One day, after I had moved to the castle, I was walking alone along the path facing the courtyard when I saw a lone figure I recognized coming from the courtyard.
Oh, it’s Lady Lateia! Come to think of it… I haven’t seen her since I saw her at Nina’s ordination ceremony…
I was about to raise my hand to call out to Lady Lateia, but she stopped moving.
The reason for this is that Lady Lateia was acting strangely.
I’m not sure if she was aware of the fact that she was smiling and laughing by himself.
I couldn’t help but feel a sense of discomfort at the sight of Lady Lateia and hid in the shadows.
Then, without noticing me, Lady Lateia arrived at the corridor and walked straight past me.
But just then, I heard a word of concern from Lady Lateia.
“Huh, that’s a good sign.”
And so Lateia-sama left with an inappropriate smile on her face, while I was still hiding in the shadows, thinking about the meaning of her words.
What the hell was that… Huh? The direction that Lady Lateia came from, I think there was a large pond in the courtyard… Ah! No way!!!!
An idea came to me and I rushed out of the shadows and ran towards the pond.
When I came to the pond, as I had expected, I saw a blonde girl standing by the pond.
Nina, whose shoulders trembled at the sound of my voice, turned to me with a startled look on her face, and there were tears in her eyes.
“Nina, what is wrong with you?”
“What? No… it’s nothing.”
Nina wiped away her tears with her hand and gave me a fake smile.
But even as she did so, I noticed that she was glancing towards the pond, and I was convinced that I had been right.
“Hey Nina, what happened to that pendant you always wore around your neck?”
“I mean, that’s…”
Nina stuttered at my point and clearly became upset.
“I…I…just passed the Marquise’s daughter, Lateia-sama…could it have something to do with Lateia-sama?”
“No, no! Nothing!”
I let out a deep sigh at his obvious attitude of saying something was wrong.
“As I thought, something was done to you by Lateia-sama. And also… if you were looking at the pond without the pendant, then… Lady Lateia-sama must have thrown Nina’s pendant into this pond, right?”
“Nina, could you please talk to me?”
“…Lady Cecilia is right.”
When I asked Nina with a serious face, she affirmed in a small voice as if she had given up on it.
“I… I… It seems that Lateia-sama doesn’t like me, and sometimes Lateia-sama has been harsh on me. But… I believed that if I talked to her, we would be able to get along someday, but… when I was talking to her… she suddenly took my pendant and threw it into the pond.”
She looked very sad when she told me this.
“Could it be that pendant…?”
“…Yes. My late parents gave it to me as a birthday present before they died. And in it was a picture of my parents and me together…”
Nina stared at the pond and then turned to me again, her face smiling as she gulped down the pain.
“I’m sorry, there’s no point in talking to Cecilia-sama about this. Besides, this pond is huge, and I probably won’t be able to find it, so I’ll just… give up. Then I’ll leave you to it.”
She bowed her head to me and then hurried away.
As she was leaving, I saw a tear on Nina’s cheek, but I didn’t miss it.
Then I was left alone, arm in arm, staring at the pond and thinking.
Hmm, this is exactly the same situation as in the game, isn’t it? But this event… originally I, as Cecilia, abused Nina and threw her precious pendant into the pond, but for some reason the role was changed from me to Lady Lateia. Could this be the so-called game correction? That would make a lot of things sour. Because if Lateia-sama continues to torment Nina instead of me…eventually Lateia-sama might get a death flag…
I frowned at the thought. But then I realized there was something else going on as well.
Huh? Wasn’t this event with Kaiser in the first place? As I recall… after I in the game threw Nina’s pendant into the pond and left, Kaiser happened to come to Nina, who was staring at the pond and depressed. He left his jacket with Nina and went into the pond, taking off his shoes, rolling up his hem and going barefoot. The pond wasn’t too deep, so there was no problem for him to go in, but Nina was surprised when the prince of the country suddenly started doing such a thing.
As I remembered the game screen, I realized that I had unexpectedly interrupted them again.
I hurriedly looked in the direction of Nina’s departure, but I didn’t see her anymore.
“…Cecilia? What are you doing here?”
Suddenly, a strange sounding Kaiser called out from behind me, and I turned around slowly, my shoulders jittering widely.
“What’s going on? Have you been looking at the pond alone?”
“What? Well, I’ve been watching, but… oh, you know, Kaiser…”
“Yes, what is it?”
“Oh, umm, it’s still nothing!”
I thought about telling Kaiser about Nina, but I didn’t think it would be right for me to talk about her without permission, and I also thought that he wouldn’t be thrilled even if he found the pendant after hearing what I had told him.
But if I don’t do it, Nina’s memorial pendant might not return…it will keep causing her sadness… I can’t repair the Kaiser event anymore, but there’s no choice. Haha, I’ll take care of it!
I thought to myself, and I stared at the area where Nina’s pendant had supposedly fallen off.
“…I’m sorry, Kaiser, I’m sorry. I just remembered some business, so I’ll take my leave now.”
Kaiser was puzzled by my sudden words of resignation, but I left him there and rushed back to my room.
Late at night, when people had gone to bed, I went back to my room.
I walked through the courtyard in the dark.
When I arrived at the pond, I checked that no one was around and then took off my shoes and rolled up my trousers to my knees.
In fact, my current outfit was borrowed from a booth boy who works for me.
When I borrowed the outfit, the booth boy was surprised, but I asked him to lend me the outfit because I really needed it.
I came to the pond with my hair tied up and my sleeves rolled up so that it wouldn’t get in the way.
I think… in that event, it was somewhere near that flower in the water, right?
I gazed at the pink flowers on the surface of the water, which were pale in the moonlight, and then I stepped into the pond.
Even though it’s been getting warmer lately, the water is cold at night, as expected! But this took much patience, patience!
I told myself that and moved slowly to my destination.
When I arrived at the location of the pink flowers that I had marked, I immediately dipped my hand into the water.
Since this is not a river, it’s not likely to have flowed away…I’ll just have to do my best to find it by moving around for it! But… I’m a duke’s daughter and I’m definitely not going to let anyone else see me doing this in this way!
I smiled bitterly as I frantically moved my hands to find Nina’s pendant.
The next day, I had arranged for the booth attendant’s clothes to be properly washed before they were delivered to him, and I was soon walking through the castle looking for Nina.
Then I managed to find Nina walking alone in the corridor with her back to me.
However, her back was clearly listless.
“…Good morning, Lady Cecilia.”
“Good morning, Nina.
“…Lady Cecilia seems to be in very good spirits this morning.”
“Thank you. Nina doesn’t seem to have much energy this morning.”
“Then I’ll give Nina something that will make her feel better.”
“Here you go.”
“…What? Hey, I think that’s my pendant! But how could you…”
Nina looked at me with a look of disbelief on her face when she saw the pendant I had placed in Nina’s palm.
“Actually… I was really curious about it, so I went to look at the pond again in the morning, and I saw an object that was shining in the morning sun. I was curious about the light and when I got closer, I found the pendant caught in the leaves of the pond.
“I can’t believe you went out of your way to look for it.”
“I was taking a walk in the morning, so don’t worry about it. But… I washed the dirt off the surface with clean water, but as you would expect from being in the pond for so long, the pictures inside were wrinkled…
At my words, Nina opened the locket on her pendant and found a crumpled photograph of Nina’s parents and Nina’s childhood in it, barely visible.
Nina stared at the picture.
“Nina… I’m sorry,”
“No! Thank you, Cecilia, for taking the trouble to deliver it! I’m so glad I didn’t think it’d ever come back!”
Nina smiled happily with tears in her eyes and hugged the pendant carefully to her chest.
I was so glad that I had searched so hard in the middle of the night to find it.
Then Kaiser came in.
“What are you two doing in the corridor this early in the morning?”
“Oh, Prince Kaiser, actually…”
Then Nina explained to Kaiser that I had picked up the memento pendant that had fallen into the pond, without telling him who had done it.
“I see… that’s how it happened.”
Kaiser was convinced by one after hearing Nina’s story, and for some reason he looked at me and gave his usual pseudo-smile.
“Cecilia… do you have mud on your face?”
“What? I’m sure I washed it all off at night… oh.”
I hurriedly put my hand to my face at Kaiser’s words and made a motion to remove the dirt, but then I realized with a huff that I had been tricked.
“Huh, I knew it was Cecilia.”
“…Kaiser, were you watching me?”
“I happened to be at work until that hour. And as I was walking back to my room after work, I saw Cecilia dressed in a strange way.”
“It’s a good thing that I was the only one. When I saw you, I was wondering if it was a mistake at first … but when I saw your beautiful silver hair, I was convinced that it was you. Well, it seemed that for some reason, you were working under cover, so I didn’t speak to you and watched you in silence.”
“…I’ll think about covering my hair next time.”
“If you could… I’d like you to talk to me about it first.
I didn’t expect that Kaiser had seen me, so I nodded in dismay.
Then Nina, who was perplexed by our conversation, spoke to me on a tangent.
“I don’t know what you’re talking about, but…”
“Oh, actually, Cecilia…”
And so, ignoring my restraints, Kaiser told Nina that I had actually been sneaking into the pond late at night to look for the pendant.
“What!? Did Lady Cecilia do that? Is it true, Lady Cecilia!?”
“No! That’s such a difficult thing for Cecilia-sama to do for me!”
“…but I saw Nina’s happy smile so I don’t regret it.”
I smiled at Nina, whose expression was cloudy, to tell her that I meant it, and smiled at her.
Then Nina’s face turned red as she looked at me.
Nina grabbed my right hand with both of hers and squeezed it in front of her chest and looked at my face with water in her eyes.
“Cecilia-sama… I love you!”
“What? Oh, thank you. I’m a big fan of Nina too. I’d love for you to be my friend.”
“Friends… yes, thank you!”
For some reason, Nina had a complicated look on her face at the word “friend” for a moment, but she quickly turned into a happy smile and so we became friends.
However, at that time I didn’t notice that Kaiser had put his hand on his forehead and was looking up at the ceiling with a dumbfounded and dismayed expression on his face.
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4 thoughts on “Chapter 26: Memento”
cecilia is a man and lady killer xD
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Literally anybody in this novel: 😍
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You are not wrong lol
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Between Bakarina and Cecilia….
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