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Chapter 2

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“What is your name?” he asked.

I suddenly snapped out of my trance and blinked. I gasped and realized the situation.

“Huh? Uh, um… uh… I-I… Ah…” I didn’t know what to say and only stutters escaped my lips.

“My name’s Yoshitaka. What’s yours?” he asked again.

“H-Hi… Hino… A… Ashi… Ashita…ka…” I rambled, not able to look at him.

“Eh?” he uttered. “Hino Aishita? Ah ha ha ha! That’s a funny name. Aishita sounds like ‘I love you’.”

I stood there, baffled and embarrassed. Ahh, what kind of idiot am I? I couldn’t even say my name right! My legs began to tremble from anxiety as my chest felt as if it’d explode. Yoshitaka then leaned his face towards me and his scent sniffed up my nose. My eyes fluttered like stars as I hiccupped from his alluring scent.

“Oh! Are you feeling alright?” he asked, almost bringing his forehead up to mine.

The back of my knees gave in and I tumbled back. He stood there with wide eyes and then he chuckled, placing his hand near his lips.

“You’re so funny,” he tittered.

Bending down and reaching his hand out, he helped me up, again. I felt completely helpless in this situation. He then looked at me and asked, “You’re not hurt are you?”

I shook my head and he let out a sigh of relief. Clutching onto my bag tightly, I averted my gaze from him as his stare was too intimidating.

“Well then… Be careful on your way home, Aishita,” he chuckled.

He tapped my shoulder and my shoulder jumped. He turned around and walked away, waving his hand back. I stood there, flustered with flushed cheeks.

“It’s Ashitaka…” I mumbled.

Hitting my head on my bag, I only let out a silent groan. I then began to walk back to my apartment. Going to the third floor, I walked to my door and I pulled out the key from my bag. I scrambled through the keys to find the key to the front door. After unlocking the door, I flipped on the lights and closed the door behind me. Taking off my old shoes, I walked down the small hallway and placed my bag down on the floor next to the table.

Going to the bathroom, I took off my glasses and placed them on the edge of the sink. Turning on the facet, I splashed and rubbed water into my face. Scrubbing my face, I looked up in the mirror and stared at my reflection. My face still seemed a bit feverish. Turning off the facet, I grabbed the small towel that was hanging in the bathroom. Wiping my face with it, I parted my bangs to the side slightly. I then fixed them back down and frowned.

“I look like a mushroom…” I told myself.

Remembering that man, Yoshitaka, my cheeks started to flush pink. His face, smile and voice were starting to make my chest throb with butterflies. Smacking my cheeks, I told myself not to let it get to me. I shouldn’t get my hopes up. Also he’s a man for crying out loud!

Picking my glasses back up, I placed them back on my face and left the bathroom. After making a little dinner and eating it, I started working on my homework. Sitting in front of my small desk, I started tapping my pencil on the paper as I was losing focus. I stared blankly at the paper and notebook. Without realizing it, I started doodling pictures on my homework.

“Ah, crap,” I uttered.

Grabbing my eraser, I erased all the fun doodles on the paper. Dusting the paper off, I tossed the eraser back on the table and I sat there, clueless of what to do. I couldn’t think, I couldn’t do my homework, I didn’t feel like doing anything. I couldn’t get him out of my head. I lied back down on the floor and covered my eyes from the light above.  Looking at my watch, it was nearly midnight. I sat back up and decided to call it a day.

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