I vaguely remembered what happened a year ago and set my elbow on the counter.
After I got engaged to that, everything went downhill from there.
If possible, I didn’t want to recall it anymore.
Compared to those times, I was so happy!
I looked around the store amidst the gentle music.
Chairs and tables with minimalistic designs.
There was a spacious sofa, beyond which only V.I.P customers could pass.
A kitchen counter made of fine wood.
A refrigerator and music player consisting of magic tools that could be operated even by people without magical power.
The aroma of high-quality coffee wafted around the store.
It was my castle. It was filled with everything I wanted.
“It’s delicious. The check, please.”
“Alright! Please wait a moment.”
I went to the cash register.
An old gentleman dressed in a fine suit, gently presented the check.
“Thank you, but the change is…”
“You can keep it.”
“But it’s too much…”
“Okay, in that case, may I request for a chocolate cake the next time I come?”
The old gentleman said with a playful wink.
I recalled the old man saying to his wife that he’d cut down on the sweets.
As I stared at his abdomen, the old gentleman quickly hid his belly with both hands.
“…Okay, I’ll prepare a delicious chocolate cake with low sugar.”
When I said that, the old gentleman beamed.
“Really? Thank you. The cake here is truly exquisite.”
A regular since the store had opened, he gladly stopped by from time to time to request for desserts that weren’t on the menu.
I saw off his cheerful back and returned to my position behind the counter. I was happy for myself.
A month had passed since my engagement had been abandoned.
With the generous compensation from the Sterling family, and my own savings, I had opened a café in a prime location in the castle town.
It was a small shop, but I was able to renovate a cheap vacant property with my father’s help.
That land, which was close to the royal castle, was a place where wealthy people lived. Therefore, it could be considered lucrative.
Besides, the quality of the customers was also good.
No one was making a fuss, and no one loitered for hours on end with a cup of coffee.
They’d take about an hour at the longest, and in that case, they’d order something to eat.
The rotation wasn’t fast, but the unit price per customer was high. Most people even bounced chips.
It wasn’t uncommon for castle knights and officials to come.
Thanks to the word-of-mouth reputation, my store was now one of the most popular in that prime location.
The store was thriving, exceeding my initial expectations.
The amount of the compensation used for the initial investment would soon be recovered.
I couldn’t erase the past in which I was engaged to the worst of men, but I was just a little grateful to him that I was able to grasp the future I dreamed of.
Just a little bit.
Because I was able to make money with just my abilities, it eventually came true.
It just happened a little faster.
That was right.
I didn’t have to thank that person.
Even if I didn’t receive the alimony from Ricardo, I was sure I’d have been able to sustain the café by taking on some debt.
Well, like that, I was living a busy but happy life.
Karan—the bell at the entrance rang.
The store wasn’t that big, but the bell was a must because I tended to get too immersed in reading books when my orders settled down.
I hurriedly looked up to the entrance.
Sure enough, I lowered my guard because only a few people were left. After all, the store was about to close. As such, my reaction was a little delayed.
The person didn’t get angry, and after my light greeting, he went into the store.
“Please take to the vacant seat.”
I guided the person as usual, prepared a hand towel, and gave him some well-chilled lemon water.
That was my first time seeing that customer.
He was tall.
He was dressed in a knight’s uniform, so he probably came on a break from work.
Perhaps responding to my voice, the customers in the store paid attention to the new customer.
The female customers in the store were especially bedazzled.
They chased after him with their eyes until the young man sat near the counter.
I wondered why and subtly glanced at the young man to avoid being uncouth.
The man was pleasing to the eye.
I was impressed and nodded secretly.
Despite being the center of the attention, his expression remained calm.
Maybe he was used to it?
“May I have your order?”
The young man chose the seat near the counter, the one where I used to sit.
Then, after staring at the menu, he briefly said. “Hot cocoa.”
His choice was a little surprising, but I managed to resist saying anything.
—Usually, wouldn’t a handsome man like him prefer black coffee?
Preventing that question from appearing on my face, I quickly prepared the cocoa. I also added a handmade cookie as an added bonus to the customers.
He looked up at me confused because he had received something he hadn’t ordered.
He was truly a beautiful young man.
What eye candy.
“It’s a service.”
I said with a smile. After being convinced, he picked up the cookie.
The moment he ate the cookie—
—his expression relaxed and I spotted a glimpse of a smile.
It was only a moment, but it alleviated his cold impression at once.
Maybe that man liked sweets.
As I stared at him with a warm feeling, I saw a group of female customers who were fascinated by the handsome man standing up.
They were probably planning to pay.
When I stood at the cash register and thanked them, a woman, who appeared to be the group’s representative, whispered to me. By the way, that woman came often.
“An amazing person has just come by.”
“Huh? An amazing person?”
She said that while glancing at the handsome man. She then spoke as if she could no longer conceal her excitement.
As the woman was a noble lady, she usually didn’t make a fuss.
Well-educated women refrained from doing uncouth things in public.
“Could it be, Flores doesn’t know? Haven’t you heard of the Knight of Dawn?”
The woman appeared stunned.
The Knight of Dawn.
I didn’t think I had ever heard of him.
However, I did hear the previous customers talking about a certain man.
There was a young man in the knights, one who was steadily on the rise.
“—Th, the prince, as in, the Duke of Clifford!?”
The cheeks of the women were flushed as soon as I mentioned his name.
That alone gave me insight as to how popular he was.
***T/N: Man… I wish I have the skill to magnet ikemens to my way like all this heroines…
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