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Me, Attending, What?
One day, Ann’s voice—full of surprise—filled the normally quiet Schwartzen residence.
If Simone were there, she’d already smack Ann and say with her stern voice, “Minus one thousand points!”
Luckily, she had to endure Allen’s ‘what the hell?’ stare only.
“Why are you that surprised?” He asked.
“Did you just ask me to attend a social gathering with you?” Ann repeated Allen’s words that caused her to raise her voice earlier.
“Me, attending, what? Wait… Are you sure?!” Ann asked again, just in case he changed his mind…
Allen’s quick and determined answer seemed to say otherwise…
Ann was clearly not expecting any of this.
As far as she knew from the game, the original Anne never really attended social function with Allen. Not because he didn’t want to admit his wife, but it was because of Anne’s attitude…
Oh, maybe at the very beginning, she did, but it didn’t go well, and she was told not to join again until she had reflected…
Ah, that might be it. With how she acted recently, did she gain Allen’s trust to the extent he’d ask her to participate with him?
Honestly, she never considered this scenario before…
But she was indeed curious about the so-called social gathering of the nobles… She could come and see how the experience would be, for once, right?
“Alright, I will,” Ann answered.
“I’ll send you the dress tomorrow,” Allen said.
“The dress you’re going to wear for the party,” Allen answered with a look on his face that seemed to say ‘Are you dumb?’
“Uh… Can I just choose it myself?” Ann asked, wondering why would he need to provide her with a dress when she could just provide it herself?
The moment Ann’s words came out, she felt like Allen suddenly became dejected.
“You can,” Allen said, but the atmosphere around him seemed a bit gloomy as he turned his back at Ann.
Ann tilted her head in wonder.
“Excuse me, Arlea-sama.”
Just right at that moment, Gwen—who happened to be next to them—called out to Ann.
As Ann responded, Gwen approached her and whispered in her ears.
“A man will sometimes gift their spouse with a dress to use for social gatherings, and it’s seen as a thoughtful and romantic gesture,” Gwen explained.
Ann was dumbfounded. She didn’t expect Gwen to be saying this.
But now, one mystery was answered.
Was Allen dejected because he thought she had rejected his gift? His thoughtful gesture?
Ann cleared her throat quite loudly as she said, “On a second thought, do send it to me. I’ll see the dress first. If I like it, I’ll wear it to the social gathering. Is that good enough?”
And in an instant, the atmosphere around Allen cleared, as if a switch was just pressed.
“Of course. If you don’t like it, let me know. I’ll get you something else.”
Ann said as she blinked several times.
Was it just her imagination, but she felt like Allen was like… a big dog?
That was actually cute of him…
Oh, it must have been her imagination.
The next day, Ann received the dress… set that Allen bought for her. The dress was such a pretty dark purple dress, complete with a set of accessories and… a pair of glass slippers?
What am I, Cinderella? Annderella?
Ann thought to herself, but she tried the outfit set and couldn’t help but marvel at how great they looked on her.
“Chirp chirp!” Birdie’s chirp seemed to tell that she approved this appearance.
“You look great, Arlea-sama!” Faye complimented; her eyes full of sparks.
With that, she didn’t have any complaint towards the dress and agreed on wearing them.
Though it was too late, Ann finally remembered that she hadn’t asked the most important question… on what occasion was the party held, and who was the host?
When she realized that, her body turned stiff.
“…? Arlea-sama, are you not going to change back?” Faye asked as she didn’t get a response from her mistress, when she already gestured that she’d be helping her change…
“Uhm… Faye, do you know whose party am I going to attend?” Ann asked with a low voice and ended it with an ‘ehe’.
Faye was dumbfounded when she heard Ann’s question.
“It’s Viscountess Doussier’s birthday.”
Nevertheless, she answered Ann’s question.
“Viscountess Doussier… Hmm…,” Ann was drawing blank.
But at the very least, she ought to know the host of the party, so she decided to go to Gwen and ask for more information.
Hearing Ann’s request, Gwen was delighted to answer. After all, she was satisfied that Ann would care enough to ask about it.
“The Doussier viscount family lives not too far from here. They can be considered the Schwartzen family’s old friend…”
As Gwen explained in a lengthy explanation, Ann listened with great interest.
Who knew that a simple question about the host of the party would turn into an interesting story about the history of the Schwartzen family too?
Prior to the revolution and the change of the monarch, both of the Doussier family and the Schwartzen family were only new baron families. Their noble titles were still new, unlike the long-standing Claritianta family.
Because of the Schwartzen family’s important role in the revolution and the establishment of the new royal family, they rose in rank very quickly, from a new baron family to a ducal family. No wonder the long-standing nobles with ‘blood purity’ mindset would feel unsatisfied with the Schwartzen family’s rank.
To stabilize this noble title and quell this issue in the future, the Schwartzen heir—Allen—needed to be married to someone from the long-standing noble family. That person happened to be the original owner of the body she possessed—though she could guess that it was also part of the play that Princess Anne and her faction wanted to do.
Meanwhile, the Doussier family only rose from baron to viscount because their role wasn’t as significant as the Schwartzen family, but they still played a role, nevertheless.
Apparently, the Doussier family now only consisted of Viscountess Vanessa and Viscount Jonas, who were both in their forties.
“Aah, it’s really pitiful, the Doussier family…,” Gwen narrated with a sigh.
“They couldn’t have children?” Ann guessed.
“No, they had sons. A pair of sons,” Gwen answered.
Ann had a hunch.
“Back then, the previous king was quite ambitious, but his heart wasn’t in the right place. He was involved in a conflict with another country, and a battle happened. The Doussier family’s eldest son was one of the soldiers that were killed there. Meanwhile, their youngest son also passed away in a battle… During the revolution.”
It was indeed a sad story…
“They didn’t have another child?” Ann asked again.
“The viscountess had a cold uterus, and it was a miracle that she could give birth to a pair of sons. When they passed away, the viscountess’ grief was so deep, and I still remember her words at her youngest’s funeral. She said, ‘What atrocities have I committed in my past life that I wasn’t blessed with any children in this lifetime?’” Gwen said with a sad expression as her eyes seemed to look far into the distance, reminiscing the past.
“That’s…,” Ann couldn’t imagine the viscountess’ feelings.
“Oh, I went out of topic again, please pardon me. Meanwhile, Viscount Jonas is an exemplary man who’s loyal and loving to the viscountess, so they didn’t have any other children, not even an illegitimate one. As for how the peerage will be, nobody dared to ask because this is such a sensitive matter,” Gwen added.
“Indeed,” Ann nodded in agreement.
“With such circumstances, the hosts and the ones who are going to attend the birthday party will be the nobles who are in good terms with the Schwartzen house as well, so you don’t need to worry, Arlea-sama.”
“I see. That’s good to know! Thank you, Gwen,” Ann said before she excused herself.
On her way back to her room, she was still digesting all this new information and was trying to overcome the feels that surged upon hearing the Doussier family’s story.
It was only when she returned to her room and sat on the bed did she remember…
“Oh shoot. I forgot to ask what kind of people Viscountess Vanessa and Viscount Jonas are… And if they’ve interacted with Arlea before… But oh well, Gwen did say that I could be rest assured… So I should just assume basic courtesy and politeness that I have always practiced in modern world and I’ll be alright… Right?”
Ann could only pray that nothing troublesome would greet her there…
She just wanted to experience and enjoy her first social gathering as a noble!
And… would this be her last social gathering, too?
Various thoughts flooded her mind.
She wasn’t all that certain that she’d end up dying now.
With how she changed the scenario already, she could probably live… as a commoner, maybe?
She was still sure that she’d be condemned or exiled, at the very least.
That was if…
The soul of the real owner of this body didn’t wake up and stir the plot back to its original course.
Even now, she couldn’t forget the occasions where she felt emotions that didn’t seem to be hers.
Even with all that she had done with this body, would the real Anne come back and crash everything?
But if the real Anne were back in this body, would she still exist here?
If only she could find the answer right away… or even discuss it with someone… but who?
Discussing about her fate would mean revealing this body’s identity, and that would be equal to risking her life.
“Aaah, alright. Rather than overthinking about it, I should just enjoy what I currently have and do the things that I want and can do,” Ann lightly clapped her cheeks as she said that and plopped to her bed.
Nobody knows what the future holds. She’d just exhaust herself worrying about it and creating scenarios about the future.
When the time comes, she will just face it.
However the future will be, she believes that her presence here in the former princess Anne’s body has some kind of a meaning. Would the god be so idle as to prank her by placing her here? Or was it simply a mistake?
If it was a mistake, they had lots of chances and time to correct it, yet she is still here even now.
Either way, she can’t return to her original world.
All that she knows now is that… she has lots of things she doesn’t want to lose.
Therefore, she has to at least try everything she can do to avoid losing them.