The Empress cried while being held in my mother’s arms for a while.

Mother silently patted the Empress on the back and comforted her.

It was only after a long time had passed that the Empress fell from my mother’s arms.

Until then, Adrian and I had to watch the two of them from a few steps away.

“Are you feeling better now?”

Mom met the Empress’ eyes with an apologetic expression.

The Empress nodded awkwardly.
But, to her embarrassment, she couldn’t properly make eye contact with my mother.

“Would you like a cup of tea?”

The Empress suggested it to my mother.

Mother readily nodded and agreed to the Empress’ suggestion.

Let’s have a seat.”

Mother led the empress and at the same time looked back at me.

I didn’t really want to stay here any longer, but once my mother said she would have tea, I walked back to my seat.

Even then, Adrian, still held in my hand, followed me with a grumbling voice.

As they sat down on the chairs prepared in the building as before, Bridget served new tea in front of the Empress and prepared tea for my mother as well.

Then she asked me if I would like fresh juice, but I declined.

Tea doesn’t taste good when it’s cold, but the juice isn’t hot anyway.

While drinking tea, my mother and the Empress talked a lot.

When I heard it, it was as follows,

Empress Marianne said she was originally a friend of my mother. 

Then she said that she had secretly held the Emperor in her heart.

However, the Emperor’s fiancée was my mother, so one day, when she was trying to clear her mind, my mother suddenly fled and the Emperor’s fiancé position became vacant.

Fortunately, Marianne, who had the Emperor in her heart, took the place of the Empress, but the Emperor said that he had been waiting only for my mother.

That’s why they were able to have a wedding two years after they got engaged.

Empress Marianne said she was unhappy because he loved my mother.
She hated the Emperor for that.

At least until the birth of Adrian, the Crown Prince.

After Adrian was born, she smiled faintly, saying that she had someone to attach herself to, so that she could continue her imperial life.

After listening to the whole story, Mother took Empress Marianne’s hand.
Then Empress Marianne looked down at my mother’s hand with astonished eyes.

Then she looked up again at my mother.
Tears were welling up again.

“Why are your hands so rough, Cornelia?”

The thin, white hands of Empress Marianne contrasted with the hands of her mother, who was scared and rough from getting pricked by needles.

“Since Gale closed his eyes a few years ago, I’ve been doing hard things all the time, and that’s what happened.
It’s a little too much for a woman to raise a child by herself.”

“What about the Grand Duke? Didn’t he give you any help? He loved you so much…”

“I don’t know what happened, but I couldn’t get in touch with my father.
So, I couldn’t come back because I thought my father hated me a lot when I abandoned the family.”

Empress Marianne sighed deeply.
Sadness crossed her eyes.

“Why didn’t you contact me through my family? We are still friends.
You didn’t think I wouldn’t help you, did you?”

“How dare I do that?”

Mother’s smile looked sad.
Perhaps she had somehow guessed the circumstances of the Empress Marianne

“… I didn’t know that, I just complained about myself.”

Mother smiled as she looked at Empress Marianne, who had bowed her head in guilt.

“No, these wounds and calluses are all the result of struggling to live with my daughter.
I’m not ashamed of it.
So, you don’t have to worry too much.”

I could feel Adrian staring at me while the adults were finishing their conversation.

I looked back, wondering why, and he looked at me alternately with the cookies on my plate.

“What’s wrong?”

I asked, tilting my head at the sight of him, which I could not understand.

I didn’t think it would be because he wanted the cookies in front of me.

For he was the crown prince, and he could have ordered the servants to bring back the cookies he wanted.

“Don’t you like cookies?”

“It’s not, but it’s so sweet that I can’t eat it.”

“You don’t like sweet things?”

“It’s not that I don’t like it, but these days, I can’t eat overly sweet things.”

I didn’t dislike sweet food.

However, in my past life, when I was craving sweet foods, I couldn’t eat them because they were so expensive.

When I became a mercenary and made some money, I often bought sweet foods but at some point, I stopped craving them.

Maybe that’s why I don’t like sweet foods so much right now.

Rather, it was better to have a snack that was not overly sweet, such as the egg tart I ate for dessert in the morning.

“I’ve never seen anyone who doesn’t like sweet things.”

“I don’t hate it., I just don’t like to overdo it.”

“Isn’t it the same?”

Adrian frowned, not understanding what I was saying.

Adrian, who was still young, didn’t seem to be able to tell the difference.

I glanced at Adrian once, then turned my attention away from others, looked around the garden, and waited for time to pass.

I had followed my mother here in the first place, but she seemed to have already finished her work here.

So, there’s nothing more I can expect from here.

After some time, it was not until the tea and glass drinks all ran out that the adults’ conversation ended.

First, Empress Marianne and mother got up from their seats, and I followed them down from the chair.
It was a slightly high chair, so I had to jump down.

“Come to the Imperial Palace at any time.
I’ll prepare tea for you.”

Empress Marianne did not hide her regret and told my mother.

Mother turned to look at Empress Marianne and gave her a bright smile.

“I’ll visit you often from now on.
Instead, if you scold me for coming too often, I’ll be disappointed.”

“No way.
Just come inside, I won’t stop you.”

“Yes, Your Majesty, I’ll see you next time.”

“Goodbye, Your Majesty,”

My mother and I greeted Empress Marianne politely.
Then I checked the Empress Marianne’s side and saw Adrian staring at me.

I looked at Adrian, bowed my head, and turned away immediately.

We left the Imperial palace and got into the carriage.

When I checked on my mother, she looked more relieved now, unlike her nervous face the whole time she arrived at Imperial Castle.

I was a little heartbroken that everything was going so smoothly.

If my mother’s letter had been delivered to the Duke of Crichton from the beginning, and if the feelings of the two of them had reached each other Properly, my mother wouldn’t have suffered and died from an illness.
I suffered a lot during that time.

The Duke of Crichton too would not be killed without knowing his daughter’s heart.

If it hadn’t been for Daniel, the main culprit of all this.

Looking back, Daniel called himself my grandfather.

That means he’s the brother of Grand Duke Crichton.

When I was commissioned by Grand Duke Crichton to find my mom, everyone there was already Daniel’s hands and feet.

It seemed that the servants of the mansion had taken his side without the knowledge of the Duke of Crichton.

What about now?

Now, who among the employees of the Grand Duke of Crichton took his side?

It hasn’t been long since I entered the Grand Duke’s mansion.
I haven’t found anything yet.

There must be at least one.

There must be someone who stole my mother’s letter for the Grand Duke.

“What are you thinking, Bel?”

“Huh? Nothing.”

My mother wondered, looking at the serious expression on my face.

I shook my head.
I was nothing.

Then I spoke cautiously.

“Mother, did you perhaps ask the Grand Duke…”


But before I could speak, my mother called me.


“I know you’re not used to it, and it’s hard to change it right away, but if you can, why don’t you call him Grandpa instead of Grand Duke?”


“Yes, as you know, Lord Crichton is your maternal grandfather.”

You don’t show it on the outside, but I’m sure you’re looking forward to calling him Grandpa.
I won’t force you, but if you feel like it, why don’t you call him that?”


I couldn’t answer quickly.

I am still unfamiliar with Grand Duke Crichton.

I can’t forget the way he desperately tried to take care of me at the moment of his death, but it was me who had lived without any other family other than my mother and father for over 20 years.

It was not easy to suddenly call Grand Duke Crichton grandpa.

But my mother had a point.

The Duke of Crichton was my mother’s father, and to me, he was my grandfather.

“… I’ll try.”

As I struggled to come up with an answer, my mother smiled brightly.

First of all, it starts with making an effort.”

My mother was as happy as if I had already done so, even though I had not declared that I would call Grand Duke Crichton my grandfather.

It was a little burdensome, but I wanted to do something that my mother would love.

“But what were you going to say?”

“Oh, I was wondering if you had any other family members.”

“Yes, of course,” mother replied with a smile.

“Daniel Crichton, uncle to me, and grandfather to you, Mirabel.”

As expected,

It seems that everything I experienced in the future was not in vain.

“Now that you mention it, you’ll see him today.
He said he would visit the mansion later in the evening.”

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