My Observational Diary of Elena Evoy - Chapter 3
“Johann, what’s our next class?”
“Johann, what are your plans for vacation?”
“Johann, are you free? I want to ask you a question.”
Johann. If someone asked Elena what name she has heard the most recently, she could name one without hesitation. Of course, it was Johann.
Johann Eldorado Pertan. Johann was a celebrity. Even Elena, who is almost an outsider among nobles, was familiar with his name before entering the academy.
Elena remembered coming across “Duke Pertan”, who appeared on the first page on the news when she was delivering newsletters around the commercial district. There’re quite a few banks owned by the Duke, the most successful ones. There are several young masters at the Duke’s. It’s hard to forget him as he was a regular customer of gossip newsletters.
“Miss Elena, congratulations.”
She was honestly surprised when Johann talked to her. Elena remembered his gently curved corners of his eyes and his beautiful dimples.
Wealth, fame, beauty, honor. Elena could tell at a glance that this boy was the son of Duke Pertan, the man who had everything. As such, Johann was a golden boy. His blonde hair fluttering in the breeze literally glistened, but that wasn’t all.
Johann also had a bright personality. He’s very friendly and has a good attitude. Unlike Elena, who has been responsible for supporting herself since she was young because of her sick mother, he was a wholesome boy who had no burdens.
So for Elena, Johann’s first impression wasn’t so bad. On the contrary, he was in her good books. Naturally. Without a reason, no one would dislike a pretty boy who brightens their day with just a smile.
“… Are you taking care of the garden?”
But that’s about it. Elena had no ax to grind with Johann. She knew that many of the girls always had their eyes on Johann, but that wasn’t the case for Elena.
Don’t even look at the tree you can’t climb. Elena grew up with that philosophy in mind. Because of this philosophy, Elena could not enjoy delicious snacks, pretty clothes, or a normal life. Now, Johann was one of them. To be precise, Elena didn’t think of Johann even as a tree. So naturally, she had no unruly thoughts about him.
“You really are busy. But you still managed to be the top student. You’re amazing, Miss Elena.”
“… Not really, but thank you.”
The problem was that even though Johann was not even a tree, Elena encountered him too often. He’s like gold or silk, or even the finest diamond. I doubt he’s doing that on purpose, but it seems we just run into each other at every place I work.
‘But he shouldn’t be spreading rumors.’
He just comes, praises and then disappears, so I don’t really care. I think I was right about him. He’s more like a bother. A moment of leisure for Johann meant more work for Elena.
Elena didn’t want to get caught up in a fuss. It wasn’t that she didn’t know what aristocrats thought of labor. Yet, she only did her best because her circumstances were so dire that she had to get a job with the permission of the academy.
‘Although tuition and dormitory fees have been resolved, I still have to pay for living expenses at home and food expenses…I should call the doctor, too.’
Naturally, study hours were reduced by working hours. She felt like she got the whole world when she got a scholarship to Münuit Academy, but the reality was harsh. In fact, the joy of passing the exam didn’t even last a day.
The legacy of the Evoy family was created back when the Viscount made a name for himself as a great wizard. He was extremely sensitive and isolated himself from others. Even though he left behind his descendants, unfortunately, no one with such outstanding talent appeared in passing generations.
Eventually, during Elena’s father’s time, all his wealth ran out and they were left without a castle or an estate.
But they didn’t crumble. Elena’s father, Viscount Evoy, made a living as the administrator of a small estate nearby. He gained a good reputation thanks to his meticulous work and was asked to take charge of work in various territories.
But the happiness didn’t last long. Viscount Evoy suddenly died. Unfortunately, his carriage was involved in an accident on the way to inspect the small territories of the Duke of Notre. So, Elena lost her father at the mere age of seven.
For a while, Viscountess Evoy picked up embroidery jobs but eventually she could no longer work due to a joint illness.
Elena and her mother disposed of all the remaining assets and moved to a residential area. The residential area was the only place where doctors and healers could be accessed easily. Although it was just a shabby residential area on the outskirts, Elena was grateful just to be able to call a qualified doctor.
‘I’m sure mother is doing well. I have to go see her.’
She stayed at the academy on weekdays and stopped by the commercial district on weekends, so she couldn’t rest at all. Elena moved her stiff neck around. Soon after, she rose from her seat. Today, she had to stop by the stable and learn a bit more about horse care.
“Oh, so you’re Elena! Hi. I’m Gillian. I’m from the Kingdom of Doighton. Feel free to call me Jilly. I’ll call you Elena, too. Your name was on the plaque. I was late because there was an accident on the way here. But it’s not too late, right?”
It was a holiday she had been waiting for. A loud voice welcomed Elena, who had simply finished her morning routine. She was an impressive girl, she had her hair neatly divided in the middle, dark-skinned with stoic features.
“It’ll be okay since it’s a preliminary class until this week.”
“You’re really good at talking! It’s a relief since I was worried if my roommate was a picky person. Anyway, nice to meet you.”
Of course, what was more impressive than that was the words pouring out of her mouth nonstop. She seemed to speak twice as fast as others. I thought I was lucky when I was able to use the double room for myself, but it’s over.
“Is your body well?”
“What can I say about the empire? The academy is huge. I’m fine, wait- What?”
“You said there was an accident.”
Gillian puffed her cheeks for a moment at the trivial question. It felt like her eyeballs were rolling.
“Oh, ah… I’m okay. It wasn’t a big deal. You’re a good listener, aren’t you? Took me a second to realize what you were talking about. Anyway, what are you doing?”
“Ah, embroidery. Oh, it’s embroidered lace. Who are you going to give it to? But wow, you’re really good at it.”
“Thank you. It’s not for anyone in particular. I just make it and sell it.”
Gillian, who had been talking nonstop, was silent for a while and opened her mouth again.
“Oh… Sell it? I see. That’s understandable. If there’s a buyer, there’s a seller.”
“By the way, I don’t know much about this place and it’s huge, too. It’s bigger than our entire palace.”
“Yes. I was surprised at first, too.”
Elena replied back, eyes still fixed on the embroidery. This dormitory room, now occupied by two people, was bigger than Elena’s house. At first, Elena had chills when she used the room alone. It was too big of a room by Elena’s standards.
“Say, does that take a long time?”
“I see. How sad. By the way, can you show me around the campus?”
“I assume you didn’t get the map. I’ll give you mine.”
A polite rejection. Elena’s eyes were not an inch off the embroidery. But Gillian was adamant.
“Aren’t you being too hard on your lonely roommate? We should be helping each other.”
“Then, are you taking me for a tour?”
“No. I’m a bit occupied right now.”
I said that I make it and sell it but I actually deliver a fixed quantity. It’s been years since I’ve taken over my mother’s work. It took young Elena a great deal of effort to gain repute and continue doing this job. After a lot of hard work, they are finally receiving orders from designers for lace production.
Now that I’m studying and working at the same time, I can’t waste any time. Friends are important, of course, but they don’t feed you. Elena realized this fact after a long struggle.
“Hey, do you happen to like tasty food? I’ll buy it for you.”
However, a friend who buys me food is different. Elena neatly laid down her embroidery and stood up.
“You don’t look like that, but you like to eat!”
“Food is important to live.”
“Oh, that’s good to hear.”
Thus began the academy tour of the two girls who hit it off.
“The library you see over there is divided into two buildings. For special knowledge of magic, spirits, potions use the right, and use the left side for the rest. Anyway, when you go there, you’ll see the signs inside.”
Elena’s explanation was simple and clear. There was no need to make her repeat her words. Thanks to this, the two were able to tour around the academy very fast. Gillian managed to catch up with her pace, repeating “Oh!” and “Oh.”
Finally, when they reached the main building, the academy guide who had not had a break, had finally reached the end stage when they stood in front of the main building. This is that, and that is that. Gillian suddenly interrupted the short and concise tour with an ‘Oh’.
“If there’s an issue with the dorm or if you need to submit documents, go to the administrative building over there…”
“Who’s that guy?”
That guy? Elena followed where Gillian’s fingertips pointed and paused. Bright blonde hair shone clearly even from a distance. Johann Pertan. Surrounded by several female students and chuckling, it was clearly Johann.
“He’s like a prince. Oh, perhaps, is he the Crown Prince who is a senior here?”
“No, he’s in a different grade. If you look at his tie, it’s yellow, meaning he’s a freshman.”
“Oh, so that prince is a freshman, too?”
“He’s not a prince… His name is Johann Pertan.”
Gillian had already branded Johann as a prince in her mind. Elena quietly corrected her that he wasn’t, but she didn’t know if she understood it or not. Actually, it doesn’t really matter. Even if he’s not the Crown Prince, he’s still a member of the Royal family, being the son of Duke Pertan.
“Are you close?”
“Not at all.”
“Oh, wait a minute. Come to think of it, I need to get something from the administrative department.”
“Go ahead, then.”
“Don’t leave without me!”
Gillian shouted cheerfully and quickly went away. Since she was tall, her legs were quite long. For some reason, I feel like it’ll be tiring living in the dormitory with such a peculiar roommate.
As she waited for Gillian, Johann scaled the distance between them. Her eyes gazing in the air immediately met his. She was not close enough to greet him first, but not distant enough to ignore him. When Elena nodded her head first, Johann approached with a bright smile.
“Miss Elena, what are you doing here?”
“Giving someone a brief tour…”
Elena agonized for a moment. It isn’t a formal job, but it’s a little vague since I’m getting paid. Is it perhaps a favor?
“No. I have a new roommate.”
“A roommate at this time?”
Elena said with a slight smile. Do I feel relatively comfortable now because we meet often? Elena found herself momentarily relieved by her thoughts as she looked at Johann.
Meanwhile, Johann could only blink at the sight.
“Gillian will be back soon. I’m afraid she’ll hold you down when she sees you.”
“Oh, yes. I should go.”
Just a moment ago I barely escaped from the swarm of female students. Johann was proud of his popularity, but he didn’t always enjoy the side effects. I enjoy it often, but there are days when I get tired from it. And today was such a day.
‘Then why did I come to talk to her?’
Just why? I thought I’d find out by looking in her eyes. Johann then brushed off the question that came to his mind as if nothing. There’s something else I’m more curious about than that. Why did she smile all of a sudden?
“Oh, yes. Goodbye, Miss Elena.”
Johann returned to his senses and let out a short sigh.