The Sleepless Night of the Maid — Chapter 33
Translator: Eonnicorn / Editor: Scarlet
Eva finally broke into tears after she spoke with trembling lips. Although it was insensitive of her to make Cecil worry, emotions could sometimes be beyond someone’s control.
“I’m sorry, nanny. I was trying not to get involved with him, but it didn’t work.”
The first thing Eva confessed to Cecil when she called her was the Crown Prince’s matter. Perhaps, it wasn’t really right to say that she tried to avoid him. Because, if she didn’t want to, Eva wouldn’t have gone to the Moonlight Garden despite the fact that Pamela asked her to spend some time with Edward regardless of how.
In fact, she liked being with Edward. His eyes, body language, voice, and his smile that little by little spread across his face, it was all wonderful. That moment when they rode horses as the wind gusted through them was indescribably pleasant.
Her heart fluttered and felt butterflies in her stomach when she turned around and met his eyes with the fountain between them under the moonlight. Her heart still beating whenever she reminisced about the time when she was in his arms as their breath mingled. This was the first she ever felt this way, that’s why she couldn’t deal with it alone and helplessly got dragged into it.
“I’m sorry. Don’t scold me. Today was so difficult.”
Eva grabbed Cecil’s hand and put it on her cheek. Today was mentally exhausting, she just wanted to rest. Though she didn’t listen to Cecil’s request, she just needed Cecil’s solace for today.
“Are you having a hard time, my lady?” Fortunately, Cecil focused on Eva’s feelings without pressing the matter further.
‘No, it’s actually a lot.’
She was rather perplexed. It was a brief meeting but why did all the memories have so much impact on her? Eva didn’t understand the feeling she currently had.
“That feeling is called love. Maybe he’s your first love.”
Eva’s tears ceased as she got startled and looked at Cecil. It felt like a big, hot meteor struck right at her heart.
Loving someone. First love.
Once she heard the name and explanation about what she felt, it made so much more sense to her. Yes, that was it. Eva didn’t like him because he was a lifesaver, a polite guest, or a friend she connected with. It was because Eva, as a woman, liked Edward as a man.
So that was the reason why she felt very perturbed when showing him today’s disgrace, why it was so painful to bid goodbye like this.
Cecil watched Eva with a pitiful look as she struggled to get up. She pulled Eva in her arms gently and patted her back lovingly.
“It’s alright. Feelings are like morning mist, it’ll disappear little by little.”
Eva buried her face in Cecil’s arms and began to sob. Her heart ached and pained beyond words. An apparent remnant from the storm that had left.
In the past and even now, Edward wasn’t meant to be hers. If she didn’t get rid of this feeling quickly, she’d be the only one who got hurt.
* * *
The daybreak was full of mist. Edward stood by the window and gazed at the distant, indigo-colored sky. His mind continued to lead him to the memories of the past day.
It was about fifteen years ago. At the invitation of Count Massies, the Emperor visited Bale Castle with his son Edward and his half-brother, as well as the second Prince, James.
While greeting the Lord of the castle, a small child poked her head out from behind Count Massies leg.
“She’s your wife-to-be.”
It was the first time he saw Eva, whose eyes sparkled at the introduction from the Emperor and her father. He was 11 years old and Eva was 6 years old.
She was a catchy child with a white and chubby face, flushed cheeks, the divine blue eyes which interchange the shade of the sky and the lake, plump red lips, and blond curly hair dangled to her shoulders.
‘She’s adorable and breathtaking. I can’t believe a girl like her is my fiance.’
“Good day, Your Highness the Crown Prince.”
As she was still young, her pronunciation wasn’t flawless, regardless, she introduced herself with a sheepish smile.
“I’m your fiance. Because I’m your fiance, I’ll be your wife and you’ll be my husband in the future.”
Eva had a serious face when went over her sloppy explanation. He thought she must’ve heard it somewhere but didn’t fully grasp the idea. Edward mulled over whether or not to correct her, but laughter came from all around. All adults, including the Emperor, were smiling at Eva with a fond expression.
“…Indeed. Good to see you, Eva.”
‘What should I do?’ Edward couldn’t ruin the good atmosphere so he had no choice but to laugh it off with the others. Deep inside, he also thought this girl was cute.
Eva was an attractive child. Unlike Edward, who was alone in the Imperial Palace, all the attention of Bale Castle’s household was directed at her. Would she fall if she ran, would she get indigestion if she ate, would she feel uncomfortable because of a lumpy mattress, such concern like that wasn’t from a custom treatment. He could see that everyone in Bale Castle genuinely cared and loved Eva. Even when his father, the Emperor, saw Eva, his lips curled upward by itself.
A beloved child. A child full of love and received in return.
Edward was unfamiliar with the light that Eva emitted. He was jealous and envious. Still, he treated Eva well because she was her fiance and Eva followed him around with a wide smile.
“We’re going to get married and become a couple. But did you know this, Your Highness?”
“What?” A grin formed on Edward’s face as he asked back. He wondered what kind of story she heard from somewhere and from whom.
“Marriage means to be the closest person in the world and always beside their partner no matter what.”
“Then, you’re going to be the closest person to me?”
Eva nodded her head, wide-eyed.
“You’re going to be on my side no matter what?”
Still with a grin, he asked again. Eva nodded her head quickly and seriously, as if it was something obvious.
In awe, Edward shook his head instead. From his observation, it seemed to be a tale coming from a nanny or butler. He wished that they wouldn’t tell such fairy tales to a child. Because the reality was far more cold and cruel.
For Edward, marriage was a meeting between people who fulfill certain qualifications and a couple who tried to tie a knot. A relationship where doubt came before faith, and boundaries came before love. Since he was young, he had witnessed the definition of marriage and married couples too many times.
Even like that, Eva’s words weren’t bad. Because he found no lies in her statement.
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