The next day, the time showed 04:00 PM. The sky above the Diamond Collage is a little cloudy. I sat on the bench while chewing a sandwich in my hand. My eyes locked at Larry who was sitting next to me.
"How long do I have to be like this?" he said while looking away awkwardly.
"Wait, I'm not done yet," I said, holding his head, turning his face back to me and stared at him.
Larry cleared his throat awkwardly.
"Ethan, I know we have been friends since childhood. But I only think of you as friends no more than that..." His tone is like a shy highschool girl who rejects the man who just made a confession to her.
"Since you still think of me as a friend, stay still," I remember for the last two days I got a daily quest after staring at Emma and Olivia. I concluded, my quest has to do with what I saw. That's why I decided to stare at Larry to get a quest related to him. At least if it's related to him, I can complete it easily, but it's been almost half an hour, I still haven't gotten any quest.
'Is something missing? Am I wrong?'
"What exactly were you talking about yesterday? Why after you talked with that crazy bodyguard you became like this?"
"This has nothing to do with yesterday's incident."
"I'm sure something must have happened to you!" Larry held my shoulders furiously.
"Did that crazy bodyguard harass you?" he said in a dramatic tone.
"No-" I stopped my sentence when I saw Olivia approaching us.
"I knew it! That crazy bodyguard must have harassed you!" Larry started blabbering again before I could stop him.
"Who is the crazy bodyguard who harassed you?" said Olivia suddenly while standing behind Larry.
Larry stiffened and released his hand from me as he turned his body slowly with a pale face.
Olivia immediately frowned in confusion when she saw Larry's face.
"Why is your face turning pale?"
While I bit down my lips trying to hold back my laugh after seeing it.
Since Larry didn't answer, Olivia returned her gaze to me.
"Who has been harassing you?"
"No one. He just imagines too much," I said while continuing to hold my laughter.
"You're not lying right?" Her expression turned worried.
After I saw her expression, for a moment I remembered yesterday's incident when she was worried before I fought with Franz. An announcement suddenly appeared in front of me.
[You have received a daily quest!]
[Hugging for 10 seconds.]
[Target: Olivia Creststream.]
[Reward: Title and EXP.]
[Punishment: Losing half your DP.]
[Time limit: 3:59:55]
'This is harder than yesterday.' But instead of panicking as before, I was more curious about what triggers it. I retraced what I just thought and realized something. When I got Emma's quest I was watching her physically, which is why my quest was related to what I wanted to touch physically. Yesterday, when I got Olivia's quest, I thought about how to be friends with her since I thought she already knew I was Damian. And this time was because I wanted to calm her down after seeing her worried face.
"Ethan, are you all right?" Olivia's voice made my mind return. Her worried face did not change. While Larry is still silent with a pale face.
I smiled in response to her words. A second later, without warning, I stood up and embraced her.
Olivia was shocked by my sudden movements and Larry was also shocked with his mouth wide open like he was sure I would die this time. Well ... Actually, not only Larry but everyone looked at us with the same expression as him and was sure I would be killed by Olivia. While a countdown appeared before my eyes.
[10 ... 9 ... 8 ...]
Olivia tried to push me away.
"Let me go-"
But before she finished her sentence, I interrupted her.
"Thank you for worrying about me. But I'm fine. Please don't make a face like that ..." What I told her honestly came from my heart. I don't like seeing other people worry about me, that's also one of the reasons why I never said anything to Celia about our difficulties.
Hearing my words she stopped pushing me and was stunned. I could feel her heart beating fast.
"Olivia, even though I'm thin, I'm not a weak man," I said again.
Rather than yesterday, this time countdown felt even faster. Everything works naturally, as if I did it on my own, not because the system asked me to do it.
'Lilieth is right. This system is related to me. During all this time I kept suppressing myself but this system showed the true me. '
"I understand ... Let me go." Her voice sounded softer than usual.
At the same time, my countdown has reached 0.
[Congratulations! You have completed your daily quest!]
[You gained exp.]
[You have earned a new title: Hugger. Let me hug you and calm your feelings. STR + 1 LUK + 1.]
I let go of my arms and could clearly see her face turning red with embarrassment and nervousness.
"You already have enough problems, don't add it again because of me." Then I took my bag on the bench while she was still stunned.
"Let's go," I said with a smile.
My voice startled her.
"Ah ... Okay."
Both of us walked past the students who were still dumbfounded looking at us with casual steps. While Larry muttered.
"I must be dreaming."
Like yesterday we walked in Nighthallow City, but since it was still too early I took her to the Acrine District with the reason that yesterday we met Camila at night. Besides, it's bad for her to be seen at Ledred too often.
It's almost 06:00 PM.
We were already sitting at the Star Cafe but instead of sitting on the outdoor seat like yesterday, today we sat inside, next to a large glass window accompanied by two cups of latte.
"I'm sorry for not being able to accompany you for too long today."
"It's okay. I'm glad you can accompany me." A smile spread on her face.
Seeing she was in a good mood, I decided to ask her.
"Olivia, may I ask you some questions?"
"About 'that man'." I deliberately didn't say it directly to keep her from being offended.
"What is it?" Her face suddenly turned sour.
"Do you really want to let him be with your mother if he can make her happy?"
She paused for a moment and looked down to cover her sad expression.
"Do I have any other choice?"
"Are you afraid he will take your mother?" My eyes continued to observe every change in her facial expression.
"You have experienced the same thing as me. I think you already understand what's in my mind now."
"If he can make your mother happy without taking her from you, will you forgive him?"
She raised her head and gave me a cynical look.
"He is a prostitute. Aren't all prostitutes rotten?"
"I think equating everyone based on their profession is unfair."
Her forehead wrinkled in dissatisfaction with my words.
"Ethan, why did you defend him?" she said suspiciously.
"I'm not defending him. I said it because I don't want you to torture yourself," I replied firmly, while my eyes looked at her with seriousness. She goes to Ledred every day to follow Camila in order to protect her, that's not something a girl should do. She is not supposed to be the 'bodyguard' of her mother nor Emma, she is also a woman who should be protected and loved.
"I know you are trying to protect your mother, but this is not the way to do it," I continued.
She fell silent after hearing my words, while her expression turned calmer.
"I think rather than spying on her all day like this. Your mother needs encouragement to face her divorcement," I added.
"I know ... It just ... I hate seeing men who hurt women. I hate when I see my mother crying..."
"You can judge him later. For now, I think it's still too early."
"I don't know about that ..." The confusion was clearly on her face.
* Beep * * Beep * * Beep *
My alarm sounded, I took my cellphone and turned it off.
"I have to go now," I said, taking my bag. I flashed a smile at her.
"My friend will be here soon. Please don't leave before she arrives, ok?"
"See you tomorrow."
My feet walked quickly toward the exit and into the Havana Cafe across the street after previously checking whether Olivia followed me or not. Camila was already sitting in the chair as a waiter putting a cup of tea in front of her, while I passed her to the toilet.
I went inside a stall and took off my sweater.
'Incubus Form Activated.'
[You have activated your Incubus Form.]
A dark aura covered my body as the sound of bones rattled with a strange hiss in my ears. I checked myself in the mirror before moving out and approached Camila.
"Sorry for keeping you waiting," I said while sitting in the chair before her.
"It's fine, I just arrived." A happy smile immediately appeared on her face when she saw me.
"Why are you looking for me?"
"I want to talk to you about a few things. Especially about what happened two days ago." She took a deep breath before returning to speak.
"I already talked about this with my daughter ... But it seems like she ..." She stopped in the last sentence, but I already knew.
"Did she reject it?" I asked.
Her face turned sour, her disappointment clearly visible on her expression.
"She didn't reject it directly."
"I think this is too fast for her. Her father has been taken by someone else, she must be afraid of her mother being taken too," I said to calm her. I understand she was depressed because of her divorce and needed someone to comfort her to get through it. But forcing her ego at the expense of Olivia was also not a good thing.
She bent down her head.
"I understand that but ... Isn't it unfair for me?"
I held her hands gently.
"Camila, if you need me I'm here. I'm not going anywhere. But you have to remember your daughter needs you too. I don't want you to hurt her for me. I don't want to take someone who is important to others, because I know what it feels like to lose someone who is precious to me. "
She raised her head and looked at me, while I looked at her deeply.
"Even if your husband has done something to disappoint you, you shouldn't lose your heart. Because that will only make you the same as him," I continued.
She gasped as if she realized something after hearing my words.
[Congratulations! You have raised your partner's Love meter.]
[Camila Creststream - Human (35)]
[Love Meter 2/10 - You are the person that I want. ]
' Hah? The love meter goes up? '
She held my hand in response, my attention returned to her. Her face looks brighter and more relaxed, a sweet smile adorns her face.
"Thank you for making me realize it, Damian. You are right, I should be taking care of my divorce before telling my daughter about you."
A sigh of relief came out of my mouth after hearing her words.
"Then do you want to settle it with her first?"
"With my daughter?"
I cast my gaze at the window beside us to the opposite cafe. Camila turned to look in the same direction at me and immediately caught her daughter's figure who was sitting while sipping her latte.
"Olivia ?!" she said in a surprised tone.
"She's a good daughter. I heard from my friend that she has been looking for you for two days at Ledred." I turned my gaze to Camila. "Just because she's worried about you."
She paused as she continued to look at Olivia, a smile reappeared on her face.
"Don't make her worry too much. We still can meet again tomorrow." I said.
"Yes." She turned at me and looked at me gently.
"I'll see you tomorrow."
I answered with a nod.
She took her hand off me and stood up, but before she left she spoke again.
"Damian, I never thought I could meet a man like you at Ledred ... Thank you." Then she left.
I heaved a sigh of relief once more as I leaned my back on my chair, my eyes watched Camila who crossed the street and entered the Star Cafe while Olivia looked at her in shock. Yes, I know what it's like to lose, so I don't want the others to experience the same thing as me.
I stood up from my chair and grabbed my bag.
'Since the problem is solved. It's time for me to go back to work at Ledred. '
Camila's and Olivia's PoV
Camila's feet stepped inside the Star Cafe and approached Olivia.
"Who are you waiting for, Olivia?" she said while sitting before her.
"Mother?!" Olivia said in surprise while putting down her cellphone. She didn't think the person that Ethan wanted her to meet was her mother.
Camila noticed that there was another cup of latte on the table.
"Did you just meet your boyfriend?" she asked bluntly.
"Mom, don't tease me. He's not my boyfriend," she quickly refused.
Camila smiled at her daughter's expression, guilt enveloped her. Indeed, after her husband brought his mistress home, she was very depressed. After she met Damian and felt so comfortable with him, what she thought was revenge on her husband's actions. That was the reason why she told Olivia everything and even told her plans to bring Damian home and live with them. She knew it was too fast, but she was also sick of seeing her husband making out like crazy in front of her every day, making her feel increasingly wasted. If her husband can do it, why can't she?
But like Damian said ... If she brought Damian, wouldn't that mean she was no different from her husband? Wouldn't it be very sad if she ends up being the same as the person she hates? And in the end, Olivia was the victim of their conflict.
"Olivia, are you worried about me?" she said softly.
"Of course ... You are having a hard time because of father and now that man is missing."
"I've met him."
Olivia looked at Camila doubtfully.
" Are you going to bring him home?"
Camila shook her head side to side.
"He refused?" Olivia asked in a disbelief tone. How could a prostitute not want to live in their big mansion? Also if he could marry her mother, then her mother's wealth will be his.
"I haven't told him. But I'm sure he will refuse. He said he didn't want to take me from you."
"Did he say that ?!"
"Yes. I know... I made decisions too early because of my anger at your father. But now my mind is clearer after talking to him."
Olivia looked at Camila and realized that her face looked brighter than before. A smile bloomed on her face as she thought maybe that man was not as bad as she thought.
Camila noticed her daughter's smile.
"Do you feel relieved?"
"Yes ... I thought you were going to leave like father."
Camila held Olivia's hand tightly and looked at her gently.
"I'm here ... I'm not gonna leave you."
"Then? How about you?" said Camila out of blue.
"What do you mean?"
"You are already 18 years old. There's no way you haven't liked anyone?" Camila teased while observing Olivia's expression.
Olivia quickly let go of her hand and turned her blushing face.
"Of course I have ... But you know that your daughter is feared by all men. I don't know how he feels about me."
"Is he the sweater's owner you brought home a month ago?" Camila teased again.
"How do you know?" Olivia said in surprise.
"Of course I know. I also know you washed it yourself with your hands."
Olivia's face turned even redder. She remembered how a month ago several male students had walked past her while holding back their laughter without saying anything. But at that time, he approached her and told her there was a bloodstain behind her jeans, not only that, he also lent his sweater to cover it. His kindness looks simple but impressed in her heart. This is also the reason why she asked him to accompany her to Ledred in search of her mother. Because when the others laugh at her, he doesn't ...
"I'm afraid if I let the maids wash it they will damage it..."
Camila leaned forward while one of her hands supported her head.
"I'm getting curious. What does he look like? Is he handsome? Is he also a martial artist ?"
"He's not handsome, a bit thin. He's not from a rich family either, but he's kind." Olivia said, smiling shyly.
"Then what's his name?" said Camila, smiling happily, seeing the fierce eyes of her daughter turn soft.
"He's a model student at my college. His name is Ethan. "