Lilika’s weakness. The words she didn’t want to hear the most.
She often used it as an excuse because she knew it was her own weak point.
But she was also kind of acting like a baby in front of the family members who loved her.
However, people who weren’t even from the duchy, who didn’t share any blood at all with her, laughing at her bloodline… That was…
Lillika felt herself gasping for air before she knew it. The sharp anger, which seemed to prick her stomach, made her brain freeze at some point.
“It’s amazing that so many people are gathering here and worrying about me.”
“Ah, aah… Lady Lilika.”
“Are we close enough for you to call me by my name? I don’t remember allowing that.”
“Lady Primrose. I…”
“That’s right, I am a Primrose.”
The expression on Lilika’s pale face disappeared. For the first time in her life, Lilika roughly revealed her true nature in front of the ladies.
“Whatever I do, don’t waste time and be good to yourself. Did you know that your father asked the Duke’s family to lend him money?”
“No matter what you say, I’m the Duke’s daughter, and you’re a humble low-ranking noble, aren’t you?”
Among the families here, the Drival family belonged to a lower aristocracy.
Lilika knew that even as she lost her reason, the lady in front of her was from a family that wouldn’t be a problem even if she provoked her.
“Even if you say this and that about me, it makes no difference. If I have a flaw, do you think you’ll be better than me, the Duke’s daughter?
“Don’t make fun of me when your family’s position is lower than mine.”
Lady Drival’s face turned red.
All the noble ladies around her also felt insulted.
Lilika’s last words seemed to be addressed to Lady Drival, but in fact, no one was unaware that she was shooting at every lady here.
And at that moment, a sonorous voice resonated in the banquet hall.
“I apologize. Lilika must be very upset. I’ll apologize in her stead.”
It was Yuria, Lilika’s older sister.
Lilika trembled at the sight of her sister, who appeared in the banquet hall. She had no idea that Yuria would appear at such a sudden and unannounced moment.
But whether Lilika was surprised or not, Yuria walked with a neat expression and stood next to her.
“But please consider that Lilika must have felt very heartbroken as well.”
Her tone was gentle and firm.
“No matter what anyone says, she’s my sister, so I’ll have to protect her.”
She could have died of lead poisoning, and she wasn’t happy that her mother had been given white lepia flowers.
How could she protect her sister when everyone was criticizing her?
Nevertheless, she neatly apologized to the lady who had heard Lilika’s harsh words, so that there would be no further trouble.
Just the right line.
Even as she defended her sister, it was more noble and elegant to neatly admit why this situation happened.
“Let’s go, Lilika.”
That was the end of it. Yuria took Lilika and disappeared.
The banquet hall, which had been quiet for a while, cautiously resumed conversation when the two disappeared.
“Lady Primrose… I mean, the older sister, Lady Primrose. She’s amazing.”
“You’re right. She’s better than her younger sister, who got angry and said things about being a humble low-ranking noble.”
“She really looks like the Duchess…”
It was secretly a sarcastic remark about Lilika, an extramarital child.
In fact, even if Sir Vieira confessed to Lillika, not everyone was criticizing her.
The way Yuria used to torment Lilika, the bad image she showed.
Also, the story that because of the power of her family, Sir Vieira couldn’t refuse and got engaged, and with a lady like Lilika trembling pathetically next to him, he couldn’t help but fall in love with her.
“If she was aiming for her sister’s fiancé, wouldn’t she have gotten engaged? Anyway, she said it was a misunderstanding and is quiet now.”
But today, as a new story was added, the atmosphere began to flow quickly.
“Actually, it’s been weird since last time. Since her sister’s fiancé confessed…”
“Indeed. At that time, even when I was still wondering if Lady Lilika, the kind lady, had seduced her sister’s fiancé, I kept quiet about it. But… With words like this, it’s a little…”
Even those who did not dare say something about what Lilika did at that time began to come forward one by one.
“Actually, Lady Primrose, that is, Lady Yuria, was criticized a lot. For tormenting her sister.”
“But wasn’t it more like that she had a reason to do so?”
“Honestly, if someone gave my sick mother white lepias… I wouldn’t be able to hold back.”
“Indeed. I heard that she acted viciously and said that her fiancé and Lady Lilika shouldn’t be together. Honestly, isn’t it because these things have happened so far?”
“Honestly, saying that your tutor didn’t teach you anything like what the white lepia flowers meant or lead pots and running away… That’s cutting off your tail.”
The reputation of two people, which was as clear as black and white. The boundaries were blurring.
On the bad side for Lilika.
In fact, about the gathering Lilika was going to attend today, I already knew the list of the ladies who were attending.
Considering the amount of time that passed since I wrote the letter of recommendation for Madam Tiller, she moved and adjusted to a new place, and talked to her acquaintances about what had happened, today was the right time for word about Lilika to spread.
And so, seeing Lilika get off the carriage, I also quietly entered the banquet hall.
And stood in front of the people at just the right moment.
The moment the atmosphere became bitter… when Lilika heard the insulting words and blurted out remarks that she couldn’t contain in anger.
The moment where I would get the most attention if I appeared.
“Why did you come here?”
As I pulled her wrist, Lilika was mesmerized and dragged outside.
I suddenly wanted to come, and she would have an excuse to leave an uncomfortable place, so I followed her. Had she come to her senses now?
I did not answer Lilika’s question, but instead spoke in an appeasing tone.
“I understand your feelings, but you spoke too harshly today.”
“Answer my question first. Why are you here? How did you know? Were you aiming for all of this?”
“Lilika. Don’t be ridiculous. What happened today was upsetting, of course, but you were also in the wrong.”
When I dealt with her while using a good sister’s mask until the end, Lilika didn’t answer and shut her mouth. She seemed to have felt that it would be useless even if she did say something.
“…Please don’t interfere with my business from now on.”
Then, she climbed into the carriage she had taken to come here and shut the door with a bang.
Lilika’s escort knights seemed to be glaring at me a little, and then I could see them backing away.
It could be just my feeling and not worth pointing that out, but their behavior was too impolite to just let go. Exactly that.
‘They don’t even know what happened at today’s social gathering. I didn’t even say much, so why were they looking at me like that?’
It was the defiant gaze I received from the people of the duchy for a long time.
Lilika had lost her trust in the employees, so recently, I hadn’t seen people who were that loyal to her.
‘I guess the world of employees and knights is a little different. Their hearts still go out to Lilika.’
Preparing to return to the castle, I stared at the window. Then, I turned my gaze towards Lilika’s knights, and was surprised again.
‘Were the knights of the duchy always like this?’
I didn’t know because I had never been out with Lilika like this before.
The way the knights looked at the carriage before departing or were vigilant around it was very different from the knights who escorted me.
Why were they looking around to see if there were any dangers? Were escort knights supposed to act like this from the beginning?
I chewed on the faint bitterness that rose in one corner of my heart.
Most of the employees working inside the castle had turned away from Lilika.
In the past, she used to be lovely, and they considered her an innocent and brilliant young lady.
But these days, Lilika didn’t seem to be the person they knew.
Starting with the dress, she doubted the maids close to her, and seemed to have stolen her sister’s fiancé… But it was still worth letting go.
The dress, and on top of that the dress she would use at her birthday banquet, was something that a noblewoman could be sensitive to.
It was said that she had stolen her sister’s fiancé, but Yuria, the person in question, was not an important figure to the employees.
However, they couldn’t let go of the fact that she targeted the duchess and ignore it.
They were loyal to the duchess, who accepted the extramarital child as her own and handled all sorts of miscellaneous work on behalf of Duke Primrose, who was somewhat negligent in political affairs.
“The kitchen maid cooked the food for the Madam in the lead pot… because Young Lady Lilika gave it to her.”
“How could she give funeral flowers to the Madam? Even we commoners know what they mean.”
It wasn’t long after a series of incidents and embarrassing rumors broke out, that Lilika’s reputation turned upside down.