Chapter 19 : Quiet story: The day when I found the treasure (Alejandro’s POV)

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By chance, the six-year-old Alejandro had found it.

He was in the corner of the park, where he had run away from his studies with his tutor because he was too lazy to study.

There, a small reddish-brown striped kitten had been put in a box and was abandoned under a not-so-large tree.

…and there was a girl, crouching in front.

She was a pretty girl with hair the same color as the sky that day.

“…what are you doing?”

When Alejandro called out to her, the girl’s small shoulders jumped.

While wondering about her strangeness, Alejandro asked again.

“Can’t you hear me?”

“…”

Still silent, the child shook her head from side to side.

“…”

“…”

Fine, she just didn’t want to talk.

So Alejandro, too, just sat down in front of the box without saying a word.

They did not speak to each other, and the silence continued for a while.

The only sound left is the mewling of the creature in the box.

The girl, who had only been looking at the kitten for a long time, eventually reached out with her small hand.

But, perhaps frightened, the kitten attacked with its claws out.

A single red streak appeared on the girl’s white hand.

“Aww… it hurts…”

A small wound, with just a smear of blood.

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Just lick it and it will be fine, or if anything, it was just a graze.
It doesn’t really matter if anything was done to it.

And yet, the child was so shocked that she started to cry.

Her crying face momentarily overlaps with the one he remembered.

“…”

Alejandro’s chest throbbed loudly.

What came to his mind was his sister, whom he adored.

Two years younger than him, with a cute crying face, a girl who had always been Alejandro’s favorite.

Her crying face overlapped with that of the girl in front of him.

I wonder why, Alejandro thought.

Their hair and eye color were different, and even their facial features were not similar.

And yet, for some reason, the child’s crying face reminded him of the tears of his favorite sister, who he missed so much.

Would she cry more if I pushed her?

Should I prod her or not?

Should I just push her hard, or just let her fall?

Maybe twisting up her hand.

Ahh, and perhaps throwing her in the fountain.

I’m sure she will cry with a good face.

Alejandro liked his idea about the fountain, and tried to take the girl’s hand and lead her to it.

But then he once again noticed the thin line of blood oozing from the back of her hand.

If he touches her like this, he’ll get his own hand dirty with this blood of hers.

“…”

“Eh…?”

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A white color suddenly appeared in her line of sight, and the curious voice of the girl sounded.

Alejandro, a germaphobe, offered a handkerchief to wipe up the blood.

Of course, the handkerchief with the dirty stuff on it was to be burned later.

“Uhm.”

For a few moments, the girl’s gaze moved back and forth between the wound on her hand and the white handkerchief.

“Just take it.”

“…ah.”

The girl reservedly reached out her uninjured hand to take the handkerchief and gently pressed it to her wound.

“Um, thank you.”

The girl who had been crying bitterly before smiled at Alejandro.

“…!”

Alejandro’s chest tightened.

“…?”

What was that? Alejandro wondered, and touched his own chest area.

He checked to make sure he was not hurt or bleeding, and before he knew it, the girl in front of him returned her gaze from himself back to the kitten.

Alejandro, not liking this in any way, tugged on the child’s hair.

“Ouch…!”

Sure enough, that alone brought tears to the girl’s face, and Alejandro’s mood immediately soared.

It’s much better than my sister’s crying face.

And this girl has a cute smile.

No, I’ve never seen my sister’s laughing face, so I don’t know how to compare.

Satisfied that her attention returned to him, Alejandro quickly released his hand that was gripping her hair.

Then, while pulling himself together, he smiled and asked, “Are you okay?”

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The girl nodded in confusion, and Alejandro then offered her a candy ball from his pocket.

“I’m sorry.
I’ll give you this.”

What was the point of giving it to her? But there was no way that this girl, who was the same age as Alejandro, would have such wisdom.

And apparently this girl is very straightforward.

Seeing a candy ball in a cute wrapping paper, she immediately regained her good mood and smiled happily.

Alejandro laughed along with her.

Her crying face made Alejandro feel good, just as it did with his sister.

And this girl’s smile made him feel somewhat uplifted just by looking at her.

I found a good one.

So thought Alejandro.

Good.
I’m glad I found a replacement.

I’ve been bored ever since you disappeared.

It was lonely as if there was a gaping hole in my chest.
I was bored.
Everyday without her, it was tinged with gray.

Ah, but here we go.

Now I can enjoy it again.

And this girl was not like her sister.
Crying face isn’t the only thing that’s cute about her.

Alejandro stared into her face.

“What’s your name?”

“Natalia.”

“Natalia.
Natalia, huh? I’m Alejandro.”

“A-re…?”

“Alejandro.
Alejandro.”

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“Are… Are… handoro.”

“Yes.”

Later, when Alejandro learned that Natalia was the daughter of a nobleman, he was disappointed that things got a bit messy.

Alejandro was a commoner and Natalia was an aristocrat, albeit a lower class one.

His father, a merchant, had told him that it was the commoner that would be punished even if it was the nobles who were at fault.

But then he could not make Natalia cry easily.

“Haa… bummer.”

But, I was happy to finally have found a treasure to replace her.

“Although I’m not sure if I’ll be able to do it.
Well, I’ll just do it without them finding out.”

Alejandro, now seven years old, left the house today with great excitement.

He has an appointment to play with Natalia.

From that day on, Alejandro began to take his classes seriously.

As long as Natalia was around, Alejandro could lead a happy, normal life without being frustrated.

Moreover, although poor, Natalia is a daughter of a Viscount.
Her company was just what Alejandro’s parents wanted.

Now he can go visit Natalia with a big smile on his face.

“I loved the way you cried when you learned that your cat was gone.”

Alejandro stepped lightly and went to see Natalia.

I love her, I cherish her, I really can’t bear it.
My little treasure.

Both her crying and smiling faces are so intriguing that it is hard to choose his favorite one.

And now, Alejandro thought, it was probably a good thing that she had the restraints of being an aristocrat.

Because people break easily.

Like my sister.

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