The Good Brother
Chapter 2 Have A Lindt, Shiki
Shiki should have known from the way the lady dressed in a mink coat and leopard print skirt scanned his face that she was going to ask something.
”Spit it out already, ” Shiki demanded. He grimaced, since he could tell the skirt was probably not even imitation leopard print skin. The lady was probably not the type to care that a leopard potentially had to die so she could have that skirt.
”You look familiar, ” she remarked, pulling out her wallet. ”Have we met before somewhere? ”
”Gee, madam, ” Shiki replied tersely. ”I don know. ” It would be ruder if he said no, since Shiki did not know the lady in front of him.
” the lady had an idea. She snapped her fingers and pointed at Shiki.
e on Monarch International Academys soccer team! ”
Shiki sighed with exasperation, repressing the urge to ask her, ”Which part of me looks like a soccer player? ” However, to her face, he said, ”No, madam, Im not. ”
”You weren on the court for the Homecoming King election, were you? ”
Shiki could tell that even as the words left her mouth, she realised she was wrong again. He wasn exactly what people would call ”Homecoming King material ”—i.e., he was closer to lean instead of bulky, wore glasses instead of contacts, and had paler skin than those on the athletic team.
Not to mention, he did not have the popularity or the money the It Crowd had. If he was not careful with his spending, he could say goodbye to having three square meals a day.
Obviously, he did what he could with what he was given by the heavens, but he wouldn be joining any curricular activities any time soon, let alone be noticed or nominated for any court of the Homecoming King.
”No, madam, ” Shiki confirmed. The thing was, he didn really want to waste time discussing why he looked familiar. Who would, when the pay is on the line, which decided between whether they got enough for dinner or not?
But, to Shikis misfortune, she wouldn let it go.
”Goodness. I just know I know your appearance from somewhere, ” the woman mumbled, handing him her credit card to pay for the piles of branded clothing she was about to buy. ”Are you sure I didn see your picture in the paper? ”
He quelled the temptation to yell at her to leave. Why wouldn this lady just let it go already?
”A hundred percent, madam, ” Shiki sighed. What the heck was the woman thinking? Did she think he was some criminal or someone famous? Why would he even be in the paper?
Fortunately, though, he had not been in the paper since his birth announcement with his twin sister. Why would he? He never really participated in any school clubs or any school/national competitions.
While he was mostly in AP (Advanced Programme) classes, that was only because he worked hard to keep his grades up. In terms of natural intelligence, he still fell slightly short compared to his classmate Phillip Robinson, who was an actual genius—he had a perfect grade for all the subjects and got the highest score anyone could get on the school examinations, even the essay part.
Shiki thought Phillip should have been moved up a few grades, but he replied he liked where he was for some weird reason.
Not that Monarch International Academy valued the book smart kids. Otherwise, Phillip would have been more popular than the athletic or artistic kids combined, and the AP classes would have been the schools hot spot.
Instead, it was just somewhere the others never deigned to enter, except for those who took their classes there. Typical.
Shiki ran her credit card through the scanner before saying, ”Maybe because I am a new employee here, and not many people get hired here. ”
While it did not sound much, but À La Mode Boutique had a high competition due to the luxury brands the store sold. Moreover, the interviews came in stages, so potential candidates needed to study some of the handbooks at later phrases. Shiki hated the requirements, but the pay was high enough that Shiki could have money leftover after paying for the necessities.
The woman frowned, shaking her head. ”No, thats not it, either. ”
Shiki could not understand her frustration, however.
He supposed it could be upsetting when someone could not figure out something, but if it was him, hed drop it after a while. People had their secrets, after all. It was not their place to pry.
Shiki found it somewhat astounding how nosy people could be, and how there were bullies who refused to leave their victims alone. To him, what was especially upsetting about the latter case—if one ever thought about it (which he often tried not to)—was that they would target his little sister.
He really hated seeing her cry, since she always looked like a kicked puppy being drenched in the rain. Whenever he saw her tears, he had the overwhelming urge to hurt whoever had made his twin cry.
The problem was, those that bullied her always had the family background to rely upon. Even if he wanted to file a lawsuit, it would cost tons of money, which was what those people had. Hence, most of the time, he kept his head down and went on with life.
It was amazing how much people can get away with when they had money, too. It was almost as if morals were all but thrown out the window. Who cared about justice as long as they lined their pockets with wads of cash, right?
That was why he had to go with the underhanded methods to teach those people a lesson. However, that always ended up with some blood on his hands. Shiki shrugged it off as some blood spilled while teaching a lesson, but he noted that he disliked paying extra for dry-cleaning.
For some reason, whenever he mentioned what he did to his nominal friends during lunch, they always looked at him like he was the real-life Jason Voorhees. Nevertheless, he usually shrugged it off because his sister would be all smiles at hearing his stories.
Nothing else mattered if she was satisfied, since there was something contenting about his twin sister being filled with joy. It was like his only source of light in the dark, to speak.
”Well, ” Shiki said to the female customer somewhat patiently. ”Maybe you just…you know. Have one of those faces that looks familiar. Perhaps it was a resemblance to a celebrity you saw once on television or something. ”
Not, of course, that he looked like any known celebrities, since he probably looked too plain for it.
Shiki inwardly smiled wryly. It was amazing how wearing glasses and coming your hair down made everyone think that someone was beneath notice. Sure, it would sometimes open him up to bullying, but it meant that no one suspected him of any strange events.
If anything strange ever happened in school, that is. If one were to ask Shiki if anything weird happened in school, he would only shrug, being unable to give an answer.
”Maybe thats it, ” the woman mumbled doubtfully. ”Well, this is going to bug me all night. I just know it. ”
As long as you stop bugging me about it, Shiki thought scathingly.
Her credit card was approved, so Shiki tore off the slip for her to sign and started bagging her clothing, ensuring that no wrinkles would appear on the clothes.
Shiki rolled his eyes at the thought of how many customers came back to complain about wrinkled clothing. It was as if they never heard of something called ironing. Even if they did, they demanded that the employees do the job like they provided that service. What were they, an ironing service?
Shikis eyes took a dark light at the thought of teens his age who could not do things on their own and getting handed everything by their parents. They were so lucky to have parents who loved them so much that they were showered with gifts and even got their education paid for.
In fact, during summer, they would do doubt be traveling to another country, having fun at the beach or shopping at luxury stores.
Due to having everything handed on a silver platter, more often than not, they ended up spoiled and thought that the world revolved around them. They all whined for attention or respect like pathetic children wanting candy.
Perhaps he could give these people a helping hand by getting them to be on the local paper, provided if they were stupid enough to provoke him or his sister. After all, any fame would be good publicity for them, right?
Shiki supposed that the same kids could use the parents money to pay off the newspapers and erase it like nothing had happened. Hence, staining his hands to do so might not be such a good idea.
He was just going to have to face the fact that—just like how last years Prom Queen was elected based on how much money she paid instead of being chosen based on how much work the others put in to organize the event—money could and would stain peoples morals.
And not in a good way.
Regardless, it did not mean that he wouldn do something about it if anyone dared drag his sister into this.
”Oh well, ” the lady shrugged, taking her bag and her receipt. ”I guess its just one of those things. ”
”I guess it is, ” Shiki sighed to her, a little relief in his heart. After all, she was finally leaving.
Nevertheless, the relief turned out to be short-lived. Because a second later, the clicking of high heels sounded towards the pair. A beautiful girl with platinum blond hair and red eyes (Shiki suspected contact lenses) stepped into the store.
She was wearing the same black Chanel skirt with white buttons that his twin had tried on at the mall the other day, which Shiki had to stop her from buying because they cost the equivalent of around 64 hours of work at À La Mode Boutique.
The girl held a cup of mocha latte from Café Dante, taking a delicate sip of the beverage.
She said impatiently, ”Mom, would you hurry up? Ive been waiting for you for a long time. ”
Shiki raised a brow, and he narrowed his eyes at the girl. She was posing like she was a model from a fashion magazine…oh wait. Shiki rolled his eyes, remembering the magazines that featured her on the cover page.
Once he recognized her, Shiki had the urge to throttle the girl.
If he had known who he was speaking to, he would have shooed that woman off earlier.
Whatever. He could not be expected to read the name on every credit card someone handed him. Besides, it was a big world. There were many people with the same surnames, although they were not related.
”Oh, Lily, youll know, ” Mrs. Makoto said to her daughter gently. She pointed a delicate finger at Shikis face. ”How do I know this boy right here? ”
Lily took one look at Shiki, and her eyes shone with a maniac gleam. Shiki inwardly groaned, as he remembered the fiasco at the café that cost him his barista job just last week. Not Café Dante, but somewhere else.
While Lily wasn exactly involved, she did bring the person who caused it into the café.
”Hes the cute boy I told you about! ” Lily gushed, looking at him like he was the last branded dress at a Black Friday sale.
Mrs. Makoto flung a scrutinizing look at Shiki. She was looking at him with a lot more interest than she had shown while conversing with him.
” she said, delight in her tone.
e right. He does look good. ”
They need to get their eyes checked, Shiki thought. Just leave the store already!
Lily squealed delightedly, still looking like him like a wolf eyeing meat. ”I found him! My Prince Charming! Thanks so much, mother! ”
Shiki thought this girl really needed some mental help, as do the other girls that she hung out with. He hadn exactly forgiven her for that incident. He could not even forget the incident, since it ended up with his twin sister taking a shower in hot coffee.
”Wait till I tell the others about this! ” Lily giggled, whipping out her latest smartphone to text the others.
I only got this job for a week, Shiki inwardly lamented. Why was murder illegal again?
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