Author: EunEun Editor: Zil

Thump. Thump. 

 

Her heart beat hard.

 

‘…I expected this.’

 

Beatty couldn’t understand herself, why she was so shocked all of a sudden.

 

‘It’s because I’ve been seeing strange things over and over again all these time.’

 

It was because she was so used to the Duke’s Castle people who treated her kindly.

 

‘But that’s something unusual.’

 

Glance.

 

Looked up, her father’s eyes were too cold to be called looking at his only daughter.

 

‘This is a given.’

 

The cold gaze slowly permeated Beatty’s heart.

 

On the contrary, she became calm.

 

The eyes of adults that were a given until she came here. This was a very familiar treatment.

 

“Uhm….”

 

Calmly. Since he doesn’t want to talk to her for a long time, she was going to bring up the business right away. However—

 

“!”

 

At the large hand that was casting a shadow over her face, Beatty flinched and took a back step without realizing it herself.

 

 

“Stay still! A kid like you has to receive punishment!”

 

 

It was because she remembered her aunt who sometimes raised her hand while grumbling at her.

 

Beatty crouched and closed her eyes as if she were prepared for something reflexively.

 

“….”

 

The Duke’s hand stopped.

 

While he pulled back his stretched hand, Carl, who came out rather late to meet at the urge of the direct knight, opened his mouth.

 

“Father.”

 

“Carl.”

 

Those were calls that seemed desolate to be said as a greeting between father and son.

 

“The supply order was carried out without a hitch.”

 

The Duke gave Carl a dry compliment.

 

“Good job.”

 

Carl shrugged and asked back.

 

“Why are you saying that to me?”

 

“Y-Young Master. Honorifics!”

 

The knight freaked out and whispered at the outspoken speech of the Young Master, who did not care about people.

 

At the knight’s fuss, Carl snorted and opened his mouth again.

 

“You should’ve said that to Tail Fur, not me.”

 

“Tail Fur…?”

 

The puzzled Duke’s gaze followed Carl’s gaze and turned to Beatty.

 

Flinch.

 

Beatty’s shoulders flinched when her eyes met with the Duke’s.

 

“….”

 

Feeling his gaze as he watched her quietly, without knowing what kind of thought he was thinking, Beatty swallowed his saliva.

 

‘Right. I already gave you a big thing.’

 

She thought it was enough price to invite him to the negotiating table.

 

‘Calm down. I’m the only one who knows the future. It’s enough to make a proposal.’

 

From the determined Beatty, the Duke shifted his gaze and opened his mouth as he looked back.

 

“Butler.”

 

“Yes, My Lord.”

 

“Why is she brought out here?”

 

It was a displeased tone.

 

Who the Duke was referring to, Beatty could quickly guess the omitted words.

 

‘You’re holding Johanna responsible for letting me into your sight…?!’

 

“I came out alone because I have something I have to tell you!”

 

Beatty hurriedly stepped forward.

 

She couldn’t let Johanna, who had always shown a kind smile, be screwed up and got hated by her superior because of her.

 

“I brought a proposal that you won’t regret hearing about.”

 

As Beatty straightened up herself, she said intentionally with more confidence.

 

Fortunately, as planned, perhaps the half-size stature was very annoying, so the Duke’s gaze, who was glaring at Johanna, returned to her.

 

“A proposal?”

 

As if something was bothering him, the furrowed face was so scary that any child would cry when they saw it.

 

However, Beatty wasn’t just any child.

 

Beatty’s spirit, which has already been trained for decades by eating salt, wasn’t shaken by this level of humiliation.

 

‘It’s just staring. It’s not like he covered my mouth with a cloth so that I can’t talk, right?’

 

Compared to the physical punishment that her aunt did and also said that she didn’t want to hear the child’s voice, the level of fierce eyes is gentle.

 

‘Hooo.’

 

After taking a deep breath inside to calm herself down, opened her mouth with a confident voice.

 

“I had helped fill up the burnt military supplies, right?”

 

Beatty continued without being disappointed by the Duke’s slightly stiff response.

 

“This time, too, it’s a deal that will help you like that time. I’m sure it’ll be a great benefit for the Lord who rules over the territory!”

 

“….”

 

At that moment, she didn’t know why, but the Duke hesitated.

 

Beatty, who doesn’t know why he hardened, thinks that she had made a mistake.

 

“My Lord?”

 

Again, she carefully called him with what she thought was the ‘polite title’.

 

Then somehow, the Duke’s shoulder seems to have flinched, but it is probably an illusion.

 

“…Let’s talk about it tomorrow.”

 

Since the Duke’s face remained calm without any trace while looking down and talking to her.

 

‘Tomorrow? I succeeded!’

 

Even though it was delayed by a day, the Duke responded to the negotiation.

 

Beatty replied energetically.

 

“Yes!”

 

“Take her back.”

 

Without even looking at her, the Duke ordered the butler and took another step.

 

Even though anyone may be disappointed by a father’s coldness, whom the person met for the first time.

 

“Hm.”

 

Beatty, who had no expectations at all, was not disappointed at all.

 

‘Good! I surely have to persuade him tomorrow to get a chance.’

 

Johanna approached Beatty, who was clenching her fist with a small sense of accomplishment.

 

“Young Miss, shall we go up to the bedroom now? It hasn’t been long since you’ve been sick, so you surely have to be careful.”

 

Johanna’s face, which was filled with worries, naturally covered a shawl to Beatty, saying that the evening wind was chilly.

 

Still not knowing what to say to the tickling worries, Beatty followed her, nodding only her head hard.

 

 

***

 

 

At the Duke’s Office.

 

In the space which had finally found its owner again after a long time, the sound of heavy military boots rang.

 

“Welcome, Your Excellency!”

 

“I even had reported it by letter as it was urgent, but the number of merchants which were entering the territory is unusual these days… Your Excellency?”

 

After walking while listening to the report, the Duke’s gaze turned to Johanna, who had just opened the door and entered.

 

“Congratulations on your return, My Lord.”

 

“….”

 

“The Young Miss ate in the bed.”

 

As an experienced butler, Johanna noticed the Lord’s question even without speaking, and answered in advance.

 

“Fortunately, she doesn’t even have any signs of cold anymore.”

 

“…Yeah.”

 

The Duke closed his eyes for a moment and thought about something, then he ordered again.

 

“I heard that she was sick. Be careful.”

 

“Yes. I will do my best so that the Young Miss won’t fall ill with a cold again by any chance.”

 

Johanna, who understood the omitted Lord’s words perfectly, bowed down and went out of the room again.

 

“Come to think of it, the one who came to meet Your Excellency earlier was the Young Miss, right?”

 

“How small and cute she was. It would have been nice if such a pretty daughter welcomed you.”

 

“Haha. I’m sure Your Excellency was also happ— Your Excellency?”

 

The subordinate, who was laughing loudly, quietly closed his mouth when he saw the Duke’s frown.

 

“To think that they let a sick kid out of the bedroom.”

 

It was a very dissatisfied tone.

 

“Oh, it’s been a while since she saw Your Excellency, right? Furthermore, since Your Excellency came back with a great victory, she may have thought it was rude not to meet yo—”

 

“Such meeting.”

 

The firmly cut-off tone clearly revealed that he didn’t consider such courtesy important at all.

 

“Baby is….”

 

He couldn’t bear to blurt out the following words.

 

‘Her body is already weak.’

 

A gloomy expression came up upon the Duke’s face.

 

He recalled the quick sight again. His daughter, who was still so small even though she grew up a lot compared to the past.

 

He wanted to stroke her head.

 

“….”

 

The Duke looked down at his hand for a while then muttered.

 

“Am I….”

 

“Yes, My Lord.”

 

“Scary?”

 

“Yes? If you’re asking me, I will always show awe-inspiring loyalty to My Lord—”

 

“No.”

 

The Duke cut off the following words that followed uselessly.

 

“On the outside.”

 

“Uhm…. My Lord’s outside appearance?”

 

The knight, who seriously contemplated the sudden question, confidently opened his mouth.

 

“Yes! It’s scary!”

 

“….”

 

The knight who answered honestly added a smooth explanation.

 

“If you’re talking about My Lord’s outside look, it looks scary enough not only for children but also for adults.”

 

The King of Fear!

 

The Lord who ruled with dignity!

 

With such misrepresentation of loyalty, the knight praised the Lord for how overwhelming he is.

 

The more he said, the darker the Duke’s expression became.

 

“Even only at a glimpse of the Lord, anyone must be stepping backward in fear!”

 

“….”

 

At the point of ‘stepping backward’, the Duke’s shoulders flinched.

 

The Duke, who had been thinking for a while, raised his head as if he had concluded something and called his subordinate.

 

“Aide.”

 

“Yes, Your Excellency.”

 

“Prepare ‘that’ among this time’s spoils of war.”

 

Ssk.

 

The Duke pulled out one of the documents on the desk and held it out.

 

“‘That’? ….Ah! Yes! Yes!”

 

The puzzled aide recognized what the Duke was referring to and quickly straightened up.

 

“I’ll prepare thoroughly.”

 

The determined aide’s eyes flashed.

 

The Duke nodded with satisfaction.

Author's Thoughts

Hi there, EunEun here~ Thank you so very much for your support of any type for my translations <3 It means so much to me, and I really really appreciate it^^ If you want to sponsor your fav novel or support me, you can check out my Ko-fi, and please don't give any spoilers in the comment section, thank youu~ <333

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