Chapter 16: Complicated
Chapter 16: Complicated
The next day, the time showed 02.00 PM when I stepped out of the classroom with the other students. After last night’s incident I thought Celia’s attitude would change, but when I met her again this morning she was still as cold as usual. Well, it can’t be said completely as usual since she made my sandwich today. I also covered yesterday’s hickey with a bandage so no one would find out. They all thought I was a pathetic single, if suddenly there was a hickey on that pathetic single’s shoulder, I would definitely be everyone’s topic of conversation.
Larry walked up beside me.
“You’re really pathetic,” he complained.
“Are those words of thanks from someone who just copied my assignment?”
“Hey, my assignment and my complaint are different things. You know after you ran away yesterday there was a man who made a scene with Emma. Just imagine if you are the one who approached her. Maybe you are that lucky person. Are you not jealous of him?”
“What do I need to jealous for?” I’m sure the man that Larry meant was Damian.
He clicked his tongue.
“You just need to say hello, that’s your first step.”
“I told-” My words and my feet stopped as I realized Emma and her friends were walking in the opposite direction to us. I turned and walked the other way to avoid her.
Larry immediately noticed it and chased after me.
“Ethan, what’s wrong with you? Why are you acting like a puberty teenager?”
“I told you our status is too different.” I was deliberately avoiding Emma, I remember the system gave me a quest after I looked at her. I don’t want to do weird quests like yesterday, especially doing that perverted things.
“You just need to say hello. Is it that hard ?!” he was getting annoyed with my attitude.
“Just forget it.” Rather than say hello, I want to control myself and the only way that comes to my mind right now is to avoid her. At least until I can understand how to control this system better.
He grabbed my shoulder and looked at me in seriousness. While I only reply with a flat gaze, without enthusiasm.
“Yesterday that man even hugged Emma in public! He dared to go that far while you ran away like a coward!” Larry’s tone was fiery like a motivator trying to reviving a dying person.
Hug her? I even squeezed her breast yesterday and I’m not interested in doing it again.
“If only he hadn’t been bothered by that crazy bodyguard they might have been dating now!” he continued.
“Ethan, can we talk for a minute?” A woman’s voice interrupts our unuseful scene.
We turned to the origin of the voice and saw Olivia approaching us. Yep … Looks like Larry’s voice has summoned what he called ‘that crazy bodyguard’. We paused for a moment while giving her an awkward smile, hoping she hadn’t noticed our conversation earlier. There is no man in our college who is not afraid of her. Her fierce and protective attitude towards Emma was not baseless at all. Olivia’s body is not big but she is one of the martial artists who often win medals for our college. If Emma looks like a goddess of saviour, Olivia looks like a goddess of death who is ready to take all men’s lives who try to approach Emma.
Seeing both of us just dumbfounded like fools, she asked again.
“Ethan, do you have time? Can we talk for a minute?”
Without hesitation, Larry pushed me toward her.
“Of course, he has time to talk to you. Ahahaha … Isn’t that right, Ethan?” he said while accompanied by his awkward laughter.
I turned my gaze to him and we talked to each other with our eyes like telepathy.
‘You made me a bait to run away? What kind of friend are you?’ – Ethan.
‘Come on, she just wants to talk to you.’ – Larry.
‘Don’t you see her eyes? Maybe I won’t come back alive after this. ‘ – Ethan.
I knew it was just my hyperbole, she wouldn’t have killed me but talking to her alone while facing Olivia-style judgment wasn’t a good thing either. I once saw a man turn pale and almost cry after she called to talk with him alone.
Larry glanced at Olivia and realized that her eyes were staring at me like a lion staring at a little rabbit. He shook his head slowly with a hopeless expression, just like a doctor who had given up on saving his patient’s life.
‘ Forgive me. I can’t possibly save you, my friend. ‘ – Larry.
‘If I die, no one can help you to do your assignment.’ – Ethan.
Realizing his assignment’s grade is on the line if he lost me, the look in his eyes changed.
‘Just relax my friend! I’ll save you!’ – Larry.
Larry took a deep breath and looked at her with a forced smile.
“Olivia, how about we talk-“
Before Larry finished his sentence, Olivia interrupted him.
“I just want to talk to Ethan.”
“Okay, then I’ll excuse myself. See you tomorrow, Ethan,” he answered quickly while giving me a ‘Goodbye my friend. I will always remember you’ gaze. While I could only watch him walk away.
“Follow me, we’ll talk in private,” she said as she turned and walked to ask me to follow her.
“Okay …” I sighed in resignation as my feet stepped reluctantly to follow her. I feel like a cow brought to a slaughterhouse. I don’t know what she will talk about but I can only hope she doesn’t realize that Damian is me.
Just as that thought crossed my mind suddenly an announcement appeared in front of me.
[You have received a daily quest!]
[Holding hands for 10 seconds.]
[Target: Olivia Creststream.]
[Reward: Title and EXP.]
[Punishment: Losing half your DP.]
[Time limit: 3:59:55]
As soon as I read it my heart immediately pounded.
‘Oh shit …’
We stood face to face in a quiet corner of the college yard.
“What do you want to talk about?” I said opening our conversation. My heart is still pounding while my brain starts thinking hard to find a way to hold her hand for 10 seconds. I’m also not sure my manipulation skills have an effect on her. On the other hand, I am also worried about what she will say to me.
“Do you have time this afternoon?”
Upon hearing her words, I felt calmer. At least this is not about yesterday’s incident.
“I’m free this afternoon. Why?”
“Can you accompany me to Ledred?”
“Ledred? Why do you want to go there?” I said, frowning in confusion.
“I want to find someone. But I can’t go there alone.” I noticed that her face had turned slightly red, even though her tone didn’t change.
“Who are you looking for?” I asked curiously. As far as I know Olivia is also from a rich family like Emma but why does she know someone at Ledred?
“I can’t tell you.”
“Aren’t you having so many servants? Why are you asking me?”
“Don’t ask too many questions. Do you agree or not?” Her eyes looked at me sharply.
I see this is my chance to complete my quest. “Well, I agree,” I said while extending my hand to her as a sign of our agreement. Shaking hands, including holding hands, right?
She looked at my hand a few moments and grabbed it.
A countdown appeared before my eyes.
[10 … 9 … 8 …]
I don’t know why I feel that this time countdown is slower than usual…
“You can let go of my hand now,” she said after a few seconds had passed. Of course, no one shake hands more than 2 to 3 seconds like us.
“Wait, this is the first time I’ve felt a martial artist’s hand. Your hand grip is very strong,” I reasoned, trying to hold it as long as possible. My attention was focused on the countdown before my eyes.
[5 … 4 … 3 …]
‘Please hurry up …’
“Let me go, now! ” she demanded.
Once the count in front of my eyes is 0, I immediately let go of my hand.
“Okay. I’m sorry.”
[Congratulations! You have completed your daily quest!]
[You are now Level 6.]
[You have 15 unused stat points.]
[You have 2 unused skill points.]
[You have earned a new title: Let’s be Friends. The friend of my crush is my friend. AGI + 1 VIT + 1 LUK +1.]
I let out a sigh of relief secretly, relieved to be able to complete my quest quickly. I glanced at her and realized her face had turned even redder but she immediately turned to cover it.
“I have one more class today. I hope you can wait for me in front of the gate at 04.00 PM.”
“Alright, I’ll definitely wait for you there.” Actually, I was confused about why her face turned red, but I can only guess, maybe she was ashamed to tell me that she was looking for someone in Ledred.
After she heard my answer she left, while I dropped myself on a bench nearby. I was really relieved, somehow I managed to complete my quest and avoid my death.
‘I wonder who she was looking for at Ledred?’
The time showed 05.14 PM when we had just entered Ledred district and Olivia immediately made a fuss there.
“Get lost you manwhore!” Olivia said, staring intently at the two men prostitutes who offered their business cards before her. They looked surprised at her reaction as well as me who stood beside her. I glanced behind them, in front of the brothel entrance, two bodyguards were watching us suspiciously.
Without thinking twice, I grabbed Olivia’s hand. Even though she will throw her rage at me after this, the important thing was I didn’t want to cause trouble here. We are still students, if they tell our college, we will get suspended.
“Sorry. We’re really sorry. Please, excuse us,” I said as I pulled her away in panic.
She tried to release her hand from me but to no avail. I let go of her after we left Ledred.
“We’re looking for person, not looking for trouble,” I complained.
But instead of responding to my complaint, she said something else.
“I don’t know you are that strong,” she said, holding her wrist that I had just pulled.
“I’m sorry,” I replied simply. I forgot that my current strength is different from a normal human’s.
She sighed in exasperation.
“There’s no need to apologize, I know I shouldn’t make a fuss. But I really don’t like them approaching me.”
“Ledred is a place for male prostitution. They will approach every woman who enters and offers their services.” To be honest, I didn’t expect them to be as brave as to offer their cards while I walked beside her.
She tapped her index finger under her lips and thought for a while.
“Then how about we walk hand in hand. If they still come to me, you are the one who takes their cards,” she suggested.
I was shocked by her suggestion.
‘Seriously ?! If I knew this, why would I shake her hand like a fool earlier? ‘ I grumbled internally.
“Come on!” she grabbed my hand and pulled me back to Ledred.
After more than half an hour we walked hand in hand without success I felt like we had to change our strategy.
“Do you have another clue?”
“No, this disctrict is the only information I know,” her eyes swept along the street we were on. “Ah!” She immediately pulled me into hiding behind a tree.
“Have you found it?” I whispered.
“Yes,” she said, peering from between the trunk with a serious expression.
“Who exactly are you looking for?” I just peeked out of curiosity.
But she turned and stopped me.
“Ethan, promise you will keep this a secret from the others.”
She stepped aside, my eyes caught a brown-haired woman who looked familiar because I just made love with her two days ago.
“I’m looking for my mother. A jerk prostitute seducing her and now she’s looking for him.” Olivia’s voice came behind me while I was still staring at the woman dumbfounded.