The cleanly emptied plate flew into the air.
The plates that were washed with magic quickly returned to their original positions.
I murmured, as though I were possessed by the scene,
“At times like this, I wish I had learned magic even if I lack talent.”
Zen, who was flicking his finger in his seat, raised his eyebrows as if he was dumbfounded.
“Because of the dishes”
“You don’t know how annoying it is to wash dishes.”
There was no way for him, who had never done kitchen work before and would never do so in the future, to relate to what I said.
Zen changed the subject instead of refuting my words.
“What about your exam preparation”
I’m not that worried.”
Rather than the advancement exam, I was more worried about the next.
Considering the pressure coming from the Duchy, I felt like I should get a good score, but if I scored too high, surely I would draw attention.
I have been doing well till this day though— decently, but not noticeably.
I didn’t want to stand out.
“If you’re not worried, then why are you making that face”
Zen pushed his messy hair back.
“What did I do”
I subconsciously brought my hands to my face.
Even if I touched my face, I couldn’t tell what kind of expression I was making without a mirror.
Zen observed me touching my cheeks with an unreadable expression.
“What did the Young Duke say”
“Why do you mention Orion”
“You’ve been visiting that place lately.”
I hadn’t even told Rany that I had been visiting the duchy these few days.
I even deliberately boarded the carriage in a place where people couldn’t see, and I also heard that all the servants of the Duchy knew to stay silent.
“Are you still tracking my location”
“It’s for your protection.”
I like that you protect me, but isn’t it a problem that I have no privacy at all
I glanced at Zen, who looked proud, and soon gave up on arguing.
Even if he canceled the magic right away, I was sure that he would restore it over time.
“So, what’s wrong”
“Your face says there’s something.”
I eventually opened my mouth first as he scanned me.
“It’s not something big.”
Since half of your worries are useless.”
I wondered if he had really offered to hear my troubles or not.
He tilted his head slightly and asked me languidly.
“He said just like how we couldn’t choose our parents when we were born, our parents also couldn’t choose their children.
In a way, we didn’t choose to become a family.
However, because we did become a family, we might as well accept each other.”
“What’s wrong with that”
I hesitated at Zen’s question before continuing my words in mutters.
“I think that blood ties are something special.
I think it would be a little disappointing if the relationship I have with those related to my Mom’s remarriage partner and the relationship I have with Mom herself was not much different.”
“If you think so, then that’s it.”
“Don’t be swayed by his sophistry.
His words were obviously prepared beforehand.”
“I mean, it sounds like it makes sense .
He sighed and tapped my forehead.
“Whether it makes sense or not, I said the important thing is your feelings.”
“The important thing is what you want to do.
The problem is not whether the opponent’s logic is plausible, but whether you intend to play family with them.”
That’s something I can’t choose right away.
When I see my mother being happy, I think this is fine.
Actually, the most confusing thing was my heart.
Orion’s unexpected actions and the people I met through him, kept crossing my line and made me flustered.
I don’t .
It was strange that I didn’t hate it.
“Let’s make one thing clear.”
I raised my head at Zen’s words.
Then he asked earnestly.
“If Orion and I both fall in the water, who will you save”
“If Orion can’t swim, shouldn’t I save Orion”
You’re good at swimming.
“If I and Orion can not swim and we both fall in the water, who will you save”
“I will call Bertin and ask him to save you both.”
I can’t swim, you know.
Zen stared at me with annoyed eyes and soon grabbed my cheeks and stretched it out.
“You should have chosen me without even thinking of the other choices.”
In the first place, if you and Orion were in danger, wouldn’t I already be out of this world
Looking at Zen’s burning eyes, I remembered Orion’s eyes, which were burning with competition toward Sir Rune.
Everyone has a strong competitive spirit, huh .
Rany’s words that we all strove to survive in a competitive society were not wrong.
I’ll save you.”
When I nodded, he finally let go of my cheeks.
While I was touching my tingling cheeks and swallowing cold water, he put on his hooded clothing once more.
“The exam .
It was faint, but I could easily catch it.
When I raised my head, something rolled in front of me.
Rune words were engraved inside the simple silver ring.
“What is this”
“Something to increase your concentration.
This is not illegal.”
I finally realized that the ring fitted perfectly on my fourth finger.
“Did you come here to give me this”
I wondered if he was telling me the truth that he didn’t come to eat.
While I asked as I looked down on the ring, Zen abruptly left instead of answering.