This was another frustrating fragment to read. I’m tempted to just quote&comment each sentence this week, but I’ll try to restrict myself, especially since Kindle app started screaming about copy limit when I was preparing my quotes.
In the first part, it was heart-crushing to fully see that the perfect world of konbini is just Keiko’s illusion. The 100% professional relations she had with other workers and managers were only there because they thought she is too weird.
Or at least, it’s Shiraha’s interpretation, but I agree with him on this one.
I was so sad reading this list of work topics gone for Keiko. Or at least diminished? They still have to talk with her about it, too, or else no work would be done?
And they were even going out for drinks without her. I’m wondering when exactly were they making these plans, since Keiko never heard anything for 18(!!!) years, just by coincidence, for example by walking into the wrong room at the wrong moment.
Until now, I really believed that konbini relations really were that shallow - it is a temporary/part-time job after all, so maybe people there just weren’t interested in making friends. But no, it was another of Keiko’s illusions
Nooooooo. Nooooooooooooo!!! Not トゥアンくん!!!
They’ve broken him, too
As for the second part, with the sister, she certainly was very annoying for a person who helped Keiko with excuses until now. I hated it when she said that she has to “我慢する” Keiko’s behavior. Whaaaat? If it’s bothering you so much, you could just meet less often… (it was the sister who was pressuring Keiko into meeting more before, when Keiko didn’t understand why seeing sister’s baby is more valuable that seeing any baby)
…Oh, thank you Keiko.
Also, Keiko finally specifically asked her for instructions and sister just started crying.
Just a continuation of “no I won’t explain to you what is the problem but will expect you to correct your actions anyway” from the childhood.
As for Shiraha’s help, I don’t think it was either “growth for him as a character” or “selfish manipulation”, but that’s because I don’t think he’s 100% rotten person. Of course he was protecting his calm, tranquil hideout, but I also think he was just feeling uneasy listening to the whole conversation.
This also again shows difference between Keiko’s and Shiraha’s capabilities.
Shiraha knew how to calm down Keiko’s sister and what lies would make her happy. He was able to hold down a “normal” conversation.
But he’s unable to hold down a job.