As she was pulled, Yuri instinctively turned her head. And as she did, she locked eyes with the man who was still holding her very close. A pair of silvery grey eyes, gleaming like broken fragments of the moon, came into her sight. Beneath them, was a high nose bridge, a neat mouth, and a chiseled jaw.
He was a handsome young man, with strict features and he gave off an elegant feeling. Like Yuri, his hair was pitch-black. The moment the man’s face came into her sight, Yuri unconsciously paused. It wasn’t hard to guess his identity once she saw him.
“I am fine.”
She soon gave a short reply and pushed away from the man who was holding her as if to protect her.
‘I could have escaped on my own though.’
Knowing she’d been helped when she didn’t need it at all made her feel somewhat disgruntled. On top of that, what the hell was this princess carry?
It was her first time experiencing this in her life and her heart pounded…bullshit, it gave her the creeps. She hadn’t known since she hadn’t experienced it before, but she didn’t like this kind of thing at all.
If the man had put on airs due to this, her first impression of him would have hit rock bottom completely. However, she didn’t know if she should call it fortunate or maybe it was just natural…
The man put her down without saying anything unnecessary.
Yuri lowered her head to the child who she was still holding even now.
She could feel the child tremble intermittently in her arms, like a small bird in pouring rain.
“I’m, I’m oka…”
But the child couldn’t say the word and stopped speaking. A small sniffing sound traveled to Yuri’s ears. Her spring green eyes that were so much like her sister’s quickly filled up with tears.
Albeit late, Hestia recognized the situation she had just faced, and she seemed overwhelmed with both fear and relief.
Yuri sighed. She didn’t know any tricks to soothe a crying child. So for now, she stroked Hestia’s head while tidying up the girl’s disheveled hair.
“T-Today is my sister’s birthday…so I wanted to give her flowers…”
Hestia continued to stumble over her words as she sniveled. And when Yuri gave it second thought, she realized there were squashed flowers on the ground where the carriage had just raced through. There was even a yellow flower gripped tightly in Hestia’s hand.
Today was Anne Marie’s birthday? So it seems Hestia came here to buy flowers for her sister.
“Oh, I see. Are you hurt anywhere?”
“It looked like you fell earlier though. Your leg doesn’t hurt?”
Only then did Hestia seem to realize that she had sprained her ankle. And that her knee was bleeding too from her fall. Finally, tears began to fall from the child’s big eyes.
As she was a mature girl, she was trying her best not to cry but she was still a kid.
“It’s okay. It’s okay, Hestia.”
Yuri hugged the child to comfort her and turned to thank the man who was still standing there, watching them. She didn’t need it, but he had helped them anyways.
“Thank you for your help.”
Besides, the man’s actions must have been with good intentions.
“No. The one who covered the child in immediate danger was not me but you, milady.”
Expectedly, a humble reply was the response to Yuri’s thanks.
Maybe it was because of his straightforward tone, or his neat appearance but the man exuded an aura of uprightness and reliability.
The scene he saw moments ago seemed to have left a considerable impression on him. Then again, Yuri’s entire composure despite the situation also gave him with a unique impression. His silver-grey eyes held faint interest as he looked at Yuri.
“I guess the child injured her leg.”
The man’s gaze fell on Hestia who was crying in Yuri’s arms.
“Are you really alright, milady?”
Then his eyes moved to Yuri and hearing the question, Yuri felt like her stomach was churning again.
Why did he keep calling her ‘milady’?
It might be a natural title in the aristocratic world he lived in but that wasn’t the case for Yuri. Somehow, she couldn’t help but feel rejection towards that over-polite title.
“Yes, I’m fine thanks to you.”
“There’s a clinic nearby that I know of. I can take you there if you don’t mind.”
Yuri almost rejected his suggestion reflexively. But she soon thought of something and accepted.
“Thanks for the assistance.”
“Don’t mention it.”
The man carried the crying Hestia. Then he called someone.
“Lord Crawford, did you call me?”
“Disperse for today. I’ll hear the report later.”
“Yes, sir. Understood.”
Another man who seemed like his subordinate, stood with his back to Yuri and bowed respectfully before withdrawing. When she heard the name that came from the other man’s mouth, Yuri knew that her guess was correct.
“Let’s go then.”
The dark-haired man looked back at Yuri and said.
His clear face was exposed by his wind-blown hair and he stood out prominently in the plain streets. He was wearing a white outfit akin to a uniform and it was decorated with gold.
Yuri knew they would send someone from the top to investigate because of the disappearances at the Red Ferret orphanage. But she didn’t know that such a big shot would come from the very beginning.
Then like she thought, this case was indeed what signaled the entry of the original novel.
The man standing in front of Yuri with an extraordinary aura was none other than Kalian Crawford, the eldest son of the Crawford family, rulers of the East.
Yes, it was the main male-lead of the novel.
That was also an important reason why Yuri accepted to go to the clinic with him.
In the original novel, the fateful first encounter of the male and female protagonist had happened due to Hestia’s kidnapping but that was something Yuri planned to destroy.
That said, both of their fates seemed to be tied together somehow, because Kalian just saved Hestia from a carriage accident.
In order words, a new flag for the meeting of the protagonists was born. So wouldn’t it be nice to give the male lead a chance to meet to meet the female lead?
With that in mind, Yuri finally took a step forward. Then suddenly, something vague set off her intuition.
Yuri continued to walk and secretly checked with her eyes. Her red eyes gleamed sharply as it scanned the area around her. But she couldn’t find anything suspicious among the vast crowd. As a matter of fact, there were many people watching them because of what happened a little while ago.
Because it had happened so fast and the oddity only lasted for an instant, she figured it might have just been her imagination.
“Is something the matter?”
Perhaps sensing some dissonance from Yuri, Kalian turned to her and asked.
Yuri calmly replied, removing her eyes from the buildings on the side and looking back to her front.
Like that, they all headed to the clinic where Anne-Marie worked.
* * *
The heroine, Anne-Marie, came running. Her long, sheer silver hair fluttered behind her while her plain white gown, unique to doctors, flapped around her like wings.
It seems Hestia was overcome with sadness as soon as she saw Anne-Marie because she began to cry loudly, much different from her quiet sobs before.
Anne-Marie had run up to them with no time to think and immediately hugged Hestia’s crying figure.
“Are you okay, Hestia? What do you mean you almost got hit by a carriage? Are you hurt? Did you get hurt anywhere?”
Yuri looked at the pair of sisters then she turned away slightly.
“Hestia fell down on the road, but this gentleman saved her in the nick of time.”
While feeling like she was arranging the meeting of the protagonists, Yuri flattered the male lead that was going to be Anne-Marie’s partner.
But the honest male lead corrected Yuri’s words.
“The one who ran to the child as soon as she was in danger with no hesitation, was this lady here.”
‘No…I don’t mind so just get your own recognition.’
“But the one who saved us in the end was this gentleman. If not for him, Hestia and I would have been in danger.”
Anne-Marie had grown tearful somewhere along the line.
“Thank you. Thank you so much…”
She sobbed with Hestia in her arms and thanked Kalian and Yuri repeatedly. Kalian accepted her thanks in a rather awkward manner.
Even though her nose was red from crying, she still looked piteously beautiful, making Yuri think ‘as expected of the heroine’. If something bad had happened to Hestia, Anne-Marie would probably be crying differently.
Yuri was glad she didn’t have to see that face. She didn’t want the kind and sweet sisters next-door to be struck by misfortune. Of course, in this case, even if she wasn’t here, the male lead would have saved Hestia.
But even if she had expected that, she couldn’t turn her back on Hestia in that situation.
‘I’m okay’ is one word is Korean so she in fact couldn’t say a word.
 I was going to use ‘miss’ instead of ‘milady’ but we already use Ms. for the honorifics.
 It doesn’t say doctors but ‘people who work at the clinic’.
T/N: the more I type Crawford, the more I think of crawfish. QAQ