Chapter 699: Be Proud Part 7
If they tell one another, perhaps it will be less painful for him.
"I-I can't do that- r-rather how did you find out?" Sumire exclaimed. "First Hino-san, then Jun-kun and now you! Spill, how come you know? Did they tell you?"
It took him a moment to process the names of the ones who already knew. He supposes it can't be helped. 'I can't even be the second closest person to her.'
"It's written all over your face."
Sumire's cheeks reddened and she sighed. "You know why I can't."
"I understand but you can keep it a secret right?"
"You're making it sound like Yuhi-san likes me back. Aahhh I have no confidence in this!" Sumire exclaimed. "There is another girl in the ability class that he is close to! I am worried that he likes her more."
Ran blinked hearing those words. This is the first time he is hearing this, another girl in the ability class that Yuhi is close to? Surely that is impossible. But if Sumire is saying it, then maybe she saw something?
'I will ask Yuhi about it later.'
He pointed to the sandwiches. "If you don't hurry up and eat, I will eat everything."
Sumire laughed. "You always seem to like my cooking Ran."
"You're a good cook after all, whoever takes you as their wife will be one lucky guy."
"Wife huh?" Sumire trailed off. "Hey Ran, do you think it is possible for us to leave the institute?"
"They should release us when we are old enough to work, so yeah."
"But, what if they try to keep us here longer?"
Ran looked at her confused, sensing how serious she was.
"Rest assured, with Hino-san around. They won't do anything like that."
'But, what will happen if Hino goes? Up until now I have never thought about it. Hino is older than them by six years, shouldn't he be near the age to leave? Hino has protected them all this entire time. When that protection vanishes, what will happen?'
After their meal, they cleared up the first two floors. It did not take long before they found Yuhi. He was fighting monsters on the third floor alongside Tetsuo.
"Yuhi!" Sumire said brightly as she rushed over.
"Hey you, are you following me in my dreams now?"
It was such a cheesy line and yet it left his lips easily.
Sumire laughed. "Maybe I am."
Ran watched as Sumire clung to his arm. "Since we met up coincidentally, do you want to join us?"
"Mmm! If that is okay."
Ran could only sigh seeing the sight before him. Tetsuo patted his shoulders.
"You shouldn't have brought her here."
"I didn't know until just a few minutes ago." Ran grumbled. "They are dating right? Aren't they worried about being exposed?"
"Not officially, it seems like they both acknowledge each other's feelings. But if they made it official the adults would notice."
So, they aren't stupid enough to get caught up in the flow. He supposes that is more like them. Ran watched as Yuhi brushed a strand of Sumire's hair away from her face, causing her face to turn red.
Sumire pouted. "Ah, you're teasing me again aren't you?"
Yuhi shakes his head and leaned down. "You look very cute."
At those words Sumire's already red-stained face turned redder.
"As you can see they are being very subtle." Tetsuo added.
"No, no,no anybody can tell they are flirting."
"We are children Ran, even if the adults see that they won't take it seriously."
Indeed they are children, but is this truly okay? Ran looked over at the two worriedly. He doesn't want either of them to get in trouble. The adults show no mercy when they discover fellow subjects in a relationship with one another. They are human puppets, they have no right to have emotions. The moment they find themselves attached to something that isn't their mission, they must discard it immediately.
They have to discard it, otherwise- Ran's gaze fell on the girl who briefly turned to him. She followed his gaze and laughed. "Next time I will make you more."
Yuhi rolled his eyes. "Hey, what about me? I haven't eaten the entire day."
"Hmm, I wonder if there are any left."
Yuhi looked dejected and Sumire chuckled, summoning the basket again and pulling out a sandwich. "I saved the best one for you."
"Your handmade food is the best. I'd seriously pay gold for these."
"F-flattery won't get you anywhere."
It's almost embarrassing watching them. Ran shook his head and focused ahead, he could already see a trail of lizard-like creatures. Before he could so much raise his blade however they heard several screams.
"Idiots!" Sumire exclaimed and immediately rushed off.
"Hey wait a minute-!" Yuhi quickly followed after her.
Ran stared at the two that flashed past and were running ahead like the wind. Due to their high dexterity, Yuhi and Sumire's speed far surpassed theirs. He turned to Tetsuo who nodded. They focused on clearing the path first before they joined those two.
Tetsuo and him had arrived at the entrance of the labyrinth after five minutes, only to see a gruesome sight. The entire room was covered in flames, and a huge monster stood in the center with glowing red eyes and horns.
Ran could only stare at the large monster stunned. So, this is what the adults wanted him to beat?
'You have to be kidding me, I won't even be able to dent that thing.'
Recently he has been receiving jobs in this section. He found it strange since dungeon clearing is something the older children do. But, he cannot disobey orders. Clearly they were sending him to his death. So this is how the institute plans to deal with them?
His thoughts break off when Sumire draws out her sword. "H-hey- Sumi-"
It wasn't just Sumire, he hears another blade being unsheathed to find that Yuhi had done the same. The two rushed into the room like a gust of wind and charged at the monster. Despite the abrupt attacks, Ran watched as the monster staggered slightly.
Amazing, how are they doing that? That beast is clearly stronger than them-
'It seems like I will have no choice.' Ran's eyes widened recalling something Sumire told him the other night. Could it be? Perhaps Sumire, no even Yuhi has found a way to break the limiter? If that's the case, he can trust them.
Ran stole a side way glance at Tetsuo who was already taking his weapon out. If it is those two, then perhaps something will change.
Present day, M5 Mansion, gardens. 5:00am
Ran was staring at the sheet of paper in his hands. When he woke up after that dream of the past, he found himself writing lyrics to the song Sumire gave him just the other day. It's something he hasn't told the other two yet but he has had his memories of their time together in the facility for a very long time now. Judging from the others reaction, he is the only one who remembers.
If that is the case, he wants to know why?
"I've bared my fangs at the moments in my past
I have no other choice but to howl at the wind of loneliness
But a warmth I've never felt before
Came close without fearing and touched me
How do I answer… What am I supposed to do…?
I've grown so accustomed to being alone
That I don't know what kindness is
In these days of reaching out my hand to the mayflies,
Where can I find salvation?
With the passage of time, there's something
That heals and blocks my sorrow
Wandering about with closed eyes,
I escape to the sea of songs
The sky searches a place for my soul to go
While I thrum a reckless music
I've decided to walk along with
The smile that endured even the pain
Of my sharp heart
So I don't run away from believing,
So I can be glad of loving,
You taught me to share
Both pain and weakness
Don't look at me… While I dry my eyes." Ran sang.
Why was it him? If there is a god out there, please give him a sign.