< — Peaceful day-to-day life — > (2)
Lucia’s eyes flashed open at the strong roar that shook her senses. She breathed heavily as air surged into her lungs as if her breathing was suddenly unblocked. Her eyes shook with urgency as they swept through her surroundings.
A strong force was on Lucia’s back, lifting her upper body and holding onto her shoulders. A large hand stroked her forehead that was soaked with cold sweat.
He held her to his sturdy chest with his strong arms and gently patted her back as their heartbeats drummed against each other. Then he repeatedly whispered in her ear that it was okay.
It was only then that Lucia realized that she was trembling like she had gotten a cold. The dark bedroom and his embrace made her come to.
‘Ah. This is reality.’
The despair where she was falling down a bottomless floor was a dream. That was a dream and this was reality. Her trembling slowly settled down, and her sweat-soaked nightgown cooled, bringing down her temperature.
“Did you have a nightmare? I shook you a few times, but couldn’t wake you up.”
“…Yes. It was a scary dream.”
It was the first time that the dream of the future which she saw when she was twelve, came back again as a dream. It was a memory of the night when the Count Matin household was exterminated. The terribly long time she spent hiding alone in a dark secret space, holding her breath and trembling. She didn’t know why she suddenly had such a nightmare.
Her trembling had settled down to some extent but upon seeing how anxious and restless she was, like a rabbit that was caught in a trap and survived, Hugo had grave look in his eyes.
“Should I call a doctor?”
“No. I was just…a little…shocked.”
“Do I get you water?”
Lucia nodded her head but when Hugo tried to stand up, she was startled and clung tightly to him.
“Ah, no. I’m fine. Just…stay…like this…”
“…I won’t go, so relax. You have to change your clothes. If you stay like this, you’ll catch a cold. I’ll call the maid. Is that okay?”
Hugo pulled the rope to call the maid and asked her to get a few things he needed. He fed Lucia a cup of lukewarm water, wiped her sweaty body with a warm towel, and then changed her into a dry nightwear. His touch was unhurried, gentle and careful, like a parent looking after a little child.
Lucia was filled with happiness. If this moment was a dream, she didn’t want to wake up forever. Fortunately, this was reality, but the fact that it couldn’t last forever because it was reality, was sad.
With her body completely left up to him, Lucia followed along as he lay her body down on the bed. She rested her head on his shoulders and his arms around her waist and back were reassuring.
He gently kissed her forehead, eyes and lips before moving away. His hands, which were slowly sweeping up and down her back, gave her silent comfort. Gradually, she drifted off to sleep.
It wasn’t very often that she felt his temperature when she woke up in the morning. When Lucia opened her eyes, she gazed at his handsome side profile, mesmerized. She moved her body, tilted her head and kissed his chin. She smiled faintly when she saw him open his eyes. He returned the smile and tightened his arm wrapped around her waist, pulling her towards him then he kissed her lightly on the lips.
“Did you sleep well?”(Hugo)
“Yes, what of you? You were up at dawn because of me.”(Lucia)
“I slept well enough to make up for it. Why did you need me in the morning?”
“You said I should stay back in the morning.”
Lucia thought she only said that to herself, but it must have slipped out of her mouth.
“I must have been sleep talking. You didn’t have to worry about it.”
“I also need to arrange for you to see the doctor.”
“See the doctor for what?”
“Last night, you didn’t sense me lying down at all, you were fast asleep. You were also restless and awake at dawn. Plus, I think your body temperature is hot.”
Lucia thought he was making a mountain out of a molehill, but eventually, she couldn’t stop him from calling a doctor. The doctor meticulously asked about this and that, examined her, and then said that there was nothing wrong. Lucia gave her husband a side-eye as if saying ‘see what I mean’.
“The tiredness and craving for sweet things that you mentioned are common symptoms that women often have before their menstruation start. Will your period not be coming soon? Have you ever experienced such menstrual symptoms before?”
The doctor who was newly hired two months ago, did not know about Lucia’s amenorrhea yet. After sending the doctor out, Lucia wondered about the symptoms that she had never experienced before.
Now that she thought about it, after her menstruation started again in her dream, she seemed to have always kept sweet snacks around her house. Lucia had to postpone her thinking because her husband was coming onto her. After taking away the hand that kept trying to dig inside her chest area, Lucia asked him.
“Aren’t you busy?”
“Well then, I would like to try playing around in bed.”
When Hugo’s hand burrowed between her thighs, Lucia was startled and swatted away his hand.
“Not that! Lying in bed, drinking tea, having breakfast. I want to lazy around like that. With you.”
“Doesn’t sound bad. Let’s do one round first.”
“You won’t end at one! I want to drink tea! I want to have breakfast! In bed!”
When Lucia stubbornly refused, Hugo removed his hand that was persistently groping her body as a sign of surrender.
“All right. Ask them to bring the tea you want to drink so much.”
Lucia laughed contentedly and pulled the rope to call the maid. Hugo propped his chin and flatly looked at his wife who looked as excited as a child going on a picnic. He looked full of dissatisfaction as if his tasty candy had been taken away.
Hugo thought his wife was still like a innocent child.
Most aristocrat’s lifestyles involved gathering at feasts or meetings late at night, falling asleep at dawn and waking up late in the mornings. For them, it was a daily routine to take a simple leisurely breakfast in bed and drink tea. But that routine did not apply to the ducal couple of Taran.
Lucia’s social activities were mostly at daytime, in the afternoon, and she came home late at sunset. Hugo also returned home in the evening when he was not particularly busy. Hugo’s wakeup time was around dawn and Lucia was the type to wake up early in the morning.
Due to this, they had no chance to have a lazy breakfast, late in the morning. It was something everyone did daily, but Lucia never had the chance to, so she wanted to try it.
A mild tea fragrance filled the bedroom. Lucia took a sip of the tea and savored its fragrance as she watched the maids move around busily in preparation. She leaned on him comfortably, with a cushion on her back as she sipped the tea, and with her wishes fulfilled, she was in a very good mood.
“Will you be late today?”
“The same as usual. You?”
“The charity party I am going to today is ending in the evening.”
“So you only have the charity party in your itinerary today?”
“I have one tea party before that.”
A simple picnic table with a simple breakfast was placed onto the bed. It was a typical breakfast with freshly squeezed honey, pancakes, and two cups of milk.
“The milk in the right cup was brought by the milk supplying merchant. He said it is a new product with a new processing method. There is a difference in price, but more people are looking for it because it has more flavor than the previous one.”
Lucia picked up the right cup of milk. When she took a sip, her mouth was overwhelmed with flavor.
“Try some of this. It’s delicious.”
Hugo glanced at the cup of milk held out by Lucia then he lowered his head and licked her lips with his tongue while sucking on them. Then as if nothing had happened, he lifted his head and shrugged his shoulders.
“It tastes like milk.”(Hugo)
Lucia stared at him with her face blazing red, then she quickly looked around. The servants tactfully dodged her eyes and acted like they didn’t see anything.
It wasn’t that the servants of the ducal house were acting like they weren’t surprised at their master couple’s generous display of affection, rather, they had truly reached the stage where they weren’t surprised anymore. Lucia couldn’t say anything because there were a lot of eyes around, so she tried to let it pass over with a casual attitude.
“What…do you think? Will it be better to change it?”
“Do what you want. You’re the only child who drinks milk in this house anyways.”
He replied amidst chuckles and she gave him a sidelong scowl, speechless. He was acting grumpy because of her refusal to do it earlier.
He called her a child? Was that something that someone who was repeatedly stroking her waist and thighs should say? In the eyes of others, the two of them only seemed to be sitting together snugly on the bed, but where others couldn’t see, his hand refused to stay still.
Lucia grabbed his hand which was groping under the blanket, took it off, then she looked at him and shrugged.
“You said I’m a child.”
Hugo’s eyes narrowed and he buried his head in her neck.
Hugo lightly suppressed her flailing figure and bit one side of her neck before sucking and licking it. It smarted but was also ticklish and tingling. Lucia shrunk her body with a groan but when he let her go, she came to her senses.
At some point, it was only the two of them left and all the servants had already quickly disappeared. Not only that, the servants that were quick on the uptake had put the picnic table at the bottom of the bed as if the two of them were about to have a good time.
Lucia’s face flushed bright red. Even with Lucia’s gaze condemning his atrocity, Hugo was satisfied to see the dark red mark imprinted on her neck.
“Why are you like this! Seriously!”
He impassively watched her fists pounding his chest then he effortlessly caught her wrists, lifted them up, swallowed her panting lips and pushed her down in one swift motion.
His wife struggled, refusing to give up and he licked her ears to tease her.
“Don’t do that!”(Lucia)
Hugo was amused as she looked up to meet his eyes, looking like she was about to get angry. The playful atmosphere became heated in less than no time.
 The word she used can mean fooling around, playing around, wasting time, etc. Bad choice of words imo lol.