Gilded Cage - Chapter 7

Published at 27th of December 2018 03:20:16 PM

Chapter 7

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I did not dare return to my secluded spot by the lake after that incident . Instead, I observed from a bench near that spot, bringing my schoolwork and some other books with me, and stayed there whenever I was free . My aim was to determine if I could still use my secluded spot without others claiming it as well, I persuaded myself . I definitely was not trying to satisfy my curiosity as to find out who that handsome stranger was . From his words, he seemed to come here often as he was familiar with the birds residing there . But I had not seen him since the day I moved to Mirror Court .

After two weeks, he appeared again . A flutter of birds flocked the secluded spot, no doubt enjoying their additional meal . Maybe he came every two weeks? For two weeks since I had moved to Mirror Court, I had not seen him . And two weeks after that incident, he appeared again . So did that mean my secret secluded spot was still mine except for the day he visited? This seemed to lift up my mood . The bench I was currently occupying was a good spot, but it's not secluded enough and without a huge tree protecting this area, direct sunlight shone on me for an hour every day . It's too sunny .

I looked up from the book I was reading, trying to move my neck after a long time of bending forward . I was rubbing the back of my neck with my hand when I saw the stranger . He was standing by the lake and gazing at it . He wore a robe similar to last time, a simple black one with silver embroideries at the hems . Sleeves fluttering amid the gentle breeze, when they caught the sunlight, the hidden embroidery on the edge of the sleeves became apparent . It was the ensign of Ivory Manor . He was no doubt one of the young masters of Ivory Manor . Probably one of the competitors for the spot of the heir of Ivory Manor .

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Returning my gaze to the book on the lap, I persuaded myself to stop being so nosy . But it seemed like my curiosity got the better of me, I peeked at him once in awhile . Of course I did that secretly, with my enhanced bird eyesight . There's some perks of having shape-shifting power after all . I swore my curiosity would be my downfall one day . To say the truth, he was a really handsome young man . And who didn't like admiring beautiful things? Thus, began my secret life of peeking at the handsome young master whenever he appeared by the lake .

Just as I had deduced, he only showed up every two weeks, on the day before rest day . After confirming my deduction, I happily returned to occupying the secluded spot, which by now I had thought of as my secret spot . Whenever it's time for the young master to show up, I occupied the bench close to the spot instead .

Time went by, the first evaluation of the year was coming close . I had been practicing nearly everyday in the practice ground with my partner . What I lacked in talent, I had to at least make up with my effort . I hopped back as gracefully as I could and twirled the practice sword with my wrist . A bend of my waist and then pierced the sword at my opponent's waist backhandedly . Lilian counteracted with a heavy strike of her fire-coated sword . My sword split into two on contact . I dropped my hand and sighed .

"Let's call it a day, Lilian . " My hand was still shaking slightly from the impact of Lilian's last strike .

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"Yup . Our progress was pretty good . You mastered the backhand technique! I nearly didn't see it coming! Let's continue tomorrow . "

I nodded in silence and quickly grabbed my things . I had to get out of here . It's suffocating and I was annoyed with myself . I didn't master that backhand technique . If I did, Lilian wouldn't be able to fight back . She even broke my practice sword . I thought that technique was already good enough, but apparently not .

I wanted to leave everything behind . I wanted to rest . Without noticing, I had already reached the secluded spot by the lake . Throwing my shattered sword onto the bench, I let out a tiny scream . I really needed a break . Checking for one last time that no one was around, I shifted into a bird and then soared into the sky .

After flying away and letting my steam off, I returned to the bench and closed my eyes . I stayed there, enjoying the tiny silence this moment brought me . And then my silence was shattered . I was brought into a hand of a person . I opened my eyes in shock and was met with the mocking face of the young master . He seemed thoroughly entertained .

"You're really a failure as a bird," he mocked . "I caught you again . How can you survive in this world with such poor reflex?"

I wanted to scream at myself for my stupidity . Why didn't I notice him getting so close? Was I really such a failure? And today was rest day! Why was he here? He'd just been here last week! I tried to flap my wings or struggle out of his grasp, but to no avail .

"Don't be so frightened . I don't look like such a bad guy, do I?" he smirked .

Yes, you do . You caught me every time you met me and you said you weren't a bad guy?

Suddenly, he's chuckling . "You looked like you had human emotions . What a weird bird . You're annoyed? Do you really know what annoyance is? Do you?"

His mood seemed to suddenly turn bad, something hard and dangerous gleamed in his eyes . He took a look at me and then his mouth quirked up .

I had a bad feeling .