Chapter 28 Nonna’s home alone (3)
I was summarizing the contents of an old book about the Haggle Kingdom Mr. Bernard entrusted to me.
“Vicky, I brewed some tea.”
“Thank you. Let’s take a break.”
The brother and sister who had new ID cards should be traveling by wagon while the sun is up, and staying at an inn at night while moving toward the edge of the country. After parting ways, I am no longer involved and had no intention of getting involved.
I only slept an hour or two every day because I spent the night making ID cards.
Listening to Nonna, who was talking to me next to me, I was lulled into sleep on the bench. After a while, when I woke up, I was covered with a blanket.
On the other hand, the jailers of the royal castle still felt as though they were duped by a fox.
A thin, red-haired woman came to see them every evening. Every time she visited, she would ask the prison guard to leave them alone, and after about an hour each time, she would leave, wiping her tears.
The man was scheduled to be executed soon, and the prison was locked, so after the first time when the guards stood watch, subsequent visits they stayed in the guard’s waiting room. The passage leading to the prison is a dead end, and it’s impossible to leave unless you pass in front of the waiting room, so they didn’t worry about escapes. There were also soldiers. And also patrolling soldiers outside the prison.
But yesterday, when the usual lady went to visit and didn’t come back after an hour, they went to check and found that they had disappeared. The prison cell was still locked, but all the iron bars on the windows had been cut open.
It became a huge commotion, the castle gates were closed, and there was an all-out manhunt searching the grounds of the castle, but they could not be found. After that, a large-scale search was conducted by the Second Knights Order and garrison, expanding the search area to the entire royal capital, but neither the escaped prisoner nor the red-haired woman was found.
One night two weeks after the man escaped from prison.
The Commander visited our house announcing, “I bought sweets from a popular store.”
After brewing tea, the three of us enjoyed a sweet cake. A lot of chestnuts drenched in syrup were arranged on a bed of cream. The luxurious and delicious cake made my face relax. Nonna tried to lick the cream on the plate, so I warned her, “No.”
Nonna was a little startled.
“When you want to do that, bring the dishes to the kitchen first.”
When I said that with a serious face, Nonna and the Commander burst out laughing at the same time.
“Mmm, it’s delicious! Commander, you look tired.”
“Yeah, it’s delicious. I wonder … if I’m tired. Actually, that man from the evening party escaped. It appears someone helped him.”
“The Royal Castle was in chaos. A prisoner escaped the prison after all. It’s a grave situation. We’ve been searching the royal capital for 2 weeks.”
Fatigue appeared on the Commander’s face.
“Thank you very much for your hard work. And the man who escaped?”
“It appears he managed to sneak away somewhere. I also dropped by the sibling’s house, but the sister left home with a note that said, ‘I will enter a monastery in a place where no one knows me and pray for my brother who will be sent to heaven.’
I return the words while staring at the inside of the cup.
Nonna seemed uninterested in our conversation as she finished eating her cake, lowered the plate, and read a book on the sofa in the corner of the room. She remembered to lick the cream off the plate before putting it in the sink.
I brewed a fresh cup of hot tea for the Commander.
“Most people expect that the escaped criminal will be caught sooner or later. Information about the escape was sent to all the outer gates of the royal capital on a swift horse after all. Even if he raced to the outer gates, he won’t make it in time.”
I swallowed the last bite of the cake with hot tea.
“If he plans to hide in the royal capital, it’s normal to sneak into the poorer district, but since that man is an amateur, he will eventually be caught by tips sent in for the bounty. Although I do feel sorry for the younger sister …”
“Is that so”
With a somber air, the Commander decided to go home. I was so sorry that I put my hand on his arm and spoke to him.
“Commander, it doesn’t matter how many years later, but when you can take a break someday, why don’t the three of us visit Cadiz? On the night of the summer solstice, in Cadiz, a small wooden boat with a candle on it will be sent out to sea.”
Commander’s face softened a little.
“Oh, you know about it. It is said that the souls of the deceased return to the world while the candle burns.”
“They would be able to come to this world for a little while. I want the souls of my family to come and visit me. I have a lot to tell them.”
Commander gently held my head in his chest.
“Let’s definitely go. We’ll float a small boat on the night of the summer solstice. It’s a promise. No matter what happens, I’ll take that vacation.”
The Commander got a little better and went home.
After confirming that Nonna was reading a book, I placed the red hair wig in a small cloth bag on the inside of the cushion and carefully sewed it closed with thread.
I bowed to the honest people who would be desperately searching, including the Commander, in my heart. I won’t ask for forgiveness. I believe that someday I will incur divine punishment.
A brother and sister in their twenties came to a village at the southern tip of the Ashbury Kingdom.
The two worked well together and lived modestly. It was said that the two lost their homes after their parents died and came from a village far to the east. The village chief arranged an empty house for them to live in.
The brother and sister worked hard on the abandoned arable land and were friendly with the villagers.
One night, the sister talked to her brother over the kitchen lamp.
“It’s like a dream to be able to live like this. If brother was sentenced to death because of me, I knew I would die at the same time.”
“I’m sorry for worrying you.”
“No. Just like that person said, we should have tried to be happy instead of trying to get revenge.”
The sister took out an ID card from the drawer and placed it on the table. The two of them stared at it.
No matter how you looked at it, it appeared to be an official ID card. The texture of the paper, the precise background pattern, and the printed letters.
“No matter how you look at it, it’s real.”
“I wonder if that person is an official who makes ID cards.”
“She might be, I have no idea.”
“I regret not thanking her.”
“I can no longer do so because she clearly refused to be contacted because it might be traced, but it would be nice if I could thank her someday.”
“She said to me, ‘I’m doing this for myself, don’t worry about it.’ But I wonder what she meant. We have her to thank for our happy life now.”
The two remain completely clueless as to why the flashy red-haired woman helped them. They still had a third of the money that was handed to them, which she passed to them to ‘Use it for your accommodation and new life on the way.’
She was grateful that her brother was not executed and that he did not become a murderer.
After Nonna had fallen asleep, I carefully polished my shoes.
Inside the left and right heels of the shoe, coping saws were hidden within. The teeth were worn and dull. Should I have the teeth sharpened? I don’t think I’ll cut bars anymore though.
After polishing my shoes, I arranged them neatly and stored them in the shoe rack next to the entrance. Previously, a small metal fitting for picking the lock was also installed in the sole of the shoe. Now I had sealed the sole with resin. I hid the key-picking tool in another location.
If people knew about this incident, they would call me a hypocrite. It didn’t matter to me. I was resigned to being criticized.