She shook her head.

“I can’t swave it.” (I can’t save it.)

“Then tell me how to make it again.”

“But it’ll be diffewent from Amy*. (But it’ll be different from Amy.)”

Tl note: Amy is the fish’s name.

Adrian’s gaze fell to the floor.

I recalled the memory of his past self. It was him who first rode a horse in the victory march of the Holy War.

The intense dignity he bore could be felt even before his beautiful appearance came into someone’s eye.

I had vaguely thought no one could hurt him.

But the child I was seeing now was engulfed in sadness. To the point where just looking at him made a person’s heart ache.

“But we can make a grave for them.”

When I spoke in a small voice, Boone was restless, saying,

[Child, ten strawberries!]

But I pretended that I didn’t hear it.

Adrian looked up and stared at me, I didn’t avoid his eyes.

***

“I’ll dig dweeper.”

Adrian looked at the girl pointing at the ground while holding Amy carefully in one hand.

“How long awe you gonna dig. Come hewe.”

The girl brushed off Adrian’s hand, as she gave Amy back to him to hold.

Then she squatted down and dug up the soil. Within minutes, a hole twice the size of the one Adrian had made could be seen.

“Now it looks like a burial ground.”

She was a really weird kid.

She dug as well as a farmer.

The child had never seen anyone be so kind to him either.

‘But.’

But if she knows who I am, she’ll act differently.

Everyone did.

The royal family, the nobles, and even the palace men considered him like an eyesore.

An eyesore that was scary to touch, and annoying.

As the Emperor’s eldest son, and being constantly checked on by Empress Yvonne, the eldest daughter of Duke Marche, Adrian felt uncomfortable.

He was physically alive yet, at the same time he didn’t feel alive.

So, if she knew who he was, everything would be different.

The gaze that looked at him with a litter in it would be darkened with fear, and her lively eyes were bound to be grim. I felt sorry, but I thought I should say it sooner.

“I am the eldest son of the imperial family.”

“Is twat so?”

“I said I was the child of the dead Empress, but I…”

“So?”

Adrian was speechless.

Strange.

She should have been surprised.

Even if she doesn’t know about their complicated political relations, it’s normal to be afraid of the word imperial family.

Adrian looked at her with strange eyes, and the child snorted.

“Is that important now?”

“…Huh?”

“If it doesn’t mattew, lets bury them.” (If it doesn’t matter, let’s bury them.)

The child pulled his hand.

Suddenly, Adrian sat down with the child, and let the pair of fish, which had become completely turned back into water, rush into the pit.

The child patted over the water instead of Adrian.

“Now, let’s pway.” (Now, let’s pray)

Adrian stared at the child who had both of her hands and eyes tightly closed.

“Pwease let us be togwether for a long time in the next life.”

“……..”

“Even if we fight and get angry, let us be next to each other in the nwext life,”

“……..”

The child gently looked at Adrian’s eyes.

“Let this cwild be happy.”

It was as if she was talking to himself.

He couldn’t say anything and looked at the child. Adrian couldn’t tell why his eyes were moist. Just to be clear, this was the first time he thought he would never forget the name of a person.

***

After burying the fishes and praying, I got up from my seat.

“Are you going?”

Adrian held my hand and asked me, so I replied,

“Yes.”

“…Come again?”

“Huh?”

“…Please come again.”

His eyes were looking at me.

“Yes, well.”

“But if you don’t come…”

Adrian’s eyes twinkled. His long eyelashes glistened under the sunlight.

‘Wow…’

He is indeed a beauty that could rival the Dubbleds.

Even though my aesthetic sense had become accustomed to many kinds of beauty, my heart was still pounding

“Now we’re fwiends. And fwiend keep their promises. So, see you someday.”

“Friends…”

I couldn’t help but laugh inwardly at the sight of Adrian muttering several times because he was so cute.

After that, I waved my hand to say goodbye, turned around, and ran away.

‘I’m late, too late!’

I had come here under the pretext of playing hide-and-seek, but half an hour had already passed.

As I headed for the garden, I heard a voice shouting,

“Where are you, little miss?!”

The soldiers and servants were frantically looking for me.

“Blaine is hewe!”

I jumped and shouted, and the people came running.

“Oh my god…”

Lea was relieved at the sight of me.

“Where have you been? I was so surprised that I couldn’t find you no matter how hard I looked.”

The place where I was is not far from the garden, but if they couldn’t find me, then it was probably because Adrian had built a barrier.

I replied, “I’m wong…” (I’m wrong…)

Lea sighed and shook the dirt off my skirt.

“It’s okay because you are safe. But please don’t do this next time.”

“Yes.”

“We have permission to go. Now let’s go back home.”

When she said so, I nodded with a bright expression.

[Strawberry! Little miss, ask if she’ll give you ten strawberries.]

I looked up at Lea.

“Lea, ten stawbewwies?”

“That….”

Lea’s eyes narrowed.

“You broke your promise, so I’m only going to give you five.”

Oh my god.

As a shocked expression came upon her face, laughter exploded all around her.

***

I could only get five strawberries, but I felt pretty good.

The money that Urso had borrowed was returned to the original owners, but quite a lot of money was left even after the handover.

‘There are 6,000 francs.’

Seria’s capture reward was 30,000 francs, meaning the total amount of money I currently had was 36,000 francs.

‘Now, I have to keep searching for earnest money-making ways so that I can find a place to live later on.’

I knew about a few good things I could invest in.

The problem was I’m too young to contact an investment target.

This was the reason why I lived in poverty when I was a beggar.

Of course, I had to live as quietly as I could because I didn’t want to stand out, but I couldn’t invest because of this.

‘I need an adult to help me.’

Seria was also an option, but she had limitations because she had the label of a criminal now. She was still alive but had to stay under imprisonment.

I couldn’t keep relying on Boone for help. My divine power was inadequate, so it would not be possible for me to maintain his form for the next five days.

‘I need to decide when to use Boone’s powers.’

It’s an ability I don’t really need, but it’s a shame to not use it.

While I was thinking about that, the carriage stopped. We had arrived at the Dubbled’s Castle.

As soon as the door opened, Henry and Isaac approached me.

“Why did you come back so late?”

When Isaac brought his face too close and questioned me, Henry pushed him aside and hugged me.

“You had a hard time, didn’t you?”

Then Isaac took me away and held my hand.

“I asked the chef to prepare your favorite meat.”

Henry turned to the other side to argue with Isaac while directing his question at me.

“Wouldn’t eating late at night be bad for your health? I think you’d rather have a simple meal on the terrace and a delicious breakfast tomorrow.”

“It’s unhealthy to not eat.”

“The child is weak. Don’t compare her with monsters like you.”

They tried to take me away from each other’s grasp, as my eyes went as wide as saucers.

“Ow…”

I groaned and then I was suddenly brought in the Duke’s arms.

“Don’t fight.”

When the Duke spoke sternly, Henry and Isaac looked at each other with discontented faces, but soon replied, “Yes…”

‘Oh, I’ll be able to live after all.’

It was difficult being stuck between the two of them because the trip was tiring and I was working hard to keep Boone quiet.

I leaned my face in the arms of the Duke.

I was so tired but I had to greet them.

“I’m bwack.”

Then the Duke, Henry, and Isaac’s gaze all softened.

“Yes.”

“Welcome.”

“Let’s get inside.”

Having been here for a few months it really felt like I was back home.

***

On the next day, I got the strawberries Lea promised me for lunch.

When I looked with glistening eyes at the strawberries full of whipped cream, Boone rejoiced, saying, [Good for you, my dear.]

Lea gave me a bib and took some strawberries out of the bowl.

“…Three, four, five.”

“Lea, I lwike you.”

When I kissed Lea on her cheek as a token of gratitude, the maids were squealing.

“Little miss, I helped Lea put on the cream.”

And then Dahlia put out her cheek.

“I picked the strawberries too.”

Linda came close to me.

“Do it for me too please.”

Yuni tilted her head towards me.

I kissed them on the cheek once more and picked up the fork again.

[I can get you some milk, too.]

‘What?’

[I can also pick strawberries. Should I emerge?]

“……”