YCKTML Chapter 6
Fatigue came to me as soon as I entered the bathtub and soaked in the water. Jenny quietly came up behind me and started massaging my shoulders.
“So, Jenny. How long have you been working here?”
“I think it’s been about five years.”
From Jenny’s appearance, she would be even younger five years ago. Instead of bombarding her with more questions about her life, I decided to move on and ask about the situation of the household.
“How many people in total are employed in this house?”
“Um, let me see. Chelsea quit yesterday, and a month ago, Sophie…”
“Hold on, why are people quitting?”
“That’s…” Jenny trailed off. She only continued when I opened my eyes and looked back at her. “The head maid is strict, and…”
Meanwhile, when I looked in Jenny’s direction, the gown hanging behind her caught my eye. That wasn’t the gown I was wearing.
I then noticed the bathroom products had traces of use.
“Who used this place before I came here?”
“Pardon? Ah, that’s…”
I must have unconsciously raised my voice because Jenny mumbled in panic. I took a deep breath to regain my composure and asked, “Is it the person in the annex?”
Jenny’s deer caught in headlights look said enough. Since I’ve already started, I wanted to confirm something more.
“Then the bedroom, too?”
Jenny nodded a little and said, “The Young Lord and the Lady are often together…”
No way, then, on that bed earlier… Ugh, I felt sick.
I hurried to finish my bath and put a robe over Erin’s old nightgown. Fortunately, this body owned the nightgown, so it didn’t feel repulsive.
At this point, I didn’t want to care how this house worked.
I wanted to get a divorce right now, regardless of the contract. If that didn’t work, For the time being, I had to improve things for the sake of peace and my well-being.
I first headed to Rupert’s room.
I knocked, but no one answered, so I opened the door without permission. I tried not to think of the possibility of Rupert getting angry at me for opening the door because there were more pressing matters to discuss.
“Not here. Where is he?”
Soon, I found the answer to my question.
I remembered that Chloe was in the annex. What should I do?
I tied the robe tightly around my waist.
I was now the Mistress of this house, whether our marriage was only by name or not. I could go wherever I wanted to go. Besides, I had no intention of grabbing her hair and dragging her out like a soap opera villain.
I had no idea if Rupert would be at the mansion tomorrow morning, so I had to settle this tonight.
Jenny spotted me as I was about to leave and ran to me. “Madam, where are you going?”
“To the annex.”
“Ah, but there…”
“It’s okay. I know everything. Stay here.”
“Wait a moment, Madam!” Jenny called me in a hurry and held something that looked like a lamp in her hand.
“All of the lamps outside are broken. Take this and go out.”
“Huh? Ah, right.”
So, electricity didn’t exist in this world. Then, what’s their source of light?
When I looked around, Jenny said, “It’s a lamp made of magic stones. There are only two in the mansion.”
“Ah, so that’s what this is.”
A magic stone, huh. How curious. Well, this was a novel. Magic existed, and if I remembered correctly, so did dragons and monsters.
Some soldiers and knights were guarding the entrance to the annex. Their faces weren’t familiar, but they seemed to know the woman was walking from the main building.
A knight approached and spoke politely, “A-are you Madam?”
“Yes, that’s right.”
“May I ask what you’re doing here?”
The knight looked back at the annex. The two must still be together.
“I came to see the Young Duke, so let me through.”
“I know everything, so it doesn’t matter. I didn’t come here to make a scene.”
Watching the knight fidget, I finally got frustrated and pushed past him. He didn’t stop me.
It seemed that Rupert had never ordered the knights to stop people from coming.
When I entered the annex, I immediately noticed that it looked better managed than the main building. It was apparent this wasn’t the first time Chloe had been here.
Scoffing, I opened the door and saw a cozy-looking drawing room.
At that moment, a rustling sound was heard from inside. I knocked and waited.
“Rupert, come out.”
Whatever it was, the two seemed caught off guard. There was a thumping noise, and I thought I heard a woman’s voice.
I felt like I’ve become a wife who’s about to bust my husband’s affair… or something like that.
Rupert, who wore nothing but a robe, opened the door and shouted, “What’s going on?”
Startled, I took a step back.
I saw the heroine sitting on the bed, eyes round and wide, behind Rupert.
Of course, it’s not surprising that if a man and a woman were in the room, well, something like that would happen.
“I’m sure I told you not to go here.”
“What can I say? I have something to say right now.”
“What’s going on? Is this urgent enough to talk about in the middle of the night?”
“For me, it is. I don’t know when I’ll see you again.”
“Huu, Erin. We’ll be living in the same house as a couple for a year anyway, so I don’t see the rush.”
I looked at him, stunned by what he just said. And Rupert, who looked just as surprised, turned to look at his lover behind him.
I couldn’t exactly see the expression on Chloe’s face, but I could only guess that such words would hurt a lover. Well, whatever; it’s none of my business.
“Haa, damn it. Hold on,” he stood up and went back in, probably to comfort Chloe first.
I went to the drawing room, turned to the maid standing pitifully by the corner and said, “Go get tea.”
“Yes? Ah, yes!”
I sat on the single sofa in the middle of the living room and leaned back. While waiting for the maid to serve the tea, I touched the earring I placed in my pocket.
This earring might be Chloe’s.
Everything’s so strange.
The dressing room, the bathroom, the bedroom… so, Chloe had been living like the Mistress of this house before Erin came.
In this situation, was Erin really the villain?
Chloe took Rupert’s love, and everything she thought was hers. I wondered if that gentle and kind woman had the capacity to hate Erin.
I looked over the annex. There was a bedroom, and the room beyond that would be the dressing room. The lights in the room were still on, and I could see a shadow moving. They seemed to be organizing the items taken from my bedroom earlier.
Without realizing it, the side of my lip tilted up. I shouldn’t care, but now that I was here, I kept wanting to interrupt.
Don’t even think about it. You should be careful if you don’t want to die.
Soon the maid served the tea, and I sat in a more relaxed position and lifted the teacup.
Then I heard the door open from the other side, and I deliberately spoke to the maid standing near me, “Please take good care of me during my stay.”
“Ah, that–yes. I will.”
As soon as the maid stammered out her reply, Rupert arrived, face red and fists clenched.
He was finally wearing clothes. I knew we’re technically a ‘couple,’ but I was relieved I could spare my eyes from something unpleasant.
He was about to sit in the middle of the sofa, but after stealing a glance at me, he settled on the one opposite mine.
“Would you like a cup of tea,” I asked.
Rupert sneered. “You’re already acting like the Mistress of this house. I didn’t know you’re so quick to adapt. How obstinate.”
“I’m not surprised you didn’t know things about me. Like I don’t know much about you.”
Rupert gritted his teeth. “Then, what did you want to discuss this late at night?”
“To remind you of our terms and conditions.”
Now that it’s like this, let’s do whatever we want. I sat down, crossing my legs and savoring the aroma of the tea.
“Terms? If it’s money, I already paid half of it.”
“That’s right, terms, as a condition of maintaining a year of marriage.”
“So, are you saying you’re going to sleep with me now?”
“Wow, don’t make such a terrible joke.”
Rupert’s eyebrows shot up. It must have been a shock to hear that from Erin.
“What terrible joke? It’s true that we’re married.”
“You’re right; it’s true. But it’s weird that you’re saying this. If your lover heard her, she’d be hurt,” I said, looking at the shadow behind the hallway.
Rupert also looked back. The shadow disappeared into the door.
Rupert turned to me and frowned. “Tell me what you want to say.”
“I need financial control over this house.”