The Marquis’ Amnesia 7
Chapter Seven: The Shade of the Garden, the Lap Pillow, and a Guest
From the day we had lunch for the first time, as my husband had declared, we started to eat in my room during the day and night.
Not only that, the walk through the large mansion didn’t end immediately. Recently, guiding my husband through the mansion until noon had become my habit. The residence of the Rutherford family was so large that there were many rooms I had never been to. Elsa and Frederick would guide me there. The room called ‘Art Room’ was lined with beautiful paintings, sculptures, pottery, and various works of art, making it pleasing to the eye.
Furthermore, my husband read the romance novel, ‘The Kiss at the Herb Garden’ that I recommended all at once overnight. He appeared to have been fascinated by it. The next morning, my husband bashfully told me that he was moved to the brink of tears. It was evidenced by his puffy red eyes. It appeared that he was sleep deprived, as well. He asked for more recommendations, so I offered him some of my favorite books. In exchange, Frederick told me an adventure novel that my husband used to read when he was a boy. I was currently reading it.
I never dreamed that the day would come where I’d be discussing the impressions of the book with my husband (not to mention, about a romance novel). My husband appeared to be enjoying himself. I was glad because it was also a nice break from his work.
That day, the 6th day, he invited me to eat outside during the afternoon. It was as if we were having a picnic under a big tree in the garden. Elsa and Frederick sat a little farther away. I couldn’t see them, but my husband seemed to know where they were.
That day’s lunch was a sandwich made by the chef. Said person had also helped laid a carpet and a cushion under the shade of the largest tree in the garden. The sound of the cicadas could be heard. I had an egg, tomato, and lettuce sandwich. My husband gobbled a hearty meat sandwich one after another. It was fun to watch.
My husband’s appetite matched his huge and splendid body. I was surprised at how much he ate at first. Soon, I became accustomed to how much he ate throughout the day.
“Liliana, have you eaten enough?”
“Yes. I’m full.”
“I see, are you truly full?”
My husband asked while holding a sandwich. I was happy with his thoughtfulness and nodded with a laugh. Finally convinced, my husband devoured the sandwich. It was gone after three bites.
“I think my husband is rigorously raised as the descendant of the marquis. After all, you still remember the manners of eating.”
My husband answered while sitting next to me.
“I don’t remember, but I don’t really enjoy the formality. It’s more fun to eat with Liliana.”
“But I’m not every good at eating. I long to eat like my husband. You’re such a role model to me.”
Albeit my husband ate a lot, his manners were very beautiful. As such, he didn’t appear like a glutton. Before I noticed it, a huge amount of food was gone, as if erased by magic.
“That’s not the case. Liliana’s manners are perfect, very polite, and also graceful.”
His straightforward praise made me speechless.
My husband, who knew I wasn’t good at eating because of my stepmother and sister, praised me each time I finished. Lately, I was no longer nervous whenever I ate with my husband.
“T, thank you very much…”
I managed to thank him. All the while, I was holding my cheeks. For some reason, I felt that my cheeks were loosening.
When I heard the sound of clothes rustling, I turned around. I saw my husband covering his face with both hands for some reason, seemingly in an agony. My husband often fell into that kind of situation. I was worried that he was ill.
“What’s wrong, my husband?”
“…I’m alright, it’s just, my instinct and reason are colliding.”
I wasn’t sure, but it seemed that he was fighting something.
The battle between reason and instinct—was my husband sleepy? He might be fighting the urge to sleep using the reason as to why he mustn’t sleep in the first place.
“My husband, we’re at the garden. There are only Elsa and Frederick alone. I think it’s alright for you to take a nap for a while.”
My husband turned around as a matter of fact.
“Are you tired from work? I’ll wake you up when someone comes to call you… but there’s no pillow. Oh, if my husband likes, please use my knees as a pillow.”
I tapped my knees.
My husband’s blue eyes were staring at me.
“Cedric said that it’s comfortable to sleep on.”
To my husband who didn’t say anything, I gradually felt as if I had said something utterly ridiculous.
Cedric was 9-years-old, while my husband was a fine adult of 26-years-old. He probably disliked it that I lumped them together.
“I’m sorry for my rudeness, my husband…”
“N, no, you aren’t being rude at all…!”
My husband suddenly started to move to shook his head. Sometimes, my husband would suddenly freeze before moving again. At the beginning, I was surprised. But recently, I got used to it.
“But, for me to suggest that my husband—”
“—I was merely impressed by my wife. I thought I’ve concealed my drowsiness well.”
“I, it’s nothing at all…”
My husband was truly kind. I was so happy that I smiled. Then, my husband covered his face once again with both hands and began to writhe. He was mumbling inaudibly.
When I tried to speak to him again, my husband raised his face.
“Liliana, may I appreciate your kindness by borrowing your knees?”
“Yes, of course.”
When I nodded, my husband stood up at once. Then, he put a cushion near the trunk of the tree. I was told to sit there, so I did. He put the cushion between my back and the tree. When I was ready, my husband laid on his back and put his head on my lap. Of course, his head was much heavier than Cedric’s.
“…Is it heavy?”
“Not at all. My husband, how are you feeling?”
“I feel truly comfortable.”
“Then that’s a relief. Please take a rest.”
My husband said thank you and chuckled, before closing his eyes. Perhaps, he was truly tired. I could hear his regular breathing as he fell asleep.
The fact that my husband’s head was on my lap made me feel strange. My heart felt fluffy, as if I was dreaming. I realized that my husband’s amber bangs had spilled on his eyes, and gently brushed them away with my fingers.
Although his memories hadn’t returned, my husband had been working in the study for several days.
Since my husband rarely returned to the mansion, there was a mountain of reports regarding the marquis’ territory. With the help of Arthur and Frederick, he was working through them. My husband hadn’t yet been actively involved in the territory. Elsa told me that the knights were so buys that my father-in-law, who gave his son the reign of the family, was in charge of them.
I had never met my husband’s family. I was supposed to be the trophy wife. Therefore, I only knew my in-laws from the paintings displayed in the house.
My husband inherited his eyes color and facial features from his father, but his amber hair was from his mother. His mother gave birth to him at the age of 16-years-old. Therefore, she was very youthful. My husband had a 16-years-old sister and a 9-years-old younger brother.
Currently, his parents and younger brother were in a territory with abundant nature and clear air. Meanwhile, his sister was in a boarding school where aristocratic children attended. My husband never met her in the last few years. The information was brought to me in courtesy of Elsa.
The refreshing breeze that occasionally blew swayed the leaves of the trees. Despite the fact that it was a summer afternoon, thanks to the wind, it felt comfortable to sit under the trees.
Then, while listening to the voice of the cicadas mixed with the sound of the wind, I gazed at the garden illuminated by the summer sun. Out of nowhere, I could hear the sound of footsteps, and I turned around…
“…Wow, Will, the misogynist, is sleeping on a girl’s lap!”
I heard a voice mixed with surprise and laughter from the opposite side. When I looked back, I saw a man with honey-colored hair and clear sky-blue eyes with a sweet face approaching. Behind him, was Arthur.
The man was slender and tall. He was also wearing a knight’s uniform. He seemed to be of the same age as my husband. When I saw the person, O was surprised to the point that I froze.
“Milady, I’m sorry to have surprised you, this is—…”
“I’m your husband’s friend, you may call me Al, from Alphonse!”
The person said in a small voice. Perhaps, because he was worried of waking my husband.
I tilted my head for the name sounded familiar. I thought that it was a name of an important figure that shouldn’t be forgotten. When I recalled who that person was, I could barely muster a word…
“Y, Your Highness Prince Alphonse, I, I…”
That person was none other than the crown prince of the Kingdom of Cression.
I wanted to stand up and bow to him, but my husband was sleeping on my lap. I couldn’t just throw his head out, at the same time, it’d be rude for me to not greet the crown prince.
“It’s alright, marquess, let him sleep. I didn’t come as a prince, but as your husband’s subordinate.”
With that said, Alphonse lifted the hem of his cloth, removed his sword from his waist, and sat down on the cushion that Arthur had placed. Frederick and Elsa, who appeared out of nowhere, immediately served tea and prepared sweets.
“Forgive me for the suddenness. I never thought that Will the Misogynist will sleep on his wife’s lap. But somehow, you are able to make him do so.”
Alphonse said while looking at my husband.
My husband was vast asleep. There was no sign of him waking up. When I was wondering if I should wake him, Alphonse prevented me. While I was concerned, Frederick and the others had disappeared. Alone, I wanted to cry.
“It’s alright, I don’t bite. Marquess, it appears that you’re about to cry.”
Alphonse’s voice was very calm and full of kindness. Perhaps because of that, there was a sense of security from his person. The sky-blue eyes with slightly drooping eyelids were as blue and as clear as the blue sky.
“R-right, my name is Liliana Catherine de Alwin-Rutherford.”
For the time being, I should introduce myself as best as I could.
“Liliana… what a beautiful name. It suits the beautiful you very much.”
Alphonse’s innocent and friendly smile somehow melted the tension.
“Today, I came to see Will. I’m glad that he seems fine. When he asked me who I was back then, I was shocked.”
Alphonse said with a laugh.
By the way, Frederick, the knight captain, and Alphonse must had been at the scene where my husband lost his memory.
“Sure, it’ll be a problem for the knights with the absence of Will. But I personally think that this is for the best, for he has overworked himself in the past. Of course, that doesn’t mean I’m glad he lost his memory. I mean, he forgot about his own childhood friend. Terrible, right? I’m hurt.”
Alphonse put his hand on his chest and made a sad face. However, because it was merely an act, I laughed. Alphonse immediately smiled.
“That’s right, I prefer to see women smile.”
The words made me blink. Apparently, it was Alphonse’s trick.
“Lord Alphonse is such a kind person.”
“Right? I often hear that about myself.”
Alphonse, who seemed to be boasting, made me laugh once again. Since he was the crown prince, I thought that he’d be scary. But he seemed to be a very kind and friendly person.
“Will and I are of the same age. Will’s house is a well-known loyal vassal and is trusted a lot by the royal family. That’s also the reason why my father chose him as my playmate. I’ve known him since he was three-years-old.”
“That’d be a 23-years relationship, right?”
“Yes. Although, well, I lost to Frederick.”
Alphonse gracefully shrugged while sipping tea.
“Oh, yes, let me tell you the story of Will when he was still in the knights while he’s asleep.”
Alphonse looked like a child who had come up with a prank.
Then, Alphonse talked about my husband in a humorous way. Alphonse was very good at telling a story. As a result, I was too busy laughing or being surprised.
To be honest, until he lost his memory, I had only thought of my husband as a scary person. However, it appeared that he was the same man who’d argue with his subordinates for lunch, join in arm wrestling, or take a nap during meeting. It appeared that he also wasn’t good with paperwork. Alphonse also told me that my husband was a capable knight and his swordsmanship was one of the best in the kingdom.
Alphonse told me of the side of my husband that I never knew. I realized that even though I was his wife, I knew so little about Will. I kept quiet about the loneliness that was born in my chest as I listened to Alphonse’s story.
“I think that you already knew because he fell and lost his memory, but Will is sometimes a klutz.”
Alphonse said with a laugh.
It was difficult for me to reply. Instead, I brushed the hair on my husband’s forehead.
“Hey, do you know the real reason why Will hated women?”
Alphonse stared straight at me with his sky-blue eyes.
I felt that the voice of the cicadas had grown louder.
***T/N: It’s because of shallow reasons such as not liking women in general …right?
Anyway, Al is the gift that keeps on giving in term of showing us jealous Will.
Please also consider donating to my ko-fi! It’ll greatly support me in action, no matter the amount!