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Is it okay if I become a little sister lover?
“Even though we’ve only been to two places today, I already feel incredibly tired…” I muttered as I was sitting on a bench near the pool.
After what happened, we decided to leave the pool. While the girls went to change and freshen up a bit, I decided to wait here.
“I was thinking this before, but they really do have everything here in this park…..”
Even though that crossed my mind for a second, my thoughts immediately returned to something else, namely our goal for this date today — to make me someone who loves little sisters. Thanks to Suzuka and Sakura, I felt like I understood what makes little sisters cute. It did feel like with just another small push I could fall in love with little sisters, but…
“Well… you know…”
There was still something missing, like there was an invisible wall inside my heart that stopped me from taking that final step. Our second meeting with Sakurada-san was just around the corner, and right now, it didn’t feel like I would be able to convince him.
“And just now, Suzuka looked like she was extremely pissed for some reason….”
My thoughts started to spiral into negativity.
…I mean, just a few minutes prior, her mood seemed to be really good. After I saved Sakura, however, it worsened on a matter of seconds. I don’t really know why, but I’m sure that it’s because I did something weird or bad again. I feel like I’m always troubling Suzuka, especially with this whole act to try to make me a little sister lover.
Even though she hates me, she’s still going so far for me, trying to be lovey-dovey with me for my special lessons. She always says that it’s her duty because she’s the true Towano Chikai, but I still feel like I need to apologize to her for it. After all, I’m her stand-in, and I’m bothering her about it to no end.
“‘Please pull yourself together, Onii-chan’… is it?”
For Suzuka, I’m nothing more than an unreliable big brother. Of course she’d hate me. And that feeling surely hasn’t changed during this incident. I can’t blame her for being pissed. After all, she’s basically forcing someone she hates to fall in love with her.
“But still — no, exactly because of that, huh? To become as strong as she needs me to be, I have to devote myself to her, probably.”
Because she’s my little sister. Becoming strong for a little sister is the natural job of every big brother.
“Ah, there he is! Heeeey, Onii-chan!”
At that moment, I heard Sakura’s voice and my thoughts were interrupted. As I turned around, I saw Sakura walking towards me and waving her hand in the air.
“Huh? You’re alone? Where’s Suzuka?”
“She’s still busy freshening up. Her hair’s so long and pretty, so it takes her a bit longer to get ready. Sakura asked her if Sakura should wait for her, but she said that it’s fine,” Sakura said as she sat down next to me.
“I see. Then let’s wait for her here.”
“Yeah! And when she’s done, we’ll go to another attraction, okay?”
“….I’m fine with that but can we do something more….soft next time?”
“Soft? If you want something more relaxing, then how about we go to this ‘Agonizing slime hell’ attraction? Sakura thinks that it sounds very interesting!”
“Not that kind of ‘soft!’ And what’s up with that weird attraction?!”
Sakura said that she was just joking, but the slime hell thingy she mentioned was really in the pamphlet… as well as countless other weird-sounding attractions.
“They have so many attractions here, it’s so fun! That explains why this place is so popular.”
“Well, it seems like they really designed this park well, since they got so popular so quickly.”
“Yeah, it’s really fun! Are you having fun too, Onii-chan?”
“…..Yeah, I am.”
It’s true that I was a bit tired from all the things I was thinking about, but I was still having fun. That’s why I honestly answered that.
As I did, Sakura said, “Is that so? Good,” but after that, she kept quiet.
Not knowing what to say, I started spacing out again, but…
“Hey, Onii-chan,” After a moment’s pause, Sakura opened her mouth again.
“There’s something that Sakura would like to ask you, Onii-chan.”
“W-What is it?”
For some reason, Sakura seemed a bit more mellow than usual, slightly startling me. Without paying attention to my reaction, she merely turned her face towards the pool and continued.
“Sakura knows that you’re in the middle of special lessons to get the hots for little sisters, and that’s why we’re helping you out, but… why is there any need for that anyway?”
“…..I explained that a while ago, didn’t I? I don’t really know what it feels like to be a little sister lover, and—”
“Um, and why is that?” With these words, she calmly turned towards me again, “Until now, Onii-chan has been writing such a cool little sister novel, right? Even if you think that you’re still lacking something, you managed to write that novel. Isn’t that enough? Why do you still have to become a little sister lover?”
That question wasn’t anything like the things Sakura normally said, completely attacking me off-guard.
…..Well, objectively speaking, she might be right about that.
Towano Chikai was still a newcomer but he still had managed to write a super-popular light novel that sold over 300.000 copies of just the first volume. Wishing for anything more than that would be taking it too far. Is there really any need for these special lessons, then? It was a logical question, but….
“W-Well, it’s that I’m one of those people who can never be satisfied. I have to make the perfect novel. And it’s a fact that I’m still lacking something, so that’s why I have to move forward no matter what it takes,” I answered like a typical author.
And even though I tried to cover it up pretty well….
“Mhm, that’s a lie, isn’t it?”
She answered immediately as she looked straight at me. Being surprised by that, I couldn’t find the right words immediately.
“N-No….! A-And why would you think that I was lying?!”
“Mhm? Sakura doesn’t have any basis for that but….just because, probably? We’ve been living under the same roof for quite some time now, so Sakura just thought that you sounded weird. And also, you’re very easy to see through, Onii-chan.”
“Ugh… that’s the exact same phrase I always hear out of Suzuka.”
“Is that so… yes, that makes sense. Suzuka-chan really understands Onii-chan after all.”
She looked really lonely for a second, but I didn’t have the time to dwell on it. There’s no way that I could tell her what was really going through my mind, so I had to deceive her somehow.
“B-But still, I wasn’t lying okay? I really—”
“Onii-chan.” However, she stopped me mid-sentence and—
“You shouldn’t lie to your little sister,” She said to me with an expression more serious than any I’d ever seen on her before.
“There might be special circumstances, and maybe you can’t tell anyone about it. But Onii-chan, being lied to still feels very sad.”
“If there’s really no way that you can tell Sakura, then so be it. But seeing Onii-chan suffering like this causes Sakura to worry, you know? That’s why she really wants you to talk with her about it. As your little sister, she wants to support you.”
Hearing these words, my heart skipped a beat.
Of course, there’s still no way for me to let Sakura in on Suzuka’s and my problems. The fact that I’m merely a stand-in and that Suzuka is the real Towano Chikai— I can’t tell a single person about that. But if I can just protect that secret itself, then maybe…?
Even if Sakura’s not my real little sister, I can’t just say “It’s nothing.” Not after she’s shown such concern for me. I just can’t do that.
“Well, it’s actually pretty embarrassing, being a little-sister novel author like this…” I decided to put my trust in her and tell her about my problems in a way that wouldn’t make her suspicious of me. “A while ago, I had a sort of discussion with someone else about being a little sister lover. And that person told me that I knew nothing of what’s it like to be a little sister lover.”
“What it’s like to be a little sister lover?”
“Yeah…And in the end, I was unable to satisfy him. Even though I’m a little sister novel author, I still lost to him. But, that can’t happen, you know? So to win against that person, I have to understand what it feels like to love little sisters from the bottom of my heart….!”
I tried my best to explain the circumstances without going into too much detail. With this, Sakura should be able to understand what I’m going through.
“Uhm…is that really all?”
For some reason, she tilted her head in confusion.
…H-Huh? I didn’t expect that kind of response.
“Uhm, even if you say that… that’s really all…”
“Are you really, really sure? Sakura doesn’t feel satisfied with just that.”
“What do you mean by ‘satisfied’…? I’m that little sister novel author, you know? But I still lose against someone else like that—”
“No, it’s not that,” She stopped me once more, only to continue speaking with a mysterious expression on her face, “The thing that Sakura doesn’t understand is why you gave up after being told that you ‘don’t understand what it’s really like to be a little sister lover’”
“Well, it really surprised me, so…..”
“It was a surprise because it was true, right? So basically, you were aware of that from the very start. That’s what Sakura doesn’t understand.”
I gulped at her deduction. Her words were beginning to imply that she was becoming suspicious.
I couldn’t find any words. Seeing me, Sakura continued.
“First of all, Sakura thinks that Onii-chan does know what it feels like to really love little sisters,” Her eyes looked like she was remembering an event from the distant past as she said that.
“Why…do you think so?”
Not understanding her expression, I had already asked before I even realized it. As I did, Sakura said “That’s—” with a painful smile as she continued.
“What it means to love a little sister… that was the very question Sakura asked herself a long time ago.”
Like she was confessing something, she said that.
“…Eh? The question you asked yourself a long time ago…?” I muttered like a parrot.
However, Suzuka didn’t pay any attention to my reaction and merely faced me again with a “Yeah…”
“U-Uhm, I’m sorry, but… what do you mean by that?”
“Hmm? Just as Sakura said. A long time ago, Sakura didn’t know what it meant to be in love with a little sister. Not one bit. That’s why, when she heard that Onii-chan thinks that he doesn’t know either… she thought that it was completely different from her.”
So basically…..she thinks that I’m wrong in saying that I don’t know what it means to be a little sister lover?
“But…wait? You said that in the past, you didn’t know what it meant to love little sisters, right?”
“Yes, Sakura said that. Why?”
“But right now, you’re trying so hard to get that little sister role and you’re even perfectly acting as one….?”
“Yes! Because now, she really loves little sister characters!”
Then…..what happened to make that change occur?
Being unable to say that question out loud, I merely stared at Sakura. As I did, she seemed to understand what I was thinking and finally opened her mouth after a short pause.
“Onii-chan, will you listen to Sakura’s confession?”
Finally, she had her usual smile on her face as she said that. Being perplexed, I could only mutter a “Y-Yeah….” to which Sakura responded with a “Thank you…” before staring off into the distance again.
“Sakura is sure that Onii-chan already knows this, but she only debuted as a voice actress about one year ago. She happened to get the role of the main heroine, and even though it was a lot of trouble, Sakura managed to pull through and become really popular. She was very lucky.”
“That didn’t have anything to do with luck. You definitely have the skill to back up your popularity. After all, you’ve gotten countless other roles after that, right? That’s the proof of you being a popular voice actress for a reason.”
Hearing my words, Sakura’s smile seemed to be filled with embarrassment as she said “Thank you…”
“Yeah, Sakura also thinks that she’s giving it her all. Being a voice actress is really fun after all, and there are countless people supporting her. Some have even gone so far as to call her a genius. Although that seems to be a bit over the top, Sakura has confidence in her skills and she wants to get even better.”
I know that better than everyone else. After all, I’ve seen what Minazuki Sakura is like when she’s at work. It’s completely different from her usual easygoing attitude.
“Yeah, you really deserve your popularity. Your roles have all been huge successes.”
“Mhm, and Sakura is really happy about that, but…” A bitter smile.
“But? Did something happen?”
“Nothing special. Since Sakura isn’t a perfect human either, there were some drawbacks to her success and also a lot of frustrations.”
“But—” she continued.
“That frustration was pretty severe in Sakura’s case.”
“This isn’t something that Sakura should be telling other people, but during the production of ‘Utopia’, she failed at the auditions.”
Sakura said it like it was nothing, but these words had a big impact on me.
….So it’s not a matter of ‘not getting chosen’ but rather of ‘failing’?
Well, that can happen for the even the best voice actresses out there, so this shouldn’t be all to rare in that scene. But judging from her choice of words, namely ‘failure’, it didn’t seem that simple.
While I was keeping quiet, Sakura continued with a pained expression.
“The reason Sakura failed was because there was a role she just couldn’t act out.”
“That’s…don’t tell me…?!”
“Yep, that’s right. The role of the little sister,” She said as if it were nothing important.
“W-Wait a second. Before, you said that you didn’t understand what it felt like to love little sisters… so that’s why you failed the audition…?”
“Yup,” Sakura softly nodded, “You’re probably wondering why, right? …That’s the main part of my confession.” She took a deep breath and continued, “Sakura told you before that she has a big brother, right? And the reason is that big brother. He’s a totally good-for-nothing siscon.”
“S-Siscon….that kind of siscon, you mean?”
“Yep, he has a sister complex. Towards little sisters specifically. He’s a hardcore siscon, blinded by love for little sisters…” With these words, her smile completely disappeared from her face.
“B-But wait. If what you told me before is true, then he’s not the type to be overprotective or overbearing, right….?”
“That’s true, yeah. How should she say it…? Look, he’s not the type to lay his hands on Sakura or anything… but…” She continued with a pissed off expression, “Like, his feelings are way too strong and it’s irritating… ‘I really treasure you’ or ‘I’m worried about you because you’re like an angel to me’… he’s more of the meddling type.”
Annoying. Just from listening, I thought that.
“Yep, it’s so troublesome…! He’s clearly not in the wrong, but he takes it so far that he always scolds Sakura but doesn’t care about himself, or he always is reading those little sister romance novels right on front of her with no delicacy at all…” Like she was getting irritated, her voice got louder. “When Sakura scolds him, he just goes ‘Even the mad Sakura is so cute’ or ‘It’s fine because Sakura’s Onii-chan is really cool’ and other complete nonsense…! How do you think Sakura would feel after living with him for years and years?!”
“T-That’s gotta be pretty horrible for sure!” I straightened my back as I responded.
“Yes, it is horrible….He’s the worst big brother…That’s why Sakura couldn’t understand what was so great about little sisters and why anyone would be a little sister lover. She hated the idea of loving little sisters.”
….Yeah, looking at her circumstances, it makes sense for her to harbour those feelings.
“But still, since nothing really bad happened until now, Sakura always held back. However, the situation changed.”
“Sakura doesn’t know what triggered it, but her big brother suddenly started to become more irritating, acting more like the older brothers in his books! That’s why Sakura wanted to tell him off, so she went into his room—”
“That’s right…I never asked what really happened…..”
“All over the walls were pictures of Sakura. He even had some of those dakimakura pillows with photos of her on them. The worst part is, he took voice clips of Sakura and spliced them together. ‘I love Onii-chan (Heart)!’ is what the final product was… and he kept that playing on an endless loop inside his room.”
W-Woah, that’s gotta be like a nightmare for her…..!
“When Sakura saw that, it resulted in a big fight, and that’s why she ran away from home….”
“I-I see….That makes sense. To think that Sakura’s big brother would be such a perv—-no! Such a little sister lover…..”
“It’s fine if you want to call him a pervert,” Sakura said.
“Even though you live under the same roof as such an awful big brother, you still managed to understand what it means to love little sisters?”
How did she manage to do that with her big brother basically stalking her?
However, Sakura only smiled at me, saying, “You really don’t know? It’s because I found Onii-chan’s novel.”
“B-Because you found Suzuka—-no, my novel…?”
“That’s right. By pure coincidence, Sakura happened to pick up Onii-chan’s light novel, and that changed her whole world. Before that, she wished that the ‘siscon’ trope would just disappear from this world, but that changed the moment she read your novel,” Her voice sounded like she was reminiscing about something that had happened long ago.
“W-Why such a sudden change….?!”
“Because Sakura thought that the little sister in your novel had a really wonderful life. The feelings of the little sister were transmitted so clearly, and even the big brother was such an understanding, sweet character. The moment Sakura had finished reading it, she really thought that the little sister character trope was something very lovable. When Sakura realized this, she decided that she also wanted to be a little sister like that. Since this was the first time that she had ever felt this way, Sakura was really surprised. But it didn’t end there. Of course, Sakura became a big fan of Toowano-sensei. When she went to get an autograph, she met Onii-chan there. Although she was a bit sceptical at first, Onii-chan was an exact reflection of the big brother in Sensei’s novel.”
“I told you before, right? That I’m nothing like that ideal big brother,” I answered.
“That’s not true,” Sakura responded, “But, that’s how it happened. To Sakura, Sensei— Onii-chan is something like the one who saved her life. Her… hero,” She ended her monologue with a radiant smile.
Of course, I was at a loss for words. I had known that Suzuka’s novel was something special, but to think that it had the power to completely change a person’s heart like that….!
“That’s why Sakura has to pay you back, no matter what it takes.”
“N-No, I didn’t do anything great enough for you to call me hero… and I especially didn’t do something so great that you have to repay me for it…”
I’m nothing more than a stand-in after all… but there was no way that I could tell her that.
“No, this is something that Sakura has to do. Even more so now that Onii-chan is having the same troubles that Sakura had in the past.”
I-Is she really going to give me the clue I still need…?
“But, even if she says that, the answer is relatively simple. Onii-chan just has to accept it.”
Hearing my question, Sakura grinned.
“Onii-chan might’ve not realized it yet, but you already love little sisters from the bottom of your heart.”
“E-Excuse me?!” I couldn’t believe her words.
I was incredibly surprised. It felt like the big wall inside my heart had been torn down.
…..No no no! No no no no! No no no?!
“W-What are you saying?! T-T-That I already love little sisters?!”
“It’s true, you know? Why are you so flustered, hm?”
“Well, because… you know?! A-After you said something so absurd…! On what basis are you saying that anyway?!”
“Let’s see….the most simple proof would be that when we were acting out different characters, you really looked like you loved all of us.”
“You really didn’t realize that? It was the same with Enryuu-sensei and Ahegao-san, and Sakura completely understood it at that point. When Sakura called you Onii-chan, you looked really happy.”
T-There’s no way right?! I got lovestruck because I was called ‘Onii-chan’?! I was happy being surrounded by these cute little sisters?! T-T-T-T-T-That’s impossible?! E-Even though I have a real little sister?!
“Y-You’re lying, right?”
“Sakura is completely serious.”
“An immediate reply?! Y-You’re lying! S-Something like that is…!”
Impossible! I should not develop feelings for little sisters!
No matter how often I screamed these words inside my heart, I couldn’t say them out loud. It felt like something inside me stopped me from doing so.
“I actually… love little sisters?! I-Impossible?!”
“Onii-chan! Onii-chan really is a kind person. But you might be a bit too kind,” Her voice seemed warmer than ever.
Like she was worried, but not pissed. Like she just wanted to watch over me and give me strength.
“Seeing you worry like this, Sakura understands that you really treasure little sisters from the bottom of your heart. But, there’s no need to worry, okay? Just like you treasure them, Sakura is sure that they equally treasure you as ‘Onii-chan’. That’s why it’s okay for you to be more honest with yourself.”
“B-But just because of that….”
“Have some more confidence, Onii-chan. You will be accepted no matter what happens.”
In that moment, I felt a presence looming closer towards me. I felt Sakura’s breath on my ears.
“Because—” She murmured,
“—Onii-chan is the best ‘Onii-chan’ ever—”
And I felt a soft, warm feeling on my cheek.
In surprise, I turned to look at her. What I saw was Sakura as she looked at me with flushed cheeks.
What did she do? — That was pretty obvious.
But, why? Sakura did?
While I was lost trying to figure out why this was happening, Sakura continued with a bright red face.
“You said that you would listen to Sakura’s confession, right?”
Thump My heart skipped a beat.
So that confession part wasn’t about the thing with her big brother…..?
“After living together with Onii-chan for a whole week, Sakura understands once again how kind you are… That’s why Sakura loves her Onii-chan. Both the one on the novel and the real one. From the bottom of her heart… she loves him…” She had her usual smile on her face, and both her hands in front of her chest, making it look like she was praying.
That confession didn’t look fake. It also didn’t look like she was just pretending to be some character.
I couldn’t move. Not a single muscle would listen to me.
It felt like time had stopped. Like this moment would continue for ever. However—
Time started moving again. I turned towards where the voice had come from. When I saw who it was, all the air left my lungs.
“Suzu……ka?” Her body started shivering the instant she heard my voice.
And in the next moment, my little sister dashed off.
I should confess that I have these feelings that I can barely keep from overflowing. I should tell Onii-chan directly how I feel about him.
…That’s what I’d thought. I’d thought that I had no other choice. To make him fall in love with little sisters, I would have to surpass my own limits. That’s why, once this amusement park date was over, I would confess to him. Or at least that’s what I’d thought.
But the little sister who had done it wasn’t me.
After freshening up in the bathroom, I hurried to where Onii-chan would be waiting for me. However, the scene that awaited me there was the one I feared the most.
“—–That’s why, Sakura loves her Onii-chan. Both the one on the novel and the real one. From the bottom of her heart….she loves him….—–”
At first, I thought that this wasn’t real. That Sakura-san was just troubling Onii-chan again with her weird acting. But…
Before I could even comprehend what was happening, my husky voice reached him.
“Suzu….ka?” He turned to me with a shocked expression.
Hearing Onii-chan’s voice then make my whole body and heart shake.
And, before I had even realized it, I was already running away. To get away from Onii-chan’s voice, to get away from that scene, I forgot everything and just continued to run away.
I wonder what’s happening over there. What Onii-chan and Sakura-san are doing. What Sakura-san’s words meant. I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t… want to know.
“Haa…..Haaa……..” With rough breathing, I just continued to run.
But, soon after that, I reached my limit. Having come to a stop, my shoulders heaved heavily as I gasped for air. In the middle of that, I lifted up my head and before me was a small — incredibly small garden. In the shadow of some sort of attraction, it was hidden between countless trees, like a forgotten place. There was one little bench there surrounded by a beautiful flower bed. Before I realized it, I sat down on that bench. Doing so, I felt a nostalgic sensation, like something from a long time ago.
“Onii-chan….you idiot….!” These words happened to come out of my mouth as I remembered that scene from before.
That was… a confession. Sakura-san confessed to Onii-chan. Words that clearly reflect what she feels for him. Faster than me, she mustered up all of her courage and confessed to Onii-chan. As I reminded myself of that, my heart felt like it would sink into the ocean.
“I’m the idiot…”
And seeing all that, I ran away and came here. Because I didn’t have the strength to see it through to the end.
…I really am an idiot. A coward.
Being unable to be honest, always making problems for Onii-chan, unable to tell him my feelings… and that’s why I’m the one sitting here alone, crying.
My view is getting blurry, my tears are dropping onto the flowers beneath me, and my heart is hurting so much that I can’t describe it.
I can’t cry. As if I would — the more I thought that, the more tears streamed out.
….T-This isn’t good. I have to pull myself together….! It’s true that Sakura-san confessed to Onii-chan… but I didn’t hear his answer yet…..!
A slight glimmer of hope.
I’m not trying to cheer myself up. It just feels like I’ll completely break down if I don’t start thinking like that… and I’m scared of that. That’s why I have to keep telling myself that everything will be fine. Like I’m praying.
But another deadly thought came out of the darkest recesses of my mind.
…….What if Onii-chan accepts Sakura-san’s confession?
In that moment, it felt like a sharp pain had grabbed my heart. I couldn’t pray anymore. I was just so unbelievably worried about what I would do, like a child teetering on the spot, not knowing what to do or where to go.
…If Onii-chan really were to accept Sakura-san’s feelings… if they started going out… what would I do?
—Where will my place be in all of that?
—Being unable to be a cute little sister, will he eventually forget about me?
—I don’t want that! That is… impossible for me…!
—But that might really happen, you know?! It might already be in the happening, you know?!
—They would just forget about me, run away, and have a fun time with just the two of them…..!
—And, Onii-chan would never turn around to look at me ever again……!
It felt like Onii-chan was going to a place far, far away without me. Leaving me here all alone, sitting on this bench where everyone has forgotten about me. Endlessly alone like this, never being able to see Onii-chan again—
No matter how ridiculous it may sound, my heart seemed like it was about to break into pieces.
My body started shaking, and the tears wouldn’t stop flowing.
Being unable to think about anything, I just kept calling for my most beloved person. Even though I knew very well that my voice wouldn’t reach him, I couldn’t stop myself.
…..Onii-chan Onii-chan Onii-chan Onii-chan Onii-can…….!
Like raindrops, my tears where mercilessly falling down into my hands — and in that moment, it happened.
“So you were in a place like this!”
My breathing…..stopped. I thought that it was impossible. But, standing there, it was really him. With rough breathing and serious eyes, but still with a worried expression. It was my most beloved person.
“I’ve been searching for you all over the place, Suzuka.”
Saying these words, he had a relieved smile on his face.
At that time, all these doubts and worries, all the pain and sadness, everything was blown away. Instead, I was filled with pure happiness, and a feeling of nostalgia.
“Hey Suzuka! Wait! Please!” I tried stopping her with my voice, but her back slowly vanished into the distance as she ran away.
I wanted to immediately chase after her, but someone grabbed my arm.
“Why?! Let me go! I have to chase after her!”
“Yup. But, Sakura still didn’t hear the answer to her confession.” Hearing her words, it felt like my heart was being torn in two.
Even though I was about to dash off, I completely froze up. And eventually, I remembered Sakura’s confession just now. With a serious face, she looked straight at me. She showed no signs of letting go of my hand.
“…..Sorry. I will still chase after Suzuka.”
I honestly said out what came flying into my heart. Right now, I couldn’t think about anything else.
“……….Is that so,” She muttered with a lonely expression, lowering her head.
However, in the next second, she lifted up her head again and I saw Sakura’s usual smiling face.
“Even after all Sakura said and did, it seems like it is still her loss.”
In the next second, she dropped the little sister act and started talking to me in her usual manner.
“Really Sensei, why are you so surprised? Just now, that was Sakura acting for the competition, you know! How was it? Did it get your heart beating faster?”
“…..Eh? Eh? Acting…..?”
“Like she said~, it was just an act to win the competition between Sakura and Suzuka. Sakura was hoping that being suddenly confessed to by your little sister would help you become a little sister lover. It seems like it didn’t work out, though.”
Even though I clearly heard her words, it took me a second to process them. Shortly after, I finally finished analysing them and I understood the situation.
“Acting….I-I see, that makes sense! I was really worried for a second!”
I put my hand on my chest, letting out a big sigh. Sakura watched me doing that with a lonesome expression— but also a happy face.
“Sensei really is the best Onii-chan there is….”
“Eh? What do you mean by that — and you’ve started calling me Sensei again… is your little sister act over?”
“Mhm… Is that really important right now? Shouldn’t you be chasing after Suzuka-chan?”
“—!!! That’s right. I’m sorry, but I’ll be going!”
“Yes, please find her quickly. Sakura is sure that Suzuka-chan is waiting for Sensei.”
Turning around once more to bow down with a “Sorry,” I dashed off. With that, the conversation from before completely vanished from my head and I directed all my thoughts towards finding Suzuka.
In that moment, I felt like I heard a quiet voice.
“In the end, Sakura still can’t win against the real deal…..”
“Shit….! She won’t answer!” Separating my phone from my ear, I stuffed it back into my pocket.
I tried calling her countless times, but to no avail.
…..For now, I should check the places that she would probably go to….!
“I know! If I call for her with an announcement—” I thought out loud for a bit, but I stopped mid-sentence, shaking my head.
….No no no, that won’t work. She’s not exactly a lost child; she ran away on her own accord, so there’s no reason for her to come back after hearing an announcement.
“There’s no other choice but to search for her…!” I continued running.
Rest areas, shops, restaurants, and viewpoints, I checked all of them, hoping that she might be there. But she was not. She was nowhere to be seen. But my feet never stopped. I completely ignored my rough breathing and continued to search for Suzuka.
—Onii-chan might not have realized it yet, but you already love little sisters from the bottom of your heart—
In that moment, Sakura’s words reverberated inside of my head.
“Ah, for crying out loud! I know! I knew from the very start!”
Yeah, I knew. I was aware of it. Just how much I actually loved little sisters. Just how cute I thought they were. Just how much — of a little sister lover I actually was.
But I was unable to accept that fact. Why? There was only one reason for that!
—Because I have Suzuka! Because I have a real little sister that hates her big brother! What if I openly admitted that I love little sisters? She would hate me even more than ever!
That’s why I closed off my feelings. That’s why I’ve been continuing to tell myself that I didn’t feel anything for little sisters.
In the end, that just resulted in that incident with Sakurada-san… and Suzuka dashing off like this…….! What the hell was I even doing?!
“What the fucking hell were you doing, you shitty big brother?!”
I grit my teeth. I hit myself. I was so mad — at the one who had left Suzuka alone like this. I couldn’t forgive myself.
….But this isn’t the time to be thinking about that. For now, finding Suzuka is all that matters. But… shit, where are you, Suzuka!
It happened in that moment. I didn’t know why, but for some reason, a very nostalgic feeling assaulted me. Similar to a déjà-vu. I couldn’t exactly recall what it was, but my feet still moved toward that place. In front of my view, there was something. A small garden — even smaller than I remembered. And, sitting on a bench, there was Suzuka.
“So you were here!”
Before I even realized, I had already called out to her. As she lifted up her head, I could see that she was crying. And seeing her like that sent a sharp pain through my heart. But even more than that, I was relieved that I had finally found her.
“I’ve been looking for you all over the place, Suzuka.”
Hearing my words, Suzuka looked like she was about to break out crying again. However, she immediately averted her face and wiped away the traces of her tears.
“W-Why did you come here…..!” She answered in a shaking voice, “O-Onii-chan was confessed to by Sakura-san, right…..? What business did you have coming here…..! It would’ve been fine to stay with such a cute girl and spend time with her……!” Without looking at me, she looked like she was pouting.
“N-No, that wasn’t what you think! You’re misunderstanding!”
“Misunderstanding…..? Just how could I misunderstand a situation like that…..!”
“Sakura was just saying that because she wanted to win the competition between the two of you! She was just acting!”
“T-That’s a lie! There’s no way that she was just acting!”
“It’s the truth! Sakura even said so herself!”
“She was lying! It has to be a lie! Please don’t lie to me like that…..!” She just kept on shaking her head furiously, not willing to listen to me at all.
—The important thing is that you don’t lie to your little sisters.—
I remembered Sakura’s words.
….Yeah, I know. I was lying to her all this time. It’s all my fault—-that’s why I’ll do this myself. Even if, as result, Suzuka hates me even more than she already does now. That will be my punishment.
“I declare it here and now! Everything I say from now on will be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth! I swear! So please believe me!”
“O-Onii-chan?! W-What’s this so suddenly!”
“I will say it once more! Sakura’s confession was just acting. It wasn’t the real deal!”
“A-Again….! How often do I have to tell you that you’re clearly lying—”
But I didn’t give her the time to finish her sentence. Instead, I screamed out at the top of my lungs.
“The truth is, I’ve always been a little sister lover!”
Hearing my words, Suzuka froze up.
……Ah, I said it! I went and said it! There’s no turning back now! I’ll let out all out.
“Yeah, that’s right! I’ve always liked little sisters! That’s why I have so many light novels where the heroine is a little sister, after all! I only buy eroge if they have a little sister in them, and I always play the little sister route first!”
“Wha……Wha?!” Suzuka almost screamed as she stared at me with wide eyes and a red face.
However, now that I had started, I couldn’t stop myself anymore. I had to say everything out loud.
“The whole reason why I started loving light novels was because the first one I read was a love comedy with a little sister in it! After that, I couldn’t stop myself anymore! And after reading your novel, I found the best little sister character there is! I can say that with confidence!”
“Y-Y-Y-Y-Y-Y-You’re lying! O-O-O-Onii-chan can’t be…..! T-T-T-T-T-Towards little sisters! Lies! Lies! Lies!”
“It’s not a lie! Like I said, everything I’m saying is definitely the truth! Okay? For me, little sisters are the best attribute ever! It feels like it’s my destiny to protect them! The feeling of someone depending on me but still being kind to me! The cuteness of someone younger than me! And, most importantly, being called ‘Onii-chan’ by them!”
“Everything is cute! Nothing about them isn’t cute! The best attribute there is… Is little sisters!” Trying to give my words more impact, I formed a fist.
As I did, Suzuka’s face was so red that it looked like it was about to explode.
“W-W-W-W-What kind of embarrassing things are you screaming out in broad daylight! And what’s with you so suddenly?! You always said that you didn’t really like little sisters! So why now…..!”
Because I don’t have any reason to hide it anymore. Now I will be honest with myself.
“I’ve always tried to hide it. Not just from you, but also from myself. I kept telling myself that I didn’t like little sisters until I really believed it. I kept telling myself that loving little sisters is not good.”
“And, why did you think that…..?”
“Because I didn’t want you to hate me any more than you already do.”
That was probably the lamest confession I had ever made. But I had to say it now.
“If you were to find out that I was a siscon, then you would hate me even more… that’s what I thought. Because of that, I continued to tell myself that I shouldn’t love little sisters… until now.”
“But—” I continued.
“Because of that, I kept making problems for you… That’s why I’ve decided. I don’t care if you hate me. But in return, I will never hurt you anymore!”
“Leave the thing with Sakurada-san to me! Now that I’ve realized my true feelings, I will not lose against anyone! I will never allow him to change my beloved little sister character, so rest assured!”
With that, my monologue-like confession ended. In between the silence, I was breathing roughly.
…..I’m sure that I made her mad with that confession. After all, her big brother is a disgusting siscon.
But the words Suzuka said next completely threw me off.
“T-There is no way that I would hate Onii-chan just because of that!” Glaring at me with tears in her eyes, it was like she threw these words at me, “What’s up with that! Why are you doing something like that just for me….! Suffering all on your own…..! What were you thinking!”
“I am really mad right now! Why didn’t you tell me any sooner? If you had done that, then……!”
“E-Even if you say that, I only realized it just now….”
“But, the one I can’t forgive the most…..is myself! To make Onii-chan suffer like that…..! It’s my fault that it’s come to this… so why…!” Her small body was shaking with anger, and she formed a first with her hand, “So why am I so incredibly happy right now…! Just because Onii-chan thinks like that… why am I feeling so blissful… ehehehehe!”
…So, are you crying or laughing right now? And what kind of reaction is this…?
Seeing her wild variety of expressions, I wasn’t sure what to do.
“W-What is it?”
“Ehm, so, will you forgive me?”
“There is nothing that I could forgive you for…! Since Onii-chan actually likes little sisters, that solves all of our problems!”
“T-That might be the case, but still! You know?! I’m a siscon, you know?!”
“And I told you before, didn’t I! There is no way that I would hate Onii-chan just because of that!”
“How can you say that so confidently…? I-Isn’t it, you know, disgusting?”
“On the contrary, it makes me incredibly happy — no, not that! I’ve always known that Onii-chan was a pervert, so something of that level doesn’t surprise me anymore!”
“That hurts! That hurts far more than if you were to call me disgusting!”
Still, hearing her words was really comforting. Knowing that she won’t hate me even though I am a siscon. With that thought, I could feel a weight disappearing from inside my chest.
…Haha, I feel like smiling all of a sudden.
“…Suzuka, I’m sorry that I forced you to help me out with these special lessons. It must’ve been really stressful for you.”
“N-No, it had its benefits! Although Sakura-san was a bit difficult to deal with, in the end it was all okay! Just thinking that you finally admitted being a siscon… Ehehe, ehehehehehehehehehe…!”
…Yup, I don’t really know what to make of that reaction. But there’s one thing I understood. Even after that confession, nothing will change between me and Suzuka. Just thinking that calms me down. I’m really glad…
“Ah, s-should we go back for now…?” Suddenly getting embarrassed, I blurted out these words.
With flushed cheeks, Suzuka kept muttering something under her breath.
“O-Onii-chan does…!” or “He accepted the fact that he’s a siscon…!” but she’s probably just trying to process all of this. Yup.
“Hey, we’re going to go back to where Sakura is now!”
In response to my words, Suzuka went “Hya?!”, returning to reality. And just when we were about to leave the garden behind…
“U-Uhm, Onii-chan?” Suzuka grabbed my sleeve.
“I-It’s about the result of the competition… Who won in the end? As your little sister, who was more cute? Sakura-san or I…?” She asked with a red face.
Seeing her expectant gaze as she looked up at me, my heart skipped a beat.
“L-Let me see….”
Normally, I would’ve hesitated in such a situation, but this time my answer came immediately. Now that I was finally being honest with myself, it felt like something inside me had changed.
“Since the competition was about who could make my heart beat faster by playing character, that would be your win.”
“T-That makes sense! B-But it’s not like I’m happy or anything?! It should’ve been obvious that, as your real sister, I would be the winner, right?!” She was fiddling with her hands furiously.
…Even though I had accepted my own feelings now, she’s still focused on winning… just how much of a superhuman do you have to be…
But, the next moment, Suzuka stopped her fidgeting and turned back to look at the little garden once more.
“It’s the same as before.”
“Onii-chan, do you remember this place?”
Compared to how I remembered it, it seemed a bit smaller. Now that she mentioned it, though, I did remember this place.
“When we were kids, something similar to this happened. If I remember correctly, we went here with our parents, but you got separated from us. After searching for you everywhere, I found you here, sitting on that bench.”
“….Yes. Although it was just a coincidence that I happened to end up in this place again.”
“But why did you get separated from us, again? Were you lost or something?”
“No, that wasn’t it… Do you not remember? That promise… that turned into my pen name…”
“Promise…? And your pen name…?”
“No, it’s fine if you don’t remember. Let’s just go back to where Sakura-san is waiting. We’ve made her wait for quite a while, after all.”
Although I tilted my head in confusion, Suzuka didn’t pay any attention to me as she walked off. Without knowing anything about the promise she’d mentioned, I decided to walk after her.
…But isn’t there something that I’m forgetting?
In that moment, it felt like I had forgotten to tell Suzuka something.
…T-That’s not good! I-I shouldn’t have forgotten about that in the first place!
“…? What is it, Onii-chan?”
Stopping in my tracks, she turned around as I called out to her.
“It’s true that I’m a siscon! B-But, that just means that I like little sisters in general! There’s no way that I would get crazy about my blood-related little sister, so please rest assured!”
That was the one thing I wanted her to understand.
“………..Haaah,” However, after listening, she merely took a deep breath and continued, “I’m well aware of that.” She smiled at me and started walking again.
…I’m glad… I didn’t want her to have a misunderstanding about that.
“Was that all? Then, let’s hurry back.”
“A-Ah, yeah,” I hurried after her.
“…For now, this is perfectly fine.”
As I caught up to her, I could’ve sworn that she mumbled something to herself. I couldn’t quite make it out, though, because the noisy attractions around us drowned out her words.
When we returned to the pool, Sakura was still sitting on the bench and eating some snacks.
“Really, do you know how long Sakura has been waiting here?”
As we apologized, Sakura was the same as always, smiling as if she was happy that I found Suzuka.
“But, it’s Sakura’s loss, huh……Ahhh, how frustrating….”
“T-That was to be expected. I am Onii-chan’s real little sister after all.”
After what happened, we didn’t need special lessons anymore, so we decided to go home for now. Like it was the most natural thing in the world, we ate dinner together and prepared for the following day. However…
“I can’t sleep……..” I muttered while looking up at the ceiling in the middle of the night.
Thinking that maybe I should grab a bite to eat, I stood up from the bed and headed towards the first floor. I noticed that there was already someone in the living room.
“Sakura? Why are you up this late? Is something wrong?”
“Sakura couldn’t fall asleep. Onii-chan too?”
As I nodded, I prepared something for her to drink. I decided to make her some hot chocolate, since she seemed to have quite the sweet tooth.
“Today was really fun,” She sipped the hot chocolate in silence for a bit, only to start a conversation with me again.
“Yeah… Though a lot of things happened.”
For some reason, Sakura never asked what happened after I caught up with Suzuka, or anything along those lines at all.
“It seems like Sakura still has a lot to learn as a little sister,” It seemed like she had finally reverted back to her usual way of speaking, away from the little sister act. “Amusement park date aside, Sakura was always trying to give it her best as she was staying over at Sensei’s house. But, in the end, she was just imitating the little sister of Sensei’s novel: Yuika-chan. Did you realize this, by any chance?”
“Ahhh, well, I thought that maybe that was the case.”
“But in the end, an imitation is just an imitation. I can’t win against the real thing.”
“Ah, but Sakura didn’t give up just because of that, okay? In the end, she still has to become a good little sister on her own, without imitating anyone else. Her desire to become Sensei’s number one little sister has only grown stronger!”
“U-Uhm, how do I say it….good luck…..?” I was unable to find a fitting response for that, but Minazuki-san said “Yes!” with a big smile nonetheless.
“Also, now that Sensei has realized that he’s a siscon, Sakura’s charm will be transmitted even more directly, so you’d better be ready!”
“Please take it easy on me….”
As I felt the cold sweat on my forehead, Minazuki-san changed the topic with a “By the way….”
“Tomorrow, Sensei will meet this person again that you had that argument with, right? What kind of person is he anyway, talking like that to Sensei?”
…..Ah, right, I haven’t told her about Sakurada-san.
Thinking that Minazuki-san knew almost everything already anyway, I decided that it wouldn’t hurt if I told her about the Sakurada-san’s incident directly. However…..
“Eh? Director Sakurada….?”
As the conversation moved forward, I realized that Minazuki-san’s expression was becoming more grim. And as soon as I had finished explaining, she kept muttering “It can’t be…” countless times.
“U-Uhm, is there something wrong….?”
Hearing my question, Minazuki-san merely shook her head. Though she still looked weird, so I wanted to press the issue, but…..
“Sakura doesn’t feel so good……For today, she will go to sleep. Thank you very much for the coffee,” With these words, she hurriedly returned to her room.
After putting away the cups, I also returned to my room. In the end, I was still thinking about the expression Minazuki-san had while I was talking to her. But the sleepiness caught up to me, and before I realized it, it was already morning.
When I went down on the first floor to wash my face, Suzuka came, panicking.
“Onii-chan! Sakura-san is gone! Instead there was this…..!” She handed me a piece of paper.
Written on that was:
Sakura has been in your care for these past few days. She will certainly repay you. However, there is something that Sakura has to do now. Sakura is sorry for not saying goodbye in person.
“It seems like she left the house very early in the morning. Her belongings are gone and she properly put away the futon too.”
Listening to Suzuka’s words, I tilted my head in confusion.
…Is this related to last night? Her expression had changed while we were talking, and I didn’t know why. And that ‘There is something that I have to do now’ part of the letter is also very suspicious.
“I don’t know what has happened either, but it seems like she might have important business. We know that she’s probably fine, so let’s think about her after that meeting with Sakurada-san…..”
“You look worried, Suzuka.”
“I-It’s not like that. I was just surprised that she left so suddenly after she’s been living with us for a week,” She quickly averted her gaze and left the bathroom.
I felt just as confused as Suzuka, but there were more pressing matters at hand that I had to focus on.
Having finished eating our breakfast, we made our way once more towards the editorial department.
“It’s finally time….”
“Don’t worry. I’ll definitely convince Sakurada-san.”
As Suzuka muttered while looking up at the department building, I replied with a confident voice. We had accomplished our earlier goal, so there’s no need for us to be anxious.
“I-It’s not like I’m worried…..A-After all, Onii-chan finally realized that he’s a siscon after all, so that alone is plenty for me…..ehehe, ehehehehe…..!” She went red all the way to her ears.
…..Maybe she’s worried that I won’t be able to convince Sakurada-san? If that’s the case, then there’s no need for that. I don’t feel like I’m able to lose to anyone in that regard.
“Leave it to me,” I said to Suzuka as we went into the building.
After we stated our business at the reception desk, Shinozaki-san came over to greet us in a matter of minutes.
“I’m sorry for making you come over here again. Sakurada really is stubborn sometimes… Until now, I’ve always held back on my kouhai, but I will not tolerate him talking down to Towano-sensei! Now that it’s come to this, I will think of something to—”
“N-No, I will handle this incident, so please calm down.”
While she was still a bit aggravated, we made our way towards our meeting room.
“……Towano-sensei, I see that you’re together with your little sister today as well,” After glancing at Suzuka for one second, Sakurada-san looked towards me with a gaze filled with hostility.
Although he was still wearing the same clothes as the week before, his sense of intimidation was gone for some reason.
“And, what might your business be today? I came here on the whim of my Senpai, but I don’t think that I have anything to talk about with Towano-sensei.”
“That’s not the case. Although you might not have anything you think is worth discussing, we do.”
“…And what would that be?”
“It’s about your plan to change the little sister character for the anime production. I’m going to have to be honest; we can’t allow that to happen, so you have to guarantee us that you will not follow through with that,” Because I was so straightforward, Sakurada-san looked at me with big eyes. However…..
“So it really was about that. I believe I told you before that it’s already decided. No matter how wonderful Sensei’s novel might be, Sensei himself doesn’t understand what it means to be a little sister lover, so I have to change the character accordingly—”
“I don’t mean to be rude, but I don’t think that there is a bigger little sister lover than I around here.”
Since my attitude was filled with confidence, Sakurada-san had a dubious expression.
“That being said, I wasn’t able to show that last week, so I will have to apologize for that. However, I’m different now, so there is no need to change the character.”
“…What happened? You don’t meant to tell me that you learned what it means to be a siscon in a mere week?”
“No, I didn’t have to learn that. I just remembered it. Because I was always a siscon.”
In response, Sakurada-san lifted up one eyebrow. As I looked to my side, I saw Suzuka and Shinozaki-san.
“So, Sakurada-san, what about you? Now that I’ve finally awakened, are you really sure that you understand what it means to be a little sister lover?”
“…How surprising. You’re trying to start a dispute with me?”
“That’s certainly not the case. However, I remembered… that last week you didn’t describe in any detail your feelings towards little sisters in general.”
“Fuu… fine by me. If you’re going so far as to say that, I will share my thoughts with you. However, the conclusion will not change. I will be changing the little sister character, so there’s no need for Sensei to meddle with that.”
“For now, I’ll listen.”
“…It’s certainly not an overstatement to call little sisters the best characteristic there is,” Sakurada-san pushed up his sunglasses as he started talking in a calm manner, “Even though they are from the same family, they belong to the opposite sex. This makes them very close, but still very far. And the immorality born from that is far greater than from any other characteristic.”
Calm, but impactful words. He clearly was confident in what he was saying.
“You might even call it a drug. Once you know of it, you will never be able to forget it…..! Them being simply cute, or the desire to protect them, other characteristics cannot win against them! That’s just how magnificent they are!” And he didn’t stop there, “The beings called little sisters are gods! They are the greatest characteristic! And I am merely an apostle! Licking them, sniffing them, hugging them, they are always within reach but at the same time an unobtainable flower! And I have to be the messiah that tells the world how great they are—”
“I… understand. It’s fine now, Sakurada-san,” I stopped Sakurada-san mid-sentence, tilting my head.
“What do you mean? Have you finally realized that you cannot understand what a real siscon feels—”
“No, on the contrary. After listening to you now, I completely understand.”
“Aren’t you the one who doesn’t understand what it means to be a siscon?”
“W-What did you just say…? I don’t understand what it means to be a siscon…? Impossible! I don’t want to be told that by someone like you!”
“No, it really is a shame, but you are the one who doesn’t understand. I completely understand now. Because—”
In that moment, I glanced over at Suzuka for once second, only to continue shortly after.
“You only pursue your own desires, but you don’t care about the little sister’s feelings at all. That’s not what it means to love little sisters.”
“T-The little sister’s feelings?!”
“I agree that little sisters really are the best characteristic, and that nothing can beat them. I also understand your desires for licking them, sniffing them and hugging them. However, you should only do that if it makes the little sister happy, too.”
“W-What are you saying! Something as ridiculous as that…!”
“That statement just now proves that I am in the right! You don’t know what it means to love little sisters; you’re just an insane fanatic! If you really loved them from the bottom of your heart, then you wouldn’t do anything that would hurt them!” I pointed towards Sakurada-san with my finger.
“I-Impossible! Following after your desires is what it means to be a true little sister lover! Even if it means that they hate you for it! You, who aren’t hated by your blood-related little sister, are the fake little sister lover!”
“Ha!” Hearing that response, I could barely hold back my smile.
“Your true opinion is leaking out! Just from that one sentence, it’s clear that you are nothing more than a lowly fanatic! This is your misconception! But, I am different! Like this—”
Saying that, I tightly hugged Suzuka who was standing next to me.
“Being loved by your little sister despite your faults is what makes you a true little sister lover!”
With overflowing confidence, I said that out loud. Seeing me like this, Sakurada-san stared at me with wide open eyes, and Shinozaki-san started nodding for some reason.
…I alone couldn’t have arrived at this conclusion. If Suzuka hadn’t told me that she wouldn’t hate me no matter what, I probably would never have realized it. What I like is the little sister attribute, not my little sister herself. But in the end, my little sister is still a little sister. The most important part of loving little sisters is to treasure the ‘Little sister’ attribute. That’s why you should never hurt your little sister in any way. To achieve this, I have to become a reliable big brother. Which is something very simple now that I think about it.
Treasure everything that has the name ‘little sister’ associated with it — that is the central concept behind loving little sisters, and being called ‘Onii-chan’ is the minimum requirement!
Sakurada-san just glared at me as I continued hugging Suzuka. Finally, he started shaking his head.
“I won’t accept that…! I will not accept that! Being a little sister lover and being accepted by your little sister… I will not accept that! As if I would!” Burning with rage, he stood up, “As if I could accept that! Now that it’s come to this, I will change the character for sure! To make her just like my own little sister!”
I was a bit confused by his words but I didn’t have the time to question him…
“Will you stop that already!!!”
An incredibly loud voice resounded inside the room, making everyone twitch and turn towards the source of the voice. Standing there was…
“Don’t say Sakura-tan! And what do you think you’re doing?! Changing a character in Sensei’s novel for the anime? Care to explain yourself, Nii-san?” It was the Minazuki-san who had run away from our house.
…Wait? Sakura-tan? …And Nii-san…?
“Y-You’re wrong, Sakura-tan! There’s some circumstances behind this…!”
“Ohhh, then please tell Sakura about these oh-so-important circumstances that forced you to trouble Sensei like this and to do something as stupid as change the original character!” As Minazuki-san started scolding Sakurada-san, he immediately stood up from his chair and bowed down countless times, saying “S-S-S-S-Sorry!”
W-What is going on?
“…Towano-sensei, Sakura is so sorry for everything. Things went south like this because of her idiot big brother…” As I asked her, Minazuki-san apologized.
…Wait, by “big brother” does she mean…?
“D-Don’t tell me; is Sakurada-san the perverted siscon big brother you were talking about…?”
“Yes, that’s him…” She turned around to glare at Sakurada-san, who was still bowing down while saying “Sakura-tan I’m sorry, Sakura-tan I’m sorry…”
“Sakura didn’t think that her big brother would trouble Sensei so much… Having heard Sensei’s story yesterday, Sakura thought that something sounded familiar.”
….Ah, that explains her reaction at that time.
“Sakura actually planned on coming here to grab her big brother by the ear. But she just barely missed him… So, what exactly might this character change be about, big brother?”
“You’re wrong, Sakura-tan… That was just a figure of speech or something…”
“Then properly explain it to Sakura!”
“Hyiiiiiii?!” Letting out a loud shriek, he started explaining the circumstances with tears in his eyes.
…By the way, that ikemen aura from before was completely gone.
“I really love Towano-sensei’s novel and I actually planned on faithfully adapting his novel into an anime! After he came here, and with his beautiful blood-related little sister nonetheless, I really thought that he was an amazing person!”
“But….” He continued.
“After talking with him, I realized that he didn’t actually love little sisters at all… He was completely different from what I had imagined…”
“Ah, that might’ve been my fault…”
“And in addition, he was accompanied by his blood-related little sister, and it made me really mad… At the time, Sakura-tan had just run away from home, so it was like a switch just flipped in my mind…”
“So you were mad just because of that?!”
“I-I knew very well that I was just acting like a child, but I couldn’t control my anger… And before I had realized it, I had said that I would change the character…”
“Do you have any idea how much you troubled Towano-sensei with that over the past week…?”
A black aura was emitting Minazuki-san’s body, and, seeing that, Sakurada-san continued bowing down to her in a panic.
“I-I never actually planned on really doing it, you know! But after Sensei appeared in Sakura-tan’s radio broadcast, I thought I would go crazy. When I asked your manager, she told me that you were staying over at his house and my head couldn’t keep up…”
“Ah, was that the reason you were there that day? To check on Minazuki-san?”
…So that’s why he suddenly disappeared when the two of them returned…
“Hmph, so in the end, you still decided on changing the character?”
“Y-You’re wrong! I just thought I’d give him a hard time for a bit more! We were going to meet up again later this week, so I thought that I’d tell him then that we’d do it like the original!”
“But you still haven’t, right? I hope you’re prepared for this…”
W-Woah… Her smile just now was ice cold…
“S-Sakura-tan! I didn’t think that he would’ve actually changed that much in one week! And hearing him say that I was wrong the whole time about little sisters… I couldn’t calm down anymore… B-But it was thanks to Towano-sensei’s novel that I ascended to a new stage of loving little sisters in the first place!”
“Eh? So it was basically my fault that you took a turn for the worse…?”
“That’s right! Because your novel was so superb, I felt that I had to step up my love for little sisters one more level or the anime wouldn’t be as good as the novel! That’s why I thought that I had to really fall in love with Sakura-tan or it wouldn’t work…..!”
So in the end… it was all because both of them read Suzuka’s novel…?
“So you mean to tell me that you started acting so weirdly just because of that?!”
“I-I thought that if I didn’t go to the extreme like that, I wouldn’t be able to catch up to Towano-sensei! As an anime producer, something like that would be inexcusable, right?!”
Ah, I finally understood. This person was just a straightforward and honest idiot.
“That still isn’t an excuse!”
“T-That is just as you say… I was just so mad, thinking that I had lost against Sensei, that I thought of really going through with the change…”
“It makes sense that you lost! Unlike Nii-san, who basically forced Sakura to run away from her home, Sensei actually treasures little sisters, which is why he deserves to be called ‘Onii-chan’!”
“Uhhh, Sakura-tan….Still, I really didn’t intend to change the character, so please forgive me!”
“P-Please stop already!”
As Sakurada-san went down on his knees to bow down, I was panicking. It’s not like I was really mad at him or anything, and I still feel like I’m the one at fault here… As long as he doesn’t change anything, I’m fine with that.
“I-It’s fine… I’m not mad anymore.”
“R-Really?! Thank you so much, Towano-sensei!”
“Just so you know, even if Senpai forgives you, Sakura will not. This is the perfect opportunity, so from now on, Sakura will work on removing that siscon personality from you!”
“Fumu, to think that Sakurada was so crazy about little sisters… It seems like even I didn’t know him all that well…” Shinozaki-san said as she watched the scene in front of her.
In the end, I decided to watch the siblings quarrel in silence.
“H-H-How long are you planning on staying like this…!”
While Minazuki-san was still mid-scolding, I heard a voice coming from inside my arms. Looking down, I saw Sakura glaring up at me with a red face, and I finally realized that I was still hugging her tightly.
“S-Sorry!” I hurriedly let go of her.
“J-Just how much does Onii-chan actually love little sisters…!” She might’ve sounded pissed, but it looked like she was grinning as she turned away, “Even saying all those things out loud….! Like licking… sniffing… hugging…!”
Now that she said that, I started to remember what I had actually said to Sakurada-san….
…What was I even saying…?!
And in the middle of all the things I had said, there were some really dangerous things mixed in!
…I really have to apologize to Suzuka!
“S-Sorry Suzuka! I said too much, didn’t I!?”
That’s right, even though she said that she wouldn’t hate me, she never said that she actually enjoyed it…! And I still had said all that…! What was I thinking?!
I lowered my head, waiting for Suzuka’s response.
…But she didn’t say anything.
Slowly lifting up my head, I saw Suzuka nervously fidgeting.
“O-Onii-chan, I-I actually l-l-l-l-l-l———… well, I didn’t really hate it, so it’s fine…” She said and hurriedly averted her gaze.
Though, for one second, she once more looked at me with flushed cheeks…
“Thank you very much, Onii-chan…”
Being suddenly thanked like that, my heart skipped a beat.
…Was that her gratitude for this incident?
I didn’t know exactly why, but my mouth moved before I could think and I responded.