Chapter 11 - The Exam
I was pissed off enough, but Harris, no the little punk Harry, was adding fuel to the fire. Damn punk. Take this spanking first!
“Ouch! Stop hitting me, you stupid fatty!” shouted Harry.
Oh, so he wants some more spanking. His words reminded me of him setting up a trap in my room that made me fall to the ground. I also remembered I almost got hurt because of the various traps he set in the house to prank the family. Right, you’re a little punk who isn’t nice to your only sister. You’re a dead man!
I hung my arm around his neck and began twisting his head. Harry, who was always a weak boy, then began to cry, “Ugh, this is why Kyles dumped you! You witch!”
“Oh? Alright, then. I’ll show you what the real witch can do today!”
“No-no! Mother, that ugly witch is hitting me!”
Startled, I looked up at the door of my room. My mother was already inside the room. Harry then freed himself from me and ran towards mother with his arms open. I looked away. Although I pretended to be strong, I am still a good daughter who couldn’t resist her mother.
My mother, who looks almost 10 years younger than she is, is a fierce woman that surpasses me. She is also… very talented. Right before Harry met my mother’s embrace, she slapped his hands away with the fan she was holding and yelled, “Harris, you foolish boy! Move aside. Or do you want to get spanked with a scabbard?”
Harry’s face became pale as he was shocked by Mother’s angry warning, as she usually babied him most of the time. He cried, “M-Mother…!”
Mother glanced at Harry, then pushed him away and graciously walked over to me. “I heard what happened, Marina. What did I tell you, hmm? You got yourself mixed up with that loser of a boy and brought disgrace upon yourself. I didn’t educate you for that.”
I usually never fought back, but her words angered me, and I screamed, “You didn’t even stop me from seeing him!”
My outburst blaming her made my mother argue back, “I told you before that your life is only yours to live. Why should I have to check on every little thing?”
Closing my mouth, I couldn’t argue back. Pitying me, she then pointed her arrow of anger towards someone else. “Well, I guess it’s your father who is to blame, after all! As if it wasn’t enough to waste the half of the funds we received from the capital to develop that stupid mine!”
I looked behind my mother, and Father was there. My father had soft features that made him look young, but my mother’s nagging seemed to have caused him to have dark circles under his eyes. He seemed hurt by my mother’s accusation and argued, “No, that business is going well! We just need a little more digging-”
“Nonsense! That thing’s been fruitless for years! You promised a gold mine, but we’re wasting time on a mine that doesn’t even have any iron!” she shouted as she interrupted him.
“Oh, come on, dear. Just trust me on this.”
“Trust? Look what happened today! Wasn’t it you who said that pr*ck is your friend’s son and can be trusted? And that they should get engaged? Tell me. Why should I trust you? Give me a reason.”
Exhausted, my father then sighed at my mother’s accusations. Turning to me, he said, “I never imagined he would do that. That scoundrel! Oh, my dear baby. Look at her face! Her skin’s all dry and puffy!”
Wow, Father. To think you would talk about me in this situation. He chose me as the offering for my mother’s arrow of anger. Thanks to him, my mother redirected her fury towards me.
“Her skin was already dry. I told you to use a face pack or something, didn’t I? Why did you not care for yourself and get yourself shamed? Why aren’t you like me? Huh? Why is everyone looking at me like that? Did I say something wrong?”
Well, did you think I forgot my grandfather told me that you and I are very much alike? When he was alive, he always used to hold my hands as a young girl and begged me not to be like you. Oh, and other relatives on your side told me, “Phiria and Marina are very alike.”
I wanted to say that out loud, but I didn’t. It never ended well to go against my mother.
“Well, Marina does look like you. But I think her looks are better-” said my father until he was interrupted by my mother.
“She’s got a lot more to go to catch up to me, but she does look a bit like me, so that’s good. But look at her, not caring for herself and running around in such a poor state! Why are all my kids like this? An only son who only knows about pranks and is bad with swords. It’s so easy to use swords, but he still can’t! And my only daughter, although she’s good at studying, is clueless on how people see her…!” my mother began to mumble.
‘I’m sorry, I’m only good at studying. But Mother, I do know how people see me.’
Honestly, I do consider myself less than my mother. She is always praised as beautiful wherever she goes, while people stop and frown at the sight of me. That made my self-esteem go down. As such, I knew very well when people weren’t friendly with me. But her pointing that out hurt my feelings.
“Anyway, I hope you’re not doomed to marry someone because you meddled with the Schuteiner family. Well, we do have Rey in case we have to find a marriage candidate among our relatives…” said Father.
“Sorry, uncle. I have the right to refuse,” interrupted Rey to decline the idea.
Rey’s words made me smile. ‘I also don’t want you! A*sh*le. Besides, I wouldn’t even have kept you as my knight if you weren’t my cousin!’
To both of them, Mother said, “Gosh, you people should watch your words! She’s shocked enough from getting dumped today!”
‘Weren’t you the first to shock me with your harsh words, Mother? Your caring words seemed a bit late.’
“If things go wrong, she doesn’t need to get married. Harris is a fool and not good with his swords. If he becomes the successor, he’ll put an end to the already befallen family. Let’s have Marina take over the lead instead,” declared Mother.
Shocked, Harry responded, “I-I’m not a fool! Besides, there’s no woman with the title of count anywhere!”
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