Roel was currently in the midst of scrubbing his hair with his delicate hands in the warm bathtub.
He poured some shampoo on his hands and lathered it before applying it to his hair. This was something that he had done many times before, but it had gotten more troublesome now that his hair was much longer.
I didn’t know that having long hair can be such a hassle, Roel thought with a sigh as he diligently scrubbed the shampoo into every inch of his hair.
He did like the carefree appearance that came from his long hair, thinking that it was a nice change from his usual neat image, but it felt heavy on his head and was difficult to care for. It was simply much more convenient to have short hair, and he was starting to miss it now.
It took a great deal of time and effort before he finally overcame his first challenge, but he was faced with the second one right after.
I don’t have a towel.
“I forgot that I’m not in the Azure Manor anymore. Senior did mention that she found this place on the fly…”
Roel scratched his head awkwardly as he searched around the bathroom for a towel but to no avail.
In the end, he could only walk over to the doorway and knock on it lightly. After catching Lilian’s attention, he carefully opened a crack in the doorway and asked with a reddened face.
“Senior, is there… a towel outside?”
“My apologies, it looks like I’ve forgotten to get one for you. Here, use this.”
Lilian passed a towel to him through the crack in the doorway. Roel took the towel, thanked her, and hurriedly closed the door. He patted his heart in relief right after.
They weren’t real siblings after all. He didn’t think that there was really anything awkward about asking someone to pass him a towel while he was in the bathroom, but somehow, it did feel a little embarrassing when the person on the other side was Lilian.
Perhaps out of consideration for his feelings, Lilian specially averted her eyes while passing the towel over too.
I’m a little surprised how meticulous senior is toward such minor details.
Roel hummed a melodious tune while wiping his hair and body dry.
Once again, he underestimated the inconvenience brought about by long hair. No matter how he tried to towel it, his hair still remained damp. In the end, he gave up on it and turned to look at his clothes, which he quickly realized were soaked in blood and dirt.
He sighed yet again.
It’s dirty and too big for me. I can’t wear it anymore.
Feeling utterly helpless, Roel could only learn from Lilian’s example and wrap the towel around his body. He was just about to get to it when he noticed a faint fragrance coming from the towel.
What a familiar scent. I feel like I’ve smelled it somewhere. Where could it be from…
A recollection of memories flashed across Roel’s mind. Many images flashed across his mind before abruptly coming to a halt at the moment the two of them hugged one another on a bed in the Witness State.
This is senior’s fragrance!
Roel’s eyes widened in astonishment upon stumbling on the truth. He quickly looked at the towel in his hands once more and thought about how it was wrapping Lilian’s glorious body just a moment ago. His face quickly reddened like an apple.
“T-there’s no choice. This might be the only towel here…” murmured Roel as he looked around the empty shelves in the bathroom.
He couldn’t resist the urge to raise the towel and take a whiff of it once more. Upon double confirming that it was indeed Lilian’s fragrance, his cheeks blushed even more furiously.
He took a few deep breaths to calm himself down before finally leaving the bathroom with his dirty clothes in hand. By then, Lilian had already changed into a fresh set of clothes, though it was worthwhile to note that she was dressed in a maid uniform, much to his incredulity.
“You’re finally out, young master Roel.”
Watching as the smiling Lilian lifted her skirt slightly to curtsey toward him, Roel’s pupils dilated in astonishment before quickly turning his eyes away.
A curtsy coming from an Austine imperial princess dressed as a maid? You must be kidding! Who would dare to accept something like that?
“Senior, y-your clothes…” muttered Roel.
The maid uniform was predominantly black with white frills and a little silk ribbon in front. It looked professional and adorable at the same time.
Lilian chuckled in response to Roel’s remark. She adjusted her silk ribbon a little as she replied.
“It can’t be helped. There’s no one living in this villa, so I can only make do with the spare maid uniforms.”
“What do you think? Does it look good on me?”
“A-ah? Um, you do look beautiful, but…”
Lilian had bent down slightly to meet his height while smiling at him. Just looking at her was enough to make Roel’s heart skip a beat. This maid uniform was unlike those for cosplay purposes in his previous world; it was intended for work, so it was neither tight-fitting nor revealing. That being said, it still brought out a different charm from her.
If he really had to pick a fault with it, it would be the conspicuous incongruence between her and the maid uniform.
Having grown up in a position of power, Lilian naturally gave off an authoritative aura that allowed her to silence others with just a casual glance. Just being in the same room as her would make one straighten their posture and sit properly.
To put such a person in a maid costume simply looked too out of place.
Roel couldn’t help but admire this striking contrast between Lilian and her clothes in a daze. At the same time, Lilian was also admiring the adorable little being before her. When her gaze fell upon the towel wrapped around his body, her eyes inconspicuously narrowed cunningly.
“Pardon me. I was only able to find this towel, so I could only pass you one which I have used. I hope that it wasn’t dirty?”
“No no, of course not. It’s fine, this is not something you ought to apologize over.”
“Still, it must have been a little damp. There might also be…”
“Not at all! I don’t mind the smell at all.”
“… Pardon me?”
Lilian was intending to just tease Roel a bit, knowing that he was quite restrained when it came to such matters, but his response ironically left her more flustered instead.
“W-was there an odd smell on it? I must have not thoroughly washed off the grime on me… Excuse me for a moment, I’ll take another quick bath!”
It took Roel a while before he finally realized that she had misunderstood her words.
Oh yeah, people are usually oblivious to their own body scents.
Seeing that Lilian was swiftly making her way toward the bathroom once more with her head lowered awkwardly, Roel hurriedly reached out to grab the hem of her skirt and clarified.
“That’s not what I mean! Rather than an odd smell, it’s more of a fragrance and I’m quite fond of it, so there’s no need…”
Roel was in a rush to dispel Lilian’s misunderstanding that he didn’t think his own words through before voicing them aloud. It was only after he had blurted out those words that it dawned on him just how amorous they sounded. His voice slowly began to trail off.
Lilian froze in place upon hearing his words, and her eyes slowly widened.
There was a moment of silence between the two of them before both of their faces turned bright red.
“S-senior, that’s not what I mean…”
Roel quickly retracted his hand and tried to explain himself frantically, but Lilian wasn’t responding at all.
There was a long pause before Lilian finally turned around to look at Roel. Garnering all of her courage, she bent down and planted a light kiss on his forehead.
The sudden softness on his forehead surprised Roel. He raised his head to look at Lilian in intrigue.
“This way, you’ll be covered in my scent,” replied Lilian blissfully as her eyes curled into smiles.