"Big brother! ! It's time for you to get up now! Otherwise we won't be able to get the early train ride!"
I slowly opened my eyes, the very familiar voice of my younger sister taking me out from my deep slumber. I got up with a grunt and Raiha practically shoved a towel and a clean pair of clothes into my hands before heading to the kitchen to prepare the food, all the while my father sang loudly, and poorly might I add, from the bathroom.
As my awareness slowly came back to me, I begin to recall what happened a few days that led me to my current situation. The trip to the hot springs resort and meeting the Nakano family there. Trying to uncover each girls' identity as they all dressed up as Itsuki. But most importantly of all,
I placed a hand on my lips, feeling my face burn up slightly as the memory of the kiss played back in my head. While I was slightly more confident that I knew how to differentiate the five of them, I was still unable to tell who had been the culprit that day. I wanted to rule some of them out, but since I've known them for more than six months now, I knew that those girls were extremely unpredictable at times, so I couldn't possibly assume it's someone without any concrete evidence.
I had been so lost in thought that I didn't even realise my father had exited the bathroom until he tapped my shoulder.
"Fuutarou, hurry up and bath, we don't want to be late after all. You know how your grandparents are when we arrive even a second late."
I nodded my head, recalling how grandpa acted if we were late. He would always act grumpy and strict to both me and dad, but never to Raiha, and he wasn't even trying to hide it.
Thus, I decided to forget about before and quickly head in to the showers. Hopefully dad hadn't used all the hot water in the shower…again.
"Phew, what a long journey it was!" my father exclaimed as he stretched his body while Raiha was looking around at the train station as I stood quietly from behind them. Like my dad had said, it was a very long journey from our place to our grandparents place since they lived at a peaceful village while we lived in the city.
Of course when I say that I meant my mother's parents, and not my dad's. Dad's parents lived in the city just like us, and we would usually visit them at least once every two weeks.
"Grandpa!" Raiha squealed as she ran over towards my grandfather who was standing at the side of the station.
"Ohh, Raiha, it's been quite a while since we last saw you. How've you been?" Grandpa asked curiously with a smile and Raiha began telling him all sorts of things while my dad and I stood behind them quietly watching.
"Glad to see that I've been missed by him…" Dad mumbled under his breath as I shook my head. There were plenty of other things that I could be doing now rather than being here for hours, and studying was definitely at the top of that list.
Grandpa, finally noticed the two of us standing at the back, flashed a smile at our direction, "Ah, Fuutarou, Isanari. Glad to see that the two of you have arrived safely as well."
'What do you mean by "as well" grandpa!' was what I wanted to say, but of course I didn't vocally announce my thoughts, knowing that Raiha would always be the favourite child especially since I caused them a lot of trouble when I was younger since I wanted to follow in my father's footsteps before.
"Well shall we get going already? I'm sure that grandma is tired of waiting for us already." Grandpa said as Raiha held his hand as they walked, cheerfully continuing off where she had left off in her story, leaving the two of us behind.
"Tch, pretty sure the same thing would've happened even without Raiha being here." Dad grumbled underneath his breath as he followed after them before I decided to follow in suit. It was already too hectic and it wasn't even noon yet.
After arriving at our grandparents home, we immediately began watching television as a group, watching all sorts of stuff that's on there especially Raiha, who has recently gotten hooked into romance shows, who was watching the screen intently as it was airing her favourite show at the moment.
My grandparents and father were talking to one another at the back but I could not hear as to what they were saying, not that I want to anyways. They were all probably just getting on dad's case for something… again.
Seeing as everyone was busy doing their respective activity, I decided that since I had nothing else to do, I would go and get some rest. Unfortunately my grandfather got out of the conversation with dad and dragged me to the back of the house where a vegetable garden greeted me.
It was rather nostalgic to see the place after quite some time. I could still recall all the times I spent playing around in the garden back when I was a child and when it hadn't been converted into a vegetable garden yet. Now, I wasn't all surprised at seeing how flourished the garden was considering my grandparents had been working hard on it for decades now.
Though that alone didn't answer my question. Why did he bring me here?
I turned to him, puzzled, and as if he had read my thoughts, my grandfather flashed me a huge smile as he held a straw hat in one hand while a hoe in the other.
"What is it grandpa?" I asked cautiously, staring at the two objects at his hand as he walked over towards me and placed the hat over my head and handed the hoe to me.
"Well you see, my back's been killing me over these past few days and grandma has been on my case, saying that I haven't been doing my job caring for the garden. So I was wondering…."
I gulped in fear, knowing what he was going to say in an instant before sighing. I definitely wasn't going to enjoy what was to come.
And I definitely had not enjoy it.
I was currently leaning leaned over, using the hoe's handle for support. Despite having the straw hat which protected me from the intensity of the sunlight, I was still sweating profusely. I turned to the side and glared at my uncle who was resting comfortably on his seat at the porch, drinking a can of beer.
"Wait a minute, why isn't dad helping me with this?" I asked curiously and grandpa stroked his chin for a bit before shrugging.
"I don't know, but keep at it Fuutarou and I'm sure you'll be able to finish it soon!" he laughed cheerily, a blush formed on his cheeks as I mentally sighed, too tired to be able to actually do it.
'Isn't it too early to be drinking beer?' I thought before pushing myself back up and continuing the task he had left for me. The faster I finish this, the faster I could go back to studying.
As I was about to start I heard someone making noise nearby which prompted me to turn my head towards the sound of the noise. There I saw a young boy with chestnut brown hair crying on the road and a woman who had black hair , most likely to be the boy's mother, standing beside him. The woman then proceeded to carry the boy into her arms as she cradled him gently in which managed to reduce his tears to mere sniffles. She then placed a soft kiss on his forehead and while I wasn't nearby at all, I could tell that the boy now sported a grin on his face.
It was normal for kids to turn from sad to happy in the span of mere seconds, after all, they're still trying to live life to the best they can and the only way they do so is by being optimistic, not that they knew that was the case at all, and behind them are their parents, supporting at any given point.
I carried on staring at them and for a split second, the colour of the boys hair turned a deep shade of blue. I then shook my head to stop myself from thinking any further and decided to carry on with the work, those vegetables aren't going to grow by themselves after all.
If there was one thing I had been expecting for the most during the entire trip to my grandparent's place, it was probably the food, and seeing my grandparents of course, but for the food as well.
After finishing my "chores", we immediately had lunch with them and it was sublime. My grandmother was an amazing chef and I felt happy that she's teaching Raiha how to cook the same way she does. She also wanted to teach me how to cook in the past but I refused, preferring to do some studies instead.
As we ate, Raiha began telling them all sorts of things happening in her school such as how she's coping with the school there, all the fun things she's been doing alongside her classmates and so on.
"Oh and big brother now has a job as a tutor!" Raiha exclaimed happily and the both of them looked intrigued by this news.
"Oh is that so?" Grandma said as she looked at me for confirmation to which I nodded my head without even staring away from the food.
"Well you've always been studying, nothing's wrong for wanting to share that knowledge with others. So, who are your students?"
Before I could even answer for myself, Raiha decided to take the initiative, "Big brother is teaching five female students and they're quintuplets at that!" she said excitedly and it was clear that the news shocked both my grandparents as their eyes were as wide as they could be.
"O-oh, is that so?" Why do you have to act so surprised like that? It isn't like I've never talked to a girl before.
"Well that's good for you Fuutarou. Hopefully from this you're able to find yourself a girlfriend."
The art of romance, something so minor yet major at the same time. If this had occurred before meeting those girls, I would have waved it off as nothing, believing that falling in love is a mere fantasy everyone has, and that it'd be a waste of time. However, that was not the case, and after recent incidents… It's become hard for me to ridicule such sincere feelings.
"I believe that it was around your age when your father got together with your mother. Perhaps you should do keep that in mind." Grandpa exclaimed and Dad snorted at that.
"Hah, I'd believe that my son is a complete bibliophile than him having a crush on a girl." I immediately glared at him.
"Just because I like to study doesn't mean I'm into books!" though dad merely waved off my comment as nothing.
"Isanari, he's your son, surely you should have more faith in him." Grandma chastised him.
"Well of course I do, he inherited my good looks and charm after all." He said with a striking pose and a smile causing everyone in the room to sweat drop.
Sorry dad, but that was seriously uncool.
A short while later and Raiha, grandpa and dad all finished their meal and were currently watching a new popular television series that started airing just a few days ago, and by the looks of it, they were completely engrossed with the show, leaving grandma and I on the dining table. Not that I was complaining since there were still plenty of food left.
"Time flies by in a blink of an eye, don't you think Fuutarou?" grandma asked and all I could do was shrug which caused her to sigh.
"Sighs, but to think that you're already in your third year of high-school Fuutarou. You're going to start working next year, surely you've thought about your future plans?" Grandma asked as I thought about an answer to give.
"I don't know, I'll just go with the flow… I guess." I responded. I hadn't really given much thought for the future since all I really wanted was to get a high paying job so that I could help my family live a stable life.
"Despite changing your appearance guess you're still similar to your father." Grandma sighed as I tilted my head in confusion.
"Back when he was dating your mother, we asked him the same exact question and he gave an answer which is quite similar to yours."
I definitely did not know how to respond after hearing that. Should I be worried that history might repeat itself? Would I end up just like my father?
"You're someone that we really need right now…"
My eyes widened when I heard that voice, an image of a young girl with cascading red hair and sapphire blue eyes appeared in my head.
I could feel a smile forming on my face. Yeah, there was no way I would follow in my dad's footstep.
"I'm sure it'll work out fine." I said with confidence and while she looked a bit uncertain, she nodded her head nonetheless.
No more words were uttered after that and the only sound that filled the house came from the television.
"You all should try and visit us more often you know. It's been real quiet here each day and we would appreciate the noise every once in a while." Grandma said as grandpa was hugging Raiha, telling her not to leave him and some other things.
It was already late in the evening when we were done and although we wanted to stay longer, our train ride back home was soon and the next ride would be extremely late at night.
"We'll try, but only if this guy doesn't organise any more study sessions with his students." Dad said as he elbowed me softly to which I rolled my eyes at him.
"The only time I might do that is when they can score good grades on their own." I responded as dad chuckled.
"Weren't you hesitant to be their tutor at the beginning? What changed?" Dad asked and I could detect a hint of teasing in his tone to which I decided to ignore.
"We'll see you next time, bye grandpa, grandma!" Raiha said, waving at them as we walked off, headed towards the station.
As we walked to our destination, I couldn't help but think about my conversation with grandma before.
'What do I really want to be?'
That question lingered in my thoughts during our entire journey to the train station, even when we had gotten into one.
"Big brother." Raiha called out, breaking my train of thought as I turned to her.
"You're looking more tense than you usually do when studying." She pointed out and dad nodded his head beside her.
"She's right you know. Is there something on your mind?" I thought about it for a while, debating whether or not I should consult my father about this, before shaking my head, deciding that I'd think about it another time.
As soon as we got home, Raiha began cooking us dinner as I headed straight for my books. Although half the day was gone, at the very least I still had the entire night to make up for lost time. Fortunately for me, tomorrow is Sunday, meaning I could spend the entirety of tomorrow studying as well. It was perfect!
I smirked to myself as I opened a reference book, it was finally time to study!
"We'll head to bed first alright, Fuutarou? Make sure to blow out the candle once you're done studying." Dad said as he and Raiha laid down on the mattress while I was still sitting by the table.
Unfortunately, even without any distractions, I couldn't get anything into my head. Even after eating dinner, I still could not concentrate and stayed on the same page for minutes. It was as if there was a barrier in my head preventing the entry of anything I was reading.
I laid my head down on the table with a sigh, to think that I was stopping myself from actually studying. Had there been a time when I was like this in the past?
No. Never had there been a time when this happened, what was so different between then and now?
The answer was plainly obvious as five feminine figures appeared in my head. To think that I, who had isolated himself from the rest of his peers in order to achieve the best grades, would find myself tutoring five troublesome sisters.
In fact, if I had the chance to tell about the recent events that had occurred to my past self, I'm very sure he'd not believe me at all. I still can't believe it myself truth be told.
Closing the book, I decided that since I couldn't study today, I might as well get some rest for tomorrow.
However, before I could even get up, I felt a sudden vibration from my pocket and I quickly pulled out my phone and noticed that I received a message. Seeing as I only have a… select number of contacts from my phone I could immediately deduce that it was from one of them. After opening the message, it turned out to be from Yotsuba.
'Of course she's the one that texts me out of nowhere.' I thought to myself before reading the message,
-Uesugi-san, could you choose either 1 or 2 for us? We've gotten stuck in a certain predicament!-
I was definitely confused by the question but I felt no harm in responding back to her message,
-Then I'll pick 1. What is this for if I may ask?-
It barely took a few seconds before Yotsuba responded once again,
-The five of us were answering a quiz that appeared on television, and thanks to you, we managed to get the right answer. Thanks Uesugi-san! 😊😊😊-
-I'm guessing that since you all have time to play a quiz, you all managed to finish all the homework that I've assigned to you all?-
After standing by for a minute, I quickly realised that I wasn't going to get a reply soon, which was an automatic way for me to know that they hadn't completed it yet. Sometimes they were just too predictable.
You would think that after managing to pass their final exams would cause them to change, but I guess the more things that change, the more they are likely to stay the same.
I blew out the flames from the candle and laid back on my makeshift bed and tried to sleep, but somehow, no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't sleep.
I sighed as I got up, perhaps a glass of water would be able to clear my head for a bit. Along the way to the sink, my phone vibrated softly as the light from my phone shone in the dark room.
Like I had expected, it was another message from Yotsuba,
-O-of course we did, anyways, something urgent just came up and I have to go now. Goodnight!-
Did she just stutter in a text message?
I couldn't help but sigh as I responded goodnight to her. Somehow, it seemed like the kind of response she'd give even in a normal conversation. And strangely enough, after reading that message, I felt a smile slowly crept up my face. It was rather weird. I decided to shake it off and think about it another time.
'What troublesome students.' That was the last thought I had in my head before falling into the land of slumber.
Hey there everyone, hoped you guys enjoyed this brand new fanfiction that I wrote. I enjoyed the manga which was miles ahead of the Anime and after seeing some others post stories for this anime, I decided to follow suit. Anyways, in case you're wondering about the other stories that I had yet to post, don't worry, they are currently being written as fast as I can possibly go for. Though I'm not going to lie, it's been a bit hard for me to find the incentive to write anymore, hopefully I'll find a way to recover that! Also just to note, the pairing of the story has yet to be confirmed yet, as the story flows I think you can see where its headed.
Have a good one everyone!
-Christopher Dragkrow signing out