18. — In the name of Grand Duke Destro (1)
When I heard the sound of a knock, my eyes widened.
It seemed as if Jo Malone would open the waiting room door and enter at any moment. Cain, who had seen me fluttering asking for a hug, hugged me as if he had no choice but to do so.
As soon as I was held in his arms, the door to the waiting room opened.
“You’ve waited a long time. Dinner is ready…”
As Jo Malone entered the waiting room, he squinted his eyes at my empty seat. Turning his head as though embarrassed by my unexpected absence, he found me in Cain’s arms. Of course, I looked like a puppy, so he would never think that it was me.
“Where, where did that shapeshifter come from…”
Jo Malone’s voice, unable to hide his embarrassment, trembled.
Surprised by the existence of an unexpected person, his actions seemed too suspicious somehow. Were there any shapeshifters who had been kidnapped in this mansion? If so, was he mortified to think that one of the shapeshifters might have escaped and informed Cain of the situation…?
Cain, who was watching him quietly, answered leisurely.
“Isn’t this one of the shapeshifters who hid in the mansion because they were worried about Lord Winder?”
“Is there any problem?”
“…Oh no. How could there be?”
He hurriedly glanced down at Cain’s question.
Jo Malone’s eyes, floating on the floor avoiding his gaze, frowned as if he had found something. He then raised his hand and stroked his forehead as though to cover his bewildered face. His gaze, which had been under the table, returned to Cain. Meanwhile, his eyes gleamed sharply as he peeked at Cain between his fingers.
…No, is it me?
Startled by the momentary gaze, I hurriedly avoided his eyes. I was worried that Jo Malone, who illegally trades shapeshifters, was also targeting me this time.
Without realizing it, I grabbed Cain’s arm with my front paw.
Jo Malone’s voice seemed more relaxed than before.
“By the way, where is the Grand Duke’s fiancée? There must be nothing to look around at in this waiting room.”
“Did she go around the mansion?”
Uttering so, his sharpened gaze returned to Cain and me. Perhaps… Did he happen to notice that I might be Adelia?
No, if that was the case, when…?
Even with his question, Cain was relaxed. He raised the corners of his lips playfully and asked him back, “The Baron seems to be very interested in my fiancée.”
“I’m deeply offended by such an interest from the Baron.”
Contrary to his youthful smile, Cain’s eyes were cold and frozen. Jo Malone added an awkward smile to his face.
“That, that couldn’t be true…! It’s just that the meal is ready.”
“I, I apologize if I offended you. I apologize, Grand Duke.”
While I was examining Jo Malone for a moment, in that brief moment, my eyes met his. I was surprised to see him smiling, raising the corners of his mouth almost invisibly.
My eyes narrowed as I hurriedly avoided his gaze.
“Let’s go to the dining room first. Dinner is just about ready.”
ﾟ· : * ✧ * :· ﾟ
Then, he withdrew from the dining room, saying that he would prepare my meal at my sudden appearance along with Cain’s meal. Anxiety kept creeping into my mind as he seemed relaxed.
“…I think it’s now.”
“It’s time to escape from this mansion…!”
He was still relaxed even at my urgent words. Seeing that, I wondered if I was the only one who was in danger of dying? …No, really, am I the only one?
Cain is the male protagonist, so there is no way he would die!
I gazed at him, startled by the truth I realized later. A dry saliva ran down my throat as I saw his appearance without any impatience. I have to live… In order to survive, I have to somehow seduce that seemingly peaceful male lead and get out of this mansion—that way, I can live!
I swallowed dry saliva and glanced at Cain.
His eyes twitched at my determined eyes.
“Well, let’s think about it, Grand Duke.”
“I don’t think Jo Malone is alone in this big mansion. A little while ago, Lord Winder said that he had employers to help him as well.”
“I think there will be more than ten people, how are you going to win by yourself? Even though I’m a puppy right now!”
Even with my voice rising from my frustration, he had a motionless face. Again, he opened the tea tin on the side of the table and sniffed it. Putting my fluffy feet on his hand, I glared at him. Compared to my eyes frowning at him, he did not seem to care about it in the slightest.
Cain asked, with a smile hanging from his lips.
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