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This is Tokyo. Right now, it’s the end of August. This is a coffee shop. It’s just past ten in the morning. Outside it is already a world of intense heat.
Leaving the house triply armored against ultraviolet rays with a hat, a parasol and sun block, I was walking down the street, passing in front of an elementary school, when the kids, on summer break, shouting "Pyaaa!", "Kyoo!" and such, went running past me one by one, leaving slow me behind in their dust.
"Is there a pool near here? Are they that wound up already?", I thought, in aunt mode watching attentively before me, the kids running while tearing off their clothing. Wellll, for a moment I began to get impatient.
Of course, they were wearing swimsuits underneath, and they had taken off their shoes too, everyone in the stampede around the school gate was barefoot. In the schoolyard a bunch of adults looking like teachers were lying in wait for the kids, hoses in their hands. They aimed the hoses upwards, opened them fully, and started spraying the kids. Tossing nearby the clothes they’d taken off, the kids were already screaming in excitement. All of them, acting like little wild beasts. With the sheet of spray they’d made a rainbow. Stopping automatically, I gazed on the sight.
Because already... come now.
The smell of chlorine was rising, the humidity too, the cheers also, and the scorching sun...!
From the bottom of my heart, really, it was all mixed together...!
This slow person shamefully wanted to throw off her UV-armor and join the uproar, being splashed in fresh water wearing only one set of underwear! I mean, maybe even my panties have gone transparent! Bravely throwing off my clothes, with my body still fresh as a newborn, a frolicking sopping wet 32-year old Yuyuko! Such a super crazy spectacle it would have been, but with heart! The heart of a child! So it's OK then! Okaaay then!
...But isn't that wrong!?
Wouldn't I be arrested!?
Isn't it so...!?
Well then, as it happens, I cannot really get away with such matters of undressing, having a body way too overripe, and once more, to all of you I would like to express my humblest thanks.
I have given into your hands 'Golden Time'.
You have stayed with me all the way to the postscript.
I truly thank you, very much! With this new work, I've been looking forward to your reactions very much, even with awful, awful fear. A little, but wasn't it a fun time we've passed through?
As we moved ahead with the story, we said that our protagonists left Shizuoka to live in Tokyo. Those are only place names... "Shizuoka", "Tokyo" and the rest, officially, they are fictional towns. The real places are a little different, so please accept the mixture in the world of the written text. The erotic-sounding bell actually sounds normal, and to cross the bridge you pay a small toll. Even with regards to the college, there is no particular concrete model for it.
And now the next volume. We are preparing to deliver it to you around next spring. ...Now, don't give me those dirty looks, but, that's about as fast as I can do! I'm full of energy! I plan to keep working hard on my writing! At the very least, the spirit is willing! I will continue somehow; there is no better happiness for me than your interest. Please treat us well.
...Well then, right now it's really bright outside, and 104 degrees.
These few days, the sun has been blazing like this all the time. It's really hot, to the point of heat exhaustion. Yesterday was hot too, without thinking from 11:30 on I had a yakiniku lunch, but (My hat is anti-heat-fatigue. Just meat with a lot of rice is my normal serving. My appetite isn't there.) (And then, I got here a bit early, since it gets crowded by noontime. Making the most of my status as "self employed professional", and my sly knack for time management--- The Lunchbreak Shift (a.k.a. Escape from Employment)), for some reason my chopsticks are shaking, wobbling from side to side in my field of vision.
Look, and you would see an older woman you don't know, her mouth stuffed full of meat. ...Ah but you'd be wrong, it'd be me... the reflection of my figure dominates the mirror, doesn't it? The reflection is my profile. In which, what you see wobbling in that mirror are my jaws, you see, hardly chubby at all, alluringly shiny, furthermore, there's even more reflected in the mirror: the scenery behind me.
You know what I mean...?
To put it simply, my face has been disguised by optical camouflage equipment.
"...That so?~", I only nodded. While I'm eating meat, "That so? That so?~" "That one over there~, the girl past thirty being disguised by optical camouflage~" "All of you~, can you see~?" "Over here!~" "She's ... right ... here!" ...My life is a mess. Already, it really is a mess. Any time now I will be a complete wreck...
Nonetheless, one way or another I live, disappearing from this world through optical camouflage. The next volume of the story is taking shape, for certain. We want to deliver it to your waiting hands as soon as possible! That's our plan.
Having said all that, you have stuck with me to the end. Once more, thank you very much. Please be kind to the second volume when it comes out! What would make me happier than anything else, if it's something you feel like doing, then by all means, please let me know what you think about it. Even if it's something brief, even if only one word! Of course, even if it's only a quick drawing!
And now to my illustrator, Komatsu Eeji, and my editor, I ask their patience as I continue working towards the next volume. Like a bunch of kids I don't know, suffering from the heat, let's run as fast as we can!
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