< — The Ducal Couple — > (12)
TN: The comments from last chapter made roll over in laughter. Geez guys. Also, for some reason, this week, I kept getting distracted every time I sat down to translate XD. But someone decided to blow up my WordPress feed with likes (I ❤ U btw) so here u go. Just so much to catch up on cuz schl is over. And just in case, Hugh is pronounced “Hue” not “Hog”.
He gently and softly kissed every corner of her face while his hand slowly moved up and down, from her back to her waist.
While he was languidly engrossed in afterplay, a thought came to her mind and she abruptly burst into laughter.
“Hugh, you know, Lady Milton who came this afternoon said something funny.”
“Lady Milton… ah, you mean the daughter of the Baron of Milton.”
The Baron of Milton was a vassal to the duke, a rigid and upright man. It was recognized that he educated his children to emulate his righteous character so he had allowed the daughter of Milton and his wife to interact more frequently. He wanted her life in the north to be enjoyable.
“Yes, she asked if you possibly wouldn’t let me go outside.”
His hand which was caressing her back paused for a moment. Lucia chuckled and continued speaking, not noticing.
“I told her that wasn’t how it was, so she asked me to go horse riding with her.”
“Lady Milton says it’s fun and is a sport. May I learn?”
“…It sounds dangerous.”
“It isn’t that dangerous. She said a lot of women do it.”
“Do you really want to learn?”
He did not like it. He had seen in the past how the appearance of women going riding and then panting afterwards would capture the eyes of men. It was also quite the sight to see a woman in riding clothes these days.
There was nothing more indecent than the way it clung tightly and revealed the body.
In the past, he was no different from other men, in that he thought that it was nice to look at plus he was never one to care for a woman or distinguish who he spent on but that was already a thing of the past.
He never clung to trivial things of the past.
Lucia placed her cheek on his chest and pitifully blinked her eyes. In that moment, he barely managed to stop himself from saying that she could do whatever she wanted.
He did not want her to go horse riding. He could not bear to see foolish men leering at her but this was her first request to him since they had gotten married. He didn’t want to see her disappointed look if he refused.
‘A riding place that only women are allowed in… I don’t think there is any place like that in Roam… Then, I’ll use this opportunity and make one.’
There was no such place, not only in Roam but in the entire Xenon. This was the moment when the only women-only equestrian (horse-riding) practice field was formed.
The place, which would serve as an important venue for social activities of women in northern high society in the distant future, began with a man’s unwillingness for his wife to be seen.
“Okay. Only if you promised to learn within the castle until you can safely ride to some extent.”
He would make the practice field while she was learning to ride and he expected to take about a week or so.
If that wasn’t enough time, he would ask her riding teacher to hold her back for a few more days. Or course, he also had get a horse riding teacher. A female horse riding teacher.
“Yes. So you are giving permission, right?”
“Be careful so you don’t get hurt.”
“I’ll be careful! Thank you!”
She threw her arms around his neck and hugged him. Her concern that he would not allow her was merely just that. He was a reasonable person.
Holding her in his arms, he recalled a while ago when he had gifted her an expensive necklace. For the first time ever, he had painstakingly chosen a gift for a woman.
He did not know what she liked exactly, but he knew from experience that women loved jewelry so his choice was jewelry. But he didn’t want give her just anything.
The Lady of Taran definitely had to have something special. So, he collected information sheets shared among the jewelers to find something special.
But when he found something he wanted, it already had an owner. Once something entered his sight, he was never one to change his mind.
He did not care about how much it was so he sent a negotiator to unconditionally conclude the deal. It took far longer than he had expected for the gift to get to his hands.
His original plan was to gift it and then leave for the inspection but eventually he did not get to see her expression when she received it.
However, he had high expectations of his return. He expected that she would be thrilled with the gift and knew that she would give him a grand welcome on his return.
She had thanked him but her somewhat perfunctory “thank you” did not meet his expectations. She had thanked him, given him a soft smile and greeted him respectfully and he could sense it was not heartfelt but there was nothing to nitpick at.
He felt a bit hurt and embarrassed at the same time.
‘Just why? Wasn’t it a natural reaction for women’s eyes to shine like jewels when they receive jewelry?’
He had put so much care into choosing the gift but she didn’t like it, making him wonder just how great it would have to be to satisfy her. But then, Jerome’s words were surprising.
[She said it was burdensome.]
It was his first time hearing those words after giving such a present. Did he have to meet a certain burden level? He was given something new to worry about.
However, her response from simply being allowed to go riding was more passionate than when she had received the diamond necklace.
This was the heartfelt gratitude and thankfulness he had expected. The diamond necklace he had spent a fortune on did not measure up to approval for horse riding.
‘So, money was a no.’
It was a little disheartening as he had once had an idea similar to that. Perhaps that idea would have cost more than what it took to acquire the necklace and build a horse-riding practice field. In his account, the expense was not an expense.
Although he’d solved the problem of horse riding, his honest heart always wanted her to be within his sight.
He was slightly annoyed at the daughter of Baron Milton who put useless ideas in his wife’s head but thanks to her, he knew a bit more about what Lucia liked so it was not entirely bad.
Around the time that the equestrian practice field was completed, Lucia was babbling on by the bedside.
“Hugh, I heard that if you head a bit to the east of Roam, there is a pretty large lake.”
“Hmmm it is quite big. Do you want to go see it?”
He had been thinking of making time one day to go out with her and come back.
“I was told there is a boat ride around this time. There are a lot of nobles that have a small boat, do you have one?”
He had never done something like a boat ride. He didn’t have any memories of pertaining in such entertainment.
He had probably heard about it but because he wasn’t interested, he would forget about it.
He didn’t understand how it could be pleasurable to sit in a boat and float on water so he took it as something that men and women, who had nothing to do with their time, would do.
‘I should buy a boat.’
He had already forgotten his past self.
He never clung to trivial things of the past.
“Then…since Lady Milton invited me to it, can I go?”
Again, it was the daughter of Baron Milton. He had a bad feeling about all future association with the lady of Milton at the center.
“It is dangerous, isn’t it?”
“I was told there hasn’t been any accidents in the boat ride. Lady Milton confidently told me that the boat owned by the Milton family is very strong.”
“When is the date of the boat ride?”
“It’s in four days.”
Edit done. There is a sentence that the author repeats twice that fascinated me. Anyone notice it?