Author: lipzoldyck

 

Blink, blink.

 

Eleanor, dazed for a moment by the handsome face that came right in front of her, slowly closed and opened her eyes. Eleanor, who had been pondering Izmel’s words for about 10 seconds, suddenly stepped away from him in surprise.

 

“Me? No! I really can’t dance.”

 

Eleanor refused, shaking her head fervently.

 

“You shouldn’t think of it as modesty that I’m really bad at dancing. I mean, objectively, I’m terrible.”

 

“It’s okay. Because I’m good at it.”

 

“I really can’t, you know? I won’t be able to leave your feet behind. I don’t want to die for hurting the Imperial Family!”

 

Eleanor, who had lowered her voice to the fullest, looked up at Izmel, her eyes tightening. I’m really serious, yet the smile on his face only grew wider.

 

“There’s nothing like that. I promise. Until the day I die, I will keep quiet about the culprit who left my feet covered in bruises.”

 

Hm? Then isn’t that okay?

 

Izmel asked again, staring at Eleanor as if begging. There was a strange force in his words that couldn’t be denied. Maybe that’s what power is, thought Eleanor.

 

Eleanor, half-given, grumbled as she let out a deep sigh.

 

“You know what? You’re really stubborn. When you were young, you must have made the teachers suffer. Right?”

 

“…Eleanor, in addition to the crime of hurting the Imperial Family, there is also the crime of insulting the Imperial Family. Do you know?”

 

“Is that so? Are you going to file a complaint then?”

 

Eleanor replied as if she wasn’t afraid at all. Izmel let out a peek of laughter as he tilted his head.

 

“You’re more shameless than you think. You weren’t like that at first, though.”

 

And cute.

 

“Now I know that Your Highness welcomes my disrespectful attitude.”

 

“Yeah, but don’t refuse any more. If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t have taken the time to do this.”

 

Then the pianist arrived. After discovering that the Crown Prince had arrived first, the pianist hurriedly sat down in front of the piano.

 

Izmel said briskly as he took his stride towards the children.

 

“Then shall we begin?”

 

***

 

“You need to loosen up, Eleanor.”

 

“What can I do when my strength keeps coming in? My body doesn’t move on its own.”

 

“It’s okay to step on me, so keep your eyes fixed on mine. Don’t keep looking at the floor. The more you do it, the more it gets tangled up.”

 

It was obviously a class for children, yet at some point, it became Izmel’s one-on-one class for Eleanor. Rather, the children were following Izmel’s teachings with a fairly accurate attitude.

 

Izmel was a natural dancer, as he assured her. His long, slim body was born with the slightest movement, and each movement was more like a textbook than a textbook itself.

 

So he couldn’t understand the joys and sorrows of a body like Eleanor’s. Although he kept telling her to relax, she didn’t know how to do that. She could clearly feel the expensive leather shoes being stepped on under her feet, but how could she ignore that?

 

“Children often follow it better.”

 

After all, is the younger the better?

 

“That’s right. The demonstration assistant should do most of the practice, right?”

 

Izmel readily agreed. As soon as he finished speaking, Eleanor stomped on his foot. It was a mistake that was pointed out several times.

 

“Ugh.”

 

This time, as if it seemed to hurt a little, and a thin groan escaped Izmel’s teeth. The stingy Eleanor fired a small shot.

 

“I-I just stepped on it on purpose. Stop laughing. Please bear with it even with a sad thought.”

 

“A sad thought?”

 

At that moment, Izmel, who laughed as if it was absurd, recalled a report he had heard a while ago.

 

[I just got a call from Amikidia. They said that Lady Everett visited late last night with Duke Valentine.]

 

At that moment, his heart sank and the smile disappeared from his face. He murmured softly.

 

“Yes, that’s right. That happened.”

 

Eleanor was taken aback by Izmel’s sudden calm mood. It seemed like something really, really bad had happened. A chill was felt in the red eyes that had always been playful.

 

“Come to think of it, I remembered something I had to say to you.”

 

“For me?”

 

Izmel whispered in Eleanor’s ear, pulling lightly on her waist.

 

“I heard you went to Amikidia not too long ago. With Duke Valentine, at midnight.”

 

“It wasn’t until midnight… But how did you know that?”

 

Eleanor’s eyes widened. Izmel gave a small laugh as if he was dumbfounded.

 

“Can I not know? That’s my territory.”

 

“Ah!”

 

“It’s perfectly my zone, where I can even find out what the two of you were talking about if I tried.”

 

Eleanor, who nodded her head at Izmel’s words, was taken aback.

 

“You know everything? All of that…?”

 

“Why. Was there anything I shouldn’t have heard?”

 

Eleanor’s face flushed red. She had barely forgotten, but Kaidel’s voice started ringing in her head again.

 

Seeing Eleanor’s face like that, Izmel’s mood sank even deeper. It was her transparency that forced him to know even the things he didn’t want to know.

 

‘It looks like the Duke revealed his feelings to Eleanor in a clumsy manner, but unfortunately he hasn’t been kicked yet.’

 

Izmel, who accurately pointed out the situation in an instant, let out a long breath. It was very unpleasant.

 

“No, I don’t know.”

 

Izmel’s words gave Eleanor a visibly relieved expression. Huh, Izmel narrowed his eyes.

 

“But don’t you think it’s a bit too much? I confessed there too, yet you’re taking another man there?”

 

“It’s not a confession!”

 

Eleanor, all alone, raised her voice. She felt the children’s eyes on her, and she struggled to calm herself.

 

“What kind of nonsense… Haha.”

 

Izmel whispered in Eleanor’s ear, who was laughing awkwardly.

 

“Nonsense. How is the rabbit doll I gave you?”

 

“Oh, that ugly rabbit doll? It’s fine.”

 

“I gave it for you to think of me every time you see it, but it can’t do its job, the rabbit.”

 

The relaxed Eleanor jokingly responded to Izmel’s words.

 

“I know right. The rabbit is negligent.”

 

Izmel burst into laughter. The echo came from his hand lightly wrapped around her back. Eleanor laughed at him.

 

“Anyway, if it’s jealousy, it’s been successful. It was a great provocation. Thanks to you, I was alert.”

 

“It wasn’t like that!”

 

Izmel’s eyebrows twitched.

 

“Yeah, so let’s pretend I’m lost in myself and can’t get my head around it.”

 

***

 

After class, Marianne went back. But while all children rested, Eleanor was captured by Izmel and subjected to a special training.

 

“They just said ‘confession’, didn’t they?”

 

Lucas glanced at the two close together and muttered in a bewildered voice. Demian nodded her head. The three children put their heads together and started whispering in small whispers.

 

“Did His Highness confess? Or if not…”

 

At Sienna’s words, Lucas suggested another possibility.

 

“It could be that Teacher likes my older brother.”

 

“Mm, no.”

 

Sienna, lightly ignoring that possibility, looked at Demian and asked.

 

“Have you heard anything from your brother?”

 

“Nope.”

 

“There really isn’t any, or it’s that you won’t tell me…”

 

Lucas, who was quietly chewing on Sienna’s words, questioned her with a frown, wondering if he felt unfair. His self-esteem was subtly hurt.

 

“Why is it not my older brother?”

 

What’s wrong with my brother!

 

“So what do you know? You can tell just by looking at it that he fell in love with her.”

 

“How can be?”

 

Sienna sighed and pointed at the two, beginning to explain.

 

“I can tell just by looking at it. When talking, Teacher keeps leaning her body back. Because it’s close. On the other hand, His Highness… he’s almost pouring forward.”

 

“So what?”

 

“It means that His Highness is much more proactive. Isn’t it natural to want to get closer to someone you like?”

 

At Sienna’s words, Lucas and Demian’s heads turned to the two of them. As they listened, he certainly did.

 

“By the way, His Highness seems to be very meticulous unlike you. I respect him.”

 

As Sienna praised Izmel as if acknowledging it, Lucas’ face softened. The words ‘unlike you’ hadn’t even been heard by Lucas. Lucas asked with a pale face.

 

“Why?”

 

“He must have calculated everything from the moment he said he would teach her how to dance. Standing so close…”

 

Sienna nodded her head as if in genuine admiration for him. Why hadn’t I thought of that before, it was just a pity.

 

“Besides, the Duke only teaches swordsmanship very diligently, yet His Highness has only been teaching Teacher since earlier.”

 

“That’s because Teacher can’t dance.”

 

When Sienna mentioned Kaidel, Demian, who was listening to her, became furious. Sienna also acknowledged it and nodded her head.

 

“Well… There must be a reason for that.”

 

As if Lucas was really curious, he looked at Sienna and asked.

 

“Where the hell do you pick that up?”

 

“It’s not about picking it up, it’s about reading it. If you go to a bookstore, the books related to love are piled up.”

 

“Books?”

 

Lucas and Demian’s ears perked up. As expected, Sienna wasn’t an ordinary child. Isn’t it a shame that she was reading such a thing hidden by herself? It was definitely because she read the book, so she felt a bit like an expert.

 

‘It must be in the Imperial library. I’ll have to send them all to Brother’s office.’

 

‘I want to give it to Brother as well.’

 

Thoughts that the older brothers would be terrified if they found out popped up in the boys’ heads.

 

“Mm. If you look carefully, there are many good ones. You have to look carefully and choose.”

 

Sienna also started thinking about the books that might help motivate her uncle. She didn’t say much because he seemed to be sticking with his business the whole time, but she was uneasy seeing how things were going.

 

“Anyway, there must be something between the adults that we don’t know about. We’ll have to watch it more carefully for a while.”

 

The other children nodded her head in agreement.

 

Adult love was a strange thing. It seems to be stopped without progress, yet it catches fire, and it doesn’t seem like anything special has happened, but it turned cold in an instant. It was like a play with endless twists until the very end.

 

“What is everyone talking about so much fun?”

 

At that time, Eleanor, who had crept up to them, stuck her head out and asked. She was the only heroine in the play. Meaningful glances passed between the children.

 

“Um, nothing!”

 

You’ll find out someday, but for now, shhh. It was a secret.

 

Author's Thoughts

this chapter is sponsored by My Name is not Important (8/14)

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