ODL – Chapter  47 – I forgot who Keisuke was


“Hey Souma, is your girlfriend not with you today?” (Keisuke)

University cafeteria.

After receiving my B-set meal and going to my usual seat, Keisuke asked this question casually while slurping on ramen.

“I have already told you countless times, man. Mafuyu-chan isn’t my girlfriend.” (Souma)

While sitting across from him, I tried to rectify the misunderstanding. How many times have I already told this to others? By the way, this is already my third time saying it to Keisuke.

“There are a number of people who have mentioned that they heard you call Minase-san your girlfriend.” (Keisuke)

“Well, they… must be hearing things.” (Souma)

I did say that.

…I did say that, but it’s not what I meant.

It was only a figure of speech, I swear!

“Is that so? I actually think you two make a good couple, you know. Although, I was pretty annoyed at first.” (Keisuke)

“What’s with the change in attitude then?” (Souma)

Mafuyu-chan and I being a good couple… Is that really how others see it? Sure, we get along well, but I think anyone who doesn’t know us would just see us as “a beautiful girl and an average guy.

“No, what I mean is, when Minase-san is talking to you, her demeanor is a bit different, you know? Even from an outsider’s perspective, I can tell that she’s comfortable being with you.” (Keisuke)

“Different demeanor? …Is that so?” (Souma)

Certainly, Mafuyu-chan’s demeanor does change quite a bit depending on whether there are others around or not. But I feel that she maintains a pretty calm personality at university. I don’t think she’s ever shown her apartment-side self in front of Keisuke and others.

“Oh, speaking of the devil, here comes you’re beloved girlfriend.” (Keisuke)

“I already told you, she’s not my girlfriend…” (Souma)

As I followed Keisuke’s gaze, Mafuyu-chan, who had just received her A-set meal, was walking towards us. Even when our eyes met, Mafuyu-chan didn’t change her expression at all. Looks like she is in full university mode.

“Souma-kun, and Keisuke-san, good afternoon.” (Mafuyu)

“Yahoo~ Minase-san! Come on, take a seat!” (Keisuke)

Having shared many lunches together, Keisuke and Mafuyu-chan are on quite good terms with each other. Initially, Keisuke had been somewhat wary of the appearance of the rumored underclassman, but he was fundamentally fond of women so it didn’t take long for them to become friends.

“Souma-kun, can I sit next to you?” (Mafuyu)

“Hmm? Sure, go ahead.” (Souma)

I shifted my tray slightly to make space, and Mafuyu placed her tray there before sitting down next to me.

“……*grin grin* (*niya niya*).” (Keisuke)

“Keisuke. Do you have something you want to say?” (Souma)

Keisuke didn’t bother hiding his grin as he observed our interaction. He was probably thinking of something weird again.

“Hey, Minase-san. So this guy here keeps saying you’re not his girlfriend. What’s the real story?” (Keisuke)

“Come on, cut it out…” (Souma)

I tried to restrain Keisuke with my hand, but it was already too late.

Mafuyu-chan stared at me intently, then looked up as if contemplating something, and finally turned her face towards Keisuke.

“It’s been two months.” (Mafuyu)

“Two months of dating? So you guys were dating after all~! You don’t have to be so secretive about it, man!” (Keisuke)

Keisuke made an annoying gesture and playfully hit me.

And there it was, Mafuyu’s deadpan magic. When she said anything with that expression, you couldn’t help but take it seriously. Please, just stop.

“Mafuyu-chan? Wait, that’s not───” (Souma)

“Pregnant.” (Mafuyu)

“Pregnant for two months?! So-Souma, you──── What!?” (Keisuke)

Mafuyu’s bombshell statement nearly made Keisuke spew out his ramen. It seemed like others had been eavesdropping because there was a commotion at nearby tables.

“No…! That’s not true! It’s just a joke! Mafuyu-chan, please, spare me…” (Souma)

Ignoring my pleas, Mafuyu turned her attention back to her A-set meal. She had said what she wanted to say and left it hanging. That was the nature of Minase Mafuyu, the ice queen who is also the Shootdown King of the Engineering Department.

…In the end, it took about ten minutes to clear up Keisuke’s misunderstanding.

“Oh, by the way, Souma, you knew a lot about VTubers, right?” (Keisuke)

After finally realizing that we were not dating, Keisuke suddenly brought up a completely different topic.

“VTuber? Well, I wouldn’t say I’m that knowledgeable.” (Souma)

I’ve only really watched Ette-sama. Plus, I became a VTuber myself for a while… so it’s a bit different from being knowledgeable.

“Is that so? Well, never mind… Hey, do you know about the VTuber called ‘Otoma Kodomo’?” (Keisuke)

Bufu?!” (Souma)

“…” (Mafuyu)

I nearly choked on my food, filled with a sudden wave of anxiety.

Why does he know about ‘Otoma Kodomo’?! 

Could it be… that I have been found out?

“Hey, what’s wrong? Are you okay?” (Keisuke)

“Uh, yeah… I’m fine… So, about that ‘Kodomo’ person…? What about him?” (Souma)

For now, I needed to quickly assess the situation. If I had been exposed, I would need to handle it accordingly. Depending on the circumstances, it might be a good idea to contact Maya-san.

“Ah, well, you see… my sister… we don’t usually talk about this kind of stuff, but she approached me out of the blue and said, ‘I recommend you watch him.’ So I thought maybe Souma can give me some insight of him.” (Keisuke)

“Uh, yeah… I see, I see. Got it…” (Souma)

I breathed a sigh of relief at Keisuke’s words. It seemed like I hadn’t been found out. If that was the case, there was no need to panic.

“Otoma Kodomo, huh? Honestly, I didn’t find him all that interesting. I don’t really think you need to watch him.” (Souma)

“Hmm, I see. Well, I wasn’t really planning to watch him in the first place. I’m not really into VTubers or anything.” (Keisuke)

Yep. It was better to just eliminate any risk of being found out.

After what I said, and given that Keisuke didn’t seem very interested in the topic to begin with, he didn’t bring up the name of Otoma Kodomo again.

From there, we engaged in safe conversation topics and finished our lunch uneventfully.

“Should we head off soon? Mafuyu-chan, what are you going to do today?” (Souma)

“I’ll go home with you. I’ll be at the usual place after I’m done.” (Mafuyu)

“Got it.” (Souma)

After witnessing our interaction, Keisuke muttered something under his breath.

“I wonder if you two really aren’t dating…” (Keisuke)

As the three of us stood up, a pair of guys who had just arrived at the cafeteria walked over to us. I recognized their faces. They were Keisuke’s friends, I think.

“Hey, Honna, why are you having lunch with the Shootdown King?!” (Friend)

“Oh, don’t call me that, it sounds dirty. They’re friends of mine. By the way, it’s rare to see you guys in the cafeteria.” (Keisuke)

“We’re a bit short on cash so reluctantly came here.” (Friend)

“Are you playing the Pachinko1 again? Seriously, you should have learnt by now. Those things are rigged such that you can’t actually win.” (Keisuke)

“Come on, it’s all about the horses2 now. They say the odds are better.” (Friend)

“Isn’t it pretty much the same thing?” (Keisuke)

Keisuke must have noticed that we were being left out so he gestured to us with a “see you later.”

Leaving Keisuke and his friends who are engaged in their lively banter behind, Mafuyu-chan and I departed from the cafeteria.


TL notes:

Thanks for reading!

Honna Keisuke…? …Honna Miyabi…? Wait a minute…

Alright, I think Fu Xuan about to get released in Star Rails today, pleaseee don’t lose 50/50. Anyways good luck to everyone on their pulls.


Footnote:

  1. Pachinko fills a niche in Japanese gambling comparable to that of the slot machine in the West as a form of low-stakes, low-strategy gambling. Apparently even though gambling is illegal in Japan, there is a loop hole where the prizes can be exchanged for special prizes, which can then be sold for cash to separate vendors off-premise which is then sold back to the casino lol. 
  2. I don’t play slot machine so I don’t know what this is saying.
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AzukaD

Thanks for the chapter!

Mafuyu purposedly spread rumours so Souma would eventually give in. So unhinged. I love it.

Kiri

Good luck on your pull, i got my mono quantum team now.

Schione

Oof. My condolences

Jhormum

I’m assuming the comment on the horses is referencing the extensive Horse racing industry which has an equally extensive betting/gambling industry attached to it