Chapter 1 – Crossroads of Life
“I am really, really sorry!”
Inside of a game arcade on the third floor of a shopping mall, at the rest corner set up right next to it.
While surrounded by vending machines, I bowed my head deeply.
On the bench in front of me was my five-year-old cousin, Shi-chan, aka Ayase Shiina, chugging down on a can of juice.
But make no mistake.
I am not making an all-out apology toward the little girl.
I was apologizing from the bottom of my heart to the woman with a troubled look on her face who was sitting next to Shi-chan.
“Well, it’s alright…… I was just protecting the lost Shi-chan.”
“B-But… because of that… I’m sorry it’s all my fault.
How should I apologize to you sensei?”
I’m sure you can guess what I mean by the word “Sensei.”
The person I was apologizing to was a teacher at my high school.
And, it also turns out that she was my homeroom teacher.
Her name is Yumi Sakuramiya.
She is rumored to be 30 years old this year or maybe not? But her looks are so glamorous that you would mistake her for someone in her early twenties.
Her loosely wavy dark brown falls to her waist, pale and firm skin, and she looks beautiful enough with just light makeup.
“……Minato, I will go take a refill.
Do you want some more as well?”
“Eh? You have already drunk it? well then ….”
I was distracted by the juice, but Shi-chan seemed to have already finished the 250ml can.
I then turned my attention to the nearby vending machine.
“Oh, it’s fine, Segawa-kun.
Shi-chan, what do you want to drink? You can choose what you like.”
“This one, they are good.”
“Okay, wait a minute.”
“Oh, no, it’s okay.
I can’t put any more burden on you sensei.”
“Don’t worry about it.
I have enough money.
“Oh, is that so….
I am sorry and thank you.”
When Sakuramiya-sensei comes back with a bottle of coke from the vending machine, she removes the cap and hands it to Shi-chan.
“Thank You, Yumi-nee.”
Shi-chan accepts the bottle with a big smile on her face and begins to sip on the bottle.
“Checking on Shi-chan who is concentrating on the coke, I turned my eyes again to Sakuramiya-sensei.”
“But it’s really my responsibility.
Because of my carelessness, I lost sight of Shi-chan.
I am disqualified to be Shi-chan’s guardian.”
“If you can reflect on it, I think that’s fine.
Just be careful from now on.”
I moved my head facing downwards and mumbled.
Sakuramiya-sensei protected Shi-chan when she got lost.
Usually it would be a scene to express gratitude rather than an apology.
Despite that, there was a reason why I kept apologizing.
“Certainly, I had plans to go to a marriage activity party today, but I wasn’t originally interested in it.
My parents were nagging me to get married and I felt like I had no choice but to go there.
So, as a result
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