It looked as if it was penetrated by something sharp, but a new skin was spreading out of the wound the size of the palm of his hand.
On her other shoulder, there was a diagonal cut that was passing through her navel and wrapped around like a shoulder strap.
There were ax-like wounds on her back and other small wounds on her chest and stomach that looked like scratches and stabs.
Her thighs, knees and ankles were also full of scars.
On one of her thighs was a scar that looked like it had been wrapped by a whip heated with iron.
Amongst those wounds were the marks left by Louismond in full bloom.
Thump, thump –
His heart raced.
A body full of wounds.
It felt exhilarating that he left his marks on her strong body filled with proof that she survived any hell.
That feeling crept up on his spine.
It went until to his throat and was completed as a low sigh.
What remained after he let out a sigh was hunger.
He wanted to bite and leave a mark to the wounds without his mark.
It was greed.
No, it was desire beyond greed.
Louismond swallowed his dry saliva, closed his eyes tightly and opened them again.
Pretending to act as if nothing had happened, he reached outside the bathtub as he searched for the sponge that might have dropped nearby.
“Wh, where did it go?”
“Have you seen everything?” Rubiana asked.
Louismond leaned back.
With a splash, the water overflowed once more.
“I didn’t mean to surprise you.”
“Uh, n, no.
I didn’t mean that I want to do it here, uhm, nor I am implying that I am really good at it and I’m wishing that you can quickly recover.
I never had thought of such shamelessness.”
He stammered on his words that he didn’t think through and immediately regretted it.
Louismond looked at Rubiana with tremor in his eyes.
“Here? Do what here?”
Unfortunately, or fortunately, Rubiana didn’t understand his words right away.
It was such a great opportunity that Louismond would never have again.
Pretending not to know anything, he acted startled and asked, “Yes? Did I say something?”
Rubiana was about to tell him, ‘I remember everything you just said,’ but she didn’t.
Not understanding and not hearing it are two different things, so Rubiana thought if it was alright to make someone who couldn’t tell it apart as her husband.
Somehow, she could hear the words of her grandmother, ‘Well, it’s alright to be that stupid.
After all, he’s handsome.’
‘But still, Grandma.
Shouldn’t I be pointing out that he was too suspiciously ‘familiar’ with something?’
Speaking to her grandma in her mind, Rubiana smiled softly at Louismond.
“Well, I guess I must have heard it wrong.”
“Yes, yes, that is right.
The thought of doing what we did last night here and now never crossed my mind.”
Other than that.”
Will it just lightly go like this? Just as Louismond was relieved,
“I like that the water’s temperature is just right, and you’re also good at mixing things.” Rubiana said in a small voice.
“Yes? Ah, yes, thank you.
I think this is just the right temperature to relieve fatigue in the body….”
Louismond couldn’t withstand Rubiana’s gaze, so he lowered his eyes.
Drops of water dripped from his long eyelashes.
“What were you looking for when you opened the cupboard earlier?”
“Usually, each house put bath products and perfumes in similar places.
So I opened them, thinking that [the design of] this house is similar to the other houses.”
“I also like the massage very much.”
“Thank you, I am pretty good at it.
I will do it anytime after we get married.”
“It wouldn’t be so easy to do something like this though….”
When it was my first time, I heard scolding like, ‘You’re grabbing too hard,’ and ‘It’s too soft that you’re tickling me.’ But as I continuously did it, I got better in no time.”
Louismond answered meekly.
He even had a face that he had never thought how it would look like to other people listening to him.
He looks so bright.
More and more, Rubiana couldn’t help but think, ‘Just look at this guy.’ Just how many houses did he travel that he knew each house had the same place? How many women’s limbs did he knead to master the art of massaging the arms and legs to make them feel good?
Since it was a thing in the past before I met you, it would be alright to let it go.
But I feel annoyed. Her green eyes, which had been relaxed, became cold.
And soon it was released.
The chill was released to the person who made her feel that way.
“Well, Duke, uhm, if you don’t mind….”
“If I don’t mind what?”
“Is it alright for me to continue with last night’s work?”
Their faces, which were already close to each other, inched closer.
It was enough that they could feel each other’s breath.
As he approached her, there was urgency in Louismond’s face.
“It will be different from what we did on the bed.
It will be different.”
His hand with the same urgency on his face wrapped around Rubiana’s waist.
Rubiana smiled then reached out and grabbed the nape of his neck.
Come to think of it, this steam-filled bathroom wasn’t a good place to think about those things seriously.
So let’s think about those annoying things later.
(T/N: Louismond is very hardworking~ I love that, though I would love it more with more details hehehe~)
I think this would be the perfect time to think things leisurely by myself as I ride the horse.
Every time the horse walked, her body trembled, aching here and feeling numb there, which made it hard to concentrate.
Normally, she would have had her thighs tightened on the horse’s body to prevent her upper body from swaying.
But the overworked hip joint wasn’t in its best state.
Rubiana groaned as she clutched the mane of her loyal horse.
“You, are you dissatisfied with me these days? Can’t you let me ride in comfort?”
The horse scolded her.
She could barely manage when she woke up in the bed this morning.
Now she looked like this after playing for two rounds with Louismond in the bathtub.
Louismond skillfully washed Rubiana after, who was too lazy to lift a finger.
He carefully dried Rubiana’s red hair as he hugged the drooping Rubiana.
She almost fell asleep because she felt too comfortable while he was drying her hair, but the Head Maid knocked on the door.
It wasn’t an act of loyalty that she couldn’t let her master skip a meal.
It was because a person came from the Imperial Palace and urged Rubiana to go.
Bringing a simple meal, just when Rubiana and Louismond were about to touch the food that had been brought in a tray, she stated her original business.
“Duke, a person from the Imperial Palace had come.
Please hurry up and go….”
Louismond dropped his fork.
Rubiana deftly stuffed Louismond’s mouth with bread as he looked at her with eyes that had a lot to say.
It was to prevent him from saying anything to the Head Maid.
Rubiana didn’t forget that she was someone sent by the Emperor, Callena.
Rubiana slowly finished her meal, ignoring the urging of the Head Maid.
She even asked her for a desert, which was something she doesn’t usually eat.
When the ice cream arrived in silverware, she just watched it without touching as she thought, ‘How long would it take for the ice cream to melt with the sunlight coming through the window?’ Of course, she had to be dragged by the Head Maid before the ice cream melted in half.
After she changed her clothes in a blink of an eye, she got on the horse and was sent off by Louismond, who looked at her with eyes that had many things to say until the end.
She wanted to tell him something reassuring, but she also didn’t want to promise anything before meeting Callena, so she stayed silent.
The back of her head was burning with his gaze, but she didn’t look back.
She left like that.
(T/N: Louismond be regretting exhausting Rubiana too much hahaha cute~)
Maybe because of Louismond’s resentment, the ride wasn’t that comfortable.
Rubiana repeatedly clutched and released her horse’s mane many times until she arrived at the Imperial Palace with a gloomy face.
Upon arriving at the Imperial Palace, Rubiana jumped off her horse letting out a strange scream.
‘I’ll definitely call for a carriage when I go back.
But is riding a carriage more comfortable?’
With this thought, she went inside the audience chamber, which was empty.
The Grand Chamberlain approached her as she stood blankly and held her waist.
“Her Majesty is still inside the bedroom.
Please go that way.
I will lead the way.”
“No, I want to meet Her Majesty right here.”
Rubiana insisted not going.
She should be in a public place if she is to be scolded.
That way, there is less scolding as they are aware of the eyes of the other people and formality, and there will be less fight.
“Her Majesty is still inside the bedroom.”
“I can wait.”
“Her Majesty is already waiting for the Duke.”
“According to imperial law….”
“Isn’t the one above the Imperial Law Her Imperial Majesty?”
Rubiana took a deep breath and greeted her belatedly.
“You seem to be doing well.”
“It’s all thanks to the Duke’s concern.”
The Grand Chamberlain laughed.
The wrinkled face became more wrinkled.
“I’m glad that the Duke doesn’t look any different from usual.”
The Grand Chamberlain said as he looked down on Rubiana’s waist.
Rubiana gently lowered her hand holding her waist.
The Grand Chamberlain was a butler in Luxen County even before Rubiana was born.
When Rubiana and Callena were still young, she thought of him as a portrait lined in the mansion’s hallway or a porcelain.
Because he was always by their side.
He became the King’s Grand Chamberlain when Callena became the King.
When Callena asked if she could do that, Rubiana answered that it was absolutely fine.
No, it was like telling her to please take him away.
“By the way, are you eating on time? When you come in, your steps are wobbly as if you were beaten by someone all night long and you weren’t even able to eat a bowl of porridge.
In my personal opinion, I think your muscles were surprised last night and this morning with an exercise that you haven’t done before or you didn’t feel the need to do.
Your condition would have improved if you called for a doctor early in the morning and received treatment.
But I am more concerned that rather than seeing a doctor, you came here on horseback and made the wound worse.
You were very clumsy and easy-going in nature that Her Majesty specially called for a handmaid that would take care of such a Duke….”
It was a golden opportunity to send this nagger away.
“I know you don’t mean it, but if you really didn’t want to hear me nagging….”
Rubiana covered her ears with her hands.
But it didn’t stop his nagging at all.
The Grand Chamberlain’s mouth was really a muzzle made from steel.
Is he forty now? Maybe fifty? He used to talk a lot when he was younger, but he was more talkative now that he’s older.
‘I don’t know how Lena handles his nagging.’
Rubiana strode to the Emperor’s bedroom, where she didn’t want to go so badly.
Having an audience with Callena inside her bedroom and listening to the nagging of the Grand Chamberlain – she would choose the former if she had to choose between the two.
It was more beneficial to mental health.
‘You knew this would happen so you sent the Grand Chamberlain.’
Aww, you’re really smart that you have become the Emperor who rules the Empire. Rubiana gritted her teeth as she thought of how smart her younger sister is.
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