Good Luck in the Golden Classroom (GLITGC)
I had heavy thoughts——thoughts so heavy that I had to rest my head on the bed. After lying on my bed for a few moments, my doorbell rang. I came over to attend it.
My door had an intercom. I caught a glimpse of who may be outside. It was some kind of woman, but my brain was still draining its previous thoughts to quickly realize.
So, I opened the door with my eyes to the ground, “Yes?”
“It’s nice to meet you, young master,” a homely voice greeted.
I was surprised by the sudden greeting and looked up.
Standing in the carpeted hallway was a woman dressed as hotel staff. She had an affable and calming aura. On her face was a genuine smile, and on her hands was a damp towel.
“Um, who might you be?” I asked.
“My name is Reona Mase. I will be your housekeeper during your stay,” she introduced me and gave me the towel.
I received it daintily and found out it was warm. “Housekeeper?”
“Yes, I will be cleaning your room twice a week according to your preference.”
“Clean?” I didn’t need anyone to clean up for me. I could do those things myself, so I said, “You don’t have to. I can do it myself.”
“But, it’s my work, sir. If I don’t fulfill my duty, I'll be fired.”
Didn’t she say ‘according to my preference’? I could just ask that, but it seemed such work was mandatory.
“Alright, fine. You can clean on my preferences, right? That includes time, right?”
“Yes, young master.”
“Then, come inside my room at six in the evening on Saturday.”
“Y—yes, young master,” she bowed. She seemed to want to ask something but hesitated.
“Well then, good night.”
“Good night young master.”
She bowed again, and I closed the door.
So, there were housekeepers, huh? How fanciful will this school get? And what’s with this towel? I was suspicious of the towel and dunked it into the sink.
I did appreciate the convenient and thoughtful service, but I might just find it troublesome. It was not like I had secrets or anything. It just felt like an invasion of privacy.
I went over to my folded cardboard and shook them. What flew instead was dust. I blinked in irritation. I had to sweep the floor again. Maybe I should get rid of this cardboard.
After confirming there was nothing left in the boxes, I went over to my desk which had drawers. I opened one of them and took a metallic case the size of a book; it had a combination lock on it.
Though it may seem that I was hiding something, I wasn’t. This was something precious to me. Losing it would mean losing my life’s work.
There was a safe in my bedroom dresser, but I couldn’t bring myself to trust it.
I unlocked the metallic case which had a leatherback notebook in it. I couldn't help but smirk at the sight of it. It was my treasure right there, and I will cherish it.
If you’d call anything a secret, that would be counted. Unfortunately, I can’t just bring that metallic case. I struggled to think of other places to hide it. So, I prayed that the housekeeper was honest.
But, that wasn’t my immediate concern. I needed to deal with the chaotic class. At this rate, my high school life will be a failure.
I thought about this all night and forgot about dinner—no, I didn’t forget. I intentionally skipped it. I wouldn’t afford a decent dinner anyway. And it may be too late to go to a convenience store. There was a curfew imposed.
Still devising possible plans for tomorrow and the future, I took a long bath and went to sleep.
My eyes opened. I was awakened. The imagination of a non-electric kettle screeching replayed in my ears. Such imagination was an echoing memory of the past; that past when my mom would prepare hot water in a kettle for showering, and I would go to turn the stove off. The sound scared me as it meant severe scolding for not waking up on time. It was like my alarm clock. And the sound stuck with me, not as trauma, but as nostalgia.
But I woke up to my phone’s alarm instead. I groped around the bedside desk for the phone, but couldn’t seem to reach it. So, I looked about and saw the phone at the edge of the desk. I reached out for it again, but my arms seemed shorter than they should.
Wait, this desk was familiar. This bed too. Was the bed in the academy dorm this small? If I remember correctly, it was a king-sized bed.
Why then—how come was I back in the shabby apartment again?
No, don’t tell me—no, this has to be…
When I realized this, I woke up to reality. I looked around——it was dark. The curtains were drawn. My brain clock told me it was about four in the morning. Then I heard my phone alarm ring. I was right. I wake up precisely fifteen seconds before my alarm. And my alarm was set at 4 AM.
What came first in my mind was my routine from junior high——fold my futon and store it, cook rice, undress and place my clothes in a basket, take a shower, cook canned food and prepare lunch, eat, get dressed and go to school.
But a twinge of realization ran down my body. I was not where I belonged, or rather a new place where I belonged. I was reminded that things were very disparate. I breathed deeply, in and out, and reorganized my mind.
‘Different, things are different,’ I reminded myself. ‘They’re different for the first time. Things are changing.’
But I felt like suffocating, so I left my room in the hallway.
I noticed some people in the hallway. Instantly, I looked. I thought they were burglars at first but realized they were women in uniforms. These housekeepers woke up early in the morning pushing a service cart.
From that cart, they took a plastic-wrapped dish. It seemed they were serving breakfast.
I looked to the other side of the hallway and saw more of those housekeepers, though there weren’t many of them.
Closest to me was the housekeeper who introduced herself to me yesterday. Reona saw me open the door; the other staff took notice. I saw their face contort in shock.
“G—good morning, young master! What woke you up so early?” Reona asked.
I was shocked by their response as well. It took me a second to reply, “Good morning. I usually wake up this early. Was I disturbing you?”
“No, no, not at all. I’m just surprised. Do you have anywhere to go at this early hour?”
“Not really. Was I supposed to not be outside?”
“No, that’s not what we meant. But, you could sleep a bit more. I’ll serve you breakfast shortly.”
“Me? Breakfast? I didn’t pay for it though.”
She chuckled. “Don’t worry. It’s a provided service. You could buy breakfast at the cafeteria, however. The academy doesn’t want anyone to attend classes on an empty stomach.”
“That’s very thoughtful of them, aren’t they?” I chuckled, and she did too.
Then, she opened the door to the room next to mine and placed the food somewhere.
Meanwhile, I waited in the hallway for the free breakfast and observed the other housekeepers.
It seemed that they had access to rooms with their IDs. If the academy gave them this kind of power, then they must be heavily trusted. But, I cringed at such control. I wondered if they had been monitoring my room.
But, I might just be overthinking things.
Things were different, but it didn’t have to be harmful.
Reona finished and pushed the cart in front of my door. She saw me waiting outside my room. “You didn’t have to wait outside, young master. You can let me serve breakfast in your room. I will place them at the kitchen counter.”
“That’s alright. I was curious anyway.” I pointed at the dishes inside the cart, “May I have one of those?”
“Of course, young master,” she gracefully handed me the dish.
“You’re welcome, young master,” she said as I entered my room to enjoy the free breakfast.
After a few minutes, I went outside again. This time, I hit something on the other side of the door. When I felt this, I tried to soften the impact on whoever may be outside.
“No—no, it’s alright.” It was Reona again who was rubbing her forehead.
“Did I wound it?”
“No, it’s fine—”
“May I see?” I took her soft hand from her forehead. Indeed, there was a red mark, but nothing too serious. “I’m sorry for that. I’ll get you an ice pack right away.”
“No, it’s alright. It doesn’t hurt. Anyways, going somewhere this time?”
“Yeah—wait, stay right here. I’ll be right back.”
After two minutes, I returned with a clean plate in hand, “Here, I finished the breakfast. My compliments to the chef.”
“Oh, you didn’t have to clean it!”
“It’s alright. It’s a bad courtesy to return it dirty.”
“You’re so kind, aren’t you?”
“I can’t act like a rich kid after all. I’m just a scholar.”
I saw her eyes widen momentarily, but she quickly composed herself. “Oh, yes. You’re the new scholar everyone’s been talking about.”
“Yes, every student and staff worker here has been talking about it. It’s revolutionary if I could state my opinions so politely.”
“I didn’t know I was that famous.” I didn’t know anyone noticed me. Perhaps, no one did. They only knew of a scholar who existed based on Reona’s reaction.
“In a way, you are, young master.”
That has confirmed my deductions.
I interrupted her, “May I ask something?”
“Anything, my young master.”
“Is there a place where I could take a breather?”
“A relaxing place? I’d say the rooftop, young master. You can feel the cool breeze before the sun comes up. And when it does, you can feel its rays warm you. Since this building is one of the tallest in the city, you can enjoy the spectacular view of the city and the mountains surrounding it.”
I chuckled. Did she take her time to passionately summarize the rooftop? “You love the rooftop, don’t you?”
“Yes, I do. It’s the only thing I can enjoy when I’m there.”
I wanted to ask what she meant, but her face grew a little wistful.
“I guess I should head over myself.”
“Please, with pleasure, young master.”