As I inclined my head, Boone became sullen.
Why did he get depressed again? I jabbed at the strawberries with a fork, wondering what to do with this devil.
When I put a lot of whipped cream in my mouth, I was entranced with the flavourful combination of sour & sweet, and the delicate taste.
‘I don’t think I’ll get tired of this.’
When I put the last remaining strawberry in my mouth with a lament, the door opened.
It was Isaac.
“Let’s go see the presents!”
Henry, who followed in, said, “Don’t be surprised,”
As he tenderly wiped the whipped cream off my mouth.
When I asked him, Isaac giggled.
I felt strangely uneasy.
I stared between both of them as I went along to see the present.
Returning gift?… It can’t be.
Children’s Day is over, so toys won’t be it.
My birthday is still far away.
So what present were they talking about?
After I arrived at my destination, I wasn’t feeling anxious for nothing.
In front of the duke, numerous vassals stood with their heads bowed.
“Kill us, little miss!”
“Save us, little miss!”
One side cried out for the punishment of death while the other side begged for help.
I turned my eyes and stared at the Duke, Henry, and Isaac.
The Duke looked at me with a look in his eyes as if he liked what was going on, and Isaac looked proud.
“What is this…?”
“These are the people who previously tried to make the duke adopt Cattlea Waltson.”
Upon hearing Isaac proudly answer, I looked at them again.
Some had cuts and bruises. Most of them were fine, but if they were pressured any more than this then they would probably faint.
As I murmured, Isaac said, “Ah,” and grinned.
“How many of you are missing? That’s right, exactly three missing, two in the torture chamber, and one for the whole castle too see every month as an example.”
I expected to see the day when these people would eventually pay the price for their actions
But I never wanted something like this.
“Dyuke, and Henly, Isyac.”
Three people looked at me as I muttered their names.
“Should I have just cut everyone’s throat?”
At Isaac’s words, their faces became even more pale.
I said while grimacing.
“I’ll hwate you if you kwill them.” (I’ll hate you if you kill them)
The three people whom those words were addressed to were astonished.
“I don’t want twis, I don’t want gwift. Tell them to gwo home!” (I don’t want this, I don’t want gifts. Tell them to go home!)
As of a beacon of light had shined upon them, the punished vassals were profoundly moved by Leblaine’s word trying immobilize the duke and the brothers.
Two days ago, after Leblaine was sent to the church, the people in the Dubbled were devastated.
All those involved in the Cattlea Walston case were brought to the castle.
“Your-, Your Excellency. Why were we brought here?”
As someone finally managed to speak out loud but with a shudder, Henry smiled sweetly and looked at them.
“You have done a crime punishable by death.”
“It, It’s ridiculous! We just couldn’t see the child of fate controlling the Dubbleds! So, we would rather have a blood relative, Cattlea—!”
They dared to say that because they thought the Dubbleds wouldn’t dare to touch them.
All of them were descendants of prestigious families with jurisdiction, who had long served for the Dubbleds, so they could not be easily touched.
…..They thought he wouldn’t touch them.
Until one of the elder’s wrists was cut off.
Theodore Dubbled had led the family for five years. Only then did the vassals become accustomed to peace.
They forgot that, that man was a wicked one who slaughtered his brothers and brought down his mighty ancestor.
“Your head will be rolling down from a hill soon.”
When the duke spoke languidly, the vassals, with pale complexions, plunged their heads onto the floor at once.
And this was how the current situation came to be.
The duke and the brothers had been doing all sorts of things to them for several days. They were putting all sorts of offences on their heads.
[Embezzlement of funds]
It was only three francs.
[Receiving bribery at the shopping centre.]
The owner of the flower shop gave them a piece of tulip flower each.
Those were the ridiculously minor crimes, but it was enough to make the vassals shudder.
It was so trivial that they had forgotten about it, but it meant that the Duke knew everything that no one else knew about.
In other words, all the vassals were in the duke’s sight.
He deliberately listed minor crimes. I wondered if they had no choice but to die like this. But,…
“But kid, they‘ve treated you badly.”
When Isaac said so, Leblaine answered firmly.
“Ywo can’t kwill people because of that.” (You can’t kill people because of that)
Next to him, Henry also persuaded me.
“You have to pull out the bad roots. That’s how it works, Leblaine.”
“A pewson is not a thing.” (A person is not a thing)
The Duke stretched out his hand, calling out “Blaine.”
Leblaine frowned, as she looked around the three restless people.
“I’m not gwoing to pway with Dyuke, Henly, and Isyac again.”
When they saw the three hard-headed men looking as if they had been hit by a bolt out of the blue, they were stunned.
“Ahh, Little miss….”
It was not wrong to say that she had given hope to all of them.
The little miss was so kind!
The people were released unharmed.
In front of the castle, the cries of their families for the fear that their children, husbands, and parents would die were heard.
“Honey, wife! I was so afraid!”
“Father, are you okay? Is your body aching? What a relief, your neck is intact!”
But Boone was dissatisfied.
[Why would you let them live when they deserved to die?]
‘It wasn’t severe enough a crime from them to pay with their deaths.’
They didn’t abuse a child like Teramore nor force a woman like Urso.
And most of all, I understood why they tried to drive me out.
Some people tried to get Cattlea to enter the Duke’s house, because there was definitely a position empty for Dubbled.
I am the child of fate, who was founded by the church, and it is very dangerous for me to take full control of the Dubbled.
Above all, Dubbled’s status would plummet if he was swayed by a commoner, with a fake title.
‘And if we had killed them all, the chairman would have stepped in.’
The strongest chairman, Noanoke
[Who is he?]
‘Um to put it simply… a very scary person?’
The reason why the ancestors, who were famous for their tyranny, gave people to the Senate was not just because they were required to.
The bigger reason was that the chairman of the senate was Jean Marc Noanoke.
Noanoke had a strong bond with the nobles of the senate, and even the church gave priority to his words over the Dubbled’s direct descendant.
[Why does he have so much power?]
‘When it comes to the chairman, he’s not just a vassal. He’s number two in Dubbled’s hierarchy.’
Moreover, in the near future, he would come to own more powerful connections.
‘But why is it so quiet these days?’
I should’ve stepped forward another time.
As soon as I was thinking about it, the brothers, who had been wary of me, came towards me.
“Kid, are you still mad….?”
“Leblaine do you want to go for a walk?”
Sitting on the sofa, I looked at them from the corner of my eye
They had become sullen.
“Next time, you won’t tweat people like that wight?”
The two of them visibly brightened.
I sighed and came down from the sofa.
“Let’s take a walk.”
“Shall we go to the garden?”
“How about the greenhouse?”
I left the room with the brothers, who looked like they were wagging their invisible tail.
After a small debate, the three decided to take a walk in the garden.
It was because Isaac insisted strongly that there was a flower he wanted to show me.
Coming out into the garden, I was surprised.
A few days ago, the flower bed, which had been empty, was full of flowers.
The wildflowers, primroses, and violets, were rarely seen flowers in a noble house’s flower bed. Most of them preferred flowers that were expensive and hand-sized, like Tulips.
But I preferred wild flowers more. Especially violets, they were my favorite flowers.
“Bwaine likes this flower!” (Blaine likes this flower!)
Isaac was elated.
“I told the gardener to plant it!”
Henry smiled excitedly when he smelled the scent.
“Finally an idiot has done something commendable.”
“I’m not an idiot.”
“Yes, for today I’ll admit you’re not an idiot. But I don’t know about tomorrow.”
The brothers started bickering again, so I pulled their sleeves.
When they squatted beside me, I gave them a flower ring.
As I expected both of them were surprised.
“Kid, how did you know how to do this?”
“I wearned it at the nuwsery.” (I learned it at the nursery)
Isaac looked curious as to why the nursery taught her to make such flower rings.
While peeling off the tiny dried grass on the flower ring stem, I said.
“Nobles make their newborn babies wear rings.”
“Yes. They are made to wear Ruby rings.”
The rings meant that they needed to grow up healthily until the day the family seal could be worn by them.
“The commonew make flower rings and put them on theiw fingers. Children in the nursery don’t have mothers, so the kids there make it together and wear them.”
“Why do commoners use flower rings?”
“Because it means twhey love you.”
It means that even if you can’t give a child an expensive ruby ring like a nobleman, your love for a child is no different from a noble’s.
“So, the teacwes (teachers) teach us how to make flower ring-… huh?”
They didn’t even listen to me and stared at the flower ring I had made for them.
“If a flower ring means love,…”
“Because Leblaine gave us this…”
Then, their faces turned red and they clasped the flower ring in their hands.