Sick Husband's Contract Wife - Chapter 47
“Amoide, where exactly does it hurt?”
He appeared weaker than usual, leaning against the glass. His eyelashes trembled every time he blinked, which was unusual. Not only that, but his voice had a slight fire to it, distinct from the norm.
I swiftly rested my fingers on his brow. His eyes widened, as though he was taken aback by the sudden touch – nonetheless, he did not shake off my hand.
“You’re… very hot.”
He was staring at me, his blue eyes locked quietly on me. He brushed his fingers across his brow, and they came to rest over mine. Our hands also didn’t feel the same as normal; the heat transferred through our hands caused my eyes to widen.
It wasn’t only an issue of body heat – his eyes and breath were both warm. Just by looking, I felt a palpable simmering pressure.
He spoke quietly.
“You’re too noisy.”
Then he collapsed.
“It’s a cold he frequently gets in the spring.”
Raymond’s calm explanation made me sigh with relief.
Camilla muttered with a pallid face, like a blank sheet of paper.
“It’s just symptoms of a common cold – a mild fever – but he’s stable and he’s asleep now. I gave him good recuperative medicine, so he’ll be fine.”
Raymond reassured the nervous Camilla over and over again.
“His immunity has been weakened from the medications he has been taking. He always gets a cold around this time, so don’t be too concerned.”
Raymond looked at me and comforted me too.
His eyes slid away from my hand, which was firmly gripping Amoide’s, and drew back.
“Of course,” he said, “Rather, he experienced less residual effects this time. He had caught it on numerous occasions about this time last year.”
I remember hearing about him collapsing a few times last year. In comparison to that period, the frequency of his collapsing does seem to have dropped dramatically.
“Perhaps it’s because of the duchess’ meticulous care.”
“Oh, that’s too much praise, Raymond.”
My face flushed with humiliation.
“I will continue to rely on you, Duchess.”
Raymond smiled as he walked away, supporting Camilla.
When I watched them go, a wave of remorse washed over me.
‘I’m sorry, Raymond. For having doubted you.’
Though to be honest, I haven’t entirely let down my guard.
I dashed over to the sound of a sigh coming from the bed.
“Are you awake?”
He gazed at me with his eyes scarcely open. He appeared to be questioning why I was there, so I decided to reply politely.
“You have a fever… but they say you’re fine. They said it’s a common cold circulating this time of year.”
He let out a small sigh – he seems to find the act of collapsing exhausting.
“Do you want water, Amoide? Is your throat dry?”
He nodded slightly in response.
I motioned to Rona, who had been quietly observing from behind, and she ran over and tried to bring the medicine and drink from the table. But before Rona could take a step towards us, she was stopped by someone.
“Emma, what’s the matter?”
Rona asked as she turned her head to see who was holding her back by her garments.
“It’s my duty.”
Emma’s brow wrinkled as she answered Rona. To be more specific, her brows were furrowed towards me.
‘Are you going to challenge me now?’
Emma had served Amoide even before he became ill, so her devotion was certainly outstanding, but there is such a thing as a time and a place.
“Does it really matter who brings it?”
Emma snapped her head to face me when I directed the question to her.
“Because it’s my responsibility. I don’t want to be a maid who ignores her duties.”
Emma lifted her chin defiantly in response to my question. For some reason, there was a fire blazing in her eyes.
“Alright. Can someone, anyone, please bring the medicine quickly?”
Rona passed the prescription bottle to Emma at my command. She didn’t forget to give her a sidelong glance in the process; though her wide eyes and cheeks, as well as her bangs trimmed right over her brows, made her appear a lot less threatening than she probably intended.
Emma approached us with the prescription bottle. I raised my eyes to her face. Perhaps she seemed more oppressive since she was above my line of sight.
“My Lady, this is my duty.”
Emma used a forceful tone. It seemed all she wanted to do was to be the one to administer Amoide’s medicine herself.
For some reason, she had invoked some sense of tenacity within me.
“Emma, please give me the medicine.”
Amoide’s voice could be heard from behind, and Emma’s face lit up for a split second.
I felt as though something shattered within my skull at that moment.
“My Lady, I will now give the medicine to the master…”
But I cut off the hand that was clutching the prescription bottle. As Amoide’s fingers had barely brushed against the bottle, I watched his face crumple in disbelief.
“That’s enough Emma, please step aside.”
I pulled Emma’s hand away and reached for the bottle in her hands.
The hand fiercely grasping the little glass bottle did not give.
Her lips appeared to be shaking as she exerted such intense power on the bottle.
There was no way I could win with brute force anyway. How would one defeat such a motivated opponent? So I altered my strategy.
I slowly curled my hand into hers and began tickling the inside of her palm.
Whether the sensation gave her the creeps or not, Emma relinquished her grasp on the bottle, and I took the opportunity to quickly snatch it.
“Thank you for bringing it, Emma.”
I held up the medicine bottle with a triumphant grin.
“Now, let’s take the medicine.”
Amoide looked at my hand holding out the bottle to him, but did not instantly accept it.
“Come on, come on.”
If I am the one giving him the medicine, would it turn into poison? What exactly is he staring at?
“Will you give it to me this time, too?”
He snatched the prescription bottle from me as soon as he finished speaking.
“Is that all?”
He drank the medication from the bottle until it was finished, then extended his hand.
“Everyone, please leave.”
“Everyone, he said to leave.”
I promptly repeated what he had said.
He glanced briefly at me, wide-eyed, as if perplexed by what I had said.
“Why? You said everyone should leave.”
I answered plainly. I cupped my chin with both hands.
“I’m not leaving, though.”
His gaze darkened somewhat as a nasal whine accompanied my statement.
‘What are you looking at this time?’
I, of course, did not back down.
“Amoide, I am going to stay by your side.”
I whispered as I helped him put his arm back under the cover after taking his medicine.
“What are you doing? Please, everyone, leave.”
Everyone in the room left immediately after hearing my more decisive words. Though Rona had to grab Emma, who seemed to be fighting to the last to remain in the room.
“The Duke wishes to rest, so why are you making a fuss?”
Emma literally had to be forced out of the room. She anxiously looked back at Amoide as she was dragged out by Rona’s hand, but Amoide said nothing.
A sudden stillness surrounded us after everyone had left and only the two of us remained. Amoide’s blue eyes were fixed on me, and I made no attempt to evade his stare. I kept my gaze riveted on him, my eyes refusing to close.
My eyes were starting to itch.
I blinked quickly and I thought I saw a slight smile flash across his lips. It was a sweet smile that might have thawed thin ice.
I talked to him while I wiped the corners of my eyes where tears had begun to form.
“You took your medicine, so you’ll be sleepy soon. Let’s get some sleep.”
It seemed like he might have had something else to say, but he closed his eyes, and the sound of steady breathing enveloped the room a minute later.
I replaced the moist towel on his brow; I couldn’t help but appreciate his face while I did so. For some reason, I thought I didn’t want anyone else to see his sleeping face. He has a lethal, toxic attractiveness about him. I couldn’t overtly applaud it due to his illness; Amoide’s exceptional attractiveness was definitely enhanced by his frail physical state, which could collapse at any time.
I once overheard the maids conversing in the yard.
<The master’s looks are really unearthly, especially when combined with his delicate attractiveness!>
As one maid exclaimed, the others enthusiastically concurred, exclaiming ‘Yes, yes’.
<We must feast our eyes while we still can. We don’t know when he’ll die, so we should take all the opportunities we can right now… Ouch!>
The chattering maid’s comments were stopped short when another maid pinched her on her side – when she belatedly noticed me, her face grew pale.
This man is doomed to die – by poison no less.
“That cannot happen.”
My mind trembled.
“I will put a stop to it no matter what.”
Your life, as well as mine, is my top priority.
“Don’t die, Amoide. I will save you.”
I clutched his hand securely through the covers.
His hand twitched even though he should have been asleep.