📢 Maybe you see "V2" or "V3" and so on in the NOVEL TITLE, it means what VOLUMES the NOVEL is.
📢 Maybe you see "V2" or "V3" and so on in the NOVEL TITLE, it means what VOLUMES the NOVEL is.

V2 I Reunited with my Ex-Girlfriend on a Dating App Chapter 4

Compassion and Meddling are Separated by a Thin Line

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NOVEL WISHES


Episode 4: Compassion and Meddling are Separated by a Thin Line

At San’nomiya Station Central Exit, I always remember that day. The day I had an honest talk with Hikaru.

Since that day, my relationship with Hikaru changed.

Of course, for the better.

I hadn’t apologized for when we parted ways, and that had always bothered me. That feeling disappeared thanks to Enji.

So, to repay him, I’m here now.

I arranged to meet Kaede, the girl Enji probably liked, at the same place, time, and date as him. It was Enji’s method, but it seemed the quickest way.

They both like each other anyway, so meeting should be enough.

Foolishly, I thought such a simple solution would suffice.

From a distance, I watched Kaede, arriving from the ticket gate, stop upon noticing Enji near the Sebon Irebon store.

Enji also noticed her after a few seconds. His expression changed drastically.

“Icchi.”

“Kaede…chan?”

Even from afar, I could tell Enji was flustered. I couldn’t decipher the meaning behind his agitation.

Kaede, on the other hand, briefly glanced at me, standing afar. Her expression was stiffer than usual.

Despite her request to meet, she seemed nervous.

“──So this is Shou-chan’s doing…”

Enji looked around and caught sight of me.

His expression, unlike the Enji-like anger shown beside the shrine that day, was genuine anger this time.

I had never seen Enji truly angry before, so his expression overwhelmed me.

“What’s your intention?”

“Why…why are you angry?”

“I don’t know how you found out about Kaede-chan, but don’t meddle.”

“What? I was just thinking of you…”

“I’m saying it’s meddling…!!”

His anger and outburst made me forget the usual Enji.

I just wanted to do what Enji really wished for.

Because we are…

“I’m not dwelling on the past like you, and I’m content with my present…!!”

“But, we are… that, and I thought of you──”

“──Just leave me alone. It’s none of your business.”

I was speechless.

Enji crossed past Kaede, who had just come from the ticket gate, and walked away.

I couldn’t follow him.

“Are you okay?”

Kaede placed her hand on my shoulder.

“I’m sorry, it’s my fault for bringing you two together…”

I was an idiot.

Thinking I could fix everything for Enji, just because I’m his friend, acting on mere assumptions without knowing the truth.

Enji calling me “you” instead of the usual “Shou-chan” made me feel a distance in his heart.

I used to find him annoying, always following me like a dog wagging its tail, but now…

“Enji was angry, but…”

“…”

“I’m glad I got to see him after so long. Sorry, it was me who asked to meet…”

Even though she said that, the result was terrible.

Because of me, their relationship and mine with Enji had worsened.

Honestly, I don’t know how to face Enji tomorrow.

“Kaede-san, I’m sorry.”

Leaving those words, I started to walk away.

I had no destination, but I wanted to escape immediately, feeling guilty towards Kaede.

Kaede said something in a worried tone, but I couldn’t catch it.

I just wanted to leave, to escape, walking away briskly.

I just wanted to repay what I had received. Not out of obligation.

──Because we’re friends.

As a friend, I wanted to be of help to Enji.

As a friend, I wanted Enji to be happy.

As a friend, I wanted to solve Enji’s problems.

But it was all unnecessary, and I ended up causing Enji unnecessary pain.

This wasn’t what being a friend meant.

Even in high school, until I got close to Hikaru, I had no friends. I didn’t even try to make any.

Without Hikaru, I might have always been alone.

But then, I finally had someone I could truly call a friend.

It started when Enji joined the part-time job.

On his first day, he was already friendly with the other part-timers and approached me too.

At first, his high energy and closeness annoyed me.

He followed me because we shared the same way home, and he joined me for lunch at university. Enji was always there, so I was never alone.

But now──.

“──Hey Shou, what are you doing?”

Startled by the voice calling me from ahead, I looked up.

I had been walking with my head down, lost in thought, not noticing.

“──Hikaru.”

“From afar, I saw a guy with a gloomy face that could bring down luck… turns out it’s Shou, I was surprised.”

“Ha ha… sorry.”

“…? Did something happen?”

Why do I feel like crying just by looking at Hikaru’s face?

His usual insults are somehow reassuring.

At the San’nomiya Station intersection, crying in such a public place is out of the question. It’s like something a child would do after a quarrel with a friend.

“It’s nothing, really.”

“If it’s nothing, you should look more cheerful. You had me worried.”

Worried, huh.

Thinking back, our relationship has changed a lot since we reunited.

When we first met again, it seemed like he was on the verge of saying something like, “Just go be sick and die,” but now, it’s different. Well, he wouldn’t say something that harsh, I guess.

That we’ve managed to repair our relationship this much in less than two months is also thanks to Enji.

“No, sorry. I’ll try to look more cheerful next time.”

“Don’t be so straightforward. It throws me off.”

“What should I do then…?”

Hikaru isn’t dressed as fancy as he was for the flower viewing. He’s in black skinny jeans, a white regular collar shirt tucked in, and carrying a tote bag on his shoulder.

“Hikaru, why are you here?”

“Just got off work. At that Starbucks. Remember, I told you? At Connect.”

“Oh yeah, we talked about that. With Akari-san.”

“I’m honored you remember. Kakeru-san.”

Hikaru jokes around. His mood is exactly what I need right now. It helps brighten my spirits a bit.

“Where are you heading, Shou?”

“Nowhere in particular, …just wandering around.”

“Hmm.”

I didn’t come here with a specific place in mind.

If I had successfully brought Enji and Kaede-san together, I was planning to head straight home.

But things didn’t go as planned. I just ran away.

Kaede-san might still be at the station. I don’t want to see her. Seeing her would only intensify my guilt.

Even now, being away from there, the guilt is unbearable.

I’m weak-hearted.

“The light’s green now. Come on, let’s go.”

“…Where to?”

“You’re free, right? I want to go somewhere, so you’re coming with me.”

Hikaru starts walking without waiting for my response, striding ahead so fast that I have no choice but to follow.

“Hey, where are we going?”

“First, lunch. I’m starving after working since morning.”

“Hikaru always acts hungry even after eating.”

“Maybe I should aim to be a big-eating celebrity. I think I’m pretty cute, I could be popular, right?”

“Don’t say that about yourself.”

We head to our usual cafe without discussing it, as if we’re drawn there.

The cafe like a forest.

Our icon at Connect, the omelet rice.

Though there are pastas, sandwiches, and other items, we still choose…

“Omelet rice, please.”

As expected, our compatibility of 98% isn’t for nothing.

“Don’t harmonize like that.” “I’m not harmonizing.”

We glare at each other.

Annoying, but somehow reassuring.

I’m glad I met Hikaru today. If I hadn’t, what would have become of me?

I might have suffered a major mental blow.

“After eating the omelet rice, we’ll go to the next place.”

Saying this, Hikaru takes a bite of the omelet rice and reacts as if it’s her first time eating it. How many times have you eaten this omelet rice already?

“Next? Where?”

After saying this, I also take a bite.

“Delicious.”

“You’re acting like it’s your first time eating it, but how many times have you had this omelet rice?”

Don’t say the same thing as me.

“I’ve eaten it more than Hikaru. Probably about 20 times. So, where are we going?”

“Then I’ve had it 21 times. It’s a secret.”

“No, actually I’ve had it 22 times. Don’t be so secretive.”

“Ah, I remembered, it’s 23 times for me. Anywhere is fine. You’re free anyway.”

“Make that 24 times for me. Don’t assume I’m free.”

“Why ‘make that’? Don’t compete. It’s childish.”

“You started the competition, Hikaru. Who’s the child here?”

We glare at each other again.

“Annoying!”

Why do we always end up fighting every time we meet? But now, these arguments are actually supporting me.

If I were alone, I would have been wallowing in self-loathing.

While talking with Hikaru, I can avoid dwelling on what happened earlier. I know it’s better to think things through deeply, but right now, I just wanted some time to calm down.

“Alright, we’re done eating. Let’s go.”

“Wait, I’m not done yet.”

“You’re so slow. Are you even a man?”

“Don’t compare me to you. I’m not slow; you’re just too fast. Do you even chew your food?”

“How rude. Omelet rice is a drink, you know.”

“That’s curry. That’s just weird…”

“It’s obviously a joke! I do chew my food!”

“Alright, alright, just don’t shout. You’re bothering the other customers. Are you a child?”

“So annoying…!!”

“Heh.”

I taunted him with a smug look, and he puffed his cheeks in frustration. I found that expression cute, which meant I actually lost this round…

After finishing our omelet rice, we headed to our next destination.

The next place was about a five-minute walk from the café, a place we often went to after school when we were dating. Round Two.

Inside Round Two, there’s darts, billiards, bowling, arcade games, karaoke, and more.

“Karaoke, it’s been a while! What should I sing?”

Out of all the options, Hikaru chose karaoke.

“Why karaoke?”

“What, you have a problem? I haven’t been here recently and wanted to come.”

“It’s not a problem, but can’t you go alone? I thought you were taking me somewhere where you needed a man’s help and was going to make me work…”

“I’m not like you, going to karaoke alone. Normally, people go to karaoke with someone. But unfortunately, today you’re the only one available.”

“That’s annoying in so many ways.”

Hikaru sang three songs from his favorite band in a row before finally handing me the remote.

Hikaru has always been good at singing, even since high school. That hasn’t changed.

I think I’m not good at singing, but I like it and often go to karaoke.

But alone.

I’ve been invited by Enji several times, but I always declined, thinking I’d just be laughed at for my bad singing. I secretly practiced alone at karaoke. But maybe I don’t need to practice anymore.

“Aren’t you going to choose a song? If not, I’ll choose for you.”

He snatched the remote back and started choosing a song with a smirk. I had a bad feeling about this.

“Don’t pick a weird song.”

“Leave it to me.”

He chose a recently popular song, the opening of a popular anime, with a chorus that builds up excitement. It was a normal song, so I was relieved.

“Hikaru, you’ve been watching this anime?”

“Of course. Everyone watches it. You’re not human if you haven’t seen it.”

“I watched it, so I’m human. That provocation, I can let it go because I’m the eldest brother. If I were the second brother, I couldn’t forgive it.”

“You’re an only child.”

I sang earnestly, although not well. Hikaru swayed rhythmically and sang along with me.

Hikaru often makes fun of me, but he never says anything that truly hurts me. At least that’s what I remember… probably.

His teasing is his way of showing care, I guess. He never called me tone-deaf, even though I’m sure he knows I’m self-conscious about it… probably.

He’s the type not to tease about something the other person truly dislikes… probably.

Hikaru really knows me well. He’s my ex-boyfriend of over three years, after all.

“Should I order some fries?”

“We just ate omelet rice.”

“Teacher, are fries included in the separate stomach?”

“They’re not. They’re potatoes.”

“Eh? So when they’re fried, the calories disappear with the heat? Then they’re healthy, and I can eat as much as I want! Yay!”

“He’s not listening…”

We spent two hours like this, with such playful banter.

By the time we left the room, my throat was a bit sore from talking too loudly.

“Alright, let’s go to the next place!”

“There’s more?”

Next, we headed to the bowling alley in the same building.

“Why bowling?”

“I just felt like doing it after a long time. The loser buys the other a drink.”

“Okay, okay.”

We registered at the counter and borrowed bowling shoes.

“Huh, did your feet get bigger? Weren’t you a size 27.5 before?”

“Yeah, they’re 28 now. And you didn’t mention it, but I’ve grown taller since we last met.”

“Oh, now that you mention it, maybe a little… How much? You were 176 cm before, right?”

“Now I’m 177 cm. Grew by one centimeter.”

“That’s just a margin of error, don’t brag about it.”

“Growing one centimeter after high school graduation is a big deal!”

“Shut up, let’s go.”

I won at bowling.

Hikaru, not to be outdone, challenged me to billiards next, but I won again.

“So annoying!”

While arguing, we played several games at the arcade, and I ended up winning all of them.

“It’s just that I wasn’t trying today…”

“Yeah, yeah, sore loser.”

“So annoying…”

Hikaru, puffing his cheeks, puts money into the vending machine, steps back, and points his chubby thumb at it.

“Thanks for the treat~”

“I won’t lose next time.”

“So, is this the end? It’s already evening.”

“Just one more thing. Then we’re done.”

Hikaru led me onto a train.

We arrived at Kobe Station. It’s the seaside town I once visited with Kokoro-san.

“You wanted to go on a boat?”

True to its port town nature, Kobe had several sightseeing boats available.

There were Western-style boats, Japanese-style ones, and even ones that looked like they belonged in a period drama.

We boarded one of them, a Western-style boat named Royal Princess.

“Look, I timed it for sunset. It’s less than 2000 yen, and I always wanted to try it.”

“It’s beautiful.”

It was just the time when the sun began to set, reflecting orange on the sea. Living in Kobe, this was my first time on a sightseeing boat.

“Looking at the sea, don’t you feel how insignificant we are?”

“…Yeah, I guess.”

Hikaru leans forward, shouting “Wow!” and laughing.

“Why don’t you shout too, Shou? It might feel good.”

Watching Hikaru laugh joyfully makes me feel happy too.

The sea is vast. My worries seem so insignificant now.

“No, I’m good. You’re shouting and drawing attention, it’s embarrassing.”

“Hey, stop making it sound like I’m a child.”

“That’s not wrong.”

“Hey!… Hahaha.”

How does he always understand?

“Thanks, Hikaru.”

For realizing that I’m troubled about something.

“Hmm? I just took you to places I wanted to go.”

For caring about me in his own way.

“There was a time, remember, you were seriously troubled about something?”

“…?”

“When I asked what it was, you said it was embarrassing how your grandpa would come to the door every morning to see you off.”

“Oh yeah, that happened.”

“Your grandpa is really funny. I’d like to meet him again.”

“Well, come over then. Grandpa would be happy.”

“Maybe I will. Come with me next time. It’s been a while, and I’m a bit nervous.”

“…Okay.”

Hikaru turns to face me and sits on the bench.

He pats the seat next to him, inviting me to sit.

I quietly comply.

“You’re troubled about something, aren’t you?”

“…How did you know?”

“I know. How long do you think I was your girlfriend?”

Stop it, don’t be kind when I’m weak.

He hadn’t spoken to me with such a gentle voice since we reunited. Please, don’t be kind now.

“Shou is pretty easy to read. You don’t need to be an ex-girlfriend to notice, probably. I don’t know, though.”

“You don’t know?… Haha.”

“Well, I’ll listen if you want to talk, and I’ll help if I can. But it won’t be for free.”

“You’re charging me?”

“Idiot, it’s about consideration. If I did something for free, you’d suspect there’s a catch, right?”

“I wouldn’t suspect. I know you’re kind.”

That’s right. It’s always been that way.

When I was down, he was the first to notice, stood by my side, and listened.

“Hey, stop, you’re making me blush…”

“What’s with that ending?”

“Shut up, shut up!”

While avoiding my face, he lands a punch on my shoulder. It kind of hurts, you know?

“Did something happen with Kokoro-chan?”

“No, it’s not about Kokoro-san.”

“Then it must be Enji-kun.”

“Can we not assume my social circle is limited to those two?”

“Wait, is it not?”

“Well… yes, it is. But I had a fight.”

“See, I knew it.”

“So annoying…”

He’s an ex-girlfriend with a good intuition. Or rather, it’s not just intuition, but the understanding that comes from being together for a long time.

“Shou, you’ve always been a loner, haven’t you?”

“Yeah, that’s right…”

I never found being alone painful, and I’m not depressed about being alone now.

“It was really surprising to see you become friends with someone like Enji-kun.”

“I thought I wouldn’t get along with his type too.”

“Right?”

“But, being with him is fun. Annoying at times, but still, thinking that we might not go back to how we were before… it’s kind of… you know, yeah.”

“Painful?”

“…Yeah, something like that.”

“Why are you embarrassed? He’s not here, just say it.”

Hikaru knows everything.

After breaking up with him, I had countless regrets.

It started with small misunderstandings, and in the end, I said terrible things I shouldn’t have.

I regretted what I said and that I didn’t apologize immediately.

So, I decided not to regret anymore, to act as I feel, to trust myself.

But look at how it turned out.

I don’t want to lose important relationships and regret it again, like I did with Hikaru.

Still, there are things I can’t give up on.

“He said it’s none of my business.”

“…?”

“Enji said that what I did for him was just a nuisance. He said to leave him alone, that it had nothing to do with me. Maybe I really did something troublesome to Enji. But…!”

But still, I can’t accept what he said at that time.

“We are friends. It’s not like it doesn’t matter.”

Hikaru, sitting next to me, says nothing.

I talk as if to myself, looking out at the sea in front of me.

“I don’t have many friends, so maybe I don’t understand, but that’s weird, right? Friends don’t normally say it doesn’t matter.”

“…Yeah.”

“Ah! Now I’m getting angry! I’ll make him apologize! And then, I’ll apologize! That should set everything straight, right?”

“…Pfft.”

As I stand up, clenching my fists, Hikaru next to me can’t hold back his laughter anymore.

“What are you laughing at?”

“I was just thinking, why is Shou so angry… Ahahaha!”

“What’s so funny? You don’t have to laugh so hard…”

“You’ve never had a fight with a friend, have you?”

Wiping the tears at the corner of his eyes with his finger, Hikaru is still trying to contain his laughter.

I guess I’ve never really had a fight like this with anyone before.

The only people I’ve fought with were my grandpa, my mom, and Hikaru.

I wasn’t close enough with classmates or friends to fight.

Even if we passed each other on the street, I wouldn’t initiate a conversation, and if they talked to me, I’d be perplexed.

What would I talk about other than “It’s been a while”?

I’ve never been close enough with friends to fight.

“Ah, I just had my first real fight. It ended with me getting angry one-sidedly, though.”

“Then you probably don’t know what to do after a fight, right?”

“Don’t mock me. I know what to do.”

After saying that, I deeply regretted my mistake.

After a fight, you have to apologize properly.

It might be something even a child knows, but it was Hikaru, who I’m talking to right now, who taught me that.

Hikaru, realizing he’s part of the issue, looks down at his feet. Of course, I also look up at the sky meaninglessly to escape the awkwardness.

Awkward.

“Well, if you know, then… Enji-kun isn’t stubborn, right? You can probably make up.”

“Right. But, it’s no good.”

“…What do you mean?”

I want to be on equal terms with Enji. And I know I should be the one to apologize. I’m well aware of that.

But if what he said was truly what he felt…

I can’t help but see Enji as a reflection of my past self. It’s not a misunderstanding. I understand because I’m the same.

I’ve also left big regrets in my past relationships. Because we’re the same.

And because I’m Enji’s friend.

Because we’re friends, I understand.

“First of all, I’ll investigate the relationship between Enji and Kaede-san!”

“Who’s Kaede-san?”

“Right! I’m surprisingly clumsy with others’ love matters. Hikaru, help me.”

“Wait, don’t get carried away by yourself.”

“Ah, this is such a hassle. We’ve been together so long, you should know what I’m thinking, right?”

“Really, you…”

“Well, for now, let’s enjoy this cruise we’re on, and then we’ll deal with it!”

“Explain!”

“Ouch!”

If you look at it, it’s the same as the beginning.

I do something unnecessary for Enji.

Which Enji might find bothersome. But I’ll do it.

However, this time I’ll be more careful.

“Hikaru, there’s something I need your help with.”

“Really… First, explain. Unless it’s something really serious, I’ll help you.”

“Thank you.”

I won’t let him say it’s a nuisance.

I won’t let him say it doesn’t matter.

Enji will only say thank you and sorry to me.

And I will also tell Enji. Sorry, and then, “See, I was right!”

I have a bad personality.

But I’ll make sure to say it and let him say it.

“So, what are you planning to do?”

Let’s have our first fight, Enji.

“Meddling!”

📢 Maybe you see "V2" or "V3" and so on in the NOVEL TITLE, it means what VOLUMES the NOVEL is.
I Reunited with my Ex-Girlfriend on a Dating App

I Reunited with my Ex-Girlfriend on a Dating App

I Reunited with my Ex-Girlfriend on a Dating App, マッチングアプリで元恋人と再会した。, 在交友軟體上與前任重逢了。
Score 9
Status: Ongoing Type: Author: Artist: Released: 2022 Native Language: Japanese
No matter what happens, they are still attracted to each other!The newest student romcom connected thanks to a dating app!A friend recommended me a dating app. However, the person I met was actually my own ex-girlfriend, Takamiya Hikari!And what’s even weirder is that I was also matched with a beautiful girl from the same university as me, Hatsune Shin!Who should I date?With my old love or with my new love?

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