After the last test finished, we all gathered around Sudou once again .
“H-hey, how was it?”
Ike asked anxiously . Sudou seemed to be slightly uneasy as well .
“I don’t know… I did what I could, but I don’t know how well I did…:
“It’ll be fine . Since you’ve studied hard, things will turn out well .
“Dammit, why did I fall asleep!?”
He was tapping his fingers against the table in irritation . Horikita stood right in front of Sudou .
“Sudou-kun . ”
“…What is it . Are you lecturing me again?”
“It was indeed your fault that you didn’t go over the last part . However, like you said, you did your best when we were studying . You didn’t throw in the towel even when it was difficult . With how much effort you put in, I think you should feel proud of what you did . ”
“What’s this, are you trying to comfort me?”
“Comfort? I was only speaking the truth . When I look at Sudou-kun, I understand that studying is difficult for you . ”
Horikita was praising Sudou . None of us could believe that this was really happening .
“Let’s wait for the results . ”
“Then… one more thing . I have something to correct . ”
“Earlier, I said that your hopes of becoming a basketball pro were foolish . ”
“Why are you reminding me?”
“I looked into how one could become a basketball pro in this world . I learned that it was a really difficult path to get on the professional scene . ”
“Isn’t that why you told me to give up? Because it’s such a reckless dream . ”
“It’s not like that . I know you have a passion for basketball . I know that you probably understand how difficult it is to become a pro . ”
It was her usual attitude, but this was clearly an awkward apology from Horikita .
“In Japan, there are a lot of people who want to become pros . Among those people, there are also people who want to become internationally known . You’re part of the latter group, right?”
“Yea . The incredibly foolish me is trying to become a basketball pro . Even though I might be stuck living a sad life as a part-time worker, I’m going to succeed . ”
“I always thought that there was no need to understand anyone else but myself . But when you said you wanted to become a pro, I insulted you immediately . Looking back on it, I regret it . Someone who doesn’t know how difficult and hard of a goal it is to achieve has no right to call it stupid and foolish . Sudou-kun, don’t forget the hard work you put into studying and use it for basketball . You’ll be able to become a pro with that kind of effort . At least, that’s what I think . ”
Horikita’s expression was the same as always, but she lowered her head to Sudou .
“Sorry for what I said back then . …Well then, goodbye . ”
Leaving behind her words of apology, Horikita left the room .
“H-hey, did you see that? Horikita apologized!? And that nicely!?”
“I can’t believe it…!”
Ike and Yamauchi were in complete shock . I was also somewhat surprised . Kushida too .
Horikita admitted that Sudou did his best .
Sitting in his chair in a daze, Sudou looked at Horikita as she walked out of the classroom .
A short while after, he put his right hand over his heart and looked backed at us .
“T-this is bad… I… I think I’m falling in love…”