At the back of the spacious drawing room was a table in front of a brightly lit window.
There were two chairs facing each other, soaked in the sunlight.
He must have heard the door open and close, but his eyes remained glued to the table.
‘Aaron Pietro, the male lead, who had a gentle and weak personality when he was young.’
Citrina strode towards the boy that she knew from the original novel.
As she got closer, she noticed his appearance.
Black hair, deep black eyes, a sharp jawline, and a brown tear-shaped birthmark near his eye.
As expected, he was handsome as the male protagonist.
But right now, as a sixteen-year old boy, he still had a soft, immature face.
Citrina sat in the chair opposite him.
The boy didn’t look at her.
As if he was intimidated, his eyes drooped down to his lap.
Citrina, who was staring at him, was the first to break the silence.
“This is Citrina Foluin of the Foluin Barony.
Starting today, I will serve as a companion to Young Lord Aaron and the other young lord.”
Her manner was a little business-like.
Aaron smacked his lips.
“Yes, you can call me Citrina.”
Note: Citrina is using formal language with Aaron, while Aaron speaks casually to her.]
Aaron raised his head carefully at those words.
Citrina looked at him calmly.
His black eyes reminded her of the black circular pieces on a Go board.
He opened his red lips and sputtered out his name.
“I’m Aaron Pietro.”
As if the sound of his voice was unfamiliar, he lowered his head again after speaking.
Inside the quiet drawing room, only the ticking of the clock could be heard.
Citrina replied, leaning back into the chair.
‘It’s become quiet.
It will be a lot of work to keep up the conversation, but this atmosphere is so awkward.’
She thought it would be easy to get him to open up to her.
From what she remembered, the male lead was very trusting and open at this age with just a little warmth from the other party.
“It’s my role to talk with you for an hour every day.”
Her words seemed to surprise Aaron.
He raised his head and asked.
“Huh? You’re going to talk with me?”
“Th, then, you’ll also be…cursed, you’ll be cursed.”
Aaron didn’t even hide the tremor in his voice.
When he talked about the curse, he shrunk in on himself.
Citrina shrugged her shoulders without changing her expression.
“Well then, it’s a good thing I am not the type of person who believes in curses.”
If twins were so ominous, Citrina would not have been born.
Citrina Foluin’s mother and her aunt were identical twins.
‘Citrina Foluin’s mother concealed the fact that she had an identical twin, but…’
At Citrina’s carefree words, the boy’s eyes widened.
“I don’t believe that twins are ominous, so it’s ok.”
The boy leaned forward little by little.
It was in great contrast to his original attitude when she tried to speak to him.
Slowly, the distance between the two lessened.
The boy seemed to have relaxed his guard.
‘You’re pretty young.’
Citrina laughed and smiled as she nodded her head.
That’s right, young master.
What would you like to talk about today?”
Aaron’s eyes drifted away and wandered around the room.
He didn’t seem to know what to say.
It was no wonder.
The young lords and twin brothers had been hidden from society.
The fact that the duke had hired a companion only when they were sixteen said a lot.
‘Since he doesn’t know what to say, I’ll need to lead the conversation.’
After thinking for a bit, Citrina smiled and spoke up.
“Aaron-nim, do you have a favorite flower?”
Citrina said, looking at the vase on the table with roses inside.
They couldn’t have a deep conversation right away.
It was better to start with small talk.
“I think I…I’ve never thought about what I like or not.”
“Is that right?”
Citrina watched Aaron as he answered sincerely but honestly, and pulled the rose out of the vase.
“This is a red rose.
A kind servant broke all of the thorns off.
Would you like to smell it?”
Citrina held the flower in front of his eyes.
Aaron closed his eyes and breathed in.
With his eyes still closed, Aaron inhaled and exhaled once more.
“…it smells good.
Like fresh grass.”
Citrina waited patiently while holding the rose.
Kids like these kind of things.
Soon after, Aaron opened his eyes and nodded at Citrina.
“That’s…I’m not sure.
But I think I might like it.”
Aaron smiled awkwardly.
It seemed like he had not smiled in a long time.
Citrina smiled back at him.
“I also like roses.”
For that session, they talked about flowers.
Their first hour together flew by quickly.
She felt like she had gotten a little closer to the male lead.
‘Aaron is nice.
I can feel a little more comfortable with my work.’
She was grateful for the man who shared a love with her younger sister Elaina .
An hour later, night fell.
Aaron thought for a moment.
Citrina seemed to be stuck in the room the duke had assigned to her without much to do.
From what he had heard before, she wasn’t to leave the room unless directed to do something.
‘I want to eat dinner with Citrina.
That would be ok, right?’
Aaron stood outside of Citrina’s room for a while, but wound up having dinner alone.
‘But…today dad isn’t here at the house.’
Aaron had quickly caught on that the duke left.
This was thanks to the skill he had picked up of reading the environment.
So Aaron carefully left his room with a baguette, a wet towel, and a roll of bandages.
Aaron’s pace quickened once he was certain no one else was walking around the annex.
His destination was clear.
The duke had a room under the annex that was more like a dungeon.
Aaron ran down the stairs to the dungeon room in a hurry and came to stop at a shabby door.
The ungreased door opened little by little.
The neglect was obvious, as there was dust piled up on the hinges.
Aaron staggered through the gap made by the partially opened door.
Note: Aaron calls Desian “Hyung”, which is the older brother of a boy in Korea]
On a creaky old bed was a boy with a face very similar to Aaron’s, but more serious and mature.
His whole body was covered in blood stains and all emotion seemed drained from him.
Aaron acted like he was familiar with this situation.
He sat next to the boy and spoke softly.
“Brother, today I met a friend!”
Unlike Aaron, who was rambling excitedly, the other boy remained impassive.
This boy, Desian, opened his mouth suddenly.
Aaron placed the wet towel in his hand.
Aaron’s brother wiped the blood off of his body and face with an indifferent face.
“Desian, please don’t get hurt..”
The boy with all of the cuts and bruises on his body was the twin brother of the male lead Aaron Pietro and the villain of the novel, Desian Pietro.
Aaron’s eyes darted around the wounds, restless. However, Desian did not care about the stinging pain from wiping his wounds.
“Is there anything you want to say?”
Desian asked indifferently.
As he continued to clean off the wounds, the bleeding slowed.
“Desian, guess what?”
Desian said in a monotonous tone as he stared blankly at Aaron.
Aaron looked at him blankly before gathering his courage and speaking.
“A friend arrived today, and she doesn’t care about twins being cursed! I had never seen such a person before.…”
“Do you really believe that?”
“Brother, but we talked for an hour.
This friend, she might be different.”
“She’ll reveal her true colors soon.”
He had a cynical face and cold tone as he spoke.
Disappointed, Aaron spoke quietly.
“….don’t trust too much.”
Aaron did not respond.
Aaron instead put the small baguette near Desian.
It was a careful movement.
“Desian, I’ll come back tomorrow.”
There was no response.
Aaron closed the door and left.
He didn’t eat as he listened to Aaron’s footsteps fade away.
When Aaron’s footsteps were out of earshot, he spoke.
The boy left in the dungeon muttered.
Desian closed his eyes and laughed at himself for finding hope in that word.
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