Chapter 10 - An Impolite Stranger
It was true that I had stolen a glance at him first and displayed bad manners, but I didn’t want to apologize to someone who spoke so impolitely to a stranger.
“Oh, um… I was looking for the thing you’re buying right now.”
When I answered, the owner stiffened.
“Miss, you want to… buy this?”
‘Wait a minute, is that armor polish?’
I tried to maintain a serious expression when I realized what I was looking at. Knights were usually associated with armor, but in reality, they didn’t have to wear them unless they were fighting in a war. In other words, armor polish was useless to me.
“Yes, I need it!” I declared loudly anyway. I didn’t want to admit that I had been secretly looking at the cloaked man.
“It’s a shame that the decorative armors in my house have lost their luster.”
The owner nodded to my answer.
“Of course, but one would not be enough to shine everything in a house.”
“What? No, I just need one…”
I tried to refuse him, but it seemed like the owner didn’t hear me. He continued to speak.
“Wait here. I’ll go through the warehouse to find more!”
After the owner had disappeared, it sunk in that I had purchased something out of impulse.
‘I just bought useless armor polish… I can’t criticize Father when I’m doing the same thing.’
I sighed, thinking that I had dug my own grave. The man next to me placed a gold coin on the table, picked up his polish, and turned around. I would have ignored him if he had placed down a small amount of money. However, a gold coin was an enormous value. This amount could feed a commoner’s family for two weeks.
“Hey, what about change?” I shouted after him loudly and clearly, but he didn’t respond.
“Change!” I followed him and shouted even louder.
He should’ve been able to hear me and I began to wonder if he was deaf. Maybe he had heard the wrong amount from the owner. I suddenly felt sorry for him.
“Hey, can you hear me?” I asked again.
At that moment, the man stopped in his tracks. He turned around and stared at me.
‘Okay, so he’s not deaf.’
Despite my embarrassment for causing a commotion, I said, “I think you heard the wrong thing from the owner. The amount you paid is ten times the price.”
While I was explaining to the man, I heard Geraldine call for me.
“My lady, what’s going on?”
“Um… this guy…”
I tried to explain the situation, but the man took that opportunity to leave the shop.
‘Is he just that rich or something?’
I was frowning in embarrassment when I heard the owner’s voice again.
“Hahaha, miss! It turns out that we have ten more of these.”
“No, I don’t need ten…”
I tried telling him that I didn’t need that much, but the owner wouldn’t listen to me.
“One gold coin for all of these! Oh, you have already done the math!”
One gold coin. It was the same amount that the man in the hood had paid before leaving.
I tried to clear the misunderstanding with the owner, but he continued to make his own assumptions.
“By the way, did that guy take my stuff without paying?”
“No, you’re mistaken…”
“That damned bastard!”
The owner began to curse at the man. Despite my attempts to interject, I wasn’t able to get a word in until he was finished.
“That one gold coin was paid by him!” I finally burst out.
The owner became embarrassed.
“Is that so? You should have told me earlier.”
‘Is this guy really blaming me? I tried to tell him all this time!’
In my exasperation, I decided to never step into this shop again.
* * *
Next to a carriage parked in a vacant lot, a short-haired woman was waiting for someone anxiously.
‘Where is he?’
When the man arrived, she sighed in relief.
“My Lord, I have informed Duke Floyen of your appointment.”
Although his voice was cold as usual, he sounded somewhat annoyed. The woman realized this and asked, “Did something happen?”
“Hey, can you hear me?”
The man was thinking about the woman in the shop. She had no fear, even around a vicious dog who bared its teeth to warn people around him to stay away. He had been annoyed for a second, but the moment he turned around and met the woman’s eyes, all hostility disappeared. Reminiscing what had just happened, the young man frowned.
* * *
‘Ah, I’m so tired.’
I left the shop with frustration. As I walked away, I tried to brainstorm ways I could recover from what had happened today.
“Where have you been, Jubelian?”
For some reason, my father bore a displeased expression. I quickly answered him.
“Oh, I bought something.”
My father turned to Geraldine, who was carrying the bought goods.
“And what is that?”
“It’s armor polish.”
At Geraldine’s answer, my father glanced at me with a slight frown. He then sighed and said, “Let’s go.”
‘I know I bought something useless, but there’s no way he can berate me. If he has a conscience, that is.’
I began to follow my father for who knows how long. When an obstacle appeared before my eyes, my composure threatened to crumble.
I had been following him for several hours today, so my feet throbbed.
‘I only need to endure this a little while longer.’
I tried to ignore the pain by imagining the bright future I was going to have after inheriting my father’s wealth.
‘Wait, what’s going on?’
I suddenly felt a tingling sensation in the back of my head and my eyesight became speckled with black dots. My legs also lost their strength as I tried to take another step.
Fortunately, I didn’t fall because I grabbed onto something in front of me.
‘Whew, I survived.’
As soon as my eyesight came back, I looked up to see what I was holding and stiffened with fear.
“What are you doing?”
Although I was tired, I couldn’t believe that I had latched onto my father’s arm.