Limited Time, Kitchen Maid of the Fourth Knight Order ~I Got a Job Because I Don’t Want to Get Married~ – Chapter 27

𝐋𝐢𝐧𝐮𝐬’ 𝐦𝐨𝐧𝐨𝐥𝐨𝐠𝐮𝐞

When I changed my name from Linus, which my mother gave me, and altered my appearance and voice to hide within this order of knights, I felt relief alongside regret.

Before I knew it, I was surrounded by people from the Count Dyson family, and I had to be vigilant in my every word and action. Even casual conversations with attendants required careful thought, and I couldn’t even talk to myself. The mere thought that even the number of my sighs might be reported to the Count Dyson family made tension my daily life.

The only time I could take a deep breath was in unofficial settings solely occupied by my elder brother and his close aides.

My father didn’t even look at me, consumed as he was with mourning the premature death of my mother.

He quickly relinquished the throne to my elder brother and secluded himself in a separate palace with my mom’s remains. Fortunately, he left behind all the competent people, but many frowned upon his act of renouncing his royal responsibilities.

That is precisely why my elder brother gained the unwavering support of many nobles.

On the other hand, many nobles were cautious and simply observed me.

Until my elder brother had children, I was respected to some extent as a backup. But once he had two healthy children, I became nothing but a potential problem.

All of my would-be subordinates were under the influence of the Count Dyson family, and I could do nothing to thwart their ambitions. I even considered the possibility of being imprisoned and used as a figurehead in a rebellion.

Hence, even though I trained and studied as a noble of this country, I made sure people around me thought I was incompetent. Any effort I made for my brother would be despised by his aides and welcomed by the rebels.

My elder brother was the only one who praised me and even said he was proud, but I couldn’t take his words at face value.

Just like my elder brother advised, I train with the Fourth Order of Knights to defend myself, but I spend my days not knowing if that’s the right course. I can only trust a few attendants and my elder brother.

In a worst-case scenario, even my elder brother might have to forsake me as a king. With so few allies, there is nothing I can do to turn the tide.

Miss Norchev arrived at such a time.

Arthur is highly guarded, and even Shiro can hardly talk to him since he stays in the kitchen during meals. Therefore, I decided to probe Miss Norchev myself.

I was surprised by our conversation. She doesn’t show much emotion on her face, as befitting a young lady, but her feelings are entirely transparent. It’s easy to read what she’s thinking.

And she affirmed my efforts. She genuinely called me the “Prince of Effort.”

I believe her words come from her own experiences. But they struck a chord with me. They were the words I had been looking for. I too want the strength to keep striving, even if I don’t know what the right path is.

As I continued to train and collect as much information as possible to counteract the rebels, Shiro told me to take a break.

“At this rate, you’ll break both body and spirit! You need to unwind.”

“Unwind?”

“Rest is essential for training, isn’t it? Similarly, your mind also needs rest. Take the next day off.”

“. . .I don’t know how to take a day off.”

“How about going on a date with Miss Norchev? Talking to her every night has become a bit of a breather for you, hasn’t it?”

“Maybe. . .I do enjoy talking to Miss Norchev.”

“Please do something enjoyable. You might not get another chance to rest. But be careful not to fall for Miss Norchev! You’re engaged, after all, Linus-sama.”

“. . .I understand.”

 ㅤ

My fiancée is a pawn of the Count Dyson family. The exchanges of letters and gifts, as well as tea parties, are all minimal. It seems they reluctantly agreed to the engagement because they can’t oppose the Count Dyson family.

If I can get evidence of the rebellion and change the situation, we’re at a point where we could break off the engagement. I shouldn’t worry too much, but it would be problematic if this vulnerability is exploited.

“What should we do on a date? Have tea together?”

“How about going to the lake since it’s warm? You know, the one reserved for the royal family near here.”

“Ah, that place. True, it would be pleasant this season.”

“If it’s a discreet date, how about asking Miss Norchev to prepare lunch? Commoners often have women make lunch for a picnic, and in return, the men give gifts.”

Enjoying a delicious lunch prepared by Miss Norchev at a lake fragrant with fresh grass while basking in the sunlight.

The more I think about it, the more wonderful the idea seems. I nervously ask Miss Norchev and she readily agrees. There was a minor hiccup where it wasn’t considered an escort but a handshake, but that doesn’t change the fact that it’s a date.

I stand at the meeting place on the next day off, fully aware of my excitement. I’ve made others wait before, but I’ve never waited.

While waiting with a mix of anxiety and anticipation, Miss Norchev arrives in her uniform.

. . .So, dates are conducted in uniforms?

I had no comments about the modest clothing she chose. I had thought that dates usually start by complimenting each other’s clothing and accessories, but I’ve already hit a snag.

First, I express my gratitude for the lunch she prepared and start walking. For some reason, the topic is “the most delicious-looking cloud.”

I thought I had some skill in conversation to please a lady, being a minor royal myself. Yet I’m told to burn the flowers I gave as a gift, we end up watching ants, and finally, she said she didn’t think it was a date.

The utterly unpredictable Miss Norchev even took a short nap on a cushion along the way. Who could have seen this coming?

Her unexpectedly long eyelashes cast shadows on her cheeks.

I divert my focus to draining water, and the date comes to an end. While it may not be a typical noble date, it was undeniably enjoyable and refreshing.

I will invite Miss Norchev again. This time, I’ll explicitly say it’s a date.

So this is what people find so enjoyable about taking a break. It was a day when I understood why everyone seeks to take time off.

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