COPYRIGHT © 2018 Miu
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, mechanical, electronical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the prior written permission of the Author.
This novel is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and events are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
All pictures and multimedia used are not the author’s work and doesn’t claim any legal rights.
MATURE CONTENT and VULGAR words not suited for young readers below eighteen (18) years old.
Looking up at the sky, fatty scratched his cheek, “Do what you want. It’s not like the public will care whether we’ve done something good or bad. To everyone, we lot will always be the scum of society.”
Satele stopped and watched the men strolling without a care in the world.
At first, she too thought of that. Without even hearing or knowing their circumstances, she already judged them as someone who only does trouble left and right.
Gritting her teeth, she defended herself. “You can’t exactly blame the public. How about changing your looks and the way you act?”
Lanky and fatty glanced at each other before they stared at Satele like she was an idiot.
Lanky tilted his head and waved his arm. “Don’t get the wrong idea. We already accepted these biases a long time ago. We don’t even care about it. I mean, after all, it’s not society who reject us, it is we who rejects society!”
Fatty added while nodding his head, “That’s right. That’s right. Rather than stressing about it and change the opinions of others and doing what the majority does, we prefer to act freely and carefree. As long as we don’t violate any laws, we can do whatever we want! After all, we only live once. It’s all about freedom and enjoying life!” he proudly exclaimed, accompanied by the exaggerated actions of his arms.
Humming in response, Lanky nodded. “Hm. Hm.”
They resumed walking like a pair of laid-back ducks, tail wagging while quacking with one another.
“Now that you mentioned it. Let’s go to the red light district tonight and have some fun. Ehehehe.”
“That’s right. Let’s round up the boys and go there together. It had been a while that we’ve gone there. I want to visit Ara . . .”
Not moving on her spot, Satele watched the two in a daze. Her brain was processing what they said, which, in her opinion, didn’t make sense.
Freedom? Carefree? Enjoying life?
Who doesn’t want a carefree life? Who doesn’t want to enjoy life?
However, with her circumstances, could she afford to be carefree? In her current predicament, could she afford to enjoy life?
Those phrases, those words could only be said by those rich brats who spent their parents’ money however they want without restraint.
“Don’t fuck with me!”
The two halted upon hearing Satele’s sudden outburst. Glancing back, they saw her tears rolling down her cheeks, and they gazed at each other in awkwardness.
“What freedom?! What enjoying life?! You’re just some rich kids who did whatever you wanted just because you have the money! But it’s different for me! I have to do multiple jobs to keep us afloat! I have to think hard and think multiple times if I have to buy something! I have to work twice as much to make sure I have a future! I don’t have the time to laze around and be carefree like you two!”
Turning around, Satele ran towards the opposite direction leaving the two stunned men with slack jaws behind.
. . .
. . .
Lanky and fatty glanced at each other, wide eyes and opened mouth. After a while, guilt and worry reflected on their faces.
“W-what should we do? We made her cry.”
In the quiet corner of the dense forest, Satele was sitting on a bench while gently wiping the tears in her eyes, berating herself from the way she acted earlier.
The topic clearly had gone astray and things went out of control. She just kind of lost it back there, unbefitting from the calm, and compose journalist she wanted to become.
*sigh . . . I have a long way to go . . .
If her emotions could go out of control from just that, she apparently wasn’t fitted to be a journalist who faces the storm with a calm and composed demeanor.
Somehow, she started to doubt herself. If this continued, she would just be like any other gossiping mongrel spitting nonsense to raise her popularity.
*sigh . . .
“What’s this now. Are you crying?”
A mocking voice snapped Satele out of her self-reflecting state. Still, she refused to acknowledge the presence of that man who was now standing right beside her.
Lowering her head, she hid her flustered face, remaining quiet. Clearly not wanting to have a conversation or anything to do with him. She wanted to get up and run away, but her pride wouldn’t allow her. That would be admitting that she wanted to run away from him –– even though that was what she wanted to do right now.
Asher briefly observed Satele before he cast a glance at the sky. His calm and deep voice then resonated in the dense garden.
“That lanky man is Jason. Born in an abusive family. His father killed his mother right in front of his eyes when he was still but a kid. After his father was imprisoned, he took the responsibility of taking care of his siblings. It might be due to this that he acquired a brusque look. By doing so, he can instill in the minds of others that he is not a man to be mess with. And maybe with his appearance alone, he can intimidate others and save someone’s life unlike before he was powerless.”
Satele’s eyelids twitched, snapping at Asher as she said, “Eavesdropping is not a hobby befitting the second son of a mighty food corporation, don’t you think so too, Asher Cole?”
Asher made a side glanced directed at Satele and paid her no mind as he continued, “That fatty’s name is John. His parents and little sister had an accident when he was young, taking the life of his parents and the legs of his little sister. His disabled sister was bullied often, and because of this, he took upon himself to appear like a criminal to scare his little sister’s bullies away.”
Indignant eyes only reciprocated Asher’s gaze. Satele secretly bit her lip, beneath that unyielding look laid unfathomable pool of emotions, which gradually took the shape of guilt and shame. But what came out from her mouth were tones of ridicule and stubbornness, which hid what she truly felt.
“Why are you telling me this? Do you want me to say sorry to them?”
Grinning, Asher stared down at Satele, which made her cower before his intimidating physique.
“Not really. You’re free to think whatever you want about those guys. But you should stop thinking that you’re the only victim in this world. Other people’s situations are more unfortunate than yours. And yet, you don’t see them moping around in public to gain sympathy.”
Satele’s retort got stuck in her throat, staring at the grinning face of the man who was consistently appearing in her nightmares.
She avoided her eyes and sneered. “What do you mean moping around and gaining sympathy? When did I ever want sympathy? And what do you know?”
That was right. How could he probably understand her circumstances? This rich young master didn’t have to worry about anything as everything was practically laid before him. All he had to do was lift a finger, and it would be done!
To reach the top and escape her situation, she had to do everything and anything, even if she had to step on other people to do it.
Yes . . . Just like that woman . . .
––”You know . . . You and I are quite similar. I also came from an impoverished background . . .”––
––”Do you know what separates you and me? To reach the top, to attain what I wanted to attain, I won’t think twice of doing whatever it takes to achieve my goals even I have to step and use other people to do it.” ––
Fisting her hands, Satele clamped her lip between the force of her teeth. She hated that woman to the core!
. . . And yet, she couldn’t help but admire her at the same time. And unknowingly, little by little, she too believed what she said, and her actions mirrored hers without noticing it.
To escape my circumstances, to secure my future, to achieve my dreams, to give my mother and little brother a worry-free life . . . I must do whatever it takes to realize it.
Observing the quiet woman in silence, Asher straightened his back as he placed his hands inside his pockets.
“True, I won’t ever understand the common people’s situations or anyone for that matter, and I’m not interested in knowing.”
Satele glared at him. Repeatedly cursing him inside her head for his mocking, easy-going tone. Like their circumstances was no big deal and insignificant.
She was about to rebuke him but was rendered speechless at his next words.
“But it doesn’t stop me from admiring them. By their circumstance alone, they already considered stronger than the rest.”
A boyish smile then grazed his lips. “And if you happen to come out of it, achieved whatever you want to achieve, you’ll have my . . .”
Asher briefly paused and lightly shook his head as he continued, “the world’s respect for you can say in confidence that it is through your hard work and determination that got you where you are. Which I somehow envied since people like us will always be associated with our family’s name no matter how earth-shattering we have accomplished.”
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