Translator: thursdays Editor: thursdays
The Emperor’s edict came down upon the Grace viscounty. The family mourned as they could no longer refuse the call.
With a melancholy face, Viscount Grace turned to his daughter. “There’s nothing we can do. His Majesty has ordered it himself.”
‘It’s as the letter said,’ Olivia thought.
She had hoped that it was wrong, but seeing that it was correct, she bit her lower lip firmly.
‘This is definitely what Princess Cayena meant.’
Furthermore, Olivia had heard the news that all the existing ladies-in-waiting at the princess’s palace had been expelled. The palace was undergoing an extensive reshuffling.
Olivia consulted Maria, the only friend near her to whom she could talk.
“It’s clear as day that Her Highness hates me. So isn’t it strange that she chose me as a lady-in-waiting?”
Olivia sat on a tree swing and kicked the ground. It was all too complicated.
“That’s true. It’s really surprising that she chose you as a court lady.”
“I wonder why that person needs me.”
Maria laughed at her friend, who was deeply concerned about Princess Cayena.
“Do you think that there has to be some deep meaning to it? It looks to me like she’s trying to keep an eye on you.”
Her tone showed that she was convinced that there was no special motive behind Princess Cayena’s moves.
All of society knew that Cayena was jealous and wary of Olivia.
But Olivia didn’t think this affair was so simple.
“If she were such a person, she would have done this long ago.”
And since she had sent away all the ladies-in-waiting in the princess’s palace, she would be filling their spots with new people.
What kind of people would gather at the princess’s palace?
Olivia had no way to know, so she felt frustrated.
‘It’d be better to go to the palace early and figure out the situation first.’
Olivia acted on her determination right away.
She didn’t have much to pack. She wanted to take a maid along with her, but that would bleed out the house too much.
As the eldest daughter, she had to suppress her desires.
“You don’t have go there early. Why don’t you just go tomorrow?”
She had already called for a carriage.
Olivia carried over her bag and bid goodbye to her family.
“I’ll be all right. Don’t worry about me.”
Edict in hand, she headed for the imperial palace.
From there, it was simple procedure to enter the castle.
The imperial palace was overwhelming right from the entrance.
Putting aside its size or splendor, the atmosphere inside was breathtaking.
‘This is where I’ll stay in the future. I have to adapt to it quickly.’
She headed to the princess’s palace with the help of the courtiers.
“I received your message earlier, Miss Grace.”
A neatly dressed court lady waited for her at the entrance of the princess’s palace.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you for the first time. I am Olivia Grace.”
“I am Vera Lexton. You can just call me Vera.”
She must have been a senior lady-in-waiting.
Olivia thought for certain that all the existing court ladies had been expelled. Was this someone who had survived the cut?
‘If so, it’s very likely that this is one of Princess Cayena’s people.‘
Vera guided Olivia to her lodgings.
The accommodation was a private room that was far better than Olivia’s parents’ bedroom, which was the best room in the Grace mansion.
Olivia put down her bag and looked around the room admiringly.
‘There’s even a full-body mirror in a court lady’s room.’
Vera briefly outlined her future tasks to her.
“There will be a total of four ladies-in-waiting, including myself and you, Miss Olivia. As such, you will be given many rights and permissions, but work will be very important as well.”
Olivia was a little surprised to hear that there would only be four court ladies.
Vera explained that she herself was the person in charge of the court ladies of the princess’s palace.
“Miss Olivia will be primarily responsible for the hospitality of Her Highness’s guests in the future. In addition, you’ll be managing the party schedule, general ceremonies, and procedures.”
It was a position too good to give Olivia, who would surely have the most humble family from those gathered here.
In addition to allowing her influence in social circles, it was the second-highest position in the princess’s palace after Vera, or perhaps the most important.
‘What exactly is she thinking?’
At this point, the princess seemed like some sort of mysterious figure.
“Now, get ready. We should go and greet Her Highness.”
Vera meant that Olivia could now change into nice clothes If she wanted.
However, Olivia was already wearing the best dress she had, excluding her banquet dresses.
She didn’t have an outfit to ‘get ready,’ so she had to prepare something else.
“Is there anything I should be cautious about?”
Vera smiled at Olivia’s question. “Don’t worry, Miss. You’ll soon learn what you should and shouldn’t do.”
She thought Vera’s words were quite meaningful.
Before going to greet Her Highness, Olivia checked her condition, then followed Vera.
Even the doors to the princess’s chambers were extraordinary. The huge door was decorated in gold, depicting some sort of story. It seemed to be a scene from a myth.
As the artwork-like door opened, she saw a red carpet with glamorous patterns on it.
Stepping on the soft floor, they soon reached the bedroom.
At last, the bedroom door opened.
The first thing that popped into Olivia’s head was that the room smelled nice.
There was a very subtle and soothing scent that seemed to ease her tension.
The room itself was also like a work of art, suitable for a princess.
Inside, the princess, who looked like the greatest masterpiece of all, sat on the sofa. She turned her head away from her book and to her guests.
Olivia was dazed for a moment.
Her breath was stolen away the moment she made eye contact with the unimaginably beautiful woman with the pale lemon-colored, close to platinum, hair.
Cayena smiled beautifully as she looked at her.
Olivia aroused herself up from her stupor and quickly made her greetings.
“Olivia Grace greets Her Highness, the Princess.”
‘She certainly seems a little different from what I’ve seen of her.’
Olivia had never known Cayena very well, but she couldn’t help but have questions.
“I thought the court ladies were coming tomorrow.”
“I came to the palace a day earlier when I heard that Your Highness did not have a court lady to assist you.”
Olivia behaved properly as to not seem immoderate.
Cayena liked that cleverness. Furthermore, she felt somewhat pleased to see Olivia’s glossy wheat-colored hair and sparkling green eyes. It was incomparable to Cayena’s dazzling beauty, but Olivia’s unique calm and intelligent atmosphere was alluring.
“Nice to meet you, Miss Olivia Grace.”
“Now that I am one of Your Highness’s people, please feel free to address me informally.”
From the beginning to the end, it was a flawlessly courteous attitude.
Cayena bit back a smile at her behavior.
Olivia continued, “Thank you for choosing me. I am lacking in many ways, but I will serve Your Highness with all my heart.”
Cayena approached Olivia, who was bowing down on one knee.
Then, she grabbed her hand and helped her up.
“I hope we get along well in the future.”
Cayena purposefully showed her a crafty smile.
They moved to the parlor to drink tea.
“You must have been quite surprised when you were selected as a court lady for the princess’s palace,” Cayena said, smiling with eyes that seemed to see through the fact that Olivia was being cautious. “I hope we’ll be able to move past the hurt I’ve done to you before.”
“How should I do that?”
“Hearing you say that comforts my mind,” said Cayena. “And are you twenty now?”
“Yes, I am.”
“Then, you must have already had your coming-of-age ceremony? I don’t remember hearing about it. I must have been too inattentive.”
Olivia spoke frankly, feeling no shame in coming from a poor family. “I didn’t have a separate celebration for my coming of age because I have many younger siblings, and our family doesn’t have enough money. That’s why Your Highness hasn’t heard of it.”
The servants nearby gasped in surprise or broke out into coughs at Olivia’s words.
Cayena smiled brightly. “Then we can have our coming-of-age celebrations together.”
Cayena didn’t stop talking before she opening up the dressing room. She immediately began to choose a dress for Olivia to wear at the ceremony.
“Fortunately, our body types are similar, so you can wear one of my dresses.”
Olivia was startled. She immediately knelt down on one knee and told her, “This is much more than I deserve, Your Highness.”
“How can I be a proud member of the imperial family if I can’t take care of my people at least this much? Please don’t refuse, if just for the sake of your master’s honor.”
Vera, who was next to them, helped Cayena out by saying, “You’re allowed to accept Her Highness’s kindness.”
Cayena, whom Olivia had encountered several times in the social world, and now looked like a completely different person.
There was a noble dignity in her actions, and her words were imbued with natural authority.
She was truly the princess of the empire.
Only the outside seemed to have remained the same; inside, she was thoroughly changed.
Cayena stopped in front of her quarters and looked at Olivia.
“This is enough for today. Go and rest yourself.”
It would be a waste to expand so much energy on her questions, after all.
Cayena smiled leisurely as she looked at Olivia, who looked to be deep in thought.