this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!
Louis crawled across the floor, moaning like a dying animal, perhaps because the impact of being thrown against the wall was too great.
However, Periot merely brushed past him without even sparing him a glance. Periot’s fluttering black cloak drew closer and closer to me.
I couldn’t even avert my eyes, let alone run away. All I could do was swallow dryly and stay sitting on the floor, as if I had been nailed down to it.
The moment his feet stopped in front of me was the moment I shut my eyes tightly.
‘It’s really over for me now.’
The energy that was just as terrifying and brutal as I thought it’d be weighed down on my body before I even knew it. I felt like I would faint straight away if we made eye contact. It hadn’t been like this when we talked about getting a divorce, or when I had verbally abused him at the lakeside.
He must be really pissed off this time.
I got goosebumps when I combined the stereotype of the ‘Grand Duke of the North’ and ‘really pissed off’, since I knew better than anyone else what was going to happen. I had even shouted, ‘please do more!’, when I read such incidents in novels! I must have been crazy!
Then, the sound of clothes brushing together near me. Although it was only a soft sound, I could hear it very clearly since my eyes were closed.
The image of Louis, who flew through the air and crashed into the wall consistently came to my mind over and over again. My fear grew bigger and bigger when I thought that I’d also end up like that too. I might even fly further in the air. Or maybe I’d be dragged away like a mutt…
My sense of fear became more and more intense without my sight. I couldn’t stand it anymore and slowly opened my eyes.
I could see a hand in black gloves drawing closer to my face. My shoulders started to tremble unconsciously. I couldn’t do anything but shrink back in fear.
…W-What? Are you perhaps going to hit me?!
However, Periot only gently tucked my disheveled hair behind my ear. Although his touch was cautious, the eyes that were looking straight at me were still filled with a harsh light. He even resembled that of an angry beast.
His eyes roamed my face, as if he were trying to search for something. The eyes that had been wandering around for a while finally stopped at the top of my neck. His expressionless face, which had been as calm as the surface of a lake, distorted in an instant.
“…how dare you.”
Periot muttered in a low voice and slowly rose to his feet.
The sound of his footsteps echoed in the quiet hallway. The direction he was walking in was to Louis, who was staggering and struggling to raise himself upright. Louis, who had spotted Periot, immediately tried to escape, but it was to no avail. His head fell to the floor with another loud noise.
“How dare you lay a hand on my wife? You seem to have no sense of fear, Count Mayred.”
A voice as cold as ice suffocated the painful scream. Louis shed painful tears as he fell to the floor like a dead bug and begged.
“D-Duke…! I apologize, I apologize! Urk, please spare my life!”
“I should take this opportunity to make you aware of what happens when you touch something that’s mine.”
The atmosphere was so tense that I couldn’t even remind him that I was no longer his wife. The air was so cold that even the Duke’s servants could only swallow dryly and wait with bated breath.
Periot pressed down his foot which was resting on Louis’ head and whispered grimly.
“I’m sure your soldiers are now fully aware of it.”
“Go and ask them, since you’ll be meeting them soon.”
Upon recognising the meaning behind those curt words, Louis started to struggle wildly in an attempt to break free from underneath Periot’s foot. But of course, it was useless for him to struggle.
The knights approached in perfect formation with just one glance from Periot and grabbed a hold of both of his arms.
Louis was dragged out without even being able to put up a single bit of resistance, screaming. I still couldn’t find the words to say, even after he had been dragged so far away I couldn’t even hear his voice anymore.
Silence soon descended upon us.
The only people left by the door were now only me and Periot. He came back to my side and opened his mouth.
“So the reason why you ran away was to suffer like this instead?”
Wait, no, what are you talking about right now? Just who do you think is to blame for all this?!
Periot reached his hand out with a low sigh as I curled up in silence, with only a pout on my lips as an answer. Although I didn’t want to grab onto it, my legs had honestly gone numb already.
I finally grabbed his hand reluctantly and slowly got to my feet.
As he led the way, a hallway leading to an unknown destination suddenly appeared. I didn’t even know where the hell Louis and the knights had disappeared to, not even a hair of theirs was in sight.
It was a moment after walking across the hallway silently in the suffocating atmosphere.
In the distance, I could see the servants huddled together with frightened faces. As soon as they spotted Periot and I, they quickly dispersed.
The only person who had come running toward us in tears was Joy, the maid who had helped me earlier. But even she instinctively shrank back, her shoulders trembling as she made eye contact with Periot who was standing beside me.
However, he merely whispered a few words to his subordinate, who was standing beside him, as if he were already used to this sort of situation. Then, he looked at me before slowly parting his lips.
“I’ll take care of the matter regarding Count Mayred. He won’t show up here again, so don’t worry.”
What? I doubted my ears for a second.
Even though it was Periot, he still couldn’t deal with Louis, who was the ‘Count’ recklessly, so I didn’t know what he was planning to do.
However, before I could even question him on anything, Periot turned to look coldly at the servants who were still staring at us. And then he warned in an extremely heavy and harsh voice.
“If anyone secretly helps him or even makes contact with him without permission, I’ll take that as a sign of directly defying my orders.”
The servants couldn’t even answer and merely bowed their heads even lower.
I guess it was probably because they knew that if they even said one word out of turn in this situation, their neck may very well be on the chopping block.
But just what on earth was this situation.
Naturally, I had never been curious about how he’d deal with my bastard brother. I just wanted to know how he’d deal with me from now on.
As I lifted my head in bewilderment, our eyes met.
However, at that moment, Periot suddenly turned around.
I hurriedly ran after him across the hallway. However, he neither slowed down, nor turned to look back at me, and merely just kept walking.
He was walking so fast that even though we had started off right next to each other at first, the distance between us had gradually increased. I thought I’d lose him completely at this rate, so I called out his name urgently, and only then did I stop walking.
“What is it?”
Periot finally stopped walking and turned to look at me. His cold face was expressionless and indiscernible, just like it had been when he was furious.
“Did you finally change your mind and want to return to the dukedom?”
“Unless I’m crazy, it’s impossible.”
He frowned lightly as I waved my hand to avoid any misunderstandings.
“Then why did you call me?”
“You need to explain what this is all about. You knew I was here, didn’t you? Didn’t you cooperate with my brother? So why did you suddenly…”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Periot let out a small sigh and gave his men a look. At that, they quickly moved away.
I took a step forward and shot back sharply.
“There’s no use pretending. You clearly ordered him to lock me up!”
Taking into account what Louis had said and the situation, it was a reasonable suspicion to have. Otherwise, how else would Periot have known that I was here?
Periot, who stared at me for a moment without answering, erased the expression on his face and shook his head with a gruff face.
“I never did that. I just sent him a letter telling him to let me know when you drop by.”
You’re telling me to believe that now…? I was shocked by the ridiculous excuse given.
I stared intently at him with wide eyes. Only then did I notice a completely different image from the day I had seen him by the side of the lake.
The neat black robe adorned with elaborate embroidery that gave off an austere yet luxurious feeling. Those wide shoulders which looked so firm they seemed to be sculpted out of actual stone, seemed to emit a great sense of pressure just by looking at them.
I lifted my eyes slightly, trying not to feel intimidated.
Then came a sharp jawline, a straight nose bridge, and black eyes that seemed unusually serious today. It was a handsome face that I would have liked to admire if not for the situation right now.
Although I deliberately showed my hostility and made direct eye contact with him, he didn’t shy away.
…In any case, he didn’t seem to be lying. But I couldn’t let my guard down.
Upon scanning my surroundings again, I spotted a life-sized knight holding a wooden spear.
“No matter what, I still don’t believe you.”
I rushed in that direction and grabbed the spear, exclaiming triumphantly.
“What the hell are you going to do with me? If you’re planning on taking me by force, then give up!”
No, wait a second. Why isn’t this moving?! It was a complete fail.
I tried to hide my embarrassment by using both hands to shake the spear free, but it didn’t budge.
As I grunted, Periot’s tightly closed lips opened slightly as he let out a short sigh. Periot rubbed his face and merely shook his head quietly.
“I had no thoughts of doing that, so don’t worry, Lorella.”
“Of course, I thought of taking you by force at first, but I changed my mind.”
I asked back, flabbergasted. Not because I didn’t hear the answer that I had expected, but because it was a completely unbelievable reply.
His mouth, which had been tightly closed, drew a slight arc. Even though it was clearly a smile that looked as if it had been drawn, it still felt cold like first rather than warm.
“I thought it’d be better to make you come back of your own free will.”
“I think that would satisfy me.”
It was so absurd that I had let out a sound unconsciously. I didn’t even know what to say in reply to that.
Even though he’s a crazy bastard, this is crazy in so many ways. Why did I have to get involved with such an actual psycho…
「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac’ has bought 300 shares while inhaling roughly and burping.」
「Very delicious, very delicious, very delicious1.」
The completely absurd message that appeared in the air caused my eyebrows to furrow mercilessly.
“No. You must be crazy, seriously.”
I was so overwhelmed that I ended up blurting something out.
Do you seriously mean that? What’s so delicious about that, huh?! Are you crazy in so many ways, just like him? How else was I meant to understand why people would eat something like that if that weren’t the case? N-Naturally, I had also enjoyed eating that stuff up before, but…
In any case, I didn’t feel any happiness at all despite selling those shares. It felt quite different from when it happened with Leonon.
No matter how pressing my situation is, I will absolutely not sell these shares. I… I mean, lions won’t graze on grass, even if they’re starving2!
“Yeah, I might be crazy. But Lorella.”
As if he had misunderstood the words I had uttered to myself to be directed at him, Periot approached me, one step at a time and quietly opened his mouth.
“I don’t need a doll that does exactly what I want it to do. I only need a wife who is within my sight, within my reach, and by my side.”
As if it had merely been waiting for its cue, the bell began to ring one after the other, but I had no time to concern myself with that. It was because all my attention was focused on Periot, who had come to stand right in front of me, and had lifted my chin slightly with a single long finger.
“So, what I want right now, is for you to be somewhere within my sight. Otherwise…”
Periot’s low voice sank softly into my ear, as if it were echoing in a cave.
“I might end up thinking that a doll that does exactly what I want it to do would be better.”
I slapped his hand away and raised the end of my sentence sharply.
He’s seriously crooked to the structure of his cells! It was seriously an obsession that I couldn’t understand, and didn’t want to understand either. I couldn’t even remember why I was so fanatic about reading novels about obsessive men. As expected, no matter how hungry you are, never graze…
「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac’ buys 9,000 shares with a nosebleed! It’s a new record!」
Or maybe I should eat it!
I unconsciously let out a scream for a moment. 9,000?! Crazy, it’s seriously 9,000 shares? …This master seriously means it!
I stomped my feet in excitement, not even minding Periot’s strange gaze on me.
Periot lifted my chin again. He was gazing down at me, who was breathing heavily.
However, this time, I didn’t slap his hand away. Instead, I swallowed dryly and clumsily parted my lips before stuttering.
“W-Well, the truth is…”
My words seemed to flow out freely as I stared into those fathomless black eyes that seemed to suck me in.
“You were trying to drag me away against my will, so… of course I hated it. If you hadn’t treated me like that, maybe I wouldn’t have tried to hide or disappear…”
Yeah, what can a lion do when it’s hungry?! Grass, and even flowers could be edible too!
It was an absurdly fast change of mentality that I couldn’t have even imagined, but I was already a slave to shares. I just couldn’t let this big investor go.
“But now… I really don’t want to go back to the dukedom, even if I die.”
Periot’s eyes shook violently. Wait, no, it wasn’t just his eyes. I could feel a slight tremor in his hand, which was gently grabbing my chin.
However, I was just dying to make up words I didn’t even mean.
“In any case, m-maybe it’s not that I dislike being by your side, but rather… maybe it’s because I dislike that house…”
How can every line be such… a masterpiece. I couldn’t stand it anymore so the end of my sentence trailed off on its own.
Not only did both my fingers and toes curl from the cringe, but tears naturally welled up in my eyes as I said those disgraceful words I couldn’t even repeat twice. It was also mortifying that I had to go to this extent just to survive.
I lowered my head in order to hide my tears.
Yes, that’s right, shares are your enemy. Seriously, if it weren’t for the shares3!
As I was clenching my jaw, something approached my eyes which were brimming with tears. It was Periot’s gloveless hand.
However, his hand stopped just before it touched my face. But instead of touching my face, he just brushed the air, as if he were hesitating.
It was silent for a moment.
After a while, it was Periot who retracted his hand first and turned his back toward me.
“…I’ll keep that in mind.”
Turning around, he sounded just as cold as usual. It was hard for me to believe that voice had come from someone who had been looking at me with a complicated expression on his face just a while ago.
After he had finished speaking, the sound of his footsteps moving away quickly echoed through the quiet hallway. The knights who had been watching from afar also followed after him.
It wasn’t until that black cape and all that black armor had disappeared, only then was I able to breathe comfortably again.
* * *
pls do not share this anywhere or the transmigration gods will transport u into boku no pico !! this translation has been stolen from mioscorner.com, pls only read there i’m begging u :kneels:
Joy, the Mayred County’s maid, was consumed all day with the feeling that her soul had floated away. Even though it had been a while since she had started working here, it was the first time something so shocking like today’s incident had happened.
Although it was shocking that the Young Miss who had become a noble persona had dropped by without even informing the Count beforehand, she had almost fainted when the Count had suddenly imprisoned her in the dungeon.
And as if that wasn’t enough, the Duke of Chambers, who had suddenly stormed in, had even hauled the Count and his soldiers away as soon as he had broken the Young Miss out of prison. Indeed, everything, from the beginning to the end, seemed hard to believe.
But of course, Joy naturally wasn’t the only one who was shocked.
Despite it being so late in the night, the servants of the mansion had not gone to bed yet, but had instead gathered in groups of three to five to talk constantly about the events of the day.
What was the reason behind why the Duke of Chambers had come, and what on earth had happened with the Duchess. There was also a lot of talk about where on earth the Count had been taken.
However, Joy didn’t get caught up in all of it. And that was because she had a bigger concern ahead of her.
In front of a tightly shut bedroom door. She paced in front of it for a long time while holding a steaming cup of tea.
As soon as the Duke of Chambers had left, Miss Lorella had staggered straight up to the bedroom. Then, in a very weak voice, she closed the door, saying that she wanted to rest. Since then, not once had she come out, nor called for anyone either.
She must have been tired, so naturally, Joy wanted to give her a good rest, but… she had been so worried by that pale and bloodless face of hers.
‘My poor Miss.’
When she thought of Lorella, she felt like she was going to cry again. It was Miss Lorella who had been the first one to treat her, who always did chores, with warmth and kindness. That gentle Miss was always kind to the servants of the mansion, unlike the violent Count.
“But how many times did the Young Miss hit the Count’s head like that?”
She remembered the words of the butler, who had said that her personality had changed due to the harsh environment of the north.
To some extent, Joy also agreed with that. But she believed that her innate nature hadn’t changed. The soft-hearted Young Miss could now be trembling and soaking her pillow with her tears, all by herself.
When she thought of that, Joy couldn’t stand it anymore.
Joy carefully knocked on the door. But no answer came.
‘She must be sleeping.’
She stared at the teacup in her own hand. It was Lorella’s favorite tea that she had said always helped her sleep. She had planned to pour her a cup of warm tea and comfort her by her side, but it was also a relief if she was sleeping and resting well.
‘I’ll just go in quietly in order not to wake up the Young Miss and put it on the table next to her bed.’
Having made up her mind, she turned the doorknob extremely cautiously.
But at that moment.
A screech burst out from the open door. At the same time, she could see a silk cushion flying in the air by the bed in the distance.
…Miss Lorella was awake. Only, she was throwing a cushion madly against the wall. When there were no more cushions remaining in her vicinity, she then picked up an expensive duck-down pillow this time instead.
She’s not swearing while violently pelting the bedpost with her pillow, is she…?
“Please stop eating up the obsessive maniac trope! I said not to give me 9,000 shares of this!”
Joy just turned as stiff as a rock on the spot.
“It’s not that I dislike being by your side. Rather, what I dislike is… ahhhhhh!”
Scattered red hair, bloodshot eyes, and a constantly exploding hostility.
Tea eventually overflowed onto her tray due to her trembling hands. However, Joy didn’t even notice it.
“This damn mouth! This crazy capitalist mouth! Go to hell!”
With a thwack, white feathers burst out of the pillow and embroidered the air like large snowflakes.
Joy hastily covered her mouth which was about to let out a scream.
 존맛, 베리 딜리셔쓰, 하 오츠 very delicious in korean, english and chinese
 refers to protecting [sb] pride and face. the fact that a lion will not eat grass even if they’re starving means that they are intent on preserving their pride, even to the point of death.
 this is said with her teeth clenched together
our girl rlly on survival mode rn, even if it means giving up her pride and dignity GHSDILFKJFDS QAQ
on the other hand, i think there’s something wrong with me bc i’d be that person buying shares for periot bc cold obsessive grand duke of the north trope is legit right up my alley HGSDLFIJFDSJDFSL
i still want lorella to end up with winnard tho my guy only got two chapters of screentime pls i need more ;-;