5.1 Dance Party Invitation (Part 1)
A corsage of black and green appeared in front of her. The mysterious flower consisted of jet-black petals and dark green leaves.
“…with these kinds of colors, dahlias and roses are just creepy, so bear with this instead. Just think of it as some kind of amulet, or something…”
…It’s the same color.
It’s a corsage with colors belonging to person I love…
After only dreaming about it yesterday, today, it appeared in reality.
“It’s nothing to be compared with That’s corsage, but it’ll do. It’s better than nothing…”
—Sharina could no longer hear what he was saying. She received it with both hands, and asked;
“Did Riol make this?”
“A tailor-made one was too expensive. I’m sorry because it’s handmade…”
Sharina finally understood. The meaning of this corsage—the fact that Riol himself made it—
—and, also this flower…
“—the ‘Blood-sucking Flower’—!! The flower from our first meeting—!!”
“I, It has nothing to do with our first meeting. It’s just, I couldn’t find another flower with the color black, so…”
The flowers’ shape were mysterious, like that of a row of small, black, bells.
“This is the first time I’ve ever seen a corsage this beautiful! I shall treasure it for the rest of my life!”
“There’s no need for such blatant sarcasm… although I’m aware of from whom it’s coming from.” Riol leaned his head on his palm, sighing.
“I’m being honest, though? After all, you’re the one who made it.”
Riol’s shoulders were still slumped, thus—
“—it’s the truth! I swear!”
Although just a little, Sharina felt that happiness reflected from his green eyes.
“By the way, how did you make this corsage? Even though you were lacking in materials…”
“With some excess cloth I procured from a boutique and a clasp…—it shouldn’t matter, right!?”
“…I’m really just asking out of curiosity.”
“—eh!? Shari—!! That corsage, no way—!!”
“Ufufu, no way, indeed…”
It was the morning right before class would start. Her friend’s eyes bulged, to which Sharina proudly turned away from.
“Black flowers and dark green leaves… we talked about this yesterday, but I’m just going to confirm—that corsage should be from Riol Glen, right?”
There was no mistaking it. It wasn’t a dream.
Sharina touched it a dozen times to confirm that it was indeed reality.
“Un… well, if Shari is happy, then it’s okay.”
In contrast to the hyped up Sharina, Angelica’s reaction was subtle. Noticing Angelica’s stare towards her black and green corsage, Sharina furrowed her eyebrows—
“—I don’t care if Ange is an important friend of mine, when it comes to Riol, I won’t be defeated no matter what—!!”
“—why do you keep thinking that—!? As I’ve said, that’s impossible—!!”
…Did Ange just become my love rival—!?
They didn’t have any contact up to this point—or, did they—!?
It seems that Ange knows Riol—then, it’s not strange for her to fall in love with him…
“…like, no—!? Isn’t that strange—!?” Hearing Sharina’s muttering, Angelica retorted with all her might. “Yes! Very strange, indeed! Why would you fall in love with him when you barely even know him—!?”
“You’re wrong, Ange. It’s after knowing him that I learned I’ve fallen in love with him.”
“—even if you say so with such dignity…”
Riol appeared when she was in a pinch and proceeded to save her. All the while, his dashing black hair swayed, being blown by the wind. Those intelligent eyes, and the knowledge hidden beneath… No matter how smart he was, he never showed off—that, topped with his unpretentious attitude.
Is there a girl who can resist falling in love with such a wonderful person? No, one couldn’t possibly exist.
“…I’m sorry, but this is it. This marks the start of our rivalry, my nemesis in love…”
“Okay, but let’s end that now, I choose to be your friend, Shari.”
Friendship or love—the ultimate choice that had been imposed on humanity since the ancient times.
“I, I’m so sorry, Ange! I only thought about myself…!”
“Uh, it’s alright…”
No matter how much she cherished her childhood friend, she couldn’t give up this much, right—!? That was why, Sharina desperately chose love. That was also why she was thoroughly moved by Angelica’s virtue, who chose friendship without hesitation.
“No worries, Shari. A shame, though. You no longer have the chance to be invited by His Highness Leonardo…”
“A shame? Why?”
“Like, who would miss a chance to dance with His Highness? A lot of girls are going to attend the party without an escort just to try their luck.”
“…Is that so?”
Sharina felt guilty for thinking that her fellow first years had such bad taste.
“In fact, it’s not only limited to the first years. Our 2 – 4 year upper classmen have also reserved themselves for His Highness. Welcoming the new students is no longer the priority, here. They are clearly aiming for His Highness.”
Sharina thought that both the first years and upper classmen were the same—they all had bad hobbies. This time, she no longer felt guilty about it.
“But Shari is more interested in Riol Glen rather than His Highness, right? A newfound hobby—I mean, a different in taste isn’t a bad thing. Speaking of which, unlike Rumi, I’ve never been interested in admiring His Highness’ paintings. I prefer the real thing, you know? So, this party might be my chance.”
…just now, was she hinting that my preference is bad? Must be my feelings…
“…well, if it’s Riol Glen, then you probably don’t have to worry about others stealing him.”
“On the contrary, I think it’s quite possible—!”
Sharina clenched her fists, full of determination;
The fact that a lot of girls were participating without an escort meant it was easier for them to aim for Riol. No, even girls who had escorts might try to switch to Riol…
…I won’t lose to them—!!!
“What should I do…? I don’t want to go to the dance party, but at the same time I want to, with Riol…”
“Uh… you sound troubled.”
Angelica’s gaze was full of concern towards Sharina, whom was seriously anxious.
***T/N: GRRRR….!!! Angelica, enough with your hidden insults, already…!!!