2. Difficulty Level Up Is Normal
Late in the afternoon, Daisy ran in with a flushed face.
“Oh my gosh, Lady! What should we do? Finally, an invitation has arrived from Grand Duke Ash Benio?”
I looked down at the invitation Daisy gave urgently. If it’s Ash Benio. Ah, the memory came to me spontaneously.
“Since it’s a large welcoming party, most of them are invited, but… Lady still waited for this.”
Ash, who fell in love with Luna through this welcoming party, became a loyal sub-male lead.
“What should we do, Lady? Lady sent him letters, but there was no reply from him.”
However, Ash Benio was originally Siani’s fiancé. It was famous how coldly Ash abandoned Siani. That incident made Siani a laughingstock forever.
And then you fell in love with his ex-fiancée’s sister. He was the sub-male lead who walked on the path of poisoning himself in the original work, but to me, he was just like an ex-boyfriend who couldn’t be recycled.
“Wouldn’t there be a chance to talk to each other this time?”
“A chance to talk to each other…”
Daisy’s desperate eyes gave me a headache. How long has Sini been clinging to him?
“I’ll send a reply saying that Lady is going right now—”
“Enough. Take this and throw it away.”
For a moment, Daisy’s expression was puzzled.
“I will not attend this welcoming party. So you don’t have to send a reply.”
“B-but, Lady. You’ve been waiting so long for the news from the grand duke.”
“You have heard it, so you must know. How coldly I was abandoned.”
I spoke calmly as if I was telling someone else’s business.
“Didn’t the whole capital laugh at me?”
“Don’t tell me the news about the grand duke from now on. Ah, I’m always welcoming the news about his death.”
If it wasn’t for his funeral, I wouldn’t run into him in the future.
“By the way, I’m going to have dinner with my family tonight.”
“Pardon? A-are you serious?” Daisy asked back in a faint voice.
Since I possessed Siani, I had been stuck in the room and lived alone, so she looked both happy and surprised.
“Do you remember the beige dress with the embroidery of the paillette at the end of the skirt? Get that ready.”
“N-no way, Lady. Are you talking about that dress?”
‘That’ dress I spoke about was a keepsake left by the late duchess, Siani’s mother.
Originally, Siani hated looking at the duchess’s ‘belongings.’ She seemed to have bad feelings for her mother, whom she didn’t even remember. It looked like she thought it was all her mother’s fault that she was left alone in this big mansion.
Of course, I had to take advantage of everything available to earn the duke’s trust. Only then will I be able to receive the key to the basement and meet Redian.
“It’s been a while since I’ve seen my father face to face, right?”
As I walked out the window, a warm wind gently blew.
“I think that dress would suit me perfectly on a day like today.”
It was the season when Siani was born, a spring day when the flower petals were in full bloom.
* * *
“She really is Princess Felicite. I can’t believe it.”
“As expected, Felicite’s real lineage is different. Even Lord Irik couldn’t move against her.”
The basement was buzzing throughout with stories about Siani. Everyone seemed to be unable to erase the afterimage of that woman.
“How on earth did she figure out the location of that cage?”
“More than that, I wonder what happened inside the cage. From that day on, I can’t control him at all.”
“You felt it too? You feel like he has gotten stronger, right? I still remember how bloody it was when he looked at me with those blue eyes.”
John glanced toward the exceptionally deep, dreary darkness.
“Did you tie him up properly?”
“I gave him a sedative and knocked him, so he won’t be able to wake up for a while.”
“How venomous that handsome fellow is. He endured it without blinking an eye.”
They fluttered their tongues.
“If he runs rampant in that state, someone might die. We need to keep an eye on him.”
The trainers were no different from highly skilled elite soldiers. But even to them, Redian was a feared subject.
“By the way.”
Then someone opened their mouth.
“If princess really takes that guy, what will happen?”
In an instant, the air calmed down.
“Ah, don’t tell me…”
“Right. As long as Lord Irik is here, that’s impossible. Haha.”
Their faces stiffened as they waved their hands.
“What’s the use of Lord Irik? That woman is the ‘real’ Felicite.”
The ‘real’ Felicite. Duke Felicite was the only one who inherited the blood from the arrow the goddess gave.
“Everyone saw how Lord Irik was drenched in water.”
Above all, it seemed clear that the woman’s personality wasn’t normal.
“If she really becomes the master of Redian…”
John swallowed his saliva in the silence.
“Aren’t we all going to die?”
His instincts were uselessly good. But the bigger problem was.
All the chains that had chained Redian had been lifted.
“Is my master?”
His voice, drugged from the sedative, became unusually slow.
* * *
It must have started. I deliberately left for the dining room a little later.
“Oh my gosh, Princess.”
The first person who spotted me was Loid, the butler, who was standing in front of the stairs.
“No, how…” He opened his mouth wide.
“Why? Does it not suit me? It’s been a while since I had dinner with my father, so I paid a lot of attention to it.”
I knew why the butler was so surprised, but I pretended not to know.
“No, it’s not like that.” Loid, who hesitated as if he were speechless, opened his mouth. “Isn’t that dress a keepsake left by a madam for you?”
At the same time, I could see tears welling up in Loid’s wrinkled eyes.
“When Princess is coming down like that, you look so much like madam…”
He sniffed and wiped his tears with his handkerchief.
Nice. Seeing that the butler was like that, I called for joy inside. Because the butler must remember what the duchess looked like. In other words, the fact that I looked like that in the butler’s eyes meant that it could also work for the duke.
“I’m sorry. I know Princess doesn’t like it… So what I mean is that dress suits you well…”
“Really? It’s an honor that I look so much like my mother.”
The butler, who had repeatedly apologized, blinked his eyes.
“Is my father inside?”
“Ah, yes, Princess.”
Leaving him with a blank look behind, I walked straight ahead. In the meantime, I also didn’t forget to smile kindly.
“This is a lemon cake I made myself. The kitchen staff also praised me for improving my skills a lot.”
“How is it? Does it suit Brother’s taste?”
“I can’t believe it. Did anyone really not help you?”
As I approached the dining room, I heard a friendly conversation.
“I’m sorry, I’m late.”
The problem was that the friendly atmosphere was destroyed as soon as I entered.
Then the duke’s expression, who found me, hardened in a different sense.
Wow, he recognized this at once. I knew he was a loving husband, but it’s been a while since the duchess died.
“I guess you remember. This is the dress my mother left for me.”
“Yes. Why did you take it out all of a sudden? I know you put it in a warehouse because you don’t even want to see it.” The duke’s eyes sharpened.
“It’s my birthday soon.”
“Yes. It’s your birthday soon.”
He let out a shallow sigh in my reply as if he knew it would be.
“Are you protesting not to forget your birthday?” Then he asked back coldly. “I’ve already fulfilled your unrealistic demand, even going as far as calling it a gift. What more do you want?”
“Your Excellency, it’s been a while since we’ve had a meal together, so please don’t do that.”
Luna stepped up in the cold atmosphere.
“There’s only one birthday a year. It’s natural to want to be congratulated.”
“Just stay still, Luna. She could have made such a fuss just for a gift.”
“How loud she’s going to be.”
Irik glanced at me with contemptuous looks.
“Immature,” the duke also murmured as if he had nothing more to look forward to.
Mess, this is a mess. I was a little bewildered to be bombed after barely saying a word. This must be why Siani just shut her mouth.
But I was different. I’ve been on the guillotine in my past lives, so I wasn’t discouraged by something like this. It was something I expected from the time I found the duchess’s belongings.
“No, Father. I want my birthday to pass by quietly.” I continued calmly. “My birthday and my mother’s death date are the same, so I’ve never been able to properly honor my mother.”
“On this birthday, I wanted to honor my mother.”
Maybe because it was unexpected, the duke’s expression became strange.
“I wasn’t born from killing my mother, right?” I delivered this short, sharp blow.