Night came, but Rufus could not sleep. After thinking for a while, he went to the room where Sarubia was staying.
“Sarubia,” he called her name in a low voice. As an answer, clattering noises came from inside.
“Please, hold on!”
“What’s going on?”
Surprised by the sound of something falling, Rufus hurriedly opened the door.
“Ah, I’m not dressed yet!”
A large mass of blankets was seen on the bed. On top of it, the ivory hair that had not yet been able to be hidden was sticking out.
Looking at Sarubia hiding under the quilt, Rufus murmured: “I don’t mind.”
“But I mind! Please leave for a moment!” She didn’t expect him to come in suddenly like that.
Rufus was waiting outside for a moment when the door opened again, and Sarubia’s face slipped into his view.
“You may come in now.”
Sarubia was dressed in a thin silk nightdress. Maybe it was because she was in a hurry, but the fabric on her shoulder was down. Rufus didn’t bother to point it out because he felt it was cute.
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Since that day, Sarubia has left Princess Sordid’s palace.
“You took my bowl.1. Be responsible.”
She had suddenly quit her maid job and grumbled that she had no severance pay. However, she still came out of the princess’ palace in a relaxed manner.
Sarubia said she had worked at the princess’s palace since she was very young. Having lived in a maid’s quarters all the time, she had very little belongings. There were only clothes for maids to wear while they worked.
“Why did you take off your clothes?” asked Rufus, who sat on the bed.
“I am usually like this in the dorm.”
“With everything taken off?”
“Yes, because I lived alone in the attic of the lodge… and it’s too hot in the summer.”
“You don’t seem to like the heat.”
“Yes. I’d rather freeze to death than being suffocated in my sleep. ”
“That’s extreme,” Rufus thought, “I’m glad that the Inferna estate is not so stuffy.”
“Your body is cool, so I’m fine.” Sarubia turned around with a burst of laughter.
Rufus hugged Sarubia from behind, and his chest touched her back.
Sarubia fidgety touched his hand and whispered: “Today, just sleeping while holding hands, okay? If you don’t, I’ll punish you.”
“Okay,” Rufus nodded.
“You agreed so readily? I thought you were going to whine about it.”
“I’m not a beast, and I’m not going to force you to do it when you say no.”
“Oh, wow? Who rushed in like an animal on a meal last night?”
“So, did you hate it?”
“It was nice that there were advancements in skill compared to before.”
“Which skill in particular?”
Thinking he knew her answer, Rufus swept Sarubia’s hair with his hand. He liked the colour of her hair. The creamy bright and light colours were soft and warm.
“Then why are you named Sarubia?” Patting Sarubia’s hair, Rufus muttered to himself.
Sarubia was a red flower. If the born child had a crown of red hair, the name wouldn’t be so strange, but Sarubia’s hair was a light golden ivory colour, far from those red petals.
“It’s the same reason your name is Rufus.”
“Was your mother fond of Sarubia flowers?”
“That’s too one-dimensional. It’s not my mother’s. It’s my favourite.”
Sarubia answered giggling. Rufus was puzzled at her answer.
“Then, did you name yourself?”
“Well, yes. I didn’t have a name initially. As soon as I was born, my parents discarded me.”
Sarubia fiddled with Rufus’ fingers.
“When I lived in an orphanage, there was this name that a brother I met there gave me. I hated it because it was an ugly name.”
“What was your name?”
“Well, it’s a really ugly name, so I just won’t say it.”
Sarubia, who was the only one laughing, continued to tell him about her childhood.
“Was it when I was twelve? They were looking for a maid to work in the royal palace. Then the orphanage sent me out with the words ‘Now work on your own and make a living’.”
Twelve years old. While he could still enjoy his childhood in the arms of his family, Sarubia had to muster herself up to make a livelihood already.
Rufus looked silently at Sarubia’s small and skinny back. How much weight had she been carrying all this time?
“When I entered the palace, the head maid asked me for my name. So I just said the name of my favourite flower. It was the Sarubia flower.”
A girl without a name. A child whose existence itself was ignored. Rufus didn’t know much about Sarubia.
He didn’t know when and where she was born, where her family left her, how she lived in the palace, or anything. And most of all, what was incomprehensible to him was her situation.
Sarubia was a saintess.
She was able to live a life full of enjoyment, but she chose to live as a maid. What made her throw away all the wealth and select the life of a struggling maid?
Rufus wanted to know more about Sarubia, but she never brought up more than necessary. She always avoided the answer with a laugh.
As if she was ashamed to bring up her past.
“I’ll wait,” Rufus buried his face on Sarubia’s shoulder.
“What? What are you waiting for?”
‘I’ll wait until you open your mind entirely to me.’
While swallowing those words, Rufus held her tender body firmly to himself.
Nothing has been said between the two for a while. Only the beating of their hearts wound around each other’s hearing.
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“Rufus…” Sarubia called him in a faint voice.
“What’s the matter?
At that remark, Rufus reluctantly let Sarubia go. Sarubia’s ears were burning red. Rufus pretended he hadn’t seen it because he was afraid she might be shy.
“It turns out that I haven’t given you this yet.”
Suddenly, Rufus took a necklace out of his pocket. She could hear the crystal piece swaying and ringing.
“What is this?” Looking down at the necklace that Rufus hung around her neck, Sarubia slowly raised it to eye-level.
It was a necklace with a red jewel the size of a walnut. But it was quite different from all the gems Sarubia had ever seen. It was far brighter and much more brilliant than the jewels filling Princess Sordid’s room.
“Oh, it’s amazing. The light moves in the jewel. Where did you get it?”
Sarubia looked down at the necklace with her eyes glistening. It made him feel good to see her show interest.
“It’s made by processing the mana stone of the devil Audisus.”
“Oh, that’s a more extraordinary source than I thought!”
“I washed it clean. Don’t worry.”
“I didn’t even think about hygiene. Are you really giving this to me?” Sarubia stared at Rufus.
“But if it’s the Devil’s mana stone, it must be extremely precious…”
“I’m giving it to you because it is precious.”
“So, I mean, I’m a commoner, and I don’t have any mana, so it’s no use having this.”
“Then think of it as just a pretty stone. If you don’t want it, it’s useless, and I’ll throw it away.” Rufus said bluntly.
Sarubia sighed as if it couldn’t be helped. “Really, you’re not cute.”
Holding hands, the two lay side by side on the bed. The night has deepened, but they still couldn’t fall asleep easily.
[rant] I’m sorry for being late this time! I managed to put on Ch02 of HTRH because it was ready and only needed to be revised. But I had no time to translate the past week – I’m currently working on all seven days. I plan to do at least one Chapter a week (usually translating on Saturday and posting it on Sunday/Monday). If there is more, they can be regarded as bonus chapters or because I was missing it the week prior. BTW, every three Ko-Fis will be a bonus chapter! (o’〰`o)♡
I want to thank A-chan for my first Ko-Fi ever!! (ﾉ◕ヮ◕)ﾉ*:･ﾟ✧ I’m so happy! (ﾉ◕ヮ◕)ﾉ*:･ﾟ✧ Since the Ko-Fi was given anonymous, I’m not putting a name here. But if you are okay or not okay with a shoutout, just mention it in the message (that one’s private I think). You can also use this chance to send out a personal message, even if you don’t want to put your name on it! Keep it short, tho! xD *Mali officially selling ad-space lol*
Sometimes, I would like to take Rufus and shove him in the face of some other MLs hahaha, but I’m afraid those fellows will hurt him ⚆ _ ⚆’ (Has anyone noticed how Rufus becomes more and more daring? hahaha)
And finally, some (sad) information about Sarubia! Finally ♡[/rant]