Hostility from the nobles
“I messed up”
Arum cussed himself realizing his own foolishness. He was about to get lost again if not for the teacher who showed him the way.
Arum drooped his shoulders and returned back to the gate of the entrance ceremony.
‘Come to think of it, I am not enrolled yet,’ Arum thought.
The earlier meeting with the teacher and his disdain for him had made him realize that they did not like his presence.
‘After all, I am an outsider and not a student yet. It would only be natural for us to be guided inside only after the enrollment ceremony is over.’
Arum failed to realize that the earlier disdain was not for him being a fresher wandering off rather it was for him being a commoner.
“Oh, so is that the reason why everyone was waiting in front of the gate?”
Arum regrets not thinking this beforehand. He believed that this was the reason why the other nobles were waiting in front of the gate.
‘They must have been considerate of their own academy.’
‘Certainly, when new students wander around they need extra eyes to look after them. That would only bother them who are already busy managing the academy.’
But Arum cussed himself in embarrassment.
The nobles who were in the front of the gate were able to restrain themselves unlike him who could not hide his inner excitement.
But alas! With his little knowledge of the circle of nobility, he could only jump to the wrong conclusions.
The chief objective of the nobles was not sightseeing an academy that they had already seen many times before and would keep seeing every day. But it was building good connections with the other nobles even before the inauguration begins.
‘Actually, it doesn’t really matter but it’s quite unusual indeed.’
When Arum came back near the gate, the nobles seemed to continue their conversation paying no heed to him.
What was even more unusual was that they had moved to the edges so as to not to be overheard by the others.
Arum could only wonder what kind of conversation they had. He was curious but he chose not to ask anyone since he was already driven away once.
Arum stood in absolute silence as he began overhearing some conversations.
“Lake Miller seems to be particularly active this year, so I would love to visit your place.”
“Please let me invite you then.”
“I heard that the number of beasts has decreased sharply this year in that area. The power of the Trapel family is indeed a gift from the heavens!”
“I am honored to be complimented.”
It was Arum had suspected. He understood none of it. The conversations full of flattery and lies could only make him frown. His face distorted as he covered his ears instinctively.
Misty was the first to notice Arum’s return. The nobles were seemingly having a peaceful conversation full of flattery but that wasn’t enough to keep her attention. Misty’s voice interrupted the conversation as Lux and the others turned to Arum.
One person even spilled his drink when he saw Arum.
“… What are you doing?”
At the end of their line of sight, there was the figure of Arum that covered both of his ears with both of his hands. He had a posture that doesn’t make sense in such a public get-together.
The noble’s evaluation of Arum changed from a commoner to that of a strange commoner. Their judging eyes could only do so good.
Misty rushes to see the reason behind Arum doing such a mysterious thing. After all, they were in a magic school where people who use different forms of magic gather.
Misty was genuinely worried that some kind of vicious spell was cast on the poor boy with someone toying him as he was a commoner.
Misty stood in front of him calling out to him as her voice shook in worry.
As Arum was brought back to reality he let go of his ear as he smiled wryly.
“Misty, did your conversation with the other nobles end?”
“Yes, it did. Are you okay?”
‘Why? What would happen to me?’ Arum thought.
Misty placed her hand on her chest as she gazed at Arum who seemed to have no idea what she was worried about.
‘You have no idea Arum, how dangerous this place is for you.’
“Why won’t I be okay?”
Arum had no backer, no family to rely on in times of danger. This place could very much result in his worst trauma.
Seeing Arum’s expression Misty continued.
“No, don’t worry about it if you are perfectly fine. So, what were you doing just now?”
“I was taking a walk and I was told not to go in there yet. I thought I will look around elsewhere. But I didn’t know where to go and so I came back.”
“Oh, no… that’s not what I was talking about…. Why did you block your ears?”
“Oh, didn’t you guys tell me to leave a while ago? Since you guys had something important to discuss. But when I am here I can’t help but overhear. Now I can’t be shameless here can I?”
Misty was stunned by Arum’s words.
‘Are you aware that you had been driven away instead of being asked to leave? Or you unaware of it?’
Arum’s words that were mostly true and had a tinge of arrogance that seemed to bother with the kids around had indeed caught Misty off guard.
Arum willing scoffed off the fact that he was driven away as if he had gone away on his own accord. No one could control his actions There was a sense of maturity in his words, only if one were to judge its inner implications.
“Fufufufu!” Misty laughed covering her mouth with her palm.
“Did I stay something strange?”
Misty was amazed by the misaligned words and the underlying implications
“No, of course not. It’s can never be strange.”
Even if he was reassured, Arum began to seriously wonder why he was laughed at.
Misty smiled again as she saw Arum holding onto his chin. But soon a shadow walked past her and cut in between both of them.
“Oh, Lux welcome back.”
“I see. I know your malicious intentions. You are trying to get on the good side of Misty aren’t you?”
Watching Misty smile, that was the conclusion that Lux had ended up with,
“… Are you trying to take advantage of her kindness?”
Lux didn’t try to hide his hostility against Arum this time.
Arum also changed his expression to a grim one as he noticed that Lux was not friendly anymore.
But this time, Misty chose to be on his side, unlike before. Arum no longer had to comfront him alone.
“Is that an insult to me?” Misty rebuked.
It was clear as a day that Misty was on friendly terms with Arum. As such Lux coming in between them could be a grave insult. Had Arum not been a petty commoner Lux might had have to face the consequences. But fortunately, Arum was a commoner. The worth of a commoner was nothing in the face of a noble.
“It’s sad that you take my goodwill that way. I was just warning you of a pickpocket.”
Misty greeted her teeth.
“Are you going to keep insulting?”
“He is a commoner and we are aristocratic nobles. There is a difference in positions between us. Isn’t it unnatural for you to side with him against us?”
Lux shrugged as if he had said the most obvious thing.
“We are going to compete at the same school. There is no difference in our positions!”
Misty glared at Lux with a piercing gaze.
The air between them became heavy. There was no sense of fellowship between the nobles. It was all but mind games.
But a noble might have a lot of enemies around. And even now a gap between two nobles was about to be formed.
Sparks flew in the air as the mana in their bodies got intense.
Arum intervented between them as if stopping two kids from fighting.
He broke in without any care of the heavy atmosphere and mana in the air.
His look turned serious as it pierced both of them. One might have called the atmosphere till now as one filled with anger but now it had turned to one with animosity as the tension sharpened further.
Both of them were unaware if Arum knew of the implications of what was happening. But they both saw Arum holding onto his chin for a moment and then he slowly spoke.
“Why are the two of you fighting?”
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