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The Torture Continues…
In the next few days, Simone would come right on time to torture—correction, to tutor Ann. The additional stresses that Ann received from her tutoring caused Ann to adopt new habits. For example, today, she woke up earlier than before and was already at the garden with Faye…
Yes, Ann was doing her morning stretches. Right in the garden where others could see her…
As for the reason why she would suddenly conduct an individual physical education in the garden was because she noticed her body that ached after the training with Simone. To counteract that, what would be the best solution other than to do regular stretches to make sure your body would be flexible and won’t ache that much?
But the kind of stretches Ann did was so unladylike, and to think that she was doing it in public…
Also, while Ann was at it, she sometimes would train her magic power as well.
“One two three…Stretch and waterfall~!”
As Ann stretched her body, she would also create a ‘background effect’ of water flowing from behind her.
“Arlea-sama, thank you for your assistance…”
One of the elderly gardeners bowed sincerely in gratitude to Ann for Ann’s help in watering the plants. At first, he was genuinely scared looking at the lady’s conduct, but as time passed by, he was used to it and even thanked Ann.
Ann only smiled and said, “No problem, I’m coincidentally training my magic after all. I can help more!”
Thus, Ann managed to befriend one of the servants and then she went to a whole new level in helping him. Aside from stretching, Ann was also running a few laps in the garden. While running, she made sure she bestowed the plants with her water magic.
The befriended elderly gardener rained Ann with praises and clapped his hands for his lady. His coworkers were frightened silly at that certain gardener’s courage.
With that, Ann’s mood was boosted quite significantly.
Another new change that Ann did thanks to her new routine of torture was…She would eat both her breakfast and dinner to her heart’s content that it frightened the poor maids at the kitchen and dining table.
During lunch, she couldn’t eat well to her heart’s content because of the disturbances she received from Simone.
Aah, eating shouldn’t be a burden, really! Eating as I like is really a refreshment!
But due to her unusual eating behavior, the frightened maids made a report to Allen. With that, Allen tried to be there with Arlea whenever they had meals. Ever since the ‘night incident’, Allen couldn’t really face Arlea and tried to avoid her all the more, but this time, there was no helping it. He ought to see Arlea’s progress too. Thus, with a bit of awkwardness, Allen and Arlea started seeing each other more in their meals.
Poor Ann had to try to put some restrictions to her behavior and display the results of her training in front of Allen. After all, Allen was the one who signed her up to this torture, so to shorten the torture, she needed to display that she learned things from it.
Again, Ann’s ‘trying hard’ figure looked endearing for some reason that Allen couldn’t take off his eyes from her. Of course, he noticed Ann’s awkward gesture, although it had improved.
But Allen shook his head. What finding her endearing? He had to observe her and see what she was plotting this time…unless…there was no plotting?
Since Simone’s observational skill was better than Allen, he would wait for her report.
And it didn’t take too long for Simone to report her findings to Allen.
“Arlea-sama seriously can’t do table manners and her etiquette is lacking. There doesn’t seem to be any pretense, but if she is really pretending, then her acting skills are out of this world.”
Allen tapped on his desk as he listened to Simone’s report.
“Come to think of it, I’ve seen her before all this. Though I’ve only taken several glances at her, I didn’t find her etiquette and mannerism to be odd. What caused this disparity? Did she really injure herself that badly?” Simone asked.
“Mmhm, probably,” Allen was unsure now. Perhaps he should really ask a physician to take a look at Arlea.
“I also don’t find her to be like how she was rumored. She’s docile and hard-working. In fact, I quite like her,” Simone added in a few good words.
“Is that so…,” Allen muttered.
“Anyway, I will continue my work. Don’t worry, I will definitely teach your wife well.”
Thus, Simone left Allen to be alone with his thoughts.
Back in the Schwartzen residence…
“Again, your body shape will look like a banana if you continue your habit of slouching! That is also bad for your health. Sit straighter!”
That is my bodily reflex, my dear tutor!! It’s hard to change, orz, you don’t need to tell me that I will look like a banana, I don’t know whether I should laugh or cry…
“You miss the angle by two degrees!”
HOW DO YOU EVEN MEASURE IT?!
“Walk like a lady, not a clown!”
But I’m walking using these weird shoes and with some books on top of my head, sobs sobs…
The noble ladies here actually have it rough!
I thought that being noble ladies from this era would be nice, as we could live leisurely without working…Guess everything had their challenges.
Today marked three weeks since Ann began her torture—correction, her tutoring with Simone. Being a hard worker she was, she had improved quite significantly, although her lack of talent in etiquette and mannerism hindered her progress.
“Wait, let’s have a tea together,” Simone suddenly said.
Ann’s ears perked up. Simone sometimes would have a tea ceremony with her so she could learn the etiquette needed in a tea ceremony, and it was the #1 thing she disliked the most. First, it was something new to her, and second, there were too many rules.
Seeing Ann’s stiffening, Simone wasn’t sure if she should laugh or what. Indeed, she often gave Ann the surprise attack of ‘tea ceremony’, but she didn’t intend to launch a surprise attack now. Instead, she only wanted to have a talk with Ann.
“There’s no need to be so scared. This time’s tea ceremony isn’t a lesson plan,” Simone laughed it off.
This strict teacher can joke so cruelly! Look at her laughing…
“Does it really show in my expressions?” Ann asked. She felt like she had tried to restrain her emotions from showing on the surface, though…
“You are like an open book to me,” Simone’s usually tense and strict face loosened, and she let out a gentle smile.
But Ann’s modern mind trailed off seeing Simone’s unusually gentle smile.
Based on the television shows, this person is plotting something gruesome for me at the moment! I knew it!
No, really Ann, you were overthinking it…
But nevertheless, Ann prepared herself for a trouble, perhaps make it double while she was at it.
Ann and Simone were sitting at the tea table in the middle of the garden when Faye arrived with the tea. Ann was relieved to see that it wasn’t really a lesson in tea ceremony. However, she was still wary of what the topic that Simone was going to bring up. Could it be an increase in the training difficulty? Was she going to receive a backlash or a hardcore mode?
Little Faye was still unused to her job as a maid as she sometimes became nervous. Even more so since there was an outsider here. She got so nervous that her way of walking was a bit clumsy…
“Are you okay? Take it easy,” Simone unexpectedly said as she gently smiled at Faye.
Ann’s ears were perked up and she had goosebumps.
Come to think of it, Simone was so used to change drastically whenever she faced Faye. Even when she was still in the middle of scolding me, when Faye walked in on her at that moment, Simone’s expression would change in an instant…
Immediately, Ann felt envious towards Faye.
Is it because I’m lacking charm as I’m not a cute loli?
Even her mind trailed off…
Faye managed to put the tea fine on the table, without spilling anything. After finishing her task, she stood on a standby near them.
Simone took a graceful sip of her tea before she gently said, “My impression for you has changed. You are unexpectedly honest and hardworking. Though it amused me how you weren’t very knowledgeable in terms of etiquette and mannerism…”
“I told you, I hit my head pretty bad…And I kinda…I mean, I thought I forgot a portion of my memories,” Ann tried her best to come up with a reason.
“Is it the reason behind your personality change as well? As far as I know from the rumors and from the little time I saw you, your impression was quite different,” Simone asked.
“…I…I…I don’t know,” Ann stuttered. She couldn’t really say that she was a different person altogether right?
Simone removed her glasses and wiped them. Still without her glasses, she said, “Anyway, I am glad that you are the way you are right now, regardless of the reason. I’d like to trust my gut feeling and say that you’re genuine at the moment, without any pretense. Since that is the case, I’d like to express my relief that Allen-sama married someone like you.”
Ann totally didn’t expect Simone to say such kind words, so she was stunned and moved at the same time.
“Don’t get me wrong, but I was quite worried when I heard about you from Allen-sama and the rumors. Allen-sama is a childhood friend of mine and my husband, so we really hope he married a nice person. I think you are a kind person, seeing how you endure my rigorous teaching and never talked back at me, whose position is lower from me. Heh, that’s really different from the rumored you. I wonder why?”
“Hahaha…why indeed?” Ann laughed stiffly.
“So, as his childhood friend, I’d like to ask you to live harmoniously with Allen-sama. Though Allen-sama might seem cold at times, he genuinely cares about those he considers dear. Despite the fact that you two got married without any love, he is someone who will be kind to his wife. I’ll turn in my good words for you and will continue to assist you…So, do your best.”
“Also,” Simone added, “Though I may have been tough to you all this time, I came to like you as a person. I fully support your relationship with Allen-sama. You two suit each other, now that I think about it. May you be blessed with harmonious life together for a long time.”
Ann was really touched by Simone’s words.
This tough teacher actually likes me? But her treatment towards me can’t be any stricter, can it?
Anyway…Harmonious life together for a long time…
I actually would love that as well…with Allen, Faye, and everyone else…
Ann’s heart ached when she thought about it.
“So, putting aside our current teacher and student relationship, I’d also love to be friends with you, Arlea-sama. Will you?” Simone extended her hand to Ann.
Ann’s eyes twitched in sadness.
But I’m someone who’s destined to die sooner or later.
In this world, out of all people, I possessed this character, Arlea.
With her identity…My fate…is sealed, right?
Meeting Faye was the beginning of her resolve to die crumbling. And now, even Simone wanted to be her friend…
“…You don’t want to?” Simone’s words snapped Ann out of her thoughts.
“No, I’d love to be your friend! Sorry, I was just too surprised…,” Ann made a lie as she shook Simone’s hand weakly.
I…in actuality, I don’t want to die again.
I wish I can continue to live in this world with happiness…
For the first time, Ann felt a pent-up frustration growing inside her.
That’s right…I don’t actually want to die again…I’m starting to enjoy my life here…
Is there really no way at all?
Various emotions stirred up inside Ann’s mind. For the first time, she felt already attached to her new life and was reluctant to part…It was extremely agonizing.
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