034 Dad who can't shut his mouth and his unsmiling daughter (Part 2) p.3

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This trial was a hurriedly constructed event arranged through her usage of the brainwashing perfume and Josephine’s connections to the court. There should have been no time or room for the defendant to prepare.

“Yes. I shall present witnesses that will prove beyond doubt that she is Anrietta. However, if you misunderstand Miss Anrietta’s personality as that of a liar, you will surely be surprised by the conclusion. Naturally, I had some investigation performed in advance.”

Then, he turned his innocently malicious smile on Uni.

“This is a girl who would do anything in her power for Sir Tullius.”

The court was upset once again.

Uni, in contrast, remained unmoved. She knew that the old fox’s aim was to manipulate her heart. She was ready for anything he threw her way.

The judge once again slammed his gavel down.

“That may only be proven once the witness’ testimony has been examined.”

“Then, may the witness be allowed entrance to the court?”

“Of course. Let them enter.”

At the presiding judge’s signal, one of the aides ran to the defendant’s waiting room.

Uni had a brief premonition.

If one were to think about it, information and its manipulation was the foundation for Marquis’ Lavallee’s strategy. How did he find about Anrietta? Who told the secret to the Marquis?

That evening, Madame Josephine saw the spirit of eleven years past in Uni. But was the ghost truly her?

The door to the court opened.

A woman with a spectral figure and gait entered the courtroom.



Cartan, who had been thoroughly beaten by Tullius, and Josephine, still befuddled by Uni’s drug, raised their faces at the same time.

Their eyes fixed themselves on the woman entering the court. Her green eyes were dull with exhaustion, and her face was framed by dark hair turned mostly to gray. Her skin was rough, thin, and greatly discolored, but still showed traces of what must have once been peerless beauty. Perhaps, similar to that of Uni’s.

“……She is?”

“Count Cartan here may be able to answer your question better than I.”

Marquis Lavallee answers the judge with a satisfied smirk.

Count Cartan shouted out, as if a switch had been flipped.

“Anna Marie! You were alive, all this time?!”

With tears in her eyes, the woman looked up as if she had forgotten she stood in a court.

Then, something escaped her lips.

If one were as skilled in the art of lip reading as Uni, they could have understood what the woman said.


A dark-haired woman with green eyes who dared call a count by his first name.

Her age was somewhat indistinguishable with the wear from living in base conditions, but…

It was Anna Marie, as the Count said.

(She was alive…)

Although she thought something had been afoot, Uni could not fully prevent her own surprise.

The living memory of the tragic day. Madame Josephine employed some men to assault Anna Marie till she became motionless. After that, Josephine continued venting her rage on Anrietta.

The shade of Josephine’s grudge against Anrietta was alive.

(She should have stayed dead…)

Perhaps she had only fainted, or gone into a short coma. Such things were not uncommon in life.

If only she had died on the spot, then she might not have had to suffer as much as her emaciated figure suggested, but most importantly she would never have stood in the way of her master.

While staring into her nemesis’ eyes, Anna Marie slowly shambled up to the witness’ stand.

“She…was alive…the mother…”

“Mrs. Josephine.”

Tullius warned Josephine, who had uttered something wholly unnecessary. Perhaps it had been something about how parents and children always go together. Regardless, Uni thought once again how lamentable it was that she had been unable to procure more of the drug.

Marquis Lavallee proudly introduced the woman  standing by his side.

“As Count Cartan has said, this is the mother of Miss Anrietta—Anna Marie. Is this not so, Count Cartan?”


It was Madame Josephine who stood.

“There’s no way this beggar could be that thieving cat, right? —no, couldn’t this be another surrogate?!”

“It is useless.”

Uni privately thought to herself.

“Objection overruled. First, we must examine the testimony.”

Now she understood the true depth of the Marquis’ scheming.

Earlier, when she had set up a common maid as a witness, the Marquis deliberately dismissed a heavy objection to her presence, and thus did not have to subject his witnesses to qualitative scrutiny.

All that, so as to set the stage for his oversized ace in the hole known as Anna Marie. Her mere presence haunted Josephine with delusions and hatred from the bottom of her own personal hell.



“You, oft… often, such things…”

The spirits that cried out in hatred towards the living are rightly called ghosts.

Her voice, forcibly raised, was still quiet. However, once heard, it would stick in the ear and refused to be forgotten.

Upon hearing her voice, Josephine stumbled into a sitting position after hitting her calf on her chair. A scene remarkably similar to one in recent memory.

“Return…to me… my, my daughter…”

“Don’t… Don’t come over here!!”

Josephine trembled with her head in her hands as Anna Marie slowly advanced, leaning over the fence on the witness’ stand.

As soon as the two women began to move, the men in the court stood stock still. Count Cartan, who had previously been ecstatic over the return of Anna Marie, now appeared stiff as if coming face-to-face with an apparition. Despite being the person that brought her here, even Marquis Lavallee appeared dumbfounded by their actions.The presiding judge also appeared stiff as a board, caught in the act of raising his gavel.

“Return… that child!”

Return? What did she mean, return? She was Tullius’ property and only Tullius’. She had no relation anymore to her old family. She was grateful for her parents for giving birth to her so she may be useful to Tullius, but that did not mean she allowed any meddling. Obviously, this included anybody who tried to get in her way of reuniting with her master.

Furthermore, she was the mastermind that planted a bug in Uni. If she was not perturbed by the keyword, “marriage”, she probably would not have been caught so deep into the enemy’s trap.

Because of that, she felt frustrated to such a degree.

At that time, a visible anger manifested itself on her face.

“Hey, that’s no good, Uni.”

Freed from the spell of the madwoman in the court, Tullius stood beside Uni, and told her:

“There’s nothing praiseworthy about looking at her as though she’s trash.”


Unexpectedly, she felt depressed.

What was her master saying? He should have clearly known that this madwoman, despite being blood related, was an obstacle to them.

As she steeled herself, Tullius raised his hand high.

“Objection. That witness is in no fit state to provide testimony. Please, allow her to say her piece or remove her from the court immediately.”

“Y-yes. Order in the court! Witnesses, quiet yourselves and testify!”

The presiding judge banged his gavel, Count Cartan and Marquis Lavallee calmed themselves, and Anna Marie was pulled back to the witness stand.

Still, however, Anna Marie continued to glare with pure hate and rage towards Josephine…towards Josephine?

Uni noticed something.

Perhaps Anna Marie...

“…Sir Tullius is an upright young man. How wonderful of you to help calm down our witness.”

“No, no, this is all for the sake of a smooth trial. I don’t like waste, and this trial has been too long for my preference.”

Tullius yawned while rubbing of tears of boredom from his left eye.

While this was happening, Anna Marie began her testimony.

“I… Eleven years ago, I was chased out by the family of Pierre—Count Cartan. After being separated from my daughter…I managed to find shelter in the slums…”

“Were you picked up then by Marquis Lavallee?”

At Tullius’ questioning, Anna Marie nodded quickly.

“So the Marquis must have put you under his ‘protection’ after speaking to you about the events that happened. No, Marquis Lavallee also had evil intentions. If you had returned to the Count, surely you wouldn’t have been punished, even if you had committed some wrongdoing. Right, Count?”

“Yeah...Why didn’t you, Marquis…”

“Ho ho. Well, for one, we all know how repressive Madame Josephine is, and wouldn’t you agree it would bring you much more happiness if you could be reunited with your daughter? Well, I did not expect it to be in such a venue, though.”

The thick-skinned Marquis pretended to benignity.

He probably hid the existence of Anna Marie so as to crush any resistance from Tullius. It was intended to amplify the power of any blow he struck and prevent any further actions on Tullius’ part. In short, although he reunited the family, he never had any good intentions to start with.

With Lavallee’s words, Anna Marie began to gain momentum.

“Yes…yes! The Marquis promised me… Anrietta! To let me meet my dear child… and… that’s today! That I would be able to meet my child here…!”

As she rambled on, a flush spread across her heavily lined and worn cheeks.

Marquis Lavallee smiled to himself, likely convinced of his own victory.


“Where… is Anrietta?”

With those words, her eyes combed through the crowd.

As she looked around the courtroom, her gaze passed through Uni without a second glance.


“A, Anna Marie? What are you talking about? Anrietta is...”

The count, his eyes betraying his confusion, questioned her with a shaky voice.

With eyes as wide as saucers, Anna Marie swept the court once again for her daughter, until she realised that she was nowhere to be found.

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