Chapter 44 – Shouldn’t Love (1)
Louise liked to plan everything. This meant that calculating every variable and coming up with a proper solution. Perhaps it was because she came from a society where competition was maximized. Everybody scrambled to reach their goal. At first glance it seemed normal, but very few actually got their hands on something satisfying.
A slightly better grade.
A slightly more famous school.
A slightly better job.
At the end of the bloody competition, Louise fell into another world. But here, too, Louise didn’t completely give up her old way of life. Not because of old habits or regrets about education.
She came here. She wanted to try it out. In Louise Sweeney’s perfect environment, how far could her efforts go? She wanted to show how much she could do. She wanted to prove herself.
But to whom?
Louise raised her head at the sound of the teacher assistant’s voice.
“Professor Hewitt is waiting. The allotted meeting time is 12 minutes.”
It was the day after her visit to the shopping district that Louise had a private meeting with Professor Hewitt.
“Yes. Now you 11 minutes and 47 seconds remaining.”
Louise rushed to the lecture hall and knocked on the door. She heard a short reply in return. When she opened the door, to her surprise she saw the professor was sitting on a couch. She thought he would be looking something over at his desk.
Louise quickly took the opposite seat at his suggestion.
A particularly loud clock urged Louise along. She spoke quickly.
“Well, thank you for your time, Professor. I came here because I wanted to properly apologize for sleeping during the last class. I’m sorry.”
Louise bowed her head deeply with her hands resting on her knees. As she stared down at her leather shoes, she tried to imagine her professor’s reaction.
Would he be angry? Or would he punish her with a grade that would surely make her more alert?
“According to the rules of the Academy, every student is obliged to do their best in class.”
“There is no rule that says you can’t sleep in class.”
That was true, but…
“And from a moral point of view, you were helping out the caretaker.”
“You know about that?”
“Though I didn’t think helping her would interfere with your class.”
“You simply didn’t have enough stamina.”
“I am ashamed though.”
“Even if you were asleep, being in class was the best you could do.”
“Then, I would have no reason to punish you.”
Louise lifted her head and opened her eyes wide.He was going to forgive her this easily? Professor Hewitt?!
“The consequences for not paying full attention in class is your own. At the test.”
Louise’s happiness deflated and she grumbled for a moment. In fact, she still hadn’t borrowed any notes from that day.
“I will study hard…”
She gave only the predictable answer.
“I look forward to it.”
The door of the lecture hall opened at the same time as the sound of the clock moving. The appointed time seemed to have ended. Louise quickly said goodbye and left the room, out of respect for Professor’s Hewitt’s limited time.
The problems that had fallen into her life seemed to have increased now. The first thing to do right now was…
“I need to borrow someone’s notes…”
“Did you say you needed some notes?”
The teacher’s assistant asked as he was arranging a bookshelf.
“Yes, I didn’t pay attention to the lecture.”
“I wish you luck. But it probably won’t happen.”
“What…what do you mean?”
“What I just said. No student will lend you their lecture notes.”
The teacher’s assistant crossed his arms.
“In a class that difficult, it’s better if even one competitor could fail.”
“Besides, Louise Sweeney is a top student. Students who look smart are targets.”
“I’m not that smart.”
“Yes. But even if you slept during class, the other students don’t think so.”
Really? Louise bowed to the teacher’s assistant, wondering if anyone would lend her any notes. Maybe he was right and she was wrong. She would have to try anyway.
Louise checked the time again. She had to go back to the student council room. She had asked Dean to oversee sales of ink and paper while she met the professor. He was probably grouchy while waiting for Louise to come.
The fact that Dean was grouchy was an understatement.
He was angry.
He tugged his collar as if it to loosen his uniform.
“Oh, am I late? Did you have a class, Dean?”
“No, but you’re one minute late from the time you promised!”
“It’s only a minute.”
“Hmph, just one minute? I don’t want to give every second of my life on Louise Sweeney!”
“…But you’ve already given some away.”
“Yes! And a few more seconds. In the middle of this conversation with you!”
“And now two minutes has passed.”
Dean picked up his bag without a word. Seems like he didn’t want to waste any more time. Louise smiled in amusement because Dean was complaining for nothing. Though he always grumbled, in the end he always listened to Louise.
Well, it was more like Claire’s request.
“Louise says she’s in trouble. Why don’t you help her?”
Dean couldn’t turn down Louise’s request because of Claire, and so he agreed.
“Thank you, Dean.”
“If you’re thankful, don’t ask me for anything in front of Claire from now on.”
Was that possible? Louise sat down as she tried to explain it to him.
“I don’t know if it’s possible. Claire and I have similar hours and we talk to each other often…”
Dean did not answer immediately. Instead, he looked at Louise with a scowl, then leaned deeply against the table and looked at her face-to-face.
“…You’re so annoying.”
“Should I classify Dean as an ‘annoying person’ too?”
“Would you please?”
They stared at each other fiercely. The door to the student council room opened. Maybe it was Claire; she and Louise ran into each other incredibly often. Louise turned her head with a cheerful expression.
Her expression stiffened. The person standing at the entrance of the room was Ian. Student council president of the Academy, Crown Prince of this country. The same man who kissed Louise on the corner of her eyes yesterday. Louise was captivated by yesterday’s memory, which she had tried to seal away.
The friendly answer was soon etched her body in a different form. At that moment, Louise’s head became blank. The only thing she could feel was heat. Like she once experienced in a greenhouse.
The moment his lips fell away they looked at each other. He smiled widely. It was lethal smile. If he looked like that, anyone’s heart would ache in pain.
“He’s here? Well, I’m going now.”
Dean patted Louise on the head then stood up slowly. She grabbed on to Dean’s arm with both hands without realizing it.
“Can’t you stay with me…a little longer?”
Dean looked back at Louise with an annoyed expression, while she tried to make the most pitiful face in the world.
“Don’t want to.”
Of course he refused.
Louise stammered, and Dean sighed deeply. He remembered what Claire said.
“You have to help Louise. I’m worried because she always seems to be getting into trouble.”
Louise and her stupid face must have gotten caught up in something again. She was such a nuisance.
“I’m tired. I’m going to sleep.”
Dean sat across from Louise and collapsed onto the table immediately.
Louise carefully turned her head to the hallway where Ian stood. Their eyes met for a moment and Louise quickly straightened herself.