TMD Chapter 48

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As clichéd as it sounds, Miller Bruno could do anything for his daughter, Sofia. 

She was a daughter he had at a later age. As he held his long-awaited daughter, Sofia in his arms, he finally understood his father, William Bruno, who was so happy to have Jessica.

He had Sofia, the same age his father had Jessica.

‘It was just like this.’

When William died, he asked Miller a favor. He wanted him to protect Jessica. He asked him to protect Jessica until she gets married to the man she loved, even if it was not a man of a good family.

All the while listening to the request, Miller Bruno laughed at his father’s love for Jessica. Was he such a sweet and good father to himself? He still remembers the sternness of hitting the back of his hand just because he didn’t spell something properly. He always says he’s useless, and he always compares him to Estin the Grand Duke of Conler. Even though he’s much younger than himself.

His father could not close his eyes to death because his young daughter was so caught in his eyes.

Bruno also tried to be nice to his younger sister because he felt sorry for her. Until he found William’s will.

On the day of Jessica Bruno’s wedding, he planned to hand over the Bruno family’s mansion to Jessica. He was so overwhelmed that he burned down the will in the fireplace, but the will did not turn to ashes. When he checked, there was some kind of incombustible magic that kept the paper from burning. He  was so angry he couldn’t even laugh. 

You sly old man……!

Miller hated seeing Jessica. Jessica, who found out that her only blood brother hated her, was naturally discouraged. After having Sofia, he understood William’s feelings a little, but it was only for a moment.

Thinking of the will that can’t be burned, wet, or torn in the corner of the drawer at this office, he wanted to strangle Jessica’s tender throat right away.

When Sophia was five years old, her fever suddenly went up and started talking nonsense. He gave her medicine thinking she had a cold but her fever did not go down. All the healers as well as doctors in the empire visited, but no one knew what Sophia’s illness was.

The child’s fever didn’t subside, so a rumor spread within Bruno’s mansion, they say Sophia would die soon. Some even said that he was cursed by the former family because he did not take care of Jessica.

Then one day, the baroness, who returned from an outing, called him with a trembling hand. His wife sent her aide out and said something to Miller in a trembling voice.

“I’ve found a way to save Sofia.”

“…how?”

It took some time before she could explain the method. His wife’s expression showed fear rather than joy.

“There is a way to receive the blessing of the demon.” 

“Maria!”

“Didn’t the Grand Duke also receive that blessing and gained strength!”

“Yes, but you can see him living as a marionette of the imperial family.”

“……Of course, there is a price to pay.”

“Please, Maria…….”

His wife’s face, which was usually gentle and friendly, was distorted and shedding tears. Then she approached the sofa where he was sitting and sat down and cried against his thighs. Miller stared blankly into space, not even thinking of appeasing the crying Maria.

“Where on earth did you hear that?”

As Maria’s crying stopped, Miller asked in a weak voice. Maria still spoke in a tearful voice.

“I went out to the capital today, and there’s an old woman I saw for the first time …….”

“Did you believe the words of an old woman you’ve never seen before?”

Maria cried and looked at Miller with determination. Maria’s lower lip trembled.

“For Sophia…….”

“Maria.”

“You said you would do anything.”

A rapidly cold voice pierced Miller’s heart. Miller said in a resigned voice.

“Tell me.”

“…… she said we can use someone similar.”

“Similar?”

“Sophia is suffering from an unnamed high fever; we can send that heat to a soul similar to Sophia.”

“How do we send it?”

“Fire….”

“Fire?”

“We need to set a fire.”

***

“You’re late.”

Estin sat comfortably as if the place where he was sitting was his office. He was looking at Miller’s fountain pen with his chin on his desk, looking bored.

But even in this relaxed atmosphere, the energy of Estin seemed suffocating for Miller. At the meeting of his vassals, there were a lot of people, so it was okay, but meeting him alone made him feel like they were in a very unfamiliar space even though it was his office.

This little… 

“I’m sorry. I wouldn’t have gone out today if you’d sent me a message that you were coming.”

“Hmm, you didn’t know I was coming?”

At Estin’s words, Miller bit his lower lip. Yeah, he knew he would come one day. But he didn’t expect him to come so soon.

What the hell is that little Mary Conler…….

“……I’m sorry.”

“So, where did you go?”

“I went to the Capital with my daughter for a while.”

“Well, it’s nice to have a mansion close to the Capital.”

Bruno’s mansion was located quite close to the Capital. Without losing its idyllic beauty, other nobles were quite envious of the Bruno mansion. The beautiful white stone mansion was the pride of the Bruno family.

“Oh, when the Grand Duke visited the imperial palace, he felt uncomfortable with the accommodation so he was thinking of getting a villa.”

Suddenly Lucas, who was behind Estin, spoke in a bright voice. Estin, who heard it, nodded his head with an expression as if saying that’s right. Then he turned the fountain pen in his hand and asked Miller.

“Are you not going to sell me this mansion?”

“It’s a precious mansion that’s been handed down since my ancestors. Please take back your words.”

Miller seemed to be angry for a moment, but he held it in. He tried to speak as politely as possible, but he couldn’t hide his trembling voice.

“I’m kidding. Why are you so serious?”

Estin kept playing with the fountain pen and laughed languidly. While saying that, he never looked at Miller.

Miller shook his head hard in the midst of the suffocating atmosphere. The reason Estin came here was obvious. It must be because of what happened with Mary when he visited. Miller just wanted to get out of this situation.

“I’m sorry.”

“What?”

“I made a slip of the tongue to the daughter of the Grand Duke Conler. I’m deeply reflecting on it.”

At Miller’s words, Estin stood up and nodded with the fountain pen in his hand. Estin approached Miller with a relaxed step and stood in front of him. Then, in front of Miller, who was lowering his head, he looked at Miller’s face at an angle.

“Why are you bending down to your waist?”

Estin was expressionless as he spoke those words. Miller’s cheeks ache from his gaze. At Estin’s words, Miller slowly raised his bent waist.

“But you really don’t want to sell your mansion?”

“….Your excellency.”

“I was joking. Why do you have such a straight face?”

Estin put his hand on Miller’s shoulder and said with a smile. Then he whispered close to his ear.

“Anyway.”

“…….”

“It’s not even your mansion, is it?”

At Estin’s words, Miller’s body became noticeably stiff. Estin, who felt it, smirked and slapped his shoulder a couple of times.

Miller could no longer listen to Estin, so he closed his eyes tightly and shouted.

“Your nephew threatened me!”

“Rex Bluea?”

“He’s a person with dangerous ability! Your excellency, you never know he might curse you..….”

“Oh, is that your experience?”

“Lucas!”

Miller looked back and shouted at Lucas’ sarcastic tone. Lucas just shrugged. Miller exhaled once heavily as he looked at Lucas and turned his head again, then suddenly a fountain pen slipped into his mouth.

“……!”

“I can do anything for my daughter, too.”

Miller felt the tip of the fountain pen drawing through his soft cheeks. Feeling his fear reached its peak, his body stiffened up. Something hot filled his mouth. There seemed to be a wound in his mouth. However, he had no time to feel the pain because of the cold black eyes in front of him.

“A daughter I found after nine years. I can’t believe it”

It was a laid-back tone, but Estin’s eyes were fierce. Miller couldn’t say anything because of the fountain pen in his mouth.

Lucas, watching the scene from behind, trembled at the ferocity. He can’t get used to seeing this kind of situation even after seeing it day by day. 

“Wouldn’t you know better? Please understand…….”

Estin pulled the fountain pen out of Miller’s mouth. Miller coughed hard; his cough was mixed with blood. Following Miller, who collapsed on the floor, Estin knelt on one knee and sat next to him.

“I don’t want to live in this mansion either.”

“Cough, cough!”

“How can I sleep at night when the crying in a beautiful mansion like this does not stop?”

“…….”

Miller shuddered at Estin’s whispering words. Tears from Miller’s eyes fell to the floor.

Sienna

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