Ch. 119 Something That Cannot Be Erased or Covered (3)

“That was too close.”

Louise let herself complain as they left the Marquis and Teresa in the office.

“If you had given me a hint I could have done it faster.”

“You did a good job. By the way, how did you find out it Marquis Burgess that was here?”

“I read the visitor information.”

“By whose permission?”

“…The president of the student council.”

“My dear worker has begun to fake authority now.”

“I couldn’t help it!”

Louise shouted at him indignantly, and Claire explained the rest.

“It was quite easy once we learned that Marquis Burgess was here. We went to visit Teresa, and she told us everything.”

“She was scared that her father would take her back home, so we said we would protect her paperwork first. It’s a good thing that Teresa’s birthday already passed, right?”

“Yes. Otherwise there wouldn’t have been anything Teresa could do.”

It was the best they could do to prevent her from being dragged away. Now it was up to Teresa to negotiate with her father.

“By the way.”

Claire stopped and looked alternately between Ian and Louise.

“How did you communicate that there was a problem? Do you have a code?”

“Oh, that.”

Louise shrugged and smiled. When her and Ian’s palms brushed against each other, there was a moment. It was the same at the arts center.

“When our hands touch like this, it means that we need help.”

“So that’s how you knew right away?”

Claire spoke disbelievingly, and Louise nodded.

“…You know, President.”

“Hm?”

“I think I know why you treat Louise as a high quality labor force.”

“Right?”

“She’s quite an attractive labor force.”

“Attractive? I won’t give her to you if you look at her with those greedy eyes, Claire Iris.”

Ian gave her a wary look and pulled Louise’s shoulders towards him.

“You’re playing dirty. Louise is the labor force of the student council. A public good!”

Claire protested and pulled Louise’s hand.

“I belong to the student council’s labor force, so all of Louise Sweeney’s energy is mine.”

“And all the student council’s labor force belongs to me, so all of Louise Sweeney’s energy is mine.”

Louise’s head swiveled between the two.

“Why do you two forget that my labor is mine–?”

Claire let out a giggle. Louise was happy to hear the sound, as her friend had been struggling with her personal life over the past few days.

“Oh, I have to go confirm my schedule. See you both later.”

Claire left the both of them.

Then, two court officials appeared in the hallway. Perhaps they had been watching the three of them since they left the office. The officials were not working, as noted by the absence of their usual writing instruments.

“Your Highness.”

The older court official approached Ian.

“We were told that there was some involvement with the Marquis…”

Ian took the older court official into an empty classroom to share privately what happened. Meanwhile, Louise was left alone with the young official in an empty hallway.

It was beyond awkward. Probably because of what had happened last time.

“Maybe I should write it down. Finally.”

The young official sighed.

“…What?”

“About a student named Louise Sweeney. You have made quite a commotion with the Crown Prince.”

“We have always made a commotion.”

Louise smiled. Ever since she was a child, she had always been involved with some trouble or another with Ian or Simon.

“‘We.’”

The court official lingered on how Louise emphasized her connection with Ian.

“Did you wish to have your name alongside the Crown Prince? Enough to make a commotion?”

“I’m not doing anything because I want to be in history.”

Louise continued to smile.

“It doesn’t matter if I’m not written anywhere. Because I realized something.”

“What is it?”

“I’m probably already in the records you wrote.”

He frowned.

“What are you talking about? Nothing about you–”

“No, it’s full of me. I know it, because Ian Audmonial and I have influenced each other. Since a very young age. “

Louise clenched her fist. The signal of his trust still lingered on her palm.

“It’s something that cannot be erased or blocked. It flows out naturally.”

“That kind of abstraction is basically nothing.”

“Sir.”

Louise chuckled.

“You know what? Just because something’s not in the record, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist.”

“…”

“However much you write, there is so much more that’s left unwritten. Everything that was real. Everything that was naturally connected.”

Even if the court officials wrote down only one event, they couldn’t encapsulate the whole scope of their life and relationships.

“You mean Louise Sweeney will remain in history. In some form.”

“He has a bad influence on me too, and so I can’t have a good influence on him. Sir.”

“…You say bad.”

“He has a bad influence on me too, and so I can’t have a good influence on him. Sir.”

“I see.”

“What?”

“I will not write.”

He continued on assertively.

“I will not write down anything about the students anymore. Let’s see, who is going to notice Louise Sweeney’s presence?”

“I’m looking forward to it.”

Louise smiled softly, holding her hands together. She would make a bet on it if she could. The records would be protected by magic for centuries. It would be another time when everyone living was not here anymore.

*

*

*

“Are you done now?”

Ian sighed and scratched his head.

“Yes, Your Highness.”

The official replied with a teasing smile as he moved his pen. They were leaning back against the door of the classroom, eavesdropping on the conversation outside.

“Should I have told you in advance that my fiancée doesn’t like to lose?”

“I should let you know that the court officials are full of stubborn people as well.”

The both of them shared a laugh. Being a court official and a prince they would often overhear ridiculous conversations together.

“I’m not the bad guy who told you to record this.”

Ian glanced at the official’s notes.

“If possible, I want you to write down that I’m in love with Louise Sweeney.”

The official set down his pen for a moment, his expression suddenly grim.

“I am not a dishonest official who tampers with the record.”

The official blinked back at his writing.

“I have clearly noted that Your Highness has a deep attachment for Louise Sweeney.”

“Attachment. Don’t you think the word choice is a little too old-fashioned?”

“By the time it’s read, it will already be old, Your Highness.”

“But I don’t like it…”

Ian looked regretful, but he couldn’t change it. He didn’t have the right to censor anything.

*

*

*

Ian and Louise saw the two officials off together, then Ian turned towards her.

“Shall we go to the dormitory roof? I think everyone’s there.”

Louise nodded at his proposal. As they headed side-by-side towards the dormitory, a thought entered Louise’s head and she suddenly grabbed Ian by the sleeve.

“Hmm?”

He stopped and looked back at Louise, who was boring her gaze into him.

“…”

“…”

Ian couldn’t help but feel awkward at her intense stare.

“It’s true.”

Louise looked at him wondrously, and Ian scrunched up his face and asked, “What is?”

“You get embarrassed if I stare at you. Someone said that if I became a court official, you wouldn’t be able to do anything.”

“Who said such nonsense?”

“Nonsense?”

Louise clung to his arm and giggled out loud.

“You were very embarrassed a moment ago, weren’t you?”

“…Not at all.”

He turned his head, and Louise turned back and stared at him.

“Really? Then is it okay if I become a court official? Sometimes we might be stuck together for twenty-four hours.”

“If you do, wouldn’t it be you that gets into trouble?”

“…Why?”

“Well, that wouldn’t matter whatever job you got, even if it you were a court official.”

He continued on with a grin.

“My apologies in advance for what you will have to write down.”

“Don’t forget the rule about treating court officials as non-entities!”

“Hmmm….is that so.”

This time he stared at Louise. Oh, now he was trying the reverse on her…

“Of course.”

It was Louise’s turn to avert her eyes.

“I don’t think you can write anything down when I stare at you.”

“What do you mean? I’ll write everything down. I’m going to write down all the details of how terrible you are!”

They continued to argue as they climbed all the steps towards the dormitory roof. Just as Ian said, the student council was gathered there together, the sounds of laughter coming from the group.

“Thank you all for all your hard work this week.”

Ian once again expressed his gratitude to them.

“Because of you, my record was filled with excellent facts.”

“I’m sure it said you were pretentious and condescending.”

None of them doubted it, and they all nodded.

“Anyway, starting next week, everything will be back on track.”

That was fortunate, as the new semester was about to start.

“And the library thanked us for helping them. Stella Lapis will be back today, too.”

Everyone clapped their hands, and Louise glanced at Ian.

Stella Lapis. He said her name so easily…

It was so strange that she was coming back. The real female lead in this world who should have been Ian’s girlfriend.

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