SV – 18

Thank you for the Kofi Theresa Frances! (1/3)

“Freesia, prepare the bath water.”

Returning to her room, Dahlia immediately ordered her maid. Then, without assistance, she began to take off her disheveled dress.

Every time she pulled the string from her back and loosened it, her heart fluttered and her eyes felt as if she were about to cry.

The suffocating smell of acacia flowers oozed not only from the dress she tore off but from her skin too. Before the bath water was even ready, Dahlia took off her underwear and put on a robe.

“Miss, the bathroom is ready to use.”

Freesia announced as she returned to the room rolling up her sleeves. Dahlia, who had been sitting in her chair crouching down, got up limply and pointed to her dress and underwear with a wink.

“Burn it. Everything.”

“Yes? Even the dress?”

“Yes. Will you burn it?”

“Y-Yes. I will, miss.”

Dahlia went into the bathroom connected to her room, leaving Freesia behind her grabbing her dress. In front of a large window, white petals floated in a bathtub filled with lukewarm water.

Dahlia took one deep breath, and removed the white petals* herself. Every time her hand moved through the water, her image reflected on the water’s surface was disturbed repeatedly. [t1v: white petals usually mean purity and innocence]

Dahlia took off all the petals and then took off her robe and went into her bathtub. From her toes to her chest. The moderate temperature of water pleasantly wrapped around her body. Dahlia tilted her head, hanging her hair out of the bathtub.

What was it?

It was the first time she had had such an intense experience. Her body heated up even when she didn’t want it to, and a strange sensation—some phenomenon with instinctual knowledge she didn’t know she had—broke out and ran through her whole body.

Don’t tell me, every time I face a runaway Sentinel I will have to endure such a sensation… ?

Dahlia closed her eyes tightly and poured water where the man’s lips touched. She washed her face and scrubbed her lips again and again.

Then she put her hand on her lower belly, which was no longer hot at all. Other than those initial painful burning moments, she did not feel any discomfort when she began guiding.

Stroking her belly and looking puzzled, Dahlia slipped her hand into her secret crevice unconsciously. Then, a slippery thick liquid she felt for the first time spread on her palm.

W-what is this?

Surprised, she rubbed her hands frantically to wipe off the fluid, then picked up her bath oil and poured the whole thing into the bathtub.

A strong citrus scent filled the bathroom, so much so she couldn’t think. Surprised, Freesia jumped in, opening the window, and began nagging.

“You should have called me, miss! Oh my, what should I do?”

After pulling the string in the bathroom, Freesia instructed the servants to bring in fresh water, then grabbed Dahlia’s hand.

“If a person with weak skin pores caustic bathing liquids into the bathtub—?! Ah, my lady… ?”

Freesia’s face turned blue as she scanned Dahlia coming out of the bathtub. The tips of her ears turned red. She turned around in a hurry.

“Freesia? What’s the matter?”

“Ah, no. Lady, er, well— there… .”

“What’s wrong with you? Why are you acting like this?”

“Y-your throat… . and on the shoulders and chest, so—ah… .”

Dahlia picked up the mirror, confused.

“What’s wrong with my throat?”

Dahlia’s long eyelashes quivered in the mirror when she tilted her head at an angle. Red marks were clearly visible on the neck, shoulders, and even on the chest.

His heat and touch, which she had momentarily forgotten, and all the sensations that had touched and bit her body, came back to life in an instant.

“Ha… !”

Dahlia put the mirror down, and covered his face with both hands and bowed her head.

It was not a dream.

This was reality.

***

“Sir Edelred! What happened?”

Gerald opened the door to the eastern balcony and shouted at the sight of Jurgen lighting a cigarette.

Then, Jurgen, who was silently staring at the distant sea, sneered coldly and turned his head.

“You lied to me, Earl Von Klose.”

“What do you mean? I never lied. What’s the matter with you? I heard that you entered the gate, preparing for a runaway. Why would you do that… !”

“Dahlia Von Klose.”

Cigarette smoke leaked out of Jurgen’s lips as he recited her name, blurring the view.

Gerald envisioned the worst outcome as he sensed Dahlia’s faint energy on the trail and spotted a completely sane Jurgen without a drop of rampaging runaway energy.

“What did you do to my sister… Can I ask?”

“Is it a crime to be guided by a guide?”

“Duke!”

In an instant, he lost his temper and Gerald’s sentinel’s power was unleashed. The energy of the Royal Sentinel, far beyond an  advanced level, bounced around off as blue sparks.

But then, Jurgen approached leisurely and grabbed his shoulder. Then his soaring power mercilessly dispersed without a trace as if it never existed in the first place. Shocked, Gerald tried to raise his powers again, but he was no match for him.

Jurgen smirked, leaning his upper body to whisper in his ear and softly said,

“For the first time in a long while, I’ve worked up quite a ravenous appetite, so let’s eat together.”

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