Chapter 12

***

 

“Oh, be careful, Lady Haley.”

 

“You should be more careful, Lady Haley.”

 

Fabien covered her face with a fan and raised her lips in a fine gesture.

 

Sharon, who was responding to her, also laughed, hiding her face with her lace-gloved hands. 

 

“I’m sorry, Cecilia.”

 

Filina got up and wiped Cecilia’s dress with a handkerchief on the table. 

 

“It’s all right, My Lady. It’s just my carelessness.”

 

Filina’s hand, which was slowly wiping away the yellow stained fabric, came to a quick stop. It resembled a rosy color.

 

She stared at Cecilia.

 

She looked foolish, as she was blaming herself and was about to start crying.

 

The writer of this novel really knows how to hurt others.

 

It was Sharon and Fabien’s earlier comments that clouded Cecilia’s own judgment, even though she knew it was not her fault.

 

“Cecilia, it’s obviously my fault.”

 

Filina looked straight at her and recited. Cecilia looked at Filina with shaky eyes.

 

Her eyes resembled green meadows. The green irises that let the sunlight in showed a soft, vulnerable beauty.

 

Filina, who was quietly looking into her eyes, turned her head and called the maid.

 

“Pick a dress that suits Lady Cecilia. It’ll be a little difficult to enjoy tea time like this.”

 

Filina was overflowing with expensive dresses that she had never worn before.

 

Every time a party was held, her mansion received numerous gifts of clothing, all of which were pieces from designers.

 

The dresses she wore once to a party were so popular that they were sold out the next day, and more and more shops were promoting their clothes through Filina.

 

“No, My Lady! You don’t have to do that much for me!”

 

Cecilia said, waving her hand with a surprised look on her face. The faces of Sharon and Fabian, who were watching them, turned uncomfortable as well.

 

Filina began to speak with a quiet face.

 

“Please consider this my sincerity. If Cecilia is going to leave like this, I’ll feel guilty.”

 

“But……”

 

“Think of it as a gift exchanged by those closest to you.”

 

“…close?”

 

Cecilia stared blankly at Filina with round eyes. Eventually, one of the maids approached and beckoned to her.

 

Cecilia hesitated for a moment, then moved with an awkward gesture.

 

As she disappeared from her seat, Sharon and Fabien mumbled with unhappy faces.

 

“Lady Debussy, you didn’t have to care that much.”

 

“That’s right. It happened because of Lady Haley’s carelessness.”

 

Both of them pursed their lips in frustration as they looked at each other.

 

In fact, they were right, it could be dismissed as a mere coincidence.

 

In any case, I wasn’t going to be harmed by this.

 

No matter how openly and badly Filina did, Cecilia, being the kind protagonist as she was, had never let anyone know that she had been harmed.

 

Not even Ian, who came to Count Haley’s mansion.

 

Filina’s reason for distorting the original content was not purely for Cecilia.

 

It was just because Filina didn’t want Ian Alvar to easily feel the noble and sublime emotion of “love”.

 

Filina turned around and called Laura.

 

“Laura.”

 

“Yes, My Lady.”

 

“Prepare a special gift for the Young Ladies.”

 

Sharon and Fabien’s faces immediately changed at her words.

 

Laura nodded and turned straight away. She had great insight so she would make the perfect gift that suit Sharon and Fabien.

 

Soon Cecilia appeared with her servant.

 

Unlike the simple design dress she wore earlier, the dress she was now was in yellowish pastel tones resembled a beautiful spring flower.

 

“Oh, my, Lady Haley. The dress looks great on you!”

 

Looking at Fabien’s different reaction from earlier, Filina raised her lips.

 

“This is why everyone wants Lady Filina’s dresses! The dress is truly beautiful!”

 

This time Sharon genuinely marveled, her eyes shining brightly.

 

Cecilia blinked with a panicked look at their suddenly changed reaction, Then, by chance, her gaze met Filina’s, and her face blushed shyly.

 

“Thank you so much, My Lady. I’ve never worn such a pretty dress before.”

 

It was not simply the dress that was beautiful. It was because the heroine was wearing it that made it so.

 

Maybe the story will flow as it’s supposed to now.

 

It would be hard not to fall in love with her when she looked so beautiful.

 

A little later, Laura brought out large paper bags and give it to Fabien and Sharon in turn.

 

Filina casually scanned the two people looking into the gift bags with an excited face.

 

***

 

“You look happy, Young Lady.”

 

They were on their way home after the tea party at the Duke of Debussy’s residence. Daisy said to Cecilia, who was looking out the window.

 

“Yes, I’m really glad I came to the tea party today.”

 

Daisy asked with a curious look on her face as Cecilia spoke in a clear voice.

 

“Do you like Lady Debussy that much? I don’t really understand. She doesn’t smile much.”

 

“That’s why it’s good.”

 

Cecilia dropped her gaze and stared at the dress she was wearing. The pale yellow tones were in harmony with the color of her hair.

 

“It’s not just me she doesn’t smile at. She showed the same expression to others.”

 

Her fingers brushed the expensive fabric. The texture of the silk on the surface was stiff rather than soft.

 

“I don’t think the Lady Debussy wants to keep people around her.”

 

Daisy frowned as Cecilia spoke.

 

“I suppose that means she doesn’t let her ladyship near her either. Furthermore, the Debussy family is not known for its good reputation. If you need a friend, why don’t you look for someone else?”

 

Cecilia, who had been looking down, lifted her gaze.

 

“Who else? Is there anyone else who wants to get close to me?”

 

Cecilia spoke with a sorrowful look on her face.

 

“No one wants to talk to me since I became His Highness’ fiancée.”

 

Her dry voice crashing in the air brought a sad emotion.

 

“Actually, I was worried today. I thought it would be just me and Lady Filina, bit it wasn’t….I know that the other ladies don’t like me very much.”

 

“…Miss.”

 

Daisy looked at Cecilia depressingly. A low sadness crept into her dazed mood.

 

But it was only for a short time.

 

Suddenly, a smile bloomed on Cecilia’s lips.

 

“Did you hear what Lady Filina said? She said we were close.”

 

Cecilia blushed with a look of delight.

 

“It’s not just that. The Lady only called me by my name. And she looked so kind.”

 

Cecilia smiled as she remembered the time that had passed with the lingering feeling. Daisy, who was watching her, could only nod with a small sigh.

 

In the meantime, the carriage gradually stopped moving. Before they knew it, they arrived at Count Haley’s residence. Holding the hand of the escort knight, Cecilia got off the carriage and heard a small lament from the side. It was none other than Daisy’s.

 

It was her voice. Cecilia looked up with a strange expression on her face.

 

In front of her residence stood the Crown Prince in a neat uniform. Cecilia walked towards him with a surprised expression.

 

“Your Highness, what brought you here without notice?”

 

Ian, who was looking at her still, said with a sudden frown.

 

“I sent a servant here an hour ago. I guess you didn’t know”.”

 

Cecilia looked at Ian with panicked eyes. Their refreshed golden eyes touched each other in the air. She quickly bowed, her shoulders shaking.

 

“I’m sorry………..”

 

This was all the words that came out.

 

An hour or so ago, it would have been the time Cecilia was having tea at the Debussy’s residence. She had to make an excuse for it, but her lips couldn’t quite open when she saw his cold eyes.

 

“You dressed a little different today.”

 

For a moment, Ian’s face broke into a superior smile. Then his eyes naturally shifted to the dress Cecilia was wearing.

 

It wasn’t like the plain dress she often wore. This dress was made of a thin silk material that brightly reflected her slender shoulders.

 

The lines spreading below her waist maximized its luxuriousness, and there were embroidered butterflies underneath the beautifully harmonious fabric that seemed to seep yellow paint.

 

“It looks like you went to an important meeting?”

 

Ian tilted his head at an angle. Then Cecilia, who had never made eye contact with him, bumped gazes with Ian for the first time.

 

Cecilia said with a faint smile.

 

“We had tea today at the Debussy’s residence. But, there was a small accident while we were exchanging stories.”

 

Her green eyes lowered to the dress she was wearing.

 

“So Lady Filina gave me this beautiful dress as a gift.”

 

Ian, who had been listening intently to Cecilia’s words, furrowed his brow.

 

“Filina gave you this?”

 

He glanced at Cecilia’s dress again.

 

The color of the dress did not suit Filina.

 

The pastel-toned dress Cecilia wore would never stand up to Filina’s distinct features.

 

Cecilia, on the other hand, looked at Ian with surprised eyes.

 

It was because she noticed that Ian called Filina’s name in a friendly manner. Ian’s gaze rose again and glanced at Cecilia’s emerald eyes. However, Cecilia was staring up at him blankly without recognizing the fact.

 

***

 

The entrance exam for the Swordsmanship Academy has begun.

 

Enoch waited for her near the waiting area until Filina finished her written exam.

 

After some time, people began to come out one by one.

 

It wasn’t too difficult to find Filina among them. Enoch walked straight up to her and opened his mouth. 

 

“Did you do well on your exam?”

 

Filina, who was looking at him with a dark expression, opened her mouth in dismay.

 

 “Who the hell made the written exam at the academy? Did they purposely make it so? Do you know what my thoughts were as soon as I saw the exam paper?”

 

Judging from her tantrum-like reaction, the written test must be really difficult. Enoch consoled Filina’s disappointment in his heart.

 

How hard she had been training. In the end, he thought Filina would return to the mansion without even stepping on the threshold of practical skills.

 

“X, feet, the kids who failed writing are the ones who don’t get the bug.”*

 

 *(Filina is cussing so I don’t really know how to translate this. Sorry)

 

Enoch couldn’t believe his ears. He heard an awful lot of swear words….

 

“If I knew that exam questions were this easy, I wouldn’t have stayed up all night studying.”

 

Filina frowned with frustration.

 

The results of the written exam came out exactly an hour later. 

 

Filina’s score was perfect.

 

She passed the written test with vain ease.

Notes

N/A

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