“Sure. If you tell me, I’ll deliver it to him.”
“Can I ask him to find an item or method for the paternity test? The sooner he finds it, the better.”
“Yes. Ah, but he can’t bring someone to do it.”
“It means this should be done secretly.” He heard me and immediately understood.
I grinned, nodding. “It’s good that you understand quickly. Please do me this favor. I will be back in three days, so please deliver it before then. For the time being, I have to restrict my movement.”
“I see. He said he would be back at night, so I would deliver it right away. Do you need anything else?”
“No, then please take care of it.”
“Yes, I understand.”
When I said goodbye and turned around, something came to my mind, so I grabbed Mook.
“Ah, Mook. Can I ask you one more question?”
“That, can I see the kid I left with you before? I mean the Madame’s child.”
Mook tilted his head and raised his eyebrows to see if he remembered something.
“Ah, you mean Danny?”
“Danny? I actually don’t know his name. You must be pretty close.”
“He’s living on the second floor. If you go up the stairs on the right, you will probably be able to meet him. I will take you there.”
I shook my hand at his kindness. It was because I caught someone who was already busy going somewhere.
“You don’t need to. Can I go up to the second floor?”
“Yes. He must be flying around somewhere on the second floor. He’s got a lot of stamina.”
“Okay, thank you.”
“Then see you later.”
Mook bowed his large body in half and went back.
I followed his guidance and headed to the stairs on the right. Every time I saw madame’s face, I always thought I should see her child, but I had never seen that child since I was busy doing my work. I was just trying to see him while the conversation ended early, but I didn’t even know his face.
Due to the high floor height of the building, many stairs had to be taken to go up to the second floor. Thinking I should ask the staff on the second floor about that child, I stepped on the last staircase, but something passed with a loud noise.
“You’ll get in trouble if you go down to the first floor!”
“I’m not going down!”
It was a boy with chestnut brown hair and a man who appeared to be one of Iskar’s employees. The boy was so fast that even the man was panting while chasing him.
Ah, I guess that was why Mook said he was flying. The boy swung his body to avoid being caught by the man and started running to the other side. However, he widened his eyes when he saw me and then stopped, sliding his feet just like how the carriage stopped. I felt like he was going to squeak.
“Wow! She’s a very very very pretty sister!”
Holding a ball the same size as my head in both arms, the boy opened his mouth. Even after jumping around like that, he laughed hehehe as if he wasn’t out of breath.
“Are you Danny?” I looked up at the child and asked.
After a while, a man panted and came to me, then nodded.
“Yes, that’s right! My name is Danny. Who is this very very very pretty Sister?”
“I’m the one who saved you.”
I bent down slightly and told the boy. Then the boy tilted his head.
“No! It was a cool brother who saved me!”
“Who is the cool brother?”
I said with a big smile, “I’m the one who asked Shale to save you.”
The boy’s eyes widened as if they were about to pop out at any moment.
“Yes. Do you always run around like this?”
“Yes! Does Sister want to play with me?”
“No, I can’t run. Does your mom often come to see you?”
Then he made a much brighter expression than before. He nodded his head off.
“Mom came yesterday too! She slept for a night!”
“Did you sleep over here?”
“Yes! She said she would come back again after three nights’ sleep. Is Sister close with my mom?”
“Yes, I’m your mother’s friend.”
“Wow!” The boy’s voice went up quickly to see what was so exciting.
Looking at the boy’s behavior and voice, I could see how well he was doing here at once. I didn’t know what he used to be, but now his cheeks were puffy. Now that I’ve checked his face, I had to go.
“Listen carefully to Brother Shale and your mom. See you next time.”
“Are you going already, Sister? Are you not going to play with me?”
“Yes, I came here only to see your face. Let’s play for the next time, okay?”
The boy looked slightly disappointed and quickly brightened up when the man beside him said he could play with him.
I greeted him like that, and now I was really ready to leave. I turned around and tried to go down the stairs when the boy grabbed the hem of my clothes.
“Why? Do you have something to say?”
Then the child put the ball down on the floor, took something out of his pocket, and held it out to me. It was crumpled but colorfully wrapped candy.
“You give it to me?”
“Sister said you saved me.”
“That’s why you’re giving it to me?”
The boy extended his hand to me and nodded. I didn’t like candy, but I reached out my hand, thinking I should accept it. Danny put the candy in my hand.
“I will eat it well, thank you.”
“Will you come back again?”
“Yes. Don’t be picky, and sleep well. Goodbye.”
I thought there was no need to be worried because he was a bright child. Still, Shale seemed to have paid considerable attention to the fact that he allowed the madame to come freely, slept, and even let her back to her boutique.
“I’m glad I left him here.”
I went home again with relief.
* * *
It was the next morning that I met Valery again. We had already made an appointment before I left the imperial palace. Still, Valery came early as if he had been waiting for this day.
Until now, I had only made him wait, but he never made me wait. As soon as he saw me, he smiled brightly like a flower in full bloom. They said that looking at pretty and good things relieves stress. I guess it was true. Seeing him made my stress go away all the time.
“I missed you.”
He kissed me lightly on the forehead as I approached him and raised my head. I was a bit surprised by his distinctly different behavior, which was really like a man madly in love.
“It hasn’t even been a few days.”
“If you let me, I would have come to you every day.”
“I didn’t allow it in fear of that.”
Then Valery’s expression subsided somewhat. It was really fun to tease him. I grabbed his hand, then he followed meekly
“I want to go somewhere quiet again today.”
“It may be a little far away. Are you okay with it?”
“Is it very far?”
“It will take about a day.”
It seemed Sir Shubart wouldn’t come for a while. My mother still felt uncomfortable, so I thought I could leave for a day or so. It would be good to put to rest my mother’s doubts. Of course, my mother would be angrier.
Actually, it didn’t matter where we went. I needed him, and he needed me. It was undeniable that being with him made me feel at ease to the point of falling asleep. More than anything, I didn’t want to think about anything right now.
I got into the carriage with his courteous escort. Soon the carriage began to move away from the mansion, and I leaned back comfortably. While watching the scenery passing by faster and faster, his hand came in smoothly from below and wrapped around my hand. When I turned my head, I was looking at his hand, to be precise, his thumb, as if it was a strange toy.
“Your Highness has big hands.”
He still hasn’t given up on that? His persistence made me speechless for a moment.
“That only when no one is around.”
“I don’t care.”
“But I care. Otherwise, I would hate it.”
“All right, only when there’s no one.”
He was still fiddling with my hand. There is a smile around the mouth.
What’s so funny about touching my hand? He was so busy touching my hand that I wondered about it.
He touched my fingers one by one as if measuring them, squeezed them with his large hand, or put our fingers together.
“…Is it that fun?”
“They’re pretty and soft.”
“You seem to be having fun.”
“It’s like a dream.”
He seemed to be in such a good mood that I gave up halfway and relaxed my hand.
The carriage ran for hours. Still, it wasn’t as hard or tiring as before. In between, I leaned on his shoulder and fell asleep for several hours. It wasn’t long before he let me know we had arrived.