Chapter 2 - Precious Fairy Doctor
Nearby the small winding path of the field, snow-white apple blossoms could be seen everywhere. Lydia’s long, loose hair fluttered in the spring breeze.
(Lydia, where do you wish to go?)
(Where do you wish to go?)
The voice of the petal-clad fairies broke the serene silence of their surroundings.
[Are you going to buy honey?]
The fairies then started their meaningless, idle conversation, giggling and lowly whispering amongst themselves. Catching Lydia’s hair, they began to play as they flew around.
(The color of Canola, like rain mixed with honey!)
The fairies loved to hold Lydia’s hair and were unwilling to let go. However, they weren’t being mischievous. She didn’t dislike it either. At any case, on weekdays, she was not used to putting her hair up in a bundle anyway.
Lydia generally treated these fairies like children. They inadvertently dangled in her hair as she went out the gate.
Walking through the streets of the apple trees, she finally arrived to the lively, unique streets of the small town. The wooden signs of the stores hung in a neatly, arranged fashion. Lydia went straight to the store at the corner.
Once she bought something from the store, she noticed a strange carriage pulling to a stop across the street.
Next to the coach, one of the three girls looked quite relaxed and joyful to converse with the people in the carriage.
Because this was a little town, the three sisters were also Lydia’s acquaintances.
Therefore, seeing them surround the unfamiliar figure, it made her look in their direction. In the midst of it all, she saw a man wearing a black top hat.
A tall figure, dressed in a tailored-fitted jacket. The well-dressed man wore a bright fabric coat. There was absolutely no one like that in town.
The girls were unusually excited and must have really wanted to be acquainted with the seemingly noble man who arrived from the big city.
“Can we really pull over here? I have yet to visit a place such as this. However, perhaps you can take my coach and become my guide.”
“In that case, please stop by at my home. In the big city, we are not to drink wine.”
Listening to the sound of their delighted voices, Lydia felt slightly envious of them.
It was like this. To meet someone, gradually grow close and begin to fall in love.
However, she had no reason to wish this kind of thing for herself.
“Thank you, miss, for your kindness. However, I would still like to also take a stroll across town.”
She didn’t know why. When Lydia was about to turn away, once she heard his voice, she halted to a stop. Her heart began to race for no reason.
Feeling as though her thoughts were foolish, she decided she had to leave from there.
"I am very grateful to you for your kindness. For the carriage to fall into a ditch is very difficult to handle. However, to meet such beautiful young ladies, I was really quite lucky.”
They made a loud, smug laughter.
“The city is even more beautiful for no adornment on a beautiful woman could go unnoticed. The women of this small town are as lovely wildflowers. It makes my heart burn intensely like a flame.”
Suddenly, his words now and before, they held completely different meanings.
Somehow, the eloquence of his voice seemed to be quite familiar?
In order to confirm, she gingerly turned her head back to see.
Somehow feeling Lydia’s glance, the man wearing the black hat slowly turned his head around. His ash-mauve eyes caught her immediately.
With a surprised expression, a faint smile appeared on Edgar’s face.
“Oh, it really is you, Lydia. I did not expect to see you so soon. I’m so happy, my fairy!”
With Lydia, his haughty, arrogant smile was different. Rather, the smile on his face unconsciously showed heartfelt joy. Not paying any mind to the confusion she felt inside, he boldly took a step forward.
“Have I kept you waiting so long? According to our promise, I came to pick you up.”
“What are you talking about? ... ... You are speaking of nonsense, why are you here in this place!”
“In fact, I was going to visit your home. I never thought by only going into the city, I’ll meet you. We really are meant to be.”
Then, Edgar gently kissed her hand. At the sight, all three sisters focused their eyes on Lydia.
“That's… Sir Earl, is she a friend of yours?”
Someone asked timidly.
“Yes, she is my most important ... ...”
“Hey, please wait!”
Lydia couldn’t understand what he was going to say, but she interrupted him and tried to shake off his hand.
Unconcerned and calm, Edgar gently grabbed the paper bag she was holding
“I’ll take it. Well then, will you bring me to your house now?”
If I were to bring him, surely something terrible will happen.
“Um, Father is not at home now. I can not take a man back......"
"Lydia, have you forgotten your fiancé is an exception? To be alone with you is my right, isn’t it?”
“What, her fiance?”
The girls screamed in surprised and quickly rushed before Lydia.
“Oh my, are you serious, Lydia?”
“Ah, could it be that older man in this small town, is that an old friend of Lydia’s?” (?)
In this small town here. Almost every family knew of each other, but it cannot be said that they were all also friends.
She didn’t know why, but the smiles shown on their faces were not natural.
“Yes, she is a childhood friend ... so we were very surprised.”
Childhood? As soon as she heard this, Lydia was confused as Edgar, who stood on the side, spoke first.
“Then, that is better. Since you are friends, once the engagement party is announced, you shall be invited.”
Having heard this, they became more and more ecstatic.
They seemed eager to use Lydia as a way to meet other nobles in the big city.
“Lydia, you have such a wonderful fiancee, why haven’t you told us?”
“He’s a noble, that’s really astonishing.”
“We may congratulate you two soon.”
Lydia didn’t know what to do anymore.
“It's great that you can take the time to chat with your friends, Lydia. However, ladies, if you may excuse us, we must take our leave.”
"Well then, goodbye, Earl.”
Edgar smiled at the overly-excited young girls. Then, he pulled the arm of the stunned Lydia to walk.
"Really, what nonsense are you talking about! And what do you mean by engagement?”
They passed through the shopping district, and after walking to the path next to the river bank, he finally opened his mouth.
“Is it not very good? They wanted to be friends with you. If you were ever bullied by them, this is a good opportunity to take revenge.”
To take revenge? How can he have a warm, calm attitude, saying such bad intentions nonchalantly?
“No, I have not been bullied. ”
“Oh, so because of this matter, from now on you will have good relations with them. That is also quite nice. They must have only seen the fairy side of you, so they shunned you before. Perhaps, as long as there was a suitable opportunity, you can become friends.”
However, first of all, was this man’s words of engagement true?
“Well, it makes no difference to them.”
The first problem with Lydia was Edgar’s casual and random boasting of their engagement.
“Right, is the road to your home this way?”
“If you’d like me to take a detour, I wouldn’t mind, however ... ...”
“... It’s the left side.”
Lydia said, as she had no choice but to give up now.
She began to care a little as to Edgar’s reason for coming to Scotland.
In London, was he not busy doing work as an Earl?
What was the reason for him to come here and search for Lydia?
He still remembers me.
As she thought this, she felt a slight pain in her chest. However, it wasn’t clear to her why she felt this way.
Therefore, Lydia asked while avoiding his gaze.
“Hey, what happened?”
“If you ask me, I will take it that you are worried about me.”
“I'm worried about you......?"
“I was only thinking that I’d very much like to see your hometown.”
“Were you already tired of the women in the big cities? So you’re looking for a girl who is like a wildflower?”
Lydia said sarcastically, and his face gave a wry smile.
“I only said that it meant the women in this town was the world’s most beautiful. I am talking about you. Loved by fairies, a wild Chamomile-like girl.”
Lydia still pouted.
Really, that’s what he does.
It should not tempt me.
He was a fool. Lydia only shook her head. It was only to tease me, he has too much leisure time.
“Anyway, Lydia, where were you coming from? Your hair is covered in so many apple blossoms.”
“Yes, they should be removed.”
She stopped her footsteps, intending to pick off the flowers from her hair. However, Edgar, actually smiling, reached out his hand and stopped her.
“It’s a unique and rare hair adornment. It suits you very well, so keep it.”
Lydia began to look around.
They walked all the way to the trail in the fields. They even couldn’t see the apple trees in full bloom.
In the town where fairies lived in, Lydia often subconsciously stepped into their world.
To her, it wasn’t very important. However, for a girl to be covered in blooming petals which came from who knows where, it always made people take notice and shiver in discomfort.
Then, Edgar smiled and took the time to pick them off.
“This was only the fairies being mischievous. ... Does it look very strange?”
“The fairies understand very much how to make you more beautiful.”
Edgar then picked up a flower petal that fell on her shoulder and gently placed it on her ear. Lydia, flushed, secretly snuck a glance at him.
He didn’t seem to feel it was strange at all.
Though she knew it was only sweet words, she still felt very much at ease.
Although he used it in order to grow closer to her, he understood the matters with fairies. And until now, he quite naturally accepted the relationship between Lydia and fairies.
“You ... ... are really unpredictable. I thought that, after you've achieved your dream of obtaining the title of the Blue Knight Earl and returned to noble society, you would have long forgotten all about me.”
She said, as she seemed to be very reluctant to see that he had forgotten her.
As she realized this, she couldn’t help but shyly look down. However, he actually remained silent, which made her more concern and sensitive of her indiscreet remark.
“Forgetting should be very easy.”
She casually uttered those words but immediately regretted it once she thought it over.
“Lydia, you had forgotten all of our past. However, I did not forget.”
What does that mean?
Lydia raised her head again to look up at him. He looked down at her, and their eyes met each other in a gaze.
"You promised to marry me. That time, you really don't remember?"
“Marry ... ...? Who?”
“Still cannot remember? Our love was only slightly recent. I hired you as a consultant, a fairy doctor for the Ashenbert family. Then, you stayed in London. While living with your father, you handled the everyday problems with fairies in my territories for me.”
“Wait a minute ... ..."
“All in all, Lydia. Both of us did not worry of the identity disparity of past problems and made marriage vows.”
“... Liar. I have always been here.”
As she hesitated to press forward to look into his eyes, she intended to escape from him. However, he grasped her arm and pulled her back.
“You are being misled by dark magic. I am not lying. This is proof!”
Edgar raised the hand that wore the moonstone ring.
"It is the mark of our engagement. This belonged to the first Earl of Ashenbert’s wife, Princess Diana’s ring. This ring on your hand, isn’t this an undeniable fact?”
Why can’t I remember anything about this ring?
Lydia began to hesitate.
However, Edgar’s words ... ....
Lydia’s heart fluctuated, rising and falling, like the waves of the river. Suddenly, emerging from the small river, a roaring voice resounded from the water splash.
Jetting straight out of the misty water was a dark water horse that followed after.
“Earl, how did you get in here?”
“I’m here to see Lydia. According to our contract, you were to immediately return her to me.”
Kelpie then turned into a human and arrogantly stood in front of Edgar.
“Even if you played tricks to sneak into here, it is all only a waste of time. There is no way for you to lift my magic. If you can’t take her back with your own strength, the contract will not be established.”
Suddenly, an intense tornado burst out and blew whirlwinds. Lydia couldn’t help but close her eyes. When she opened them again, Edgar and Kelpie’s figures vanished
Engaged to Edgar?
That was impossible.
However, listening to Kelpie’s tone, he seemed to know Edgar and suddenly appeared to get rid of him again. In the end, when and where did these two know each other?
Then, Lydia thought, perhaps Kelpie and Edgar knew each other by chance, and that him and his engagement was utter nonsense.
Bringing up marriage, now that he was already earl, shouldn’t he choose a girl from a noble family?
Moreover, he was always skillful in lying.
“Perhaps him lying to me of marriage was another plan for something else?”
However, in the end, for what purpose would he have in deceiving Lydia? As she bitterly brooded over it in deep thought, she couldn’t come up with any explanation.
Then, the main entrance doorbell rung.
Sitting in front of the fireplace with an open book, Lydia immediately stood up.
“It’s so late, who could it be?”
The curtain of the night completely came down and shrouded everything. Generally speaking, guests would not normally pick this time to come visit.
Is it Edgar ... ...?
Lydia cautiously walked to the front to see before arriving at the door.
“Lydia? It’s me, Lota.”
Lydia opened the door and a girl with coffee-colored hair in a pony tail came into view and greeted her.
“Lydia, are you alright? I went to your home in London, but your father said you had come to return here!”
Lota and her grandfather must have returned back from the Netherlands, Lydia naturally thought.
The memories controlled by Kelpie forbid Lydia and the people around her from entering the city’s dark magic. However, because Lota was living overseas, it seemed to not have an effect on her.
Lydia stared at Lota’s face.
“You're back, Lota. Would you be staying in London from now on?”
In her tea-brown colored eyes, they reflected her smile.
“Oh, I am so glad you came. Come in, please. Is it very cold outside at night?”
Lydia led her by the hand and entered the living room.
Although she was the granddaughter of the Grand Duke of Cremona, Lota was the total opposite of a noble. She had already forgone her formal dress, gloves and hat. She fully appeared as an impoverished handicrafts man's daughter.
“Oh, Lota, have you eaten dinner yet?”
“I’ve eaten at a pub in the station. Lydia, why did you suddenly leave and return to Scotland again on holiday? Did you have a quarrel with that guy?”
“The guy who employed you as a fairy doctor.”
Lydia tilted her head and looked at Lota, still puzzled.
“It’s Edgar, he’s called the Earl of Ashenbert ... ... you seem to have been earnestly proposed to by him, which you wrote in the letter you already sent me.”
Propose? Lydia unconsciously began to caress the moonstone ring.
Then again, she saw Edgar during the day. He also kept saying some kind of engagement and so on. What exactly is going on?
“Yes, you were running away from that guy. Is it because he is planning to do something wrong? No matter how much sweet talk he does, it’s useless. Therefore, he decided to become more arrogant and domineering, huh?”
“That, Lota, my letter ... ...”
“Hey, the pirate’s daughter came.”
Lydia was suddenly interrupted, followed by Kelpie jumping in from outside the window.
“Are you Kelpie? The one that sticks to Lydia all day, ah.”
“This is not good.”
“You wanted to attack her when Lydia didn’t shut her windows, however ...”
“Wait a minute, Lota ... ...”
Lydia face immediately became red as Lota looked with a very proud and satisfied smile.
“It is purely true. Nothing had progressed.”
“Oh, that’s very good. It’s okay for her to maintain like this.”
Lota didn’t know why, but she was holding Lydia tightly like a small child.
"Really, I had unexpectedly forgotten about this one.”
Looking very displeased, Kelpie muttered.
“What are you talking about?"
“Right, so Lydia, and that Sir cat?”
“Nico is in London. He seemed to be charmed by the food there.”
“Yes, and to this, I have specially brought this for you from the Netherlands.”
Lota said as she opened the suitcase, pulling out a bottle of wine.
“So that the two of us can drink!”
“What about me?”
Kelpie said, dissatisfied.
It ended up being a small party where Lydia’s questions of Edgar flew away, from the lively air right into the night beyond the clouds.
Drinking until she became drunk, Lydia then unknowingly fell asleep.
In the dead silence of the night, Lydia suddenly heard someone shouting to her in her dream.
The words had only made a faint impression in her mind. When she opened her eyes, the figure also immediately disappeared.
She could not remember what kind of dream that she had exactly, and Lydia only felt that her cheeks were wet.
She then looked at the cold moonlight that reflected back the moonstone ring, and the question in her heart resurfaced again.
Something seemed suspicious.
Lota said that Lydia was working for Edgar in London. Moreover, she also mentioned the matter of marriage.
However, first of all, where have I met Lota?
Concerning her, indeed it may take a little while to think about.
As a pirate, Lota was looking for a missing friend in England. The girl was imprisoned by the Wyrm ... ...
At the time, the incident occurred in Edgar’s territory.
Lota and Edgar were old friends in America.
The more she thought of it, the more she couldn’t remember the matters completely. The question in her heart grew larger.
Why would I go to Edgar’s territory? How did I know that Lota and Edgar were old friends?
Was I not estranged from Edgar ever since found the sword?
It was even stranger that Nico was not around. And, compared to that, Kelpie was unusually appearing more often.
Filled with feelings of anxiety, Lydia began to fidget. She quietly jumped down from the bed. Putting on the coat to walk out of the door, she arrived at the gate.
To come outside so late, in the end, what exactly did she wish to do?
She didn’t quite understand it herself, but Edgar was still in town.
The trains departing from Edinburgh would not open until tomorrow morning, so maybe he will be staying in a hotel.
Lydia passed through the garden, pushed open the low-fenced gate as she walked to it as it led her outside.
Lydia wanted to go out but only found herself still at the gate. Outside of the gate, the road was illuminated by the moonlight.
So then, Lydia once again opened the gate. Slowly, her feet stepped out of the boundary.
In the end, she only took a step forward within the gate.
It was the black magic that confused the will in people’s minds.
Lydia finally noticed. The reason for her loss of memory must have been the magic.
However, to be able to do this kind of thing, it must have been a fairy with powerful strength. Then, Lydia thought, here it must certainly be Kelpie.
Though Kelpie was a dark fairy, he would not do anything bad to Lydia. Nor use magic on her.
However, if it was Kelpie’s magic, it would be very difficult to crack. Though Lydia knew it very clearly, she continued her attempt to go outside.
In the same way behind the gate, Lydia carried out a ladder, intending to climb over the fence.
In the end, she was exhausted and had to sit underneath the ladder.
“What are you doing, Lydia?"
The voice was Lota, and Lydia looked up.
Still wearing her pajamas, wearing only a coat, Lydia intended to cross the small grove.
With her strange behavior being found out, along with her disheveled hair, Lydia began to blush.
“I’m sorry. I must have been making noise which woke you up, right? Because..."
“Oh, no. I thought someone was sneaking in. Compared to that, is something bothering you?”
“I cannot go outside. I think I am influenced by black magic.”
Magic? Lota gave an incredulous expression. However, she asked a rational question.
“It is now the middle of the night. Where did you want to go?”
“... ... I wanted to see him.”
Though she didn’t say who, Lota could have guessed who it was.
“I saw him one time during the day. Now, he should still be in the city. I want to see him, to confirm ... ...if I really am engaged to... ...”
Lota gently pulled Lydia up. Then, accompanying her to return to the room, Lydia sat down next to the living room’s fireplace, her mind slightly settling down.
Lota stoked the fire, and the room began to brighten again. After she settled down a bit, she stopped and later said.
“Edgar was here, right?”
“However, I seem to have forgotten many things.”
“But you still remember me.”
“Lota, you also said that in London, I was employed by Edgar. And then, he even proposed to me.”
"Have you forgotten all of it?”
“Now that I think about it, it's almost as if I have only forgotten about Edgar. I only remember meeting him once and that I have been living in this small town until now. But today, Edgar said he was here to meet me. And that I have been engaged to him...... "
"Yes, but the guy has never treated you like his fiancee.”
Is that really so? Then, in the end, it was all only a trick?
“However, at the time, you very strongly refused him. For you to suddenly want to see him, I feel that is really not like you.”
Lota said with a smile.
“However, since you came up with this idea, then perhaps engagement was not impossible. At least, his place in your heart is what had changed.”
Change. For the criminal who deceives at every turn, Edgar?
“Edgar has also changed. You wrote in the letter that, although he was very forward to propose, you also seemed to have felt that his frivolous attitude contained sincerity.”
However, I saw Edgar this morning, and he was praising the girls, exactly as before.
He was not ideal in Lydia’s eyes. She liked a kind, earnest, and somewhat clumsy but honest young man.
“...... That, Lota. I want to see him, but there’s no other meaning. I only want to know the truth.”
“So, when you ran into him this morning, what kind of impression did you have of him at the time? Usually, whenever that guy mentioned marriage, you’d loathe it. However, if it wasn’t for such a thing, did you feel happy to meet him?”
Though in her own memories, she did not love Edgar. But when she saw him, and when she found that he didn’t forget about her, she felt somewhat happy.
Though he always said troublesome words and boasted of her being his fiancee, she was never actually angry.
Lydia just couldn’t remember anything.
She didn’t know whether it was the proposal from him or the thought that he could actually fall in love with her.
“Though I want to confirm his words, I don’t know how to do it ... Perhaps Edgar would only say something like ‘I like you’ half-jokingly to tease me... ... Moreover, in front of a girl, he would always make a favorable impression of himself and get carried away.”
On the other hand, the vulgar man with his charming nature, would also go court another girl right before her eyes.
If he is only teasing her, then she might as well simply forget him.
Lydia began to become anxious. Lota didn’t know why, but she seemed rather pleased. She reached out her hand and patted Lydia’s head.
“It doesn’t matter, Lydia. If that guy really has that mentality, I will absolutely make him regret it.”
As she spoke, she briskly stood up.
“Stay good here, I’m going to bring that guy here!”
Edgar had to endure a sleepless night in the neighbouring village. This morning, wearing casual clothes, he opened a letter on the desk near the window.
Before him, his breakfast had already gone cold.
“Lord Edgar, do you need it to be reheated?”
Raven, noticing that Edgar was too deep in thought that he did not pay attention to his surroundings, became worried for him.
“Alright, alright, I’m sorry. I will try to finish it as fast as possible.”
“Would you like some hot black tea?”
Edgar was driven out of town by Kelpie yesterday. He tried a variety of methods, but he still failed to enter the town again.
There were supposed to be two firks in the road. However, when he turned right, he would be forced to come back to the left. Now, he could only walk in circles. So even if he had proceeded down the main road, many of the same scenery would appear once again.
He previously heard Nico say that if they were thrown out, it would be extremely difficult to get back in. Edgar, reluctantly, had to settle and stay in a town nearby, struggling to come up with a way to bring Lydia back.
The secret organization from London, “Scarlett Moon”, was spying on Prince -- and their letters have arrived.
Members of the organization have reported that Edgar’s friend, a young painter named Paul, had went missing.
Paul has been playing the role of a liaison for Edgar and the organization, and there was no danger in the task. His kind, civil personality was not suitable to be engaged in espionage activities.
However, Paul frequently went to Edgar’s manor and may have been seen by Prince’s henchmen. So, there was a possibility he would be targeted.
“It was said that Paul went to the orphanage in east London, visiting sick children there. And then, he disappeared.”
Looking at Raven bringing in the tea, Edgar selfishly muttered lowly to himself.
Paul went over there several times to teach the kids how to paint. He heard the children had fallen sick, so he went to send his sympathies.
“Hearing that the London Eastern district had a plague spreading, he went to see them? The children in the orphanage seemed to have been affected.”
“Did the painter also get sick?”
Hastily eating breakfast, in front of the fire was Nico who interrupted while sipping black tea.
“What else did the person in the letter say?”
Even the name of the disease was unclear. They only knew that it was a severe case of the flu. With continuous high fevers, it eventually injured the lungs which may have cause death. However, they did not immediately lose consciousness.
“Edgar, I feel that this plague may be related to Prince.”
A few days ago, Edgar went from Cambridge to London. It was because of the plague that he was called back by the Scarlett Moon.
London’s eastern district had poor handicraftsman and immigrants who were living in the slums in poverty. Hearing news of the epidemic plague, all of the people in London have gone into a panic.
The eastern district could spread many diseases. Whether it was cholera or typhoid fever, the source of any epidemic was from there.
In a sense, being unable to judge the name of the plague was unusual. Therefore, the Scarlett Moon deduced that it was likely to be man-made.
“Is Prince intending to turn London into ruins?”
Edgar’s death announced by Prince’s henchman was still a fresh, vivid memory.
What exactly is it supposed to mean, Edgar had been thinking.
He had told the Scarlet Moon members, regardless of what happened in London, that they must report to him. Therefore, they turned their attention to the place at London’s eastern district.
“However, a similar plague had not actually occurred in the western district, which is very strange.”
The Scarlett Moon seemed to also have the same thoughts.
Whether it was located in the East or Buckingham Palace in London, if the plague was from the slums, the people from there would have already left and dispersed from the area. However, they didn’t.
It was like a drop of ink on paper. It spreads slowly to the surroundings, slowly expanding. Rather, it was as if the plague was waiting for an opportunity to break through any obstacle.
“Raven, do you have any premonition from the sprite in your body? Is there anything you can tell us?”
“I also do not know ... However, I think that it knows something we don't. It is scared.”
According to the letter from the Scarlet Moon organization, although the plague seemed detained in the slums, the people’s fear and restlessness of the plague continued to grow.
To the people of London, Prince and his organization’s plans were unknown. However, they can intuitively sense an ominous presence.
Does Paul’s disappearance have anything to do with the plague and Prince?
"What are you going to do, Earl? Go back to London?”
As if in an indifferent attitude, Nico spoke superficially. One hand was stirring the black tea, and at the same time, he was narrowing his eyes to the hot tea.
It seemed that he could only go back. Edgar just decided as such. However, here, he was also equally worried about.
“Is there any way I can see Lydia again?”
“Now that Kelpie has vigilantly stepped up the security, along with the magic outside, there is no other way.”
Edgar shrugged his shoulders helplessly.
“In general, though I don’t understand magic very well, it is also not easy to understand and make a deal with a Kelpie fairy.”
“However, there were many times when you and Lydia broke the fairy magic together, just as long as there was a strong bond between you two.”
“However, Lydia already doesn’t remember me with our bond.”
“This is even more vexing.”
Then, with a voice, there came a knock on the door this time. A housemaid very politely opened it.
“Earl, you have a visitor. Can I ask her to come in?”
“A guest? Apart from my fairy, I cannot see anyone.”
“Too bad for you, I’m not Lydia.”
Not waiting to be guided into the room, a young girl with coffee-colored hair entered.
She was known as a pirate’s daughter in America. She and Edgar couldn’t stand each other at all, an incompatible existence. When Edgar saw Lota’s face, not very pleased, he whispered:
“Raven, put her out.”
Seeing Raven intending to act, Lota quickly hid behind the sofa.
“You ungrateful brat, how dare you treat me with such an attitude! I was asked by Lydia so I searched all the hotels in the whole town just to find you!”
Hearing Lydia’s name, Edgar immediately got up and approached Lota.
“Did you meet Lydia? How did you enter the town?”
“Do I have to stand up and say it?!”
Lota said, as if implying that he spoke from a superior position, and she stared at him.
Harassing and provoking the other was undoubtedly one of Edgar’s strengths.
“It was really disrespectful, Princess Charlotte. Please, have a seat.”
He deliberately gave a fixed, forced smile and gently took her hand. This gave Lota goosebumps on her whole body.
“Raven, serve the tea.”
Edgar stopped Raven as he was about go out, and glanced meaningfully at Nico, who was happily sipping at his black tea.
“Mr. Nico, please forgive me.”
Raven could definitely never disobey Edgar, and so he clamped his hand to retrieve Nico’s teacup.
“Hey, what are you doing, Earl!”
Lota angrily watched the scene.
“You’re actually going to give me a cat's leftovers!”
"I'm not a cat!”
The cat, with his hands on his hips, feet on the table, stared motionless at Lota. (Did you know “akimbo” means “hands on hips”? Interesting fact, cuz I never knew) Lota completely lost the heart to refute and pushed Nico’s teacup as she sighed wearily.
“So, can we start discussing the matter with Lydia?”
Edgar said coldly as if interrogating her.
“If Lydia hadn’t asked me, I would’ve flipped the table and left.”
“Did Lydia ask you to look for me?”
Edgar appeared to have deep wrinkles between his brows. Lota wanted to quickly end the matter. Breathing in, she said.
“... From in and out of the town, it seems that Lydia only knows me. Though I have no idea why, but Kelpie’s magic has no effect on me. Perhaps the effective range of the magic didn’t include the Netherlands. I saw that Lydia had forgotten many things, but she had noticed the blanks in her memories herself.”
“Then, Lydia believes in the words I have said?”
"The engagement? Is that true?”
Lota looked at Edgar full of doubt, and then took a look at Raven.
“It is true.”
Raven rushed to answer which deepened her suspicion further, as she eyed them anxiously.
“I didn’t ask him, Edgar. Did you make him say that?”
“Regarding this matter, what did Lydia say?”
Not answering, Edgar avoided her question, and simply went ahead and asked her.
“She is probably doubtful but would like to meet you to confirm.”
If possible, certainly, Edgar was thinking he wanted to see her right away.
“Lydia cannot leave town, right? Although I successfully went in once, it'll be very difficult for me to enter the second time.”
“Well, that night, it seemed that Lydia couldn’t even leave her home.”
“To lift Kelpie’s black magic, Lydia must remember me. For her to remember me, I must see her one more time so... ...There’s no way to do this.”
“In the end, it shows that your given name as the Earl Fairy was stolen.”
Lota’s words made him very unhappy.
“No, our Blue Knight Earl is not going to lose to Kelpie.”
A voice was suddenly heard out of nowhere.
The only ones who call Edgar by the alias 'Blue Knight Earl' are normally the fairies.
Edgar looked all around, but he still wasn’t able to spot the spurce pf the voice. However, he remembered the sound of the voice.
“Coblynau? Where are you?”
“Say you ... Hey, don’t pull on my tail!”
Nico raised his voice with his tail swinging around from what he said.
“Earl, I felt the power of Miss Lydia’s moonstone was strengthening. For the Little Bow to call for me is the first time.”
“I from long ago had already called it such for the moonstone. Anyway, Little Bow told me it was a very important matter and that it must be quickly conveyed to the Earl. Therefore, I rushed through to come here.”
Coblynau, a small mine goblin, explained.
According to what Lydia said, it was shaped very much like a miner. It wore a pointed, crooked hat, fully red-faced which was covered with an unkempt beard.
They know all about the gems and minerals. Especially Coblynau, who seemed to be the one who watched over the Earl family’s moonstone.
“Let’s hear it.”
Lota wanted to know what Coblynau was going to convey, so she watched Nico’s tail.
“There is a way you can see the Miss. Compared to the power in the town, Kelpie’s strength has less effect on the church. When the shadow of the church’s steeple stretches by the setting sun, once it matches the edge of the small town’s river, you can make a hole through the dark magic’s wall.”
Pulling his tail away from the goblin, on his knees, Nico combed through the long fur. As the matter stood, Edgar completely didn’t know where Coblynau was.
Lota and Raven also didn’t know. However, they were both still staring at Nico’s tail.
“Can I bring out Lydia from there?”
“Humans cannot pass in and out through such a hold. Where you meet will be separated by glass. In order to break the magic wall, the magic on Miss Lydia must be completely removed.”
It was better than not seeing her at all. Therefore, before returning to London, he must explain and make things clear to Lydia.
“Before the shadow of the steeple returns to the river, you only have little time.”
Edgar nodded and turned his head back to look at Lota.
“You would need to speak with Lydia.”
Lota stood up and then, as if remembering something, just continued to stand there.
"I have only one thing to confirm beforehand.”
“Hey, pony-tail, the engagement is true.”
“But does Lydia have a reason to marry you?”
“I may speak words on the surface, Lota, but I have never forced a woman to do anything. I only very rightly allowed to let Lydia feel my sincere, true love.”
“However, your way of doing things is always very strong.”
“Strong does not amount to being forceful.”
“This may really only be sophistry. Eh, anyway when Lydia’s magic is lifted, if I think you did anything wrong to her, expect things to get worse from now on.”
He and Lydia had not even properly kissed, but there was no need to tell Lota that.
“Lydia was hoping to stay by my side.”
Even if it was because of her good-nature that she decided to stay close to Edgar, it didn’t matter to him.
When the sun had set, after Lydia confirmed Kelpie was not there, she secretly slipped through the back door of her home.
She did according to what Lota said until she arrived at the church.
After seeing the church, walking, she followed the church’s shadow. The steeple’s slanting, long shadow reflected an opposite line on the grass behind the church.
Walking across the grass, she reached the river. There was a wooden frame going into a short bridge.
The steeple’s slender shadow of a cross quickly stretched to the opposite shore of the river.
At this time, she saw a black silhouette. Is that Edgar?
In Lydia’s heart, as she thought, she quickly ran forward and gradually saw the face of the one on the other side. Taking off his hat, his dazzling golden hair was blown in disorder by the wind. He revealed a sad smile. The same smile as yesterday.
Lydia then made small, quick steps through the bridge. The setting sun made her hair and cheeks glow a bright red, gleaming a gloss that was normally not there. However, she was not aware of it for she was out of breath from rushing to run forward.
Before, she would return to the side of the bridge, at the edge of the river. Cannot take a step out of the town.
But this time, it was very easy for her to walk to the other side of the river.
That was because, at her feet, there was the shadow of the cross.
Then, she couldn’t walk any further. So, she stopped and raised her head. In front of her was Edgar gently gazing at her.
“I'm so glad to see you. Lydia.”
“That, I ... ...”
She didn't know what to say. Even looking at his face, she still couldn’t think of anything, did she really like him? Why would she accept his proposal? In her mind, she wanted to know but was afraid to ask.
“It seemed you misunderstood some things about me. It must be thanks to Lota. However, you understand that I’m not a man who simply flirts with you, right?”
“Yes, but ...”
“Although there’s no way to have you believe me immediately, but now there’s no time for me to explain. I have an urgent matter, and I need to hurry back to London.”
“However, I will come and meet you again. Didn’t we promise this? The next time we meet, you will certainly remember me. The bond between humans should be stronger than any fairy’s dark magic. Now that we have this engagement, we can overcome this challenge. As long as we can meet again, the dark magic will certainly be lifted. I firmly believe this.”
As long as we can meet again, that is to say, even the reunion itself ... For Edgar, it was also a difficult matter? Thinking of the hidden meaning of his words, Lydia began to worry.
“What happened in London?"
He escaped from an organization dominated by a person named Prince. Perhaps the enemy did not give up on trying to kill Edgar.
“Is it something concerning Prince? Edgar, what dangerous matter do you plan on doing this time?”
"You're worried about me? However, I don’t have any problems.”
A lie. If the other party really was Prince's organization, it was impossible for Prince to show Edgar mercy..
As if urging him to continue, she continued to stare at him.
"Oh, I'm sorry, I should not lie to you, you are my fairy doctor.”
Edgar said, surrendering.
"The east end seems to have cholera. Perhaps it was the resulting strength of Prince using dark magic.”
“Prince is a magician?”
“He has a subordinate named Ulysses. He has the strength of a fairy doctor. It is his command that controls the dark fairies.”
The enemy’s men also had a fairy doctor. This surprised Lydia. She began to slightly understand her reason to stay close to Edgar.
Though she was an inexperienced fairy doctor, she stayed by him, shouldering his heavy burden.
She was a little bit better than anyone who was close to him.
That is to say, was Edgar still intending to use Lydia?
“Evil fairies that bring in disease usually live within the wetlands. However, if their territory was to be invaded, without any sacrifice being given to them in return, they can prove to be terrible monsters. Bringing forth an awful plague, it can destroy human beings as well as domestic animals.”
When Edgar was entrusted with the Merrow’s sword, she was aware that he was not actually the true Blue Knight Earl. She was also aware that he had deliberately lied to her in order to make good use of her ability as a fairy doctor. But even then, she had wanted to do her best to help him in his role as the Blue Knight Earl, all with her own power.
Therefore, it was the same now. It didn’t matter if Edgar was not telling the truth even now.
The significant part was that she was the only one to be able to communicate with fairies, and so she had intended to make full use of this ability.
As she thought this in her heart, she continued to say.
“And this problem isn’t confined to the fairies of the plague. In fact, for all the evil races of fairies, it would not be suffice to just say they would do malicious acts. Rather, that they would become a terrible threat to humanity. If a great number of evil fairies gather together, there would be a major catastrophe.”
“In this case, it is likely that Prince might have gathered a great deal of fae in the Eastern district of London. A large part of the London suburbs laid near the Thames River, in the wetland. That being said, for the dark fairies to all come gather here in great numbers, an epidemic would not be out of the question.”
“Well, but the city of London still remained intact. Although natural and man-made disasters have occurred several times before in the past, they did not develop into a devastating situation. Perhaps, in the time before, they were formerly protected by certain powerful forces that averted the attacks of the demons.”
“So, that’s how it is. It was said that the London Castle near Hastings was under protection until Prince had ordered Ulysses to destroy it. Although, as a result, it wasn’t completely destroyed, but the protection force seemed to have weakened because of the assault.”
At the time, had I also been staying by Edgar’s side? Lydia felt a little bit frightened at the thought.
After attaining his status as the Blue Knight Earl, Edgar was forced several times to fight against Prince’s organization. This should not be the first time.
“If the barrier in London was to be destroyed by Prince, that may as well become very dangerous.”
Edgar nodded, thoughtfully.
“What exactly is this barrier?”
Lydia felt as if she seemed to know, but at the moment, she could not remember. In the end, she still couldn’t understand what to do for the barrier.
“In any case, thank you, Lydia. This is very important information. I will surely crush Prince’s plans.”
As if to comfort Lydia, Edgar gave her a confident smile. She felt very upset not being able to remember such an important matter. In spite of that, he was earnestly thanking Lydia. Nevertheless, she still couldn't believe in her engagement with him.
There were many things still left to say, but time was already running out.
As Lydia looked at the shadow of the steeple, she also glanced back at Edgar anxiously, not knowing anything good to say.
Edgar also reluctantly gazed at Lydia and appeared as if he was hesitating on what to say.
“I will definitely come back to see you.”
He finally whispered.
“Are we really engaged?”
“Do I seem to have only a bad impression on you?”
As Lydia was still thinking, he gently put his arms around her shoulders to hold her.
“Coblynau had said that we cannot mutually touch each other across the glass. But I can still feel you.”
“Is that so.... ”
Because she was excessively startled, Lydia’s heartbeat echoed violently, leaving her mind blank. So, she could only answer him in a daze.
“Lydia, if I was to do exactly this in the past, I would have surely been avoided by you. But now, you seem to have accepted me. Do you not feel that this means something?”
Is that so? I don't know. However, Lydia had no strength to avoid it. And, although this somewhat surprised her, it also elicited mixed feelings of heartache.
He suddenly let loose of his arm, and inclined his head, slowly lifting her head up. His lips then gently touched Lydia’s lips.
The kiss felt like a gentle stroke, as if it was a natural thing.
“Even if you have no memories, do you not remember this soft, tender feeling?”
It should be the first for me, like this. Is that right?
“We...do such a thing?”
“Well, many times.”
Edgar smiled as he answered. But, because she had no memory of it, Lydia felt very shy.
Many times...? How did I survive that many times? If I weren’t so nervous, I wouldn’t dislike it.
Considering the fact that no one got slapped, Lydia didn’t feel emotions of hate towards Edgar and instead decided to give it a try. So, in that sense, it was lucky that Lydia remained in such a dazed, motionless state.
However, when his face came closer for more, Lydia could not help but find herself in a panic.
It was different from the gentle kiss before, and when Edgar moved in strongly to go for a deeper kiss, Lydia was startled, and immediately pushed him away to escape.
“Even, even such a thing, we also....”
"Yes, we have.”
"Um... I'm sorry, I still cannot remember."
“...... I see. Then, I hope from now on, you can remember this one just fine. Before I met you, I had always thought that I could never get rid of the shadows of the past.”
Lydia didn’t know which expression she could face him with, so she looked at her feet instead. That was when she noticed that the shadow of the steeple on the ground was gradually leaving the riverbank.
Edgar gently stroked her hair.
He did not say a word and only stared at her intensely, as if to cherish what was left of their remaining time.
When he had wanted to embrace her one last time, he found that his arms were already empty.
His presence had also disappeared from Lydia’s sight in an instant, and she was left alone standing on the bridge.