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The Youngest Daughter of the Villainous Duke

Chapter 6

Spring blooms in winter's pavilion (5)

Translated by Jirah Gem
Edited by Jirah Gem


 

*splash

 

Glittering eyes glued beyond the rough surface of the water.

 

What I saw outside the lake was a pair of eyes. 

 

Pale forearms, white face, long hair tangled through the waves like seaweed and resentful eyes.

 

-Hen····rie·····. 

 

– Henrie·········.

 

  1. The beast growled slowly, grabbing my body and pulling it further down, spewing out a familiar name.

 

They grabbed my arms and legs and pulled me deeper into the water, no matter how hard I struggled. 

 

Breath bubbling out of the nose and mouth kept covering my view, and soon my whole body drooped. My eyelids got heavier and heavier.

 

Oh, I can’t do it anymore. No more breath…….

 

-Its coming! 

 

-Here it comes! 

 

-Why here? Why?

 

Suddenly, the owner of the hands holding me began to shout promiscuously, then let go of my limbs and retreat deep into the water.  

 

And for an instant, someone’s hand grabbed my back and pulled it up.

 

Spearhead, my eyes hit by the bright sun, I crumbled in front of him and collapses.

 

I was dragged out of the lake at once. 

 

“Uh······ Ah!”

 

I felt like my throat was going to be torn because of the sudden opening of my tight-knit breathing container. My head was throbbing, too.

 

As soon as I lay my hands on the ground, I coughed wildly and vomited water.

 

“Cough, cough, cough! Uh-huh. ·····!’ 

 

“Take a deep breath.”

 

An unfamiliar voice from overhead were heard like a whisper. 

 

As if hesitating to reach someone, an awkward touch patted me on the back.

 

I cried and vomited water for a long time, and it wasn’t until my throat hurt that I stopped coughing and lay on my back.

 

The drops of water on the eyelashes fell on the cheek. The view was still blurry and overwhelming.

 

“Didn’t the Duke told you not to come in here?”

 

The unfamiliar voice asked, but I wasn’t in a situation to answer right now.

 

Just now I thought I was really close to death, and I burst into tears.

 

“Huh, uh, uh, uh, uh…..”

 

I began to cry in horror, and suddenly a pale face came into my sight.

 

At the moment, I stopped crying in surprise, a boy who was a little bigger than me was sitting in front of me and leaning his head closer.

 

The black hair that was cut off from the top of his ear is fluttering softly. 

 

The black eyes were lit, with scattered reddish grains like jewels.

 

“Don’t cry,”

 

he laid out his empty hands to me, softening his eyes.

 

“I’m not going to do anything. Look, I just wanted to save you. So don’t cry.” 

 

Why do I feel scared even though he’s saying it in a friendly way.

 

First, I wiped my wet face with my hands and sniffed to stop crying.

 

Then I got hiccups this time.

 

“Hiccup! Hiccup!”

 

“…stay where you are for a while. Don’t move.”

 

He reached out to me. I closed my eyes in a moment of surprise, and when his hand touched my forehead, a cool energy permeated into my body.

 

To my surprise, the hiccups stopped.

 

When the boy, who had been staring at me for a long time, blinked, his reddish black eyes shed a subtle color.

 

With those eyes folded, he smiled softly. 

 

“That’s enough.”

 

It was the most horrifyingly beautiful thing in this greenhouse. A young but handsome boy with a male fox-like face was slowly standing up first when I didn’t answer.

 

Looking at his luxurious black jacket or shoes, he was like a child of a noble family. As I looked at him all the way, I saw his sleeves wet.

 

It was that boy who saved my life.

 

“….there?”

 

 “Oh.”

 

I wonder if he was staring at me too much. The boy with his knees bent slightly back called me.

 

When we made eye contact, he bent his eyes again. 

 

“Nice to meet you.”

 

“········yeah, me, me too. Nice to meet you.”

 

It was a little hard to guess his age because he was using honorifics, but he responded with honorifics because he seemed three years older than me.

 

Soon the boy’s face turned bright. I just responded, but why is he so happy?

 

Somehow I think he was a little weird.

 

“Oh, thank you for saving me…. By the way, who are you sir?”

 

“I’m a guest.”

 

The boy replied with great tenderness.

 

What do you mean, a young guest like that comes to this duchy? 

 

I tried to get up from my seat for now, but my legs didn’t feel strong at all.

 

No matter how hard I try to push the ground, only my knees tremble, and my wet clothes became heavy and my shoulders shrank on their own as the cold wind blew. 

 

“Ah, Achoo!”

 

When I sneezed, the boy’s body became lower. 

 

I’ve decided to be a little brazen while I’m at it.

 

“Well, I can’t stand up ·······” 

 

I said, stretching my hands out to him.

 

“Help me up. And take me to my room. I’d appreciate it even more.”

 

Henriette’s existence is still bothering me, and it would be perfect to catch a cold if my clothes were all wet.

 

So I decided to go back to my room for now, thinking that I would rather fall into the water and lie down on the pretext of a fever.

 

But the boy threw a question. 

 

“Well, how are you going to thank me?”

 

If I’m grateful, then I’m grateful. Why come out there saying, ‘How would you be grateful?’

 

A little embarrassed, my fingers pointed at the castle.

 

“I live over there in the castle.”

 

“I know. I just heard from the Duke. His daughter’s back.”

 

I wonder if Henriette brought him here. But it was a little surprising that he brought me up in a conversation with someone else.

 

“If you know, I won’t talk any more. But, are your really a guest?”

 

“Hmm.”

 

Whether he understood what I was trying to say, his smiling eyes narrowed.

 

“So help me. Hurry up. I’ll tell you again, thank you. Huh?”

 

How else can I thank him? I have nothing.

 

The boy approached me more gently than I thought, held my hand and raised me up. His hand held together was strangely cold.

 

I grabbed his hand and began to stumble and walk.

 

Now that I see it, he was one head taller than me, and as he took a step forward, he saw me take three steps and began to take a step forward.

 

We’re starting to take a new stride.

 

Out of the greenhouse, he suddenly asked.

 

“How old are you?”

 

“Me? Seven.” 

 

“Oh, then, is it the daughter that the Duke has been looking for so long?”

 

The boy nodded to himself as if he were convinced of something.

 

Somehow, listening to him, I feel as if Henriette had been looking for me anxiously. 

 

No, I don’t think so. Henriette’s been released from prison for two years, and now he’s looking for me.

 

He’s been pretending to be dead, but he’s living like he actually died, so I’m sure he have forgotten. 

 

I think so.

 

“We’re here. This is your room, right?”

 

“Uh, huh?”

 

When I looked up at the boy’s words, we were already in front of my room. 

 

I already told him the location of my room, but I think we arrived too fast.

 

I’m sure we just got out of the greenhouse and came out into the garden, when did we get into the castle?

 

And now that I see it, my clothes and hair were all dried up. 

 

“Uh, uh······?”

 

“I’m going now. But it’s a secret that we met today. Then, we’ll see each other again.”

 

His eyes narrowed  and he took a step back with a smile on his face, letting go of my hand.

 

I still have some questions to ask. I looked back at him in a hurry.

 

“T, thank you. By the way, brother are you a wizard?” 

 

But the boy was nowhere.

 

More astonished than just now, Ilooked around the wide hallway, but he had disappeared without leaving a trace.

 

“·······Achoo!”

 

The question was stuck in my brain then a second after, the whole body began to tremble. 

 

Feeling the cold, I hurried into the room.

 

***

 

“Achoo!”

 

In vain for rushing back to the room, I ended up suffering from a fever all day long.

 

It’s still cold, but it’s probably because I fell in the lake. Originally, I was only thinking about performing fake sickness, but it became real.

 

Exclusive maids were looking for me, who had disappeared out of nowhere, when they suddenly found me in my room with a fever rising, they seemed very surprised.

 

They immediately made a fuss about bringing cold towels, rubbing my arms and legs and telling everyone to bring something.

 

There was no room to ask about the strange boy I met in the glass greenhouse. 

 

After a while, the resident doctor came to see me, and he brought me the medicine.

 

After I ate the porridge the chef made in a hurry and drank cold water, I began to feel sleepy little by little.

 

Peina’s hands, which are sweeping my forehead, makes me more sleepy because they are cool and pleasant.

 

“You’ll get better if you take a nap. It’s all right, miss. Uh-huh. What can I do?”

 

The sleep that had been swallowing me quickly made me closed my eyelids. 

 

The fever seemed to boil up while I was asleep, but it was not until night that it finally subsided.

 

It wasn’t until I came to my senses that the maids were relieved and made me drink cold water.

 

When the water touched the cracked lips because of the heat, the body became a little more comfortable.

 

My head didn’t hurt anymore. But that didn’t solve all the problems. 

 

“…I’m hungry.”

 

Didn’t I sleep all day and skip dinner?

 

My stomach was growling.

 

This is why people seem to be called animals of adaptation.

 

My body was petulant that I had forgotten what I experienced in Count Semond. I survived even after a day or two of starving.

 

My full-time maids had been hanging on to me all day, aside from other tasks, so they had not left until this late hour.

 

So I was a little sorry to call them back. 

 

It’s a problem that can be solved by myself anyway, so I silently got out of the room.

 

The destination was the kitchen.

 

The main kitchen was on the first floor, but the castle also had large and small kitchens on other floors.

 

Thanks to the memory of stopping by with Peina several times, I quickly found the kitchen on the third floor.

 

The kitchen, where the lights were all turned off, was very dark, but after my eyes got used to the darkness, I could quickly grasp the structure.

 

“Well, let’s see…..”

 

Count Semond’s maids would often leave their leftovers in the kitchen. 

 

So on days when I were too hungry to bear, I secretly ate everything they had left behind.

 

But the duchy of Wensgrey didn’t leave food, not a single breadcrumper.

 

Instead, I could find an egg and salt.

 

I brought a footrest to step on it to boil and stir the water in the kettle, beat the egg yolks and sprinkle with salt. 

 

When the water is done boiling, beat the eggs in the water, stir with a spoon and sprinkle a little more salt.

 

The egg soup was just finished.

 

After confirming that the door was tightly closed, I sat under the table, grabbed a bowl of egg soup, and blew the soup.

 

*Slurp.

 

“…….It’s bland.”

 

I wish it would taste better. I thought I should have added more salt, so I took out a small pot of salt and added just one more pinch.

 

When I was at the Count’s, I was once caught cooking alone in the kitchen.

 

I was caught by the Countess, and at her command, my hair was immediately grabbed by the maids, dragged out, and then beaten until my legs were swollen.

 

The Countess swore at me, “Why are you being so vulgar when you’re of noble birth?”

 

I’m a noble but I’m hungry and I don’t know what to do. Everything’s fair in front of an empty stomach.

 

“But it’s a little, too bad….”

 

As I was still drinking the bland egg soup, I kept getting greedy.

 

Originally, green onions were supposed to be included here, but considering that there were no green onions, whether it was a count or a duke, green onions were not very popular vegetables in this country.

 

On top of that, I began to think of rice.

 

If you put a lot of green onions in a hot egg soup and put cooked kimchi on top of it, it can be that delicious ·········.

 

“*Sniff.” 

 

Thinking about my past life made my stomach growl.

 

I used to be a really, really bad crybaby, but I felt like I was only a crybaby because I was a child.

 

Little by little, I’m going to finish the egg soup with a half empty bowl.

 

A thump were heard and the door opened, suddenly, fear penetrated the spine. 

 

“…you must be inside here.”

 

Out of reflex, I shrank my shoulders nervously and covered my mouth.

 

An unforgettable voice was approaching, one step at a time, with sharp steps.

 

“I know you’re there.” 

 

When I looked over the table with a frightened look, I noticed a sword shining green in the dark.

 

The golden eyes shedding light were clear even beyond the darkness. I crouched in fear like a beast hiding in the woods of the night.

 

Henriette…….

 

“········ now even the little things go against my orders.”

 

He was talking slowly, as if he had just woken up. Nevertheless, it was a sharp-edged voice.


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