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The night Allen was contemplating on the children’s book, Gwen brought Faye back to Arlea’s room, but they soon learned that Arlea was already asleep. This was unusual since Arlea used to sleep quite late. In the evening after dinner, Arlea would spend her quality time with Faye. Could it be she thought that Faye won’t return tonight?
In any case, this caused Faye to be a little bit disappointed, but it couldn’t be helped. She thought that Arlea was too tired today, so she left together with Gwen to the maid’s quarter.
The next morning…
“Arlea-sama, wake up!” Faye said.
“Nnn…Five more minutes,” Ann only moved a little bit.
“It’s your eighth five more minutes…,” Faye shook Ann’s body, which caused Ann to grumble and sit down on her bed. She was still processing things as she opened her eyes lazily.
The moment she opened her eyes, her beloved Faye was right in front of her.
“My child…!” The half-asleep Ann pulled Faye to her embrace right away.
“Uwa!” The sudden movement startled Faye, she almost fell to the bed.
At this moment, Ann came to a sudden realization. Yesterday night, there was a talk about how Faye would be placed somewhere else and be taken care of. She didn’t disagree with that, so why was Faye here right now?
“Faye, why are you here?” Ann said as she let go of her embrace, grabbed Faye’s hands with hers, and looked at Faye.
Faye was surprised to hear that and thought inside her heart, ‘Why is Arlea-sama asking this…Could it be…?’
“Arlea-sama, you don’t want me anymore?” Faye said as she felt her eyes stinging, tears threatening to form.
“What?! No, no, no, that can’t be!”
“Then why did you ask that?”
“It’s because…Yesterday night, Allen told me that he’d be placing you somewhere else…”
“And you didn’t fight for it?” Faye’s eyes turned even redder.
“…,” Ann was speechless, she couldn’t say the reason why she thought that was the best for Faye.
“Mistress doesn’t want me anymore, huweeee!” Faye finally broke down and cried.
Ann was flustered and immediately hugged Faye as she tapped on her back.
Faye cried for a while, and after she calmed down a bit due to Ann’s tapping…
“Sssh, my child, that’s not true, that’s not true! I just thought that it was the best for you…and that I couldn’t go against Allen’s decision…”
The latter part wasn’t true. Ann wanted another excuse to prevent her explaining why it was the best for Faye.
“So, you still want me?” Faye asked as she tilted her head.
“Yes, yes, by all means!” Ann nodded vehemently.
Faye immediately smiled.
“But why are you asking me all this? I thought you are here this morning to bid farewell to me…is that not the case?” Ann tilted her head.
“No, they are not going to put me somewhere else. They misunderstood things and thought you were being mean to me,” Faye explained.
“Wha…,” Ann wanted to say that it was absurd, but she stopped to think about the things she did together with Faye. Certainly, some of them could be misunderstood as her bullying Faye if people didn’t know what exactly happened…
“Fine, I am the vile woman in their eyes,” Ann said, a little bit vexed.
“Arlea-sama is the kindest person I’ve ever met!” Faye quickly said.
“Aww…Faye, thank you,” Ann hugged Faye again.
Who knows how she would be if Faye weren’t there? She would definitely feel lonely. Perhaps it was her egoistical side taking over as Faye would be brokenhearted after she was gone, but…let’s just create lots of good memories to make up for that.
After that, Faye helped Ann getting prepared for the day. Today Simone would be coming over to teach Ann stuff, so they needed to get prepared fast.
And during her breakfast with Allen…
Allen kept glancing at Ann, his mouth open but it was closed right away. He was unsure what to say. Ann was busy eating, but since Allen was seated right across her, she could see Allen’s gesture. Ann put down her eating utensils on the table and looked straight at Allen.
“What’s the matter?” Ann asked, unable to bear looking at Allen hesitating like that.
Allen was startled at Ann’s straightforward question. He hadn’t prepared any words to say, but he had to answer nevertheless. So, he gulped and answered.
“Sorry…for yesterday. It was my bad,” Allen said and averted his gaze from Arlea, as he was embarrassed.
“…Oh, that’s what you wanted to say,” Ann came to an understanding.
…Oh, that’s what you wanted to say? That’s it?
For some reason, Allen was disappointed by Arlea’s lackluster answer.
Thankfully, Ann caught on Allen’s weird expression and quickly added, “No worries! Thanks for apologizing. I can understand what you think. It’s hard to trust me after what I’ve done in the past, right? I…heard.”
What I did in the past my butt. It was all Arlea’s doing! But since I took over her body, it became mine! Arlea, come back here and make amends to what you’ve done!! I’m getting irritated now, I did nothing wrong but I have to shoulder everything! Aaaaaaaaa!!
Ann was smiling on the outside, but she was on rage inside. Mini Ann in her mind was pulling her hair out of frustration.
Allen was surprised by Arlea’s sincere words and understanding. He totally didn’t expect that. He was expecting Arlea’s rage, yet he received nothing of the sort. He appreciated this ‘new’ Arlea even more. At the same time, fear grew inside him. Fear that this Arlea was nothing but a pretense and the wicked Arlea would be back any time soon.
But for the moment being, he should just do what he could.
“To make up for it, you can now ask the other maids and servants in this house for their service. That’s including going out by carriage,” Allen said.
“Eh?” Ann lifted her head from her food. She was already immersed to her food because Allen was being silent, and she thought that was the end of their conversation. More importantly, she didn’t expect Allen to give her…access card?
But the first thing Ann said was…
“I can just walk, it’s fine for the carriage…”
Besides, it isn’t too far from here. I can take it as an exercise.
“What? No, you’ll be tired. Carriage,” Allen said in concern.
“What? That’s a good exercise to keep one’s body fresh,” Ann gave her argument.
“You can do other exercise in the garden,” Allen said as he thought that it wouldn’t suit her image as a noble lady if she were to walk. To keep her image, she needed to take the carriage.
“…Fine then,” Ann gave up debating with Allen. She would just take the carriage until downtown then she would walk when exploring the stores, no problem.
More than that, she was happy Allen actually loosened on her! But then…save for the gardener she got friendly with, would the other servants and maids be willing and not scared to serve her?
Yeah right, Faye was enough anyway. It wasn’t like she was a noble girl inside who didn’t know how to do everything by herself.
It seemed like it would take time before everyone could adapt to her new self.
…I wonder if they will get used to the new me before my death?
Ann thought to herself.
Later that afternoon, Simone came to tutor Ann. During tutoring, she was always strict. Ann cursed inside her heart.
She is my friend, right? Right? Can she relax more on tutoring me? Is she the type to keep her personal and work attitude separate? Darn, darn it!
But the difference between when she wasn’t Simone’s friend yet was that they now spent some time relaxing after tutoring to drink tea and just talk.
Ann was more or less used to the etiquette during drinking tea and maintained a good posture, so there was nothing for Simone to comment on.
“You know, there was this incidence where people thought I was bullying my maid, Faye, and Faye was almost stationed elsewhere. But the misunderstanding was cleared by Faye. My child is amazing, right?” Ann opened the topic today.
“And you didn’t try to clear the misunderstanding?” Simone lifted her eyebrow.
“Urgh…That’s not it. I just didn’t know what was the best for her. Beside, if she thinks that she wants to go elsewhere, then I’m fine with it,” Ann swiftly told a lie.
“Hee…So you’re giving her freedom to choose,” Simone said, “Despite you being so close to her? I think you wouldn’t want her to go anywhere.”
“Well, loving someone doesn’t always mean keeping them close, right? We want what’s the best for those we love, right? You are a mother, so you understand what I mean, I suppose?”
“Hmm, you have a point there,” Simone nodded.
“And then, thanks to it, Allen apologized and lifted my ban of asking the servants for help!” Ann grinned, “He loosened on me. That’s a good thing!”
“I see. It means he trusts you more now. Isn’t that a good thing? You seem to be getting along more, don’t you think?”
“Hmm, compared to when I first came he—I mean, compared to before, sure, I think?” Ann thought of her interactions with Allen.
“That’s good. I assume you and Allen will soon become a true husband and wife?”
“That would be nice…,” Ann said in a daze. Having a handsome husband like Allen…how nice would it be? But that might just be her wishful thinking, as she would be dead in the end…but hey, what if they could make out even just once before that? She could treat it as something like hooking up not seriously, to save her from the heartbreak when her fated death comes.
“You like Allen,” Simone said in an affirmative tone instead of a questioning one.
“Well…Can’t deny that he’s my type,” Ann thought and discounted Allen’s cold demeanor towards her. Since the Allen in the game was so charming and how gentle he was towards the heroine when she played her route. Yup, he was only cold to Arlea due to Arlea’s behavior. It was a cause and effect.
“I hope to hear good news soon,” Simone said as she smiled gently looking at Ann who was grinning when she recalled Allen’s route in the game.
“Hahaha…,” Ann could only laugh.
The two of them continued to chatter happily. Though Faye’s presence soothed her, having someone around the same age as herself felt different.
Having friends is really good, indeed.
Speaking of friends…I wonder how Lori is doing right now?
Ann couldn’t help but think of her best friend’s condition right now. It would be good if she was doing well in the Earth.
Anyway, being able to ride on a carriage came in handy. She could shop without thinking how she should carry all the items she brought to the residence.
Hmm…Shall I go to downtown again next?
It seemed like Ann already had plans in her mind.