Ezet greeted the ladies and tried to turn away.
But a lady with white-blonde hair stopped Ezet.

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“Wait for me, miss.
You have to give your name when you apologize, right?”

“What? Oh… I’m sorry.
I’m Erit Jaxen.”

“Jaxen, don’t tell me… Duchess of Jaxen?”

The women standing behind the white-blonde lady raised their voices in surprise.
Come to think of it, it’s been three years since Edmond was crowned.
He has never taken his wife with him, so it is the first time that the Duchess of Jaxen has made an appearance in society.
Rumors circulated that the veiled/hidden Duke and Duchess of Jaxen were attending the banquet.

“Nice to meet you, Duchess Jaxon.
I’m Cornelia Devon.”

“What? Devon is…”

Devon is the most powerful Count in the west.
Ezet covered her mouth with both hands.

‘The Devon family with donations also ran the city library she used to go to.’

Even if she knew that the Duke of Jaxen, and the Marquis of Spencer, the great families were well-known and wealthy, it felt as if she was reading a newspaper article, separated from herself.

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However, Count Devon’s impression of a noble lady, who had always been in the library, was unique.
The feeling of facing a ‘great person’ who melted in her life.
The reality was different.

“Duchess Jaxen, this is Marchioness Base.
And this is Countess Gray, Countess Delaware, Countess Harrington.”

“How do you do?”

“Nice to meet you.”

As the ladies greeted her, Ezet greeted them.
Initially, she would apologize for being in front of the door and leaving right away, but before she knew it, the ladies surrounded Ezet.

“I didn’t expect to see the rumored guest here.”

“You’re much younger and more beautiful than I’ve ever heard.”

The ladies who enjoyed refreshments in the inner room talked about the Jaxen throughout.
Duke Jaxen and Duchess Jaxen were making their first appearance in society after three years.
Even though he was the Duke of Jaxen, the highest aristocrat in the Empire, rumors surrounding him were rife as he never showed his face in public.

‘What kind of woman is the Duchess of Jaxen, that the Duke hides it in his castle and hides her?’

Ladies and gentlemen have come up with some speculations.

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One is that the Duchess looks so ugly that she simply can’t show her face in the vacancy.
The other was that the Duchess was too sick to go out and meet people.

However, not long ago, the story of buying all 26 dresses displayed in Madame La Promet’s wardrobe became a hot topic.
The intense story of buying diamonds at an incredible price at Aldebaran’s jewelry auction also spread like wings.

The ladies concluded that their first guess was both wrong, citing a series of events.

So today’s third hypothesis from the tea room was that the Duchess was so beautiful that the Duke hid her in a castle like a treasure and invisible to others.

‘She’s definitely beautiful, but…’

‘She’s not that beautiful.’

‘And look at the clothes.
There’s dirt on the end of the dress.’

‘Oh, my God, are you saying you just walked down the dirt road without a maid?’

‘No way.’

‘And the frill on the chest is crumpled.’

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‘Oh, my God…’

The ladies covered their mouths with fans and exchanged conversations with their eyes.
Ezet was uncomfortable with the ladies’ eyes, who looked over her as if they were criticizing her, but there was no place to move because the five ladies surrounded her.
It’s like surrounding the prey and driving it into the middle.
Every time the five ladies approached, Ezet felt her mouth dry.

“We, well…”

When Ezet, who wanted to avoid this position somehow, opened her mouth, Countess Gray announced the time in a gentle voice as if she had noticed it belatedly.

“Oh my, it’s time for the banquet soon.”

“Oh, yeah.
We stood up so that we wouldn’t be late for the banquet.”

As the ladies turned around one by one, Ezet breathed a sigh of relief.
When the ladies went down the stairs to the banquet hall, she intended to return to the outer castle through the opposite aisle.

But Countess Devon smiled at Ezet, still eyeing her.

“Duchess Jaxen, come with me.”

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“What? No, I’m not…”

She needs to change.

Uh, what do we do?

But the start of the banquet was just around the corner.
If she goes all the way to the northern outer castle and changes her clothes, she will be late.
The Emperor and Empress only appear after the atmosphere of the banquet hall is ripe, but they did not have much time.
She must not enter the banquet hall later than the emperor.

“Duchess Jaxen?”

“Yes, yes!”

Being late for a court banquet or entering the banquet hall with dirt on the skirt.
Ezet, who was agonizing over the two, chose the latter.
When Countess Devon and other ladies urged her, she could not say she would change her clothes there.

“It’s okay.
If I stand in the corner, they won’t notice the tip of my muddy skirt.”

Of course, the ladies had already scanned all of Ezet’s clothes.

* * *

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