I Want to Hear Your Voice - Chapter 4
A faint noise woke Satori up. It seemed like he had suddenly fallen asleep on the sofa while he was waiting for Sousuke. It was still dark inside the room, so he could tell that it was not dawn yet.
“My bad. Did I wake you up?”
Satori jolted and sat up with a great force. The blanket that had been draped over his body fell to the floor. He quickly stretched out his hand and picked up the blanket. There was no such a thing when Satori was awake, so Sousuke must have put it there for him. Satori’s chest became tight as he felt the soft sensation of the blanket in his fingertips.
“You can go back to sleep.”
Sousuke was putting on a wristwatch as if he was going out somewhere. Unlike the relaxed clothes he wore before going to bed, Sousuke was dressed neatly now. Sousuke glanced at Satori then thought-
(Oh right, I forgot that he was in my house.)
It seemed like he had only noticed Satori’s presence once again.
“…What about you, Sousuke?”
“Sorry, but I’ve got to go to work.”
(I can’t possibly take him with me to work or leave him here like this. No matter how young his reactions seemed to be compared to his looks, he’s not actually a kid. But I can’t just leave him alone in my house…)
Apparently, Sousuke was troubled about Satori staying in his room.
I don’t have any problem with this. If Sousuke is troubled, I can just get out of here right here and now.
“As you’ve said, I’m not a kid so I’ll be fine. You can just go to ‘work’. If you have a problem with me staying here, then should I leave together with you, Sousuke?”
As Satori said those words with a smile, Sousuke looked at him strangely for a moment.
(…Wasn’t there something weird about our conversation just now? It’s like he could read my mind.)
Sousuke then said that such a thing is not possible and lightly laughed at his own idea. Satori’s face turned pale. When he realized that he had unconsciously answered Sousuke’s inner voice, his body went cold with fear.
“That guy is a ‘Satori’ that could read people’s minds. It’s best not to get involved with him.”
“To think that he could read what’s on our mind without us saying it out loud, what a creepy kid. I might as well strangle that thin neck of his to death.”
“If we break those small bones of his, don’t you think they’ll make a nice sound?”
“Oh no, oh no. It’s him.”
“I end up seeing such a nasty thing so early in the morning. There’s no mistake that this is a bad omen.”
The words that the other fellow spirits had said to him so many times when he was in the mountains of his hometown came back to his mind. Satori’s body trembled a little.
Once, when Satori asked Sousuke about his opinion on someone who could read other people’s minds, Sousuke laughed and said that it’d be useful. However, if he were to know that Satori could actually do that, would Sousuke still answer in the same way? Would he not hate Satori for it?
(What’s wrong with him all of a sudden?)
Satori didn’t mind being hated by anyone else. In the first place, there was no one who liked him in the first place. He also understood that there was a reason for him being hated.
The more expectations one has, the more painful it’ll be when one gets betrayed. That was why Satori had always lived his life carefully, not expecting anything, not having even the slightest hope. It was all to protect his heart. But that was until he met Sousuke.
“I-I’ll do anything. I’ll listen to anything you tell me to do. I won’t be selfish. I won’t even say that I li-like you.”
Satori grabbed Sousuke’s arm with trembling hands. He felt a pain in his chest when he saw Sousuke’s perplexed face.
(What the heck is this guy saying…?)
Every time Satori heard Sousuke’s questioning thoughts, it made him want to cry.
It was frightening just imagining that Sousuke hated him. Satori was so scared that it felt like his vision had gone completely dark.
Despair filled Satori’s chest. As cold sweat drenched his whole body, Satori was about to give up, then…
Satori came back to his senses when Sousuke clapped his hands in front of him. His body that was still trembling a little was softly wrapped in a blanket.
“Pull yourself together, Sato.”
Sousuke who looked straight at him came into view, and Satori felt like his blurry vision came into focus.
(Are you okay…?)
Satori’s stiffened body became relaxed at the sight of Sousuke’s eyes that were still the same as ever, showing concern even for someone like him. Satori hesitated, but then nodded firmly. Seeing this, Sousuke looked relieved.
(For now, we’ll get to the minor details when I get back home later.)
“I’m about to go to work now. I won’t be back until around 5pm at the earliest. There is some food in the refrigerator, so feel free to eat as you like. Will you be okay by yourself until I get back?”
Satori was surprised. He had thought that Sousuke was troubled about him staying here.
Can I really stay here?
Sousuke smiled in resignation at Satori’s puzzled face.
“Yeah, you can stay. For now, let’s talk about the rest after I get home.”
(If he stole something from me with this, then that means I’ve misjudged him.)
I-I wouldn’t do something like that. I would never steal Sousuke’s belongings.
Satori hurriedly tried to deny it, then realized that he was about to make the same mistake again. He covered his mouth with both hands.
A feeling of joy slowly filled his chest. Satori was happy that he could still be together with Sousuke. When he realized that the reason Sousuke was willing to let him stay here was because Sousuke had trusted him, Satori felt like crying.
Satori bit his lips tightly and looked downwards. If he didn’t, his tears would start to spill.
Sousuke put his hand on Satori’s head.
“Then, I’m going.”
Sousuke was about to head for the front door when he came back as if he had just remembered something. Then he took a memo from the side table, scribbled it down with a pen, and put it in Satori’s hand.
“Here, this is my phone number. I might not be able to answer right away because of work, but I’ll know if there’s an incoming call. If something comes up, call me.”
(Oh no. I’m seriously going to be late.)
This time Sousuke rushed out of the door without looking back.
Satori looked at the paper in his hands, then tilted his head. The memo was small, and there was some kind of symbol written on it that he couldn’t read.
He couldn’t read it, but it was something that Sousuke had written for him.
Satori brought the memo to his chest and hugged it gently so as not to crush it. He rolled around on the sofa while giggling lightly.
Sousuke was still the same Sousuke after all. He was still the same gentle Sousuke as he was in the past, whom Satori knew so well.
Satori felt that this was like a miracle, as he could read the minds of those around him even when he didn’t want to.
“I wonder if there’s something I can do for Sousuke.”
Satori muttered those words to himself as he lay down on the sofa while staring at the ceiling of Sousuke’s room.
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