Is it Tough Being a Friend?

Is it Tough Being a Friend? Chapter 1 Part 2

It’s already been a year since I met Hinomori Ryuuga.

In just that amount of time we’ve been together, I’ve gotten to know him pretty well.

Needless to say, Ryuuga is a pretty cliche protagonist. He falls within what’s known as a stereotype. Well, he himself isn’t aware that he’s a protagonist, but since that would have an adverse effect on his extraordinary character, I think that’s fine.

──Ryuuga does not take part in any club activities at school.

Since he doesn’t know when an enemy might emerge, it’s reasonable to say that he’s part of the “go-home club.” He’s a youth engaged in the endless battle between light and darkness.

──In addition, Ryuuga often gets dragged into mysterious events.

In this town, “phenomena that can’t be explained with modern science” or “cases of unidentified life-forms attacking humans” happen quite often, but they soon die down once Ryuuga gets involved. Of course, he knocks down the main culprit, the enemy peculiarity, behind it.

──That’s how Ryuuga is, but he stubbornly insists that he’s just “a very ordinary high school student.”

At that point, it’s pretty much the equivalent of a middle-aged man coming out of a women’s restroom with a camera in one hand while saying “I’m nobody suspicious.” Ordinary high school students don’t just suddenly notice malicious peculiarities.

However, I don’t press him about it. I just magnificently let it slide.

When being as skilled of a friend as me, one can see through such bare-faced cover-ups and look into “the protagonist’s beauty of form.”

──And there’s always guaranteed to be beauties surrounding Hinomori Ryuuga.

There’s his sister, a lovely angelic junior high schooler, Hinomori Kyouka.

The one who was like an idol within the school, Yukimiya Shiori.

The cool expert of the sword who was like Yamato Nadeshiko, Aogasaki Rei. (TLN: Yamato Nadeshiko represents a sort of ideal figure of women in ancient Japan.)

The mysterious transfer student, Elmira McCartney. She’s got scarlet colored hair.

There’s also a childhood friend, who he’s reunited with after several years, and some other people, but they’re all beauties that are a bit unorthodox and they’re quite different in type, as they’re the more pushy heroines.

However, all of these people are quite the burden for me.

Whenever any of them appear in front of Ryuuga, I have to do my “job.”

I have to bicker with Ryuuga each and every time.

I have to say things like “H, hey Ryuga! How did you get acquainted with Yukimiya!”

Or things like “W, why did the beautiful swordswoman Aogasaki come to the classroom to specifically meet Ryuga?!”

Or things like “E, E, Elmira! What is it that you see in Ryuga!”. I had to act frantically and make a fuss.

I’d make excessive reactions of shock, jealousy, complaining, and so forth, towards the ever-so-popular protagonist…this is the most basic of basics in regards to being a friend character, but it’s not easy at all.

This uses up more energy than it looks like it would.

Even I have days where I’m in low spirits. Yet even so, I can’t abandon my duties. I have to cause a commotion whenever necessary.

Sometimes they run into each other and things develop into a fight, which causes great suffering for Ryuuga.

In such cases, I don’t forget to act cocky and say “Hmph, notice anything Ryuga?” Upon which, Ryuuga always says “…Jeez.” That’s his catchphrase.

As an aside, the heroines are all neck-to-neck as of now. It seems that none of them have managed to greatly reduce the distance between themselves and Ryuuga.

I wonder which heroine will be able to win Ryuuga over…Personally, I’d like it if things would quicken up so that he’d get out of this harem situation. It’s all so wishy-washy.

Actually, not all candidates have entered the battle as of yet.

It’s possible that more heroines will appear here and there in the future, expanding Ryuuga’s harem. At least two or three more perhaps?

I’m concerned about Ryuuga’s resilience. I’m also concerned about my blood pressure. But…eh, whatever. Let things come as they may.

No matter what character shows up, I’ll act exhilarated. I’ll say “C, c, cuuuuuute!” while having hearts in my eyes.

If I’m being honest, I think that women are just bothersome creatures, but I’m not going to let such hidden thoughts slip out.

The reason for that──is because I’m a pro at being a friend character.

 

“Hey Ryuga, let’s eat together.”

It’s lunch break. Today I once again called out to Ryuuga while holding a pouch of bread from the convenience store.

My chances of eating lunch with him haven’t been so high recently. Probably about a one in five chance of succeeding?’

In most cases, Ryuuga is eventually taken away by one of the heroine/candidates. He’s taken to the empty rooftop, an unused classroom, or at times someplace outside of the school.

There’s no use voicing any complaints. They’re the main characters in the story. It’d be natural for them to take priority over a sub-character like me.

However…today, there are fortunately no heroines to interrupt us. It seems this is the  part where the friend is in focus.

“Hey Ryuga, listen. I’ve updated my ‘list of beauties.'”

So, I’ll talk on and on about information of the girls in the campus that are considered cute. I take out the secret notebook I’m prideful of and leak dates of birth, heights, weights, blood types, three sizes, and other such things to Ryuuga.

…To tell the truth, I’m really not interested about these things. I’d rather memorize a chronological table than memorize the profile of any woman.

However, I have to tell these things to Ryuuga. I have to talk while having a self-satisfied look and seem amazed. This is a bit of an old-fashioned friend type, but this is the kind of character I’ve decided on.

“Ichirou…what are you doing researching such things?”

Naturally, Ryuuga sighed and looked at me while narrowing his eyes. He’s got scornful eyes.

“I don’t know how you got this information, but it’ll be a problem if you get caught, you know.”

“It’ll be fine. I’m paying close attention not to let personal information be public. I’m only leaking these things to you because you’re my close friend.”

“I wish you would make use of that energy for other things, though…”

00007

While having a milk carton straw in his mouth, Ryuuga once again sighed as he said “Jeez.”

I completely feel the same way as him. What’s the meaning in investigating someone else’s three sizes during their growth period? My weight fluctuates by one or two kilograms in a month. This task produces way too fruitless results considering the effort it requires.

But I have no choice. After all, I believe that a “perverted fool” has good compatibility with a cool protagonist as a friend.

Once I start acting like that, the homeroom teacher Minegishi gets irritated. As a teacher, that person is way too serious and work-heavy.

The homeroom teacher of the protagonist is supposed to be lax and unserious.

They’re supposed to frequently have class be a self-study session so that the protagonist has an opportunity to slip out. Then the protagonist is supposed to say “Jeez, is this school alright?”

In addition, Minegishi is a middle-aged man.

The one in charge of the protagonist’s class is supposed to be a female teacher. They’re supposed to be a sexy lady, an extremely loli girl, or a clumsy air-headed woman. Minegishi, you pack a weak punch.

Perhaps Minegishi will be swapped over to somewhere else──as I was thinking as such,

“Ough, guh…!”

Ryuuga suddenly clutched his chest and groaned in pain.

His whole body trembled, his eyes were wide open, he was bustling within his uniform. It seemed like he was frantically trying to struggle against something.

This is just a guess, but perhaps the “overly mighty power” dwelling within his body was running wild. He’s likely holding a power that’s normally something outside the capacity of humans, a dangerous power even for gods and demons to use.

It was pretty pitiful looking at him breaking into a cold sweat from his forehead, but I hardened my heart and spoke.

“Ba ha ha. What are you fooling around for, Ryuga?”

…If I were a genuine friend, I wouldn’t make such a reaction. I wanted to make a serious expression and tell him my true feelings of worry.

However, I can’t allow such actions of anxiety. It’s necessary for me to be a “carefree fellow that doesn’t even know a bit about the protagonist’s hardships” to the bitter end.

It’s the role of the heroines to heroically aid Ryuuga. There would only be trouble if some useless guy were to do it.

So because of that──HEY, anyone will do, so someone come here quick. Do something about Ryuuga.

There’s a golden aura that’s coming out of his back. This is seriously distressing!

“**gasp*, *gasp*……*pant*”

Oh, he got better. Ryuuga recovered without waiting for a heroine to show up.

I wonder if he’s okay. Was it not necessary to urgently call out to a beauty for help?

This was the chance for one of them to break through and get ahead, but what the heck are all of them doing right now? At this rate, nobody will win the position of the main heroine. If a heroine had messed up because they had plans, they would get axed.

While I was confused, Ryuuga soon lifted his head.

“H, hey Ryuga, are you alright? Nothing wrong?”

Ryuuga, seeming to interpret my panic as “simple worrying,” made an awkward smile while breathing heavily.

“Oh, my bad…it’s nothing.”

“……”

“Don’t mind it. It’s really nothing.”

There’s no way that it’s just nothing.

There was an aura coming out, was there not? There was a light was coming out of both of his eyes, was there not? There was mysterious rumble in the background, was there not?

However, it’s of course strictly forbidden to point that out. I soon returned to a more optimistic expression, as if thinking “Did you not get enough sleep?”

“If it’s nothing in particular, then that’s good. Make sure to get proper sleep, alright?”

“Oh, I understand.”

“Perhaps you’ve been playing games until late at night. Or perhaps, you were reading porn? Show me, c’mon, c’mon.”

“Ah ha ha. Maybe it was something like that.”

Even for me, this is a stupid conversation.

What groans of pain come from a lack of sleep? Who would ignore that aura? It was taking the form of a dragon.

When we first met, there was a period where I doubted Ryuuga, thinking that he was just an ordinary case of chuunibyou. However, as you can see, this guy wasn’t joking. (TLN: Chuunibyou is a Japanese term for when people, often middle schoolers, become delusional and act like they have special powers or other stuff like that.)

It was thanks to Ryuuga’s efforts that “the incidents of people turning into stone” was resolved the other day.

 

“──Ryuuga. Come with me for a bit.”

It was after school that day.

Overhearing the conversation during lunch from who-knows-where, Aogasaki Rei stormed into the classroom.

With just her entry, the classroom went into a commotion. She had an appearance that splendidly blended the heroism of a still samurai and the proportions of a model…when her penetrating eyes made a swift glance over the room, two girls immediately fainted.

Not minding her surroundings, Aogasaki swept her long ponytail, briskly walked over to Ryuuga, then grabbed his arm, forcing him to stand up.

“A, A, Aogasaki’s here for Ryuga again! Just what kind of relationship do those two──”

“Kobayashi. I have no leisure to pay attention to you today. Sorry, I’ll be borrowing Ryuuga.”

My job didn’t work, Aogasaki takes along Ryuuga. She’s a heroine/candidate and yet she’s taller than Ryuuga. I think she’s around 170 centimeters.

“Let me go in place of Ryuga! Even if it’s to a hotel or a women’s restroom!”

“Restrain yourself, pervert.”

Aogasaki took one glare at me and then left.

I thought about heading home with Ryuuga, but I can’t oppose the intervention of a heroine/candidate. She’s a much more important character than me.

(…Perhaps I’ll go take a quick look)

After hesitating for a bit, I decided to secretly follow after the two.

Although I’ve been taking a hands-off approach on the main storyline so far, it may be better to know an outline of Ryuuga’s abilities when thinking about it.

At the very least, I’d like to understand the meaning of that dragon-like aura…those were my thoughts.

(Presumably, that was a guardian deity or something similar dwelling within Ryuuga…does it have a name or something?)

Fortunately, the two were headed towards the school dojo. Since there seems to be no club activities today, the only ones in there are Ryuuga and Aogasaki.

Ryuuga was in the center of the dojo, meditating while sitting cross-legged.

While Ryuuga was doing so, Aogasaki spoke while wearing her kendo uniform. Thanks to the silence within the room, I can hear their voices pretty well when leaning against the door.

“Ryuuga, it seems the guardian deity is running wild.”

…So it really was a guardian deity after all.

“I know. I’ve managed to suppress it up until now.”

“It may be truly awakening because of the increase in opportunities to unleash its power. A great ‘dragon king’ is laying dormant inside you.”

…So it really was a dragon king after all.

“Even so, it’ll be fine. I won’t get swallowed up by this thing’s power.”

“I understand, Ryuuga. If it’s you, you’ll certainly be able to manage the ‘dragon king.’ You’re the only man who I acknowledge.”

They were still continuing to talk, but I left the dojo.

First of all, I got the basic information already. I don’t need to know any more than this. It’s fine if I just know only a part of a main character.

Though I’d never carelessly make a slip of the tongue, it’s best not to keep listening. There’s a huge difference in importance between this and a woman’s three sizes.

(Even so…a ‘dragon king’, was it?)

Perhaps this a little too cliche.

I wonder if it’ll turn out to be something from Western mythology, like the Leviathan, Jörmungandr, or Quetzalcoatl. That’s the only thing I’m concerned about.

Of course, I’m aware that not everything goes according to fiction.

Ryuuga’s story is a real drama. A surreal reality. So, there’s no particular reason for him to be defeated so easily.

At the very least though, I’ll just keep pulling out names for a little longer…


TLN:

Ryuuga’s name directly translates to “dragon fang”

Sorry about the image quality of the illustrations. These images come straight from the e-book as they are, so I can’t do much about it. Maybe a different e-book version has better quality ones (I bought the Amazon.co.jp e-book)?


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11 thoughts on “Is it Tough Being a Friend? Chapter 1 Part 2”

  1. Thanks for bringuing part 2 so soon. Well the image looked good fro me, I am guessing that the ‘protagonist ‘ is the one with the light color hair. MC looks a lot like the type of ordinary guy thats not ordinary at all. If he gains powers I am sure he will delve into the rival type of role HAHAHAHAAHAHA!!!!!!!!!

  2. Thanks for the chapter and the illustrations.
    I like hiw this stiry is going. Looking firward to more soon

  3. Haha. It’s hard and exhausting being an insignificant sub-character. This feels like a harem with shared duties – 1/5 days to spend time with Ryuuga. Question mark on the weekends or it could be a group event thing, like the beach, shopping, or miscellaneous side-adventures. Thx for this.

  4. Soooooo good . It’s all fresh and new to see typical jap novels in a different perspective ! Especially the best friend character !! Thank you for your work

  5. “No matter what character shows up, I’ll act exhilarated. I’ll say “C, c, cuuuuuute!” while having hearts in my eyes.” I don’t know why but the image of a side character forcing themselves to do this everytime is incredibly funny.
    Thanks for the chapter!

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