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However, it wasn’t a lie that the Roem Family couldn’t receive guests.
Chloe, who returned home after taking a walk, was puzzled by the chaotic atmosphere. She grabbed a passing employee and asked.
“Emily, what’s going on?”
“Oh, young Lady. about that…”
Emily, a maid working in the Roem Residence, was contemplating whether to speak or not because she didn’t know if she had the right to talk about it.
“It’s all right. You can speak comfortably.”
“I… The Lord and Lady are enraged. They had a fight with Lady Catherine.”
“Okay, thanks for letting me know.”
Chloe thanked Emily and let her go, however, she was still puzzled.
‘Why is there arguing between Catherine and our parents?’
Catherine was the pride of the Roem Family regardless of what anyone said. The Roem Family wasn’t very rich when Chloe was young because of her father, who unreasonably expanded his business. It was Catherine’s paintings that allowed the Roem Family to come this far.
Count Roem trusted and relied on Catherine the most among his three daughters. Not only was Catherine good at painting, but she was also smart and sensible enough to hold the top spot in the academy.
In fact, not only the Count but the rest of the Roem Family also relied on Catherine. Especially Chloe.
She usually followed Catherine recklessly, though they were not on good terms currently. Catherine was Chloe’s favorite.
In any case, Catherine and Count Roem rarely bumped into each other. The Count had an indefinite trust for Catherine in whatever decision she made.
Chloe became lost in thought as she climbed the central staircase.
“Sister, are you out of your mind? Do you think it’s over after you say it?”
She heard Karina’s sharp, scolding voice. She was picking on Catherine, who was about to descend the central staircase.
“That’s enough, Karina.”
Catherine cut Karina off in a firm tone.
“No amount of persuasion will change my mind.”
“How can you only think about yourself, sister? Don’t you think about family? About our family?”
“…Yes, I’m just going to think about myself now.”
Catherine’s words somehow became determined.
“I’m sorry, Karina.”
Catherine apologized and removed Karina’s hand from her shoulder.
Karina couldn’t hold her sister back anymore and buried her face in her hands. What was the point of apologizing?
Chloe was puzzled and just blinked. Catherine, who was descending the stairs, and Chloe, who was going to climb up, collided into each other.
Catherine soon approached Chloe. She gently held her youngest sister in her arms.
When Chloe became confused, Catherine patted her sister’s back once and pulled away.
“If you have time later, could you stop by my studio?”
Catherine spoke with a miserable smile. And she went on her way, not bothering to wait for Chloe’s answer.
Chloe had no choice but to stand there and stare at her sister’s back as her figure gradually moved away. The remark whispered by her sister lingered in her ears.
‘I’m really sorry.’
It was a mere apology, but she couldn’t figure out why it sounded so sad.
It was the day Catherine Roem declared to her parents that she would no longer live as the eldest daughter of the Roem Family. She seized her destiny by not letting her family even think about bequeathing the title to her nor marrying her off for the sake of the family.
Chloe Roem and Gerard Blanchett finally met. It was the day of the engagement of Owen de Hernia and Karina Roem.
‘Even if she missed everything else, she wouldn’t miss her sister’s engagement.’
Gerard was grateful that Owen got engaged just in time.
His eyes didn’t budge from the Roem Family during the whole ceremony. No, he didn’t know how to get them away from Chloe, who looked as if she was hiding from him.
“It’s a very delightful day to have a precious relationship with the Roem Family. Please share this delight with everyone who has gathered here today.”
The engagement banquet began upon Owen’s words. And as soon as Owen finished his speech, Gerard strode toward Chloe.
However, Chloe’s behavior was ridiculous. Was she moving to the terrace while glancing around?
Gerard felt like it was beyond ridiculous and even unfair. He felt like a monster she needed to get away from.
No, she said she felt guilty towards him. He didn’t know why she felt that way, but her actions were not of someone who felt guilty.
“Hasn’t it been a long time, young Lady Roem?”
Chloe and Gerard’s hand brushed for a very brief moment. Gerard greeted Chloe, opening the terrace door for her.
Chloe breathed in quickly upon hearing Gerard Blanchett’s voice above her head.
He was somehow satisfied. Gerard had to bite his lip in order to hold back his laugh at Chloe’s frightened gasp. He didn’t know what was so funny about that.
Gerard nonchalantly opened the terrace door.
“Didn’t you mean to come here? Please go ahead, young Lady.”
Chloe looked up at Gerard’s smiling face. He was smiling, but she could feel a strange aura beyond it.
Chloe hurried through the open door. However, it wasn’t his face that made Chloe nervous. It was Gerard’s body standing right behind her. They were too close.
Chloe tried to thank him right at the door. That was to imply that she wanted to send Gerard away.
However, Gerard couldn’t go back when he got his first chance after a long time. Gerard naturally came onto the terrace and closed the door behind him.
And he smiled brightly.
“I have something to talk about with the young Lady, so could you spare me a little bit of your time?”
Chloe formed goosebumps upon seeing that smile.
However, when the two were left on the terrace, Gerard couldn’t open his mouth easily.
‘What does he want to say?’
Chloe turned and looked at Gerard Blanchett. She was pleased. He appeared healthy.
She heard that Gerard had regained consciousness and that he had started social activities again. However, when she confirmed with her own eyes that he was doing well, she felt relieved.
Chloe inadvertently let out a relieved sigh. It made Gerard shudder.
“Why are you avoiding me?”
Thus, the question Gerard was curious about the most slipped out of his mouth.
Chloe was at loss for words and only stared at the terrace railing.
Why did she avoid him? The answer was simple. It would be painful to face Gerard Blanchett.
Gerard was severely injured because Chloe clumsily involved herself in the plot of the novel. It all seemed like her fault.
He didn’t know how much she blamed herself seeing him in bed with a pale face. Chloe turned away, frowning at the memory that crept back into her mind.
Gerard’s eyes widened as he looked at her face. Did she hate him to the point where she turned her face away in such a hurry?
She had a right to push him away coldly, but still.
“I mean… on the day we made a bet on playing chess.”
“I think I was talking too harshly to you. I wanted to keep apologizing for that.”
“It’s all right. We are supposed to keep our distance as you said.”
Chloe recited exactly what Gerard said at that time. Gerard felt a cold feeling in his chest upon her words. He wondered why it felt so frustrating when he heard his own words.
‘What should I say? That was a slip of tongue, and that I wished we could stay the same way as before? Isn’t it too shameless?’
Gerard’s mind became complicated. He couldn’t figure out what he should say. Perhaps that was the reason the words that slipped out from his tongue were spontaneous.
“I think I’ll be heading to the west border area soon.”
It hadn’t been confirmed yet.
“If it’s the west border…”
It was an area that had contact with the Tzuwa people. Yes, in the book inside her dream, Gerard Blanchett was punished and sent to the west border.
‘That’s what I wanted to prevent.’
That was why she advised Leila to bring a knife in the middle of the banquet. She knew that Sir Blanchett wouldn’t leave his escort’s side if Leila could escape the person who held her hostage by herself.
However, that was just an idea. The future went the way it was written in the book. It was helpless.
“Therefore, I wanted to say farewell before I go.”
“You’re going to return with a huge victory, Sir.”
To his dismay, Chloe wasn’t that upset about it. She was sure Gerard would come back safely. It turned out that way in the book inside her dream.
“Thank you, young Lady.”
Gerard raised his eyebrows and smiled pathetically at Chloe’s plain affirmation.
In fact, he wasn’t too afraid to go to the border. However, if he smiled like this, the kind-hearted Chloe Roem would be worried about him.
“Do you remember the opera that we watched together?”
–Have you seen the opera that was recently performed by Tiara? If you haven’t, would you like to go see it with me, Sir?
It was the opera with a miserable ending that he went to see with Chloe.
“I don’t know why I keep thinking about that opera these days.”
The female protagonist couldn’t say farewell on the day her beloved man went to war. She had fallen asleep whilst embroidering a handkerchief for her lover all night.
She prayed for her lover to return safely, but the only thing that returned to her was the news of his death. At the end, the actress’ performance while tearing the handkerchief apart was impressive.
“Anyway, I really wanted to greet the young Lady before I set off.”
Gerard Blanchett was good at quitting moderately. It was time to give up.
“Thank you for your time.”
Gerard bowed slightly and walked toward the terrace door.
Gerard, who planned for this, turned around, biting the flesh inside his mouth so that the corners of his mouth didn’t curve up.
“What is it, young Lady?”
“Can I meet you one more time before you go?”
It turned out just as Gerard planned. Perhaps she would bring an embroidered handkerchief to their next meeting.
“Yes, that will be nice.”
That was proof Chloe Roem still had feelings for him. He didn’t know why, but he felt like he had to take the handkerchief from her before he left.
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