Ch. 64 Where Have I Seen This Before? (2)
Once she sorted out the items that arrived at the mansion, she catalogued twenty dresses and five boxes of jewels. To prevent the clothes from becoming creased they would be placed in the dressing room, and in the meanwhile Elena opened the third jewelry box. She rubbed her fingertips against her forehead.
‘…I cannot believe this man.’
She couldn’t afford to look unattractive at the ball, but Carlisle’s gifts were too much. As Elena ruminated with her headache, Mirabelle was continually singing her admiration as she arranged the dresses.
“Look, sister. It’s so pretty.”
She swooned at the vivid colors and detailed decorations, alive with unique designs. While she loved the dresses from Anco’s Tailors, it couldn’t compare it to the dresses that arrived at the mansion. The dresses made at the tailor shop were fit for any noble to wear, but these were elegant costumes fit for any royal family member. They were the proper amount of splendor as well. Too showy could appear too tacky; too little, too plain; but the aesthetic of the dresses were perfectly balanced.
One dress drew attention to the chest, while another had a rich hem on its skirt. Mirabelle was stunned at the variety and murmured wonderingly to herself.
“…So beautiful. It’s like they’re from the Freegrand Kingdom, the holy land of fashion.”
Elena did not answer, unsure of the origin of the dresses. However, if Carlisle met the Kingdom of Freegrand in battlefield, then surely these would be the spoils. He must be extremely wealthy having acquired so many riches from war.
‘…Should I return them?’
The problem was that Elena and Mirabelle had nothing else to wear for the ball. Furthermore, Carlisle gave her a condition in exchange for these dresses.
– Whatever I send, you can’t say anything against it.
Carlisle must’ve known her thoughts.
Elena let out a frustrated sigh. Mirabelle, who was still soaking in the gifts, pranced up to Elena.
“So who sent you all of these?”
“Ah, well…He’s so timid he doesn’t really like to reveal who he his.”
Elena managed to evade answering and smiled stiffly, while Mirabelle replied with a radiant expression.
“I think he likes you!”
“…What? No way.”
“Huh? How do you know that? You don’t send all these dresses to someone you don’t like.”
Mirabelle didn’t mean anything deep, but Elena realized a new possibility. She appreciated that Carlisle was so nice to her, but she never thought of it in those terms.
Whatever the relationship, there was always a process to it. But there was not much of a relationship between the two. At best, he seemed more likely to flirt with other women than choose to like someone like her.
Perhaps he wanted to pay back a debt in the past? Elena chose to lean towards that explanation. After a moment of thought, Elena turned her head and saw Mirabelle staring at her with lonely eyes. Elena stroked her sister’s soft cheek.
“You’re the only one I need.”
“Yes. If Mirabelle stays with me like this now, I don’t need anything else.”
Mirabelle turned bright red as she smiled, and the sight of it tugged on Elena’s heart so much she smiled after her. This small happiness will do. She would never give up on this life she had been given.
Mirabelle pointed to one of the unopened jewelry boxes.
“Shall I open it then put what’s in there away, too?”
She hadn’t decided what to do with them yet, but they couldn’t afford to leave such expensive jewelry lying around. Mirabelle opened the box.
Elena turned at Mirabelle’s startled voice. There was a necklace with a red jewel that caught their eyes. While the other boxes brimmed with various accessories, this box cradled only one special necklace.
‘…Where have I seen something like this before?’
Elena tilted her head as she looked at the vaguely familiar item. Mirabelle continued with a trembling voice.
“Isn’t this similar the red diamond necklace we saw at the jeweler’s, before we left for the capital? “
Elena, who was not one to be easily surprised, found herself surprised yet again in a single day. Her mouth fell open as she recalled the price of a red diamond she saw at the jewelry store. However, the red diamond set in this necklace was much larger. She couldn’t imagine wearing such a costly thing around her neck. She had lived her last life frugally, and while and she tried to enjoy luxury when she could, this was too much.
‘I don’t know what else to do, but I can’t really accept this.’
After Mirabelle left, Elena tied a red handkerchief on the window. She didn’t tie several of them like the time when Carlisle was in danger, but…
As if to express her embarrassment, she tied two handkerchiefs to the window.