= Rena =
“Mom, I have an extra lesson for piano after my class this afternoon.”
“I’ve said it to you last week, mom… I’ll participate in Piano Competition next month.” She rolled her eyes.
“Ah.” The woman laughed. “I’m sorry, honey. I forgot about it. Just call me if you’re done, I’ll pick you up.” She stopped the car in front of the university main gate. “We’re arrived.” After she turned off the car engine, she kissed her daughter who sat next to her. “Have a nice day. I love you. See you later.”
“I love you too, mom.” She stepped out from the car.
The middle-aged woman turned her head to the back seat direction. “Ta-”
“Take care of your sister and help her if she needs something.” A girl cut off the woman words and said it in a cold way. “I know, mom. You’ve said it every day to me.” She said it while putting the books into her bag. “I know it. She’s a perfect girl and I’m a bad sister.” She opened the door and stepped out from the car.
“No, you’re not bad!” The woman raised her voice so her other daughter could hear her. “See you later!” She waited for a respond but as usual… her oldest daughter didn’t give her an answer. She sighed. After she saw that both of her daughters had been entered the gate, she turned on her car again and went away.
Rena turned her head and saw her mother drove the car away, and then she looked to the front again… she saw her younger sister, Sakiko, walked with a bunch of popular students in the campus. She sighed. I hate my life. She walked straight to her class without greet or greeted by anyone.
She entered the class and found an empty chair on the back row, and then she quickly walked there and put her butt on the chair before someone else taking her favorite spot. Not long after that the lecturer came into the class and then he prepared his laptop and also the projector.
The lecturer spent about 10 minutes to set everything. “Okay, let’s start our class.”
All students looked at the lecturer and completely shut their mouth.
“Just like what I’ve told you in the beginning of this semester, we will have a Humanity Project this month. 2 days ago, our campus has been decided which country that we will visit for doing this project….. Philippines.”
In about 3 seconds later, all students in the class cheering out loud. They looked so happy and excited about this humanity project. Most of them did the high-five with their friends and they began to discuss about their individual plans in Philippines.
“Okay-okay, guys… Please be quiet.” The lecturer could understand his students’ excitement. “I know that all of you will start to plan something fun, but remember… first of all, we go there for a Humanity Project. The project will be held in 2 days and we give you another 2 days for enjoying the natural landscape of Philippines.” He smiled.
Rena could hear the others cheered even louder and saw how excited the students. But it was not gave any impact to her. I don’t want to participate in this silly project!
“Sorry, I’m late!!” A student entered the super noisy class. She looked so confused about the situation in that class.
“Matsui Jurina! Why do you always late on my class?!”
Jurina bowed at the lecturer. “Sorry.” After that, her friends gave her a signal to sit beside them. Jurina grinned and then she rushed toward her friends who already talked about the Humanity Project.
Rena took a small glance at Jurina’s direction. Popular kids are always same. She rolled her eyes.
============================= ***** =============================
= Jurina =
“Hi, J.” A girl stopped in front of Jurina. She bent down and then she whispered at Jurina who sat on a chair in the cafeteria. “Don’t forget about tonight. 8 PM.”
Jurina smirked. “I won’t forget about it, sweetie.”
The girl planted a small kiss on her cheek before walked away.
“She’s hot. Your new girlfriend?”
“No. She’s only a friend, Churi.” Jurina proceeded to eat the meal that she bought before.
“Friend with benefit?”
Jurina rolled her eyes. “Kanon, please. I’m eating right now. Stop teasing me!”
Churi and Kanon giggled.
“Hi guys.” A gorgeous girl sat beside Jurina.
“Oh, hi. Where have you been, Yuria?” Kanon looked at her friend who had just bought her lunch.
“Sorry, I’m late. I had to go to the bathroom first.” Yuria drank the soft drink.
Churi tilted her head. “Bathroom? Did you’ve just make out with someone or something?”
Yuria almost spit out her drink in mid-sip and Jurina choked as well. “Guys, please!!” Both of them said it in the same time and glared at their silly friends.
“What?!” Churi said it in a innocent way. “Both of you are popular… WE are popular, so… it’s easy to have a sexual relationship with anyone.”
Jurina smacked Churi’s head. “Stop your non-sense talks!”
Kanon had accidentally seen a girl who had just sat on the chair, not too far from them. “Guys, do you know her?” She pointed her finger at the corner table. There was a girl who sat there.
Jurina turned her head and narrowed her eyes. She observed the girl. “I don’t know her name, but… I often see her. Is she from our class?”
Churi and Yuria nodded as they had a same thought with Jurina.
“She used to be a nice girl. She was in my middle school.” Kanon sip her coffee. “And you know what? She’s Sakiko’s older sister.”
“Wait WHAT??!” Three of them looked so surprised.
“Matsui Sakiko??!!” Yuria couldn’t believe her friend words.
Churi was surprised as well. “Their personalities seem too different. Sakiko is a ‘popular junior’, but that girl is the ‘unknown girl’.”
Jurina kept looking at the girl even though Churi, Yuria, and Kanon already turned away from the girl. “Kanon, you said that she used to be nice. What happened to her?”
Kanon shrugged. “I don’t know. Well… maybe it’s hard to have a perfect sister.”
“Especially when the perfect sister is studying in the same college with her.” Yuria added.
“Precisely.” Kanon nodded.
“Matsui Jurina, please come to the principal’s office right now.” The big voice came from the cafeteria intercom.
Everyone in the cafeteria looked at Jurina. Jurina facepalmed. SHIT!
Yuria glared at Jurina. “Stop making the trouble! Or you won’t be able to go to Philippines with us, baka!!”
“What have you done this time?!” Churi slapped Jurina’s hand.
“Aw! It’s hurt.” Jurina rubbed her hand. “I skipped some important classes for 2 weeks. And then… yesterday, our principal found me with a girl, I forgot her name, kissed each other inside the library. Well… it’s not my fault! That girl captured my lips first, not me! I went to the library to sleep peacefully, but she came to me.”
“Library?! Stupid.” Kanon sighed.
Jurina put her clothes into her bag. Fiuhh…. I’m very lucky that the principal still give me the permission to do the Humanity Project in Philippines.
In about some minutes later, she was shocked because her mother grabbed the bag from her grip. “H-hey, mom. Let me pack my own stuff.” Jurina tried to grab the suitcase from her mother hand.
But Jurina’s mom slapped her daughter hands, not too hard, it just to shove away the hands from the suitcase. “No! No. You’ll bring some USELESS stuff instead of the USEFUL things.”
“Mom! I only go for a week, not for a month!” Jurina scratched her head.
Jurina’s dad chuckled softly. “Honey, Jurina is right. She doesn’t have to bring too many clothes and medicines. She only goes for a week.”
Jurina smiled at her dad. “Thanks, dad.”
But it seemed Jurina’s mom didn’t care about them, she kept packing her daughter stuff. “A week is a long enough time, Jurina.”
Jurina and her dad rolled their eyes. They couldn’t do anything to against the mother who overly worried. They decided to sit and watched the woman put everything into Jurina’s suitcase.
After half an hour, finally…. “Done!” Jurina’s mother grinned at her husband and her daughter. “Let’s go.” She asked her husband to bring the suitcase to their car.
Jurina stood up and walked behind her parents who walked toward the car. I will miss you, mom… dad.
============================= ***** =============================
= Humanity Project =
“Okay, listen!” The lecturer talked through the megaphone. “We will have the dinner at 7 PM so you still have 3 hours to take a rest!”
Churi nudged Jurina who stood beside her. “Take a rest? Bullshit! Let’s go swimming after we put our bags in the hotel room.”
Jurina grinned. “We have a same thought.” She did a highfive with Churi. She looked at Kanon and Yuria who smirked as well.
All of them rushed into the hotel room after they got the key. They put their bags on the floor and then they took their swimsuit. After they changed their clothes, they left the bags just like that…. messy.
They wanted to swim on the sea, but it seemed the sea waves were too un-stable because the wind was quite strong in the time like that. They counted together, “1, 2, 3, Go!” All of them jumped into the swimming pool in the same time.
“Wohooo!!” Jurina cheered loudly, she looked so enjoyed it. It was just the swimming pool but she felt it so refreshing, somehow, she felt the water and the air in Japan were so different from Philippines.
Jurina lifted her head while kept swimming; she wanted to enjoy the scenery of the sky and the clouds. But her eyes had accidentally noticed a girl who stood on the terrace of one of the hotel rooms on the third floor. The girl was holding the binoculars. Isn’t she Matsui Sakiko’s older sister? She stared at the girl just for a few seconds because her friends suddenly splashed the water onto her face.
—- On the other hand —-
Rena stood on the terrace while holding her binoculars. I can’t believe that I’m actually come here. She sighed.
“I don’t even want to go on that silly trip!” Rena replied sarcastically. “I don’t want to be forced to go and hang out with people I never talk to.”
Rena’s mother shook her head. “You have to go, Rena. It’s your chance to get more friends.”
“I don’t need any friend!”
“It’s your chance to do something fun with someone else. It’s time for you to help people besides yourself.”
Rena groaned. “Fine! I’ll go, so you and Sakiko don’t have to get stuck with my face for a whole week.” She went upstairs.
“That’s not the reason, Rena. I’ve told you… this is-” Rena’s mom words was been cut off by the sound of the slammed door.
*END OF FLASHBACK*
Rena saw the beach and the sea scenery through the binoculars. Well… at least the scenery didn’t disappoint me… so beautiful. She enjoyed the scenery for about 15 minutes and also taking some pictures. She was about to go inside her room, but the cheering from the swimming pool made her mind distracted. She looked down and saw many students fooling around. They didn’t know what the meaning of ‘take a rest’. She went inside her room and planned to spend an hour for sleeping.
==== On the next day ====
The students was visiting a small village, it spent about 2-3 hours from the hotel. They gave away many things to the locals… like rice, sugar, salt, cooking oil, blanket, clothes, and toys for children, etc.
And the day after that, they worked together to built a kind of small outdoor patio so the locals could sat together to watch the TV that the students gave to them.
“Here, let me help you.”
The pair of hands offered some helps when Rena tried to lift a wooden pole, but it hardly moved; she wanted to paint it, “Oh, thanks.” She said it without saw the helper face.
Rena was not good in many physically jobs, so she just did a small job like that, like coloring or paint the wall, or collect the garbage on the ground.
Both of them lifted it together and put it vertically beside the wall, so Rena could paint it easier.
“You’re welcome.” The helper smiled at Rena, but Rena seemed didn’t pay attention to the helper anymore. The helper walked toward Rena and whispered. “You’re so white, don’t forget to use your lotion or your beautiful skin will be burned.” After that, the helper walked away.
Rena was a bit surprised and then she looked at the helper direction. She only could see the helper’s back.
“Jurina! Please help me to give away these medicines to the locals.”
“Okay!” The helper lifted the bag from the ground and followed the one who called her.
Rena raised her eyebrows. Jurina? Matsui Jurina?! Wow. It was the first time for her to talk with Jurina, the popular girl from sport club. She shrugged and then proceeded to paint the wooden pole.
============================= ***** =============================
= Wrong Decision =
“Matsui- Matsui – Matsui! Wake up!!”
Rena opened her eyes slowly as the 2 girls disturbing her peaceful sleep. See?! This is why I didn’t need any friends! They always irritating anyway. She woke up lazily. “What is it?” She forced to talk with those girls since 2 days ago because they were her roommates and her teammates in the humanity project.
“Matsui, this is good news!!” One of the girls looked so excited. “Yuria, one of the richest student in our college rent a boat tonight! She invites some of the students to come and enjoy the party~”
Rena rolled her eyes. “I’m not interest.” She covered herself with a blanket and then she lay on the bed again.
“Oh, come on!” The other girl took the blanket and threw it onto the floor. “Listen, this is the only chance, we have to go! Joining a party on the luxurious boat and enjoying the night sky of Philippines…. OMG! You won’t have a chance like this again!”
Rena groaned. I hate them! This is going to be the first time and also last time I hang out with them. She woke up. “Okay.”
“The boat will be leaving in an hour, you better hurry.”
Rena take a (super quick) shower, she didn’t bring any pretty dress so she just wore the white t-shirt and the pink gingham check pattern pants, she grabbed her bag that she had prepared before, and then she took a bottle of water from the table.
“Let’s go.” A girl pulled Rena’s hand and then three of them rushed outside the hotel. They ride a taxi and went to the harbor.
Just in 10 minutes, they arrived at the harbor. They ran toward the boat that almost left without them. They walked around the boat. Rena felt so thankful because no one there using a dress, well… that was an unexpected party after all.
‘’Do you want to drink a cocktail?”
Rena shook her head. “No. Just…. enjoy yourself, okay? I’ll just walking around and taking some pictures.” She left both of her roommates. She walked away from the crowd. She stood on the left side of the boat to enjoy the night lights and the wind.
Rena took her binoculars from her bag and then put it closer to her eyes.
“You won’t be able to see anything in the midnight like this.”
“Kyaa!” Rena utterly surprised. She looked at the girl who talked to her. “You scared me!!! YOU-” She paused as she realized who it was. Tch! I can’t put myself in trouble just because of a silly popular kid. She walked away from the girl before her anger burst out. This is her friend’s boat. I will be kicked out in the middle of the sea if I yell at her.
But before Rena could take any step, she heard the police siren wailing. WHAT THE FUCK?! She saw the police’s boat came closer.
“This is the police.” The police spoke through the speaker. “Prepare to be boarded, you ride an illegal boat and the boat has been operated in the forbidden zone. To all of you, move to the front side of the boat.”
Many of people ran to Rena’s direction and went to the front side of the boat. She kept being pushed to the edge of the boat while everyone looked so panicked. Rena lost her balance when she bumped with too many people. “Kyaa!” She fell onto the sea because the side of the ship just as high as her thighs.
Jurina was shocked. “Fuck!” She quickly jumped onto the water to help Rena. She grabbed Rena’s body and then she held Rena’s body tightly before she swam toward a small canoe near the boat. She guessed that the small canoe was used for an emergency case.
“Climb up!” Jurina helped Rena to ride the small canoe, and after that… she climbed up as well. “What the hell are you doing?!”
“What?! I fell!!”
Jurina took a small knife from her pocket and then she was going to cut the rope that connected the canoe and the boat.
“W-wait What?! Why did you cut it??!!” Rena looked so freaking panic.
“I already got too much trouble in college, I can’t get busted tonight.” Jurina succeeded in cutting the rope and then the canoe left behind without being seen by the police.
Rena grabbed Jurina’s collar. “I want to get back on the boat!!” She looked at the boats. “They’re getting too far away!”
Jurina tried to calm Rena. “Relax, girl. We’ll go back to the hotel when everything cool down.”
“I want to go back to the DAMN BOAT!!”
“Okay-okay!” Jurina crawled to another side of the canoe. “We’ll hang back and quietly follow them from behind.”
“Hurry up! The sea waves make us move to the wrong direction!!”
Jurina took a big plastic that covering the back side of the canoe and then she was really-really shocked. “FUCK!!”
“What?!” Rena rubbed her own fingers while trying to calm down.
*THUMP!* Rena became so afraid when she saw the boat already too far from them. “We won’t be able to see the boat! What do you mean by ‘NO MACHINE’?!”
Jurina grabbed her own hair. “This canoe didn’t have a motor to make this thing move!”
“No motor?! What now, genius?!”
Jurina groaned. “Be quiet. Let me think!” She became panic as she felt that the waves became stronger.
“Do you even know which way to go?!” Rena held the edge of the canoe tightly because she didn’t want to fall again this time.
“I don’t know.”
Rena clenched her teeth. “What do you mean by YOU DON’T KNOW?!”
Jurina rubbed her own lips. “We’re stuck here.” She couldn’t close her mouth when she saw some big sea waves were about to ‘attack’ their canoe. “Hey, watch out!” She quickly grabbed Rena’s body, she forced Rena to lay down, and then Jurina took the big plastic that she saw before… she used it to cover their body. She whispered at Rena. “Hold on to the canoe and onto my shirt tightly, okay? Close your eyes.”
Rena nodded while her tears already rolled down on her cheek. She held Jurina’s body tightly and then she closed her eyes. God, please do not drown us.
Jurina saw the huge waves had been appeared right in front of their canoe. She gulped. After the second thought, I think get busted by the police is much better than this. She lay down beside Rena and then she gripped the canoe tightly.
The waves ‘slammed’ the canoe strongly.
======================== TO BE CONTINUED ========================