「 With that said, we’ll be making a corner for the pastries Ai-chan makes 」
Katsuko-nee tells the students.
「 I think that it’ll look different at first, but please try them out, okay? 」
「 Hey, Ai-chan, greet everyone 」
Nei pushes Ai’s back.
「 Auuu 」
Ai gets nervous as people concentrate on her again.
「 Ai-chan, what do you do at times like this? 」
「 Uuuu, shuffle!!! 」
Ai restarts herself.
「 Aaauu, I-I’m Kiyohara A-Ai… I-I’m in first-year. I just entered the “bread course,”…I think… 」
「 I’m sure you will, it’s okay 」
Katsuko-nee gives a stamp of approval.
「 Yes, it seems so. T-Therefore, everyone…uuuuu 」
「 Please try out the pastry Ai makes! 」
Ai bows her head.
「 Yeah! I’ll go buy that!! I’ll eat it! 」
The guy who shouts is…
It’s my classmate, Takana.
That guy went to look at the situation after hearing that there’s a fuss in the cafeteria.
「 I’ll buy them too!! 」
「 Yes! That’s right! It makes you want to eat food if it’s a cute girl making it 」
「 Yeah, she’ll make them by hand, right?! Then… 」
The boys speak out unanimously.
「 Oh? You guys don’t want to buy the food I make? 」
「 N-Not at all! I’ll buy them together with Katsuko-san’s pastries! 」
「 Then that’s good 」
That just means that the products that aren’t cheap will be from Katsuko-nee.
Actually, more than half of it is my work.
「 “Don’t look down on people who are trying to do their best,” that’s a good line 」
A-Ah, it’s Captain Takeshiba.
「 I like those who work hard. I’ll support you 」
Hearing Captain’s words, the other girls…
「 I don’t get what’s going on, but I can see that you’re trying to do your best. That’s why you have our support! 」
「 Go for it! 」
Girls who support Ai also shows up.
「 Y-Yes! I’ll do my best! 」
Ai bows her head.
「 With that said, Ai-chan’s now a member of the bread course, and so it’s her lesson to stay in here 」
Nei speaks to Ai’s classmates.
「 S-She hasn’t officially changed courses yet, has she?! 」
「 T-That’s right, Kiyohara-san’s still in the general education student! 」
They say and glare at Nei, but…
「 But, you saw her make that decision herself, haven’t you? 」
Katsuko-nee says with a gentle smile.
「 You must be worried for Ai-san, that’s why you came here, but you don’t have anything to worry about 」
「 That’s right! So now, go back, you’re interfering with our business here 」
「 Ya-chan, hold it 」
I stopped Nei.
「 Okay, now that we have that, we still have ten minutes, go ahead and buy and eat bread from here 」
Katsuko-nee speaks cheerfully, trying to put an end to the commotion.
「 Ai-san, get back inside, we still have to talk about the course change 」
Ai hides back in the bakery like it’s absolutely normal.
As long as Ai’s still in the counter, the noise won’t calm down.
Then, she whispered to my ears.
「 I’ll talk to Ojou-sama. Don’t worry. Also, look after Ai-san 」
「 Got it 」
I bring Ai back inside the bakery.
「 Ai, you did great 」
Kana-senpai hugs Ai.
「 Auuu? 」
「 You’re now my little sister from now on 」
Kana-senpai has teary eyes.
It seems like she’s impressed that Ai found the courage and made that confession.
「 Megumi-chan, let’s swap! You need to hurry and eat your lunch, I’ll deal with this 」
「 Okay, thank you 」
She switches with Megu as the support in the counter area.
When I closed down the door…
「 You think Yuzuki or Katsuko’s okay with that development? 」
Yukino stares at me with a grim face.
「 Auu? 」
Ai is scared of Yukino’s tension.
「 Yeah, no problems 」
Minaho-neesan’s in control of this school.
She drove out the teachers that belong to Shirasaka Sousuke’s faction but, Minaho-neesan still has a lot of personnel under her control.
「 Then, while at it, let’s change her class to ours 」
Ai goes to our class?
「 Huh, why? 」
I mean, I’m in the bread course, but I’m just alone, so I still attend to the same classroom.
When it’s ordinary class hours, I also accept the same lessons as my classmates.
「 The reason can be whatever. Like, making some random reason to suit our needs, saying that those in the bread course have to be in the same block! Right now! 」
Why right now?
「 It’s because of the girls who made that fuss earlier. We need to hurry, or it’ll become troublesome! 」
「 The girl they took care of until now just betrayed them. Soon enough, they’ll start to bully her 」
From friends to bullied?
「 That’s what happened to me back then! That’s why you need to hurry and take measures! 」
Yukino says while bubble escapes from her lips.
「 B-But, t-they’re not… 」
「 They’re not people you can deal with using conversations! Those girls only live by their mood. You need to cut off your connections with them! This is for your future troubles! 」
Yukino has bitter memories with those who turned her away when she thought they were friends.
「 Oh, right, since we have this situation. You should leave early today, like say that it’s part of the process for changing course! 」
Yukino speaks to Ai.
「 Then, Megumi, Edie, go with this girl. Take everything out of her locker. Bring them all here, we can lock it off here. Also, bring her bag and shoes. Bring all the things you think other students can reach!! 」
「 You don’t know what kind of prank they’ll do when you’re not around 」
「 Speaking from experience? 」
「 Well yeah, back then… 」
「 Sorry, I didn’t notice it 」
「 It’s okay now. It’s decreased recently. Well, I don’t have any private items in this school now. I make sure to pack up my outdoor shoes and place them in my bag, and I don’t attend PE 」
Someone may take her bag when she’s changing clothes.
「 They won’t happen anymore, you don’t have to worry about it, Yukino 」
「 Minaho gave instructions, and I punished those who tried to pull pranks on Yukino’s stuff 」
「 I won’t say who. They promised to never do it again, and they’re getting kicked out of the school if they tried it again 」
「 I didn’t know anything about this? 」
「 Darling, you’ve been busy in the bakery recently. Minaho thought that it’s better left unsaid 」
「 No, but… 」
「 I mean, Darling shouldn’t know about the world of girls among our class. It’s troublesome in a lot of ways 」
「 Then that means Megu knew about it? 」
I looked at Megu…
「 She doesn’t know, but I think she has an idea, she might even know since Edie started moving around. The atmosphere in our class has changed 」
「 I see 」
「 I just get in between them and resolve things behind-the-scenes. If Darling were to know who it is, your attitude towards them would change, and they’ll think that I told you. It’s a betrayal for them. When that happens, that’s another problem rising up 」
「 Right. It’s better if you don’t know. And me too 」
「 Anyway, you girls need to hurry! We only have ten more minutes before lunch break is over. They don’t have the time to do something. That’s what they’re concentrating in right now 」
The uproar from the earlier should be spread within the school already.
If the girls suddenly hunt for Ai’s locker, then the other students would expose them, and they’ll start attacking.
「 Therefore, I think that you should collect everything while you still have the time, while they can’t do anything strange yet 」
「 Then, I’m going too 」
It’s better to have a man carry out their luggage.
「 What are you saying, stupid?! If you go, then they’ll pay attention to you! You need to have the girls deal with it and quick! 」
Oh, it would be problematic if I, the representative of the bread course, goes with them.
Megu and I are the fiance duo.
「 Right. Leave it to us, Yoshi-kun! 」
「 Megumi and I will protect Ai. 」
「 A-Auuu 」
Ai trembles, the two.
「 T-Thank you 」
「 M-Mama, I’m going out. I-I’ll come back right away 」
She tells her mother.
「 Okay, let’s go 」
「 We’re going out! 」
Megu and Edie walk on Ai’s side, and they head back to the classroom through the rear entrance.
「 This is a battle of speed! 」
「 W-What’s with that face? 」
「 No, I just thought that it’s surprising that Ai’s caring with Ai… 」
Yukino’s weak with timid girls like Ai…
Besides, ever since she came to the mansion, she never came to get involved with anyone in housework.
「 It can’t be helped, your family is also mine 」
「 If you accepted that girl, then I have to be helpful to her as well 」
「 You know? All the girls since then, other than Agnes and Mao-chan, they can do things themselves. They got it together. But that’s the first girl that takes a lot of labor. That’s coming from me, you know 」
Megu and Mana, Misuzu, and the girls, the Takakura sisters, all are dependable.
「 With that girl coming over, it makes it easier for me 」
Yukino said and looked at Ai’s mother.
「 I get that you only see this idiot and us as some messed up people. I had a phase where I thought of the same 」
Ai’s mother stares at Yukino dumbfoundedly.
But you see, this idiot is always serious. Therefore, the people around him become like him. He’s seriously thinking of how to make the women he had sex with becoming happy 」
Yukino looked at me and smiled wryly.
「 With that said, you don’t have to worry about your daughter. Even if you set her free, this idiot would take responsibility and look after her 」
「 Auntie, you need to think about yourself 」
Koyomi-chan speaks to Ai’s mother.
「 Ai-san is now independent of Auntie 」
「 You talk like she’s independent, but this idiot and we still have our hands on her shoulders, and that’s how she managed to stand up 」
「 But, she’s no longer a girl who needs Auntie to take care of everything for her 」
「 I-I… 」
Ai’s mother sighed.
「 What do I do now? 」
「 Please think of your own life, not Ai-san… 」
「 I’m sure that you’ll find something you want to do… 」
「 But, I’m at my age… 」
「 Your age has nothing to do with it. Humans will always find something they want to do until they die 」
「 That’s right. Luna-chan’s right 」
The two girls of the same age holing Miko power.
They try to come close with Ai’s mother.
I know that they’re using their power to heal her.
「 Okay, we’re done! See you tomorrow! 」
The lunch break ends with the chime.
「 Awawa, Nobu, I got to rush back to my classroom. Look after Ai, okay? 」
「 Yeah, thanks, Kana-senpai 」
「 Geez, aren’t we friends? 」
Megu and Edie who has Ai’s stuff as well.
「 Yoshi-kun, we’re heading back to the classroom! 」
「 Take care of the rest! 」
They all run back to their classrooms together with Kana-senpai.
「 Ah, wait! You didn’t eat lunch, Megu-chan, Edie! Bring this with you! 」
Katsuko-nee hands Megu a bag of pastries.
「 I’ll go take one! 」
Edie holds one in her mouth right away.
Are you running to the classroom while having a piece of bread in your mouth?
「 Megu, I think… 」
「 I know! I’ll deal with the teacher! 」
I can’t just leave Ai and the girls here and take lessons for the afternoon class.
「 Well then, see you later Ai 」
「 Let’s go! 」
「 Mogumogumogu 」
The three start running from the backdoor.
That path is the closest to the classrooms.
「 I’ll skip out 」
Nei returns from the counter area.
「 Me too 」
Well, it can’t be helped.
We can’t have a pregnant woman run around.
「 Geez, I thought that we’ll have a lot left unsold because of the fuss earlier, but they took them all on the last ten minutes 」
Katsuko-nee comes back with the cash box.
「 Even so, there’s still some left for Megu-chan and the girls 」
「 Let’s eat lunch together. We still haven’t eaten yet 」
I also lost the time to eat because of the uproar.
Yukino’s the only one who ate adequately.
Kana-senpai rushed eating to switch with Megu…
「 Ai, come here 」
She’s breathing heavily as she brought over her stuff from the classroom and shoebox.
Edie and Megu’s trained, so they don’t get short of breath when running.
Ai, what were you doing in the tennis club?
You don’t have the stamina that it surprised me.
「 Ai-san, are you serious with what you said earlier, about entering the bread course? 」
Katsuko-nee asks Ai after she calmed down.
「 Auuu, Yes, I-I’ll do my best 」
「 But, that means you’ll learn how to make pastries and manage a bakery. Are you okay with that? You’re going to lock in your career 」
Ai looked at me.
「 Yoshida-kun told me. 」
「 A-Ai did well for the first time making this. 」
「 That’s why I want to try it out. I’ll do my best 」
She didn’t just make the decision suddenly.
Ai is prepared for it.
「 I see. Then, I’ll teach you. Come here. We’ll start teaching you by eating this 」
「 Auuu 」
「 You’ll need to research by tasting each and every one of this, learning what ingredients are used and what to do to make it taste like this 」
It’s not just a simple, tasty, or not tasty thing.
You need to check how delicious it is, why is it delicious? Or like, how bad the taste is.
You need to be specific to it.
「 If you’re just working part-time in a bakeshop, then you don’t have to think about it, but, we’re genuine workers in the bakery! 」
Katsuko-nee says, “we.”
Katsuko-nee’s the teacher of this course, but…
She’s also with me, just starting this bakery together.
Oh, I see.
Ai’s also going to our bakery.
「 Someday, we’ll go through all the delicious bakeries in Japan and taste them all. We’ll soon understand the raw materials, mixture, fermentation period, baking temperature, and everything with just a bite. You need to train your tongue for that 」
「 Y-Yes 」
The one-year relationship with Ai is pulled out.
Ai will decide by herself in a year.
Whether she wants to stay with us doing bakery work or not.
「 Wow, it looks like going around to eat pastries is fun! I want to join too! 」
「 U-Uhm? 」
Koyomi-chan calls us out.
「 What’s up? 」
I turned to her.
「 I’d like to learn how to make bread too 」
「 I don’t know if I’m going to work in a bakery but, I want to learn 」
She looks straight at me.
「 I’d like to find what I can do and learn them 」
Then, she looked at AI’smother.
「 Auntie, do you want to join together? 」