Bell and Miriam entered the bedroom, and Freya, who had just gotten up, leaned on the back of the bed, looking embarrassed.
What should I say?
She couldn’t help but explain what had happened yesterday. Lucius had gone into the hunting grounds and didn’t come back. And what should she say about His Highness’s work?
“There you are.”
The two, who made eye contact with the slightly hesitant Freya, began chattering like sparrows.
“Madam, I was surprised to see your sudden disappearance with the crown prince yesterday.”
“His Highness, I didn’t see it as anything romantic.”
Freya looked at Bell and Miriam’s faces in wonder, not at all worried. Yesterday’s engagement hunt between Hart and Selena was the worst. She had fallen into a pit, and Lucius was seriously injured.
Does anyone else know?
Freya had come back here as if running away after stepping on dewy grass at dawn. She had pretended to be asleep all night, but couldn’t get a wink of sleep. It was hard to understand their story all at once.
“It’s so cool to go to Diana’s temple and pray together.”
“I used to be afraid of Your Highness, but not these days.”
At Bell’s words, Freya let out a short sigh.
She didn’t know how, but Bell and Miriam had no idea about the disturbance in the hunting grounds.
“Did Lucius use his hands?”
Freya thought it was quite clever to surround the nobles who had not returned from the fox hunt the previous night with a visit to the temple. Did no one know that Lucius had been hurt?
It was a significant event that happened without anyone knowing, and there were many nobles in the forest for the hunt.
When the hell did this happen?
Her head throbbed as she tried to recall everything that had happened. When Freya frowned, Bell clapped her hands.
“I see, you must be tired from praying all night, and we talked too much next to you.”
She remembered the time when Bell and Miriam thought they had prayed. She still had the sensation of her breathing and her tangled fingers.
“No, it’s just that I have a headache.”
Freya quickly put on a façade, but Miriam packed warm tea and a simple meal and placed it on the table.
“We’ll leave you to it. If you need anything, please call us right away.”
Freya gazed at the two faces in front of her, feeling a pang of gratitude. It was a strange sensation to be served by others, but it had made her life easier. She realized she had not properly thanked them yet.
“Bell, Miriam, I want to thank you.”
Her words caused a moment of awkward silence, and Freya coughed in an attempt to ease the tension.
“Why are you thanking us all of a sudden? We didn’t do anything special,” said Bell, sticking out her tongue slightly.
“Exactly,” Miriam chimed in.
As the two of them exited the room, Freya rubbed her arm under the blanket, even though her whole body was covered in scratches and bruises. She had fallen into a pit during the engagement hunt between Hart and Selena the previous day, which had turned out to be a disaster. Her limbs were still sore, and she struggled to lift the cup on the table.
“I don’t think my body is doing well.”
Freya’s hands trembled as she took a sip of tea. Hero had given her medicine for her bruises, which she reached for in a drawer and carefully applied to her hands, arms, and legs. She massaged the ointment into her skin, which made a groaning sound. Despite having experienced this pain before, it always felt new. As she applied for medicine, she suddenly remembered Lucius.
“Hero must be treating him by now.”
She had sent a message to Hero on her way back, so she was confident that Lucius was in good hands. Freya’s ears reddened as she wiped the water droplets off her lips with her fingertips.
“This is insane.”
Looking back on the previous day, everything had gone wrong. Freya hadn’t even had the chance to wash properly after falling into the pit. She had slept in torn, muddy clothes the night before.
“I hate feeling this much regret.”
It wasn’t just yesterday; the regret of why it happened yesterday captivated her.
“Decorating doesn’t make you prettier, but at least sometimes it’s clean,” she sighed as she smoothed her worn nails. What’s past is past, though.
“Time can’t be turned back.”
Her body was in pain, but her lips kept fluttering.
“I don’t know,” she said as she trembled, wrapping her arms around herself. She pulled her knees up to her chest, hugging them close, and bowed her head. Lucius’ voice still seemed to linger in her ears.
I love you, Freya.
His strong arms cradled her, and her ears were filled with confessions of love. Lucius grabbed her by the wrist, snatched her by the waist, and never let her go, not even once.
Even when she opened her eyes, which had not fallen asleep and were black for a while, his big hands were curling Freya’s long hair, as if he couldn’t wait to see it run away. The light penetrating through the very small window shone on Lucius’ blonde hair as if gold sand were twinkling. His face burned as he looked at his upper body with nothing on above his waist.
“He’s not cute at all.”
Lucius, who had a solid man’s body, could no longer be teased by calling him her brother.
“Freya, it must be hard, but please wait a little longer for me,” he said. The work he had prepared was nearly done. Then she wouldn’t have to hide behind the false name of De Bua anymore. Why did she keep wanting to believe what he said?
“It’s the same as when you said you’d pick me up if I was waiting.”
He didn’t come after all, but Freya waited for Ruth until the end. Freya weighed the original plan and his words on the scale. The scale was always supposed to lean toward reality.
“I already know the result.”
Soon, the scale, which had been swinging from side to side, tilted towards her future, and she hesitated for a moment before seeing the expected result.
“This is not the future I want to see.”
Freya then reached out and overturned the scale. She wanted to trust Lucius once again and watch his confession to see where her heart was headed.
“Because I’ve never felt this way before.”
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