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“Besides, with the Countess’s generosity, she allowed you to attend the tea time, but you caused a commotion.”
“Wait a minute, that’s… !”
“I hope to never see Young Lady Jason at the Wickham’s residence in the future.”
The Baroness raised her chin and finished her words.
“So, I want you to leave now.”
Charlotte was terrified.
But Baroness Wickham was determined.
“If you step down now, it will end with Lady Jason’s personal departure, but if you persist, it’s going to be a dispute.”
“Ha, Baroness Wickham. I mean…… ”
“Now I’m giving you a chance to quietly cover up the current commotion.”
Charlotte, who was rushing to come up with excuses, stiffened her shoulders.
“If you don’t accept that opportunity, I have no intention of putting up with it either.”
Baroness Wickham declared coldly.
Charlotte was about to cry, in fact, the current situation itself was too disadvantageous.
Her affair was reported by Elton, the most trusted magazine in the kingdom.
And even the personal testimony of Ines. Even the excuse of ‘I am also a victim!’, which she believed in her heart, was destroyed by Ines.
No matter how she looked at it, there was no room for Charlotte to turn.
Baroness Wickham raised her voice once again.
“Is anyone there? Lady Jason is leaving, take her to the front door.”
“No, I can go out on my own!”
In the end, Charlotte was forced to back down with a resentment on her face.
As soon as Charlotte walked out of the parlor, words of consolation poured down on Ines.
“Ugh, what is this… … It seems like the storm has swept through.”
Starting with Baroness Wickham.
“Are you okay, Countess?”
“Whether Lady Jason has a concept or not…”
The ladies also blatantly poured harsh words towards Charlotte.
“She claims to be the victim is outrageous.”
In particular, the Viscountess Fildette, who heard about Ines’ investment, was eager to talk.
“Even if Master Gott had seduced her in the first place, she thought have told the Countess first, right?”
“I mean. If she didn’t really want that kind of relationship, she would have distanced herself from Master Gott already.”
“It looked like they had fun together, but now what… … ”
Listening to the pouring words of consolation, Ines had a bitter smile on her face.
“Thank you all for comforting me like this. It is a great comfort.”
“Oh my God, Countess!”
“But I’m okay now.”
Ines continued speaking in a calm voice.
“Even though it’s true that I once loved Ryan very much, and gave him my all.”
“Hey, Countess of Brierton…… ”
“However, in a way, I think it’s fortunate that this is the end.”
Ines did not shed tears or become sad.
Instead, she calmly expressed her inner feelings with a consistent attitude from start to finish.
“Anyway, the divorce was successfully completed, and I can filter out people who I once thought were friends but were not.”
The eyes of the ladies who had heard those words were filled with admiration.
‘’You must have suffered a lot of heartache so far, but how can you be so calm… “
“If it were me, I wouldn’t have been so calm.”
“Anyway, what I want to tell you is that you don’t have to stop interacting with Lady Jason because of me.”
“What? Still, Countess… ”
“How can I meddle in your ladies’ friendships?”
Ines asked that question casually.
For a moment, the ladies looked shocked.
‘How can she be so generous?’ Come to think of it, Ines didn’t interfere at all with today’s tea time, whether Lady Jason was present or not.
It was just that the ladies knew and acted on their own.
“However, I have no intention of interacting with her any more, so I hope you understand that.”
Ines ended her words softly.
Each of the ladies looked at Ines with a solemn expression on their faces.
“Of course, Countess!”
“It wasn’t because the Countess made it so, we also don’t want to interact with such a shameless woman.”
“Right! what? Did the Countess tell us to continue to interact with Lady Jason?”
Among them, some noble ladies with strong pride were angry and zealous to the top of their heads. Facing the excited ladies, Ines raised her lips with satisfaction.
“Who do you think we are?”
At least for the ladies here, Charlotte’s reputation seemed to have come to an end.
And given the influence they had on the social world… .
‘Charlotte, you’re going to have a hard time.’
Ines’s smile grew a little deeper.
That day, Ines returned home later than usual. Even though Baroness Wickham invited her to stay for dinner, Ines refused.
“Are you here, my lord?”
Mary welcomed Ines. But, somehow, there was a sad expression on her face.
“Mary? What’s the matter?”
Ines looked at Mary with a puzzled face.
Then, after she hesitated for a long time, Mary opened her mouth with difficulty.
“About earlier… ”
Mary muffled her words with a dark expression.
Earlier in the day, when Charlotte came to see Ines, Mary couldn’t stand it and shot back at her. Although Ines said ‘thank you’ and moved on.
“Nevertheless, it was a task that the headmaster had to deal with, but I think I was too presumptuous.”
Mary shrank her shoulders, avoiding Ines’ gaze.
“Ha, my lord?!”
Startled, Mary widened her eyes. It was because Ines hugged Mary tightly in her arms.
At the same time a faintly wet voice rang out.
“On the contrary, I’ve been grateful and sorry all this time.”
“… My Lord.”
“I guess I was too busy with my work to say thank you properly.”
Ines was sincere.
Eight years ago, when Ines was still a young girl, until now, Mary was always by her side.
Whenever Ryan was harsh on Ines, Mary was the only one who comforted Ines and was nice to her.
‘And…… Even before the regression.’
Mary’s arms slowly gained strength.
Come to think of it, one year before Ines was forcibly admitted to a psychiatric hospital.
Suddenly Mary got fired.
To be precise, not only Mary, but all of the servants who had been working for the Brierton for a long time were expelled.
At that time, Ines was only helpless.
Even in a situation where the people who had been kind to Ines were forcibly leaving the residence.
Far from stopping it from happening, she only feared that she might be hated by Ryan.
What did Mary say to her then?
‘It’s not your fault.’
‘So, be strong. Don’t cry.’
A muffled voice came out from between Ines’ lips.
“I’m really sorry I couldn’t part with Ryan sooner. Did I wake up too late?”
“Oh my God, what do you mean? That…… ”
“Still, I’m glad to be called by the title of Lord.”
After hugging for a long time, Ines took a step back, held Mary’s hand tightly with both hands, and smiled brightly.
His dark green eyes were drenched in water.
“Thank you for getting angry for my sake.”
In her indescribable mood, Mary, who had only licked her lips, frowned and smiled.
“You are the head of a family, and you cry so much, what should I do?”
“Then can’t I cry in front of Mary?”
“Oh, of course.”
Mary nodded her head quickly, and opened her mouth as if she had just remembered something.
“Oh, my lord. A letter has arrived for you.”
Ines opened her eyes wide.
“Yes, a letter from the Duke of Sussex. I put it in your study.”
In an instant, Ines stiffened. Mary tilted her head and asked.
Ines, who came to her senses, hurriedly moved to her study.
Inside the silver tray on the desk. She saw a white letter inside.
‘Sir Duke of Sussex.’
Ines, who looked down at the envelope with a complicated gaze, picked up the envelope.
The purpose of the letter was simple.
Since the portrait was incomplete, he asked when she could continue. However, even for that simple matter, Ines could not easily reply.
She just fiddled with the envelope for a long time.
‘Right. To complete the portrait, I have to see his face…’
Will she be able to not be shaken in front of the Duke?
Can she face him without thinking of reasons?
‘But I can’t just keep avoiding him like this.’
Strictly speaking, it was Ines’s own problem that she was conscious of Enoch as the opposite attraction.
It was also strange that Enoch did nothing wrong but she continued to avoid him.
Taking a deep breath, Ines pulled up a chair and sat down.
She unfolded the stationery and grabbed a pen.
But even after that, the light illuminating the study did not go out for a long time.