28. The Returnee Noble Lady (27)
Rave possessed Hadith’s body, but not before mentioning that Hadith rarely drank alcohol. It seemed to be an effective method to speed up his recovery.
In fact, Hadith’s breath had calmed down and his face was no longer red.
Hadith, regaining his consciousness, muttered while laying down.
Jill, whom was preparing water by the bed, turned around.
“Are you okay? There are water and fruits. I got them from the kitchen.”
“…were you caring for me?”
“Yes, I’m used to nursing drunks… if you’re worried, I shall call someone.”
Both Camila and Zeke should be good at it. But Hadith shook his head gently.
“As long as you’re there, it’s already aplenty …I want to eat an apple.”
“Alright, just a moment.”
She almost gave the apple to him as it was. Thankfully, she recalled that he was an Emperor. As such, she took the available small knife and started peeling it.
How could I almost forget to peel it…?
Rotate the knife and inserting the blade into the apple—that was the way to do it. However, when she started moving the blade, not only the skin, but the fruit was also cut off!
W-well, at least the skin is gone?
If he didn’t like it, then he should eat the chunk that still had the skin.
Jill tried again and dug her knife into the apple—however, it resulted in a chunk of the apple flying right onto her forehead. From behind came laughter.
“Wha, you seem quite skillful with blade, but you also have this clumsy side to yourself!”
“Using a blade for the purpose of battle is quite different than using it for this purpose.”
Hadith laughed, before sitting up.
He lifted Jill up and placed her between his legs. Jill’s back stuck to him, as he held each of her hands—one holding the knife and the other holding the apple.
“This is how you do it.”
Giving an example, he started moving Jill’s hand to peel the apple. This time, the apple was peeled cleanly. Jill stared at her hands, impressed by the wondrous feat done through his help.
“So it isn’t the knife that should be moved…”
“You’re right… see, you managed to do it. Anyone can master it once they learned the small trick.”
“C-can you make a bunny-shaped apple? No matter how much I tried, I couldn’t make it…”
She wished to be that girl who was able to slice apples in such way when nursing people. She was ashamed when she requested it, but Hadith didn’t laugh at her.
He discarded the skin properly in a bowl, and dexterously peeled the remaining skin before removing the core and placing it on the table. The sliced apples were neatly arranged on the plate. Hadith then took another apple.
Again, while holding Jill, he started dexterously peeling the apple.
His wide palms had magically created the ideal rabbit shape.
“Oooh…” Jill’s eyes sparkled.
“If there were more apples, I could create many other shapes as well.”
“Many other shapes—!? Your Majesty, you genius, you—!”
“It isn’t that difficult, since I have half-brothers and sisters, I kept practicing. If I’m able to do this, then they might like me, even if only a little…”
Hadith then washed his hands, using the bowl prepared for him to wash his face in the morning. Jill’s hands were also washed in it.
After that, he dotingly dried her hands using a towel.
He’s really expecting the day where he can do this for his brothers and sisters to come…
Realizing his genuine feelings, Jill found it easy to ignore his little girl hobby and also the notion of ‘First Night’.
“You should eat the apples, too.”
When she was sick, there was no one to peel apples nor to eat apples together with her.
…My appearance is that of a kid right now! This may seems like I’m playing house, but I shouldn’t be ashamed by that!
She turned to Hadith, whom was on the bed. Then, she brought the adorable bunny-shaped apple to Hadith’s mouth.
“Alright, Your Majesty, open your mouth, please.”
“Yes, after all, Your Majesty has just recovered. As such, you still need to be cared for.”
His golden eyes seemed puzzled. In the end, Hadith obediently opened his mouth and chewed the apple.
Jill laughed because there was apparently a misalignment between his beautiful face and the way he chewed the apple. As he continued on munching, he appeared sullen. Then, Hadith spoke.
“…Why do you laugh? Aren’t you the one who told me to eat it?”
“’How cute~’, I thought. You remind me of my little brother.”
“Your little brother…?”
With his eyebrows raised to the max, Hadith gave his entire attention. “Yes.” Jill replied.
“I came from a big family. I have an older sister, a little brother, and also a little sister.”
“That does sound lively, but… me, your little brother?”
“Speaking of which, I haven’t contacted my parents, yet. But it should be alright…”
“It’s not alright, me as your little brother—wait, how is that ‘alright’?”
“Well, they watched the entire courtship scene, right? If I don’t come back, they will probably think I was caught by a strong man, as such, I couldn’t escape on my own.”
Hadith still had an unsatisfied face, and this time, ate the apple himself.
“Is that so?”
“Yes. But, it would be another story if I actually ask for help—right, I have to thank you.”
“…for what, this time?”
“It’s because of today. You’ve granted me my wish.”
Hadith could had just kill Hugo and Marquis Veil right there and then, and spared himself the inconveniences they might cause later—but he didn’t. He chose to assist Jill in her wish to ‘help everyone’.
“…if I did otherwise, wouldn’t you hate it? Unnecessary killings, a politics of fear, those kind of things…”
“Obviously. However, I’ve never had much of a way to help them, despite saying I wanted to help everyone. As such, I was actually unsure if I could do it.”
“…is that so?”
Towards his disbelief, Jill smiled.
“But, with His Majesty’s help, I managed to do it. I’m very glad.”
“J, just for that, you needn’t thank me so…!”
“Because it’s also the first time I’ve been able to do what I wanted to do.”
After she finished saying that, she realized that she might be happier than she thought. But, there were things to keep in mind.
“However, also because of that, His Majesty was forced to listen to those terrible things Marquis Veil had uttered…”
But, merely apologizing wouldn’t be enough. Jill turned around and put her little hands on top of Hadith’s hand.
“I don’t care if Your Majesty is cursed, or hated, or whatever—I want Your Majesty to keep on living! That’s why, if someone were to treat you like that again, just tell me! After all, I’m here for you!”
She would never let him endure those horrible words again—in her heart, Jill had sworn so. Hadith quickly turned away. Suddenly, his cheeks were dyed red, he was bashful, like a maiden.
“Y, you, you actually love me, right?”
“Otherwise, you wouldn’t say that you want me to stay alive!”
“Isn’t your standard for ‘love’ too low—!? Isn’t it normal for wanting someone you already consider family to live!?”
After saying so, she recalled that Hadith had rarely interacted with his own family. Again, she had said some careless things…
…Rather than hurt, Hadith seemed deep in thought instead?
“I see, as your little brother, huh…”
“Eh? Yes, that’s kind of it…”
When Jill thought that Hadith was quick to understand, suddenly, Hadith took the plate containing the apples from Jill and wrapped the blanket around his body.
“…It has felt cold since a while ago. I may have drank too much water.”
“Why didn’t you mention that sooner!?”
She grabbed another sheet and the jacket that Hadith had removed. Then, she covered Hadith with them.
However, when she touched Hadith’s cheeks, they felt cold. It might take some time for him to warm up.
“…Pardon me, Your Majesty.”
After saying so, Jill suddenly slipped inside Hadith’s blanket. Because her body was small, she couldn’t warm him fully—but she should be a better alternative than a hot water bottle.
Near Hadith’s neck, who was lying on the pillow, Jill rested her head.
“This way, you’ll soon feel warm.”
“…yes, it seems so…”
Hadith wrapped his arms around Jill’s body. In the dimness, his golden eyes glinted ferociously.
Jill only noticed it a second later.
“Y, you fooled me—!?”
“Treating your husband like your little brother, absolutely unforgiveable.”
“I, I was worried because you said you were cold…”
“It’s true that I feel cold. I’m trembling, and my toes feel a bit uncomfortable.”
Was he basically saying that he wouldn’t release her?
Damn! He was acting like a child, as such, I was tricked!
When she averted her gaze due to embarrassment and frustration, she was suddenly embraced tightly.
“Don’t worry, I won’t do anything.”
Of course. However, Jill dared not reply, because whatever she said would only spell out her defeat—she kept silent.
“Hey, won’t you fall for me?”
“Otherwise, I would be forced to expose your everything…”
Try it, she bit her lips.
Her appearance might be that of a 10 year old, but the content were that of 16 year old. Not only first love, she had also experienced the worst heartbreak ever!
That said, even if she was actually curious, she didn’t want to go too deep.
That was why, even though her cheeks were hot, she pretended to not know the meaning of his words.
—Hadith looked down at Jill, whom had fallen asleep as easily as that.
“Are you a child, or an adult? Which is it, I wonder?”
He couldn’t decide which, but that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing.
She was under the age of fourteen, but had enough magic prowess to see Rave. That should be enough, but he ended up getting so much more. The happiness he felt was different from the time he was proposed to.
He didn’t want to be hated by her. It would be great if they could get along.
But… to be thought of as a little brother? He definitely couldn’t overlook that.
He had become greedy.
Was it because he was told—for the first time since he was born—to life by someone?
“Don’t get ahead of yourself. Also, just so you know, you’re heavy.” A half asleep voice came from inside his mind. Rave.
Hadith answered using his thought as to not to wake Jill.
“What’s wrong with being greedy once in a while? Beside, you also said that the Goddess won’t be able to do anything.”
“You are the one who said that there are other options. Besides, Little Miss also said that this relationship is for each of your own gains. Won’t she hate you if you get too full of yourself?”
“I’m used to being hated.”
That was why he wanted to be liked by this girl. Just not being hated wasn’t enough—he wanted to be loved.
While he, himself, wouldn’t fall for her. If she fell for him, she would finally cast aside that stubbornness of her, and would reveal her contents. He couldn’t wait for that to happen! What an uplifting sensation it was, like a predator that clawed out the entrails of its prey—
—and to achieve that;
“I shall make delicious bread for tomorrow’s breakfast…!!”
“Oh, okay, good luck with that, Imma sleep.”
***T/N: ==The Journal of the Translator, part 2==
///reads the part where they were peelin apple together///
Oh my gosh…!!!! Such a pure scene…!!! They were but two lil’ kids inside…!!! The most pure-hearted, innocent couple there ever was…!!!! My ideal couple…!!! What is that scene… picturing the two of them excitedly making bunny-shaped apples… it torn my heart asunder; my heart went astringent…!!! What is this, what is this heartrending, cathartic, sensation…!!!! wipes a single tear
Hadith received +++999 brownie points that day.
///Then basically read how he entrapped a supposed 10 yo JILLbait to climb to his bed and sleep beside him///
“W-well, it could always be worse…–“
///Basically read excerpts that could only belong to the Silence of the Lamb///
OH MY GOD, TAKE HIM AWAY–!!!! TAKE HIM AWAY FROM THERE RIGHT NOW–!!!!! FBI–!!!!
-99999999999 brownie points!!!!
and someone mentioned him being Yandere in the novel review. I never had contact with any yandere stories until now. Besides, it wasn’t my taste. Y’know, the whole “be mine or die.” thingy.
That was when everything became clear–OMG HADITH IS A YANDERE ALL ALONG!?!?!?! IM THE DENSE MOFO ALL ALONG—!?!?!?!?!?!