T/N: Welcome to my first project. I’m a MTLer with a dictionary and mediocre Japanese, so I apologize in advance for inaccuracies. Please point out mistakes as you see them!
On that day, I was sitting alone in the coffee shop at the woman’s university.
In my hand was strawberry milk gelato served in a crispy waffle cone. With a cute pink colour, the strong milk flavour and refreshing sourness of strawberry spread through my mouth with every bite. It was an amazingly wonderful dessert.
The coffee shop was limited to the women’s college and had many splendid desserts like this that grabbed at the hearts of young women. Just like an ice cream shop, there were cones and gelato ready to be served at a counter. Today, I tried a single scoop of strawberry milk gelato.
“Ah, it’s delicious〜 Strawberry milk is godly ice cream! I’m so happy~”
Smiling, I smacked my lips on my sweet and sour gelato while enjoying a moment after school.
My name is Ōsawa Michiru. I am a third-year student studying Japanese literature at a woman’s university in Tokyo.
Although I don’t think my appearance is ugly, there was nothing of special notice either. In short, I was too commonplace. No, I was just plain within a group of similar aged and fashionable girls. Rather, “be a little cuter!” my friends would shove me in a direction to attract attention.
It’s not that I don’t like cute or sparkling things. I love them, but I would rather look at and hold them in my hands than wear them as accessories.
That’s why I thought there were some pretty cute goods in my room. There was a handmade shelf on the wall. My mother ran a select shop1 with miscellaneous goods, so I would save up my pocket money, get a bargain, and enjoy placing them there. There was also a corner for my favourite stones.
My hair was pitch black and went down to my shoulders. I had it cut in a beauty salon (fashionably speaking it was a jet black straight middle bob2. They would laugh that the halo of an elementary school student had appeared on me.
You guys, praise me without laughing at me! I wanted to say) but together with my Japanese face that proclaimed that soy sauce had won3, it was unfortunately not a trendy hairstyle.
Hmm, was it because the way it was cut was bad?
Even though it was not a bob cut, my friends told me I gave off the impression of an『adult zashiki warashi4』.
I took it as a compliment because it seemed like a good omen somehow……but if you think about it, wasn’t that a yōkai5?!
Isn’t that bad!?
Was it possible for a girl of my age to look like a yōkai!?
Fashion was a t-shirt and jeans by default.
I tried wearing a fashionable skirt to a mixer at an Italian place but it was only uncomfortable and bore no fruit.
While sitting at the counter of a small and quiet izakaya6 while drinking, a drunk uncle treated me to a meal for some reason. First of all, I was undoubtedly someone to be treated.
Was I still really like a zashiki warashi?
This ordinary yōkai……I mean, I, an ordinary college student, will tell the story of how I was suddenly dragged into a trip to a different world.
- a Japanese term referring to a boutique that carries fashionable items from several brands as chosen by the owner.
- something like this, I think,
- “Soy sauce face” refers to a face that is typically Japanese (long narrow eyes, compact features, and a thin face). She’s saying that her features are very typically Japanese.
- Zashiki warashi are mischievous household spirits said to bring good fortune to the places they haunt. They appear in the form of little girls with bobbed hair and red faces.
- Yōkai refers to supernatural Japanese monsters, spirits, and demons.
- an izakaya is typically a kind of casual Japanese pub.