“Thank you for your hard work.”
Saturday just before lunch, I went to Mon Pet Kuwa. Today, I have plenty of hours to work as my shift starts at 12 and goes until closing time at 9:00 PM.
“Ah, thanks for your hard work. Today you have a long shift but do your best.”
Unlike usual, the owner was in the office at the back. Today as well, he had his trademark chin beard. He was busy using his laptop for something I didn’t understand.
“Is the floor alright without you?”
“Ah, there aren’t very many customers right now so it should be fine.”
If a customer were to come right now, what was he going to do? There probably isn’t anyone watching the floor right now, right? Even though I was thinking that, the owner has a few screws loose in his head so there isn’t really any meaning in telling him.
I give the owner a backwards glance as I went to change into my uniform and head out onto the floor. As the owner said, as usual, there’s very few customers today. There wasn’t a single seat that was filled.
Usually there are at least a few seats filled. I wonder if there’s an event going on nearby.
While thinking about these things, I organize the tables. However, since it doesn’t seem like any customers will come soon, I will be free for a while.
I end up thinking this all the time, but is this place really being managed properly? Of course, having it easy for my part-time job is nice, but I can’t help but be a little bit worried. Then, the owner, who had finished his work in the back, came out with a cheerful face.
“Finally, I’m done~. Doing work on the laptop is pretty hard.”
“Ah, thanks for your hard work. I’ve been wondering for a while now, but what are you doing on the laptop?”
“Various things here and there….Like sales, and stuff like that.”
The moment when he answered, he seemed so tired that I couldn’t ask any further.
Sales are pretty low I guess… Trying to change the topic of the conversation, I speak to him in a happier tone.
“Speaking of which, am I the only one today?”
“No, Echizen-chan will be here at 3.”
Really? I’m with Echizen again. I don’t hate it, but since I can’t seem to start a conversation the time feels longer. Honestly, it’s not like there are that many customers, one part-timer should be more than enough.
“Make sure you properly get along with each other during break!”
With that said, this old man, who was over 30 years old and had a white beard, winked at me. Sometimes, the owner is really weird like this. For some reason, he keeps trying to set me up with Echizen. Because of that, the mood becomes a little awkward. To be honest, it’s a little bit annoying, but I couldn’t say that to the person that hired me. Even if it’s at the same time as Echizen, if the owner tells me to take a break at that time, I will have to obediently take a break.
Ah~ I feel heavy.
We did take breaks together, but at that time the mood was very heavy. When it’s like that it really isn’t a break. It doesn’t let my heart rest at all. Time passed as I held those thoughts in my mind.
“Thanks for you hard work.”
It became 3 o’clock and Echizen entered. She seemed like she was in somewhat of a bad mood. I see, she hates it that much when she’s with me.
After replying to Echizen, I moved the customer seating area and started organizing tables There was barely anything to do, but she still properly tried to organize it all.
I was already trying to pass the time. There is way too little to do, and too many people to do it. I wonder if I should really be receiving pay from this.
Echizen was in the back, organizing food supplies. To be honest, it really isn’t necessary to do that either. She’s probably just trying to pass time in her own way.
After about 30 minutes of organizing, I had nothing to do again. Echizen also ended up with nothing to do, so we were both standing in our usual positions. As usual, we were standing about 5 meters apart from each other.
So, the awkward silence begins.
Ah~ please time, pass faster.
“You two can take a break now.”
In the end, there was basically no customers and when it turned 6, Echizen and I were put on break. Echizen tried to talk to the owner and said, “There isn’t a need for both of us…”, but the he would not hear any of it and forced us to take a break.
Now, we were stuck in more awkward silence. Why does the owner always try to bring this about?
We were sitting face to face, with a strained atmosphere. Why does it always come down to this? While wondering about the strained atmosphere, I heard a familiar music flow by.
It was the main menu BGM of the smartphone game Human Beast War, which I often played. It was coming from Echizen’s smartphone. Echizen is always so straight-laced that she had the image of reading books, rather than playing games.
However, that Echizen was now playing a smartphone game, and, it was the same as the one that I played. I turned to Echizen with a surprised face, while Echizen faced me, her face slightly blushing.
She quickly turned her phone onto silent and the BGM disappeared, but I definitely heard it for a moment. I can’t not say anything about it. I stop thinking about it and open my mouth.
“That game, Echizen plays it too? I play it as well.”
When asked, Echizen gave a surprised expression, then replied with a slightly protesting tone.
“… I do.”
“As I thought! It’s interesting right!”
After hearing her say that she played Human Beast Wars as well, I was so happy I ended up overwhelming her with my feelings. Normally, Echizen would’ve have drawn away from me by now, but today, she was a little softer on me.
As usual, the response wasn’t too friendly, but I feel that she was a little gentler with her tone than usual.
“Echizen, what level are you right now? By the way I’m currently about level 50.”
“Currently 35. I’m not the type to go for kills very often after all.”
There are different ways to play in Human Beast War, but they are divided into two general types. The first type is where you deal damage and kill beasts, while the second type is more of a support type that doesn’t really attack but provides supportive items and heals during encounters.
So, since the killing is mostly done by the damage dealer, these types of players usually get more experience.
I am one of those damage dealer type players.
Since she avoids killing, Echizen is a support type.
“I see. Are you in a party?”
“Eh, is that so? I’m also in one. Partying with other people is fun!”
“Yeah, being in a party, we can defeat stronger enemies.”
“Yeah yeah, I get that! It helps to have everyone helping each other out.”
“That’s true. That’s also a good part.”
The conversation continued on like that.
It feels like we were able to get a good conversation going. This was the first time that we were able to talk like fellow part-timers together.
“That’s right, let’s become friends. During times when we’re free, like now, we can go on quests together?”
“…I-is that so. I’m sorry.”
Seems like I went a little bit too far.
I was rejected immediately.
Why did she reply so harshly?
She looked so happy talking about it earlier too. Somehow, the mood suddenly became weird again.
I still wanted to talk with Echizen more, but she was concentrated so much on her smartphone screen, that there was no way I could talk to her further. Can’t be helped, I guess I’ll open up Human Beast War and play too.
When I did, I noticed that Ryouma, who was also from the same party, was also online. Looks like we logged in at about the same time. It’s been a while, so let’s go together on quests.
After that, I went on quests with Ryouma-san until my break ended. I wasn’t able to converse with Echizen during that time, but since we were both playing the same game, the time passed by more easily than usual.
Getting passionate over a game together over a game during work, I felt the distance between Echizen and I shrink a little bit.