Home Post 998-chapter-175


Matilda and Esther were having tea time in the rose garden. When Laria arrived with Evan, Matilda greeted her with a broad smile and waved her hands.

“Oh, Laria! I heard you’re having a debutante ball?”

Esther added while sipping her tea.

“It’s going to be very splendid and quite a grand event in the Capital’s social circle. All nobles will attend.”

“All… nobles?”

Laria didn’t miss Matilda’s expression tightening at that moment. However, Esther, not noticing Matilda’s hesitation, continued cheerfully.

“So, Matilda, I really want to make Laria look beautiful that day. Which dressing room do you recommend?”

Matilda, looking Laria up and down, smiled brightly and answered as if discussing her own affairs.

“Currently, the most popular place is Evynart’s dressing room, but their accounting is a bit odd. The fabric quality is subtly different from what’s advertised. Honestly, it’s close to being a scam…”

“Oh, really? Though, aren’t there quite a few nobles getting their clothes fitted there? Lately, those nobles who proudly wear Evynart’s peculiar lace are all over the place.”

“So, I asked a bit with Madam Evynart… and the regulars subtly made me out to be a strange person.”

“Oh, really? Then Evynart won’t do. Dealing with a place that plays with money is absolutely not acceptable. Besides, I don’t like the idea of using peculiar lace from the beginning. It feels like designating beggars from the clothes.”

Esther reacted sensitively to the word ‘money,’ immediately raising her head. However, Laria subtly grasped the importance of Matilda’s words and asked discreetly.

“If you’re talking about Madam Evynart’s regulars, are you perhaps referring to Duchy Resphia’s group?”

“Well, something like that.”

Matilda mumbled awkwardly and then quickly changed the subject, adding brightly.

“Sorodel Boutique or Stiart’s dressing room would be good. Sorodel Boutique tends to prefer designs with more exposure, but they’re so flashy…”

“I think Stiart would be good.”

The one who interrupted Matilda’s words was Evan.

Matilda looked at her son’s hard face before she opened her mouth, “Evan? You can just go. Today’s tea time topic might not be of interest to you.”

“I’ve always been interested in dresses.”

“…Can’t you distinguish lace from ribbons well? That was just yesterday.”

“I’ve decided to take an interest from today.”

At that moment, a maid brought Laria and Evan’s tea, interrupting the conversation. Laria habitually served the sweetest ganache from the Afternoon Tea set in front of Evan and spoke to Matilda.

“I’ll go to Stiart then! I saw a dress that Lady Orne had fitted there last time, and I liked it.”

“Alright, Laria. Let’s go together with Mom later. Now, what about accessories? It would be best to get everything new, right? We should decide on that, and then choosing the dress color would be easy.”

Esther also enthusiastically agreed, and when the topic turned to accessories, Matilda leaned forward to Laria and smiled.

“Speaking of accessories… Laria, do you happen to have a young lord in mind?”


“There was such a tradition where I used to live. During the debutante ball, if you wear a gemstone that matches the eye color of the one you love, your love will come true.”

“Oh my.”

As Laria smiled mischievously, Esther chimed in with a chuckle.

“Right, Laria. You get plenty of letters from the young lords, don’t you? If you have someone you like among them, why not try coordinating with them? Maybe? Who knows, the next day, a marriage proposal might come flying from that guy?”

While Esther was playfully speaking, she suddenly stiffened and muttered.

“Come to think of it… the day after my debutante ball, your father proposed to me. D*mn.”

Suddenly, the atmosphere became solemn.

Esther sighed, rubbing her forehead.

“I married him just for the money… it’s my karma.”

As Matilda began comforting Esther again, the topic of Laria’s debutante ball temporarily drifted away. Laria shrugged and was about to place a macaron in front of Evan, though she looked surprised when she realized he hadn’t eaten any ganache.

“Evan? Haven’t you eaten any ganache?”

Considering his love for sweets, she expected him to have already finished it.

With a furrowed brow, Evan asked, “Do you get a lot of letters from the young lords? Who sends you the most?”

“Just some ordinary people, you know. You know I’m a socialite, right?”

Laria casually replied, but upon seeing Evan’s expression, she looked closely at him.

“But why? Is something wrong? Why haven’t you eaten anything?”

The impression on Evan’s face, which had erased even the formally made smile next to her, has now become harsh. Still, she knew that his character was a little better than his impression suggested, so she offered macarons without the slightest hesitation.

“If you don’t like ganache, try this. It’s delicious.”

She even went as far as putting the macaron into his mouth.

In fact, for Laria, it was a usual act. However, Esther and Matilda were so engrossed in badmouthing Marquis Rostri that they didn’t notice Evan’s ears turning red.

“You, eat too.”

“Yes. By the way, did you hear about Café Erenin, which opened a few days ago? It’s run by a famous chef from the imperial family. The macarons there are supposed to be amazing. It’s hard to get a reservation because the wait is so long. But Evan…”

Laria chatted aimlessly before discreetly lowering her voice and asking Evan.

“Are there any recent guests for Matilda, besides us?”

“Hmm… Count Sevurn and Marquis Dieterin, maybe? Come to think of it, there haven’t been many guests lately.”

At that, Laria rolled her eyes for a moment.

Evan lightly pulled her hair and chuckled.

“What are you thinking? Planning something again?”

“What do you mean… just trying to figure something out.”

Laria genuinely liked Matilda. She appreciated Matilda’s brightness, warmth, thoroughness and sense of justice that didn’t compromise the corruption inside the dressing room.

Furthermore, as Esther’s only friend, Laria cherished her like a second parent. If Laria had been an orphan in her early years, Matilda was someone who would have embraced her without any calculations. She was more trustworthy than most relatives.

‘Hearing that all nobles will be coming to my debutante ball seems to have made Matilda’s expression noticeably stiff, and… the number of people coming has significantly decreased.’

Laria pondered, genuinely concerned about Matilda’s situation. It seemed that there was a social group revolving around Madame Evynart that was tormenting Matilda now.

As a potential future villain in the high society, she couldn’t just stand by quietly.

“But, Laria.”

After finishing the macarons, Evan asked seriously.

“So, among the young lords, who gets you the most letters?”

“Why does it matter to you?”

Laria shrugged nonchalantly, sipping her tea.

“Well, you don’t send me letters anyway.”

Evan was caught off guard.

Come to think of it, he had never written Laria a letter. Letters were usually exchanged to check on well-being or maintain friendships. However, Laria and Evan had met frequently, leaving no room for thoughts on asking for well-being or maintaining friendship.

Seeing Evan’s face still frozen, Laria teasingly asked.

“Worried that Older Sister might get married first?”


“Don’t worry. I won’t believe in the content of the flood of marriage proposals that come after the debutante ball.”

She chuckled, playfully raising her small hand to pat Evan’s head.

“Do you have plans to live with your Mom? If you don’t want to get married, you don’t have to.”

“Exactly, Laria!”

Esther chimed in like lightning.

“You don’t have to get married, especially if it’s an unhappy marriage. If you’re not going to be loved by a good and healthy man like Matilda here, you might as well marry for money!”

Laria understood Esther’s sentiment and beamed with a bright smile. Smiling in front of her mother was a habit of hers. She deliberately behaved more cheerfully, thinking that if she showed a dark side, it would upset Esther even more amidst her parents’ discord.

And Evan had been silently watching that side of Laria for a long time.