[ YEAR SIX. ]
apr 6 AF 8:20AM
Hey. I'm about to start my last year in high school. It's a little scary, thinking about all the work I have to do this year — I'll be even busier with studying for exams and preparing for college, so who knows how much free time I'll be able to have. I'll try to text as often as possible, but with how it's looking so far, I don't know how things are gonna go… Just wanted to apologize for future occasions where I don't reply for longer periods of time or if I can't talk much. I'm sorry.
apr 7 AF 5:03PM
Omg don't be sorry! It's okay! I understand. Even though I've never been good at studying AT ALL, I was still really busy around senior year, and that didn't just apply to my idol career. Good luck! I'll be cheering you on. I know you can do it.
apr 12 AF 2:06PM
Thanks for understanding. I hope that I won't have to compromise more of my free time in the future once I get into college. I hope that by then, I'd be able to do more of the things I enjoy doing, explore a new environment, and spend more time with the people I love.
How have you been, though? I hope you're doing well. I saw your new role in that recent hit TV show — Hiyori's pretty obsessed with it.
apr 14 AF 5:03PM
I'm doing okay. I've been working a lot the last few months, so right now I have more of a break. I might be taking a muuuuuuuuuch longer break from work in the future… But anyways! I'm actually going to Disneyland with Marry-chan, Seto-san, and Kano-san the day after tomorrow! Tsubomi couldn't come with us because she's busy :( I'm pretty excited! I haven't been to Disney in a while, since I never had the time or the friends LMAO
But yeah, you'll probably see some pictures later. I'll let you know how it goes!
apr 15 AF 2:06PM
we're meeting at your place before we go to disney right?
yep! (o˘◡˘o) seto has to go check in at the flower shop in the morning but he'll be back before we leave
he says kano's going to be late again anyways ( ´ ▿ ` )
i bet seto-san's bringing u flowers
eh— (⁄ ⁄⁄ ▽ ⁄⁄ ⁄)
you guys are so cute ashg;asfjdklasflk;
thanks hehe you and hibiya-kun are cute too (´꒳`)
MARRY— we're not dating
yet ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ
kano also said that it'd be better if hibiya came on the trip instead of him because it'd be a double date!
why aren't you guys dating yet, anyways?
it's not as simple as that lmao
you're lucky that everything was super straightforward between you and seto-san
i've been worried about our physical distance and age gap and all that
age gap? (ᓀ . ᓀ)
ok well you guys are different lmao
idk im scared that we won't be able to relate to each other
or if he thinks im too old
you're only 3 years apart
if seto and i are happy together then i'm sure your 3 year age gap won't be a problem!
sometimes i envy you guys
you guys seem so happy together
it's clear that seto-san loves you a lot
really, i'm so thankful for him
he has no idea how much i love him but he always argues that he loves me more when i say that
brb crying omg
i'm sure everything will go well with hibiya-kun!
tell me more about how it's going between the two of you!
well, he's preparing for college rn so he says he's really busy
i might not be able to talk to him much this year
that just means you'll be able to talk to him more after all his work!
don't worry momo-chan! let's have fun at disney tomorrow (´ ε ` )
of course hehe
momo ʕ •̀ ω •́ ʔ
Disney day with my faves ( ˙︶˙ )
[ photo . jpg ]
may 2 AF 2:06PM
My daily routine is now go to school, go to the library to study, go home to study, sleep, then rinse and repeat. This year isn't looking so fun. I have to do this because I really need to work hard to get that scholarship. My family isn't wealthy enough to sponsor my college tuition — man, Hiyori really has it easier.
I heard that you're releasing a photo book soon, though. How's that going?
may 4 AF 9:31PM
That's… terrible…. I can't imagine. I would pass out on the spot, honestly. When I was still in school, I would always get scolded by Mr. Tateyama for being stupid LOL I'd have to stay after school all the time. So you're really impressive. Although you shouldn't compare yourself to me HAHA
The photo book is coming along nicely! It'll be released in two weeks. I'm really happy with how these photos turned out. They're more of a cozy, at-home vibe, with more natural makeup and everyday outfits. I hope it'll be well-received.
I've been spending more time with the gang these days. We go out for lunch and dinner pretty often. Sometimes it's just two or three of us hanging out, but recently we actually got seven of us together for a game night at my brother's apartment! Tsubomi made us dinner and it was like spending time at the base all over again.
may 10 AF 10:56PM
I just had some exams today and I'm pretty exhausted. I'll let myself take a break from studying too much for today… I've been doing okay with humanities, but STEM just isn't my thing. I'm gonna have to calculate my grades and pray later…
That game night sounds fun; I wish I could participate. I know that the Discord server is still active as ever, and I check it and reply to some messages once in a while, but I could never find the time to have a full conversation or start a game with one of them. My parents are definitely happy that I do a lot of studying instead of playing video games, though. They've been beaming recently — even my dad, who's always strict.
Also, you'll be receiving a package in the next few days. I sent you some weird snacks from my home town that you might like, since you have such weird taste. Trust me, they're the same level of weird as that red bean soup flavored soda you like so much. I hope you like it; I know it's not much, but I don't know, I saw them the other day and it reminded me of you.
I saw that you're doing a handshake event tomorrow. Good luck.
may 12 AF 9:59PM
Oh god Im not into that
ew what the fuck is wrong with you
What do you want
Just get on with it
how did you confess to ayano-chan?
Why are you asking this all of a sudden
just tell me
Are you thinking about confessing to the brat
JUST TELL ME OMG
Well… I thought I told you
It was 8/15 four years ago and we visited school
We started talking about what had happened all those years
I apologized to her for how badly I treated her
But she told me that she never regretted meeting me
And I just felt like I had to tell her because I couldn't lose her again
We went to the rooftop and she said that even though she already made up her mind about saving everyone, she regretted not being able to be with me
And I just asked her out ig
It was nothing too extraordinary
how did you find the courage
The moment just felt right ig
And I really didn't want to lose her ever again
I knew I had to tell her bc after all that happened I can't just let myself regret it for the rest of my life
I just couldn't keep it a secret anymore
did you ever think that you weren't good enough
or be worried that she wouldn't like you back
or get scared that she never looked at you in that way before and that you're the only one who's feeling this way
Obviously, just look at me
It's still a miracle that she reciprocates my feelings honestly
I've thought all of those things before and tbh it still bothers me at times
It's normal so dont be too hard on yourself
so it's not just me…
Nah he's probably worrying about the same things as you
Just follow your heart
Also are you still thinking about doing the thing
You know, the thing that'll create utter chaos in the world
i haven't decided yet
it's a big risk and i don't know if i'm brave enough
what do you think i should do
I can't decide for you but I think that if that's what you want, then you shouldn't let anything stop you
Follow you heart yknow
wow when did you start being nice
Hey shut up
You asked for my advice
okok well i guess i'll think about it for a bit longer
jul 20 AF 4:09PM
Everyone's out on summer vacation, but I don't have time for that. I don't know how I feel about it. Hiyori's visiting Tokyo in a few days, I think, and she asked if I wanted to go, but I couldn't. I really wanted to, but I've been so exhausted these days. Summer could be a good opportunity for me to get some proper sleep.
jul 25 AF 3:02PM
I hope you get some rest! You sound really tired… Don't sacrifice your health for studying. Please. I mean, I wouldn't, but then again, we can tell from my grades LOL
Hiyori hung out with us a few days ago! It was super fun. We went shopping! We've been planning a girls' night for a while now but Hiyori couldn't make it, since she'd be going back before then. It's really a bummer :(
aug 5 AF 3:30PM
Ayano: are we ready for girls night?
Ene: hell yeah
Ayano: im cooking and baking for us
Ene: HELL YEAH
Ayano: everyone's good with dinner at 7pm right?
Marry: yep hehe
Momo Kisaragi: I'll try to be there on time HAHA
Ene: don't be like kano
Tsubomi: we don't speak of his name here
Momo Kisaragi: huh?
Marry: did you guys fight again? :(
Tsubomi: let's just move on from this topic
Momo Kisaragi: we'll be asking you about this later
"So what happened between you and Kano-san?"
Kido's expression darkened as soon as she heard Momo's question, stabbing her strawberry shortcake with her fork. Beside her, Marry flinched, while Takane raised an eyebrow.
"He pisses me off," Kido said through gritted teeth. "I don't want to speak to him ever again."
"Not a very realistic goal, but okay," said Takane. "There's gotta be a reason. What'd the bastard do this time?"
Kido stayed silent as she gathered her thoughts. "He… kept saying ambiguous things. He's been like this for ages. He keeps joking about how it was hard for him not to fall in love with me or some shit, and I hated it. That bastard, he definitely knows that I love him, but he kept joking about reciprocating my feelings. I'm done with all this."
"That's the first time I've heard Leader admit that she's in love with Kano," said Takane wide-eyed. "This is revolutionary."
Kido shrugged. "Let's not pretend that you guys didn't already know," she said, sighing. "Point is, he treats my feelings like a joke. I'm fine with him not liking me back. I've accepted it already, at this point. I just don't want him to joke about liking me back but not actually reciprocating my feelings. It's stupid."
"How do you know it was a joke?" Marry asked.
"Please, this isn't the first day any of us has met Kano," said Kido. "We all know what he's like. His goddamn tone and that stupid ass smile on his face, it all gives it away."
aug 5 AF 7:30PM
Have you seen Kido? I… I really need to talk to her. I messed up. Sorry. I know you guys are hanging out and all, but I'm near Aya-nee's house, if she's there.
"Why would Shuuya joke about something like that?" Ayano asked. "Really, this is crossing the line!"
"Because Leader would never confess to him," said Takane. "So I guess he thought it was okay."
"I confessed to him."
Momo turned her head to look at Kido so violently that she almost got whiplash. The girls stared at their leader, whose cheeks had turned pink by now. For minutes, nobody said anything, shocked at what they just heard.
"Someone, please say something," said Kido, pulling her hood over her head in an attempt to hide her face.
"Ayo, what the fuck?" Takane burst out. "Wait, what happened?"
"Oh, my god," said Momo, eyes wide. "No way."
"Tsubomi!" Ayano yelled. "What did you say to him?"
"Tell us what happened!" Marry said excitedly.
"Calm down," Kido said, her blush deepening. "It's really not a big deal."
"Not a big deal?" Momo yelled. "What do you mean, 'not a big deal?' You can't just say that!"
"Well… It was really just a spur of the moment thing," said Kido, looking away. "He went too far with his jokes, and I couldn't take it anymore. Out of rage, I just said that… that I was an idiot for falling in love with him."
Momo and Ayano squealed in delight at Kido's words, while Takane whistled and Marry looked at her with wide eyes.
"What did he say?" Marry asked.
"Nothing, I… I stormed off. Haven't contacted him since."
"Well, you gotta hear his response," said Takane. "He's gotta respond to you somehow."
Kido groaned. "He's not gonna take me seriously. I'm done. I don't want him to break my heart. I'm good. I—"
The doorbell sounded, interrupting Kido's words. Ayano stood up to open the door, and Kido buried her head in her hands.
"You don't know for sure that he'll do that," said Momo. "You've gotta try, you know."
"I don't know about that one…"
"Hey, on the bright side, it can't get any worse than this," said Takane. "Seriously. You gotta at least hear him out."
"I'm back," said Ayano, returning to the room. "I have a guest."
"Hey, uh… Can I talk to Kido for a bit?"
That familiar voice… Could it be? Sure enough, it was Kano, standing awkwardly in the Tateyama living room. His gaze didn't have its usual air of mischief to them; rather, he looked nervous, almost uncertain, so unfitting to his character. At the sight of him, Kido's face flushed red, and if it wasn't for Momo and Takane, who pinned her down in her seat, she would have tried to escape.
"She's all yours!" Ayano chirped as she dragged Kido out of her seat and pushed her towards him. "You guys can talk in your old room!"
As the pair left, Ayano turned to the girls excitedly. "I didn't expect Shuuya to show up all of a sudden! I wonder why he's here? And how he knew to come at such a good timing!"
Momo looked nervously at her phone. Whoops, she was in major trouble. "Yeah, about that… I, uh, texted Kano-san that he should probably come here. And talk to her."
"For real?" Takane raised an eyebrow. "She's gonna kill you. And you know that she can kill with her eyes."
"Ah, Leader's gonna be so mad at me later," Momo wailed. "But Kano-san seemed like he wanted to explain things, so I told him we were here…"
"I believe in Shuuya," said Ayano. "I think he really has something important to say."
As the four girls chatted amongst themselves, they couldn't help but take glances towards the hallway, where Kido and Kano were having a conversation they were dying to eavesdrop on. Finally, when the two returned, Momo noticed how Kido's eyes were a little red and Kano was smiling more naturally than she had ever seen.
"Well, I'm going to leave you guys to yourselves now," said Kano. He took Kido's hand and gave it a reassuring squeeze. "See you soon, Tsubomi."
And with that, he left, leaving the girls to scream in excitement amongst themselves.
"Holy shit," Momo yelled. "'Tsubomi?' 'Tsubomi?' He called you 'Tsubomi?'"
"I-It's nothing," said Kido, feigning calmness as she sat down. "That's my name, you know, and it's not like he hasn't called me that before…"
"He took your hand, though?" Ayano screamed. "Oh, my god, Tsubomi, what did he say earlier?"
Kido pulled her hood over her head once again, unable to meet their excited gazes. "He, um… He told me that he felt the same way."
The room erupted into a frenzy of emotions, with the girls screaming and squealing endlessly. The blush on Kido's face grew redder and redder as she sank into her chair in disbelief, wondering if it was all a dream or not.
"I'm so happy for you!" Momo screamed. "This is amazing! We should celebrate!"
"Before that, we need to address how you texted Kano to come here," said Kido, staring at Momo, who immediately shut up.
"I'm sorry, Leader, but I just… Kano-san was asking about you and he sounded like he wanted to apologize so I told him that you were here…"
"I'm not mad," Kido said, sighing. "I just think that it's amusing how you're so daring when it comes to other people's romances but not your own."
Immediately, all eyes focused on Momo, whose face heated up at the thought of a certain member of their group.
"She's not wrong," said Takane. "It's been like, what, two years? And you've had, like, zero progress?"
"Hey, you can't say that!" Momo pouted.
Takane rolled her eyes. "Okay, but I was basically dead for, like, two years and he was amnesic, so I couldn't do anything even if I wanted to. That doesn't count."
"I don't know," Momo said, looking away from her friends. "I'm just… scared."
"You're Momo Kisaragi," said Takane. "Anyone would go mad if you confessed to them. The kid's lucky to have you."
But the world's in love with "Top Idol Momo Kisaragi," not me.
"You're amazing, Momo-chan," Marry said, grabbing onto her arm. "You're so pretty and so nice and just so much fun to be around! You're so cool!"
But nobody knows just how insecure I really am, how little confidence I actually have, how much of a mess I can be when I start crying in the middle of the night.
"We believe in you, the same way you've believed in us," said Kido. "You've helped us a lot, and without a doubt, we'll be there for you."
Nobody… except him.
"What are you scared of?" Ayano asked softly.
For a second, she wasn't quite sure. Rejection? The possibility that things would get awkward? That they could never be friends again? If this were a test, she'd probably pick D, all of the above. But she was never good at taking tests, and she never really thought outside of the box, so perhaps the right answer was always hidden from her. Maybe it was E, none of the above.
Maybe it was time for her to take risks.
"I've decided," Momo said. Her voice was quiet yet resolute, just like her decisions.
"What is it?" Marry asked.
"I'm going to confess to him the next time I see him."
On August 14, 20AF, at 23:39, KASHIWA TALENT AGENCY management wrote:
Best of luck to you, Momo-chan.
| On August 12, 20AF, at 11:38 PM, Momo Kisaragi momo wrote:
| Yes. I've made up my mind and I'm ready to take on the future, whatever it brings.
| | On August 9, 20AF, at 23:31, KASHIWA TALENT AGENCY management wrote:
| | The details have been attached below. Please read it over and let us know if there's anything you need.
| | Are you sure about this decision?
| | attachment . pdf
Kashiwa Talent Agency
A notice regarding the future of idol Momo Kisaragi. As of today, August 15, 20AF, Momo Kisaragi will graduate from her idol career. Her graduation concert will be held on October 10, 20AF. This will not be the end of her public life, and she will continue to be present in fans' lives. Thank you all for your continued support.
[ photo . jpg ]
VIDEO: IDOL MOMO KISARAGI IS GRADUATING?
August 15, 20AF
momo kisaragi stan
HEADLINE: BREAKING NEWS: Top Idol MOMO KISARAGI is GRADUATING?
The world was shocked when Kashiwa Talent Agency announced that top idol Momo Kisaragi would be graduating from her idol career.
Momo Kisaragi, 21, stepped into the entertainment world at age 14. Over the years, she gained a massive following and great popularity, dominating magazines, music charts, television, and more. Her most well-known songs, "Kisaragi Attention" and "Otsukimi Recital," have become world-famous tunes, and she has been on the cover of virtually every fashion magazine.
The news immediately caused an uproar on the Internet, with fans tagging the hashtag #KisaragiEffect to express severity of the havoc that this news has left in its wake.
Momo Kisaragi's graduation concert will be held on October 10th. More information will be released through Kashiwa Talent Agency's social media shortly.
At the moment, Kisaragi's reason for leaving her idol career is unclear; Kashiwa Talent Agency has confirmed that Kisaragi will not be leaving the entertainment world entirely and instead will pursue a different path. Stay tuned to find out more.
fuwa loves momo
THERE'S NO FUCKING WAY AOIJFOPAISJFOIPAOSPI #KisaragiEffect
HEY TWITTER WHAT DID I JSUT READ? #KisaragiEffect
okay yall enough with the jokes this isn't april fools day this is a dream right? right? #KisaragiEffect
yeah no, this ain't it. not today satan #KisaragiEffect
aug 15 2:23PM
aug 15 AF 2:35PM
Sorry what? - Tsubomi
I have the same question 😃
aug 15 AF 2:50PM
ayo what the fuck?
aug 15 AF 3:08PM
momo-chan you're not gonna be an idol anymore?
aug 15 AF 4:01PM
WAIT WHAT WHATS GOING ON?
aug 15 AF 5:00PM
Oh man, you really did it
i still can't believe it
The media is going wild
and so is the internet
i've been getting so many texts from everyone too
Oh right you didn't tell anyone huh
i was kinda scared of their reaction tbh
Its your decision, they'll support it one way or another
hiyori texted me too so hibiya-kun must know as well…
He better not think you did this for him or something
he's not that kind of person!
He better not be lol
i don't think i'll be able to leave the house for a while
at least until the media calms down
Well that's probably gonna take a while
it'll be worth it tho
this is… one of the first few things i've decided to do myself
aug 15 AF 5:15PM
I'm sure everyone has been asking you about the news already, but… I have a lot of questions, too.
i know you do 😅
Oh you're online
Tell me about happened?
well… i quit being an idol LOL
I figured LOL but why?
Did something happen?
It's kind of a long story. But um, I started out as an idol because I wanted the attention. I know that sounds bad, but… you know how it is.
Yeah, I understand
But now, I feel less insecure and I want a fresh start. Although I liked being an idol, I just didn't feel like myself. I felt like I was putting on a smile for my audience, even during times I didn't want to smile. It was more like I was playing the top idol Momo Kisaragi they liked instead of being myself. And I want to finally try to be my true self from now on.
I've been wanting to share more of myself to the world. What my life really is like. Who I really am.
If that's what you want to do, then I think it's worth a shot.
Just do whatever makes you happy
I was pretty worried that you would think that I'm crazy
No not at all
I was definitely surprised bc like who wakes up to the headline of TOP IDOL MOMO KISARAGI IS GRADUATING lmao
But I think everything you said definitely make sense
And if they make you happy, ill support all your decisions
momo ʕ •̀ ω •́ ʔ
Thank you to everyone who has supported me so far — really, words cannot describe how happy I am. In a few months, I will be opening up a YouTube channel, where I will be uploading videos to record my life! I hope that this way, you guys will be able to see a more realistic version of me.
[ photo . jpg ]
momo ʕ •̀ ω •́ ʔ
To everyone who attended my graduation concert, thank you for everything. This is in no way a goodbye, and I hope to see everyone again.
[ photo . jpg ]
oct 20 AF 1:04PM
momo-san! what r u doing on 11/4?
i think i'm going shopping with tsubomi, kano-san and seto-san. why?
oh just asking! don't worry about it!
? okay i guess LOL
nov 4 AF 12:00AM
Happy birthday, Hibiya-kun. You're… 18. It's been so many years since we first met. I really can't believe it. I have a lot to say, and I don't think I can write everything in a text, so I think I'll save it for when I see you next. I wish the best for you.
She's imagined their rencounter a countless amount of times, in multiple scenarios and variations in her daydreams. She's fantasized about traveling to his home town and surprising him, snickering mischievously at his shock, about staging a casual run-in at wherever he would be going next for college, feigning surprise as their eyes meet, about many more scenarios that she mapped out in her head as she planned them for perfection.
But never once did she expect him to show up out of the blue in front of the Hachiko statue at Shibuya Station, casually looking around at the city he arrived so suddenly at. Even at a distance, in the midst of the sea of people, his appearance caught her eye, and she wasn't able to look away. What, did Drawing Eyes move on to him now?
Beside her, Kido, Seto and Kano seemed to follow her gaze — she could see Kano's grin widen from the corner of her eye, and oh, god, she wanted to just crawl into a hole and perish as she thought about what Kano could do (the absolute power he held in his 5'8'' body—)
"Hey, isn't that—"
Kano surely didn't disappoint, because he would have yelled loud enough for the entire Hachiko Exit area to hear him if Seto hadn't slapped his palm over his mouth just in time. Kido gave him a deathly glare that made Momo momentarily forget about the destruction Kano could have caused and instead worry about his safety.
"I think we're gonna get going," said Kido to Momo. "Seto, you have to meet Marry at the flower shop, right?"
"Y-Yeah!" Seto stuttered. "Sorry, Kisaragi-san, but we'll see you around!"
Momo could only slowly wave as the trio took their leave, with Kano still mumbling some protests against his breath. They weren't being subtle at all about wanting her to face this herself, but she silently thanked her friends as she closed the distance between her and the boy standing in front of the Hachiko statue.
He wasn't as much of a boy anymore, was he? — That's right, today was his 18th birthday. He's changed a lot since the last time she saw him, 3 and a half years ago at her own 18th birthday party. He's grown quite a bit in height, standing at a little less than Seto's 5'10'' stature, and just like the video from last summer had shown, his features have matured quite well, losing some of the boyishness in his childhood.
When he spotted her, he seemed just as surprised as she was. Eyes wide, he stared at her as she stopped right in front of him; for a few seconds, they stared at each other, wondering if this was just another one of their daydreams.
"What are you doing here?"
His voice had gotten deeper, making Momo's heart flutter like butterflies in springtime. Doing her best to keep the heat from flooding to her face, she put all of her acting skills from her career into this conversation: "Shouldn't I be the one asking you that? How are you in Shibuya? In Tokyo? What about school?"
He seemed surprised to hear her speak, and immediately, he pinched his own cheek. He winced at the pain, and after that pain subsided, he looked at her again. "So this really isn't a dream…"
Momo couldn't help but laugh. "It's not! I should be the one who's more surprised to see you, though. It's not everyday that you just randomly show up in the city."
"Well," Hibiya sighs. "It's school related business, but I'm done with that now, so I was just… Hanging out, I guess. I got here early morning, and I leave around 9 at night. I was wondering if I should text you, but I didn't know if you were busy or not, and it would be really spontaneous, too, and I don't know if that's okay or not…"
"I guess we met up one way or another," Momo laughed. "Do you have any plans afterwards?"
"Not really. Do you?"
"I was out with Tsubomi, Seto-san, and Kano-san, but they just left, so I guess I don't anymore."
"In that case…" Hibiya looks away for a few seconds as a faint blush tints his cheeks. "It's almost dinnertime. Do you want to eat together? Maybe? If you want? No pressure."
It took all of Momo's willpower not to throw herself at him with a hug, and all she could think was he's so cute. "Of course! I haven't seen you in so long!"
"I've missed you."
Her heart skipped a beat as her mind registered his words, and she recalled the decision she made in the summer. But this was too sudden, and she didn't make any preparations at all — she envied those who had the courage to declare their love loud and proud. Even so, she could afford to be a little bit honest, just a little bit—
"I've missed you, too."
It only occurred to Momo when they sat down at dinner that the two of them had never spent time alone before. Although they've been texting back and forth for six years now, the times they saw each other in person were few in number, and this would be the first time they were by themselves. The mere minutes they spent walking to the convenience store on her 18th birthday didn't count — that wasn't enough for her.
Time passed too quickly for her to keep track; one moment they were thirteen and sixteen and stuck in a never-ending tragedy, and in a matter of what seemed like seconds, they were now eighteen and twenty-one, adventuring into the adult world. What kind of person did Hibiya Amamiya grow up into? She was dying to find out.
Hibiya's voice brought her back to reality; she didn't realize she had been staring at him until she noticed his amused expression. Quickly, she retracted her gaze and focused on the scenery outside the window.
"Nothing," she said, laughing the awkwardness away. "I just… still can't believe you're here."
"You've been saying that for thirty minutes now," Hibiya chuckled. Raising his glass, he took a gulp of iced water, and even the slight movement of his throat made her cheeks burn.
"It's just… really sudden, you know? You could've told me."
"I figured you were busy, considering the aftermath of the Kisaragi Effect," Hibiya shrugged.
Momo couldn't help but laugh. "Kisaragi Effect? There's a name for it?"
"Yeah, it's all over the news, you know. I've been seeing it everywhere."
"I didn't know you cared about me so much."
Momo surprised herself with her boldness, the sweet, teasing way her voice suddenly became. Across from her, Hibiya's face burned red; thankfully, their dinner arrived at that second, saving them from further awkwardness.
"You just turned eighteen today, huh?" Momo mused. "You're a legal adult now."
"It's still sinking in. Really, I don't feel too different from my ordinary self."
"It's what you've always wanted, isn't it? To be an adult," Momo laughed. "Really, I never quite understood. I just wanted to stay a teenager forever." So I could stay closer to you.
"There's been a lot of things I looked forward to in adulthood. I wanted… more freedom to really do what I want to do. It's really hard when you're confined to a small town, you know."
"Well, when you visit Tokyo, you'll always have me!" Momo smiled proudly. "I'll be your tour guide! Just let me know whenever you need anything."
"In that case… do you want to walk around a little more after dinner?"
The invitation came more boldly than she expected, and all she could do was try to keep the blush from her face and nod, hiding her embarrassment behind a smile. After their meal, they walked around aimlessly, talking about their experiences and feelings; somehow, this moment made Momo happier than ever, and she quickly realized that it was because he was with her.
"Ah, this park…"
They turned the corner and came about a familiar landmark. Instantly, Momo was reminded of their day together six years ago, when she did everything she could to cheer him up. Ah, how nostalgic — they were so young, so unaware of how things would turn out in the future.
"It's where you cheered me up," Hibiya said with a reminiscent smile. "You used your ability and collapsed afterwards from exhaustion."
That happened, didn't it? She remembered how much she wanted him to smile again; her song "Otsukimi Recital" expressed that clear enough. "Afterwards, you faced the moon and shouted, 'I'll do it, just wait and see,'" Momo laughed.
"Man…" Hibiya cringed. "You don't have to remind me of that."
"What do you mean, 'why?'" He sighed. "It's embarrassing. God, what was I thinking?"
"Well…" She could afford to be a little honest, right? "I always thought you sounded kinda cool."
His surprised stare brought the heat back to her face, and she quickly looked away. "A-Anyways, it's been six years, hasn't it? I can't believe I've known you for so long."
"You're right," he mused. "Six years… That's a third of my lifetime."
For some reason, she felt an inexplicable emotion tugging at her heart; she wanted to cry, but she also wanted to laugh, for she was so happy, no matter how weird that seemed to be to express right now. But she wanted him to know, and he deserved to know, because she loved him so dearly, even if he didn't feel the same about her—
"I'm happy we met all those years ago. I know it was a mere two days, but it felt like it was much longer than that. And of course, terrible things happened back then, but I think being with everyone made me so much happier." She shook her head; no, that wasn't what she wanted to say. "Being with you made me so much happier."
"I didn't do anything," Hibiya said quietly. "You were the one who helped me."
She shook her head. "Before all this, I lacked confidence in myself, in everything I did, and I really, really hated… a lot of things. I hated waking up every day and feeling like I wasn't enough, hated the emptiness that filled my heart no matter what I did. But you… you came along and seemed to save me from it all. Not just during that summer day, but all the days following it, you were there for me. You care about me. And I care a lot about you. I'm really glad I met you, Hibiya-kun."
Hibiya looked surprised, and for a second, she was worried that she had come off too strong with her gratitude. It was weird; why was she getting so emotional all of a sudden? She's expressed her gratitude before, but in this moment, if she didn't tell him, if she kept it all to herself, her heart was going to burst from the overflow of emotions. "Ah, I don't know why I got so serious all of a sudden. Don't worry about—"
"I love you."
She must have heard that wrong. It couldn't be. In some sort of daydream she must be having, she seemed to hear that he returned her feelings. Wide-eyed, she stared at him; there was no way that he, too loved her.
He seemed to only realize the words he just uttered after a minute of shock. Immediately, his face burned as red as their eyes would turn, and he quickly fell to the ground, head in hands.
Her heart pounded as she worked to process his words. "W-What's wrong?" She stammered as she stared at him.
"I fucked up. I fucking fucked up. I'm a fucking idiot, oh my god, how the fuck do you just fuck up on something you've been planning for years?" He muttered under his breath. "Goddamn it, Marry, reset the timeline or actually, let's just call up that psychotic snake from the void and end me, please."
"This was supposed to be an elaborate confession, something romantic that I know you'd like, but nooooo, I just had to blurt it out like a fucking child."
"It's…not really a problem…"
"What do you mean it's not a problem?" He stood back up, and Momo could clearly see the frustration in his eyes. "I was ready to set myself up so that even when I get rejected, I won't feel too devastated about it and then we won't be too awkward. But now… Goddamn it, why did I do that? I can't even—"
It was the first time she said his name, sans honorifics, and that seemed to stop Hibiya's stressing. She bit her lip, heart beating wildly as she worked up the courage; oh god, she was going to say it, wasn't she?
"It's not a problem," she said, suppressing the shaking of her voice. "I don't really mind. In fact, it makes me really happy, because… Because I love you too."
She was too afraid to look into his eyes, but even with her averted gaze, she knew that he was staring straight at her. She never knew that her heartbeat could be this quick; even before her concerts, she was nervous, but never this nervous.
"Why would I lie about something like this?"
"I don't know," Hibiya ran a hand through his hair nervously. "You're Momo Kisaragi, and I'm… me. I don't want you to, I don't know, feel obligated to reciprocate, either."
She inched closer to him, step by step. "I've loved you for the last two years," she said, reaching out her hand to his. Their fingertips brushed past each other, and she finally got the courage to look into his eyes. "I love you because you're you, and I don't want anyone else."
He took her hand into his, and as their fingers intertwined, he pulled her closer. Nervously, cautiously, she rested her head on his chest, and he smoothed out her hair softly.
"I still can't believe this is happening," Hibiya said, letting out a shaky breath. "If this is a dream, then I don't want to wake up."
"It's real." Momo finds herself wrapping her arms around him; she could feel him tense up at her touch.
"I don't know, my dreams tend to be pretty realistic."
"Well, at least I hope it's real. I really can't believe that you love me back," said Momo. "I thought I was the only one."
At this, Hibiya laughed. "You? You thought your feelings were unrequited? Come on, idiot, I was so worried that I was being way too obvious and that I was making you uncomfortable."
"No way!" Momo's cheeks puffed into a pout as she looked at him, confused. "I was so worried! I was so worried that you'd think I was too old or something."
"Momo, you're twenty-one," he said, trying to bite back a laugh. "You're anything but old. Besides, I was worried that you only thought of me as a younger brother or another random kid."
"Definitely not. You're… special."
He paused, letting the thought sink in, and he pulls away slightly, a serious expression on his face. "I was going to discuss something with you," Hibiya said slowly. "I've applied for universities in Tokyo. If I can get in, I'll be able to stay by your side. And if I don't get in… I won't be able to be here with you, and I think you deserve better. Regardless of the result, I'll be very busy the next few months so that I can study hard, hard enough for me to have a chance, because I want a future with you."
Another four months until college decisions are released. Four months, where she'd want to be with him so bad, but she wouldn't be able to. She'd live with the knowledge that he, too, loved her, and that mere fact made her heart ache from how close, yet how far away he would be. Four months… That seemed like a long time.
"If it's too much, I completely understand, but if you're willing… Would you wait for me?"
It seems like a long time… But love made her braver, stronger than she thought she was, and she was willing to take risks with him.
"Yes," she breathed. "I'll wait for you."
Hibiya stared at her, as if he didn't expect this response from her. "Really?" He asked, trying to stop his voice from shaking. "Are you sure? I'll try to talk to you every day, but some days, I might be so tired that I just fall asleep or can't hold a proper conversation."
"Yeah," Momo said, nodding. "I just want to be with you, you know. I've already waited two years, so another four months is nothing."
"I'm… so glad to hear that."
"I have so many questions for you. You seemed so… mature and serious in your texts, but really, you haven't changed a bit. You're still the Hibiya I know."
At this, Hibiya seemed a little embarrassed. "I didn't want to seem too childish, you know. I just wanted to be all cool and attractive so that you wouldn't look at me like a younger brother. I just wanted you to see the best version of myself. So I just tried really hard to seem really mature."
"You really are an idiot," Momo said, smiling to herself. "I love you. So much."
"I love you, too," he said, pulling her back in for a hug. "I can't wait for the next time I see you."
"Let's meet again, in Tokyo."
nov 4 AF 10:58PM
Momo Kisaragi: i did it.
Tsubomi: no way
Marry: what happened?
Momo Kisaragi: i confessed to hibiya.
Hiyori: HOLY SHIT
Hiyori: HELLO WHAT
Momo Kisaragi: ahhhh i still can't believe it!
Ene: what did he say?
Momo Kisaragi: well technically he confessed first
Ayano: so you guys are dating now?
Momo Kisaragi: yeah kind of
Tsubomi: wdym kind of?
Momo Kisaragi: he's studying for college entrance exams rn and he's trying to get into universities in Tokyo
Momo Kisaragi: so he's gonna be really busy until results come out
Momo Kisaragi: he asked me if I was okay with that and I said I'll wait for him
Marry: is hiyori-chan okay?
Hiyori: IM SHAKIGN RN yOU HAVE NO IDEA HOW MANY YEARS I HAVE WAITED FOR THIS
Ene: lmfao why are you getting so excited
Hiyori: HE'S BEEN WANTING TO DO THIS FOR LITERAL FUCKING YEARS
Hiyori: IM SO HAPPY RN
Tsubomi: momo i can't believe you used to be jealous of her lol
Hiyori: of me?
Hiyori: no way
Momo Kisaragi: well… you guys are always together yknow :/
Hiyori: you're all he talks about
Hiyori: he only has eyes for you
Hiyori: he's so in love with you, in ways you cannot imagine
Hiyori: you should see the way he freaks out about his relationship with you
Ayano: my heart is melting omg im so happy for u momo!
Marry: congrats momo-chan (*¯ ³¯*)
Ene: good stuff
Momo Kisaragi: thanks everyone
nov 4 AF 11:11PM
Hey. I'm home. Everything still feels like a dream, but… I just want you to know that I love you.
I love you too
I'm assuming that you told Hiyori, since she just called me and screamed for like 5 minutes straight.
Ah yeah, I told her in the group chat we have with the girls. She was definitely very emotional haha
The guys also have a group chat. I told them as well. Kind of terrified of what your brother's gonna say, but oh well.
I still have a lot of questions for you, but you should get some rest. It's getting late
Yeah. You should sleep soon too.
Yep I will
Okay then good night
I've never used that emoji before lol
good night! ❤️ ❤️
you're so cute
VIDEO: Hi! It's Momo Kisaragi
November 10, 20AF
VIDEO: Guide to Momo Kisaragi's Signature Idol Makeup
November 17, 20AF
VIDEO: Momonday: My Graduation Concert, Life Recently, What's Next?
November 25, 20AF
VIDEO: Momonday: Hot Pot with Friends, Photo Shoots, and Shopping
December 2, 20AF
VIDEO: Momonday: Christmas Shopping, Re-Decorating My House, Trying Weird Snacks
December 9, 20AF
dec 15 AF 02:49AM
Studying's going smoothly, and test scores for my mock exams are coming back pretty well. I'm sorry I can't spend Christmas Eve with you in person, but I'll clear out my schedule so that we can FaceTime. If you want, that is.
Yes! Of course I want to! So glad that we can. I'll clear out my schedule too 😚
VIDEO: What I Wore This Week! Winter Outfit Inspiration
December 23, 20AF
FaceTime Call from Hibiya ❤️
December 24, 20AF
4 hours 27 minutes
jan 15 AG 7:45AM
Test in 15 minutes. Very nervous.
jan 15 AG 11:50AM
Good luck! I hope it went well. Let me know!
jan 15 AG 12:30PM
It went okay. I think I did fine. Now it's all up to fate.
I know you did fine. I believe in you!
Thanks. I'm still shaking, honestly. I'm at lunch and I can't even eat properly lmao. I'll update you on how things go in a second.
momo ʕ •̀ ω •́ ʔ
Thank you for 3 million subscribers!
[ photo . jpg ]
feb 14 AG 12:00AM
Happy birthday, Momo. In the six years I've known you, this is your first birthday where I get to tell you how I really feel. I've never been able to be 100% honest with you, because of this big secret I've been carrying over the last few years. But now… Everything's different. I can't tell you how happy I am to be with you. I wish I was there celebrating with you, but… Maybe, hopefully, in a month or so. For now, all I can tell you is that I wish the best for you. I love you. Happy birthday, may all your wishes come true. I'll FaceTime you later.
And, of course, happy Valentine's Day.
oh my god I love youuu thank you! I can't wait to see you again ❤️
FaceTime Call from Hibiya ❤️
February 14, 20AG
3 hours 58 minutes
feb 26 AG 11:30AM
Just finished secondary tests. I think that went okay. Surprisingly, I'm not as nervous as last time anymore. Now, we wait for results on March 10. My first choice school is Tokyo University, Faculty of Letters.
You'll get in! I believe in you.
VIDEO: Momonday: Hanging Out with Friends All Week! Parties, Move Nights, Trying (and Failing) to Cook!
February 26, 20AG
Reminder: TOKYO UNIVERSITY, RESULTS ANNOUNCED
March 10, 20AG
"How does anyone oversleep on a day like this?!"
Hurriedly grabbing her phone, keys and purse, Momo rushed out the door, barely having any time to throw on her coat and scarf. Muttering under her breath, she made her way to the station, heels tapping on the ground as her brisk pace quickened. She was an absolute idiot; she knew this would happen, so she set fifteen alarms before she went to bed. But noooooo, she just had to sleep through all of them and wake up with messy hair and dry skin. She barely had time to finish doing her makeup — she's certain that her eyeliner was somewhat uneven.
On the JR train, she fidgeted with her fingers as she wished the train would go faster. Ever since she lost her ability, she started being able to go outside more normally than before, and now that she wasn't an idol anymore, she was able to enjoy her time out without being interrupted every few minutes by a fan. Today, she couldn't afford to be stopped by fans; she had to get to Tokyo University, and she had to check if her heart would finally be able to stay by her side in the city.
She arrived at Tokyo University in a rush, barely making it there at 12:30. Weaving through crowds of happy college-students-to-be, she arrived in front of a huge board filled with numbers, where results were announced.
10085, 10085… Peering nervously at the sea of numbers, she could feel her heartbeat quickening. Her eyes jumped past 10081 and focused on 10089; there was nothing in between.
She felt her stomach sink to the ground. He didn't get in? She didn't know what to say; more importantly, she didn't know what to say to him. He must be devastated; what could she do to help? He had other options, his second and third choices, so it wasn't like all hope was lost, but she still felt a nervousness that seemed to eat her alive. Sighing, she turned away from the bulletin, letting other anxious students take her place in the crowd.
Just as she left the crowd, someone from behind her took her hand. Immediately, she turned around, surprised at the suddenness. She was just about to yell at the stranger when she realized who it was.
"Hibiya?" Momo exclaimed, shocked that he was here. "You're here?"
"Of course I am," he said, laughing. "I'm here to check the results."
The results. Quickly, Momo mustered up all the positivity she could find within her and focused it in her voice. "It's okay! You still have two other options to wait for, so let's just see what happens then! Yeah?"
Hibiya stared at her, furrowing his brows in confusion. He then took a look at the bulletin she was standing in front of, then burst into laughter.
"Why are you laughing?" Momo pouted. "I'm trying to cheer you up!"
"Nothing, nothing," Hibiya said, shaking his head. "I just think that you should take a look at this." He pulled out his phone and turned it around for Momo to see.
"'Entry number 10085, congratulations on your acceptance to Tokyo University, Faculty of Letters,'" Momo read. "'We will send you your acceptance letter shortly; please follow the instructions included to enroll…' Wait, does this mean… You got in?"
Hibiya nodded. "You read it yourself, didn't you?"
"But the bulletin… It didn't have your number on it…"
"Idiot," Hibiya said, taking her hand. "You were looking at the wrong bulletin. That one's for the Faculty of Education."
"Does that mean… that you get to stay in Tokyo?"
"We won't have to be long distance anymore?"
Momo could no longer control her happiness. Throwing her arms around his neck, she pulled him close as she squealed with excitement. Hibiya hugged her back, laughing at her reaction. She was well aware that the people around them were staring, but that didn't matter; finally, he was close enough to touch, and he'd stay by her side no matter what.
"I love you," she whispered. "What about you?"
"I love you, too."