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I’m back, Japaaaan!
Whenever I visit Europe the cities are beautiful, the atmosphere and people are stylish, and I have fun every day, but it’s still Japan that I feel most at home in~
Green tea over black tea. Rice over bread.
The first thing I did when I got home was eat some ume salmon chazuke! Hahhh~ This was the taste of Japan~
In Zui’ran the high school class trips were timed to the Golden Week holidays so that they wouldn’t affect our studies so much. My family had gone overseas as well, but they timed their homecoming to match mine.
We had a fun talk about our trips while the living room was packed full of souvenirs. Naturally Oniisama was included!
“Did you have fun on your class trip?”
“Yes! Very much! And you all?”
“We had a good time, but I’m a little tired,” Otousama admitted.
“That’s because you golfed all day, dear.”
Okaasama’s skin was smooth and silky because of her stay at a beauty salon, but Otousama looked a bit exhausted.
As for Oniisama, he had gone to Hokkaido with some uni friends of his.
He even brought back a lot of my favourite desserts for me!
Corn Chocolate was impossible to stop eating once you began~
I hadn’t felt any homesickness while I was gone, but seeing my family’s for the first time in ten days made me awfully happy for some reason. I was all over them, and just chatted all night.
Ehehe. I wonder if maybe I had actually missed them.
I was even finding Otousama’s belly endearing. Homesickness was such a fearsome thing.
Look, Oniisama! I got you all these souvenirs! Aah~ So happy.
──But still, it wouldn’t do to forget that I had lost something precious during my trip. My urna was gone now.
During my last night in Rome I had noticed its absence and fallen into a panic.
The next morning I had forgotten again, but now that my good luck charm was gone dark days were surely awaiting.
The first order of business was sitting in the corner of my room.
The hoya kerrii that I had received as a present last Christmas had withered up. What had once been a lively green heart-shape was now a rotten brown thing.
I had given it extra water so that it could endure while I was on holiday, but it seemed to have been the wrong choice.
The fact that the temperature had dropped while I was gone probably hadn’t helped either.
I’m sorry, Hoya-chan! Forgive me!
Hoya-chan who I spoke to every day, in the hopes that she would grow up faster.
Hoya-chan who lent an ear to my daily complaints about being stuck as the Chief of the Forever Alone Village.
It didn’t look like nutrition supplements would help her at this point. After all, I could smell a bit of rot…
How could I explain this to Kitazawa-kun? It hadn’t even been half a year yet, and I’d killed his present. I didn’t have the guts to tell him.
Aah, I felt so guilty…
People called the hoya kerrii the love heart plant, and it was supposed to help your luck in romance.
I myself had prayed to her that I would finally experience my own romance this year.
It had come to nothing though.
The fact that it had rotted spelled nothing but misfortune for my coming love life.
I was feeling nervous now.
Hoya-chan, please don’t curse me, okay?
Just head straight to heaven.
It happened during the morning of my first day going back to school.
I awoke in bed to cacophonous warbling.
Already having a bad feeling about it, I pulled back the balcony curtains to investigate.
There were two pigeons there!
So early in the morning and I was already meeting my natural enemy!
I was too afraid to open the window though, so the best I could do was smack on the glass to try to scare them.
Fortunately it worked, and my presence sent them flying away. Thank goodness…
What could have been a refreshing morning had already been ruined. They better not have pooped on my balcony.
I opened my window to check. Thankfully they hadn’t, but… taking a closer look, there was a strange bundle of twigs under the air-con outdoor unit that sat to the side of my balcony.
What on earth was that? …Wait.
Inside there were a number of round white things!
Don’t tell me they were eggs!?
Those pigeons had left their eggs here! Plural! There were two!
Oh my god. Those two birds had been a couple.
While I was away they had taken the chance to build a nest and lay their eggs here.
What was I supposed to do? I was too scared to get rid of them myself.
Oh no, what if they hatched right now!?
The only course of action I could think of was to get changed and call for help.
Somebody please take care of this problem in place of my cowardly self…
The housemaid who replied to my call looked at the nest in surprise.
“While you were away I did some light cleaning and aired out your room, Reika-ojousama, but I overlooked the area under the air-conditioning unit. My apologies.”
“No, it was because they picked somewhere so out of sight. You could not have helped it.”
To begin with, it was my request that they only did the bare minimum of cleaning while I was away. It was because I was hiding candy in my room, and secret savings, amongst other things.
Instead, I relied a lot on a cleaning robot. The appliances of modern civilisation were wonderful indeed.
Sometimes I do find a few dust bunnies living under my bed though.
“I hadn’t noticed anything while cleaning the windows the other day though,” the maid mused.
“Then it must have been a recent development,” I concluded.
I hadn’t heard any chirping or flying before the class trip after all.
This must have happened because I lost my urna…!
“Ah! The pigeons have come again!” I shouted. “On the handrail!”
“Hey! Go away!” my housemaid shooed them, but with their nest here I knew it was only a matter of time until they were back.
They could hardly leave their eggs behind.
“What’s the matter?” Oniisama asked from in front of my door.
The noise must have brought him here.
“Oniisama, it is terrible! Some pigeons have built a nest on my balcony! And of all things they even laid eggs!” I cried.
“Built a nest? Oh, so they have.”
“Shall I put them in a nearby park?” my housemaid suggested.
Thank you! Could you?
Unfortunately Oniisama stopped her.
“The Wildlife Protection and Proper Hunting Act prohibits us from disposing of the eggs of wild birds.”
Then what were we supposed to do!?
If the egg hatched then the whole family would be settling here for real!
Didn’t they say that birds knew how to return home!? I couldn’t let that be my balcony!
What if they lived out their entire lives here!? Please no!
“I can’t be room mates with the pigeons, Oniisama!” I cried tearily.
“…Please call the Office of Animal Control.”
Ohh! As expected of Oniisama! So reliable!
The housemaid said that she would call them first thing, so that was that.
Haah. Could I count this problem as dealt with, for now?
“Thank you, Oniisama. I apologise for the ruckus so early in the morning.”
“No, no, it just really feels like you’re back now.”
I wasn’t sure what his smile meant, but Oniisama patted me on the head.
Maybe Oniisama was worried about my frayed nerves because he drove me to school that morning.
Oniisama looked so cool driving the car in his suit!
“I must say, that was surprising. When I woke up I hardly expected to find a pigeon nest in my room.”
“I guess you would be.”
It was bad enough that they attacked me with poop from the sky, but to think they even followed me home to finish me off, those damned pigeons!
And a couple, no less.
Even though they were just pigeons they sure had a lot of nerve acting all lovey-dovey like that.
I guess it couldn’t be helped though. It was spring after all.
“I suppose this comes with spring,” I sighed. “I wonder if things will calm down after this.”
“Unfortunately, pigeons are in heat all year around, so they lay quite a few eggs.”
What the heck!? This was the first I’d heard of this!
“Reika, I’m driving so don’t grab my arm like that, okay?”
In heat all year round!? Didn’t these pigeons have any morals!?
These pigeons were unforgivable…
As expected of my natural enemy. As it turned out, pigeons were the chiefs of the Fulfilling Bird Romance village!
“Then that means that even if we get rid of the nest and eggs they might simply do this all over again!?”
This wasn’t a joke.
How could they get sexy on somebody else’s balcony!?
“I’ve asked them to take measures to keep pigeons away, so there’s nothing to worry about.”
“Reika, I’m driving so don’t grab my arm like that, okay?”
By ‘measures’, I wonder if he was talking about nets and CDs.
Or could it be traps instead?
“Oh, I just remembered, Oniisama. I bought some souvenirs for Imari-sama as well, so I was hoping for a chance to hand them over. Do you know if he plans to visit our house any time soon?”
“Just have it sent by courier.”
Imari-sama gave me so many presents normally, so I wanted to hand them over personally to show my gratitude.
Wasn’t having a courier send it a bit dispassionate? Although that was exactly what I did for Valentines, since it was food and all.
Oniisama glanced over at my dissatisfied expression as said, “I’ll let him know.”
I’m counting on you, Oniisama!
When I arrived at school I spotted new members of the Fulfilling Romance village, thanks to the effects of the class trip. Damn them all…
What phenomenon caused all these new couples after a school trip? It had been a mystery in my previous life too.
It made no sense.
“Gokigen’yoh, Reika-sama. We were just talking about the class trip.”
When I arrived in the classroom a number of my friends had already been chatting together.
I want to talk about the trip as well.
Lemme join in~
“It certainly was quite a trip. Which city were you just talking about?”
“Well… Actually, in Rome some students apparently spotted Kaburagi-sama and Takamichi-san at a café together…”
Oh my god.
Just how many times had I told him to be careful about being seen!
“Are we sure it was the two of them?” I tried. “Perhaps they were mistaken.”
“But would anyone really mistake somebody else for Kaburagi-sama?”
…It was true that the idiot was stupidly noticeable.
It didn’t take long for the rumours to spread like wildfire.
According to the rumours it happened at a café famous for its tiramisu. The two of them were seen happily chatting to each other before boarding a taxi and riding off.
Since nobody had the guts to question Kaburagi, naturally they hounded Wakaba-chan instead.
Flustered, she replied “We just happened to meet…” but then they asked why the two of them boarded a taxi together in that case.
The fact that they had been sampling desserts together the whole day was still a secret. Still, it was now a confirmed fact that she had at least spent some amount of time with him in Rome.
Aaah, I just got back and I could already see the trouble brewing!
When I returned home, I found blooming flowers on my balcony.
The handrail had been wrapped in rose vines. It was lovely.
Truly the balcony of a maiden.
Ooh, and there were urara roses too.
That said, I was confused about the change.
As it turned out, pigeons apparently hated the smell of roses, so we had the gardener set this up after the nest was cleared away.
It wouldn’t have done to have anti-pigeon nets, I suppose, to say nothing of CDs hanging on the balcony.
It was the Kisshouin estate, so there were appearances to uphold after all.
But I was concerned.
If gardeners had green thumbs, then mine were definitely brown.
I even managed to kill a cactus, so how long would these flowers last on my balcony…?
Please, God, let there be no pigeons tomorrow.