ODL – Chapter 99 – Mafuyu’s Feelings

… Lately, whenever I walk around the university, there are times when I feel like I’m being watched by someone. It’s a burning and sticky gaze.

“Souma-kun, what’s wrong?” (Mafuyu)

Mafuyu-chan, sitting across the table, looks at me with a puzzled expression while reaching for her chopsticks and Set B meal.

“…No, it’s nothing. By the way, how are the preparations for the beauty pageant?” (Souma)

I ask while slurping my ramen.

The university festival is just one week away. I thought the beauty pageant was simply about standing on stage and striking a pose, but it seems that it involves various other tasks as well. I heard that last year, there was even a section for showcasing special talents.

Although the beauty pageant participants have already been notified of what they will be doing this year, it’s kept a top-secret do I don’t know what Mafuyu-chan would be doing.

“It’s going well. Hey, Souma-kun… Promise me you’ll come watch the beauty pageant. I want you to be in a spot where I can find you from the stage.” (Mafuyu)

Mafuyu-chan anxiously sways her eyes, locking her gaze with mine. I catch her gaze and return the look straight.

“I promise. I’ll definitely come watch. When you come out, I’ll wave my hands as much as I can.” (Souma)

“Yeah… please.” (Mafuyu)

Mafuyu-chan seems reassured by my words, and she smiles faintly, shifting her gaze back to the Set B meal. I also return to slurping my ramen.

… During that time, I continued to feel that burning and sticky gaze, constantly directed at me.

From every direction.

The reason I’ve been receiving intense gazes from various guys is undoubtedly related to Mafuyu-chan participating in the beauty pageant.

With her participation in the beauty pageant, Mafuyu-chan’s already high popularity skyrocketed. This is due to the posters with the faces of the participants, including Mafuyu-chan, are plastered all over the campus. The information on the beauty pageant is also on the school website, making it a topic of discussion even in other universities. According to Kaisuke, browsing the beauty pageant website is natural for male university students… or so he says.

So, now Mafuyu-chan is undeniably the Madonna1 of the university.

And naturally, as the rumored boyfriend of Mafuyu-chan, my own popularity is also rising whether I like it or not.

“…Mafuyu-chan is amazing.” (Souma)

Unconsciously, those words slip out of my mouth.

“What’s gotten into you all of a sudden?” (Mafuyu)

“Oh no, I was just thinking that Mafuyu-chan is really working hard.” (Souma)

“…………? I don’t quite get it, but does that mean you’ll marry me?” (Mafuyu)

“Why would it lead to that? Don’t say strange things in public.” (Souma)

Mafuyu-chan has been acting like this ever since she entered university. Because of this, there was no place where my heart could rest as people who saw our interaction started to spread rumors about us.

“Hehe, just kidding. I wanted to see your reaction.” (Mafuyu)

But unlike me, she wears a calm expression. Of course, it might just be a facade.

As if remembering, I continue to slurp my ramen. Of course, I can’t really taste it at all. The pressure of being watched is much stronger than I expected.

“I understand what you’re thinking, Souma-kun.” (Mafuyu)

“Eh?” (Souma)

When I raise my face from the bowl, Mafuyu-chan is looking at me from the corner of her eye, wearing a gentle expression. It’s a rare expression.

“It’s not like… I’m completely okay either, you know? Honestly, there was a time when I hated going to university.” (Mafuyu)

“…I see. That’s understandable… considering your circumstances.” (Souma)

It wouldn’t be strange at all if she developed neuroses2. Unlike Hiyorin, she isn’t a celebrity or anything. As such, it wasn’t easy dealing with all the extra attention.

“But you know, one day, it just stopped bothering me. Can you guess when?” (Mafuyu)

I shook my head. I had no idea.

“It was on the day… we reunited, Souma-kun. Because you’re with me, I’m okay now.” (Mafuyu)

Mafuyu-chan smiles brightly. It’s a dazzling smile, almost like a sunflower, which is rare for her.

“Thank you for being with me. I’m more grateful than you think, Souma-kun.” (Mafuyu)

Mafuyu-chan gets up from her seat. The Set B meal on her tray is already empty.

“Be sure to come watch the beauty pageant.” (Mafuyu)

Leaving those words behind, Mafuyu-chan walked away.

TL Notes:

Thanks for reading!

Wow what an abrupt ending to the chapter. MC didn’t even make a comment.

4 more chapters!


  1. Madonna is basically a popular girl in school.
  2. I don’t really know how to explain this so think of it as anxiety disorder.
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Thanks for the chapter!

Woah, so Mafuyu is in a sort of fragile state all this time. Souma you better take more care of her after this


Thank you for the hard work you do for this series. I can’t wait for the next chapter.