Believing in her

Arte smacked Monde with the umbrella once, twice, only stopping when Monde spluttered out a surrender. However, Arte immediately smacked her again when Monde giggled, “You have to admit, you’re cute when you trip.”

If her face hadn’t turned red, Arte might have been able to play it off as nothing. “What if I fell on my face?” she demanded.

Monde shrugged, dropping her arm around Arte’s shoulders as if nothing was wrong. “You wouldn’t fall, I wouldn’t let you.”

“How are you so smooth?” Arte demanded, nearly throwing her arms up in the air. This time Arte caught the umbrella before Arte accidentally whacked either of them with it.

“Because I’m super cool with my super cool girlfriend.”

Arte didn’t believe it, but she was beginning to think that Monde believed it. And that was almost more important.

Easily embarrassed by murder? Then DON’T DO IT

Normal parents hung up school awards or sports trophies. At least, that was what he had heard. His parents had decided to hang up the relics of every monster that he had murdered on the walls.

He hid his face in his hands. “Mom, can you… take those down? At least for tomorrow. My friends are going to be here and I don’t-”

She fixed him with a look that told him to look at her while she spoke, but his face was still hidden in his hands so he didn’t see it. So she had to interrupt him with words instead. “And hide how proud we are of you? How could you suggest a thing?”

He sighed. “I don’t really want to get into…” No, he couldn’t finish that sentence. He couldn’t tell his mother, a monster hunter, that his friends didn’t know that he killed monsters. That that is what his parents did too. “Oh, okay.”

Nope, he had to get his friends to want to go somewhere else instead. That was his only option to get out of this embarrassment-free. Or something.

She was lying, too, just to mess with him

Everyone knew the story. No one knew the truth.

“You told him what?” He adjusted his collar. And again. It didn’t move very much.

“About what you said in your sleep!” Oh, she was unaffected by what she had done to him. Like normal. How come he could never embarrass her? It was always him!

“Wh-why would you tell him that?”

She smiled, innocently. He had no idea if she really didn’t understand what she had done or not. “We were talking and it just came up!”

“How could it just come up?” There was no way he could go into the meeting now.

“Uh…” She shrugged. “It just did! What’s wrong?”

He took a moment to pinch the bridge of his nose. The motion gave him a moment to think about what just happened. Which didn’t calm him down as much as made him freak out. “Okay, okay… it doesn’t have anything to do with anything. Just focus on the work.”

“You can do it!”

Well, she was always a good cheerleader, at least.


The sky was covered. She peered out from under the awning. Yep, it was starting to rain.


She turned to see her underclassman. “Oh! I wasn’t expecting to see you. I thought you were busy.”

“Yeah, was.” He held out his umbrella. “Here.”

She could hear the rain beating against it. Almost magnetic, she reached out and took it. “Oh. Thanks. But what about-”

“Just a little rain,” he interrupted, before running off into the shower. She watched him go.

Her shoes got wet, but nothing else.

Interested learning

Golden​ shouldn’t have felt so interested, but there it was. “What is all of this?”

Fletcher didn’t stop what he was doing, arranging the instruments on the table. “I teach the young baron in his spare time. While I can’t teach him magic, which is my specialty, I can still show him the things I have seen from all of my travels.”

Golden sat on the other side of the table. He should have left, really. Well, that was only how he felt about it. What about that one? he wanted to ask, but the fact he had already asked a question stuck on his tongue. He felt more like scoffing and walking out. He struggled against it.

“Once this is put together, it will show an outside representation of the sky.”

“What?” The question left him before he could think about it. Golden continued to not think about it. “None of that looks like the sky.”

“And it won’t, from what we see down here. It took me long enough to come up with a physical representation…” Golden wasn’t sure what he was talking about now, but eventually Fletcher got back on track. “Would you like to stay and watch?”

Then the Baroness’ son would know. Golden got up and left the room. If Fletcher said anything after him, he didn’t listen.


She couldn’t help it. She reached out an poked him.

At first, he might not have noticed. Then Dahlia was extremely aware of how much he had noticed. He looked down on her, the tall and sturdy form he had, despite having no blood rushing through his veins. He had been cold.

And she had poked him. Dahlia’s blood decided to decorate the insides of her cheeks.

“Did you need something?” he asked. Kindly, maybe.

Dahlia’s mouth worked around air. Then she nodded.

“Don’t be shy.”

He probably didn’t mean that like she acted he did. Even she knew that. But she reached out and poked the undead man once more.