The carriage swayed along the unpaved slope. No matter how badly it swayed, it was difficult to protect her buttocks with a cheap cushion on the seat.
Even so, Herietta managed to doze off in such a carriage. Right now, it was more difficult to endure the pouring sleep than the pain in the buttocks.
Tung! The carriage swayed loudly as it passed over a stone that protruded from the side of the road. Herietta’s body, which was half asleep, floated in the air and then landed. She banged her head hard against the window in the recoil of the shaking.
Surprised, she regained her senses and looked around because she was worried that there might be other eyes that saw her in a messy state.
After a while, Herietta, reminded of the fact that she was alone in the carriage, relaxed her tense mind. Breathing in a sigh of relief, she looked out the window.
‘What time is it now?’
Evening had passed, and it was already dark all around. Herietta rubbed her eyes with the back of her hand. As her mind began to clear, she began to feel the pain in her hip that she had forgotten for a moment. She wiggled her buttocks in place.
‘Do we still have a long way to go?’
She had only been travelling for one day, and she already felt exhausted.
Before leaving Philioche, Baodor told her about the plans for where to rest and where to stay.
But she had her mind elsewhere, and unfortunately she couldn’t listen to him. So all she knew was that it would take her about three days to reach Lavant, and that she would be accompanied by only a coachman and two porters on her journey this time.
‘Aren’t we supposed to be camping on the street like this? Either that or going all night…’
Without realizing it, the color of her face turned pale as she remembered the worst. She couldn’t stand it, so she tried to ask the coachman to stop the carriage so she could rest for a while.
Herietta, who was about to get up from her seat, stopped. This is because after she left Philioche, the speed of the carriage, which had been running relentlessly, began to noticeably slow down. Along with that, the surrounding landscapes that were passing by quickly were captured in her eyes in more detail.
A pile of overgrown trees and bushes that have not been maintained. The dirt road is still full of small stones. No matter how much she looked at it, it didn’t look like it was near a village where people lived.
“We will be staying here overnight.”
The coachman opened a small window leading to the inside of the carriage and said.
“There is a hut built for travelers nearby. Of course, it’s not comparable to a decent inn, but it has everything you need, so it won’t be too inconvenient for an overnight stay.”
Herietta rolled her eyes. It was much better than camping on the street, but she was a little surprised because she thinks she’ll still be staying at a village inn, of course.
But whatever she thought, the coachman didn’t care. This is how they had to go, and he was able to reach Lavant the fastest, and since he had already received Baodor’s permission, it was decided that there would be no problem.
No matter how familiar he was, running the horse all day was physically exhausting. He desperately wanted to get to his destination as soon as possible and drink a cold beer.
The coachman signaled to the two horses and pulled the reins he was holding towards himself. The carriage, which was running slowly, came to a complete stop at one point.
Herietta opened the window and looked out, sticking her head out. Just in front of the carriage, as the coachman said, a small hut was built. There was no one inside, and not a single light leaked out, giving off a slightly eerie atmosphere.
‘Are we staying here? From this place where a ghost is likely to pop out from somewhere right now?’
Herietta had a shaky expression on her face. In that case, wouldn’t it be better to camp outside with the moonlight as a friend? Besides, she was the only woman in the group.
Originally, it was common to have at least one maid along on such a trip, but Herietta went out alone. They said they would pay them for all the hard work, but no one applied for the long-term trip.
But even so it was a short trip of about three days. So she had one thought for that brief period: she didn’t want something big to happen.
But now that she thinks about it, she regrets a little about why she did it. If she had at least one maid by her side, she would be less frightened.
Suddenly, the coachman who got off the coachman’s seat approached and opened the carriage door.
“We’re here, Miss. Get off.”
He said it quite politely. But to Herietta, who was very nervous, it only sounded harsh and crude. She gripped the hem of her skirt and gulped. When she saw him in the morning, she must have had a good impression, but it was difficult to see because she was in the dark.
“Aren’t you going to get off?”
He even opened the door, but the coachman asked, puzzled by the mumbling Herietta. She seemed to think he would really think she was really weird if she mumbled more.
Herietta quickly got her supplies and got out of the carriage. She was so flustered that she almost fell without noticing the footstool that the coachman had prepared for her.
“Wait a minute. I’ll go in first and take a look inside.”
Herietta nodded as she understood the words of the coachman. As it was a traveler’s hut, he immediately turned the handle and opened the door, making sure the door was not locked. So he went into the hut, and Herietta was standing alone in front of the carriage.
Whoooo. A cool breeze blew through her hair and hem.
There was the sound of rusty wheels turning from somewhere. Herietta looked at the direction where she had heard the sound. A large object was moving in the dark.
Herietta narrowed her eyes to see what it was. After a while, she realized that it was a cart that followed the carriage.
It stopped at a distance from the carriage. When the cart stopped completely, the two men sitting on it jumped off. It must have been the porter that Baodor had hired for this trip.
The moonlight was obscured by the clouds, and only their shapes were visible, but their faces were not visible.
‘He’s pretty tall. He seems to have a good physique.’
Herietta, who was observing them quietly, thought. Haha, he has a good physique and good strength, so he must be doing manual labor to carry loads.
One of the two porters bowed their head towards her, perhaps sensing a gaze from Herietta looking at them. Herietta, too, suddenly raised her hand to them.
‘I don’t know who they are, but they are pretty decent people… Huh?’
Herietta stopped her thoughts. Because it wasn’t the one who greeted her, but another porter started walking towards her.
‘Why, why are you coming this way?’
She thought it was an illusion at first, but apparently he was coming straight towards her. Because he was tall, the gap between the two quickly narrowed with every step he took. Herietta’s body stiffened. It is unlikely that Baodor would have hired an unverified person, but she was compelled to raise her vigilance in the first place.
The man’s gait had no hesitation. What do you want? The closer he got to her, the more she realized that he was a lot bigger than she first thought he was. The unknown intimidation emanating from him made her unknowingly take a step backwards.
Breaking the suffocating silence, the coachman opened the hut door and came out. Herietta unconsciously turned her head to look at him.
“Come in, Miss. I have a lamp lit inside.”
Said the coachman. As he said, a faint light seeped through the crack in the open door. Herietta, looking at the coachman and the hut, turned her head again and saw the porter approaching her. Was he even surprised by the appearance of the coachman? He didn’t come any closer to her, and he stood still. Its appearance, not even moving, resembled a piece of stone.
“Do you know who they are?”
Herietta asked at once. They? The coachman glanced at where her gaze was headed. Ahh. The porters, he murmured.
“I don’t know. Because they were hired separately by Viscount Mackenzie. I only heard that they were going to Lavant with us.”
The coachman who was talking to her raised an eyebrow. He tilted his head.
“By the way, I thought there was only one porter, but now I see he has hired two. I must have misunderstood.”
Even as he spoke, his tone was surprised. Herietta could understand his reaction. Herietta was traveling alone, she didn’t have much luggage with her. And yet, the Mackenzies, whose finances are not very good, hired two porters. Something wasn’t quite right.
“Anyway, come in. The night air is cold.”
The coachman opened the door a little wider and suggested. Another long way to go tomorrow. Therefore, he also felt like taking a break as soon as possible.
Herietta, who had been staring at the man standing in the dark for quite some time, struggled to turn around. All of this is just mere delusion. Let’s not think about anything useless. She told herself.
But the man stood there and watched her until she entered the hut and completely disappeared behind the closed door.
Comments for chapter "Chapter 20"
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