You like Mari-san. You can’t deny your feelings anymore, Kirin thought as she stared at her reflection in the mirror. What are you going you do?
There were only two options. She could keep her feelings to herself or confess. Though it seemed a simple question, it wasn’t. At least not for her. Because of that, she groaned.
I wanna confess, but we’ve known each other for less than a month. And she has a daughter. There’s no way she has time to date. Also, I don’t know if she’d date another woman. Even if her coworkers joked about it, she might be troubled by the idea. Since we’re neighbors, that could be awkward. And it might ruin our friendship.
That was the main reason Kirin didn’t want to confess. The rest were just excuses and she knew. I like her, but just being around her is fun. I don’t wanna lose that.
She sighed, splashed water on her face, and let out a bitter laugh. I can’t believe I’m thinking the same things I did before I confessed to my first girlfriend. I thought I had grown past this. As she dried her face, the doorbell rang.
“Please, Kirin! Help me!” Mari shouted.
Kirin almost tripped as she ran to the entrance. “What’s wrong?”
Kirin blinked a couple times. Then she couldn’t help but smile. “Who’d be mad enough to think someone as gorgeous as you is fat?”
“Look!” Mari raised her shirt enough to show her bellybutton. “Fat!”
Kirin barely heard. She was too entranced by that belly and was doing her best to suppress the urge to kiss it.
“It’s l-lovely,” she managed to say, looking at Mari’s eyes with difficulty.
If she kept looking at that belly, she would lose her mind.
“I know it’s not!” She grabbed Kirin’s hand and made her touch her stomach. Then she made her squeeze it a little.
Kirin could barely suppress her grin. Her face was an alarming shade of red. How can she do this to me? If I was an anime character, I’d be having a nosebleed right now!
“I don’t see anything other than a lovely tummy,” she said using all her self-restraint.
“Thanks for lying to me! But I know I’m fat!”
“T-that’s nonsense. You’re not even at the level of being called plump or thick.” Which would make you even more beautiful to me, she thought but kept it to herself.
“Liar!” Mari was almost crying. “This is all your fault!”
“My fault? W-why?”
“Because we’ve been having breakfast and dinner together so much I’ve been eating more than usual!”
Kirin could only smile at her neighbor. Though she shouldn’t be thinking that, Mari was too cute when she was nervous like that.
“You should be! Take responsibility!”
“Yes. I’ll marry you,” Kirin said the first thing that came to her mind. A second later, she widened her eyes and became even redder than moments ago.
“If I’m fat for the rest of my life, you better make me happy! But before that, help me!”
Mari was panting and sweating. Kirin couldn’t help but gulp at that sight. She’s so hot! I can’t believe there was a gorgeous woman like this living next to me and I had no idea until a month ago!
“I can’t… Kirin… too… much,” Mari said in a voice that sounded sexy to the teacher.
“Y-you can do it… Just one more lap…”
After calming Mari down, Kirin had promised to go jogging with her a few times a week. She didn’t believe her neighbor needed to though. She would never voice it, but that only made Mari even more beautiful. However, there was no persuading the woman down.
“You can. I believe in you.” Kirin moved her legs up and down to keep her blood flowing as she slowed down to walk next to Mari.
“Then you’re going to be disappointed. I’m so sorry,” Mari said, almost stopping completely. She was at the level of dragging her feet.
“Don’t give up,” Kirin said. “If you finish this, I’ll… I’ll do anything you want.”
“Any… anything?” Mari looked at her with hopeful eyes.
“Within my power, yes.”
Mari stopped, closed her eyes, and took deep breaths. When she opened them, she looked determined.
Even so, she could barely walk, let alone jog. Still, she forced herself to go around the block one more time. When they reached the park they were using as a starting point, she collapsed at the bench.
Kirin smiled as she handed her an energy drink she got from the vending machine. When Mari raised her hand to take it, she pulled her from the bench.
“No. Let me rest, please,” Mari begged. Then she narrowed her eyes. “Or the demon teacher will deny me that?”
“It’s not good to sit or lie after running. Only do that after you cool down your body,” Kirin explained. “And demon teacher?”
“Yes. How do expect me to cool down if I can’t lie down?” Mari complained in a cute and childish way.
“Also, you need to stretch after exercising.”
“Ignoring me, huh? I never thought you had a side like that.” Despite what she said, Mari drank the energy drink and stretched just as how Kirin showed her.
After they were finished, she collapsed on the bench again.
Kirin beamed. “Good work.”
“Thanks,” Mari grunted, finishing her drink.
“Don’t be like that. You were the one who asked for my help.”
“You don’t have to look so happy, demon teacher.”
Kirin laughed and sat too. “I just enjoy running. The fresh air and all, you know?” And it’s nice doing it next to the person I like.
Mari looked doubtful. Within the next second, her expression changed, and she flashed the smile Kirin had grown to like.
“W-why are you smiling like that? D-do you secretly enjoy suffering?” Kirin joked to mask her embarrassment.
“I’m smiling because I found out something new about you,” she said. “Also, I just thought of what I’m gonna ask of you.”
“O-oh, yeah. I did promise anything… W-what is it?”
With a serious expression, Mari stood up and threw the pet bottle in the trash. She placed her hands behind her back, turned to Kirin, and flashed another smile, but this one was lovelier than before.
“I want a date!”
Kirin stood still, not believing what she had heard. She didn’t blush. She could only stare at the woman she had feelings for.
“What?” she asked when she finally woke.
“I want a date. With you.”
This time Kirin blushed and widened her eyes. “W-w-what!? W-w-why would you ask for that?”
“Because it’s been a while since I went on a date. After suffering this much, I want to be spoiled by a lovely person.”
“B-but you were the one who asked,” Kirin murmured.
“Is that a no?” Mari asked in a low and dejected voice, her smile deflating.
“I’ll take you on the best date you ever had!” Kirin exclaimed. She only wanted to see Mari smiling and happy.
Mari’s expression made Kirin’s heart thump faster.
I’m in love with this wonderful woman…