The Sleepless Night of the Maid — Chapter 89
Translator: Scarlet / Editor: Scarlet
The smile vanished from Eva’s face in an instant. She had no idea that she would hear that name, which had suddenly become unwelcome, in an ordinary Wellington family.
Why do the things she wants to forget and the things she wants to leave behind always cast a shadow whenever she finds herself in a bright place?
“Ah, maybe you two aren’t aware. The Duke of Kensington is a very well-known nobleman in Montana,” Joy added, thinking Eva’s silence was due to ignorance, offering a kind explanation.
“You work for an esteemed man. I wish you the best,” Cecil responded with a pleasant smile, finding Joey’s chirping endearing.
Eva pretended not to know, but she had some knowledge about the Duke of Kensington. Cecil knew, of course, that Eva had attended his ball. She thought she had done a good job concealing it, fearing that Joy might find out. However, she was unaware that Edward and Olivia were also there. If she had known, she wouldn’t have been able to hide her expression of anger the moment she heard Joy’s words.
“Hehe, thank you,” Joy said, seemingly pleased with the compliment. “I’ll leave you to take a quick two-minute break.” She left, running her hands through her red hair.
“Nanny, how famous is the Kensington family?” Eva asked, feigning ignorance as she poured water into the basin. She had only inferred the family’s prestige from the title of Duke, but she wanted a more realistic answer.
“I’m not entirely sure. They are an old-established family, but they didn’t stand out that much… At one point, there were rumors that their economic situation was so dire that they had to sell the title. Ultimately, power shifts as the world changes.”
“I see,” Eva replied calmly, careful not to let Cecil notice. The fact that the Massies were a declining sun while the Kensington family was a rising one saddened her, although she wasn’t envious of the other side’s achievements.
“Miss,” Cecil said, rising after scooping cold water and pouring it into the hot water in the basin. She was quick-witted, and Eva’s question seemed to catch her attention. “Don’t be modest. After all, the Massies are one of the most prestigious families in the Empire.”
Cecil always spoke with pride about the Massies’ history as a noble family. They were known to have provided the greatest assistance to the Emperor, strengthening imperial power when the nobles still held authority and ruled over their territories with their own armies.
Even though their glory had faded, Cecil still held onto her pride in the Massies. Although they weren’t her own family, she regarded them as such because she had served them for many years.
Eva was grateful for Cecil’s loyalty but also felt a sense of shame. The noble families of the empire had vanished, and all that remained were old stories, a handful of people’s sympathy, and a woman on the run.
“Let’s wash up, nanny,” Eva said, suppressing her sadness as she dipped her hands into the hot water.
Mrs. Leona was not Father John’s sister. However, their relationship was more than that of relatives or friends; it held a subtle connection.
John was the youngest son of a fairly renowned knight, and Mrs. Leona was the daughter of a housemaid. They had grown up as close friends from an early age and even made a promise to marry each other. But in the end, that promise remained unfulfilled.
There was a barrier greater than the difference in their social status: John’s love for someone else. Any other woman might have been jealous, but how could Mrs. Leona compete with John’s love for the Creator?
Mrs. Leona had her heart broken but still encouraged John to become a priest. Since then, their paths had diverged, but they continued to communicate through letters and remained special friends.
Upon hearing this, both Eva and Cecil had greater trust in Mrs. Leona. However, it was not possible to reveal her true identity immediately. Eva and Cecil adopted new names—Lily and Margaret—and explained that they had left their hometown due to difficult circumstances. They also shared the story of escaping and meeting the group in Hastings.
“Oh my God, that’s what happened,” Mrs. Leona exclaimed.
After hearing Cecil’s explanation, Mrs. Leona covered her mouth in surprise. The genuine empathy displayed by the two women as they shared their feelings made it seem unlikely that they were lying. Mrs. Leona’s initial positive impression of them was reinforced by the comforting aura she felt from them. While some doubts might still linger, Mrs. Leona chose not to probe further and cared for the well-being of the two women.