Chapter 31:

Ken's True Self

Master Of Rejections But Beginner At Love

"So why exactly did you call me?"Bookmark here

"Just sit down already."Bookmark here

"Huh? Just sa-"Bookmark here

"Sit. Now."Bookmark here

It was the first day of the summer holidays.Bookmark here

Currently, Kazuma sat on a bench in a park with Ken standing in front of him as the sun was gleaming on them.Bookmark here

"Tch." Ken clicked his tongue before sitting down.Bookmark here

"You sure are a brat." Kazuma commented without looking him at him.Bookmark here

Kazuma took a sip from his soda can.Bookmark here

"What do you think of Emma?" Kazuma asked as his eyes got sharper.Bookmark here

"Emma? What I think of her? She's annoying." he answered with a pretentious grin.Bookmark here

Kazuma sighed.Bookmark here

"What?" Ken asked annoyed.Bookmark here

"I'm still your master, you know? As my servant you should never lie to me." Kazuma replied while he threw his phone in the air and caught it with his hand.Bookmark here

"So you're still blackmailing me, huh? I will make sure that you will regret it!" Ken looked at him threateningly.Bookmark here

Kazuma smirked.Bookmark here

"And sent." Kazuma said indifferently as he sent something on his phone."Bookmark here

"H-h-huh? D-did you just sent the recording?!" Ken stood up and was in panic as he grabbed his head with his hands.Bookmark here

"Heh." Kazuma's playful grin got broader.Bookmark here

Thud.Bookmark here

"P-please tell me t-that it is just a prank..." Ken fell on his knees as he looked with hollow eyes at the ground.Bookmark here

"Hm?"Bookmark here

"Sniff... sniff... That's the end... sniff..."Bookmark here

"H-hey, don't tell me that you're crying..." Kazuma was taken aback.Bookmark here

Ken grabbed Kazuma's collar.Bookmark here

"M-my father will kill me! And then, I... I would lose her, too... sniff..."Bookmark here

"Her?" a question mark popped in Kazuma's head while he tried to get Ken off him.Bookmark here

"Y-yes! Sniff... Emma!" Ken admitted as he still cried like a little kid.Bookmark here

Kazuma's playful grin turned into a toothy smile.Bookmark here

"It was a prank." Kazuma said.Bookmark here

"Sniff... huh?" Ken could not comprehend it.Bookmark here

He finally let go of Kazuma and took a step back.Bookmark here

"A p-prank?"Bookmark here

"Yes."Bookmark here

Then, Ken formed a fist, aiming at Kazuma.Bookmark here

"Y-you bast-"Bookmark here

Pow.Bookmark here

"Be quiet."Bookmark here

Before his punch connected, Kazuma reacted fast and punched him.Bookmark here

"Now sit down."Bookmark here

Having no other choice, Ken had to obey.Bookmark here

"You're wondering why I pranked you, right? Well, I just wanted to see the real you."Bookmark here

"R-real me?" Ken was confused as he rubbed the place where he was hit.Bookmark here

"Most people tend to show their real selves if faced with catastrophes. In this case, you showed the real you after I pretended to send the recording which could destroy your life."Bookmark here

"..." Ken was speechless.Bookmark here

"B-but why did you want to see my real me?" Ken asked nervously.Bookmark here

"I'm the one who asks the question, servant." Kazuma stressed the word 'servant' mockingly.Bookmark here

Ken looked at him like a barking dog. But it did not bother Kazuma, who took another sip from his drink without a care in the world.Bookmark here

"Tell me everything about yourself."Bookmark here

"What?" Ken reacted to the question as if it was the most stupid thing he ever heard.Bookmark here

Kazuma, however, did not repeat the question and just gazed at him threateningly.Bookmark here

Ken gulped his saliva down.Bookmark here

"Alright, fine..." Ken gave in.Bookmark here

Ken took a deep breath before he began.Bookmark here

"It will be a long story." Ken warned.Bookmark here

"Just tell me firstly, why you distanced yourself from her in your second year in middle school."Bookmark here

"O-okay."Bookmark here

He took another deep breath.Bookmark here

"Are you pregnant or what?" Kazuma remarked as he slowly became annoyed.Bookmark here

"Fine, fine, I will talk! I did it to make her hate me." he stated.Bookmark here

Ken clenched his fists which he pressed against his legs.Bookmark here

"We two came from powerful families. My and her father are great friends and after they saw that Emma and I were close to each other back then, they decided to engage us."Bookmark here

"How stupid." Kazuma commented shamelessly.Bookmark here

"I know but... at that time I was really happy. When I was young, I was in love with her. At first, I didn't really think that much about it. But when we were in middle school I thought that it may be unfair to Emma. The engagement was basically forced on us. I want her to choose her partner on her own. She should be happy."Bookmark here

Kazuma just continued to stare ahead while Ken was talking.Bookmark here

"I didn't know how Emma felt and I was too scared to ask... Therefore, I decided to make her hate me so that she didn't feel chained anymore by the engagement."Bookmark here

"What do you mean? Couldn't you two just complain to your parents?" Kazuma asked.Bookmark here

"She could do it but not me... Her father really dotes on her and would listen to any of her wishes whereas my father raised me strictly. I gradually began to fear him up to the point where I couldn't speak against him."Bookmark here

"So you thought that behaving like a delinquent would maker her hate you? And what if your father discovers your activity?"Bookmark here

"My father only cares for my grades. As long as I achieve good results at school, he won't care. And Emma, well... You know it, too, right?" She is too kind and pure for this world. As if she would like a delinquent."Bookmark here

"I see." Kazuma said.Bookmark here

"And why did you want to get rid of me so badly that you would even go as far as to kidnap Yui?" he aimed his fierce gaze at Ken.Bookmark here

"..." Ken averted his gaze.Bookmark here

"Explain."Bookmark here

"I... I didn't want you to get too close to Emma..." Ken murmured nervously.Bookmark here

"Are you kidding me?" Kazuma asked with an emotionless expression.Bookmark here

"N-no..."Bookmark here

"..."Bookmark here

Crunch.Bookmark here

The sound of crushing a can was heard before the silence returned.Bookmark here

"So basically you love her but you want her to hate you so that Emma would break up the engagement to choose her own man and to become happy, right? But you still get jealous if someone else gets close to her, right?"Bookmark here

Ken nodded his head slowly.Bookmark here

"Stand up." Kazuma ordered as he also stood up from the bench.Bookmark here

Obeying his command, he slowly got up.Bookmark here

Pow.Bookmark here

As soon as he stood, he was punched in the face by Kazuma.Bookmark here

"W-what was that for?!"Bookmark here

"Because you're stupid."Bookmark here

While Ken rubbed the place he was hit, Kazuma grabbed him by his collar.Bookmark here

"You're irritating me!" Kazuma raised his voice.Bookmark here

"You're just thinking this and that. But if you truly know Emma, then you should know better than anyone that she could never hate somebody!"Bookmark here

"It pains me to say this... But she has only eyes for you..."Bookmark here

The whole time, Ken averted his gaze from him as he gritted his teeth. Deep down, he had to agree with Kazuma's points. Thus, he could only listen ashamed.Bookmark here

Kazuma loosened his grip on him until he finally let go. He turned around with his back facing Ken.Bookmark here

"Didn't you realize, how much you've hurt her by leaving her alone for all these years? You want her to be happy? Don't make me laugh! In the end, you just selfishly decided that she would be more happy without you, however, it was the opposite. She needs you." before he walked away, Kazuma left these words to Ken who looked frustratingly at the ground.Bookmark here

But after he took a few steps, he stopped in his tracks.Bookmark here

With his back still facing Ken, Kazuma raised a fist in the air.Bookmark here

"These will be my last orders to you, servant. First, stop your wannabe delinquent act. Second, stop assuming things on your own. And third, make Emma truly happy." Kazuma listed his orders to Ken as he raised one finger after another according to the numbers of orders.Bookmark here

Then, Kazuma slowly vanished in the horizon.Bookmark here

While he headed home, Kazuma let out a sigh.Bookmark here

"Geez, now I've done it..."Bookmark here

He was annoyed and yet he smiled contentedly.Bookmark here

"But I guess it's better this way."Bookmark here

Kazuma finally accepted the fact that Ken was the one for Emma and not him.Bookmark here

Naturally, it will take him much time until he could even consider forgiving Ken for kidnapping Yui. If he could, he would like to beat Ken up as much as he wanted but he did not.Bookmark here

Kazuma decided to mend the broken bond between Emma and Ken because he wanted free Emma from her sadness. Yes, he only did it because of Emma. To him, she was a friend.Bookmark here

It was official. Kazuma passed the baton back to Ken.Bookmark here

Thud.Bookmark here

Suddenly, someone bumped into his shoulder.Bookmark here

"Oh, sor-"Bookmark here

"Aaahrg! Hey, you twerp! You just broke my damn shoulder!"Bookmark here

Kazuma tried to apologize to the black-haired guy with a bowl cut and golden eyes but he ignored it and cried in agony as he held his shoulder like it actually broke.Bookmark here

It was an act straight out of a book, teaching how to behave like a delinquent.Bookmark here

Kazuma knew this trick.Bookmark here

"Man, just drop your act. I know this trick." Kazuma shrugged his shoulder and was about to head back.Bookmark here

"Heh. You sure are bright. But still, I don't like it if you just walk away as if nothing happened after bumping into my shoulder." the guy let go of his own shoulder and stood tall and proud.Bookmark here

He tried to intimidate Kazuma with his bulky figure and his tattoo on his right arm which he hid previously as he held his shoulder. He cracked his fingers.Bookmark here

Kazuma did not know it yet but his fight against the elite of 'The Owls of Tokyo' already began.Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.