and his disposition.

“What is it?”
“I’m talking about Duke Pietro.” “…What? Duke Pietro?”

“Why are you worried about that?”
Adilac had left the empire with her four years ago.
For that reason, she was also completely ignorant of the rumors.

“I’m a little…curious.”
When she tried to hear rumors about Duke Pietro , not Desian, they shut up like a clam.
She understood that.
Estelle could have tipped people off about her connection to Duke Pietro.

“I can’t find any rumors about Duke Pietro or anything in the latest newspapers or in older papers.”
Citrina whispered, pointing to several morning papers on her desk.

“Oh, it that right?”
Adilac’s eyes opened wide as if she had noticed.
Usually rumors about nobles were covered in the social gossip papers.
Of course, there was no way there would be anything too critical of the aristocrats.

“Normally, if there’s no rumors about nobility it’s one of two things, right?”
“One of two things?”
No matter how powerful the duke was, people looked like they had sucked on a lemon whenever he came up on conversation.
Here, there was clearly something she didn’t know.
Citrina quietly chewed on her lip with her front teeth.

“Either there’s nothing to gossip about, or they have hushed it all up.”
Adilac once again let something slip.
“… yes, thank you, Adilac.”

Citrina smiled at her and began to color in the design she had drawn up.
“I should find out a bit more.’
The Desian she knew personally was an extremely harmless man.
His attitude towards her was also gentle.
Then the attendant carefully caught Citrina’s attention.

“Excuse me, Lady Citrina.”
“What is it?”
“There’s a guest outside.”
“Aaron, he said that you would know who he was.
Citrina tapped the pencil in her hand.
It was a familiar yet unexpected name since she hadn’t thought they would meet for a while.

“Tell him to come inside.”
“Hi, Citrina!”
However, before the attendant had even left, a good-looking man with black hair popped up behind the attendant’s back and waved at Citrina.
Looking at his drooping, smiling, cute eyes, Citrina thought that if he had a tail it would probably be wagging right now.

“Are you doing ok?”
“I’ve been ok.
Have a seat, Aaron.”
Adilac and the attendant left the room.
Citrina sat across from Aaron at a round table inside the atelier.

“How many years has it been? It’s been too long!”
“That’s right.”
The attendant brought some tea out and placed it on the table.
Citrina smiled at Aaron.

“I’ve tried hard till now to be worthy of the sword you gave me.”
The boy, no, the young man that Aaron had become responded maturely.
He was different from when she had seen him a few years ago.
At twenty years old, his voice had lost all traces of childishness.
He had broad shoulders and a strong build.
If they stood side-by-side, her neck might fall off from looking him in the eye.

“I trained really hard.”
“Well done.”
“I’ll take that as a compliment.”
Aaron smiled so that his eyes crinkled at the corners.
He was even like a puppy asking to be pet.
In the past he was more like a small fluffy dog, but now he was more like a big dog.

‘I can’t treat a young lord from a duchy like a dog.’
But he enjoyed it more than anyone else.
Citrina justified her behavior, then raised her hand to stroke Aaron’s hair.
Black hair delicately wound around her fingertips.
“That feels good…”
Aaron closed his eyes as he felt Citrina’s touch.
He murmured as if he were dreaming.

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