[You're Keithwood, right?]

[It's an honor to be remembered by you, Anne.
the Imperial Princess Mia's aide.]

Keithwood looked at Liora with a smile on his face.

[So, is the young lady from the Empire as well?]

[Ah, yes.
That is correct.
She is Liora, maid of Tiona-sama from the Rudolvon family.]

[Liora Lulu.
Please, please, help Tiona-sama, save.]

After hearing what happened, Keithwood folded his arms and started mumbling.

[Hum.
There are two guards keeping watch here.
How many are in total?]

[Not know.
But four people locked us.
Man, and woman too.]

[So, either they noticed you escaped and put guards inside, or they left the two men behind.
Well, If I leave 2 ladies in trouble on their own, His Highness Sion would be furious.
Let me help you.]

[Really? Yes, please!]

[But what are you going to do?]

Anne thought he would lure the guards out and create a gap for them to rescue Tiona, or maybe use another smart strategy.

[What do you mean? I will simply rescue a lovely noble lady from the hands of the bad guys.
That is all.]

Keithwood said in a casual tone, but with a fierce smile.

After that, what unfolded before Anne happened so quickly that she could only watch in amazement.

Without making a sound, Keithwood ran over to the guards and slammed his knee into the stomach of the closest one.
Then, he grabbed the arm of the other one, who was too surprised to move, and threw him to the floor.

It happened in the blink of an eye.

[Uhm…
can all male servants do that?]

Anne made the question in a daze, to which Keithwood shrugged his shoulders and gave a bitterly smile.

[Well, in my case, I have my circustances.
After all, I serve someone who is the embodiment of sense of justice.]

Meanwhile, Liora ran to the door and quickly unlocked it.

[Tiona-sama.
Are you okay?]

[Liora? You are safe.]

Fortunately, Tiona didn't seem to be injured after coming out of the room.

[I'm glad you're okay.
Tiona Rudolvon-sama.]

[You are…
Mia-sama's?]

 

[When I came back to my room, my dress was gone.]

According to Tiona, when she and Liora returned to their room, it had been ravaged and a letter was left behind.

The letter said that if she wanted her dress back, she should go to the school's north tower.

[That's…
who would do such a thing…?]

[Probably someone you or Her Highness Mia know?]

[What do you mean?]

[Look.
The guard outside had it.]

Keithwood was holding a handkerchief with the emblem of the Tearmoon Empire on it.
There is no mistake.

[It can't be…]

[Yes, they're probably servants of nobles from the empire.]

This caught Anne off guard.
She thought the ones responsible were the nobles that were bullying Tiona the other day.

[They said I shouldn't go to the party because I would embarass the imperial nobility.]

She was not really angry.
Instead, she just looked sad.
While saying that, she showed what she had been holding.

It was a dress completely ripped appart.

[…That is terrible.]

[But weren't you too reckless, just for a dress? I can't believe a woman would come to this place alone.]

Keithwood admonish her, narrowing his eyes.
In response, Tiona showed a faint bitterly smile and shook her head.

[This dress is all my family could prepare.]

And then, she sighed as if she had given up.

[So, Liora, you didn't have to be so rash…
There was no need to be in a hurry.]

[Tiona-sama…]

Liora was biting her lips a little, while looking at Tiona.

Anne knew exactly how she felt.

If she was in the same position as her…
if it was Mia who was trapped.
Surely, her frustration would be unbearable.

She gently opens her clenched hands.

In it, was the leftover money Mia had entrusted to her.

[Liora, please go to the store in the main street in town and buy the dress displayed there.
Here's the money…]

She handed the money to Liora with no hesitation.

[This is…?]

[It was entrusted to me by Mia-sama.]

I'm sure Mia would have done the same…
Anne's conviction is unwavering.

[In the meantime, Tiona-sama, let's fix your makeup.
The makeup around your eyes has been ruined by tears.]

As she was about to start, Keithwood suddenly stopped her.

[Is it really fine? As Her Highness Mia's maid, should you really help her?]

[What do you mean?]

[Her Highness Mia is at the top of the imperial noble society.
If Tiona-sama was locked up by imperial nobles, it is possible that it was under orders of Her Highness Mia herself, right?]

[…Eh?]

 

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