66. The Little Witch of the Old Days (4)
The pleasant night breeze caresses her cheek.
Roze sits on the window sill, lowering her face.
The entrance to the Azm Mansion is still unlit.
No matter how many times she keeps looking around with her ears perched up, there’s no sign of Harij’s horse.
Sheets and quilts envelop her body as she leans on the window sill.
Roze is surprised, thus stiffening.
She almost falls from the window, thankfully, she manages to catch the window frame in time. Also, there’s another reason.
The cup falls from Roze’s hand, shattering into pieces.
Staring at the broken cup, Roze carefully steps into the room, cold sweat drenching her. She then turns around.
There’s Mona. She’s holding Roze’s quilt with a pale face.
Perhaps Mona has thrown everything she has in her hands because she rushed to catch Roze. Various things are scattered around Mona.
“I, I’m very sorry.”
As Mona trembles, Roze shakes her head.
In the first place, for Roze to be in that kind of spot, something might be wrong with her.
“I would be happy if you would accompany me to apologize to Tara tomorrow.”
“Of course. I’ll put away the broken cup, so please come this way.”
Mona goes downstairs after she briefly gathers the scattered items. In this darkness, she’ll be injured if she tries to clean the broken cup alone.
Roze follows Mona with a candle.
“Milady, please stay where you are!”
“It’s fine. I’m used to this.”
Roze illuminates the area around her feet in a hurry to assist Mona.
Mona awkwardly picks up the broken ceramics.
When Roze tries to help her, Mona profusely shakes her head.
“The ceremony is approaching, you must take care of yourself.”
In the end, the only form of assistance Roze can give is illuminating the floor. Amidst that, Roze asks Mona a question.
“Do you want to talk about something?”
“Earlier, you came to see me, right? For what reason?”
Recently, Mona has begun to open her heart to Roze. However, it seems that she’s still avoiding Roze except when there are tasks to perform. Therefore, Roze concludes the reason Mona came to see her is also because of that.
Actually, leaving Roze alone might be the wisest choice. After all, Roze can’t lie.
Meaningless conversations could prove her undoing if they drag on for too long. Because it’s a matter of life and death for witches.
However, there’s also the fact that Roze is introverted and lacks common senses. She has only recently managed learning how to speak naturally.
Originally, Roze had mastered the art of not answering hard question. Once she had confirmed that the person indeed harbored no malice, she would talk honestly.
Mona briefly stops picking up the shards and slowly opens her mouth in determination.
“I have to apologize about my attitude until recently. I’m ashamed to admit that I’m scared of Milady just because she’s a witch.”
“…did something happen?”
“…This afternoon, when Milady protected me from Mr. Khong, I realized my own mistake.”
Khong is Tien’s family name. Mona seems very grateful for Roze’s help during the day.
Roze nods vaguely. She’s not used to being thanked by others.
“I thought all witches were horrible, because… because, wasn’t it a witch who gave those people the same potion Mr. Khong brought?”
Tien spoke about its pricing, saying it was reasonable for both nobility and merchants.
Was Mona perhaps a lady of some house? Roze begins to observe Mona gently.
“In the mansion where I used to work, the young lady I was serving at that time ordered me to use that potion on a certain man she was interested in. I couldn’t refuse, hence, I mixed the potion into the cup and served it to him.”
As she recalled her experiences, Mona’s body trembles.
“But, when that man took a sip… he, he collapsed…”
Mona was fired on spot. The young lady panicked, and the place became noisy.
She was given a letter of recommendation as a means to silence her, but never again would she be allowed to step into that household.
Deep down, Mona may have felt incredibly remorseful for unintentionally hurting another. Her voice is painful to hear. Roze gently rubs Mona’s shoulders.
“…why are you telling me this?”
“After listening to Mr. Khong’s story, I’m sure you aren’t the one who made that potion…”
“Of course, if it were truly my Love Potion, that man would have been madly in love, instead.”
The effect too, has been tested and proven. Roze reports with utmost confidence.
Roze is a witch, and a witch makes secret potions—
—and Roze, who’s proud of being a witch, doesn’t consider her secret potions ‘evil’.
A blacksmith creates a sword to take a person’s life, while a witch prepares a potion to take a person’s heart.
It’s necessary for some, if not many.
As long as a single person needs it, Roze, the Good Witch, shall continue mixing secret potions.
However, of course, there are also potions that Roze consider as evil—
—that is, potions that don’t serve their purpose, simply put, don’t work.
She isn’t an individual that possesses the conviction to correct wrongdoings, but she can’t believe someone would mix such poor products and then sell them at large.
“When Mr. Khong asked me, I was confused. I couldn’t immediately tell you because there’s also the issue that my previous Master instructed me against doing so. But, after thinking about it, I realized Mr. Khong just wanted to get to the bottom of the matter. My previous Master, the young lady, might be in some kind of trouble. Hence, I finally decided to speak up…”
It might not be the best choice to divulge the story of her previous Master like that. But at the same time, a great amount of courage must’ve been mustered by Mona. Especially considering the fact that she’s afraid of the Witch Roze.
The servants are the same as witches—if they aren’t trusted, they wouldn’t be hired.
Both Mona and Roze will only become dust after serving their purposes.
“Thank you very much, other than that…”
Roze crouches, and peers at Mona’s face.
“I think Mona is a very wonderful servant.”
Mona, who still doesn’t know the witches’ rule, to which they can’t utter a single lie, doesn’t know how much Roze is conveying through that sentence alone.
But still, Mona’s eyes become wet as she prays for Roze.
“If it’s indeed a counterfeit, then Milady might be involved in unnecessary danger… my previous Master’s family had their distrust of witches greatly heightened… therefore, please, please be careful, always!”
Roze replies aloud—“—yes.” Such that it echoes in the dark.
Unfortunately, Mona’s premonition comes true—
—three days later, Roze is arrested.
***T/N : OKAY WHO DO I NEED TO KILL!? ///clacking sound of a shotgun being reloaded///