“…Thanks for letting me in, young lady.
I disturbed you and met at a time like this; forgive me for the rudeness.”
“I'll listen to the business first. Whether or not this will be passed on will be judged later.”
At Iona's answer, the maid opened her mouth with a nervous face.
“I know you'll find it hard to believe, but I'm here to let you know that Nils is plotting to harm my lady.”
“Nils is trying to kill me?”
Iona tilted her head without a sense of danger.
Thinking that it was because Iona didn't believe her, the maid hurriedly elaborated.
“I heard that Nils came to visit Yvonne and plotted a scheme. He wants to get rid of my lady to stop her marriage with the duke and send Yvonne to be the duke's bride instead. Because I was kicked out of the room in the middle, I don't know the details… … It didn't seem like he was just saying it.”
It wasn't that Iona didn't particularly trust the whistleblower and showed a carefree attitude.
It was just that Nils' behavior felt incredibly careless.
'In fact, don't I have many regrets in life?'
She was thinking of killing him in the not-too-distant future, but that wasn't as early as now.
And Iona didn't remember her life being threatened at this stage like this either.
'I guess he didn't like what I've been up to lately.'
After all, in the previous life, she hadn't broken Nils's teeth, nor had she shown disrespect to the count's family.
In short, she must have felt like a neighborhood drum to them; There was no reason to tear up a drum that could potentially be sold at a higher price later.
But now it was different.
Since she did not hide her hostile attitude, Nils must have been wary.
Thinking about it, Nils's quick actions made sense.
And whether the count's family died earlier or later, as long as Iona was there, it won't change their fate.
“Why did you come to me?”
If there was one question, why did this maid bother to tell her the truth?
It was unlikely that she was a spy from Nils or other family members.
If they had concocted it, she'd rather have them come up with some other excuse. This was because there is nothing to be gained by making her vigilant.
“Who would want to get involved in something like that? You never know who will take the blame if things get discovered.”
The maid said that and wept.
Iona muttered quietly, “Yeah, I guess you didn’t want to be seen as one with Nils or Yvonne.”
“It's same for the most of the maids under Yvonne.”
The master was selfish and even violent.
And, since there was no proper reward, there was no such thing as loyalty.
Nonetheless, no one was looking for Iona when something similar happened before.
She wouldn't have looked like someone who could protect them.
After all, even when Marsha, the only one who protected Iona, was kicked out, she didn't resist at all…
It was funny. The fact that the eyes toward her could have changed so easily.
'I've been living thinking that I was abandoned by the world, but in fact, I was the one who abandoned me.'
Iona, sneering as if passing by, looked into the maid's eyes and asked.
“Can you say that you came here because you wanted to work for me from now on?”
If the maid simply wanted to avoid responsibility, she could have used a more roundabout way.
Most of the maids thought the same, but the reason she dared to go out on her own was probably that she felt it was worth taking the risk.
Iona was going to become a duchess, and yet there were no reliable people around her. As a maid, she had seen it as an opportunity to rise.
“If necessary, I will bring you all the information you want from now on.”
“Tell me what you want in return.”
“… …It's hard to continue working under Yvonne. If you take me with you when you leave this place, I will serve you wholeheartedly.”
“What is your name?”
“This is Cornelia.”
It wasn't a name she remembered.
After Iona became the head of the County, it was most likely that the maid, who had served Count Modrov in her previous life, was cut off in the process of renovating the mansion; All those who directly assisted the Modrov family had been kicked out without thinking.
And those who were fired without a letter of recommendation were no longer able to get quality jobs.
At least it was clear that this maid had made the best choice for herself.
Looking at the letters Cornelia pulled out from her arms, Iona briefly commented.
“These are invitations.” Cornelia said.“These are the things that Yvonne has been stealing. I brought it in case you need it.”
Looking at her quick-witted behavior, Iona thought she would be worth using in the future.
Originally, she was planning to start her social circle activities more slowly than this, but when she realized the invitation that had been delayed, an idea flashed into her mind.
Iona accepted the invitation from Cornelia and began to look at the sender's names one by one.
Iona's eyes stopped at one of them.
'This… … .'
Irene Kruger. It was an invitation from an unexpected person.
As the young daughter of Viscount Kruger, she had a sociable personality and was a big spender.
The relaxed atmosphere and good drinks naturally attracted people.
Thanks to this, young aristocrats who were interested in the opposite sex would stamp their feet at every party hosted by Viscount Kruger.
Except for Iona, of course.
Originally, she would not have been able to attend even if she had received the invitation on time, but now it was different.
After thinking about something, Iona smiled incomprehensibly.
“If your position is that of a duchess, it’s normal for you to emerge as a socialite, right?”
Of course, becoming a socialite was something she could only dream of after work.
After going to the imperial palace, Iona patrolled around Richard's bedroom as usual.
Of course, not a single ant wandered around, let alone an unfamiliar face.
Finding danger in the depths of such a palace was as difficult as finding a shark in a river.
After reporting that there was nothing wrong, Iona headed straight to the restaurant to have breakfast.
The cafeteria under the Order of the Knights was a hearty place serving breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late-night snacks.
In other words, the knights rolled people non-stop from morning, noon, and evening to dawn.
As expected, the inside was crowded with people who had already signed up for work – or who hadn’t been able to leave work yet.
As Iona sat down after receiving her food, a nearby knight pretended to be familiar.
“Dame Iona, I heard His Grace the Duke met you?”
'Why are people so interested in other people's love affairs?'
Of course, she and the Duke weren't particularly tied to a relationship of the opposite sex…
'No, since I've decided to become a proper couple this time… perhaps?'
It belatedly occurred to her that she seemed to have been overly businesslike towards the duke during their last meeting.
She was too busy trying to appeal to the benefits he could get from marrying her.
It would be difficult to say that she was wrong because she had to convince him to move on to the next step.
'Last time it wasn't so difficult to walk into the wedding hall.'
Although there were obvious shortcuts that had already been taken, she did not want to use the same method this time.
She'd rather bite her tongue and die again.
After organizing her thoughts, Iona cut off the useless question at once.
“You have the mind to hear such news. I must inform the captain that the amount of training seems insufficient.”
“No, every Knight is talking about it, so how would I not know?”
“Okay, if you want to claim that you've had enough training, come with me after dinner. I'll check it myself.”
“Hmmm, enjoy your meal, senior. I already have to spar with Sir Theobald.”
Saying that the junior, who lowered his tail at once, stood up with a half-empty tray.
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