§035 Saito 11/18 (Sun)


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We enter the ARK Hills Tower, go to the first floor, and meet up with Miyoshi’s group right when they are coming up from below at the “Chun Shui Tang” corner.1

“Aahh! Ms. Midori isn’t wearing a white coat!?”

“Surprised you, right?” Miyoshi agrees with me while clenching her fist.

“What, are you into scientist-looking women with glasses and white coats?”

“No, I’m afraid you are mistaken, Ms. Midori.”

“Don’t suddenly act all formal there!”

While Ms. Midori and I have such a silly conversation, Miyoshi congratulates Ms. Mitsurugi, who’s standing next to me.

“Oh, hello Ms. Mitsurugi~ Congratulations on passing the audition.”

“Thank you very much. Sorry for shamelessly tagging along today.”

“You were invited by senpai, right? For him to pull off such a playboy move is totally out of character.”

“Hey, stop it! It’s because she’s a member of the anti-slime team, okay!?”

“Come on, let’s go.”

Ugh, I got totally ignored.
Eventually we arrive at a spot that looks like a dead end, but there’s actually a corridor on the left side, just before the wall. Passing through an automatic door, we immediately arrive at the meeting place.
However, I gotta say, they sure picked an out of the way location, no one’s gonna wander by here.2

『Oh, Yoshimura, Miyoshi! You’re here. Please allow me to welcome our honorable benefactors!』

When we move up to the corner, Mr. Ahmed, who was waiting in front of the restaurant, notices our arrival, and comes to hug us.
This old man got quite a bit of strength in his arms. His hug is painful.

『We don’t deserve all the credit. We were supported by Ms. Naruse of the JDA, both officially and behind the scenes.』

『It goes without saying that we’re thankful for her smooth assistance as well. So, the young, beautiful, ladies over there are?』

『Over here we have Ms. Midori, Ms. Naruse’s younger sister. She runs a company that develops medical devices. She works with us every now and then.』

『Oh, the owner of a venture company?』

『Correct.』

『It is nice to meet you, I am called Naruse Midori. I am grateful to you for allowing me to join today, despite not having been invited directly.』

『Don’t mind it. We’re very indebted to your sister. Please enjoy yourself.』

『Thank you very much.』

Seeing her like this, Ms. Midori completely gives one the impression of a capable woman. She looks quite stylish in a suit too.

“Midori-senpai, I must say, you’d be pretty cool if you were always like this.”

“Hey, Miyoshi, isn’t that way too blunt? I agree with you, though.”

『And this is Ms. Mitsurugi Haruka. She’s an up-and-coming model who will become the exclusive model of the fiversity brand, starting next year.』

『Nice to meet you. My English, still not good. Sorry.』

『Congratulations. I fully understand what you’re saying, so your English is fine. Are you Yoshimura’s girlfriend?』

『No such luck I’m afraid. I’m sorry to say, but she’s just someone related to our company.』

I feel like Ms. Mitsurugi’s cheeks became slightly red just now.

『Hoh, you mean, she’s diving into dungeons?』

『Yes, a bit.』

『Does that help with your job?』

『Very much.』

『I see, so similar to company staff.』

Mr. Ahmed laughs and enters the restaurant through the main door.
The inside is rather cramped, with just an L-shaped counter. It looks like there’s a separate room as well, but of course it won’t be in use today.

『Kaygo!』

『Ayesha, thanks for your invitation today.』

“Here senpai, take this.”

“Oh, sure.”

I hold out the jewelry box I got from Miyoshi to Ayesha.
Ayesha’s outfit is just as Miyoshi had predicted. No surprise there.

『Ayesha, this is a congratulatory gift from us to celebrate your complete recovery.』

『Eh? Thanks! Can I open it?』

『Go ahead.』

『Wow! What lovely earrings! It’s quite regrettable that I can’t put them on right away.』

『Don’t worry about it, you can get your ears pierced at an appropriate place later.. For today, we’d like you to make do with this pendant.』

『Oh my, can I have you put it on for me?』

『Your wish is my command.』

(Senpai, since when did you know how to speak English like that?)

(I looked up those phrases on the net yesterday. I didn’t say anything strange, did I?)

(It should be OK since they were standard phrases.)

When Ayesha turns the other way and lightly holds up her hair, I put the pendant’s chain around her neck, and connect the hook with clumsy hand movements.
The small ruby surrounded by diamonds beautifully sparkles on her chest once she turns around and lowers her hair.

『Yep, it suits you perfectly.』

『Thank you, I will cherish it!』

And then we were led to our seats, and enjoyed a hearty meal.
While Ms. Midori orders a second serving, with the words, “Whoa! The monkfish liver is awesome! Delicious!”, I glance over at all the empty sake bottles near her. Another drinker, huh?

“The monkfish liver becomes fat starting in December, but as of late, it often happens that they are caught earlier than that. This is the first catch of the year, with the monkfish having matured to its proper taste,” explains the owner.

Ms. Midori completely pretends to not see that while chatting with Miyoshi and Mr. Ahmed.
I’m sitting between Ayesha and Ms. Mitsurugi, having a great time.
Although it’s a bit strange to think that one is a foreigner speaking Japanese, and the other is a Japanese speaking English.
Having said that, it’s unexpectedly working out one way or the other.

 

 

“Kaygo, this, tasty. Here.”

『Ayesha, the “Aahn~” pose, mean, intimate.』

“Intimate? So good! Do I have to say ‘earn’?”3

『I, show you. Copy.』

“Okay, Mr. Yoshimura, say aahn.”

“Wai-, wha-!”

“S-Senpai is being pampered.”

“It feels like he’s being treated like a toy, though.”

Saying that the alcohol also plays a role in the nice atmosphere, Ms. Naruse audibly drains down her sake cup.
In other words, the older sister can hold her drink as well.

“Still, on one side a beauty that might very well be called a Bollywood actress, and on the other side, a young and energetic fashion model who was selected from among many others by a fashion brand!”

“If you put it like that, it definitely sounds amazing.”

“A scoop that will make good copy!”

Miyoshi says something disturbing.
The scary part about this girl is that you never know when she’s serious and when she’s joking around.

 

◇◇◇◇◇◇◇◇

 

『It was a wonderful meal today.』

『Kaygo.』

『Ayesha, you sure are lively as well.』

Once I say so, Ayesha approaches me and pulls me into a hug.
Umm, are Indians usually touchy-feely like this?? As I’m panicking about that, she suddenly lets go of me, and says, 『See you again someday, okay?』

『Sure, see you』, I bid her farewell like a friend who’s going to see her again soon.

『Nowadays the world is small enough that we can meet whenever we want to.』

The smile of Mr. Ahmed as he says that is a bit scary. I guess that’s a doting parent for you.

『Please contact me should you be in some kind of trouble. I’ll definitely be of help.』

『Thank you very much.』

After passing me his excessively extravagant business card, and exchanging a deliberately powerful handshake (painful) with me, we bid farewell from Mr. Ahmed and his daughter, while waving our hands.
Since it looks like Ms. Midori is going to crash at Miyoshi’s place, she gets into the hired car with us.
When we drop off Ms. Mitsurugi on the way, I give her the present I had prepared for her.
When I asked for earrings with somewhat larger pearls, the shop clerk chose something with a slightly modern design, in the shape of an M.
Being deeply moved, which could also be due in part to her being a bit drunk, Ms. Mitsurugi kisses me before getting out of the car. Of course, on the cheek.

“Oh, oh, a scoop before the debut?” Miyoshi mocks me in the car after we leave Ms. Mitsurugi behind.

I pretend to be calm by answering, “I doubt the paparazzi have time to stalk anonymous people,” but in reality, I’m in a pretty good mood.

 

 


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Translation Notes:

  1. Here’s a floor map of the ARK Hills Tower of the first floor, red the Chun Shui Tang restaurant: https://www.chunshuitang.jp/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/roppongi_pc2.png
  2. Author’s note: “Since the toilets are actually around here, that statement is not quite correct
  3. This “So good! Do I have to say ‘earn’?” is in English in the raw. I think the “earn” relates to “Aahn~”

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