SMCS Ch 18 — Good Timing

When I hesitated and stood frozen to the spot, blushing and unable to say anything, Leonon had a look of realisation on his face shortly and moved to the side.

“Let’s talk comfortably inside instead of standing like this. Come on in, Lorella.”

“Oh, right.”

But there was still nowhere I could look. It was all because… I felt like I’d only keep looking at him if I even took so much as a glance at him.

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


When I hesitated and stood frozen to the spot, blushing and unable to say anything, Leonon had a look of realisation on his face shortly and moved to the side.

“Let’s talk comfortably inside instead of standing like this. Come on in, Lorella.”

“Oh, right.”

But there was still nowhere I could look. It was all because… I felt like I’d only keep looking at him if I even took so much as a glance at him.

I cautiously held out the cloak I had in my hand after agonising over it for a moment. “If you’re okay with this…”

The cloak Winnard had draped over me at dawn was very long, perhaps because it was made for men, and also extremely luxurious. It would probably suit Leonon too.

“Huh? What’s this for…?”

“It’s quite windy today.” I raised my hand to point at his open shirt that was fluttering in the wind at that very moment.

“This…” Leonon looked down and hurriedly buttoned up his shirt. But his sweat-soaked shirt still stuck against his firm chest, so there was still nowhere for me to look.

“I apologise for showing you such a discourteous appearance.” Completely flustered, the entire area around his neck was dyed red as he hastily gifted me an apology. “I’ve even ended up showing you this sort of disrespect since I’m only used to dealing with unruly knights…”

“What disrespect, this much is nothing.”

I shook my head lightly, smiling as naturally as possible so as not to embarrass Leonon any further.

Ding dong!

「‘This area’s hype king’ is seized by terror and shock and purchases 600 of Ms Lorella’s shares.」

「Sister, what exactly do you think you’re doing right now? Why the hell are you trying to cover up such a good thing? I’m in front of your house right now. Just open the door for a bit, okay?」

I quietly took a deep breath in at the sudden message. I wouldn’t have known which point had sold the share if I saw this yesterday, but I could guess what the reason was now.

‘As expected, it’s that.’

I received an extremely big tip from these messages that were ‘comments’. Because it played a decisive hand in helping me infer the identity of ‘them’, which I had previously only been able to form a conjecture on. Now, their existence felt closer to me than anyone else, for me, who had shouted ‘next chapter!’ at the tense push and pull and playing hard to get of a chapter.

A reader knows a reader’s heart the best. What they wanted was as clear as if they had raised their hand. The me today was not the same as the me of yesterday who would be easily swayed by these messages!

I closed the window quickly and smiled brightly at Leonon. “Were you in the middle of training just now? I heard the sound of training when I was walking around earlier.”

“Yes, that’s right. I always go and observe their training as long as I’m free, but in the end, I’m unable to just observe them without getting involved…”

“Feel free to use it if you don’t despise it.”

I draped the cloak over the arm of Leonon, who was standing there as if he were insensitive to the weather. It was an act that had nothing to do with selling shares. Even if he had already buttoned up his shirt, I was still concerned that he might catch a cold from the chilly early morning air since he was still sweaty.

“Thank you.”

But contrary to his own words, Leonon did not wear the cloak. He just looked at it being draped over half his hand. The change in his expression was subtle, as if something had happened.

“What’s wrong?”

I was a bit flustered. Although I had already checked it over in advance before handing it over to him, it seemed to still have some dirt on it that had remained undiscovered by me.

“…it’s nothing.”

Leonon handed me the cloak back after a while and smiled softly.

“It’s not that cold.” Despite his beautiful smile, his voice was unusually stiff.

“Let’s go inside for now.”

Although the hand that escorted me was just as friendly as always, I couldn’t help but doubt the peculiar appearance he had just shown me.

‘What’s wrong with him?’

Tilting my head once more, I quietly followed him inside.

* * *

pls do not share this anywhere or u will always stub ur toe when u walk past a door frame !! this translation has been stolen from mioscorner.com, pls only read there i’m begging u :kneels:

“Wow…”

Although I had also been inside the Headquarters of the Holy Knights during my stay in the temple, it was my first time entering into such a deep part of it. The interior of the Holy Knights’ Headquarters was just as splendid and sacred looking as the temple. It was so neat and tidy that it was hard for me to believe that this was a place where knights were living together.

The most important among them all was the hall of the main building where the Knights’ Commander’s office was located. Even though I knew it was a place not just anyone could enter, Leonon willingly guided me there and asked me to wait there for him to change his clothes and come out. 

The hall was constructed in a wide fan-like shape, with a heavy mahogany door behind it underneath a luxurious chandelier. Endless rows of tall decorative cabinets were lined up along both walls, and inside of them were a countless number of swords that felt as if they had seen time flow through the ages. From the colourful jewels embedded in the handles and scabbard, to the freshly sharpened blades that seemed to be able to cut you if you just so much as brushed against it. 

Even someone like me, who was an outsider, could feel the tremendous energy coming from these swords that were clearly more than just decorative ones. I kept staring at them for a long time before I heard the door opening behind me.

“You’ve waited quite a while, Lorella.” 

Strolling up to me was Leonon, who had changed back into his usual uniform. Seeing a refreshing smile on his lips, just like usual, I ascertained what I had felt earlier just to my mood. 

“This is where we keep all the family heirlooms that have been handed down from generation to generation in the Berhardt family.” 

He kindly provided an explanation, as if he had seen me snooping around the cabinets earlier. 

“You’ve come after much trouble, so would you like to take a closer look inside? I’ll show you around.”

“Yes, that sounds good!” I nodded quickly, my eyes twinkling.

“How about having tea together after that as well?”

“Yes, that sounds good as well…!”

Nod, nod, nod. Like a wooden doll with a bobble head constantly moving its head up and down, I nodded continuously at his words.

‘At first, I only came here because of panic, but coming here seems like a good decision in the end.’

I had that thought since my heart seemed to be incredibly at ease. The gap between me and my rival, which made me depressed just by thinking about it, the fatigue of pulling an all nighter, and the worries that made my head throb all melted away in front of his gentle smile.

“If you exit this hall and cut across the hallway at the end, you’ll see a large greenhouse. It’s an extremely beautiful sight, so let’s start the tour from there.” 

After he said that, Leonon led me around slowly after dismissing the guards around the area. There were only the two of us walking in the wide hallway. I couldn’t even hear any footsteps due to the soft carpet in the hallway. 

As I walked along the majestic pillars engraved with the sculptures of brave knights, I heard a low yet warm voice in my ear, “…are you sure you’re alright?”

“Oh, yes.” I quickly flashed a smile at him upon realising the actual meaning behind his question. 

“Thank you for your letter. To be honest, I was going to send you a reply first, but… when I came to my senses, I ended up making the mistake of coming to visit you so discourteously. I just wanted to tell you that I was very thankful for your concern.” 

“What discourtesy, it’s not like that at all. After all, I did tell you that you could come and find me any time. It’s just that…” Leonon paused and continued with an even graver expression on his face. “Your face is still filled with anxiety, so your heart must ache even more. You don’t seem to have slept properly either.”

“Oh, that’s…” 

I couldn’t find the words to reply to his sharp observations. Was it that obvious? I pinched my own face unconsciously.

“I heard that Periot not only led his own soldiers into the mansion, but also detained Count Mayred in the North. How audacious must he have been, to even use your own family as hostages…” 

Leonon’s voice became even deeper. In addition to that, I could see a blue tendon protruding from the back of his hand from him clenching his fist so tightly. 

“So, how about speaking directly to His Majesty the Emperor?”

“Speaking about it to who… what?!”

Unlike me, who was simply shocked by the unexpected name that had popped up, Leonon was extremely serious. 

“I will arrange for you to have an audience with him. If you tell him the whole story, Uncle will definitely take action.”

“N-No, that…”

“I tried to just endure it and watch since I could tell that you didn’t particularly want to go down that route, but it’s gone too far now.”

N-No! There’s no need for the Emperor to personally take out trash like that!

“Commander! Well, the thing is…”

It was clear that Leonon was only aware of the fact that Periot had come to the County, and not what had happened within it. I hurriedly told him the details of what had occurred. Everything, about how I was locked up and then released. 

“Then the debt collectors came to the mansion…”

I couldn’t bear to elaborate on what happened after that, so I lowered my head. My face was flushed red with embarrassment. 

“No way, to think that Count Mayred was that sort of person…” Leonon looked at me for a moment with a look of disbelief, then nodded calmly. “It must have been hard for you.”

“So what I’m saying is… Although I don’t know when that time is, I don’t want to face my brother until the wound in my heart heals.” I added, deliberately lowering my eyes. My voice was even trembling now.

“You might think I’m being weak, but…”

“What do you mean, weak? You’re not, Lorella.” Leonon placed some emphasis on my name. 

“It’s not your fault. There is no one who can criticise you. No, rather, they would think that you were incredible for persevering in such a difficult situation.”

“Do you really think so…?”

“At least that’s what I think. If you really were a weak person, you would have been in a hurry to run away to avoid it.”

His firm answer made my heart flutter. 

Yeah, that’s right, I’m not running away. Rather, I was far from running away, and was trying my utmost best to survive by trying to sell shares in some way or another. 

When I bit my lips and couldn’t continue to speak, Leonon whispered in a voice that didn’t even tremble, “Everything will be fine. No matter what happens, I’ll be by your side.”

His firm but sweet form of consolation touched me greatly. It might’ve escaped my notice at first, but I guess what happened last night had hit me with quite a big shock. Seeing as my eyes were starting to fill up with tears, even at this sort of simple consolation.

I had believed that all of ‘them’ who had bought my shares would be on my side. But they weren’t. They weren’t on anyone’s side, and compared to Sable, I was nothing short of not even worth looking at for them. 

I became furious as I shouted out that they were all traitors, but on the other hand, I felt sad. I even felt like I was an abandoned child. 

But Leonon’s consolation covered all of those feelings. My expectations had been raised to the extent where I thought that even if everyone else turned their back on me, this person wouldn’t do so.

I burst into tears at my indescribable gratitude and emotions. I secretly tried to wipe away the tears around my eyes, but before I could do so, I felt a warm body touch my face.

“When you feel like crying, you should cry as much as you want.”

A friendly smile greeted my face when I looked up. Leonon, who was carefully and tenderly rubbing the area under my eyes for a moment, soon pulled my head gently into his embrace. 

Suddenly, a strong beat coiled around my ears. Seeing as the same vibrations were resounding within me as well, it must’ve been the sound of my heart. 

“N-No… I’m not crying anymore…”

My face became exceedingly hot. Even if I didn’t see it myself, it was obvious my face would’ve been coloured a bright shade of scarlet radish. 

I didn’t want him to see that sort of face of mine, so I pretended not to know and burrowed my face deeper into his arms. 

Ding dong! Ding dong! Ding dong! Ding dong!

The bell rang like crazy, but I only focused on accepting his patting hand without even glancing at the screen.

* * *

“Wow…”

My jaw dropped again as soon as I entered the greenhouse. Just like Leonon had said, it was a place so beautiful it was enough to make my eyes widen. 

The sight of tender, verdant shoots of greenery that sparkled and emitted a green light from all directions was so refreshing it seemed like my heart was washed anew just by looking at it while the rare and colourful flowers that I had never seen before were in full bloom, as if they were showing off their elegant appearance. However, the most eye-catching of them all was an old tree that was nestled in the middle of the greenhouse. 

“Do you like it?”

“Yes! It’s my first time seeing such a beautiful place.”

As I was swinging my head back and forth, immersed in the sights, I spotted an inconspicuous swing hanging underneath the old tree. As if he had noticed where I was looking, Leonon smiled and led me there. 

“It’s the Knights’ Sacred Tree. It was originally a pair of trees, but one day, one of them was struck by lightning, and only one remained. The swing is made from the burnt lumber that remained from the other tree. With the hope that they could be together, even if it’s only possible with this method.”

So it’s like that. The swing that hung from the white branch that stretched out to the side was as if the tree had only been there since it was born. 

But what was really fascinating was actually the branch rather than the swing. The branch, which was white enough to be mistaken for marble, was especially thick, and shiny, more so than the rest.

“Would you like to have a go?”

“I do, but…”

I became a little anxious when I looked up at the swing hanging from the branch, no matter how thick and strong it may be, but Leonon said confidently, “Don’t worry, it won’t break. I check it regularly every time, so it’s safe.”

At his words, I approached the swing hesitantly. However, it wasn’t easy to get on the swing with a dress on since it was higher than I expected, so I hesitated at what I should do. 

“Pardon me.”

My body suddenly floated in the air. Without even giving me time to scream, my body was already on the swing before I even knew it. I quickly grabbed onto the rope of the swing as my body tilted backwards. 

Leonon coughed shyly and quietly changed the subject. “There’s a legend that says that this white branch is actually a unicorn horn instead.”

“A unicorn?”

“Yes. It’s a legendary creature whose horns can withstand the force of dozens of elephants stepping on it and not break. When the first Knights’ Commander cut off its horn and planted it under this tree, the tree then sprouted surprisingly beautiful white branches. Of course, it’s only a legend, but…”

Leonon continued to speak as he gently pushed the swing. “I don’t know if it’s because I grew up using this place as a playground ever since I was young, but I believed the story to be true for quite some time…”

But then he eventually shut up. “I was young back then.”

I could see Leonon’s face turn red as he gave a vague explanation.

“That’s a wonderful legend. I think I’d even believe it too.” 

When I responded with a deliberately big smile, Leonon scratched his temple with an awkward smile still on his face and pretended not to know. 

His appearance was so amusing that I burst into laughter once again. The more I got to know him, the more friendly he seemed to be, yet on the other hand, he also seemed rather boyish. 

But… to think that he was the Emperor’s nephew. Today was the first time I found out that the Berhardt family was actually an imperial household. 

I was far from the high society scene since I was confined in the Duke’s mansion, and no one would tell those sorts of things to someone who was only the Duchess in name. 

Although I was rather curious about the details, I wanted to focus on this moment right now more than anything else. 

This space that only held the two of us. 

There was a strong fragrance that came from the flowers everywhere, a temperature that was neither too hot nor too cold, and a swing that was swinging joyfully back and forth. Being upset all night seemed like a lie all of a sudden. 

…And of course, apart from all that, the system window was also ringing noisily.

Ding dong! Ding dong! Ding dong!

The bell rang so incessantly that it felt like there was an earthquake.

“If you don’t mind, may I ask you a question?” Then, through the clamour of bells, I heard Leonon’s voice.

Again, sensing his somewhat stiff tone, I immediately stopped thinking and quickly answered, “Yes, of course.”

“Who does that cloak belong to? It looks like it’s made for men…” He pointed to the bench on the other side of us. On top of it was the cloak that I had folded up nicely before getting on the swing.

“That… I borrowed it from the coachman.” I answered quickly after a short deliberation. “Since I thought the wind was rather chilly today.”

Although it was something that was too luxurious for a coachman to use, I couldn’t exactly say that it was a cloak that my secret guide gave me, so I simply gave an appropriate answer.

“Oh, I see.” 

In an instant, a smile that resembled a flower in full bloom soon appeared on Leonon’s face. And on top of that, I thought I could see the nape of his neck turning red, just for a moment. 

“…”

There was suddenly an awkward silence. I glanced at him to gauge his reaction, but Leonon’s mouth remained closed and showed no signs of opening, simply continuing to push the swing. 

“It couldn’t have possibly bothered you if it belonged to another man, right?” 

Unable to stand the awkwardness, I ended up speaking first, an exaggerated smile on my face. But the reply that came back to me was rather unexpected.

“…it bothered me.”

“What?”

“I said, it bothers me.”


JEALOUS LEONON MWAHAHHAHAHAHA

also are they rlly not gonna talk abt how the first knights commander allegedly cut off a unicorn’s horn,,, ???? like wtHFDSLKFJDFSJ

SMCS Ch 17 — Actual Female Lead Vibes vs Acting Prodigy

The cry of the owl, which seemed to have sounded out piercingly the whole night, had already subsided at some point in the late night.

Fog began to seep through the dense forest path lined with fir trees. With every step I took, the lower hem of my dress would be dampened by the evening dew from the leaves.

However, it wasn’t long before I had no choice but to stop abruptly again.

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


The cry of the owl, which seemed to have sounded out piercingly the whole night, had already subsided at some point in the late night.

Fog began to seep through the dense forest path lined with fir trees. With every step I took, the lower hem of my dress would be dampened by the evening dew from the leaves.

However, it wasn’t long before I had no choice but to stop abruptly again.

Then Winnard, who had been walking by my side without a word, also had to stop as well. He took a few glances at the side of my face before asking in a very cautious voice.

“Should we stop and call the carriage now?”

Instead of replying to him, I sighed heavily…

“Lorella, just how long are we going to keep walking…”

AHHHHHH!

I ended up letting out a loud scream at the sky, just like that. As I cut Winnard off, I went even further.

“This bit-”

My anger started to flare up again. However, I was still worried that ‘they’ would hear me if I started to pour out my curses to the sky.

With my pride trampled and unable to voice out my miseries, I became frustrated due to my restrictive circumstances. After looking up at the cloudless night sky in thought with my hands on my waist, I finally settled on kicking an innocent tree with my feet.

“Seriously! I’m so pissed off!”

“Calm down, okay? Of course, I understand why you’re doing this, but you should still settle your emotions right now.”

Winnard continued to comfort me tirelessly. I couldn’t even count how many times this situation had repeated itself anymore.

Although it was a dark forest road that could rely on the moonlight to light the way, I was the one who had suggested that we get some fresh air before getting on the carriage. Otherwise, there would be no way for me to extinguish this blazing anger.

However, instead of calming down, my anger continued to rise without any signs of stopping. We hadn’t even been walking for that long before I’d repeatedly walk a few steps, then kick a tree, then walk another few steps, then kick a tree again. 

I opened the system window and looked at my small, cute, and insignificant amount of shares. The more I did so, the more I kept thinking of the shares of the other candidate that Winnard had shown me.

“50,000 shares? Someone’s gone through such a damn hard time for a few hundred shares, but 50,000 shares?!”

Was it because it wasn’t mine? I didn’t know why it looked so big. No… it was actually a really large amount. Every time I thought about it, my lips would twitch and I would feel a stifling sensation on the inside of my throat.

“Now, now, you’re now not allowed to look at the system window. Why do you keep opening it when you know you’re just going to get even angrier?”

Winnard spoke softly while closing the system window in front of me. However, my anger had already reached its peak.

“What? My sister is so cool? Do everything you want to do?!”

t/n: i changed the tl from ‘has so much style’ to ‘so cool’ bc it just makes more sense. can be interchangeable w/ ‘badass’ too.

Saying they were the hype king, they didn’t even forget to leave out these sort of hype comments!

Besides, to think that even ‘That bastard isn’t the male lead, right’, who I haven’t even seen a trace off, bought 10,000 shares!

Is this how it would feel if I witnessed the betrayal of a loved one? I trembled from the unbearable feeling of jealousy and betrayal.

However, the most shocking thing was ‘A Mansour in cider’, the new name that I had never even met before, had bought a lot of her shares.

If you want, I can also put an IV drip of cider into your blood vessels…!

Bam bam!

Every time I kicked the tree trunk, dry leaves would fall on top of my head.

“She’s fooling everyone. She’s clearly just fabricating a favourable situation that allows her to sell shares!”

Why did she get the man to kneel before at a collapsed building in the middle of the night? What was the point of hiding such a beautiful appearance under a ragged cloak, just to throw it back to powerfully reveal her beauty?!

That was when Winnard muttered softly under his breath to himself.

“I don’t think you’re in the position to say that about other people…”

“What did you say?”

The kick that I had tried to release in a burst of anger stopped momentarily.

He’s… right?

But my embarrassment because of that only lasted momentarily.

“Oi!”

I turned around and gave him a fierce look.

Even if other people don’t know, you shouldn’t say that!

However, this damn guide, whose quick wittedness was second to no one, had already backed too far away for me to even grab ahold of his collar anymore.

“Ah, right. Would you like me to tell you something?”

Annoying people as much as they could bear and then skillfully changing the topic was also one of Winnard’s talents. 

“What is it.”

Go on, give me some useless information! I really won’t let you get away with it this time.

I quietly rolled up my sleeves, measuring the distance between me and him.

“The messages that pop up when shares are sold. They’re called ‘comments’.”

Smiling confidently, Winnard had a look on his face that seemed to say, ‘You didn’t know this, did you?’. On the other hand, upon hearing the familiar word, I even stopped rolling up my sleeves just to stare blankly at him.

“What? Comments…?”

“Such a thing exists. To put it simply, just think of it as a short article in which you express your feelings and opinions.”

No, if you’re talking about comments, then I’ve regularly posted them before…?

My head went blank for a moment at the unexpected words.

They look down at the situation, buy shares, and write comments. The more I repeated those words, the more I could see it overlapping with someone else’s appearance.

…That being me in my previous life.

“Let’s go now. You’ll catch a cold.”

Something warm was draped over my shoulders. When I lifted my head, my eyes met the eyes of Winnard, who had taken off his cloak and put his arms around me, smiling softly.

“S-So…”

So looking at a handsome face right in front of you really won’t offer you any comfort when you’ve really fallen into despair, huh. With such random thoughts in my head, I hesitated before opening my mouth.

“So that villainess who’s my rival didn’t actually sell 50,000 shares… instead, it was all because of the ‘My sister is so cool’ comment…?”

“That’s right.”

The moment I heard such a simple and clear answer, it felt as if a huge shock had been dealt to my brain.

A moan escaped my frozen lips.

…Huh.”

“Lorella?”

I flopped down and released a cry mixed with despair just as Winnard tilted his head in question.

HuuuUwahhhh!

My shoulders automatically started shaking due to the cold night air. Although my wet dress stuck to my ankle like an ice sheet, my heart felt even colder than that.

“Wh-What’s wrong?”

A bewildered Winnard followed me in dropping to the floor on his knees.

“This is insane…! How am I meant to beat that?!”

“Why are you pretending to cry again… No, wait, are you actually crying?”

Although I could feel a hand struggling to help me up, I couldn’t find the strength to get up. Instead, all I could do was let out a cry that was mixed with frustration.

“Unlike me, she actually feels like a female lead…! Even I would buy her shares if I was a reader!”

“What?”

I realised how big of a mistake it was to think that it was simply a competition in the number of shares sold, and also that other candidates would be people similar to me.

Most of the messages that I had received so far had only been about Commander Leonon or Periot. There had never been a single word about me. Seriously, not even once! 

However, Sable Lilly was different. They said, ‘My sister is so cool’. This means it doesn’t rely on whichever guy she sticks herself to. No, maybe they even think she’s better off without a male lead!

Judging from my experience as a reader and her actions, Sable Lilly was probably… a villainess with a story. Since it’s rare to be a fan of an actual villain.

Perhaps it was the villainess main character cliche, wielding a blade of revenge without shedding any blood or tears, trying to break away from her life where she had only been taken advantage of? Crazy, even I’d binge-read this!

In any case, when I put it all together, I came to the conclusion that she felt like an actual main character. She wasn’t like me, who was only earning shares through my clumsy acting.

First of all, there’s a difference in intensity between an ordinary woman who’s taken over someone else’s body and a villainess with a story!

Someone who feels like a main character and me, who only acts as the main character. Just which side would win?

Uwahhh!

I started to cry again when I asked myself such an obvious question.

Then, I felt a gentle hand patting my shoulder.

“It’s alright, Lorella. You’ve been doing well so far.”

It was all the more depressing for me to hear the warm comfort I normally couldn’t have even imagined to hear. 

“It’s because my shares look so tiny in comparison… Huuuu.”

“Well, I can understand why. The first rival we saw was just that powerful.”

I heard him click his tongue for a moment, as if it were a shame.

“So… you’re going to give up?”

“What?”

“If you think it’s really that hard, then it’s not like I can force you to do it…”

There was a sullen light evident in Winnard’s eyes, which normally always shone with confidence. Heat rose to my face in an instant.

“Giving up, who’s giving up? I don’t have any choice but to do it, no matter what! Anyway, you said I’d die if I didn’t…!”

My pounding heart now felt as if it were about to burst.

Jealousy, envy, sorrow, and even fear. All sorts of emotions that couldn’t be easily defined rushed in like a tidal wave.

“Yes, that’s right.”

A quiet yet low voice landed in my ears once again.

“So, what does my main character want to do?”

I slowly raised my head at his words.

Winnard was looking down at me with his cane tucked inside his arm. The moment my gaze landed on those slightly upturned lips, I suddenly came to my senses.

I shouted while looking at him with burning eyes.

“I can’t give up like this. I’ll show them everything my rivals won’t be able to show! Acting or whatever, I’ll exhaust every one of my means and methods!”

I want to live. I didn’t want to die!

“If I can satisfy all of their different tastes, I’ll certainly be able to earn hundreds, or even tens of thousands of shares!”

Huh? I seem to have heard this from somewhere before though.

However, that sense of dejavu was momentary, an incredibly friendly voice sounding out after that.

“I was just waiting for you to say that. Let’s go somewhere warm for now. It’ll be a big deal if my precious main character gets sick.”

Before I knew it, a large carriage suddenly appeared in front of me. It was the same carriage we were in before.

Fastening the oversized cloak that was about to fall off, I jumped up. Yeah, just being frustrated like this won’t do anything.

“Please don’t forget the resolve you just had. You can definitely become the main character, Lorella.”

Winnard, who was holding my hand as I stepped into the carriage, whispered softly.

“Until that day comes, I’ll never leave you.”

It was a voice so earnest I had never heard it before. However, there was a smile on his lips that was just as sweet as usual, wait no, maybe even more so than usual.

Although it was a smile so charming, it seemed as if it could captivate you, I didn’t have the energy to think anymore.

So I just held his hand tightly and nodded slowly. 

* * * 

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:

By the time we finally returned to the mansion, it was already well past dawn.

Winnard disappeared as he always did. Not before saying that he’d erase the coachman’s memory so there was no need for me to worry.

When I arrived at the front door and opened it carefully, I spotted someone rushing out.

“Miss!”

A face that looked particularly haggard due to lack of sleep. It was Joy.

“Just where have you been without telling anyone…!”

Seeing the teary faced Joy, I had the thought that I’d just ask Winnard to teleport next time.

There’d also be times in the future where I wouldn’t be able to tell them where we were going, so I couldn’t make up that many excuses to the servants every time.

“Why are you so pale? Don’t tell me, something bad happened…”

“No. I couldn’t sleep so I just went out to get some air.”

While I gave a dodgy answer, I spotted a luxurious gold envelope sticking out of Joy’s apron pocket.

“What’s that?”

I tried to shift the subject as naturally as I could.

“Oh, the delivery man just came and left. It’s a letter for you, miss.”

“A letter? To me?”

I took the letter she handed me, wondering if there was anyone that could send me this other than those who were urging me to pay back my debt.

I’m pretty sure I’ve paid off all the debt though…

But you never know. Swallowing my rising anxiety, I tore the envelope carelessly without a letter knife.

And not long after reading the letter, my eyes widened.

The letter was sent by Leonon.

The letter, which began with his subordinates telling him that Duke Periot had led his men to the Mayred Country, ended with concern for my safety. With the words, ‘If you’re alright, I’ll be waiting for your reply.’

“Miss, are you alright…?”

As I raised my head at Joy’s worried tone, I spotted a carriage about to depart just over her shoulder.

I ran quickly in front of it to block it. As the startled coachman hurriedly pulled the reins, the two horses reared onto their hind legs, neighing violently.

“It’s dangerous!”

Disregarding Joy’s screams, I opened the door to the carriage and shouted loudly.

“To the Holy Knights of Ecrestus, quickly!”

“Pardon…?”

“M-Miss?”

This time, the bewildered voices of the coachman and Joy sounded in unison. However, I banged my fist against the carriage wall and shouted, brief and loud.

“Set off!”

Soon, the carriage began to move with a rattle. Listening to the sound of the horses’ hooves galloping faster and faster, I clenched my fists so tightly that my palms started to hurt.

* * *

In front of the large front gate of the white marble building, so beautiful that it felt sacred.

I rubbed my face with a feeling of dismay. It was because it was only then that I had remembered that I had come without making an appointment.

As if I had been possessed by something, I had gotten into the carriage without any plans. Although I didn’t know if Commander Leonon was even inside or not, was I even actually allowed to come at such an early time?

I had the thought of asking one of the soldiers standing by the front gate, but then I immediately shook my head at that thought. It was because I had the sudden thought that as expected, it just wasn’t polite to turn up so out of the blue.

Although I had been told that I was welcome to come at any time, no matter what, it was still beyond common sense for me to come and call for him like this all of a sudden.

Just why on earth had I come all the way here without any plans or anything? It was ridiculous. 

Maybe it was because I had just witnessed my rival, Sable Lilly’s performance. Anyway, it was my mistake for not being able to think deeply since I was in a hurry.

However, still not being able to give up my lingering feelings, I asked the coachman to wait around for a moment before wandering around the Knights headquarters for no reason.

From the inside of the walls came a fierce shout. It seemed to be training time.

It was when I had eventually finished my short walk with no gains and was just about to move toward the waiting bay for carriages.

“Lorella, wait…!”

The door opened with a bang from behind as someone urgently called out my name.

Looking back in surprise, I spotted loosely tied blond hair.

“Wait a minute… haa.

Commander Leonon ran to my side in the blink of an eye. Breathing heavily, he asked for my understanding and put his hands on his waist, bending his body slightly. 

His breath hadn’t been disturbed in the slightest, even when he had been swinging his sword against several assailants. I tilted my head without realising it.

After catching his breath for a while, he smiled in embarrassment and said softly.

“It’s been a while, Lorella.”

“…What? Oh, yes. Hello, Commander.”

Staring at his face in a daze, I greeted him a beat later after receiving his greeting. I was both happy and shocked that he’d appear right as I was about to give up and go back home.

“How did you know I was here…”

“The soldier standing guard at the door saw you and informed me.”

At my cautious question, a smile as bright as the blinding sun poured in along with his answer.

“You came all the way here already, so why did you just want to leave?”

“Ah, that’s…”

My eyes darted back and forth quietly in order to find the words to answer the question that was asked innocently. Thanks to this, I found that the appearance of Commander Leonon was a little different from usual.

Today, instead of his usual white uniform that was devoid of wrinkles, he was wearing black trousers and boots that wrapped snugly around his calves.

As expected, he must have been training too. Given that the buttons on his white shirt at the bottom of his neck area were somewhat loose.

Of all places, my gaze happened to land on his sweaty collarbone that was conveniently right in front of my eyes. Beneath it were… well-sculpted muscles.

His arms, which were exposed under his sleeves that were rolled up, looked equally just as firm.

i would worship him tbh he looks as majestic as the sun itself

“W-Well, that’s…”

I lowered my head and parted my lips. But no words came to my mind.


a few things this chapter:
idk i love leonon but i always feel like him and lorella’s interactions are always a bit bland. actually nah, i feel that way with periot too.
maybe i’m just biased toward winnard bc i feel like she gets to act the most natural with him GHSDIJDSFDJ

also mood when lorella went a bit crazy over the competition bc ngl if i was in her position i’d be threatened by sable too bc she is actually girlbossing a bit too hard HGSDLKJFSSFD
also the fact that she doesn’t even have a choice too ;-;

SMCS Ch 16 — The Rival’s Identity

A large carriage ran non-stop down the road that was soaked with evening dew. In the dark streets at night, there was nothing but the sound of horseshoes and wheels.

With my entire body still within the swaying carriage, I stared out of the window where there was only darkness. And as I gazed at the red hair that was reflected in the glass, I silently rolled the word that had been in my mind since earlier on my tongue.

Rival.

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


A large carriage ran non-stop down the road that was soaked with evening dew. In the dark streets at night, there was nothing but the sound of horseshoes and wheels.

With my entire body still within the swaying carriage, I stared out of the window where there was only darkness. And as I gazed at the red hair that was reflected in the glass, I silently rolled the word that had been in my mind since earlier on my tongue.

Rival.

My palms were soaked with sweat once again. When I heard that I was going to meet my rival, I was more anxious than calm, and more fearful than expectant.

It was already expected that I wasn’t the only candidate.

It was a fact that could be seen just by looking at the message that flew through the system window, ‘Sell more shares than anyone else and beat the other candidates to become the main character.’

However, meeting the competition in person was another story. What sort of person were they? Could it be that they were possessed just like me as well?

What was certain was that I’d have to sell more shares than that person, no matter who it was. If I fell behind in the competition, I’d ‘cease to exist’, and I wanted to avoid that ending at all costs.

As I was twisting the hem of my innocent dress for no reason, I suddenly felt a stinging gaze. It was because Winnard, who was sitting across from me, was looking at me.

“Don’t be too nervous.”

He said with a smile as soon as our eyes met.

…How did you know I was nervous? It couldn’t be more like a ghostly intuition.

“Well, it’s because I’m not interested in anything apart from you.”

What the hell. Are you reading my mind too?!

I would have been shy if someone else had said it, but it was suspicious because Winnard was the one who said it.

Come to think of it, I followed him out of curiosity of what kind of person my rival would be, but I still don’t know where our destination is yet.

In order not to let this opportunity slip by me, my questions quickly poured out like rapid fire.

“Where are we going right now? Just who the hell are we going to meet? And… how much did that person sell…?”

“Who knows. You’ll find out when you get there anyways, right?”

However, Winnard just shook his head and gave a vague answer while smiling.

“I can’t tell you because of the rules, Lorella. But of course, I don’t know everything either.”

Again, again with that bastard’s rules!

The only thing that hurts when I bring it up is my mouth. I grumbled for no reason because I felt sulky.

“You don’t even have anything to tell me, and you still call yourself a guide. Just how far are you going to bring people this late at night? Wouldn’t it be better if you just took me straight to our destination in the blink of an eye like last time?”

“At a time like this, I wanted you to get some fresh air, but was it actually pointless in the end?”

The corners of his lips were still curved in a smooth arc as ever before, but something was still a bit suspicious to me.

“We’ll arrive there in a little while. Why don’t you close your eyes if you’re tired?”

…Just look at this. Doesn’t it feel like you’re changing the subject a bit too obviously?

However, instead of questioning him, I just quietly closed my eyes. And while I pretended to sleep, I thought carefully over what he had said.

I wasn’t sure how much of Winnard’s words I should believe. Was it true that guides couldn’t intervene in a candidate’s affairs?

What if he could help me, but just found it to be too bothersome? Are you just trying to turn me into a share selling machine, just like a dog rolling around and doing tricks?!

The suspicion that had emerged once, ended up snowballing in size.

Still, even if that wasn’t the case, there were still a lot of questionable points. Wait no, the truth was that my trust in Winnard had already hit rock bottom, ever since he had pretended not to see me in prison and disappeared.

A handsome face that was flowing with elegance, a charming eye smile, and red lips that were always painted in a smirk. The face that I had praised as being a savior rather than just a guide in my eyes, only looked suspicious now.

‘I guess I just looked like a pushover…’

I gritted my teeth inwardly and took a deep breath.

Heup…!

Then, I immediately held my breath and leaned forward, clutching the front of my dress. No, I pretended to fall flat on my face.

“Lorella…?”

I could feel his embarrassment just from his voice which was calling my name. I purposely wept and lowered my head even more.

“I-I can’t breathe… all of a sudden…!”

“What…?”

“To think that I have to be rivals with someone. And with someone I don’t even know as well! Heuk…!

Surprisingly enough, he, who was normally composed and relaxed, looked startled and carefully placed his hand on my shoulder. Although it seemed like he was about to help me get up so he could get a closer look at my face, I kept my head down forcefully.

“H-Hey, are you alright?! Why are you like this all of a sudden?”

“What do I do if my rival is actually a really good person? What if I finally met my soulmate, but it turns out that they’re my rival…!”

“Why are you imagining such nonsense all of a sudden, Lorella?”

“Actually, I could do it! I mean, I’m an INFP after all, huhuuu…”

“Now what else is this? I can’t do this anymore. Just raise your head up first, alright?”

“Don’t you know about INFP? Timid attention seekers!”

I talked about whatever I wanted, even bringing up MBTIs, which I had been obsessed with in my previous life.

Heuk, do we have to meet in person? You… hic, can’t you just help me this one time, hmm…?”

It was me who recited embarrassing lines, even in front of Periot, who I didn’t even want to associate with. Compared to that, this much was nothing to me!

Then, a deep sigh came from Winnard’s mouth.

“Listen to me, Lorella. I’ve already said it over and over again, but I can’t. If a guide directly intervenes with a candidate’s behavior, he or she will be disciplined.”

“R-Really?”

…At least it now seemed like rules really did exist.

I focused my concentration on not missing even a single word of his, even as I was producing tears and snot.

“Really. That’s why I’m keeping a low profile now, because the guide of the candidate we’re going to watch has broken the rules. Thanks to you, I can go and watch it secretly like this. Without a guide, the candidate will be exposed to multiple dangers, Lorella.”

“What?”

I lifted my head involuntarily for a moment.

Oops. Tears, tears!

I quickly buried my face in my palms and shook my shoulders again.

“That’s ridiculous…”

“So there’s no choice but for us to follow the rules. Since I have a duty to protect you.”

Ha… but no one would care about an ordinary candidate like me…”

Winnard tried to soothe me, patting me on the shoulder.

“Ordinary you say? No way. If that were the case, do you really think I would have come to be your guide? As soon as you sold your shares, you were the first to get a cookie reward.”

“Really…? Out of all the hundreds of candidates, am I really the first one…?”

“Of course. And for there to be hundreds of candidates, there’s no way there can be that many.”

“Then how many are there?”

“About that, even I’m not too sure, but what I am sure of is…”

It was then.

As soon as he stopped talking, the hand that was patting my shoulder also stopped.

‘Did I get caught already?’

I had the thought that it was already a complete failure, but I kept on pretending to cry shamelessly without showing it. However, Winnard no longer comforted me, nor patted me on the shoulder.

After a short period of time had passed like this.

“…Ha.”

A low laugh escaped from his mouth.

“Lorella.”

However, the voice saying my name was somehow even lower. Don’t tell me… you’re angry?

“…You’re smart.”

As expected, I got caught. Would I have had to do this if you had just told me sooner?

Wow, aren’t you so quick-witted!

“I look forward to you generously using that brilliant brain of yours to sell shares.”

Is it just my delusion or can I feel a subtle thorn behind those sly words?

“Anyway, you’ve already been caught, so you can lift your head up now, right?”

“…”

“Even if you don’t like it, there’s nothing you can do about it.”

Winnard said sarcastically, but I kept my face buried in my hands and remained stubborn.

Only a deep sense of regret filled my throat.

So just what the hell was it that you were so sure of! Can’t you just finish what you were going to say?!

My lips opened and closed by themselves with the urge to pester him for an answer.

The sound of sad sighs constantly leaked out from the gaps in my hands.

* * *

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:

Fortunately, that uncomfortable and awkward period of time didn’t last for very long. That was thanks to the carriage soon coming to a stop, not long after.

Winnard, who opened the door and stepped out first, silently held his hand out to me. As soon as he escorted me out of the carriage, he snapped his fingers with a flick. At the same time, the large carriage disappeared without a trace.

After a moment of surprise, I looked at our surroundings and asked.

“Where are we?”

It was a forest devoid of any light. Only the faint sound of an owl’s chilling cry from somewhere brushed past my ears. It seemed like something would pop out of the dense forest.

Shh, this way.”

Winnard, who put his index finger to his lips in a pretense to tell me to be quiet, took the lead cautiously. We proceeded carefully in the darkness, where we couldn’t even see an inch ahead of us.

I wonder just how long it took for us to walk through such a small forest. The ruins of a small building lay in front of me.

I relied on the pale white moonlight to examine it more closely.

Dome-shaped ceilings with holes here and there, a crumbling wall, and arched doors lined with dried ivy. Did I have a rival in a place like this?

As I looked around the collapsed building, I heard footsteps from inside the building.

“You’ve finally appeared.

Winnard whispered quietly. The tension within me rose once again. I crouched behind the bushes and swallowed dryly.

Just in time, the clouds lifted as the moonlight poured in.

And underneath that, I saw someone of small stature, covered in a large cloak.

‘That woman must be my rival…’

I couldn’t see the silhouette of her body very clearly thanks to the cloak, but I could be certain that she was a woman. That was because every time she’d move her foot, the toe of a red high-heeled shoe would slip out from beneath the hem of her long cloak which was narrowly dragging against the floor.

“You’re here early, Sable.”

I didn’t know when they had been there, but someone suddenly appeared from the bushes near me. Although the woman didn’t even flinch at all, I ended up being even more startled than the woman, and almost screamed.

Had it not been for the large hand that gently covered my mouth, I would have.

Shh.”

The man approached the woman at the same time when winnard gave me a soft warning. She also turned around slowly, as if she was expecting him.

“Marquis.”

It was then I got a glimpse of her red lips painted in a coy smile through her large hood.

The cloak then fell to the floor, revealing her face.

“…!”

Without realizing it, my lips parted.

omg SLAYYYYY

The first thing that caught my eye was her long hair that fell down to her waist. Her enviable luscious black hair rippled gently under the soft moonlight.

Her eyes were a mysterious purple. As if an amethyst had been taken and embedded in them, the dazzling appearance catching one’s gaze in an instant.

I couldn’t take my eyes off her at all… no, she was so beautiful that I almost lost my mind.

Moreover, contrary to her elegant countenance, she was wearing an alluring black dress filled with luxurious rubies and clung nicely to her figure. Even I, as a woman, was mesmerized by her figure.

‘Wow…’

Silent exclamations continued to burst forth from me.

It seemed that I wasn’t the only one who had been distracted by her appearance. Hot desire and passion swirled nakedly in the eyes of the young marquis standing in front of the woman.

“I did everything perfectly, just like I promised you.”

“You mean… everything?”

“Yeah, it’s all been burned to a crisp.”

The marquis said and raised his chin arrogantly.

“There’s only a heap of ashes left. No matter how hard they try to dig through it, they won’t find anything.”

“…I see.”

A beautiful smile, just like that of a flower, bloomed on the woman’s lips, who just nodded her head slightly. Just then, a gust of wind from the dark forest caused the long black hair that was covering her slender neck to disappear.

There seemed to be a dark bruise on her white skin. I got goosebumps since it looked like traces of a beheaded head being stuck back together.

“Sable, you’re mine now.”

As if seduced by her smile, the marquis strode up toward her and ran an arrogant hand through her long hair. Then, he tried to kiss her.

Just as the lips of the two of them were about to touch each other.

Someone emerged from the darkness and pointed a large sword at the marquis’ neck. Although the sharp sword neither pierced nor penetrated his neck, it threatened him from such a position where it wouldn’t be strange if his head was completely lopped off, just by moving a little.

Unlike the marquis, who stiffened up in embarrassment, the woman just looked at him without any change in her expression.

“Sable…?”

“You did well, Marquis.”

She, who had just been smiling quietly beforehand, now smiled broadly, revealing her pearly white teeth. However, the eyes that were staring at the marquis seemed to be somewhat indifferent.

As I clutched onto Winnard’s arm tightly, I felt like I couldn’t even breathe.

It felt like I was watching the climax of a horror movie that I had always been curious about. Although it was extremely frightening, I couldn’t turn my eyes away since I was still curious about the ending!

“Sable! How dare you…!”

An angry shout reverberated through the air.

“I killed them all, as promised! And in the most brutal way possible, just like you wished for!”

“Did I… ever make such a promise?”

“Wh-What did you say?!”

“All of that, that was all the Marquis’ doing.”

“Are you going to betray me now, Sable? Betray me, who knows everything about you…!”

At that moment, the eyes of the woman, who had been calm this whole time, suddenly lit up.

As if that were a signal, the man who was pointing the sword quickly subdued the marquis so that he was kneeling in front of her. There wasn’t even time for him to fight back and resist.

With the blade against his own neck again, the marquis bit his trembling lips until they bled.

There was a moment of silence. The woman was still looking down at the marquis with an indifferent gaze, while the marquis had his forehead resting against the floor, seemingly as if he were thinking about something.

Eventually, the marquis raised his head and pleaded with her in a voice full of tears.

“I-I don’t care if you betray me. Sable, I’ve dedicated everything to loving you. So please…”

“…”

“Tell me you love me…”

His voice was extremely pathetic, as if he had overcome the fury. It was such a desperate confession that even my own heart ached while listening to it.

However, the woman standing in front of him answered his plea with a smile.

“I’m sorry.”

She leaned forward toward him slowly with her hair tucked behind her ear. And after making eye contact with the marquis, she smiled beautifully, just like painting.

“I’ve never once loved you.”

“Sable…”

“Goodbye, Marquis.”

The creepy laughter that was added along with that last greeting seemed to cling to my ears.

Evil! What the hell? What’s with that woman?!

I raised my hand and rubbed my entire ear. I think I’m going to have nightmares tonight!

Then, she turned around. The steady sound of high heels faded away without a single bit of trembling.

The marquis, who was banging his head on the ground and crying in despair, as well as the man who grabbed him and forcibly dragged him away, both disappeared before I even knew it.

In the night sky, the only sound that could be heard was an owl’s intermittent hooting.

Just how much time had passed already? I couldn’t come to my senses for a long time and just stared in the direction that she disappeared in.

“How do you feel after seeing your rival?”

Just like usual. No, a little more laughter than usual seemed to permeate the voice of Winnard as I moved my head to it. 

“My lady still doesn’t seem to have very much trust in me, so I’ll especially show this to you, just this once.”

Probably because this didn’t count as a direct intervention of my actions. As soon as he finished speaking, the sound of snapping fingers rang in my ear.

Ding dong!

And with that familiar bell sound, the system window appeared in front of me once again…

「‘That bastard isn’t the male lead, right?’ claps and buys 10,000 of Ms Sable Lilly’s shares!」

「‘A Mansour1 in cider2’ shakes the cider to buy 20,000 of Ms Sable Lilly’s shares!」

「‘This area’s hype king’ squanders away their family’s fortune to buy 20,000 of Ms Sable Lilly’s shares!」

That wasn’t mine.

“…Wh-What?!”

It was when the nape of my neck became stiff at the first number I saw.

Ding dong.

A message appeared again with the sound of the bell.

「This area’s hype king recites a poem shyly.」

「My sister (于里言尼) has such good style (槪幹支拿),
Do everything (河鼓風去) you want to do (削多海 蘿),
I acknowledge (左虜人正) all of this (右虜人正),
Roll forward (狎鷗漏器), over and over (大窟 大窟).」3

“Th-This…”

My fists were trembling before I knew it. Like a person naked in a cold place, the sound of my molars grinding against one another came out through my teeth in succession.

“Traitors—!

It was a rage that I had never experienced before, nor in my past nor present life.

[1] 만수르 refers to the name of emerati prince Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan whose name has become synonymous in internet slang to ‘a fabulously rich person’ and by extension can be used to describe someone who has an abundance of something, in this case, a person who has an abundance of refreshingness.

[2] 사이더 is internet slang for a refreshing/satisfying situation.

[3] korean wordplay that mimics ​​사자성어 (four character idioms). basically fake phrases that have the same homophonetical sounds as their hanja (chinese character) counterparts.


a few things this chapter:
can we give it up for lorella’s a+ acting skills in the beginning bc SIS NEEDS A GRAMMY FOR NOT ONLY THE ACTING BUT ALSO THE LEVEL OF SHAMELESSNESS SHE HAS LMAOIHSDJISDF PLS i could never

ALSO NOT LORELLA LOWKEY GOING YURI ROUTE SHGDLFIJSDF sis legit could not pull her eyes off of sable and i do not blame her for that bc same sis we are the same we no better than a man fr ;-;

ALSO OMG SLAYYYY i’m one of those few that may have been swayed by our newly introduced main character candidate now HGLKDSSFDJ I DO LOVE MYSELF A GOOD GIRLBOSS THO GHDSLFKSDFJ
like girl fr i didn’t even need to be fully introduced to the marquis to know i wouldn’t like him fuck him LMAOOOO
also some intrigue on our girl sable bc whats that mark on her neck ???? interesting hmmmm and so the pLO T THICKENS

ALSO this chapter is SO LONG WTH plus the slang goodnight, esp after this chapter bc wtf was that poem at the end i wanted to kill myself after trying to find all the definitions and stuff HGDSLKFFJ

SMCS Ch 15 — The Path to Becoming a Main Character is Difficult

The bitter north wind constantly howled across the other side of the thickly frozen river. Every time the bare branches knocked on the shutters of the window, a loud rattling sound would echo throughout the mansion, as if an uninvited guest was knocking on the door.

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


The bitter north wind constantly howled across the other side of the thickly frozen river. Every time the bare branches knocked on the shutters of the window, a loud rattling sound would echo throughout the mansion, as if an uninvited guest was knocking on the door.

The warmest place in this eerie mansion was the drawing room, which had a large fireplace. Firewood was constantly being put into the fireplace which was large enough for six or seven children to lie side by side in it.

The Duke of Periot leaned back comfortably on the large comfortable leather sofa in front of it, silently rifling through a thick pile of papers.

He looked a bit more languid, unlike he normally was, with his sleeves rolled up and several buttons that had always been buttoned to his neck were left loose.

Thanks to that, his subordinate, who was always by his side, noticed that Periot was in a considerably good mood right now, but unfortunately, the guest who had his head bowed on the other side, was completely unaware of that fact.

“Is it… to your liking?”

The guest who had set foot into the duke’s residence, which rarely had guests, was an interior designer. He wiped the sweat from his forehead. It was due to the constant cold sweat that was sweeping through his whole body.

He was widely rumored to be able to transform an old mansion into one that seemed completely new, no matter how old it was before. Thanks to that, he has dealt with all kinds of nobles who were known as the best in the empire, but it was the first time in his life being this nervous.

He thought he had already experienced all sorts of hardships, but his voice trembled just from standing in front of him.

It was probably all because of the Duke of Periot, who was still looking at the papers with an expressionless face.

Although he was also surprised when he had received a commission from a duke who was more notorious for being a hero who had led the war to victory, it wasn’t as much as when he had confirmed the bizarre request he had entrusted to him.

At first glance, it was a seemingly ordinary request to change the interior decoration of the Duke’s mansion that had been neglected for a long time. The problem was with the details in it.

It said that it wanted him to build a mansion so beautiful that once you set foot in it, you’ll never want to leave again. It was such an obscure request, he didn’t know what the hell he should do.

Although he couldn’t really understand it anyway, his safety was at risk. So he had really done his best as a contractor.

First of all, starting from the exterior, he had decided to decorate the interior in a beautiful and luxurious way, to the point where it could even be seen just from a quick glimpse outside the window. Where your gaze is stolen from just a glance.

He had also put a lot of effort into filling the mansion with a warm and gentle feeling that could suppress the atmosphere of the barren northern territories.

That wasn’t all. Next, a sofa that was rumored to feel as if your body was melting just by sitting on it, a bed that was widely praised to be as soft as if it were made from clouds in the sky, and a legendary pillow that could make even the most insomniac patients snore in their slumber the moment they lay down on it; he planned to change all the furniture in the whole house. All so that no matter where you lean your body against, you’ll never want to get up again…!

As a result, a luxurious and beautiful interior that was comparable to that of the imperial palace, a house that was like a comfortable cradle, second to none in the world was created. Of course, the price was also beyond imagination too.

However, the long silence made the contractor uneasy. His shoulders continued to droop under the weight of the pressure.

“Duke…?”

He cautiously attempted to call out, but Periot’s eyes were still on the papers. He swallowed dryly.

Maybe he thought it was too expensive. But he only did it according to the Duke’s instructions… 

The longer the silence, the more complicated his mind was, filled with all sorts of conclusions.

“…Good.”

At that moment, Periot’s mouth opened after a while.

“Is this sofa the one that’s written here?”

Only then did the interior designer, who had been frozen by the tension, finally exhale the breath he had been holding in.

“Th-That’s right!”

“It’s definitely comfortable. Alright, let’s proceed like this then.”

“Yes! Just leave it to me!”

The contractor, who had bowed to 90 degrees, retreated from the room as if he were fleeing.

After the door of the drawing room shut, Periot slowly got up from his seat, moving the thick paperwork to one side with an indifferent hand.

“That should be enough for the maintenance of the mansion… Is there only one more thing left to do now?”

A knock sounded on the door, as if in response to his mumbling to himself. The door swung open as soon as he briefly gave his permission.

The knights who entered immediately saluted him at once.

At their feet was a woman who had sunk down onto her knees.

“Periot!”

Her shrill voice echoed in the quiet drawing room

“H-How could you do this to me…?!”

It was none other than his mother, Emma Chambers, who was wailing loudly with bloodshot eyes.

Periot stared vacantly at her, and asked in a horrifyingly calm and indifferent voice.

“Why did you lie?”

“I did it all for our family…!”

“What does lying about Lorella having an affair with another man have to do with our family?”

“Because I wanted you to do better! Any mother who has children would understand me-!”

“And, you’ve also pocketed the Duchy’s fortune. Even firing and changing out employees for no reason. Do I need to continue?”

At those words, Emma’s mouth closed like magic. In the freezing drawing room, the only things that were furiously moving were her eyes which were darting around, and her heart, which was beating like crazy.

When had her son, who had left for the battlefield, become like this…?

But Emma Chambers’s thoughts weren’t able to continue. Because at Periot’s brief nod, the knights then forced her to stand up.

“Let go of me! How dare you do this to me…! Periot, Periot!”

Emma called out her son’s name in a pitiful voice the whole time she was being dragged away.

But he didn’t even bat an eye. It had been a long time since he had heard something like his mother’s voice.

Instead, there was only one voice in his ear.

“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…”

The sight of her blushing without being able to finish her sentence was extremely vivid in his mind. Each movement of her kicking the ground sheepishly with her toes, perhaps because those words had been difficult for her to say, rushed freshly into his mind.

This decision of his to transform the Duke Mansion on a large scale was because he had taken her words literally.

Periot stared out of the window expressionlessly, as if nothing had happened.

Since the mansion was on a hill, the particularly harsh and barren state of the territory was able to be seen at a glance. He frowned momentarily.

…He almost forgot that she had to go through the territory in order to get to the house.

He ordered his subordinate to call for Baron Ketton immediately. He was an administrative noble who was in charge of the overall facilities and maintenance of the northern territories. The subordinate withdrew, replying that he would bring him right away.

He had been negligent in managing his territories since he had been restricted to the battlefield. However, even the desolate and barren North would be able to come back to life after several repairs.

It was only then that the figure of Lorella, who had returned to the completely transformed mansion of her own free will, was vividly appearing before his eyes.

“…Ha.”

How troublesome.

A deep laugh escaped his tightly shut lips momentarily. The shoulders of his aide, who had been standing at a distance from him, flinched in surprise, but Periot paid no attention to him.

He just murmured to himself in a low voice.

“Let’s see who wins, Duchess.”

After a long time, a faint smile appeared on his lips.

* * *

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:

Ever since the day Periot had left, I had been so busy I didn’t even have enough time to eat.

The first thing I did was find a list of people who had been present as guests on the bride’s side at my wedding. Then, I contacted everyone who I could technically call my relatives.

Although I didn’t know what Periot would do with Louis, in any case, I would have to be in charge of the Mayred household while my brother was away. I didn’t know if there would be people who held animosity toward me, so I had to check it all in advance.

I had the thought that they might harass me if any of them were in cahoots with Louis.

However, the results were rather unexpected. None of them even brought up the syllable ‘Lou’ in Louis, and I didn’t discover there to be a particularly close relationship between us during that time, so the standard sentiments to maintain the relationship and get along well were politely gifted and returned.

Although they tried not to make it obvious, everyone seemed to feel uncomfortable… no, they seemed to feel a bit scared around me. Even though I didn’t really know why, in any case, it still seemed to have taken some of the burden off me.

However, the situation surrounding me was still grim. It was because of the second ordeal that followed.

As I sat in Louis’s study reading the list of names, I tried to hide my trembling hands as I looked up at the butler standing in front of me.

“There’s… this many?”

“My apologies, Miss Lorella.”

The butler bowed his head, as if it were his fault.

But how could it be his crime to shoulder? I forcibly pulled up the corners of my lips to comfort him.

“It’s alright. It’s what I expected anyways.”

…Damn it! Even though I had said that, I actually wanted to cry!

What I was actually holding was a list of the people who wanted to retire from the mansion’s employees.

From now on, I hadn’t wanted to spend a lot of manpower on a mansion where I’d be living alone. I didn’t have the money for that either. So I had just told them that if there was anyone who wanted to quit, to just speak up comfortably, but…

I didn’t know that the majority of them would want to quit!

Wouldn’t I go bankrupt from paying for their severance pay?

But a promise is a promise. Even if the road ahead seems hopeless, I had no choice but to keep my word.

With tears threatening to overflow and trembling hands, I stamped dozens of resignation letters, one after another.

The reasons for their retirement were mostly the same. Habitual overdue wages, excessive amounts of overwork, an excess amount of profanity directed at the character and personality of the previous employer…

Louis, you dog shit bastard, bastard not even worth killing!

A constant slew of swear words kept coming out of my mouth throughout the stamping. The more the amount of severance pay I had to pay increased, the more the level of insults increased.

In the end, I cautiously called out to the butler who was next to me, diligently helping me organize the paperwork.

“Excuse me, butler…”

“Yes, Miss Lorella. What’s the matter?”

“That over there, sell it all.”

The old butler, whose gaze followed my fingertip pointing at the wall, asked back in surprise.

“You mean the decorations on the wall? But gems like that will be hard to find again. Besides, there will be an ugly hole in its place once you’ve taken it all off…”

“Well, we don’t have enough money, so…”

The butler quietly shut his mouth at my tearful words. Then, he nodded silently, his white eyebrows drooping.

By the time the paperwork for the employees was finally concluded, the contractors that had been called in by the butler had arrived. Like a swarm of locusts sweeping through a grassy plain, they swept away everything that shone, leaving nothing in their wake.

Ha, haha…

Looking around at the interior which had become devoid of color in an instant, I rubbed my eyes that were prickling with tears.

Despite that, the only reason I was still able to laugh against my will was thanks to the large decorative cabinet occupying one side of the drawing room. It was filled with expensive ceramics, crystal fountain pens, and even gold tableware.

That’s right, it’s fine, even if there’s only this much left! The peeling walls could be covered with wallpaper. And I can just commission a painter to paint a mural over the really unsightly places.

How about titling it, ‘The Consequences of Greed’, or ‘Consumption Within One’s Limits’?

It was when I was hiding my upset feelings with trivial thoughts. Another ominous knock rang out.

“Miss Lorella…”

The butler, who looked like he was going to die compared to earlier, had come to see me again.

“Wh-What’s the matter?”

“The contractors who built the mansion came to visit.”

“What?”

“They’ve come to ask for the overdue payment…”

He quietly held out the paperwork to me with both of his eyes tightly shut. It was an estimation of the construction for this mansion.

My mouth dropped open as I counted the zeroes in the number written at the bottom. It was an amount that I had never seen in my previous life, nor even when I had been in the wealthy Duke’s residence.

“This bit…!”

Bam!

The latter part of that harsh swear word was replaced by my fist hitting the table. A numbing sensation spread from the edge of my hand to my elbow, but I didn’t notice it at all.

I ended up collapsing in a corner of the sofa, as if I had passed out.

Kurk.”

“M-Miss Lorella…!”

The face of the butler, who had rushed toward me in a flurry from the shock, was blurry, as if it had been obscured by fog. 

Heavens, he hadn’t paid for even half of the construction costs yet.

There’s actually a lunatic who starts interior work before he even pays off the construction price!

My whole body trembled as tears of anger filled my eyes.

Damn it, Louis, you bastard. Even though I had hit him on the head several times, if only I could wring his next for the last time! I even regretted that I might have handed him over to Periot too obediently.

But what could I do? Things had already happened like this, and it was my job to fix them.

I pointed to the cabinet with a shaky hand.

“Then we should sell all of that too…”

“Yes…”

The butler didn’t question me this time. He simply quietly opened the cabinet door, carefully packed the luxurious items into a box with his white gloved hands, and retreated from the drawing room.

At some point, the beautiful sunset seeped to the empty decorative cabinet. As I gazed at the golden sunlight that quietly spread over empty glass, a single line of tears slid down my cheek unknowingly.

Ahem.”

However, I quickly raised my head, suppressing my short bout of muddle headedness. Then, I shouted in a brave voice.

“It’s fine!”

I still have a lot of things left! For example, this luxurious sofa in the drawing room! Antique furniture that’s been made by famous craftsmen! Vintage antiques!

That’s right, the walls that were plastered from top to bottom with glittering gold or the decorative cabinet that was lined with all sorts of jewels seemed too much like a nouveau riche.

Although there were no ornaments, an antique mansion with an elegant style would suit the main character much more.

As I tried to console myself, with another knock, someone else cautiously poked their head out from behind the wide opened door.

“What is it now!”

I screamed unconsciously, the sound of a knock on the door almost provoking neurosis.

“M-My apologies, Miss…”

In front of the door stood a pale looking Joy. She continued tearfully with a face that seemed as if she were about to run away at any moment.

“The maids who decided to continue working here were wondering when their six months worth of wages would be paid…”

Oh, right.

I jumped to my feet and hurriedly walked over to Joy.

In the midst of a series of employees retiring, there were some people who had chosen to stay in the mansion, refusing my lump sum of severance pay.

How grateful I felt towards them. Their words were like a ray of light to me, who was at a loss in a dark reality.

So… drunk with emotion, I made a promise that no one forced me to make. And that was an impulsive promise to pay them six months worth of wages all at once!

“Miss, the only reason we said we wanted to stay was because we like being by your side. So don’t overdo yourself…”

Joy, who was looking around the drawing room which had been transformed into a barren landscape, cautiously suggested. However, I couldn’t make an empty promise.

“It’s fine, Joy. I should keep my promise. It’s alright.”

Then whispered quietly in her ear.

“…We can just sell the furniture.”

I clenched my teeth harder than ever after I finished speaking.

No, but oh my god. To think that the main character would be broke!

However, I didn’t want to show any weakness in front of people who believed in me and would be by my side. Especially in front of Joy, who had been put in such a tough situation just to help me.

* * *

The furniture that was packed away was loaded into carriages lined up in front of the mansion, one after another. The laborers, who had been cautiously handling the expensive furniture to avoid any damages to it, all only returned well past midnight.

All that was left in the study, which had been full of antique furniture and expensive books, was a table with a shaky leg and an old chair that Joy had picked up somewhere in the past.

“This fucking world!”

I let out a gasp and swiftly pulled out a pen and paper. There was only one good thing left for me to vent my fury on.

It was to write a letter about the invalidity of my marriage to Periot.

Thanks to this, a petition filled with anger that made you want to vomit blood was completed. I even had the thought that a princess who was deposed just before taking over the position as queen couldn’t be more angry than this.

Haa…

I lost all my strength after finishing the matter with lightning speed. All that was left to do now was to receive the testimony of Commander Leonon.

Leonon. That name reminded me of another concern that I had put off due to the urgent situation. I quietly opened the system window in the empty study.

「Total shares sold: 12,900 shares」

Perhaps thanks to all my labor and efforts, the shares had already surpassed 10,000. However, the system window had remained silent during the time when Periot had left and I had struggled alone in the mansion.

I muttered to myself as I alternated between looking at the transparent window and white paper.

“Should I… ask the Commander to meet up with me?”

Right, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to meet up and complain about what had happened to me so far.

The kind Leonon would definitely console me. And I could also grasp this opportunity and sell some shares too!

It was when I had made my decision, sitting down on the creaky chair and grabbing my pen again.

“Although I don’t know the details about anything else, how about you get a new chair first?”

Suddenly, a voice filled with pity sounded from behind me. Although it sounded friendly at first, the somewhat playful voice sounded very familiar.

After looking back in surprise for a while, I sprang up from my seat.

“Nice to finally meet you again!”

Then, I grabbed the collar  of Winnard, who had suddenly appeared behind me when no one was there and was standing there as if nothing had happened.

“You pretended you didn’t know me and just walked away when I was locked up, didn’t you?! I begged you so much, and you just ignored it?!”

“W-Wait, Lorella. Because of the regulations, I had no choice-”

“Shut up! You bastard!”

The sight of his brown hair fluttering before my eyes made me even more angry.

“You said you were a guide! You said that you’d help me!

I grabbed him by the collar and shook him with all my might.

Keok, heup…! S-So, I…”

Winnard began to talk intermittently while choking.

“I came here… to help you, urk… and came all the way here…”

“Help me?! What help? Now you come?!”

“Since I thought you’d be curious… about who your rival is…”

At that moment, my hand, which was about to strangle him, stopped.

“Rival…?”

Winnard quickly stepped away from me while I was repeating what he said without realizing it.

“That’s right, your rival.”

A sly smile graced his mouth as he readjusted his extravagant silk cravat.

“Isn’t there apparently a saying in some Eastern country that says, if you know your enemy and yourself, you can win every battle? It’ll help you if you know what kind of people the other main character candidates are. Do you want to go look with me?”

In my mind, I wanted to swing my fist at least once at his cheeky face, but my body moved against my wishes.

I had no choice but to grab onto his hand that was stretched out toward me.


3.7k words ;-;

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SMCS Ch 14 — Even Lions Will Eat Grass If They’re Starving

Urk, heuk…

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.’

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


Urk, heuk…

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.

Clomp clomp.

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.

Ahhhh!

“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.”

“Pardon…?”

“Go and ask them, since you’ll be meeting them soon.”

“W-Wait…!”

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.

“Duke! Dukeee!”

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.

“Get up.”

“…”

“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.

“Young Miss…!”

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.

“W-Wait!”

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.

“Periot…!”

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.”

“What?”

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.

Ha…”

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.”

“…What?”

“Of course, I thought of taking you by force at first, but I changed my mind.”

“W-Why?!”

I asked back, flabbergasted. Not because I didn’t hear the answer that I had expected, but because it was a completely unbelievable reply.

“Because…”

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.”

“What…?”

“I think that would satisfy me.”

Huh!

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…

Ding-dong!

「‘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.”

Ding-dong, ding-dong!

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.”

“Wh-What?!”

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…

Ding-dong!

「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac’ buys 9,000 shares with a nosebleed! It’s a new record!」

“On gra-ahhhh!

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.

“Lorella?”

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…”

“What…?”

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.

Heuk…”

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.

“…Miss.”

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.

Aish! Fuck!”

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.

“Fuckkkkk!”

Thwack! Thwack! 

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.

[1] 존맛, 베리 딜리셔쓰, 하 오츠 very delicious in korean, english and chinese

[2] 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.

[3] 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 ;-;

SMCS Ch 13 — Who Dared To Do This?

Mmph!

My arms were already trembling. Then, before I knew it, sweat was already gathering profusely by my forehead. 

But I didn’t give up, and with all my might, I tried to wrench the bars apart in the opposite direction. 

Urk…!

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


Mmph!

My arms were already trembling. Then, before I knew it, sweat was already gathering profusely by my forehead. 

But I didn’t give up, and with all my might, I tried to wrench the bars apart in the opposite direction. 

Urk…!

I used so much strength that I could hear the sound of my teeth clenching together.

Hot blood rushed to my head in an instant. It felt as if my face was about to burst. 

I tried everything, but… it was just impossible. The ignorantly tough iron bars remained motionless, far from being opened.

“It’s impossible, I can’t do it!”

In the end, I eventually let out a huge breath and sank to my knees. I didn’t even have the strength to stand because of my weak legs. And even so, I wasn’t even able to sit comfortably due to the sticky filth on the floor.

“How in the world am I supposed to get out of here?”

I couldn’t even sell any shares since I was stuck in here all by myself! Didn’t I still need to sell shares or something in order to get cookies?!

But what? I believe in you? Good luck?!

The more I thought about it, the more I started to seethe with anger.

“What sort of guide is that?!”

He was no help, no help at all!

I hunched my shoulders as I gritted my teeth. My body trembled from the cold air that seeped in between the gaps in the wall.

Just how long had I already been imprisoned here for? It felt as if my sense of time itself was disappearing since I couldn’t even tell whether it was day or night. 

Being isolated alone in the dark seemed to make a person even more helpless than I could have ever imagined.

“…if only there were cookies.”

I sniffled and muttered to myself, the sadness surging up within me all of a sudden. 

And to make matters worse, my stomach made a rumbling sound at the thought of cookies.

But it was at that moment when I heard the sound of the door being opened from a distance. Then, the sound of footsteps walking quickly in my direction. 

In any case, it was an unusual sensation.

‘…what is it?’

I instinctively held my breath and listened tensely. Since there wouldn’t be many people who could go in and out of the place I was confined in.

Wait, no, it could just be one person. The very person I wouldn’t be delighted to meet right now.

The shadow of a light pierced through the darkness that was the basement. The light came closer and closer, and soon, the owner of those footsteps was soon revealed.

My guess was exactly right. 

Red hair which was softly illuminated by the candlelight and dim lighting of the lamp. The ridiculous sight of a round bag of ice laying on top of a head that was hit by a vase.

Tch. Just what sort of situation is this, Lorella.”

Louis, who had approached closer to the barred room with a candle, clicked his tongue while looking down at me.

Upon seeing the detestable face of the person who was right in front of me, I started to tremble with anger all the way down to my fingertips.

“Since it’s even come to this, you should’ve also come to realize it by now.”

“What realization? The realization that my only family is trash?”

When I retorted back, as if I had been waiting for that moment, the bastard’s face turned purple with rage.

“I had hoped that you had reflected on yourself, but to think that you’re still talking like that…!”

Louis pointed his finger at me as he raised his voice.

“Are you rich or are you just thoughtless? You married into a duchy that could’ve allowed you to live luxuriously for a lifetime, yet you’re going to kick that good fortune away to the curb? It seems like your head really is just a decoration1.”

“A comfortable life? Are you kidding me? How can you have the shameless face to comment on that when you walk around wearing a head that can’t think of anything but that topic?!”

Now, rather than anger, a deep regret came over me instead. 

I should’ve hit him with a rock from the beginning. No, rather, I should’ve broken his two legs instead! If I had done that, at least he wouldn’t have been able to walk around with that shameless face of his!

It was then Louis rolled his eyes and said in a gloomy voice.

“I wouldn’t have let you get away with it if you weren’t worth using. Does this seem like a joke too?”

“Try it and you’ll see.”

Eyes that seemed to catch and kill each other collided fiercely in the air. At this point, it was not an exaggeration to say that we were not siblings, but worse than enemies right now.

It was Louis who broke the silence first.

“On the topic of living comfortably all this while in the luxurious Duke’s mansion, I don’t know why you’re complaining about it.”

He rebuked me in a stern tone, as if he were dealing with an immature child.

“Sure, you’ve cried because it’s been tough once or twice, but are you only going to come to your senses when you’re living on the streets?”

“What…? Living comfortably?”

It was so ridiculous that both my eyelids and voice trembled at the same time.

“Are you asking me since you really don’t know…? The treatment I received while I lived in that house?”

But of course, you may not have cared about your younger sister. Since I certainly didn’t consider him as family either anymore.

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:

“Even if you receive poor treatment, what’s the big deal in that? If you endure one thing, you’ll have the opportunity to securely grab onto a portion of good fortune.”

However, this crazy pig bastard couldn’t help but run wild with his own vain delusions.

“Think about it, now is the right time since Duke Periot has done a meritorious deed on the battlefield. Are you really going to miss out on this great opportunity just because of your petty pride?”

Louis shrugged his shoulders as if he didn’t really understand what I was doing and went on.

“No matter what people around you say, you can just say ‘yes, yes’, and smile like a doll. Where else in the world can you find such an easy job to do? It’s a no-brainer. I’d do it for the rest of my life if it were me.”

I thought my molars would be the first to break if I just continued to listen. 

To think that I couldn’t even let a punch loose after hearing this sort of bullshit. I grinded my teeth to the point where I was almost plagued with a disorder from my repressed anger.

Just smile like a doll? An easy job that I could do for the rest of my life?

I suddenly remembered the days I spent in the dukedom.

Emma Chambers would always crumple her face whenever she saw me. Even though she usually meticulously managed her expressions for fear of wrinkles on her forehead and nose, it was to the extent where she couldn’t when she saw me. 

The gaze that ran down me from head to toe was always filled with contempt and ridicule. As if she was looking at a tiny bug.

As if receiving such glances for two years wasn’t enough, my every move was also monitored.

She interfered with everything I wore and ate, and on days when she was in a bad mood, would even go and pester me for hours on end, asking why I had drank coffee instead of black tea. 

The days where I couldn’t even drink a cup of tea when I wanted to were like hell. If I didn’t even have the goal of getting a divorce, then I probably would’ve gone insane. Seriously, even the mere thought of it made my blood boil.

“In any case, you still seem to be out of your mind. This is the perfect place for you to reflect on it, so do more of it while you’re here!”

“Wait!”

I urgently grabbed onto Louis, who tried to turn around with a click of his tongue.

“You only seem to know one side of the story. A great opportunity you say, do you really think that’s the case here? Do you not know why I ran away from that house, even at the risk of my life? Who doesn’t want to live a comfortable life?”

Right, my first priority should be getting out of jail first. Then the next should be… having this bastard die!

With that thought alone filling my mind, I struggled to maintain my rationality and quickly threw out a bunch of nonsense.

“If you don’t hurry and submit a petition for the annulment of my marriage to the palace, the Mayred household will be finished! You mustn’t miss this opportunity, since we have witnesses as well.”

“What…?” 

Louis’s eyebrows jumped up.

“Wh-What? A witness? Who is it? Who dares to interfere with the duke’s affairs…!”

That half-witted thing annoyingly couldn’t follow what I was saying! That’s clearly not the point here!

“What’s so important about that? The Duke of Chambers is about to be completely ruined. If you don’t cut me off soon, not only will I be finished, but you will be too!”

I kicked the iron bars hard enough for it to make a loud bang. It was such a strong kick that even Louis stepped back instinctively. Although it was in a fit of anger, it was thanks to that a believable atmosphere was created.

“Wh-What the hell are you talking about…”

Louis’s pupils shook violently in confusion, but he soon came to his senses again and snorted.

“The Duke making a great contribution in this war is something that the entire empire knows. But you’re saying that the Dukedom is going to be ruined? Don’t be ridiculous!”

“Of course that’s what the citizens of the empire know. But who knows more about what happens in that family than I do?”

I grabbed the iron bars tightly and lowered my voice secretively.

“He did make that contribution. However, the problem is that he also made a huge mistake that can’t be overlooked. Furthermore, it’s related to the imperial family too…”

“What sort of nonsense are you spouting…”

“I’m sure it wasn’t only one or two people who saw me cursing by the lake. Then I’m guessing they didn’t tell you the state Periot appeared in? Just why did the duke search for me so frantically, and not anyone else?”

If Louis knew about what happened at the lake, then it meant that the events of that day had already spread in high society. I’m sure there’s also rumors about Commander Leonon and I, but Louis was probably only interested in the ones that concerned Periot and I.

The gossips of the social world would have talked as much about Periot’s appearance as I did. Since he had looked shockingly haggard on that day, even to me.

As expected, my prediction seemed to have hit its mark again. Louis’ pupils shook briefly, but clearly.

“The reason I’ve been making such a fuss was because I thought that you were completely on Periot’s side, but now, that doesn’t seem to be the case…Brother2.”

I hastily pasted3 on honorifics with a shallow smile. Anyone would’ve been able to tell that it was an awkward change, but Louis didn’t seem to mind as he was too preoccupied with his own thoughts.

“He isn’t just pursuing me because I ran away from home. This is all because I have a hold of his ‘weakness’…”

And when I continued to speak, I deliberately emphasized a specific word and pretended to be surprised and covered my mouth. When I did so…

“Weakness…? What is it?”

Louis took the bait. The space between his eyebrows was still wrinkled, but it seemed to be out of frustration now instead of malice. I could also tell from his voice, which was much calmer than before.

“Just tell me first! I need to know what it is so I can use it… no, so I can help you, of course!”

I slowly raised my hand and pointed to the lock on my prison cell.

“If you let me out, I’ll tell you everything.”

“What…?”

“The conditions aren’t equal, you know. How can I be sure that you’re not working with him just to find out how much I know? What should I do if you just steal the information and keep me locked up here?!”

Louis sighed briefly at my words. Then, he winked toward somewhere as a signal. Although I couldn’t see very well since it was far away and dark, it was probably in the direction with a door.

“Don’t have any unnecessary thoughts. There are soldiers guarding the front so escaping from here is useless.”

“I didn’t think of that.”

The sound of the lock being unlocked and the chains being lifted from it echoed quietly in the silence. 

The door finally opened with a clank. Louis approached me cautiously.

“Now, tell me.”

However, instead of answering, I repeatedly raised one knee at a right angle and then put it back down.

“What are you doing? Come on, just hurry up and tell me.”

“Ah, wait a minute. I’m just getting into position.”

I had no choice but to bring Louis down if I wanted to get out of here, which would be impossible just from biting his ear. Besides, there was nothing here for me to hit his head with. So all that was left… was just one place.

“Position? What position?”

It was when the punk had his head cocked to one side.

“I think it’s… here!”

Hoping I wouldn’t miss, I raised my knee and kicked him as hard as I could in his crucial place.

With a thud, the color faded from Louis’ face in an instant.

Mmph… urgh…!”

Far from the screams of someone facing imminent death, a short groan leaked out of his trembling lips.

Louis eventually fell forward as a heavy thud rang out.

Keo…heok.”

Louis lay meekly on the floor with both hands and knees, as if he were prostrating himself, and let out a breathless exhale. 

I took the opportunity to pull back the front sole of a high heel and kick him in the ribs once again. 

Thud!

Gasp!

“You bastard older brother! What? Good fortune? Just smile like a doll?!”

Thud!

“If you like the duke so much, then you go live with him instead!”

I continued to kick him, one after another, but Louis remained motionless, as if he was a dead mouse. I stopped kicking him and listened, but couldn’t even hear the slightest moan from him. 

I hurriedly turned around and ran out of the prison, leaving him on the floor behind me. Although I had to hit him for a long time in order to properly vent out my anger, I was now in a hurry.

If I missed this opportunity, I didn’t know if I’d ever be able to escape. However, I still had one more obstacle left in my way.

And that was the soldiers at the door.

“Stop right there!”

They shouted in dismay as soon as they saw me pop out from the dark. Then, they reached out to grab me.

“Where do you think you’re putting your hands?”

I spoke coldly before they could even touch me.

“How dare you touch me, the duchess? All right, Periot will be here soon anyway and my escapade will be over. Since I can’t do this, I’ll need at least one person to resolve my anger anyways.”

The Duchess.

That one word stopped the soldiers’ movements in their tracks. It seemed as if they hadn’t thought that far since they were only following Louis’ orders.

“I’ve remembered all of your faces, so you’d better look forward to it. As soon as I return to the dukedom, I’ll call you all in and make you pay for this!”

“S-Sorry!”

“If you understand, then get out of my way!”

The soldiers shrank back in fear. 

I raised my chin as haughtily as I could, trying to conceal my anxious state of mind. Then, at a natural pace, but faster than ever, I brushed past them.

It was when I finally grabbed the doorknob leading to the outside.

I could hear the sound of fierce footsteps from afar, approaching like a monster.

“Where do you think you’re going…?!”

I tried to open the door to leave, but a hand suddenly stretched out from behind me and violently grabbed my neck.

Ack!

Surprised by the unexpected incident, I struggled to escape, but his solid arm didn’t budge. My body was roughly spun around 180 degrees. Louis, with bloodshot eyes, was breathing heavily in front of me, as if he had been chasing after me in a frenzy.

“L-Let go of me!”

“You thought you’d be okay after touching me twice, huh?”

Louis tightened his grip around me with an even more dangerous smile. 

The pressure on my neck made it harder and harder for me to breathe. I twisted my body with all my might, but it was all in vain. 

Although he didn’t have a very large build and had small hands, I still couldn’t beat the strength of a man who was using all his might.

“What were you saying to me earlier? Repeat it one more time.”

“You bastard older brother… heup, if you like the duke so much, then you go live with him instead…” 

Although I was being choked to the point where I couldn’t even breathe properly, I still recited word for word what I had said as he asked.

“This bitch really said it again, huh.”

Then, there came a force as violent as those words that were spat out.

However, I was already so exhausted that I couldn’t even manage to kick my legs.

“Count…!”

I could see the soldiers rushing in in confusion and grabbing his arm.

Right, since they’re here, at least I’m not going to die… right?

However, there was still no sign of the grip on my neck slacking at all.

Urk…

It was when my airways were being blocked and I unknowingly opened my mouth again.

Bang!

The wooden door, which was the only way out, suddenly broke open with a loud noise.

…wait, it really broke.

Only then did the hand that was gripping me tightly fall away.

I sank to the floor as my shoulders trembled. I could feel my narrow throat struggling to breathe still.

A shattered piece of wood appeared in front of me. As I stared blankly at it, the sound of controlled footsteps caught my ears.

The moment I turned my gaze in the direction of that sound, a large, threatening black shadow suddenly appeared in front of me.

‘Who…’

I blinked and stared blankly at the person standing with their back to the light. The man slowly moved between the knights who were lined up on either side.

It was when he completely emerged from the darkness.

“Duke Periot!”

Contrary to the welcoming cry of Louis, I closed my eyes with despair, pessimism, and resignation.

“You’re here just in time!”

The bastard shouted triumphantly.

However, Periot still remained silent. He just stood there and took turns alternating looks between Louis, and me, who was still on my knees.

Then, he slowly raised his black gloved hand and lightly beckoned his index finger toward Louis.

Despite his extremely overbearing attitude, Louis swiftly ran towards him, as if he had just been graced by him.

“What do you think? My active role in…!”

It was then.

Keuk! W-Why… are you…!”

The body of Louis, who let out a suppressed moan, as if in pain, floated in the air.

…in the dark, by itself? No, it can’t be, there’s no way. 

I blinked my eyes and looked again.

Periot, who was clothed in black from head to toe, held Louis by the collar and had lifted him up. As if he wasn’t even heavy, and without even frowning. Louis’ feet, unable to touch the ground, were dangling pitifully in the air. And…

Argh!

His body flew away like a scarecrow and struck the wall. A cold voice sounded from behind the dull thud.

“…how dare you forcibly imprison my wife in such a place?”

I couldn’t help but laugh when the familiar sound of grinding teeth pierced my ears again.

Excuse me, but you did that too!

…You did that as well!

[1] 머리는 장식으로 들고다니다: ‘do you only carry your head around as a decoration?’ basically an insult that implies that your head is useless and that it’s only there for decoration.

[2] she switches from informal to formal speech here

[3] the difference between informal and formal speech is only one character at the end so she literally just ‘pastes it on’ to the end of her sentence


periot: how dare you imprison my wife in a dirty filthy jail cell ?!!!!
also periot: clearly has short term memory loss and has forgotten what he did in ch2,,,

SMCS Ch 12 — I’ll Send You to Hell

Ha, ha…!”

I quickly became out of breath. But I clenched my teeth and continued to run like crazy. 

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


Ha, ha…!”

I quickly became out of breath. But I clenched my teeth and continued to run like crazy. 

The harsh sound of his footsteps followed closely behind me. But I didn’t even have time to look back. Even when the sound of his footsteps grew louder and louder behind me.

“Young Miss! Stop right there!”

Yeah, wouldn’t you like it if I just stopped right here?

I quickly darted around the corner of the corridor as a staircase appeared in front of me. Although I didn’t know where it led to, it would be better to head down that direction first.

“Phew, ha…!”

My foot, which had been injured whilst running on that forest trail, was still full of blisters here and there, so I was extremely bitter everytime I ran. And on top of that, the mansion seemed to be vast beyond belief.

In the end, I gradually became more and more exhausted. However, as soon as I stopped to catch my breath, I couldn’t help but think that someone was going to grab me from behind. 

I used my body to push aside the people I encountered in the middle and descended to the first floor, but the exit was still nowhere in sight. 

Just where the hell is this? Which way should I go?

It was when I was looking around anxiously.

“Young Miss, over here! This way!”

I could see a garden in full bloom just over her shoulder. Anyhow, it seemed to be the exit leading out of the mansion. I sprinted with all my might in that direction. 

However, there were already soldiers that had come running from the opposite side. They too, had heard Joy’s voice, and had already closed in at a rapid pace. There was no way I could run faster than professionally trained soldiers in a long dress and high heels.

In the end, Joy, who had been trying to block their way and buy me some time, was thrown to the floor by the soldiers.

“Ahhh!”

Joy sprang back up on her wet like a roly poly and desperately tried to block them, but there was no way a skinny maid could deal with a bunch of burly men.

“N-No!”

Before I could even take a whiff of the air outside, the door had close with a thud. At the same time, my shoulders had been firmly grasped.

“Let go of me!”

I tried to resist them with all my might, but it was useless. As I was trying to free myself from their grasp, I heard the sound of footsteps rushing in from behind me.

It was Louis, who had been left behind, still struggling to catch his breath.

“You ungrateful bitch…!”

He raised his hand as he glared alternately at Joy and I. 

A sharp sound echoed for a moment as Joy’s head whips to the side abruptly.

“How dare you betray me when I fed you and gave you a place to stay?”

Joy covered her face, her whole body shaking without making a sound.

“What the hell are you doing?! Try raising your hand one more time and you’ll see what happens!”

I shouted and struggled desperately. However, I didn’t even have any time to worry about here, the strength behind the hands that gripped my shoulders growing stronger and stronger.

“Let go! I said let go of me!”

“Hey, you guys. Even if no one will know, you should still take it a bit easier on my little sister,” Louis ordered. “I haven’t even paid off all the construction costs yet, so it will be rather troublesome for me if the Duchess gets hurt. If it’s rumored that she’s been seriously injured, the people that have put their faith in the Chambers’ name and lent me money will disappear.”

Only then did the soldiers who were applying pressure on my shoulders fall back. 

However my body still remained stiff.

“W-What did you say?”

I asked while glaring at him.

“Don’t tell me, did you take advantage of my name for your own benefits?”

“I’m sure I can enjoy at least that much as an older brother. Besides, now that Duke Periot is the hero of the Empire, he’s no different to a goose that only lays golden eggs.”

Louis grinned and rubbed his chin. It was a wicked laugh.

At that moment, I suddenly felt as if I were going to faint. 

I had only fully grasped the whole situation now. Just how the poor Count Mayred had been able to afford to buy such a splendid mansion, and why he had locked me inside a room and prevented me from going out.

“More importantly, Lorella, to think that you ran away when your marriage pledge, which is more important than your life, was burnt to a crisp…”

His flippant mouth flattened in an instant. A ferocious look came over him as he slowly approached me.

“Are you insane? If you marry someone with a more noble status than you, you should live with gratitude until the day you die, how dare you do such a thing!”

I felt suffocated by his absurd remark. 

This fucker… I thought he was just a sunfish who couldn’t even make a peep in front of Periot, but turns out he’s a piece of trash who is the type to only act arrogantly in front of people weaker than him.

I felt lightheaded from the burst of anger that I couldn’t seem to suppress. I barely managed to support myself by grabbing on to the decorative table that was lined with antique pottery.

“And what’s with that scandal by the lake? I heard that it wasn’t just one or two people who witnessed you swearing at Duke Periot. To think that you’d stain my reputation like this…”

Louis cast a disapproving glance at me and clicked his tongue.

“Just know that you won’t ever be leaving this house until you’ve re-stamped the papers. If not for the Duke, you, who would’ve been married off as the second wife to an old man would’ve had no idea of any of this… tch.”

Oh, that’s it. There’s no reason for me to continue listening to such vulgar words.

“Shut up, you fucker! You’re full of shit!”

I shouted, my veins in my neck protruding as I clenched my fists so tightly my nails made marks in my skin.

“To think that I actually believed this piece of trash was my family! I must’ve been crazy!”

“Wh-What did you say…?”

Louis rubbed his deathly pale face with his hands harshly, as if he was shocked by what I had said. Rings with large jewels on them lined the fingers of both his hands. The sight of that stirred up the intense fury I felt inside even more.

“You seem to really think that you’re something since I’ve let you have your way. I was just going to go over it nicely but I didn’t think that you’d become this arrogant…!”

Louis approached with heavy footsteps, seemingly extremely worked up. It was an extremely intimidating stance.

“I’ll make you get down on your knees like a dog and beg!”

Then, a large hand stretched out toward me, as if trying to grab ahold of my hair. I quickly dodged the hand and grabbed the handle of a piece of china off the decorative table.

“What a fucking joke!”

“Aren’t you going to hurry up and apolog-ahhh!

A loud scream erupted from Louis’s mouth, along with a large bang. The piece of china, which had boasted an elegant appearance, shattered unattractively on his head.

U-Urgh…

That bastard ended up falling to his knees instead of me, clutching at his head.

The soldiers let out a quick breath for a moment and firmly grabbed onto my arms again. However, whether it was thanks to Louis ordering them to not take it too rough on me or the fury of either one of us, I was still able to shake them off rather easily.

“I… I won’t let you get away with this.”

I gritted my teeth and looked around for my next potential weapon(?). What soon caught my eye was a large vase which was made of marble.

Heup…!”

As I picked it up with a grunt, the bastard suddenly rose to his feet, as if he were startled.

“Wh-What the hell are you guys all doing?!”

The bastard, Louis, desperately clutched at his head as he shouted with tears in his eyes.

“Get this bitch back in her room right now… no, just throw her in the dungeon!”

Double the amount of the soldiers from earlier suddenly surrounded me again. I tried not to get caught, but it was rather difficult since I was still carrying a heavy vase.

I threw the vase with all my might. I had intended for the throw to break Louis’s head, but it was too heavy to fly that far. 

The sound of the thick pottery shattering echoed loudly, followed by the cry of me, who was being dragged away by the soldiers.

“If I… become the main character, I’ll definitely make it so that a bastard like you won’t be able to set foot on this land and survive!”

“…What?”

That punk muttered with a pale face as I made a racket while leaving the mansion.

“Did she… perhaps go insane?”

“Even if we’re all wiped out, I’ll still make sure to send your bastards to hell!”

A voice filled with anger echoed in the wide hallway.

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:

***

The soldiers pushed me behind iron bars. The floor was littered with filthy water, and to its side was a pile of damp straw, its purpose unknown.

It was clear to anyone that it was a commendable prison, completely isolated from the outside world to the extent that the only light there came from the lamp on the wall. 

How could there be such an unbecoming prison inside such a dazzling, luxurious mansion?

The soldiers, who wrapped a chain around the iron door and even secured it with a large padlock, quickly disappeared without even leaving a single hair behind, as if they already had a prior engagement.

When I was finally left alone, a hushed silence came to the prison. The only thing I was able to hear from time to time was just the sound of water dripping from somewhere.

You won’t get away with this, you damn red-head count bastard.

I had no other choice but to grind my teeth while thinking of dozens of ways to smash Louis’s head in.

However, even though it was just for a moment, an indescribable sense of despondency suddenly flooded in.

“So that’s why I had a bad feeling…”

I slammed my innocent head against the wall in an effort to quell my anger. 

When I had read novels as a reader, the main character’s brother always had dozens of comments claiming that the bastard was suspicious, even if he had only dome something slightly abnormal.

Why couldn’t a person act like that when they were actually in that situation? I suddenly remembered the comments on all kinds of novels and comics claiming that the main character was stupid. 

Writers, I’m sorry. 

Those female protagonists, they were all smart… at least a lot more than me.

But the regretful event has already happened. Being like this wouldn’t change anything. 

I let out a long sigh and looked around. I finally saw my surroundings, perhaps because I had finally adapted to the dark of the prison. 

There was a perch full of cobwebs that seemed to pop out of the gap in the dirty wall. Even half of that seemed to have decayed, seeming as if it would fall apart with just the slightest brush.

I didn’t even know where this was, or which side of the mansion this even was.

If I knew this would’ve happened, I should have paid more attention when I was being dragged in.

“Tsk.”

I approached the door as I clicked my tongue. 

As I swept my hands over the iron bar, I felt the rough and cold touch of iron on my fingertips.

“This is almost like child’s play compared to the iron door that was broken last time.”

Although of course, it was thanks to the power of cookies back then. 

Now there were no cookies, nor was it a situation where I could sell shares to get them. Nevertheless, my mouth flattened into a straight line before I knew it.

Because I had something I believed in. 

I took a deep breath and cried out loudly.

“Winnard!”

Although I didn’t have a bonus cookie, I had a guide who could control time and space at his will instead!

“Winnard Veldrian!”

There was no mistaking it, the guide must have been assigned for this very occasion, I’m sure of it! I shouted again at the top of my voice with that belief in mind.

“Help! Guide!”

“…my ears are about to fall off.”

Then, a low voice came from behind me.

“Ah!”

I was delighted to find that when I looked back, a tall man leaning against the wall with a luxurious cane was standing before my eyes.

“As expected, you did come after all!”

I stood before him with a sigh of relief. It didn’t matter where on earth he came from or how he had come into an enclosed prison. Anyway, the only thing that was important was that he had answered my call.

“Help me, alright?”

The corners of his mouth which seemed spiteful at first glance now seemed to be mischievous.

“You want me to help you? For what?”

“Stop joking around. I’m not in the mood for that right now.”

I hurriedly opened the system window.

「Total shares sold: 8,600 shares.」

“Now, look at this.”

Gloatingly smug, my eyes glittered at Winnard, whose gaze was fixed upon the window.

“Just look at this shocking progress.”

“That’s right, I’ve also been monitoring your performance.”

Winnard’s smile became deeper, as if he was satisfied. He added with a nod.

“You did a great job.”

I asked him with excitement, elated by his praise. No, rather than asking for a favor, it was almost as if I was just telling him instead.

“First, I need to get out of this place right now. Can you break me out of here? And prepare a horse for me too. There’s no one behind the mansion, so… no, no.”

I corrected myself quickly. 

What if I got caught riding a horse? Rather than that, I’d rather…

“Can you just send me to the official headquarters of the Paladins right now?”

Since there would be someone there to help me. And that person was Commander Leonon!

Although I was rather ashamed to say that not only was my ex-husband someone I couldn’t associate myself with, but also my biological older brother. However, I had the thought that he would treat me without any prejudice. 

When I’ve established a safe place for me to stay, I’ll meticulously plan out what to do. 

How should I gruesomely and effectively beat up that bastard Louis, who deceived me? If I get rid of him, then naturally, I’ll also get the County back as well. Wasn’t that just like killing two birds with one stone?

“Hmm.”

However, Winnard just stood there and reacted rather ambiguously.

“What are you doing? Hurry up and get me out of here.”

“Of course I want to get you out as well. Yeah, I’d really like to do that, but…” he continued, scratching his temples as if he were troubled.

“It’s strictly forbidden for a guide to directly intervene with a candidate’s situation.”

“Huh?”

“You have no choice but to escape on your own. Whether it’s through receiving a bonus, whatever it is, you’ll need to work it out on your own.”

“What? Wait, I’m calling you because I clearly can’t do that right now!”

“Ah, I have to go now. I have something urgent to do after all.”

“Hey, hey, wait a minute…!”

“I’m sure you’ll do a good job, Lorella.”

Winnard patted me on the shoulder, nodded, and gave me a smile so beautiful it seemed like a painting.

“Good luck.”

And with those last words, he disappeared before my eyes with a slight breeze. Before i knew it, I was left alone in the prison, looking around in the dark once again.

However, Winnard was nowhere to be found. The person who had just been in front of me had disappeared once again.

“Hey…!”

I let out a sigh at the bewildering situation without even realizing it.

What do you mean urgent business? What could be more urgent than getting me out of here?!

I searched outside of my cell with my face forcibly squished between the bars, but I couldn’t even see a trace of an ant.

“Winnard! No, what the hell? Did you really leave?!”

My voice echoed in the dark prison, as if it were a huge cave instead. 

Of course, there was no reply either.

“Damn it, you can’t just leave! Come back!”

I finally grabbed onto the iron bars and shook them violently.

“Hey, you bastard!”

No matter how many times I shouted, my surroundings remained deadly quiet, with only the sound of water droplets dripping from the ceiling onto the stone floor to break the silence.


sorry for the long wait, uni hit me like a truck ;-;

SMCS Ch 11 — What, There Are Shitty Situations Like This Too?!

General Leonon accompanied me all the way to the County in Aurea, just like he had when I had come to the knights compound.

“Thank you so much, Commander. I don’t know how I’ll ever repay you…”

I bowed down over and over again to express my deep gratitude. However, he didn’t seem to be relieved until the end. 

“No, please don’t say such things. And if there’s ever a problem… please feel free to contact me whenever.”

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


General Leonon accompanied me all the way to the County in Aurea, just like he had when I had come to the knights compound.

“Thank you so much, Commander. I don’t know how I’ll ever repay you…”

I bowed down over and over again to express my deep gratitude. However, he didn’t seem to be relieved until the end. 

“No, please don’t say such things. And if there’s ever a problem… please feel free to contact me whenever.”

I laughed for no reason when I saw him rub his neck sheepishly after talking. It seemed to be a habit that came out whenever he felt shy. 

Leonon quickly added a few additional words, like someone who was trying to erase their embarrassment. 

“Although I might receive the letters a little late if I’m out handling something, it won’t go over a day’s time unless something extremely important has happened. And…”

“Yes, please go ahead.”

“If I ask you how you’re doing from time to time… would that be alright?”

I was a little touched by his unexpected words. 

Leonon was the first ‘person I could rely on’ since I had come to possess this body. Since I didn’t have a friend I could trust and give my heart to when I had been trapped in the Duke’s mansion. 

Although it had been to sell shares, it was also true that I had gotten closer to him than anyone else during the time we had spent together. Apart from not being able to sell shares with him, I also felt that it was a shame for me to part with him already.

But from what he said, I now knew that I wasn’t the only one who felt the same way. There was a side of my heart that felt rather emotional. 

I responded with a bright smile and nodded vigorously.

“Yes, of course!”

A smile that seemed as if it had been drawn on appeared on the slightly flushed face of Leonon, who was standing there.

Even so, he hesitated for a long time, as if he still weren’t relieved, before finally managing to get back into the carriage. 

After watching the distant back view of the carriage for a while, I finally took a step forward after the carriage had disappeared around the corner. And stood in front of the flashy golden gate that towered high above me.

‘Is this really the Mayred Country…?’

I had no choice but to doubt my eyes. Was this imposing grand mansion really the right one?

The building, which could be seen at first glance peeking over the fence, was so large and splendid that it was even comparable to Duke Periot’s mansion. 

The mansion of Count Mayred which I had seen when I first opened my eyes when I possessed this body was so old that it seemed to be on the verge of collapse. Not only that, but the clothes of the maid who had served me were also extremely worn out and shabby.

I still couldn’t believe it, so I went to double check it, again and again, but it was definitely the name ‘Mayred’ which was engraved on the marble plaque. 

Leonon had been the one to guide me here in the first place, so I couldn’t have come anywhere else.

“I guess our family’s situation has improved.”

Not knowing how to get in, I ended up snooping in front of the door for no reason until two people who looked like gatekeepers came out. 

Did I perhaps look like a suspicious person? Even if I had been misunderstood like that, I couldn’t do anything but open my mouth to hurriedly make some sort of excuse.

“So, actually, I’m…”

“Y-Young Miss! Welcome back!”

They shouted loudly and bowed their heads hurriedly, even before I had started to consider how to make myself seem less suspicious to them. 

Instinctive… no. It was an action that seemed almost mechanical. 

Did they recognise my face right away? It would’ve been a little easier for me if I could also remember who this person was.

This seemed to be the first time I felt sorry for leaving the County too soon. 

As I entered under the guidance of the gatekeeper, I was able to see the state of the mansion at a single glance. 

The windows of the three-story mansion boasted beautiful patterns on the enormous-looking elaborate stained glass. Both large and small fountains were built in the beautiful garden which was filled to the brim with a variety of flowers.

‘That’s a bit weird?’

The sound of Periot’s voice as he laughed at the fact that the Mayred family wasn’t able to contribute anything more than the meager annual tax lingered in my ears. They moved to such a grand mansion, yet couldn’t afford to pay their taxes?

As I cut across the mansion through the garden, I could see a maid squatting down and snapping off a rose with her bare hands.

I nodded my head slightly and sent away the gatekeepers. Then, I carefully approached her from behind.

There was a lot of blood on her fingertips, as if she had been continuously stabbed by the thorns. However, the maid continued to move her hands diligently without resting. 

The sight of that made my eyebrows knit in a frown.

“A-Ahem.”

The busy hands finally stopped after I coughed for no reason in order to draw her attention. As she turned her head to look at me, the shock and astoundment that were spreading in her eyes that were wet with tears was extremely obvious.

“Y-Young Miss!”

An extremely urgent voice rang out.

“If Young Miss has come here…! N-No. W-Welcome back!”

She stuttered and almost lay flat on the floor. 

Seeing as she had recognised me at once, she seemed to know me well, but I couldn’t remember who she was at all. 

“I’m sorry, but who are you again…?”

No matter how much I thought over it, it was definitely my first time seeing her, so I asked her cautiously with my eyes squinted. 

“What are you talking about, Young Miss? It’s me! Joy!”

It was when the maid had spoken up and told me her name.

The front door suddenly opened, before someone appeared inside the mansion.

“Why is it so noisy in here?!”

Although I couldn’t see their face very well due to the dark shadows, I could definitely make out the red hair that was exactly the same as mine. 

That person was probably my older brother, Count Louis Mayred.

“Huh?”

Sure enough. 

The man who had come out shouting stood blankly in place for a moment and stared at me before soon shouting out a welcome. 

“Lorella! It’s really you!”

He ran toward me quickly and grabbed both my hands. Anyone could see at once that it was an attitude which was that of welcoming back a friend or family member one hadn’t seen for a long time.

I quickly bowed my head in greeting, afraid that I’d get caught making an awkward expression.

“…It’s been a while since I last saw you, Brother.”

“Just how long has it been, huh?! I’m glad you seem to be healthy too…”

The man even started to cry, as if he couldn’t control his happiness.

A slightly upturned nose, a particularly round chin, and even red eyes. He looked extremely similar to me. Even without having to check his name, anyone would be blue to tell that he was my brother. 

But… was our relationship ever close enough for you to welcome me like this? The letters he had occasionally sent to me didn’t give off that impression though.

I asked cautiously, looking into his eyes to probe his reaction just in case.

“You must be surprised that I’ve come to find you without contacting you beforehand all of a sudden, right?”

“This is your house too, so what’s this mention about contacting?!”

Louis Mayred jumped like a person who had just heard nonsense and started examining my face.

“Your face seems extremely haggard. It really breaks this older brother’s heart…! Wait, what’s this bandage on your foot? How did this happen?”

“I, actually, it’s a long story…”

“Let’s go inside first. We’ll talk more comfortably inside.”

The Count smiled brightly and took my hand before I could even finish speaking.

“Although I don’t know why you’ve come here without any prior notice beforehand, seeing as you’re safe and sound, I feel like I can let out a breath in relief.”

Honestly, I thought our relationship had been one that was like strangers, so it felt a little odd for him to treat me so affectionately.

Though, looking back on it now, there was nothing in his letters that indicated that our relationship was bad.

I followed him into the mansion, scratching the tip of my nose awkwardly.

*** 

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:

As Louis led me into the drawing room, I couldn’t even think to close my mouth. Although the exterior already looked dazzling from the outside, the inside was far more luxurious. 

Though there were also expensive ornaments scattered everywhere in the hallway, it was not at all comparable to the drawing room. The expensive furniture and decorations here and there were so expensive to the point where I couldn’t even begin to imagine the price. Is the thing on this tapestry a pearl? No way, was that a jewel on the wall too?

“Since we moved, I changed all the decorations to ones that were brand new. Do you like them?”

He looked back at me with a smile, despite the answer already being obvious from my expression as I looked around the drawing room. 

I sat on the edge of a sofa and nodded quietly. The sofa which was decorated with satin was also adorned with jewels on its armrests, making me even more cautious as I sat down. 

“Now, tell me, Lorella. Just what on earth happened to you for you to suddenly appear without contacting me beforehand?”

Louis sat across from me and leaned forward toward me. It was an attitude that displayed that he couldn’t stand his curiosity. 

When I was asked by him, I told him what had happened until now in a calm and collected manner. Of course, excluding the things about shares and cookies, but simply a brief summary of what had happened thus far. 

When I finished speaking, Louis’s lips, which had been stuck together, finally started to move again after a long bout of silence, perhaps because he was so shocked.

“S-So the marriage vows have been completely burned to a crisp?”

“Yes, that’s correct.”

“Huh… I can’t believe it. It clearly had the protection of divine power, so just how…”

He rubbed his face with a look of embarrassment on his face. 

It wasn’t unreasonable for Louis to be so surprised. Since the burning of marriage pledges was something which had never been heard of before.

“I know, right? I’m not sure what went wrong, but it seems like the divine power that protected it had somehow weakened.”

“No matter how much the master was away from his position, how could he be so negligent in taking care of things?”

It was a considerably sharp question. I quickly tried to search for the appropriate words to reply to him before I became even more suspicious.

“Come to think of it, I think I heard that the Duke was meant to call for the priests when he came back…”

While I was avoiding his gaze, I heard a knock from the door. 

When Louis told them to come in, the maid named Joy, who had been picking flowers in the garden earlier, and another maid came in with a tea set on a tray. 

“Pardon our intrusion.”

They began to set up the teacups with their hands trembling. The teacups clinked against each other and the sound of its clatter rang out loudly.

“Do you guys have to be this slow… tch.”

As Louis clicked his tongue at the sound, the maids lowered their heads even deeper. Their particularly rough fingertips along with their heads which were bent to the ground happened to catch my eye.

Both of them were full of so many untended wounds I felt my fingertips hurting just by looking at them. 

It was when I was overcome with pity and was about to ask Louis to call for a doctor for them.

‘Wait a minute.’

Suddenly, the appearances of the people in the Duchy flashed through my mind. 

My mother-in-law, Emma, who was stingy with everyone but herself, and the employees of the cold and dark mansion, who always had nothing but an insignificant cold and the like. 

They were also scared of Emma, but it wasn’t enough for them to avoid eye contact with her like this. Although Emma also wasn’t a great person who gave generous rewards to her servants, she also wasn’t vicious enough to pretend they weren’t sick or injured.

‘Sure enough… it’s weird.’

An unknown sense of incongruity had slowly been engulfing my body since earlier. I wasn’t sure why, but I even felt a sense of déjà vu, as if I had seen a similar scene somewhere else before.

“How long do you want me to wait for you? Just leave it and get out!”

Louis couldn’t stand it in the end and frowned while ordering fiercely, perhaps because the cautious movements of the maid made him feel suffocated. 

At his sharp shout, the maids quickly left the drawing room with their heads down. Louis continued to stare at the back of their figures with cold eyes.

“You must’ve suffered this whole time, Lorella. But you don’t have to worry about anything now”

When the maids finally fled the room and the door closed, a gentle voice rang out in the quiet drawing room, as if he had never lost his temper at all.

Though the voice was clearly one of affection, I strangely still felt goosebumps all over my body.

“From now on, this older brother will take care of everything.”

Louis got up from his seat and approached me, then held my shoulders and personally helped me to my feet. 

“N-No. Wait a minute. Now I need to file a petition to the imperial family…”

“Right, that’s quite urgent. But you’ve been on the road for a long time. You must be extremely tired, so don’t think of anything else and just get some rest first. I’ll give you the largest and most comfortable room.”

I ended up being pushed out of the drawing room by his hands. 

Without even having a chance to have a single sip of the freshly brewed black tea.

***

I was guided into a fairly spacious room.

However, the atmosphere inside was quite different from Louis’s words of promising me the largest and most comfortable room. 

Unlike the drawing room and hallways, which were full of a burdensome amount of ornaments, this room only had a bed, a small table, and chairs, making it a bleak and dreary sight. 

Thanks to this, I felt even more uneasy. The sense of incongruity that I felt as I entered the mansion continued to inflate in size.

“It’s weird. No matter how much I think about it, it’s so weird.”

After sitting in the chair and muttering to myself, I eventually jumped up from my seat.

“I’m sure Louis is hiding something.”

Once they swelled up, my doubts weren’t able to subside very easily. I couldn’t even rest comfortably like this now. 

In any case, I thought I should meet someone who would be familiar with the situation of the Count’s mansion in secret. Although it’d be a little more difficult to hear about more serious topics, it’d still be more helpful than not knowing anything at all. 

Naturally, the first person that came to mind was the maid named ‘Joy’. Since she seemed to know me quite well, and also seemed to have a sense of goodwill toward me. 

In addition to that, that strange reaction I saw when she had first seen me had constantly kept bothering me. 

I definitely needed to meet her. 

It was when I approached the door with that thought and grabbed onto the doorknob.

“…guard her. Don’t even let a single rat get in.”

“Yes, Count.”

The voice of Count Louis, which seemed to be giving orders to someone, sounded faintly beyond the door.

…What?

Again, an ominous foreboding made the back of my neck cold. 

I held my breath and turned the doorknob carefully. I made a small gap very slowly so that they couldn’t hear the sound of the door opening. 

An insidious voice flowed more clearly through the thin gap, like a thread.

“Don’t give any of the maids any access either until I give my permission. Do you understand? And just in case there’s someone who can help her waiting outside, we’ll post a guard right underneath the window too.”

“Yes, I understand.”

“She showed up on her own without me having to go and catch her, so I shouldn’t miss out on this opportunity.”

“Please rest your worries, Count.”

…There was no mistaking it. It was definitely about me.

I could feel my heart beating like crazy. The sound of my heart thumping was so loud that I couldn’t even hear what the two were saying very well. 

Are you locking me up? No way, don’t tell me, are you perhaps colluding with Periot too?

‘No matter what it is, I have to get out of here!’

It wouldn’t be too late for me to find out why they were doing this after I had gotten out anyway. 

I tried to relax and be as calm as possible by slapping both of my cheeks lightly.

And then I opened the door. 

I saw the shock on Louis’s face as he turned his head in my direction.

“Oh, Brother! What are you doing here?”

I pretended to be oblivious to everything and spoke in a bright voice.

“W-What’s the matter, Lorella?”

“The thing is…”

Louis couldn’t hide the fluster on his face and ended up stuttering. His eyes were darting here and there, as if trying to figure out whether or not I had heard him. 

I rolled my eyes inwardly and answered with a bright smile.

“I want to look around the mansion. There are also a few things I need…”

“I’ll order them next time. There are also quite a few messy and cluttered places since they haven’t been cleaned up yet. I can’t possibly show them to my younger sister who I haven’t seen in such a long time.”

Though both of his eyes were still shaking anxiously, his shameless answer still sounded out.

This bastard seemed to be a professional in feigning ignorance.

“And if you need anything else, just tell me.”

“But…”

He seemed to think that I’d just let it slide if he used his usual ways. 

I deliberately glanced at the soldier standing next to him, letting the end of my sentence trail off.

“I don’t mind telling this to you, Brother, but…”

“What?”

“It’s because I don’t want anyone else to hear it.”

When I hesitated and looked at my surroundings for a long time, Lewis finally reluctantly leaned in. With his forehead wrinkled, as if it were annoying. 

And as soon as his ears came close to my lips, I bit them as hard as I could.

Argh!

As soon as he screamed and wrapped both hands around his ear, I quickly turned around. And then began to run with all my might. 

“Catch that bitch right now!”

I raced down the hallway, leaving Louis, who was shouting raucously, behind. 

Whenever I breathed out raggedly, I got angry once again. 

I now knew why I kept getting that sense of déjà vu. That’s right, it’s a scene that I had seen countless times already.

To think that my ex-husband, the fucking psycho Duke of the North, and even the family that I had trusted were all nuclear waste!

Just what was this shitty cliche novel-like situation?!


ARGHHHHH PIECE OF SHIT BROTHER CHECK

i just knew he was a snake the minute mf yelled at maids smh

like u just know someone’s a shitty human being when they yell at hospitality ppl like bro ur getting angry for WHAT ??? they’re literally earning minimum wage wtf

SMCS Ch 10 — Let’s Continue to Stay in Touch!

“We should get going, Duke.”

“…”

The coachman cautiously asked in a faint voice, but Periot remained silent.

However, a knight in a black helmet who was with him noticed that the Duke had blinked slightly at that moment. It was something that was only possible because he was one of the few subordinates who were trusted by Duke Periot, who didn’t allow strangers to be by his side.

“He said to set off.”

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


“We should get going, Duke.”

“…”

The coachman cautiously asked in a faint voice, but Periot remained silent.

However, a knight in a black helmet who was with him noticed that the Duke had blinked slightly at that moment. It was something that was only possible because he was one of the few subordinates who were trusted by Duke Periot, who didn’t allow strangers to be by his side.

“He said to set off.”

As soon as the order was given, the coachman slowly moved the carriage. Then the knights who were guarding him immediately dug their heels lightly into their horses sides. 

Although there were quite a number of knights who guarded the carriage in order to escort the Duke, not one of them even made a sound.

The only sound around them was the sound of the horses’ hoofs galloping down the rough dirt path, as well as the sound of small rocks hitting each other.

This was because of the unusual atmosphere of Duke Periot, who was currently in the carriage. It was such a vicious aura that even the subordinates who had worked by his side for several years did not dare to roll their eyes freely.

Periot silently gazed at the scenery outside his window, his face devoid of any expression. Unlike in the North, the leaves, which were all an abundant fresh green, quickly passed by those black eyes.

“Give me proof that I’m your wife! Show me the marriage certificate, you psycho bastard!”

In an instant, Lorella’s voice echoed in his ears. Although she seemed to have spilled a lot more words other than that, only those words of hers kept coming to his mind.

How the hell did she know that her marriage vows had been burnt? She wouldn’t have been able to confirm it since she was too busy trying to escape. There was only one answer he could think of.

‘The very person who started that fire must have told her.’

That wasn’t the only thing he was concerned about. The worried gaze of the Holy Knights Commander, Leonon, who had not even once, left her side.

As soon as he recalled such a scene, his sharp jaw twitched, then convulsed shortly.

“…Haa.” 

A rather low laugh escaped from between his lips.

Thanks to this, his subordinate, who was sitting across from him, couldn’t even breathe properly.

That was also because the Duke’s face, which had stiffened like a stone sculpture, and only jerked up the corner of his mouth, was the very picture of fear itself.

Although he had witnessed all sorts of horrific scenes a countless number of times while roaming the battlefield with Periot, this was the very first time he had been so afraid.

He continued to go over and continuously wipe the polished scabbard. Since if he didn’t, he flet as if he would suffocate under the heavy atmosphere.

But then, an indifferent voice sank into his ears.

“What could possibly break a barrier made from divine power?”

It was impossible for him not to realize that this question was referring to the divine power which protected marriage vows. The subordinate answered cautiously.

“Either strong black magic which directly opposes divine power, or it disappears on its own once the length on the protection contract expires…”

The subordinate was unable to continue speaking easily and paused for a while. However, it was clear that Duke Periot, had asked, despite knowing the answer himself, so he had no choice but to continue speaking until the end.

“It could also be broken with something that possesses a stronger amount of divine power than it. For example, a holy sword…”

The subordinate bit his lip after finishing the conversation with much difficulty. Only the sound of the subordinate gulping tensely could be heard, resounding throughout the quiet carriage.

“There wouldn’t be any other way, right?” 

“Yes. It’s strictly managed, so if there was another way, it would’ve already been made known.”

“…Right, then in that case, the confirmation should be finished quickly.” 

At that moment, Periot’s head slowly turned to the face the front.

“Unless Lorella has found another way.”

The subordinate couldn’t even answer, and bowed his head so low that his neck started to hurt.

All the while rubbing the goosebumps on his arm in the chilly air that was coming in.

*** 

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:

After Periot finally left, I just couldn’t bring myself to raise my head in front of Commander Leonon anymore.

Not only did I get a high-ranking Knight Commander involved in such a nonsensical thing, but I had even created a dark past where I had lost my temper and even cursed in front of him. The more I thought about it, the more embarrassed I became.

‘Now I understand why you didn’t reveal your circumstances.’

However, on the day I showed such an unsightly appearance to him, Leonon didn’t criticize me, nor did he think I was weird.

 ‘Don’t worry. I will protect you until everything has been wrapped up.’

No, rather, instead of criticizing me, he had even comforted me. Thanks to that, my heart was at ease.

…But of course, that didn’t last very long. 

“I’m going crazy, seriously!”

I tore at my hair as I shouted, staring at a system window in a room devoid of any other people.

“Why is such a guy to your taste?!”

What a preference!

A sigh leaked out of my mouth. I heard that filing a petition to the Imperial Palace was a fairly long and complicated process. I barely had enough time to hang onto that, but now I even had to embrace such an ordeal.

With my eyes wide open, I slowly read the last message that had popped up once again.

「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac1 has bought 300 of your shares.」

「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac’ smacked their lips and purchased an additional 200 shares.」

「Drool.」

“500 shares…”

What should I do?

Although it wasn’t an amount of sales that was enough to make my eyes roll into the back of my head, but it was still one that was hard to ignore.

Numerous contradictions in my mind repeatedly bloomed and withered.

After struggling for a while, I looked out the window and muttered to myself.

“It’d be better for me to listen to other people’s opinions rather than to make the decision on my own…”

But then I shook my head. Who could I consult about this? It’d be a relief just for me not to be treated as a lunatic.

If there was someone who I could confide in, then there was only one. And that was the person who had come to find me, saying that they were a guide, Winnard Veldrian.

However, even though I didn’t know, I could still roughly guess how he would answer. If you don’t, you’ll die, so in the time you’re using to think about this, even selling just one more share would be good.

Although we had only ever seen each other once, I was sure of it somehow.

Huuu…”

I took a few deep breaths and finally got up from my seat, clenching my fists.

“Okay, I’ve made up my mind.”

Then I proceeded to shout, as if proclaiming to the world.

“A lion won’t graze on grass, even when it’s starving!”

It was a decision I had reached after thinking for a long time. Just a few hundred shares, it’d be enough for me to just earn that elsewhere. It wasn’t as if there were only obsessive maniacs who could buy my shares.

So let’s never associate ourselves again with that crazy Grand Duke of the North! Right, that’d be better.

No, but wait. If we think about it again, a few hundred shares is still something… 

“What the heck!”

I slumped down in my seat, holding my head which was full of lingering regrets.

But then, I heard a knock at the door.

“Excuse me.”

Hearing that familiar voice, without even having to ask who it was, I quickly ran to the door and opened it.

“Commander…!”

My heart seemed to purify itself just by looking at that shining blond hair and those friendly eyes that seemed to resemble a puppy.

“I asked the priest and he said you were resting in your room, so… I didn’t know if I’d be disturbing you or not.”

“No, you’re not disturbing me at all. I was just about to take a walk since I felt so stuffy in here.”

“I see. As it turns out, I also just happen to be free right now, so would you like to go with me?”

I smiled broadly in a positive sense. 

Yeah, at times like this, the more diligently I had to work to sell to the hype king.

In fact, I stayed at the temple for a few more days after Periot left. It was just in the event that something unforeseeable would happen.

Meanwhile, Leonon would come and check in on my wellbeing in person whenever he had spare time. He seemed to be worried that I might have been shocked by what had happened at the lakeside.

Of course I was shocked. Not because of Periot, but for some other reason… 

I chatted with him about this and that and headed to the backyard full of white lilies. 

On the way there, we not only encountered some priests, but also a few members of the Holy Knights. As soon as the knights saw Leonon and I, they greeted us in a polite manner.

It wasn’t just that. The gazes that followed Leonon’s every step and gesture were full of admiration and loyalty, and when he occasionally stopped and asked how they were doing, they would rejoice like an excited boy.

To think that the popularity of the new Knight Commander, who was now in his third year, was this. I could once again feel how much Leonon was loved and trusted as a leader. 

Thanks to this, my heart became even heavier.

It was because I had belatedly recalled that this kind commander, who was loved by everyone, had been dragged into something extremely ridiculous by me.

What if I got stigmatized as a nuisance by the members of the Holy Knights Order? Everyone wouldn’t point at me while clenching their teeth, saying, ‘don’t you dare touch our Commander!’.

“Duchess.”

As I was walking with these thoughts in mind, I heard a friendly voice next to me. When I turned my head to meet his eyes, Leonon hurriedly corrected his words with a red face, as if he was flustered.

“Oh, my apologies. You wouldn’t really like to be referred to as Duchess.”

“It’s alright, Commander. Even so, if you could, please call me Lorella instead.”

“Alright. Miss Lorella. It’s nothing, but…”

“Without the Miss.”

“…Yes.” 

Leonon paused for a moment before whispering my name, Lorella, in a slightly lower voice. At the same time, I could hear the sound of shares being sold, as if they had just been waiting, but I waited for what he would say first.

“You said you had family in Aurea. That… were you talking about Count Mayred?”

Although it was a sudden question, I now had no need to hide it, so I meekly nodded my head.

As long as he knew that I was married to Periot, it wouldn’t have been too difficult for Leonon to find out who I was.

“I personally found out just in case. Duke Periot passed through Aurea and went straight back to his fief. Count Mayred wasn’t found to be in any danger either.”

“What?”

“I’m sorry that I just did what I liked. However, it seemed as if you had been depressed this whole time, so I wanted to give you some encouragement and good news…”

Leonon scratched the back of his head in embarrassment, then smiled kindly.

“You must have been worried about the safety of your family members. Both the Count, and everyone else in the mansion are safe. So you don’t have to worry too much.”

“Th-That’s right…!”

I didn’t hide the corners of my lips that went up in a smooth arc, but revealed it all.

Never once had I worried about the wellbeing of my family, nor of my brother, whom I had only seen once, but Leonon’s news was like a cool waterfall cascading down to a thirsty person.

Periot had returned straight to his fief!

Still, I was worried I would have had to continue staying in the temple just in case he had gone to over turn the County upside down. Of course, although it was a very comfortable place, and everyone was kind to me, I couldn’t be indebted to them for the rest of my life.

Especially since my brother, the Count Mayred I remembered in my mind, was a timid human being who couldn’t even look into Periot’s eyes properly.

Although I had only seen him once after possessing this body, there wasn’t anything else to think about since he had continuously trembled throughout the wedding ceremony.

‘Even if by any chance, my brother happens to overhear the news and tries to persuade me, it’d be enough for me just to hold on until I could put in a complaint to the Imperial Palace.’

After that, even Periot wouldn’t be able to do anything.

“I… I want to go and see how my older brother is doing, but would that be okay…?”

After thinking about it for a while, I opened my mouth and mustered up the most pitiful voice I could. Then, Leonon nodded immediately, as if he had already guessed what I would say.

“Of course. Just let me know and I’ll prepare a carriage for you right away.”

“Thank you. Then…”

As I was about to say that I wanted to ask for it right away, I suddenly paused momentarily.

Wait a minute. 

What if the situation turned out better than I had expected? Of course, it was my wish to just settle down in the County and remain there, but the problem was that there might not be any reason for me to come here ever again.

The excellent shares vending machine… that was Leonon, I might not ever be able to meet him anymore! That absolutely could not happen!

“…Commander.”

I blinked nonchalantly and looked up at him. Then, those eyes that were as blue as the deep sea, but were warmer than anything else in the world, met mine.

“I’m fully aware that the official headquarters of the Knights of Ecrestus isn’t a place for me to come and go without any business. I know that, but… would I be able to come back here again?”

“You’re saying something obvious again. If it’s Miss Lorella, everyone will gladly welcome you back here anytime.”

Although Commander Leonon smiled kindly and responded with a gentle smile, I shook my head violently on the inside.

‘No! This isn’t it!’

There was nothing for me to see in the knights if it was without him. Moreover, since he was a very busy person, there was a high possibility that I wouldn’t be able to meet him again, even if I went to visit the Knights Headquarters again as I pleased.

It would be better for me to make it clear and confirm it right here.

“So, what I’m saying is… I feel so sad to think that I may not be able to meet with the Commander again like I am right now…”

“Me?”

“Yes, so…”

I pretended to be on the verge of tears to no avail and continued to talk.

Although I wished that even a single drop of tears would flow out, nothing came out in the end, so I had to resort to lowering my eyes and covering my mouth with my hand.

“What should I do when I want to see you…”

At that moment, I could see the Commander’s eyes tremble slightly.

“Whenever you want to, you can contact me… n-no. I’ll contact you from time to time… to see you.”

Although I was concerned about his somewhat stiff voice, it fortunately didn’t seem as if he found it unpleasant or uncomfortable. Rather, he just seemed a little shocked by what I had said.

“Really? Then we can continue to meet each other?”

“…Yes.”

“You’ll come and see me, even if there isn’t a special purpose for the visit?” 

“Of course.”

“Oh, what a relief!”

I was so happy that I forgot all about trembling and being coy, and shouted out loud.

“Then, please promise me.”

I smiled broadly and quickly stuck my pinky finger out in front of him.

Leonon stared at my hand for a few moments without saying a word, then gently linked his pinky with mine. I didn’t know why, but his face suddenly became red, as if it were on fire for some reason.

Ding dong! Ding dong! Ding dong!

The loud sound of the bells rang out, one after the other. Beyond the screen, where the numbers had started to rise rapidly, I saw Commander Leonon standing among the lilies which were swaying in the wind, blushing.

It was truly such a beautiful and delightful sight.

[1] the word 광공 was originally derived from bl novels, but is now known widely across novels as a character who is overly obsessed with the female/male lead.


EVERYONE THANK THE ARTIST FOR THE MEAL BC UGSDLFKJDSFJ IM CREAMING AT BLUSHY LEONON YESLGHDKFJFSDJFDS WE BEEN FED RL GOOD TONIGHT !1!1!1

SMCS Ch 9 — You’re Not Supposed To Eat That!

“Lorella.”

He slowly stepped forward while calling my name.

His black hair, which had been neatly arranged and brushed back, even on the day he had returned home after a long war, was for some reason, a mess, with bits and pieces of it sticking out here and there.

His eyes, which never always seemed to be aloof, no matter what the circumstances, were sunken and bloodshot, giving off an indescribably vicious atmosphere. 

Even his complexion was as pale as a corpse’s.

And by the way… why were his clothes also in such a mess?

It was the appearance of someone who had neither eaten nor slept for a few days.

this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!


“Lorella.”

He slowly stepped forward while calling my name.

His black hair, which had been neatly arranged and brushed back, even on the day he had returned home after a long war, was for some reason, a mess, with bits and pieces of it sticking out here and there.

His eyes, which never always seemed to be aloof, no matter what the circumstances, were sunken and bloodshot, giving off an indescribably vicious atmosphere. 

Even his complexion was as pale as a corpse’s.

And by the way… why were his clothes also in such a mess?

It was the appearance of someone who had neither eaten nor slept for a few days.

In fact, although we had only met twice in the span of two years, I had still heard about Periot while I was living in the Duke’s residence. 

I was also well aware that he had knife-like nature which was famous for not leaving even a pen in his office just in any random place.

So it was hard to believe, even if I saw it with my own two eyes. How could such a Periot appear here in such a thoroughly ruined state? 

Perhaps I was dreaming.

“I just asked the two of you what you were doing right now.”

With each step he took, the long sword that was hung at his waist moved with an eerie sound. Thanks to that, I realised that this was in fact, not a dream.

Yeah, in fact, this wasn’t a dream, but rather, the entrance to hell, right?

As soon as I heard that frigid voice, the sprigs of flowers that were swaying to and fro with the wind behind Periot seemed to resemble the emaciated arms of the dead, beckoning to me to go to hell.

Even the once beautiful lake seemed to look like a black swamp of the dead, one which had no return once crossed. Goosebumps ran down my spine. 

Just why was that man here? Don’t tell me you came all the way here from chasing after me?

Just when and where did you start watching from?!

As I recalled what I had been doing until just now, I felt a chill envelop my whole body, as if all the blood from my body had just been drained from my body.

‘Th-Thankfully it was a failed attempt…!’

What would have happened if my eyes had really been filled just with shares and I had actually pressed my lips against his?!

The answer was fixed. I would’ve been sightseeing in the afterlife already.

Since no excuse would’ve worked on a psycho who imprisons people right away at just one word of his wife seeing another man…!

“Why can’t you speak? Are you perhaps suffering from aphasia1?”

While I hesitated to answer, Periot came closer and closer toward me. It was when I unknowingly took a step back in retreat due to the pressure he was emitting from his body.

“Hold on.”

Someone was blocking my way. 

A clean, white, and wrinkleless uniform underneath long blond hair.

“How surprising to meet you in a place like this. It’s quite far from your estate.”

It didn’t take very long for me to realise that the person standing in my way was General Leonon.

“Don’t tell me you came all this way just because of this person?”

The sound of the footsteps that were approaching stopped abruptly at Leonon’s question.

“Although I don’t know what’s going on, doing this here won’t be a good idea. There are many eyes watching.”

Even in front of this wretched Periot, who seemed to be possessed by an evil spirit with a grudge, Leonon still spoke in a calm manner.

Periot laughed briefly, as if he were dumbfounded.

“I should be the one to ask what’s going on.”

But he soon glared at Leonon with blazing eyes.

“Just what is the new head of the Holy Knights doing with someone else’s wife right now?”

The sound of his teeth grinding slipped out, and even reached all the way to me.

“What? Wife…?”

Leonon’s eyes, which were looking back at me slowly, were full of unmistakable shock. I couldn’t look him in the eyes, as if I had become a sinner.

Although I couldn’t tell him and hid it, I was still planning on being honest with him and apologising one day.

If only that crazy Grand Duke of the North hadn’t exposed everything like this!

“Yes, that’s my wife.”

At that time, Periot spoke while raising his chin arrogantly. His face was full of mocking laughter.

It was the same expression he had when I had handed him the divorce papers. When I recalled the memory of that moment, I started to get angry without even realising it.

“Who the hell is your wife? Who?!” 

I quickly ran past Captain Leonon.

“Give me proof that I’m your wife!”

“…What did you say?” 

Periot frowned with displeasure, but that didn’t matter to me. I wasn’t that angry or afraid, since more than anything else, I knew he couldn’t show any proof.

We only had a wedding and lived together for less than a day, and our wedding vows, which were the most important of all, didn’t even exist anymore!

Under the laws of this country, aristocratic marriages without a marriage certificate were considered null and void. It was something I definitely couldn’t be unaware of since I had wanted to escape from that hellish Dukedom somehow. 

I took a deep breath and delivered the final blow.

“Show me the marriage certificate, you psycho bastard!”

*** 

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:

At some point, before I knew it, the sun began to set as dusk began to settle in.

A rather chilly wind blew continuously from the other side of the lake. Periot’s disheveled hair also swayed alone with the wind.

Although it wasn’t my first time feeling it, I once again realised that Periot’s eyes were like a deep cave, devoid of even a single light. Those black eyes which were like obsidian somehow made my spine feel cold just by looking at it. 

During my stay in the Duke’s mansion, I had heard the servants whispering about his eyes, but I had never felt it as deeply as I did today. 

As I turned to face Periot, who was staring at me with a sharp force behind his eyes, my heart began to pound like crazy as the excitement and adrenaline rush from earlier gradually began to wear off.

However, I tried not to show it and stared at the man who was standing upright like a stone statue with all my might.

It was clear that he wouldn’t be able to pull out the marriage certificate since it had already been burned to ashes. And unlike the Dukedom, there were many eyes here, as well as Leonon, so he wouldn’t be able to forcefully drag me away.

So I wasn’t afraid anymore…!

“I’m a psycho bastard…”

The lips of Periot, who had been quietly muttering to himself, gradually curved into a smile. A smile that was clearly made by his cold face suddenly came to mind.

…No, actually, to be honest, I’m still a bit scared!

Why the hell are you laughing? Just where in what I said was so funny to you?

“Yeah, like you said, I can’t bring it out. But so what?”

He very slowly approached Leonon and I. Although Leonon was blocking me just in case of an unexpected situation, Periot’s gaze still remained directly on me.

“Once it’s in my hands, the fact that it belongs to me remains the same, Lorella.”

“Huh…”

I was taken aback and was dumbfounded at his easygoing whisper. What he had said was just so ridiculous that I didn’t even know what to say back to him.

Just when I was looking at Periot with my mouth agape, someone stepped out in front of me once again.

“Hold on.”

Beautiful blond hair that was clearly noticeable, even in the dark. It was Commander Leonon.

“It’s rather difficult to just pass over those words just then. Is it true that the marriage certificate doesn’t exist?”

Right, I was so angry that I had forgotten that the only person who could help me right now was actually right beside me. His calm voice felt like a ray of light from heaven.

I rejoiced and hurriedly opened my mouth.

“I’m telling you the truth, Commander! The vows have already been burned to ashes!”

Leonon looked me straight in the eye, like someone who was trying to see if I was lying.

It wasn’t unreasonable for him not to believe me. As a marriage becomes null and void if the marriage vows disappear, everyone makes sure to protect it in a variety of ways.

In particular, it was common practice for aristocrats of Duke Periot’s calibre to bring in a high-ranking priest and create a boundary with their divine power.

But for me, I had no choice but to hope that Leonon would believe me unconditionally.

“There was a fire in the mansion the day I ran away. If you ask the Duke’s serants, you’ll be able to find out that what I’m saying is true!”

I almost shouted in desperation and clutched his arm tightly.

“So, Duke Periot and I are no longer…”

“Lorella, that’s not where you’re place is supposed to be.”

At that moment, an ice-cold voice cut me off. 

When I turned my eyes, I saw a pair of indescribably harsh eyes look at me… No, to be more precise, he was glaring at my hand which was holding onto the arm of Commander Leonon.

However, rather than letting go of that arm, I held onto it even tighter. This was my only lifeline right now.

“Are you going to test my patience?”

Periot spat out each word, as if he were chewing, in a low voice that seemed to have been pulled up from underground.

Then, the expression on the face of him, who was striding toward me, became indescribably frightening. I swear, this is the first time I had seen such a hideous and vicious face in both my current and past life as well.

“I was wondering what you were so dissatisfied about that you’d even run away from home, so…”

However, in the face of fear, my anger outweighed my fear.

What are you so dissatisfied about? Those were the words I never wanted to hear from the mouth of the person who remained ignorant to the shame and humiliation I had been subjected to for two whole years.

“I guess I should listen to what you have to say at home. We should go back right away.”

“What are you talking about, listening to what I have to say?!”

I shouted and hurriedly hid behind Commander Leonon, as if I were going to argue with only my face peeking out. 

“Someone who was on the battlefield for two years and didn’t even bother to send a letter back, and now you want to talk?!”

 “Lorella.”

A rather low and cold voice seemed to grab onto the back of my neck.

“Whether you shout or swear at me, do it by my side.”

Wait, no, his hand which was clad in black leather gloves stretched out toward me without any hesitation, as if he really was trying to grab onto me.

“I don’t want to! Why should I?”

It was when I was about to sink down to the floor in order to resist and stay in place somehow.

“You should calm down.”

Commander Leonon tore Periot’s arm away. Holding onto his wrist tightly, he looked into Periot’s eyes and said.

“Aren’t you scared right now?”

It wasn’t that I was scared, but rather, I was trembling with anger… 

However, it seemed like I wasn’t the only one who was trembling with anger.

The voice that leaked out from between Periot’s lips also trembled with anger.

“…Leonon Berhardt. I’ve made it clear to you already.”

It was a voice so cold it couldn’t even be compared to everything until now, so cold it was enough to freeze your ears.

“I said that’s my wife.”

Shaking his hand off roughly, he glared at Leonon with a sharp gaze that seemed as if he would cut down everything.

FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT FIGHT GHDSLFKJFSD

“How dare you, a third party, do something so presumptuous?”

Periot’s remarks seemed to bear a blade as much as his ferocious gaze did. However, Commander Leonon showed no sign of agitation.

“I just want to help. You don’t need any qualifications to show goodwill. Furthermore…”

Leonon merely stood upright and continued to speak in a rather low voice. Although his voice was calm and quiet, it still felt somewhat firm.

“Isn’t this sort of action what they call, dragging away someone weaker than you by force?”

“What…?”

“That would include pursuing someone who couldn’t even run properly and even releasing dogs after them, or having armed knights attack a carriage.”

“Ha, how amusing.”

Periot smiled and swept back his hair. A black long sword suddenly appeared menacingly through the flapping cloak for a moment.

“I didn’t know that the noble Commander of the Holy Knights had a hobby of taking interest in other people’s wives.”

“You’re crazy. How can you be so vulgar?!”

“This is my last warning. If you keep meddling in my wife’s affairs, I won’t let you off.”

In an instant, the atmosphere started to freeze over. I was as if an invisible deadly sharp blade was dancing overhead.

Gulp.

It was when I hid behind Commander Leonon while swallowing my saliva, without even a thought of intervening.

Ding dong! 

「’The hype king of this area’ slams the keyboard with their head and buys 500 shares!」

Suddenly, a cheerful bell, which didn’t match the atmosphere, rang out. 

Ding dong! 

「SLdlkfsDSlkjd Ng%$#73SDFJKdkd)IfbwqlS23p9u@@@@87!!」

At the same time, an indecipherable message appeared on the system window. Just what on earth does this mean?

But thanks to that, I finally came to my senses.

Yeah, now wasn’t the right time to do this. Now is not the time to look on to someone else’s house fire idly2!

“Periot, please stop it already!”

To ensure that I made my stance clear, I raised my voice without even batting an eye. Only then did Periot’s gaze, which had been glaring at Leonon, finally turn toward me.

I didn’t panic and continued to speak calmly.

“No matter what you try to do, I have no intention of ever going to that house again.”

“Then where will you go? There’s nowhere else for you to go other than the Dukedom.

“Wh-What did you say…?”

Unlike me, who was at a loss for words and couldn’t speak properly, Periot asked once again with a cold and expressionless face.

“Tell me. Where else would you be if you weren’t by my side, within my reach?”

His voice gradually became more and more dreary.

“I will destroy it right now.”

Boom! 

At that moment, something broke in my head with a loud crack.

“Why…”

“Lorella?”

“Why the hell are you being like this to me, you craaaazy bastard!”

I stomped my feet and shouted loudly.

At that moment, I couldn’t care less about the countless onlookers surrounding me, nor Commander Leonon at all. There was simply nothing that could enter my sight. 

The anger, irritation, fatigue, and sorrow that had accumulated over the years suddenly came crashing down on me, like a raging wave. The resentment that I hadn’t been able to tell anyone finally erupted.

“Please, just leave me alone…! Just go away! We’re strangers that have nothing to do with each other anymore!”

“…What?”

Then, for the first time, Periot’s eyes began to shake violently. 

“Did you just say that we were strangers… who had nothing to do with each other anymore?”

“That’s right! I did! So what? Of course there’s a limit to how much of a psychopath you can be! Why do you keep tormenting people like this? Just why?!” 

Damn it, I’m so pissed! Just wait and see if I’ll be able to sell the Grand Duke of the North keyword again! If I do, then they’re not a person, but a dog, a dog!

“You’re saying stuff I don’t understand again. And, why do we have nothing to do with each other again?”

However, despite all kinds of curses and harsh insults, Periot still seemed to have regained his composure once again.

“I already said that I wouldn’t allow that though.”

“Wh-Whaaat?!”

I clutched my stiff nape.

You crazy fucker… I really can’t get my words across to you!

I was so full of anger that the sky seemed to spin as I started to feel dizzy, and I even felt dizzy, as if I were trapped inside a spinning barrel. 

It was the low but firm voice of Commander Leonon, that saved me.

“You should send a formal complaint to the Imperial Palace, Duchess. Then, something like what’s happening right now, won’t ever happen again. If you’d like, I’d be happy to be a witness.”

“Really? Thank you!”

I answered without any hesitation. 

Right, once get checked at the Imperial Palace, even if it’s Periot, we still won’t be able to claim that we’re a married couple.

In addition to that, there was Leonon, the Commander of the Ecrestus Holy Knights, who had seen from the very beginning, just when, and in what shape I had fled in. It was clear that his testimony would be more credible than anyone else’s.

“If you don’t mind, then please!”

“It’s something I naturally should’ve done. Please do not worry.”

He smiled softly at me, then looked back at Periot and said flatly.

“I will do everything in my power to help prevent such a violent and abusive incident from ever happening again.”

“Thank you so much…!”

The bell rang loudly, as if in response to his extremely reliable words, but I didn’t bother to check it. 

At least for now, my feelings and the feelings of hype king would be exactly one and the same!

“…Ha.”

 Periot, who had been looking at us without saying anything, made a strange sound that seemed to be a laugh, but not a laugh at the same time.

“Alright, go ahead and try it if you want then.”

Then he whispered quietly, distorting his mouth in a strange way.

“…I will chase you to the ends of hell.”

Commander Leonon, who clicked his tongue briefly at that sight, quickly stood by my side to guard me and nodded slightly.

“That’s enough. Let’s go back now. The night air is rather cold.”

“Yes, it is.”

I turned around coldy, without even giving a glance at Periot. Then, it happened when I was being escorted by Leonon and was about to leave.

Ding dong, ding dong! 

「‘This area’s hype king!’ slapped their forehead and bought an additional 500 shares.」

「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac3’ has bought 300 of your shares.」

My footsteps halted abruptly for a moment.

It wasn’t just because of the two bells which rang out in unison.

Ding dong! 

「‘Trying a taste of the obsessive maniac’ smacked their lips and purchased an additional 200 shares.」

「Drool.」

That unbelievable message made the vision in front of my eyes go white.

W-Why would you eat that?

…You’re not supposed to eat that! 

[1] aphasia is a condition that robs you of the ability to communicate. it can affect your ability to speak, write and understand language, both verbal and written. aphasia typically occurs suddenly after a stroke or a head injury. (source: mayo clinic)

[2] 남의 집 불구경 to become a mere spectator, to look on unconcernedly.

[3] the word 광공 was originally derived from bl novels, but is now known widely across novels as a character who is overly obsessed with the female/male lead.


ok um,,, yawl, sue me but i’m rooting for periot HGSDLFKJDSFJ i’m shitting tears rn bc im a slut for the character that is cold and can’t express his emotions too well but its downright obsessed with mc trope HGSDLFDFSJDS
like i know damn well if i was in lorella’s position i’d be so fucking done with periot BUTTTTT since i’m a reader,,, ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
like GOD maybe it’s just something abt his devotion to her ??? like obviously lorella wouldn’t know bc he’s never expressed it, so to her, he just seems like the psycho ex stalker he is GHDSFLKDFJSJDS but since we get his pov,,, GHSDFLKJDFS
like im deadass shitting tears it’s so cute like bro hasn’t forgotten her and keeps thinking abt her every single day on the battlefield hGDLSKFJFDSJ IM CRYING

like it’s his actions that speak louder than his words but like i get it, his fucking actions in the first and second chapter to lorella were jack shit,,,sorry periot, i’m rooting for u but u done fucked up in the beginning GHSDLFKJDSFJ

n e ways, my ship rn is plot twist if winnard and lorella get together bc i sort of loved their dynamic, plus (at least so far) he’s the only one who actually KNOWS who she is. plus i would feel guilty to leonon since he likes her but she’s just doing all this to get shares HGDSLKFJDSFJ