༺ The Love that Blossomed ༻
“Stop right there.”
“Huh? Ah, okay…”
Lulu became flustered when the maid guarding the entrance of the noble dormitory stopped her in her tracks.
“Commoners are not allowed to enter the nobles’ dormitory.”
“Ah, uh… Um… You don’t know me?”
Lulu asked cautiously, but the maid replied sternly.
“The rules must be upheld regardless of your identity. Only nobles are allowed in here. This isn’t some place a commoner can–”
“Let her in.”
However, another maid who seemed to be her senior cut her off with a sigh, baffling the maid guarding the entrance.
“W-what are you saying? Why are you letting a commoner in?”
“She must have been unaware because she’s new. Go on in, I give my permission.”
As Lulu quickly headed inside, the new maid faced her senior with a puzzled expression.
“Um… What was that about?”
“She’s Frey’s sex slave.”
The new maid immediately grasped the situation from the words of her senior maid, who had a sour look on her face.
“How pitiful. To think that of all the nobles out there, she was Frey’s sex slave.”
“You should be careful as well. Lately, there have been rumors that he’s even harassing the maids.”
Finishing their conversation, the two maids watched Lulu sympathetically as she made her way into the dormitory.
‘…I’ve only been kissed by him.’
Lulu, who had been eavesdropping on their conversation while pretending not to care, felt like she was slandered.
It was true that Frey forced himself on her. He frequently touched her and even forcibly kissed her.
However, besides that, he had never crossed the line.
‘…No, I shouldn’t be fooled. That wasn’t out of consideration for me, it’s just because he doesn’t even see me as a person.’
Lulu shook her head to get rid of her thoughts.
However, despite her efforts to clear her mind, her feelings continued to be in a state of disarray for some reason.
Although he was a despicable man who did not even see her as a fellow human being, the warmth she felt whenever he pet her satisfied Lulu’s cravings for human affection.
And it was the same for the kisses she received every night.
– Thump, thump
As a result, Lulu slowly made her way towards Frey’s dorm with a heavy heart.
‘But I can’t stop here… I can’t…’
Frey was undoubtedly a villain.
At the mansion, he physically abused Kania and Irina, threatened the chefs, and verbally abused his younger sister.
He even tried to sexually assault the commoners who approached him, going as far as trying to legally claim them.
Even if you ignored all of that, anyone paying attention to the stories circulating the Empire would suspect that Frey Raon Starlight was a spy working for the Demon King’s Army.
That was why Lulu had chosen Frey as the target of her misfortune while simultaneously removing her stigma.
If Frey–a person so evil that most people wished him dead–were to become interested in her, then he would have her suffer all sorts of humiliation in line with the rumors.
Then, she wouldn’t have to feel guilty even if he suffered from her misfortune.
That was why she had deliberately broken the vase to catch his attention.
She had honestly felt a little glad when she became Frey’s pet, despite being at a loss from how it happened before she could even carry out her other plans.
‘…Why are you treating me so well?’
Before she even knew it, Lulu arrived in front of Frey’s room. She then stood in place, trembling.
‘Why aren’t you treating me harshly…’
She stood blankly in front of the door for a long while.
Then, she bit down on her lips.
“…For now, let’s just check up on him.”
Lulu grabbed the doorknob, thinking that Frey wouldn’t have anyone taking care of him anyway.
However, the door was firmly locked.
Lulu activated her magic eyes, but when even that was blocked by information interference magic cast on the door, she became bewildered and started looking around.
After looking around, she spotted the head manager sighing in the corridor.
“What’s the matter?”
“I want to enter Frey’s room…”
“I’m guessing you’re up next in the rotation?”
“It’s been like that since night-time. Ms. Kania had been nursing Frey, but she just left the room earlier, so it’s about time for the next person to come.”
For the past few days, the head maid had seen Lulu wandering around Frey’s room every night. Thinking that she was the new rotation member, she quietly headed towards the room door.
“You also have it hard, huh? Then, I’m off to rest now.”
“Ah, um… I…”
“Sorry, I’ve been on night watch ever since I received an order to not let anyone in, so I haven’t been able to get a wink of sleep… Please.”
The head maid opened the door and left through the corridor after pleading with sunken eyes. Taken aback by the sudden development, Lulu momentarily stood still before approaching the door.
“…I’m just taking a look at his face and leaving, so there shouldn’t be any problems.”
She carefully opened the door.
“What, so the rumors were exaggerated after all…”
Upon entering the room, Lulu found Frey sitting on the bed with his head down and turned around to quietly leave the room.
However, she froze in place when Frey suddenly threw up dark pool of blood.
And Lulu, who watched the bloody scene before her in a daze, unconsciously started approaching Frey.
Immensely shocked by the situation, she began wiping the corners of Frey’s mouth. When Frey once again vomited blood, she started to break out in a cold sweat.
‘…He’s in such a terrible condition?’
Despite wearing clothes, Frey’s body that was slightly in contact with hers felt as hot as a fireball, and black blood continuously poured out of his mouth.
His face was also deathly pale, like a corpse.
“H-his heart is still beating though…”
Lulu skeptically pressed her ear against his chest to check his heartbeat and confirmed that it was still beating.
Then, Lulu lifted her head and examined Frey’s face before carefully trying to shake him awake.
“L-Lord Frey, p-please wake up.”
However, what spilled out of his mouth was not a response but rather more black blood.
“Just, just what…”
At a loss for what to do, Lulu gently caressed the weakly slumped Frey.
Footsteps suddenly echoed from outside. Startled, Lulu got back on her feet.
Frey’s room was under watch to prevent people from entering.
And her hands were currently stained with Frey’s blood.
In this situation where the footsteps stopped right outside the door, Lulu suddenly shifted her eyes to the side in panic before gulping.
In front of her was the bathroom door–the only space in the room she could hide in.
Moments before Lulu panicked at the sound of footsteps.
“So you were here, Ms. Irina.”
Kania had just left Frey’s room and found Irina vacantly staring out the window at the end of the corridor.
“I was looking for you, since you didn’t come even when it was time to change shifts.”
“O-Oh. It’s already time?”
Kania’s words flustered Irina, who then moved away from the window.
“Wait, Frey throws up blood if you’re not with him… I need to quickly get some antihemorrhagic agents…”
“Don’t. We need him to get rid of his blood.”
Irina looked at Kania incredulously while Kania heaved a sigh.
“When our souls merged together, dark mana entered his body while it was in shock.”
“I-isn’t that dangerous?”
“There’s no problem. The negative energy from the dark mana gets discharged whenever he throws up blood. Most of it has already been expelled from his body.”
After saying so, Kania let out another sigh before continuing.
“Also, it’s better to let him cough up his blood than to block it.”
“The Young Master’s newly formed blood gets imbued with his ‘Blessing of the Star’ and pushes the bad blood out of his body. In other words, he’s vomiting blood not because he’s in a poor condition, but to recover.”
“Phew… I guess we won’t have to worry about him fainting from anemia.”
Irina sighed in relief. She had been immensely worried about Frey, who had not stopped spitting out blood since the previous night.
“Then, let’s go.”
Kania quietly turned and started walking down the corridor. Irina, who, unlike her usual self, had been acting feeble, quietly spoke up.
“Then… that means you don’t need to stick right next to Frey anymore, right?”
“No. It won’t be forever, but… I will still have to stay in close contact with him for the foreseeable future.”
Irina cocked her head at Kania’s denial while Kania began stroking her stomach.
“Traces of the Young Master’s soul still remain. I have to be with him for at least another week or two to ensure his soul is restored safely.”
At Kania’s explanation, Irina could only quietly mumble to herself as she watched Kania walk ahead of her.
“…If only I had a little more dark mana.”
“Thank you, Ms. Irina.”
“For developing the magic that saved the Young Master’s life.”
“Oh. Not at all… it didn’t even work perfectly.”
“No, if it wasn’t for your magic, the Young Master’s life would have been cut in half again, and we wouldn’t have been able to figure out the System’s identity either.”
“I’ll report everything about it to the Young Master when he wakes up. Once again, thank you very much, Ms. Irina.”
As Kania thanked Irina, Irina briefly glanced at Kania’s belly which was currently branded by the magic circle.
“Does it hurt, by any chance?”
“Mm… Just a bit.”
“Want me to transfer it to my body?”
“N-No, it’s okay. I’ll manage.”
Soon after Kania refused Irina’s offer, they arrived at Frey’s room, and Irina stood in place as she seriously requested help.
“…Then, can you help me form a blood oath with him today?”
After hearing Irina’s request, Kania furrowed her brows as she opened the door which had been automatically locked.
“Please give up on that.”
“Aren’t you trying to offer your soul to Lord Frey through the oath?”
Opening the door, Kania spoke softly with a kind tone.
“You should already know what it means to offer your soul to neither a god nor a devil, but a mere mortal individual. So, there’s no reason for you to do that.”
“No, I will do it.”
Irina quietly entered the room and closed the door behind her as she responded with a similarly solemn voice.
‘Not only did I cause him to suffer from a curse that’s rotting away both his body and mind… even his lifespan has been cut short.’
Irina murmured inwardly as she approached Frey, who once again threw up bad blood while his body continued generating healthy blood.
Then, she hesitated momentarily before taking out and looking at the lifespan device.
“Two years and two months. That’s how long you have left to live, Frey.”
Irina gently hugged Frey and spoke with unwavering conviction.
“Even though you only have a few years… “
“…I will pledge my soul to you.”
She began whispering so quietly that only she and the sleeping Frey could possibly hear her next words.
“My body, my heart, and even my chastity… I will give you everything, Frey.”
Frey’s expression wriggled, and Irina gazed lovingly at him before looking to the side.
“Do you know why?”
To their side was a sapling that had rapidly grown and started flowering. It was one of the saplings she had him choose a few months ago when she still wasn’t sure of Frey.
“It’s because I love you.”
She quietly whispered into his ear.
“…I’ve loved you ever since we were young.”
And beside them, a puppy-love flower was gently swaying in the air.
“What… just what does that…?”
“Two years and two months…?”
Lulu shivered as she overheard everything from inside the dark bathroom devoid of even a single ray of light.
“………Because of me?”
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