Haruto Akihara wants to keep the Goddess warm.
Mikoto-san says that this home is the only place for her to go.
What does this mean?
Does it mean that she was evicted from her previous house?
If so, why?
Many questions came to mind, but then Mikoto-san gave a cute little sneeze.
The heating was not turned on for this apartment.
I had just returned, and Mikoto-san probably didn’t know where the remote control was.
The digital room temperature gauge on the wall showed 3°C, indicating that the room was quite cold.
Moreover, Mikoto-san was wearing only a sweater.
It was as if she had walked all the way here without a coat or scarf on such a cold night.
Seeing Mikoto-san shivering slightly, I hurriedly offered her my own coat.
“You should put this on for now.
It’s strange to wear a coat in a room, but it’s better than nothing until the room gets warmer.”
“I don’t need it…”
“You’ll catch a cold.
Maybe you don’t want to wear a coat worn by a guy like me, but let’s hold it together.”
“No, I don’t mean that, I don’t want to owe you anything.”
Mikoto-san said this in a trembling but clear tone.
She didn’t want to owe me anything, huh?
I don’t think it’s a big deal to borrow a coat.
I wondered why Mikoto-san said that she didn’t want to owe me anything.
I thought for a moment and then said.
“I don’t need to feel like you owe me anything.
This is my home, and I don’t like it when people shiver in the cold in front of me.”
“I don’t care if you have a problem.
Besides, I’m not cold at all.”
Mikoto-san cupped her shoulders with both hands.
I don’t think there’s any way she’s not cold.
Her teeth are rattling and shaking, and her complexion is getting paler than it was a moment ago.
If she stays in this condition, I wonder if she’s really going to freeze to death.
I said, puzzled.
“Please, just take it.
This is a favor of mine, so you should rather think of it as me owing Mikoto-san.”
“Oh, would you prefer a blanket over a coat? Which would be better?”
Mikoto-san looked a little hesitant, then said in a whisper, “Both.”
I nodded and pushed the coat to Mikoto-san first, then pulled a blanket out of the closet and handed it to her as well.
I told her to sit at the dining table, and she gave a small nod and sat down on a chair.
I took the remote control for the air conditioner from under the TV stand and started to turn the heating on.
Next, I opened the refrigerator near the dining table and peeked inside.
I wanted to give her something warm to drink.
I looked back at Mikoto-san.
“Which would you like to drink, cocoa or hot milk with honey? If you don’t like milk, I can make you coffee.”
“I-I don’t intend to have Akihara-kun do such a thing for me.”
“I drink because I’m cold, too.
It’s just incidental.
Besides, it’s only natural to serve drinks to guests.”
I emphasized the “just for the sake of it,” and tried to reduce Mikoto-san’s psychological resistance.
In fact, I am preparing the drink for Mikoto-san, and if anything, I would rather drink on the side.
If I said such a thing, she might say again, “I don’t want to owe you anything.”
It seems that the Ice Goddess is not good at accepting people’s good intentions.
Anyway, Mikoto-san is still a guest.
Although Mikoto-san says she will live in this home, it hasn’t been decided yet.
I don’t know anything about the situation.
She answered shortly, “Hot milk with honey.” to which I replied, “Okay.”
I poured the contents into two mugs and put them in the microwave to heat them up.
It took one minute.
This was about the right amount of time to drink it warm without burning yourself.
Then I moved to the bathroom.
I had cleaned the bathtub this morning.
I set the temperature a little hotter and began to fill the bathtub with hot water.
It would take a while to get this one going, so I left it alone.
When I came back to the kitchen again, the microwave had just finished.
“Here you go.”
I offered the mug to Mikoto-san and joined her at the table.
Mikoto-san took a sip from the mug with some hesitation.
Seeing this, I felt a thrill for a moment.
Mikoto-san’s lush lips were touching the mug that I usually use.
The sight of Mikoto-san drinking milk was also strangely attractive.
After all, the goddess looks beautiful no matter what she does.
“It’s just hot milk.”
“But it tastes so good because it was so cold just now.”
After saying this, Mikoto-san put her hand over her mouth with a shocked expression.
I knew it was a big lie that it was not cold.
But I didn’t say anything because I knew that if I pointed that out to her, she might harden her attitude again.
Instead, I said something else.
“The bathtub is already filled with hot water.
I think it will be ready when you finish drinking it, so please go.”
Mikoto-san said she had nowhere to go and that she would live in this apartment from today onward.
If that meant there was nowhere to go back to, then she would have to take a bath here.
The public baths are quite far away, and besides, she would get cold on the way there and back.
Mikoto-san seemed to think about it for a moment.
Although Mikoto-san may not feel comfortable taking a bath in a man’s house, if she really wants to live in this apartment, she will have to use the bath here every day.
“If you want to warm yourself, there is no better way than to bathe in warm water! Don’t you think so, Mikoto-san?”
“… I guess so.”
In the end, Mikoto-san nodded her head in agreement.
After that, Mikoto-san seemed to notice something and looked a little troubled.
“I don’t have any change of clothes.”
Not only was Mikoto-san not wearing any warm clothes, she didn’t have any luggage of any kind.
What is really going on?
It is not normal for a high school girl to be left out in the winter night all by herself.
“I can at least lend you a change of clothes.
In return, can you tell me how you came to live in my home, Mikoto-san?”
“Akihara-kun and I are cousins.
That means we are distant relatives.”
Mikoto-san put her mug on the table and looked at me with her blue eyes.
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