I Stole the Child of My War-Mad Husband - Chapter 16
Fortunately, it was different from the usual.
Rupert looked troubled. His red eyes are much darker than usual.
A moment of silence passed. He opened his mouth heavily.
“… okay, if that’s all you really want, I’ll try.”
I smiled broadly.
“It was a promise, right?”
He stared at me.
“You look happy.”
Not everyone is a perfect parent at first. But you can start with small things like spending time with your child and growing up together.
So, even if it’s impossible right now, I hope he will be a good father to Leah in the future.
I didn’t want anything other than my safety and Leah.
‘We’ll be fine if I don’t upset him.’
Of course, just because Rupert seems to have granted my wish, doesn’t mean I’m completely relieved.
If there is even the slightest danger, I will immediately take Leah and run away.
For now, I just hope he can keep his curse under control.
‘In the end, all problems will be solved by Aren.’
Like a fairy tale, true love will break Rupert’s curse.
At that point, I will either get a divorce or break up on my own. Then it will be a happy ending for everyone.
Rupert was still thinking about something. But since I got the answer I was looking for, I decided not to worry about it anymore.
He was a man caught up in a complex and dark past that I couldn’t handle.
I decided to be satisfied with the fact that the urgent problem was resolved.
Noel stood on the rubble of a burning, collapsing building.
The moment she saw the scenery around her, she had an intuition.
‘Is this what you call a lucid dream?’
It was the first thing she experienced in her life. She looked around her in wonder.
The surroundings were deserted. The shadows of crumbling and broken houses covered her face.
Noel entered the old building in front of her, feeling possessed.
A small voice could be heard inside. She slowly climbed the stairs to find the owner of the voice.
‘What dream is this… why do I have to dream like this?’
The moment she grumbled like that, she heard the voice again.
She couldn’t hear it exactly, but she was somehow used to it.
She heard the voice more clearly the closer she got. There were occasional cries.
By then, Noel knew who the owner of the crying voice was.
The crying child in her dream was Leah. The child was terrified in the corner.
‘Why am I dreaming like this!’
Noel reached out to Leah, but she couldn’t touch her. Maybe because it’s a dream.
Despite knowing that it was a dream, Noel was still restless.
“Leah, don’t cry. Mom is here.”
Noel, of course, was not heard by Leah. She was sniffling, curled up in the corner.
‘How do I wake up from this dream?’
She wanted to stop seeing such a terrible sight.
Then, an ominous sound rang out behind.
Noel turned around with a strange feeling.
The old ceiling is slowly crumbling. The pillar shook precariously.
“Leah, it’s dangerous to stay here!”
She screamed and tried to stop it, but to no avail. Like a ghost, Noel’s hand went through everything.
Leah, who did not notice this situation, was still crying.
[Sob… I’m scared, mom sob hahhh…]
At that moment, the ceiling and pillars immediately hit Leah.
Noel shouted as she wrapped her body around Leah.
The wreckage passed through her body and struck Leah.
Noel jumped out of bed.
She immediately looked around. It was the same as yesterday, she was in her room.
She exhaled her breath deeply. Her back was damp with cold sweat.
Indeed, it is a terrible dream.
“It was just a dream… it was just a dream…”
As she murmured like that, she calmed her startled mind.
After convincing herself that it was just a dream, she lay back down.
Soon it was time for Leah to wake up. Noel got out of bed vigorously.
‘I couldn’t go on with a gloomy face.’
It wasn’t very refreshing, but it was a new morning anyway.
Today Leah was wearing a yellow dress embroidered with small white flowers.
I was moved to see her approaching me with a smile in that state. It was like a fairy in a fairy tale.
Leah spread her arms out. I hugged her tightly and kissed her on the cheek.
“Leah, did you sleep well?”
Leah stroked my cheek with her little hand.
“I slept well, how about you, Mom?”
I had a nightmare and was terrified, but it was disappeared as soon as I saw my daughter.
“Mom slept well too.”
On the way to the dining room with the babbling child in my arms, I stopped.
It was because I ran into an unexpected person.
Rupert was standing there. I wondered what was going on.
“Why are you here?”
“To keep my promise with you.”
Promise? I blinked for a moment at those words.
“Have you forgotten already?”
Then I remembered.
‘Are you trying to keep the promise you made last night?’
To be honest, I didn’t know it was going to be like this. I thought that he might be avoiding it with excuses.
‘Are you the type to keep promises when you make them?’
Surprisingly, he has a sincere side.
Leah was also surprised by the sudden situation. Her small body stiffened as if she was nervous when her father, whom she seldom met, came to visit.
I patted her back.
“Leah, how about we have breakfast with Dad?”
Leah nodded slightly.
‘Are you hiding your face?’
“Then will you say good morning to your Dad?”
Leah pondered for quite some time, and then she nodded slowly. She procrastinated at first but finally came down from my arms.
Leah, who grabbed the end of her skirt, bowed her head slightly and spoke.
“Good morning, Marquis.”
For a moment Rupert and I were surprised at Leah’s greeting.
You used the title ‘Marquis’ for your biological father!?
“Le-Leah? You should call him Father or Daddy.”
At my words, Leah looked at us and asked.
This time Rupert responded.
“You’re asking something obvious.”
Startled at the sound of his voice, Leah hid behind my back holding on to the hem of my skirt.
I winked at Rupert as a signal.
‘Speak more kindly!’
He understood my meaning and made a slightly dissatisfied face.
I ignored him and made eye contact with Leah.
“Leah, why have you called him Marquis instead of Father or Daddy?”
“I’m not trying to scold you, so it’s okay to be honest with Mom.”
Leah hesitated before opening her mouth.
“Ugh… but… Mom also called him with the title Marquis, so I guess I’ll be scolded if I call him with a different title.”
I asked softly.
“What did that mean?”
“Well, Mom and the Marquis see each other more often than I do, but Mom always called him by honorifics. So is it okay if I use the word ‘father’ since I’ve never met him? In the etiquette book, I was taught that unless you are close to someone, you should always call them by honorifics.”
Only then did I understand Leah’s words.
Leah seems to have considered herself not to be close to Rupert. So, she thought it would be against etiquette to call him ‘father.’
I was a little shocked. At the same time, I felt sad.
Young children act honestly with what they see and learn. This in itself revealed how far away Leah and Rupert were.
‘It’s all because of Rupert’s actions so far.’
Children tend to be sensitive to their parents’ feelings. Leah must have sensed that her father was pushing her out unconsciously too.
I looked at him quietly.
“Marquis, what do you think?”
‘Can’t you feel the weight of your conscience when you see your daughter’s behavior?’
Fortunately, Rupert seems to have felt something too. He looked like someone who had seen the most difficult problem in the world.
After some hesitation, he slowly kneels down and made eye contact with Leah.
Even in that state, he hesitated for a moment. It seems that he doesn’t know how to treat his daughter.
Without meddling, I watched him calmly.
Breathing in his sigh, he carefully placed his hand on Leah’s head. He gently stroked her with a very awkward hand.
“You don’t have to call me that.”
Leah rolled her eyes.
“It’s okay to call me father. I won’t scold you for that.”
It was the first time I had seen his human form. I smiled with a bit of satisfaction.
‘If I laugh here, Rupert will be angry.’
I barely pressed the corner of my lips.
“Then what about Mom?”
Leah asked an unexpected question.
“That means Mom doesn’t need to call you Marquis anymore?”