|Author: Himezaki Shiu||Original Source: Syosetu|
|Translator: PunishedLyly||English Source: Re:Library|
Certainly, her life— or rather, their lives must have been anything but ordinary. Now that I know, I find some comfort in understanding. What immense effort must be concealed behind the grace of that barrier? I realize it might seem presumptuous, but if I had been led to believe that such elegance was merely the outcome of innate talent, I could have become envious, or perhaps even contemptuous.
「Even so, they assisted in resolving your issue, didn’t they, Viviana?」
My light-hearted tease, intended to signal a close to our discussion, elicited a more pronounced reaction from Viviana than I anticipated, and I couldn’t help but smile. It wasn’t hard to infer that Lady Cielmer, or perhaps the unseen Lady Ainsel, had been instrumental in solving Viviana’s problem. She was probably instructed to remain silent on the matter.
「No need to speak of it. Instead, let’s attend to our misguided brother who has crossed a forbidden line and return him to where he belongs.」
「Indeed. We can’t very well leave him in this house.」
And with that, we resolved to escort our disheartened elder brother to the Hunter Guild.
Mistress Fiiyanamia’s estate – normally an intimidating place to approach, yet here I stood before it. The grandeur of the Amyulute mansion paled in comparison, although it was less ornate than the royal castle I had seen in another land. Still, an air of purity pervaded the place, almost as if infused with unique magical energy.
A maidservant waited before the building, her expression somewhat stern, but she greeted me with a graceful bow.
「I have been expecting you. Just to confirm, may I ask your identity?」
「Yes, I am Sumiaria. I was instructed to mention Lady Ainsel’s name in this situation.」
「Very well. Please, follow me inside.」
As she guided me into the manor, I noticed that the interior had a tasteful restraint. It appeared to be designed more for comfort than decoration.
「Lady Sumiaria. No, just Sumiaria should suffice.」
「Yes, certainly. I’m no longer of the Amyulute family, merely a servant here.」
「In that case, you may call me Mohsa.」
「Understood, Lady Mohsa.」
「As fellow maidservants, the “Lady” is unnecessary.」
「Then, Miss Mohsa.」
I believed we were close in age, but as my senior in service, her guidance would likely be essential. I resolved to maintain humility, even if she considered us equals, until I proved myself a competent peer.
「That’ll do. Among fellow maidservants, we needn’t be overly formal. Relax as you grow accustomed here. Constant formality could wear you out.」
「Thank you for your consideration.」
「Now, here we are. Sumiaria, this will be your room from today on. There are clothes inside; please change into them. Do you require assistance?」
Miss Mohsa’s question caught me off guard. I initially wanted to decline, but reconsidered. If it were ordinary clothes, I could manage on my own, but these are likely servant’s work garments. They might be completely different from what I usually wear, so there’s no reason to be unnecessarily stubborn.
「I would greatly appreciate the help.」
I was half-expecting a sarcastic retort like “You can’t even do as much as that?” but it never came. Despite her cold and strict demeanor, Miss Mohsa might actually be quite caring. It appears my judgment still requires refinement.
The room was larger than my room at the Amyulute mansion, and the furniture was top-notch. The main difference was that this room wasn’t designed with attendants in mind for the occupant. I am genuinely glad that I know how to do most things by myself. Is it thanks to Viviana, perhaps?
Inside the closet, I found an outfit similar to what Miss Mohsa was wearing, an apron dress that I’ve seen often. Having been attended to before, my heart raced a bit at the thought of wearing it.
「This will be the last time I’ll teach you as thoroughly, so please pay close attention.」
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Heeding Miss Mohsa’s guidance, I attentively absorbed her explanation. There were fewer steps involved compared to the dresses I’d worn before, but some parts seemed a little tricky. Was that everything? I believed I could manage on my own, but today, I would gratefully accept Miss Mohsa’s assistance.
「Did you understand?」
「If you ever forget something, find a nearby housemaid and ask them about it. Everyone has some leeway, so they shouldn’t mind such a trivial question.」
「Is that alright?」
I thought I was just told that I wouldn’t be taught any further.
「That was the last time you’d be taught as thoroughly. However, it would be a disgrace to the mistress if her servants can’t even wear their work clothes properly, no? It wouldn’t be good if you asked every time, but I don’t expect a newcomer to perform perfectly from the start.」
「Understood. Please teach me well.」
「Now then, let’s have you familiarized with your work. Please follow me.」
I once again trailed after Miss Mohsa.
「That reminds me, how much do you know about Lady Ainsel?」
「That she is inside Lady Cielmer, and not much else. Also that Lady Ainsel has black eyes and hair.」
「That’s enough for now. Lady Ainsel appears as herself within the manor, so you’re unlikely to mistake them. Though even if you do, they are not ones to rebuke people about it.」
When Miss Mohsa speaks of the young ladies, her face softens, which is somewhat surprising. Lady Ainsel I have yet to meet, but Lady Cielmer seemed rather unsociable or perhaps disinterested in others. Though, considering their circumstances, this doesn’t bother me, and I harbor no negative feelings towards her. In fact, there’s much about her that I respect. However, I was lost in these thoughts and had to refocus as the conversation continued.
「In the meantime, you will be following me and another maid.」
「Miss Mohsa, may I inquire about your duties in this manor?」
「I am Lady Ainsel’s personal maid. The other is Lady Cielmer’s personal maid. When one is unneeded, she assists the other. In other words, for now, your work will be as an aide to an aide. You were brought in by the young ladies, after all.」
It seems that I won’t be assigned difficult tasks immediately. Being an aide’s aide means I’ll likely handle errands and odd jobs, but as I’m a personal maid to Mistress Fiiyanamia’s daughter, I expect to be treated well.
「At any rate, you’ll only be observing today. And you must remember the most crucial thing.」
As I responded, Miss Mohsa paused in front of a door slightly larger than the others. Could it lead to the dining hall? Observing the flow of maids, we joined them, entering a room with a large table and many chairs. Only one end was being used, not an uncommon sight, but the presence of Mistress Fiiyanamia made me tense.
「I’ve already asked for permission, and you don’t have to converse with them here. Don’t be nervous… that might be impossible, but at least try not to show it.」 She whispered, so I took a quiet, deep breath.
I was once of noble standing, in a manner of speaking, so I know how to maintain composure in such settings. Once I’d collected myself, I noticed someone seated near Mistress Fiiyanamia, an adorable white-haired girl. Though we’d met yesterday, her demeanor was so different that I nearly didn’t recognize her. She was conversing with Mistress Fiiyanamia, and Lady Cielmer appeared extraordinarily animated.
「Your most important duty, and ours, is to ensure the smile on their faces remains untainted, at least within this manor. Lady Cielmer and Lady Ainsel may not show it in their usual behavior, but they are on the brink of collapsing. It’s no overstatement to say that Lady Cielmer’s smile is nothing short of miraculous.」
Miss Mohsa’s words resonated powerfully within me.
That ends Sumiaria’s interlude! Looks like we got a new member in the Protect AinCiel’s Smile club! Though it’s specifically only Ciel for now, since Sumiaria has yet to meet Ain, lol.
Last week was absolutely bumpy, sorry about that again. For this whole interlude, Sumiaria has shown herself to be passive and I can’t help but feel that her temperament makes her a good fit for her new work. She’s smart, attentive, capable, caring, and humble. It honestly shows just how good she is compared to the brother, lol. I can see why people think she’s superior. She is bad at scheming and we don’t know how well she is at negotiation, but this chapter also shows she’s the type to go with the flow. And of course, for the last part. It’s always nice to remember how terrible our protagonists’ past was and how closed off they were and compare it now to how Ciel can be openly happy even when there’s maids coming in and out of the room she’s in. Now, they have people who are willing to help them in a place far from the threat of their history.
Now then, I hope you enjoyed this chapter. Please feel free to comment. Stay healthy, stay safe, and have a nice day~!
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