House of Sweets – Part 6

Part 6: House of Sweets ~un petit nid~ (6)

—–Translated by daydrop. Please read on the original site at

That night, a customer came into the shop while Kase put out the Closed sign.

“I’m sorry, we’re closed right now.”

“I’m here to see Agi.”

It was a voice that suited the night. It was low and rough like Agi’s, but unlike Agi, the man did not try to hide the powerful intensity that permeated the sharp features and that voice of his. The man wore a well-tailored suit and walked into the half-dimmed shop. He appeared to be about the same age as Agi.

Kase wasn’t sure if he should continue to close up the shop. When he looked at the street for some reason, he saw a Mercedes-Benz parked a little distance away with a man leaned against it. He didn’t look like someone in a respectable occupation. The man outside noticed Kase’s gaze and gave a slight bow of his head, and Kase knew that he had come with the man who had entered the shop.

When Kase went back inside, Agi introduced the man to him. “Oh, Hiroaki, this is Mutou, we grew up together. Mutou, this is our new hire.”

The man gave Kase a relaxed nod without giving his name. His smile exerted both domination and pity at the same time, and it didn’t appear to be respectable. If this man was yakuza, then based on his appearance, he was probably someone with a very high rank in the organization.

“…Hello, I’m Kase.”

He bowed his head with an upward glance, and Mutou suddenly changed his expression, narrowing his eyes to stare at Kase like there was something he needed to confirm. And then he looked over at Agi. Agi shrugged his shoulders with a wry smile. What was that? Kase thought suspiciously, but then Chise and Rio came out from the kitchen.

“Uncle Mutou!”

Rio rushed over, happy to see the man, and Mutou picked Rio up into his arms.

Mutou asked Rio, “How have you been doing?” and smiled at Chise with just his eyes. Apparently he was quite close to them too.

“Hiroaki, you can leave for today. I’ll take care of the rest here.”

Kase nodded and gave a small bow again. When he passed through the side, Mutou was watching him again. It gave him a weird feeling, and Kase rushed to leave the area without meeting the man’s eyes.

While Kase changed, he could hear the faint voices of three people laughing.

A small town bakery and the yakuza. Kase puzzled over the strange friendship, and he remembered thinking when he first met Agi, that Agi could have passed for yakuza. But Kase had no further interest in their personal friendship, and when he left the bakery, he had already forgotten about the man.

On his way home, the stray cat was in front of the greengrocer as usual. The cat stopped moving when it saw Kase. It watched him from a safe distance, no longer taking a hostile stance like before.

Kase took out a sandwich from his paper bag and tossed it over.

The cat quietly approached it and bit into the white triangle.

Kase stood away from the cat at a distance, watching it eat.

It had become a custom since he started his job a month ago to give some of his leftover unsold bread to this cat. He didn’t think about trying to tame it. He just gave it something extra that he had. That was all.

As Kase watched the cat in a daze, he noticed that its left ear was torn. Its ear had been normal yesterday, so what had happened? Well, there was nothing for him to worry about. It was a stray cat; it must have seen plenty of injuries up until now and had always recovered on its own.

—Go to the hospital.

The words suddenly popped into his mind, and Kase shook his head lightly to chase them away. He didn’t need any of his concern. Kase was scared at first when he had learned that there was something wrong with his sense of taste, but then he got used to it. Just because his tongue didn’t work properly didn’t mean that he would die from it, and maybe it could even heal on its own. Even if the process was slow. But someday, surely it would.

He was only trying to encourage himself, but somehow it felt exhausting. It was too tiring to stand, and Kase crouched down on the asphalt, pretending to watch the cat eat the sandwich.

—If you drive everyone away like this, you’ll just be miserable in the end.

Kase gave himself a wry smile. He couldn’t argue with his words. The cat finished eating the sandwich, and it looked at Kase like it was demanding more. Kase removed another one from the bag and tossed it over. A small interaction with a cat. It was so small that made him want to laugh. He wasn’t even interacting with a human.

“…Is it good?” he mumbled at the cat.

The cat lifted its head, and strangely enough, it peered back at him. The cat gave a quiet meow and started eating the sandwich again.

Un petit nid was closed one Sunday a month. Kase woke up at 3:30 out of habit, but he couldn’t go back to sleep even though he stayed in bed for a while.

The entire room was submerged in the deepest part of night, just before dawn. As Kase stared into the darkness, there was a moment when his sight was suddenly covered in a jet black. Even though he was right here, he was assailed by an illusion that made him feel as if he was only a consciousness that didn’t really exist in the world. Kase reached his hand towards the table and searched for the TV remote.

Somehow he bumped into it and pressed the power button. Light emitted from the rectangular box in an instant. An energetic host of a shopping program explained how a piece of exercise equipment worked. It was loud and noisy. But it was better than the silent darkness. As his five senses received the flood of light and sound, his eyes grasped sight of the shirt hanging on the wall.

He stared at the one thing of warmth that he owned.

Like tugging on a fine thread, he tried to remember that kind and gentle lover.

When they had snuggled close to sleep together. When they had woken up in the morning next to each other. Kase had traced over these memories, again and again, so much that they had lost all of its contours, but they seared into his chest like a low-temperature burn.

It stung, and it hurt, and he wished that sleep would hurry up and come.

After a time similar to a prayer, the other side of the curtain finally started to brighten. Even with the TV off, the faint light filled the room. There was the sound of the car horn in the distance. Good. There was nothing to fear anymore. Listening to the signs of the world stirring around him, Kase was finally able to sleep peacefully.

—–Translated by daydrop. Please read on the original site at

Please leave a comment if you enjoyed the story!❤

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7 thoughts on “House of Sweets – Part 6”

  1. Tiny steps. Everyone has to start somewhere. Might as well start with a stray cat. 🐈🐈🐈

  2. Kase must really resemble that other friend Agi mentioned last time, for this Mutou to look at him twice.

    Ah, that stray cat can make him company. They need each other.

    Thanks for the chapter!

    1. Yes, that’s the cat! Kasai-sensei has a lot of lovely art~ There was a time when I read like 3 series in a row illustrated by her.

  3. Kase is such a man. I don’t know why they’re like this, but pretty much all men I’ve met dread going to the hospital unless they’re literally on the brink of death. It’s a very strange phenomenon.

    As for the story, I wonder if Kase’s mornings with his lover were really like he remembers them? I feel like he might be looking back with a nostalgia filter. And once again, I feel sorry for the ex. They must’ve been a very kind person.

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