Classroom of the Elite Volume 10 Chapter 5 Part 2
“Sorry to keep you waiting…”
Manabu stood there quietly. From Suzune’s perspective, he hadn’t changed a bit since they were younger.
He was still the same person she had been chasing after all this time.
“How long has it been since the two of us talked alone like this?”
“…If we don’t count what happened immediately after I enrolled here, about three years…”
“I see. It has probably been around that long.”
Manabu thought back to when his younger sister was in her first year of middle school.
When he decided to attend Kōdo Ikusei high school, he pushed her away.
At the time, he had never even considered that his younger sister would follow in his footsteps.
But, sure as day, Suzune was here now, standing in front of him.
“You said that you wanted to talk with me, so let’s hear it.”
Their conversation would be over if she said that her goal was to reconcile with her older brother.
If it was the old her, it wouldn’t have been surprising for her to say that.
In which case, Manabu probably wouldn’t say a word. He’d simply take his leave without a moment’s hesitation.
“It has to do with this supplementary exam. You’re aware of what the first-years are going through, right?”
“Mhm. Each class is being forced to expel one student.”
He urged Suzune to get on with it.
Suzune, who had been speaking relatively easily, hesitated to continue.
“If you’re asking about my own personal supply of private points, it was nearly exhausted back during the training camp. In which case, you’re just wasting your time.”
“It’s nothing like that. I had never considered asking you for that kind of support.”
Suzune hardened her resolve, determined to dispel any uncertainties he might have.
“What I wanted to talk with you about today… Please, give me courage.”
The words came out, and after a brief pause, she continued.
“I want to face this exam head-on. Other people are forming groups, trying to take control of the votes in order to ensure that they’re safe from expulsion. But, they’ll definitely regret doing that later on down the line. That’s why I… I want to stand up against them.”
Manabu silently looked on as she spoke, acknowledging the determination held within her eyes.
At the same time, he thought back to what Ayanokōji had told him the day before.
What she was trying to do was by no means easy.
But, with her own two hands, she was trying to do something that no one else could.
To resolve herself, she made up her mind and came to meet with her brother.
“How much time do you have?”
“I don’t have any plans after this…”
Suzune was somewhat taken aback by Manabu’s unexpected question.
“Then, I’d like to ask you a few things before I hear you out. What do you think of this school?”
“Are you enjoying it here?”
“Ah. Uhm… I-I see.”
Her brother’s unexpected question had clearly caught her off-guard.
“I-I’m sorry. That, uh…”
Manabu didn’t reprimand her even though she was fumbling her words.
“Whether or not I enjoy being here… I honestly don’t know. At the very least, it’s not boring.”
“Is that so?”
Suzune couldn’t understand the meaning behind Manabu’s question.
After all, it had been quite a while since the last time she had a normal conversation with her brother.
“It seems you’ve managed to overcome one of your shortcomings.”
“Indeed. You focused so much on yourself that you never paid attention to what was going on around you. By broadening your own horizons, you’ve managed to break away from spending your days in boredom.”
“You somehow… seem different today.”
In Suzune’s eyes, her older brother was serious and dedicated. Someone who pretty much never smiled.
Someone who would never neglect an opportunity to improve himself.
She felt like it was impossible for him to think of going to school as something to be enjoyed.
“You only ever paid attention to my academic achievements, always obsessed with scoring high on tests.”
“That’s because… you’ve always been my role model.”
This was something Suzune had already said many times over by this point, and Manabu’s face clouded over every time he heard it.
“Role model, huh?”
“…I understand. That it’s absolutely impossible for me to catch up with you. But still, striving to shorten the distance as much as possible shouldn’t be a bad thing.”
Despite being aware of her own shamelessness, she still wanted him to see how hard she was trying.
Without responding to his sister’s feelings, Manabu quietly closed his eyes for a moment.
“What do you think of Ayanokōji?”
“…What do I, think of him?”
“Just tell me your honest impression of him.”
“He’s an irritable classmate. Even though he’s capable enough to be recognized by you, I don’t like how he doesn’t even try to make use of it. But, I think that, someday, I’ll be able to catch up with him and, hopefully, surpass him.”
“It’s unfortunate, but you’ll never be able to catch up to Ayanokōji.”
“That said, there’s no need for you to catch up with him. It’s absolutely fine for you to grow at your own pace.”
“My own pace…”
Manabu moved a little closer to his sister.
If Suzune were to do the same, the distance between them would be short enough for their hands to reach each other.
However, Suzune wasn’t able to take that one step.
“Are you scared?”
This sense of distance was something Suzune hadn’t been able to overcome, even when she was younger.
It was so short, and yet so hopelessly far.
“To get closer, you have to be willing to take a step forward.”
“What can I do…? What can I do to get rid of this distance…?”
“Let me help you find the answers you’re looking for. So tell me, what do you want to put forward to your class?”
With a nod, Suzune slowly began explaining things to her brother.
Part 3 is longer than the collective total of Chapter 1. It’s such a long part that I want to make it a 2 part part, but I won’t. Just sit back and wait for the next part to release. It’ll come eventually. I’ve already got about 25% of it done, and I’m looking to get to the 40% mark by the end of today. My estimate is like Monday or something, if that. We will have to see. Thanks for reading.