The tension that had accumulated so far broke out with a big sigh from my mouth, sitting on the fluffy sofa.
After the Crown Prince appointment ceremony.
Me and Perez were on our way back to Poylac Palace.
Perez, who sits across from me, has long since thrown the crown on his head off a long time ago.
Now his button, which was filled to the bottom of the neck, was now being loosened with a rough hand.
The appearance of me, sitting deep in the chair, was far from dignity or formality.
At least in this space where the two of us are together, both I and Perez can breathe comfortably.
However, my heart is still not very comfortable.
"Crazy. I did it. I did it."
I muttered, covering my face with both hands.
It was already decided that we'll announce our relationship at the Crown Prince appointment ceremony.
The feeling of lethargy that came after the real work made my body heavy like wet cotton.
One again, I could see Perez's face through the gap of my hand, sighing.
Unlike me, who is exhausted, he has a very nonchalant face holding a glass of water to his mouth.
My voice sounds a little crooked.
"Why are you so fine?"
It's roughly similar to 'why do you look like that?'
I know it's not the right thing to say half-arguably all of a sudden.
It's also true that he looks so normal.
Perez, who was about to drink water, stops acting and looks at me.
Perez tilted his head slightly sideways and asked me back.
Then he spoke slowly.
"I'm pretty sad right now."
"Are...are you sad?"
My heart sank and it seemed to sink.
A while ago, he gathered hundreds of nobles and announced that he would marry me with all sorts of threats.
Why are you sad now?
"You...you... Perez, you...."
I'm so overwhelmed that I can't even speak properly.
"How can you say that?"
Doesn't it mean you're regretting it?
I heard that there is something called Marriage Blues before entering the wedding hall.
Still, I can't believe you regret it so quickly.
My head was tangled like a bundle of wool from a cat.
The sound of Perez putting the glass down on the table rang a little louder.
And he came dawdling over to me.
I think I can hear footsteps loudly today.
Standing in front of me sitting on a single sofa, Perez held both armrests with his hands.
And slowly leaned towards me.
Would it be my illusion if I felt that there was some kind of deep sigh mixed with that low voice?
"What...what is it?"
Are you going to say you regret it?!
As Perez approached, I struggled to pretend to be unaware of my beating heart and stick to my angry expression.
Perez, who was looking into my face, said briefly.
I blinked because I couldn't understand the word that suddenly popped out.
Then Perez's red eyes looked straight at me and spoke in a lower voice.
"I have to wait two more years."
"Are you talking about the duration of the engagement period?"
Perez didn't answer, but his eyes on me were answering instead.
"I can't help it."
I spoke comfortably to Perez.
"When Crenny graduates from the academy and returns, I'll trust my family's work on him. That way, we can do the Imperial work and Lombardi's work well."
Perez answered right away.
"And even among aristocrats, it is common to have a period of engagement to some extent.
But Perez isn't listening to any of my explanations.
His eyes were busy tracing my face.
Perez once again lamented.
His red eyes became even more red as if there was an ember.
I have to stop it here.
Some kind of alarm system, which was created by several experiences, was ringing in my head.
"You don't have a good look in your eyes?"
When Perez says, "Is that so?"
I felt awkward and thought I'd back off.
He even smiled lightly.
Perez slowly strokes my arm with his right hand.
The destination is my left hand holding the armrest of the chair.
Secretly, the palm of my hand squeezed, I said, narrowing my eyes.
Then he kissed the back of my hand and stretched out the corners of his mouth.
My heart is racing.
In the end, my heart beat loudly.
Perez's body temperature, which I could feel up close, seemed to hold me tight.
I couldn't stand it and so I jumped up from my seat and walked to the window.
When the minute cold breeze felt through the closed window touched my burning face, the heat seemed to go away for a little.
"For now, let Caitlin prepare for the Crown Prince's appointment celebration a week later."
After taking a few deep breaths, a pretty sound voice came out.
I turned around satisfied with that.
"I'm also busy with Lombardi's work for the time being, so I can't even care about the banquet----."
Perez was right behind me all of a sudden.
I hesitated and took a half step back, but my back only hit the chin of the window.
Perez wrapped his arms around my waist, calling my name in a low voice.
How did you know I'm weak with that voice!?
Perez, who wrapped his arms around my waist slowly, also pulled me slowly with a firm hand.
Slouchy long eyelashes and loose lips.
I was pretending to be calm, but I could read it.
The longing for me contained in the red eyes and the indescribable nervousness that cannot be hidden.
Eventually, I spit out words of surrender and pulled Perez around his neck.
Through the body in contact, the sound of his low laugh was transmitted to me.
A few days later.
"How the hell did my grandfather do this?"
The householder's work was hectic.
Of course, my grandfather must have had the weapons of years of experience, something that I do not have now.
Perhaps this huge workload was a problem for my grandfather, who passed me the household post and entered his full-fledged retirement life, to get better day by day.
"But I'm glad that everyone is doing well."
I mumbled like that and piled up the documents I had signed for the day on one side of the desk.
Indeed, as far as I'm concerned, the members of Lombardi were doing their best in their place.
It's been years since I've had such a solid family.
Viege, in his previous life, may have been a great person in his own way.
Then, there was a low knock.
"Lord, it's John."
It was John, the butler, and Bate, who came in after opening the door.
Not long ago, Bate successfully launched a restaurant and began to make a name for himself as a well-rounded catering entrepreneur.
But it's just the outer packaging.
Nowadays, Bate was cheering that more high-end information was pouring in as he opened a restaurant rather than money.
"What brings you here?"
At my question, Bate took a glance at John and said politely, bowing his head.
"Last time, we delivered a steak meal from our restaurant with a special reservation to the mansion's kitchen. In a little while, you will be able to eat the food on a warm plate."
I have never made such a reservation.
If so, it means that there is news that needs to be delivered urgently enough to disguise the delivery route.
"I'm just a little hungry. Will you bring me some food, John?"
I sent John out of the office.
As the door closed, and John's footsteps faded away, Bate threw off his calm face and said.
"Remember when I told you a while ago that I found the man who murdered the Crown Prince's nanny?"
Upon His Majesty's order, he left young Perez alone in his villa and dragged his nanny.
And he was found off the Southwestern river.
"But he said something strange."
Bate stepped closer to the office desk and lowered his voice.
"It wasn't the Empress who killed the Crown Prince's mother."
"It's not Lavigne?"
I shook my head.
"No one has a motive to kill Perez's mother unless it's Lavigne. She was a maid with a quiet personality from a commoner."
"That's what the Crown Prince's nanny said in tears before she died."
Anyway, it was the nanny who served Perez and Perez's mother right next to him.
If I heard it directly from his mouth, it was credible.
I asked Bate.
"Who did you say killed her?"
A/N: Da-dun! If it's not Lavigne, who do you think killed Perez's mother? Hmmm....
The last two chapters will be the last update, I think I can update it on Sunday! Enjoy your day!