We were asked questions like 「How many days has it been since you started dating?」 「How many children do you want?」 「How many times have you kissed?」 「How many times did you think you’d break up?」
Only couples who answered with the exact same numbers would get points. Mizuhara and I both excelled, answering 0 to all of them and ending up at the top.
The unexpected couple nobody saw coming. The Michel pair followed after us.
I thought we’d get booed, but the audience simply ignored us. Though the shirts did have a big effect on the crowd; I heard people saying, 「Are those two really a couple? I thought they were one because of their clothes…」
The second game was the Couple 4 Kanji Compounds. Each person would say a compound that repeated the kanji for 「one」 twice in it, and the couple that chose the same idiom would get a point.
The Michel pair quickly recovered by using the same compound meaning 「once in a lifetime encounter」. The other pairs used phrases that didn’t match, and got no points.
Mizuhara filled in 「言」 and 「メ」 for his turn. I wondered if there really was a compound that used those characters.
「It’s a kaomoji that represents how I feel towards all this,」 Mizuhara said, and the chairman displayed his compound on the board.
An angry kaomoji.
Even as I profusely apologized to the chairman, I was actually impressed with Mizuhara for being able to come up with a kaomoji on the spot.
Since a kaomoji isn’t a kanji compound, we drastically lost points for breaking the rules, instantly shooting down to the bottom.
The next game was called the Couple Handshake. Each boy had to shake hands with the participating girls while being blindfolded and pick out his girlfriend correctly from all of them.
Of course, not everyone got it right.
The chairman pointed the mic towards Michel, who currently had the most points. 「How did you figure out which hand was Kinoshita’s?」
「Just through the process of elimination,」 said Michel, smiling wryly. 「The first girl had long nails, so I realized it was Nakamura’s girlfriend. The third one had freezing cold hands, so I figured it was the girl who was the most stressed out, Miyamoto’s girlfriend. And the fourth one was Sagiri, so the 2nd one had to be Yui.」
「Sagiri from the Mizuhara pair, right? ….. Uh, how did you…」 The chairman struggled to find the words to say. It seemed Michel’s matter-of-fact tone had caused some misunderstandings.
「I practice karate with Sagiri, so I immediately recognized her hand.」
「Aaah, I see. So you’re in the same club.」 The chairman heaved a sigh of relief, and pointed the mic towards Mizuhara. 「What about you? How did you realize right away which hand was Noda’s?」
「I realized immediately because I’ve been the victim of violence from that hand many times.」
It was an everyday thing for us to fight over who got the sweets. While I had the advantage of speed, Mizuhara’s defense was better. He was acting like the victim, but it was actually his fault for trying to eat my share of the sweets.
「So you’re also in the karate club?」
「No, I’m not.」
「Aah…. What kind of a couple are you? Well, let’s not go into details here. It’s time for the next game, the Couple Cards!」
In this game, you had to pull out cards from a stack that had questions written on them and answer the one you chose. You just had to answer as lovingly as possible to increase your audience appeal.
The Michel pair were equally adorable so they got the most points.
They gracefully answered questions ranging from from normal ones like 「What was your first impression of each other?」 「What are your favorite date spots?」 to dark ones like 「What would you do if you found out your partner was in debt?」
Kinoshita was particularly perfect, murmuring, 「That’s right, isn’t it?」 every time Michel answered, tilting her head and looking at him.
They looked like they enjoyed each other’s company; had they made up already? I looked at the club members to ask them, but they were completely ignoring the contest to try flirting instead, saying, 「That girl’s cute, try calling out to her!」
Looking at them as they enjoyed their free time after dragging me into this, I decided to make a revenge list. The person whose name was at the top, Arioka, was nowhere to be seen.
I was absolutely enraged. I decided to draw mustaches on all the idol pictures that Arioka keeps so carefully.
As I was thinking of what to do to the other member, the other pairs’ turns had ended.
「Well then, will the Mizuhara pair please step up to the center of the stage?」
I reluctantly stood up as the chairman called me out. Mizuhara refused to go, but had no choice once the executive committee confiscated his chair.
「And now, it’s Noda’s turn. Please pick out a card.」
I chose a random card from the ones lined up on the table and presented it to the chairman.
「Here’s a question for Noda. If you were stuck on a deserted island with Mizuhara and there was nothing to eat except a loaf of bread, what would you do?」
Considering the fact that I was on a desert island and there was only one loaf of bread, the only response was: 「I’d snatch it away from him.」
There was no other way. I looked challengingly at Mizuhara and saw him glaring at me as well. 「I knew you’d say that. Although my chances of victory are low, if there was nothing else to eat I’d have no choice but to take up your challenge.」
Looks like he’d quickly leave the island.
The club members admiringly raised their voices, saying, 「That four-eye’s got guts to challenge Noda in wild mode! You wouldn’t think he had so much spirit from the looks of him!」
「Aah, a very difficult response to comment on. Let’s move onto the next card. Mizuhara, would you please choose a card from the table?」
Mizuhara reluctantly pointed at a card. The chairman picked it up and read it out.
「The question is, ‘What does your partner do when they’re drunk?’ So, Mizuhara, how does Noda behave when she’s drunk? Is she a lightweight?」
「She’s not just a huge lightweight, she’s awful when she’s drunk,」 concluded Mizuhara without hesitating. I quickly turned away, remembering the things I’d done when I was drunk, and pretended not to hear.
「What exactly do you mean by that?」 the investigating chairman asked.
「She gets into fights with any home appliance in sight.」
The chairman simply went, 「Huh?」 and looked confused.
「I apologized for it!」 I wanted to keep my drinking habits a secret, and now Mizuhara had revealed them in front of everyone.
「You can’t just apologize for that. Ever since you yelled ‘It’d be nice if you went round and round!’ at the washing machine and fought it, it hasn’t been functioning decently at all.」
The chairman tried to continue, even as he was fumbling for words. 「Uhh, well then, at least you don’t pick fights with Mizuhara!」
「I’d rather she fought with me. That one time she grabbed the new, thin yet unbelievably expensive LCD TV I’d just bought, I had to protect it to the last.」
「Aah, that did happen. Your defense has been getting better lately!」 I remembered his desperate attempts that day, and tried to flatter him so he’d stop talking.
I do get into fights with inanimate objects when I’m drunk. Mainly any appliances in sight.
「Because I had to protect it. Lately I’ve found a coping strategy so you don’t cause as much damage as before.」
「You have a coping strategy?」 I’d never heard that before.
The chairman pointed the mic towards Mizuhara, pressing for more details.
「I realized there’s devices you don’t fight with. You’re never violent with the fridge or the stove. One time you sat in the fridge, and I prepared for the worst where I’d have to drag you out by the shoulder or something. But instead, you just quietly stroked the fridge, saying, ‘You must be so cold…’」
「Huh…? I don’t remember that…」
「Before this, there was another time where you just stood in front of the stove saying, ‘This is embarrassing but thank you for everything!’ So now whenever you get drunk, I just put you in front of the stove or the fridge.」
「…..Let’s move on!」
Our conversation was forcibly cut as the chairman continued his job, urging Mizuhara to pick a card.
「And now, the next question!」 he said, as Mizuhara chose the next card.
- TL note: Yojijukugo or 4 kanji compounds are phrases that use exactly four Japanese characters or ‘kanji’. This game asks for 4 letter compounds with ‘one’ repeated twice, for example ‘一汁一菜’ which means a simple meal, literally it’s 「one soup one side dish」. The character for one is 一. ↩