Thank you for the Ko-fi LC!
When he was leaning against the railing on the second floor and immersed in thought, a murmur started from the entrance of Winter Hall spread like wildfire. Jurgen naturally moved his gaze towards the foyer.
There was the Count, Countess, Gerald Von Klose and— standing there was Dahlia Von Klose.
Jurgen felt a thrill tingle his brain just by looking at her. Trying so hard not to be noticed, she donned a simple style with her half-tied up hair and a modest tan dress. She had a bewildered expression as if she had just come out of a monastery.
So it was even more amusing to him. It seemed that she didn’t know that she had a presence that she couldn’t hide.
The woman who desperately tried to hide herself looked around in confusion. Perhaps it was the first time she had encountered so many nobles, for she looked overwhelmed and blood seemed to drain from her face. She did not fall from the side of her brother who skillfully escorted her.
Intrigued, he pulled his body off the banister.
“Sir Gerald, I’ve heard you’re the top of your class in the Sentinel Academy.”
“Oh my, is the young girl behind you Lady Dahlia, ‘The Pearl of Tezeba’?”
“Sir, this is my sister… .”
It was not her but her twin brother Gerald who took all the attention and gaze of the noble girls. Dahlia regretted that she had accompanied him. She now faced glances filled with curiosity and interest, mixed with ridicule.
“How amazing, the young lady doesn’t look like a Southerner at all?”
It was an expected remark. Dahlia smiled politely as she had been taught, but Gerald didn’t. He stared down the lady who had made the remark for some time and then warmly held the back of Dahlia hand that rested in the inside of his elbow while escorting her.
“I have to say my greetings to the Crown Prince, so I bid you adieu.”
When Gerald cut off the conversation formally first, feeling awkward, the crowd withdrew.
Gerald held the glow of healthy, darker skin and the tall stature distinctive to southerners. He captivated nobility with his appearance that contained both tenderness and strength. At least in Dahlia’s eyes, the desire they shed was starky evident.
Countess Von Klose stepped forward, glancing at the nobles who had just shown interest in Gerald and Dahlia.
After she greeted the host, the Crown Prince first, she was about to introduce Dahlia. Instead, subconsciously she grabbed her necklace.
Rumors said the Crown Prince was the continent’s 4th Luster-ranked Sentinel with extraordinary psychic powers. It was not known what kind of psychic abilities he had, but his rank alone was dangerous enough to ward her off.
Knowing this, Dahlia secretly let go of Gerald’s hand.
“Go ahead. I… I will be here.”
“Do you think it would be dangerous?”
“… Then, stay here. I will be back soon.”
She nodded and waved his hand slightly. The tips of Gerald’s ears turned slightly red. After he and the Countess disappeared in the crowd to greet the Crown Prince, she suffered with the gazes as if she was a circus animal.
At first glance she was without flaws to ridicule. She had clear skin, soft-as-silk hair and her feminine silhouette that could not be hidden by her stuffy-looking dress.
But the problem was that she was from Tezeba. The land of intense sun and fertility, all the nobles of Tezeba had olive-colored skin and dark hair.
But it was not so for Dahlia. It was as if she was a Northerner. She had pale, bright hair and skin that could hold a tan. Her appearance coupled with her peculiar origin made her well-qualified to be the prey of the vicious elite.
“Her dress… . Do you think that kind of thing is fashionable in Tezeba?”
“I was looking forward to seeing ‘the Pearl,’ but now that I catch a glimpse of it, there’s nothing to see. To think, coming to an imperial banquet without a single proper jewel.”
“How embarrassing she is, that the Countess goes to greet the Crown Prince and leaves only her. But really… . she has not even one southern feature.”
I can hear everything. No, she’s probably talking loud enough for me to hear.
Dahlia lifted her hand from her necklace. Seeing that it had begun to react faintly when she got close to the prince, and is now silent, it seemed that the prince was the only one she needed to avoid here.
As she raised her head from her necklace, those who peeked a look and gossiped about her skillfully avoided her gaze. She was already exhausted. This must have been the battle of nerves in high society that Freesia was talking about.
‘Are Gerald and your mother still there…..?’
Dahlia, inspecting the direction they disappeared to, realized that the expressions of the crowd, who had looked at me with strange glances a moment ago, had changed.
They looked visibly nervous, with their backs straightened and equipped with bright shining manners.
Her body felt hot, and an idea accorded to her but she shook head and the thought away. But just in case she turned around.
“Miss Dahlia, long time no see, my lady.”
The man who dragged her gloved hand without permission gave an impeccable greeting. After kissing the back of her hand, he lifted his exceptional sculptural face.
As if embedded with jewels, his beautiful red eyes softened in an instant. Dahlia’s face went blank for a moment, and then grabbed her necklace with the opposite hand and raised her lips into a polite smile with effort.
“It’s been a while… Sir Edelred.”