The Villainess Reverses The Hourglass - LightNovelsOnl.com
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Translator: Jis...o...b..>Proofreader: Arie Bee
"Miss, we've arrived."
While Aria was looking at the newspaper and thinking of the past, the carriage had already arrived at the tinker's shop. But, because there wasn't any useful information besides the slave incident, Aria placed the paper down and went inside the tinker's shop.
Inside the worn-out and small shop were two customers, who Aria a.s.sumed were males and an old man who was the owner.
The air became stuffy as soon as Aria and her servants walked in. But she didn't frown because there was at least some s.p.a.ce to move around.
The owner seemed to recognize Aria and widened his eyes. It was because she had lived in their village before and there was no one else who had risen in status other than Aria and her mother.
Unlike the boutique, Aria had often visited the tinker's shop to buy something.
But because a commoner could not speak to a n.o.ble, the owner silently handed the fixed hourgla.s.s.
He seemed to have heard the rumors about Aria because his hands were trembling. It was strange and funny to think that she could become a symbol of fear just by becoming a n.o.ble despite being a mere fourteen-year-old girl.
"P-please take a look."
Aria carefully looked at the fixed hourgla.s.s. She checked to see if there were cracks and if the sand fell down smoothly and if it was overall in good shape. After checking, she confirmed that it had been perfectly fixed without a single fault.
"It's amazing that you could fix an hourgla.s.s that was completely shattered."
Aria also took a huge liking to the holder that was shaped like an hourgla.s.s on the inside and covered in cloth to absorb the shock.
No one would be able to get to it if she kept it in her own secret place.
Aria ordered Jessie to pay twice the amount of the original cost. Because this was a compliment better than words, the old man bowed his head as if he was honored.
"Miss, will you return home now?"
"No, I'm going to look around a bit."
It was her first outing in a while, and it would be such a waste to just go back now, so she looked around the tinker's shop instead.
There were cheap toys and large items that Aria could not figure out the use for and there were many different types of strange items exhibited.
'I used to admire those useless items.'
The items even changed colors because of all the dust. When she wiped it with her hand, the poorly-made decorations jingled as if they were about to fall off. It was really cheap. But somehow Aria still felt happy.
As Aria looked around slowly, she noticed the two men who had been looking at the same object since earlier. They were the people who had been in the shop before Aria had even come in.
She had come near them while being lost in thought. She couldn't see clearly because they had their hoods on, but they were definitely males based on their height.
The two men did not move while they stared at the cabinet, and Aria couldn't even hear them breathing. Aria also held her breath. She could somehow feel a dangerous vibe.
"……Miss, let's return now."
The bodyguards must have also felt it because they frantically blocked the s.p.a.ce between Aria and the two men.
The soldier's hand was already at the sword on his waist. Aria gulped and nodded.
She had no intention of voluntarily falling into danger with this hard-earned second chance. Aria turned towards the exit.
The tight tension finally let loose and her bodyguards opened the door for her with relieved expressions.
As she was heading out, Aria saw a piece of paper on the old man's counter and paused for a moment to think before warning the man.
She wouldn't normally bother but it was to thank him for fixing the hourgla.s.s.
"That auction ticket, you should sell it because you won't be able to use it."
"W-what do you mean……?"
"I warned you. But the choice is up to you."
People were secretly sold and bought in the bas.e.m.e.nt of the casino, but they were also sold items through auctions in public.
The tickets for the auctions were quite expensive for commoners to purchase, but there were long lines of people who wanted to buy the tickets days before the auction began.
It was because there were rumors that they were sold cheaply. There were also rumors that you could hit it big if you sold the items you got through the auctions.
The old man probably bought a ticket for the same reasons.
But soon the casino will close because of the Crown Prince. And when it does, the ticket will become another useless piece of paper, and the old man will lose a lot of money.
The old man seemed confused at Aria's words, and he didn't seem to want to sell the ticket based off of a young girl's words.
'It's a shame but there's nothing I can do about it.'
Aria was about to head out after her warning. But one of the men in the corner that had not been moving till then suddenly s.n.a.t.c.hed her thin arm.
The other one quickly pulled out a sword and blocked the bodyguards. They were as fast as light.
Because it was so sudden, Aria's freedom had been stolen by the two men without even a chance to escape.
Jessie fell in shock and screamed in silence.
If she moved even a little bit her head will come off. Aria shuddered because of her past experience with it.
"……Why did you say something like that?"
The man holding Aria's wrist asked.
His black hair and blue eyes were slightly exposed. Despite his tall height that could be seen as an adult, his body was thin and his face was young. He seemed to be Kain's age at most.
Aria frowned because she thought she had seen him somewhere, and the grip on her wrist strengthened.
"I asked why you said such a thing to the owner."
"I-I don't know what you're saying……!"
She had no idea what he was trying to say. Aria looked around by rolling her eyes but there was no one around who could help her.
The man asked again.
"I asked why the ticket is going to be useless."
How did she know something that didn't happen? Aria finally understood the man's question. Is this really something he had to ask in this way though? She looked at his appearance to see if he was trying to join the auction as well.
He was mostly covered in the black cloak so she couldn't see inside, and even the parts of clothing she could see was black, so there was no information she earned through that.
The one thing was that he had fair skin that commoners could not have due to the harsh labor.
'……Is he a n.o.ble?'
He must not be a significant one. It was because his face was unfamiliar to Aria, who had nearly all the n.o.bles' faces memorized because of all the parties she had attended. He must've come up from the countryside or something. So he can enter the auction.
Everything fell into place when she thought of it that way. He must've been surprised because he heard that the ticket would be useless even though he had come up all the way to the capital and bought an expensive ticket.
His strangely fast movement and his informal way of speaking to her were questionable but there was no other solution.
"Let go of my wrist, it hurts."
"I will if you let go."
He glared at Aria without letting go of her wrist. He didn't seem to trust Aria. Aria finally regained her calmness. The man may seem older than her but Aria was the more experienced.
Although she had led an enjoyable life, even that experience was enough to figure out the man and the situation. If he had more experience in life, he wouldn't have asked for an answer in this way.
Aria smiled at the man who was threatening her and whispered.
"You seem to be more skilled than my bodyguards, surely you don't think a little girl like me can escape just because you let go of my wrist? And it really hurts."
The man finally looked down at Aria's wrist. All the life had drained from her skin and a bluish corpse color was beginning to show.
He sent a few signals to his partner and slowly let go of Aria's wrist.
Her bodyguards' movement was still stopped, and although Aria's wrist was free she could not escape because the man had blocked her path.
Aria flicked her right wrist a few times and clenched her fist and let it go. Her hand was numb from being held by such strength. He really was a rude person.
"Now, answer me."
"I heard a rumor."
"A rumor that the casino will go out of business soon."
She had never promised to tell the truth, and she had no obligation to, so Aria lied without hesitation.
The man's face froze.
He really must have bought the auction ticket.
Aria added on another lie to her lie.
"It was a rumor that Viscount Louvre lost a lot because of his business method. It's at the point where he needed to close the casino, give up his viscount t.i.tle, and run away from the empire."
Viscount Louvre was the owner of the casino. Three generations of his family were destined to be executed because his human trafficking business gets exposed.
He had brought on the downfall of his own family by pa.s.sing on such a terrible business to his offspring.
"Since I've answered, move aside so I can leave."
"……I won't let you go if what you've said is a lie."
The man's blue eyes were set on Aria. His expression was stained with murderous intent. Aria could feel the chills on her spine. She was also breaking out in cold sweat.
Although she knew he was bluffing, she could not be calm in front of the predator. Unable to control her trembling lips, Aria smiled awkwardly.
"……How would you know if the rumors are true?"
He spoke as if he understood but his actions didn't match. He looked over her entire body as if he was determined to find her.
His gaze lingered at the rose-shaped ruby at her chest, and Aria's face paled as his eyes seemed to know where it was from.
'I have to run away……! I have to get away!'
She wanted to leave this place immediately. She didn't want to be a.s.sociated with this man ever again. She could feel the danger. The danger she had never experienced in her past life would become a sword that would cut her neck off.
"…..This is the end of my response, so let my soldiers go."
The man sent a signal to his partner as Aria spoke in an expression that looked like she was about to faint. His partner let go of her bodyguards.
Although they had become free, the soldiers did not move and looked at the man who had suppressed them. Aria quickly left the tinker's shop with her useless bodyguards and Jessie.
* * *
"What should we do?"
The man who had suppressed the bodyguards asked as he watched Aria's carriage leave.
"……A carriage from the Roscente family."
"Did the count have a daughter around that age?"
"There is a lady named Mielle. I heard he has another daughter from his remarriage, but she seems to be a girl who doesn't even have the basic manners down. So it's probably Lady Mielle."
It meant honey. It wasn't a name that suited her cold face. She had stayed mostly calm in an unexpected situation and even played him. It was hard to think of her as a girl in her early 10s.
The man looked down at his hand that had grabbed her wrist. It was a very thin and weak wrist. The ladies of her age must be the same but hers seemed particularly so.
'What is this feeling?'
A strange feeling was left along with her warmth on his palm. It was a familiar yet unfamiliar feeling. It was very weak but something he had felt before.
'Where did I feel it……?'
He could not understand the familiar feeling because he had no connections with the Roscente family. As he gazed blankly at his hand, the other man asked.
"What should we do? Should we a.s.sign someone to follow?"
"No, it's fine since we've figured out what family she's from. For now…… we'll hit the casino. If the rumors are true, we have to do something before the viscount runs."
"But……. We don't have enough information and we're not done making a perfect plan."
"Not having a perfect plan is better than the viscount's escape."
It would become quite troublesome if he escaped out of the country. It was better to let him go inside the country rather than out of it.
"It may be an ignorant lady's joke."
"Even if it is, we need to do something just in case."
Even if the rumor about the rumor spreading was fake and they were to hit the casino without enough information or a plan, there weren't any particular risks besides it becoming a little more bothersome.
But if Aria was telling the truth and the viscount escapes while they are busy gathering information and making a plan?
Then they would have to ask the neighboring countries for help. Not only was it troublesome, but it was also embarra.s.sing. It was better to end it inside the country for all sorts of reasons.
Furthermore, the girl had known for sure that the casino would close. She knew that a casino that looked like it was getting even more successful by the day would close. It was a fact that no one knew except him.
She had said she heard the 'rumors' of Viscount Louvre somewhere, but she must know something based on how specific her information was. He had to act fast.
"Then what time should we plan it?"
"You mean…… today?"
"Yes. Gather the people we need in the next hour and have them ready. We need to attack now. Since we don't know when he'll run."
Today is a bit……. The other man whispered to himself but bowed his head after looking at the man's expression.
"……I understand. I'll prepare it right away."
The man who received the order moved quickly and was out of sight in a moment. The man checked the warmth on his hand once more. There was nothing left but Aria's expression was still clear in his mind.
'Now's not the time.'
This wasn't the time to be lost in such thoughts. He had to catch the viscount as quickly as possible and build his foundation.
The man soon erased Aria's face and warmth from his mind and disappeared into the darkness.
END OF CHAPTER 10.
WHO IS THE NEW GUY?! I'm legit asking the question because I don't know who until I was reading this chapter….. and I still have no idea XD. Don't worry, I'll get the next chapter out very soon!
As usual, thank you Jisoo, for translating!Continue Reading