Chapter 1. I was abandoned by my family
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Elle’s steps were relentless, as if she was about to storm into the Leroy’s mansion. Leticia, who was holding her hand, was being dragged along.
Poor Leticia sighed and tugged on Elle’s hand. As soon as she looked back, Leticia spoke slowly as soon as she made eye contact with Elle.
“For today, can’t we spend it together?”
Leticia didn’t want to go, because there was no way that good words would be exchanged.
But Elle was adamant.
“First of all, I want that apology.”
“Why don’t we go tomorrow, instead of today.”
The moment her gaze met Leticia’s, Elle began to hesitate more and more.
Fingertips that barely touch and eyes filled with sorrowful longing. Elle let out a short sigh, her heart was being swayed by Leticia’s desperate voice.
Leticia held Elle’s hand tightly when she tried to walk again.
“I wanted to congratulate you while eating delicious food.”
“Can’t we, Miss Elle?”
She squeezed both of Elle’s hands when she spoke, but Elle pouted in frustration.
“Oh, come on. Talking like that is unfair.”
Elle wanted to visit the Leroy mansion immediately and make a scene. However, the moment she faced those blue eyes looking at her mournfully, Elle’s motivation disappeared like mist.
It was not long before Elle shrugged her shoulders lightly in defeat.
“Come to think of it, how long are you going to keep calling me Miss.”
“I think we’re close enough to call each other without titles.”
Elle narrowed her eyes in displeasure. Leticia, who had been looking at Elle, glanced at Enoch without realizing.
Ian noticed the glance before Elle did.
“Did you call Big Brother without honorifics first?”
Embarrassed by Ian’s words, Leticia and Enoch looked at each other and turned their heads away immediately.
But they were already caught.
“Wow, I’m about to get upset.”
“This is betrayal!”
Enoch quickly took Leticia, and avoided eye contact. Elle and Ian joined forces to demand an immediate explanation.
The twins chased after him with disgruntled expressions on their faces as he ran away.
It was an out of the blue chase, but the smiles wouldn’t leave the four of them.
Marquis Leroy was in a good mood lately.
It was because of Count Aster’s offer to invest in the mining business, which he’d almost had to close, and Marquis El told Livion that he would be engaged to Diana.
A family with abilities will have a deeper relationship with each other if their children were to get married later.
With Emil’s performance at the Academy, he was expected to become an Imperial official this year. Marquis Leroy did not have to worry much about Xavier because he quickly recovered from the mercy of the horse.
If Irene hadn’t lost her test paper at the Academy of Magic.
“You can’t even properly hand in a piece of paper!”
Irene’s performance so far has been good enough to qualify her for the Imperial Wizard Test, but her passing was in jeopardy as she was disqualified in one of her subjects.
Irene, who knew this fact better than anyone else, quivered as if she were being hit by a cold winter wind.
“It’s not because I wanted to lose it…”
“I don’t want to see your face right now, go to your room.”
As soon as she tried to make an excuse, Marquis Leroy suddenly turned his back to her. Irene felt suffocated by his heartless response.
She cried in a tearful voice, but Marquis Leroy never looked back.
Irene stared at his retreating back while she flopped on the floor and sobbed aloud. Emil, who had been watching quietly, sighed at her antics.
“Let’s get you off the cold floor, Irene.”
“What should I do…”
“Father must be disappointed in me, right? Now you’re ashamed of me, aren’t you?”
Emil slowly helped her up, but Irene’s eyes were somewhat lifeless.
“You must’ve expected a lot from me… It’s all my fault.”
“It’s my fault I didn’t get the proper test sheet.”
It was unusual to see her mumbling with her head down.
Noticing immediately, Emil grabbed Irene’s shoulder and soothed her with a soft voice.
“You can do better next time.”
“You can learn from this time, like you always do…”
“Don’t say that so easily!”
Irene, who had been standing still and showing no reaction, suddenly shook her head and then violently threw off Emil’s hand.
“Do you know how hard I’ve tried to be good all the time?”
“I didn’t want to be hated by Father, so I tried so hard I thought I would throw up blood.”
“No, you don’t. How can you understand when Father’s always been proud of you.”
Irene stared at Emil with ferocity. She didn’t want to talk anymore, so she turned around and ran straight to her room. She heard Emil calling to her, but she slammed the door and cried on her desk as if she hadn’t heard.
She has always been a beloved daughter. She was always a daughter her father was proud of.
However, Irene was disgraced in the Marquis’ eyes when she was caught hiding her secret.
‘I’ll have to do it all again.’
As soon as the thought crossed her mind, Irene quickly pulled out the magic book with a blue cover and began reading it like crazy.
Then she faintly heard a familiar voice.
[I’m careful to say this, but I don’t want you to work too hard.]
[It’s such a waste to sacrifice yourself for someone else’s reputation.]
Someone said that to her.
The hand that was turning the page paused for a moment.
Irene looked over the books with half-lost in thought, when did that ever happen?
‘I can’t make a mistake this time. It has to be perfect.’
To always be a proud and wonderful daughter.
To be a daughter who will always be loved.
“Look at this!”
One leisurely afternoon, Elle went to visit the owner of Pegasus during the day. When she returned, Elle placed something down on the table with a big smile.
Enoch was drinking tea with the others, and looked at her wondering what this was about. Instead of answering, Elle just nodded towards it, as if to say open it.
Ian opened up the paper that Elle laid down. As soon as he checked what was inside, he passed it to Enoch with a stiff face. Enoch put the paper down without looking.
“That’s not all. Really, it’s only a little bit.”
What Elle brought back was a receipt proofing that she’d paid back some of their debt.
She knew Enoch alone was responsible for the debt, but Elle wanted to help pay back what little she could.
“Thank you, Elle. Thanks to you, the burden has been reduced.”
Enoch didn’t say why he did it, but he stroked Elle’s hair affectionately. Elle, who was beaming happily at the touch, handed Ian some pocket money.
The money was given to Ian to use for books that he needed for the Imperial civil official exam.
Ian hesitated briefly at the offering before thanking her.
Leticia clapped her hands with a smile on her face. At that moment, Elle’s gaze turned towards Leticia.
“I’m going out to buy Miss Leticia a present.”
Leticia blinked her eyes in confusion, and Elle rushed to grab her hand.
“Now wait a minute Miss Elle…”
A few days ago, after learning that Leticia and Enoch were calling each other without honorifics, Elle did not hide her disappointment. In fact, Leticia hasn’t called Enoch’s name properly yet, but it wasn’t important to Elle.
To ease her disappointment, Leticia often tried to call Elle and Ian’s names. Elle smiled with satisfaction, even if it came out awkwardly because she was not used to it yet.
“Then we’re on our way.”
As Elle pulled her hand again, Leticia glanced at Enoch with a puzzled look on her face. She looked as if she really wanted to follow her.
Enoch nodded lightly and put Leticia’s coat over her shoulder.
“You should go out and buy a present.”
Leticia was wriggling her hands, hesitating to say what she wanted to say. She looked up at Enoch with a worried face.
“I’ll be back.”
The expression on her face seemed to be delighted, as if she had really wanted to say this.
Enoch was mesmerized by her beauty, and he couldn’t help reaching out to her.
When he came to his senses, he was already stroking Leticia’s bright pink hair.
“Ah… I’m sorry.”
Maybe it’s because of his habit of patting his younger siblings on the head.
However, Leticia only clenched her hands with her head bowed.
As Enoch tried to apologize again, Leticia quickly took Elle without raising her head. Enoch panicked and tried to catch her, but she quickly disappeared into the distance.
He could see the reddish ears visible through the petal-like beauty of her hair.
Looking at Leticia’s red ears, Enoch laughed out loud for the first time in a while.
As soon as she arrived at the square, Leticia fanned her cheeks. Fortunately, the heat on her face had dropped sharply.
‘You shouldn’t suddenly stroke someone’s head.’
She could still feel his touch, and felt her face starting to flush again.
Leticia was trying to calm herself down, when she felt a gaze on her. She turned her head in surprise.
Elle was standing there looking very pleased.
“Why.. why are you looking at me like that?”
While shaking her head lightly, Elle handed over the satchel that she’d waited to give her. Leticia was embarrassed by its weight, she looked at Elle with uncertainty.
Instead of answering, Elle glanced at the satchel. Then Leticia reluctantly opened it.
“Wow, you’re getting better at calling my name.”
“This is not the time to say that.”
What Elle gave Leticia was none other than a satchel of gold coins. Leticia blinked and thought she was seeing things. She was shocked and tried to give it back to Elle.
But Elle shook her head firmly and said.
“It’s a fair price.”
“What? What do you mean?”
“I told you last time. I designed the bracelet, but thank you for giving me the idea of ‘wish’.”
“I was able to make money because of it, so please accept it.”
Leticia still hesitated, and Elle was forced to show her true feelings.
“I want to stay with Miss Leticia for a long time.”
There was no lie in the way Elle looked at her.
Leticia’s heart felt warm, so she nodded quickly.
“I want to stay close, too.”
“Then take it.”
“The closer you are, the more certain you have to be.”
Leticia realized that Elle was never going to back down, so she looked down at the bag of gold coins in her hand.
It was the first time she had ever received anything monetary, so she wondered if it was really okay to receive it. It was clear that Elle would refuse it if she tried to return it, so Leticia had no choice but to smile.
“Then I’ll take it gratefully.”
Leticia repeatedly opened and closed her mouth in an attempt to say something.
While it might’ve frustrated some, Elle quietly waited for Leticia’s answer without frowning.
Leticia found the right words and slowly brought it up.
“You can call me ‘Sister’ if you want.”
“Oh… if it’s uncomfortable or burdensome…”
Leticia smiled sadly, she thought her words had made Elle uncomfortable.
“No! Not at all!”
Elle was staring in shock at Leticia, and belatedly came to her senses. She shook her hands in denial.
“I really wanted to have a sister!”
At first I just thought she was nice and kind. However, as she spent more time with her, Elle came to enjoy their time together because of Leticia’s sensitive heart, the way she listened to her, and above all… her kindness in taking care of even the smallest things.
Elle could never turn a blind eye to such a nice and friendly sister.
Leticia had been secretly feeling uneasy. So when Elle strongly denied being uncomfortable, she smiled brightly.
So the two walked around the square in harmony. Leticia bought the blue ribbon that she wanted but couldn’t afford before. They also looked at other accessories.
Just when she thought they had looked around enough, Elle suddenly took Leticia’s hand and walked into a boutique.
It was the most popular boutique among the aristocrats.
Leticia stared at her in surprise, but Elle laughed and glanced at the dresses as if it was normal.
“There’s a hunting competition soon, we should get dresses.”
“But it’s too expensive here…”
As they were leaving the boutique, Leticia made eye contact with someone who was entering.
Only then did Leticia remember something she’d forgotten.
This was Diana’s favourite boutique.