The waiter also came along with Kouen's order, several pieces of barbecued meat were placed in an orderly fashion in his plate, Kouen looked a bit confused at first and when he looked up at the waiter, he quickly said "I know you wanted it packed up to go, but when I saw you were talking with the girl, I assumed you wanted to eat here." and with that, the waiter walked off. He didn't seem to mind it, he's just glad that he had his food now after all the waiting. He picked up the appropriate silverware that was placed with the plate and grabbed small pieces of the meat with it, genuinely enjoying it as he listened to Shimiko... but he immediately froze at that last part! He quickly swallowed and already tried to respond to her. "Girlfriend? afraid I haven't been that lucky, hah..." well, that incited a bit more of a reaction in him to the point his face almost went red, but he calmed it down soon after and his normal expression came right back. "But in terms of comrades I've met a couple of people here and there, but not as apart of any squad if you were wondering. A few of them also helped me train so I guess they might've been temporary sensei in a sense? as it stands, I don't really have a squad and the ones I've trained with aren't really people that I would call close friends, you know? probably my fault for being so lax as a shinobi."
He started to slowly eat his meal a bit more slowly, that question of a girlfriend can't seem to slip his mind. He soon stopped eating once more just to talk again, trying to get that thought of his mind. "I'm sorry if I'm not that talkative or giving much to the conversation, I'm not that good at small talk... I think you might've picked up on that back in the academy, but I am really glad I got to meet with you again, I'm glad you you're still the same sweet Shimiko that I remember... makes me think how everyone else in our year back from the academy are doing." he was on somewhat indifferent terms with the rest of the class but he was quite an observant person at a young age, even though he never spoke with them, he practically knew them from the actions that he watched them do. They could be completely different now considering it's been years, but he wouldn't know for sure until he met them again. It seems to him though that Shimiko hasn't changed that much from the academy, still carrying that sweet attitude of hers even to this day. It's refreshingly honest to Kouen.