Crown was genuinely surprised, so surprised that he had to stop.
He turned her around and looked at her.
"S-Sorry if i got carried away."
Though he didn't mind going on, he certainly didn't want her being uncomfortable with it.
"Oh, alright." Crown replied as he got closer. Surprisingly enough there weren't any real burn marks. The collar wasn't designed for that. Mostly because damaged salves had a lesser value and burnt flesh and skin usually stank a bit too much for slave owners. Still, the brutality of Clare's attack could be seen right there. The skin was visibly red. Though it wouldn't leave lasting damage, it probably felt like a really bad sunburn. He was about to inform her about the situation when he got a crazy idea. Maybe he should kiss her. Was that appropriate? He didn't know. Did it make any sense? He didn't know.
But there was some urge in him that made him do it anyway. He put his arms around her stomach and pressed his lips against the back of her neck.
"Good to hear." he replied with a smile.
"Well..." he continued wanting to answer her question but he stopped. Crown wasn't exactly sure what to tell her. After pondering about it for a few minutes he finally spoke up. "I don't even know." he said, frustration could be heard in his voice. "She says she's really sorry but... that's not something you can make unhappen with a sorry."
Crown locked the door and made his way downstairs.
In the kitchen Clare was waiting with a visibly red cheek. As soon as Crown entered she jumped up. "I-Im sorry.... i didn't mean to do that i swear." she apologized. How genuine her apology was was up foe debate, but for now Crown would accept it. "Why? Why did you do it?" he asked her in a serious tone. "I-I don't know, i guess i just felt threatened." she explained herself. "By what? By her washing the dishes? By wearing that demeaning uniform and collar?" Crown interrupted her right away. He never had an argument as serious as this one with Clare ever before. Technically speaking, Clare did not break the law in any way. She was perfectly allowed to torture Hagane to death. But that didn't help a little when it came to Crown's feeling of repulsion he felt right now. Clare stayed silent for some time, tears building up in her eyes. "I-I know it was wrong but... her being here with you just..." though before she could finish Crown let out a loud sigh, loud enough interrupt her.
"You could have killed her, are you aware of that?" he asked with his legs crossed showing no softness in his tone. "Could you live on knowing that you killed an innocent girl, in a most repulsive and cruel way on top of that?" Crown went on with his question staring at Clare all the time, trying to provoke a reaction. "No..." she replied silently.
"I need some time to think." he continued in a slightly softer tone. "You should do the same." he said as he got up, making a few sandwiches and taking a glass as well as a bottle of orange juice with him. "We most likely won't see each other for the rest of the day." he added as he left the room, making his way upstairs.
That was... not good. Clare knew that there would be a backlash naturally. But if she had managed to complete her dirty work it would have been easier to explain. Though she had no intention of giving up, not that the adrenalin rush was over she was kinda scared of what she could do. No matter how much she considered Hagane a threat, she did feel a bit sorry for her.
But that didn't matter in the end. She had to keep Crown. That was her life, everything else was a pointless add-on which could be discarded including her own innocence. She needed that man, she needed him more than anyone else did. And she was ready to fight for him, using any method out there.
She sighed and closed her eyes.
She had to stay focused and collected.
Crown retreated to the closet for a moment.
He found pajamas which he bought for Clare but she never wore for some reason, they were still in their package. Bright yellow with cat heads printed on them. He also found some underwear.
He put everything onto her as good as he could without looking.
Staying silent for a few moments he finally asked.
"Does it hurt a lot?"
"H-How..." Crown asked in a frail voice.
He had suffered a completely break down because of this. This sweet girl nearly died because of him. He was an idiot for ever giving that remote away. He took it out once more, trying to get the collar off or at least to increase it's size enough to slip it over her head. Nothing worked. In rage he threw it on the ground, it bouncing off harmlessly with no damage on it.
As he finished wrapping the band around her hand his hands were shaking like never before and his eyes were teary. He wasn't really making sense of what she was saying. He didn't have the brain capacity for that. He lifted her out of the bat for a moment. Letting the water flow and clean the bathtub. As he was undressing her he filled the tub with warm water. Thanks to the simple design of the uniform he managed to get her out of it with his eyes closed. Slowly lifting her he put her into the bathtub again before opening his eyes. He was still shaking but managed to take the remote out of his pocket fiddling around with it trying to get the collar off.
It didn't work.
In the end he simply got on his knees and started repeating a few words like a mantra.
"I'm sorry, i'm sorry, i'm sorry, i'm sorry...."
Crown rushed up the stairs as soon as he realized the situation that could be going on.
He was horrified once he arrived in the kitchen.
Hagane on the floor, bleeding out of her head which was being stepped on. Clare was holding the trigger, her thumb bloody by now because of the absurd amount of pressure she was using. Sprinting the short distance Crown pushed Clare aside, ripping the remote out of her hand. "C-Crown s-she attacked me i had to else-" she was stopped mid sentence. Stopped by a hit to her face. A slap. But not a light one, in fact she ended up on the floor because of it. Crown wasn't holding back. "Shut up!" he yelled at her before picking up Hagane and rushing upstairs into the bathroom.
His mouth was dry, his hands shaking and his eyes were wet.
Putting her into the bathtub he started searching for some bandaids.
The smile didn't disappear from Clare's lips as she walked over to her victim.
Still pressing the button she stepped on her head , putting more and more weight on it.
"Stupid bitch. Your house? Your husband? Your children? I'll kill you, i swear i'll kill you." Clare continued her rambling calling Hagane names, "whore", "bitch", "piece of shit" and the like.
She had no intention of stopping this.
In the meantime Crown in the basement felt like he heard something.
He slowly turned around facing the door.
Clare didn't even let her finish that sentence and pressed as hard as she could, the maximum charge.
It would most likely throw Hagane to the ground right away. Though it wasn't lethal, the pain would be most intense and it could cause some permanent damage if used for too long.
Clare's thumb started hurting as she pressed be button harder and harder.
For the first time in her life, her face shifted to create a sadistic smile filled with glee.
She couldn't believe how much she was enjoy this.