Chapter 13

 


I was curious how he knew my name, but the question was resolved sooner than I thought.

 

He saw the crest on the fan.

 

Currently, I was the only noble lady who could confidently carry objects with the crest of the Duke of Williot. So it was natural for the man to realize that I was Leila Thebesa because according to Countess Thebesa, I was quite famous in the social world. Of course, I wasn’t famous in a good way.

 

He knew who I was and disappeared without introducing himself. I thought he was a polite man, but I guessed he wasn’t.

 

“Sarah, do you happen to know which family the man you saw earlier is from?”

 

Sarah, who hadn’t been working as a maid for five years, couldn’t know what I didn’t know. But I still asked her in case she knew, and Sarah shook her head.

 

“No. Shall we find out?”

 

“No.”

 

I didn’t want to do that because it seemed like I was doing a background check. Furthermore, seeing the man’s actions, it was clear that he was more than a count’s family member. 

 

At that level, I would see him at the Emperor’s coronation celebration party, so there was no need to be nervous at all. All I had to do was relax and wait.

 

As I was looking around the capital, the sky had already turned red.

 

I had to go back to the mansion and check out the clothes and stuff. There shouldn’t be any mistakes as this banquet was the first stage for Philen’s social debut. I had to show my perfect self. Taking this opportunity to strengthen my position as the next duchess.

 

…I need to talk about marriage as well.

 

“Haa.” 

 

The word marriage weighed heavily on my heart that a sigh came out.

 

Sarah, who was following, looked at me anxiously. “Are you okay, My Lady?”

 

“I’m okay.”

 

None of it was okay, but I couldn’t tell Sarah the story.

 

“It looks like the sun will set soon, so let’s go back to the mansion.”

 

“I’ll send an errand boy to the mansion and call the carriage.”

 

“No. Don’t be bothered, let’s just ride a public carriage.”

 

“But public carriages are uncomfortable.”

 

“It’s okay.”

 

I even got on a carriage that was more uncomfortable than a public carriage, so it was nothing. It wasn’t long-distance too.

 

It was a waste of time to call and wait for the carriage, so I headed to the mansion in a public carriage.

 

The guards, who were watching the public carriage approaching the mansion, ran in surprise when I got off the public carriage. 

 

“My Lady, why didn’t you call the carriage?”

 

“It’s okay.”

 

How many times do I say that it’s okay today? It becomes more and more annoying.

 

I waved my hand while thinking what I should do, and went into the mansion.

 

Dalgdak–

 

No, I tried to enter, but I couldn’t because the carriage stopped in front of the mansion.

 

A sword entangled with roses. It was the crest of the Duke of Williot.

 

Is it Philen?

 

At other times, of course, I would have thought Philen was riding, but not after Cecily appeared. There was also a possibility that she was riding.

 

“Leila.”

 

Fortunately, it was Philen, not Cecily, who got off the carriage. There was no Cecily.

 

“You should call me Lady Thebesa, not Leila, Duke Williot.” I smiled and pointed out his mistake.

 

Pilen didn’t say anything, even with a dissatisfied face.

  

It was something he suggested first, so he couldn’t have said anything.

 

“As I always think, Lady Thebesa is inflexible.”

 

…I thought he couldn’t, but I was wrong. It was out of common sense, but it wasn’t surprising. This wasn’t the first time Philen was doing something outside of common sense.

 

“Is that so?”

 

“Is it fun to live in such a hard world?”

 

“I’m having fun.”

 

When I asked what his problem was, Philen sighed and shook his hand.

 

“That’s enough. Talking with the Lady only hurts my head.”

 

“It’s a lot of fun talking with Leila.”

 

Auditory hallucinations were heard in the blowing wind.

 

“Leila knows a lot of things. I envy you. I want to be smart like Leila.”

 

The past Philen, who was smiling brightly, overlapped with the present Philen with a dissatisfied face.

 

My heart ached at the faint memories. The front of my eyes was blurred. I felt even sadder knowing that I couldn’t go back to that time again.

 

“Are you crying?”

 

“…cry.” I replied bluntly, wiping tears around my eyes with a handkerchief. “It’s because there’s dust in my eyes.”

 

“There’s a lot of dust these days.”

 

“Uhh, really.”

 

As Philen believed me, Sarah, who was behind me, breathed in a frustrated sigh. As if to represent my feelings.

 

“More than that, Lady Thebesa.”

 

“Yes.”

 

“Do women like chocolate cake?”

 

Why is chocolate cake out of nowhere?

 

“Ah.”

 

Only then did I see a box of cake Philen was holding in his hand, and I let out a small exclamation.

 

“Did you buy a chocolate cake?”

 

“I didn’t know what she liked, so I asked the store owner and he recommended this one.” Philen smiled shyly as if he had never bought something like this before.

 

When I heard him say that, I didn’t think he’s going to eat it. 

 

If you don’t give it to me…

 

“…is it for her?”

 

Cecily, I didn’t want to put her name in my mouth, so I roughly referred to it, but in this case, Philen, who was quick-witted, nodded. 

 

“Cecily wanted to eat a cake.” 

 

“…what about mine?”

 

It was unintentionally spoken. I was surprised when I said it. Philen stared at me because he didn’t know I was going to say this.

 

There’s a moment of silence. As the sun went down, the cooler air passed through my skin.

 

“I didn’t know the Lady had a sweet tooth.” It was Philen who broke the silence first. “You don’t really like cake before. I thought it was like that.”

 

Of course, I didn’t like it, but I didn’t dislike it either. 

 

“If you want to eat cake, you can buy it yourself, don’t tell me.” He said, looking at me a little dumbfounded.

 

“You’re not a child and don’t bother me with that, Lady Thebesa.”

 

So Cecily is a child, that’s why you buy it yourself?

 

It was so absurd that I couldn’t speak. Philen left me blank and went into the mansion first. 

 

Philen had never bought me a present with his own hands before. Even for my birthday present, he ordered the butler to prepare it. He didn’t even know what the butler gave me. I couldn’t believe he bought the cake for her.

 

“Ha.”

 

Being left alone, I sat down, unable to overcome various emotions such as disappointment and anger.

 

“My Lady…”

 

Sarah felt sorry and hugged me tightly.

 

*****

 

“Chocolate cake!”

 

Cecily’s eyes sparkled brilliantly when she saw the chocolate cake Philen bought.

 

Philen smiled happily. He cut the cake and put it on a plate. Cecily’s face, who took a big bite of the cake with a fork, was dyed with happiness.

 

“Delicious! Where did you get this delicious thing?”

 

“I asked another nobleman. The place that sells delicious cakes.”

 

“Did you do that for me? I’m happy!” Cecily was overjoyed and snapped a piece of cake.

 

He was worried that she didn’t eat well because she had such a small mouth. If she ate well, the baby in her belly would be healthy.

 

“Eat more.”

 

Philen put a new piece of cake on Cecily’s empty plate.

 

“Can I just eat it with the cake? I’ve always wanted to do that.”

 

“Whatever you like.”

 

Philen had no intention of eating anyway, so he gladly allowed it.

 

Cecily, who had been eating deliciously while scrambling the cake, suddenly groaned while holding the fork.

 

“What’s wrong?”

 

“Did Lady Thebesa get the cake too?”

 

“Hmm, I don’t know. Why are you asking?”

 

“I’m sorry to eat this delicious cake by myself.”

 

“That’s a great idea.”

 

Philen gently swept Cecily’s greedy hair.

 

“But there’s no need to worry about that. Leila doesn’t like cakes.”

 

“Wouldn’t you like a bite?”

 

“I’ll have a bite.”

 

At Philen’s answer, Cecily agonized for a moment, then removed some cake that seemed to be eaten by a mouse and moved it onto her plate. 

  

“Will you eat this much?”  

 

“You want to give it to Leila?”

 

“Yes. I can’t?”

 

“It’s not like you can’t, but…”

 

Her thought of Leila was pretty, but it bothered him to give her the leftover cake. It was obvious that it was leftover, even though the shape was intact. 

 

“In our kingdom, there’s a custom of sharing good food, even if it was eaten. Even more in the family.” Cecily looked up at Philen, smiling spotlessly. “Lady Thebesa is like my family now, so I want to give it to her. Your baby will want it too.”

 

“…right.”

 

The heart was more important than the shape. It might seem a bit weird, but if it conveyed Cecily’s pretty heart, even Leila would definitely understand.

 

“Butler.”

 

Philen immediately called the butler and put his thoughts into action.

 

*****

 

“Cake?”

 

Barely enough to stop crying, I returned to my room and shook off the remaining sadness. 

 

Sarah smiled brightly and nodded. “Yes! Master sent My Lady a cake! Even if he said something like that, he must have been bothered!”

 

Hmm… I wonder?

 

Philen, who I know, wasn’t the type to care about this. I was puzzled, but I got it.

 

The butler came with a pretty cake box. It was the box I saw earlier.

 

Are you giving me the same cake as Cecily’s?

 

I didn’t feel very good because it was like I forced myself to accept it.

 

Sarah quickly set the tea-table. I didn’t open the cake box on purpose. It’s just like waiting for me to open it. 

 

I opened the box as Sarah wanted. And… 

 

“This, what is this!” Sarah shouted as she saw the cake that anyone could tell that it had been eaten. 

 

I also looked at the cake in surprise. 

 

…did he give me the cake she ate?

 

As I looked at the cake silently, the butler stuttered and explained. “In, in her kingdom, there’s a custom of sharing good food, even if it was eaten…”

 

I didn’t listen to the butler and put the cake box down nervously again.

 

“Take it and throw it away.”

 

Philen, how far do you have to go to make me feel miserable?

 

Who am I to you?

 

Do you think I’m your fiancée?

 

I sincerely wanted to look inside his mind.

 

I curled up on the sofa and buried my face between my knees.