Chapter 32:

[The Golden Skies] Golden Skies

Good Luck in the Golden Classroom: The Golden Waltz

 What is that feeling——the feeling that you have lost—no, have been caught; somehow feeling defeated yet you don’t know why——when a shiver travels down your spine, knowing you’ve been had, yet you don’t know why?

Her smile somehow looked different, felt different, and the words sounded different. Here, I was expecting to be tricked; it seemed like it, but at the same time, it didn’t. It was an unexplainable intuition made unfathomable because of the context. The context? There was no context. Instantly, I thought of minimizing the risk and consequences, because of that feeling.

Here, I stood frozen, expecting an answer; what I desired was a positive answer of acceptance, but I braced myself for rejection, yet I already had an inkling of what she would say, ‘You have fallen into my trap.’

“You have fallen into my trap,” those words once uttered by Kana Chinatsu almost buckled my knees. Most of all, my brain was scrambling for an excuse to retract my words, knowing it was too late. I knew what had just occurred. My clue was right, but my human desires led me astray. “I actually never liked you,” she said so coldly and brazenly. As to what her seductions and temptations motives, I do not know, and could care less to know. My heart was struck to the core, seemingly too hopeless to recover.

My mouth failed to open. My throat failed me; it tightened as if something was choking it. Because of it, my breathing was ragged, almost gasping for air, but I tried to keep calm, pride, and place. There was always some way I could recover from this, I confidently thought.

“Speechless, aren’t you? It’s only a matter of time until you fall for me,” she smirked and giggled. “Even the most ‘apathetic’ boy like you,” she made air gestures, “cannot refuse his want for love, and being loved.”

I unconsciously averted my eyes and realized that I’ve looked away. Such a psychological reaction suggests weakness, so I quickly looked straight into her eyes, but my eyes were weighed by an unseen burden; shame, embarrassment, broken pride, regret——I did not know. All I knew was that I lost to her, and should have handled things better.

“Just a reminder, Akko,” she called my nickname she gave me playfully, but now it sounded fake. “If you try to expose me, I will send this scene of you confessing.”

Suddenly, a rustling came from the bushes nearby. It was a student from Class Iridium, the same class she was in. I’ve seen him with her several times at school, and I had my suspicions. Now, I’ve confirmed that they’ve colluded against me this day; that was the only positive thing that lightened my mood, but it also downcasted me at the same time.

“Here you go, all in 4k, 60FPS. Anyone can clearly see the disappointment on his face!” he bragged as he handed a smartphone to her.

“Good job, Ota—Nightwing! I’m going to reward you later.”


“I’ll be expecting it, Chinatsu!” and quickly he left.

There was no point in the codename. I could just remember his face and inquire elsewhere.

“Now, do you see the situation you are in?”

I remained to stare at the ground, not because of shame, but because of confusion. I thought of every possible reason that could grace my brain but has not drawn to a definite conclusion.

“Do you not want to know why I did this?”

At that question, I looked straight into her eyes. With renewed confidence, I said, “No, I don’t.”

She seemed to be shocked at my answer. I could see a little grimace on her triumphant smile, but she kept her cool. “Well, it wasn’t as if I was going to tell you. Just you remember the position you are in.” She faced away from me and started to walk slowly. “Know your place, Akko.”

I looked as she walked away, maintaining a stoic face as much as I can, but my vision started to become blurry, and I instinctively looked down.

I sat on a bench nearby with my eyes on the ground. In hindsight, I shouldn’t be facing down because my tears would flow easily to the pull of gravity. But, I didn’t want anyone to see me in this state.

I am Amahiko Yajima; this is not me. I’m Amahiko Yajima; this isn’t me——those words I repeated in an attempt to comfort myself, but it didn’t remedy my depression.

Then, a sensation of a cold touch landed on my arched back. I jolted a little, surprised that I haven’t sensed any presence nearby, but I soon realized after a couple more of those icy cold fingers landing on me, that these were raindrops. In that quick moment, I wished someone could cover me under their warmth——anything warm and comforting. I knew someone could do that, right at this moment.

I trudged back, almost dragging my shoes into the mud, soaked in the aftermath of the sudden, heavy rain. It was still raining when I arrived, and I arrived late. Most students have taken a shower and were preparing for the lights out, either to sleep or to secretly play. Fortunately for me, no teachers were roaming the hallways where I needed to pass through to my room. However, someone did catch me in my pitiful demeanor.

“Ya…jima?” It was the last voice I’d like to hear in the lowest of my lows.

I dared not to look back. Perhaps she’ll think that she got the wrong person.

“Yajima,” the voice called in a much firmer voice, mixed with a little consideration.

Walking, I continued.

“Yajima!” I remained adamant to look back, but then I heard a series of quickening stomps nearing me. My instincts told me to run, but I held myself back, seeing no point in fleeing her. Then, she pulled me by the shoulder to face her, “What happened to you? You’re all wet and,” she promptly looked down, muddy! You shouldn’t be walking in the hallways like this! You should get yourself cleaned!“

Even at a time like this, Eriki Miyazono remained Eriki Miyazono.

I sighed, having none of it, but trying to seem accommodating to her vexes. “I just had to do a favor for someone. It just happened to rain and the favor took much longer.”

She squinted her eyes, “That sounds like a blatant lie.”

“Believe what you want to believe, but what I’ve said is the only thing you can accept.”

“What if there was something else I could accept?”

“Like what? Me intentionally getting wet and rolling into a puddle of mud?”

“Well, you’ve presented me another possibility——one which I am more inclined to believe.”

I lightly pushed her away, in an attempt to dismiss her and her worries inoffensively. “When you believe something, you think it is true, therefore, that shall be what has happened to me. Now, if you may, I would like to clean myself up to not dirty the hallway.”

But, my efforts were demeaned because it seemed that my words and actions instead irritated her further. “Why won’t you just tell me what happened? Is there harm in telling me why you’re like this? Are you hiding something? Yajima, let down your pride a little. This is one thing I don’t like about you—”

“Enough!” I raised my voice. I might have shouted it out. I tried to be calm, but the boiling anger has become uncontrollable. Indeed, I did not have any capacity to accommodate her vexing. And my words were about to spew out, but I instantly walked away, and she seemed to understand my plight. I wondered and worried about what my face looked like back there.

I don’t take too much time in the showers, but this time, I needed some kind of solace, so I took longer than usual to finish. My mind was in such a mess. I could not think of risk management plans as per my usual protocols in situations like this. I figured that now I was placed in a precarious position where one had leverage on me to do anything that they wanted——something I despised so much. I did not want to become like my mom, where debt collectors forced her to do crazy things for them, just to repay her debt. No, I must not be tied lest I lose my liberty. Considering that this school is very discriminatory to people like me, it is very detrimental for me to have someone who has control, and the will and power to use it, without consequences.

Still, my heart and my logical mind were fighting for my brain’s power to solve their problems. My heart was broken; my mind was in a panic. These two were deadly combinations for a person to be easily manipulated. I figured that I must have none of it, but I knew my heart’s problem will take time. However, I must not let it cloud my mind’s judgment lest I show weakness.

At that moment, I vowed to never fall in love again. I instilled in myself that love is insanity.

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