If You Wish For Something Useless - Chapter 15
Translator and Editor: Gina and Tea
Chapter 15 – Useless Hope (4)
“Should I lift you higher?”
At the same time, as if she was a little too low, the hand that held Evelyn’s waist reached out a little further. Only then did Evelyn, understanding what was happening, regain her composure.
‘You should tell me in advance! What’s this lifting me up without prior notice?’
Evelyn criticized Ethan inwardly and put amber jewels in the snowman’s face.
“Now, please put me down!”
Was it due to the cold tone? Ethan quickly lowered his arms and set Evelyn on the ground.
“Were you surprised? Or- or uncomfortable… I’m sorry, I was ahead of myself…”
Evelyn glared at Ethan and nodded at once.
“Yes, I was surprised.”
“I’m really sorry! I was wrong! I won’t do it next time- huh?”
Seeing him contrite and anxious that she might not forgive him calmed her heart. Evelyn finally sighed and shook her head. As Ethan breathed sighs of relief, she admired the finished snowman. With amber gems as eyes, it was quite luxurious. It wasn’t a great work of art, but at least it wasn’t bad enough to call it unpleasant.
‘It’s been a long time since I’ve played like this, it was fun.’
While she was contemplating her finished work a gardener approached, finding two people sitting in the middle of the garden building a snowman. In his old hands, he held a large branch of a tree. When he sneakily slipped to him, Ethan accepted it with a smile. Suddenly, the big snowman had arms.
Ethan didn’t stop there, he took off his gloves and affixed them to the ends of the branches.
“Won’t your hands get cold?”
“I’m fine- aachoo!”
Ethan couldn’t even finish and sneezed. Immediately afterward, he began sniffling with a runny nose. Seeing even his pupils shake, Evelyn shook her head. He clearly said the cold didn’t bother him a minute ago and now…
“This… oh… ehem.”
His ears were burning red. He was embarrassed enough to bow his head without thinking about making up an excuse. Evelyn couldn’t help but find him cute.
‘He seems embarrassed.’
Unlike his boastful mouth claiming he was okay, his body was honest. Looking at him more closely, Ethan’s lips were turning blue.
‘We have to go in. Ethan might catch a cold if he stays here.’
Even if he was a trained knight, he was still a human after all. Of course, he was not exempt from sickness. The lower the temperature, the more cautious one had to be.
“Now, let’s stop and go in.”
In the end, Evelyn suggested going indoors.
“…Oh… But you haven’t made one yet…”
Ethan seemed disappointed. To correct his words, Evelyn pointed at her feet.
“There’s one here.”
It was a small snowman that barely reached to her waist.
“But… It’s too small.”
“Does size matter?”
Ethan, scratching his snow-wet head, answered with a vague smile.
“Actually… I wanted to make you and me.”
At the unexpected announcement, Evelyn glanced at the jewels scattered around the ground. Garnets and sapphires with a reddish-orange hue, golden sapphires, and ambers. All the jewels resembled Ethan’s and Evelyn’s color eyes respectively. Why did she realize it only now?
“Since you made me, I want to make you, too. Can’t I?”
Her heart was tickled, should she give in and build another snowman as he wished? She quickly dismissed that idea when Ethan tried to hold back a sneeze and his runny nose.
“I’ll like it, next time.”
Evelyn comforted him by telling him they could do it another day. Disappointed to have to go back inside, Ethan’s steps were much slower than usual. Slow, hesitant …
Evelyn pulled his arm, trying to cajole him who didn’t want to go inside.
“It’s not that the snow will melt in a day or two anyway. Let’s make my snowman next time and let’s do something else inside today.”
Her soft voice seemed to hold a smile.
Ethan, who had been staring at the snow-covered ground, raised his head.
“You want to do something together?”
Suddenly, the corner of his mouth began to twitch again, threatening to rise. In a way, he was a very easy person to read.
“But you must be busy with your duties… I’ve already taken a lot of your time… also…”
His face telegraphed the feeling that he could die of happiness as he muttered. Evelyn couldn’t help but smile as she watched him trying to read her face.
“Help me a little more this afternoon.”
‘I can’t believe you’re still pretending even though you’re already willing to do it.’ It was ridiculously cute; Evelyn couldn’t help but keep smiling.
“Okay, so let’s go in now, you’ll catch a cold.”
Ethan touched his lips with one hand and turned with a smile on his face.
“What would you like to play? You’re good at chess, would you like to play it one more time?”
“I’m just good at it, though, I don’t enjoy it.”
Evelyn was not fond of board games where players placed pieces or cards on the board and played according to certain rules. Because it was too easy to win.
“Hmm, well, yeah, with your skills, chess must be boring. If there is anything you want to do, tell me.”
She didn’t even bother to open her mouth, but Ethan quickly figured out why she didn’t like board games. Knowing that such understanding came from his care and affection, Evelyn felt dizzy as if drunk.
“‘Go’1 from the eastern continent is quite interesting. It is not as easy to win or lose as you might think.”
That was the reason she could easily say things she wouldn’t have said before.
“Go? Oh, Are you talking about the chess game of the eastern continent?”
“It’s different. Actually, chess is similar to Go, not the other way around.”
“Um… There are black and white pieces, right?”
“Yes, but the rules are completely different.”
Ethan had a puzzled expression on his face.
“I wouldn’t know. I’ve never played it.”
Of course, he had never played Go himself.
“Do you want me to teach you?”
She liked the smile that bloomed on his face after hearing that short question.
“You’ll teach me yourself? If that’s the case, I’d appreciate it…”
“I’m not sure if Brother will like it though.”
“If you like it, I like it too. Why didn’t you tell me if you enjoyed playing Go? I would have learned it right away.”
It was definitely not her fault to be captivated by those simple words. Evelyn’s eyes folded into a half-moon shape as if mirroring Ethan’s smile. Adding a bit of force into the hand holding Ethan she said,
“Hurry inside. I will teach you well.”
Until then, Ethan didn’t know what ‘well’ meant. So with a surprised yet soft expression, he let himself be dragged inside by Evelyn’s hand.
The white stone that had landed on the checkerboard made a loud yet firm sound.
“You keep making predictable moves that can be blocked.”
Ethan’s body flinched and shivered as if he were frightened by the sound. Evelyn looked at Ethan cowering and removed the black stone from the plate, which was just eaten by a white stone.
“I told you. Don’t just think about the stones you’ll place now, but also think about the stones to put next.”
“Umm, I did…”
“It’s not just that. If your stone is blocked, you have to think a move forward in advance. In Go, like in chess, it’s one exchange turn at a time, so you have no choice but to create a path that the opponent won’t block. You have to avoid it.”
“You will never win if you keep thinking about short term moves like this. Every time you make a move you get eaten by me.”
It took around only twenty minutes for Ethan’s bright smile to fade.
“That… It’s not about winning, is it? Regardless of winning or losing the game–”
“What do you mean? Since we started, it’s a competition, I have to win!”
“This is just a game…”
Evelyn’s eyebrows twitched before Ethan could finish his words.
‘What the hell is this faint desire to win?’ From what she had seen so far, Ethan wasn’t very competitive. In other words, his desire for victory was almost nonexistent. She realized it many times by playing chess or Othello, but at that time, she didn’t care because it was when she wanted to keep her distance from him.
Perhaps it was because she had changed her mind, Evelyn was dissatisfied with Ethan’s passive, rather than cutthroat, character.
‘I can’t believe you’re saying it doesn’t matter if you win or lose when I have been thinking from the beginning that I would win even if I have to grit my teeth.’
Tch. The sound of her tongue clicking filled the quiet room. At that sound, Ethan fiddled with the black stone he was holding in his hand and looked into Evelyn’s face. He regretted it. Had he known Evelyn would be this aggressive, he wouldn’t have followed her so willingly. But shortly after entertaining such thoughts, he shook his head and scolded himself. ‘Just a few days ago, I thought anything was fine as long as it was with Evelyn, what kind of silly idea is this?’
‘At most, Evelyn gave me time.’
In fact, games like Go and Chess weren’t to Ethan’s taste. He was an active person, so sitting still indoors was not very attractive. Still, Evelyn liked it, so he thought he should study hard in the future.
‘…It will take a long time to be with Evelyn.’
Go had far more principles and strategies than chess. It will take quite a while to get it right.
“If it’s not fun, should we stop?”
Evelyn had been quiet right after clicking her tongue as if displeased and finally spoke again.
Ethan was startled and flinched again.
“No, it’s not that. It’s a little difficult, but interesting. If I work hard, I might get better, right?”
To be honest, he wasn’t pleased. ‘But even so, what does that matter? It’s Evelyn’s favorite.’
Ethan was determined. Let’s work hard. Evelyn’s thoughts seemed to be different though. Putting down the stone she was holding, she began to tidy the Go board.
“Let’s stop. I’m not enjoying it anymore.”
Ethan’s shoulders sagged.
‘Did I speak too harshly?’ Evelyn glanced at Ethan and noticed his reaction. But she couldn’t say she enjoys what she doesn’t just because Ethan looked sullen.
‘You don’t even think about winning.’
She liked to play fiercely for victory. Playing Go with Ethan, who didn’t have the slightest desire to win was not enjoyable. Furthermore…
Even though the air in the room was warm enough to make Evelyn feel overheated, Ethan still occasionally sniffed or coughed. He must have caught a cold after playing too much with snow in the garden. It was better to push him into bed early than to force him to stay up. Evelyn decided to leave first because as long as she was with him, Ethan would hesitate and wouldn’t retire.
“Are you heading to the office?”
Ethan asked, following from behind.
“I will go alone today. It’ll be better for Brother to rest.”
“Huh? I’m fine though? Besides, I was supposed to help you…”
Ethan spoke eagerly, not wanting to miss his chance to accompany her.
“Your mouth says you’re good, but your body is honest.
Evelyn did not change her mind. Whether he knew he was showing symptoms of a cold or not, Ethan avoided her gaze with a guilty expression on his face. He wasn’t someone who could lie.
‘Is he naive or pure?’ Maybe he was both.
“I’ll send the physician, so don’t overdo it and rest.”
“Then I’ll go first,” Evelyn turned her back after finishing her words. Leaving Ethan behind and walking towards the office was a bit troubling.
‘Shouldn’t I have stopped him when he said he wanted to make a snowman?’ Even if he had paid more attention to her, she shouldn’t have let him play with snow outside. Evelyn, arriving at the office, clicked her tongue again and sat down. She planned to call the Grand Duchy’s physician and resident priest.
She couldn’t erase the past, so she had no choice but to instruct them to prepare a good medicine.
1. [Go is an abstract strategy board game for two players in which the aim is to surround more territory than the opponent. The game was invented in China more than 2,500 years ago and is believed to be the oldest board game continuously played to the present day]↩
Comments for chapter "Chapter 15 "
What Are Pilot Novels?
Pilot novels are novels that will only have 1 chapter to 3 chapters released from our group. We hope that someone else can continue these novels for the enjoyment of everyone!