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Viscountess Vanessa’s Party
11 December 1022 AR.
Viscountess Vanessa Doussier’s birthday finally arrived.
After Ann was done with her preparation, she went to the front door where the carriage was on standby, together with Allen, whose outfit was surprisingly matching with hers.
At first, Ann didn’t pay any attention to that, but the maids’ whisperings reached her ears.
“Hey, look! The master and the mistress of the house are wearing matching outfits to a social event!”
“Now that we take a look at them, they really make a good couple.”
“I hope the mistress will stay this way. Though she lacks the former elegance she had, she’s much kinder and friendlier.”
“If things stay like this, we can expect a few children running around the house soon, right?”
Oi, oi. Wait a minute. Why did things escalate so quickly, from matching outfits to bad-mouthing about my elegance, then to the topic of children?!
More importantly, is it just my ears that are sharp, or are they not bothering to hide their loud whispering at all?!
Ann softly sighed as she quickly glanced at her outfit and Allen’s outfit.
Ugh, they’re true… Is this just a show to display our good relationship to the public? But is this really necessary?
“Come,” Allen said as he extended his hand to help Ann ride on the carriage.
Looking at the man’s gentle gesture, Ann’s prior thoughts disappeared as she willingly accepted Allen’s help.
Inside the carriage, only Ann, Faye, Birdie, and Allen were there. Faye and Birdie were looking at the scenery displayed by the carriage window as they didn’t want to bother the couple with the matching outfit that was sitting right next to them.
As for the said couple…
“Your birthday is soon, isn’t it?” Allen suddenly asked.
“Eh?” Ann was surprised at Allen’s unexpected question.
She then thought for a while.
The window box that displayed her body’s information actually displayed the real birthday of Princess Anne, 2 December, which had already passed. Meanwhile, her real birthday would still be a long time after this—still 19 March.
As for the real daughter of the Pristine family whose identity she took, her real birthday was… Ann quickly brought her hand closer to her chest and lightly pressed on it. She then read the real Arlea’s birthday. 31 December. The New Year’s Eve.
No wonder Allen said that her birthday would be soon. As far as everyone knew, she was Arlea Pristine Claritianta. Not Princess Arnestianne Lacey du Ermengilde.
To public, her birthday would be the New Year’s Eve.
“Ah, yes,” Ann quickly answered when she realized that Allen was looking at her, waiting for an answer.
“How shall we celebrate it?” Allen asked.
To be honest, she never thought about it at all…
“I don’t want to have a party. Just a small celebration will do,” Ann said, after thinking how nobody might sincerely come to celebrate her birthday party should they hold one. The former owner of her body didn’t have someone she could call a friend, after all.
She was thankful that it was optional to host a birthday party as a noble here. And that Allen was someone who never considered it before… Wait, why did he ask, if he was really someone who never cared for such a thing?
“Alright,” Allen quickly responded.
“…Wait, we’re celebrating my birthday?” Ann asked in disbelief.
“You don’t want to?”
“Arlea-sama’s birthday is soon?” Faye turned to look at Ann with her sparkling eyes.
“…Yeah, let’s celebrate it together,” Ann relented after seeing Faye’s eyes that seemed to scream, ‘I want to celebrate it!’
Luckily, Allen asked instead of suddenly saying, ‘Your birthday party is tomorrow. I’ve prepared everything. Just get ready.’
Since it was Allen, it was possible for such a thing to happen… Oh, how he had improved a lot.
It didn’t take long for them to arrive at the Doussier residence since the location wasn’t too far.
All Ann had to do was to follow Allen, as she tried to remember the etiquette and mannerism, she had been taught by the strict tutor whose birthday was on her supposed death day.
Upon their entrance, she saw how some noble women were looking at her and whispering to one another with expressions that didn’t seem to show joy.
…How bad was her reputation?
Allen paid no mind to them, so she followed him. He went straight to where the main star of the party was.
Viscountess Vanessa was a beautiful middle-aged woman whose posture was uptight, with her brunette long hair being tied up in a bun with several loose strands of hair. Her pearl earrings were simple yet elegant, and with her hair tied up like that, the radiance of the pearl earrings could be seen easily. And then, her green eyes were so sharp as they were directed at… Ann?
Ann blinked, but Viscountess Vanessa’s green eyes were clearly scanning herself from head to toe. Just as she was feeling scared by her scanning eyes, Allen tugged her and she realized that she forgot to follow Allen in greeting Viscountess Vanessa and Viscount Jonas, who was standing next to his wife.
Unlike Viscountess Vanessa whose aura was strong and seemed stern, Viscount Jonas seemed to be a kind man. His dull blonde hair was tidily tied in a low ponytail, and his brown eyes were mellow and gentle.
Ann quickly greeted them and introduced herself.
“Greetings, Viscountess Vanessa and Viscount Jonas. I’m Arlea, Allen’s wife. And happy birthday, Viscountess Vanessa,” Ann awkwardly said.
After she finished saluting, she accidentally locked eyes with Vanessa. She was about to look elsewhere in a fluster when unexpectedly, Vanessa was the first one to avert her eyesight.
“…,” Ann was at a loss. She couldn’t really read Vanessa’s thoughts, she couldn’t find out her intention towards herself.
Then, instead of Viscountess Vanessa, Viscount Jonas was the one to warmly respond to Allen and Ann’s greetings. Viscountess Vanessa followed suit with several words after that.
“Oh, there you are.”
A familiar male’s voice could be heard approaching them.
When Ann turned to look at the source of the voice, she was surprised to see that it was none other than Prince Kiehl.
“P-Prince,” Ann stuttered. She didn’t expect the prince to be there.
But when she pondered over it, she realized that the prince, Allen, and the Doussier family were all comrades in arms when the revolution happened.
And when her mind recalled the revolution, she finally realized.
She was the daughter of the fallen king, and if the people gathered near her already had suspicions of her identity, it was no wonder why Viscountess Vanessa looked at her with stern eyes like that!
The previous royal family might as well be the culprit of her sons’ death, so if she knew that Ann was suspected to be the daughter of that previous royal family…
Aaaaaah, can I find a hole to bury myself in, then when the party’s done, can I emerge from that hole and return home?
The mini Ann inside her was panicking.
Feeling conscious, she tried to diminish her presence all the more, not wanting to attract any attention… Let alone wanting to try to suck it up to the Viscount and Viscountess, as well as the prince.
Luckily, nobody realized Ann’s reaction, just as she planned.
Except for Faye and Birdie, who were surprised to see their mistress seemingly about to turn invisible…
“You two actually look good in your outfits… matching ones, eh?” Prince Kiehl said to Allen with a slightly teasing tone.
But Allen just stayed calm as he responded, “Thank you for your compliment.”
“Anyway, can we talk a bit?” Prince Kiehl suddenly said.
Allen nodded and was about to follow Prince Kiehl together with Viscount Jonas and Viscountess Vanessa when Prince Kiehl stopped and glanced at Ann.
Noticing Kiehl’s signal, Allen looked at Ann and stopped.
“The four of us need to talk a bit. Is it fine with you?” Allen asked to Ann.
Overhearing Allen’s words, Kiehl gasped a bit.
The old Allen would just leave this woman without even asking gently like this. This guy has truly fallen for her!
What can she say in a situation like this? Will they take a ‘no’ for an answer?
Nah, she wouldn’t want to feel like on the edge with Viscountess Vanessa and Prince Kiehl around, so she’d definitely say ‘yes’, either way.
“Alright,” Ann said as she turned to take Faye with her, away from the rest of them.
She had no one she could talk to, so she was headed straight to where she could munch on delicious food.
It was inevitable for her to walk into other people, but whenever she seemed to approach someone, that someone would distance themselves from her.
Obviously, not everyone was like that. But when she saw people who didn’t seem to avoid her, there would be at least someone around those people who’d encourage them to not approach her.
Who the heck is coming for you? I am looking for delicious food, not constipation because I have to talk with you!
Actually, it was more convenient this way. Ann could enjoy her meal without any distraction. She didn’t need to deal with other nobles that might use their sugar-coated words to attack her. She didn’t need to put on the ‘work mode Ann’ for them.
Though it might seem lonely, she couldn’t care less. It’d be better to have a few allies who were sincere to her rather than having many friends that might actually be enemies.
In the first place, she was still unsure if she could continue to live as a noble in this country.
She was more hopeful now that she could save her head, but as to how she could continue to live… She couldn’t guess how.
As she finished eating in an area secluded from the rest of the nobles, she thought to herself.
Darn, this is so unlike the modern world! I can just open my phone and look at it until it’s time for me to return… But now, where do I put my eyes to? I can’t just stare blankly towards the direction where the other nobles are… They’d be creeped out or gossip about me.
Should I just look at the floor? But that’d—Hmm?
What is this that I found?
Ann happened to cast her eyes downward when she detected something moving on the floor. As she focused there, she finally saw a figure of a boy… moving on all fours, with his back (or butt?) against Ann.
She blinked several times, but that figure was still there.
She turned to look at her surroundings, but since she was so far from all the other nobles, the other nobles didn’t seem to notice the boy.
In her final desperation, Ann turned to look at Faye who was standing behind her, but Faye was so focused on seeing the orchestra that was located at a completely different direction from where Ann spotted the boy.
Not wanting to disturb the immersed Faye, Ann turned to look at the boy again, hoping that the figure she just saw was her wild imagination because she was too bored… But alas, the boy who was on all fours was still there!
…Do I pretend to not notice this odd boy, or do I just talk to him?
From his outfit, he seems like a noble boy, but… WHY THE HECK IS HE WALKING ON ALL FOURS LIKE THAT?!
Can somebody send her an answer via telepathy?
She desperately needs it at the moment!!!