After lunch, we say our thanks to Zuckerberg.
“Please come again soon, Miss Persia and young lad.”
Zuckerberg gave us a gentle smile as he sends us away at the back door.
“Hmm~” Persia said nothing, she only responded with a smile.
“Ah, I will.” I replied to Zuckerberg.
“Actually Zuckerberg, you don`t need to say the same thing every time you know?” She said, with a mild look.
“Hoho, my bad. It turns out as a habit after saying this to every customer, have fun.” The old man replied with a smile, and winked his left eye to Persia.
“I will be back soon~” Persia replied to Zuckerberg.
Zuckerberg then gently bowed to us and gently closed the door.
By the way, the lunch just now was discounted 99%, it`s only exclusively for Persia.
I can`t forgive Zuckerberg for doing such a wicked thing without showing any sign of remorse. On how I shall get my revenge, I will think about it later.
“Let`s go~” Persia grabbed my left arm in an instant, and jerked me.
“Whoa!? We are we heading?” I muttered.
“A park~” She replied while smiling, and walks as she held my arm tightly.
“Why a park…?”
“I want to rest…” Persia suddenly had a tired look.
…It seems serious.
Her breathing is heavy and her hands are trembling. It wasn`t even like that a few seconds ago.
“…you don`t look good. I think you should go to the clinic—”
“I`m just a bit exhausted, that`s all.” She interrupted, with a heavy tone.
This condition… I knew it clearly myself. Because I`ve been through this before.
Mental exhaustion, or so what they called it. If not treated quickly, it will lead to mental breakdown sooner or later.
…I shouldn`t be bombing questions on her now. In that state, I don`t think I can ask her anything about her conversation with Zuckerberg earlier.
“…get on.” I said, and squat down in front of her with my back facing her.
“Eh…? A piggy back ride? Y-You just want to feel my legs and chest…!”
“……” My head popped a vein.
“...forget it.” I uttered.
“No…! I`m sorry, please carry me…!” She quickly apologizes and hops on my back before I could stand up.
I easily stood up without taking any effort as I hold her on her legs.
She then leans her body on my back, pressing her chest on my back.
“…………” I continued to walk silently without any reaction.
“……?” Persia continued to tease me by patting my head, like a little girl.
“Why aren`t you making any lewd sounds or reactions…?” She said, after messing with me for quite some time.
“Sorry to disappoint you, but I`m already used to this years ago.” I replied.
“…n. No fun.” She murmured.
She seems to be pouting.
Afterwards, she remained silent.
The reason for Persia`s mental exhaustion… is definitely something else other than the student council`s work. It`s definitely impossible for her to get exhausted with that.
It`s something else… that she`s unable to tell anyone.
…I guess it`s about time to make her let it out.
“…Persia.” I muttered.
“…N…?” She placed her head on my shoulder.
“Why are you pushing yourself so hard…?” I asked.
“I want to… become capable enough to stand beside to that person…” She softly replied.
“That person… is it Kuroyuki?”
“No… It`s a friend that I hold dear…”
“What good will having that to you? Aren`t there something else you hope to do?”
“…I`m responsible for all of it. I brought this… all on myself… If only… he`s here… then…” She gritted her fingers on my shirt.
…She`s in pain.
“You`re starting to feel like you need someone to lend a hand, then?”
“No… I already swear… that I will make up for my failure… even if… alone…”
“You can`t do it alone, Persia. Sorry to tell you, but you are not that strong.”
“……!” Persia gasped.
“Are you… telling me to give up…?” She murmured.
“I didn`t say that— there`s no need to give up. If you can`t fight by yourself, then fight with another. I`ll help you.”
“Why…? But you are not… that kind of person… who says things like that…”
“Ah… indeed. But Nightwalker would`ve hate me if I just ignore that.”
“…………” Persia said nothing.
She grabbed me tighter, and bury her face on my shoulder— crying as she holds her weeping sounds in.
I remained silent, and continued my walk to the park by following the map.
At the mini-park.
“Feeling better?” I asked Persia.
“(Sniff)… N…” She murmured, with her head still buried on my shoulder.
“Can you walk on your own?” I asked.
“…N.” I guess that`s a yes.
I gently let her down. Persia then said nothing and sat on the bench, with tears still soaked on her face.
I took out my handkerchief and wiped her face.
“Your pretty face`s a mess.” I said as I wiped.
“Mmmm! Mmmm…! G-Give me that! I`ll do it myself…!”
Persia snatched the handkerchief away, and wiped her tears by herself.
Before she`s going to return it to me, she folded it to half.
“…there`s blood…?” She said, when she saw there`s blood stain on the handkerchief.
“Oh… something troublesome happened earlier.”
“…what is it…?” Persia softly asked.
I told her everything.
“I see… ……” Persia murmured, but I can`t hear the last few words.
But judging from her lip movement, I think it was—
“…I want ice cream.” Persia suddenly said.
“Ice cream…?” I inadvertently mumbled.
“There`s a shop over there, can you please buy it for me…? Any will do.” She pleaded with a tired look as she pointed the direction.
After looking at her exhausted look, I can`t refuse at all.
“Then, I will be back soon.” I said, and walks to the place where Persia pointed.
…I guess she will be alright.
I need to be faster, I can`t just leave her all alone there. There might be some delinquent messing with her.
Then… I use silent step to shorten the time.
Wow. An ice cream shop.
The name is… ‘甘いデザート’ (Amai Dezato). (Sweet Dessert), a language from an eastern country.
I waltz in to the take away section, and stood in front of the fridge-like machine as it pops a menu screen in front of me.
“What would you like to order, sir?”
The fridge-like machine that was installed with an A.I. (Artificial Intelligence) system spoke to me.
“Hmm… let me think for a while.” I replied.
“Please take your time.”
Hmm… any will do? It`s impossible. She should just have told me what she wants.
If I simply choose an ice-cream that doesn`t suits her taste, her mood will get even worse. Because if someone acted like they know exactly what I wanted based on my general tastes, I`d get pissed. Surely she`s the same.
“Double scoop vanilla with extra icing sugar mixed.” I said unconsciously.
My mouth just sorts of opened itself.
“E-Eh? Alright then.” The A.I. machine fustily replied.
Such a realistic reply. It makes me seems like I`m a weirdo.
After transferring money from my account to his automatically, the machine made some ice blending sounds.
“It is done, sir.” It said.
The fridge machine opened sideways, revealing a cone of ice cream with double scope vanilla. Whoa, I can smell the sweetness from the ice cream. It`s quite alluring.
After I took the ice cream cone from the handle, the fridge-machine closes.
“Thanks sir, please come again.” It said.
I hurried back to Persia.
Same as before, I used Silent Step continuously and eventually reached back to the park in less than 3 minutes. It took less than 10 minutes in my trip. I could`ve been faster if I think didn`t think for that long.
…there`s Persia. Even though she`s sitting elegantly, but she looks really down.
I walk towards her and waved my hand in front of her, but she didn`t notice me at all. And so, I sat next to her, and tickle her on the waist.
“Kya— wa— a— nya— u— wa— eh—?” Persia inadvertently moaned and stood up.
When someone`s spacing out, a strong physical stimulus will snap them back to reality.
I stopped my fingers as soon as she started to push my hand away.
“N— ngh…!” Persia`s face flushed red and looks at me angrily.
“Meanie…!” She shouted, and quickly sits and hits me over and over again with her harmless fist.
Eventually till a point, the fragrance from the ice cream stimulated her nose, and her attacks stopped. After a second, she snatches the ice cream away from my hand.
“This is… vanilla…! It`s my favourite… how did you know?”
“I don`t know… I just sort of… brought it.” I replied awkwardly.
“Really…?” Persia stares at me with a disbelieve expression as she pouted.
“What good will I gain if I lied to you?” I retorted.
“My body.” She said without a shred of embarrassment.
Is she really 16? Hmm… when comparing her and those two little girls, forget it.
“…Not interested.” I uttered with an annoyed look.
“I will let you touch my chest if you say you are interested.”
“Why do you want me to touch your chest? Are you a pervert or a masochist?”
“Because I know you wouldn`t do that.” She replied.
Somehow Persia gave me a similar feeling— resemblance of an old friend. But I`m 100% positive sure that I`ve never met her before. I don`t think the ‘real’ me knew her either.
“…huh?” I inadvertently mumbled.
She finished her ice cream in a very fast speed, but wouldn`t she gets a b—
“B-brain freeze…! Ngh……” She mumbled in pain as she places her hands on her head.
“Are you an idiot or something?” I mumbled, and rubs her head gently to relieve her pain.
“B-Because it`s sweet…”
“…what sort of logic is that…” I sighed.
“Ngh… I want to go shopping with you…” She murmured.
“Sure, but where...?” I instantly replied.
“A lingerie store…”
“I`m not interested in your underwear…” I uttered.
“You can pick my undergarments…”
“Choose it on your own…”
“You can go in to the dressing room with me and help me dress up…”
“…Now this is too much. I`m not your maid. By the way, if you really ARE going to buy it, buy a comfortable one and make sure it`s your size.”
“You seem to have a lot of experience…”
“Yeah, I have two cute little girls at home after all.”
Persia`s pain seems to die off. Because she is looking at me with a sulking look.
“It`s normal, and you are the pervert, not me.” I muttered as I stopped the massage.
“…let`s go.” Persia murmured, and she stood up.
“Lingerie store?” I asked as I stood up.
“No, a gift shop.”
She starts to walk, and towards the direction of the shopping mall.
“Why suddenly the change of course?” I asks as I walk by her side.
“Because you aren`t interested. I was going to wear it for you if you are going…” She said, and eventually she felt embarrassed afterwards.
“Don`t push yourself if your face is that red.” I replied.
“………meanie.” She softly murmured.
Before I could look at the time, I inadvertently caught a glance on a bunch of well-dressed guys in front coming straight towards us. Among those 8 people, one of them is slightly thinner and he`s walking in front of the other 7. It seems he`s the leader, and most likely, his target is…
“Well, well, aren`t you a beauty?”
The guy on the middle only look at Persia, and he reached out his hand, grabbing on Persia`s shoulder.
Is this what they call delinquents on the road? Where they randomly find a girl and invite them to a love hotel or something…
“Come on, don`t you want to come have some fun with us?” He had an evil smile.
Persia slaps away that guy`s hand. She quickly hides behind my back, not even peeking from my shoulder.
Finally, that guy seems to noticed me.
“Hey, are you her boyfriend or something? Just let us borrow your girlfriend if you don`t wanna get hurt.”
He looks at me with an intimidating look. Not only it`s not scary, but rather his face looks a little funny.
“Sorry, but she`s not my girlfriend. So I can`t lend her out.” I replied.
“Wha— you damn kidding me!? Who do you think you a—”
That guy is going to push me back with his hand. Regardless the situation, I dodged it as I make sure his hand wouldn`t hit Persia.
Somehow he uses too much force, he lost his balance a little. Making use of that opportunity, I step my foot forth a little and make him trip and fall down.
Apparently, he smacked down flat and hit his nose. Oh, it`s getting redder.
“Pfft… hahahaha…!” I burst out from laughter.
“Damn you…! A mere commoner like you dare to mock me…! Seize both of them and get the girl…!” He uttered, then stood up.
Under his command, the 7 broader guys went into battle mode.
“I won`t be so sure if I were you. Can`t you think before you act?” I said to them.
The 7 of them stopped immediately as soon as I said that.
“Huh…?” The guy was dumbfounded.
I guess it`s time to let them know their place.
“I`m not cute!!!”
Before I could finish the word ‘cutie’, Persia interrupted my cool speech and hits me with her fist.
“But you are cute! Just admit it!” I said, and stroke Persia`s head.
“Tch…!” A vein popped on that guy`s forehead.
“Sigh… Are you trying to break the <Noble`s Code>? She`s a noble you know?” I muttered.
<Noble`s Code> is a law given to the nobles worldwide acknowledged by the international government.
Nobles are those with power, and they must do all they can to ensure that those not so privileged can live in peace and joy. And if war ever breaks out, they are the ones that to be the first to take out their weapons.
There are ranking systems among the nobles— from rank 1 to 9. Those that were on the lower rank must listen to the higher rank.
Those ranked on the top were ranked based on their battle strength as well as their performance towards their civilians. Among them, there are only 13 families that were ranked 1st, and the Silverlight family is one of them.
So if you ask me how strong is Persia, then I must say... she`s unmeasurable, perhaps the potential to surpass Kuroyuki. That`s why, I`ve been avoiding myself to become her enemy.
Her speed and swiftness alone… is more than enough to handle me.
“W-What…!? T-That glowing white-golden hair…! That can`t be…! I demand a duel!” The guy muttered.
He`s pointing at Persia, demanding a duel.
Is he trying to test Persia`s strength…? That`s good, I want to see too.
“N-No, I`m not a noble…” Persia looks away with a surprised look, as she`s still hiding behind my back.
I see… so she`s still trying to hide her strength. I won`t easily let you.
“Persia, if you reject it— I will let him take you away you know?” I said to her.
I know saying this makes me look like shit, but either way— she`s the only one who`s able to decide what will she do.
“You damned commoner…! I had enough with you…!”
That very guy suddenly pulled out a dark-grey laser gun from thin air, and pointed the gun towards me.
Nano-machine technology…!? Shit, he`s pulling the trigger…! I need to dodge…!
I`m sure Persia is able to protect herself. But, just before I`m going to move away— I saw the seven dudes behind him were hiding their guns inside their sleeves— pulling the trigger as well.
Can she avoid this…? Damn…! I don`t care anymore…!
I quickly raised both of my arms to protect my head and make sure it`s enough to protect Persia from the bullets.
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
“……?” Huh…? I`m… not hit?
Before I`m able to get a clearer view, the guy including the 7 dudes behind him— were pinned down on the ground with cards stabbed on their sleeves.
…and Persia was in a fighting stance, with one of her knee kneeling on top of that guy, and a card placed just on that guy`s neck.
“DON`T YOU DARE LAY A HAND ON HIM.” Persia uttered with a scary and threatening voice.
What kind of expression is Persia making…? That guy is seriously trembling.
…his neck was cut a little, and it`s bleeding.
Persia heard and realized my voice, she lifted her head a little— and turn her head back, facing me.
“Ehehe… Sorry for scaring you~” Persia replied with a carefree look.