༺ The First Letter (36) ༻
Silence lingered for a while between Celine and Seria.
Two hands were holding me from either side. I was stuck in between two women who were fighting a war of nerves. It wasn’t a mistake, nor was it an exaggeration. It was indeed the reality.
Celine and Seria are lovely girls who attract admiration from everywhere. It’s flattering to know that those two cared for me so much, but I felt heartbroken when I saw the icy glint in their eyes as their gazes clashed against each other.
Celine, who I grew up with since childhood, as well as Seria, who was just learning about human relationships, are friends whom I cherished quite a lot. And I must be a close friend to the two of them as well, so I can understand why they didn’t want to lose me.
Even if it isn’t a romantic relationship, the desire for monopoly still exists. Those feelings will fade with age, but for now, Celine and Seria still harbored those emotions.
To be honest, it’s quite the conundrum.
That was the first thought that crossed my mind amidst the tension, which was akin to a thin thread on the verge of snapping. It wasn’t easy for me to take either of their sides.
In a way, it was Celine who had unilaterally gotten in between me and Seria, but still, it was implicit action on her part, since we always have breakfast together. However, it was impossible for me to suggest that all three of us should dine together in such a chilling atmosphere.
In fact, I don’t even think I would be able to digest properly while walking on thin ice. No matter how much of a fool I am, I’m not that dense of a person.
While I was drenched in sweat, it was Celine who broke the silence.
Celine’s smile is usually gentle and friendly. Her smile could properly show her amiable personality. But the smile she has now seemed different.
Her eyes weren’t smiling, only an arc was drawn across her lips.
At first glance, one could see a cold light still lingered in her brown eyes. Then Celine uttered the following first words to Seria, whom she had been ignoring so far.
“Huh, Lady Yurdina? Do you have anything to do with ‘my’ Ian Oppa?”
And then Celine snuggled close to me, and began hugging my arm. I looked at Celine in astonishment, but she was just staring at Seria with a cold expression on her face.
Rather, she snorted cheekily, as if she wanted to show off. The soft feeling of a woman’s body enveloped my arm. Before I knew it, the realization Celine was no longer a kid dawned upon me.
As usual, the moment I was about to push away Celine, Seria’s hand gripped the hem of my robe.
Her sapphire eyes sank deeply. It was a dramatic change akin to a clear azure sky suddenly being covered by a storm of clouds. Her blue eyes, which had always been clear and seemed to twinkle, gradually took the form of an ocean floor submerged in silent darkness in the very depths of the sea.
She spoke to Celine in a cold, resolute voice.
However, Celine’s response to Seria was simply brazen. She then snorted and shrugged.
“Me and Ian Oppa have always been like this. How many days have you been sticking with Ian Oppa? Haha… When I think about it, I can’t help but laugh.”
Celine, who had suddenly burst into hysterical laughter, slowly erased the smile etched on her face.
Her gleaming eyes coldly lost its glitter, and the lips that drew soft arcs twisted with hostility. She then muttered out loud.
“Who are you to get in between me and Ian Oppa? Ah, you must have thought that you have got closer to Ian Oppa now.”
I called Celine’s name in a stern tone, but she didn’t even pay attention to my words since she was seething with rage.
She instead firmed her grip and pulled me, making me stagger towards her. Seria was still holding the hem of my robe, so she also got pulled towards her, narrowing the distance between them.
That was, however, only in regard to physical distance. The distance between their hearts couldn’t have been more far apart.
Celine murmured in an icy voice.
“You don’t have any friends and you look pitiful. That’s why Ian Oppa hung out with you. Did you not realize?”
“I told you to stop, Celine.”
“Seeing how you got so excited and started clinging to Ian Oppa without knowing your place, pfft…….”
As if unbearable, Celine covered her mouth like that and burst out laughing. She didn’t even care about my incessant admonishments.
There was no change in Seria’s expression. As always, she had a cold face. Her eyes sank even deeper, making me unable to read even a fragment of her emotions.
I looked worriedly at Seria. Celine’s insults have gone too far. I decided that even if I do get resented by either of the two, I still need to calm things down.
But Celine was faster than my newfound resolution.
Celine spoke in a threatening voice, brushing off my arm and approached Seria. Seria hadn’t let go of the hem of my clothes yet.
She approached Seria with blood seeking eyes and folded her arms. Seria was taller, so she had to look up to her, but Celine didn’t get discouraged at all.
Celine smirked and raised up the corners of her lips mockingly and said to Seria, as if she was letting out all her bottled up emotions.
“Do you think you are that big of a deal just because you’re a Yurdina? Please act more conscientiously… alright? You have no say in anything that happens between me and Ian Oppa. know your place bitch……!”
Eventually, a scream erupted from my throat. Celine got startled as if she had just realized that she got carried away, but still didn’t show any signs of remorse.
Rather, she snorted and avoided my gaze. A dejected face.
I heaved a sigh. It was inevitable that a voice mixed with sighs came out of my mouth.
“I told you to stop, didn’t I!? And Seria, don’t care too much about what Celine said. I didn’t hang out with you because you looked pitiful or anything—-”
“It was you.”
I was trying to soothe Seria, presuming that she was hurt, but I was startled when unmistakable words came out of Seria’s mouth.
My wide-open eyes were proof of my astonishment. Seria was talking to a stranger without biting her tongue?
After all Seria had been like that since the beginning. Moreover, didn’t she have the nickname ‘Yurdina’s Loner’? A cold, vainglorious, and strong image.
And for her to respond to Celine meant that Seria would also make ‘vulgar’ remarks.
“I wasn’t sure at first, but as I listened to your voice, I realized it. When I heard that sharp voice… you’re the one who was hiding in the crowd while swearing at me.”
“…… There are many people who swore at you.”
Celine, who was at first shaken by Seria’s rebuttal, responded with an annoyed frown.
Hostility blazed in her hazelnut eyes. The reason why she had been ignoring her all this time might have been because she knew that she and Seria would fight like this if they ever met in the first place.
That’s the extent to which Celine despised Seria. However, I couldn’t figure out the reason.
“How can you be sure that it was my voice in the midst of the crowd?”
“Are you afraid of Yurdina?”
Stiffen, Celine’s words stopped.
She cut her off neatly, reminiscent of a blade trimming a piece of silk. Celine flinched and hesitated for a moment, then asked again with a frown.
“I asked if you were scared of ‘Yurdina.’ That’s why you were talking behind my back.”
Seria once again pulled the hem of my clothes and took another step. My body now leaned slightly towards Seria. The distance between Seria and Celine had now gotten even closer.
At the sight of a woman one head taller than her striding towards her, Celine almost inadvertently backed away. However, her pride stopped her from taking a step back.
Celine clenched her teeth and glared at Seria. Seria’s icy gaze looking down at Celine remained the same. Eyes resembling the coldest of frost.
“Then why don’t you just keep gossiping from behind until the end? Don’t show your ugly inferiority complex in front of Senior Ian.”
Celine took a deep breath, seemingly surprised by the harsh words which went beyond her imagination. Her eyes widened, and soon a bloody aura began to arise.
‘Gnash-gnash,’ I heard Celine gnashing her teeth.
It is true that there was a gap between high and low aristocrats in the academy, but there has never been a case where it had been so explicitly mentioned. First of all, it was because the Academy was aiming for an equal environment, free from social classes, that was at least the case on the surface.
Remarks of this level were enough to lead to a disciplinary punishment. Celine then exclaimed in a furious tone.
“And did you say that Senior Ian only hung out with me because I seemed pitiful?”
Rage flickered across Celine’s face, but Seria’s eyes were still cold. It was like seeing fire and ice. It was impossible for the two to mix together at all.
Even if they do mix, in the end, doing so will only lead both of them to ruin.
I was taken aback by the two women’s uncouth language. It was an absurd situation.
Seria took another step, then leaned forward and brought her lips close to Celine’s ear. She then voiced out her cold whispers.
“…… So, I will keep being miserable in the future so that senior Ian will stay by my side forever.”
Eventually, Celine exploded. Her hand went towards the sword hanging on her waist. It was a natural response dictated by a swordsman’s instinct.
“You little bastard mustn’t have been properly educated at home, that’s why you are acting like this……!”
When the situation escalated out of hand like a flash of light. It was then that I decided to step forward.
Up until now, they were just bickering, but when the situation escalated into violence, it became a different story altogether. This is especially true in a situation where they’re this agitated and their emotions are out of control.
Someone might get hurt. If they were to fight with their swords like Thean and I did, even if they didn’t use the sharp side, the consequences would be catastrophic.
I immediately let out a roar.
“You both better stop now!”
So far, I never told Seria to stop, but I needed to be stern to stop the two of them now. I don’t know if it’s because of that, but Seria and Celine’s bodies both stiffened abruptly, and they looked at me in shock.
Seria’s reaction was particularly dramatic. Violent tremors of dread flickered across her eyes as she registered my wrath in her sight.
Darn it, I might have gone too far.
A deep fear dwelled in her sapphire eyes. Nevertheless, my ire didn’t cool down, and I had no choice but to heave a sigh and say.
“…… Both of you calm down and go home. I also need some rest, so don’t look for me for a while.”
This situation is so annoying that even my head is throbbing. I’ve gone through too much lately, and now Celine and Seria even had an argument. ‘I’m tired,’ that’s the first thought that flashed through my mind.
I wanted to rest somewhere. I want to cool my head down for a few hours. I just simply wanted that, that’s all.
But upon hearing those words, Seria’s expression turned grim, as if her world had crumbled.
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