His First Cold in a While, and Being Nursed
Translated by HamletJr
Edited by HamletJr
While Shizuna and Ryuichi’s friends were worried about Ryuichi’s absence from school…he was in his apartment under his covers.
“…Dammit, I’ve caught a cold. For the first time in a while, huh,” he muttered. His face was flushed, and a cold towel was on his forehead. He hadn’t been in an accident, nor had he been attacked by anyone or had anything dangerous happen to him, he was simply lying in bed with a fever.
“…Oh yeah, I guess I was so fuzzy-headed that I forgot to tell Shizuna.”
He only remembered now that he had told Shizuna to go ahead of him, thinking that his high body temperature would make it impossible for him to go to school.
He’d already called the school and let them know, so she should be…definitely worried, he thought.
That said, though, he had a feeling she would definitely come to his place if he had told her he wasn’t feeling well before she headed to school.
“I shouldn’t bother her for something as tiny as this.”
It was easy to imagine that she would’ve nursed him and abandoned school otherwise. Since it wasn’t like he was going to die, and he wasn’t in bad enough shape to require hospital care, Ryuichi nodded his head and hoped that the teacher would hear about it and tell the class after school started.
Since they were very close, he also sent Shizuna a message nonetheless, apologizing for the delay in telling her that he was taking a leave of absence due to a cold. He then put his phone beside his bed and laid down motionlessly. Immediately, he was attacked by a feeling of drowsiness. It had been a long time since he had been in bed with a fever, and it had also been a long time since he had missed school for a legitimate reason: a cold.
“…Man, I’m starving.”
His body was lethargic, and thus he didn’t want to move his body as much as possible. He had eaten a light meal, a rice ball he had bought at the convenience store, but it wasn’t enough to fill him up.
Even a buff, robust man like Ryuichi couldn’t beat the common cold. Praying that he would recover as quickly as possible, he closed his eyes and went to sleep.
Ryuichi didn’t know how much time had passed since then, but he woke up with a slightly clearer head. When he picked up the phone he had left by his bedside, he found that the time was just before noon.
He was able to check the reply he had gotten from Shizuna to his message, and it read, “I’m on my way right now.”
It was only a few words, but it was more than enough to surprise Ryuichi. However, he couldn’t see her by his side, so he was definitely half-relieved, but also half-disappointed; two very conflicting feelings.
The longer he had been with Shizuna, the more she had inevitably been spending time with him. Still, it seemed she wasn’t neglecting her schoolwork, so he had nothing to worry about there.
“…Man, Shizuna’s seriously a high-spec girl, isn’t she?”
That was also true of Ryuichi, but he only thought of himself as an average Joe.
Moving on, now that he was awake, he could clearly sense his hunger, and his stomach growled.
“Guess I’ll make some cup ramen.”
He still felt a slight fever and lightheadedness, but it wasn’t so bad that he couldn’t move. However, just as he was about to get up, he spotted a familiar bag in the corner of the room.
It was the bag Shizuna always carried on her way to school. No sooner had he found the bag than he heard the sound of running water in the bathroom.
“It can’t be…”
He stared at the bathroom, and sure enough, she appeared, wiping her hands with a handkerchief. Her eyes opened wide in amazement when she saw him awake, but soon a look of concern came over her as she ran toward him.
“You’re awake. How are you feeling?”
“…Just fine, but you…what about school?”
“I left early. I’ve already told everybody, and I’ve told Mom, too, you know?”
He immediately clutched his head in his hands.
He hadn’t told her in the morning for fear of this happening, but he never would’ve expected her to leave school early and rush over. No, he was convinced that it was only possible because it was Shizuna.
“…Thanks. Seriously, if I had to say, I’m really happy you came.”
“No problem ♪. I knew you’d say that.”
Apparently, Shizuna also knew Ryuichi well. Still, she’d left school early to come check up on him, but it seemed certain that he still had a slight fever. It would be a disaster if she caught a cold as well, so they decided to keep as much distance as possible between them as they talked.
“I was really worried, you know? We’ve been going to school together so much lately that it felt weird to be going to school separately for once.”
“So when the teacher came and you weren’t there… I’m just glad you’re okay, really.”
“…Sorry about that.”
Hearing that from her made him feel like he should have just told her honestly. Even though he had caught a cold, she was smiling with relief from the bottom of her heart after confirming that he was okay. As they stared at each other, a loud rumbling sound could suddenly be heard.
“Fufu, I’ll make you a simple porridge.”
“Leave it to me. ♪”
Ryuichi decided to presume upon Shizuna’s kindness. After seeing her off to the kitchen, he decided to lie down and get some rest until the porridge was ready.
Perhaps people became weak when they caught colds, because even as he was lying under the covers, his mind was calmed just by the presence of someone else and being able to hear their voice.
Thinking back, he had never experienced having someone take care of him when he caught a cold, so it was really refreshing to have Shizuna who was worrying for him like this.
…When I think about it that way, I guess I really wasn’t loved, was I?
Of course, he could remember catching a cold during his childhood. However, the only memory that came back to him was one where he was only given medicine and, far from being told words of concern, was told that he should just let it get worse and die. Well, such dark memories were no longer a burden on Ryuichi.
You’re the ones who should just disappear, morons!
Aggressively retorting to his memories like that allowed him to forget about his dark past and his parents quite nicely.
After waiting for a while, Shizuna came back with a bowl of porridge in her hand.
“Here you go, meal’s ready.”
“Ooh… So this is porridge.”
“…Yup. It’s really good for your digestion.”
It looked like flavorless rice soup (zosui). Although he was told that it had a minimal amount of salt in it and thus might not be too flavorful, now that he was hungry, it looked no different than a fancy meal.
He scooped it up with a spoon and brought it to his mouth. It had a thick texture, but also melted in his mouth right away. Its taste was certainly not very strong, but that did not stop him from scooping more and more.
He finished the meal in no time and, still feeling somewhat unfulfilled, handed the bowl to Shizuna and thanked her.
“By the looks of it, I wonder if you could’ve eaten even more.”
“Maybe. But this is good enough for now… Seriously, thank you, Shizuna.”
“Really, don’t mention it. This much is no problem at all.”
He stared at her again as she headed into the kitchen with the empty bowl. Seeing her slip away from school and do all this for him…made him realize once again how important of a person she was to him, truly.
He was once again assailed by a feeling of drowsiness, making him close his eyes with completely different feelings than he had in the morning. The sound of running water washing dishes in his ears put him at ease as he drifted off to sleep once more.
Incidentally, Ryuichi did not wake up until about two hours later, and Shizuna still hadn’t gone home yet. Though he wasn’t back to tip-top shape, his complexion had improved considerably. Perhaps the day’s rest and the porridge that Shizuna had wholeheartedly made had helped him to recover.
“Oh, right, Ryuichi-kun! I saw the picture you took on my phone!”
“So you finally noticed it.”
“‘Finally’ is not what you should be saying right now! I was so surprised I couldn’t help but scream…”
“You were screaming at the top of your lungs then, too.”
She blushed somewhat happily; it seemed that she subconsciously really did like to be teased like this. He whispered in her ear that, though it wouldn’t be possible today, he would make her squeal like that again, and her body blatantly shivered in anticipation.
“Heh, you’re such a cute girl.”
“…This is why I’m so easy of a woman, huh.”
Ryuichi was lying down on his futon, and Shizuna was watching over him while heaving a sigh. And so, although the day had started off worrying, it seemed that everything would be all right now.
Perhaps you thought something was up with how things ended last chapter, but no, it wasn’t anything too big.
However, the end is definitely coming up soon.
Please stick around with me for a little longer.