Chapter 28: Unexpected Reunion
“…livia! Olivia-san! Please wake up!”
Olivia’s submerged consciousness gradually awakens to the distant sound of a man’s voice, a voice she has heard before.
She opens her eyes, stunned, to see a jagged stone ceiling.
(…What is this place?)
Olivia, staring blankly at the unknown ceiling, heard a relieved voice beside her.
“Thank goodness. I was surprised when you were brought in unconscious.”
She slowly turned her gaze to look at the voice. Then, she sprang to her feet with her eyes wide open.
It was Jack, the former longtime Carter’s Great Magic Tools Store employee. He looked a little older than she remembered.
He was a magic tool maker who became ill while working tirelessly to protect Olivia two and a half years ago.
One day, he suddenly stopped coming to the store, and her uncle informed her that he had “fallen ill and had to return to the countryside.”
(Why is Jack here? Where am I?)
She looked around, perplexed, and discovered herself in a large room.
It appears to be a magic tool workshop or something based on the large workbench and the numerous items commonly used by magic tool makers.
Other furnishings include a table, a chest of drawers, and a sofa on which to sit, and it appears that people live in the room.
(… What’s going on? Where am I?)
Jack looked worriedly at Olivia, who had her head in her hands.
“… I’m not sure what happened, but you were brought here about ten minutes ago. I looked at your face, and it was Olivia-san, and I was shocked. And her hands were bleeding…”
Olivia examines her hand and notices a white cloth wrapped around the back of it.
She remembered more and more as she thanked Jack for his assistance.
(That’s right! I walked into the restroom and was immediately hit in the back…!)
She turned blue when she realized she had given the maid her handbag, which held the defensive magic tool, without realizing it.
(This is obviously a kidnapping.)
Exasperated, she inquired.
“Jack, where are we?”
Jack looked down at the ground as if he didn’t want to say anything.
“…This is my, uh, confinement facility.”
Olivia repeats the unbelievable response.
Jack’s face contorts in pain.
“I was held captive here for a long time, with my family as hostages.”
Olivia exclaimed, her eyes wide open.
Her blood began to freeze all over her body, and her heart palpitations became more severe.
She forced her dry lips to move and inquired.
“S-Since how long?”
“…Two and a half years ago.”
(That is, two and a half years since he stopped coming to the store!)
Then it struck Olivia.
Perhaps her uncle knew where she was because he had read the letter she had sent to Jack without her knowledge.
“W-Wait, how did that happen?”
Jack appears distressed and is about to explain himself when…
There was a loud noise outside.
(Someone is approaching!)
The door opened with a creak.
There stood Viscount Bergor, with a grim countenance, and her uncle with a blank expression.
(…! Are you saying those two are in on it?)
Viscount Bergor stormed into the room and gave Olivia a cold stare as if he despised her.
“Hmph. Little b*tch… You’ve given me a lot of trouble. Of all people to be so friendly with the Flarence’s son. That’s not what you said!”
The Viscount yells at him:
“I’m sorry!” Her uncle bowed his head.
He crawled to his feet and then stared at Olivia.
“It’s all your fault! You went to the Royal Capital all by yourself!”
Olivia bit her lower lip.
“… Wasn’t it my uncle who fired me and kicked me out?”
Viscount Bergor kicked her uncle in the face.
“Stop talking! Move out of my way!”
Her uncle is back on the floor, shaking and trembling, clutching the side where he was kicked again.
The Viscount looks down at him stupidly and turns to Jack, standing in front of Olivia, protecting her.
“You go into the next room.”
“She’s a well-known magic tool maker. So, I won’t be rough with her. But I’ll take her somewhere else if you don’t leave.”
Jack glares at the Viscount in frustration.
He whispers to Olivia, “Shout out if anything happens,” and disappears behind a door at the back of the room.
The Viscount sighed and looked at Olivia, his eyes clouded.
“Olivia. You will begin working here today.”
The Viscount’s mouth twists as Olivia blinks, not understanding what he’s saying.
“The plot is as follows. You sneak out of the wedding hall by yourself, leave town, and disappear—we can’t find you no matter how hard we look, and you’re declared dead three years later.”
Like a blow to the head, a shock ran through Olivia’s body.
(Don’t tell me he’s going to fake my death?!)
She insisted desperately.
“Please let me go! I have a store!”
“Hmph. You had it coming. It’s your fault for seducing House Flarence’s son.”
“Huh?! I didn’t seduce him…”
Olivia looks annoyed, and the Viscount shrugs.
“Well, a duke’s son would never take a countryside baronet’s daughter seriously. I’m sure he’s just having fun.”
Olivia fell silent.
(No, he’s not that kind of person…)
But she can’t say anything because of the difference in status.
The Viscount looks down at her and mockingly smiles at her.
“Well, you’re going to have to work hard from now on,” he says as he walks away.
“We’ve got a problem!”
A pale-faced butler burst into the room, followed by the sound of hard shoes running down a stone corridor.
Viscount Bergor frowned. “What’s all the racket?!”
The butler screamed and gasped.
“Knights! The knights are on their way!”
The Viscount was taken aback.
“What do you mean!”
“I also don’t understand. They just show up out of nowhere and claim to be aware of the illegal production of… Gghh.”
In the middle of his speech, the butler groans and collapses.
A person is standing next to the collapsed butler.
Olivia raises her head in surprise.
Elliot stood there, sword in hand, a cold, deadly expression on his handsome face.
“…I have found you, at last, Viscount Bergor. You made a fool of me, didn’t you?”
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