o one wanted to admit it, and the case was eventually dropped.

“You know, Sachi was the only one who didn’t kick Aoi, right?”

Then I heard those words.

It was a strange thing to realize she actually enjoyed the bullying, but that girl didn’t reflect on it.
All she looked for was her next target.
They didn’t have a reason anymore, they just did it for the sake of it.
That’s how I felt at the time.

And the process started all over again, the same way it happened to Aoi.
They began ignoring me, then talking behind my back, then hiding things.
As soon as things escalated to that point, I feared they would gang up and beat me, but they had learned from Aoi.
If they did that, it would mean marks on my body, which in turn would mean their “toy” would break too quickly.

“Sachi, we want to buy something.
Bring us some money.”

“But I don’t have any…” I pleaded.

“Then why don’t you get it from your daddy and mommy?”

They laughed as they suggested I steal from my own parents.
I couldn’t trouble them, and if they found out everything that’s happened, they might even abandon me.
I didn’t do it.
I couldn’t.

I would then refuse each time they asked me if I brought the money.
Every time I did, I was either slapped or punched in the gut.
After a few days of this, the bullying changed in various ways, from “light” violence, to water being poured on me out of the blue.
They started with that as soon as they realized I wouldn’t be their piggy bank.

This was my punishment for not helping Aoi.
Those were my thoughts as I endured all of the bullying.
Still, I was getting exhausted day by day.

“Mom, I don’t want to go to school,” I confided to my mother when I couldn’t take it anymore.

“What are you talking about? I don’t want to work either, you know? I also have hard things to do.
Don’t be selfish.”

“No, mom.
I’m being bullied.”

I felt bad and embarrassed for telling my parents what I was going through, but I had made up my mind.

“Then make a proper effort.
Bullying is a sign you’re not trying hard enough.
If you run away from it, you’ll continue running for the rest of your life.”

What should I have done then? Should I have joined in with them and kicked Aoi?

This is bad.
Mom won’t listen to me, so maybe my father will.

“Hey dad, I—”

“I have a busy morning tomorrow, and I still have to finish my work.
You should just go to your room and study,” he gave me a few excuses and wouldn’t listen.

My parents, whom I had trusted all my life, brushed me off.
Meanwhile, the bullying continued.
Thinking back, my heart was already broken by then.

Ironically, it was their violence that saved me.

Previously, the group had suppressed their bullying to the point no marks were left on me, but things ended up escalating.
It was only after bruises started appearing on my body that my parents realized the seriousness of the situation and prepared to change my school.

And thus, I transferred away.

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