Chapter 7 – Friends
In the end, Kishimoto, who finished two bowls of rice with one soup of Cheonggukjang, enjoyed the Sungnyung that my mother brought as a finishing touch.
“It’s nice to see a young lady eating well.”
“Hehe! Thank you!”
Kishimoto, who ate the Sungnyung without leaving a grain of rice, soon got up and told me.
“Then let’s go, Kim-kun.”
“You said you’d show me your room.”
Then, my mother, who was next to us, listening to our conversation, covered her mouth with her hands and expressed admiration.
“Oh my, are you two already like that?”
“No, we’re not.”
I got up from my seat after cutting my mother’s words while she was trying to tie me up with Kishimoto.
Then, Kishimoto followed along.
“Okay! Come back to eat again!”
I got out of the store before my mother was more obnoxious.
My house was renovated from an old wooden mansion, the first floor was used as a store and the second floor as a residential space.
If you go out of the restaurant and follow the iron stairs outside, you will find a door to the residential space on the second floor.
“Excuse my intrusion.”
Since both parents were away, Kishimoto’s voice echoed in the house where no one was present.
I took off my shoes at the front door and went straight into my room on the right side of the hallway.
Kishimoto, who followed me back into the room, exclaimed her surprise when she saw the inside.
“Wow! This is a boy’s room!”
She looked curiously at the exercise equipment that filled the room.
Most of the time, I went to the gym near my house to work out. At home, it was only equipped with a variety of items so that I could simply warm up.
The room was small, so I took out of the bed the dumbbell and barbell and I put an angle-adjustable bench.
She looked down curiously at the angular dumbbells standing sideways.
“Is this one 50kg? Those dumbbells are heavier than me.”
“If you’re curious, do you want to hold it?”
Then Kishimoto, who was curious and said, “Shall I?” and tried to hold the dumbbell with both hands.
But the dumbbell didn’t even budge.
Kishimoto struggled until her face turned red, and gasped. She stepped back and was angry at me.
“Was it really made for people to hold it?”
I immediately lifted the dumbbell with one hand in front of her.
Then Kishimoto, who was looking at the dumbbell and me alternately with an expression of ridiculousness, sat on the empty bench.
“I want to try the bench press that I saw on TV!”
“How much weight?”
“Hmm? 10kg since it’s my first time?”
When I heard that, I shook my head as I was folding my arms.
“Sorry, there is no unit of 10kg in the bench press.”
Then Kishimoto tilted her head.
“Huh? But isn’t it 0kg if it’s just an empty stick?”
I immediately corrected the common illusion of fitness beginners.
“Bench press starts at 20kg. An empty bar is 20kg.”
“Oh, then I’ll have an empty bar.”
I removed all the discs from the barbell and put only the empty bar on the rock as she wished.
“How do you do the posture?”
I explained in a relatively simple way for a beginner.
“Think of it as a bow. Make an arch with your back.”
I don’t know if Kishimoto had a good understanding, but she followed well what I explained.
“Spread your arms over your shoulders and extend perpendicularly to your chest. Good. Take a deep breath and listen!”
“Lower your arms as it is, but don’t force yourself to bend, do it only to the point where you can bend naturally. Alright, that’s how you hit the pit of your stomach and come back to your original position.”
“How was it?”
Kishimoto, who put the 20-kilogram empty stick back on the rock, looked at me with a proud expression.
It was like a puppy begging for compliments, so I nodded and raised my thumb.
“You did very well for a beginner.”
“Yay! I got complimented!”
I smiled at Kishimoto with a grin.
It wasn’t that bad, I felt rewarded from the perspective of the person who taught her.
“Maybe I’ll add some weight…”
“Ah! It’s been a while since I’ve worked out, so I’m tired! Let’s take a break!”
Kishimoto cut me off in a hurry and sat down on a chair next to the desk.
I was a bit disappointed, and asked her, who was fanning her hands as she was hot.
“Do you want to drink something? I have barley tea and orange juice in the fridge.”
“Oh, then I’ll have barley tea. With ice!”
I took her order and headed straight to the kitchen.
When I opened the refrigerator, the cold barley tea was in a water bottle.
I poured barley tea in two glass and splashed down the ice taken out of the freezer.
It looked quite good on the outside.
I put a glass of water on a tray and came back to my room, Kishimoto was reading a manga from the bookcase.
I finally arrived, put down the tray and spoke.
“I’ll tell you in advance, but I just don’t care about the genre.”
Then Kishimoto, who had a volume of a love comedy manga in which the heroine was a little too exposed, said with a cat-like smile.
“But I think there’s a lot of love comedy among all the manga you’re into”
It was all to prepare for the future ahead.
It was because the genre of love comedy was unknown to me, so it was necessary to accumulate such knowledge to predict future developments.
However, Kishimoto, who didn’t knew the situation, showed me with a cat-like smile the fan service scene in the manga and made fun of me.
“You look blunt on the outside, but you have a very revealing personality.”
Even if I had ten mouths, I would have had nothing to say.
This was because the genre of love comedy itself is a collection of dreams and hopes for boys.
In the serial issue of the magazine, it was covered by mysterious light, and in the unabridged version of the book, there had been a lot of detailed descriptions.
“You wouldn’t believe me if I said it was all a misunderstanding, would you?”
Then Kishimoto smiled broadly, nodded, and said,
“No, I believe you. Actually, I know that Kim-kun just likes manga for boys.”
As she said so, she opened an unexpected story.
“Actually, I really like manga, too. Especially the one for boys.”
“Manga for boys?”
It was a modest hobby that didn’t go well with her gorgeous-looking Gyaru appearance.
“Oh, you thought it doesn’t match with me, right?”
“Lie! When you lie, your right eyebrow wiggles”
When I heard that, I accidentally touched my eyes and soon realized that I had been tricked by her.
In the end, I had no choice but to admit the truth.
“Well, I’ll forgive you this time. To be honest, when I was in my hometown, my friends reacted the same way.”
As she said so, Kishimoto, who laughed, put her hands together on her knees and said,
“Did I tell you before? My father’s job.”
I shook my head.
Come to think of it, I told her all the details, but I never heard about her family.
Then Kishimoto took a break and opened her mouth.
“Actually, my father is a mangaka. He’s one of the most popular.”
In that case, I could understand why Kishimoto liked manga for boys.
If my father was a mangaka, I would have naturally grown-up reading manga since I was very young.
“It’s quite a unique hobby for a high school girl these days, right? I liked it alone because I didn’t have anyone to talk to, and it just happened that Kim-kun also liked reading the jump.”
After saying that, she crouched her neck shyly, looked up at me with her slightly raised green eyes and said,
“If you don’t mind, can you keep being friends with me?”
I was momentarily at a loss as to how to respond to her very cautious friend request.
If I said OK there, wouldn’t the original story be more twisted as it was?
Such an idea stroked me naturally.
‘What should I do?’
I didn’t want to get involved in the main story of scrambled love.
Because I thought it would destroy my peaceful school life.
But just for that, could I trample on the little courage of the girl in front of me?
Afraid of the yet to come future, just running away without fighting back.
Wasn’t that too cowardly as a man?
I came to a conclusion after some consideration.
When I called her name in a low voice, her shoulders trembled as she waited for an answer with a nervous face.
I shouted as I held out a glass of barley tea to her.
“Normally, I don’t bring home people who aren’t friends.”
She carefully took the barley tea with both hands.
Staring in her eyes firmly, I said,
“You were my friend from the start.”
Only then did Kishimoto smile brightly like a sunflower, as if the tension was relieved.