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Today I was picking up the yule log. As planned, we met at the train station closest to her house.
“Here it is! I feel bad making you come all the way here just to get it!”
“No, no. I am feeling rather shameless for having you make a cake just for me.”
“Don’t be! Yule logs are pretty easy to make. Ah, but it wasn’t sloppy work, okay?”
“Of course. I already knew that.”
The reason why we met here was because Wakaba-chan had a train to catch today. Since home was in the same direction we were waiting to catch the train together.
“So you use the train too, Kisshouin-san…”
“My, my, that was how I arrived here today.”
She seemed surprised to hear that.
I suppose she couldn’t help it. I was driven to school each day, after all.
“I thought people from the Pivoine never rode public transport.”
“I suppose there certainly are many like that.”
“Then could it be that you’ve ridden a bike before, Kisshouin-san?”
Was it that surprising?
I used to ride my bike every day in my old life, and in this life I had taken bicycle classes for my primary school entrance exam too. Not that I had touched one since though.
Since a pair of seats were free we sat next to each other.
Wakaba-chan was wearing a red duffel coat today. I felt that it suited her energy.
“Where are you headed today?”
“Well it’s nearly Christmas, right? I’ve gotta buy my little siblings their presents.”
It had to be tough with as many siblings as she had.
“Speaking of Christmas, what are you doing this year, Takamichi-san?”
“Me? I’m just going to be helping at the store, same as always. It’s always busiest near Christmas. It’s almost winter now, so every day I’ve been hard at work since the morning, you know~”
“That must be tiring.”
“Yeah. Some of the orders from a while ago had overlapping delivery times. It was a nightmare. And for some reason it’s always at times like that that random customers pop into our store.”
“Oh my~ In that case you are certainly not going to be spending Christmas with a special someone.”
“Unfortunately~ But once opening hours are over my family is going to have a party. Well, probably not the types of grand parties that you’re used to, though,” she laughed. “After all, the parties at Kaburagi-kun’s house hire orchestras and opera singers and magicians and stuff, right? That must be so cool~”
“Did you hear that from him?”
“Could it be he invited you?”
“But I’ve got to help out at my store. And besides, I’d be so out of place there it wouldn’t be funny. It’s kind of a shame I’ll miss out on a real magician’s show though.”
“And I bet the cakes are going to be amazing too, right~?”
“My. I think the cake you gave me today will outshine them by far.”
“Ehhh~ But my dad didn’t make that one, you know? I did. I’m a bit worried about the taste. If it was one of Dad’s I could definitely boast about it.”
“…So when you defended our family’s cakes I was really very happy. Thank you.”
“Ah, this is my stop. Cya then, Kisshouin-san!”
As my train left, Wakaba-chan waved at me from the platform.
When I got home, I discovered that it came with a little meringue Santa Claus, standing besides a little meringue girl with ringlets.
Ehh!? Could that be me!? This was sooo cute! Thank you, Wakaba-chan! I had to take a picture!
It was so cute that I couldn’t bear to eat them, so I left the meringue girl in my room’s refrigerator.
I was going to show it off to Oniisama later!
I took a photo of myself with the meringue figure and sent it with a thank you message to Wakaba-chan.
When I passed by Kaburagi in the salon it took everything I had not to show off about the meringue doll. I wonder if he’d feel bitter though.
Casually asking Wakaba-chan out though. That was pretty assertive of him. Too bad she turned him down, though. Uupfftpfftpfft.
Maybe he read my mind or something because he sent me a questioning look. Oops, put on a neutral expression, Reika.
“Oh yeah, Kisshouin-san,” began Enjou, “apparently Yukino has something he wants to give to you, so do you think you could visit the Petit salon sometime before the day of the closing ceremony?”
“Yukino-kun? What does he want?”
“Apparently he has a Christmas present for you. He actually wanted to hand it to you on the day, but none of us will be at school on Christmas.”
“Heavens! A present from Yukino-kun!?”
Oh my god! I was going to get a Christmas present from an angel!?
I didn’t think I could quite make it on the day of the closing ceremony, so I told Enjou I would go some day before then. For some reason Kaburagi said he’d come with.
“I kinda wanna see how he’s doing in the Petit.”
Ehhh!? Then just go on your own sometime! You’re completely uninvited, you know!
Today was the day of the Handicrafts Club tea party. Last year I wasn’t invited.
This year however, I could brazenly participate. After all, I was a full member, and the Club President. Ku hu hu!
Ordinarily we were forbidden from bringing snacks to school, but the teachers turned a blind eye on special days like this. We put down the tea and sweets on the table. This was so fun.
After that a number of club members brought out home-made foods like quiche and stollen.
“I made this, if you feel like it.”
“Waah! It looks delicious!”
Teacakes were all rather sweet so I was glad for something else. Bread with dried fruits is good stuff, isn’t it~
Everyone enjoyed the food as we chatted happily about our year.
“It’s embarrassing but I’ve almost never cooked,” said a nearby girl with quiche.
“Actually, neither have I,” admitted another girl, and then another.
“There just isn’t much chance to cook at home.”
“Yeah. There’s never really a reason to.”
“What about you, Reika-sama?”
“I suppose if I had to say something, I enjoy baking sweets. Nothing complex though, all right? Hmm, my father and brother like chocolate brownies so I make them each Valentine’s. Hmm, and some yoghurt, or cookies with garden roses mixed in…”
“That sounds wonderful!”
“Not really. It was not anything special. Although you can make something feel more home-made by adding your own touches.”
“I never realised. As expected of you, Reika-sama.”
“We’d all love to try your sweets, Reika-sama.”
“Uhuhu, but my brother made me promise to only let my family try my desserts.”
“Really? Your oniisama really dotes on you, Reika-sama.”
“You think?” I asked.
“Uhuhu,” we all chuckled in harmony.
Phew. I somehow made it out of that topic alive.
I really needed to start Akimi-san’s lessons. We agreed to start after the New Year.
No way could I have told everyone that I couldn’t even use a kitchen knife properly.
Speaking of cooking through, Wakaba-chan’s yule log really was amazing. The mix of tart strawberries inside the sweet chocolate was just perfect!
Wakaba-chan said it was easy to make, so I was thinking of trying my own hand at it. Oh, maybe using lavender jam instead of the strawberries might be nice. It was worth trying out.
Minami-kun, the only male here, had looked a bit uncomfortable at the start, but once the topic changed to handicrafts he turned lively and participated.
“Minami-kun, whatever happened to Ririna, anyhow?”
“She was a little sulky but she accepted it.”
“Good. That girl must always be causing you guys so much trouble.”
“Not at all. It’s easy to misunderstand Kotou-san, but she’s kind and cares a lot about her friends.”
A red-faced Minami-kun took a sip of his tea.
To each his own, I guess~
Well anyway, club members, I hope we’ll have another great year together!
I went to Kyoto and bought some konpeitoh.