A concert in the snow, most people would cancel that concert. Indeed his organizers said the same thing. However, he pushed for it. He even went so far as to put a dome shelter with heating around the stage seats. When Sumire saw this, she wondered why he didn't do it around the stage area too. Or rather shouldn't that be the first thing he thought of? But, he didn't do that.
For a while, even though he gained popularity and momentum, Yuhi couldn't just use that much budget in one go. It would trouble the company. They would lose more than gain, so Yuhi paid for the domes and heating with his own money.
'What a kind person.' Or maybe he is just foolishly honest? When she met Terashima Yuhi then, she forgot what happened when they were kids. They only briefly spoke then, so she couldn't remember. It was a fleeting encounter. Yet Sumire remembered it quite well.
He performed a fifty song setlist in the harsh freezing winter and didn't falter once. When she saw him like that, she wanted to do something. So she slipped out of the protective area and stood aside. The moment she did, Sumire understood just exactly what conditions he was singing in. It was an unusually cold winter, and there he was singing without stage lights.
His face looked so beautiful in the side, like a dream in the snow. If she accidentally touched it, it'll break and disappear. So fragile, and yet so very beautiful. Sumire couldn't forget the emotions she felt that day.
After the concert, the harsh snow melted completely, and the blizzard stopped. It was like it had never snowed even though the weather had been bad for days. It was during that night, under a full winter moon, that was the night she first met. Her second encounter with Terashima Yuhi.
She was freezing after the stunt she pulled and went to a nearby karaoke place to warm up. After hearing such an amazing live, she sang the setlist. He entered her room and told her, 'Your singing isn't bad' and started to sing.' That night when she was thirteen, Sumire remembered it clearly. Ever since then, she felt her emotions towards change.
The next time she encountered Terashima Yuhi was the middle school art competition when she was fourteen though they didn't get to know each other until later that year.
Now seventeen years old, here they are. Her gaze flickered towards Yuhi. The two of them stood so close together that their shoulders touched. Yuhi didn't seem to notice this, or maybe he did. One thing was for sure, though, 'he doesn't mind being so close to her.'
"Just now, you seem startled when I heard you sing," Yuhi commented.
"Ah, that's because I haven't sung in front of anyone in so long." Sumire murmured. After the accident, Sumire no longer wanted to sing in front of other people. She felt traumatized.
"Is that all right with you?"
"I used to think so too. But, recently, I have changed my mind." Sumire said. "I'm sure the others told you what happened already."
"I was so scared that I would die there without being able to do anything. If Asuka heard me, she would probably comment that I'm contradicting myself. However, recently my opinions have changed, and for the first time, I felt so scared," she paused. "I was frightened that I would die without being able to change anything."
If only she could carve her existence somehow.
"That's impossible," Yuhi said.
That's right...it probably was. Even though she was a strong contender in the idol industry, unlike the others, it still wasn't enough. Even Yuhi thinks so; maybe it would be better if she gave up. What use is there continuing this useless charade?
"That's impossible because you're still hesitating."
Her eyes widened when she heard this. Eh? Sumire looked over at him; he wore a troubled expression on his face.
"If you want to do something like that...Then you should throw away your hesitations."
He picked up something on the ground. 'A paper airplane?' He throws the airplane, and she watched as it flew off into the distance. There was something mysterious about the sight. His words and appearance don't match at all.
Terashima Yuhi looks like a scary guy, but his words and his actions are so very gentle. She wants to know, after all. What kind of paintings does he paint now?
She walked over to him, hoping to ask this question. But when Sumire got closer, she saw a rosy red color on his cheeks. 'He was embarrassed?' Geez, even though he acted all high and mighty there. Truly, what a strange person. But she is one to talk, isn't she?
Sumire chuckled, "You're mean, Yuhi."
"So, I hear."
"I guess I want everyone to convey it, after all. I want to tell everyone, so will you watch me paint?"
Sumire blinked when she heard his straight forward reply. Usually people would refuse such a crazy-sounding suggestion.
"By the way, like a diligent student. I carry my art supplies with me. Knock yourself out," he pointed to the right where she found him sleeping.
She glanced over and spotted the scattered art supplies on the ground. 'Was he painting up here?' Sumire tried to look around for something, but Yuhi shook his head.
"Forget my work for now. Isn't there something you want to convey to people?"
Her haze softened, 'truly this person understands her far better than she understands herself.' If it's him, it's okay, right? It's okay to sing in front of him. Sumire took a deep breath, "I'm in love with two things, these two things are the only way for me to convey my feelings. Hey, can I sing in front of you?"
Is it okay to sing again? Sumire regretted the accident so much. It was her fault, insisting Mamoru drove her to the concert. Initially, they were supposed to go their separately. But instead, they went together.
Yuhi placed his hands on her shoulders and gave them a gentle squeeze. "In front of me, you can do whatever you want. I won't judge you. I will listen. So sing, Sumire."
Sumire felt the tears well up in her eyes. 'Coming to Tokyo was the right decision, after all.' She doesn't know how long she held back these tears, but now, now she can cry freely. After crying for a few minutes, she took a deep breath and started to sing.
"Tell me about the dream you had yesterday and the story of the neighbor's dog
Teach me about the world you see that I don't know
Even though I'd like you see you now, after just a little longer,
I want to close my eyes and hear the voice of the person I love but can't see...." Sumire sang.
One hour later - Iroroad High school, main building -
After she rushed off like that, Sumire awkwardly had to return to the teacher's lounge. Thankfully they didn't blame her. But, her gaze fell on the sheets of paper in front of her face. It seems like she has to choose, after all.
She entered here as a scholarship student, so the school would pay her school fees. However, she received two scholarships, one for the art side of the academy and one for the music.
It's up to her to decide. This decision would affect the next two years of her life here. Sumire took a deep breath and recalled what happened in the rooftop with Yuhi. 'But, she's already decided, hasn't she?'
Sumire reached out for the purple file on the right and extended it towards the teacher. "This one, please."
"Are you certain?" the old man seemed very surprised.
For the first time since she came here, a bright smile, not a light one, appeared on her face. "Yes, I'm sure."