“High School Boys and Being Yourself” is the 41st chapter of the manga.
The Literary Girl appears behind Hidenori as he sits on the riverbank. He rues his luck, but vows never to be chased away by her from the bank, resolving that if anything, he would make her leave. Just then, he notices that she’s wearing a guilty expression. He realizes that he had glared at her the previous time for being rude and she now wished to apologize.
He feels that there is no need for her to do so, but is happy she has the determination to approach him. He believes that her finding the bravery to say sorry was more valuable a life experience than indulging in her fictions. Sweating in anxiety, she reaches out as if to call him. This results in the sheets of her novel flying out of her exposed bag and being lifted away by the wind. Hidenori is exasperated and in downright disbelief when she runs after the papers and trips, falling face flat.
The Literary Girl gets up with a bleeding hand. Hidenori, concerned, whips out a bandage, but is stunned to see her taking out her own box of bandages. He hopelessly watches her struggle to open the box, almost unable to contain himself when she gives up on it. She takes out a bottle to drink but chokes, spewing water everywhere. Trying to regain her composure, she ends up sneezing over both hands.
Hidenori is in tears with suppressed laughter. In his mind, he begs her to stop her exhibition as he couldn't keep a straight face much longer. The agitated Literary Girl fumbles for tissues to clear her face but they get swept away by the wind as well. As she runs to retrieve them, she slips on the grass and crashes straight into his back. After they both recover from the shock, an awkward silence persists for a while. The embarrassed Literary Girl covers her face and wails loudly, her legs still perched over Hidenori’s shoulders.
As she cries, he thinks to himself that it’s okay for him to see her lame side, as that’s what comes out when one tries to be oneself. The girl recovers and pulls herself to her feet behind him once again. After a few moments, Hidenori tells her that she didn’t need to worry. He assures her he was never really angry, and that she should cheer up.
He stands up while saying this and his rising head catches the Literary Girl square on her nose. Bleeding, she falls over backward with a gasp and hits the ground. Hidenori turns around to see her lying unconscious. He assesses the situation before concluding “That isn’t good”.
In order of appearance:
- This is the only chapter to feature dialogue on the cover page.