Ch. 174 The Pain Was Good (1)
Mirabelle packed a picnic basket full of food, and headed to the mountainside accompanied only with Kuhn. It was unusual that she didn’t bring any other maids or servants, and the butler tried to persuade her otherwise, but she made excuses about feeling too crowded. In reality, she couldn’t talk freely to Kuhn if there was anyone else. Kuhn was vaguely aware of the fact, but he pretended to be ignorant.
“Wow, look at all the forsythia flowers here. They’re so beautiful.”
It was an idyllic spring day, and a warm breeze floated in the air. Mirabelle kept expressing her admiration for the blooms, while Kuhn looked on with a blank expression. He was not impressed by natural landscapes. Flowers were just flowers, and trees were just trees. He couldn’t understand why people admired the changing of the seasons.
And so Mirabelle and Kuhn had opposite reactions, but they did not force their own opinions on each other. Mirabelle continued to be delighted, while Kuhn simply observed her. They were an unusual combination that didn’t match at all, but nevertheless, they weren’t uncomfortable with each other.
Mirabelle pointed to a small bird sitting on a large branch.
“Oh, look over there. That bird is so cute.”
Despite the bluntness of his response, Mirabelle smiled. They strolled around the mountainside and took in the natural beauty of spring.
After some time, they settled down on a blanket and unpacked the picnic basket from Blaise mansion. There was an unbelievable amount of food inside, and there was barely any room for them to sit on when Mirabelle finished laying them out. When she finished, she smiled at Kuhn.
“Help yourself, Kuhn.”
Kuhn knew from experience that he couldn’t refuse her, and so he nodded and thanked her.
“Yes, Young Lady.”
No matter how tasty the food he ate was, his expression remained the same. He did not show his feelings out of habit. Mirabelle would sometimes stop eating to watch Kuhn, and though he felt a little awkward, he continued to eat silently. No matter who looked at them, the combination of the lovely young lady and a taciturn servant was quite unusual.
They ended up eating half the food they brought, and Mirabelle watched Kuhn as he quietly cleaned up.
“How does it feel to go out and have some fresh air?”
“What do you mean?”
“You were looking a little depressed these days. Actually, I wanted to bring some more food. Watching the scenery while eating delicious food is the best way to relax.”
Kuhn had never properly relaxed before, and didn’t understand it well. It was the first time in his life that he had ever had leisure. If it weren’t for Mirabelle, Kuhn wouldn’t never have gone on a picnic. What was clear to him, however, was that looking at the flowers and listening to the birds did make him lose his uneasiness.
‘Has she been observing my mood?’
Kuhn often wore an impassive mask, and it was difficult for others to tell if he was happy or unhappy. Mirabelle, however, seemed to have seen through his gloomy mood. The irony was that the cause of his melancholy was Mirabelle herself, who prevented him from leaving Blaise mansion.
Kuhn gave Mirabelle a curious look, and finished packing up the picnic basket.
“What do you want to do next, Young Lady? Do you want to look around a little more? Or do you want to go back to the mansion now?”
Their carriage was at the bottom of the mountainside. Kuhn had driven it alone, and no one else was waiting for them there. That meant that Mirabelle could arrange the schedule as she pleased.
Mirabelle gave a thoughtful look, when—
A thin bolt of lightning flashed in the sky. Dark storm clouds started to creep into the clear blue.
Mirabelle stared upwards with a confused look. Kuhn picked up the picnic basket without hesitation, then hurried over to the seated Mirabelle.
“We’ll have to hurry back. It’s going to rain soon.”
Mirabelle stood up with a look of regret. They could get caught in the rain in the middle of the mountainside, and so the pair diligently made their way down to where the carriage was located.
Unfortunately, heavy raindrops began to fall before they reached it. Spring showers weren’t unexpected, but Mirabelle didn’t expect the weather to be so capricious. Her breathing became more labored as she trudged down the path.
She started to pale as her body chilled in the rain. At the sight, Kuhn recalled the day when he first met Mirabelle and she had collapsed to the floor in pain. He worried that it would happen again. He pulled off his jacket and placed in on Mirabelle, and her pale lips lifted in a faint smile.
“Thank you, Kuhn.”
“Are you alright?”
Mirabelle acted as calm as she could, but Kuhn noticed that her condition was worsening. He tossed the picnic basket to the ground, causing the contents to rattle inside, but he ignored and bent down to offer his back to Mirabelle.
“Get on. We’ll get back as soon as possible.”
“I’m—heus—I’m fine— “
At Kuhn’s urging, Mirabelle replied in a fading voice.
As soon as Mirabelle’s small body leaned against back, Kuhn rose up and began to run forward. She was lighter than he expected, so much so that he worried she would disappear. Kuhn wondered for a moment at his unexpected feelings, but now was not the time to contemplate it.
He hurried down the slope, and Mirabelle was amazed at the speed.
“Kuhn, you’re going really fast. It’s like a ride.”
Mirabelle’s voice was faint in his ears, and she was noticeably shivering on his back. Kuhn spoke to her firmly.
“Hang in there.”
He took a deep breath and sped down the slope. Mirabelle clung feebly as she was jostled on his back, and she swallowed her groans of pain as to not worry him. She forced a faint smile despite the agony that radiated from her stomach.
“What’s happening to me…”
Since Mirabelle was a child she had suffered from an unknown disease, which was even worse as no one knew the proper treatment. When the pain suddenly came like this, she felt like she would die…
Well, if she had to pick a time and place to do so, this was a good one.
“…I hope the road never ends.”
As long as she could be with Kuhn, the pain was good. She gradually began to lose consciousness on his back, and could faintly make out Kuhn’s voice yelling at her.
“Young Lady, you have to stay awake!”
Mirabelle wanted to answer his desperate cry, but she lost the battle to keep her eyes open.