Neighbor Seat Phobia
That night, Yui who was buried under a blanket on her bed, just couldn’t sleep.
It has always been like this. Every time there is a seating change planned for the next day, she can’t help but remember it.
— Uwaa, I don’t want to be her neighbor ~ Such misfortune, such luck ~ This is the worst.
That happened on a seat exchange day when she was only in fourth grade elementary.
It was whispered by the person who just became her neighbor. No, that wasn’t a whisper, it was considerably loud.
Admittedly, I was one of the “misses.” 1
I was extremely shy and had a considerable small voice. I also had a very bad case of stage fright, to the point that just someone smiling could scare me.
I wanted to say “it’s the same case for me, the worst case.” but for obvious reasons I couldn’t say those words, so I brought that sadness home and cried loudly.
I started to hate changing seats, and I started to hate attending school altogether.
While I was assigned on that seat, I was always startled by my neighbors’ sudden outbursts, but I was able to endure all of that until the next change of seats.
But, when the next exchange of seats happens, what will I do if the other person says the same “this is the worst.”
If that were to happen, it will all just repeat from the start. Will I keep on feeling this anxiety every time there is a change of seats?
Yui, who was really troubled, consulted her most reliable person that she knows, her older sister.
Thereafter, her sister made a really confused expression and told her,
「Then why don’t you just turn into an interesting girl?」
It was quite a bit of an advice if she were to think about it now, but Yui back then took that as if that was the most perfect answer there can be.
In fact, there was a girl that was really bright and funny, and her surroundings were full of people. She was really popular.
Thereafter, Yui started to research on how to be an interesting person.
She read not only shoujo manga but also Gag manga. She watched comedians on some video sharing website, she also checked a variety of comedy shows and reality shows.
Apart from that, Yui also received dubious advice from her sister— Girls should be this and that, that kind of advice.
But in fact, there was no certainty that such efforts would yield results.
There was a time where she just stopped trying after laughing and tiring herself out by watching a Gag anime.
Eventually, my sister asked me if “I was trying my best.” She then told me to just try to smile for now, and I did try to do so.
But fortunately, all of that worked, and since then no more neighbors said that it was “the worst.”
She started to become popular and gained friends.
However, after a while in junior high school, it all gradually moved towards a strange direction.
Even though I just tried to greet someone with a smile, I was suddenly called and told “I like you.”
Now, that interesting girl from elementary is treated as an envious and annoying woman.
Yui was not aware of her own growth, appearance wise. She started to be confused because her idea of “being interesting = justice” was not working the way she expected it to.
For Yui, all she was doing was in order to avoid getting hated by her neighbor.
She tried to smile to brighten the atmosphere between them, and she tried to act nice between them, but all that lead to an overkill.
As time passed, she became a hot topic between guys, but she had not grasped all of that.
In time, she just kept receiving confessions, so she finally had it.
Let’s stop all of this, let’s be normal, let’s stay normal, so she thought.
Even if she knew that in her mind, her neighbor seat phobia didn’t help.
She even forgot how she was acting before all of this.
She had a feeling that she was just acting as a character, or that her personality itself had already changed. The boundary between what is real and what is for appearance was blurred.
That said, it’s not like she hates how she is right now, she feels that it’s better than that past version of hers where she was hated.
However, if she were to try ignore her neighbor, she might wonder if she’s doing something wrong.
If the classmates around her seat started to get lively, she can’t help but think if she should say something to liven things out.
“I should be entertaining.” Such thought was eating her and it was really difficult to stop thinking so.
Even now, she still hates exchanging seats.
Fuu~, exhaling a sigh, Yui turned around.
The truth is that the reason she couldn’t sleep was not because of the seat change.
— You are playing a game where you’re trying to make the boy who’s seated beside you fall in love with you.
He said that with a very serious face.
When she was thinking back about that idea, she started to laugh about it as she remembered it bit by bit.
（Saying that all of this is a game…. Hmmm, maybe he really is an airhead? But all in all he’s really funny.）
Her mouth formed into a smile.
If it’s just that, she can just pass it on as him being cute…. But what happened next is something she can’t just ignore.
（I got patted.）
She was never patted by a guy the same age as her. In fact, when she tried to think back, there really weren’t that many times when she was patted on her head.
In other words, he’s taken my first… 3 He took it from me without me noticing. 45
（Not to mention he was really good at it! To be honest I felt really good! His voice was really gentle too…）
（He said that he has a little sister, unexpectedly, he’s an onii-chan character?）
Not to mention, he doesn’t look like someone who’d just randomly pat someone’s head.
That really caused me to panic and show an unsightly side of me.
Surely, he thought that “Uh, her face started to get red just because of that? How easy.” Just thinking so is making my face hot!
（What is really going on?!）
She started to kick her feet up and down.
He was someone she was interested in before, then they coincidentally became seatmates and she talked to him since he’s kind of interesting. Also coincidentally they went home together, but then her head was patted, and because of that she became conscious of him…. Then it reached this point here.
（No, no, no! I am not that kind of easy to get heroine! This is just the first day we’ve talked okay? I can endure more than some harem anime’s heroine!）
I am sure that is not the case. I am pretty sure this feeling is not that.
Yes, that’s it. I was just surprised. My heart is beating fast because I was surprised, yes. I am sure that’s the case!
（Damn youuu~ That guy~!）
Even though I am this disturbed, he’s probably sleeping very peacefully right now… Oh no, thinking about that is making me so angry.
Somehow I hate losing. I will make his sleepy face go completely red! Since it came to this, I will play that “make him fall in love” game seriously!