26 August, Ayano Takeda

文字数 2,721文字

My game character appeared in the middle of the TV screen. When I press B, he jumps, and when I press A, he attacks with a ray gun. There was a mechanical BI-BI-BI-BI-BI sound, and the enemy fell down.
  The words YOU WIN! appeared across the screen along with a loud fanfare, but I didn’t feel happy at all. No matter how often I win, it’s boring when I’m on my own.
  I wonder what Kinoshita-kun’s up to?
  I was lying sprawled out on the tatami mat when my mom told me, Don’t just play games. Make sure you get your homework done, too. But I really didn’t feel like it. I was all sentimental.
  Kinoshita-kun was my classmate. He was the one who came and spoke to me first. I was using a plastic pencil board that I put under my paper to keep it smooth, and there was a picture of a game character printed on it. He said to me, I like that character, too.
  Then when I said, You know this game? Kinoshita-kun looked happy and grinned, showing all his teeth.
  From then on, he would sometimes come over to my place and we would game. We formed a team and went on to defeat the enemy together.
  One week ago, Kinoshita-kun transferred to another school. He moved somewhere really far away. I’ll come over again one day, he had said to me, but I wonder if that day will really come.
  I was sulking on my bed when my mom spoke to me.
  By the way, a letter from Kinoshita-kun arrived earlier. Here.
  She handed it over and I quickly opened it. He had written one short sentence and a cell phone number.
  

We

can

still

play

together

if

we

use

the

internet!


  I borrowed my mom’s phone and rang Kinoshita-kun. While we talked, we added each other’s game account details.
  Alright, let’s have another round.
  Yeah!
  We now live far apart and we can’t to talk face to face. But no matter how far apart we are, we can still talk and play together like this.
  I’m having so much fun! laughed Kinoshita-kun, and I shouted back to him.
  Me, too!


Translated by Lauren Barrett/Arranged by TranNet KK

Ayano Takeda
Born in Kyoto, 1992. Made her debut in 2013 with

Kyō

kimi

to

iki

o

suru

(Breathing with you today), which was a finalist for the 8th Japan Love-Story Grand Prize. Her Hibike! Yūfoniamu (Sound! Euphonium) series was adapted into a highly popular anime series. Her works include the Kimi to kogu (Rowing with you) series,

Aoi

haru

o

kazoete

(Counting the blue springs), and

Sono

hi

Akane

wa

sora

o

tonda

(That day, Akane flew through the sky), among others. Her most recent work,

Aisarenakutemo

betsu

ni

(I don’t care if I’m not loved) has received critical acclaim.

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