Days past by quietly, and before everyone knew it, it was almost time for the Academy’s annual sports festival.
For Daniel and Sisley, since that time they cut classes, they had grown closer to one another. Daniel love talking to her and like what he was feeling every time that they were together. Sisley was like a breath of warm fresh air after the never-ending rain and cold.
Daniel knew what Sisley felt for him. He was not an idiot. Her beautiful hazelnut eyes, which shone every time that they were together, was enough proof that she likes him. But instead of backing away, he found himself drawn to her innocent face, heart-warming smiles, and caring personality.
Sisley was so different compared to Evangeline’s strong, intimidating self. She was the sweet, delicate, cute, and frail type. The type that stirred anyone’s manly instincts to protect and cherish for the rest of her life.
In the beginning, Daniel thought Sisley was a boring woman. But after talking and getting to know her, he found himself drawn to her wits and sense of humor.
He was amazed at how caring Sisley truly was. Like every time that they secretly saw each other after school, she would ask him first on how his day was. And if he was hungry, she would feed him with her home cook meal –– well, what was left of it anyway.
He also found her kind personality irresistible. Like the one time he saw her making her way and giving her all in helping a student who was lost. Also, knowing that she was in the health committee, the newspaper club that solely focus writing about advocates and rights, and other organizations that concentrated helping human beings, made him think that she would be a good Queen in the future.
A Queen he very much like to be by his side.
He knew that what he was doing was wrong, but he couldn’t stop himself. He couldn’t stop himself from meeting with her in secret after school in the garden. He sometimes even skipped lunch or eat little so he had room for her cooking later. He was so caught up with his new found feelings when he was together with her. A happy and warm feeling that filled his heart with joy and excitement.
Daniel blinked. He was pulled out from his thoughts, and he glanced at the stunning woman sitting opposite him.
Raising an eyebrow, Evangeline smiled in a sarcastic way.
“I know that I’m beautiful, but you don’t have to stupidly gape at me with mouth hanging open.” She teased with her usual indulgent, clear voice.
Daniel’s brows briefly crumpled. He couldn’t help but compare Evangeline’s confident, sarcastic tone to Sisley’s warm, cheerful ones.
“It looks like your thoughts are not with me as I can see your brain is scattering all over the place.”
Daniel’s frown deepened. This was another thing he didn’t like about her. The way she said words in a soft voice but mocking tone. The way she spoke like she belittled everyone. Like she was above the rest. Whenever she opened her lips, only conceited words came out from her mouth.
He sighed, suddenly feeling exhausted.
They were at a luxury mall inside a famous Michelin awarded restaurant having their once a week date every weekend. It was not even an hour when they met and he was already losing his patience with her.
“The game on Monday . . . ,” Evangeline said, breaking the silence. “The teacher forced me to play in the sports fest, so the class president put me in the dodgeball game in the morning while pass the baton in the afternoon. The P.E. teacher said it’s for my grades, so I expect you’ll be there, attending to me.”
With refined and classy movement, she sliced her meat and ate it before sipping her wine.
Daniel closed his eyes. This was another thing he didn’t like about her.
She’s so bossy!
He felt like he was her servant and not her boyfriend. Doing her assignments, her projects, carrying her bags, her things, her shopping bags. And now, she wanted him to tend to her during her plays?
He inwardly screamed in frustration.
Doesn’t she know I’m playing two games in the morning and two games in the afternoon? Doesn’t she even care about me at all?
“I can’t,” he said, helplessness in his voice. “I have two games in the morning and two games in the afternoon.” He didn’t notice that he was already cutting his meat with so much force that the knife screeched against his plate.
Evangeline’s cold face remained neutral, voice soft and sardonic. She smirked and didn’t say anything more.
Daniel was about to explode in anger and frustration.
There it is! That mocking voice and eyes.
Every time he couldn’t do one of her demands, she gave him a cynical smile and a disappointed look.
Lost his appetite, he contented to text their team’s basketball manager, asking for their daily practice routine.
“Who is it?”
The corner of Daniel’s eyes twitched. Nevertheless, he remained polite and gentlemanly in answering.
“Nina, our basketball manager. I’m asking for our daily routine since the match with other universities are coming in the first week of Fall.”
Evangeline observed Daniel with a knowing smile and sardonic eyes. She knew Nina has a crush on him. She knew the girl would alter Daniel’s schedule, making it earlier than the rest so the woman could have an ‘alone time’ with him.
“Let me see,” she said, hand extending at him.
Frowning, Daniel sighed through his mouth. He knew better than anyone that it was useless to argue with Evangeline Heart, so he obediently handed his phone.
Evangeline’s smile grew wider when she saw Daniel’s schedule. Like what she expected, it was earlier than the rest. She peered at her boyfriend who she silently called an idiotic oblivious guy before she pressed the call button.
“Hello, is this Nina?” Evangeline beamed when Daniel’s eyes bulged from their sockets, staring at her in disbelief.
“This is Evangeline Heart. I want you to know that the man you are secretly coveting and scheming at is already seeing someone, and that someone is me in case you are leaving in a cave and didn’t hear the news. Well, I couldn’t exactly blame you since you look like a cavewoman with no morals whatsoever. Nice talking to you. Bye.”
Without an ounce of guilt, Evangeline handed Daniel’s phone back to him and resumed eating like nothing happened.
. . .
. . .
“What the hell is wrong with you?!”
Daniel couldn’t take it anymore and exploded. He slammed his palms against the table, which lure the people to look their way.
Evangeline tapped a napkin on her lips and arranged the said cloth on her lap before she faced Daniel.
“What do you mean, Daniel?” she asked, voice innocent as her face, completely opposite from the fuming man.
“Don’t play dumb with me!” Daniel spat. “Why are you so mean and harsh? Are you even human? Where’s your heart?”
Evangeline stared at the furious man with a still calm face and smiling lips.
“I don’t understand why you are so angry, Daniel. I only told her what’s on my mind. Unless . . . freedom of speech is now forbidden?”
“You could have told her kindly without the insults! Don’t you have any compassion?”
For a moment, Evangeline stared at Daniel straight in the eyes before she leaned forward, holding her chin at the back of her palm.
“Kindly? I don’t know how to put it in any other way. Would you like it if I had said please?” Her lips formed a lazy grin as she continued when Daniel was rendered speechless. “And what do you mean by insults, Daniel? Those are my honest opinions of her. If I wanted to insult her, I wouldn’t say ‘cavewoman with no morals,’ but a slutty whore, prostituting herself to get you between her legs.”
Daniel’s gasped echoed in the silence that soon followed after Evangeline’s speech. He closed his eyes tight. His fingers balled into fists, trying to control himself. Afraid if he didn’t, he might hurt her in a moment of anger.
“You are . . . heartless,” he hissed through the gap of his gritted teeth.
Abruptly he stood, chair scraping the carpet floor. He stormed out, for who knew how many times now, but Evangeline’s sweet voice stopped him on his path.
“What?!” he snapped.
“You hadn’t pay your end of the meal.”
“. . .”
“. . .”
Daniel took a deep breath. He grabbed his wallet and tossed a few thousand dollars on the table and left without a word.
. . .
. . .
Evangeline stared at the money, eyes glinting in coldness it could probably freeze hell itself.
“Excuse me. More wine?”
She broke out from her temporary loss of self upon hearing that soothing clear voice. Looking up, she gazed at the dark messy hair and black thick-rimmed eyeglasses of a familiar man.
She sluggishly held her goblet before Eric poured wine into it. Then he bowed and attended the other guests.
Evangeline didn’t care about Eric one bit. She wasn’t curious nor interested to know how he landed a job at one of Blue River City’s famous restaurant that only served luxurious cuisine and hired HRM graduates to pose as waiters.
As long as he doesn’t cross me, I won’t do anything in turn.
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