Hina’s room had been turned upside down. All the drawers were open and the contents scattered on the floor. The curtains and bed sheet were ripped apart and sliced by what seemed like a utility knife.
Hasegawa rushed in as soon as he heard her scream and immediately called the police. With her face ashen, Hina went to the police station to give her statement.
The policemen searched around her room to find clues about the culprit. Since her passbook was missing, the police looked at the possibility of theft.
“How about staying in my apartment today?”
After providing her police statement and filling out the necessary paperwork, Hasegawa asked gently while supporting Hina’s shoulders. Hina glanced at him but did not respond.
“You can also stay at a nearby hotel, but please let me send you there. I’m extremely worried..”
Hina was still in a state of shock that her voice came out very soft, it was barely audible.
“But first, we have to go back to the apartment to pack up a few things. Is that okay?”
Hina nodded weakly.
It was already 2 o’clock in the morning.
After the police left, her room was as messy as expected. The drawers were still open and all the clothes and accessories were still scattered on the floor. When she checked her phone, which she left in the room, she saw a lot of missed calls from the landlord.
Since it’s already late at night, she decided to just return the call in the morning. She picked up her Boston bag and started stuffing it with clothes and other things she might need. After packing up all the necessary stuff, she carried the bag on her shoulders.
When she stood up and scanned the room, she felt like her tears were coming back. Her body shook again and she felt so scared that the lock of hair that fell down her face spooked her.
She didn’t want to stay a second longer in the room so she decided to leave right away. Hasegawa should be waiting for her outside her room.
At that moment, a ringing sound echoed from her pockets. But before realizing that the sound was only from her cellphone, Hina screamed. She slid down and hugged herself for protection. Hasegawa, who stood outside, immediately dashed in.
“Everything okay? …eh? Cellphone?”
“Ah.. yeah, I was just surprised.. Sorry.”
Hina was still sitting down as she bowed her head in apology. Hasegawa breathed a sigh of relief. When Hina took out her phone from her pocket and glanced at the name on the screen, she blinked her eyes several times.
It was indeed his name on the incoming call screen. It was the first time he contacted her after they broke up.
Recalling their encounter the other day at the convenience store, Hina fearfully pressed the answer button. Then his usual cheer voice, just like when they were dating, echoed from the other side of the phone.
“Oh, it got connected! What a relief that you didn’t change your number! Hina, how are you? I’m sorry for calling late in the night. I’m drunk and I just kinda want to hear your voice. Also, I wanted to apologize for last time…”
Hina only mumbled in response. Afterwards, he heard her light sobs over the phone.
“What’s wrong? You okay?”
“Did something happen? Anything I can help with?”
To that frantic voice over the phone, Hina felt uneasy and scratched her cheek.
“Everything’s fine. I’m just a bit overwhelmed with things… Anyway, I’m hanging up now.”
“I’ll go over there now. I just finished drinking.”
“Really, everything’s fine. Bye then.”
“Hey, wait! Wait!”
“What is it?”
Hina asked in a slightly frustrated tone but Hasegawa suddenly snatched the phone from her hand and pressed the end call button.
“What an inconsiderate man to be calling at this time of the night.”
Hina could also sense the frustration in Hasegawa’s voice. Then he took the bag from her shoulders.
“I called earlier to check and there is an available room at the hotel in front of the train station. And you can also make a reservation through the phone. How about it?”
As she answered, Hasegawa quickly made a reservation. Afterwards, they took a taxi and headed to the hotel.
The hotel was spacious and neatly decorated. Perhaps because it was built recently, every corner of the room was spotless, giving a positive impression.
Hasegawa had escorted Hina to her room and placed down her bag on top of the double bed.
“Well, let’s slowly think about what to do in the future. I will help tidy things up so please don’t take it all on yourself, okay?”
Hasegawa lightly patted Hina’s head and the gesture warmed her heart that her tears threatened to spill again.
Away from her catastrophic room, Hina finally felt relieved. Her shoulders felt heavy with fatigue.
“In the meantime, just take a good rest today. I’ll come pick you up tomorrow.”
After saying so, Hasegawa headed for the door. After opening it, he turned back and faced Hina.
“If you need anything, just call me. I’ll come right away. Well the, I’ll be on my way.”
“Got it. Thank you.”
Saying so, Hina lowered her head. However, Hasegawa didn’t show any signs of leaving. Rather, he furrowed his brows as if troubled by something.
“As expected, are you anxious?”
“As it is, I can’t leave you like this.”
Hasegawa looked down and saw that Hina’s hands had grabbed his shirt.
Realizing her subconscious action, Hina jumped up in surprise and turned red. Then she let go of his shirt and pulled back her hand.
“No worries. I don’t mind.”
As he said so, Hasegawa entered the room again and closed the door behind him.
“I’ll keep you company until you fall asleep. I’m sorry for trying to leave you in this state.”
Hasegawa caressed Hina’s cheek with the back of his hand. The touch somehow gave Hina a sense of relief.
“Is that okay?”
“It’s perfectly fine for me if we stay together like this, you know.”
“…But, you’ll feel uneasy, won’t you? Just rest for today. I’ll make sure you’re asleep before I go home.”
When Hina came out of the shower, Hasegawa was sitting on the bed with his eyes closed and his back leaning against the wall. Hina slowly approached him and studied his face.
He looked as stern as usual but with a trace of weariness and fatigue.
“Oh, you’ve come out. Sorry, I dozed off a bit.”
Because he just woke up, Hasegawa carefully stretched his neck, then moved his back away from the wall. The look of exhaustion still visible on his face.
“No, it’s fine. More importantly, are you okay? Even though you were so exhausted from work today, you had to get dragged into my problems, too.”
“There’s nothing for you to worry about. Anyway, why don’t you sleep now?”
Hasegawa gestured to the bed. After tucking Hina in, he sat on the edge. He placed his hand under her bangs and stroked her forehead gently.
Drowsiness slowly crept over Hina. As her consciousness started slipping away, she saw Hasegawa stifle a yawn at the corner of her eyes. It was already 3 o’clock in the morning. It’s more surprising if you’re not sleepy at such an ungodly hour.
“Do you want to sleep together today?”
Hina blurted out as she grasped Hasegawa’s hand.