Chapter 7. Terrible Nightmare (2)

 

 

“That’s right, my little Brother. Thinking of playing with your older brother today, you must have high expectations, don’t you? Seeing that you fainted like that, then I will have to live up to those expectations, right?”

“Yes. You’re gonna get hurt if you move like that. So, you should stay calm, right?”

“You have to listen carefully, to be a good little brother to me. You’re a patient, little Brother. Okay then… Shall we start the fun game now?”

“Here, swallow it. It is very delicious… poison.”

 

The next moment, the child violently grabbed the boy’s chin with an eerie cold smile.

 

* * *

 

“Urgh, keheug.”

Astein, who fell asleep, was sweating profusely and groaning. As if he had had a terrible dream, he twisted his body and wrapped his arms around his stomach. But he never screamed. He closed his mouth as if swallowing his scream. In the end, he gasped for breath.

Then it all stopped completely after a while. Astein’s body dropped as if he was dead.

Just then, the door was opened quietly by a child.

 

* * *

 

Elusiana, standing in front of Astein’s room, hesitated for a moment. According to the maid, the door couldn’t be opened properly, but she was wondering if she could open it like this.

As a temporary measure, she put her ear next to the door, but she still didn’t hear anything. But she couldn’t go back like this. Elusiana, who had been snooping in front of the door for a long time, grumbled.

“Then why did he starve himself?”

Astein had been starving himself for over ten days. It wasn’t common sense for him to still be alive. However, it was certain that the boy could be in a dangerous state if he didn’t eat.

‘I saved his life, but I can’t let him die.’

In the end, Elusiana carefully opened the door. She already had shallow expectations that he would be happy about it.

Creak.

Elusiana quietly entered the room. She came here after a week, and it was very dark, even in the middle of the day. At this time, Astein sometimes fell asleep, which seems to be the case now. She, who approached Astein’s side, shed a smirk involuntarily.

‘He really… fell asleep?

She had a lot of worry about whether he could sleep well. But all of them were washed away right now.

The food on the table was cold as if they hadn’t eaten yet. Shaking her head, she gently pulled the curtain a bit off the window. While adjusting the angle so the light only flowed towards her leg, avoiding Astein’s face, only then could Astein’s face be seen. But—

‘Huh?’

Elusiana narrowed her eyes and quickly approached Astein’s side.

“…why is he sweating so much?”

The hair above his forehead was wet. It was early spring, so it wasn’t that hot yet. When she looked closely, she could see traces of tears.

‘What? Did he cry? No way…! Did he get sick again?’

Elusiana, whose heart sank, involuntarily reached out her hand. She had to check if he had a fever. She had to call a doctor immediately if he was really sick. But at that moment, Astein, who was lying dead, opened his eyes.

“Hiik!”

Surprised, Elusiana paused her hand. But what surprised her was that the child was more surprised than her.

Astein, who got his body up, flew to the corner of the bed in an instant.

‘No, why, why is he running away?!’

What did I even do!

While Elusiana was making excuses inside, Astein moved to the corner of the bed and curled up. As if trying to hide away from something. His figure looked frightened.

‘…did he have a dream?’

That must be a terrible nightmare.

Astein’s fragile shoulders trembled. Looking closely, the focus in his eyes was slightly blurred. It was as if he hadn’t yet awakened from his dream.

Elusiana called out Astein, carefully pulling her outstretched hand.

“…hey.”

“…”

“Astein? Hey, get yourself together.”

Astein’s red eyes fluttered shallowly. The boy, who lowered his body, moved his gaze slowly.

Elusiana spoke calmly, “It’s me, me… Do you recognize me?”

His eyes, which rolled to the left and right as if responding to her voice, suddenly stopped.

‘…!’

Elusiana breathed in without realizing it. Because the red eyes came across her as if they were going to hurt her.

‘Really, it makes my heart pound every time I see it.’

Eluciana brought up the words, trying to deflect his eerie gaze.

“Hey, you remember me, right? How many times have we said greetings?… Huh?”

A horrifying silence.

Astein seemed to react for a moment but then lowered himself again.

‘Did he not recognize me?’

Elusiana sighed low as she looked at the window where the light came in. She would have pulled all the curtains if she knew this would happen. It seemed that it was not easy to identify her face because she stood against the window.

Elusiana crept closer to Astein and asked carefully again.

“I also gave you the ointment. The special ointment received from the temple. Don’t you remember?”

“…”

“The blue bottle. I told you to apply it to the sore spot.”

It was the moment when her words were finished, Astein’s hazy eyes became a little clearer. His gaze, which moved slowly, turned to Elusiana’s neck. Elusiana, who didn’t know about it, drew out a few memories and added explanations.

“I told you to use it generously. If you need more—”

It was then. Something dark hit Elusiana’s upper body.

“Ugh!”

As if tying her whole body, the feeling of pressure tightened her. Elusiana blinked her eyes. She didn’t understand how this was happening now.

“You…!”

Why was Astein, who was so far away, riding on her body, and why was his face staring at her as if he was trying to kill her right now?

Elusiana couldn’t move. It wasn’t just because Astein was riding on her body. Those red eyes looked like they were going to eat her right now. When she met those eyes, her lungs were suffocating.

‘Hey! You brat! Get out of my way! What the hell are you doing!’

Elusiana grabbed Astein’s shoulder and pushed him away. But his skinny body was like an iron that couldn’t move. Then, a suppressed voice flowed into her ear.

“…from.”

“What?”

Astein’s finger pointed towards her neck. The boy, who grabbed a thin string, growled as if he was about to chew her.

“Where did it come from?… Answer me.”

What? Answer what?

‘If he cut off his words, how could I know what he meant?’

As Elusiana stared, Astein brought his face closer to her and said, “Hanging around your neck, this.”

“…what?”

Astein’s gaze touched a little below her face as she looked at it. Elusiana’s gaze turned to his hand. A thin chain was there from Astein’s hand to my neck.

‘…necklace?’

Elusiana, who had a tearful face, confirmed something was caught in Astein’s hand again.

A silver chain necklace.

She stared at the necklace and said foolishly, “This, why?”

“Ha!”

Astein astonishingly twisted his brows.

“Who did you get this Lisianthus necklace from… say, it.”

Astein’s eyes shone brightly. The red eyes with golden rings were as beautiful as the enchanting sunset. Elusiana looked into those eyes as if possessed and suddenly recalled a memory.

Not long after she possessed this body, there was a time when she took off the necklace because she felt stuffy. She had never worn accessories before, so the necklace that rubbed against her skin made her feel uncomfortable. But just in time, Trisha found her necklace being taken off, shed tears with a face as if the world was collapsing.

 

“L-Lady. This… You can’t take it off like this. This is Madam’s keepsake.”

 

A token of love from the lover.

The Lisianthus necklace was said to be a necklace given to a lover who was sent away by the father of Viscountess Waieos, Count Tuberose, who couldn’t overcome the difference in status. It was said that two identical necklaces were made, one kept by the head of Tuberose and the other given to the lover. It was passed down to her through Elusiana’s mother.

‘Even though Trisha was making a fuss about it.’

In fact, it wasn’t very impressive to Elusiana. It was the Viscountess’s keepsake, but she wasn’t her real mother. But it was different with this boy. Seeing him rushing regardless of the circumstances before and after—

‘Is it something very precious?’

Unfortunately, the necklace wasn’t what Astein was looking at.

Elusiana sighed deeply. 

Notes

N/A

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