Kalian stretched out his hand to me like he was trying to escort me, but I indicated it was fine and walked on my own. He didn’t offer it again, seemingly only doing it out of politeness.
Like that, we walked down the hallway side by side, with our hands to ourselves. Even though Kalian proposed to walk down together because he had something to say to me, he didn’t speak right away.
If it was Anne-Marie or someone else here right now, they might have made some small talk to liven the atmosphere in order to make it easier for him to speak up. But I didn’t bother going through that trouble.
Besides, the silence didn’t even feel that uncomfortable.
So I just kept walking while checking out the picture frames and decorations on the wall. And the main thoughts on my mind were things like ‘as expected of a great noble house, everything looked expensive’ or ‘that’s pretty, I wonder how much it costs’.
Then a while later, Kalian finally opened his mouth.
“What I want to say is, I don’t know how you’ll take this but…”
Instead of beating around the bush, he skipped the introduction and went straight to the main subject.
“I think you should be careful.”
And the words which dug into my ears were a little unexpected.
But something about it was familiar and for a split second, I thought the person next to me was Dominic’s avatar.
Maybe I should say like father like son; Kalian said something very similar to his father. In the carriage, I’d already heard Dominic tell me to ‘be careful if you want to live long’ so for a moment, I wondered if Kalian’s words meant the same thing.
However, I didn’t see any sign that he was threatening me. Rather, although it was faint, the emotion in his voice…felt closer to concern.
From the looks of things, Kalian wasn’t threatening me like Dominic but sincerely warning me.
“Mm, I’m sorry but I don’t know what I should be careful about.”
I wondered if he knew something Dominic did or was going to do to me in the future, so I asked for confirmation.
At that, Kalian frowned slightly as if I’d asked him a difficult question.
“I can’t really explain the circumstances. I know what I’m saying sounds strange to you.”
He paused for a moment, as though he was trying to organize his thoughts then he opened his mouth again.
“But I think, it’s almost certain that something serious will happen to you soon so…I wanted to tell you to be careful.”
So in other words, apart from telling me that something bad will happen to me, he didn’t know what that ‘something’ was nor could he tell me how he knew about it.
Just like Kalian said, what I was hearing right now sounded very strange.
I spoke like I was flinging the words.
“If you say that without any other explanation, I could just ignore it.”
“Of course, you might think lightly of my words but…I hope you don’t.”
He was looking straight at me and his gaze was very serious.
Kalian’s personality itself was serious to begin with so I didn’t think he was saying this to me casually. Despite that, his expression told me he was a little concerned about how I would interpret his words.
I stared at his face for a while, then soon enough, I parted my lips slightly.
At that moment, Kalian’s eyes trembled. His eyes were a little wide as if he had just heard me say something completely unexpected.
“I don’t know but you told me about it even though it’s difficult for you to explain. So I’ll listen and I won’t ignore it.”
Since Kalian didn’t intend anything bad by telling me this, I didn’t plan on being frustrating by picking at what was wrong.
“…It’s not something you should thank me for.”
But why is it that Kalian’s face got a little darker than before?
If someone thanks you, you should just accept it. In some ways, this guy’s character was exhausting.
“Is that all you wanted to say to me?”
“Actually, there was one more thing but…I think it would be better to just forget it.”
On a closer look, I could see a faint sense of guilt lingering on his face and it made me suspicious. But Kalian quickly looked away from me and faced the front so I couldn’t study his expression for long.
A thunderous roar that seemed to rip through my eardrum burst out that very moment.
At that sudden noise, Kalian and I turned to the window at the same time.
The sound didn’t seem to be coming from the mansion but somewhere in the distance. I would guess about 10km(6.2miles) from here.
A red light shone in the distance then disappeared, as if something had exploded.
But soon enough, another ‘Bang!’ rang out and a light flashed in my sight at the same time.
“I’m afraid I’ll have to excuse myself. There’s a carriage waiting for you outside so take care on your way back.”
After saying his goodbye, Kalian quickly dashed ahead. Before he left, his expression was extremely severe.
No surprise there but everyone in the mansion seemed to have heard the noise from outside. I could feel the once quiet mansion quickly becoming rowdy.
I moved my gaze away from where Kalian disappeared and looked out the window again. Somehow, it gave me a similar feeling to the explosion at the shopping mall.
For a while, I watched the darkness outside the window quietly until a surprised Anne-Marie quickly ran over to me.
* * *
When I got home, Lakis was nowhere to be found.
I guess he had gone out while I was gone. This situation wasn’t that unusual anymore, so I wasn’t as shaken as before.
I went to my room to change and while I was at it, I went to the bathroom and washed up. When I came out after all that, Lakis was now sitting on the sofa in the living room.
“Oh, you’re back, Mr. Lakis.”
But for some reason, the moment he saw me, he sprang to his feet. Lakis was still wearing his outdoor clothing but he was staring at me and his face was sternly cold.
Seeing that, I was a little confused.
“Why are you looking at me like that?”
However, Lakis didn’t answer me, instead he approached me with long strides and quickly narrowed the distance between us.
He drew close till he was right in front of my nose and his frame cast a shadow over my head then he grabbed my arm.
“I can smell blood from you.”
When I heard those words, I shut my mouth.
Seeing that, Lakis looked at me as if he was searching every inch of my face.
“Did you get hurt?”
“Why would I get hurt?”
I retorted, feeling embarrassed by the sudden situation and Lakis’ eyes sharpened.
“Don’t play innocent with me. Another explosion happened downtown, and you said you were going there with the girl next door.”
It was only after hearing this that I understood why Lakis was acting this way.
Ah, so the explosion happened downtown of all places?
It felt kind of weird to tell Lakis I was going to the Crawford’s, so I just told him I was going to look around downtown with Anne-Marie.
“Mr. Lakis…are you just coming back from there?”
“I went out for a bit because it was noisy outside and when I heard people talking, it seemed like the place you went to.”
Lakis’ eyes were still cold, and he was looking me up and down as he spoke. He looked like he was trying to see if there was any sign of injury on my body.
In other words…Lakis was worried that I might be caught up in an explosion again, so he went to the scene of the incident himself and was just coming back from there.
Of course, I was in a different place at that time, so I had no involvement with the explosion whatsoever. So it was only natural that Lakis couldn’t find me even though he was looking for me.
“I guess we missed each other on the way but just tell me where you got hurt.”
As I watched Lakis urge me, I felt my conscience hurting a bit.
“No, I’m not hurt. I wasn’t there when the explosion happened.”
For a moment, I pondered how honest I should be and when I opened my mouth, Lakis’ face crumpled.
“Although it’s faint, I can definitely smell blood on you but you’re telling me you’re not injured?”
The look on his face told me he didn’t believe me at all. Lakis gave me a sharp look as though telling me not to lie.
I guess he felt more suspicious because he could sense the slight hesitation in my voice. I felt like he wouldn’t believe it until he took off my clothes and checked himself. So in the end, I had no choice but to be honest about the identity of the bloody smell.
“It’s just my menstruation, you know, the bleeding that happens once a month?”
Instantly, Lakis froze over but for a different reason from before.
His mouth fell open slightly.
His blue eyes were filled with embarrassment and I watched as he blinked a few times. Still, Lakis quickly regained his composure. Then he spoke to me in a calm voice, as though confirming.
I’m not sure if I should be thankful or not but Lakis wasn’t suspicious anymore. Although after that, he quietly looked away from me and there was still some ripples in his eyes.
As expected…Seeing as he was convinced so easily, he obviously had a rough idea of my menstrual cycle even though he hadn’t said anything so far.
Since his five senses were much better than normal people, it was inevitable that he was sensitive to smells so I guess it’s only natural that he knew.
If my face wasn’t so thick, I might have run into the room and covered myself with a blanket in embarrassment.
“I’m glad you’re fine but I don’t want you to get involved in dangerous things in the future.”
Lakis who seemed like he’d regained his inner peace, looked at me with a serious look in his eyes.
His tone was like he was pleading with a trouble-making child, so I narrowed my eyes a little.
“If something dangerous is going to happen, don’t go there at all.”
“How would I know if something dangerous is going to happen?”
“Just try not to go out as much as possible and stay at home. After all, everything outside the blanket is dangerous.” 
While borrowing the words I said in the past, Lakis’ face was somewhat serious. Once again, he looked down at me with a serious look in his eyes.
I said it as a joke back then but like before, Lakis was serious.
Then after quietly staring at my face for a while, Lakis slowly opened his mouth.
“Seriously, I’m worried.”
His voice was very soft, almost like he was talking to himself and hearing those words, I felt strange.