＃ ＃ ＃
Today, one third of November had passed. I get inside the train while rubbing my sleepy eyes as usual.
By the way, there was one more thing in the「autumn of ◯◯」series that we didn’t discuss yesterday.
The「autumn of art」.
Art museum is trying to advertise that all over the place to attract more customers, but just how effective is the campaign?
While having that kind of thought in the corner of my mind, I ask Kouhai-chan in front of me who is a ghost member of the art club.
「Hey. This is my『today’s question』. In the end, what will you end up doing for the cultural festival?」
After confirming the schedule, it is still surprisingly long before the cultural festival starts. It will be on the 25th and 26th, the weekend at the end of this month.
On the day the date was confirmed, Kouhai-chan came to our classroom and had a dispute about that, but let’s leave that aside for now.
「I decided to draw a picture.」
Well, of course it will end up like that. In the art club exhibition, one of the most normal, or even always associated with, is drawing.
「Will you finish it in time?」
I have an image that oil painting, or even something decent will take at least a few months to make.
Is she going to draw every day to make it in time? But this person’s actual production time seems to be short. She is the type that will often lose focus and go somewhere else.
「What do you mean by that? Isn’t that Kouhai-chan’s work?」
「It’s not a work, though. It’s not like they give me part-time payment.」
I feel like there is another nuance of ‘work’ other than something that will get a salary, like ‘doing a task’. But fine. That’s not the main subject.
When I was thinking about how to arrange my words, I received a question from Kouhai-chan instead.
「Senpai, do you like looking at pictures? It’s『today’s question』.」
「What a difficult question.」
「Isn’t it a two-choices question? Just answer with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’.」
「Even if you say that…」
My preference on looking at pictures, huh. Hmm.
「Pictures are… pictures, right? There are lots of them.」
You can call all of the type of images except photos as「pictures」, right?
In other words, if I just remove the text and photos from a picturized news, what’s remaining will be a「picture」.
Thinking so, there are surprisingly many 「pictures」in this world.
I pointed to the advertisement above the train luggage rack. There is an illustration there.
「If we speak of the extreme, that is also a picture, right?」
「Well, that’s right」
There are also plenty of advertisements when I look outside the train window. I can see lots of photos, but there are also many pictures.
「Then isn’t it hard to decide on my preferences?」
The question is vague, like when someone asks, “do you like letters, instead of sentences?”
I think this will simply depend on the amount of contact. The more contact we have with it, the more good will we would have towards the object.
「I understand. Let’s change the way of my questioning. Senpai, what type of pictures do you like?」
「What kind of picture?」
「Is it oil paintings, pencil drawings, digital art, or something like that?」
「I don’t really like oil paintings that just screams『I am art!』」
Of course it will be nice to know the intention of the paintings after reading the explanation of it.
But I think the paintings in the museum are difficult. I feel like I have to appreciate the background of the era when that painting was painted, the life of the painter, and so on.
「I mostly look at ordinary digital illustrations, so I think I like them the most.」
The illustrations of my light reading materials（such as light novels）or the illustrations I saw when browsing my Twitter timeline are the ones that make me feel relaxed when I see them.
Hearing that, Kouhai-chan grinned.
「Senpai, I have a good news for you.」
「Yes, really. I will present a digital picture at the cultural festival. I draw them on my computer.」
「Do you have the tools?」
「I have a cheap pen tab at home.」
「You are unexpectedly serious about this, oi.」
There are many people who draw directly on tablets or smartphones recently, but when we are talking about digital pictures, what comes to mind is, as I thought, an image of a pen tab.
「That’s not true.」
I didn’t really draw pictures that I could show to other people, she added.
＊ ＊ ＊
「Then, did you decide what you will draw already? There’s only two weeks left, you know.」
The senpai from the art club told me that presenting a picture is highly welcomed. They should be saying that because there are only a few members in the club, though.
Because of that, they told me that if I already decided on presenting it, I could definitely present it without any trouble.
But, I haven’t started drawing anything yet.
I have decided on what to draw, but I can’t really figure out how to draw it.
「Are you really alright, oi oi.」
That’s why―― I decided to get senpai to accompany me on collecting data.
「It’s senpai’s fault.」
I got one step closer to senpai.
「It’s senpai’s fault since senpai doesn’t participate in the school festival.」
「No way, because of that? Isn’t that just strange?」
Senpai made a strained laugh at my unreasonable words.
「Please accompany me tomorrow, or the day after tomorrow.」
「My precious weekend… What will we do anyway?」
Senpai made a face, completely not expecting me to give an answer, as I gave him a quick reply.
Certainly, whenever I invited him to go out, I only specified where we will meet, and what we will do remained a secret. This might be a rare thing for him.
But this time, I haven’t told him anything specific as well, you know?
「Is it alright?」
「…Then, let’s go at Sunday.」
「I understand. I will contact senpai again later for the meeting appointment.」
＃ ＃ ＃
I gaze at Kouhai-chan, who looks happy after successfully making an appointment with me.
She is wearing a beige sweater (when did she change from cardigan anyway?), her hair flows a little sparkly, her lips the light red color, and then, uhm, ah, she turns her eyes to me now. Her big pupils reflects the swaying light entering through the train window.
Yup. Rather than gazing at her, I am staring at her, huh.
She tilts her head towards me who become completely silent all of a sudden, and that gesture is just cute. No, maybe this is called as cunning? I’m not sure what the difference is.
I was thinking about the reason why I prefer digital illustration I saw on my timeline should be because of that simple contact effect.
Since then, I have been thinking about this all the time.
Kouhai-chan is, she is. Yoneyama Maharu is…
Without a doubt, she is someone with the opposite gender to me that I have been the most closely related with in this last two months. I don’t know what she thought of me, though.
Anyway, even if I include the same gender and the opposite gender, I don’t have anyone that I will talk with like this every day.
To simply put it, we have a lot of contact. It might not be that much of physical contacts, but on the other hand, the amount of our exchanged words might have greatly surpassed that.
Doesn’t this means, I have grown to like her?
Or maybe, I had liked her from the start, but I just didn’t realize it myself.
I was thinking about that.
Kouhai-chan stretches her neck, staring at my face. She is bulging her cheeks, as if unhappy that I am not talking to her.
I should reply to her now.
「What were you thinking of, senpai? You were staring at me.」
Did she noticed? She noticed, huh.
I stared at her so much, of course she would notice.
「No, I didn’t really think of anything, though? I was just sleepy.」
Yup, just sleepy. That is not the「today’s question」, so I can tell her lies.
Rather than a lie, I’m cheating, huh.
「I’m saying the truth, really.」
Kouhai-chan grins, making me uncomfortable.
「Well, fine. I’ll let you leave it as that, senpai.」
After saying so, she winks at me, and it looks very cute.
I might not be able to escape this anymore.
The things I knew about my senpai 55
It seems like he kind of likes looking at digital illustrations.