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Chapter 7 – Strange Window (4)

Leyla found herself regretting her behavior.

‘Just because people said they dislike me doesn’t mean I have to put up spines on others like a hedgehog.’

As she pondered in belated regret, her face grew somber, and she began to bite her lip.

“No, that is not true,” Jen said firmly. “Serving Madam has not been difficult at all. If anything, it is I who might inconvenience you due to my shortcomings.”

“What? Not at all. Absolutely not!”

Leyla vehemently denied it, waving her hands emphatically.

“Thanks to Jen, I could at least feel comfortable in my room! I could endure being here this long because of you.”


Jen’s voice trailed off, her tone lowering.

‘Is she angry?’

Leyla glanced nervously at Jen, who wiped her eyes with her sleeve as if wiping away tears.

‘Huh? She’s not angry; she’s crying?’

She was taken aback.

‘Wh-wh-what should I do?’

While Leyla fretted, Jen opened her reddened eyes and spoke.

“If I had a more friendly personality, I could have been of greater help to you, Madam. If I had been more eloquent, I could have properly corrected those who misunderstood you. But because of my shortcomings, I failed at everything.”

“Huh? Jen, you did things like that?”

Just having this conversation with Jen made Leyla’s heart race, but now she was truly astonished. She never imagined that Jen would engage in discussions on her behalf behind the scenes.

“Anyway, since I did not accomplish anything properly, it is all nothing but meaningless. I apologize for being this useless!”

As Leyla listened to Jen’s heartfelt words, her own eyes grew moist.

“It’s not…”

Leyla sniffled while squeezing Jen’s hand.

“I-I, I’m, grateful for how much you’ve cared for me. I’m sorry for making you feel upset by things like that…”



〈 (⸝⸝⸝ᵒ̴̶̷̥́⌑ᵒ̴̶̷̥́⸝⸝⸝) 〉


Misunderstandings cleared, and all that was left were deep emotions. Leyla hugged Jen tightly, crying uncontrollably. Even Jen, who seemed unlikely to shed tears, sobbed as if Leyla’s tears were contagious.

After crying for what seemed like ages, Leyla, her eyes swollen with tears, spoke in a broken voice.

“Um, hic… You’re tired, aren’t you? I’m going to stay in my room for a while, so go rest for a while since I won’t be needing anything.”


“It’s okay. Sniff. I’ll feel better after you rest, mh?”

“…Then I will take a short rest. But if you need anything, please do not hesitate to call for me.”


Leyla gently pushed the hesitant Jen out of the room, insisting she rest for a while. All alone, Leyla still felt the warmth of Jen’s touch on her hand, and she happily murmured.

“Jen doesn’t dislike me. In fact, it seems like she might even like me.”

A bright smile bloomed on Leyla’s face as she pondered what had just happened.

“I thought everyone hated me, but it’s not like that. There was someone who liked me. Someone I wanted to like to.”

Leyla suddenly felt happy. The sensation of being loved—something she hadn’t felt in a long time—filled her with excitement.

‘How did this stroke of luck come about?’ As Leyla reminisced, she tightly grasped the pendant around her neck.

‘…It’s all thanks to the magic of the pendant!’

She was able to experience this happiness thanks to the pendant’s ability to reveal the inner feelings of others.

“But wait. If the picture shown by the pendant represents the person’s most hidden emotions, then… yesterday, Siegfried… what?”

As Leyla pieced together her memories, she suddenly froze in shock.

Certainly, on top of—the intimidatingly stern—Siegfried’s head, there was a too-difficult-to-describe soft and cute expression.

“…People really are different on the inside.”

Just as she gained this new realization.


『 Di-diiing~ 』


“Wh-what’s that?”

Leyla was startled by a sound coming from somewhere.

Without needing to look around for the source of the sound, a long and translucent blue window appeared from the pendant. It was the same window that displayed pictographs above people’s heads. However, this time, instead of enigmatic pictographs, there was a sentence written in the imperial language that she understood.


『 Hidden condition ‘Understanding The Ability’ has been met 』

『 Stage 1 — Expression 』

『 The emotions hidden by the opponent are expressed as ’emoticons.’ You can know your opponent’s true feelings that are not revealed on the surface 』

『 The ability evolves 』


“Huh? Emoticon? What’s that? Real emotions… Wait, the ability evolves?”

As Leyla read the sentence with confusion, it disappeared smoothly, and a new one emerged.


『 Stage 2 — Words 』

『 From now on, the opponent’s inner emotions will be expressed in ‘words.’ This not only helps in determining the truth but also greatly assists in uncovering the secrets behind this 』


“What does that…?”

Whatever Leyla said, the pendant did whatever it pleased.


Just like when her ability first emerged, a burst of white light enveloped her. The light burst and disappeared in a split second, and all left behind was a bewildered Leyla. Feeling disconcerted, she calmly reflected on what had just occurred.

“So, just now, um, my ability evolved… and now it expresses inner feelings in words?”

Even after saying it out loud, she couldn’t understand anything. Leyla looked down at the pendant with a perplexed expression.

“All that has happened so far… must be because of this, right?”

Leyla fiddled with the pendant around her neck. Even upon closer inspection, it looked like an ordinary piece of jewelry without any magic.

However, she was almost certain that the strange occurrences she had experienced since yesterday were due to the pendant’s magic. Just now, a strange window appeared from it along with light, and there couldn’t be any other cause.

However, a question arose.

‘Why did Siegfried give me such a special pendant?’

In truth, Leyla had never truly realized the value of the pendant until now. She knew that Siegfried, who defeated the evil dragon, obtained this pendant from the lair where the dragon kept its treasures. In comparison with the other treasures he brought home, this pendant was rather inconspicuous.

For example, it paled next to the tiara gifted to Amelie, a distant relative whom Lady Vanessa regarded as a daughter but was just a stranger.

The sight of Amelie proudly wearing that tiara and showing it off to the guests at the party welcoming Siegfried’s return was still vivid in Leyla’s mind. People were all amazed by the dazzling tiara and curious about the other treasures Siegfried had brought.

At that moment, Leyla didn’t dare to step forward and show her pendant. While she appreciated the pendant she received as a gift and was grateful to Siegfried for not forgetting about her…


“Goodness, Siegfried is—really. Even if he has no strong feelings because you haven’t seen each other that much, to choose such a modest gift for his wife… Even after giving Mother a treasure so blindly gorgeous.”


Aunt Vanessa’s words as she smiled pierced Leyla’s heart—who was delighted to receive the pendant as a gift—like thorns. And because of that, she didn’t dare brag about her pendant like Amelie did.

In front of the silent Leyla, people kept praising Siegfried as the hero of the century. Thanks to him, the once-declining family rose to the highest echelons of the kingdom.

Everyone envied Leyla for becoming his wife, but they mocked her behind the scenes for not being loved by such a man.

After that incident, Leyla’s lingering fantasies about her husband were shattered.


“…I should ask him about the pendant when we meet later.”

Did Siegfried know the secret of this pendant? Did he give it to me, knowing everything?

Belated curiosity filled Leyla’s mind.