Limited Time, Kitchen Maid of the Fourth Knight Order ~I Got a Job Because I Don’t Want to Get Married~ – Chapter 93

𝐂𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐚𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐚𝐟𝐟𝐞𝐜𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧

. . .I can’t sleep.

I feel like if I fall asleep, I’ll have nightmares, so I’m somehow scared to sleep.

I thought I had gotten over the merchant, but when I accidentally engage in conversation, my emotions become a mess.

. . .Mainly because I’m angry.

Anger and a good night’s sleep are far apart.

. . .Even so, my life seems to be quite tumultuous, doesn’t it?

In my previous life, I was all alone in the world, my ex-husband squandered my fortune and cheated on me, and I died twisted.

Somehow, I reincarnated with memories intact, got attacked by a man, my brother turned into a sister-complex, occasionally nursing my sick mom without sleep, got involved in conspiracies over the throne, and here I am, playing the part of a whimsical lady.

“. . .Maybe I am walking a rather hard path in life.”

It’s better than almost dying before actually dying. . . or maybe I am on the verge of dying right now?

Once I start thinking, I can’t stop, so I decide to change into a dress I can wear alone and head to the kitchen.

I gently open the door and close it slowly. The discussion room, quiet and dark.

“On nights like this, you crave a warm cocoa or a milk tea loaded with sugar, right?”

It’s especially true when you’re tired.

“That’s correct.”

“Yea. . . ah!”

“You’ve gotten used to screaming with composure, haven’t you?”

“That’s because it’s always Edgardo-sama who scares me.”

In the darkness, Edgardo, sitting slumped on the sofa, smiled tiredly, unable to hide his fatigue.

“That might be true. I always surprise Alice.”

Edgardo’s face, looking down, was plastered with various negative emotions.

Being told that the specialty of his own territory was used for poisoning, it’s impossible to remain calm. Rolf also acted bravely, but he must be concerned.

Rolf hides his weaknesses alone. So tonight, he surely won’t come out of his room.

Edgardo has an honest nature, able to expose his vulnerabilities, so he wasn’t too disturbed by my presence.

“Will Edgardo-sama have some cocoa?”

“. . .Yes, I’ll have some.”

I go to the kitchen, make the cocoa, and top it with marshmallows. It’s ready.

I return to the still-dark room and hand the cocoa to Edgardo.

“Thank you. . . .It’s delicious.”

“I’m glad. Sweets are good when you’re tired.”

“Sweets are always delicious.”

As expected of Edgardo, he’s consistent.

We sit facing each other, drinking cocoa. Edgardo, warming his hands on the cup, starts to speak sporadically.

“. . .I never told Alice about the strictness of the Valka family.”

“I’ve heard a little.”

“I’m grateful you didn’t ask.”

Edgardo’s long lashes were cast down.

“To be precise, it’s not that the Valka family is strict. . . It’s just my dad.”

“Edgardo-sama’s dad?”

“Yes. The Valka family became the Marquis family thanks to my grandfather. My dad idolized him. . . but my dad and grandfather are different people.”

Edgardo, gripping the cup so tightly as if it might break, drained his cocoa along with various emotions.

 ㅤ

“Like a grandfather, expected to work hard, facing repeated disappointments. . . my dad gradually changed. Eventually, he began to demand that I do exactly as my grandfather did.”

“. . .I see, such things happened.”

“Of course, my grandfather tried to dissuade him. But that only made things worse. . . When my grandmother passed away, my grandfather moved to a distant place. I haven’t seen him since then.”

Unsure of how to respond or even if it was appropriate to make a sound.

I was still reeling from the weight of Edgardo’s past when suddenly, I found myself caught in his gaze.

It was a sharp, serious. . . a man’s gaze.

“Alice, you do not wish to marry, do you?”

I bit my lip hard.

It felt like a crossroads moment. How I answered now could determine my future with Edgardo.

“. . .I do not wish to marry.”

It was a feeling without falsehood.

Maybe someday, I will want to marry someone desperately. But for now, I can’t even contemplate it.

“With the Valka Marquis family, one could marry if they really wished to. But. . . marrying me would tie Alice down to that house. Everyone wants to improve the situation, but the more we struggle to make it better, the more entangled and worsened it becomes.”

I think I understand that feeling of helplessness.

“I feel like Alice could somehow make it better. But. . . this is something my dad, grandfather, and I should resolve. Besides.”

Edgardo plastered what looked like a faint smile on his face.

“I want Alice to be free.”

Edgardo, having closed his mouth, chose not to speak anymore.

The cocoa had grown cold in the cup, swaying. Drinking it now seemed wrong, so I stayed silent, waiting for Edgardo’s contemplation to end.

After waiting a while, I felt cold and sneezed, which seemed to bring Edgardo back from his sea of thoughts.

“To be so consumed with my own issues that I neglect Alice’s feelings. . . I’m sorry. Rolf would have noticed.”

“I believe that no good thoughts come before sleep or in the middle of the night. Stay warm and sleep well. Lack of sleep is the source of negative thinking.”

“Thank you.”

Edgardo left with a fleeting smile and an uncertain gait.

After seeing him off, I decided to clean up the cup and return to my room.

. . .It seems when you come to the lounge late at night, there’s a high chance of meeting someone. I see.

That night, I couldn’t sleep thinking about Edgardo.

I don’t dislike Edgardo. In fact, I quite like him, but it feels different from romantic affection.

One thing is clear: marrying out of sympathy would lead to nothing good.

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