Huge thanks to Njdor for your kofis!! (2/3) 💕
The Bad and the Crazy
A faint smile appeared on the lips of the grand duke, who was staring at him indifferently.
Although it was clearly a ridiculing smile, he wasn’t in a bad mood for some reason.
“Paul, let me give you a piece of advice.”
Words of rejection rose up to the top of his throat, but Paul couldn’t bear to speak them aloud.
Instead, he looked at his master with eyes that were filled with sincerity.
‘The person that needed to listen to advice now was the grand duke. Not me!’
But before Paul could ask him to reconsider again, Lionel opened his mouth and spoke a little faster.
“If you try to suit your boss’ tastes by chasing after something that wasn’t that big of a deal, you’ll eventually lose what you have.”
“W–What do you mean boss…”
It was a word that’s used by ordinary people on the streets.
Paling, Paul immediately shut his mouth.
It seemed shocking for vulgar words to come out of the mouth of a noble aristocrat.
Giving Paul’s startled look a glance, Lionel slowly rose from his seat.
It was a graceful and noble gesture, as if he was a beast stretching.
“Is it because of your veins? Paul, I think you’ve been sensitive to the Empire ever since you were born.”
“But that’s not me. All that I’m currently interested in is how I can move Miss Atalante’s heart, and things like that. Not anything regarding the Empire.”
How could he say Empire?
‘Things that will move her heart… Was His Highness rejected?’
Speechless, Paul froze in place and blinked dazedly.
But that only lasted for a moment, before he let out a deep sigh.
As the lord chamberlain, when has he ever experienced ‘leisure’ for one or two days while serving the grand duke?
Paul intuitively sensed that Lionel wouldn’t budge from his decision.
“…What do you plan to do in the future? You should tell me that at the very least.”
He wanted to stop this absurd marriage if it was possible, but he should take a step back for now. Haphazardly provoking the grand duke would only result in adverse effects.
However, this time Paul didn’t get an answer that adhered to common sense.
“I’m heading to the capital.”
“That’s a very good… No, what?”
The capital, which is filled with her wanted posters?
It was so absurd that he was rendered speechless. Instead of asking a question, Paul stiffened where he stood and opened and closed his lips.
Turning away from the stiffened Paul, the grand duke walked straight to bed.
Paul quickly followed him and helped Lionel change.
It seems that habits were frightening. Before he could come up with a rebuttal to his ridiculous plan, Paul’s body moved first.
Leaning obliquely on the bed, Lionel didn’t seem interested in his lord chamberlain’s face that was distorted with a sense of shame.
The outline of his face gleamed beautifully under the light of the lamp.
Paul swallowed dryly, and summoned up his remaining courage to implore for the last time.
Bring that woman to the capital at this time was definitely! He definitely mustn’t, as it was his job to give advice.
‘Although she’s oddly different from the rumours, no matter what she’s still the head of a criminal organisation, and a wanted woman.’
Recalling the moment when the knife was about to strike his neck, Paul made up his mind and clenched his fist.
“…It’s still bothering me.”
However, the grand duke’s mutter was still faster than him.
The matter that Lionel was concerned about, it was probably referring to taking a wanted woman to the capital.
‘If only he was talking about the absurd marriage.’
Instantly brightening, Paul’s eyes shone as he responded.
“Isn’t that right?”
“You haven’t left yet?”
He was treated as an uninvited guest, but Paul didn’t stop talking.
“Of course you’ll feel bothered. What’s the point of bringing a wanted criminal to the capital, whom the Empire is looking for persistently? Let’s leave that woman here, and after understanding how the situation has progressed…!”
“What the hell are you talking about?”
“It’s almost time for the founding festival, and that woman… No, Miss Atalante should be kept as invisible as possible.”
At his words, Lionel’s brows furrowed noticeably.
“What nonsense are you talking about? When have I said that I was going to reverse my plan?”
“What? But the thing that you’re bothered about…”
After snorting softly, Lionel extinguished the fluttering lamp light with a short puff of air.
The grand duke’s low voice cut through Paul’s darkened vision.
“The thing that’s bothering me is that I offered Miss Atalante a subpar room.”
“What do you mean a subpar room? That room was the second largest and second most extravagant room in this villa…”
“The problem is that it’s the second. That’s enough, let’s rectify the townhouses and the grand ducal castle so that there aren’t any inadequacies when serving Miss Atalante.”
Paul didn’t even want to guess what would happen if he said he couldn’t do that.
‘The thing that he couldn’t help but be bothered about was actually something like that…’
He never dreamed that his vicious master would have such a silly side.
Taking a moment to ruminate over his words, Paul decided against pulling out his hair in the dark.
“Did you not sleep well?”
The next day, Atalante started a conversation with Paul, who came down to the dining room first.
The purple coloured dark circles contrasted perfectly with his white face.
Unlike Paul, who seemed as if he was about to collapse instantly, Atalante’s face seemed to have a subtle glow.
‘Whose fault was it that I couldn’t sleep?’
He was gritting his teeth internally, but Paul hid it perfectly, and had a bright smile on his face.
“Thank you for your concern. Oh my, you’re so nice.”
“It doesn’t seem like you’re taken with the fact that I’m here.”
“That’s ridiculous. Miss Atalante is the person His Highness is enamoured with.”
She secretly provoked him, but Paul was a veteran amongst veterans.
He wasn’t foolish to the point where he would show his feelings to the ‘enemy’. What’s more was that he had confidence in his lip service.
However, the opponent that Paul has designated as the ‘enemy’ was Atalante.
She, who was rolling at the bottom ever since she was born, possessed an overly sharp intuition.
Staring blankly at Paul’s face, suspicion rose in Atalante’s eyes.
‘I can feel the killing intent from his smiling face.’
Well, the man before Atalante had killing intent aimed at her, but it wouldn’t result in any harm to her.
Yesterday, she was obediently allowed him to carry her on his back due to her injury, but if they were purely comparing their martial prowess, Atalante was quite a long way above Paul.
With the thought that he’s being cute, she let out a brief snort.
She was quite accustomed to such treatment.
It was natural for a villain to be despised and hated.
‘Enough of that lord chamberlain that says one thing and means another, the problem is…’
Atalante moved her gaze towards the food that was displayed before her, and let out a light sigh. The menu was too fancy for a brunch.
It was to the point where all the members of Argo could finish everything.
But these dishes were only prepared for Lionel and Atalante.
‘How annoying, when that man throws away the dinner that’s untouched, the kids in the slums wouldn’t get a single piece of this bread…and die of starvation.’
Such luxury felt quite unpleasant as she didn’t overcome the crisis of starvation just once or twice.
What’s even more annoying than being wasteful, was that these foods were definitely…
Unwilling to admit this, Atalante purposefully hardened the shape of her mouth.
As such, the more delicious the food that touched her tongue was, the darker her complexion became.
“Is the food not to your liking?”
While Lionel was staring affectionately at Atalante, he slowly opened his mouth.
It hurt her pride to respond honestly that it was delicious.
Atalante, who answered primly, brought the perfectly bite sized veal steak into her mouth.
What in the world did they do to the meat, for it to melt in her mouth before she could chew it.
Almost letting out an exclamation unwittingly, Atalante barely managed to maintain her rigid expression.
Pretending that delicious food wasn’t delicious was… she was more terrible at it than she thought.
“You don’t look well, you don’t have to force yourself to eat.”
Lionel observed her face before speaking with a worried tone.
For him to think that such delicious food was being eaten reluctantly, did the grand duke have a problem with his taste buds?
“It’s somewhat to my tastes, so don’t worry about it.”
Answering haughtily, Atalante lifted the fork again.
“I can’t serve you with such a low-quality meal. I’ll replace the chef immediately.”
Atalante thought that he was joking, but there wasn’t any hint of mischief within his eyes.
‘If this is considered a low-quality meal, have I been living off dirt?’
Starting from ‘those b*stard nobles’, a long string of curses resounded internally, before Atalante let out a deep sigh.
It was because she momentarily recalled the physician that was slapped by the grand duke.
From the looks of things, his words of finding a new chef definitely also included the fact that he wouldn’t let the current chef go.
‘Also, it’s not as if you’re going to personally look for a new chef.’
As she mused mockingly, Atalante’s gaze moved towards Paul, who was standing upright beside the grand duke.
As expected, Lionel looked up at the lord chamberlain.
“Paul, you have till evening to find a chef that can make Miss Atalante a proper meal that she’s satisfied with.”
“Was the Western villa’s chef Derek’s son?”
“Drag him over here immediately.”
He should pay the price of serving terrible food.
Adding such chilling words, Lionel looked at Atalante with an expression that was hoping for praise.
‘Seriously, you wicked madman.’
Atalante had no choice but to refer to the man possessing the same nickname as she did in such a manner.
Although Lionel and Atalante were both called villains, they were different.
While Atalante’s evil deeds were born out of desperation and remained in its original form, the grand duke’s evil deeds were carried out in an endlessly ‘noble’ manner.
Lowering his head towards Lionel, Paul turned towards the kitchen.
A decent idea surfaced in Atalante’s mind.
A way to kill two birds with one stone, testing the efficacy of Esma’s medicine and saving the poor chef at the same time.
“Wait a moment.”
At her call, both Paul’s and Lionel’s gazes turned towards Atalante at the same time.
“That chef, please send him to me.”
A puzzled light entered Lionel’s eyes.
“May I ask you for the reason?”
Leaning backwards languidly, Atalante gave the most wicked smile she could muster and continued speaking.
“I want to make him pay for serving such a ridiculous meal.”
Atalante intended to make the chef that served such a ridiculously delicious meal pay.
Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed what you have read, do consider tipping us a little through: https://ko-fi.com/rainofsnow . Once we receive 6$, an advance chapter will be posted as a thank you. Don’t forget to mention the series that you’re supporting!