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Infinite Stratos Volume 3 Chapter 2: Ocean's Eleven

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Chapter 2: Ocean's Eleven - 11 O'Clock Sea!Edit

"I can see the sea!"

As the bus went through the tunnel, the girls in the class shouted out.

It's the first day of the seaside school, and fortunately, today the weather's clear . The sea that's reflecting the sunlight off is rather stable, with the sea breeze gently swaying it.

"Ohh--seeing the sea sure makes me excited!"

"Uu, uu? Yeah."

On the bus, Charl's sitting beside me. But it's been like ever since we departed; I haven't heard her say much. Right now, it's the same as well. After she finished answering, she immediately focused on her hand.

"So you really like that?"

"Huh? Ah, mn, okay. Hehe."

The bracelet that Charl's wearing on the left wrist was a gift I bought for her for shopping with me. She continues to smile at that silver bracelet, sometimes pondering and letting out a laugh.

Even so, seeing her liking it so much, I'm rather sorry that I didn't get her something more expensive. Even though I chose it because she said 'Ichika, you just need to get me something you feel it suits me', is that really alright?

"Ufufufu♪"

Mn. She's in a good mood.

"Really, Charlotte-san's been in a good mood since this morning started."

On the other side of the corridor, Cecilia said that with an unhappy look.

"Mn, that's right. I'm sorry. Ehehe..."

Charl didn't even care about what Cecilia said as she continues to smile. Mn, she's in a really good mood, so much that it's scary, huh? Is she really looking forward to the seaside? I'm looking forward to it though.

"I thought both of you separated midway through yesterday. You two unexpectedly went off to buy a gift...that's so unfair."

"Ah-...oh, that, I'll get one for Cecilia next time when we have a chance, okay?"

Seems like Cecilia really wants one as well? No need to be so awkward.

"Are-Are we set?"

"Mn, but I can't buy one too expensive."

Maybe my promise made her happy for a while, as Cecilia says,

"If that happens...well, I'll forgive you."

And she let me off. But if I have to spend money frequently now, it means that I'll have to find work and earn money. I don't want to spend all my savings.

"..."

Speaking of which, unbelievably, Laura's been sitting beside Cecilia quietly. I don't know if she's feeling unwell, but she would look around in a suspicious manner.

"Are you alright? You've been like this since yesterday. What's wrong?"

"..."

"Hey, Laura? He-y!"

As I could barely get a response, I got up from my seat and peered at her face.

"!? Wha-What...what are you doing? You, you're too close! Idiot!"

"NUWAH!!"

My nose got forcefully pushed by her, causing me to make a weird sound. I don't know whether Laura's having a flu or a fever as her face is slightly blushed.

(Oh well. There's no need to worry. This person here can deal with her own, so it should be alright.)

As Laura seemed like she didn't have a problem, I turned to look at Houki, who was sitting behind Laura and said to her.

"We can swim later. Houki, you're rather good at swimming."

"Ye-Yeah. Ahh, it's because I used to go swimming often."

Hm? Why is Houki acting all weird out of a sudden? She's either unable to calm down or is fidgeting.

"We're about to reach our destination. Everyone, sit down."

The entire class immediately obeyed Chifuyu-nee's order. This leadership ability is really outstanding.

Just like Chifuyu-nee said, the bus soon reached the hotel. The 1st years of IS Academy scoot off the four buses in a chaotic manner and started to line up.

"Then, this is the Kagetsu resort. From today onwards, we're going to be in their care for 3 days, so everyone is to be more respectful and not let the staff's work increase."

"""Thanks for taking care of us!!"""

After Chifuyu-nee finished speaking, everyone said their greetings. Our Academy seems to be taken care of by this resort every year, and the lady boss-san in the Japanese clothing bows at us politely,

"Alright, please move this way. The freshmen this year seem rather energetic. That's good."

She's probably about 30+ years old, and she gives off a hardworking woman vibe. Maybe it's because her profession makes her smile often, as she doesn't look like she became the lady boss of this place at all. She sure feels young.

"Oh my, is this the rumoured...?"

Meeting my eyes coincidentally, the lady boss asked Chifuyu-nee.

"Oh, yes, as there's a male student this year, it'll be hard for you to separate the baths. I'm really sorry."

"No no no, that's not the case. He's a fine boy. Feels reliable."

"That is 'just' the feeling. Hurry up and greet her, idiot!"

My head got pressed down forcefully.

"My-My name's Orimura Ichika. Nice to meet you."

"Hohoho, how polite. I'm Kiyosu Keiko."

After the lady boss said that, she bowed politely to me again. Her action is as full of presence as before, making me, who's powerless against mature women, really nervous.

"My younger brother here's really useless. Sorry to bother you."

"Oh my, I have to say, Orimura-sensei, you're really strict with your younger brother."

"Because I'm normally cleaning up the mess for him."

No, I don't think that it's that exaggerated. But I can't deny that it's the case sometimes. Ahh...I really want to grow up and not burden Chifuyu-nee...

"Then, please head towards your rooms. There's a changing room at the annex. All students who want to go to the beach, please head there to change. If you aren't clear on where it is, you are welcome to ask the staff members."

After the girls answered 'yes--', they immediately walked into the resort. Anyway, we have to put our luggage down before doing anything else.

On a side note, it's free and easy for the entire first day, so as for meals, everyone has to go to the resort's restaurant.

"A-Ahe-Ahem--Orimu~"

Huh? This manner of calling me, it must be that Nohohon-san[3B 1], right? Looking behind me, she's the same as normal, moving towards me at a snail's pace. That sleepy look of hers is most probably real.

"Where's Orimura's room~? The room plan never indicated it. I want to play with you, so hurry up and tell me~"

As she said that, I knew the girls around me immediately pricked their ears. But what can they do even after knowing where my room is? There's nothing interesting in the room. Maybe.

"Well, I don't know. Maybe I'll sleep on the corridor?"

"Wa--, that's great~ let me sleep! Ahh--the floor's so cool~"

Since it's summer, maybe that's it...no, it's impossible.

On a side note, as it seems that I can't sleep with other girls, my room seems to be located some place else. The reason why I said 'seems' is because Yamada-sensei only told me that. She didn't tell me any specifics.

"Orimura. Here's your room. Follow me."

Oh, Chifuyu-nee's calling me. I can't keep her waiting for too long, so I just said to Nohohon-san 'Please wait a bit' and separated from her.

"Well, Orimura-sensei, where's my room?"

"Shut up and follow me."

Uu, I was suddenly forced to shut up. On a side note, this resort's rather spacious and wide. It's already amazing that this can take the entire batch of students this year. The interior decors successfully blend the interior decorations and the latest facilities. The optimized air temperature regulator's simply brilliant! Even the corridor's rather cooling, making one comfortable.

"Over here."

"Huh? This is..."

Pasted on the door is the paper with the words 'Staff room'. U-mm...?

"The initial plan was to give you a single room, but if we do that, there will be girls who will ignore the lights out timing and stay in your room."

*Haiz*. Chifuyu-nee sighed, and continued,

"So in the end, you'll be rooming with me. That way, the girls won't approach you that easily."

"Well...I guess?"

Nothing ventured, nothing gained. But even if that's the case, I don't think there's anyone brave enough to barge into the demon's lair for someone like me, right?

"Let's make this clear first. I'm a teacher, don't forget that."

"Yes, Orimura-sensei."

"That's good."

Thus, she allowed me to enter the room. It's a twin person's room, but the room itself is rather spacious. The wall is a shoji door[3B 2], and the scenery from here is beautiful. The entire sea's right in front of me. As the room's facing East, I can definitely see a beautiful sunrise.

"Oohh, amazing--"

Besides that, the bathroom is isolated from the room, and even the sink has its own room. The luxurious bathtub is so big that this guy here can extend his legs out.

"The large bath can be used, but you must use it according to timing. The plan was to separate guys from girls, but since it involves all the students in this batch, it will be too weird if everyone's to feel uncomfortable because of you. Thus, you can only use it at certain times. If you want to take a bath during the middle of the night or in the morning, do it in the room."

"Got it."

Even though there's only the two of us, Chifuyu-nee's still fulfilling her duty. That's exactly how she works. Had she not mentioned it before, I would have called her 'Chifuyu-nee' already.

"Alright, it's free and easy today. We've put down our luggage as well. You can do whatever you want."

"Huh? What about you, Orimura-sensei?"

"I still need to contact and check with the other teachers. There's a lot of things to deal with. However, well--"

Ahem. Chifuyu-nee clears her throat.

"Anyway, I intend to swim. Besides, a certain little brother specially chose a swimsuit for me."

"I see."

Though I answered briefly like Chifuyu-nee, it made my heart beat a little faster, *doki* *doki*. I'm happy that she would wear the swimsuit I chose for her. Speaking of which, how many years has it been since I last saw Chifuyu-nee in a swimsuit? Uu...

*Knock knock*. My thoughts got interrupted by the knocking on the door.

"Excuse me, Orimura-sensei. Can I bother you for a while?"

That voice definitely belongs to Yamada-sensei.

"Sure, please enter."

On hearing Chifuyu-nee's answer, Yamada-sensei opened the door, and met my eyes as I'm standing opposite the door.

"WAH! ORIMURA-KUN!"

"Huh, you don't have to be that shocked..."

It seems that she came here to deal with teaching stuff, as Yamada-sensei seemed like she was looking through some documents as she entered, and then lifted her head up and saw me.

"So-Sorry! I forgot that Orimura-kun's sleeping in Orimura-sensei's room!"

"Yamada-sensei, I thought that was your idea, right?"

"Ye-Yes. That's right! Yes! I'm sorry!"

Being on the receiving end of Chifuyu-nee's sharp glare, Yamada-sensei looks like she got bitten by a snake.

"Alright, Orimura, we're going to work. You can go wherever you want, so enjoy yourself."

"Yes, I'll head to the beach as soon as possible."

"Don't play too much though."

After seriously replying to Chifuyu-nee's reminder, I left the room and pulled out my trunks, towel and change of underwear from the light backpack amongst my luggage.

Alright, let's go to the sea!

"..."

"..."

On the way to the changing room, Houki and I met coincidentally. This is nothing. The problem is the mysterious scene in front of us.

There are bunny ears sticking out from the ground. On a side note, I'm not talking about living bunny ears here, but 'rabbit ears' that bunny girls would wear. It's just that these bunny ears are white.

And there's even a 'Please pull' piece of paper stuck on it.

"Huh, is this--"

"I don't know, don't ask me. It has nothing to do with me."

Houki immediately denied it before I could even finish asking her. This means--yup, I'm correct.

Her talents are limitless, the genius amongst geniuses, the woman who self-proclaimed to have 35 hours a day, the developer of IS, and Houki's older sister. It's definitely Shinonono Tabane-san alright.

"Huh...I'm pulling, is that alright?"

"Do whatever you want. It doesn't involve me."

After saying that, Houki immediately left. Uu, it seems that her relationship with Tabane-san's is somewhat hard to repair.

Being left alone, I had no choice but to pull that pair of bunny ears.

*SUPAZ!!*

"WAAHHH!!"

I thought that Tabane-san would be hiding underground, so I forcefully pulled her out. But that's not the case, as I tumbled backwards due to the huge force.

"OWWW..."

"What are you doing?"

"Oh, Cecilia. It's nothing, I was just pulling these bunny ears--AH!"

My sight looks up at where the sound came from, but as I'm still on the floor, it means...that I'm looking up her skirt.

"!? I-ICHIKA-SAN!"

Noticing my gaze, Cecilia quickly pressed her skirt down and backed away. On a side note, huh...white with laces on the sides. NO WAIT, I'M A DOUCHEBAG! WHY COULD I SEE THAT CLEARLY!!?

"So-Sorry! Well, that, there were bunny ears over there, so I..."

"Wha-What?"

Cecilia asked back with a surprised voice. This can't be helped. If I were to hear others explain this to me, even I would feel that it's ridiculous. On a side note, as she's embarrassed and furious, her face is all flushed.

"No, Tabane-san is--"

*KIIIIIIIINNNN*...

Uu? What's with this thing that's flying at supersonic speed--hold on, UWAAHHH!!!

*DON--K!!*

An unidentified flying object drilled deeply into the ground, and it looks like--

""A-A carrot...?""

Cecilia and I said that together. Also, it looks like an illustration-style transforming carrot. Speaking of which, what's going on!?

"Ahahahaha! You got tricked, Ii-kun!!"

*PA!* The carrot split into half, and the person who appeared while laughing is the genius I mentioned before--Shinonono Tabane-san...can't she enter through a normal way?

"Well, when I used a missile to fly, I was nearly shot down by a certain country's scouting planes! I'm a creature who knows how to learn. Fui Fui!"

She's wearing a tightfitting blue and white skirt that's like the one in Alice in Wonderland. She takes the bunny ears from me and immediately puts them on. Is she acting the part of Alice in Wonderland alone? I really can't understand this person's theme of trends.

"Long-Long time no see, Tabane-san."

"Yup yup, it's been long, really long. Speaking of which, Ii-kun, where's Houki-chan? Were both of you together just now? Did she go to the bathroom?"

File:IS03 097.jpg

"Huh..."

She went off to escape from Tabane-san. I can't say it, so I really don't know how to answer her.

"Well, no problem. I can use just this little Houki-chan detector to find her! Bye bye Ii-kun. See you later!!"

Just like that, she vanished like the wind, and blazingly fast. On a side note, it seems that the Houki-chan detector she's talking about seems to be that pair of bunny ears. The detectors successfully turn towards where Houki went. No, wait, do detectors look like that?

"I-Ichika-san? Was that..."

"She's Tabane-san, Houki's older sister."

"Huh...WHAAT? That-That was Professor Shinonono? The professor who's currently missing and every country's looking for?"

"Yes, that Shinonono Tabane."

On a side note, this seaside school event has a theme called 'IS mobilization in unrestricted area', so there are all sorts of new models sent over from all countries. But as outside personnel are not allowed to participate, it seem that they can only transport them here through landing crafts.

However, as expected of Tabane-san, she likely ignored the rules completely and sneaked in, right? Speaking of which, what's her aim?

"Well, it seems like she's looking for Houki, so it looks like it's unrelated to me for now. Speaking of which, I'm going to the beach, what about you Cecilia?"

"Oh, okay, I'm going to the beach too. Oh-Oh yes!"

Ahem, Cecilia clears her throat. What's wrong? Is she trying to imitate Chifuyu-nee?

"I-I can't rub sunblock lotion on my back, so I want Ichika-san to help out...can you?"

"Hm? Can't you get a friend?"

"Huh? Ohh, that's true, but if possible...well, Ichika-san..."

What's wrong? Is she still embarrassed that I just saw her underwear? Cecilia looks rather fidgety, and her eyes started wavering about.

"Mn, why don't you just don't apply it?"

"OBJECTION!!"

She immediately refused. I actually wanted to make a joke. Maybe it was the wrong timing? I would always make the girls angry when I joke with them.

"I'm joking, I'm joking! Well, if it's that kind of trivial stuff, I'd be glad to help."

"Re-Really? You won't take it back, right?"

Woah, is she really insistent on sunblock? She sounded really agitated even though I haven't even rubbed it on her.

"I got it. See you later then."

After nodding hard twice, Cecilia ran to the annex. She's not as fast as Tabane-san, but her footsteps are rather light.

"Alright. I'll go over then."

Of course, being a guy, I was told to use the inner most changing room in the annex's changing rooms. On a side note, once I leave that annex, I can go run all the way to the sea!!

(Huh, speaking of which...)

The inner most changing room--this means that I have to go past the female changing room. Of course, I won't be able to see what's inside, but the screams of excitement would be irresistible.

"WAH, MIKA! YOUR BREASTS ARE BIG!? YOU'RE STILL IN PUBERTY, RIGHT~?"

"KYAH!! DON'T-DON'T GRAB THEM!!"

"MENA'S SWIMSUIT'S RATHER BOLD. AMAZING~"

"REALLY? THIS IS COMMON IN AMERICA."

...

That's right. All these topics are being discussed casually. To be honest, I'm really afraid of hearing these. What should I say? Well, I'll be embarrassed, it's just that I don't know why.

I slightly increased my speed and headed towards the guys' changing room. Guys change clothes really easily, and I finished while thinking of what to do for warm-ups. Alright, time to head to the seaside!

"Ah, it's Orimura-kun!"

"AR-ARE YOU FOR REAL? IS-IS MY SWIMSUIT WEIRD? THERE'S NO PROBLEM, RIGHT?"

"Wa-Wahh~his physique's amazing~he did train~"

"Orimura-kun, let's play beach volleyball later~"

"Oh, if there's time later, okay."

Having just exited the changing room, I met a few girls who exited from the neighboring changing room. They're all wearing cute swimsuits, and the amount of skin they revealed really made me nervous.

And then, I take a step to the seaside--the sand that's baked hot by the July sun, and my soles got scalded.

"HOT HOT HOT HOT!!"

For someone like me who hasn't been to the beach for quite a few years, this feeling's really nostalgic and satisfying. That's right, this's how the beach should be like!

The bare feet of mine can feel the heat of the sand, causing me to curl my toes slightly as I walk towards the coast. The beach's already full of female students. Some are sunbathing, some are playing beach volleyball, some are swimming, everyone's doing all sorts of activities. They're all wearing swimsuits of many different colors, and in a certain sense, it's even more eye-blinding than the sun of July.

"He, ho..."

I start to do my warm-ups first. It's been a long time since I've been to the seaside. It'll be ugly if I get leg cramps and drown. Anyway, let's stretch the arms, contract the legs, stretch the back--

"I-chika~"

Oh--HUH, WHAT?

"You're rather serious, doing stretches so seriously. Okay, let's go swim once you're done!"

Suddenly jumping on my back is Rin. Speaking of which, whether it was primary school or middle school, she would always jump on me when she puts on a swimsuit. She's really like a cat.

On a side note, she's wearing a sports bikini. The orange swimsuit has white lining and reveals the bellybutton.

"Hey hey, do some warm-ups too! I don't care if you drown."

"I won't drown! I was a mermaid in my previous life, most likely."

She continued to pull as she quickly climbed up my body and sat on my shoulders. She was probably a cat or a monkey in her previous life, right? Also, the mermaid illustrations were drawn by men at first. Does she know that?

"Ohh--I'm so high up. I can see things far away from here clearly. It's great. You can be a mini-observation tower, Ichika."

Thanks. It's hard to find a job now anyway, so maybe this can do--WHAT, YOU IDIOT!!

"Not being a lookout worker, but a tower!?"

"What's wrong with that? It can benefit others anyway."

"Who would climb up..."

"Mn...me?"

Rin chuckled. Ugh--this person.

"Ah-Ahh-Aahh! What, what are you two doing?"

Walking over here, Cecilia questioned us. She's holding onto the foldable beach umbrella, a beach mat and sunblock.

She's wearing a bright blue bikini, and the sari that's tied around her waist has a bit of elegance. It looks nice, just like a model. The ample breasts the swimsuit emphasizes are more alluring than what I had imagined, thus I inadvertently looked away in embarrassment.

"Nothing much, just sitting on his shoulders. Or rather, he's acting as a movable watchtower."

"So you're actually acting."

"Of course, I don't have a license."

"Huh-that's true."

"Isn't that right? But if someone was drowning, I would still go and save her."

"Could-Could you please stop ignoring me!!"

Ohh, I suddenly started talking to Rin who's on my body. On a side note, I'm okay with her sticking to me like this, mainly--I can't say it to her directly-- 'cause her chest is super flat! Besides, she's been sitting on me like this since primary school, so I got very used to it.

"Anyway, Rin-san, hurry up and get off him!"

"No."

"What, what kind of childish tantrum are you throwing...!"

*PAZZ!* Cecilia stabs the beach umbrella into the sand. Woah, it seems like she's fuming!

"What's wrong? Is someone arguing?"

"Huh? Ah--! O-Orimura-kun has someone sitting on his shoulders!"

"Whaat? That's so nice, so nice~!"

"Must be by turn, right?"

"So the one who gets first will go first!"

I could randomly hear some quarreling girls seemingly creating a misunderstanding as they all squeezed over and asked me to let them sit on my shoulders. This is bad, this is really bad. If so many girls are to sit on my shoulders, it would be mentally draining for a guy, both physically and mentally.

"Rin, Rin, hurry up and get down. There will be misunderstandings."

"Hmm, well, it can't be helped."

Alright. Rin jumped down from my shoulders and used her hands to land before flipping forward. Amazing, she's practically the same as a cat.

"Rin-san...? Wasn't that against the rules...?"

Cecilia's showing a stiff smile. She must be fuming.

On a side note, I'm explaining to the girls gathering here 'I don't provide such services'. Sigh, it's all because of Rin.

"Speaking of which, Cecilia, you definitely asked Ichika to do something for you, right? We're even now, aren't we?"

"No, that..."

"Huh? You didn't ask him to do something? Then, I'll--"

"I-I did! ICHIKA-SAN, HURRY OVER AND HELP ME APPLY SUNBLOCK!"

"""WHAAT!!!???"""

Cecilia said that while I was explaining to the girls, causing them to shout out. Ahh, you idiot! Why did you say that so loudly...

"I'LL GET THE SUNBLOCK!"

"I'LL GET THE BEACH MAT!"

"I'LL GET THE BEACH UMBRELLA!"

"I'LL WASH THE SUNBLOCK OFF THEN!"

Hey! Since you already applied it, stop deliberately increasing my workload! *sigh*, that girl went into the sea. Heeeeey...

Anyway, the girls who gathered here because of Rin dispersed because of Cecilia.

"Ahem, I'll leave it to you then."

Cecilia gently takes off her sari. The action itself looked bewitching, causing my heart to skip a beat.

"Huh, erm...just the back, right?"

"If-If Ichika-san wants, you can apply it on the front as well."

"No, well, just let me apply it on the back."

"If that's the case--"

Cecilia suddenly undoes the swimsuit knot that's tied at the back and presses her breasts against her swimsuit as she lies face-down on the beach mat.

"I-I'm ready. Please rub, okay?"

"O-Okay..."

The swimsuit that was undone is now stuck between the beach mat and the body, as Cecilia's completely defenseless back is naked for show to me. The cleavage that's revealed under the armpit is distorted, and it's a little--no, extremely sexy.

Also, maybe it's because she's pressing down, as her curvy buttocks aren't making me forget about them, and because the sari was blocking just now, I didn't notice that the lower part of her swimsuit revealed quite a lot.

The straight legs are as pretty as ever, making me swallow my saliva unconsciously.

"The-Then, I'm applying it now."

"KYAH! I-Ichika-san, you must warm your hands slightly before applying sunblock."

"Is-Is that so? It's my first time doing this...sorry."

"Is-Is that so? So it's your first time? It, it's not your fault then."

For some reason, I feel that Cecilia sounded really happy. Maybe I'm thinking too much.

Anyway, I followed what she instructed and squeezed the sunblock on my palms, rubbed them warm until it got suitably warm before applying it on Cecilia.

(Uwa, Cecilia's skin is really supple...I can feel that it's comfortable just by touching it...)

"Mn...that's nice! Ichika-san, do the bottom part as well."

"I-I just needed to rub the back, no?"

"No, no...since you already started rubbing it on me, please rub onto the parts my hands can't reach, including the legs, and the butt."

"WHAAAT!?"

No-No way! This is way too dangerous. It's just applying sunblock, but for me to touch Cecilia's butt is too--

"Okay okay, I'll rub it for you, until you're all sticky."

"KYAH! Ri-Rin-san, why did you come here to me--IT-IT'S COLD!!"

"What's the problem? Since you just need to apply sunblock, it's doesn't matter how you do it. I'll rub it on you."

"Ahh, that's enough! Behave your--"

Cecilia stood up angrily, and the swimsuit slipped down the body--

"AH!"

"KYAH!!"

That was close! The important parts weren't shown, but Cecilia ducked down, so embarrassed that her ears are red.

"Ah...sorry."

"It-It-It's basically, saying sorry now, that's...RIN-SAN! I DEFINITELY WON'T FORGIVE YOU!!"

"Hmm...I'm running off then. Bye bye!"

*Guieee*.

"HEY! STOP DRAGGING ME IN! SIGH, REALLY, YOU...SORRY CECILIA! THAT, WELL, I DIDN'T SEE THEM, SO DON'T MIND, OKAY?"

"WHA-WHAT...!"

Her face flushed red, Cecilia's unable to grip her fist tight and swing over as she maintains that pose, frozen there.

As for me, I got dragged by Rin into the sea.

"BUHA! Rin, you're really...!"

"Let's have a race to that buoy over there, Ichika! If you lose, you have to treat me to parfait at '@ CRUISE'--READY, GO!"

"HEY, THAT'S NOT FAIR! ACK, WAIT FOR ME!!"

"HAHAHA, WHO ASKED YOU TO DAZE OFF THERE!!"

Just like that, I got dragged into the scenario of chasing after Rin. On a side note, the cheapest parfait '@ CRUISE' sells is 1,500 yen, so I definitely can't lose this match.

(I'm really sorry, Cecilia, but let me win this time.)

Rin continued to swim against Ichika as she pondered.

Last month, she specially made her sweet and sour pork bento. To be honest, it was a failure because she didn't expect Houki and Cecilia to make their own food.

(I thought that was a good strategy!)

On a side note, what she had planned for that time was:

"Only Ichika's sweet and sour pork wasn't hot."

"I want to eat some hot sweet and sour pork!"

"Really, what's with you."

"Here, ahh--"

Something like that, but it wasn't successful at all.

It's true that the tactic to make him eat sweet and sour pork succeeded, but the fact was that she fell behind Houki, so there was a little sense of failure there.

In addition, she only bought her own share of rice because:

"Give me some rice!"

"Really, it can't be helped."

"Here, ah--"

She wanted to employ this tactic, but it failed because of Houki as well.

(But to guys, skin contact should be most effective, right? And Ichika knows that I'll stick onto him once I put on a swimsuit.)

But there's another problem to this reaction, and that is 'He doesn't really sees me as a girl'. To be honest, she's rather frustrated as well.

(No, no worries! There shouldn't be that many girls who would stick close to him! As for Cecilia, well, it was a close shave...)

Thinking up till here, she remembered the situation just now.

(Sunblock lotion...Ichika looked rather stiff just now. Maybe I should just get him to apply it on me.)

It was Cecilia's idea, but the winner is whoever does it first.

(Bu-But, he'll touch my body. It, it doesn't matter if I touch him, but if he's to touch me...it's-it's a little embarrassing...)

She cools her gradually reddening face into the sea, but the fluttering in her chest doesn't stop as it becomes even faster.

(Uu~...but other girls would definitely have confessed to him...)

*Bukubukubuku*, Rin's not exhaling, but sighing to hide her embarrassment. The air form bubbles in the sea.

(Huuh, Huang Lingyin, buck up! You're already studying in IS Academy, what do you intend to do if you don't work harder!?)

Watch me! Trying to motivate herself, she accidentally took in a large amount of air. But this is the sea, so what she breathed in wasn't air, but seawater.

"!? GLUPPLUPLUP!!"

As it was too sudden, Rin sank into a light moment of panic and started struggling due to the sudden loss of balance.

(Wa-Water, ran in...! Up, got to go up...)

But as this was the water, she didn't know which direction she was swimming towards. As Rin looked like she was really about to drown, a strong arm pulled her up.

(Ah! Ichika...this is Ichika's arm...)

A sense of relief spread through her chest. Rin hugged onto the strong arm and floated up to the surface.

"Hey, Rin! Are you alright?"

"GUHA! Ha ha! I-I'm alright..."

"Really, didn't I tell you? It's because you didn't do your warm-ups properly."

"Tha-That's not it. I nearly drowned because, because of you..."

"? Never mind, let's get back to land. Here!"

I didn't hear the last part clearly, but it's better to get back. Thinking about this, I turned my back on Rin.

"Wha-What are you going to do?"

"Get on. I'll carry you back."

"I-I'm alright. We're just heading back to the beach after all."

Even though she said this, I can't just leave someone who nearly drowned right now alone, so I deepened my tone to indicate to her that I must carry her no matter what.

"Rin."

"O-Okay! I got it..."

Now Rin is finally obedient enough. I carried Rin, who became rather light in the sea, and swam back to the coast.

Chifuyu-nee once taught me how to carry someone while swimming. If I don't carry the person a little higher than what I expect, the person on the back can drown, so this will require a little skill.

File:IS03 115.jpg

"Pat my back if water enters your mouth. You'll choke if you start to talk."

"Mn."

I hear her respond with her mouth shut as I swim to the coast. As it will be too dangerous to swim too fast, I started wading slowly.

"Well, about that, Ichika..."

"You'll drink seawater once you talk."

"No, that's alright. Forget about that, well..."

The voice was soft, but the last few words entered my ears clearly.

"Tha-Thank you..."

The boast she made about not drowning still remains in my ears, so now she's probably embarrassed about it. I nodded my head in response and continued to carry Rin up the coast.

"It-It's okay. I can walk on my own now."

"Really?"

"Really! That's enough, hurry up and let me down!"

Noticing me get onto the coast, the girls quickly turned around. Rin most likely felt embarrassed about being seen by those people, so she was struggling quite stubbornly.

"I got it, I'll let you down, so stop moving wildly. Even if you were a cat in your previous life, what'll happen if you fall?"

"I-I was a mermaid in my previous life..."

Nodding away, I bent my body down and let Rin off.

"I-I'll go over there to rest..."

After saying that, Rin quickly ran to the annex. Having been carried back, she was really embarrassed as her face blushed slightly.

(Mn...maybe she's embarrassed because she boasted that she wouldn't drown, is it?)

"Ah, Ichika, you're here!"

Having my name called up, I turn around to see Charl and--

"Huh? Who's this towel mummy?"

There's a super mysterious thing--it's covered completely in quite a few towels, from the head to the knees...what-what is this thing...

"Alright, come out now. It's alright."

"I-I'll decide whether it's alright..."

Hm? This voice...Laura?

But why is it that the proud Laura sounded so cowardly? And Charl's trying to convince her. Hm, I don't know what's going on.

"O~kay, it's rare for you to wear a swimsuit. Let Ichika see it!"

"Ho-Hold on, I need a bit of mental preparation as well..."

"Well-, you've been saying that for a while, and you still haven't come out. And since I helped out, he should have the right to see it as well, right?"

Speaking of which, Charl and Laura seem to be staying in the same room. Both of them were enemies who fought intensely in the incident last month, but now it seems that they're ordinary roommates with quite the good relationship. Uu, Laura's still as unfriendly as ever. Maybe she would change if she's with someone intimate like Charl, I guess.

"Okay, Laura, if you don't want to show yourself, I'm going to play with Ichika and ignore you."

"Wha-What?"

"Yeah, let's do it. Let's go Ichika."

After that, Charl grabbed my hand, and then leaned on my shoulder as she dragged me to the sea.

"Wa-Wait for me! I-I'll go!"

"Like that?"

"Humph--I'll take it off! I'll take it off!"

*Papapa!* Several pieces of towel dropped down in an instant. Under the sun, Laura's dressed in a swimsuit. And as for that swimsuit--

File:IS03 119.jpg

The black swimsuit is decorated with a large number of laces. On first glance, it looks like a sexy lingerie. Her hair that's usually not dolled up is now tied into ponytails on left and right side. Though it looks like she's imitating Rin's get up, in truth, Laura looks--really cute. Seeing her really insecure added that cuteness factor.

"It's not weird at all! Right, Ichika?"

"Oh, yeah! I was surprised, but this really suits you."

"WHA...!"

Did I say something unexpected? Laura seem to be taken aback by that as she paused for a while, her face all blushed.

"That-That's enough for courtesies..."

"No, I'm not just saying that at all. Right Charl?"

"Yup, I told her that she was cute, and yet she didn't believe me at all. By the way I helped design Laura's hairstyle! It's rare for her to wear a swimsuit, so she should of course look a little trendier."

"Oh. So that's how it is. Yeah, your swimsuit suits you well too, Charl."

"Uu, yeah! Thanks."

After I praised her, Charl fiddled with her hair looking embarrassed. The bracelet I bought for her yesterday as a gift was still glittering on her wrist.

"Won't that rust? Is it alright?"

"It's alright. I carefully did all sorts of anti-rust measures before coming here. After that, I'll use salt water to wash it. It's a rare thing that Ichika would give me something~"

Charl chuckled. It seems that she really likes it.

"Ichika."

"Hm?"

In a completely different voice from before, Laura's voice regained her usual calm.

"That's too despicable! You didn't buy a gift for me...well, I hope that you buy me one..."

Uu, after Cecilia did that, even Laura requested for one.

"Well, if that's the case, I'll get you one if you have some day worth celebrating, like a birthday or something."

"Uu, I see. Then you must give me one if there's a chance! Promise!"

"Okay, but the price can't be too high. I'm still a student after all."

"Uu, but one day, you have to give me a gift worth three months' salary! I heard my squad mates say that in Japan, important gifts need to be worth that much money."

Huh--, it seems that the people making Laura mistaken about Japan are her comrades. Though it's not really wrong, it does feel that way.

"By the way, do you have anything you want? It doesn't seem like you really wear anything decorative."

"You're right. To be honest, I don't really have any interest in those sort of things...bu-but, if you choose one for me, I'll be really happy no matter what it was."

"I see. Hmm, what should I get for you? A necklace...ah, your hairstyle now will reveal your ears. Earrings are suitable for you as well. I think it would be very cute."

"Cu-Cute...?"

The different hairstyle must have made Laura uneasy, right? She looks embarrassed because I said that as she intertwined her fingers.

"ORI-MU-RA-KUN!"

"WE JUST AGREED TO PLAY BEACH VOLLEYBALL!"

"WA- AGAINST ORIMU~ THAT'S GREAT!"

It's the girl I just agreed to play with and her friends, and that Nohohon-san. For some reason, I feel that I should start remembering other people's names...

"Heh! Here, Orimura-kun!"

*Pa!* The beach volleyball flew to me. After receiving the ball, I confirmed the members beside me.

"Then, after adding Charl and Laura, it'll be 3 on 3. OK, let's start!"

After hearing my reply, the two girls quickly began to expand the net, and the Nohohon-san is drawing the boundary on the beach. Uwah, she's super slow.

"Then, we'll use the basic rules, okay? Maximum of 3 hits, no consecutive spikes, first to 10 gets the set!"

"Alright, you people can serve first."

I threw the ball over. The receiving girl's (Huh--should be Kushinada-san) eyes glowed.

"Hohoho, let me show you the Summer Devil of July's...ability!"

UGH! She jumped for the serve! I can't complain about the speed or the angle.

"Watch me!"

Charl said that. As expected of the reliable honor student. I'll leave it to her then.

"Huh! WAH!!"

With a 'thonk', Charl cried out. I turn around and see that Charl chased after the ball and knocked into Laura, who was standing there blankly.

"Are-Are you alright?"

"Oww...what's with you, Laura?"

"Cu-Cute...sa-said, that...I...UU!!"

For some reason, Laura blushed after seeing my face, and then ran off like a scared rabbit.

"Huh...HEY! LAURA! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?"

Even though I called her, Laura ran off into the annex and disappeared, leaving me, Charl and the three dumbfounded girls.

"Uu~hm, so it's that~ Orimu's girl electrobarrier activated~"

The Nohohon-san said. On a side note, she's not wearing a swimsuit, but a fox costume that covers her entire body, with even the ears to boot. Maybe this taste would go along with Tabane-san as well?

"Uu...yeah, never mind. We'll play on. I'll check on Laura later."

"I agree~"

Though it became 2 on 3 now, that Nohohon-san's clothes seem to have a negative effect, so we continued to play 2 on 2.

"TAKE THIS!"

Moving lightly, Charl jumped up to spike the ball. I looked up at her from the side, and those breasts that bounced crazily when she jumped stunned me.

(Uu, no...speaking of which, Charl has quite the nice body--AH, NONONONONONONONO!!!)

Realizing this, my attention was diverted, and when the opposing girls jumped up, their soft breasts would jiggle as well.

"..."

"What's wrong, Ichika?"

"No, nothing! Nothing at all! Yup, nothing!"

As soon as I thought that she realized that I was looking at the girls' bodies all the while, my heartbeat went super fast. Trying to prevent other people from realizing my inner wavering, I tried my best to deny it, by using my hands to wave them in an exaggerated manner.

Seeing my reaction, Charl gave out a weird laugh.

"I see, Ichika's really weird."

"Huh...it's summer, so I got a little too hot."

"Okay okay. You need more thermal energy in the summer, I know that."

Alriight. Recently, it seems that Charl's been very strict with my jokes. This 'I know what Ichika wants to say' attitude feels like I got caught by the neighbor nee-san, it doesn't feel good at all, or even embarrassing, I would say.

"Ah, it's about time for lunch, right? What do you want to do later, Ichika?"

"Huh-, I want to swim a little, but I can't go swimming immediately after eating a full meal. I want to rest before swimming again."

"I see. Then let's go for lunch then. Also, Ichika, which room are you staying in?"

"Ah--I want to know too!"

"Me too, me too!"

"I want to know too~useless bedtop information should be shared~"

That Nohohon-san's words made everyone look awkward. Anyway, let's ignore her for now.

"Huh-Orimura-sensei's room."

The excited looks of the girls up till now seemed to be frozen. It's like they stopped thinking due to the unexpected development.

"So it's dangerous to look for me."

"Ye-Yeah...but we can meet Orimura-kun during lunch."

"Yeah! We don't have to enter the devil's lair--"

"Who's the devil?"

*DONG!* I seem to hear someone. No, it couldn't be my imagination. A group of girls' necks are trembling...trembling non-stop.

"O-Ori-Orimura-sensei..."

"Yup."

Ah! The swimsuit she's wearing is the black one different in style from Laura. That trained figure's being shown under the sun without any selfishness.

File:IS03 127.jpg

To be honest, if Chifuyu-nee and I weren't brother and sister, my heart would pound even crazier as well.

Even though the hands on her waist aren't different from usual, there's a slight sense of sexiness the way I see it now. Not to mention she's got good looks like a model. Compared to the other girls, she has an overwhelming victory over them.

Though Chifuyu-nee would normally wear a suit, which makes it hard to imagine, if I don't look at this from a distorted point of view, the curves revealing those breasts are really ample.

And this swimsuit emphasizes a lot on the bustline, so naturally, my eyes are attracted by that.

"...Ichika's drool is about to flow out."

"WHA...!? CHAR-CHARL!? WHAT ARE YOU SAYING!? AHAHAHA..."

"You were enticed by it."

Kuu! Well...I can't deny that.

"Alright, hurry up and go have lunch!"

"What about you, sensei?"

"I'm going to enjoy this really pitifully little free time."

Just as she said, the teachers don't seem like they have much free time. If that's the case, I don't want to delay her much.

"We'll go have lunch then."

"Follow the gathering time. Don't be late."

"Yes."

I just said that and left the location. As it's just past 12, other students beside us are moving off as well.

"Did you see Orimura-sensei's swimsuit? So pretty~ cool~"

"Ah~ I want to become like that as well."

"I don't think you have any hope."

"How would you know if you don't try?"

The students were debating furiously. I'm rather uncomfortable about hearing my relative get praised. I don't know if I should be happy or embarrassed.

(But speaking of which, it really suits her...)

Truthfully, Chifuyu-nee's beautiful like a model--no, better than a model.

"Ichika, is Orimura-sensei your type?"

"HUH? WHA-WHAT? CHARL, WHAT'S WITH THAT ALL OF A SUDDEN..."

"Nothing, it's just that I find that your reaction on seeing our swimsuits was somewhat different."

Wah, Charl-san's not happy...I guess. Why?

"Sigh, there're so many enemies...and they're all so strong. It'll be even tougher with Orimura-sensei in the mix."

That's true. Chifuyu-nee's strong. Last month, she even used her IS sword[3B 3]. How much power and skill are required to get to that level...

"She's amazing, that Orimura-sensei."

"...I get the feeling that Ichika's missing the point here."

"Huh? Really?"

"That's right. Sigh...the strongest enemy is still Ichika."

Uu, really? But if possible, I really don't want to fight against Charl. As we teamed up before, I feel that she'd toy with me.

"Oh well, it's pointless to think too much. Let's go Ichika."

"Oh, okay."

I don't know what's going on, but as I head off to the annex to change, my hand got grabbed by Charl, who seems to be feeling better. I intend to swim later, but I don't think anyone would wear a swimsuit for lunch, right?

"What's for lunch? Maybe we might get sashimi[3B 4]."

"Sashimi! That's great! I like sashimi the most."

On a side note, this is an example of how used Charl is to Japanese culture. If it's Cecilia, she would say, 'Eating fish, raw? Tha-That's unbelievable...'. As for Laura, she would say 'Relax, I've gone through raw food eating training to survive in the jungle when I'm alone'. Um, Laura, it's not like that.

(Speaking of which...)

Suddenly, I remembered that Houki disappeared.

(She's not in the sea? She should be good at swimming, so why?)

Thinking about this, I waved goodbye to Charl and the rest as I walked into the guys' changing room.

Time passed, and it's now 7:30pm. We're having our dinner in the large banquet hall that's composed of 3 halls linked together.

"Yeah, it's great! The sashimi provided for lunch and dinner here is fantastic!"

"That's right. IS Academy's really too powerful."

Sitting beside me, Charl said as she nodded away.

Right now, she's dressed in a yukuta like everyone here. I'm not really sure, but the rule within this resort seems to be that 'One has to wear yukatas while eating'. Normally speaking, aren't they not allowed...?

The 1st years that are sitting neatly in rows are sitting on cushions. So of course, we're all sitting down in the seiza position[3B 5]. Everyone has a catering table in front of them.

The dishes are sashimi and a small hotpot. There's a salad of 2 mountain herbs, red miso soup and pickled vegetables.

That's good enough, but the sashimi's actually made from a Thread-sail filefish[3B 6], and there's even fish liver to go with it. Really unbelievable.

I bit into the fish. The feeling's really unique, and there's no fishiness to it. It's really delicious, yet so hard to describe. There's no stench or bitterness in the fish liver, and the taste is thick. I can understand now why it recently became a high class fish on the market.

"Ahh, it's so delicious! And this wasabi[3B 7] is real! Amazing! Hey, this isn't something a high school student can eat!"

"A real wasabi?"

"Hm? Charl, you don't know? The wasabi sauce that's grounded direcly through a wasabi root is a real wasabi."

"Huh? Then the ones given with the sashimi at the school cafeteria is..."

"That's manufactured. Well, the main ingredients are the wasabi root and horseradish. After coloring and mixing them, it will look and tastes like wasabi."

"Oh~so this is a real one?"

"Yup. But there's a lot of nice manufactured wasabi. Based on the way the manfacturer does it, some shops would even mix real wasabi with manufactured wasabi sauce."

"I see. Uu..."

Huh? Did Charl just swallow the entire pile of wasabi in...?

"U~..........................!!!"

As I expected, Charl pressed her nose as tears swelled up in her eyes. What the heck...

"Are you alright?"

"U-Um allbite..."[3B 8]

Charl forced her words out with her nose as she tried to force a smile. However, the smile wasn't too successful because of the tears in her eyes.

"It-It's flavorful. Not bad...ni...ce."

That's forcing it too much, isn't it?

"...Uu..."

On a side note, ever since the beginning, Cecilia, who's sitting on my left has been moaning like this. She doesn't seem to be used to sitting in a seiza position, and she hasn't eaten much.

"Are you alright, Cecilia? You don't look so good."

"I...am...okay..."

Nope, seems like she's not. Speaking of which, she's really not used to sitting in a seiza position...

Cecilia, who's trembling non-stop, seem to be forcing all her strength as a show of pride as she acts like nothing's wrong while picking up her chopsticks.

"Thanks...for the...food..."

It seems like she's even having trouble drinking the miso soup.

Speaking of which, the students from IS Academy are from all over the world. Thus, there are students and teachers from all countries.

The scenery in front of me is as such; blonds in yukata, silver-haired girls, brown-skinned students, blue-eyed students...a whole assortment of races. It seems that this is the only place where one can feel that I just went around the whole world. Of course, that's impossible.

"Ni-Nice..."

She-She's smiling...

Hmm, seems like she's really forcing it...

"Cecilia, if you can't sit down, shouldn't you move over to the dinner tables over there? A lot of our classmates are there. You don't have to be embarrassed about it, you know?"

By the way, having considered the many nationalities, race and religions of the students, the school provided an eating area for the students who can't eat in a seiza position.

As the meal trays are sorted according to the type of cuisine, so those who want their own food just need to take their own and consume it.

"I'm-I'm alright...compared to the effort I spent just to get this seat, this trivial thing..."

Hm? Get a seat? What did she mean? I thought the dinner seating was just according to first-come-first-serve, isn't that the case?

"Ichika, girls consider about a lot of things."

"Really?"

"Yeah."

That seems to be the case.

(Speaking of which, where did Houki go?)

Ah, she saw me. She's just sitting at the rear behind the rows opposite me. As expected of a girl from the kendo dojo, Houki's back is straight and proper as she eats her meal.

She seem to be talking about something interesting with the student beside her as she doesn't notice the look I gave her.

Should I say that it's to be expected of Houki? Even the way she's dressed in a yukata is stunning. Is the typical 'Yamato Nadeshiko'[3B 9] referring to someone like her?

"Ah, Orimura-kun. kya~"

The girl who's beside Houki suddenly noticed me and waved her hand at me. Such an action made Houki, who looked like she was chatting away happily, glare at me unhappily.

That expression most likely means 'Why are you showing such an indecent smile to a girl? You rude guy'.

I casually just waved my hand back at them in response and again focused on eating my dinner. Maybe they can't eat on if I continue to stare at them?

(Speaking of which, where did Tabane-san go...)

She just suddenly disappeared after that daring and unruly entrance. I really don't understand her.

"U, ugh...erm..."

Right, Cecilia is still having trouble sitting in the seiza position. She has already failed to pick up the sashimi twice.

"Cecilia."

"I'm not going there."

Uu, I got refuted back.

"But you can't eat anything like this, right? Do I need to feed you like what I did to Cha--"

"I-Ichika!"

"--Sorry."

I nearly slipped it out. To Charl, it should be embarrassing that she couldn't use chopsticks and needed someone to feed her, right?

I covered my mouth and apologized to her.

"I-Ichika-san, was what you said true!?"

WA--I got noticed! No wait, got to give an excuse somewhat.

"Huh--at that time, Charl wasn't feeling..."

"FORGET ABOUT CHARLOTTE-SAN! YOU-YOU SAID...YOU-YOU'D FEED ME...!"

"Uu, well? Alright then? You'll be able to enjoy dinner now that your legs aren't numb. And the fish is a thread-sail filefish. Wouldn't it be a waste not to finish?"

"Th-That's right! Mn, mnn! It'll be rude to the chefs if we waste such a delicious thing!"

Yeah, that's right. We can't just treat the food the chefs prepared for us as nothing. Anyone who can't appreciate that should end up dead.

"I-I'll leave it to you then."

Cecilia said as she passed me the chopsticks. Once I received the chopsticks, I immediately picked up a piece of sashimi.

"Do you dare to eat wasabi, Cecilia?"

"Wa-Wasabi, well, well, maybe later..."

Seems like she doesn't. Wasabi's nice.

"Here."

"Ok, okay. Ah--"

The moment she was about to eat it down, trouble happened.

"AHHH!! YOU'RE TOO SNEAKY, CECILIA!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!?"

"YOU ACTUALLY LET ORIMURA-KUN FEED YOU!! YOU'RE DESPICABLE!!"

"CRAFTY! SINISTER! BLACK-HEARTED!!"

Uwah, the other girls found out. But isn't that to be expected? Everyone's lined up while eating, so obviously, any ordinary person would find out.

"That, that's not crafty! That's the privilege of sitting beside him!"

"THAT'S CALLED BEING SINISTER!!"

"ORIMURA-KUN, I WANT IT TOO!!!"

Is this an honor? A group of girls wanting me to feed them started rushing over. Hey! Hold on! You people all look like you can eat normally!

"HURRY UP HURRY UP!!"

"AHM--MMN!!"

A group of girls opened their mouths at the same time. Whaat, are you all nestlings!!?

"Why can't all of you eat your meals quietly?"

After hearing that voice, everyone froze.

"O-Orimura-sensei..."

"Seems like all of you are rather energetic, right? Very good...well, 50km should be alright, so go run a round on the beach and come back, is that alright?"

"NONONO! PLEASE DON'T SAY THAT!! WE'LL EAT OBEDIENTLY!"

After saying that, everyone immediately returned to their seats. Upon seeing this, Chifuyu-nee stared at me and said,

"Orimura, stop creating commotions. It'll be troublesome to control them."

"I-I got it."

It's...It's my fault? Really?

"That's how it is, Cecilia. Sorry, please..."

"..."

Uu, she really looks unhappy. If there's a special effect sound to describe it, it should be like 'hmm~', right?

"Well. Umm..."

"I got it, alright? I got it! Ichika-san values his sister the most."

Hm...seems like I really made her angry--oh, that's right.

"To make up for it, Cecilia, come over to my room."

After I said that softly, Cecilia blinked.

"Later to your room...? That means--"

*Pa!* She suddenly grabbed my hand and answered softly yet enthusiatically,

"Okay, I got it! I-I need to prepare, so you may need to wait a while, but I'll definitely be there!"

Prepare? Prepare what? While I was still thinking about this, Cecilia already changed her mood as she wolfed down her meal. Seems like she got used to the numbness. That's good.

"Ahh, it's nice no matter what I eat!"

She's-She's really enthusiastic! But she's right. Each meal is delicious, so I can understand her feelings.

(What's the base used for this small hotpot? Ginger, wasabi...un.)

Even though the soup base is refreshing and not oily, there's quite the flavor in it. As it's really tasty, I really like it. It seems that my preference is towards these home-styled type.

After that, I continued to analyze the individual ingredients. By the time I realized them all, my stomach was full.

"Hoo~that was good."

An onsen bath after a meal is truly a luxury.

After bathing alone in this open-aired onsen where I could see everything, I went back to my room in high spirits.

(Chifuyu-nee went to bathe too?)

Seems like she's not in the room either. I thought--well, she just happened to come back.

"Huh? You're alone? You didn't bring a girl with you? How uninteresting."

"I say, you...umm, never mind. Forget about it."

This room is still the 'Orimura-sensei' room. Once someone does something suspicious, it's unknown what fate will befall them.

Incidentally, Chifuyu-nee did take a bath since her hair's all wet. Even though she's my sister, the overly glamorous black hair made my heart race.

"Hey, Chifuyu-nee."

She glares at me, sharply.

"Call me Orimura-sensei."

"What's the problem. There's only the two of us left, and we just bathed, and we haven't done it for a long time--"

"-♪"

Having taken a bath after the meal, Cecilia, who had bathed again, was happily changing clothes.

She was wearing the yukata the resort provided, but the underwear under it was completely different.

(Ahh, just in case...the underwear I brought just in case can finally be used!)

Thinking till here, her expression became exceptionally gentle.

Seeing that mysterious yet excited look on her, a certain classmate asked incredulously,

"Did something good happen, Cecilia?"

"Nope, nothing♪"

"...That expression says otherwise, you know?"

"Oh my, really? Ufufu."

"Sigh...never mind. Ahh, it's rare to have a chance to prepare so much just to play with Orimura-kun, and yet he and Orimura-sensei are in the same room..."

We can't possibly play now...the other girls nodded in unison.

Incidentally, they had prepared games with poker cards, UNO cards, Hanafuda, the Game of Life and Twister so guys and girl could look forward to. It's amazing that even in the 21st century these games are still extremely popular.

(Ufufu, I don't need to play games at all tonight.)

Cecilia hummed as she blowed-dryed her hair. Her wavering strands were two times more glamorous than usual.

"Ah~your underwear is so sexy. It's so revealing--"

Even though her eyes were half-open, the Nohohon-san's observation and perception skills were extremely great. On hearing her say that, even Cecilia felt a shock deep inside, because...

"WHAT? SOMEBODY HELP STRIP HER~!"

"STRIP~STRIP HER OFF~!!"

"KYAH! ST-STOP IT...STOP PULLING~!"

If three people gathered together can perform a skit, then with nine people you could perform three skits. Especially since everyone couldn't go and find their target, Ichika, to play with, they ended up having a lot of free time. Seeing the girls go crazy like this Cecilia could sense how energetic they really were.

"WAH!! THAT'S SOME EROTIC UNDERWEAR..."

"ERO~ ERO~"

"What's this? Lucky underwear? We're unable to go to Orimura-kun's room, and you're wearing such a thing!?"

The girls started chatting away, and finally declare in unison,

"""CECILIA'S SO LEWD!!!"""

"I'm-I'm not~! This, this is, just preparations for the occasion...yes, for the occasion!"

Cecilia pulled on her now ruffled yukata and argued back while blushing, praying silently to herself that the fact that she would be going to Ichika's room alone won't be revealed.

"Speaking of which, you were pretty thorough in your bathing."

Uh oh.

"And after bathing, you put on make-up for some reason."

Uh oh uh oh.

"That's rather suspicious, you know?"

"That's-that's not suspicious! Girls should be aware of the occasion! I still have things to do. Got to make a move first!"

After saying some mood-killing words, Cecilia stood up. I'll win once I step out of this room! Just when she thought that...

"Un? Hmm? This isn't the perfume Cecilia normally uses. This fragrance is L'Ireal[3B 10] Number 6? Wa~ that's pretty high class~"

After the Nohohon-san said that, the girls' expression froze.

--Oh no! It was too late, the moment Cecilia thought this, the girls began to hassle her and ask.

"L'Ireal number 6? I heard that one bottle costs about 100,000 yen?"

"They only produce 100 bottles of it every year, and there's even a serial number!"

"Do you have the product with you? Show me!"

"O-Okay, it's alright to show you. Anyway, I'll go off first--"

"""NO WAY!!!"""

Ehh~ Cecilia muttered deep inside, but the girls grabbed her hand really tightly, making her to be unable to get away.

"Where did you buy this? Didn't I hear that it's hard to buy even with money?"

"Our family has relations with the L'Ireal company..."

"UWA! ISN'T CECILIA SUPER RICH!?"

"LET ME HAVE A WHIFF!"

"Ah, erm, if you like it, you can use it however you want. As for me, I'll leave first..."

"""NO WAY!!!"""

Ehhh~...the same desciption follows.

"THAT'S A WASTE!"

"IF CECILIA APPLIED IT, WE WILL JUST SMELL YOUR BODY! OKAY?"

"KAGU~KAGU!"

The girls immediately opened their arms wide and rushed over. Cecilia had a bad feeling as she continued to back away until she hit the wall.

"Fufufu, we're not letting you get away."

"Alright, just surrender quietly!"

"Very good~ very good~"

The girls slowly closed in with their eyes shining mysteriously.

"No, no, NOOOOOOOOOO~!!!"

"Uu, uu...that was too much..."

Having been harrassed badly by the other girls, Cecilia looked thoroughly worn out as she walks on the corridor.

(But at last, I can finally--!!)

Go to Ichika's room!! Thinking about this, all the damage and fatigue she suffered up till now disappeared in a puff of smoke, and the ruffled yukata recovered in just a few seconds.

(I-I need to adjust my voice too. Mn, mnn.)

Her excitement caused her to walk like the breeze, moving faster like she was dancing as she moved towards her destination.

However--

"..."

"..."

She saw two girls in front of Ichika's room door.

"Rin-san? Houki-san? What are you two--"

"Shh!"

With Rin hushing her, Cecilia immediately quieted down.

Not understanding what was going on, she suddenly heard voices from behind the door.

"Chifuyu-nee, you're a bit tense because you haven't done it for a long time?"

"How is it possible, idiot--mm! A-A little forceful..."

"Yes yes, how about...there?"

"Ah! Th-There, there's...no good, UU!"

"You'll be comfortable soon. There's quite a bit of fatigue you accumulated..."

"AHHH!!"

...

"Wh-Wha-What's going on...?"

Her mouth trembling, Cecilia forced a smile as she asked. However, she only got the silent response of the other two.

"..."

"..."

Rin and Houki looked dead serious like they hadn't slept for the entire night.

"Then--"

"Hold on, Ichika."

Their conversation was interrupted. Just as the three people with their ears at the door felt that it was weird--

*PAM!!*

"""HUKK!!!"""

The door got punched without warning.

The moment the door got hit, the three teenage girls shouted out in reflex.

"What are you idiots doing?"

"Ha, haha..."

"Good evening, Orimura-sensei..."

"Bye...bye bye, Orimura-sensei!!"

The trio intended to escape like rabbits, but got caught immediately. Rin and Houki got caught by the collars, and Cecilia got stepped on the yukata. They didn't think they could win in a battle of brawns other than in IS battles.

"I can't allow eavesdropping. But since you're here, come in."

"""WHAAT!!???"""

The unexpected words caused the trio to widen their eyes in shock.

"Ahhh, yes, the other two--call Bodewig and Dunois here."

"Ye-Yes!"

The moment the back of their collars got released, Rin and Houki immediately ran off to call them.

With the hem of her yukata removed, Cecilia adjusted it and walks into the room.

"Ohh, you're really slow, Cecilia. Let's get it started."

Ichika slapped the bed, indicating to Cecilia to get on.

In contrast, Cecilia was blushing in embarrassment due to such a bold request.

"Huh, ahh, isn't Orimura-sensei still here? This..."

"What's wrong? I'm warmed up already. Let's get started."

"No, not that, but, this, is, the mood..."

"...?"

Ichika still didn't understand what Cecilia was trying to talk about as he looked puzzled. He then patted the bedsheet again to prompt her to be faster.

Feeling really bothered, Cecilia secretly glanced at Chifuyu, who remained silent and gave a 'Don't mind me, just start' look.

(How, how can I not be bothered by this...)

However, she couldn't decide. But, since Chifuyu seemed to have called for Charlotte and Laura to come over as well, things would only get worse if she dragged this on.

(UU...! WO-WOMEN MUST BE FORCEFUL!!)

After screaming this in her heart, Cecilia gave up as she laid on the bedsheet.

Her crazily-beating heart sounded like it could explode any second soon. Cecilia's heart was full of anticipation and anxiety as she closed her eyes.

"..."

But nothing happened.

Ahh...? Just when she felt that this was weird and opened her right eye slightly, Ichika said.

"Cecilia, if you don't lie down, I can't do that."

"Huh? Huh? Do-Do it...lying down?"

"Yup."

"I-I see..."

Even though Cecilia felt bothered that it was different from what she read on the books, she still convinced herself that this was a normal thing in Japan.

"I'm starting then!"

"O-Okay!"

The sudden break in voice caused her to be embarrassed and anxious. Cecilia's heart started to beat crazily until she felt that it was about to pounce out as she waited for the incoming hand. Then--

"Mn, shoo..."

KYU~!!!

"OWWWW...IT HURTS! I-I-ICHIKA-SAN! WHA-WHAT ARE YOU DOING--AUUU!!!"

"What am I doing? A massage."

"Mas...sage...?"

"Yup? At the waist."

"Waist..."

Cecilia looked stunned as she repeated what Ichika said like a parrot.

"E-Erm, Ichika-san, did you invite me to your room for this..."

"Yup. I just wanted to give you a massage. You're living in a large room right, Cecilia? I can't focus if that was the case, so I called you here."

...

KAU~ It felt like a crow flew by from above as Cecilia started crying inside her heart.

"That-That was bad...I..."

"Hm? Wha-What is it? Is it that painful?"

"Yeah, it hurts...it hurts so badly that I feel like I will die..."

"I-I'm sorry then. I'll go lighter a bit."

"Anything will do..."

Cecilia sighed deeply, deeper than the darkness, that even the souls got sighed away as she had the look of fatigue, despair, cool and self-depreciation.

But the comfort of the massage and her conversation with Ichika caused her mood to naturally improve.

"Will this force do?"

"Mn...feels great..."

*Gu*, *gu*. Ichika pressed against her back with his thumbs as he started massaging on both left and right sides.

"Speaking of which, your waist's really stiff. What do you normally do, Cecilia?"

"Mn, I do play the violin, but only occasionally. It-It feels a bit bad there..."

"Oh, sorry. I won't use my fingers then."

Ichika relaxed his thumbs and silently exerted force on his palms.

He's not using his thumbs as a pressure point, but using his palms to relax Cecilia's body with suitable force. Soon, that touch became a stable feeling, causing her to moan out in comfort.

"Haa...Ichika-san really is skillful..."

"Yeah, because I've been massaging Chifuyu-nee for a while now."

"...And to the girls..."

Though she sounded like she was grumbling, Cecilia just muttered that at a volume Ichika couldn't hear. Maybe it was because the massage made her feel good. Her voice did not carry any anger, instead bringing a cute feeling of 'Wanting fawn and wanting to make the other person feel troubled'.

"I'll push up the backbone then."

"Okay...I'll leave it to you then..."

Feeling really happy and comfortable with the massage now, Cecilia felt like sleeping as she answered in a dazed manner.

"Any place you want me to exert more strength?"

"Fufu, I'll leave it to you then..."

"Okay then. Let me check here first."

The range of massaging wasn't just limited to the top of the back as Ichika exerted force on both sides. He rub his palms and gently knocked on her. This method can remove muscle stiffness and making people feel like sleeping.

Ichika had said 'A good massage will make people want to sleep, and it will be extremely good if you immediately sleep, as the fatigue will be inexplicably removed from you'. These words were true.

Massages with only pain are basically torture and interrogation. Only when the body and soul feels relaxed completely can it be considered a complete massage. A real high quality massage can relax the body, and more importantly, the soul.

(Mn...I really...feel like sleeping...)

Cecilia thought that with the now empty mind of hers, and now that idea gradually disappeared.

Suddenly, she felt a male's scent on the bedsheet she's lying on. This is Ichika's scent, causing her heart to beat wildly again.

(Such a wonderful smell..)

Just when the half-awake Cecilia's about to fall alseep with the scent, suddenly--

*Grope!*

"!?!?"

As her arms got grabbed suddenly, Cecilia's seemingly sleeping state got woken up immediately.

(I-I-Ichika-san!? Eve-Even if it's a massage? That-That's too daring...!)

She used her right hand to press onto her wildly beating heart and turned around while trembling--

"Yo--you precocious brat."

Chifuyu grabbed onto Cecilia's butt without mercy as she revealed a playful look of one whose prank had succeeded. However, that look didn't look apologetic or innocent, but one with ill-intent.

"Wearing such underwear that really doesn't match your age. And it's black too."

"HUH...KYAAAAAHHHH!!?"

As Chifuyu grabbed Cecilia's butt from below, the round buttocks got revealed by the yukata that flipped up. Of course, the underwear on the inside got seen.

It was a laced 'special underwear' with extremely little cloth. Both sides were tied using strings, and it looked like it was designed to be taken off easily.

"..."

Feeling really embarrassed, Ichika immediately looked away. Seeing him like this, Cecilia understood clearly that 'she got exposed', and felt so embarrassed that she wanted to find a hole to hide in.

"SEN-SEN-SENSEI! PLEASE LET GO OF ME!!"

She shouted out while blushing, but unexpectedly, Chifuyu just let go like this.

"Oh my, to think that you would expect to do such an erotic thing in front of a teacher. You 15-year-old girl."

"E-ER-ERO-EROTIC...!?"

"I'm just kidding--HEY, THE 4 PEOPLE OUTSIDE, TIME TO GET IN HERE!!"

THIS IS BAD!!!

""""...""""

After a few seconds of silence, the door opened.

Standing at the door were Rin, Houki, Charlotte and Laura. They're all wearing the yukatas provided by the resort.

"You had enough of massaging, right, Ichika? Okay, you girls go get a place to sit."

Seeing Chifuyu greet them, the four girls walked into the room with a look of terror. They then followed orders and looked for their favorite seats (though there's only the bed and chairs).

"Fuu--Having massaged two people at one go, I'm sweating quite a bit now."

"That's because you don't know how to conserve your strength. You wouldn't become like that if you just skipped a few parts."

"No, I would feel sorry for the people who took their time to let me massage them."

"You're rather straightforward."

"Just praise me once in a while, okay, Chifuyu-nee?"

"Who knows?"

Hearing both of them chat away happily, everyone present finally realized what was going on. Anyway, what they just eavesdropped on Cecilia's voice and Chifuyu's voice from before were because of the massage.

"Ha, haha...haa."

"I-I-I knew about this already..."

Houki relaxed completely, yet Rin just argued back.

""...""

Having imagined all sorts of 'explicit things', Charlotte and Laura blushed as they looked down.

"Uu, go take a bath again. It won't feel good if the entire room's filled with the smell of your sweat."

"Okay, I'll do that then."

On hearing Chifuyu's words, Ichika nodded his head as he took the towel and change of clothes. He then walked out of the room, leaving behind a 'Just relax. Erm, it may be a bit too hard, right?'.

"..."

Like what Ichika said, the five girls who were ordered to sit down didn't dare to move at all.

"Hey hey, is this the watching of a funeral? What happened to that usual noisy atmosphere?"

"No, it's not that, but..."

"Talk-Talking to Orimura-sensei like this. Well, how should I say it..."

"It's the first time anyway..."

"Really, it can't be helped then. I'll treat all of you to drinks then. What do you want, Shinonono?"

Being called out suddenly, Houki's shoulders trembled as she felt bothered about being unable to answer immediately.

Just when everyone was hesitating, Chifuyu opened the fridge of the resort room and took out 5 bottles of cool refreshments.

"Here, ramune, orange juice, sports drink, coffee and red tea. If you want to drink something else, just exchange around."

Even though she said that, the girls took the respective drinks. Houki, Charlotte, Rin, Laura and Cecilia felt satisfied with their drinks, so they didn't exchange it.

"Thanks-Thanks for the patronage."

Everyone said in unison and started drinking.

Seeing the rumbling on the girls' throats, Chifuyu smiled.

"You drank it?"

"Ye-Yes?"

"We-We did..."

"Wha-What did you put inside?"

"Idiots, stop being so rude. It's nothing much, I just want to bribe you anyway."

After saying that, Chifuyu took out a canned beer with a star logo from the fridge.

With the crisp sound of the can being opened, the beer foam bubbles spurted out. Chifuyu just gulped it down in one shot.

"..."

Everyone present just looked dumbstruck as Chifuyu looked seemingly satisfied as she sat on the bedsheet.

"Well, I wanted to share a bit with Ichika...but I couldn't wait."

This person in front of them now is completely different from the lawful and ridiculously strict 'Orimura-sensei', causing the girls to be dumbstruck, especially Laura, who continued to blink her eyes like mad as if she couldn't believe what she just saw.

"Stop giving me that weird look! I'm an ordinary person, of course I would drink beer! Do I look like I drink machine oil?"

"No, no, it's not that..."

"It's not..."

"But, right now..."

"Aren't you working now..."

Laura just left her mouth wide open, unable to say anything, and then gulped down the black coffee in her hand.

"Don't be so strict! I just bribed you people anyway."

Chifuyu revealed a heinous grin as she looked around at everyone's hand. At this moment, the girls finally realized the meaning behind the drinks as they let out an 'Ah'.

"That's it for the opening. Now to the main point."

Chifuyu wanted Laura to get her a second can of beer. With the crisp sound of the can being opened again, she continued,

"I say, what's so good about that guy?"

Even though Chifuyu said 'That guy', everyone present knew who she's referring to. The only 'him'--Ichika.

"I-I'm not really that interested in him...it's just that I feel angry that he's no longer as strong as before."

Drinking the ramune, Houki said.

"Just a little fate..."

Rin mumbled while rubbing her sports drink can.

"As the class representative, I just want him to buck up."

Completely different in attitude now, Cecilia boasted proudly.

"Oh, is that so? I'll just tell Ichika that then."

Chifuyu's casual words scared the trio as they all stopped her.

"""PLEASE DON'T SAY IT OUT!!!"""

Seeing them like this, Chifuyu laughed and took another gulp of beer.

"I--well, I...like his kindness, so..."

Charlotte muttered softly, yet it sounded firm.

"Oh? But he's kind to everyone."

"Tha-That's right...which is why I hate it..."

She revealed an embarrassed smile as she fanned her burning cheeks. The trio before Charlotte stared at her, seemingly feeling envious.

"What about you?"

Chifuyu asked the silent Laura. Laura jerked, probably not expecting to be called up. She said,

"May-Maybe because he's strong..."

"He's weak."

That was a merciless critique. Even though Chifuyu said that without treating it as much, Laura argued back, which was rare of her,

"He-He's strong! Stronger than me, at least."

I see... Chifuyu said as she finished off the second beer can in her hand.

"Well, forget about whether that guy's strong or not. That guy's pretty useful. He can do housework, he can cook, and his massages are great."

Isn't that right, Alcott? Being questioned, Cecilia blushed as she looked down and nodded her head gently.

"Anyway, I know the kind of girl he would like to go out with. So? Do you want to know?"

Huh? Everyone looked up. Laura asked timidly,

"Are you going to tell us?"

"Idiots, you really think I would?"

Ehhh~...the girls moaned in their hearts.

"As women how can you lack will when fighting for a guy? Work harder brats, and try to get to my level!"

Bringing the third can of beer to her mouth, Chifuyu looked delighted as she said that.



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