Lucia - Chapter 36
< — Damian — > (7)
In the quiet bedroom, only the sound of two people breathing could be heard. Lucia’s breathing was calming down to an even pace and Hugo lowered his head, turned her body sideways then wrapped his arms around her waist, pulling her into his arms.
He simply embraced her for a while then he began to cover her lips, eyes and forehead with kisses.
“Ha-ha, that’s ticklish.” [Lucia]
“Shall I make it not ticklish?”
Hugo whispered softly then bit her neck. His hand stealthily slipped from her back to her waist but Lucia twisted her body and naturally pushed his hand away.
When the smooth sensation of her skin disappeared from his palm, he reached out stubbornly and grabbed her buttocks. This time, Lucia pushed away from his chest.
“We can’t. I have a lot to do so I have to get up early tomorrow morning.”
“What do you have to do?”
“I’m planning to have a garden party in three days and since it’s a situation where I show my garden to people, I want to increase the scale a bit. So, from tomorrow, I have to organize the garden, prepare it and of course, there are a lot of other things I have to take care of.”
‘She was completely fine even though I wasn’t around.’
He grumbled inwardly.
“A garden party? The days are starting to get colder, are there still flowers?”
“There are autumn flowers. Although they aren’t as bright as spring’s or summer’s, I wanted to have a garden party before the year is over.”
“So, your party is more important than your husband that just came back. Which one is your priority?”
Again, his hands stealthily slid to her waist and his lips glued themselves to her neck. Lucia smacked his shoulders.
“Don’t be unreasonable. Do you know how childish you sound?”
“Oh-ho. Now you’re beating your husband?”
Lucia teasingly booed as his attempt to act tough. Hugo’s eyes strangely lit up then with huge motions, he pounced at her but Lucia’s small body quickly rolled away and avoided him.
There were bursts of laughter blended with small screams and the bed quickly became a mess with the two of them tossing and turning all over.
Soon enough, Lucia grew breathless and began to pant then was firmly caught by him. That she was able to avoid him even once on the narrow bed meant he was going easy on her or it would have been impossible.
He hugged her from behind, slid his legs between hers, then placed one hand on her chest as he kissed her back. Lucia tried to move but found she was held firmly in place so she gave up. Although his hands kept fondling her breasts, she left him alone.
“Did your assignment with your vassals go well?”
“Mhm. What of you? What have you been doing?”
“Nothing mu…ah, no, they is something. Damian came back.”
Just for an instant, his body stiffened. As Lucia was wrapped in his embrace, she could feel it.
“…I know.” (Hugo)
What did Damian mean to him? Lucia had a lot of things that she wanted to ask but she decided to take it slow and wait for when they could sit down and have a long conversation.
Since even Jerome was treasuring his words, she didn’t want to approach it prematurely. All this while, she’d been interacting with Damian and could tell that the boy did not resent his father.
It wouldn’t have been strange if the boy’s sense of shame over his situation and illegitimacy twisted his emotions but Damian turned out to be an honest and innocent child.
If she had a son like Damian, even if he wasn’t a child she gave birth to, she would put all her effort into raising him.
Now, she wanted to know how he thought of Damian. If they didn’t have any animosity towards each other, it was be a pity for them to keep having such a frigid relationship.
Was the relationship between them only the fact that they shared the same blood?
Lucia believed that even though it wasn’t as intense as the love between a man and a woman, the love between blood ties was bound with a string that was not easily broken.
“What do you think? Lunch? If possible, let’s have a meal together.”
Although Lucia spoke like it wasn’t a big deal, inwardly she worried about what to do if he rejected. If he didn’t even want to eat with the boy, then it was the worst possible situation.
“Let’s do dinner, I have a meeting in the morning.”
Fortunately, his answer was positive. Lucia gave a little sigh of relief.
“Was there any rudeness?” (Hugo)
Lucia thought about it briefly then realized the subject of his words was Damian but she couldn’t help but think, ‘ah, he doesn’t really know his son.’ If he knew Damian, even a little bit, he wouldn’t ask that question.
“Not at all. He was very polite and mature and his attitude and manners were not out of place. I’ll co-exist fine with Damian, you don’t have to worry about tha-”
“I’m not worried about that. Just tell me if he’s ever impolite to you.”
Behind his back, Lucia’s eyes narrowed as she listened to his tone that sounded like an officer talking about a recruit.
“What would you do?”
However, Hugo’s type was advice was never one from the mouth.
“That won’t happen. While you weren’t here, we’ve gotten along very well…”
Her voice was getting increasingly drowsy.
The lingering question was not heard by Lucia’s ear that had fallen asleep.
“Ah…my greetings…are late…Welcome back…” (Lucia)
He kissed her lips close to the end of her mumblings. Not long after, Lucia fell asleep, her breathing calm and even.
Once again, he lightly kissed her lips, then closed his eyes to sleep.
When Lucia woke up in the morning, she was alone. His waking hours were quite early so she’d grown accustomed to waking up alone.
The lingering sensation in her body told her that last night was not a dream. It had been a long time since they’d united so she had no strength in her body. She had to use her arms to support her body upright.
After she stood up, his viscous body fluids flowed out from between her thighs. No matter how many time she’d experienced this, Lucia covered her face out of embarrassment.
When she calmed down, she called the maid and ordered for a bath to be prepared. The maids waited on Lucia as she entered the bath full of warm water.
Her dazzling skin that was enhanced by the bright morning sun was littered with red marks. The maids kept glancing at those red traces and their faces grew flushed.
Their master returned late last night and no one could catch a glimpse of him but now they knew he went to their Mistress’ room. It was almost certain that after the bath, this rumor would spread among the maids.
“Is he in the office?” (Lucia)
“His Grace is in a meeting.”
“His Grace suddenly issued a summon before sunrise.”
He was a really energetic man. The ones that works below him could only suffer. To him, as soon as he’d returned to the castle, having a meeting was only a natural procedure. Even though he did the most work, he was the most energetic.
Lucia’s face reddened as the events from the previous night floated to the top of her mind. She was happy to see him again and glad that he still wanted her as passionately. Her mood became as light as the petals floating on the water.
*Next part is…dun dun dun.
*Nah, I’m just kidding…or am I? We’ll find out next week~~
< — Damian — > (7)
It was the first dinner together for the three people that had become family. Damian was the first to arrive at the dining room and sat waiting. When Lucia arrived, he got up and helped her into her seat as usual.
“Damian, have you seen your father?”
“I have not yet sent my greetings. His Grace was continuously occupied.”
“You’re right. He seems very busy today.”
Lucia pouted slightly as she replied.
‘No matter how busy he is, calling the boy in for a short greeting wouldn’t be too hard. Now look, this meal ends up being the first time they meet.’
Really, he was so inconsiderate. It was really admirable that Damian managed to grow so big without having a twisted mind.
Lucia had also been busy today and the fact that she was unable to have lunch with Damian as usual was constantly on her mind.
“What did you do for lunch? You didn’t skip it, did you? I had a lot of work today and couldn’t pay attention.”
“I ate and I know that you’re busy preparing for your party.”
After a while, Hugo arrived. His gaze fell on Damian, pausing on the boy for a little while then he sat down.
Without a simple word of greeting, the first family meal began. In the suffocatingly quiet dining room, Lucia proceeded to alternate glances between father and son.
‘Both of them are quite extreme.’
She didn’t expect an amicable, friendly relationship and Lucia didn’t know that ever since Damian went to boarding school, they hadn’t seen each other but even so it was obvious that this identical pair of father and son had not seen each other in a long time yet their eyes didn’t even meet.
‘Damian said he admires his father and…he wouldn’t have made Damian his successor if he hated him…’
The dreary atmosphere between the two was as cold as the weather but Lucia had no idea what to do so she decided to not worry about it.
The atmosphere between them wasn’t murderous or threatening and Lucia didn’t have any problems with either of them so the thought that it was serious didn’t occur to her.
‘It will probably be better if I am in the middle.’
Lucia didn’t think that a relationship like this could be changed overnight. If one tries to forcefully improve a relationship, the side effects could be huge.
When Damian returns to boarding school, the memory of his time here would remain a good one and if Hugo became more conscious of his son than before, that would be good too. For now, she would consider that as the first step.
‘Although…it’s really nice to see them side by side.’
It felt as though there was a big Hugo and a small Hugo together. Just looking at the two of them made her feel content. Meanwhile, the employees felt the the Lady of the House was incredible to eat calmly in such a suffocating atmosphere.
“Is the preparation for the garden party going well?”
Hugo asked a few moments after they had finished dining.
“Yes, it’s going smoothly. And about that, I have something to tell you. I was thinking about having Damian attend, what do you think?”
Damian who was drinking water made a small choking sound. Hugo glanced sideways at Damian then moved his gaze to Lucia.
“Isn’t it a party for women?”
“But Damian isn’t a man, he’s just 8 years old.”
For a moment, there was silence then Hugo let out a small laugh while Damian’s ears flushed red.
“As you say, Damian is not a man. Do as you please.”
“Damian, what do you think?”
Damian suddenly opened his mouth but when Hugo’s calm gaze moved to him, he shut his mouth and lowered his head.
“…Yes. I will do so.”
Lucia could feel the absolute power difference between father and son. Sometimes, Damian was so mature it was hard to believe he was just eight years old.
With his huge, sturdy build, his stiff but polite manner of speaking and his vocabulary that was on the level of an adult, one could barely see the signs that he was a child.
Lucia tried to remember her childhood as an eight year old but found she could barely even remember. Perhaps she had spent her time playing with the other children in the neighborhood.
But beside Hugo, Damian became a cub lion. In comparison, Hugo was the lion king, seated on the highest throne and looking down below. It seemed as though even if Hugo’s giant paw pressed down on him, Damian wouldn’t even make a sound.
‘It’s a good thing for a son to admire their father but they could also have difficulties to some extent.’
Lucia’s mood improved when she began to think that there was some possibility for improvement in their relationship.
‘The great lion king and his cub lion…now that I think about it, the banner for the Taran family is a black lion. How fitting.’
“Did you have something planned after the meal?” (Hugo)
“Nothing special, I wanted to go to the study and read a book.” (Lucia)
“Is it a book you have to read today?”
“Not really. Are we having guests?”
“At this time? There’s no need to attend to such rude guests.”
“Take a light stroll to digest your meal and take a bath.”
“I’m saying if you want to wake up early tomorrow, you have to retire to bed early.”
As Lucia looked her Hugo, her face gradually became red.
‘So someone’s face can get this red.’
Damian thought with an expressionless face.
“… what the hell are you saying in front of the child?”
Lucia’s face was crimson and she spoke in hushed tones. Seeing Lucia this way, Hugo couldn’t help but chuckle.
“What did I say?” (Hugo)
Lucia glared at him then stood up. Hugo called after her as she walked away.
“Where are you going?”
“Going for a walk!”
Her footsteps thudded as she rushed out of the hall with huge strides.
Damian stared blankly at her departing back. The boy could not understand the situation itself.
What part of that conversation caused Lucia to have such an excessive reaction? The smart boy couldn’t figure it out at all.
As the boy was mulling over it in his head, he heard the sound of a small laugh and turned his head in that direction, only to see the Duke laughing quite pleasantly.
The boy had seen the Duke’s cold smile or his ridiculing smile but it was his first time seeing the Duke laughing like this.
It was fascinating to see and at the same time, shocking. His father that was as fierce as a sword suddenly seemed human.
After a while, Lucia came back into the dining room.
“Damian, let’s go together.”
Damian glanced sideways at the Duke then stood up and followed after Lucia. The suddenly alone Hugo’s expression didn’t look so good.
The word she’d said the previous night.
He began to worry over that word. He recalled her appearance as she called for Damian without any inhibitions or hesitation and it seemed like the two of them had grown pretty friendly while he was gone.
It wasn’t as though he wanted them to have a terrible relationship but for some reason, he didn’t quite like it.
*I didn’t realize how much I wanted to see Damian and Hugo interact till this chapter (cries).