It’s been a day since I brought Emil. Due to the visit of the precious guest, the chef showed off his skills more than usual since morning.
“Is the food to your liking?”
“Yes, it is very delicious.”
Emil nodded softly, nibbling on his soft scrambled eggs. I expected him to eat like a baby bird, but instead, he bit soft bread with butter and then took another bite.
My family was overjoyed to witness such a scene.
“Growing children need to eat well to grow taller.”
“Yes, thank you.”
“I hope Emil grows up to be as tall as you.”
“…There are very few people as tall as me.”
After dad said so, mom offered him another glass of milk. Emil took it and drank it quietly, and dad couldn’t help feeling jealous of the child and quietly finished the meal.
“Daddy, daddy should drink another glass of juice too.”
I took my father’s empty glass and filled it with juice. Dad’s hardened face softened.
“Oh, you should drink more.”
“Nah I already finished it all.”
When I whispered that I was only giving it to my dad, my dad smirked and drank the juice at once.
When the meal was over, father went to work at the imperial palace as usual. I too received my daily schedule from Isana and my personal maid, Elena.
“I heard a bit from my mother yesterday, so I’m aware. We’re supposed to set Emil’s clothes in the morning, and in the afternoon we’re going to see ties and necessary accessories.”
“Don’t you need anything, Miss?”
“Me? But I think the people coming today are mostly men’s clothes vendors?”
“If you ask for anything, they will come back tomorrow with the catalog.”
‘What I need… I don’t need anything. I’m thinking of getting Emil a present to show off though.’
While I was thinking, it became the scheduled time. Wagons loaded with luggage entered the mansion one at a time. The luxurious fabrics were already lined up in the drawing-room when I arrived. Mom and Emil were already inside.
“Look through the catalog and let me know if you see anything you like. You can change the parts you don’t.”
“…I’m not very knowledgeable about such matters.”
“So, do you mind if I help you? Would you mind if we took a look together?”
I looked around the fabrics while mom went through the samples with Emil. There were a couple of amazing fabrics to look at. Like thick wool that would be especially strong even in the middle of winter. Emil, on the other hand, was befuddled amid the fabric feast.
“You don’t need to do this…”
Emil attempted to refute something before closing his mouth. His expressionless face was tinged with red.
“. . .”
It was more like being embarrassed than shy. Despite growing up in oppression and contempt, he was a child who never lost his dignity. This child was now ashamed of himself for being baffled by the situation.
While not saying anything, my mother’s eyes met mine. ‘I feel ashamed of myself, but I can’t hurt you anymore.’ My mother might have thought so.
“Come to think of it, you don’t have to worry about it,” mom said softly. “I’ll buy everything you brought today. For the design, I’ll put my faith in your abilities and reputation.”
Emil’s pupils shook greatly as a result of my mother’s abrupt words.
* * *
It was the jeweler’s turn in the afternoon after lunch. Unlike the morning, when they brought hundreds of rolling fabrics, solid wooden boxes and valuable gold boxes arrived in a row.
“First, could you please show me some neck collar pins? It would be great if you could show me the tie and belt together. Because the young master will make use of it.”
Emil told his mother after the tailor had left the dressing room,
“You don’t have to go that far. I didn’t know, but now I do. This is far too natural for nobles… It’s just that I wasn’t worthy of it.”
The voice that inquired if it was worth wasting money buying all those fabrics for him was still in my head. My mother was a little startled but listened quietly to Emil’s words and then spoke.
“What are your qualifications?”
“That you were born as the son of a villainess?” Mom corrected firmly. “That’s just prejudice, and it’s not a good measure of qualification.
“. . .”
It was as if I had seen Emil’s expression of swallowing up his soaring emotions more than in my whole past life.
“If you’re uncomfortable, I’ll inform the jeweler not to come this afternoon.”
“Then, do you mind if I help you choose that too?”
After that brief conversation, Emil, a bit more honest, expressed his taste a little more than before.
“In my opinion, Young Master has deep gold eyes, so this Heliodor is the best fit for him.”
Certainly, the color, which is not too yellow and has a subtle golden color like the sun, suited Emil very well. However, he refused briefly.
“…I hate gold.”
It was probably because of his eyes. The jeweler opened another box as if he had never taken out a gold jewel.
“This blue topaz and sapphires are also very nice. If you want an elegant design, diamonds are also a great choice.”
But this time, Emil’s reaction was calm.
‘Wouldn’t it be better to just buy everything like before? How long has it been?’ With the help of mother, Emil decided on some pretty decent items.
“This is enough.”
No matter the amount, the number of items bought was not an easier amount of goods for others to purchase, thus the jeweler smiled brightly and bowed his head.
“I look forward to the next time. If you need any other jewels, please feel free to call me.”
As he left the drawing-room, I too got up stretching.
“I have something to say to the jeweler. I’ll be back.”
Coming out into the hallway, the jeweler had already gone down to the first floor.
“Wait a moment!”
He was very surprised to see me grabbing the hem of my dress and coming down the stairs.
“You- you will fall!”
“I won’t. Would it be alright to wait a little longer? I have something I’d like to order secretly.”
The jeweler asked cautiously, thinking about what could be so important for me to rush.
“Is it a present for His Excellency?”
“No, it’s not my father.”
Shht- I put my index finger in my mouth as if telling him to keep silent.
“I want to order cufflinks with a simple and stylish design that can be used even when becoming an adult.”
When the specific design was presented, the jeweler, who was surprised, quickly took out his notebook and sketched it.
“Where did you hear of this design?”
This technique, in which the jewels are cut into small pieces and tightly embedded, was the most popular design when I was an adult.
“This- it looks like it’s going to require some great craftsmanship.”
“Is it impossible?”
Fortunately, the jeweler smiled confidently.
“Not at all.”
After completing the order safely and saying that Elena would give him the payment, I sighed in relief. It was the end of my day’s biggest task. I went up to the drawing-room where my mom and Emil were waiting.
“Emil, are you tired?”
“Your face says otherwise. Shall we rest now?”
Emil did not refuse.
Little by little, Emil adapted to our home.
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