Home Post 1053-chapter-7


The sound of footsteps halted right in front of me.

As I turned, I was slightly startled to find the child was much closer than I had expected. The boy facing me had emerald-green eyes. He was maybe seven or eight years old. His skin was soft and seemed like it would be fragrant, and his chestnut hair shone brightly where the sunlight touched.

This angelically cute child looked at me and then, with a bright smile, opened his small mouth to shout,



I thought I was alone. Even when I looked behind me, there was still no one. Turning back to the front, the little one lightly tapped his own head a few times as if realizing something.

Then, he looked at me directly and opened his mouth again.

“You’re pretty!”

Oh my, this kid knew how to flatter.

Barely suppressing a smile, I asked him in a kind voice.

“Where are your parents? Did you lose them?”

“No! I came to find Mommy!”

So, that meant he did get lost.

The child didn’t seem to articulate his thoughts clearly yet. And to think, which household could have such an angelically beautiful and cute child? With such looks, the parents must be quite attractive, too.

In addition, the clothes he wore were clean and of high quality. Despite being trained in imperial etiquette and memorizing the family trees of notable noble families, I couldn’t recall any household with a child like him.

I dusted off my dress and stood up, extending my hand to the child.

“It would be great to find your Mommy. Shall we look for her together with Sister?”


The child’s soft hand eagerly grabbed mine.

Holding his hand, I started walking back in the direction from which he had run. I figured we might quickly find his guardian if we retraced our steps.

As expected, it wasn’t long before I saw a man dressed as a butler. He must be a servant of Duchy Glentino. He was looking around hurriedly with an anxious expression. Upon seeing us, his face lit up as if he had just averted a disaster.

“Oh my, Young Master…! How did you end up here…!”

He then ran towards us. It seemed like he was the one responsible for the child.

Judging by the child’s reaction, he recognized the butler. I crouched down to be at eye level with the boy and said.

“That man will help you find your Mommy.”


The child asked with a forlorn look.

Come on, butler, earn some trust from the child here. While I brushed it off with a smile, the butler finally reached us.

“Oh, Lady Bartholi. Thank you for looking after… this one.”

This one?

This ambiguous term puzzled me.

As I looked puzzled, the little boy glanced up at the butler and then gestured towards me. Understanding his cue, I bent down, and the angelic child whispered in my ear.

“Sister, you and Daddy would make a good match.”


Not my father surely, so his father?! Was he trying to pair me up with a married man? Once, a lizard fell on my head and clung there like an ornament, refusing to come off.

Watching me panic and flail, Leonie laughed uproariously and said.

[ “You two make a good match, Sophia!!” ]

Since then, the phrase ‘a good match’ hadn’t irked me until now!

As I failed to hide my astonishment, the child, seeing my expression, pondered for a moment before whispering again.

“Actually, on second thought, you’re too good for him.”

“Of course I am!”

Oops, maybe I responded too energetically, considering he was talking about his dad. As I internally reflected, the boy, looking apparently unoffended, explained earnestly with wide eyes.

“Daddy looks like me, he’s handsome. He’d be great just to look at in the house.”

“Oh, really?”

At this point, I couldn’t help but laugh, both at the absurdity and the child’s sheer cuteness.

“But that’s not all, sister.”

“And what else is there?”

“If you marry my Daddy, he’ll probably listen to you well.”

The butler, listening to this bizarre conversation, hesitantly extended his hand towards the child. While I tried to hold back my laughter, tears almost streaming down my face, the boy gave my dress one last tug and whispered.

“My name is Arne. See you again, Mo—sister.”


* * *


The excitement from meeting such an angelically beautiful child quickly faded. It was because I noticed that my father, Marquis Bartholi, was mingling among the mourners.

‘…He tells me not to laze around and to hurry up, yet he hasn’t left himself?’

So, I hid in a corner of the rose garden, biding my time until he left.

In public, the Marquis often played the role of a somewhat kind father, but occasionally, his gaze would betray a hint of contempt. Surely, those with keen observation could pinpoint that and stir up gossip.

‘Right. Getting excited at my fiancé’s funeral, of all places.’

Especially at the funeral of a fiancé who died because of me.

I felt a sense of guilt towards Arnold, with whom I had been indifferent. Our relationship wasn’t good, though it wasn’t so bad that I’d giggle at his funeral, either.

Once my father had completely disappeared, I casually emerged from the rose garden to survey my surroundings.

Now was the time to pay my respects and head home.

…But that meant I had to find the Duchess or the next head of the family.

Before my return, the next head had been the already married third son. He then later received the title of duke.

After looking around for a while without spotting any woman who looked like the Duchess, I shifted my focus to finding the next head. The third son would likely be where the crowd was thickest. It wasn’t hard to locate the place.

A white marble altar piled high with various flowers was partially visible through the crowd, so I walked towards it.

What did the third son look like again?

I tried to recall but couldn’t. Though I seemed to have met the face of the new Duke Glentino a few times, it wasn’t memorable. Even if I couldn’t remember his face, I figured I could guess who he was by the way he interacted with the crowd.

The person most diligently greeting others would likely be the third son.

Even with my casual thoughts, I diligently made my way closer. Pushing through people clad in various forms of black attire, the person standing before me was…

“Lord Glentino?”

Owen Glentino, why was he here?

I would probably recognize this man’s face even in another life. As I stared blankly at the man standing before me, he seemed a bit surprised as he looked back at me.

“Lady Bartholi.”

Why had things changed? Why was he here?

This was strange.

Still, surely, I was the only one who found this scene odd. It was perfectly natural for the eldest son of Duke Glentino’s family to be the next head. Rather, at the last funeral, there had been quiet murmurs questioning why the eldest son was missing and why the third son was being positioned as the next head.

‘It changed again.’

However, I didn’t show any reaction and quietly laid down the flowers.

To this man and me, we were supposed to be strangers, and he was just my fiancé’s brother.

I bowed slightly, making sure my face was covered by the veil attached to my black cocktail hat, then quickly walked away.

Truthfully, I didn’t have the nerve to face him.

Truthfully, I didn’t have the nerve to face the man who had lost his brother because of me.


* * *


Without looking back, I quickly crossed the garden, and the Bartholi family’s carriage came into view.

The coachman, noticing me, descended from the carriage to open the door. Inside, I saw Bessie waiting. True to my word, Bessie had diligently prepared to change my bandage. Just as I was about to board the carriage under the coachman’s escort…

“Lady Bartholi”


Turning towards the voice, to my surprise, the man who had been attending to the mourners until a moment ago was blocking the space between me and the carriage with his arm.

Both Bessie and the coachman were wide-eyed with surprise.

“Why, why are you here?”

While I stuttered my question, the man quickly scanned the inside of the carriage. Then, noticing Bessie holding the bandage, he flinched as if stung.

“Excuse me.”

“What? Oh, my God!”

Like a sleek tiger, the man who had easily lifted me into his arms two days ago did the same again and sat me inside the carriage. He then rummaged through his pocket and pulled out something small with a pungent smell.

Handing it to me as I sat in the carriage sniffing curiously, he said.

“It’s an ointment. Use it generously.”

Ointment, just what I needed… No! Saying that in front of Bessie would reveal that we had been together! At the thought, I quickly turned to Bessie, who, as expected, looked shocked and somewhat hopeful.

Regardless of whom I looked at, the man who had placed me in the carriage continued.

“I’ll be busy today, but make some time for me tomorrow.”


The man appeared slightly impatient before he ran his large hand through his dark blond hair and added.

“Don’t get any strange ideas. Just stretch your legs at home and rest until tomorrow when you come again.”

Who would tell a woman who has just lost her fiancé to stretch her legs and rest, especially when that person is the fiancé’s brother? Above all, I had no intention of visiting the Duchy again.

“Again? Why should I?”

“This time, you’re coming to see me, not my brother.”