Chapter 1 - Prologue
After placing the bedding on the couch, Lesche walked over to the bed.
Seria was still asleep on the bed. Earlier, he had surely laid her on her back and covered her properly with the covers before leaving, but right now, Seria was asleep with her body curled up like a shrimp. The blanket was rolled up completely over her head.
Lesche, who was watching her, suddenly went over to the fireplace. He looked at the fire and put the last of the firewood in.
Then he walked back to the bed and pulled the blanket down to Seria’s neck, but a moment later, it was up over her head again. Lesche once again went over and lowered it down, however, it went up again. He wondered how long does a noble lady sleep with the covers over her head? It was only natural that he didn’t know.
No, he wasn’t even sure why he was even bothered with these things in the first place. Lesche was appalled by his own behavior.
“You really are a handful, aren’t you?”
A rather sincere tweet. As if it annoyed her, Seria, who had been asleep, frowned her forehead. Lesche chuckled, wondering what she was thinking, and reflexively stopped talking. He stopped pacing in front of Seria like a foolish boy and walked over to the sofa to lie down.
The Laurel Manor had been encroached upon by the shadows, and all of Berg’s treasures stored in the manor were moved to the main castle over the years. However, there were some things that had not been touched. For example, things on the second floor, or this Grand Duke’s bedroom. The reason for this was his personal aversion.
Thanks to that, the furniture in the room was still the same. The sofa was also a masterpiece, a work of art, as the Grand Duke’s bedroom could not be decorated carelessly. The silk that covered the sofa was of the highest quality, the gold thread embroidery was the work of craftsmanship, and the size of the sofa was large enough for one adult man to sleep on.
So it must not be too inconvenient for Lesche to sleep on this sofa. From the very beginning, he had never had anyone beside him when he slept.
Well, there was one now.
The sight of Seria curling herself up and sleeping irritated him. It was also annoying that the old-fashioned fireplace, which had long been left unattended, could not warm enough air in the spacious bedroom. Suddenly, Linon’s nagging that ‘Your Highness didn’t take care of Lady Seria and she got sick’ came to his mind.
She wouldn’t just freeze to death in her sleep, would she? He thought. The image of Seria, almost frozen and unconscious on the horse on the way to this green manor, came vividly to his vision.
Lesche sighed. It was indeed in the Laurel Manor, and on the bed of the Grand Duke, if Stern, the Grand Duchess, froze to death in her sleep…. It would be very troublesome and horrible. As soon as the thought occurred to him, Lesche got up from the sofa and sat on the bed.
Before he knew it, Seria’s body was still completely covered with the bedding that Lesche took from Ben a little while ago.
Lesche lay down on his side like a habit, while Seria was also on her side, turned over and her face naturally came into Lesche’s view.
Her white forehead, plump lips, and her long eyelashes were as green as her hair. Her hair was certainly an unusual color. While the early summer recording came to mind, it also reminded Lesche of the time when the Laurel Manor was renowned for its greatness and beauty. The green manor at that time looked as beautiful as summer in the noon sun.
At that moment, Seria moved her arm. The bedding that Lesche placed up to her neck fell down. He didn’t want her to freeze to death, so Lesche, who had even come to the bed to lie down, put the covers on her again as it was his duty.
He tucked her back in without much hesitation. Seria frowned briefly and suddenly nuzzled closer into Lesche’s chest.
Lesche’s eyes went wide. He looked at Seria with embarrassed red eyes. It was as if her body, seeking warmth, had unconsciously plunged into Lesche’s chest. His slightly cold hand quickly flipped through his hair.
It was early morning the next day.
Seria woke up with a slightly sore throat. She was worried because for as large as the Grand Duke’s bedroom was, there was only one fireplace, and there was still a chill in the air.
But it wasn’t very cold on the bed. Blinking her sleepy eyes repeatedly, she suddenly felt a weight behind her back and on her waist. She could feel a different level of firmness in every part of that something.
‘What is it?’
She looked down and thought for a moment that she must be dreaming. The man’s arm hugging her waist came into her vision. Unlike her panicked state, her body was cautious. Because the only man who could have entered the Grand Duke’s bedchamber and laid down on the bed with such firm arms was her temporary husband, Lesche Berg.
Seria carefully turned around.
It was real.
Lesche was really sleeping behind her and wrapping her waist with one arm.
‘What kind of dream is this?’
Seria placed her hand on Lesche’s cheek and withdrew her hand immediately in surprise.
Indeed, it was Lesche.
She couldn’t help but give him a light poke but Lesche didn’t move. She wished she were dreaming, but the face in front of her was clearly real. She was stunned and just looked at Lesche for a while.
She remembered vividly that she went to sleep on the sofa last night, and wondered why she woke up in bed. It was obvious that either Martha or Lesche moved her here, because she couldn’t have crawled on the bed in her sleeping state. However, that wasn’t too big of a problem.
The problem was why was he sleeping with her in his arms?
Perhaps Lesche didn’t have the covers and went to sleep holding her because he was cold. No matter how much she thought about it, that was the only reason she could think of. But it didn’t seem like they did anything. Her clothes were still the same as Martha gave them to her before she fell asleep. Same went for Lesche.
‘What is this bedding?’
She couldn’t understand why her body was covered in double layers. Who could have done such a heinous distribution? Seria got up, fumbling with the covers. Lesche had the covers she was wearing tightly around his body, and for a moment she was transfixed by his face.
He certainly was the male lead. Handsome, deadly handsome. His face was so perfectly balanced that she could stare at it all day and never get tired of it. Only with his eyes closed, of course. She could probably count on her fingers the number of women who couldn’t stare into Lesche’s cold, red eyes.
If only his eyes were friendlier. No, that would be too many women rushing to him.
Seria pulled the blanket up to Lesche’s neck while thinking nonsense. By all accounts, the air in this bedroom was too cold.
‘But why is his hand like that?’
She looked for a moment at Lesche’s hand, which was bandaged, as if it was injured. Then she tried to sneak away, being as careful as possible not to shake the bed, but suddenly she heard a voice.
“You’re just going to leave after staring at someone’s face like that?”
Seria was so surprised that she almost fainted. She turned around and saw Lesche sitting up and pulling down the blanket. For some reason, it seemed strange to her seeing the blanket was uncovering Lesche’s body, so she tried not to look and averted her gaze.
“Why are you avoiding my eyes?”
“I’m looking for my slippers.”
“They’re probably down there on the left.”
“What? I thought they were on the sofa.”
She slid the slipper through her foot, thinking that Martha was the only person who could put her slippers under the bed with such delicacy.
“Did Martha bring me to the bed?”
“I moved you.”
“Because Young Lady was sleeping on the sofa like a shrimp.”
“No, Your Highness. I was comfortably sleeping.”
“And did you run away because you thought I’d do something else?”
For a moment, Seria opened her eyes wide. As if he read her mind, she was instantly perplexed. Her face started to get hot.
“I knew it.”
“How’s about you? Why did you lick my cheek?”
“Young Lady wants me to watch you freeze to death in my arms?”
“The couch looks spacious and comfortable.”
Lesche clicked his tongue and said,
“You see people as trash, don’t you?”
Seria was instantly frustrated.
“Last time you said I see people as mops, now I see them as trash?”
“So I should let my strong wife sleep on the sofa while I sleep on the bed?”
“Aren’t we temporary?”
“It’s not temporary, it’s not timed, it’s not.”
Lesche said in a decisive voice, pushing the covers and asking something else.
“Was the bed cold?”
“It wasn’t that cold.”
“It wasn’t cold because you snuggled up in my chest sleeping.”
“Hmm? Wasn’t it because Your Highness was cold that’s why you slept with me in your arms?”
“I’m not as sensitive to the cold as Young Lady.”
Lesche answered simply and smiled satisfactorily.
“So that’s what you thought huh?”
Seria jumped to her feet pretending not to hear. Lesche tilted his head.
“Young Lady. Seria stern.”
Seria’s face, which was heating up at the mention of her name, was now completely red. Aside from being embarrassed that she had made a mistake, the fact that she was exposed as such was extremely embarrassing. Her cheeks were hot. Seria frowned.
“Stop teasing me, Your Highness. Why did your hand get injured? Did you fight with a demon?”
Lesche finally looked down at his hand. It was the first time since she started living in the main castle of Berg that she had seen a bandage anywhere on that man’s body.
“Is that so?”
“I bumped into something.”
Lesche answered shortly, but Seria could see in his expression that he didn’t want to talk more about the wound. She diverted the conversation appropriately.
“It would be better to change the bandage. Let’s go down together. Your Highness.”