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Yes! Sofia is terrible! But she's also sincere with her friends, She may be unkind at times, and her bluntness offends people, but she's honest with her friends and doesn't make empty promises. She acts tough; not many can get close, but she does that to hide her insecurities. But she's so stubborn...unbearable at times![1]
— Richard's point of view of Sofia that he explained to Joni
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Rifia (Ri/chard and So/fia) is a semi-canon pair between Richard and Sofia.

Relationship

It was love at first sight for Sofia when she first met Richard in Little Ladies: Courtesy. Despite her constant flirting she does towards him. Sofia soon lost her feelings for Richard after he unintentionally ruined her expensive dress.

Ever since then, the two possessed a mutual dislike for each other due to Richard's great loathe towards Sofia's snobby personality, wealthy lifestyle and family background, and choice of clothes which he describes as 'outrageous'.

Despite the two bonded at the end of the 15th book, the two remained reluctant to accept each other, their newfound acceptance was immediately strained afterwards in the 16th book and so on. The two had a tendency to act cold and hostile towards the latter, not wanting to admit their gratitude towards the opposite (mainly Sofia) whenever one attempted to help or praise the other. In spite of this, the two gradually displayed a warmer and nicer side of them over time.

This section contains potential spoilers, read at your own risk.

Sofia was noted to be one of the few people who are aware of Richard's mother's reputation. Sometimes, even accidentally, stated that his mother is a mistress. Which often resulted in the latter to be greatly hurt and offended.

Their relationship, however, leaped into greater change soon after; The two demonstrated amiable behaviour towards one another throughout the 23rd book alone. As Richard acknowledged Sofia's (horrible) experience she had with her schoolmates. He then displays a warmer side towards Sofia whom he called a "friend".

Richard and Sofia

Richard deeply cares for Sofia

In Spick & Span: Cleanliness, Richard and Sofia's relationship soon became closer and more intimate. Despite the fact that the two still constantly get onto each other's nerves and constantly bicker over small matters, the two still greatly cared for the opposite's well-being.

It is hinted that Richard might have a small crush on Sofia, as he complimented her as a "doll" (Espeically since Richard is the type of person that holds high standards to one's appearance) and in one occasion when Sofia visited Richard uninvited, Richard brought up that he might potentially "bully" her since they were alone in the house. Richard also increasingly tend to tease and make fun of Sofia in the events of Spick & Span: Cleanliness.

Synopsis

Little Ladies: Courtesy

Being invited to Sofia's home with his mother. Richard listened to the conversation between his mother and Sofia's, as he acknowledged Sofia's rude and mean demeanor. The latter then consoled a worried Mrs. Kwek that he shall meet Sofia during their time in school.

On a subsequent day, after being wooed by several admirers, Richard proceeded to school, accidentally bumped into Sofia, whose mirror fell onto the ground and shattered. Richard then apologized to the angry princess, and even complimented her as a "lovely girl" (while in his mind, dissing Sofia for her choice of clothing and described her as a "circus tiger"). After leaving, an awestruck Sofia stared at Richard from afar as she started to develop feelings for the latter.

Hearing commotion from outside his classroom, Richard and his friends went to take a look, only to notice Sofia being dragged to the disciplinary room by Anthony.

Keeping You Waiting: Time Management

Meeting the latter outside school, Richard sneered at seeing Sofia and asked her why do he had to see her everyday. Fumed, Sofia defended herself from him by saying if he does not like her, then he should not bother to see her face. Before their conversation got any further, Sofia spotted Joni and Mikael walking in front of them, hence attempted to hide herself from being noticed by the two.

Right outside the school's concert hall, Sofia hid herself in a corner as she watched the preparations for the upcoming school concert. Richard suddenly popped up behind her and questioned her presence in school during a weekend, scaring the latter.

Rules of Popularity: Reputation

Before Sofia could pay for an expensive gown with her credit card to the store's sales clerk, Richard snatched it away from Sofia to prevent her from buying it, thus making the latter furious. After giving a warning to the sales clerk for his trickery and deceiving behavior, Sofia ended up getting mad at Richard; yelled at him after they departed from the store. Hence, starting an argument between the two. Qistina and Zara then commented on their relationship and said that it had been simpler in being friends with Sofia ever since she befriended Richard.

Richard and his mother later paid a visit to Sofia's house. Politely greeting the latter's mother, Sofia's mother was flattered by Richard's politeness and praised him, making Sofia furious as she threw a tantrum in front of them and nearly tried to spill out Richard's true behavior to them before getting ceased by him. Dragging the spoilt princess away from the mothers and into the kitchen, Richard explained the difference between Sofia's personality and his in attempt to correct Sofia's point of view towards the similarity of their behaviors.
You and me are different

Richard explaining to Sofia the differences of their personalities.

One a subsequent day, Sofia avoided getting into a conversation with Richard on the way to school by cause of the argument she had with him before. Zara then brought up the fact that she saw Richard as a nice and considerate person, which greatly angered the latter as she confronted her- not until Richard appeared and attempted to cease Sofia's rash action towards her friend. Saying that he came to apologize to Sofia for the arguments they previously had, the latter brushed off before realizing that Richard had stole her earrings. Struggling to get her accessories back, Richard immediately slipped his gym shirt onto Sofia so that she can avoid getting a dress-code violation. He then proceeded, not knowing Sofia was staring and blushing at him from behind.[2]

Richard patting Sofia's head

Richard giving Sofia his gym shirt.

Richard later approached Candy JEM's class, wanting to ask his gym shirt back from Sofia. Announcing his reason for coming into the class, the classmates shuddered as they stared at Sofia in disbelief of her actually being the reason for Richard's visit to the class. Sofia then shamelessly revealed to Richard that she had thrown his shirt away, stunning him (and Zara and Qistina). As Zara argued with her, Richard tried to get use to the current status of his gym shirt and patted her on the head, which made the latter blush at Richard's smile- all of which were sighted by Sofia at Richard and Zara from behind.

The following day, Sofia attempted to sneak into Richard's classroom to return Richard's gym shirt that she owed him. Sofia then peeped from the entrance of the classroom, noticing Zara was giving a brand new gym shirt to Richard on behalf of believing Sofia would not return his original to him, leaving a blank expression on Sofia's face.

Soon after, Sofia was approached by a worried Qistina. Qistina's commotion alerted Richard and Zara as they walked towards the two. Richard then questioned Sofia for her presence outside his class, and got utterly confused when a furious Sofia reacted angrily at him.

After the incident of Sofia being blamed for pushing Qistina and Zara down the stairs, Richard visited Sofia in attempt to get enlightened on whether the latter was to blame for her two friends' injuries. Sofia got mad when Richard described her as a hard-hearted person and argued back, not knowing the words that she had spilled out had impulsively hurt the latter's feelings. The two were later approached by Sofia's mother, whom eagerly welcomed Richard's for his sudden visit to their home. Covering up his true feelings he had then, Richard politely denied Sofia's mother offer to go inside the house and proceeded to go back home. A saddened Sofia ran up to her room and locked herself up and wept, regretting for what she had said to Richard.

A few days later, Richard visited Zara and Qisitna at the hospital. When Zara told him not to mistake Sofia as the culprit whom pushed her and Qistina down the stairs, Richard replied saying that he had acknowledged Sofia's personality before.

When Sofia got ridiculed and bullied by several schoolmates of hers, Richard punched one of them in attempt to avenge Sofia for what the bullies had done to her. Noticing Sofia still traumatized by the bullies' mean act, Richard proceeded to pull her up from the ground, telling her that she had done nothing wrong to deserve this. The traumatized princess then fainted, shocking Richard and Candy JEM, all worried about Sofia's condition.

Sofia was then brought back to her home. Awakening from her slumber, she saw herself in her bedroom lying on bed. Hearing a commotion right outside her room. Sofia quickly knew the voice as Richard's as she quickly laid back down to pretend that she was still asleep. Carrying a tray of prepared food for Sofia, Richard entered her room and wanted the latter to eat it. Purposely acting cold and hostile to Richard, Sofia then sheepishly thanked him for rescuing her from the bullies. Reacting to Sofia's compliment with a smile, Richard said that he truly felt to smile for her when she questioned it, making the latter blushed in embarrassment.

Noticing that Richard was still in her room while she was eating, Sofia immediately suspected Richard for adding something 'weird' in her porridge. Fidgeting around on her bed, Richard commented that he saw her actions adorable was the reason why he could not stop smiling. Richard then questioned on Sofia's bullying she had from her classmates, Sofia replied by saying how she and her classmates truly felt about one another, making her having little friends in school. Richard then acknowledged her feelings and comforted her, saying that he was her friend and he would always support her.

Candy JEM then came and paid a visit to Sofia. Joni then noticed how angry Sofia was for them budging into her room, she teased Sofia and Richard that their sudden visit might be the reason that made Sofia so furious, and questioned the two's relationship for being intimate after Richard exclaimed thoroughly on how Sofia had pressured herself.

On the following day, after Sofia exited her classroom with a few new friends she had made, Richard was seen standing outside Mrs. Lawson's office, being punished for defending Sofia by punching the bully the other day. Richard then felt happy for Sofia for making progess in rebuilding her reputation. Anthony, whom was looking out for Richard, hit him, thinking that he wanted to flirt with Sofia and her friends.

Athletic Ace: Sports

During the basketball competition between Sacred Hearts Primary School and a rivaling school, Sofia was seen sitting at the stands watching Richard and the others preparing for the next round of the competition.[3]

Spick & Span: Cleanliness

This section contains spoilers of the most recent Candy Series Book, read at your own risk.

Sometime after school, Sofia approached Corey to question the Basketball team's training session in order to know Richard's current presence. Once knowing that it was cancelled, Sofia then went to Richard's house to pay a visit.
Sofia's sudden visit took Richard by surprise, as the princess proceeded straight into Richard's room without his permission. Richard then ceased her from entering, as he explained about the fact that since they are alone in the house, he might "hurt" her. Nevertheless, Sofia ignored his warning and went to his room.
While Sofia was arranging her comic books into Richard's bookshelf, Richard picked up one of her comics and scanned and read out the somewhat inappropriate and racy title and cover, much to the girl's dismay and embarrassment. When Sofia attempted to retrieve her book from him, Richard assumed that the reason behind why she hid her comics in her place was because of her failing grades which resulted in her parents not allowing her to read them.

Evidence

  • Sofia fell in love at first sight with Richard in Little Ladies: Courtesy when she saw him talking to a few admirers on his way to school. Sofia then constantly flirted with him whenever possible, but soon lost her feelings for him after Richard accidently bumped into Sofia and ruined her clothes when trying to retrieve his stolen jacket from her.
  • The two had occasionally helped each other before.
    • Sofia helped Richard to get rid of his arrogance and high standards for people, ever since then, the two had become friends.
    • When Richard's childhood bullies were about to reveal Richard's true nature (his arrogance and rudeness) to his friends in attempt of ruining Richard's reputation, Sofia dressed up in her gothic clothing and scared the bullies (and Richard's friends) away. Hence preventing his good image from getting spoiled.
    • In order to help Sofia to reset her reputation, Richard did a huge part in helping her- even to a point of getting himself in trouble; ended up getting punished by Mrs. Lawson for physically hitting a boy that bullied Sofia.
  • Sofia tends to blush whenever Richard called her cute.
  • Joni brought up the fact that Richard and Sofia had bonded and became more intimate with each other[4].
  • When Sofia went to Richard's house uninvited, Richard warned Sofia that he might "bully" her since they were alone in the house:
A girl and a boy alone together...aren't you afraid I'll "bully" you?[5]
— Richard teasing Sofia
  • When Joni exaggerated on how unlucky she was on being partners with Sofia, Richard tried to explain on how Sofia is not a totally bad person, and even stated good traits he knew about her.
  • After seeing Sofia was constantly sneezing, Richard provided Sofia with his jacket to help her deal with her allergy.
  • When Sofia sneezed three times in a row, Richard teased Sofia, stating the superstition of that is a sign of how when one is in love.
  • Sofia was jealous when Richard 'flirted' with Zara by making Zara smile.
  • When Joni thought why Sofia was upset about their sudden visit, she brought up that Sofia was angry because they interrupted their 'personal' conversation. Sofia was blushing red when Joni mentioned it.

Among The Fans

Rifia is possibly one of the most shipped couple in Candy Series. This is because they have this relationship called the 'Love and Hate Relationship' and the pair are also very close with each other. The fans also ship this pair because despite the two's constant arguments and objections to the opposite, they still bear a strong bond of trust and often support each other whenever one is in trouble. The pair also appeared in some of Candy Factory's artwork. Currently, this pair is the main focus of several books of Candy Series, such as:

Rifia rivals with Riczara, which is a pairing between Richard and Zara and Rimia, which is a pairing between Richard and Mia.

Other Media

Candy Cuties

Rifia along with a few Candy Series couples appear in some Candy Cuties book. Rifia is featured in:

  • Candy Cuties Vol.8

Trivia

  • Their relationship is considered as a Love/Hate relationship; it is an interpersonal relationship involving simultaneous or alternating emotions of love and hate.
  • Replacing Candy JEM, Sofia and Richard are the main protagonists in book 15, 23 and 30.

Reference

  1. Spick and Span: Cleaniness, page 123-124
  2. Rules of Popularity: Reputation, page 38-44
  3. Athletic Ace: Sports, Page 14
  4. Rules of Popularity: Reputation, page 139
  5. Spick & Span: Cleanliness, page

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