Author: Byuon

Viscount Evelyn felt like he was facing the greatest difficulty of his life.

The feel of his wife’s hand in his had never been so awkward.

He paced in silence, feeling the child’s wiggling fingers against his own.

‘Hey, why is this guy so obedient?’

Viscount Evelyn slowed his pace down a bit, seeing Escal staggered to match his footsteps.

Escal, who was sweating profusely, finally let out a small sigh.

‘This little guy doesn’t even whine.’

Viscount Evelyn came to the shore of the lake with Escal, thinking whether he had grown up too early or if he was too observant.

“Sit here.”

Setting down his fishing pole, he spread a rug on the flat ground and sat the child down.

Escal, with his hips on the edge of the rug, glanced at Viscount Evelyn, who was grooming his fishing rod.

Viscount Evelyn threaded the bait onto the hook and spoke nonchalantly.

“Have you ever fished before?”

“No.”

Shaking his head, Viscount threw the fishing rod. The fishing hook sank into the water with splashes of water.

“When the fishing rod goes down, you have caught a fish.”

“Ah…”

At the words of the Viscount, Escal stared intently at the fishing rod.

The lake, where there was no wind, was very calm.

Viscount Evelyn paused, reaching for a cigarette in his tackle box, when not even the shadow of a fish was visible, let alone a bite.

‘He’s getting on my nerves.’

Viscount said as he put the cigarette back in.

“If you are bored, you can go back.”

“I want to see you catch a fish.”

“… Do as you wish.”

And then silence again.

It was tiring to just look at the fishing rod without saying a word, but the child sat quietly without complaining.

Viscount Evelyn took out an unlit cigarette, popped it in his mouth, and chewed on the filter.

“Is your arm still hurt?”

To the unexpected question, Escal blinked his eyes before answering.

“Oh, it doesn’t hurt anymore.”

“Be careful, your Mom, will worry.”

Viscount Evelyn coughed and opened his mouth again.

“You may think this old man looks bad, but you know I’m not that bad.”

“…….”

“Do you understand what I mean?”

“Uh… Yes.”

Escal reluctantly nodded.

‘What am I doing with this child?’

He smiled bitterly and put the cigarette with the smashed filter into his inner pocket.

“Anyway, you shouldn’t bother your mother.”

“Yes.”

Suddenly! As soon as Escal was finished answering, the fishing rod sank into the water.

Viscount Evelyn hurriedly grabbed the fishing rod with both hands.

Judging from the pressure, he was sure it wasn’t an ordinary fish.

“Escal, get the bucket! Give me a bucket!”

“Yes!”

Escal scrambled to his feet and took a large bucket.

When he pulled the fishing rod with all his might, a carp the size of his forearm came up.

“Wow! It’s huge!”

Escal exclaimed as he looked at the carp in the bucket, and Viscount Evelyn shrugged his shoulders.

“Did you see it? Grandpa is like this.”

 

*****

 

The market 30 minutes from the Viscount Evelyn was bustling with activity.

“There, pretty girl! Check this fresh fruit!”

The fruit vendor looked at me and waved his hand over and over again.

I smiled and said to Helios.

“Did you hear that?”

“What?”

“He sees me as a pretty girl. I guess I don’t look like a married woman.”

“So, is that good?”

“Fine, then.”

I replied playfully, and Helios put his hand around my waist.

“What are you doing?”

“This is how I keep the blind guys from throwing flirts.”

“I see.”

Even if you didn’t, the sword at your waist wouldn’t let them touch me.

I tapped Helios on the side with my elbow and looked around the market diligently.

“Welcome.”

When I entered the butcher shop, the owner greeted me warmly.

“Ten pounds of pork, ten pounds of beef, five each of chicken and turkey.”

“That mich? Do you have a party?”

“This man eats a lot.”

At a light joke, the owner of the butcher smiled and served the meat. There was so much of it that the large bag threatened to overflow.

“I’ll come back in again.”

“Be my guest.”

After paying for the meat and leaving the butcher, the second place I stopped was the vegetable vendor.

“Welcome. I just picked these from the field.”

As if the shopkeeper wasn’t exaggerating, the shelves were filled with freshly picked vegetables.

I walked to beautiful potatoes, carrots, cabbage and tomatoes.

“And what else do you need?”

“I don’t know. Do you want something to eat?”

“What I want to eat… ah!”

I suddenly thought of something to buy, so I grabbed Helios and headed to a seafood place.

“Welcome.”

“50 shrimp, please.”

“Lena.”

Helios looked at me and frowned.

“You can’t eat that.”

“Escal will eat that.”

“Don’t do it. What if you get sick again?”

“The kitchen maids will make it, so how about it? We can cook it separately.”

“Forget it, don’t do it.”

Helios firmly shook his head.

I appreciate that he’s thinking of me, but sometimes it’s just too much.

I said as I squeezed the inside of his arm.

“I know you like it too.”

“I don’t like it. It doesn’t matter if I don’t eat shrimp for the rest of my life.”

He’s really stubborn.

I pulled out my last resort

“My father likes it too.”

“… Buy only 20.”

Helios nodded reluctantly.

Accepting his surrender, I grabbed the 20 shrimp and left the store.

“Hah.”

“Tired?”

“My leg hurts. But it’s okay.”

“Then do you want to rest there?”

Helios pointed to the coffee house at the entrance to the market.

“Sure.”

I went into the coffee house with Helios. There were many people in the market, and the coffee house was also crowded with people.

We managed to find an empty seat and sat down, and an employee approached us.

“Welcome, what would you like to eat?”

“A cup of coffee and cheesecake.”

“Same.”

“All right.”

The waitress who took the order entered the kitchen.

Even in that short period of time, people’s eyes gathered and then dispersed.

“Tsk.”

Helios, sensitive to the presence, looked around once and kicked the empty chair.

Bang! The collapsed chair slammed loudly to the floor.

“Helios?”

“There are a lot of flies.”

… I can’t believe him.

It’s not like I’m going to see them again..

Still, I couldn’t feel the stare in my face anymore , I guess it was working.

“I got the coffee you ordered.”

Frustrated by Helios’ bloody momentum, the waiter put down the food and fled as if running away.

I looked at Helios drinking coffee and took a large bite out of the cheesecake with a fork.

Huh? Is it better than I think?

I took another bite, loving the taste of the rich cheese as it melted in my mouth, and Helios tilted his head and asked.

“Tasty?”

“Do you want to try some?”

I cut the cake with a fork and put it in his mouth.

“How about it?”

“Too sweet.”

Helios furrowed his eyebrows and pushed the cake plate toward me.

I giggled and ate the whole cake, including Helios’ share.

‘Maybe I should get one for Escal.?’

“Shall we buy one?”

“You’re getting one for Escal?”

“Yes.”

“He can’t have anything sweet, he’ll lose his appetite.”

Helios shook his head resolutely.

After all, he’s a tough dad.

“I see. Then let’s go back.”

After leaving the empty coffee cup behind and leaving the coffee house, the number of people had dropped sharply.

As dinner time neared, everyone seemed to have gone home.

We were heading to the market entrance, wanting to go back soon, but Helios suddenly stopped walking.

“Lena, our meat!”

“Oh right.”

I forgot.

“Wait here for a moment, I’ll go get the meat.”

“Okay.”

I looked at the back of Helios as he ran away and looked away.

The scenery of the market as the sun was setting was cluttered and cozy.

It wasn’t as big and magnificent as the Imperial capital, but that’s why I liked it more.

‘Should I ask Helios to live in a place like this?’

I think it would be better to live quietly without getting entangled in politics or anything complicated.

Just when I thought I’d find a day to discuss it with Helios.

“Excuse me, miss.”

Some men came and talked to me.

“Who are you?”

“Looks like it’s your first time in this village, but I was wondering if I could give you a guide to the village.”

The young man smiled, revealing his yellow teeth.

What a bunch of assholes, not worth dealing with.

I snorted and replied.

“No thanks, neither of you are my type.”

“Hey, don’t do that, let’s have a cup of tea.”

Another man grabbed my arm.

“Let go of me.”

“It’ll only take a few minutes… Ouch!”

Thud!

A fist flew out of nowhere and hit the man’s face.

I turned around in surprise, and Helios spoke in a terrifying voice.

“How dare you filthy bastards lay a hand on her?”

“You, you…!”

Thud! Helios kicked another man in the stomach.

In the blink of an eye, two men were down, and he looked down at them like a bug.

“If you have any complaints, come to the Duke of Anthemion.”

At the word ‘Duke of Anthemion’, the men’s faces became pale.

“Sir, I’m sorry.”

Then the two men realized that they had touched the wrong person and ran away.

“That garbage.”

I laughed when I saw him grinning his teeth and talking to himself.

“What are you laughing at?”

“It’s just, it’s funny.”

Helios narrowed his eyes when I answered with a smiley voice.

“Anyway, I can’t take my eyes off you.”

He grabbed my wrist with a dissatisfied expression.

“Come on, let’s go back.”

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