Chapter 122 – Good Villainess Instincts (1)
The corner of the thick book dropped on Stella’s hand. She looked up at the girl with a frown. The girl made an apologetic expression, but the insincerity of it was not lost to Louise. The original story passed through her mind.
Oh, I’m sorry, Stella. The book was so heavy that I missed. Ah, your skin is torn! Let’s hurry up to the infirmary. I’ll take you there!
The original Louise had fussed over the Stella in the novel, and this scene didn’t play out any differently. The girl who repeated Louise’s cruel words and behavior began to fuss over Stella as well.
“Are you okay? Ah, your skin is torn! Let’s hurry up to the infirmary. I’ll take you there!”
It was as if the two were taken captive by the original story.
Louise took an involuntary step backwards in alarm. She was terrified, as if the whirlwind would snatch her. Another step back. She did not want to bully Stella, and there was no reason for her to do so.
Louise fled out of the library steps, her heart pounding.
“Please prove yourself this semester, Stella Lapis. ”
The professor used the word “prove.” Stella used to like that word, as it meant that the professor had great expectations for her.
“What happened to your hand?”
Stella quickly hid her hand behind her back.
“I-it was an accident…”
Stella’s shoulders flinched at Professor Lassen’s disapproving tut.
She automatically apologized, despite the fact that she did nothing wrong.
The rest of the Lapis family was now under investigation for massive fraud. Many other families involved had been exposed as collateral damage, and some of the other students’ parents now found themselves under pressure as well.
Stella was not to blame, but no one else thought that.
“Get your act together.”
The professor raised Stella’s chin and fixed her with a cold gaze.
“What did you say to me a while ago?”
Stella froze solid. She could see her face reflected in the professor’s thick glasses. When did she start to look so meek?
It wasn’t until the professor barked at her did Stella open her lips to speak.
“Help…the Lapis family.”
Her plea was mixed with desperation, as her family situation was worse than ever. It took power to reclaim the name taken away by the Imperial Family. The nobles turned against them, and the only person Stella had left was Professor Lassen.
“I have always given you the way. It was very simple. Yet you didn’t make it.”
A scholarship from the Lassen family was said to be an easy ride. Except for Stella.
Not only that, but Profession Lassen also expected her to leave a good impression on the royal family.
“I don’t like stupid people.”
Stella murmured another apology.
“But I believe in your ability.”
“So Stella Lapis, I will always tell you this.”
Stella nodded, understanding the professor’s unspoken words. But in her mind, the word “prove” crushed down on her like a tower. It was strange. It was only a word, vibrations made by the respiratory and speech organs. There is no weight or physical impact. Yet from time to time, Stella found herself submitting control of her body to that word. No, not only her body, but her thoughts as well. And yet, she had never been able to prove herself, as if her efforts were nonexistent.
Stella left the lecture room, and leaned against the nearest wall. A thin sigh leaked out of her mouth, and the tower trembled. What if it collapsed? The thought gripped her for a moment, but finally she shook her head. She didn’t want to dwell on it.
‘Why did this happen?’
Her life was perfect before she came to the Academy. Everyone liked her, and she accomplished anything she set her mind to. People around her said it was Stella’s natural luck and charm.
She looked up and saw the noisy group of the student council members in the distance. They were the most influential group in the Academy, and countless students admired them.
Louise Sweeney always stood out in that group. Everyone knew that she was a special friend not only the Crown Prince, but the king’s nephew Simon Hillard as well. She didn’t have the proper status, but no one dared to ignore or bully her. She had excellent grades and secured her place with her golden connections, the two things that Professor Lassen asked Stella to do. Perhaps if it were the old Stella, then those two things would have been hers.
Stella adjusted her notebook. She moved along and brushed against a group of students.
A boy bumped into her, hard, and Stella fell to the floor. The boy had bent his shoulder to do it. She was hurt, but what was worse was the eyes of the students boring into her…
“Oh, sorry. I didn’t know you were there, Lapis.”
The male student spoke in a casual tone. Stella tried to remember what family he came from, but could not recall. However, the investigation must have cost his family money. The hostility in his eyes was clear.
Stella stood up without saying a word. As she turned to the window, her eyes spotted Louise Sweeney staring at her with a surprised look on her face.
‘ …She saw it.’
Louise probably thought she deserved it. She should, as Stella was awful to her, and although Stella was under pressure by the professor, her conscience hadn’t completely disappeared. Still, no matter how cruel Stella was, Louise Sweeney would sit high in the air and never suffer, untouched. The realization made Stella hate Louise again. It was inevitable.
Their eyes continued to lock onto to each other. Just as Stella noticed Ian reaching out to Louise from behind, Stella scrambled up and quickly hid herself behind a pillar. After counting the seconds in her mind, she glanced back at them.
Ian must have made fun of Louise, and she was now punching his arm with her fist. Their lips were curved in a pleasant shaped as they exchanged playful words.
In the distance, Stella heard the sound of the caretaker calling to the student council. Perhaps she had to ask them something. The group moved on to the same area, and soon Ian’s arms naturally wrapped around Louise’s shoulders to guide her away. They smiled at each other face-to-face. At first glance, they looked like a couple, but when Stella looked around, no one else seemed to think so.
Louise turned her head around again to look at where Stella had been standing, a complicated expression on her face.