110-Waiting for you...

What determines a person's identity?
What makes a person who he/she is? Is it a name, genes, mind, or body structure?
For example, in the case of two identical twins, it is what is inside that determines the identity of the twins.
When we are looking for a way to distinguish between twins, we can rely on the conversation. It is not the way they talk. It is to find out what they know and what they have experienced.
In other words, the easiest way is to look into their memories. Memory is such an important factor in establishing self-identity.

Alina's confession was a test of this.

This is the reason why I was not genuinely happy when I heard her confession.
From the point of view of my classmates, it was inevitable, or perhaps the right time had come. It is true that I was close to Alina, and that our relationship was too much for a heteros*xual friend. I guess it was natural to assume that we would eventually have a relationship.
When I imagined the scene that I accepted her, I could imagine a poisonous rose staring at me with a sad look on her face in the distance. It's just my imagination, but it was enough to influence me.
Of course, I knew that she was the poisonous rose and her basic personality was Alina Hiba whom I had met in the library that day. I just have no memory of Comet Sakakiki. That is the only thing missing from Arina. Why am I tormented so much even though I know that our personalities are the same? Why do they treat her as a different person just because she forgot me?

I was not the only one confused. Tsuru wasn't laughing either. It was an out-of-place reaction because she knew what was going on. I'm sure she must have sensed what I was going through in her own way.

I have always claimed to be a single aristocrat. And I'm upset, to my shame.
To respond to her feelings in the first place would be a betrayal of her principles, but first of all, it would mean that I am pining for her.

I heard you! I heard it, I heard it!

Bathroom break between classes. I was staring at the bulletin board in the hallway, thinking. In the middle of my thoughts, Shirana spoke to me.

'Already! Why are you wondering now! I think even Alina has been wishing for this for a long time!''
'Is the story even going that way ......'

The story is spreading too fast.
Shirana doesn't know about Alina's situation. That's why she doesn't like my lack of clarity.

It came out of nowhere. I was so surprised that I couldn't think straight. Just like your skin,' she said.
'Don't pick on me in a weird way!
'I'm kidding. Well, I'm really in trouble. ......'
'Why do you look so serious? Aren't you happy?
'Well, I'm glad. But, you know...'

I am angry at my indecisive nature. Part of me thinks that I don't have to be so rational, but I just can't shake the feeling.

'You don't like Alina-san, do you?
'That's the ultimate question, isn't it?
You're not being honest when you say 'ultimate. It's very easy to like or dislike something.
'That's right. It should be easy. ......'

The chime has rung. I have to go back to class.

'Pull yourself together, comet. Don't run away.
'Oh. Don't run away, don't run away ......'

I couldn't make up my mind, and after school came.
I will not run away as I swore to Shirana. Alina will be there. I couldn't leave her waiting alone. And I had questions I wanted to ask her.
After cleaning up, I packed my bags before anyone else and started to get ready to leave. As a returning member of the club, I had trained myself to descend HALO quickly, and it was worth it. I am the best at this.
I feel Alina's eyes on me, but I ignore them and leave the classroom. I hope you will forgive me for being so rude.

I know you'll come.
I sat down in my chair and looked at my watch. I know that it is meaningless to look at the clock, which is off by three hours, but I still have to be aware of something or I will lose my mind.
The useless clock ticks and ticks every minute. I wonder if this clock is going to make up for the three-hour delay. And why is it three hours late? What happened to the time that used to be accurate when Alina and I were here?


There was a knock at the door.
A familiar outline floats vaguely in the frosted glass.


I said to the door.
Slowly the door slides open, and Alina sticks out half her face to check.

I knew you were here...' she said.

Alina exhaled in relief and lowered her shoulders. Her reaction was also so innocent that I could not look directly at her.
She straightened her posture as usual and approached me, her shoes clacking beautifully. She sat down in a chair, lowered her gaze slightly, and faced me.


I'm not sure where to begin. We are both in such a state of mind.
It's so quiet that even the sound of our uniforms rubbing against each other is too much for me. For a moment, my eyes meet Alina's, but they are quickly averted. Then I fearfully try to make eye contact with her again.

Why did you decide to tell me then?

'Did you hate ......?

Like a child being scolded, Alina's voice was quiet.

'I don't mind. But you've been acting strange, haven't you? He said I was boring and impatient. After that, suddenly, you know, when you say ......'
'I'm sorry. I wasn't calm either, and it wasn't ...... like me.'
'No need to apologize, but are you serious ......?'

Alina turns over and covers her eyes with her bangs.


The reply was so small that you had to listen carefully to hear it.

'Alina. Think about it. There are many more attractive men out there than someone like me.
'Why are you so down on yourself? I'm not comparing you to anyone. It doesn't make sense.
'So ...... it is.'

Alina's brow furrowed and a sad expression appeared on her face.

'I thought of you when I first saw you. I wanted to get to know you. It was so strange. I didn't know anything about you, but I was drawn to you. And I knew I was in love with you before I lost your memory. I didn't imagine it. It was in my notebook. "I can't help how I feel." So I thought it was fate. Even though I lost my memory, I met you again, and I fell in love with you again.

I felt my eyes burning. I opened my eyes and resisted.

'I'm sure you wanted to hear it from me, from the person who knows you. That's what I would think if I were in your shoes. But you know, the moment I remembered everything instead of losing you, I saw the world differently. I'm still the same person, but I think differently, I see differently. That's what it's like to lose your memory. That's why I wanted to tell you. I wanted to tell you now, before I get your memory back. That I love you. I'm so sorry. I can't help it, really.

I opened my mouth, careful not to let my voice shake.

'I'm sorry, Alina.
'It's been hard. I wanted to tell you about my memories of Alina, I wanted to tell you about ...... but you know, it's useless. So I sometimes wished I had never met her in the first place.

I knew I was saying terrible things, but I had to talk.

'Every day I hoped to see him. I wondered if he was back.
'I'm sorry. I still don't remember you, but it's true that I like you. I don't want to leave you.

Alina reached out to touch my hand.
But she stopped just before I touched it because I spoke.

'I'll answer you at the end of the summer vacation. I promise.
'...... really?'
'Yeah. I'll definitely tell him. I'm not joking.'
'Thank you. I'll be waiting for you.

Alina pulled her hand back and slung her bag over her shoulder.

I'll be waiting for her, too. Forever.