YCKTML Chapter 15
“Sorry? Me?” I asked back in surprise.
Originally, Plada offered this to Chloe. But why was she asking me now?
“Wouldn’t you prefer Miss Chloe, who was here earlier?”
“Well, that young lady is also beautiful. I would have asked her if the Count Spilet had not come. But now that Madam is in front of me, what’s the point in doing that?”
Plada whispered the last words. I didn’t know what to say to that, so I stayed silent.
Plada laughed and went back to organizing the clothes.
If I hadn’t come, she would have asked Chloe. That was the original flow of the story. In the novel, Erin didn’t come here, so Madam Plada made the exclusive offer with Chloe.
“Believe me when I say I’ll make you the most beautiful flower in the social world,” Plada recited the familiar lines I once read.
I thought for a moment. I had nothing to lose.
Even if I couldn’t attend the ball now didn’t mean there weren’t other chances. In addition, Erin didn’t have as many clothes as she should, and she didn’t have the money to buy them.
It was a win-win for us.
This time, I took her hand and shook it.
“Then… please, Madam Plada.”
“Just leave it to me.”
“By the way… is this because of the business card?”
Plada shook her head at my question. “The fact that you brought the business card means you’ll be a valued patron, but the offer has nothing to do with that. I did say I’ve been watching Madam for a while now.”
“Ah… I see.”
As Plada packed the clothes, I stared outside the window and noticed that it was getting dark.
So, how do I get home now? The Prince split the carriage I rode in two with his magic.
Still, Plada took the luggage and went outside. Worst case scenario, I would have to walk, and I’d have no way of carrying that with me.
“Hold on, Plada. I need to call for a carriage.”
“Huh? Isn’t the carriage outside not Madam’s?”
“There’s… there’s a carriage outside…?”
I opened the door and looked outside. There stood a small carriage, the one the Crown Prince had lent earlier.
As I looked at the carriage, I was caught up in a strange feeling. It was very similar to how I felt when I was sitting next to Enoch earlier.
I let out a breath I hadn’t realized I had been holding and breathed in. I would have to ride that carriage. There was no other way to go back.
Before I could say anything, Plada and Chelsea loaded the luggage in the back of the carriage. I didn’t know if it was just me, but it looked heavier than it did when I saw it earlier.
“Madam, I was surprised.”
After Erin left, Chelsea suddenly spoke.
With a knowing look, Plada asked, “Why are you surprised?”
“I didn’t expect that you’d ask the future Duchess to be your exclusive model, much less send her all those clothes.”
“Well, my creations didn’t have owners yet, so I took the opportunity to give them one.”
“Still…” Chelsea tilted her head in confusion.
“Do you know how many young ladies, wives, and beloved mistresses I have seen in this job?”
“Of course… it’s a lot.”
Plada hung some clothes and shook her hands.
“If it’s just beauty, the mistress, Lady Verezian, might be better. But, not only was Madam beautiful, but she exuded grace. She’s the ideal subject.”
“Really… is that the reason?”
“Of course, that’s not all.”
Plada crossed her arms and walked to the window. It looked like it was going to rain soon.
“The one holding the business card is the future Duchess… I’m curious to see how she’ll come out in the future.”
The carriage stopped at the entrance. I turned to the coachman and said, “Thank you for bringing me home. You must be a skilled coachman. The carriage didn’t shake the whole way.”
“Ah, this carriage has a magic device attached to it. So it’s faster and quieter than a regular carriage.”
I was taken aback, but I nodded my head. “Is that so. In any case, be sure to say thank you to the Crown Prince.”
“Yes, I will. Phew. Go ahead. It looks like it’s going to rain soon.”
After the carriage had departed, I entered the main gate. As soon as I entered, I absently looked towards the annex.
There was a light inside the annex. Surely, they’re both there. Good. We had separate living quarters, so we didn’t have to see each other often.
As I walked across the center of the garden, it started to rain. It began with a drop or two; then, a shower poured down. It was so strong that I couldn’t even open my eyes. I ran towards the main building without even thinking about it.
As soon as I ran to the front door and took a breather, I bumped into someone hard and fell straight over.
When I looked up to see who it was, it was Rupert. He looked startled to see me and didn’t seem to have any intention of helping me up. What did I expect?
He belatedly reached out his hand as I got up. You act fast. I snorted, trying to wipe off the water from my clothes and hands.
Surprisingly, Rupert stayed and hung around, but he refused to look me in the eye for some reason.
“Aren’t you going?”
I tried to leave first, but he suddenly stopped me.
“Wait.” He took off his coat and placed it over my shoulders. “Don’t walk around like that. Go straight to your room.”
Rupert left and went to the annex. There was a roof on the road connecting the main building and the annex, so he didn’t have to worry about getting wet.
“What’s up with him.”
I looked back for a moment before going inside. The maid was nowhere to be seen, and the old butler was coming down the stairs.
“I have put my luggage inside… ma’am.” The butler, who was talking, looked me up and down and gave me a strange smile.
“Okay, well done.”
The butler only turned his gaze away when I narrowed my eyes at him. What’s going on?
Because it was raining, the chill gradually penetrated my body. I shuddered and hurried into the room. I’d have to take a bath as soon as possible.
It was only when I entered the room and looked in the mirror that I understood. The dress Plada gave me to wear was made of a relatively thin white fabric.
It was drenched in the rain, revealing the silhouette of my body. Then I saw the coat Rupert gave me… My face turned bright red.
But then I remembered the butler’s eyes earlier and shuddered in disgust.
There was no way I’d let that butler stay in this house.
I called Jenny, who was organizing my clothes in the dressing room, and asked her to prepare the bathwater first.
After taking a bath, Jenny prepared a nightgown I had never seen before. The pink silk pajamas looked new, but they weren’t Erin’s.
“Jenny, I don’t think that’s mine.”
“But that was in the luggage from a while ago? Isn’t that yours?”
At Jenny’s words, I put on the gown and went to the dressing room. Come to think of it, the shift also looked different from yesterday. The color was more subtle, and the soft feel seemed to be of a much higher quality material.
My eyes opened wide when I took in the view of the dressing room. A lot more clothes were hanging than before.
Apart from the casual clothes that Plada made for practice, there were also a few dresses that seemed to be perfect for tea parties or outdoor events.
They weren’t as glamorous as party dresses, but they were all luxurious and elegant because Plada handled them all.
“Are these all from the luggage?”
“Yes, yes, and look. There are also accessories here,” Jenny gushed as she opened the drawer. It wasn’t a lot, but there were accessories and underwear that were obviously new.
I stared at the items for a moment before putting them back in. Did people treat their exclusive models like this? No, it couldn’t be.
Usually, such a partnership meant the model chose a designer who’d make the dresses they’d wear for a banquet or tea party. Although Madam Plada was the most famous, there were certainly many other designers in this world besides her.
They wanted to raise the value of their name, so they would sometimes treat high-ranking aristocrats as their exclusive models.
I didn’t know if Plada took care of these things because she was aware of my situation or because she just wanted me to wear them.
Either way, I was thankful.
I’d have to send her a letter of gratitude tomorrow.
With that in mind, I went to my bedroom. The butler changed the bed and furniture as soon as I gave him the money.
I couldn’t say that it suited my taste, but I didn’t tell him my preference, and I had no intention of staying here long. This would have to do.
Because I had been walking all day, my whole body felt heavy and sore.
Lying in bed, lost in thoughts, I soon fell asleep.
Anyway, I made one mistake today.
A noble lady’s body was much weaker than I thought. I was groaning all night because of the brief rain.
And that night, I had a terrifying and eerie dream.