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Author: Niks


As I opened my eyes, I saw a shabby attic ceiling.


“…Today was the start.”


I got up quietly, took off my only pajamas, and changed into a rag-like dress.


Pajamas were the only clothes I had left that weren’t torn apart. And the rest were made up of clumsy sewing skills.


I quickly left the attic and went into the kitchen before the director came screaming.


“Oh, I’m tired already…”


I’m used to going to bed late and waking up early, but that didn’t mean I wasn’t tired.


I hurriedly took out a large pot and put all the vegetables I had yesterday.


The soup was the only thing that I could cook with these limited ingredients.


On the other hand… I’m just a nine-year-old child, but the director seems to think I’m already 19 years old.


Taking turns preparing meals, that was then, but from some point on, I was in charge of it.


It was exactly what the other kids put me to, and the director pretended not to see anything regarding it.


‘Heh. Does he think I’m better off doing what other kids do than eating? Do I have to think of it positively…?’


Well, I simply tried to rationalize and chew those negative thoughts inside.


The good news was that I know how to cook to some extent.


As I peered into the boiling pot, I tried to close my eyes.




At that moment, there was a small rumbling sound from my stomach.


But even though the soup was being cooked right in front of me, I couldn’t be the first to eat.


Because what was given to me was all that was left after taking the share of the other kids.


The evil director was my rice bowl.


It was a very unhappy setting, no one takes care of me unlike the other kids.


One time when I was so hungry, I got caught trying to eat a piece of bread first, then I faced the director who turned into a beast.


“It was up to me anyway.”


However, I never want to receive a nagging bomb with a shrill voice under the guise of the director’s discipline.


‘I’m not going to eat because it’s disrespectful?’


After a while, the children started coming down one by one with a loud noise.


The way the children sat, rubbing their sleepy eyes, was starkly different from my situation.


And even when the children and the director started eating, I couldn’t sit down and eat with them.


After I showed my portion of the plate to the director, only then I was able to eat.


My meal didn’t take that long to finish because it was only a small amount in the first place.


“When you’re done, go ahead and clean up.”


I shrugged at the harsh words of the director.


If I don’t obey, he would glare at me again and scold me.


After quietly leaving the dining room, I took out a broom and started cleaning.


The orphanage, which wasn’t very spacious, always became dirty, even if I cleaned it every day.


Cleaning should be done with the other kids, but I’m the only one actually doing the job, cleaning the place with all I could.


It was only me.


The others were mopping it up and making it twice as dirty by walking on it.


“Cough, cough… It’s dirty.”


When I swept away the dust in the corner, I coughed on my own.


The cleaning was familiar enough to be worn out. I’ve had enough of it in my previous life.


“I could work as a cleaner when I grow up.” I muttered to myself.


A year ago, when I woke up from this child’s body, how absurd it was.


I thought I was killed in a car accident, but now I’m an eight-year-old girl.


Now, I’m a year older, currently nine years old, but the fact that I’m still a child, it hasn’t changed anyway.


That’s the same as when I was a child.


“Ayla was lovely.”


It was the Helsion Empire. After hearing the name of this place I found out that it was from the novel I was reading in my previous life.


Fortunately, I remembered clearly the year the original began.


Imperial year 1220. The male lead’s birthday was also December 20th, whether it was the writer’s intention or whatever.


Anyway, it was just 10 years before the original began.


I’m an extra who didn’t even appear in the novel. I took a deep breath and continued cleaning.


“Hey, black hair!”


Then a ringing voice called me.


Oh, here we go again. “Yes, why?”


I pressed down my annoyance and answered mildly.


It would have been a mess if I ignored their call or talked back.


Lily, whom the butler adores, was also an orphan.


“The director was calling you.”




“Don’t ask me? Maybe It’s because you don’t clean properly. And don’t talk to me!”


Lily, who shot with a vicious expression, ran away.


Who always talks to me first? I don’t want to talk to you either.


There were no words to compare with her audacious manners.


“Tell me what’s going on…”


With the broom I was holding on one side of the wall, I washed my hands in cold water and headed to the director’s office.


Knock, knock~


“Director, it’s Rita.”


There was no answer beyond the closed wooden door.


“Well, sir, I’m the black haired kid…”


I knocked on the door again, saying that I have black hair, not my name, because I hate being called by my name.


Then, I heard rough footsteps and the door burst open.


“You! I told you! you didn’t have a name!”


That’s right.


The director’s face, when he opened the door, was distorted like an ugly beast.


Even if my hair was black it doesn’t mean I harm people.


Of course such complaints were only swallowed up.


“I’m sorry.” I gently bowed my head and said.


The director nodded his head telling me to come in, it seems he’s not angry anymore.


He would normally have yelled right away, but what the heck?


“You, go to the market and get me today’s ingredients.”


Cancel everything I said that he was getting better! I tried to evaluate the expression on his face which was about to crumple again.


“Well, today’s Lily’s day to…”


“I told you not to argue with me! Lily needs to get her new clothes tailored today, so you should go! You have nothing to do anyway.”


I tried to rebut it carefully, but all I got back was yelling. I couldn’t believe there’s nothing I could do with my situation.


He was so terrifying and arrogant.


‘I am the busiest person in the orphanage, I’m in charge of cleaning and dining.’


How was it that they are so similar?


Whether from my past life’s orphanage or here, the vicious orphanage director seemed to be everywhere.


Because there’s no such place to be called good with empty words.


“…Yes, I got it.”


“Then get out!”


I bit my lip, bowed my head, and left the director’s office. I’m the one who brought the ingredients the day before and yesterday.


My arm hurt from carrying heavy vegetables for two consecutive days.


Then the resentment came, but I didn’t have the courage to go back to the director’s office and say that I didn’t want to go.


In an orphanage where a child like me couldn’t escape, if I go against the director’s decisions, I would only be locked up in a warehouse.


So, it wasn’t that I hadn’t tried to run away from this place.


Although it’s a child’s body, my mind wasn’t that of a child, so I thought that I could somehow make a living.


So, when I woke up and realized where this place was, I tried to escape while everyone was asleep.


But things didn’t work out as well as I thought, and the escape attempt was unsuccessful.


I tried, I really did…


But I was caught by a villager coming down from the mountain and was brought back to the orphanage.


Not to mention, I was locked up in a narrow, dark warehouse for a week.


After that, I gave up running away. I knew I’d be persecuted wherever I went.


At least until I’m old enough to take care of myself.




After putting on my shabby robe, I grabbed a basket and left the orphanage.


When I squinted and looked up at the sky, the sun was blazing above my head.


I felt a little better doing this when I was depressed.


“The director said he’s going out with Lily today, so I could take it slow.”


Normally, I ran back and forth because of the director who would get angry if I didn’t go back quickly, but today there’s no need for that.


Thanks to it, I walked a little leisurely.


The shoes I am wearing now are about one foot smaller than mine, so if I walk for a long time, I often get blisters.


If I walk fast, my feet hurt.


“Come on!”


“We sell fresh fish!”


As I entered the market, loud voices rang everywhere.


“…If possible, I wish I could have an ordinary child with a normal family.”


It’s like all other novels. Why couldn’t I get out of being an orphan?


Looking at these things, it seems to be true that people have different fates.


“Oh, my! Look over there. It’s cursed black hair!”


Although the setting wasn’t described in detail in the original, there was a myth that black-haired people are descendants of demons.


People easily rejected and despised others based only on myths that weren’t known whether they were true or not.


So every time I went out, I used a ragged robe to cover my head, but the villagers who already knew me didn’t care.


“Hey! Do you want to stop doing business in the morning? Don’t look at things like that.”


“Why are you coming out and making a fuss?”


Until earlier I was walking slowly, and then I hurried as I heard their words.


Even though I covered my hair, they couldn’t stop criticizing me.


It was sad that I couldn’t even afford to enjoy my time alone.


It was a moment ago that I felt a little better because of the nice weather.


Arriving at the store in the alley, I carefully called the owner.


“Well, uncle, I’m here to get ingredients again.”


Fortunately, Uncle Philip greeted me with a smile.


“Rita, are you here again today?”


“Yes, the director said he was going to buy new clothes with Lily.”


“I see. I think I’ll just have to get you your own clothes rather than Lily… Now, at least eat this. I’ll take care of you in a minute.”


“Thank you…”


I carefully received the plums the uncle had brought out.


By the way, wasn’t this my first time eating this?


Fruits like plums are so popular in orphanages but I haven’t even tasted it.


I took a bite of the smooth, pretty plum, and the sweet and sour juice came out.


“…So delicious!”


“Haha! Wasn’t it? I’ve got it from my wife to give it to you when you come.”


“Aunt Meghan?”


Oh, she’s so very generous to offer me the prettiest one.


Those words warmed my heart.


Not everyone in the village liked me, but Uncle Philip and Aunt Meghan were really nice to me.


Erita liked those feelings, even if it was sympathy.


“Now, today’s potatoes, onions, and meat


“Thank you, Uncle Philip. Please tell Aunt Meghan I’m thankful.”


“I’m sorry that this was the only thing that I could do for you.”


At the words of the man while stroking my hair, I almost shed tears like a child.


Perhaps it’s because I pretended to be a child in order not to appear strange. My emotions trembled easily.


Although I’m older than what I look like, I still feel like a child in front of my uncle everytime.


“No. I’m still thankful enough.” Erita said I’m a calm voice.


“Wouldn’t it be heavy to carry alone?”


I smiled and shook my head at his friendly words.


“It’s okay. You have to take care of your business, too.”


“Hey, if you want to eat plums again next time, sneak up on me. I’ll definitely leave one for sure.”


“Okay, Thank you Uncle Philip… I’ll go ahead.”


Holding back the tears that were about to leak out, I quickly left the alley.


The basket full of heavy vegetables weighed on the soft shoulders, but time had passed already, so I couldn’t be late.


‘If I go back late, the kids would definitely report me to the director.’


Erita ran fast in a hurry and didn’t notice anyone walking in front of her.




As my small body bumped into the stone-like, hard legs of someone, I fell on my butt.


At the impact, the basket I was holding fell on the floor, and a few round potatoes and onions slipped out.


The robe that was covering my face finally moved, but my heart was pounding thinking of the potatoes that were rolling farther away.


“Oh, no!”


If any of them were missing, the director would starve me instead.


“I’m sorry. I’m really sorry.”


I bowed down to the person I bumped into and apologized over and over again, and picked up the scattered potatoes and onions.


“…Eight, nine.”


One potato was missing.


As I looked around, with an almost crying face, a potato appeared in front of my eyes.


“Here it is.”


A low voice clung to my ear.


A sigh of relief burst out when I saw the potato in his huge hand.


“Thank you!”


He was much taller and bigger than me, and as his robes wrapped around him tightly, I couldn’t see the face of the person who picked up and handed me the potato.


Then I just took the potatoes and put them in the basket and thanked him for the last time.


‘Thanks to him, the director won’t have a reason to starve me.’


And just as I was leaving, the man suddenly blocked my path.


“Could I ask you something for a moment?”




I would be scolded if I’m late, but the man also helped me pick up the potatoes.

late, but I still picked up potatoes.


“May I ask where you live?”


To that question, I hesitated, and answered him in a small voice.


“I’m staying at the Lysen orphanage over there.”


My finger pointed at the direction of the orphanage. The man’s eyes turned to where I pointed at.


“Then could I leave now? I’ll be scolded if I don’t go quickly.”


When I spoke impatiently, the man hurriedly spoke again.


“Then, please answer this one question.”




“Could you tell me your name?”


The orphanage called me black-hair, but I had a name too.


“It’s Erita. I don’t have a last name.”


“…Ah, that’s right.”


The man who heard my name muttered, but now I was in a hurry and said that I would leave.


“I’ll go now. Thank you for picking up the potatoes.”


“…Yes. Goodbye.”


Then the man said nothing for a moment, and then greeted me in a calm voice.


At that moment, my heart was relieved and I quickly started running towards the orphanage.


“See you soon… My daughter.”


In the end, I didn’t listen to what the man muttered behind, as I was furiously running towards the orphanage.




The man, who had been looking at the direction Erita had left, only left after the figure of the child had disappeared.




A knight in the same robe behind him appeared at his call.


“Yes, Grand Duke.”


“I’m going to the Lysen Orphanage tomorrow. I won’t reveal my identity, so prepare yourself.”


“Yes, sir!”


In response to Kyle’s answer, the man called the Grand Duke smiled, still staring at the direction where the child had run.


‘Black hair that has been passed down from generations, and the pretty purple eyes that look just like my deceased wife.’


The child resembled my wife very much.


Besides, the mana lurking in the child’s heart was very familiar.


A mana that no one else could have. The familiar magic I felt a year ago.


It took me a year to find out exactly where it was because it was only a small wave, but I finally found it.


“Erita, that’s right.”




“My lost daughter.”


“I would obey the command of the Lord.”


At that, Kyle bowed his head in obedience and disappeared.


The man’s eyes sank as he stared at the Lysen Orphanage, who was left alone.


The clothes that Erita was wearing, the worn-out shoes, were worse than the rags she was wearing.


And a heavy basket that was difficult for a child to lift alone.


The girl’s sharply bruised hand was seen clearly in front of him.


She was a child who had to be raised more precious than anyone else.


“My beloved daughter, Erita.”


A beautiful and eerie smile appeared on Aslan’s face, staring in the direction Erita had disappeared.


“I’ll pick you up in a minute.”


So just wait a little bit, my daughter…




Author's Thoughts

Note for Male Lead

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