My head suddenly felt numb.
Leona’s father brought up a past that I couldn’t even remember and secretly read into me.
“Still, we did our best for you.”
He was clearly talking to me, but I couldn’t focus at the moment.
It didn’t make sense that Leona was dying.
There was no recollection about that at all.
Selen held my hands.
The touch alone gave me goosebumps, so I hurriedly pulled back my hands.
“Did you really think it was okay to make such a decision just because I’m dying?”
“You’ve been alright since then anyway.”
“You could’ve worked for yourselves.
I’ve been working to death alone just to put food on your table.
What exactly…am I to you?”
I was really curious and asked on behalf of Leona.
What in the world was Leona to them?
“A slave? A maid? The only breadwinner in the family?”
“We wanted to work, too! B-But, we were very weak physically back then.
That’s why we couldn’t work!”
We were so weak! Take a look at us…”
So I fixed my eyes on each of them just like they wanted.
Funnily enough, those who claimed sickness looked healthier than Leona.
“No matter how much I look, no one seems weaker than me.”
“What are you talking about? Your father’s knees are weak, and I….I feel like collapsing anytime.
A-And your sister is… she…”
She’s playing with us right now.
Are you all idiots?”
As expected, Jane was pretty sharp.
Hearing her criticize her own parents for their nonsense, I finally came to my senses.
“Be quiet, Jane! Do you think we did this because we don’t know better?! We did this because we trust Leona!”
“My daughter won’t abandon us! If Leona doesn’t help us…then we…”
“Is something serious happening?”
I collected myself and looked at them carefully.
My parents’ faces tensed as if something quite serious had happened to them.
“That’s….You have to help us if we tell you about this, okay?”
Almost like she had rehearsed this story, Mrs.
Selen whined even before I could answer.
“Leona, we lived in poverty after you left! The last time we ate meat was when Duke Petri sent us money…but now…we can’t even afford rice…”
“…After I left? Don’t you mean after you sold me?”
“Anyways….! How can you throw away your family! I haven’t eaten for three days! Leona, please…you’re not someone who will abandon us!”
Leona’s father rose from his seat in agitation.
Where else can you find such a great spectacle?
“So you’ve spent all the money you received from selling me and the compensation money from the Duke, only to show up again after you ran through that money?”
“It’s not just that! Your father borrowed money using your name….”
I doubted my ears for a moment.
We have nothing to eat, so I borrowed money!”
“If you don’t have anything to eat, you have to work or sell your belongings.
Borrowing money? Have you gone crazy? It’s not enough that you sold my body, are you even selling my name now?”
Selen shook her hands.
“W-We are not selling your name! It’s because my daughter is a duchess now…”
I wanted to scream all kinds of swear words right in their faces.
They sold their own daughter and shamelessly used her name to borrow money.
I always knew that the Selen family was crazy, but this was far beyond crazy!
“It hasn’t been long since you sold me.
It hasn’t been long at all since the Duchy paid the compensation money.
What happened to all that money? Tell me….!”
“…We already used it up.”
“How much did you borrow?”
I lived a difficult life.
But they easily borrowed money and spent it like it was their own!
This time, they went too far.
“You’re going to pay off my debt anyway, so I can borrow that much, right?”
“Why would I pay off your debt? That’s ridiculous! Are you really crazy?”
“How impudent! You’re so full of yourself now that you’ve become a duchess! Did you say we are crazy?! Leona, no matter how demanding we are with you, you’re still my child! We raised you! So you must sacrifice for us!”
Leona’s father screamed, finally dropping his good father act.
It was so amusing to see them like this.
So I burst into laughter.
“Now you’re showing your true colors.”
“That’s right! I can’t stand it anymore! I’d still borrow your name from now on…!”
“I don’t have a reason to pay off your debt! I’m a grown married woman who acquired my husband’s surname! I have no connection with your family anymore.
But you want me to pay off your debt? How ridiculous! I don’t care even if you live like a beggar, I won’t give you a single penny!”
I leaped from my seat and spat out my feelings.
But Leona’s father raised his hand to hit me without a qualm.
“I came in because it was too noisy…but what the hell are you doing now?”
It was the Duke.
He rushed in and twisted my father’s arm without hesitation.
Amid this sudden situation, I glanced at May standing just outside the door.
I think 15 minutes had passed since I entered the parlor, but I didn’t expect the Duke to come in person.
Unlike his usual neat appearance, he was disheveled.
“Ugh, ouch! It hurts! Let go of me!”
“I thought this was just a normal family reunion….but what the hell is this?”
The Duke’s face was filled with murderous rage.
His expression was so distorted that I wondered if he truly was the Duke.
“Ahh…y-your Excellency! Let me go first and talk! This is a misunderstanding….”
“Misunderstanding? Are you telling me raising your hand against someone is a misunderstanding?”
“P-Please let him go first! We were just talking!”
Selen, who cherished her husband so much, tried to stop the Duke.
“We were just talking.”
“Yeah! We were just talking.
Everyone turned toward me all at once.
We were just talking.”
As I spoke, the Duke roughly threw off Mr.
His naturally frail body fell to the floor like a dead leaf.
“Ugh…w-what the hell is this….how can a duke be so mean to a guest? We are Leona’s family! I’m Leona’s father!”
But the Duke only smirked and approached me.
“A family? I guess a family must hit each other in your book?”
Leona doesn’t listen so I got a little carried away.
It’s just a little misunderstanding.”
But since when did uninvited people call themselves guests?”
The Duke crossed his arms.
“E-Even if we don’t have an invitation…because we’re family….”
As if intimidated by the Duke, Leona’s father stammered.
“Hmm…because you’re her family, huh? By the way, didn’t you sell my wife a while back?”
“Even so! We are still a family!”
Leona’s father seemed to gather his courage and screamed.
Meanwhile, my sister who had been watching silently, suddenly started talking.
“We did sell her, but objectively speaking, you have no standing to be so conceited since you are the one who bought Leona! You made her a duchess in name only.
But it’s strange that you actually take her as a real duchess after so long!”
“Jane! Be quiet!”
Selen tried to contain her daughter in a hurry, but Jane was stubborn.
“Hoo! It’s my first time to witness a woman questioning me like this.
“So let’s annul this transactional relationship, and bring in your wife fairly.”
“Are you doing this for your sister’s sake? If that’s what you want, then are you willing to return the money you took?”
I’m telling you to bring in someone other than her as your wife!”
Everyone’s faces froze in the natural response to her proposition.
“Isn’t it better to have a wife who doesn’t have a dirty past like her? I think it’s better than having an uneducated wife.”
Is this what I think it is? Her face got brighter the moment he appeared.
This is really the height of comedy.
The Duke basically told her, ‘You’re the first woman who dares to slap me in the face like this’.
Did she misunderstand his meaning or what?
Why do you think I took Leona as my wife?”
“Because you already spent money on her?”
“It’s because my daughter and I love her more than anyone else.
But what can you offer?”
“I can do that much, too.”
As the atmosphere suddenly changed, the Selen couple smiled brightly.
“Jane! So you were thinking about that!”
We don’t have to beg Leona.
We have a better daughter!”
So you want me to take this woman to be my wife now?”
Selen nodded at the same time.
“Actually, Leona is not that great! Your Excellency, on the other hand, our Jane is a child that we raised preciously.
I’m sure you’ll like her!”
“I really detest women with ugly hearts like you!”
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