33. The Ball
As music started to play, we entered the venue.
Instead of the large hall where His Majesty’s throne was located, Phil guided me to a place where a number of small chambers were lined up beside it.
There were many people gathered about and dancing happily.
I was familiar with many of them. It seemed that a lot of the participants were either viscounts or barons. The others, like Phil, wore masks that completely covered their eyes.
Overall, there were many young people. From the atmosphere, it could be inferred that they were immersed in the joy of dancing.
Higher-ranking aristocrats were probably in the main hall.
It seemed that Gorman and Irena weren’t there. I was secretly relieved about that.
“Would you like something to drink? Or should we dance once the next song starts?”
“I’m full, so I’d like to dance.”
When I nodded, Phil turned to Alves.
“What about you?”
“I’m going to greet some of my acquaintances. Other than that, I’m hungry, so I’m going to look for something to eat.”
“Hey, hey, that’s not good. Invite someone to dance.”
“No lady would be happy to be invited by me. Well then, see you later, Lucia.”
My brother then walked somewhere else.
As I saw him off, a well-dressed man greeted him.
…He has no female acquaintances.
I see, I understand.
“That’s Count Barois. It’s rare to see him here.”
I had heard of that name from somewhere.
…If I wasn’t mistaken, wasn’t that the family name of the young knight who attended Gorman’s wedding?
“…Isn’t he looking for a daughter-in-law? Count Barois still hasn’t found any female suitors. Alves should deal with him accordingly.”
“Certainly, getting acquainted with each other shouldn’t be a bad thing.”
“For Viscount Ragulen, definitely. However, that shouldn’t be your priority today. Weren’t you trying to find him a bride candidate?”
“Well, that’s true. But you already know what kind of person my brother is. If it’s a high-ranking person like him, then he might be able to introduce my brother to someone. Should I go greet him?”
“…N, no, you can’t. It’d be bad if you get noticed.”
Phil murmured in a low voice.
When I tried to make out what he said, the song finished.
At the end of the song, the people dancing thanked their partners. Some stepped off the dance floor, but most continued dancing.
“Lucia-chan, please give me your hand.”
Phil reverently extended his hand.
His movement was graceful, while his posture was perfect. Under the mask that concealed his eyes, Phil smiled.
“For the time being, please give me about three songs.”
“I heard from Alves that Lucia-chan could at least dance that much.”
“Ugh, that brother of mine!”
I looked back on where my brother was.
He seemed to still be talking to Count Barois. He was also laughing with some others who were nearby.
Alves seemed to be doing a more important task than dancing, so it was alright.
I turned to Phil and made a slightly awkward face.
“I have never danced more than one song at a ball. If I get nervous and accidentally step on your foot, please forgive me.”
“I’m a knight. I’m confident in my strength and sturdiness.”
When I put my hand on him, Phil naturally urged me to the center of the hall.
Phil mentioned three songs.
But we ended up dancing to five songs consecutively.
Around me, there were only those who were of the same age as me. There were many who danced all the time.
While we were dancing, our surroundings changed over and over. Those who purely enjoying the dance were sweating lightly and laughed at each other as their eyes met.
I thought that the ladies who had been dancing this entire time had been exercising enough in their countryside territories.
Even if it wasn’t as frequent as the Ragulen Family, those who were either viscounts or barons often wandered around or rode horses.
I wished my father hadn’t died so early.
Then, I would’ve enjoyed dancing by moving my body vigorously with beautiful hands like those ladies.
…But in that case, my dance partner would have still been Gorman.
I glanced at Phil.
Phil, who had dyed his hair and covered his eyes with a mask, tilted his head slightly when he noticed my gaze. In the meantime, his steps were precise, and he twirled me around with his powerful grip.
If my father was still alive, and the Ragulen family wasn’t struggling…
…I’d still be Gorman’s fiancée, and I would only be able to dance with him at balls. I doubted I’d have be allowed to dance to so many songs in a row either.
I also wouldn’t have a hairstyle that would emphasize my height. Nor would I have been able to have so much fun dancing because I’d be too careful trying not to rise up onto my toes with each step
A lot had happened.
I was glad that my engagement with Gorman had been annulled.
***T/N: //came out from the surrounding crowd and started clapping for their marriage. When you know they are going to get married but they just won’t energy.
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