Inside the carriage heading home from Nine, the scenery outside the window was dark, covered in shadows.

“Was it the right decision…?”

May murmured as she propped her chin on her hand.

“Joining Nine, was it the right decision?”

She had become a Nine member out of unnecessary resentment.

When May had decided to join Nine, Diego had seemed quite satisfied. She easily noticed his hidden bad intentions because there was no trace of warmth in his expression.

Nevertheless, she pushed through with the decision because of her resentment.

“I feel like a rabbit that went into a tiger’s den, knowing it’s a tiger’s den.”

Well, they say you have to enter the tiger’s den to catch the tiger.

“Now that I’ve joined, let’s try to win an apology.”

Make it so they can’t ignore me anymore!

As she made up her mind, the carriage May was in arrived at Flotina. The butler had a worried expression since it was unusual for her to return late from an outing.

“If you stay out late, the master will worry. Many dreadful things happen at night.”

May couldn’t agree with Persis’s concern, but going out at night in this world was indeed dangerous.

“I’m sorry. I’ll come back earlier next time.”

“The master is waiting.”

“…My father?”

May’s eyes widened at the mention of Persis waiting. It was the first time he had waited for her when she went out.

Is it because I came so late…? But it’s not like I care whether he goes out late or not.

“Yes, please follow me.”

May followed the butler. As she thought about seeing Persis, a sigh escaped her lips.

What does he want to say by calling me? It definitely didn’t seem like good news. He never called me for good reasons in the first place.

However, contrary to her expectations, when they arrived at the study and met him, he didn’t get angry or lecture her.

“I heard you were invited to Nine and visited. Are you planning to join Nine?”

His tone was unusually gentle. It was the first time his tone had been so gentle.

Of course, he wasn’t as gentle as Ellen, Joan, or Johan.

“Today… I said I would join.”

“I see.”

Is that it? She thought he would at least scold her or give a sermon. Not doing so was a relief, but something felt off.

Persis opened his mouth again.

“I’ve already sent a letter to Lady Yudith, stating that you won’t attend the class in three days.”


“Because I have a place I want to go with you on that day.”

What’s wrong with this person? He’s acting like a completely different person. Mei felt uneasy.

Wait a minute. Come to think of it… In three days, isn’t it Persis’s birthday?

Honestly, she didn’t want to bother preparing for his birthday because she disliked him. But if she thought this might be the last chance to prepare for his birthday, she wondered if it would be okay to give him a gift once.

After all, he’s my father, he kept me from dying, and he allowed me to live comfortably in this luxurious mansion.

This can be considered as a repayment for that.

“Do you happen to have something you want as a birthday gift…?”

Persis’s eyes, which had maintained an expressionless face, widened in surprise. He was taken aback because he didn’t expect a birthday gift since he never had any expectations.

However, Persis quickly averted his gaze.

“It’s fine. You don’t have to give me a gift.”

He knew he wasn’t in a position to receive gifts from his own child. And he

hadn’t even wished for such a thing. He didn’t want to burden her, as she was still underage. But contrary to Persis’s expectations, May felt burdened by his refusal.

‘Although I want a gift, I can’t bring myself to say I want it. So, I’ll leave it up to you to prepare it properly, right?’

May made up her mind that she would definitely prepare a gift, no matter what it was.

* * *

Three days later, it was Persis’s birthday. I prepared the gift I had prepared in advance and got ready to go out.

One thing I realized while preparing the gift was that this was the first time I had ever celebrated Persis’s birthday.

During the five years I lived in this house, I had never celebrated his birthday. I had thought it wasn’t necessary, and I can also justify it by saying that it wasn’t entirely his fault. After all, he didn’t show his face to me and didn’t meet me often.

But still, Persis had given me durable swords or reliable horses as birthday gifts every year.

Maybe I was also indifferent.

Just as I finished straightening my shirt collar with Ellen’s help, who was helping me get ready, Joan, who had been outside, knocked on the door and entered.

“Master, you can go by carriage now.”


Ellen placed a gift in my hand so that I wouldn’t forget.

“Take care and make sure to give him the gift.”

“Yeah, I’ll be back, Ellen, Joan.”

With the gift I had personally wrapped, I went outside the room.

Persis, who had finished preparing for the outing, was waiting for me in the courtyard. Unlike his usual plain-colored clothes, he was wearing an indie pink vest today. Perhaps because it was his birthday, he seemed to be in a good mood.

“Did you wait long?”


“Happy birthday.”

Persis showed a faint smile.

“Thank you.”

As I saw his smile up close, I was momentarily stunned. Was he someone who knew how to smile? In fact, I even suspected if the person in front of me was Persis or someone else disguised as Persis.

Quickly regaining my composure, I asked as we walked out of the mansion together.

“Where are we going today?”

“You’ll find out when we get there.”


I was curious about the destination, but it seemed like he wouldn’t tell me, so I stopped asking and followed him.

* * *

The carriage May and Persis were riding arrived at the train station. May got off the carriage and asked Persis.

“This is a train station. Are we going to take the train?”

“It was five years ago. You begged to go on a train trip. I came to find out why you wanted to go.”

To find out…? May made a perplexed expression as if she couldn’t understand his words.

‘Why is he suddenly interested in something that happened five years ago?’

However, since she was happy to ride the train, she followed him without further questions.

Persis rented the entire expensive first-class cabin so that he and May could have their own time. May, who had only experienced second-class cabins, exclaimed in awe as she entered the first-class cabin.

“Wow! First-class cabins are decorated like this?”

She admired the first-class cabin while stepping on the long red carpet in the middle. There were luxurious sofas and tables, and a chandelier hung above them. The interior was decorated in red and white, giving it a clean and sophisticated look.

Like the second-class cabin, the first-class cabin had large windows, making it great for enjoying the view outside.

“At that time, Floa told me to sit in the first-class cabin. Well, the second-class cabin was also good.”

May entered the seat area and sat on the sofa. The sofa was incredibly soft, and it seemed like her back and buttocks wouldn’t hurt even if she sat for a long time.

Persis sat down facing May in the seat in front of her.

As the train was about to depart, the attendants brought various foods on trays and arranged them on the table.

In front of May were expensive foods that an ordinary person could only dream of. The foods that she would have never had a chance to eat if Persis hadn’t come for her on that day five years ago, when the swindler took her to the slave auction.

Although it made her feel melancholic, May didn’t show it and had the meal with Persis.

While they were eating, May suddenly remembered the gift she had brought.

“Dad, I have something to give you.”

Persis, who was eating, glanced at May.

He received the gift with an expression that showed he had no idea what to expect. When he opened the package, he found a beige checkered handkerchief inside.

“I don’t know if you remember, but when I was about to become your son, you gave me a handkerchief to wipe away sweat. I wiped my sweat and gave it back to you, but you immediately ordered Yudipf to throw it away, remember? So I said I would keep it rather than throwing it away. I still have that handkerchief.”

May took out the handkerchief she had received back then from her pocket and showed it to him.

“I took one of your handkerchiefs, so I chose a handkerchief as a gift. Of course, you probably throw away handkerchiefs often… but this is a gift, so please don’t throw it away unless you really have to.”

If he were to wipe his sweat and throw it away again, he would be a bad person who disregarded the sentiment of others.

A smile appeared on Persis’s lips.

“Keep it well.”

May thought to herself as she looked at him.

“He seems to like it more than I expected. Well, he only has Hind as a friend… so receiving a gift from someone close must be precious…”

As she thought that, she felt a little sorry for him.

However, that was all. She didn’t have any intentions of doing anything for him in the future.

Persis looked at May persistently.

After pondering over the advice Heint had given him, he opened his mouth.


May swallowed the food she had in her mouth and met his gaze.

Persis made a difficult decision and spoke.

“You don’t have to live as my son anymore.”