People stare sometimes.
They walk to school or karate practice, Mitsukuni on his shoulders with Usa-chan in one hand and a cupcake in the other (he never gets crumbs in Takashi’s hair. Never) and they have faces like fish, these people. Don’t they know who Mitsukuni is?
For his part, Takashi stares back. Gives them his “I have a sword and am not afraid to use it” face.
“Say hi, Usa-chan!” Mitsukuni calls, waving the bunny’s arm. Takashi can hear the smile in his voice.
It’s only years later that Takashi realizes that the smile, the waving, is for him.