I looked at the small delicate box that rested on the kitchen bench with Himawari's name written on top as neatly as I was able to write. It had been one more month of practice, one more month of trial and error, and begging my parents for more money so that I could make the perfect chocolate for Himawari. The chocolate that sat inside the pink box was a handmade low sugar, dark chocolate ganache with ripples of raspberry dusted with a light coating of icing sugar. Beneath the chocolate was a delicately written note thanking Himawari for the chocolate and for always helping me.
I sighed, happy with the finished product, and glad that I had failed to give Hima-chan the last hand made chocolate as it was an utter failure. But this time I was able to make some extra, which I had given to my sisters and they assured me that I had done an excellent job this time. I was giddy at the praise and excited to see the look on Himawari's face when I gave her a gift in return for what she gave me on Valentine's day.
Next to the pink box sat a plain white envelope, also carrying Himawari's name, inside was a letter explaining how I felt about Himawari. Nadeshiko had suggested to me that I might find it easier giving Hima-chan a letter rather than actually saying it to her out loud. I didn't think I would be able to give her the letter today, but I wanted to at least try, so I quickly slipped the note into the back pocket of my jeans.
I pulled out my phone and typed out a quick message to Himawari asking the girl if it was okay for me to come over. Himawari replied, almost immediately.
Wow, Sakurako is actually asking to come over?
I've never been able to dictate whether or not you could…
So I'm going to say…
Before Himawari could write another a message, I quickly typed out my own.
I think we both know you don't actually have a choice. ;)
And with that, I grabbed Himawari's chocolate and headed out the door. Himawari was waiting by her front door and opened it as I went to grab the door handle.
"At least this time I can let you in rather than the having you barge in like you live here," Himawari said with a slight smile, she looked down at my hands and frowned, "Where is your homework?"
"I didn't come here for homework. I got Nadeshiko to help me with that."
"Oh… So you want me to make you some sweets?" Himawari asked as she allowed me into her home.
I shook my head with a slight frown, "I didn't come here to get something from you," I grumbled, "Can we… Go to your room?" I asked, for some reason feeling a little embarrassed being in the Furutani entryway.
Himawari nodded with a slight look of bewilderment on her face. I quickly slipped off my shoes before following the bluette through her house. I clutched her present in both hands behind my back, taking care not to crush the delicate box and, in turn, the chocolate inside the box.
We quickly arrived at Himawari's room, and my heartbeat began to speed up as she closed her door, I bit my lower lip as I looked down at the box in my hands.
"So why are we in here?" Himawari asked, causing me to jump in surprise.
I walked further into Hima-chan's small room before turning towards her, "Here," I said as I held the box out to Himawari.
"What's this?" The bluette asked as she tentatively took the box from my hands.
"It's… A White day gift, to repay you for the chocolates you gave me on Valentine's day," I explained.
"Really? Where did you get it from?" Himawari asked as she lifted the lid off the box.
"I didn't buy it, it's handmade," I replied.
"Oh, did Nadeshiko make it for you?"
"No, no, I made it for you." Himawari looked down at the chocolate suspiciously before looking back to me then back to the chocolate again.
"You didn't put anything strange in it… Did you?"
The question hurt a little, but Himawari had reason to ask that question so I hid the hurt behind a smile, "Of course not," I laughed, "This was a present, I wouldn't use a present to prank someone… At least not this time."
Relieved, Himawari reached into the box and pulled out the plastic covered chocolate, "What's this?" She asked as she pulled out the little thank you note from under the chocolate, I watched as Hima-chan's cheeks tinted in a light shade of pink, "Th-thank you, I… I'm…" Himawari took a calming breath, "Your welcome, Sakurako. And thank you for this," She said as she raised the chocolate.
I smiled happily, "You're welcome, Himawari," I said as I sat on Himawari's bed and moved back so I could lean against the wall, I hugged my knees to my chest. At the same time, Himawari left her room to get a spoon for her ganache, leaving the chocolate on her well-kept and perfectly organized desk.
I looked down to my right, spying Himawari's pillow, I glanced back at the open door before I leaned over, taking a sniff of the pillow. I sighed in contentment as the scent of Himawari's shampoo wafted off of the pillow and into my nose, setting my heart aflutter and warming my insides slightly.
I quickly sat back up before Himawari came back, not wanting to get caught in such a compromising position, although it could be another way for me to show Himawari how I felt without having to say it. I rested my head on my knees as I waited for Himawari to return, which she did just a few moments later.
"I've got to say though, I'm surprised at you, for you know, this," Himawari said as she raised the chocolate that was now sitting open in her hands. "Are you sure you made it? It looks… Amazing."
I narrowed my eyes a little, "Why don't you believe I could do it?" I asked angrily.
Himawari raised an eyebrow at me, "Well there is the time when I tried to help you learn to cook, and with every dish I tried to suggest, you'd either want to buy it from a convenience store pre-prepared or buy all of the ingredients themselves pre-prepared."
I snarled as I hurriedly climbed off of the girl's bed, "Well, if you don't want it, then I'll just take it back home and eat it myself then!" I yelled as I reached for the sweet treat.
Himawari pulled away, shaking her head with an apologetic look on her face, "Wait, Sakurako. I'm sorry, I- I didn't mean to offend you… I'm just surprised is all. I've known you for a long time, and you've never done anything like this for anyone before."
My chest tightened painfully, I've just never followed through, I sighed and nodded my head,
"You're right," I looked away, a little upset by the whole situation. "But I really did make it myself… For you."
Hima-chan smiled widely at me, "Well thank you, and… Well, I'm glad you came over. I was a little bored earlier."
I blushed a little at Himawari's comment as my heart rate sped up, "Himawari I…" I looked deeply into her eyes as I battled against my nerves, "Himawari, I want to tell you something…"
"What is it, Sakurako?" Himawari asked as I had been silent for a few moments too long, I felt myself begin to tear up as I couldn't force the words out. I felt a warm hand come to rest on my shoulder, "Sakurako, what's wrong? This isn't like you, and it's kind of scaring me."
I tried to smile, but I just couldn't as the gravity of my situation continued to push in on me, I shook my head and took a deep, steadying breath, "I just, miss how we used to be, you know, back in elementary school."
Himawari took a deep breath as her eyes glazed over, "Get out." The statement was short but echoed in my mind over and over again.
"Wha-" I started but was cut off as Himawari began to cry.
"Leave. Get out now! I don't want to remember!" I moved towards Himawari but was quickly stopped by hand flying out and striking me across the face.
"Hima-chan…" I tried one last time before I was shoved out of the small room by a crying Himawari, I felt my heart break inside as pained sobs wafted through the door into my ears. "I'm so sorry," I whispered before turning and heading towards the front door, raising a hand to my now throbbing, hot cheek.
I stood in the Furutani entryway, looking back down the hallway, hoping against hope that Himawari would walk out of her room with a smile on her face, welcoming me into her home because the last few minutes hadn't just transpired. But that didn't happen, and I trudged home with tears streaming from my eyes, I ignored my sisters as I walked up to my room, shutting myself away from the harsh reality that I had ruined things between us a long time ago.