Kagami smiled as she watched Misao and Ayano play on the swings. Notably, Ayano was having a nice time and was calm, but Misao was- if she had to describe it- almost going wild with the swings.
"Yaaay! Yaaaay! Hanging out with Hiiragi!" Misao cheered.
More like I'm being a babysitter... Kagami thought. Then... "S-stop announcing it out loud, jeez."
"Huehueee, is Hiiragi embarrassed?" Misao teased with a grin.
"S-shut it," was the reply she got.
Ayano chuckled. "But it really is a surprise to be able to spend time with you, Hiiragi. We've never really hunt out together that much, have we?"
"W-well..." Kagami muttered. I'm usually with Konata and the others, after all... she thought. "Sorry, girls."
Misao snickered. "Yeah, Hiiragi's too busy with that chibi and her sister!"
The tsundere's face turned red. "H-hey! What're you implying!?"
"It's alright to be gay, Hiiragi!" Misao exclaimed.
"I'm not- Kusakabeeee!" Kagami yelled.
Her two friends laughed for a while, enjoying teasing the girl. The sun eventually fell even more, and everything was turning dark orange.
In time, Kagami stood against the swing's supporting poles, as Misao and Ayano slowed down their swinging.
"It really is quiet and peaceful here, huh..." Kagami whispered.
The two nodded. "Yes, quite. I wouldn't mind doing this again," Ayano said.
"Yeah... yeah, I wouldn't either," Misao said.
Kagami smiled. These two... I should try to be with them a bit more often. Leaving silence to take over, she went through the events of today's, suddenly recalling the strange phenomenon happening around her. Speaking of which... that mirror... The girl reached for the mysterious mirror that she took ownership of.
"Say, Hiiragi," Misao said. "What do you think about... girls liking girls?" she suddenly asked.
Hands still in her pocket, the purple haired girl raised an eyebrow. "What's this about?" she asked, and eventually pulled the pocket mirror out.
"Nah, I just... I- I'm not implying anything, I swear!" Misao said. "I just... want to know your stance on it, I guess."
Kagami smiled. "Well, I mean, I..." she said, but paused. Liking girls? That's... not weird... She frowned, staring through the case of the pocket mirror. Her mind was now distracted, as she thought about her sexuality. What a topic... "...Kusakabe, I'll be honest. I think... I don't mind it one bit."
Ayano noticed Misao's serious expression turned into a smile. Misa... you...
"T-that's... good to know!" Misao suddenly said.
"Heh, what's this, Kusakabe? You make it sound like you're going to reveal that you're gay," Kagami noted. Oh, right, the mirror. She clicked open the pocket mirror and stared at her reflection.
"W-well, hey, I'm not... saying anything like that, I just..." Misao turned slightly red. "M-maybe I just want to say... y-you're a really good friend?"
Misao frowned. "Hiiragi?" she asked, her eyes traveling right... and she noticed that Kagami's shadow was gone. She looked up and turned her head to the right, where her friend had stood. Stood, but no longer stood. It was like Kagami had completely disappeared from the world, like a ninja. "H-Hiiragi...?"
Ayano looked as well and was left quite puzzled. Where did Hiiragi go? she thought briefly, but then turned to Misao. "...more importantly, Misa... just now..."
"...ahaha, guess it's easy to figure out, huh?" Misao suddenly said with a laugh. Sighing, the girl looked back down. "Yeah, I... sorry, I just... w-wait, that's not the problem right now!" The girl quickly got up and looked around. "H-Hiiragi? Where'd you go?"
"W-well, hey, I'm not..."
Kagami grinned. I think I just found something to tease Kusakabe with, she thought and silently chuckled.
Then nothing else came.
...or am I being a bit too pushy with her?
Kagami glanced behind her. Then she gasped, jumping away and turning around. "G-girls?" she asked.
Misao and Ayano had completely vanished, leaving behind not even a single trace of existence.
"W-where are... not this again..." she muttered. It's just like this morning! Like Tsukasa's weird magic trick... she thought. "What the heck is going on today, seriously? First Tsukasa, now Kusakabe and Minegishi... can't a girl stare at a mirror in peace without some crazy dream-like thing happening?"
She sighed and walked out the park, onto the street. She looked left and right- no sight of incoming cars.
In fact... there were no dogs or cats or birds or even insects nearby, either, which slightly creeped her out.
Kagam grimaced. "...okay, this is really freaky..." she thought. Actually... wait, what if I'm just hallucinating, and they're still here? The girl looked back at the swings. What if... they're looking at me right now, wondering why I'm walking around and acting weird? The girl shivered. "What the hell am I even high on...?"
Slowly, she walked back to where she previously stood and leaned against the pole once more.
"Jeez... give me a break, life." The girl took out her pocket mirror once more and stared into it. "Just let me, an ordinary high school girl, be..."
"...and... yeah, I guess that's all I can say," Misao's voice suddenly droned in.
Kagami blinked. Huh? She turned around to see Misao and Ayano sitting on the swings once more, chatting normally. What the...?
"I-it's just that simple I guess," Misao said, not having noticed her. "I like Hiiragi. I really like Hiiragi, but, well... you know? What's the use?"
The older Hiiragi twin was about to call their names, but this just cracked her jaw open in pure shock.
Ayano patted her friend's back. "Come now, don't think negatively. I'm sure if you work hard for it, you will eventually get her attention," she said. "Besides... I-" A normal blink later, Ayano noticed an existence standing to Misao's right. Notably, it was Hiiragi Kagami herself. Her jaw dropped open, equally shocked at the timing and situation.
The two stared at each other.
...well, this is awkward, Kagami thought.
My, this is awkward, Ayano thought.
Then Misao noticed her orange haired friend going silent. "Ayano? What's the matter?" she asked and looked up at her friend. Then, noticing her shock, she looked right and noticed that very Hiiragi Kagami standing there once more. Misao stared at the tsundere, her mouth open. "H... Hiira... Hii..."
"...u-uh..." Kagami tried to start. "I... well, um. Haha, that's... really... flattering?"
Misao's face then turned extremely red. "H-H-Hiiragi! Y-you! You!" she screamed. Then she grabbed her bag and turned around. "Y-you magician meanie bullyyyy!"
The two watched as the brunette ran away from the park at an incredible speed, disappearing in less than ten seconds.
Kagami then frowned. "W-wait, what'd she call me!?"
That's what you question? Ayano thought.
Iwasaki Minami cut another small piece off her cake and stabbed it lightly with her fork. She lifted it and brought it close to Kobayakawa Yutaka's face, who happily chomped on it. "...good?"
"Mmhm!" Yutaka cheered. She chewed on the cake piece and swallowed. "I like the flavor and soft creamy texture!"
"Good," Minami replied with a content smile. A smile that soon evaporated as she thought back on today.
Kagami chuckled. "It just seems so like Miyuki to be the odd one out, being so passionate about dentists..."
Takara Miyuki, her close neighbor, would sometimes come to hang out with her- out of consideration, of course, she realized. They often had random conversations as a way to kill time and get to know each other- albeit admittedly one-sided, since Minami herself rarely talked much. But one thing she recalled was that the Miyuki she knew definitely didn't like dentists, more being afraid of those shady people.
Her upperclassmen Kagami seemed to realize this soon after saying it, Minami noticed. The tsundere must've caught on too, what Minami was wondering: is something bothering Takara Miyuki?
"...Minami?" Yutaka's voice snapped her out of her thoughts. "I-is something wrong?"
"...oh." Minami realized that her eyes had been narrowed, and she had been glaring at the spot next to Yutaka for some time now- not for any reason, really. "Sorry. I'm... just thinking."
"Okay..." Yutaka replied. After a few more seconds of silence, she smiled. "Minami, if anything is bothering you, I'm willing to listen!" she said and flashed that miraculously innocent faze. Not just her, but everyone around, Minami could feel everyone melting slightly at the sight of that fact.
Worries washed away temporarily, Minami held up her fork again. "Aaah."
Yutaka happily received that piece of cake as well.
Kagami gulped. "I... I didn't know she..."
"Of course you didn't know," Ayano said. "I reckon she had always been scared that revealing that would out her as a weird person."
"H-hey, I wouldn't say that she's weird for that," Kagami said.
Ayano nodded. "Yes, I agree, but Hiiragi, surely you know that most people in our country don't view homosexuality well, right?" she said. The Hiiragi twin nodded slowly. "Misa's a bright and cheerful person most of the times, but that's because she has to be."
"She... has to?" the shrine maiden asked.
"Her house isn't exactly a pleasant place to be around," Ayano explained. "Her parents don't interact with her much, her grandparents often criticizes her, and she and her brother don't exactly get along well. She's probably the only optimistic person in her family, too."
"...how do you even know this?" Kagami asked.
"Oh, I talk with her brother often. We are together after ll," Ayano said and chuckled.
Kagami was surprised, to say. "Whaaaa...? When did that happen!?"
"Oh, Hiiragi. There's a lot you don't know about us," Ayano said and winked. She then got up and grabbed her bag. "I say you should take this chance to get to know Misa some more. It wouldn't hurt to be closer to us, don't you think?" With that, she left with a smile on her face, whilst Kagami remained seated on the swings, still slightly speechless.
Takara Miyuki glanced out the window calmly. "...hmhm."