“My people need the help of the clan to break the imprint.”
Alec hesitated to light the cigarette with a lighter and nudged Lauren. Lauren, who didn’t understand the meaning of his gaze, blinked her big eyes.
Damn it. He couldn’t bring himself to light the cigarette with a lighter and threw the cigarette he had been biting out the window.
Lauren opened her mouth as she watched the falling cigarette as it fell in a parabolic arc.
“I’ve never heard of that method of extinguishing. That’s unique.”
The cigarette fell to the ground and was quickly picked up by a passerby, who fussed over it. It must have been quite valuable. It seems to be a habit to throw away valuable things without smoking them.
“It’s less unique than wolves. We don’t have to kill our mates.”
“Don’t speak lightly. Wolves don’t force their mates into death.”
Lauren drew a firm line.
“Oh, are you angry? Anyway, dogs bark when they don’t like something.”
Alec openly taunted and then twitched his hand. Isn’t that woman giving him a stern look as if scolding him?
Alec, too, tried to stand his ground against her. However, it was impossible. Whether or not its due to the effects of the imprinting, but even the wolf’s frowning face was lovely.
‘Holy shit. You’re crazy.’
This was a disease more incurable than any other. Alec covered his eyes with his hands, which held her, and returned to the main topic.
“My clan happens to be coming to the kingdom in a month. I’ll send a carriage in 30 days, so let’s release the imprint then.”
As soon as Alec finished speaking, the carriage conveniently stopped. The carriage door creaked open, revealing Lauren’s workplace outside.
‘How did that guy find this place?’
Lauren got off the train station in a daze.
Just as she was about to express her gratitude to the rude man, the carriage door slammed shut behind her and the carriage departed immediately. Even the sound of the door closing was as irritating as that guy.
Well then. Lauren quietly watched the carriage getting farther away. Sasha sitting next to the coachman glanced at Lauren and waved her big hand at her.
* * *
Recently, Lauren has been worried about something. Someone keeps barging into her workplace.
‘I thought he was going to send the carriage in a month.’
Lauren looked outside the store. At this time, Alec, who got off the carriage, always passed by the tea shop on his way to the train station. Look at that. There he is again.
“Ah, it’s like this. Business is slow again today. Well, considering that a couple cups of coffee and a few pieces of bread cost as much as a person’s worth, it’s hard to believe you’re doing good business.”
The soliloquy was heard clearly through the open store door.
“I do know a thing or two about business. Well, if you ask politely, I can be generous enough to provide education. Right, Sasha?”
Alec looked for Sasha, but his gaze was still fixed on Lauren inside the store.
Lauren threw the dishcloth she was wiping the table with and walked confidently towards the entrance. Then, she glared at Alec with her eyes wide open and slammed the open store door shut.
“If you keep this up, you’re going to break the door. The owner of this place has a bad temper, like she’s going to tie someone up.”
Alec smiled brightly at Lauren through the window and passed by the store. Pedestrians stared at Alec’s smile in awe, but only Lauren glared fiercely at his retreating back.
But that wasn’t the end of it.
Alec appeared not only at the tea shop but also at the train station.
‘Why did he show up at the train station at this time of day, when the trains had stopped running?’
Lauren sighed as she piled up the packages she had to deliver to the post office on top of a handcart.
He seems to be up to mischief again, looking at his mischievous face.
‘I’ll ignore him and go to the post office quickly.’
Alright! Lauren lifted the handcart with packages on her shoulder. Alec, who was grinning crookedly, froze his face coldly when he saw Lauren carrying a pile of packages on her back.
‘Why are you looking so serious all of a sudden?’
Well, it’s none of my business. Lauren turned away from him first. She had to deliver the packages to the post office.
Sasha approached Lauren as if she knew her.
“What’s all this? How are you going to carry such heavy packages with that body?”
Sasha trembled as she emphasized ‘that body.’ Meanwhile, Alec was talking to the stationmaster who was bending his waist.
“Put down those packages quickly!”
Sasha looked at Lauren’s luggage with a helpless expression on her large frame.
“I’m fine. It’s what I usually do.”
“Lady, no matter how much of a beast you are, it’s impossible to carry such a huge load like a backpack at this time.”
At this time? Lauren cocked her head and raised one arm, bent at the elbow.
“I’m a brave wolf. I have a lot of strength.”
As she put strength into her arm, a small muscle bulged out, but it wasn’t noticeable on her clothing. Sasha, whose muscles didn’t develop well, looked at her with pity.
“Eat a lot of chicken breast and you’ll be fine soon, Lady.”
Sasha shed a tear for her poorly developed muscles, then turned the topic.
“Anyway, please give me the biggest load. You can’t carry it with that body.”
“…Thank you for your concern. But I can do this alone.”
Lauren declined with a formal smile. She had to deliver all of these to receive one silver coin, and she was a little worried about her asking for a share of the profits later.
In the meantime, Alec, who had finished his conversation with the stationmaster, walked towards Lauren. He’s probably going to be the same. Lauren gripped the luggage strap tightly and assumed a defensive posture, anticipating lectures like ‘Why is a woman in a skirt doing this kind of work?’ or ‘Leave the tough stuff to the men and practice needlework at home.’
But Alec’s reaction was unexpected.
He stared silently at Lauren with a strange expression before adding his own envelope to the cart he was carrying. “Please take mine too,” he said with a sneaky smile.
“What are you up to?”
Lauren growled like a wolf.
“Why? Can’t walk because I added one envelope? You’re a brave wolf, aren’t you?”
Do you want me to help?
Alec greeted her with a sales smile.
“Well then, it’s settled. I’ll also ask you to deliver something for me. One delivery equals one silver coin, right?”
When Alec nudged Sasha with his chin, Sasha took out a silver coin from her pocket and handed it to Lauren.
One silver coin for this one envelope?
Could the criminal who complained that 34 sillons and 9 cents was too much be telling the truth. Lauren looked back and forth between the silver coin in her hand and Alec. Amidst all this, her honest lips reflexively formed a smile.
Oh my. Lauren quickly concealed her smile and with a dignified expression, placed the silver coin into her pocket.
“Ahem. I accept the delivery. Where should I go?”
“To my carriage.”
How far away did he park it? Lauren cocked her head. She felt like the weight of the luggage on her back had lightened, but she didn’t pay much attention to it.
Lauren started walking briskly out of the station to find Alec’s carriage. She scanned far away places while cocking her head, wondering where he might have parked it, but nothing in particular caught her eye.
Then, a big and shiny carriage appeared right in front of her. It was Alec’s carriage, waiting for its owner just in front of the train station.
“Are you making fun of me now…uh, huh?”
At that moment, Lauren’s luggage floated up into the air. It was magic. Since the carriage was cleverly positioned, passersby couldn’t see how the luggage was stacked neatly in the carriage’s luggage compartment.
Thud. Alec opened the carriage door.
“What are you doing?”
“Why? Are you afraid I might kidnap you?”
“Just take the envelope and give me back my luggage.”
“I’m going to the post office anyway. Just get in. I have something to talk to you about.”
“What else do you want to talk about?”
“I brought a doctor.”
Alec gestured inside the carriage. An old doctor was sitting in the corner with his eyes covered.
“Suddenly, a doctor…”
Lauren was about to ask a question, but Alec interrupted her.
“We need to make sure whether you’re pregnant or not.”
Lauren was taken aback by the word ‘pregnant’ and looked around quickly. Fortunately, the carriage was in a secluded area.
She wondered if they really need to confirm whether she’s pregnant or not, but Alec seemed to read her mind and spoke.
“I’ve imprinted on you, so there shouldn’t be any complaints. I hope that in a few years, I won’t have to divide my business for some child I don’t even know. We have to be sure about what to do.”
Alec listed the reasons dryly while gesturing to Sasha. Sasha, who had been munching on honey cookies, took the empty cart Lauren was carrying and hung it in the cargo area.
‘Right. That guy’s words weren’t entirely wrong. Let’s get on the carriage for now.’
Lauren agreed with Alec’s suggestion for a check up. As she stepped onto the carriage platform and prepared to board, Alec naturally extended his hand.
‘Seems like he has a habit of escorting ladies.’
Despite his reputation as a playboy, he had some very considerate habits.
However, there was no need to hold someone’s hand to climb a few steps. Alec looked down at the hand that was completely ignored by Lauren and let out a wry smile. While Alec examined the inside of the carriage, Lauren threw a question at him.
“But why is that doctor blindfolded?”
“I thought that was your preference, so I prepared like that, okay? You used to like covering my eyes.”
“Pre-preference? What are you talking about?”
Suddenly, what’s he saying? Lauren’s face turned bright red.
The flustered Lauren trembled and then staggered, quickly grabbing onto Alec’s shoulder to avoid falling. At the same time, Alec steadied Lauren’s upper body. Lauren ended up half-hugging Alec, hanging from his neck.