* * *
Luka felt both remorse and satisfaction as he watched the peaceful Leah sleep.
‘Was it a bit too much?’
Of course, seeing her struggling quite a bit the whole day made Luka’s heart feel weak. From the moment he regained his blocked memories, the magic restrictions that had been holding him back were lifted, and his mana was unlocked, making it easy to use basic magic such as short-distance-high-speed traveling.
When they arrived at the first village, the range of movement was too vast to employ magic, but once they entered the Gesilla region, it was up to him. Nonetheless, he grew abnormally greedy to spend more time with her. When it comes to Leah, Luka couldn’t keep his cool. It had been that way since the first time he saw the warm smile and little hand reaching out to him when he entered the Troi orphanage.
Luka swept his hair. At that moment, his soft brown hair turned pitch black, radiant as the night sky. It was a symbol of royalty. His original hair color–hidden under the poor tactics of the one who kidnapped him– was restored. A gentle breeze blew through the open window, scattering his neat hair.
Looking at Leah drooling in her sleep, made Luka chuckle. Curly, fairy-like silver hair, and warm light-green eyes that make you feel like you’d be enchanted just by looking at them. A lovely girl in all her corners, always calling him with a cheerful voice.
He couldn’t tell why he was so mesmerized by her. Has he ever–in his whole life– met someone who speaks kind words, stretches out her warm hands, or smiles with sincerity and kindness while looking at him? Perhaps it was because she was the only one who did that.
The more significance you give to it, the bigger your heart will grow, to the extent that he was growing impatient.
Luka whispered, carefully covering her shoulders with a blanket he found inside the carriage.
“I’ll be generous.”
Snap- Luka snapped his fingers. At that moment, he heard the coachman, who was yawning and leisurely driving the wagon, scream outside.
“Oh? Oh?! What is this?!”
Time flew by and the scenery outside changed so quickly that it was impossible to recognize its shape. The trees and greenery that passed along the carriage swayed violently in the gust of wind. The coachman, who didn’t know high-speed traveling magic, simply screamed at the marvelous sight and clung to the wagon. Luka snapped his finger once more, blocking the man’s mouth so that Leah wouldn’t wake up due to the commotion.
The dukedom, which they should have reached after a long journey through the night, was only a few minutes away. As a white fortress, the symbol of the Rayes dukedom, began to appear in the distance, Luka dispelled his magic.
The carriage, which couldn’t overcome the momentum, ran as if flying several tens of meters even after the magic was released and stopped.
Since the meteor shower was no longer visible in the sky, it was clear that they had reached Rayes territory.
Luka poked his head out the window and spoke to the coachman, who was still trembling and clutching onto the horse-drawn rope, utterly confused.
“Come on, calm down, and let’s move again.”
“Ah… ye- yes!”
The coachman thought they were the children of a servant working for the duke’s family, hence, he took his time driving the carriage, making the journey as long as possible to get more money. However, beyond his expectations, these little kids were extraordinary and commendable. Being a commoner with a horse-drawn carriage, it was hard to experience fast-moving magic like that.
“Hohoo, to experience something like this in my life…”
The coachman murmured as if he was out of his mind and then shouted “giddy up!” driving the carriage.
It was still early evening; the sun had yet to set.
* * *
“Leah, you have to get up now.”
‘Oh- Did I oversleep? I need to wake up the kids on duty today or…’ Thinking about the kids scolded because I overslept last time and didn’t wake them up on time, I woke up suddenly.
“Luka, what time is it now?” I lifted my heavy eyelids and asked Luka.
“It’s about seven o’clock.”
“Seven in the morning is still early…”
“It’s seven o’clock in the evening.”
I jumped up. But as soon as I looked around, I was at a loss for words.
‘It’s not my room.‘ It wasn’t the wooden roof covered in spider webs that I had seen every day for the past twelve years, but an old-fashioned yet sophisticated ceiling with all kinds of pleasing patterns and decorations. In the middle of it was a chandelier hanging like a flower in bloom. I still couldn’t tell if it was a dream or reality. Initially, the place I saw every day was a small, cozy room with ten children muttering softly and sleeping together. Even the blanket we used was an old and worn one, not an elegantly embroidered blanket in soft silk. While pondering, lost in thought, I saw Luka on a chair next to the bed I was lying on.
I was appalled.
“Luka. Your hair…!”
It had turned black. Even with brown hair, he was handsome enough, yet now, he exuded an atmosphere fitting for the imperial family. He was even wearing a shirt as any other noble child would wear. It seemed that his body, which had become scruffy as he came out of the forest with me, was thoroughly washed, and the hair that covered his eyes before was neatly trimmed. He was so good-looking that I almost thought I saw his face glowing.
Thank God I was immune to such a face. I gently touched his hair as usual. My hand, which was covered with wounds while tearing the planks, was healed.
‘Well, the color has changed, but the soft texture remains the same.’ When it was brown, I thought his hair was as soft as that of a puppy, but now that it had soft pitch-black, it looked luxurious as if I had to pay money just to touch it.
Still, right now, this child was exactly as I knew him. Luka looked at me stroking his hair and said,
“Leah, are you okay? You didn’t wake up even when we arrived, so I moved you to the room first. You must have been tired enough to sleep without knowing who carried you.”
“When you say ‘we arrived,’ you mean we’re in the duke’s castle right now?”
“That’s right. We’re in Duke Rayes’ castle.”
As soon as Luka finished speaking, I heard a knock, and a large door opened on both sides.
I opened my eyes wide.
A handsome man, with pure white silver hair and dark blue eyes, stood there. I could tell who he was at a glance.
The head of Rayes household, one of the distinguished families contributing to the consolidation of the Greffin Imperial Family; protector of the eastern fortress– that’s how the novel described him.
“I see you’re up.”
Duke Rayes approached us.
So I realized something, lol. In the last chapter, I say that his hair changed from black to brown, but now realize I forgot that Duke Kavlos put a spell on him to change his hair color. My bad, my bad~
This chapter is shorter cuz the next one will be quite long!
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