Here is a one-shot that i wrote back in 2014.
Author’s note : This story was inspired by the anime movie Kotanoha no niwa.
My name is Tsubaki Ryousuke. I am a seventeen years old , male and a high school student. I am just an ordinary student. I do not have any special abilities nor do I have a high status, to be precise I am an orphan and my only companion is my pet cat ‘Neko’.
“I will be leaving now for school.” I kissed my parent’s picture that stood up tall on top of an old, wooden table. That was the only picture I had of them.
I picked up my bag, kissed Neko good-bye and exited the house.
I stopped at the junction and turned my head left and right.
“Should I take the train…or…go through the garden?” I questioned myself.
I looked at the roads again and finally started walking down the road that lead me to the garden. I love this garden. Green everywhere, it’s like you enter a magical world by just taking a few steps.
As soon as I set my right foot on the soft grass of the garden, The sky started turning black.
The bright, blue sky was getting engulfed by the dull, gray clouds.
“It’s going to rain?” I whispered to myself.
In a few minutes, Fat raindrops began to fall.
I quickly ran toward the gazebo that was nearby. A little further away was a beautiful small stream and a small bridge over it.
A girl just about my age was standing inside the gazebo. She was squeezing her white colored hat that went well with her white sundress with orange broad borders.
We shared a quick glance.
“Hello.” I said bowing down.
“Hello.” She greeted me back, hiding her hat behind her back.
I sat down inside the gazebo and removed out my sketch book. She stole a glance at the book and quickly away.
She looked around and then removed a coffee can from her handbag, opened it and then took a quick sip.
The pace of the rain decreased and reduced to a slight drizzle accompanied by the sun that slowly started to be seen again.
The bright rays fell on the grass and made the raindrops on them sparkle like jewels. The stream glittered and soon a bright seven colored rainbow covered the sky.
The girl’s face slowly brightened. She quickly got up and ran out of the gazebo, she turned around and looked at me saying “come.” And made her way towards the bridge. I followed her without any questions.
We stared at the rainbow for a while, admiring its beauty.
I looked at my wrist watch. It was past eight.
“ Oh no! I need to get to school.” I said as I ran back to the gazebo to retrieve my bag and head to the exit. Before I set foot on the concrete road I looked behind at that stranger and for some reason I felt a sense of happiness and peace. So much, that without even me noticing, I wore a small but humble smile.
“Ryousuke, this is rare. You missed a class.” Chizu stated surprised.
“Ah…yeah… Sorry..” I panicked.
“…You okay?” Chizu asked taking a good look at me. I was probably acting too strange.
“You’ve never been late before.” He continued.
I remained speechless. I found no words that could defend me.
The sound of the school bell echoed through the corridors and classrooms. The sound of the students shuffling seats were heard as they quickly took their seats.
“I’m home.” I said removing my shoes.
Neko came running to the front door, her tail held up high.
“You’re hungry?” I asked her and she rubbed her head on my leg.
The alarm rang continuously.
I stretched out my hand and struggled to shut it off and succeeded in doing so. I buried my head in the pillow hesitating to take the rays of the warm sun of my face. Feeling no sign of warmth, I slowly opened one eye only to see the dark and cloudy scenery outside. I woke up quickly and examined the sky a little longer.
After thirty minutes of heavy downpour. The sun entered the show, made its way like a mighty king as a slight drizzle accompanied it.
“I’m leaving.”I said as I stuffed the last bite of bread in my mouth, grabbed my bag and this time an umbrella too, kissed my parents picture, petted Neko and quickly made my way out.
I looked up again and again eagerly hunting for a rainbow. I entered the garden and then into the gazebo. The same girl was sitting down and a half empty coffee can was stationed in her hand.
I bowed and she too gently bend down her neck in respect. I placed my plain black umbrella next to her polka dotted one.
“I hope a rainbow appears.” She said, softly sipping her coffee.
I looked at her and remained silent and then quickly removed my sketchbook and began to draw.
“…What are you drawing? “ She asked observing my concentrated face.
I looked up and whispered “secret.”
“Oh…” She said trying her best not to sound disappointed.
“I hate secrets…and yet I can’t stop giving them.” She said.
Her voice seemed strong. It’s like her gentleness just disappeared. Her eyes were filled with regret and sorrow. I could tell she wasn’t leading a very happy life.
The rain came to a sudden stop; both of us looked at each other and walked to the bridge.
The sky was bright and blue.
We saw no rainbow.
“Looks like there won’t be a rainbow.” I stated and looked at her face. She was sad.
She turned towards me and smiled.
“You’re going to be late for school right?” She asked.
“I’m sorry, because of me-”
“It’s my decision. It’s not your fault.” I interrupted.
The next day I woke up before my alarm. There was no rain.
“Sunny day.” I said, disappointment evident in my voice.
From that day onwards, I met her regularly, I waited for nothing but a rainbow. I wanted to see that smile of hers again. I felt connected. It felt like I knew her my whole life. I don’t know her name or anything else about her. We two are complete strangers and yet we pour ourselves out to each other and have discussions about our problems.
It was a sunny day but I was hoping she would be there waiting for me.
I stepped inside the gazebo to find it empty.
A week passed and I haven’t seen her nor did I see a rainbow.
“I’m home.” I said, entering my house before falling flat on my back.
“I’m exhausted.” I said and looked at Neko who quietly sat on my stomach.
I remained in that position for quite some time and then got up and turned on the old Television.
“Today three hours later it’s going to rain and will be accompanied by sun.” The reporter spoke.
I was alerted and quickly turned to the window and looked out.
It was drizzling.
“I’m going out.” I said and quickly ran out with an umbrella and sketch book.
She was sitting there, inside the gazebo.
I entered and we both smiled at each other.
“It’s been a long time.” She said.
I missed her. Her long hair, her coffee can which she always held in her hand.
“Yes.” I responded as I took a seat, opening my sketch book.
“Haven’t you completed the drawing yet?” She asked.
I looked up and shook my head “No.”
“I see.” She said and then opened another can of coffee, took a sip.
“I was telling you about my dad’s transfer right. It’s happening again.” She said placing her coffee can on the seat.
Her words struck me like lightning. I stopped drawing and looked at her.
She giggled and then continued “I am leaving for Sapporo in two weeks time.”
She paused and then said “I have no life of my own.”
I remained silent because I knew there wasn’t anything I could say to her that would truly comfort her.
People who think that saying ‘everything is going to be fine’ will make someone feel better are wrong. After all I experienced it much too well after my parents died.
The sky cleared up.
“I think the rainbow might have appeared by now. Hurry.” She said standing up.
While she did I heard a soft sigh.
We both stood on the bridge and engulfed the rainbow with our eyes, admiring the beauty of it.
“You seem happy today.” She said. “……Maybe it’s because of it rainbow.”
“What are you talking about? …. It’s because, I got to see you.” I thought to myself but I couldn’t summon up the courage to say it out loud.
She turned towards me.
“I really want to see your sketches.” She pouted.
“They’re really not that great.” I said embarrassed.
“Eh? But you seem to enjoy drawing it. You’re always so concentrated. I bet they are amazing.” She came closer and patted my shoulder.
Just why do I want to treasure this moment forever? A girl who I hardly know, someone who is eventually going to go away and yet…I don’t want to let go.
It’s finally been one week and a few days since I last saw her and still no rainbow showed up.
I finally completed the sketch she wanted to see so badly. I visit that garden everyday hoping that she would be there. On sunny days and rainy days and cloudy days too.
The monsoon season was nearing its end.
The annoying sound of my alarm clock woke me up. I looked out. It was sunny. My eyes could hardly remain open due to the bright rays of the sun.
I let out a sigh and went to freshen up and get ready for school. I decided I would go to school directly today without stopping at the gazebo since the I have already received a warning from the head master. I wouldn’t want to get kicked out.
“Hey! Ryousuke.” Chizu said waving at me from a distance.
I smiled and waved back as I walked towards him.
“You’re on time today.” Chizu stated with a smirk.
“Yeah.” I responded quickly.
“Have you heard about the girl from class 2?” Chizu asked.
“Who? What?” I asked confused.
“What? You don’t know her? Reiko! She is transferring today from our school. She had joined the school this year as a transfer student from Tokyo and apparently she has been moving around Japan a lot.” Chizu explained.
“Reiko….” I murmured. It couldn’t be…. right? I turned my head towards Chizu and stopped walking “what’s her surname?” I asked baffled.
“Ah….Inoue Reiko.” Chizu said surprised at my reaction.
“Take me to her class.” I demanded desperately.
“She is absent today! She probably left to Sapporo…”
“I need to go.” I quickly dumped my bag on Chizu and began running out of the school campus.
“RYOUSUKE” I could hear Chizu calling.
I entered the garden ,as I was about to turn my sight to the gazebo. I glanced at the small bridge and to my surprise the girl was standing there looking at the blue sky and a pink suitcase was standing beside her.
I ran to the bridge.
“Reiko.” I softly whispered.
She turned towards me and smiled brightly.
Without realizing it, I was crying and so was she.
“You finally realized…” She said wiping her tears.
Inoue Reiko was my childhood friend. We used to play a lot together but then she left for Tokyo because of her dads transfer. And I promised her that we would meet again and we will play together again someday, but I…I spent almost a month with her and I didn’t notice.
“WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME ?!” I screamed.
“Sorry. Nice meeting you Ryou-chan.” She walked closer to me and kissed my forehead.
“Stop adding “chan”….. It’s embarrassing.” I said trying to suppress my tears.
“You made me wait so long.” She started complaining.
“Reiko.” I called out to her and handed her the drawing.
“You are showing it to me?” she said surprised
She looked at it and smiled.
“Me drinking coffee. you’re amazing.” She said and laughed.
“Next time, I’ll surely be the first to recognize you.” I said confidently.
“…Let’s see!” She smiled and walked away with her suitcase.
That was the best day of my life and the worst too because I knew deep down I could never see her again. That’s why she didn’t tell me who she was.
She isn’t going to come back.
Thank you so much. I love you all ❤
See you next week. o.o/