all!

So I will endure it and yell this!

Nagumo, Takamine, Sengoku! Hit me! If you have any complaints, strike me with them here and now! Beat me up with you please!

I'm fine! I'm used to pain! But I can't bear seeing you guys fight and hurt each other!

It's more painful than dying! So punch me!

I shall carry your worries, pain, and everything else! And then I'll throw them all into the sun, there'll be a huge explosion, and we'll get a happy ending!

Tetora: Haha. If I seriously hit you, Captain, you'd die.

But, yeah, I accept your feelings. ... Midori-kun, I won't pester you anymore.

I won't get angry with you one-sidedly... I just want us to talk.

I'm in the same year as you, Midori-kun. Both Ryusei Red... and the position of "Captain" is something I don't intend on properly inheriting until our seniors actually graduate.

We're the same rank — ordinary troopers. So I can't act high-and-mighty and order you to do this and that.

I know it's not very good for me to hold back like that too.

But I still don't have the confidence. I'm just a hollow person, though I do plan on being a cool, reliable man one day.

But it's still hard at the moment, so I can't have you expecting me to act like Captain right now.

I can't say anything back if you refuse.

But as friends in the same year, I don't get it.

I heard about it for the first time today, but the reason Midori-kun's turning his back to Repayment Fes...

Is because he has to help with greengrocer work that day.

Apparently, they're opening up a stall in the shopping district at the same time as Repayment Fes, and his parents asked for his help.

And that he'd be busy with that, so he can't participate.

I understand that. He complains about it, but Midori-kun always did his best for the sake of his family. For his greengrocer.

We once made a signboard together, for advertising. That's a really important memory of mine.

But I really just don't get it. Is that something only you can do, Midori-kun?

Do you really need to help? Your parents and big brother are all in good health, right?

I'm sure they'd be alright even if you weren't there.

But for Repayment Fes... as first years, the opportunity for us to give thanks to our Ryuseitai seniors for taking care of us the whole year is probably something that won't happen again.

It's something that only we can do. Something that only me, Midori-kun, and Shinobu-kun — the three of us can do.

So why are you prioritizing your greengrocer work?

I couldn't understand it one bit. So I got mad and didn't know what to do... My mind went blank and I lashed out without thinking.

I apologize for that. I'm sorry, but I really don't get it.

Is it because it's too lonely to say goodbye? Is it too embarrassing to face your seniors and say "thank you for this year"?

Do you just want to avoid things you don't like or find awkward?

Is that why you're going to help with the greengrocer work you're so accustomed to? You chose the simple way without any difficulties or pain?

In that case, that's just disdainful. I always hated "that" part of you, Midori-kun.

You're always a hesitant scaredy cat! A weak coward!

It's like watching how I was in the past! It's irritating!

Sorry, I really am mad right now!

I don't have the tolerance to accept everything like Taishou or Captain!

But, you know... answer me, Midori-kun! What was this entire year to you?

Every single day, Captain came to pick your motivationless self up and had you stand tall!

Him running around, encourging you to do your best together... was that effort all for nothing?

He pretty much offered his entire last year of his precious high school life to train us up, you know? Was that all in vain?

No... was it all unnecessary to you, Midori-kun? Was it just annoying? A nuisance?

All that pessimism you spouted off like you were breathing, your depressing complaints and grumbles!

I was expecting that those were just your way to hide your embarrassment! That, in reality, something really did resonate in your heart!

But if everything was for nothing! If you really did mean it when you said that you "hated this" or that you're "depressed" and "want to die"!

What did Captain spent his entire year doing!?

"Nobody asked"? "He just ran around on his own accord"? Sure, I agree, but that's too much!

He had expectations for you, Midori-kun! You have way more talent than I do, and you're super handsome!

To be honest, as your peer, I'd be totally jealous!

If I could, I'd want to be somebody like you in my next life! I'm sure Captain feels the same way!

He was envious, and pined. He wanted you to shine even brighter!

But was all that pushing a conceited, one-way nuisance?

Was it all just trouble to you? In that case, you should've said that sooner!

You didn't care to become an idol? You made a mistake in enrolling? You don't feel like playing hero?

You said all those things so constantly that I've gotten sick of it!

In that case! If you hated it that much!

You should've just thrown away your uniform and your hero clothes and disappeared before you devoured this entire year of his!

Nobody would've stopped you! You should've just taken your leave, and returned your peaceful life! Back to your greengrocer...!

But you had our seniors spoil you and keep you company until the very end, all while making a face like, "I don't like this but I guess I have no choice!"

They protected you, loved you, and showered you with happiness!

They've taken care of you this much, and what, you refuse to repay them? You don't want to do anything that's too much trouble, too much of a bother?

How long are you going to stay a brat, Midori-kun...!?

Chiaki: ... you can stop, Nagumo. Please, don't fight.

Kanata: you musn't "stop" them, chiaki. this is something "necessary".

these kids have always been "good". they never fought, always listened to what we said, are honest and energetic...

but they cannot stay "kids" forever.

we don't need to "carry" them. they can walk on their "own" two feet. believing that and "watching over" them is all we can do.

spoiling them here... will surely have them be unable to walk by themselves for "eternity".

on this "land", being "unable to walk" is the same as "not living".

loong ago, the one who told me that... was chiaki, yes?

Chiaki: .....

Takamine, I want you to tell me what you really feel — I won't know otherwise. Was it really a nuisance?

Have I been causing you pain this entire year?

If that's the case, I apologize. I'm sorry, and I will do anything I can to atone.

If you think our meeting was a misfortunate incident, then I don't mind if you want to forget it.

As long as you can smile without worry... because your smile is this world's biggest treasure.

I was always looking forward to polish it. But if you think that it was all just an annoyance... I will apologize. I'm really sorry, Takamine.

Midori: .....

I'm pretty sure I've said this all the time... That it was annoying, that I didn't want to do it, that it was a total bother... You really don't listen to other people...

But Morisawa-senpai... Am I really that worthy...?

Until middle school, I never sticked out at all... I was just a normal middle schooler...

Of course, I was unnecessarily tall, and I look like this, so... girls especially had some kind of interest in me...

But I really was normal inside... so when they talked to me, they just got disillusioned...

I thought you'd be the same. That you'd get disappointed in me sooner or later and lose interest...

That's just natural to me... That's why I always had an escape route planned...

People only look at my appearance... so there's no way somebody would love me from the bottom of their heart...

The only ones who never gave up on me are my family. That's just about it...

Is it that strange, wanting to contribute for the sake of my family, for my greengrocer...?

Sure, Ryuseitai's kinda like family too, but you're neither my parents or my brothers...!

I mean, I only took the entrance exam for the idol course by accident... I'm only in Yumenosaki Academy because I somehow passed...

It's scary, and distressing... so I've alwayed wanted to avoid the things I didn't like... The entrance exam was really tough too...

But they accepted me into the idol course, so I went through with it because it was the simplest choice...

I pushed aside everybody else who actually did want to be idols in all seriousness...!

I can't just enjoy the happiness an idol would feel, being loved by so many people...!

Besides, it's not like being an idol is a job you'd have entire life...

That should only be for a handful of people — people who wished to be an idol from the bottom of their hearts...

That's not who I am... I just chose the easy path. My intentions are lower than anybody else in my year...

In a harsh place like the entertainment world, somebody like me would be eliminated immediately...

Everybody had expectations, but it's impossible for me...

I always felt guilty about it... I wondered if it was okay for somebody like me to be here...

I mean, everybody's serious about this! You're all working hard as idols with everything you've got! I'm not like that! It was some mistake made in the very beginning!

Somebody like me shouldn't become an idol! I can't even imagine a future where I'd be able to work as an idol my whole life!

But I'm a greengrocer's son from the moment I was born to the moment I'll die!

Yumenosaki, Ryuseitai... in a lifetime, they're just a moment's dream!

But in our long lives, you'll have to keep on living even after you wake up from that dream!

My big brother has a dream — he wants to be a lawyer! He studies every day!

Even after challenging and failing that difficult bar examination time after time, he still works hard despite the tears and pain!

I want to cheer him on! I want to tell him that I'll inherit the greengrocer, so he can do his best to achieve his dreams!

That's why I'm helping my family out! What's wrong with that!?

I don't have any dreams, so at the very least I'm not going to steal somebody else's!

I can't get in the way, so I have to sit in the corner hugging my knees!

Become an idol? Become a hero? How impressive — I think it's splendid!

But not everybody in this world is as impressive and splendid as you people are!

Ordinary people have lives too! We can't just chase our dreams forever! It's impossible for me, at the very least, being all stressed and scared and anxious!

And yet you had expectations for somebody as miserable as me! You thought I'd be able to do something!

I regret that Morisawa-senpai wasted this entire year on me! It makes me feel absolutely pathetic!

Did you guys know? Morisawa-senpai secretly cried all by himself because he felt that lonely at the thought of saying farewell to everybody.

But he hid that from us to the very end!

He was planning on going gallantly, leaving behind only smiles and happy memories for us!

Are you kidding me? That's way too cool! What does he think he is, a saint!?

And I'm the one who made that kind of person waste this entire year of his! His precious time...!

I can't puff out my chest and say "goodbye" like Tetora-kun and the others!

"Thank you for taking care of me, you can leave the rest to us"... there's no way I could say something like that!

Repayment Fes is impossible for me...!

There's no way I could repay all the debts of gratitude I have during a single day... with just one "thank you" when we part!

Even an entire lifetime isn't enough! I can't do this, Tetora-kun!

It's exactly as you said. I should've disappeared sooner...

But I had fun. I was always so happy... It was a shining adolescence I never would've expected to have...

I loved everybody in Ryuseitai... and that's exactly why I feel so guilty being a part of this group...

I'm just a superficial, worthless, fake idol...!

I'm sorry... If you've gotten tired of me, you can just ignore me and throw me away...

Tetora-kun and Sengoku-kun can participate in Repayment Fes by themselves...

It's impossible for me. I don't have the right... I'm sorry. I'm sorry, I'm so sorry...

weeps in my strawberries

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