Read at Watashi wa Sugoi Desu!
Part 5 – Lemon Candy Magic
Chapter 19 – Promise
“You, you need to become a magician’s apprentice!”
Red and Sui stared at Yizul blankly.
“Um, what do you mean by that…?”
Yizul grinned as Sui tilted his head in confusion.
“I don’t know of any precedents, but why don’t we find out if it’s possible? Don’t you want to try? Is it not curiosity that propels us to the future? Was it not curiosity that made us eat an apple, build an airplane, fly to space, and drop an apple?”
Does he like apples? Sui wondered.1
“Well, I haven’t actually encountered any evidence to prove that such a thing is possible. At least not in the history books in Kasa-kun’s library.”
“You, what are you even saying?”
“You’re not very perceptive, are you? I’m talking about turning a regular human into a magician.”
Yizul’s eyes sparkled with curiosity as he stared directly at Sui.
“We only know of magic as an inherited power, but if it truly is ‘a slightly special power given to a regular human at birth,’ if it truly is ‘a modest skill meant to give others a spark of joy,’ then don’t you think it is a power that can be acquired?”
“Those are just figures of speech.”
“Then why don’t we turn them into a reality?”
“Then you’ll just be using Sui as a guinea pig.”
“That’s my intention,” Yizul replied, not a hint of malice in his voice. “We’re trying to accomplish something that’s never been done before – of course it’ll be an experiment.”
“That kind of thi-”
“But you know, isn’t that the best option? If Sui becomes a magician, he won’t be affected by your magic. And, you could say goodbye to that blindfold too.”
“That…” Red’s words faltered as he glanced at Sui.
“What do you mean?” (Sui)
“Sui-kun, have you ever seen Red-kun’s eyes?”
Sui nodded, remembering those beautiful, ruby eyes he’d seen as a child.
“Red eyes are known as a sign of a powerful magician. Magic is stored in the eyes of such people. Now, usually, it’s not really a problem because the magician can control that magic, but the power in Red-kun’s eyes is ridiculously strong, and he can’t seem to get it under control.”
“That time when you got sick, that was also because of my eyes… you used to look at them a lot,” Red added.
Sui liked Red’s beautiful eyes and would stare at them whenever he had the chance. Red at that time would always avert his eyes or turn in a different direction as if embarrassed by the eye contact.
“Even the people of Akebi can be influenced by that level of power. It was really troublesome, especially since I’m kind of in a position where I have to keep the order in Akebi.”
The person who just tried to stir up some trouble has no right to say something like that, Sui frowned.
“Anyway, so I gave him this special-made fabric that can suppress his powers.”
“The blindfold is annoying but it helps – I don’t really want to influence people either.”
“Bu~ut,” Yizul sprung up and shoved a finger in front of Sui’s face, “if Sui-kun develops some magic, even if he can still feel Red-kun’s power, he won’t be as affected by it. He’ll have some tolerance against it, at least.”
If something like that could be made possible, then Red would be able to take off his blindfold, at least when he was inside the house.
“It’s the best option if you want to stay here for the rest of your life. As I said, it’s so that we won’t have to deal with anything annoying. Most people won’t notice you’re a regular human, but when they do, there’s a 90% chance that it’ll be annoying. So, being able to use even the tiniest bit of magic won’t just be fun but also convenient, don’t you think?”
Sui was listening intently when Red interrupted in a harsh voice.
“Not really. If something like that happens, I’ll protect him. I’ll just use my power to hide him.”
“When you say stuff like that, you really do resemble Azul-ani~”
“I… I don’t want to just rely on Red-san.”
“Oh, how splendid, Sui-kun.” Yizul clapped his hands as if applauding. “Ne, Sui-kun, how about this? Hmm, right, since you also work at Kasa-kun’s place, would two times a week work? Come to my place and I’ll personally instruct you on magic. I really like humans, you know, and I’ve got a feeling that you’re definitely going to do something amusing. I’m a strict yet kind instructor.” Yizul slapped his chest while laughing. “I feel like the stars and lady fate are smiling down on you, so why not test it out and become my guinea pig then?”
Sui’s gaze alternated between Red, who seemed to hate the idea, and Yizul, who was grinning.
“Please go easy on me.”
After that, Red tried to persuade him a number of times, but Sui turned him down each time. With that promise to become a magician’s apprentice and the years-long feud between father and son coming to an end, it seemed that Sui’s wish was about to come true.
Red and Sui decided to talk about what they were going to do from now on. After dinner the following day, Red sat down opposite Sui on the crimson sofa, steaming cups of milk cocoa on the table in front of them.
Sui had told Red before that, if possible, he would like to stay with him just like this, and he knew that Red felt the same way.
“I’ve said this before, but I want to be with you,” Red started in a firm voice.
“I… what I meant… because…” Red mumbled before desperately blurting out – “I like you, so I want to be with you! I want to marry you as well.”
Sui’s eyes opened wide at Red’s confession.
Does, does that mean that Red is in love with me?2
Sui didn’t know what to say. Of course, it wasn’t like he hated Red, rather he liked him, but he didn’t know if that feeling was love.3
Love was an emotion he had read about in fairytales but had never actually experienced.
It would be rude to carelessly accept his confession just because I like him when I still don’t know if this feeling is truly love.4
Sui told Red about his thoughts.
“For me, you are the only person I feel this way about.”
“How did you find out that that feeling is love?”
“You… it feels like there’s no delicacy in the world that’s sweeter than you,” Red said, then seemed flustered, like he might have gone too far. “No. Well, yeah. Um… yes, so I want to touch you and… I get this prickly feeling when you get along with somebody else. I feel like I love you and don’t want to be apart for even a second. I was probably attracted to you since the first time we met…” his words faltered.5
While Red was groaning in embarrassment in front of him, Sui thought back on their relationship.
For Sui, Red had quickly grown into a special and precious existence, both when he was younger and when they met for the second time.
Both then and now, he’d been captivated by Red’s beauty at first sight.
When Red hugged him, he was startled at first, but it made him feel really happy.
Sui had also felt something painful and prickly in his chest when he had heard about Red’s close childhood friend.
He had been extremely lonely when Red had come back late from apple-picking.
Could it be? Was what I felt towards Red always been…?
Sui felt his cheeks flush. It was warm.
“Um, Red-san? I, I think I might also feel that way.”
I see, so this is love. I’ve loved him this whole time without even realizing it.6
The moment the realization came to him, Sui’s heart started beating loudly.
“I like you.” His heart was racing.
“Is this sympathy or something like that?”
“Of course not! I, I mean… Uu. It’s Red-san’s fault I realized this.”
Whether from embarrassment or from love, something inside Sui’s chest squeezed tightly.
Red, who’d been depressed just moments ago, had lifted his head at some point. His voice shaking, he embraced Sui and asked – “Can I believe you?”
“Please believe me…” Sui wrapped his arms around Red, reciprocating the hug.
“Tell me you’ll always be with me.”
“From now on, forever.”
Sui went so far as to say that, but then suddenly remembered something.
“Ah, but I’ll have to leave once.”
Red loosened his grip and Sui could see his flabbergasted face.
“Eh? But you just said… what?”7
“Because I can’t just leave Aoimachi and abandon my family home. It’s common courtesy to tidy up after oneself.”
Red let out a huge sigh of relief before pulling Sui in closer.
“You… don’t scare me like that.”
“When I’m done with everything I’ll come back straight away, so wait for me, ok?”
“Yeah. I’ll be waiting.”