28. To botanical garden
I didn’t have anything to talk about, but when I asked about the easiest topic that came to my mind, I got a heavier story than expected.
“Don’t worry, information about Taketo-kun has not flowed yet.” (Makoto)
“That’s right. Right now, it’s only about second-year boys.” (Yuuko)
“Yeah, you can assume that anything about you has not yet been known.” (Rie)
So, it’s just a matter of time?
Well, it’s true that the number of boys attending co-ed high schools is not a lot, but…
“Hmm… I don’t know much about girls’ schools, so if anything happens, I’ll leave it to you.”
“Yes, please leave it to me.” (Makoto)
“Rest assured, I’ll handle it properly.” (Yuuko)
“I’ll get rid of it in secret.” (Rie)
“Please do it in a gentle way”
As I didn’t want to know more about such a dangerous topic, I decided to end this story here.
I need to think about another topic…
Ah… come to think of it, there should be a botanical garden in this fountain park, right?
I took out my ticket.
“I guess, it’s time to check out the botanical garden?”
“Yes. Let’s go.” (Makoto)
“Perfect, let’s shake our belly and digest all of that protein… ouch.” (Rie)
“Rie, don’t speak such vulgar words.” (Yuuko)
From an early age, women were taught not to say or do anything that might offend men.
Therefore, there were almost no girls who would behave like Rie in the Special Ward. Well, perhaps it was just because she got carried away by the nice atmosphere.
“I don’t mind. It’s not vulgar at all. But, I guess you shouldn’t speak like that in front of other men. Anyway, where is the garden? Hmm… if I’m not mistaken, it’s somewhere around big trees.”
The botanical garden should be at the back of the fountain park… right?
“I guess, it’s going to be a little detour from here.” (Makoto)
“We have time, let’s go slowly.”
While chatting, we walked around the park.
Makoto and Yuuko were on my left and right sides, while Rie was behind me.
It was the formation to repel approaching women.
Women in their late twenties to early thirties who were wandering too closely would be pushed back by their glares.
Surely, they must have practiced a lot to have such a strong glare and look as if they are ready for anything.
Well, all martial arts are based on repeated practice.
There is probably no other sport in which the difference between an amateur and a trained individual is as great as martial arts.
Martial arts aren’t something that you can leave only to your good sense.
For that reason, for three years, I was made to repeat the same thing until I hated it.
You can only be called a full-fledged martial artist when your body moves before you think.
Looking at the movements of the three… their proficiency of it is comparable to that of a martial artist.
If they go on like this, I’m sure they will leave their names in history.
After walking for a while, a greenhouse came into view.
It looked a little older than what I remembered.
“It seems like it’s empty at noon.” (Makoto)
The inside could be seen from the entrance, and there were certainly no people.
“Seems we came at the right time.” (Makoto)
We all handed over the ticket at the reception and entered inside.
Since it was in a greenhouse, I imagined the temperature to be about the same as midsummer, but it seemed to be a few degrees higher.
For that reason, it was humid, and the moment I entered, I felt stuffy.
“My glasses have fogged up”
Yuuko panicked and took off her glasses.
“Yuuko, it’s because you won’t wear contacts.” (Makoto)
“B-but, I mean, I’m scared.” (Yuuko)
“Now that you say it, Yuuko is afraid of the tip of a pencil, too, right?”
I remembered a few times when the tip of a pencil was pointed at Yuuko, and she turned her face away immediately.
“What it’s called again, aichmophobia?”
Saying so, Makoto was twisting her head.
“It’s been a long time since I’m afraid of sharp things. I can’t even use eye drops. More so putting lenses in my eyes. Just the thought of it already sent chills down my spine.”
Yuuko said so in an apologetic manner.
“I think having a kind of weakness isn’t bad, rather it’s better to have one or two cute sides. After all, Yuuko always tries to do everything perfectly.”
The words came out of my mouth naturally. Even I myself was surprised.
After Yuuko blinked her eyes a few times, her face turned bright red.
“Huff, it’s sure hot here.”
Saying so, Yuuko brought her hands to her cheeks.
“Yuu, you’re blushing.” (Rie)
“That seems to be the case. Let’s leave her alone.” (Makoto)
Tall plants formed an arch, and we walked along the path in it.
“They all have big leaves.”
“It looks like it’s recreating the environment of a tropical rainforest. I can hear the sound of water coming from over there.” (Makoto)
“…it’s a waterfall.”
The waterfall didn’t have the same power as the one in nature, but still, it was a splendid waterfall.
“Maintenance of this place must be difficult”
“It seems that this place also serves as an experimental facility.” (Yuuko)
It seemed to be a study on how plants would grow in a simulated environment.
“I see, that’s why there’s such a carnivorous plant. Hmm? That Rafflesia… is fake”
It seems to be made of concrete or something…
“It seems to be the case. I guess, they couldn’t prepare the real thing.” (Makoto)
“It must be because of the bad smell. If the bad smell stuck on people’s clothes, they’ll get a lot of claims.” (Yuuko)
Yuuko explained about the flower with the world’s largest petals named Rafflesia.
It seemed that Rafflesia could spread an odor resembling dead animals to attract small flies.
“In that case, a fake one is more than fine.”
Saying so, Makoto then gave a bitter smile.
“Hey, the next one is there, right?” (Rie)
“Wait, Rie. Don’t leave the door open!” (Yuuko)
Rie, who was full of energy, seemed to want to go to the next exhibition as soon as possible.
“It seems Rie can’t wait, so let’s move on.”
In contrast to the first area, the second area was a dry area.
Large and small cacti were displayed like spectator seats in a stadium.
“I wonder if they recreated the climate of Africa… but, wait, this greenhouse is a dome-shaped place?
“Look, that must be the reason.” (Makoto)
In the center of the greenhouse, a strange-looking tree was enshrined.
Only the trunk was thick and there weren’t many leaves.
“It’s a baobab tree, and it looks like the Madagascar Baobab.” (Yuuko)
“Is there a difference?”
“The shape of the branch is said to be slightly different for each variety.” (Yuuko)
I wonder why she has such knowledge.
Hearing Yuuko’s explanation, I felt like the mystery about her deepened just a little.
The third area was for alpine plants, and the fourth area was for aquatic plants.
We took our time to explore all areas.
“Sure, it was enjoyable. At least, more interesting than I thought.” (Makoto)
“The gained knowledge is worth more than the entrance fee.” (Yuuko)
“Yeah, you’re right.”
“It was hot, then cold. It was fun~” (Rie)
“… you’re right”
Rie’s impression was the most interesting one.
“Then, let’s go to the special stage next.” (Makoto)
“The cat exhibition?”
“Yes, it’s a limited-time event, so if you miss it, you won’t be able to see it until at least next year.” (Yuuko)
This event was said to end before the rainy season. And no one knew whether it would be held again next year, so it was a must-see event.
“Alright. Let’s go.”
Thus, we left the botanical garden.
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