She got everything she wanted.

So Erin walked down the hall to return to the shop.

As she walked, she saw a man walking towards her from the far end of the hallway.
He looked like a nobleman with the way he was dressed.

Erin didn’t think much of it, and stepped slightly to the side as she passed.

Maybe she’d see someone who recognized her, but what did it matter if they did so or not, she wasn’t a duchess anymore.

With that thought, she turned to walk past the hallway.
Suddenly, a man grabbed Erin by the wrist.

She stopped and turned around, his face blurred in the hallway light.
It was an unfamiliar face.

He was slightly chubby, roughly built, like a roughly shaved potato.

He looked stubborn, to put it mildly, and grumpy, to put it bluntly.
Worst of all, he had a sneering look in his eyes.

There was not the slightest hint of sincerity or seriousness.
He was dressed in a lavish outfit, but it felt like he was trying to make a point.

Though it would have been odd to see a nobleman walking in and out of a gambling house looking sincere and dignified.

“What do you want?”

Erin asked as politely as she could, and the man looked at Erin closely and then asked.

“How much are you?”


Erin laughed out loud without realizing it.
She started laughing because it was so ridiculous.

This was a gambling house, after all, where nobles came and went.
No doubt prostitutes and courtesans would come and go as well.

This man must have mistaken Erin for a prostitute.

She didn’t have time for a place like this, where she’d have to accept a bunch of farmlands.

Erin gave him a light smile and jerked her wrist out of his grasp.

“More than your life’s worth.”

Erin tried to walk away, not wanting to deal with him anymore, but the man lunged forward and grabbed her wrist again.

“Why are you acting so cold? I don’t think you’re a noblewoman at all, even if you pretend to be.
If you’re a noblewoman coming and going from the gambling house, there’s no way I don’t recognize you.”

‘Of course you don’t.’

Erin had never been in or out of a gambling house.

Erin didn’t know who this man was either.
Apparently, he’s a lowly nobleman who doesn’t have enough status to be in the palace, so it’s no wonder they don’t know each other.

His gleaming eyes swept over her body up and down.
She felt a momentary chill.

“Let go.”

Erin tried to pull away, but the man grabbed her wrist and wouldn’t let go.

“Don’t do that and don’t make me— Argh!”

Erin lifted the hem of her skirt with her free hand and gave him a lightning kick with one foot.
She aimed squarely at his shin, and kicked him hard enough to make a popping sound.

The man screamed and crumpled to the floor.


The man stared at Erin, trembling with insults.
Hatred leaking from his mouth.

“You, you lowly slut..!”

Erin raised her eyebrows for a moment.
The other person still perceived her as a prostitute.

“Do I have to identify myself?

Now that I was getting down and dirty with a stranger, I felt like I had to identify myself and get it over with, or things would get loud.

Erin was about to identify herself, but before she could, the door next to them opened and an irritated voice came through.

“Too noisy.”

The owner of the voice appeared through the open door.

It was a young, confident face, with refined features and silky silvery hair.
He was a handsome man with an imposing build and arrogant blue-gray eyes.

He looked directly at the two of them with a sneer.

The man on the ground ducked his head in surprise.

“The—- Great Duke…!”

‘It was Raymond.’

She knew that one day she would meet Raymond again.

The capital of the Empire was large and bustling enough that one could go a lifetime without seeing someone you didn’t like, but it was pretty hard to go a lifetime without seeing the man who was the heir to the Empire.

Even if she didn’t bump into him somewhere, unless she left the capital, she was bound to see his face at an event or an enthronement ceremony.

But she didn’t expect to see him again at such an unexpected moment and in such an unexpected place.

It’s been about three weeks since she signed the divorce papers.

Erin inwardly clucked her tongue as she looked at Raymond’s picturesque face for the first time in three weeks.

She wondered what she would feel once she saw him in person, but she actually felt no emotion when she looked at him.

Raymond’s face was expressionless, but his eyes were filled with confusion.

He wanted to know why Erin had suddenly appeared here.

Erin bowed calmly, as was her custom.

“Your Highness the Duke.”

The voice brought the man on the floor to his feet, and he too scrambled to his feet and bowed to Raymond.

“Your Majesty, I’m sorry.
I was just having a conversation with this Lady… and I was drunk, so please forgive me if I was rude….”

Just earlier he was being arrogant and chic, but now he was bowing his head and grovelling in front of Raymond.

It’s understandable.

After all Raymond was the heir to the empire and the future emperor.

“Apologize to the one you were being rude to.”

At Raymond’s command, the man jerked his head toward Erin.

“Sorry, I’m sorry, Lady… I apologize…”

Erin clicked her tongue as she watched the man duck his head so that his nose touched the ground.

She wanted to punch him again, but the way he was shaking and begging for forgiveness made it impossible.

A snapping sound drew Raymond’s attention to Erin, his picture-perfect eyes crinkling in disbelief.
He glanced at the man on the ground, looking annoyed.

“Go away.”

“Yes, thank you, Your Majesty, then if you’ll excuse me.”

At his command, the man slipped out of the hallway, hurriedly almost crawling.

As the man fled with a hasty salute, Raymond turned to Erin, blatant mockery written all over his handsome face.

“I never thought we’d meet again in a place like this.”


He felt like she was being smug, after taking her dowry, and then walking out.
Only to find her again at a gambling house.

Erin immediately retorted,

“I know, I didn’t know you also came to a place like this? I should have known you had this kind of hobby, does Miss Serena know?”

He laughed at her again, but his cold, detached expression was clearly revealed.

Cold blue-gray eyes, devoid of all emotion, stared directly at Erin.

He wanted to yell at her for her being rude, but he sighed instead.

“If you don’t have enough money, you should have asked for alimony, not come to this sort–”


He really thought Erin had come to gamble.
It was amazing.

“Don’t get me wrong, I’m just here to meet some people because of the shop.”

“A shop? Are you really thinking of opening a cafe or something?”

I thought I made that clear before?”

She definitely made it clear when she was signing the divorce papers.
He’d actually forgotten already.

But at those words, Raymond looked at Erin in bewilderment, and started rebuking her with whatever misunderstanding he had made.

“I know you have a grudge against me because of Serena, but you don’t have to go to such lengths to get revenge.”

“What are you talking about?”

Erin was dumbfounded.

“Aren’t you doing this because you have a grudge against… Me and Serena?”

Not at all.”

Erin looked at Raymond, who was looking unusually stupid, and thought of Serena.

The blonde-haired beauty who always stood beside him with a look of love on her face.

‘Ah, yes, there was a time when I tried to fight against her too.’

From the time they first entered the palace, Serena and Erin had been compared in every way.

One from the pure and loving lower nobility, the other from the gloomy and timid prestigious family.

One is a poor damsel in distress who has long loved the Duke but stays in the shadows because of her status.

The other is a retarded duchess who has taken her rightful place by force due to the Emperor.

Despite the fact that the Duke’s official wife was Erin, it was always Serena who garnered the sympathy and admiration of the people.

Erin, in her hay day, was a ‘Mean Duchess‘ who was entrenched in her position by blood.

Even her noble lineage was nothing more than a fallen family in debt.

People looked at Erin with even more disdain and sneers as they realized that the daughter of a debt-ridden marquis was now the Duchess.

One of the reasons for this was due to Serena’s beauty, which was said to be the most beautiful in the empire.

Anyone who met Serena in person could have mistaken the innocent-looking blonde for the victim.

It was Raymond who poured gasoline on that fire.
He was always on Serena’s side.

Whenever Erin had a problem with her, even if it was completely her fault, Raymond would get annoyed with Erin.

‘Don’t make a fuss for nothing.’


So the Erin of the past gave up fighting Serena.

There was no point in fighting a losing battle.

“Don’t get me wrong.
It’s not because of your highness, nor her, that I’m trying to set up a shop.”

Erin spoke nonchalantly, while brushing off the sordid details of her past.


Me when Raymond said Erin had a grudge on him and Serena:

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