AIWTRO Chapter 129
Raw Provider: Jessica
TL: Ms MTLer
Translator’s Note: Thank you for your well-wishes and understanding! So grateful for your kindness.
His hesitance was answer enough. He didn’t reveal that he snooped in on the conversation from the beginning to hide that he learned how to read lips.
Mason bit his lip nervously.
If he lied to another person here, they would find out immediately.
‘In that case, wouldn’t it be better to tell the truth?’
He promised Lady Cosette he would keep it a secret, but it couldn’t be helped.
Besides, while teaching a servant the art of lip-reading was a bit unusual, it wasn’t a crime. On the other hand, consenting to poison someone was a criminal act.
Having judged that, Mason said.
Mason: “I learned from… Lady Cosette.”
If he had raised his head, he would have sensed Cosette’s murderous gaze.
Arabella hummed in interest. Even if Cosette knew how to read lips, why did she teach such a skill to a servant?
It was a question that made one think of countless possibilities.
Dowager: “Lady Cosette, is that true?”
Mason slowly raised his head when the Empress Dowager’s questioned his master. He was worried that he had confessed something Lady Cosette told him never to say.
But given the situation, he was certain she’d understand…
Cosette: “It’s a lie.”
Cosette: “There is no way I’d know how to do that, much less teach others. All are blatant lies. He’s probably trying to frame me!”
When she said that, the young lady’s face was devoid of any warmth. Mason froze as he stared at her.
Cosette: “Your Highness, I’m innocent! I really don’t know.”
Mason called out for her, his voice faint, but Cosette didn’t even spare him a glance. He was so flustered that his voice would barely come out.
In the end, Mason could do nothing but pout his lips like a crucian carp.
Before Mason could find the words to tell his master, Ludwig spoke.
Ludwig: “You don’t know?”
Cosette: “Father, I’m telling you–”
Ludwig: “You said the same thing when your relatives framed Keira with that obscene rumor. But this time, you’re telling me you have nothing to do with your servant’s schemes?”
Of course, she indeed tried to stigmatize Keira through Countess Rheol. But this time, Cosette really had nothing to do with it.
Cosette: “F-father, it’s a misunderstanding. Your Highness, please believe me! I haven’t had any contact with the child since I left the mansion for my mother’s death anniversary a few days ago. How could I be behind this?”
Ludwig: “You’re still shamelessly making excuses. Your Highness, you don’t need to hear anymore. This happened because I didn’t properly teach this girl. Punish me.”
Cosette: “Father! I-it’s not me! I didn’t do it!”
Ludwig: “Don’t call me that!”
Ludwig’s resolute, booming voice resonated through the room. Cosette was at a loss for words at the way he drew the line.
A moment later, Ludwig realized his mistake and went down on one knee in front of the Empress Dowager.
Ludwig: “I dared to raise my voice in front of Your Highness, Empress Dowager. Please punish me for this and for not properly teaching the girl.”
Dowager: “No, Lord Parvis didn’t do anything wrong. Come on, get up.”
Ludwig said ‘girl,’ not ‘servant.’ In other words, he had concluded that Cosette was responsible for Mason’s instructions.
Cosette’s worst expected outcome came. She knelt on her knees.
Cosette: “Your Highness, please forgive me! The last time I met my servant was a week ago. So how could I possibly have come up with something like this?”
At that, Ludwig answered instead.
Ludwig: “Is that your excuse? You could have prepared it beforehand. Don’t think we’ve forgotten that your servant asked for a moment alone with you a while ago.”
Cosette: “I-I really don’t know! I don’t even know why he asked to be alone!”
Cosette, who had been frantically thinking of more excuses, slowly moved her gaze to Keira. Keira looked down at her with a completely calm expression.
‘That girl tricked Mason!’
Whatever the case, there was surely evidence left behind. If only she could prove that Keira was behind this, she would have turned the situation around.
The only clue she had was the maid sneaking into the kitchen. But before Cosette could bring up that evidence, Keira spoke first.
Keira: “She did the same thing at Great Aunt Johanna’s house. Even after Great Aunt caught you, you haven’t reflected, Cosette.”
Keira: “And we discovered that you tried to have me investigated by your maids. What were you trying to dig up by teaching your servant how to read lips?”
Cosette: “What are you saying…”
Keira: “Are you going to say this isn’t the case either? Even though there were so many witnesses?”
It was unfounded that she tried to investigate Keira through the servants. But the problem was that many people misunderstood it.
Keira: “Or are you trying to claim that it is a misunderstanding?”
Keira: “By the look on your face, it seems like that’s what you’re going to say. Cosette, you’ve already lied once or twice to deceive me.”
After saying that, Keira sighed and turned her head as if dealing with a helpless child.
Was this what it felt like to get hit in the head with a hammer?
The pain of her nails digging into her palm barely kept Cosette rational. If she continued to tremble like this, Keira would roll her up the way she wanted.
She had to think of an excuse. However, the situation wasn’t so accommodating.
People were starting to show interest in Keira’s words, especially when she implied that something similar had already happened before.
In particular, there was a curious glint in Princess Arabella’s eyes. She seemed like she wanted to ask about it but stopped herself because of the atmosphere. But if the princess wanted to know, it was only a matter of time before she found out.
The Empress Dowager opened her mouth.
Dowager: “Lady Cosette, do you have anything else to say?”
Cosette: “I, I…”
Dowager: “I think you need some time to organize your thoughts.”
When the Empress Dowager turned to her attendants, they lifted Mason from the floor.
Dowager: “Put him in jail for now.”
“Yes, Your Highness!”
Mason: “N-no! Your Highness! Please listen to me one more time! M-milady! I risked my life for the truth…!”
The commotion didn’t last long. When the servants noticed the Empress Dowager’s poor pallor, they hurriedly dragged Mason outside.
Silence blanketed the room after the door closed.
The Empress Dowager sighed deeply, and Cosette’s shoulders trembled at the sound.
Things went awry when the stupid servant got into trouble.
At the moment when the mistake was barely rectified, ashes were heavily sprinkled on it.
This time, Cosette swore she had nothing to do with him. But would her claims of innocence be convincing when her immediate servant was involved in such a mess?
While Cosette was at a loss, the Empress Dowager quickly decided to dispose of it.
Dowager: “For now, verify if the kid truly has mastered the art of lip-reading.”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
Dowager: “And… I have to apologize to Lord Parvis.”
Ludwig: “It’s nothing, Your Highness.”
Dowager: “A servant has been accused, so shouldn’t we investigate? I wish I could find out if it was true that the lady received poison, and if so, why.”
In other words, the Empress Dowager meant to have the Parvis residence searched. The Grand Duke could take offense; that’s why the Empress Dowager looked tense.
But a moment later.
Ludwig: “I also want to make sure. Do as you please.”
Dowager: “Oh, I’m glad to hear that.”
If you search the mansion, you won’t find anything. Cosette was certain of it.
It must have been a trap since Mason discovered such an important scene in the first place.
‘Since when? Since when did you start noticing that I taught him how to lip-read?’
Her head throbbed. Maybe her stupid servant got caught because he made a blunder.
“…tte. Lady Cosette?”
Lost in her thoughts, she jumped when someone called her name.
Cosette: “Yes? Yes, Your Highness.”
Dowager: “Are you dissatisfied with today’s decision?”
She had nothing to say but her complaint about how unfair it was. Of course, no one would agree with her.
Cosette reluctantly lowered her head and said.
Cosette: “No, Your Highness. But, I…”
Dowager: “Okay then, I’m going to leave. I’m tired.”
A middle-aged maid helped the Empress Dowager to stand.