A sound was coming from my waist as I stretched all the way.
I fist-patted myself on the back.
I think I stiffened up my body unintentionally while organizing the paperwork.
I softly caressed my waist and saw Lord Vessel’s vacancy.
He had gone to the conference room with the end-of-month report I handed him.
To get Caleb’s approval.
‘I was taken aback when he stated he would go to the conference hall.’
To be honest, I expected him to ask me to go there and obtain Caleb’s approval, but it was incredible that he seemed to have a conscience.
That, of course, did not imply that it would impact Lord Vessel’s opinion of me.
Lord Vessel had been unfairly treating me for the past several days, and I couldn’t seem to get any better.
“In addition, tomorrow is the weekend.”
I became ecstatic as soon as I remembered the fact.
Time had passed without me knowing it while I was thinking about what to do over the weekend.
It was a moment when I stroked the corner of the paperwork with my hands, wondering what would happen to the paperwork and Caleb, who had planned to return in the afternoon.
Lord Vessel opened the door and came in.
“Welcome, Lord Vessel. What happened to the report?”
“It turned out fine.”
“That’s true. And you may now go home.”
“But aren’t these still work hours?”
“It’s all right. After all, the work we had to accomplish was nearly completed, and the Commander had instructed me to do the same.”
Was this some kind of reward?
Well, I was glad I could go home early.
I started to tidy up my seat.
But why was Lord Vessel looking at me instead of heading to the training ground?
No, let’s not think about that.
Finally tucking my chair in, I bowed politely as I passed Lord Vessel.
“Well, I’m going to get going.”
But, at best, there was no response.
Was he still ignoring me? No, let’s not worry about it.
It would just be me who was exhausted.
It was at the time that I passed Lord Vessel with my hand on the office doorknob.
“Ex, excuse me, Lady Oreu!”
I turned around, gripping the doorknob, as I heard the unexpected call.
Lord Vessel cautiously opened his mouth, unable to believe he was the one who had called me anxiously a minute before.
“Have…have a nice weekend.”
Did he mean to say that when I asked if there was anything serious irritating him?
It was ridiculous, but I added, opening the door as little as possible.
“Lord Vessel, as well.”
* * * * *
‘People’s habits are extremely frightening.’
I looked at the time with a grimace.
Normally, it was time for me to get up and prepare to go to Imperial Castle, so it was normal for me to become preoccupied at this time, but today was the weekend.
As a result, I tried to sleep the entire morning with the blanket covering my head, but as I already woke up, I couldn’t go back to sleep.
But I wished I could sleep longer……
Swallowing my emotions, I stood up, cleaned my face, and then filled the watering can.
It was to water the jasmine that Rael had given me before.
Standing in front of the pot, I discovered something surprising and came to a halt.
“How come it’s a flower bud?”
A flowerpot with light green foliage had purple buds a few days ago.
“How did the buds get so big?”
The buds were fairly large, and I expected them to bloom shortly……
I remembered what Rael had said to me when he handed me this flower pot while I was stroking the buds.
‘Did he give me this purple flower because it looked similar to my hair?’
Of course, my hair was considerably darker and closer to black than the jasmine flowers’ colour.
But I assumed Rael would have given it to me with those thoughts.
I generally smiled gently, remembering Rael’s gaze.
I hope everything is going well for everyone……
As I brushed the jasmine leaves, a cool breeze blew through the open window. It was back then.
One thought that occurred to me was.
‘Why don’t I go visit them if I want to see them?’
* * * * *
It didn’t take long for desire to turn into action.
I walked proudly out of the mansion when I was ready to go.
But after a time, I was able to think up a fact.
I hadn’t been around since I moved in!
‘How did I come up with the idea of going out alone without knowing the way……’
Fortunately, I knew the mansion’s address and the theatre’s location, so I may take a rented carriage.
Where might I, by the way, rent a carriage?
I was hunting for a carriage when I noticed a man.
He appears to be familiar……
I took a peek at the man standing nearby.
The man’s clothing was completely black, from caps to capes, maybe to avoid being noticed.
However, because of his height and unusual appearance, it was rather noticeable.
By the way, when did I see that outfit before?
I was sure I had seen it before…… Oh, Lord Egon!
Desperately trying to remember, I remembered where I saw that outfit. It was that outfit.
That was the outfit Caleb was wearing the day I went out to purchase perfume and encountered the bullies.
So, who was that man, Caleb?
For some reason, I thought of the man standing there for Caleb.
I was staring at the man when he turned his head towards me and we locked gazes.
We might not recognize each other if we didn’t know each other.
But I had already seen Caleb many times.
Caleb was easy to recognize, no matter how deep his hat was buried.
‘Should I pretend I don’t know him?’
I would gladly greet the Knight if we were within the Knight’s quarters.
But it was the weekend, and this was a street, not a Knight’s quarter, so I was cautious and concerned.
The voice at close range astounded me.
Oh, I thought he would just pass by, but when did he get here?
“Hello there, Lord Egon. Good morning.”
“Good morning. I guess you’re on your way back from somewhere.”
“Oh, I haven’t gone anywhere yet. I was just coming out. I have somewhere to go.”
“I’m guessing your mansion is nearby.”
My mansion was presumably nearby, right?
Since it hadn’t been long since I had come out……?
I couldn’t bring myself to admit that I had lost my way now, but I smiled awkwardly and turned around.
“I was surprised to see you here. You must have had something to do around here.”
“I was on my way home after morning patrols.”
“Do you patrol on weekends? I had no idea you were on patrol.”
“It’s normal for Lady Oreu to be unaware because it’s not on our job list.”
“Does that indicate you’re doing it voluntarily?”
“I just do it when I have spare time, and I’m not doing it to show off.”
“You can show off enough. It’s not even your responsibility. You’ve put in enough effort, Lord.”
“No, this is absolutely nothing. If you don’t mind, could you tell me where you’re going?”
“I was on my way to Chloe’s theatre company.”
I realized I had made a mistake as soon as I finished speaking and bit my lower lip.
It had only been a few days since the members had debated my origins, and here I was, confidently declaring that I was on my way to the theatre company……
Of course, I knew Caleb was different from the other members, but I was concerned since I had previously been treated unfairly by others.
No matter who my opponent was.
“Are you planning on seeing your friends?”
“Yes, indeed. That’s right.”
I nodded and peeked at Caleb’s expression.
But his expression and gaze remained the same as when we first met.
To the point when it no longer matters if I was nervous before.
“Well, doesn’t it matter to you, Lord? Don’t you despise my profession?”
“I apologize, but I’m not sure what Lady wants to say.”
Later on, I realized I was rambling and added.
“I told you I was going to see the theatre. Of course, I’m no longer an actor, but I used to be and……”
I closed my mouth in the middle of talking.
I didn’t know when I became concerned about other people’s perceptions of me as an actor.
If anyone asked me if I regret being an actor, I would answer no.
On the contrary, I was still enjoying it.
Still, I’m concerned about other people’s gazes and thoughts, and I’m ashamed.
Repeating the same thing, I ended up with no backbiting.
Instead, I simply lowered my head and clenched my clasped fists.
“I am not sure why you’re saying this.”
Caleb’s voice echoed in my ears.
“I don’t believe I deserve to be bothered by Lady Oreu’s desire to go to the theatre. The same is true of Lady Oreu’s origins. I don’t believe there’s any reason to think that way.”
The unexpected response brightened my emotions.
My lips moved freely and uncontrollably.
“You don’t mind that I used to be an actor? Really?”
“Why do you keep saying that?”
“That is, prejudice.”
While I was speaking, I was reminded of the Royal Knight’s reaction to me and the guys who had approached me and harassed me.
Ah. It was as a result of this.
That’s why I’d been hesitant to mention my profession as an actress.
This was terrible.
I couldn’t honestly state what I liked because of other people’s perceptions, and I became aware of this at some time.
“So…I assumed the Lord would feel uncomfortable as well.”
Caleb hesitated for a minute as if to collect his thoughts. And carefully opened his mouth one again.
“May I ask Lady a question before I respond?”
“Is my answer really necessary?”
“Not completely, but I’d like it if you could accept my question as much as possible.”
It was unexpected, but I nodded.
“How do you feel about your profession as an actor? Do you despise it and are embarrassed about it?”
I was unable to respond quickly.
And I couldn’t figure out why Caleb was asking.
Without realizing it, I looked up at him, and our gazes locked.
Perhaps because of the hat’s shadow, the shadowed black eyes appeared more serious than normal.
I could think seriously about the question Caleb posed to me because of the way he stared at me as if he was truly interested in my response.
‘He was asking whether I despised and was ashamed of being an actor.’
The response came quickly after that.
I would never have despised or been ashamed of my profession as an actor.
No, perhaps it was right to say that I had never thought that way in the first place.
“On the contrary……I enjoy it.”
It was something I had admired and dreamed of since I was a child.
Even though there was a negative perception about actors in this place, I enjoyed my profession.
Caleb remained silent.
Naturally, silence fell.
At other times, this situation might have been quite burdensome.
But, for the time being, not at all
I didn’t try to avert Caleb’s gaze and instead looked straight ahead when our gazes locked.
How long have we been looking each other in the eyes?
His eyes slightly bowed as he gazed at me.
“And so is my response.”
“I, too, do not despise the work of an actor like Lady Oreu.”
In my ears, a pleasant low tone sounded.
“I’m not ashamed of your job as an actor.”
Caleb’s lips were curled in a gentle smile when he stated this.
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