48: Tea Party Where I Can’t Relax
Lancel-sama followed Roberto-sama to the inner part of the palace.
I wasn’t as tensed as before, so I could afford to look around me a little.
The maids, who we occasionally passed, looked at the two high-ranking nobles with longing eyes and pink cheeks. Then, they looked at me and made an unpleasant face before looking relieved. It was an expression one used to look at pitiful people.
(Is it because of this hairstyle…?)
The black bobbed wig was only up to my shoulders.
It was natural for noble ladies to have long hair. Having waist length hair was very common. Long hair was very important for ladies and they would keep it nice and clean, even if it was hard to do so.
My hair is probably up to my mid-back. It’s short, but I guess you could say it’s long.
It was common knowledge in the noble world that the people who have shoulder-length hair are widows who have lost their husbands or ladies who have no intentions of marrying.
Commoners don’t fuss over the length of their hair. Well, but it’s not like there aren’t people who don’t cut their hair when they lose their husband.
The maids seem to think that even though I’m wearing a dress suited for a noble, I pose no problem for them even if I’m with Roberto-sama and Lancel-sama because I have short hair.
I wonder if Roberto-sama prepared this wig with that in mind.
Well, it’s fine if they just think I don’t want to get married.
But, I would be mortified if they think that I’m already a widow even though I’ve just reached adulthood. I’ll be a little annoyed if they conclude that I’m pitiful.
We climbed up and down many stairs from the audience room that we were in and entered a room on the second floor of the inner part of the palace.
It was a sunny room and even had a balcony.
There were several office desks that were sturdy and practical and piles of books and documents on those desks. The room was brown so it didn’t feel constricting. There were also a lot of soft-looking, cream-coloured sofas a slight distance away from the desks. There were even foot rests on good cushions. And finally, there was a sturdy bookshelf at the back of the room.
There were three doors to the left and right walls of the room, so it was probably linked to other rooms.
It was too practical to be called a personal room and it looked comfortable to be an office.
Roberto-sama urged me to sit down on the sofa, so I chose a single seater to sit on.
When Lancel-sama rang the bell, the door on the right opened and a maid came in. He gave her some instructions before she left through the same door she came in from.
Not long after, a wagon with a tea set and snacks was brought into the room. A number of plates filled with snacks were lined up on the side table next to the sofa. Roberto-sama suggested that I pour the tea when His Highness arrives.
(It’s already time to eat lunch, isn’t it? Indeed, it looks delicious.)
Scones accompanied with whipped cream and dark purple jam, sandwiches stuffed with small vegetables and fruits, cake sale and so on. It was full of food that weren’t that sweet and would fill one’s belly. The type of food that men liked. They had cream puff for sweets. All of which were made small.
I couldn’t keep my eyes off the food.
The door at the back on the left side opened. His Highness, who’d changed clothes, made his appearance.
He was wearing a thick, dark blue shirt that was obviously made from fine cloth and a loop tie with a red jewel attached to it and velvet black trousers. The colours that he wore now were completely different from the ones he had on before. His golden hair was shining.
He clenched one of his hands happily and entered the room in a relaxed manner. His escorts weren’t with him.
The only escort knights in this room was Lancel-sama.
“I’ve made you wait. Lady Ayesha-marie, I’ve cleared out the people here so you can relax. Well, if something happens then they’ll come flying from the room next door.”
(There’s no way I can relax with this line-up. He’s really detestable if he said that while knowing this.)
Roberto-sama sat on the two-seater sofa in front of me (Are you my chaperone?) and Lancel-sama sat with good posture. His Highness Ludens sat on the one-seater between me and Lancel-sama.
I got up and brewed tea in the pure white pottery for everyone… Woah, these tea leaves are great. It also has a nice colour, almost orange. Is this the high grade stuff? I warmed up the cups with warm water while being nervous and brew tea with all the techniques at my disposal. I placed them in front of each of them.
Everyone was silent during this time.
Everyone received their tea and I sat down.
“You’re skilful, as always.”
“Roberto-sama, Lancel-sama. Thank you for the compliment.”
(So His Highness will drink after they’ve tried it. Even though I didn’t put poison into it. So he doesn’t trust me? And he still invites me to such a private place?)
His Highness drank the cup of tea. What is it? His eyes widened for a second.
“Oh, you had such a special skill. You brewed a really good cup of tea. You won’t even lose to the maids who brew tea at the Royal Palace.”
“Thank you for your compliment, but the tea leaves are also wonderful. They have such a beautiful colour and fragrance. It helped that I understood when the colour changed because of the white pottery.”
“You probably understand the use of white pottery, don’t you? You pass. Now, let’s eat.”
Of course, His Highness waited for us to eat first before he reached for something.
I put scones on my plate with a thong and ate it with a knife and fork. The beads in the dark purple jam were big and looked delicious.
I wanted to eat all the snacks in front of me, but of course, I wasn’t brave enough to eat greedily in front of these people… And the girls’ feelings inside of me told me that I didn’t want to take my gloves off to eat the sandwiches. My rough hands didn’t suit this place.
I had no choice, but to drink the delicious cup of tea.
Ah, why am I in this place?
I looked around and see three adult nobles eating gracefully. They were talking about a lot of things, but I thought it would be better for me not to listen so it went in one and out the other ear.
I wanted to talk about removing myself from the noble registry as soon as possible so I could go back to Coolden.
I was suddenly surprised with myself.
Coolden has become the place where I return to……
I knew that my mouth was turned up in a smile. Now, let’s talk about the topic in question so he can send me home.