“Good morning, Layla.”
As soon as I left the house, a bouquet of flowers was held in front of me. I looked at the face of the man who handed it to me once with a bouquet of flowers. Distorted dark hair, red eyes, and beautifully tanned copper skin… The man in front of me had a face so beautiful that admiration came out. But all that comes out of my mouth is a deep sigh.
“… Yes, good morning.”
It’s him today, Isley Emers.
Upon receiving the bouquet, Isley smiled, showing teeth. He looks innocent like a child. His nose and cheeks were stained red as if he had been standing outside for a long time. It’s still midwinter, so it must have been quite hard to be outside.
“You don’t even have to say respectful things. I’m a commoner now.”
“I’m more comfortable with respectful words.”
“If you are.”
It’s already been two weeks since he came to Arya. You don’t know how surprised I was when I first saw Isley. Because I never thought he would come here. In the original story, the three brothers were obsessed with lust and could not leave the mansion for the rest of their lives. They only rotted there, hoping for their mother’s love.
That Isley appears in Arya? Does this mean it’s real? I couldn’t help but doubt my eyes.
The day I saw him in the store, I was so embarrassed that I stood with my mouth wide open and Isley was smiling embarrassedly. As soon as Yuria, who came down to the first floor after her class, saw him, she stiffened just like me. The only person who didn’t mind was Michaela.
In a way, it may not come as a surprise that Isley came.
This world was built on a novel, but it wasn’t a novel. This was a reality made up of living people. Affected by trivial events, people change, and the future made up of such people also changes. Isley, who I thought was the villain in the novel, could also change.
Because he was a man… Because everyone changes.
That fact came as a huge shock to me. Because I’ve always thought Isley wouldn’t change. I was convinced that he would never leave the mansion for the rest of his life like the original, and that his arrogant and selfish personality of sacrificing others for himself would not change at all.
Isley’s presence here meant that something had changed. What made him change? Maybe it’s me. Are the changes that have occurred to him good or bad? A slight uneasiness settled in my heart.
Isley hesitated at the store door and said he wanted to talk to me.
I reassured Yuria, who looked at me with worried eyes, and went out with him. no wonder… It was something I could do because I didn’t think Isley would do anything bad to me.
In the alleyway where only the two of us were left, Isley bowed his head to me.
– I’m sorry for coming here.
The purpose of his visit was me. With a single thought of wanting to see me again, he had abandoned his noble status, his family, and his wealthy life. Isley begged me not to be afraid, since he had given up everything I feared.
It felt so awkward to see him terrified of hearing rejection. You threw them all away? Is this man really, Isley? no. The man I knew was a man who couldn’t even do this for others. The person already standing in front of me was not the Isley Emers I knew. He was unknown. I could acutely feel that he had changed.
No, has Isley really changed? Is he always like this from the beginning, did I become blinded by his appearance in the novel and didn’t know? I don’t know. I really didn’t know.
I just bow my head in shame and guilt that I was judging others recklessly.
Isley handed me an item called an absolute contract, saying that he would never use violence, abusive behavior, or coercion.
– If you don’t believe me, you can use this.
He said that the absolute contract is a magical oath used by nobles and royalty to make important contracts. Anyone who breaks the terms of the contract suffers more suffering than death. Received a smooth contract without a single wrinkle, and I… It was then that I realized that Isley really loved me.
It’s a real love.
I felt like my heart was pounding and falling to the floor. It wasn’t because I felt so terrible or disgusting as before. Isley’s love was so heavy that she was choking. The person who had everything from his birth gave up everything he had for me? I could not comprehend the feeling of giving up everything else just to get one love, and I felt sympathy for him, who had no choice but to make this choice.
Finally, the burden of burden came rushing in. Because it felt compelled to say, ‘I gave up everything for you, so you must accept me too.’
I couldn’t accept Isley.
There were a lot of reasons, but the biggest one is that I don’t have a heart for him.
I must refuse.
I don’t like you. No matter what you gave up or what you did for me, it won’t change my mind.
– Young master, I’m…
– Give me a chance. I’ll try.
I couldn’t refuse Isley.
What he did didn’t change my mind, but it was because it implanted new emotions deep in my heart. Its name was compassion. I felt sorry for Isley. I feel sorry for him for giving up everything for me, a woman who doesn’t even accept his heart… I couldn’t even utter a word of refusal. Had I not known his past, I might have said no if I hadn’t known that Isley must have been prepared to leave the mansion.
– All right.
After that, he was trying to win my heart in many ways. He came every day, giving flowers, or chasing after me.
But so far, my heart hasn’t changed.
When I heard a voice calling me, I woke up.
Isley asked, hesitating.
“How is your schedule today?”
Every word that came out of his mouth was careful.
Occasionally Isley would look out for me, fearing that I might be afraid of him. Actually, I’m not afraid of him anymore. Because we no longer thought that this man would harm us. However, there were times when I was reluctant to do things in the mansion or because bad memories were intertwined. Yuria also treated him casually, but he used to be awkward at times.
I said, fiddling with the bouquet.
I don’t think there is anything as useless as flowers. It is inedible, and even if left for decoration, it will wither someday. But it feels good to receive it as a gift.
“I want to go to a new restaurant with Yuria.”
A Western restaurant has opened up near the store we run. Michaela, who went to a restaurant by himself to see where the money came from, gave the review that the food tasted okay. He was a picky eater. He eats what he buys or makes, but he doesn’t say it’s delicious. Michaela’s “it’s okay” is the same as “delicious”.
“Is that a new place next to the chocolate shop?”
Isley said it was all right.
“I was going to go to that restaurant today too. Would you like to go with me?”
“Eell. I have a friend.”
“Does that mean it’s okay if Yuria allows it?”
Well, if Yuria allows it.
As I nodded, Isley’s expression brightened even more. He’s confident he’ll get permission.
Then I felt a hand lightly touching my shoulder. I looked behind me and there was Yuria. Instead of the plain dress she always wore, she changed into a gorgeous outdoor outfit, and she seemed to shine brighter than usual. She greeted Isley with a smile, Yuria.
“I am no longer a master.”
Isley said with a mischievous laugh. It was then that Yuria quickly added that she had remembered what he had asked her to call her name.
“Nope! Isley. haha, sorry It’s been a while, but I’m not used to it.”
“I’m sorry what… I’ve always been called by that name, so there’s nothing I can do about it. But Yuria, if you’re really sorry, I can forgive you. instead!”
Yuria’s eyes widened.
What is this guy thinking? I narrowed my eyes and watched the sheep Isley’s.
“On that condition, can I go to the restaurant with you? Yes?”
Isley clasped his hands and looked at Yuria with earnest eyes. The kind Yuria did not refuse him, she smiled roundly and she said:
“Yes, let’s go together. It will be more fun with three.”
He said thank her and grabbed Yuria’s hand. Yuria would be uncomfortable. As expected, Yuria had an awkward smile. There was a lot of embarrassment at Isley’s behavior.
He’s still not very careful. I clicked my tongue and said.
“Master, your hand.”
Isley hurriedly let go of his hand. Watching him apologize to Yuria, scratching the back of his head in embarrassment. I needed to do something with this flower before going out. When new flowers were placed in a vase on the table, the new and the old harmonized beautifully. I looked at them with satisfaction and went out.
On the side of the road quite far from the house, Isley and Yuria were talking. The two of them chattered, and when I came, they acted like they never did. Even if I asked, there was no sign of speaking to me, so I sighed and moved on.
Why are you doing that?
The three of us headed to the restaurant together, tilting our heads. Along the way, I met some neighborhood kids, who smiled at Isley and asked me if I was going on a date. What is my date? I looked at it and smiled.
It was a known fact all over town that he had already come all the way to Arya in search of me. He came to me with a bouquet of flowers saying it was a long day, but he couldn’t figure it out.
The children wrapped around Isley and pulled up his coat or sleeves. At first, I tried to stop the children from fearlessly approaching Isley like that.
If not now, he was once an aristocrat, and he might not allow commoners to be rude. But unexpectedly, Isley got along well with the children. He laughed at them as he did now, tickling his armpits or squeezing his head. He’s pretty good at dealing with people younger than him. Isley had heard that going out with the three of them didn’t make sense, but he was excited that it was okay to be mistaken for dating me.
The restaurant was lined with people who came to taste the food. Still, it wasn’t much because it was more expensive than a normal restaurant. As I smiled at Yuria, who whispered her hopes, I saw Isley ignoring the line and going straight to the entrance.
No… What is this person doing now?
Thinking the words coming out of my mouth were awkward, I quickly reached out and grabbed his sleeve.
“Stop. You can’t cut it.”
“What do you mean? Aren’t we going in?”
He had a puzzled face like someone who didn’t understand what I was saying, and then his eyes widened as if he had suddenly realized something.
Isley, who stood at the back of the line by my hand, said with a shy smile.
“I acted as usual without knowing it… So, is it okay to just stand here? Until all these lines are gone?”
He seemed awkward standing in line, so he folded his arms and rolled his eyes. He looked like a young child who had gone on an errand alone for the first time.
I leaned my back against the wall of the dining room and opened my mouth.
“Has Isley never waited like this before?”
“Ummm… Yes. The servants always made a reservation for the restaurant, and if you go to the restaurant without a reservation, the waitress will prepare a seat for you. It won’t happen again in the future, so I’ll have to get used to waiting in line.”
“It’s annoying having to wait in line.”
“It’s also awkward.”
“… A little too much.”
I don’t think it’s a small expression.
Seeing Isley like that, will he be able to live here in the future? I had a question Wouldn’t it be better for him to return to the familiar and comfortable life of an aristocrat rather than living an awkward and uncomfortable life of a commoner? A life where you don’t have to stand in line, you can do whatever you want, and everyone looks up to you…
Then Isley spoke as firmly as someone who had read my thoughts.
“But it’s good now.”
After hearing that voice, we followed the staff’s guidance and entered the restaurant.