At the apparent temperature difference, Felix unconsciously squeezed her hand. Lucy didn’t take her hand away. She just wiggled her hand in his grasp for a moment.
When Lucy stopped moving, Felix, who gained confidence, moved his fingers gently and clasped his fingers. Again, Lucy did not refuse. Instead her feet, which were laying neatly on the floor, twitch for a moment.
In the early evening as the sun was setting, in a slightly dim carriage, the hands of the two shared their warmth and gradually had similar temperatures.
“Wow, the streets are so crowded! I guess everyone is on their way home to see their family.”
Felix was not annoyed by Colin’s cheerful chatter as he looked out the window.
His whole mind was focused only on Lucy. He could also feel it. At that moment, Lucy also realized that she was concentrating all her senses on him.
As if they were in a different world from Colin, Felix and Lucy held hands for a long time, staring at the meandering streets of Bethel.
* * *
Madam Triana’s mansion seemed to embody her dignity.
The antique exterior perched on a large lawn looked imposing like the madam.
When the carriage that entered the gate slowly stopped, the waiting servant opened the door.
Lucy got off the carriage and looked around the mansion with admiration. Her eyes gleamed with joy, as if the memories of her visits when she was a child came to mind.
“Colin, look! It’s exactly what I saw before!”
The servant, who had been waiting patiently for Lucy and Colin to look around the mansion for a while recalling memories, soon led them alone.
As if fully prepared to entertain the guests, the hall was lit up with countless candles.
Madam Triana, who was waiting with her several maids behind her, welcomed them with open arms. She hugged Colin and Lucy one after another, and then asked Felix to shake hands.
“Welcome, Prince Felix.”
It was already dark, and the dinner time was approaching, so Madam Triana ordered the food to be served immediately. Soon, the table was filled with geese, deer dishes, mashed potato dishes, and various breads.
Even Felix, who wasn’t very hungry, felt hungry as soon as he saw the food. The delicious smell stimulated the tip of his nose.
The dinner started with Madam Triana’s prayer of thanks to God.
They were busy eating because of the excellent taste, but for a while they praised the chef’s culinary skills and did not have any other conversations.
In the meantime, Felix looked around the table as if something was missing. It was a really perfect dinner, but something was awkward.
Soon he realized that a dish that was never left out on Thanksgiving Day was not on the table. It’s….
“Oh, there’s no pig dish!”
Colin, who had looked around the table before Felix, said with a questionable face.
It was the tradition of the Beros Empire to always have pig on the Thanksgiving table. It was even told that without the dish, it’s not a proper Thanksgiving.
However, despite Colin’s remarks, Madam Triana calmly replied.
“The Trianas don’t eat pork, Colin.”
As if it was a fact that Lucy did not know, she raised her puzzled eyes and looked at the Madam. Colin also murmured with a look on his face, contemplating the meals he had eaten at this mansion.
“Come to think of it, I’ve never seen pork cooked in my great-aunt’s mansion.”
“It’s because of the prophecy.”
The Madam beckoned her servants to cut the goose dish.
“Some families in the Beros Empire have prophecies that have been passed down from generation to generation. These are the things that came down from the Great Shrine a long time ago.”
Felix knew that each family had a prophecy passed down as an oracle. This is because those prophecies have been handed down since the founding of the Beros Empire.
Some families regarded the prophecy as important as a myth, while others treated it as just a superstition.
The prophecy of the Triana family was, ‘If the household harms pigs, they will die’.
The Madam then told the story of her husband, whom she had lost long ago.
Former Count Triana, who usually enjoyed hunting, ignored the prophecy one day and aimed his bow at a wild boar. However, his arrow, which was always on fire, did not hit the wild boar properly at that moment. When the excited boar rushed, the horse the Count was riding got surprised and raised its front feet, the count fell and passed away.
“What happened that day was once again a reminder of the prophecy to the people of Triana. After that all Triana people, of course, never put pork on the table.”
The wife’s expression telling the story of her long-dead husband was calm. Grief was weathered and seemed to have flown away from her face earlier.
“But I don’t know if his death was really due to prophecy.”
With her casual face, the lady cut the meat and put it in her mouth.
“My husband had been drinking a lot that day. Riding on a horse while drunk was an unwise act. I think alcohol killed my husband, not the prophecy.”
She spoke insensitively as if he was talking about someone else, but because of that, the atmosphere at the dinner was even more subdued.
“Gosh. What useless things did I say in front of the guests? …. It was a long time ago, so I spoke carelessly. Don’t worry about it.”
She said with a mischievous smile on her face. Then Colin opened his mouth as if trying to change the mood.
“It’s a family prophecy! I’ve never heard of it. My parents never told me anything like that. Have you ever heard of Baron Connor’s prophecy?”
“Well…… I don’t know either. My father, who used to be the baron, never said anything to me. Perhaps he had informed his brother, who was his successor.”
But Colin murmured in disappointment that his deceased grandfather had not given him any prophecies. Colin, who must have been expecting some great prophecy in his own family, quickly became sullen.
Looking at it, Felix reasonably suspected that Baron Connor might not have informed him on purpose because of Colin’s constant babbling.
“What about you, sunbae?”
Colin turned his gaze to Felix and his eyes lit up. He looked at Felix with anticipation of some great prophecy.
“If it was the Berg family, it must have been an unusual prophecy.”
Colin couldn’t hide his curiosity and spoke frankly. Lucy, who was sitting next to him, also looked at him with curious eyes.
But Felix couldn’t live up to that expectation.
Because no prophecy was passed down to his family.
“Well. There are no prophecies in our family.”
He frankly wondered if his father, the Duke of Berg, would believe in God. When he thinks of the businesses he usually does, he never seemed to be a man who believed in God.
Perhaps he would have laughed and turned away at the prophecy of God.
In fact, even Felix had a stronger idea of prophecy as a superstition. He looked down at his plate and said timidly.
“It might be better not to listen to prophecies in the first place.”
Madam Triana responded to Felix’s words.
“Because, like I said, I don’t think my husband died because of the prophecy. Man’s fate is in his hands.”
When the story about the prophecy ended, the topic shifted to Madam Triana’s health and hobbies. It was followed by stories about Colin and Lucy’s family in Brom, then stories of their life at the Xenomium Academy.
By the time the candle in the center of the table burned more than half, the dinner was slowly coming to an end.
At Madam Triana’s direction, two of her maids entered the banquet hall and guided Felix, Lucy and Colin to their room for the night. The three continued to pat their belly and followed the maids upstairs.
The three were given separate guest rooms.
Before entering the room, Felix tried to ask Lucy if she would like to go for a walk together, but he shut up again because Colin was around. He didn’t want to walk with him.
After a while, Felix sneaked the door open and walked out of the room.
He approached Lucy’s room and knocked on the door, but there was no answer.
Are you already asleep?
It was dark outside the window, but it was still early for bed. Felix knocked on the door a few more times. She still didn’t answer.
Then the door to the next room opened and Colin poked his head out.
“Sunbae, Lucy is probably not in the room”
He yawned loudly.
“Maybe in the garden. She likes to look around the garden day and night.”
“I wasn’t really looking for Lucy.”
Felix pretended he wasn’t interested and lied, but Colin suddenly smiled sinisterly.
“Hey, you’ve been walking around in front of Lucy’s room since a while ago and knocking on the door! You don’t even have to hide it from me!”
Felix’s voice rose for no reason. Looking at him with a funny look, Colin said.
“I saw it all in the carriage earlier. Holding hands together. It’s all reflected in the window.”