───Why, why, why?

"Miss Marcel, it seems like the criminal who poisoned the Saint and attacked her using water magic is you. Do you have any excuse?"

"Your Highness, it's that woman's fault! She tried to rob you from me. She deserved it!"

"I don't remember her trying to rob me, though. My conversation with the Saint is mainly for the sake of this country."

"But you chat with her repeatedly in the courtyard... You even invited her to the royal palace! My friends told me that they have seen both of you being intimate!"

With his eyes glowing coldly, Louis' expression turned blank. Like he was disillusioned at her. That he was disappointed with her.

"Those friends you're talking about should be the people who brought me the reports and evidence that you repeatedly harmed the Saint, right?"

"W-what!?"

"Unfortunately, my engagement with you has been cancelled. This is with the consent of His Majesty and both of your parents."

Louis left jauntily without looking at her as if she wasn't even worth a glance. Rachel's body turned cold at his leaving back.

No, wait! Don't go!

"Your Highness, Your Highness! Please wait!"

"What is the meaning of this!? What did you all say to His Highness!"

"Fufu, His Highness asked us the truth, so we did exactly as he said."

"The situation has changed now, Rachel. We no longer need to stay by your side."

"In the first place, you're chosen to be his fiancee only solely because of your magic power, right? This is our last conversation, so I'll tell you this. Everyone thinks that you're bothersome."

Rachel didn't recognize any of the girls who were chuckling and giggling at her. They always praised her with beautifully-woven words. But now, only mocking words came out, stabbing right into her. Their mouth was distorted, and their face looked as if it had been dyed black.

What, what am I looking at?

Their laughs and scorns towards her didn't stop.

Rachel didn't know these people.

But.

She had looked down on someone like this before.

Then, did she also have such an ugly face?

"What did you do, Rachel!?"

"Father. I, I..."

"Just when did you see His Highness being intimate with other women! What are you planning to do to this country? Why did you try to harm the Saint!?"

"No, I... um..."

"You will be sent to the monastery tomorrow. Make sure to reconsider your actions there."

Rachel's father was covering his haggard face.

Rachel's mother was sitting lifelessly on the sofa, crying in silence.

The carriage slowly swayed.

"My Lady, Sarah is happy to be able to accompany you."

"Sarah... I've been mistaken about everything, haven't I?"

"My Lady, you're originally a gentle person. I'm sure you have been influenced by some bad people."

"No, it's me who has chosen to do it. I didn't even apologize to the Saint, but she told me that anyone can make a mistake."

"As expected from the Saint. She sure is full of charity."

"...I wonder if I can get a little closer to her once I go to the monastery. I want to become a woman brimming with such a beautiful light."

"Of course you can."

"Sarah is really sweet. Even I know that I can't be that kind of person."

───Creak

The high-pitched scream of the horse, the scream of the coachman, and the vigorously shaking carriage.

"My Lady, what happened!?"

When Rachel and Sarah were trembling and hugging each other, the carriage entrance opened violently.

And what they saw was a dull silver light.

"...dy, My Lady, My Lady!"

Rachel woke up at Sarah's voice.

Sarah was hugging her tight, even though she shook in fear...

...No. Sarah anxiously looked into Rachel's face.

"My Lady, you seem to have a nightmare."

"I'm fine. It's a dream... Yeah, I had a bad dream."

"I see. You are sweating. I will bring a cloth to wipe your body."

Sarah smiled to reassure Rachel and turned her heels to get out of the room.

"Sarah, thank you."

"Yes, My Lady."

Sarah laughed. She was no longer surprised when Rachel thanked her. It just made the maid happy.

A letter from Louis was placed near Rachel's bed. It should've arrived today.

Rachel raised her body and opened the letter.

'As I said on the other day, I will bring the cook I recommend to the Marquis' residence.'

Ah, about me not having appetite? A cook His Highness recommended?

In the end, Rachel didn't really understand Louis' thoughts.

However, this unprecedented exchange relieved her a little bit. It made her felt like her nightmare was something very distant.


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