59: Unfamiliar Life
I was hitting my pillow.
I was disappointed that I was scared of strangers.
I’ve never been frozen before even when I went to the ball, nor when I met His Highness Ludens or even when Roberto-sama glared at me.
Even if I had to look down, I always did what I had to do.
It was probably because I told Dick-san how I really felt in Coolden. I’ve become weak.
I had to behave like a noble here at the Royal Palace.
I didn’t need to be honest to my feelings.
“Well, I’m Lady Ayesha-marie, who was driven out of the Thousand House, so this much is good enough. I behaved appropriately after I went into the dining hall.”
I abandon my thoughts early when I sunk into the small and hardish bed.
I’m wearing my noble mask, so next time will be fine. It’ll be fine. I told myself.
I woke up early, got dressed and left my room.
It was a bit early, but I headed for breakfast.
I wore the eggplant coloured secretary uniform.
I thought it was harder for people to know who I was if I wore the eggplant coloured long dress rather than plain clothes. There were a few people here from last night.
I received breakfast and sat at the corner in a vacant seat.
It was a dining hall in the Royal Palace, but the food wasn’t satisfying. I thought the same thing last night too. I stopped my hand with the spoon in it. I turned my head and looked around while taking the meal in.
The colours were beautiful, the bread was soft and the soup wasn’t greasy at all. It was warm.
I have to be thankful
But, what is it? It’s not good enough.
I thought as I finished the meal. I tied my hair up, so that it was easier to change and headed towards said room.
It took time to disguise myself after all.
I remembered where to go. I wouldn’t recklessly ask for directions just because I forgot.
I entered the room and looked at the mirror.
I divided my golden hair and braided it. I put them onto the other side of my head so that it wouldn’t have much volume. I fastened them with pins. It took a lot of time, but I somehow managed. I wore the black wig.
I lightly tapped powder onto my face, approached the mirror and drew my eyeliner. My hands were trembling, but I think I’m quite good at drawing it now. I put on some reddish plum lipstick and Ann’s face was ready. My look would be complete with the white gloves.
I went through the hidden passageway that I was taught.
Because I was told not to write it on paper, I wrote it on the ground and erased it numerous times so I could memorise it. Desperately. I’m so great for remembering it from just going through twice. I have a lot of guts right now.
My heart wouldn’t stop throbbing as I walked through the dark passageway alone. I don’t think it’s normal to go through this passageway without light. I wonder if there’s something that would trouble them if I could see here. Well, I was fine in the dark since I didn’t use light at night in the Thousand House estate to save money.
“Is it okay for me to know this passage?” I asked, and I was told that I didn’t have any connections outside of the Royal Palace so it was fine. It was used as a shortcut and royalty used it to get away from people.
I couldn’t help but sigh when I got out into the bright corridor.
I looked around, mindful of my surroundings and walked towards the ‘Royal Capital’s Public Order Consolation Room’ (I named it myself).
I briskly walked without taking a break. I bowed whenever I passed people.
Seems like I remember the way correctly.
I arrived safely at the Royal Capital’s Public Order Consolation Room and began working.
I spent my days quietly in the past week.
My work started with wiping the desks in the Royal Capital’s Public Order Consolation Room. Then, I opened the windows and let the fresh air in.
I made a copy of His Highness Luden’s memo and sorted the documents. Then, His Highness Ludens and the others came. I made tea, went to my desk and kept working.
They didn’t tell me what to do. It was just like when I worked for father and brother.
“I’m going to lunch.”
His Highness Ludens and his comrades haven’t come yet. I said that to the knight at the door and headed towards the dining hall.
I remembered the minimal layout of the Royal Palace by walking around with Cafule-san. At the beginning, I had lunch in my room, but I got bored of being in my room day after day. But, since yesterday I started going to the dining hall where the knights and guards were because I finally remembered the layout of the palace. The government residence’s dining hall was a little far and it took time to commute there.
I never had any emotion on my face whenever I walked through the Royal Palace, but my face would loosen whenever I got to the inner garden.
I quickly finished eating in the dining hall with the knights and sat down on a handkerchief under an unpopular Zelkova tree.
I took out the small apple from my pocket which I’d put in there at breakfast, rub it on my skirt and bite into it.
“Ann is tired. Am I being helpful?”
I wasn’t talking to anyone, my voice just came out.
I actually wanted to lie down here, but I couldn’t as a noble lady. I probably shouldn’t be sitting under the shade like this either.
But I want people to overlook this since I was only a simple office lady while I wore this eggplant coloured dress.
When I finished eating the apple, I heard a rustling and saw three ladies.
“Oh my, she’s really here.”
“Right? I saw her heading towards here.”
“She has really bad manners, doesn’t she?”
I stood up and bowed a noble bow.
Have my enemies appeared at last?