Chapter 23.
Elodie’s Hand Skirmish 

It was just then, when I was distracted by Carlot’s direct bombarding.




After hearing a knock, I looked up and saw Jansi leaning against the door.


“Are you done talking?” He asked nonchalantly. 


“No, just a little more–”


“We are done! You can come in.” I quickly cut off Carlot’s words before he could say anything.


Carlot was noticeably sullen, but I pretended not to see it and gestured to Jansi.


Jansi, who glanced at Carlot kneeling on the floor, sat down on the edge of the bed, and asked, “More than that, Lili.”




“The mercenary king, Ian.
Did you know him before?”


His sudden question threw me into confusion.


I told Jansi that Raeyan saved me by accident/coincidence, but asking this question…..


‘Jansi had one of his people following me.
At least during my first outing.’


It was either that he didn’t intend to hide it or that he thought I was stupid enough to not even notice it.


Knowing that it was useless to point that out to Jansi, I just answered the question.


“Yes, I’ve encountered him on the street before.
I think he mistook me for someone else back then.”






“I see.”


Jansi’s smile became deeper as if he was still suspicious, but he didn’t question me any further.


‘I can’t believe that Raeyan was the mercenary king, Ian.’


I’d heard rumors about him.


I couldn’t help but to know.


He was one of the two most famous commoners.


A commoner from the slums.


He was a man who jumped into the mercenary business at a young age with all his blood and fervor, until he eventually overpowered all mercenaries with his own power and reigned over them.


Was it said that he was a legend among mercenaries?


He was such a famous person but there was a reason why I didn’t recognize him.


Since Martha only tried to get information about the nobles, there is no way that Raeyan, a commoner, would show up on that list.


‘But in the original there was no such thing as a mercenary king.’


Raeyan’s existence was still questionable to me.


After taking me to the mansion, I remembered Raeyan’s last words before leaving.


“I will visit again soon.”


This time it was also an ambiguous visit notification that did not give the exact date.


But now that I knew the other person’s identity, I didn’t have to wait.


‘Should I go and find him first?’


As soon as I thought about it, Jansi stared at me.


“You’d better stay away from him, Lili.” Jansi warned, with a rare smileless face.




A warning from Jansi.


Since he was number one in Perdia when it came to information, of course he will have a lot of information about Raeyan; he might know something.


Jansi wouldn’t ask me to stay away for no reason.


I asked him ‘why’ with such a firm belief that Jansi would have a deep, dependable reason for telling me to avoid Raeyan…..


“Just because.”




Just? Just because? 


I was stunned at the answer from Jansi’s mouth.


“Is there any reason?” I repeated.


“There are many reasons.
There is no reason for you, as a member of Perdia, to get acquainted with a mere mercenary who will approach you impurely again.  No, no.” Jansi shook his head for emphasis.
“Please pretend you didn’t hear the backstory and you still know nothing about him.”


So, in conclusion, there was no particular reason?


Of course, I had no intention of listening to Jansi.


Raeyan was hiding something important from me.
In order to find out what it was, I had no choice but to contact him frequently and obtain information.


Anyway, since he saved me, I would compensate him at the family level, but first of all, I was planning to meet him a few times with that excuse.


I wish I could figure out something important in the process….


‘No, wait a second.
More than that….’


My gaze turned downward.


At some point I realized that Jansi’s hand was secretly holding my hand.


Jansi’s gloved fingertips lightly covered the back of my hand, and then he touched my fingers, lifted them up and down, and played with my hand.


Jansi Perdia.


He was not this kind of person.


He was a character who was extremely reluctant to come into contact with others and didn’t come into contact as much as possible.


Because he has a hard time controlling his powers, he might inadvertently harm someone he touches.


But to touch me without hesitation like this– 


‘Does that mean it doesn’t matter if I get hurt?’


I knew that he was originally a bad person, but I didn’t know he would treat me this carelessly.




I looked at Jansi in disbelief, but Jansi was only absorbed in holding my hand and playing with it.


“…..Jansi, what are you doing?” I asked, a not-subtle layer of formality entering my tone.


“Lili, you’ve been in a lot of trouble.
I was surprised, but holding onto part of you like this makes me relieved.
Can I keep holding it? I can’t let go because I’m anxious.”




I didn’t know what to say.
I didn’t even know how to react…..


‘I forgot for a second because of Carl, but Jansi was crazy too……’


I felt chills running down my spine thinking that a bomb that could explode at any moment was holding my hand. 


It was time to figure out how to pull out my hand naturally enough to avoid retaliation by a sullen Jansi later.


Carlot, who was creeping closer, stared at the other hand that was not grabbed by Jansi.


At that gaze, Jansi laughed like a fox, and somehow provoked Carlot with a teasing tone.


“Carl, you know what? Lili’s hands are so soft and warm.”




“Soft and…..”


When Jansi waved my hand proudly, Carlot urgently reached out his hand.


“Sister, I want a hand too.” 




“I also want to hold my sister’s soft and warm hand.”


The guy who used to get sick and tired of touching something dirty, now wanted to hold hands.


Again, this time too, when I closed my mouth because I didn’t know how to react, Carlot looked at me and slowly grabbed my hand.


Both my left and right hand were trapped.


‘What kind of situation is this?’


Who wanted to explain…….? 


Suddenly, with a brother in each hand, I had a serious thought.


After all, could this be a newly devised bullying method?






Elodie’s face, which was already white, soon became like a blank sheet of paper.


Jansi, observing her change in expression that fluctuated from moment to moment, smiled and let go of Elodie’s hand.


‘Because I think that it seems to be bothering her.’


That was it for today.


He didn’t know why, but Elodie was now wary of him.


Maybe it was natural.


He’d always pretended to be kind to her, saying she was his younger sister, but he’d never actually looked into her.


To Jansi, Elodie was a special being.


She was a person who was not surprised to see his real face, without his usual pretentious mask.


She was the kind of kid who patted him on the back despite all the verbal abuse he levied at her.


Usually, when someone tried to approach him like that, he tried to push them away immediately.


But now Jansi wanted to permeate into Elodie’s daily life.
Very, very slowly so that she was not aware.


The reason was clear.


He found out that it was Elodie who watched his power on the verge of going berserk on the night of the lunar eclipse six years ago.


The evidence was that she was not surprised at all when she saw his powers run wild on the night of the lunar eclipse not too long ago.


Jansi became curious.


The real him and him were really nothing alike.
How long could she bear with him, stand to be around him?


He was somehow stimulated further by Carlot’s sudden change in attitude.


After Elodie’s disappearance, it was impressive to see him change his attitude and try to catch a glimpse of her by calling her “Sister”.


Why did it make Jansi think that he would be left behind, even though Carlot was hardly something to compete with?


‘It’s childish, but….’


This wasn’t bad either.


There was an obvious reason why he became obsessed with contact with Elodie.


When he came into contact with Elodie, the power that he usually had a hard time controlling calmed down surprisingly.


The nerves that were on edge became loose, and there was no need to worry about runaway powers, so he naturally felt drowsy.


So, he couldn’t help but to keep reaching out.


For Elodie, who seemed to want to have time alone, Jansi bid her farewell and then grabbed Carlot, who said he didn’t want to go.


“Then see you tomorrow, Lili.” Jansi smiled.
“Get some rest.”


“Yes, but, are you coming tomorrow too?”


“Of course.
I will come tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, and I will come every day.”


“Must you do that……?”


Pretending not to hear the last sentence, Jansi closed the door.


Perhaps due to the influence of holding Elodie’s hand for a long time, handling his power was much easier than usual.


‘What is the reason?’


What does Elodie do to help him not lose control?


It wasn’t like Jansi to squirm over his doubts.
He was a man who had the persistence to find out why.


Because there was plenty of time ahead.


As long as she was family, there was enough time to get to know each other.


Carlot looked back at the smiling Jansi, stared at his face and said, “You look happy, Brother.”




Jansi touched his mouth.
He was always smiling, so he couldn’t tell what the difference in his current smile was.


On the other hand, Carlot who suddenly was dragged out by Jansi, had a face full of dissatisfaction.


It was a drastic change in just a few days.


“You’ve changed Carl.
I guess you don’t hate Elodie anymore.”


“That’s kind of like you then, Brother.”


Before, when Elodie was in front of Carlot, he tried to attack without hesitation.
However, when the person he thought he hated suddenly was gone, he began to reflect on how his actions had been. 


Carlot blushed and turned around.


“Why are you doing something you haven’t done before?” Carlot asked bluntly.


“Lili is my sister.”


“That again.”


When Carlot was fed up, Jansi just laughed.


He had always referred to Elodie as his sister, but he never really thought of it that way.


But what was said now was sincere.


Though Carlot didn’t seem to understand the meaning.


“Come to think of it, there will be a banquet soon.
Who will she enter with?”


The host of the royal banquet this time was the second prince’s biological mother, Empress Salvatrice.


The relationship between the first prince Adenmir and the empress was not good, as they both competed for the throne – Adenmir for himself, and the empress for the second prince. 


Naturally, the first prince would not attend the royal banquet.


However, since all members of the Perdia family received an invitation from the empress, it was better to attend the banquet unless something unavoidable came up.


So, it was a banquet that Elodie will also attend.


“As always, she will enter without a partner.”


“Really? Then….”


The two brothers had a thought at the same time.


‘I’ll have to attend as Lili’s partner.’


‘Sister Lili’s partner…I’m looking forward to it.’


Of course, they didn’t know that they thought the same thing.





At the Somnia branch of his mercenary guild, Raeyan sat in the leader’s office and received a letter from the Perdia family.


A letter asking for a visit because they wanted to express their gratitude for the incident the other day.


“Leader, what’s the matter with the Perdia family?” Raeyan’s confidant and deputy leader, Mario, asked in horror.


“Never mind.”


“Of course, I’m going to turn my attention away, but I’m just curious.”


“Don’t even be curious.” Raeyan said coldly. 


Raeyan, consistent with his firm answer, immediately headed to the Perdia family.


As soon as he arrived, Raeyan was guided somewhere.


Entering the drawing room, only Duke Sylvester Perdia, the owner of the Perdia family, was there.


“Sit down,” the Duke intoned. 


As soon as Raeyan sat down across from the Duke, the servant immediately prepared refreshments.


The two men didn’t say anything to each other while the refreshments were being prepared.


The Duke spoke first only after the employee left the drawing room.


“I’m going to invest in your mercenary group in return for saving my daughter, how about that?”


“I didn’t do it for that price.”


“But the only price I can give is “such a price”.


Raeyan understood what the Duke was saying.


It means he should eat well and fall back, because the Duke will pay enough money. 


In other words, he should not approach his daughter Elodie anymore.


However, it was an unacceptable proposal for Raeyan, who was only interested in Elodie Perdia.


Raeyan’s only purpose was Elodie.


He looked unwaveringly at the Duke.
“I’d like to see Lady Elodie.”


“No way,” the Duke answered firmly.


But Raeyan didn’t back down easily either.


“What I saved is the young lady’s life.
So, I think it is right to ask the lady for a price.
Don’t you think so?”


“Since she is my daughter, I, the father, will pay the price instead.”


“I will see the lady.”


“No, you can’t–”


It was before the Duke’s words were finished.


Knock! Knock!


Someone knocked on the door three times, and soon the door burst open.


Standing beyond the door as none other than Elodie.


Elodie and Raeyan’s eyes met while she was looking around the drawing room.




Duke Perdia, who was famous for his unchanging facial expressions, frowned openly at the unintentionally welcoming voice that he heard from his daughter’s mouth and muttered.



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