𝐂𝐡𝐚𝐩𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝟒𝟒: 𝐄𝐱𝐭𝐫𝐚 𝐄𝐝𝐢𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧: 𝐌𝐢𝐝𝐰𝐢𝐧𝐭𝐞𝐫 𝐍𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭’𝐬 𝐃𝐫𝐞𝐚𝐦
In a luxurious and splendid sleeping chamber.
Mabel slowly sat up.
The soft bed seemed to engulf her entire body, making her feel restless. As Mabel gazed absentmindedly at the shimmering sheets, she noticed that someone was sleeping next to her.
Soft red hair spread across the pillow. The fluttering eyelashes were lowered, and the person was peacefully breathing in their sleep. As Mabel shifted her gaze, she saw strong shoulders and well-toned arms peeking out from the covers, revealing smooth skin. Huh? Bare skin?
Mabel hastily looked at her own body. She was wearing a high-quality nightdress, and she let out a sigh of relief. It seemed that she and the man next to her were married?
“Good morning, Mabel.”
“Ro-Row-san, what on earth?.”
“What’s wrong? Tell your husband.”
Husband?! Mabel’s scream echoed through Row’s mansion early in the morning.
“We share the same bed; Live in the same house. What am I if not your husband?”
“Row-san and I… married?”
As they sat across from each other at the table, Row casually said those words. Mabel repeated the words in her mind, but her memories were hazy.
“Yeah, you took quite a while to agree. It was tough.”
Row smiled and Mabel gently tore the bread she had in her hand.
Unable to savor the taste, Mabel desperately tried to gather her thoughts.
(Marriage… Row-san is one of the few masked mages in the world.)
But the more she thought about it, the less she understood why she and Row were in such a relationship. Could it be that she had amnesia?
“Um, Row-san, I’m sorry. It seems like I’ve forgotten everything up until now.”
Upon hearing that, Row widened his beautiful crimson eyes.
“What? So you don’t remember the proposal I made to you?”
“Yeah. Like this―”
As Row stood up and approached Mabel’s side, he knelt down next to her chair and gently took her left hand.
“―I want you to be my last lover.”
Row lightly touched Mabel’s ring finger with his lips.
Mabel hadn’t noticed before, but there was a beautiful silver wedding ring shining on that finger, presumably given to her by him. After briefly parting his lips, Row looked up at Mabel.
With a wink that seemed like it would make a sound, Mabel’s face instantly turned bright red. She felt as if she were being drawn into his passionate red eyes, but at the same time, an uncomfortable sensation tugged at her chest.
(Me, Row-san’s lover?)
Black, gold. . . She felt like she was about to remember something and tightly closed her eyes.
But no matter how hard she tried, she couldn’t grasp the answer to what this discomfort was. Row seemed to notice Mabel’s troubled expression as he leaned in closer.
“Are you okay? You seem to be in pain.”
“Eek?! Y-yes, I’m fine, but, um, could you please step back a bit.”
Ignoring Mabel, whose face was about to catch fire, Row continued to hold her hand and approached even closer. It seemed that her body reached its limit before her face did.
Somewhere in the distance, Row’s voice echoed.
Being held firmly in his strong arms, Mabel lost consciousness.
She was now on a velvet-covered sofa.
“. . .”
Mabel gasped for breath and quickly sat up. Startled by her sudden movement, Mutabilis, who was reading a book on a nearby desk, trembled.
Mabel looked around again. An antique carpet and shelves filled with books. As Mutabilis watched Mabel’s flustered state, she tilted her head.
“Well, um, it seems like I was having a dream.”
Finally calming down, Mabel let out a deep sigh. Seeing Mutabilis looking puzzled, Mabel recalled the dream she had just had.
‘I never thought I would dream of marrying Row-san. I probably won’t be able to calm down at all…’
Mabel shook her head vigorously, trying to shake off the vivid memory.
Perhaps finding her reaction amusing, Mutabilis chuckled softly.
“You seem really flustered.”
“Sorry, it’s nothing. By the way, why am I in Mutabilis’ room?”
In response to Mabel’s question, Mutabilis widened his eyes in surprise.
“Mabel came to play and ended up falling asleep here.”
“Yeah. I thought you looked happy reading a magazine, and before I knew it…”
Curious, Mabel raised an eyebrow and found a booklet beside her, taking it out and placing it in front of her. The cover read “Happy Marriage Special Feature.”
Blinking several times, she flipped through the pages.
There were articles about how to greet both families, choosing engagement and wedding rings together, and more. Mabel had been looking at them for a while, but she couldn’t remember a thing. Unable to contain her curiosity, she asked Mutabilis.
“Um, why do I have this book?”
“W-Well, It’s for our wedding, I guess.”
Mabel let out a surprised voice. But it seemed that Mutabilis wasn’t joking, as he smiled with his beautiful azure eyes narrowed. His silky platinum hair flowed gracefully.
“But I still can’t believe I get to marry Mable.”
“M-Mutabilis, what. . .?”
“I thought I couldn’t make someone like me, a mage. But Mabel was different. She said she liked me, even though I’m a mage.”
In front of Mutabilis, who smiled somewhat bashfully, Mabel was completely bewildered.
‘What does this mean?! Mutabilis and I? getting married?’
Mabel somehow had a vague recollection of Mutabilis’ words from earlier.
However, she couldn’t remember when it happened or who he said it to.
Mabel, who was holding her head and mumbling, puzzled Mutabilis.
“Ah, um, yeah, that’s right.”
Seeing Mabel stumble over her words, Mutabilis’s expression darkened.
He eventually stood up from his chair and sat down next to Mabel on the sofa. He gently overlapped his hand with Mabel’s tightly clenched one and murmured in a calm voice.
“I will cherish you, Mabel.”
“I’ve been thinking about how I can make you like me more.”
Those words triggered a blurry scene in Mabel’s mind.
‘―How can I make you like me?’
Whose words were those again?
Feeling intensely curious, Mabel repeated it quietly, as if digging into the depths of her memory.
“How can I make you like me?”
Surprised by Mabel’s sudden silence, Mutabilis seemed taken aback.
But he quickly narrowed his eyes and smiled gently, leaning his forehead against hers.
“I’ve always liked you, Mabel.”
“. . .”
“I want to be with you forever. Eating cookies together, baking delicious cakes. Do you dislike those things, Mabel?”
Mutabilis’s calm voice resonated in Mabel’s heart.
She loved Mutabilis’s pure and gentle nature. She also loved how he enjoyed sweets and ate them with such delight.
‘Why did I forget about that?’
I’ll make sweets for him. From now on, always. that will be–
―But once again, a dark image flowed into Mabel’s mind.
Not just black, but amber, pale skin, and large wings extending from the back.
At that moment, Mabel stood up abruptly.
Ignoring Mutabilis’ call from behind, Mabel found herself running. She opened the door and swiftly descended the long staircase in one leap.
Though Mutabilis shouted something from upstairs, Mabel didn’t stop. She grabbed the handrail with one hand and slid down to the entrance.
‘I am…that person’s fiancée,’ However, in her excitement, Mabel tripped and stumbled at the last landing. She hurriedly reached out to grab something, but it was already too late. Mabel’s body fell dramatically down the stairs.
Mabel gasped for breath and quickly got up, placing her hand on her pounding chest. She found herself on a firm leather sofa. It was still throbbing with her heartbeat.
‘Where am I?’
She looked around, shifting her gaze from left to right. There was an expensive-looking desk and numerous bookshelves lining the walls. There was no doubt, it was Eugene’s room.
As Mabel caught her breath, she remembered the dream she had just witnessed. She tilted her head, wondering what it could have been.
‘What a vivid dream that was…’
She looked at her left hand again, but there was no sign of the engagement ring with Row. The magazine featuring a wedding special with Mutabilis was also nowhere to be found. Instead, there was only a blanket draped over Mabel.
Then, she heard the sound of the door opening, and Eugene appeared from the back with his tall stature and neatly styled black hair.
“Are you awake?”
“Eugene-san! Why am I here?”
“You were sleeping in the garden after folding the laundry, so I brought you here.”
Eugene sighed, sounding displeased.
Come to think of it, today was a warm and sunny day, and Mabel vaguely remembered dozing off. It seemed she had fallen asleep outside, and Eugene had carried her to his room out of concern.
“Ah, thank you.”
Relieved that it was just a dream, Mabel let out a sigh. However, Eugene seemed even more irritated and sat down next to her, moving her aside.
“What kind of dream were you having?”
At that question, Mabel paled.
She forced a giggly smile, but Eugene narrowed his eyes.
“What did you say about Mutabilis?”
It seemed she had accidentally blurted it out while being carried.
“Well, it was just a dream.”
“I see. Tell me more. Right now. Here.”
‘Could this also be a dream?’
Eugene’s perfectly handsome face transformed into a smile.
Mabel realized there was no escape.