5 August, Michi Ichiho

文字数 3,499文字

Onion Girl

The world around me can be broken down into two categories: non-essential, non-urgent things and everything else. My ballet and swimming lessons are non-essential, non-urgent. So are baking muffins at Aoi’s and getting ice cream with Hina . Going to school is non-essential, non-urgent, but studying is apparently part of everything else, so I’ve been given piles of homework. . . . How is that fair?
  What I did like was the fact that this meant I no longer had to see Dad, who would normally get the bullet train from Tokyo every month to visit me. Spending time with him had become such a drag. He’d always say the same things, like, Are you having fun at school? and You’ve grown taller. Whenever I put on lip gloss or did my nails, he’d look at me with a kind of weird, worried face. And when I told him, I don’t want to go to the zoo because it smells terrible, he got all sad. Didn’t he know that I was a sixth grader now? But every time I asked Mom, Do I


to see Dad? she’d get super mad (she shouldn’t have divorced him, then!).
  So, the cherry blossom season and the May holidays went by without seeing Dad or my friends, or my teachers. I was stuck at my house with Mom, who was working from home. I spent my long, boring days doing non-essential, non-urgent things, like painting my toenails in three different colors, and secretly playing with Mom’s make-up during her online meetings. The matte red lipstick I put on didn’t suit me at all; it looked like I’d turned into another creature. I stood in front of the mirror and watched my red lips move clumsily as I mumbled, non-essential, non-urgent.
  It’s not like I’m ever going to become a ballerina or a professional swimmer, but I loved my ballet and swimming classes. Not that my feelings matter. My favorite things have been labeled non-essential, non-urgent, and even after the classes resume, that label will probably stay. Seeing myself in the mirror, I felt that I looked like a very boring girl.
  One night, I had a dream. I’d turned into an onion, and one after another, my layers were taken away. This is non-essential. Peel. So is this. Peel. I grew smaller and smaller. Please stop! I screamed. Keep going, and I’d have nothing left. When I woke up, I was soaked in sweat.
  The next day, I had my regular Skype call with Dad.
  It looks like I won’t be able to visit you during summer vacation, either.
  The second I heard those words, I burst into tears.
  I want to see you, Daddy.
  He looked at me with that same worried face, then said gently, Hold on, it will be over soon. . . .
  So, don’t grow up too quickly, okay?
  You mean, it’s non-essential, non-urgent?
  Daddy’s smile was near and far. I couldn’t stop my tears from falling, but I didn’t feel so sad.

Translated by Yuka Maeno/Arranged by TranNet KK

Michi Ichiho
Made her debut in 2008 with







(Snow like the scent of an apple). Primarily writes in the Boy’s Love genre. Her works include the Ringo amai ka suppai ka (Are apples sweet or sour), Yes, No, or Maybe? , and the Shinbunsha (Newspaper company) series, among others. Has drawn acclaim with her newest short story Neon tetora (Neon tetra), published in the June/July issue of







  • 特大
  • 生成り
  • 水色
  • 明朝
  • ゴシック
  • 横組み
  • 縦組み