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Chapter 49 - Can We Become a Family?

Forced to be Empress, Navia craves acceptance, but faces betrayal. She pursues revenge and new life. DBT,Korean,Novel,Translations,CWBF,Shoujo,Fantasy

While Suleiman was standing there in astonishment, Navia cheerfully said, "By the way, I'm really good at earning my keep."

What is the way to win the hearts of those in difficult circumstances? It's by earning money for them. '

That's easy.' 

Navia was more than qualified to be a perfect captive.

Suleiman was at a loss for words. 

The child was more than just calm and intelligent. 

'She's adept.' 

It's unclear whether such an adjective is appropriate for an eight-year-old, but Navia was certainly adept, like the seven-year-old Lark who had suddenly appeared on the battlefield. '…A familiar sensation.'

He was embarrassingly choked up by the sight of the child, who was so reminiscent of a longed-for presence. 

"Earning her keep," he mused. 

It sounded like a joke, but why did it seem like the girl could really do it? 

His heart, which had been beating slowly, tightened and fluttered violently. 

'Am I looking forward to this?'

He had been complacent for some time. 

The ducal house always seemed submerged in death, casting a deep shadow even on the living. 

The past had faded, and the future was invisible. He had just been living in the present.

In fact, Suleiman himself had secretly thought that there would be no more change here. 

'I thought I would die like this.' 

But then, the girl who appeared unexpectedly in Eseled had shown him the dazzling brilliance he had longed for.

At the same time, he witnessed a reality he had tried to ignore: a spear, a captive, earning her keep. Navia had set her own value. The child was not cunning. The child was cornered.

Still, there was no change in his belief that Navia was a dangerous being. But was that a reason to ignore her? Suleiman couldn't easily answer.

"What will you do if you leave here?" 

Navia just smiled quietly. "I have to run away."

Suleiman held his tongue for a moment. The idea of running away sounded far-fetched, but upon reflection, there was nothing else the girl could choose. 

'The world is generous yet utterly cruel to a child who belongs to the powerless without a guardian. She'll be completely shunned.'

Wasn't she afraid to face that alone? Suleiman's heart ached unknowingly at this thought. 

It would be okay to ask for help. 

'This is troublesome. Really troublesome.'

He watched Navia neatly fold the used towel she was carrying and thanked him cutely before leaving. 

'Why take the used towel? Just leave it,' he thought, then realized. There were no servants to clean up.

He walked slowly to Navia, who was walking away, and suddenly picked her up. "How long will it take you to climb all those stairs? Let me take you to your room."

"I can't impose on you like this." 

"This isn't an imposition. It's just the right thing to do." 

For Suleiman, taking care of someone other than his master was unfamiliar, especially a child, but it felt quite good.

Would this be how it feels to have a granddaughter? 

"I hope you'll accept my help."

As Suleiman said this, Navia reluctantly nodded. Indeed, climbing the stairs would be painful for her body. And it would be slower. So, accepting this much help would be okay.

Navia found a suitable reason and clutched the hem of Suleiman's clothes. 

She observed Suleiman's reaction, realizing that he was quite favorable towards her. 

'I haven't even mentioned anything beneficial yet, why is that?'

Though she hadn't proven her usefulness or value, the excessive kindness she received was surprising, but not bad. Actually, it was good. 

'The people of Esseled are really kind and gentle.'

Minerva, Margaret, Suleiman. She had only met three people, but they were all so kind and good that it made her suspicious. 

If kindness was this common, why had she never experienced it in her eight lives? 

"Please, keep this clothing."

Ah. There had been one time. 'Creed.'

She didn't know why Creed had ended up here, but perhaps his pure, unselfish kindness was due to being raised among such good people. 

Navia felt a little heaviness in her chest. 

'Am I envious of Creed?' 

This affection, this warmth, all belonged to Creed. She was just temporarily using his nest.

She felt a bitter envy tasting a sweet dream that can't be hers. 

"I'm like a really bad child," Navia thought, accustomed to being treated as a thief, always seen as a wicked child enjoying luxuries not fitting her station by stealing from Vivian. 

This wasn't her choice. But this time, it was a decision she had made. Feeling like a stone that had rolled into place, Navia had to bite her tongue.

"Ah, Miss!"

Navia looked up as Minerva, who had been lingering at the door, called out to her. 

"I've reached the second floor already." Minerva adjusted her glasses with a big bag in her arms and widened her eyes in surprise.

"Count? How are you here with Miss...?"

"There was a matter."

Margaret appeared just in time, holding a tray filled with a teapot and neatly cut sandwiches. "Good morning, Navia."

Responding warmly, Navia replied, "Good morning, Countess."

"Ha ha, just call me Margaret."

"How can I address someone with a title like that..." Navia felt out of place in this world where her aristocratic knowledge didn't apply.

Margaret then saw Suleiman holding Navia. "Oh, Suleiman. Such an unexpected sight this morning."

Suleiman crinkled his nose at Margaret's teasing tone and averted his gaze from her gently curved eyes. "Well, it's not that unexpected."

Suleiman carefully set Navia down. Margaret looked at the plate of sandwiches. "Had I known so many people would be here, I would have made more sandwiches."

Navia's gaze fell on the sandwiches. Hmm. It seems like enough for everyone to have at least three pieces.

"I'll be fine with just a cup of tea," said Suleiman, opening Navia's door and then hesitating.

"Ah, now it's the young lady's room. May I invite you to breakfast?"

Joining in with a playful tone, Margaret added, "I did make a bit extra for everyone, but is it alright with you, Navia?"

Minerva quietly watched Navia with just her eyes moving.

Navia, surprised by the invitation to eat together, responded, "Of course... yes."

Strangely, her chest tightened as she said this. Perhaps it was from moving around too much with her injured body.

Thinking so, Navia entered the bedroom with everyone. A table set for four with sandwiches and a teapot was laid out.

Navia stood by, planning to sit in the remaining seat, but was suddenly lifted up again.

Suleiman seated her by the window with a good view. "Today's weather is nice, so this spot is for the young lady."

"Ah... Thank you," Navia bowed quickly.

Reading her discomfort, Suleiman and Margaret smiled warmly and took their seats, inviting Minerva to join.

"Let's eat first and then proceed with the treatment."

"Yes, yes!"

It was a simple meal, neither aristocratic nor bourgeois. Navia cautiously nibbled on the sandwich, savoring the soft taste of mashed potatoes and boiled eggs mixed with mayonnaise.


She then tried a sandwich richly spread with jam and butter. It was also very delicious.

"Everything is so tasty... Margaret."

Navia glanced at Margaret, adding her name timidly. Margaret smiled happily.

"Oh, it feels rewarding to hear that. Please eat a lot."

Yesterday's soup was really delicious, but today's meal was incomparable, even sweeter than chocolate cookies. 

Strangely, Navia should have felt full with just one sandwich, having emptied a basket of chocolate cookies earlier, but now she ate two pieces without feeling overly full. 

Rather, she felt very pleasant finishing the meal.

Navia carefully named this feeling. ‘Could this be happiness?’

Yes. It was more than just happiness. It was an overwhelming sense of joy.

She was happy that she could use her time, effort, and perhaps even more for such wonderful people.

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