AIWTRO Chapter 114
Raw Provider: Jessica
TL: Ms MTLer
When Keira returned to her box, Miranda stood alone, Ludwig nowhere in sight.
Keira: “Where is His Grace?”
Miranda: “He would go out for a while then come back.”
Keira: “Well, it’s frustrating to sit here for hours. Would you like to get some air, too?”
Miranda: “I-it’s fine. I just went to the bathroom.”
If it were Emily or Lira, they would have been excited to look around the auction house.
Miranda was a quiet and reserved person, enough to make Keira wonder how she became close to her friends.
What was so embarrassing? Her cheeks were flushed red, even under the dim lighting.
Cute. Keira thought so and sat down.
At the beginning of the second half of the event, Ludwig returned to his seat.
Keira wondered what was bothering him. He didn’t smile once until the show started.
Fortunately, the silence wasn’t awkward during the play, was it?
‘It’s pretty entertaining.’
It was a predictable love story, but it was distracting enough to forget the awkward silence.
She was completely engulfed in the actors’ performances and didn’t notice how much time had passed. When she came to her senses, the curtains on the stage were coming down.
Then Ludwig spoke.
Ludwig: “You looked like you were focused on watching it. It must have been interesting.”
Keira: “Well, it was more fun than watching an auction.”
All that was left was to go home and deliver the amethyst brooch to Zeke.
‘Oh, before that, I’ll have to go to the organizers and pick up the goods.’
The winning bids were usually delivered right before returning home.
Keira would have to send Miranda to pick up the items.
Just as she thought it would be nice if Zeke liked what she got for him…
They could hear a whistle from downstairs. It was a noise that didn’t suit the situation.
“What is this?”
Everyone frowned and turned their gaze to where the sound was coming from.
A guard came up the stage and said.
“First of all, I would like to apologize to the visitors. Unfortunately, there has been a theft inside the building, so we have no choice but to restrict access points for a while. Please cooperate with the guards’ search request…”
“Nonsense! You dare accuse us of being thieves!”
“How shameless. How dare you treat me like a thief! Bring in the person in charge!”
As expected, complaints erupted from the audience.
Cooperate with the search? Didn’t that mean they were investigating the issue thinking that the culprit was among the crowd?
Most of the people here had been treated their whole life preciously, and now that they were accused of thievery, it was expected that they’d be indignant about it.
The auction house was instantly filled with anger. Objects even flew towards the stage.
“P-please calm down!”
“Calm? How are we supposed to stay calm? Get out of here and get the manager!”
“T-that… The necklace that Her Highness, Princess Arabella had won has disappeared!”
As soon as the guard mentioned the Princess’s name, the audience fell silent. The man on stage took advantage of that moment.
“There was a request to find the item. I ask for your consideration just this once.”
There was nothing more to say about the search, especially since the goods stolen were that of a member of the Imperial family.
“If it was Her Highness’s, then there’s nothing we can do about it.”
“But, do they still have to investigate us? The lower nobles blinded by greed could have stolen it.”
“Aren’t you supposed to consider only one suspect at a time?”
The audience still expressed their dissatisfaction, but they didn’t show their anger outright. The guard, who noticed the slight softening, added hurriedly.
“We will do it as quickly as possible. Thank you for understanding.”
Obviously, the guard was forced to say ‘Thank you for understanding’ since the crowd didn’t.
Anyway, no one wanted to earn the hatred of the Imperial family, so the spectators swallowed their irritation and followed the guards’ instructions.
If they brought bags, the bags were searched, if their clothes had pockets or had space to hide things, their clothes were searched.
Whether it was a woman’s dress or a man’s outerwear.
Ludwig was also unable to escape the search.
“Excuse me, Your Grace.”
Ludwig held out his coat without showing any sign of offense.
Another guard came in, looked inside the box seats, and made sure what they were looking for wasn’t there.
‘I don’t think they’re trying to frame me…’
It was the first thing Keira considered when she heard that the Princess’s necklace was stolen. Of course, it probably didn’t make sense for someone like Keira to steal a necklace.
After confirming the Grand Duke’s innocence, the guards bowed politely.
“Thank you for your cooperation. Forgive us for the inconvenience.”
Ludwig: “Can we go back now?”
“Oh, um… I am very sorry, but please wait a little longer.”
Ludwig: “Do we have to stay here for the rest of our lives until the culprit is found?”
“I-I’m so sorry. More details will be given in a moment.”
Ludwig: “What a mess.”
Ludwig sighed indignantly and sat down. Keira also returned to her seat.
‘If they’re not trying to frame me, why are they doing this?’
She was convinced that Cosette’s camp was behind the commotion. Otherwise, there was someone foolish enough to steal the Princess’s necklace.
But it was too cunning to be a mere coincidence.
‘What are you trying to do?’
Unfortunately or fortunately, her question was quickly answered.
The door to the box seat opened, and a confused auction house employee stuck out his head.
“Uh, Your Ladyship. There’s something I’d like you to confirm, but…”
Keira: “What’s going on?”
“Is this the item Your Ladyship successfully bid?”
The employee brought out a men’s brooch that Keira planned to gift to Zeke. It looked exactly as she had seen on stage.
Keira: “It looks like it. But wouldn’t they know better if that was the item up for auction or not?”
“Um, I think you will have to come downstairs for a moment. The item was found in someone else’s clothes. Since a theft has occurred, it’s better to check more clearly.”
Keira’s forehead furrowed.
Keira: “You found it in someone else’s clothes? Just who is it?”
The employee hesitated for a moment before speaking.
“It’s Sir Erez Shore.”
As she made her way downstairs, she could see a flustered Erez standing next to the stage.
There were several other familiar faces– the Countess of Rheol, the charity auction organizer, her daughter, Lady Rheol, the Princess, and Claire Neil.
It wasn’t just them. The auction house guards and other nobles were also there, discussing something.
“Lady Keira is here.”
When the employee who escorted Keira announced her arrival, everyone’s eyes turned to her.
The Countess approached her and said.
Countess: “Thank you for coming. The appraiser just arrived. Come on, take a look.”
The man whom the Countess identified as the appraiser was a middle-aged man wearing a monocle. He took the brooch from the auction housekeeper and examined it closely.
After a while, he said.
“This is the same brooch that went up for auction today. There’s no doubt about it.”
Then the crowd lowered their voices and whispered amongst themselves.
“Oh my, what’s going on?”
“I know, right?”
The Countess stared at Keira in confusion and asked.
“Lady Keira, excuse me, but may I ask for an explanation?”
Keira: “I don’t know what’s happening. I should be the one who’s asking for an explanation. Why is the brooch I bought here?”
Countess: “Well… During the search process, we found the brooch in Sir Erez’s clothes. It seems that one of the staff here found it…”
Keira: “Yes, and?”
Countess: “As you know, we’re investigating a theft, right? We figured we should check to see if there are other items stolen, too.”
Keira’s eyes narrowed. So, they did this incident of hiding the Princess’s necklace to have a legitimate reason to search the nobles.
Countess: “Of course, I personally don’t think Sir Erez is a thief. It must have been a present from Lady Keira, right?”
Keira looked around the room and saw Erez looking at her with an expression so upset that he couldn’t even speak.
Next to him was Claire, who looked pale. A few steps away, the Princess stood with her arms crossed, and beside her were several nobles whispering in low voices.
Keira finally understood their intentions.
‘They probably want me to lie that I gave it to Erez as a gift to cover for him.’
The moment Keira did that, people would accuse her of delivering a gift to a man with a prospective fiancée.