05/20/11 Chapter has been re-edited.
"Hurry up, now, will you, Mikan?" said a raven-haired girl. Boredom evident in her husky voice.
"I'm coming! I'm coming!" yapped an uncertain sixteen-year-old.
Welcome to Alice Academy — a school where all of the students come from different rich countries throughout Japan…ah, well, almost all of them.
"H-hey, Hotaru-chan! Wait for me!" a brunette said, gathering all her books and running to her raven-haired best friend.
Meet Mikan Sakura — a scholar coming from an average family, average parents and with average looks. She was basically just an ordinary student.
That until she met the F4.
The First Chapter
The Flowers and the Weed
"No way! He said that to you?" Mikan overheard one of her classmates say.
"Yeah! He did! Ruka was so cute at that time!" Mikan's left eye twitched as she turned the page of the book she was reading.
These girls are getting in her nerves. The flirts! They were talking about the same topic for almost five hours and they were just plain annoying! No wonder she was against teachers giving them free period to "study by themselves". Obviously enough, most of the students in this school wouldn't care less about studying since they pretty much had their lives laid out for them in soft, frilly red carpets.
"I know, but I think Natsume is cuter!" At that, Mikan rolled her chocolate eyes and closed the book. That's it. She couldn't study in a place where all the 'flirts' gather.
Gathering all her things, the brunette stood up and walked out of the classroom. She couldn't stand it anymore! Her classmates were just plain annoying. Can't they pull out another topic with sense? How about Algebra or Earth Science? They were acting like the F4 were, like, damn gods or something – it was pathetic!
"Darn it," she muttered as she stomped out of the building. "What's good about that stupid F4 anyway? People think they're gods!"
She walked like this, murmuring to herself and when she reached the sakura tree, she couldn't help but scream. If it wasn't for all the privileges she gained from this school, she wouldn't even be in here anyway!
Two more years, she thought. Two more years of trying to ignore the flirts who talked about F4 all the time, the stupid teachers that act like the F4 are the teachers and, of course, the F4 themselves.
Mikan exhaled loudly. It was moments after when she heard something in the grasses move.
What was that?
Curious, Mikan edged closer, tension eating her whole. Oh no oh no oh no. What if there was some kind of monster sleeping under the sakura tree and she just woke it up. What if she was doomed all her life for – wait. What was she thinking? A genius like her needed not to be scared of something that didn't exist.
Mikan let out a short laugh and rolled her eyes to herself before she tilted her head and took a glimpse of something. A body? There was a boy... and he had dark-raven hair almost like Hotaru's, but darker.
The boy rubbed his head and glared at her menacingly. "What's all this screaming about?" he said in a tone filled with so much authority it made her shudder.
Mikan was dumbfounded. She knew this guy. And she knew those crimson-red eyes anywhere! Yes, she hated the F4, but not in a million years did she want to get involved with them in any way – most especially with their leader, Natsume Hyuuga!
Natsume looked at the brunette in a venomous way. "Why did you wake me up?"
"I…um…" Mikan started, but ended up not saying anything else. She was voiceless, she wanted to defend herself, yet no defensive words came. She heard a lot of things about Natsume Hyuuga. A lot of different things but they all had one thing in common – it all had the side note 'keep the hell out of this guy's way if you don't want to be eaten alive'.
Mikan felt her throat run dry as she watched the raven-haired boy watch her in a sinister way.
"You mean you actually woke Natsume Hyuuga up?" Hotaru asked, looking at her straight in the eye. It was rare to see her like this. It must mean that this was a really urgent matter.
"Well…" Mikan paused for a bit. "…well yeah. But it's been two days and nothing's happened!"
The two girls walked to their seats, holding their trays.
"Still, that's Natsume Hyuuga we're talking about," Hotaru pressed, "and you do know that his family owns the company your father is working at."
Mikan stayed silent. Hotaru was right. A hundred percent positively, undoubtedly, absolutely right. If she hasn't experienced any in-school torture yet, there was still a chance that his father was having the worst time of his life at work. But still, it was her trait to always be optimistic.
"I know, but this school isn't a hotel!" Mikan insisted, defending herself. "He wasn't supposed to be there anyway – and – and everyone had the right to voice out their opinions and," she paused, "well, scream."
"Were you even listening to me?" Hotaru glared. "You just messed with the F4, Mikan! If you had an encounter with someone else that wasn't part of the F4, it would be okay."
Mikan opened her mouth and tried to say something, but Hotaru cut her off. "But no, you didn't and it was their leader you woke up and that's the issue," she finished.
The brunette bit her lip hard, mentally slapping herself. Hotaru was right. It was the second time she realized this, but well, Hotaru was right.
"What will I do?" Mikan asked, sounding a little bit frantic.
Hotaru shrugged. "Unless you're absolutely sure that you're safe, you can't think that you're safe."
She sighed. If anybody asked her to defend herself, she would immediately say that it wasn't her fault. At all. Everybody can scream their hearts out! That, except it was Natsume Hyuuga who heard.
"Good morning, classmates!" Mikan greeted cheerfully. It had been three days and still, nothing has happened. Maybe Natsume Hyuuga just forgave her and forgot the whole incident. Yeah, there was a good chance she'd get out of this mess as fast as she created it!
"Good morning, Mikan-chan," some of her classmates greeted back.
Smiling, the brunette walked towards her locker and opened it... there was something different. No, no, no. Maybe this wasn't her locker.
Mikan closed it again, checked the number and realized that it was. And she better brace herself because what she saw was something to freak out about.
"A red card," Mikan said breathlessly.
Around her, Mikan heard whispers. A red card wasn't good. It was a way of F4 to communicate with anyone who messed with them. After receiving the red card, she knew that things were not going to be the same. Chances are, nobody would talk to her, scared of what will happen to them, too, since talking to somebody who had a red card was an offense to the F4.
She slowly stretched her shaking hand and flipped the card. Something was written.
At the back of the school gym.
Mikan gulped. This was bad. This was very, very bad.
Mikan walked slowly towards the back of the gym, her heart beating fast. She then started weighing her consequences – if she surrendered now, her life would be hell. If she ignored the letter, her life would be hell. If she dropped out, her life would be hell – ugh! Stupid F4! There was no way out!
She bowed her head down and tightly clasped her bag. When she raised her head, she saw the four boys looking at her with unreadable expressions. She turned her head and saw the person she least wanted to see.
Natsume smirked at her. "So happy to know you aren't too chicken to leave us waiting," he remarked.
Mikan shuddered at the sound of his voice and started to look away before she starts sinking to the floor in fear.
"Well you are aware to what you did three days ago, right?" he said smugly, looking at her with those blood-colored eyes.
Mikan used ever ounce of her energy to say something. "Y-yes…" she stuttered, "a-and I'm sorry."
She heard one of the members laugh in a high-pitch tone. Mocking, yet serious. "She said she was sorry," she heard him whisper to another.
"Don't worry," Natsume continued, "we know you are."
Natsume stood up and approached the brunette. "…but no matter how sorry you are, I still wonder what your father will say after he lose his job."
Mikan's eyes widened in shock. What he said echoed repeatedly through her
"No! Please! I'll do anything!" she found herself blurting out those words she never wanted to utter.
Natsume smirked again. "Well you're a good girl," he remarked.
"P-please," she repeated, this time, softer. "I'll do anything."
The raven-haired boy raised an eye brow. "Anything?" he echoed.
The brunette was silent for a while. "Y-yes," she answered. "Anything…"
Her tears formed in the corner of her butterscotch pools as she closed her eyes. Tears drops fell to the ground like crystals as she turned her head down.
Natsume seemed bemused. "I knew you'd say that," he remarked, turning around. "So here's the deal."
Mikan braced herself. This was it. She was about to say goodbye to this school and her friends and her career and her future – all because she woke somebody up.
"I'll save your father's job," Natsume continued slowly, as if to mock her. "…but from now on, you're my girlfriend."
She raised her head. "What?"
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