Chapter 3 - Disappearance
The ballroom shone brightly as the fancy lights, which were brighter than sunlight, illuminated the room. It was full of people who groomed themselves so fancily that it even put the chandelier to shame. The Estevan Duchy’s eldest son, Laos Estevan, the marquess of the duke family, lifted his head and carelessly swept his gaze over the crowd that almost looked like colorful clouds.
“Hey, Sir Estevan.”
The man who approached with a pleasant smile was Leonard Lucile, a knight companion of Laos. Laos seemed to be deep in thought about something before coldly nodding in greeting when he noticed Leonard. Looking at Laos, Leonard shook his head at him helplessly and asked, “What are you looking at so seriously?”
“Nothing really. I was just thinking that it was way too fancy.”
“But that’s not new.”
Upon Leonard’s lukewarm reaction, Laos silently drank his wine. He lowered his gaze towards it and thought of the one person who was constantly plaguing his mind—Laila Estevan.
She was a child that his father had brought from outside. Had it not been for her amplified blonde hair that was similar to grey and his father’s assurance, she would’ve not been able to step foot into the Estevan family and be a part of it.
‘No, she’s too old now to be called a child.’
During the long period where she was growing up, she had never done anything like she had today.
“By the way, did she do that again today? I’m talking about the lady.”
“Every time you leave, she greets you ‘Have a safe trip!’ But I heard that she observes the wagon. She didn’t make anything for you today?”
Laos slightly frowned at Leonard’s frivolous tone of voice. He was silent for a bit then opened his lips to respond to his companion.
“Where did you hear that from?”
“Huh? Where do you think I heard it from? I heard from my dear Lord Estevan’s brother loudly grumbling.”
When Laos frowned, Leonard scoffed then added, “It wasn’t just once. Are you even trying to hide your family situation?”
Laos swallowed his sigh and relieved his thirst.
“I mean I just couldn’t stay still when I heard the noble lady was making something. So, nothing? No biscuits or handkerchief? Huh?” Leonard asked, winking at him acting friendly.
Leonard overly blinked his eyes upon Laos’s ignorant answer.
“Oh, so you mean not today? Sir, please just do something about adding a subject to your sentences. I almost made a mistake, thinking you really didn’t want to hide your family situation anymore.”
“…I should get going.”
Leonard mischievously and sarcastically waved his hand at Laos’s back. Laos strode towards the terrace and thought, ‘More than that, she wasn’t even present today.’
There was no one who saw Laila Estevan today from morning until night, even when they were all departing to the ballroom.
‘Did she faint again?’
He knew Laila Estevan’s health wasn’t good. She often collapsed easily. She tried to hide her condition, but it was hard not to know about what she was going through. For example, like today. She was usually around, but when she wasn’t present anywhere, people assumed that she was sick.
‘But no matter how sick she was, there was no day where she wasn’t present at all like this.’
His mood was down because of that. He was sure that his twin sister, Rakiel, was probably thinking the same, although he didn’t want to admit it.
“It’s bothering me.”
He sighed and firmly shut the entrance of the terrace.
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