Attendant Delivers Something to her Lord
“Okay, don’t let even a single mouse pass through! Tighten security and make a proper blockade around Rachel!”
At Prince Elliott’s direction, a number of knights were placed around a certain dungeon. Several knights from the Knight’s Order took alternating shifts, concealing themselves, and waiting to seize Rachel’s contact with the outside world.
“No matter how you think about it, Rachel must’ve opened her cell in order to receive new supplies. If not, then there is no way to explain all that new furniture she has. We’ll seize the guy bringing things in from the outside, and in front of her eyes we’ll make her feel our starvation tactics.”
Sykes was explaining the strategy to his fellow knights. He dared Rachel to listen from inside her cell.
Each knight would hide in the shadows of some nearby plants or trees, keeping an eye on the ventilation window in a plan to capture any of her essential agents who carelessly approached. If her last ray of hope were to be captured before her eyes, then Rachel would assuredly give in.
“Absolutely……..it sounds like there is still no movement from the Duke’s house, just what is going on?”
Elliott was muttering to himself feeling irritated. Not only was the Duke’s house not making any moves to rescue her, but the Duke and his wife have gone in the exact opposite direction and gone on a trip.
“Are they unable to grasp the current situation!? Don’t they realize their daughter has been accused of a crime and arrested!? Normally you’d send in at least one care package!”
“Your Highness, do you want them to send supplies to Sis? Do you not want……….?”
Elliott was stunned for a bit at George’s point, but he eventually managed to work up a reply.
“Of course it is out of the question for that care package to reach Rachel. However I would like those parents to try and show their feelings by having some sweets delivered. Seriously, what is the Duke doing!?”
“…….Should I have something delivered from the nearby store under Father’s name?”
“Hmm, I’ll eat them right in front of her eyes.”
“Ah, you were thinking of some proper harassment………”
In the meantime there was someone who wasn’t paying much mind to the fuss being made outside. Today as well Rachel had put on her eye mask, diving into her bed and making a pleasant sigh as she drifted off to sleep.
Being busy today just like every other day with his own work plus the work of his Lord, the butler was just finishing up when Sophia appeared before him.
Their Lady’s attendant looked ready to go out wearing a nice mantle with a hood pulled over her head.
“Jonathan, I’m going to meet with My Lady.”
“Ah, is that so. Please be sure to tell all the other servants.”
The butler’s hand quit writing as he raised up his face. And then hardened at what was said next.
“Meia and I will be going on a business trip together for two or three days, so don’t expect us back until then.”
Even though there’s no Lord present, why would a couple of maids have to go on a business trip?
Thinking about it for a little bit, Jonathan once again began signing documents without saying anything.
“Alright. Take care.”
It’s pointless to worry about details when it comes to the Lady.
Sofia headed towards the royal palace, walking into the side entrance of a store at a nearby city block.
Showing her face in the office, she received a report from the representative of the company.
It was a front masquerading as a legitimate business. This was where they covertly made contact with remote areas. Where they prepare supplies for their Lady. Where they work to fulfill the requests their Lady has specifically asked of them………so, this shop close to the Duke’s home was the Black Cat Firm, base for Sofia and the other members of the Dark Night Black Cats.
After confirming there were no problems at all, see immediately took out the wagon. It had already been prepared for departure upon Sofia’s arrival, so with an escort accompanying her, she could load herself into the back of the wagon. With the carriage making its way through the backyard’s wicket gate, the store didn’t look any different from the usual.
Although you’d think that being the gatekeeper for the royal palace would be a busy job, this was only true until around midday. Everybody there to do business would already be inside, and any visitors wouldn’t come by this late. That’s why when it is late in the afternoon, you will see almost no visitors to the castle or wagons delivering goods.
At such a place, a small wagon with no notable characteristics appeared.
“Halt! …..um, to which station are you delivering to?”
An elderly gatekeeper met it. As that elderly gatekeeper tried to find out where this wagon was going, the elderly coachman smiled from his seat and tipped his hat to say hello.
“Yes, I’ve got a delivery of cat food here.”
The gatekeeper made a signal while handing the driver a pass permit, and another gatekeeper removed the barricade that blocked the way. The coachman offered a nod to him as well before the wagon continued on its way into the royal palace.
It seems that a notification had been sent ahead from the first gate as when the wagon reached the second gate, it was allowed a free pass through.
The vehicle eventually passed by the front of the dungeon, and stopped at the back-facing door.
Sofia jumped out from the luggage carrier of the carriage. The coachman and escort meanwhile pulled back the canopy and began unloading the luggage.
A knight then suddenly ran towards them from out behind some nearby foliage.
The knight came right up in front of Sofia and gave a standing bow.
Sofia kept calm and asked,
“Are you a dog?”
“Right now everyone on duty is a cat. The others are keeping watch nearby. Today’s patrol won’t make it’s way to the prison cell for another three hours.”
If you look around, you’ll see that several of the Royal Palace’s lower clerks had gathered to help unload the goods. Sofia left the delivery to them and made her way down into the dungeon.
Having already become aware of the situation up top, Rachel removed her cell’s padlock and unwrapped the chain from the bars. As for the lock to the jail cell itself, she was currently in the process of trying to dexterously pick the lock with her hand poking out from between the bars.
“My Lady……please use the key to open the door.”
Sofia voiced her complaints, but Rachel responded showing little care for her servant’s words.
“If you don’t use your skills occasionally, then they’ll surely rust over time.”
“They’ll realize the trick when they notice the strange scratches around though. And what will you do if you accidentally crush the keyhole?”
“Don’t you think it’d be interesting if you could just slide these bars off and set them against the wall?”
“Please save it for next time.”
“I, you’ll be coming in again………?”
Sofia pushed her Lady aside as she opened the cell door with a key that only the Prison Guard should have. By the way, Rachel also has a copy of this key. She just doesn’t use it. It was a lockpicker’s pride (Lie).
“Madame’s life, are their any inconveniences?”
“Nothing in particular. I’ve been able to sleep well ever since we switched out my cushion for a bed……..and my writing is going well also.”
“We’ve loaded the sample from the Mouse & Rat Company on the carriage. Please take a look later. ………It hasn’t been a month yet, so why have you already written ten volumes?”
“Fufu, the story moves on its own when the characters are alive.”
Rachel walked through the doorway, leaving her cell for the first time in almost a month.
“Nnmmm! It’s been too long since I’ve tasted the air of the outside world!”
“You’ve just stepped outside the bars; the air here isn’t any different from what you were breathing before. We don’t have a lot of time, so please quickly come and sit here.”
Sofia sat Rachel down in the Prison Guard’s chair, placing a prepared brunette wig on her head and passing a comb through it. Rachel originally has long hair, so it has to be blent in with a darker wig to be hidden well. It’s also necessary for her hair to be done up for her to meet with people.
“Here, tickets for a box seat at the Royal Theater. The program is, The Prince and the Homeless Boy. Since the Young Master will be home today and tomorrow, we’ve reserved you a twin bed suite with a living room at the Green New Leaves. We’ll have Meia wait for you in the hotel for when you’re ready to return to the dungeon. Please inform Lisa through Meia should you have any business inside the mansion.”
Rachel smiled satisfied checking her hair in a mirror after changing into a new outfit as well.
“It’s been a long time since I met with Alexandra! It’s already been over a year since she followed her father when he moved for a new job………”
“We’ve already received a message from the other party that they really wanted to see you and hear about everything that’s going on. We’ve also received a letter from Martina apologizing for not being able to come in time”
Sofia took off her mantle and hood as she spoke.
Her gray-white hair had been dyed a chocolate brown, and had also been done up to match her Lord’s. The clothes she was wearing were also the same as Rachel’s. Along with the deception that came from them wearing the same clothes and giving off a similar atmosphere, these two actually had similar heights and figures as well.
“I wish you would have changed your clothes here. Is the size okay?”
“But then there wouldn’t have been enough time to set up the right atmosphere inside the prison. The little extra space in the chest is leaving me irritated.”
“Wouldn’t it be fine to say you’re reasonable? You have a better shape than Sand Bag.”
“That usually peppy young woman huh”
The coachman came down and informed them the loading and unloading had been finished.
Rachel put on Sofia’s mantle and hood. Sofia meanwhile walked into the cell, making sure that nothing was being overlooked.
“………By the way My Lady, there wasn’t any trash-like garbage around here last time either. What do you do after you finish eating?”
“Hm? Isn’t it good hygiene to do away with it? If you throw it out the window into the backyard you’ll hear someone complain………but if you throw it into the front room outside of the cell, Mr. Prison Guard will come by to collect it.”
The person who said something was probably somebody who loved the backyard very much.
“Is that so? That’s fine then.”
Sofia ended the topic without prying into it too deeply. So long as the problem is solved, a trivial detail wouldn’t bother Rachel at all. The two of them are basic; a master and servant who are very similar to each other.
Rachel locked the cell from the outside, and Sofia wrapped the chain around the bars and replaced the padlock. Only at this time did Sofia, who had been the epitome of composure until now, almost drop it before quickly recovering.
“My Lady, lifting this lock up……..
“If you can’t lift that up, then you won’t be able to ready the crossbow and won’t be able to live up to the gossip.”
There is probably only one noblewoman in the world who would threaten a prince and then spread the gossip.
Rachel also checked to see if there was anything left behind.
“Recently I’ve changed my lifestyle and been staying up late into the night, so long as you have the futon pulled over you the Prison Guard won’t call out to you. You might have to respond if His Highness’s group makes one of their occasional visits……….but you’ll be fine right?”
From inside the cell Sofia put her hand to her throat and made a small cough. And then.
“Our appearances are pretty similar with a bit of make-up, so as long as the lights are off, there shouldn’t be anything off……..for His Highness and Sand Bag at least right?”
She was able to answer perfectly mimicking Rachel’s voice and tone.
Rachel’s satisfaction showed through in her smile, and she signaled for the others in the room to start up the stairs.
“Alright Sofia, I’ll see you around the same time the day after tomorrow.”
“Yes, please enjoy your pajama party.”
“I’ll try even if the topic is His Highness and George.”
Rachel left the dungeon, taking a nice long look at the open sky for the first time in almost a month before boarding the wagon.
While the carriage rattled as it began to move, Rachel narrowed her eyes while resting her chin in her palm.
“Well then………let’s start out by going for the limbs.”