About 15 days have passed since I became Ariel Dalton in the first semester of 5th grade again. That means that it had been 15 days since Rosemary Blossom transferred. In the first semester of the 5th grade, Blossom always became the secretary of the student council around this time and received envy and jealousy from many students.
Today’s Fitzsimmons Times, however, did not release any articles related to Blossom.
Wondering if the newspaper club perhaps had less interest in the student council than I remembered, I read all the pages carefully. I learned that Illestia had a royal habit in his freshman year that he changed: waiting for someone’s signal before sitting at his every meal. I also learned that Bolton had a jinx of wearing a certain color of undergarments on important days, and when he had a sparring with Spencer, it was found out that his underwear’s color was dark red.
Spencer had recently quarreled with a baby dragon over a piece of candy in the dragon kennel, Bryce Nardon had finally been slapped in the jaw by Delaney Wood, and Edgar Ramos had a tryst with a fortune-telling instructor on Finnigan Street.
The newspaper club was invariably over-interested in the student council. Well, it was a well-known fact that if even one of their names was listed, the number of copies sold would change.
However, there was still no article about Blossom becoming the secretary of the student council.
I heard that Bryce Nadon is trying not to decrease even a second of his time with Blossom. Marquis Bolton, the luckless man in glasses, was also said to be getting lucky only to Blossom. Ramos wouldn’t necessarily object to his brother’s decision, and Spencer’s opinion was close to nonexistent. Then, there was only one mountain that Blossom had to overcome to become a member of the student council. Keran Illestia.
These days, Illestia was at the end of every question. Looking back on the 10 years of my academy life, I had never thought of Illestia so much. I felt strange.
Anyway, this first semester of 5th grade was really different from the previous one in many ways. Dumbfounded, I folded the newspaper and put it beside Bree’s bed, when she asked if she could read it.
Brianna and her mother were given unlimited financial support instead of living as if they didn’t exist, so rather than seeing the newspaper as waste of money she was just too lazy to go out and buy one. Brianna Mosley, one of the most malignant curlies I know, casts a spell every morning to straighten every curly hair on her head but won’t even open the window.
“Shouldn’t you disinfect it first?”
I asked playfully. Brianna opened her eyes thinly, but said nothing more. Is this also a progress of its own? I was overwhelmed for no reason.
Professor Stanford’s herbalism class was canceled today. It was because someone was bold enough to broke into the greenhouse she treasured so much. She had been carrying a pixie she had caught in the greenhouse in a small glass jar since yesterday, and she said she wouldn’t stop searching until she checked every student’s face and found the culprit. I desperately hoped that me in my pajamas and the me in my school uniform looked like completely different people.
It wasn’t until I arrived at the classroom that I found out that the Herbalism class was canceled. Because no one told me. The harmful effects of lack of sociability.
Apparently in a position no different from mine, Kelly Ramirez was probing in front of the door while I’m loosing my mind at the class cancellation notice written on the blackboard. She took one look at me whose standing alone in the middle of the classroom, took one look at the blackboard, and gave me a thumbs up.
“Ariel, you don’t have friends too?”
“We should try harder.”
When I said it weakly, Kelly laughed loudly and said that she should sublimate the pain in her heart into music, fixing the banjo on her shoulder she finally left.
I trudged to a random seat in the empty classroom. I didn’t want to go back to the dormitory because the next class was close. Also, I didn’t have any club activities, nor did I belong to any private organization on campus, so it was hard to find a place to pass the time like Kelly.
I didn’t want to go to the library at all, at the thought that I might meet Walsh like that other time. I stretched out and put my cheek on my arm that stretched over the desk. I want to sleep.
“Dalton, are you sleeping because you are confident in designing magic circuits?”
“Oh, Professor, I’m sorry!”
The moment I was about to go to sleep, Professor Houston’s scolding pierced my ears out of nowhere.
I got up like I was bouncing. Hearing the ensuing laughter, I looked around and before I knew it, Kyle was sitting in the seat next to me.
“Because of you, I can’t stop imitating Professor Houston’s voice.”
Kyle said with tears in his eyes. My reaction must have been so funny that it made him cry.
“I met Ramirez in the hallway earlier, and I came because she said you were alone here.”
“Thank you so much, Kelly Ramirez.”
At my sarcastic remark, Kyle laughed out loud again. It was exactly the same as it had been a week ago and the last nineteen years and forty-six months.
As if he had never went to Professor Stafford’s greenhouse in a griffon, Kyle was acting completely normal. When I took out the fart-making magic tool from under the cushion of the chair in the magic science classroom, I thought for a moment that maybe the memory of last night was a dream. However, I knew it wasn’t because Professor Stafford was running around screaming.
Anyway, that was something I was very grateful for. My narrow mind was filled with the tragedy that had befallen me, and the conflict I had with Kyle, which had never happened in the last nineteen years and forty-six months, was too great to add to it.
Whether or not she knows that we fought because of her, Blossom constantly called Kyle from time to time. There were times when I was there and there were times when I wasn’t there, but somehow it didn’t bother me like before.
Kyle’s voice, begging me to believe in him, sounded very desperate. Also, looking at the face I have gone through thick and thin with, I didn’t want to be awkward with my childhood friend anymore in the future.
HIs sudden nosebleed when he tried to say something lingered in my mind. Perhaps he suffers from the same ban as me. Thinking so, I felt ashamed. As he said, we are friends, very close friends, so I felt like an idiot when I got swayed by the stories about him coming from other people.
So I threw the fart-making magic tool at Kyle and let him know that there was no problem between us anymore by making his left cheek create the best fart. Thanks to this, Ariel Dalton, who Professor Houston already hates so much (because my eyes close just hearing his name), earned more hatred from him, but so what.
“Ariel, are you going to sleep?”
“I’m going to sleep, don’t touch me… . I slept past four yesterday too.”
I still wasn’t able to help the wyvern find its way to the nest. And today, I had to look at the sky at dawn and think about what did I do wrong.
“Okay then. Sleep well.”
“Aren’t you going? What are you going to do here?”
“Well. Should I at least draw your sleeping face and send it to Dalton’s estate?”
“My parents would be happier if you send them a drawing of your face.”
Whatever he liked, they would immediately put it in an expensive frame and hang it on the wall in the most visible position in the central hall.
“Anyway, don’t draw. Your drawing skills aren’t bad, but you have a habit of making my facial features a little angry.”
“Why are you blaming me for looking like that?”
“Let’s stop talking.”
I sighed and brushed off Kyle’s finger on my shoulder. My face, of course, was facing away from him.
I faintly came to my senses. A muffled sound echoed in my ears as if I were listening while submerged in water. It sounded like a conversation between a woman and a man.
The woman seemed very angry. I wasn’t sure, but I vaguely thought she sounded like Blossom.
“Something is wrong. No matter what, the □□□ of □□ cannot be filled!”
“So I told you to use □□ sparingly.”
I knew exactly the voice of the man. It was Kyle. It was the same low-pitched voice he used when the ‘Man of Love’ switch is turned on and when he poured grape juice into a goblet and recite a toast at a table watched by Baroness Dalton and the Count of Villard.
Some of the words they used were unnaturally muffled and difficult to hear, but the slightest concentration made them more sound distant. It was as if they were deliberately preventing me from focusing on them.
“□□□ is □□□ in the hallway on the second floor of the annex late tomorrow evening. □□ □□ □□□, so don’t miss it.”
“Thank you, Kyle. It looks like you really want to help me this time.”
“Of course. I am the □□ □□□ of this □□. It exists for you.”
It was hard to understand half of what Kyle was saying. I listened unconsciously and then tried to think of other things because I was suddenly drowsy. Spencer’s candy, Bolton’s red underwear, Nadon’s swollen jaw, but to no avail.
By the time I realized it, it was already too late, and my shallow consciousness, which had been thinly connected, was eventually caught in the throes and dragged into deep darkness.
When I opened my eyes again, Kyle was still by my side. Existing for Rosemary Blossom, but by Ariel Dalton’s side.
“… … .”
“Why do you look like that? Am I too handsome?”
“Yeah, you are handsome. Not too much, just enough.”
When I said that out of courtesy, Kyle pretended to touch his sideburns and covered his reddened ears with his hands.