Author: Chewyy

‘However…I can’t remember how or why I died.’ 

 

Things like my name or job from my previous life were vague.

 

The only thing I remembered was that I wasn’t that old, maybe twenty-two or three…

 

The only thing I remembered was how unfair it felt to have my eyes closed at such a young age.

 

“Nell?”

 

“Ah yes?”

 

“Are you okay? Your expression suddenly darkened.” 

 

“Meow.”

 

Ruby, who had been grunting in response to Leonhard’s words, looked up at me.

 

I shook my head saying it was nothing and stroked Ruby’s back.

 

“I think I’ve calmed down a little because I had a scary imagination. Because I don’t have the ability to protect my body, I can’t use magic like my sister.”

 

“I will protect you.”

 

Leonhard said so immediately, without hesitation.

 

“Even if it’s not me, the knight of Heilang, the wizard, and everyone in Ajas will protect and help you. So you don’t have to be afraid of things that could hurt you. Just call and anyone will come running to you.”

 

“Of course they will, because I am the Marquess.”

 

His words were very pleasing, but for some reason, I felt a little down.

 

‘Because I became his wife, they must be protecting me, right?’ 

 

That’s not going to happen, but if I ever get a divorce for some reason and leave the Ajas… Then there will be no reason to protect me. 

 

“Even if you’re not my wife, Nell.”

 

Then Leonhard reached out and took my hand.

 

Two rings glisten on the interlocking fingers. The ring worn on his left hand was clean today without any blemishes. 

 

“Even if you can’t adapt to the North or leave me because you miss your family,….”

 

His lips landed on my hand. To be precise, the pink pearl of the ring was worn on the ring finger. 

 

“My sword will be drawn anytime you need it.” 

 

A knight can take only two oaths in his lifetime.

 

Once to the lord, he would give his allegiance to, and once to the lady, he would give his life to. It was up to the knight himself to decide which of the two to put weight on.

 

There is only one thing, a knight who has sworn an oath must not betray his lord’s trust and must not turn his back on the lady because her life is precious.

 

The moment the oath is broken, the knight ceases to be a knight. 

 

Knighted or not.

 

But Leonhard was trying to make a once-in-a-lifetime oath for Lady.

 

Not because I’m his wife, but even if I’m not his wife…My heart was filled with emotion for a moment.

 

But it was faster than that, something stirred inside me. I couldn’t hold it in any longer and impulsively asked him.

 

“Why? If I’m not your wife, you don’t have to protect me, do you?”

 

“Not all knights offer swords to their wives.” 

 

“I know. There are more cases where the sword is dedicated to the royal family, a noble lady, or the wife of a lord.…but I’m not one of them.”

 

My heart pounded wildly in my chest. I looked carefully at his face and asked carefully.

 

“Why Do you want to offer your sword to me?” 

 

“That’s…”

 

“That’s…?”

 

Leonhard couldn’t speak easily and just pursed his lips. Looking at his slightly confused face, it seemed that he was not sure why, not because he didn’t want to talk.

 

That time when the atmosphere around us became awkward with the silence got longer and longer.

 

— Whoa, Whoa!

— Hee hee hee!

 

At that moment, the carriage, which had been running well, came to a sudden stop as if the brakes were suddenly applied.

 

“Kyaaak!”

 

Due to the law of inertia, my body tilted as if I was falling forward. 

 

“Nell!”

 

He grabbed me, but was a little late and I slammed my face into his broad, hard chest.

 

“Ouch….”

 

I rubbed my tingling forehead and removed my face from his arms. I was surprised and Ruby was the same, but the cat flew up into the air as soon as I leaned over, circling the air inside the carriage.

 

“What, what is this?”

 

“Well. I don’t think it was an attack because it’s quiet outside…” 

 

As if he had guessed something, Leonhard’s face, as he stopped speaking, was colored with a strange light.

 

As if it had been announced, a man’s voice came from outside.

 

“I came to win Nolan medal. Come out, Leonhard Ajas!”

 

“Huft…”

 

The moment he heard the word ‘Nolan’, Leonhard’s handsome eyebrows wrinkled beautifully.

 

It was the first time I’d seen him make such an expression. 

 

Before I even had time to open my eyes wide at him, this time, the whole carriage swayed with a bang! and a loud noise was heard.

 

“Did a fight happen?”

 

“I hid the flag and the carriage seal, but I guess he managed to find out…I’ll be gone for a while. It won’t be long, so stay in the carriage.”

 

“Yes, I will.”

 

I was actually a little curious, but I didn’t want to get out of the carriage. Also, there was a request from Robert not to get off the carriage when passing through the Anild Gate.

 

“Nell, I’m going in.”

 

“Cathy?”

 

The carriage door, which had been closed for a moment, opened and Catherine came inside.

 

After closing the door, she sat in front of me and hugged Ruby with both hands as he flew through the air.

 

“The Captain told me to go inside. Don’t worry. The situation will be sorted out soon.” 

 

Could it be that you were worried that I would be scared? I felt a little emotional.

 

“By the way, does this happen often?”

 

“often…Not really, but it happens a lot near the Anild gate. Of the humans who rush to get Nolan’s medal, more than half can’t get through the gate.”

 

“Why? Are they all criminals?”

 

“Probably, since more than half are warriors from the Colosseum.” 

 

“I see….”

 

In exchange for the dazzling honor that only one person on this continent can wear, Nolan’s owner is subject to one obligation.

 

Respect those who challenge Nolan’s honor. The holder of Nolan’s Medal cannot refuse the challenge. 

 

Refusal leads to surrender, and if you have been defeated in a fierce duel, abstaining without drawing your sword is a cowardly act that deserves to be mocked by people.

 

If the owner’s physical condition is not good, he can postpone the challenge. However, from what I heard, Leonhard never postponed a single challenge he had taken on.

 

As short as five minutes, as long as 30 minutes.

 

And in that duel, Leonhard said he would not use Ajas’s power. Even so, he was so powerful that famous warriors couldn’t easily win. 

 

I was very curious about that… but It’s not something you can tell just by looking at it.’ 

 

As if the duel had begun, the sound of friction between iron and iron rang out loudly along with the sound of the challenger outside.

 

The sound of the sword and the rapid collision was so vivid that I unknowingly shook my shoulders in the middle. I was glad I didn’t get off…

 

‘No way….You’re not going to get hurt, are you?’

 

Holding my hands interlaced, I glanced in the direction the sound was coming from.

 

After a very long time, the door of the closed carriage opened. 

 

“It’s done. Having declared defeat, he will return quietly…” 

 

“Leon! Are you hurt?” 

 

“Yes? Ah….it’s okay.” 

 

“Really? Sit here.”

 

I moved to the side and tapped on the place where I was sitting, and Leonhard, who hesitated for a moment, carefully sat down on the seat.

 

I checked his hands first, then his muscular arms and shoulders.

 

Contrary to my worries, there were no wounds anywhere on his body, his body, which wore no protection, let alone armor.

 

There was even a subtle iron smell coming from his body, but there was no blood spatter.

 

“Huft….Are you really okay?”

 

“Your husband is not a weak man enough to be beaten by such a fool. You don’t have to worry too much.”

 

“what? His voice was very loud.” 

 

“Only his voice was loud. He was a man who had nothing but the information he knew I would pass here and the courage to dare to stand in front of him.

 

“I see…”

 

“Leonhard Aias! To receive Nolan’s medal, the warrior of Kalenger, Belfo, came here. Accept my challenge!”

 

It was not even before the carriage left. Hearing the shouts from outside, Leonhard put his hand on his face, let out a long sigh, and got up again.

 

“In a minute…I’ll be back, Nell.” 

 

“yes. Don’t get hurt and come quickly.” 

 

“Uhuk.”

 

Then Catherine coughed lightly. I raised my head, wondering what was going on, and Ruby flew into my arms.

 

“Meow!”

 

Ruby, who seemed to have calmed down a lot, landed on my thigh and kneaded here and there with his front and back legs, then curled up and yawned loudly. At that time, I heard a small “Ah.” next to me.

 

“Leon?”

 

“I’ll finish quietly. I’ll be back, so don’t worry too much.”

 

Leonhard kept his word very well. As for how well he kept his word, he must have used a sword, but I couldn’t hear the sound of swords clashing at all. 

 

“Argh” only the man’s scream signaled the end of the duel.

 

How long did it take for Leonhard to leave the carriage and return? Maybe 5 minutes?

 

‘He must have been a really weak challenger this time.’ 

 

I realized that, thanks to the carriage that had been running and stopping and running and stopping all day.

 

As rumors had spread that Ajas’s carriage was nearby, the challenger continued to attack Leonhard. Each time Leonhard defeated every challenger within 10 minutes at most.

 

But how fast would a carriage run if it stopped and stopped repeatedly?

 

Leonhard easily defeated all the challengers, but it was only when it was extremely late in the night that we crossed the Anild and arrived at Cloud Castle. 

 

I even found out the next morning that I had arrived at Cloud Castle because I had fallen asleep in the carriage.

 

I woke up from a hand shaking my shoulder, and while I was washing my face in a daze, I realized that the place where I opened my eyes was a splendid and spacious room, I was startled and woke up completely.

 

“Uh, when did we arrive?”

 

“We arrived last night. My wife seems to be in a deep sleep, so I didn’t wake you up. Did you have a good night’s sleep?”

 

“Yes, I slept very well.”

 

I especially liked the large pillow that I hugged and slept on.…

 

Eh?

 

“Why are you wearing armor? Even from this morning?” 

 

She wasn’t even heavily armed, but from the dagger on his thigh to the bow and quiver he wore on his back, anyone could see that he was a person who was going out for hunting or going out immediately. 

 

As if to soothe me who widened my eyes in surprise, Leonhard kissed the back of my wet hand with a smile.

 

“Something happened at Cloud Castle, so I think I need to go out to help for a while. I’ll leave you with an escort behind, so stay with them. If you need anything, just call them and ask for it.”

 

“What happened? Is it urgent enough to leave in the morning like this?”

 

“Yes, it is urgent.”

 

Leonhard hesitated for a while, as if he didn’t know how to explain it, but finally gave up on talking about it and told me directly. 

 

“They say a monster appeared in the castle and kidnapped the daughter of Marquis Cloud.”

 

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