＃ ＃ ＃
The cold wind blows today as well.
Kouhai-chan is wearing a checkered muffler, and she greets me as usual.
「That looks warm.」
「Ah, you realized it, senpai? This is really warm~」
She puts her hands to her neck and appeals her muffler to me.
Her hair also sways together, and I can see how fluffy it is.
The train comes, together with the autumn wind.
We settle in our usual position, facing each other as always.
There is a bit of heating inside the train, and with how much people are getting into the train, it starts to become warmer.
Since I just got up in the morning, being exposed to warm air makes me feel like I have returned to my blanket. Simply put, it makes me sleepy. I just ate my breakfast as well, and I feel quite full.
「Are you sleepy, senpai?」
「There’s no way there will be a morning when I don’t feel sleepy, though.」
「I slept at ten o’clock yesterday, so I don’t feel sleepy at all.」
What did I do last night anyway?
I reviewed the lesson, browsed my Twitter, read some webnovels… When I went to sleep, the date had changed somehow. Maybe I shouldn’t do that in the first place.
「Well then, senpai. Here’s my『today’s question.』」
「Ah, is this like those invisible ink that will be revealed when heat is applied kind of series?」
「Yes. This is a relief-like campaign.」
We talked about those too「deep」questions recently.
I don’t care about her stepping on my territory, and I feel like Kouhai-chan also thinks so. However, it also feels somewhat wrong.
That’s why, after thinking how it was when we originally started this whole thing, we concluded that we should go back and ask some superficial questions, pick up what seemed essential, and ask what we really want to know as the main dish.
The second question of the campaign that started（since yesterday）is this.
「Senpai, what kind of pen do you use?」
「Apple pen… not that!」
Actually, I want to have Apple Pencil a little bit when I see their commercials.
But of course, iPad is not a brand that a high schooler can buy. Also, it’s also considered expensive since it can only be used with iPad Pro.
「I wonder if the pineapple pen is already commercialized?」
「It sounds like it will be super heavy.」
「It will also smells good!」
「The leaves look like they will prick us as well.」
「That’s certainly true.」
The topic becomes strange.
「Well, a writing instrument, huh. Ehm. It’s that, the KURU TOGA. [1. https://www.mpuni.co.jp/products/mechanical_pencils/sharp_pen/kurutoga/standard.html]」
It is a mechanical pencil released by Mitsubishi Pencil, which「pencil lead will continue to keep spinning.」
When used for writing, the orange gear will rotate with the pressure of the pencil tip touching the paper. In short, the pencil lead will spin with every stroke.
Before I met this product, it was bothersome for me when I used a pencil. After all, the letters will naturally thicken if I leave it like that. I don’t want to have my notes be difficult to read later on. That’s why I used to change pencil every three strokes, and rotate them. But now it can be done automatically. The products in this world are truly wonderful.
「Ah, that? I don’t like to use it very much.」
「Is it because the grip is hard?」
One of the things that can be considered as KURU TOGA’s weak point is the grip.
I don’t know if it’s for the cost reduction, or even if that’s how they planned to design it, but most of the common KURU TOGA series doesn’t have rubber grip. It has a rubber ring, but the plastic is bumpy. There are quite a few people who don’t like that. I don’t particularly hate it, though.
「Rather than that, the pen tip shakes too much, and it is a little… you know…」
KURU TOGA’s lead will rotate following the pen pressure, making the pen top slightly blurred.
Well, it can’t be helped. However, since I already explained to her this much, I decided to take out my favourite partner and show it to her.
From my blue pencil case, I take out a… err, light blue KURU TOGA I have been using from first year of middle high school, or four and a half years to be exact. But, I really do like blue, huh.
「Here it is.」
Kouhai-chan makes a surprised face as she sees the pencil in my hand.
「What used the color be?」
「You should know just by looking, right?」
「No, I don’t know, senpai. This is the first time for me to see this kind of transparent mechanical pencil.」
Yeah. The partner which I (an honor student who can even be the student council president) have been in my hands for four years has its paint peeled off little by little on the surface, and even the shaft is already just a transparent plastic tube.
But then, there is still a little light blue paint left around the clip, okay!
「Well, this proves that I have been working hard on writing notes every day.」
「Actually, how long have you been using this anyway, senpai?」
「Around four and a half years.」
「Senpai is a second year student, meaning you have been using it since the beginning of your middle high school?」
Since I use this pencil with a lot of attachment, it is only natural that it has become that long.
＊ ＊ ＊
「Then, here is my『today’s question』as well. Kouhai-chan, what kind of mechanical pencil do you use?」
Even though I specially said writing instrument at the beginning, senpai has been underestimating me recently.
「I doesn’t really use mechanical pencil, senpai.」
Senpai blinks his eyes.
「So you only use colored pen? Ah, right, you don’t use notebooks, eh?」
It looks like he remembered it.
「It’s hard to write in the textbook with a mechanical pencil.」
「That’s why, I just use ballpoint pen. I used the SARASA[2. https://www.zebra.co.jp/pro/sarasa/index.html] one, with orange, red, blue, and pink inks.」
Since I don’t carry a mechanical pencil around, I don’t have to bring eraser as well. It makes my pencil case completely clean.
「What company does SARASA come from again?」
「Isn’t it Pilot?」
I take the pen out of my bag and check it.
「So it’s zebra, huh.」
「Senpai, why don’t you use the three powerhouse of writing instrument [3. Not sure about this, but this might refer to Pilot, Pentel, and ZEBRA which are very famous in Japan] anyway?」
「Don’t mine sound stronger?」
「But my zebra is bigger than yours.」
＃ ＃ ＃
That’s right. If she mostly writes in the textbook, she will use a ballpoint everyday. I also use a red pen when I am making a mark in my textbook.
「Hey, by the way. Can I ask one extra question?」
Since we asked a lot of questions already, a little mischievousness started to grow in me. You can even say what I am going to ask is mean.
「Haa, what is it?」
「Kouhai-chan, what do you use to write in your diary?」
There’s no way she will write everything with colored pens, though. She said it herself that it’s handwriting.
When she heard my questions, Kouhai-chan heaves a big sigh.
「You know what, senpai.」
「That is mean.」
Kouhai-chan raises her muffler, covering her mouth (how cunning). She responds with a whisper.
Being able to see this appearance of her makes the question worth it.
「First, it is, a『deep』… or may not. Right. Anyway, it’s unfair.」
「I’m sorry for holding your weakness.」
She stretches her back, and whispers at me on the swaying train.
「If senpai is that interested in me, I can tell you, you know♪」
Seriously, isn’t she the one who is even more unfair?
「Yes, yes. I’m interested in you, very much so.」
Therefore, I replied as if poking fun at her, but still unable to look at her directly.
「What’s with that. Well, fine. I’ll tell you.」
「It is a mechanical pencil I bought a long time ago. Just a cheap one.」
＊ ＊ ＊
「Hey, is that really something you only do just to put on airs?」
Finally, the eagerness in his face subsided. It seems like senpai is disappointed.
No, but. It is truly a relief that it wasn’t his『today’s question』just now.
There are a little decoration in the mechanical pencil, a sticker of heart symbol.
There’s no way I will increase this weakness even more.
The things I knew about my senpai 53
It seems like his beloved mechanical pencil is KURU TOGA.