The children’s eyes twinkled when they saw Theo approaching.


“Brother Theo!”

“Look at this, the flour is piled up!”

“What’s so great about that? Collock, I can’t breathe! When are you going to clean this up?”

That was common sense for the culprit.
As Theo strode as if to crack down on the children, the white children from head to toe stuck out their tongues and ran away.

“Eh- Theo stupid-!”

“Come here, you!”

The children ran and scattered more flour everywhere.
Not long after, the teachers who belatedly heard the commotion and rushed to the scene screamed.

“What a mess this is!”

“Oh my god! Did you guys do all of this?”

“I just heard a bang, so I came here, and it was like this!”

“We didn’t do it!”

“Is that important now?! We have to clean it up right now!”

Without flour, it was teachers who ate white bread, not children who ate potatoes and corn porridge, that was in trouble right away.

Whether the teachers shouted or not, the children swayed sullenly, and during the winter, bread was cut in half, and only the teachers, stunned, hauled carts and shovels to retrieve the remaining flour.

In other words, no one will be in the nursery building right now.

‘I wonder if this is enough.’

Theo glanced in the direction of the director’s office, then leaned down and squeezed a handful of flour piled up like a mountain and put it on the children’s faces and blew and giggled.

All that was left was Lillian’s share.



The lock on the door to the director’s office was unlocked.
Lillian looked back as she retrieved the hairpin from the keyhole.

‘It’s making a lot of noise.’

There had been a commotion on the side of the warehouse since the bang a moment ago.
It was proof that Theo had done a good job.

It hasn’t been long since I heard the teachers running downstairs, so I still have time.

‘I wish it would take a little longer.’

Opening the door took longer than expected.
It was the method Lillian used whenever she had to be locked in her room for punishment, but her skills seemed to be rusty because she hadn’t had anything to do lately.

I’m glad I’m not completely dead yet.
Lillian pushed her barrette through her hair, opened the door, and stepped inside.

The director’s office, which I had only visited twice, was as luxurious as the last memory.

Firstly, it was especially true that all the wooden furniture making up the room was smooth with no cracked thorns.

The question now is how to find the custody certificate here, and also the locket.

Fortunately, the first one was easy to find.

When I pulled out the thickest file among the many files on the bookshelf, the papers with the children’s names on them fell.

Lillian hurriedly rummaged through the deed and pulled out her own and Theo’s.

A sentence in the shape of a bear and a flag flashed on the gold leaf embedded in the paper.

It was the first sentence I had seen, but it was not difficult to recognize that it was the imperial family symbol.

‘Because they said the bear is the symbol of the imperial family.’

It must have been.

Lillian put the file containing the deed back on the bookshelf and put the deed in her pocket.
Because it was a hard-to-reach place, she was sweaty even doing that.

Lillian wiped her forehead with her small hand.

‘Now the problem is finding the locket.’

It would be nice if it was placed in an easy place like a certificate, but there was no way to put such an important item in a conspicuous place.

Of course, you could carry it around with you, but since you risk losing it, you’d rather put it in a place where only you can open it.

Like a safe for example.

But there was a problem.

No matter how much I looked around, there was no safe in the director’s office.


It wasn’t just the safe that was missing.

There were no key lockable drawers, jewelry boxes or anything to store valuables.
‘Is there nothing?’

Lillian panicked, choosing to rob the director’s bedroom or the director’s office because the director’s office was more secure than the bedroom.

The director’s bedroom didn’t look like anything special, but the director’s office was always completely locked, so there was nothing wrong with it.
Besides, Swan said he showed her the locket in the office.

But so far nothing?

Lillian involuntarily took a few steps back.
Embarrassment ran down her spine, but the girl struggled to keep her composure.

‘Don’t hesitate here.’

If you hesitate in embarrassment, you could leave traces or miss the time to escape.

Swan’s voice came to Lillian’s mind.

— Lily, you’re good at everything, but you seem to have a weak heart.

— What does that mean?

―You can’t keep your calm.

A chessboard was placed in front of them.
One day, the director said, “Noble children all learn chess from an early age.”

After that, Swan and Lillian would often play chess, but most games went like this.

At first, Lillian seemed to have the upper hand.
Then, later, Swan won a come-from-behind victory.

So was the board that lay right in front of them.

Lillian had the upper hand at first, but after one bishop was caught, Swan threw all of Lillian’s pieces out off the board one by one.

―It’s not because I’m smarter than you or because I read more books.
You use your brain well, but it doesn’t last long.

— I always do my best.

— Yeah, but you, you were thinking before you put the king down, right?

It was a straight line.
When Lillian stiffened her mouth instead of answering, Swan smiled softly.

―If you didn’t put King here and put it here as you first thought about it, even if your Bishop was eaten, the game wouldn’t have turned upside down.

Swan was right.
Lillian also regretted that choice.

―You are easily swayed and do not believe in yourself even if a slight variable arises.
Trust the judgment you made the first time.

I trust you, Lillian.

‘Trust me.’

Her judgment was not wrong.
She just can’t see the answer right now.

Lillian said to herself and slowly stepped back from the desk.

Then I saw something I hadn’t seen before.


A bookshelf was full of books behind the desk.
There was a notable feature there.

The bookshelf was made up of 2 rows of 3 spaces, with a total of 6 spaces, and all the books on the bookshelf were arranged according to the height of the books.

Except for the one that protrudes from each space in a heterogeneous way.

Lillian hurried to the bookshelf and pulled out one book at a time.
Then she revealed the cogs hidden behind them, one by one.

Turning the cogs, the bookshelf moved slowly.

The bookshelf was a sophisticated device that hid a space inside.

‘That’s why it looked bigger from the outside.’

When the bookshelf was opened, there was a cabinet displaying items that seemed to be very expensive at first glance.

And in the middle of it.


There was the king


The sun has set, and the children have already left for the land of dreams.

“So, is this the certificate?”

It’s your name, Theodore.”

“It looks strange.”

Theo grumbled and poked his nose where Lillian had pointed out, reading the text.
Rather than reading it, he felt like imprinting its shape directly into his eyes, but anyway.

Lillian looked out the window at the bright moon, then approached Theo, who was still busy reading his name, and handed him something.

“What’s this?”

I was in the director’s office.

In the display case beyond the bookshelf, there were many miscellaneous items, from antiques to jewelry, and Lillian brought two transparent crystals the size of a coin.

One for herself and one for Theo.

“It’s not a very valuable item, but I thought if I had it, I’d be able to pay when I left.”

I didn’t think it would be a common item as it was in the display case, but I picked the one that seemed to be the least expensive among the items.

“You and I are orphans who have no relatives when we go out of here.
You know.”

“What, why are you taking care of all this?” Do you have any affection?”

“What do you see me as?”

“Rarely a bad-tempered kid.”

“Look in the mirror, it’s rare.”

Lillian twisted her body, answering sourly.
And she was going to say goodbye.

“You act like you didn’t need anyone but Swan.”

She was interrupted by Theo’s words that followed.

Lillian turned around again.
Theo was staring at Lillian with an expressionless face.

Is it an illusion that somehow feels unfamiliar?

“You’re leaving now.”

“… yes.”

“Looking for parents.”

Theo muttered to himself, fiddling with the crystal in his hand, then looked back as he put it in his pocket.

“You acted like you wouldn’t talk to anyone but Swan, and I don’t know what happened to him now.”


“I don’t want you to look less than the dead.
Go and live well.”

“…and you, aren’t you going?”

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