Cerys nodded glumly. “My mom made me sit down in the kitchen and watched me do them all while she cooked dinner,” she grumbled. “It only took me ten minutes.”
“If math is so easy for you, why are you barely pulling a C in class?”
“Because it’s boring!” Cerys replied, stomping her foot on the last word. “But that isn’t why I wanted to see you tonight. Let’s walk together?”
Himeko nodded, she they began their stroll through the park. Aside from the soccer game, it was a quiet evening. The little children were all at home, and even the teenagers had gone in to play video games before bedtime rolled around. It was a safe neighborhood, really, and Cerys was thankful that nothing bad ever happened there and that she and her friend could be out after dinner.
Eventually the girls found their way to the playground, and sat down on adjacent swings.
Why would your mother question me like that?” Cerys grumbled as she swung slowly, ignoring the squeak in the hinges far above. It was so like her to bring up a part of a conversation from earlier and expect her friend to know what she meant.
Fortunately for her, Himeko usually understood. “I think both our mothers were having tea earlier, and yours was worrying about you out loud again. Maybe Mister Bert called her.”
“Of course he did. My point is, why after all these years is your mother worried about us being friends? Have I ever led you astray?”
Himeko shook her head. “It’s probably about college again. Ever since Daisuke got into MIT and Mitsue only got into UC-Berkeley, my parents have been worried that I will end up at one of the universities in our state.”
“Or worse,” Cerys said in a mockingly haunting tone, “coommmuuunity cooolleeege!”
Himeko pretended to shriek, and they both laughed together.
When they settled down, Cerys asked, “Is she really worried that I would cause that?”
“Your mother is probably worried about the same thing,” Himeko replied with a shrug. “Our mothers are just like us, getting together and coming up with all kinds of wild ideas.”
“Except you have to follow in your bothers’ footsteps, and I have to be the leader.”
“I could help you brush up your MIT application,” Himeko teased.
“You just watch it!” Cerys retorted. “I’m bound for University College Dublin!”
“You still want to study chemistry in Ireland?” Himeko asked.
“And been a handsome hunk of an Irishman!” Cerys replied with a wink. “Or maybe Toudai.”
“Daisuke’s friend is going to Tokyo University,” her friend told her, using the English term for it rather than the Japanese one. “He could she you around.”
Cerys giggled, knowing that her friend was just teasing. They went on talking about college a little while longer, and then changed the subject to what else one could do while studying abroad other than actually study. They had taken French together ever since Freshman year, mainly because it was either that or Spanish at their high school. They would have studied Japanese, had it been offered, or even Gaelic or German. Anything to be different from the crowd without being outright rebellious. It would have made traveling the world that much easier.