Tatlin looked at me again after warning Martha with her eyes.
“If there is anyone who is rude to you, please tell me.
I will make sure to dispose of them right away.”
At those words, the servants except for Martha shouted “Eek”!
As I turned my gaze toward the source of the sound, the servants who made eye contact with me pulled up their lips and smiled.
But their eyes were not smiling.
‘This is it.
A smile fueled by capitalism.’
I also smile often, so I suddenly felt a sense of homogeneity.
I encouraged them with pity in my heart.
“Well, I just want you to do your job well.”
All the former employees were disapproving of me anyway, so even if they were fired, I didn’t feel particularly sad.
The reason I left them alone was because I couldn’t help myself with my status.
I lived in the annex and wasn’t the employer who hired them directly.
All I could do was to make sure that they wouldn’t talk about my backstory and act rudely in front of me.
The best way for the servants who were frightened by my actions, was to keep themselves out of my sight.
It was also satisfying that they were invisible.
Anyway, it was true the previous servants didn’t like me, so I felt relieved, but I couldn’t understand at all.
‘Why are you doing this all of a sudden?’
I couldn’t figure out what the duchess was thinking.
She cut off a large number of long-serving employees just by listening to my exclusive maid.
I didn’t expect the duchess to do this.
‘I’ll be leaving this house sooner or later anyway.’
So she didn’t have to pay attention to me.
Rather, the more the duchess cared about me, the more I was worried about how she would change when the secret of my birth was revealed.
“Above all, she said to take good care of the young miss.”
Tatlin stared at me with sharp eyes.
From those determined looks, I guessed the duchess’s intentions.
‘She is trying to keep an eye on me in case I drink poison.’
The duchess didn’t like it that I had to drink poison in order to make an antidote.
Even though there would be no reason for that.
I thought it wouldn’t matter if I drank poison or not.
But to stop me from drinking poison….
‘Are you worried about me? Me, who even isn’t your own daughter?’
There was no such contradiction as the existence of Themis Perdia, and no one else who was worried about me.
Although I’d been seeing and talking to the duchess more often lately, it was purely for work.
It was kind of like a gentle, friendly relationship with a business partner.
A business partner would never consider me as family.
‘That’s why she must have looked at me with such insensitive eyes when I was a baby crying in pain.’
Even if someone else’s child cried for the first time, I wouldn’t look at it so coldly like that.
It was also nonsense that such a person would suddenly worry about me.
If it was not for the purpose of poison monitoring, I may not fully be trusted with my words of independence, so she planted her people to ensure that I don’t commit nonsense until then.
Then, as the duchess wishes….
‘I need to become independent as soon as possible…..!’
I secretly clenched my fists.
The meeting day of the Ishtar Temple dawned.
Though it had nothing to do with me, I couldn’t help but know.
Because the Perdia mansion was noisy from the early morning.
The murmurs even reached the annex, which was a little far from the main mansion.
The invitation to the temple of Ishtar was not a one-day-visit.
There was a lot to prepare because they would stay at the temple for at least one to two days.
I didn’t know exactly what they were doing in the temple.
‘I wouldn’t know because I’ve never been there.’
I was sitting on a bench by the window and watched the servants move busily outside the window.
I heard a knock on the door, so I quickly went back to bed and closed my eyes and pretended to be asleep.
Because I didn’t want to deal with anyone.
There was another knock, and soon the door opened gently.
Regular steps drew nearer and stopped by the bed.
I was able to guess who it was just by his walk.
It was Jansi.
I desperately pretended to be asleep.
I didn’t want to get exhausted this early in the morning by talking to Jansi.
Jansi’s voice was heard in the still silence.
Are you sleeping?”
“You must be sleeping.”
I heard the door close at the end of the sentence.
It was only when I was convinced that Jansi had left completely that I opened my eyes as I lifted the blanket.
“…Why were you here?” I murmured.
He was as clingy as an ex-boyfriend. The eccentricity of Jansi Perdia continues to be a mystery to me today.
It was when I stood by the window, stretching, thinking I should prepare for my appointment with Raeyan today.
Carlot, who sat on a tree, called me with a bright smile.
It seemed like he was wagging his invisible tail.
‘Ugh, this one is also annoying.’
I managed to kick out Jansi – who was acting like my clingy ex-boyfriend who couldn’t bear to leave me alone – by pretending to be asleep, but then came Carlot.
Don’t you have to get ready to go out?”
“I just have to go.
So what? There’s a bigger problem than that.”
Carlot let out a deep sigh.
I wasn’t curious at all, but I asked out of courtesy, “What’s the matter?
“I can’t see my sister while I’m at the temple.
I would want to put you in my pocket if I could.”
“Can’t I put you in my luggage?”
I couldn’t believe it.
When I narrowed my eyes and looked at Carlot coldly, he dodged my gaze as if he was embarrassed.
“I got it, I’ll go.”
Carlot jumped down and quickly disappeared.
I thought he would bother me more, but thankfully he actually left.
I thought I could finally prepare myself, but that was not the case.
Someone else knocked on the door as if they were waiting.
“Miss, are you there?”
It was the voice of the butler of the main mansion.
I could ignore Jansi, but I couldn’t bear to pretend not to hear the butler’s call, so I opened the door.
“Before the two of them leave, they said they have something to tell you.”
Why are there so many people looking for me today? It was early in the morning.
I will prepare quickly and go.”
“Please hurry if you can.”
Leaving the butler’s urging behind me, I called Martha and the maids.
The newly assigned maids in the annex were tactful and quick.
“Miss, what jewelry do you want to choose?”
“It doesn’t matter.”
Then the maids who helped me dress up began a discussion among themselves with sparkling eyes.
“Then I’d say you’d better wear pink diamond earrings to match your lovely pink eyes.”
Or, since you have clear skin, I think these blue sapphire earrings would look good on you.”
“You look good in everything because you are beautiful!”
I instinctively looked for Martha at the compliments of the shy maids.
Martha, who was watching from a distance, was just smiling.
She just looked excited because her work was cut short.
‘You must have told the duchess everything for that.’
I felt like I was being used by Martha’s big picture ulterior motive to work less and earn more.
The new maids were kind to the point of being burdensome, but it wasn’t too bad.
Above all, I’ve never heard anyone talk about my back story.
It had been a long time since I was treated by someone kind to me even though I hadn’t done anything, so I was actually at a loss.
I arrived in front of the carriage with the butler after finishing my preparations.
The Duke and Duchess of Perdia and their two sons were standing in front of the carriage as if they were about to leave.
As I got closer, all eyes were on me.
‘I think they’re ready to leave, but is it because of me that they’re not going?’
‘You’ve been overly self-conscious lately, Elodie,’ I chided myself.
I had to be careful.
I quickly shook off the sudden thoughts and stood in front of the duke and the duchess.
“Did you call me?”
This situation where everyone was looking at me was quite burdensome.
The first to speak was the duchess.
“I have to leave the mansion for a few days, so I called you to see your face before we left.
When we enter the temple, all contact will be cut off.”
“If you need anything, tell the butler.”
The duke helped out with a word.
The duchess also added.
“You may speak to Tatlin, Elodie.”
A little puzzled, I looked at the two people alternately.
I’ve been fine alone every other year.”
What a surprise.
Somehow, the atmosphere suddenly became chilly.
I thought I might have made a mistake, so I thought about what I had just said, but I didn’t make any mistakes.
“Uh…..have a safe trip.
If you don’t have anything more to say, I’ll go now.”
After finishing the farewell in a hurry, I quickly turned around and walked away.
After walking for a while, I glanced back and saw that the four of them hadn’t climbed the carriage yet.
‘Why aren’t they going?’
I questioned their actions, but only briefly.
I turned my eyes away from the Perdias and kept moving forward.
Because I was exhausted from the morning, I sprawled out on the sofa and took a break.
“Now then, shall I go out too?”
I asked Martha to bring the cloak that I had prepared in advance and went outside.
Even though I came out a little earlier than the appointment time, Raeyan was already at the entrance of the mansion.
“Raeyan, since when have you been here?”
“It hasn’t been long.”
“Next time, come on time.
I don’t even care if you’re 10 minutes late.”
Because that’s the K-promise time.
(T/N: I believe it’s a cultural thing for Koreans to be 10 minutes late.)
We headed straight to the black market auction house.
As I put on the cloak I brought along, Raeyan handed me something.
“It’s your identity card.”
I remembered that Raeyan had said not to worry because he would fake my identity.
My eyes widened when I glanced at the identification card.
It was an identification card with the name of a mercenary member that I often encountered and knew.
“Is this…..is this okay?”
“I brought this because she was stretched out totally drunk.”
“She won’t even know she lost it, so it doesn’t matter.”
A mercenary group where the leader steals the personal belongings of the members…is that really okay?
There are more than one or two things to point out, but I decided to move on for now because I couldn’t get another ID card right away.
The process of entering the auction house was more trivial than expected.
The guard guarding the entrance roughly checked the identification card and let us in without even looking at our faces properly.
When I gestured to Raeyan, he leaned toward me.
I whispered in Raeyan’s ear.
“Are they always this sloppy?”
“If you make a fuss here, you will be tracked down by the Perdia family, so your status is not that important.
If you don’t want to die, you’ll be careful.”
“As expected, the atrocious Perdia….”
It was a part where you could see how clearly they dominated the underworld.
Thinking that I shouldn’t be caught, I pressed the hood of my cloak down deeply and sat side by side with Raeyan in an empty seat.
The auction was in full swing.
“When will that item come out?”
“You have to wait a little bit.”
It was amazing to see the auction house for the first time, and it was fun to see other people winning bids, so time passed quickly when I was looking around in silence.
There was a wide variety of auction items.
There were paintings, old antiques and accessories.
In particular, since it was a black market transaction, it seemed that mainly stolen goods were traded.
After several successful bids, as soon as the next item came out, Raeyan quickly lowered his head toward me.
Raeyan´s breath tickled in my ear.
For some reason, my face seemed to heat up.
‘You’re too close.’
But I kept my eyes pointed forward and pretended nothing happened.
Seeing what Raeyan indicated, I frowned.
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