Chapter 18. Where Misfortunes Come

 

 

***

“Did you have a good trip?”

 

Enoch asked when Leticia and Elle entered the drawing room where Ian and him had been drinking tea.

 

Elle lightly shrugged her shoulders.

 

“Yes, but I couldn’t get the work done.”

 

Ian nodded with a look of relief that Elle didn’t show any sign of disappointment.

 

“I thought you’d be downcast because you couldn’t find anyone.”

“What do you mean? I’ll find someone.”

 

Elle sat next to Ian, vowing to find a craftsman who would surely make her accessories.

 

Leticia paused for a moment to giggle at Elle and Ian’s quarreling.

 

“Why are you standing there like that? Sit down.”

 

Elle saw Leticia standing there awkwardly, and beckoned her to sit in the chair across from her.

 

It was right next to Enoch.

 

“Oh, yes…”

 

Leticia sat down next to Enoch, as soon as their eyes met she glanced away shyly.

 

She could feel Enoch’s gaze and stared straight ahead.

 

‘I wonder if it’s okay if I sit next to you?’

 

Unlike the self-conscious Leticia, Enoch wore an indifferent expression while he poured tea into a Vienna cup.

 

“Don’t walk around too late. I’m worried about you.”

 

A warm tea was placed in front of Leticia. 

 

Leticia thought the words were directed at her, so she looked up at Enoch. But he was handing a cup of tea to Elle.

 

When he glanced back at her, she met his troubled eyes.

 

“The same goes for you, Miss Leroy.”

 

The firm yet gentle voice made her feel better, and Leticia almost smiled in happiness.

 

She nodded quickly, trying to hold it in. 

 

“Yes, I’ll be careful not to worry you.”

 

When Leticia said yes, Enoch smiled contentedly and drank tea.

 

Leticia glanced at him and blushed furiously.

 

It had been a while since she felt someone worry about her.

 

‘It’s warm.’

 

Leticia gripped the hot cup of tea Enoch had given her.

 

A feeling hotter than the cup she was holding bloomed in her chest.

 

Strangely, the feeling wasn’t unpleasant.

 

She was sipping her tea while contemplating that warmth when Ian said.

 

“Come to think of it, isn’t there an Imperial Knighthood ceremony soon?”

“That’s right. Aren’t you nervous, Brother?”

 

Ian asked as he had suddenly remembered, Elle also looked at Enoch.

 

Enoch smiled lightly as he faced their uneasy gazes.

 

“I’m not nervous.”

 

“Oh, Brother is so mature.”

“You’re coming with us, right?”

 

Ian asked Leticia, while Elle was busy teasing Enoch. While it was said in a questioning tone, it sounded more like a statement.

 

Enoch and Elle also turned to Leticia.

 

With three sets of eyes on her, Leticia asked cautiously.

 

“Is it alright if I go?”

“Of course!”

 

As Elle nodded her head excitedly, Leticia looked to Enoch.

 

Enoch smiled and nodded, and Leticia’s expression brightened. 

 

“Yes, I’ll go celebrate with you.”

 

She was happy just thinking that she was going to celebrate with people precious to her.

 

But that happiness was short-lived as Leticia gripped the cup anxiously.

 

‘If it is an Imperial Knight appointment ceremony…’

 

She was sure to run into Levion.

 

Leticia didn’t realize, but her face had become gloomy.

 

“You said you were going to make your own jewelry to sell. Show me the design.”

“Okay, here you go.”

 

Elle readily handed the envelope, across the table, to the curious Ian.

 

Ian made a strange expression while looking at the paper.

 

“What’s this contract?”

 

Ian asked, showing Elle the papers from the envelope. 

 

Inside the envelope were contract papers, not the accessory drawn by Elle.

 

“Huh? What’s this?”

 

A puzzled Elle looked at the papers and recognized what they were.

 

But no matter how many times she looked, it was a contract, not her drawing.

 

“No way…”

 

As soon as the thought crossed her mind, Leticia and Elle’s eyes met at the same time. 

 

There was only one possibility coming to mind.

 

Elle immediately sighed and said. 

 

“I guess the envelope was switched with the person I bumped into outside.”

“It’s too late now, let’s go to bed and try to find him tomorrow.”

 

Elle said dejectedly. Ian, who was sitting next to her, patted her lightly on the shoulder. 

 

It was late in the evening. Elle and Ian decided to go back to their rooms to sleep.

 

As Enoch was leaving the parlor.

 

“Umm…”

 

Enoch looked back in curiosity at the quiet voice calling out to him.

 

There stood a hesitant Leticia, who looked like she wanted to say something.

 

“What’s wrong?”

“No! It’s not…”

“….?”

 

Leticia opened and closed her mouth several times before she managed to say something.

 

“Did he come back again?”

“….”

 

She worried that Levion might have come back unannounced, and bothered Enoch again. 

 

The Levion that Leticia knew was someone who would do that.

 

But for some reason, Enoch’s voice sounded cold.

 

“You call his name comfortably… You must have a special relationship.”

“He’s been close to my family since we were children.”

 

Leticia’s expression softened as she nodded lightly, oblivious of Enoch’s sharp comment.

 

Maybe Levion was closer and friendlier with her family, but where was he when she was struggling.

 

But…

 

[Are you relying on another man while still engaged to him? Get your act together. Don’t make me the bad guy.]

 

She was someone who’s more focused on people’s eyes and reputation than Enoch had ever been.

 

“It’s different. No, it’s special.”

 

Now it was a relationship that was as easily broken as her family bond.

 

Enoch stopped talking for a moment as he turned his head with a bitter smile, and then answered quietly.

 

“He didn’t come.”

“Phew… that’s a relief to hear.”

 

Leticia gave a sigh of relief, Enoch who was watching her said.

 

“There is something I’d like to say to Miss Leroy.”

“What?”

 

She blinked her eyes, wondering what he meant. 

 

Enoch did not take his eyes off her sky blue eyes as he said.

 

“Don’t put up with someone hurting you or taking you for granted.”

 

The black eyes stared at me adamantly. It made me straighten my back.

 

“No one deserves to be hurt.”

“Ah…”

 

A short cry floated out of Leticia’s mouth.

 

No one deserves to be hurt.

 

It was a natural thing to say.

 

But Enoch was the first person to say that to her.

 

“Yes.”

 

Leticia smiled softly with a sweet voice that warmed her eyes.

 

So she slowly brought up something that had been bothering her. 

 

“Lord Achilles.”

“….?”

“I’m not a Leroy anymore, so you can call me whatever you want.”

 

Leticia said casually, but froze for a moment. 

 

Speaking of which…

 

‘What should I call him?’

 

It was normal to have no family name after being excommunicated.

 

That meant he would be calling her by her given name.

 

She felt nervous thinking of Enoch calling her name, but Leticia tried to act casual about it.

 

“Call me by my first name, Lord Achilles.”

 

It was just a name, and yet, her hands wouldn’t stop trembling.

 

A shadow fell over her.

 

As she raised her head in surprise, she saw Enoch right in front of her, bent down slightly at eye level.

 

As soon as their gaze was intertwined, Enoch slowly opened his mouth. 

 

“Leticia.”

“….!”

“Is that what I should call you?”

 

Thump, thump, thump.

 

The sound of her heart beating seemed to be right in her ears.

 

Enoch spoke in a soft voice to Leticia, who was too embarrassed to even raise her head.

 

“I’d like you to call me by my name as well.”

“What? Oh…”

 

Her heart felt like it would explode when he called her name, the thought of calling Enoch’s by name left her flustered.

 

She felt herself blushing from head to toe.

 

With her head down, Leticia spoke slowly with a trembling voice. 

 

“Can you wait a bit longer?”

 

Enoch nodded with a smile as he looked down at Leticia, who was wringing her white hands shyly.

 

“Then I’ll wait.”

“Thank you.”

“Sweet dreams.”

 

Enoch, who she had expected to return to his room immediately, suddenly stopped and turned around. 

 

She opened her eyes wide wondering if something was wrong. Enoch’s mouth raised up in a pleasant smile, then she heard his voice.

 

“Leticia.”

 

He said her name gently before returning to his room.

 

Leticia was left standing alone in the hallway watching him walk away. She answered him in a small voice that Enoch couldn’t hear. 

 

“Yes, goodnight…”

 

Enoch.

 

The name she hadn’t been able to call out was still tickling her mouth.

 

***

 

“What? You excommunicated her?”

 

Upon returning to the Leroy mansion, Seos heard shocking news from Marquis Leroy. 

 

Leticia was expelled from the family. 

 

As soon as Seos heard the news, his voice became stern.

 

“Her ability is not to bring misfortune! If it was, your family would have been ruined already, you wouldn’t have thrived!”

“It was for a good reason.”

“Reason?”

 

It was so ridiculous that Seos burst into laughter.

 

“What great reason did you have to excommunicate that child?”

“That one child would have ruined me, my children, and my family.”

 

Seos’ expression hardened at the Marquis’ words.

 

It seemed that Marquis Leroy had already made up his mind.

 

“What would you have me do? Her behavior was going to bring misfortune.”

“Master Leroy.”

“Even spending time with that Achilles family, famous for their bad luck.”

 

It must be the reason why an investor suddenly backed out and the Marquis had to stop working on one of his businesses.

 

Seos listened to Marquis Leroy’s story with a blank face.

 

“You’re blaming Leticia for what happened?”

“What other reason could there be?”

“….”

“Since Diana was born nothing bad has happened. Either the power of the first child really brings misfortune, or she was too close to the Achilles family.”

 

Marquis Leroy was morbidly obsessed with luck and good fortune. Due to this fact, his family line was about to fall in a big way.

 

Seos knew he wasn’t wrong.

 

“I swear on my name. That child’s ability does not bring misfortune.”

 

He didn’t know what her ability was yet, but he was sure it was an extraordinary ability.

 

But Marquis Leroy didn’t even pretend to listen.

 

Seos was about to strike his chest in frustration at the sight.

 

There was a sudden commotion outside the room.

 

“That can’t be true! I’m sure I turned in my exam papers!”

 

Marquis Leroy immediately recognized Irene’s voice. He jumped up and went outside.

 

As he went out, he saw Irene and a staff member from the Magic Academy standing at the front door. He approached slowly, and the sound of their conversation became clearer.

 

“Unfortunately, we have no choice but to disqualify you.”

“Oh, that’s ridiculous! I’ll look for it myself!”

 

The only reason the Magic Academy employee even visited was to inform Irene of her disqualification. 

 

Unable to believe it, Irene accompanied the staff member back to the academy to look for the paper. 

 

“What is going on all of a sudden?”

“I don’t know.”

 

‘I hope it’s not a big deal,’ the family thought.

 

“Master! There’s trouble! The Young Master!”

 

As soon as Irene left the mansion, the stableman rushed to the Marquis Leroy with a panicked look on his face. 

 

Marquis Leroy felt a strong sense of foreboding.

 

“What’s the fuss?”

“Young master Xavier fell off his horse and was injured.”

“What? It can’t be!”

 

Everyone in the mansion knew that Xavier was good with a sword and could ride a horse. 

 

But he fell off a horse?

 

Marquis Leroy rushed to Xavier’s room with a pale face.

 

Seos watched him leave with a soft exhale. 

 

‘I heard that the Marquess was burned the other day and his second daughter injured her wrist.’

 

Why are so many bad things happening all of a sudden?

 

Seos clicked his tongue, but then his face stiffened.

 

‘When did it start?’

 

How long had this unbelievably bad luck been happening to the Leroy household? 

 

He thought back slowly and calmly, one by one, until he came to one fact.

 

‘That’s when it started.’

 

Nothing good has happened since Leticia was excommunicated from the family.