Chapter 1. I was abandoned by my family
“What’s going on?”
Leticia asked curiously after she had just returned from seeing Enoch off. Considering the suspicious look in Elle’s eyes as he left. She seemed to be trying to hide something from him.
It wasn’t until he’d left, that Elle took Leticia to the drawing room.
“It’s a secret, so don’t tell him what we said.”
“What is it?”
These days, pink diamonds have been increasing in popularity. Although there weren’t very many of them, the color was good and the gem was quite large. So nobles were asking for him to sell the diamonds to them.
Thanks to this, the Achilles family situation had become mentally and physically more relaxed as their debts were almost completely paid back.
Finally, Elle and Ian have the opportunity to solve a problem that had been on their minds for a long time.
“I want to have a succession ceremony for my brother.”
“Are you talking about a Duke’s succession ceremony?”
Ian was listening to the conversation, he nodded and answered.
“We were supposed to have done it already, but we didn’t because we couldn’t afford to.”
“So our goal is to prepare one and notify the guests ourselves. If we tell our brother in advance, he’ll probably tell us that the family hasn’t recovered yet, so we shouldn’t bother.”
Leticia nodded in agreement with Ian’s words. Even she thought that if Enoch heard he would say it’s fine and try to stop it.
“I’m going to prepare properly this time, and make sure he doesn’t ignore it again!”
Elle put her hands on her waist with a grim look on her face.
It was her turn to make an example of those who whispered behind their back, mocking them for not having enough money to do the succession ceremony.
Leticia was quietly watching Elle, who was more motivated than ever, when she asked.
“Can I join you?”
“Of course. That’s why I called you over secretly.”
Elle hugged Leticia as she asked if it was really okay.
Ian smiled slightly at the friendly atmosphere between the two and calmly said.
“I’m off to the exam then.”
“Is today the second exam?”
Ian was acting like he was merely going for a stroll outside, not leaving for an important exam.
Leticia was surprised by Ian’s attitude and unwound Elle’s arms from around her shoulder.
When Ian realized that she was going with him, he smiled and said he was fine.
“I can go alone.”
“Then can I pick you up after the exam ends?”
Ian nodded, pretending not to be won over by the earnest look that begged him not to refuse.
Elle hugged Leticia from behind, then looked at her brother and sarcastically remarked.
“Would it hurt you to be that nice to me?”
“Are you and Sister the same?”
“I’m the real thing!”
Elle frowned fiercely at Ian, before she pretended to be choked up about the blatant discrimination.
“Go ahead and take a good look. Don’t think about coming home if you don’t meet that person. “
“Don’t say that.”
Ian left the drawing room after telling her to stop stating the obvious.
Leticia watched Ian leave, then patted Elle’s arm that was around her shoulder.
“Elle, who were you talking about?”
“There are some things.”
“Why? Who is it?”
Leticia grabbed Elle’s arm when she dropped her arm away and stepped back. She was quite curious.
Elle didn’t want to upset Leticia, so she changed the subject.
“We don’t have time for that. We need to plan for the succession ceremony.”
“I don’t know how to prepare for the ceremony.”
“I don’t know much either…”
For a little while, a strange silence hovered over the drawing room.
In the end, they changed around their plans to hold a party to properly demonstrate the position of the Achilles family. The goal was to have a grand party with maximum pomp and circumstance so that they would not be treated as a family that couldn’t even hold a succession ceremony.
They wanted to surprise Enoch as much as possible with the ceremony, but it was difficult for Ian, Elle, and Leticia to prepare alone.
Leticia thought about it for a while, and slowly said.
“I think it would be better if we asked Count Aster for advice.”
“Great! I’d like to prepare as much as I can for now.”
“Let’s do that. Next time, why don’t we donate a reasonable amount and do some charity work later?”
“Okay, I need to improve my image, too. I care about my reputation.”
Leticia was relieved to a certain extent, and slowly rose from her seat. It was almost time for Ian’s exam to end.
“I’m going to have to go now.”
“Have a safe trip.”
Strangely, Elle remained seated and waved goodbye from her spot.
“Aren’t you coming with me?”
“You wouldn’t like it if I went, it’s obvious why you want to go.”
“Okay, then I’ll go by myself.”
Leticia nodded and said she’d be back soon, leaving the drawing room.
‘There’s no way Ian won’t like it.’
Leticia was pretty sure Elle wanted her to go pick him up. She tried to persuade her to come along, but there was no way she could interrupt Elle, who was preoccupied with the preparations for the party.
‘Elle was always complaining about Enoch, but she would do anything she could to help him.’
Maybe it was because there was finally something that she could do for him, but you could see the excitement on her face.
‘That’s what family is.’
A relationship where they care for each other, and take care of each other.
Leticia thought about her family as she walked alone to Ian’s examination site, somehow she felt heavier when she thought about them.
‘I’m sure it must be Emil.’
A sigh flowed from her mouth.
It was still hard to believe that Emil was the culprit behind the malicious rumor. There was no obvious evidence, but if Enoch said so there must be some clear connection.
‘You’ll know it when you see it.’
Apart from believing Enoch’s words, she wanted to talk to Emil face to face. In fact, this was the other reason she wanted to pick up Ian.
‘I think it’s time to pursue this.’
It was when she was leaning against a wall and looking at the front door.
The students began to exit, one by one, because the exam was over. Among them was Emil, who was seen talking to his colleagues.
As soon as Emil looked back slightly, their eyes met. Leticia slowly began to approach him.
“I have something I want to talk to you about.”
“I don’t have time.”
“It will only take a minute.”
Conscious of the curious stares of passersby, Emil let out an annoyed sigh.
“I can’t give you much time, so keep it short.”
As soon as they moved to a secluded corner, Leticia asked with a calm look.
“I’ll get straight to the point. Was it you?”
“What are you talking about?”
It felt like he realized she already knew everything, and was acting like he’d done nothing wrong.
Leticia felt something rise inside her, even though she’d already expected him to show this brazen attitude.
“The one who spread the false rumor about me.”
“I’m not sure what you’re talking about.”
Emil replied nonchalantly without changing his facial expression. It would look like he knew nothing to anyone else, but Leticia felt her heart grow cold.
‘I didn’t think it was possible…’
There was a bitter taste in her mouth.
Emil himself didn’t know this, but he had a habit of looking straight at you, without avoiding your eyes, when he lied or felt embarrassed. As if he was trying to say that he wasn’t ashamed at all.
Just like now.
“It really was you.”
Leticia couldn’t hide the miserable look on her face.
It had been a long time since she’d left her family, but every time she was confronted with a moment like this, it was inevitable that a part of her would feel conflicted.
“I said it wasn’t me.”
Leticia stared at Emil, who was uncomfortable about the encounter, and said.
“Don’t get caught.”
Leticia clenched her hands as Emil looked at her like she was talking nonsense.
The reason why she had kept quiet until now was because she was worried that he might bother the people around her for no reason.
Even though she’d endured it, she knew the people around her were having a hard time, and there was no reason for her to stay quiet anymore.
“If you get caught, prepare to have everything you’ve done returned to you.”
She was sick and tired of being mocked.
Leticia decided that for the sake of those who cared for her, she would return good intentions with good intentions and bad intentions with bad intentions.
Emil smirked at her as if she was being ridiculous.
“What are you expecting to give back to me when I haven’t done anything?”
How are you so confident?
Emil was not amused by what he was hearing. He sighed and took a step closer to Leticia.
“Sister, I’m saying this out of concern.”
At first glance, it seemed like he was really worried, but there was an obvious sneer painted on his stony face.
“Please figure out reality.”
“There’s nothing you can do, so don’t even bother trying.”
Lately, his head had been killing him. Then she came out of nowhere asking questions, and unbearable anger erupted at Leticia for scratching at his heart.
“Just live quietly.”
“Act as if you’re dead.”
Then the position of the family should not be lowered just because they kicked out an innocent person.
If Leticia had just lived like she was invisible after she was kicked out, he wouldn’t have done anything. Leticia, who keeps going around despite her excommunication, had forced him to do something annoying, which was making him nervous these days.
It was all Leticia’s own fault that things had gotten so out of hand.
Why does she keep doing things, when all she needs to do is stay quiet and still?
Emil swept his hair back angrily. He thought that she would be able to understand what he was saying as long as she wasn’t stupid.
That was Emil’s mistake.
“You’re the one who poked someone who was being quiet.”
The mouse’s hands trembled while he spoke.
Everything was her fault. It was her fault that she spoiled her younger siblings too much.
It seems that she loved them too much and they grew up rude, cowardly and petty.
Diana, who doesn’t do anything right, but lives with a smug look on her face. Emil who often looks down on others for being stupid. Xavier, who only relies on his ability and brags about it. All of them hurt her, even Irene,
“When did you fall to such a low point?”
“I thought you would know better, but this isn’t like you.”
Leticia considered Emil to be the most reliable and dependable of all of her siblings. Sometimes he was too ruthless and cold-hearted. She was willing to accept it, because he usually had his reasons.
At this moment, Leticia realized that she had misjudged Emil.
“You’re not smart, you look stupid to me.”
“Who are you calling stupid?”
Emil let out a gasp of astonishment as he listened.
Leticia’s words were not over yet.
“So don’t let yourself get caught in the act.”
Leticia smiled brightly at his fierce glare.
“You know I’m just saying this out of concern, right?”