Evening, that day.

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I barely made it to my room, washed up, and was unable to sleep for a long time.

The appearance of Rere that I saw today kept pricking my heart.

‘I want to do something for her.
Should I just be frank with my feelings?’

How should I change the child?

Based on the numerous children that I’ve seen so far, all I can do for the child was to wait patiently.

The words ‘I believe in you’ or ‘I will wait for you to change’ didn’t and won’t work for a wounded child.

I looked out the window quietly, knowing that it would be useless trying to pluck out the wounds stemmed from various complex sources.

Before I came here, there was no adult who was close to me.

A child born to a single mother.

Even that single mother disappeared without a trace as soon as she gave birth to me.
The child who couldn’t even register her birth because no one came to look for her after staying at the hospital for the whole month was me.

I was unaware of this story when I was young.

One day, I was suddenly curious about my parents, so I followed the head of the orphanage and asked her.
She was rummaging through the documents roughly with an annoyed expression.
She told me the truth that may or may not be true.

I never had a family since I was born.
The people in the orphanage were my family, and no one cared about me as they had so many children.

Even the head of the orphanage overworked me to take care of the children as if I’m an employee.

There was nothing going on in my everyday life except when I went to school.
From newborns to children who graduated from the orphanage, I overworked myself every day as if I were born to take care of them.

I went through many sleepless nights, but the adults were feigning ignorance because they knew that if I took a day off, they would have a hard time.

‘And then I was adopted.’

I’m not sure if it was a decision made on a whim, or if it’s due to somebody’s pressure, but I had a normal family.
It was even an economically affluent house.

But my parents, who adopted my 15-year-old self, only viewed me as their child’s nanny.

I wish it would just stop there, but I had to do all the housework and as well as clean up after their 13-year-old child.

The child of that house habitually stole his mother’s money, and I had to take all the blame for stealing instead of him.

Filthy blood and inevitable abusive words tormented me.

I was hit in the head and beaten all over my body to the point where I couldn’t lie down.

But even in that life, there were some good things that happened.

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After staying there for 3 years, I learned how to bake and draw.

If I stayed in the orphanage, I would have never learned such things.

‘It’s funny to compare Rere and I like that…’

I said Rere was like a reflection of my childhood days, but Rere’s situation was completely different from mine.

But the image of my younger self, who kneeled and begged my adoptive parents each time they said ‘Just where did I adopt this beggar kid from?!’ because I was scared of being abandoned, was overlapping with Rere’s image now.

‘I don’t need anything else, I just want you to stay by my side.
I hope you don’t throw me away.’

So I clasped both of my hands tightly and headed to the kitchen.

***

The next morning.

I walked to Rere’s room with May, who had come to fetch me on time as usual.

While I was thinking about what we should play today, or should we make chocolate together if she was healthy enough, I arrived in front of her room.

“Oh my.
We meet again.”

It was the woman that the Duke had brought as the child’s new stepmother.

“Have you been looking for the child since early this morning? No, before that, are you still yearning for the mother position? Ms.
Nameless Cockroach?”

“I’m not the one who’s going to lose this position.
Don’t you think it matches well with someone who has noble blood like me? The Duchess position, I mean.
Now, open the door.”

The woman, who looked at me up and down as if I looked funny, went in at once.

The woman’s chattering did not stop while she was entering the room.

“You want to beat me, but what can you do? There’s nothing good about you.
You look ridiculous as you walk around in those clothes.
Did you say a cockroach? Isn’t that a vulgar word that only slaves say? Hoho.”

Her clothes were clearly different from mine.

All kinds of jewels were attached to her skirt that was made of high-quality material.

There was even a large ribbon attached to the top of her dress, which made it look countrified.

‘Are you saying that’s beautiful?’

Well, it was better than the dress I wore, but it’s not practical at all.

I stared at her for a moment and tried to move my feet to get inside.

However, the maids of that woman prevented me from coming in for a long time.
But that couldn’t stop me from entering.

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Just like a worm that wriggled when someone stepped on it, I went inside with no trouble.

During the scuffle that happened in front of the door, that woman clung close to Rere.

“Hi, Rere.
It’s your mom.”

“Such an ugly auntie can’t be my mom.”

“Did you say I’m ugly? You shouldn’t say that.
That’s a bad word.
That…”

“…Stupid.”

“What?”

“What did you put on your face? It smells.
To be exact, it smells like poop.”

“What do you mean by it smells? It’s just… the scent of perfume.”

The embarrassed woman was busy fanning herself.

“A chunk of poop.”

“…You.
In the end, I’m going to be your mom.
Don’t you think you’ll regret doing this to me? What if you get hit? Then it’ll hurt a lot.”

“I’m not scared.
Stupid poop.”

“…Seriously.
How can a child, who is called a princess, have such a bad habit.”

“What?”

“I’ll put an end to your attitude today.
Your daddy said I could do whatever I wanted from now on.”

Only then did Rere shift her gaze from the rabbit and met that woman’s eyes.

As if it was a sign, the woman’s maid hurriedly handed out something in front of Rere.

All kinds of chocolates.

Some had luxurious packaging, whereas others were shaped like animals.

It was an assortment of chocolates that were so pretty and was enough to infatuate me, even as an adult.

It wasn’t until I saw what I had stuffed in my pocket that I realized.
There was a huge difference between what I had made earnestly for Rere and that woman’s chocolates, which were scattered all over the floor.

To the point that I was embarrassed.
Mine was bad.

Rere’s eyes were on me for a moment.

But that woman blocked my view again.

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“You have to listen to your mom.
Look.
Your mom brought you some chocolate.”

“…”

“Listen to me if you want to eat.”

As Rere only stared at the chocolate wordlessly, she lifted her chin and laid her eyes on Rere.

“If you’ve come to your senses, get up and apologize to me.”

Now her eyes turned to me.

I could feel her obvious sarcastic eyes as if saying that this much was nothing for her.

I snorted at her attitude.

Sure enough.
Let’s see if you could handle that kind of child.

“These are chunks of poop brought by a stupid poop.”

“What?”

“Get lost.”

“It can’t be…Are you telling me to get lost?”

“Yeah.”

“…Ha.
Do you know who I am!”

“I know.
A chunk of poop.”

Rere didn’t even look at her as she was busy playing with her dolls.

“…You’ll come to your senses only if you’re hit, right?”

Only then did Rere’s uncomfortable gaze reach her again.

“Are you going to hit me?”

“Yeah.
That’s right.
Princess Rebecca of Petri Dukedom is a very spoiled child.
You were out of your mind.
An ill-mannered child must be taught a lesson.
As a parent, I have to punish my child so they will grow up properly.”

“You’re not my mom.”

“I’m your mother.
Your third mother.
The document says I’m your third mother.
That stupid woman back there couldn’t even put up her name.”

For a moment, the woman turned her head and looked at me.

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“Slow-witted people like you must not know.
You must have believed that you were the third mother.
The document was annulled by the duke even before it was officially filed.
Tsk.”

That’s why she was so brazen.

I never imagined that would happen.
As I was surprised by her unexpected words, the woman kept chattering.

“Get yourself together.
Princess, that woman is not your mom.
I’m your real mom, even if you don’t like it.
So bring in the stick.”

“No!”

“Your father told me to take care of you.”

At that moment, a thought came to my mind.

‘The third mother listed on the document? Rebecca’s third mother was severely hurt.
I don’t even know her name.’

The woman who gets severely hurt by Rebecca.
That…can’t be.
I’m the third one in order, but according to what she said, I was no longer the third one, was I?

I couldn’t believe he annulled the document.
Clearly, the first document written by the Duke and Leona was about marriage registration.

Leona didn’t know anything and wrote the document under the pressure of her family.
I certainly remembered her memory.

At that time.

The woman who kept talking nonsense pulled Rere’s arm roughly.

“Come here!”

Instinctively, my body jumped out like a rubber ball and held her hand violently.

“Argh! Why are you holding me! Do you want to get hit? You’re a fake mother! How dare you touch me?! What the hell are you doing!” She said with a sharp glare at me.

“What about you? What are you doing to a child? Are you taking out your anger on her?”

“Shut up.
How dare a wench like you touch my body!”

“Then what’s so great about you that you lay your hand on a mere 5-year-old?”

But what I said didn’t work on her.

“I’m her mother.
It’s only natural for parents to lead their children to the right path.
How dare you try to teach me with that mouth of yours! Get the hell out here before I rip your mouth apart.
Maids, what are you doing? Get this wench out of here right now.”

I was about to be dragged by her maids that were much more numerous than before.
But the moment I let go of this woman’s hand right here, it was obvious that the child would be abused.
I grabbed her with all my might.

“I won’t let go.”

“Arggh! It hurts!”

“I won’t let go even if I break your hand.”

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