The youth wore a wide grin and waved. Calix waved back at the youth.
People gathered around the youth with hardly enough room to breathe. They all leaned an ear towards the youth, hung on to his every word, and burst out into laughter in response. They were all firmly captivated by the youth.
The youth’s shining black eyes simply overflowed with liveliness. He was enjoying the ball immensely. Calix was pleased by the sight of the youth enjoying himself, but on the other hand, it was an eyesore.
Until now, the youth had belonged solely to him. Apart from himself, no other had received the youth’s attention or exchanged words with him. That was obvious, as only the two of them had been spending time together late at night. However, here at the ball, people talking with the youth, people receiving the youth’s attention, and people making the youth smile were numerous. For his heart to be so uneasy just because the youth got along with someone else, it seemed that he, himself, was quite smitten with the youth.
The youth, who had been introduced as royalty from a distant foreign land, grabbed people’s attention from the beginning.
At first, the reason he became the center of attention was because the youth had appeared with Calix.
A rumor had spread quietly. The curiosity towards the black-haired youth residing with the Crown Prince in his own palace was immense. It was to be expected, but the gazes turned upon the youth now weren’t of that kind. The people gazed upon the youth with favor and delight. Those at a distance also snuck glances at him, their desire to get closer to him plain in their demeanor.
As the youth said something, the crowd burst into hearty laughter.
The little one who was strangely dense and naive before him was now nowhere to be seen. Instead, there was only that haughty and proud, shrewd figure from when Calix had first met him. The youth was well versed in how to draw other people’s attention and interest, as well as how to thoroughly be pampered by those same people.
The youth who had been enjoying himself for a while sent his gaze towards Calix again. And as their eyes met, the youth smiled brightly in his direction. The people surrounding the youth followed his line of sight and saw the Crown Prince returning his gaze. Then they went back to hanging onto the youth’s every word.
Well, this is…
From where he was sitting, Calix murmured with a hint of a smile.
Today, the youth was even more manipulative than he had thought. In this ballroom full of the empire’s narcissistic nobles, the youth was using him without hesitation to stand in a position that was the slightest bit more favorable. Drunk on the limelight, the youth cast him aside to go play, but flaunted his close relationship with the Crown Prince by smiling in his direction every so often.
If someone else had done it, he never would have let it pass it kindly. Perhaps it was because he had fallen for the youth, but even that behavior seemed lovely and adorable. And so he sat good-naturedly like this, waiting for the youth to wave at him and returning the gesture right away.
This time, how long would it be until he smiled his way again?
Calix sipped a light alcohol and chuckled lightly.
When he first entered the ballroom, the youth looked a bit bewildered. He glanced around the ballroom while mumbling to himself. His words were ‘What is this? The land of giants?’ As if. From a human’s perspective, the youth had only seen Calix, so he wouldn’t know how great the difference was between his physique and others’. Every so often, his pride would be hurt, and he would grumble over their large difference in height. Indeed, how shocked he must have been when he realized that he was quite similar in build to the petite women in the ballroom.
In any case, it was not long before the dazed youth quickly recovered his composure and began going about the ballroom as if was his own world.
The youth had dark eyes and hair that were almost never seen in this land— and even if they were, nothing came close to its luster—and his delicate form quickly captivated the people. More than anything, those dark eyes. They couldn’t look away from those black eyes that clearly reflected the sparkling lights.
Since the youth had neglected him for a while, it would be nice if he gradually came back.
Calix drummed his fingers on the chair’s armrest as his restlessness grew. Ever since it became known that the youth was his, no one would sloppily approach him, but there was the small worry that someone would hang around him with bothersome intentions.
The youth was blissfully unaware of his restlessness and was busy amusing himself with the other guests. Calix considered whether it would be fine if he stepped in and retrieved the youth about now.
But he did not act on it. Although it was a vague feeling, it occurred to him that the youth was testing him.
To specifically put it into words, ‘I’ve accepted your apology, but I still haven’t completely forgiven you. So wait obediently over there.’ It was approximately that sort of message.
Other than showing off his relationship with Calix, it seemed that the occasional look the youth sent his way also served to observe, or even keep vigilant against, Calix.
I better not to do anything to be hated again.
Calix clicked his tongue and resolved.
The youth was normally one to be quite affectionate. Even if Calix groped his body while giving a flimsy excuse, he would nod in understanding. But once he crossed the line that the youth had decided, it became like this with just the lightest kiss on the lips. Even after accepting his apology yesterday, the aftereffects had not disappeared. If he did something to deserve the youth’s hatred again, he really might not ever set his eyes upon that face again.
Calix looked towards the younger sister who was coming towards him.
As he called her name, her two cheeks flushed red. Her meticulously adorned figure was rather lady-like. After a moment of speechlessness, quite unlike herself, Rosemary opened her lips to speak, but…
The youth, who had come to his side at some point, placed a hand on his shoulder and called his name. Calix wondered if the youth had finally come around and wrapped his hand around the other’s waist.
The youth greeted Rosemary first, however his expression was threatening. As if she detected that, Calix saw Rosemary’s expression change. The youth looked at Rosemary and smiled opaquely, then suddenly grasped Calix’s hand.
“Lixy. I want to change into something else.”
He could plainly feel the tenacity in the eyes of the youth pulling his hand. Just now, he willing to endlessly wait for the youth. There was no reason to reject that demand.
As he rose from his seat, Rosemary exclaimed, “Elder Brother!” Calix pet his younger sister’s head once and wrapped his fingers around the youth’s. His eyes met the youth’s, and saw the satisfied look filling his face. He seemed pleased that Calix was following him. Calix tightly grasped the hand of the youth who had finally come back to him and followed him.
Thank you all for waiting so patiently! I hope you enjoyed the ballroom scenes hehe…
Another semester, another chapter. I’m really sorry to all of my readers that this is the trend so far… I really hope to get a lot more done during the free time I have this winter break, hopefully another chapter out by Christmas/New Years!