80-Excuse me.

Alina's change was only for that moment, and now she is back to her usual lack of facial expression, but I can assure you that I was not mistaken. That's how impressive it was.
I gave up my seat on the train to the three girls and gripped the strap as I looked out the window. I was a bit embarrassed to sit next to them, so I decided to play the gentleman.

My house is a five-minute walk from the station. The location is great, but the short distance makes me nervous. I'm not fully prepared for it, and yet it's already upon us.
My sister sometimes brings her friends over, so I'm not against having strangers in the house, but bringing a classmate of the opposite s*x into the house is another matter. And two of them. One of them might be worse than the other, but that won't change now.
And so we arrive at the Sakakikis' house. I hope my parents are not at home.

I'm home. I'm home!

Ugin was the first to enter the house.

Welcome home. Did you go to Hatsumode properly? Oh, ......?'

Death was confirmed by the descent of My Mother.
This would be the last time, if ever, that I would want to go back in time. I regret now that I should have given a little more money when I made the offering.

My brother's classmate! Tsuru and Alina! I couldn't get into any of the stores, so I invited them over to ours.
'They're both so cute and amazing. When did you get to ......?

Don't use the technique of leaving the rest of the words to the reader's imagination, Mother. There is one woman who is furious.

'Sorry to disturb you. Nice to meet you, my name is Nitotsuru. I'm a classmate of Comet-kun. I apologize for the sudden appearance on New Year's Day.

Tsuru introduces himself with a bow and a bow. Mummy saw this and hurriedly returned the bow. She was probably a little surprised that her son and daughter were not people with a strong sense of propriety.

I'm Alina Hiba. Um, Sakakiki-kun is, uh, what is it?

Why are you nervous? Where's your usual character? Alina Hibane. Is it a master-slave relationship with this guy? I thought you were going to spit out a harsh line like "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry. Why are you so timid? And what's with the 'Sakakiki-kun'? Why don't you call him 'you, trash, millworm, ditch oil, pig feed, cicada shell, stalker, or vomit' like you always do? What's wrong with using people's names? You gave me a little jolt, you son of a b*tc*. You got my heart rate up.

We're on the same committee.

I couldn't stand to see Alina clamming up, so I offered my help. I'm not on the committee, but it's a good cover. It's a good stopgap.

'Oh, yeah. Comet is always good to me. I'm sure I'm always bothering you because I'm like this, but please be a good friend to him.
Yes, yes. I understand.'

What do you mean, not like this? Ugin, say something back to your mother.

I'm tired of standing around talking. Can I use the living room?
'Go ahead. I'll get you some tea and snacks.

Oh, no.

Ugin led them into the living room. But I didn't go to the living room.

I'm coming in.

My taciturn father is often in his room. I came to his room to warn him.

'Dad. There's a problem in the living room.
'Cause it's otherworldly. Anyway, you shouldn't leave your room right now.'
'...... I don't understand.'
'That's understandable. What you need to understand is that the living room is in trouble right now. You should stay out of it as much as possible.
'...... got it. I'll be careful.

All right, the heads-up is good. Even my taciturn father would sit up if he saw Tsuru and Alina. And if he knew that they were my classmates and not Ugin's friends, I think he would drop his eyeballs.
I go back to my room, take off my coat, and go back to my casual clothes. Before leaving the room, I took a quick look around. I checked to see if there was anything that would make me nervous if they were to break in and point it out to me. Okay, nothing. It's all good.

The living room was truly another world. Maam, Ugin, Alina, and Tsuru are chatting around a kotatsu. It is similar to the feeling that makes your blood run cold when you step into a women's bath in a public bathhouse. I've never been in one.
I don't want to be a part of this circle. I turned around as if nothing had happened.

'Oh, brother, you're here at last!
'Take your time, ladies. Bye.
'Don't run away.'
'Sometimes it's okay to run away. Now is the time.
'Hey mom. Let's stop buying tomato juice from today.

Yes, yes, yes. I'll stay here.

Sometimes they drop cruel remarks so quickly that you have to be on your guard. I shudder to think what would have happened if I had just listened. The threats are deadly. I wonder if she understands. It's tantamount to a ban on oxygen and water.
I can't get into the kotatsu, so I lie down on the sofa. The sofa was my only place in this space.

'Brother. You're sloppy.
'Let me at least be sloppy at home. ......'
'Hey, big brother. You must be embarrassed in front of Tsuru and Arina.
'It's okay, it's okay. I know you're like this.
'It's not my brother who's embarrassed, it's my mother. I'm sorry I'm such a son.
Ha-ha-ha. No, no, no, I know.

I had no allies. I was alone.

What's my son doing at school? Are you doing anything weird?

What do you mean "weird"? I don't think they trust me.

'Comet-kun is... Hmm. What do you think?

With a malicious look in his eyes, Tsuru puffed at Alina.

'Well, Sakakiki-kun, you know... I think he stands out.
'Heh. In what way do you stand out?'
'Oh, like someone who talks a lot about interesting things.'
'I see. What do you think, big brother?
'No, I don't stand out as much as that guy.
'Shut up.'

Don't suddenly switch to plain Alina. You're freaking me out.

'Alina, you're going to be an actress. You'll be popular with the boys, right? Aren't you irresistible?

Stop it, Mother. I don't want to hear about your love life in your forties. Not in front of my son. I really don't like it when my immediate family talks about their love lives. It's a new kind of psychological attack, you know. It's torture.

It's torture. I'm not popular.
'Noooooo! Tell me about it between us, Obasan~''

God, I'm so embarrassed, I'm so embarrassed.
Mother, your youth ended 30 years ago. Can't we stop this useless war? How long will you incite the people? Wheat does not grow roots in the ground no matter how much you worship the regime. The people do not want a national victory, but water and beans. That is all.
Wealthy corrupt politicians are so intoxicated with metaphysical concepts that they have stopped looking down to the ground and to the hand. They feel responsible for their position and start chasing illusions on their own. Those in power who can afford it always stop being realistic. They forget their true purpose, they forget us. They feel righteous for what no one asked them to do and start throwing all their energy into their own self-satisfaction. Please don't do that anymore. It's all right to live.

Alina... why are you lying?
'I don't know what you're talking about.'
'There's not a week that goes by that I don't get a confession, right? Alina is an idol!'
'No, I'm not! It's not like that!
'Eh? Is that so?'
Yes, it is!

In this day and age, the only countries willing to go to war are those that are poor or well-off.
As the word "globalization" has taken root, the world is intertwined like a spider's thread, interfering with each other's very foundations. As a result, the national interests gained from war are no longer as valuable as they once were...

'Brother. Your face is too stern. It's unpleasant.'
'I'm sorry.

I can't keep up with the girl talk. There's no way I can keep up with strawberry-flavored conversation.

Bye, bye. Maybe my son confessed to Alina-chan too......'?

Mother asks Alina in a whisper in her ear.
Okay, this is going to be very, very complicated.

I wonder...? I answered my mother with a meaningful smile.
What? You really told him! What about you, big brother!''
I didn't. Mother, please calm down. Do you know if you've overdosed on caffeine?
'Oh, how can you be so sure?

Don't look so smug. I'm getting back on track.

'Are you stupid, brother? You think you can go out with me! If you thought it was possible with Alina, you should be dead a million times over! You wretched pervert! Stupid! Gross! Tomato poisoning! Daedalab*tc*!

It's overkill. Don't do it. I'm already dead, Ugin.

I think you'd be good together. Alina?
'Hey, what are you talking about? With this guy!
'If you come to be my son's wife, I'll be so worried about my old age.'
'Ugh ...... is that right ......?'
'Don't do it, Mom. People will think the Sakakiki family is a bunch of idiots.
'The only idiot is you, brother.'
'I don't want to be told by you, who's been getting more and more stupid lately.'

Mother left the living room to bake rice cakes.
I despair. My mother, the only sane person in this space, was gone. It was as if a chain had been broken. It was like the zoo had opened.

I was surprised to see no resemblance between Comet and my mother. I wonder if Ugin-chan looks like her mother.
'Yes, that's right. If I had to choose between father and mother, I'd say I look like my mother!
'I thought your mother was crazy like the comet ......'
'Your mother, father and I are sensible people. It's just that my brother is an anomaly.
'Yeah. I totally agree.

I closed my eyes and shut out the world. I let my consciousness melt into a dream, thinking, "If I make a comment, I lose, if I make a comment, I lose. I am done with the painful reality. I want to be a deep-sea fish in my next life. I don't seem to have any worries.
After a while, I begin to feel a little sleepy. Just before my body is about to pass the last pass and fall asleep, I feel a strange sensation of not being able to hear anything in the living room, and I open my eyes.
I opened my eyes and saw Ugin, Alina, and Tsuru looking down at me.

'Whoa! What a psycho horror!
'Ha-ha-ha! I'm seriously freaking out!
'Your sleeping face looks like an amoeba.
'Do amoebas have faces too? ......'

Feeling in danger, I tried to escape.

'I have to pee.

As I stood up to go to the bathroom, my father appeared in the hallway.
My father shuddered and went rigid for a few seconds. I could tell. He was quite surprised.

'...... thanks.

He mumbled something in a low voice and went down the corridor.

'What, was that Comet's father ......?
''Yes, but...''

Tsuru and Alina looked at each other and tilted their heads.

'...... are you a mutation?'
'I'm afraid I can't give you spider silk or claws.
'I thought your father was more like you. ......'
'I don't know either.'
'And, and, and... we have to say hello anyway, don't we?
'You've been stuttering since you came to my house. You're like a buggy artificial intelligence.
I'm not nervous, I'll kill you.
'No one's pointing that out.

He is trying to be strong, but he can't be convinced if he is seen blinking his eyes and looking so confused.

'Alina-san, would you like to go to your brother's room?
'What? What are you talking about?

Ugin's unexpected response was a reflexive one. My brother was the most surprised I've seen him in a year. I thought my large and small intestines were going to pop out of my mouth.

'Eh, but ......'.

Don't glance at me and Ugin.
Don't give off an aura that you want to go.
Don't laugh at Tsuru-kun next to you.

'Because you look like you want to go back to your room...'
'I don't want to go back. I don't want to go back even if I die, so let's just sit in the living room and talk about the old days, ladies.
'Is there something you don't want me to see?'
No. You're the one who's going in unannounced, and you know it best.'
'Yeah? Is that so?

He's totally bluffing. I'm a gentleman with nothing to hide. It's a big trap to pique your interest. Don't fall for it. ......!
Then Tsuru cowered and grabbed me by the shoulders.

Let's go, shall we?
Who the hell are you?

With a wink and a thumbs-up.
Alina, on the other hand, continues to act the part of a shy lady. This must be her first time in a boy's house. I wonder if that's why she's been acting like an annoyingly pure and beautiful girl for a while now. Visually, though, she's so good that I'd rather lick her. Oh no, I've revealed my true nature. Gentleman! Gentleman!


Ugin's voice makes me turn around. He must be on his way back to his room from the kitchen. He has a bottle of wine and a glass in each hand.

'...... Enjoy your stay.

He bowed, muttered a few words, and left.

'Hey ......, comets are mutations, aren't they?

'It's frustrating, but my relatives say it all the time: ......'

The living room goes quiet.
'Gosh, greetings ......,' mutters Alina. Tsuru stares at me as if he's trying to solve a difficult math problem. Ugin tugs on my sleeve to lead me to the comet room.
It's chaos. I seem to be the only person with a personality in this world.

The rice cakes are baking!

Mother's cheerful voice brings us all back to our childhood and we return to the kotatsu.
A critical situation was thus averted.
But only temporarily.