Reset My Favor and Live a Normal Youth Volume 1 Chapter 3

Episode 3 – Kind Tanaka

Meals during elementary school were inorganic. The taste was whatever. Just filling my stomach while getting nutrients. Any deficiencies were supplemented with pills. I recall eating alone in the classroom.
By then I had already lost my memories of kindergarten.
I didn’t learn the concept of friends until starting middle school.
So I was really happy when I first made friends.
Eating bento secretly together with Michiba in the library, for some reason it tasted more delicious than usual to me.
–Those feelings are already gone now.

Lunch break.
I’m eating my bento alone. A homemade bento. Plum rice, chicken sashimi, and overcooked broccoli – the taste wasn’t great but it turned out well.
Any deficient nutrients can be supplemented with pills. My cooking skills have improved little by little. I’ll try adding one more dish tomorrow.
Unlike in elementary school, my classmates are in the classroom with me now.
Just hearing the voices around me makes my heart bloom.
But I’m still the only one eating bento alone…it felt a little lonely.

“Hey, you took my fried chicken!”
“Shut up, your mom’s fried chicken is delicious!”
“Then give me your shrimp fry!”
“Fine, here. Oh yeah, did you do the homework? I didn’t, lemme copy.”
“Buy me a doughnut later.”
“Nice, let’s go buy some after eating!”
Everyone is happily eating gathered around their friends’ desks.
The class was clearly divided into cliques. I’m the only loner.
Luckily there are no bullies in this class.

There’s the gamer/anime group, the quiet good student group, the active sports guys, and the socially aware cool kids group. More nuanced divisions exist but that’s the gist.
…Michiba-san is looking over here. She belongs to the group of people with fulfilling relationships. She’s surrounded by friends, eating lunch together. I feel glances from her since the morning. She shows signs of wanting to start a conversation with me, but I don’t feel like talking.
My relationship with her is gone. I don’t want to hurt by interacting with her again.
I know. This is just me being childish and selfish, relying on resetting. It shows my heart is weak.
When I finished eating my bento, I realized my lunchtime routine had disappeared.
With no more connection to Michiba, I have no need to go to the library.
I see, habits can form through connections between people.
I now have free time after this.
Now then, what to do…
Just as I started to stand from my seat–

“Is Tsuyoshi here today? — Oh, Toudou. Ah, there you are!”
Hanazono came over to me.
If Hanazono talks to me I’ll respond, but right now I’m not in the mood.
Plus I’ve caused Hanazono trouble so I shouldn’t talk to her, or strange rumors might spread about her…
“Sorry, I’m about to–“
“Wait! Tsuyoshi, you stopped your study sessions with Michiba right? I heard the rumors. You don’t have plans after this right? Come hang out with me a bit!”
I was surprised. I thought nobody knew about my study sessions with Michiba in the library.
To think Hanazono knew…
Just as I tried to reply, Michiba came this way.
“You, the girl who got dumped by Sensei…I mean, Toudou…that’s Hanazono right? Haha, so clingy. I mean, we’re doing a study session now!”
–I don’t have any desire for that anymore. The feelings I had for Michiba as a friend are gone, reset and disappeared. Why can’t Michiba understand that? I guess it’s only natural since normal people can’t erase their emotions.
“Huh? Weren’t you the one who tricked and made fun of Tsuyoshi!? I can’t forgive someone like that!”
“I-it was just a little joke! Not like you stirring up weird romantic drama! –Hmph, at least I’m more mature than a stupid girl who says the name of a guy she doesn’t even like!”
“Why you–! This devious woman!”
“What’d you say! Liar!”
–I slipped out of the classroom without a trace. They’re talking about me but it feels like someone else’s business. I don’t want to get involved in troublesome stuff.

I wandered the school aimlessly. Come to think of it, I haven’t grown at all from middle school to high school. Still shy with strangers and bad at talking, without any friends.
The only one always beside me looking troubled is Hanazono.
I want to live a normal life. I don’t need to be the most popular guy in class. I don’t want to stand out. I just want a peaceful life.
Can I live normally? Or am I strange after all?

While walking I ended up in the courtyard. Students who finished lunch are chatting. It’s a popular spot with lots of greenery and feels nice in the sunlight.
I saw an empty bench and decided to kill time sitting there, counting the flowers in the garden.

“Hey! It’s you, Toudou! Thanks for the juice the other day! “

Tanaka Haru suddenly sat next to me.
I shift half a step away. I get nervous when girls besides Hanazono sit next to me.
Tanaka goes to the same school but she’s in a special class in a different building, so we rarely cross paths.
The blonde gal Tanaka has lots of curly clip-on hair pieces on her head. I think they’re called…ex…something.
She has a flashy appearance but is a very kind girl, supporting me when I’m not used to working my part-time job.
Our conversation at karaoke the other day was meaningful. Despite her looks, Tanaka is level-headed. When I tried to treat her to juice she got mad at me.
I first met Tanaka on my first day working my part-time job.
I had plenty of savings but chose to get a job to learn social skills.
When we first met, Tanaka was very cold.


[Huh? New part-timer? Oh, I see.]
[What? I have to look after him? Ugh…]
[Don’t get too familiar with me. We just have a work relationship.]

I just focused on my work.
And I realized something. Groups existed at my workplace too. None of the staff tried talking to me. Besides the chef, no one taught me what to do when I didn’t understand something.
Despite so many people around, I was alone. The workplace formed its own little society.
Sometimes I would make mistakes unlike normal people. I knew they called me “weird in the head” and laughed at me behind my back.

[Ah geez, you do it like this.]
[Hey, why Toudou is doing your job!? Cut that out, ‘kay?]
[Oh…it’s raining. We don’t have spare umbrellas at the shop…Hm? You’ll let me borrow yours? W-wait! Your umbrella!?]
[And Toudou’s unexpectedly funny y’know. Like, totally uninterested in girls right? I can tell with my woman’s intuition. Kinda like a little brother.]
[Here, let’s take the trash out quick so we can leave faster! Let’s get juice on the way home!]
[Hmm, your childhood friend Hanazono-san, right? Hey, tell me more details, that’s totally a date!]
I don’t know what triggered it, but Tanaka started talking to me normally at work. I still can’t talk with the other staff.
There were many times I considered quitting the part-time job, but I kept at it because I could see Tanaka.

I rapidly recall memories of Tanaka. Yes, she’s a girl I have good feelings about.
“Oh, Tanaka. Hello.”
“As dull as ever…But hey, you had friends to go to karaoke with Toudou? Did you have fun last weekend?”
I try recalling what happened on the weekend…
That’s already irrelevant to me now. I erased those emotions so I no longer remember them.
The only fact is that I didn’t get to do karaoke.
“No, I don’t remember.”
“You don’t remember? Huh, I don’t get it.”
“S-sorry. I don’t know how to explain it. I went to the karaoke place but didn’t actually sing karaoke.”
“Huh? What do you mean? And Toudou, you look down. Tell me what’s up! I heard rumors you’re on weird terms with your childhood friend now too?”
“Yeah, Hanazono doesn’t matter anymore.”
“…That’s no good. I mean, you used to happily tell me a lot about Hanazono right?”
Tanaka stares at me intently.
It’s a serious expression. The atmosphere is completely different from just a moment ago. I unintentionally got captivated. Her eyes were truly beautiful.
Maybe it’s okay to talk to Tanaka.
“Well, actually–“

I briefly explained to Tanaka. Trying to be as objective as possible, eliminating emotions. I wanted to convey the information accurately without my subjectivity interfering.
Tanaka, without interrupting my story, listens while nodding.
After hearing the story, Tanaka opens her closed eyes and lightly taps my head.
“–Ouch, Tanaka.”
“Even though you finally became friends, you shouldn’t just cut it off so easily… It’s lonely, you know.”
“But I don’t want my own heart to hurt. That’s why I [reset].”
“You can’t just reset your emotions. You’re just deceiving yourself.”
“Well, this is…”
“I didn’t know about Michiba-san, but you’ve been friends with Hanazono-san for a long time, right? Let’s make up.”
“But I already said it was my fault–“
“No, that’s not the point. This is something you could’ve resolved by talking it out right? Is it that big of a deal you have to completely cut ties…? Severing all relationships is lonely, for you…”
At that time, I couldn’t leave my hurt heart as it was.
So I–reset my heart. Completely zeroed out all the relationships I had built up.
That way my heart won’t hurt. Things will go back to normal.
As I stay silent, Tanaka stands up and stretches.
“Well, I get how you feel. Everyone’s selfish…That’s why some people don’t like me, they say I make enemies easily. So like, at times like that, I let it slide off me.”
“Let it slide off…can I do something that skillful?”
“How should I know? I’m talking about me.”
I gaze intently at Tanaka.
Like I thought even at work, Tanaka is mature.
Her looks and inner self don’t match — it’s shocking.
I’m moved by Tanaka’s words.
“W-why’re you staring at me like that!? It’s embarrassing, ‘kay! Toudou’s plain but high quality. Discerning people will know! …Ah, I ended up saying something weird while caught up in the moment. You’re treating me to juice next time!”
“Idiot! At times like this you’re supposed to think more before answering! …Well, just stay as you are Toudou…See you!”
Tanaka turns her back to me. Looks like the conversation is over.
–I see, then.
“Um, thank you, Tanaka. So, I found this cafe with delicious juice, and next time, as thanks, would you…would you like to go together…?”
The words get stuck and I can’t speak smoothly…My face must be flushed from embarrassment…But still I force the words out.

“Will you go with me, please? “

With gratitude–

Tanaka who had her back turned looks my way.
Hands on her hips, chest thrust forward. Her healthy skin looks beautiful in the light.
With a big smile–she winks and makes a peace sign at me.
“Ahaha! Of course! I’ll wait for you to contact me!”
Tanaka runs off looking happy.
I feel my body growing hot.

scene transition


It didn’t disappear even after Tanaka left.

–I thought I don’t want to reset this warm feeling.

But at the same time, I understand this feeling can hurt my heart,
since I believe affection will one day disappear. I know feelings of affection generate pain in my chest.

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