Isnt that like the last dinner
Aria glanced back at the note ordering her to leave once she was cured.
If she was kicked out, she wouldnt be able to taste any more desserts.
Maybe Lloyd was trying to be thoughtful by ordering the maids to serve Aria all kinds of desserts.
“If you want to eat all types of sweets, you have to get better first.” Diana said as she gave a pill to Aria.
Aria immediately gulped it down.
“You take the pills so well.
Im proud of you.” Diana said.
Then, she gave a small jar to Aria.
‘….What is this
Inside the jar, were small, colored grains.
They glittered attractively in the light like majestic gemstones, giving off an ethereal glow.
“Do you like star candies”
‘Star candies This is candy
Aria looked inside the jar, opened the cork lid and chewed on a piece of the star candy.
The sugary after-taste hovered on her tongue.
‘Ill eat one more.
The candy called to her seductively, promising moments of bliss that would melt on her tongue.
Once it was finished, her heart ached for more.
But Aria hastily put the lid back on and returned them to the drawer.
She wanted to savor them for a long time.
‘She looks like a squirrel hiding her acorn…
The servants clenched their teeth.
Not because they were annoyed, but because of Arias unbearably cute actions.
They desperately wanted to pat her head.
However, only a certain lady-in-waiting was allowed to stroke her hair.
‘We cant stroke the young miss.
She would probably give out the [Im not a baby] card again, pouting with her cute chubby cheeks.
The servants glanced at the lovely child, hoping that one day, it would finally be their turn to stroke her head.
* * *
The servants would bring flowers every time they visited Aria.
“This is called Dahlia.”
“This is a Primrose.”
“This is Grape Hyacinth.
Before long, the guest room where Aria was staying became crowded with vases of various flowers.
The air was also perfumed by their heavy scents.
‘This is my first time seeing these many flowers.
Aria stretched her neck like a meerkat to look outside the window.
“Young Miss, dont stand by the window anymore since theres a lot of flowers here already.” Diana said, holding a bouquet in her arms.
“And from today onwards, these knights will temporarily become your escorts.”
Diana appointed escorts for her because she was afraid that Aria would get sick again when left alone.
The knights, who stood behind Diana, greeted Aria one after another.
They were very polite… all except for one.
‘His name was Sir Anjou.
To be forced to leave your post just to escort a child.
He must have thought of it as a hassle.
The knight looked discontented.
As Aria observed him closely, her nose started to tickle.
Everyone stared at Aria with surprised expressions.
Aria snuffled after her sneezing stopped.
She didnt have allergies, but strong aromas tended to make her sneeze.
“H-Head lady-in-waiting!” Betty interrupted whilst holding a book titled「Hospital Etiquette」.
“Please look at this.
The book said that fresh flowers are banned within hospital premises! Especially for outsiders!”
“Because theres a risk of allergy or infection!”
Aria tilted her head, rubbing her itchy nose with the sleeves of her dress.
Diana and Betty exchanged glances with each other.
“But, isnt the madame from the outside too I change the flowers in her vase every morning.”
“Well, people have different conditions.
Some are weaker than the others.”
“But that means… the young miss is weaker than the madame!”
“Get rid of the flowers right away.” Diana ordered.
The maids proceeded to clear out all the flowers in the room.
Aria frowned at the removed flowers.
it almost turned into a huge problem.
I apologize for my carelessness.
This is my first time nursing a child from outside the border.”
[Outside the border]
She had heard it a few times before.
Aria had to ask what it was to satisfy her curiosity.
“I mean outside the territory.
The border refers to the Ingo Mountains surrounding the Grand Duchy of Valentine.”
[Am I weak]
Diana smiled and gently answered the question.
“Well, the people from the Grand Duchy are very strong.
Everyone here is confident in their physical abilities and strengths.”
She was right.
The beasts she saw here were gigantic.
Furthermore, the humans werent normal.
‘Everyone here is confident in their physical abilities and strengths.
They were the exact opposite of Aria who was weak but had excellent senses.
Aria stared at Diana with inquisitive eyes, “Well, no matter how hard you train, one will never be comparable to the Valentines.”
A shiver ran down Dianas spine.
As she swept the goosebumps off her neck, she stared anxiously at Aria.
“But why wont your fever go down”
‘Because only one day had passed. Aria thought.
“The book said that if you have a fever, you have to cover your body with a blanket and sweat it all out!”
“Are you trying to kill her Wrong! What you should do is to give her a cold bath!”
“Heavens, no! Youll freeze her to death! The best way is to raise the room temperature to maximum and…”
And so, their argument continued…
‘Ive taken the medicine anyway.
My fever will come down eventually.
“Young miss, I made ginger tea.”
“What if the peculiar taste of ginger worsens her condition”
“Ive never thought of that!”
The maids had a very creative imagination…
“Ho-ho! Do not fret, for I have prepared this in advance!” Betty said, revealing a bowl on the table.
She was holding another book titled 「Foods to Offer During Fever」.
“I made this by beating honey, and egg yolk until they foam.
Then, I mixed them with milk and butter using a whisk!” She said triumphantly, telling the others that it was what outsiders used as a remedy.
One of the maids asked, “But, Head Maid.
Dont raw eggs have a risk of contamination”
“She could get food poisoning…”
Betty hastily disposed of the bowl.
The maids started to gather.
“Then what should we do” One of them whispered.
“Just watch her until she gets better”
The maids murmured with each other in very small voices.
Fortunately, Aria could hear them as clear as day, thanks to her keen senses.
“Is that really alright I mean, outsiders are weak in general.
But the young miss is probably the weakest of them all! At this rate, its safer to think of her as an infant!”
‘…Im not a baby.
Aria didnt like being treated as a baby.
But truthfully, she was no longer embarrassed of the word.
This was because they actually cared about her.
‘Im not used to it.
Aria didnt want these moments to dissipate like smoke.
‘The feeling of being cherished.
They respected her as a person.
Regardless of her status, regardless of her ability as a Siren.
Aria couldnt help but stifle a smile.
Then, she clutched Dianas sleeves tightly and handed her a card.
She thought she would use this card someday, so she had it written in advance.
‘It should be okay to show it now.
What a weakling.
This is why we shouldnt allow outsiders inside the border.”
A small whisper could be heard amongst the other voices.
He was one of Arias appointed escorts.
The other servants missed his remarks because his words were very faint.
However, it was clear to Arias hypersensitive ears.
“Their class is different.
Im not even sure if she can give birth to an heir.”
Aria stared at the knight, and when they made eye contact, he looked slightly flustered.
‘No way, Im sure she cant hear me.
It was impossible for her to hear him.
She was at a distance where he wouldnt be able to hear himself either.
Moreover, neither the knights nor the servants glanced at Anjou, who was sitting in the corner of the room.
Aria was the only one staring at him.
‘…..Well, so what if she heard it
The knight brazenly raised his chin.
He knew it was useless to direct his anger towards her, but he didnt want to leave his post just to escort a child.
And he was all the more pissed off at her, since her origin was unclear.
‘Id rather babysit the prince.
She became the princes fiancé without even doing anything.
‘There was no dowry, no gifts, and they didnt even prepare the marriage papers!
Her father signed a waiver of parental authority and she was instantly the future grand duchess.
It was absurd.
‘They said that the prince held her at swordpoint.
The knight glanced at the bandage around Arias neck and laughed arrogantly.
No matter how much they thought of it as a marriage of convenience, the consent of both parties was extremely necessary to establish a healthy relationship.
However, the prince raised his sword against her exposed neck.
So he must have hated her too.
‘She should be relieved that she didnt get kicked out, despite how much he hates her.
It was clear that she was going to be banished even before their marriage.
This was why Anjou was not afraid to act rude to the princes fiancé.
Aria snorted at the ridiculous word.
Dividing people into classes, based on their social status.
‘What a foolish judgment.
Whether it was the Valentines, the emperor or even the pope.
They flocked in groups based on their similar backgrounds.
But in reality, we were all humans.
Humans who could do nothing but bleed when they were stabbed in the back.
The Valentines were outstanding and powerful.
Their skills were unrivaled across the empire and beyond.
But if it were true, then how did the massacre happen
‘Why did Lloyd go crazy
Aria thought that all humans, including herself, were imperfect.
There was no such thing as a perfect human.
‘Was it so important whether we were born a noble, commoner, or even a slave
We were all humans, and we were the same.
Aria was vexed.
The servants had poured their hearts out just to let her feel at home, only for him to ruthlessly trash their efforts.
Aria took out her fountain pen and wrote on a few cards.
Then, she pointed her finger towards Anjou.
He seemed uncomfortable, but he still approached the little girl.
“Just say it.
You cant! Pardon me….” he sneered.