Chapter 10: To be dyed black

“Ayana PoV”

“Why are you playing soccer, Towa-kun?”

I had once asked Towa because I was suddenly curious.

After graduating from elementary school and entering junior high school, Towa-kun continued to play soccer for a long time, so I was curious.

I could understand that he simply liked it because he seemed to enjoy it, but it seemed to me that there was another big reason.

“Why do I play…… because I like it?”

“Of course you do~”

It’s too simple, but it’s certainly true, and I agreed with him.

But I know that there is another big reason because I have seen Towa up until now.

Perhaps he gave up after staring at me so intently, he let out a small breath and continued his words.

“Uhm…… It’s because of my mother”


Akemi, that’s the name of Towa-kun’s mother.

I’ve only talked to her a little bit when I would go to Towa-kun’s house with Shu, but we would often see each other when we went to watch soccer games, so naturally we hit it off.

She had a youthful appearance that made it hard to believe she had a junior high school son, but at first I had the impression that she was a bit flamboyant and scary, but after talking to her, I realized that she was a foolish parent who loved Towa-kun very much.

“Towa! Over there! Heel-lift him out of the way!”

“I’m not Captain Whatever, things don’t always go well during a game, you know!?”

She was a really lively mother, and I liked talking with Akemi.
It may sound like an unfilial thing to say, but there were many times when I wished I had a mother like her.
I know that Akemi is a wonderful mother, but what is it about …… that makes her so special?

“Uhm…that …… you keep it a secret, Ayana? I don’t want you to tell my mother about it, even if it’s wrong.
It’s embarrassing.”

Towa-kun scratched his cheek and said so, and I promised that I understood.
Towa-kun looked at me as I nodded.
He told me why he has continued to play soccer this long, in addition to his love for the sport.

“You know my dad is not in our house because of the …… accident.”


I didn’t know the details of Towa-kun’s family situation because I never asked him about it, but his dad died in an accident…….
I thought I had asked something bad ……, but Towa-kun pats my head and tells me not to worry about it.

“She loved him so much.
Of course I was depressed.
But she got over it right away because I was there.
I thought she was a really strong mother.
But sometimes she cried when she thought about him.”

Towa-kun also seemed to be remembering those days and seemed to be in a bit of pain.

“Even though she had recovered, she was still smiling less and it was still hard for me to see her like that.
It was at that time.
I joined a soccer club, and while I was participating in games, my mother started coming to cheer me on.
That’s when she started smiling more.”

Ah, is that so? Maybe that is the reason why …… Towa continues to play soccer.

“If she smiles when she sees me playing soccer, it makes me feel like I have to keep on playing, right? And as I kept going, I started to like soccer more, so it’s a win-win situation.”

“…… that’s what it was.”

…… I have never had the idea to work hard for my family, and I know that the time will never come in the future.
But Towa-kun’s desire to work hard for his mother was very noble, and I thought it was really cool of him.
It was so cute to see Towa-kun talking shyly, as if he was the first to say he was embarrassed.
But …… seeing him like that, my heart was pounding so hard.

Towa-kun, you brought light to a world that was too small at that time.
Since then, I have spent a lot of time getting to know you better and better, and today I know something new about you.

“What’s wrong? Your face is all red……”

“Fufu, I guess so.
Because I got to know even more of the wonderful parts of Towa-kun.”

I am embarrassed……I am really embarrassed, but I have no choice but to admit it now.

I … Towa-kun, I love him so much that I can’t help it.

Towa-kun, you brought light to a world that was too small at that time.
Since then, I have spent a lot of time getting to know you better and better, and today I know something new about you.

“Ayana, I’ll do my best, so please come to the big press conference.”

“Of course.
I will definitely come to cheer you on!”

I will definitely go to the tournament to cheer him on.
I mean, I promised Akemi that I would, so it’s a definite thing.
What about Shu-kun? He might come along since Towa-kun is going to the tournament, but I don’t know since he seemed to be bored from the middle of the tournament before.

Shu-kun… Am I a terrible woman for thinking that he doesn’t matter anymore? I don’t know what our mothers would say if they heard this, but Towa-kun is already in my heart.
There’s no room for Shu-kun to sneak in.

……Ah, I guess that’s when Towa-kun asked me about it.
About the way I speak.

“Speaking of, why are you using honorifics nowadays?”

“Oh, it’s because…”

As Towa-kun said, I mainly use honorifics these days.

Lately, my way of speaking has become predominantly formal.
The reason is simple – it’s like a protective barrier towards my family.
Even though they’re my family, speaking in formal language makes them seem like strangers.
As for why I’ve become fixed in speaking this way to Towa-kun, it’s become a habit.
I can remove it if I’m conscious of it, but I’ve already gotten used to it.

I was at a loss for what to say, and I couldn’t honestly say that I wanted to keep my distance from my family, so I gave him a thumbs up.

“I know you have a lot of things to say, but I think honorifics are good for girls”

I laughed at his cool, smartly and uselessly said.
I really feel like all my little worries are ridiculous in front of Towa-kun.

Time passes.

Towa-kun worked hard for the soccer tournament and I supported him as much as I could.
Towa-kun had been working hard since elementary school.
He said he was doing it for Akemi’s sake and for mine.
I had always thought that his hard work should definitely be rewarded.

But …….

“OI SHU!!”

“…… Eh?”

Fate is cruel.


In an instant, it took away his years of effort and passion.

I’ve learned so much about how people can be so ugly.

“You know, you’re not needed here.
Shu has Ayana-chan, and Ayana-chan has Shu.
You must be punished for being an outsider who has entered into this.

Shu-kun’s mother …… that filth uttered this.

“It is fine just with Onii-chan and Ayane nee-chan.
I don’t want to have him around.”

Shut up, shut up trash.

“Towa can’t go to the tournament …… haha”

Why are you laughing? Towa-kun was injured because of you!

“I knew from that moment on that he was a disgusting child.
With a mother like that, it’s no wonder he’s not getting a good education.”

……How sickening it is to have the blood of …… this person with you.

I put my hand on my chest to restrain my chest from vomiting, it was slightly damp and that was a sign that Towa-kun had shed tears on my chest.

He loved soccer.
He worked hard for Akemi’s smile,…… and something in me changed with the words that so easily trampled on those feelings.
Then,…… I no longer saw them as equal to me,…….

My heart creaks every time I see Towa-kun’s painful appearance as he works hard at rehabilitation.
I am glad that Towa-kun notices and cares about me even though he has his hands full with himself.
I was happy to see that, and at the same time, I felt shallow for being happy about it.

And then I heard.

“I …… like Ayana.
I want Towa to support me in this.
You are my best friend, so I wanted to be the first to tell you.”

My heart, which tried to be indifferent, turned to disgust and hatred.

“… That’s outrageous.
Ayana is in trouble.”

The man who had finished playing the fan disk muttered those words.
It was a revenge story against those who mocked Ayana’s path in life and Towas’ dreams, which were not discussed in the main story.

Ayana’s figure driven by hatred was shocking, but in front of Towa, she was always her usual self.
Of course, there were H scenes with Ayana, but her partner was always Towa.
She only lost control in front of Towa.
However, despite the intense scenes, the story was too heavy, and the focus was mostly on that.

“Um, is this an interview with the developers?”

What the man saw was the developers’ comments posted on the official website.

“Perhaps, everyone who played the game, including the family members, may have developed hate towards Shu.
There were several scenes that I thought we went too far, but it turned out that it became like that because we wanted to express Ayana’s madness in detail.
The staff felt sorry for the seniors and juniors (laughs).
By the way, have you played the game for the second time? There’s a slight change in the production of the ending on the second playthrough.”


It was a surprise for the man.
Leaving the comment page as it was, the man played the game again, but there were no changes in the conversation, so he used the skip function to quickly head towards the ending.

The screen showed Towa and Ayana holding hands with a smile, and the staff roll flowed in the background.
However, at the very end, these words appeared on the screen:

“In my arms is Ayana, always smiling.
Seeing that smile, I can also become happy.
But… was this really okay?”

The picture of the two happily together changed, and Ayana’s figure disappeared, leaving only Towa behind.

“She acted for me, who she loved.
But perhaps, what truly broke her heart was… me, who couldn’t realize anything.
Maybe I am the one who took away that kind-hearted girl from myself.”

With those words, the true meaning of the ending was revealed, and the title screen appeared again.

The man who had been watching it all was at a loss, but he quickly read the comments page again.

[I actually don’t know if Towa did what Ayana did in the main story.
So, it’s more like if they realized it later and the staff added it as a fun feature.
In other words, Ayana was already broken and couldn’t stop herself from doing it.
This game is over, but… if there was someone with a more special perspective than Towa or Ayana, both of them could have had a happier ending.
Achieving revenge may give a sense of accomplishment for a moment, but in the end, it only brings emptiness.
Well, no matter how it turns out, it seems like a bitter ending for Shu, haha.]

“… A third party with a special perspective”

The man muttered, lost in thought.

What could he do if he were in that position? It’s pointless to think about it since it’s just a game, but what if… if only.
Would Touwa approve of Ayana bearing his hatred if he knew this would be the outcome?

Playing the fan disk changed the man’s impression of Towa’s character.
He only wanted to be with Ayana and didn’t realize he was trapped in his past and hatred as Ayana began to act.

If there had been some sort of trigger, if there had been an event where Ayana and Touwa truly shared their feelings and overcame their past, their future together would have been much brighter.

“… Phew, should I write a review?”

Writing a review after finishing the game is part of the man’s routine.

He opens the internet to write his review, but before he can start, something catches his eye.

It’s the game file he had been playing in window mode, and he never noticed until now.

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