Empress of the Lambrew Empire.
Even within the palace, the most spectacular space was not until noon when the day began.
It was a daily occurrence because the Empress, who usually couldn't fall asleep easily, would not fall asleep until dawn.
The Empress's bedroom was dim with curtains pulled down to prevent bright sunlight from outside.
Just out of the bath, the wet-haired empress sat in front of the mirror.
It was already a bedroom filled with dozens of people, including a maid who combed and dried her hair hundreds of times, a maid who prepares a dress for the empress today, and a maid who cleans up her sleeping bedding.
But the space was as quiet as a mouse.
From time to time, they could only hear the Empress's irritating sigh.
Dozens of handmaids moved without making a sound of their clothes or footsteps.
But no one was frowning.
they knew they had to be careful not to breathe in front of the Empress.
It wasn't until a long time later that the Empress's decoration was complete.
The empress smiled satisfactorily when she saw a beautiful woman sitting in the mirror who would not be comparable to anyone in appearance.
"You're the only one left and you're out."
The empress said, pointing to a maid who was organizing her underwear.
It seemed familiar, everyone bowed politely out of the bedroom.
However, only the maid who was pointed out turned pale.
It was because she knew why the Empress wanted to see her.
It's already been five years since she had the empress right next to her, but the always-called word was "you."
The black-haired maid, named Bella, preferred her hair.
"How come there's no news?"
Bella's eyes trembled uneasily.
"I'm definitely using my hands as you ordered......."
What Empress Lavigne to do was simple.
Poison the food of Prince Perez.
No matter how humble the mother was, he was definitely the son of the emperor.
Poisoning such a second prince.
It was a matter of natural wrath, but the Empress's face was dry as if to pull out weeds that she didn't want to see.
Bella was so scared.
She didn't want to do such a terrible thing.
But she had no right to refuse the Empress' orders.
Bella's family, one of the Angenas's many vassal families, was a poor aristocrat with a palm-sized burial ground in the western Empire.
Bella, the eldest daughter of such a family, was devoted to the empress by her father.
At least it was her father's order to take care of the Empress right next to her because she was the most beautiful and smart among the siblings.
He also said, "Don't ever think about coming back to the estate again."
Most of the maids serving the empress were in such circumstances, and the fate of them and their families depended on every word she said.
If she disobey the Empress's words to mix poison with the food of the second Prince, not only her but also all her family members will die.
Now they were blood and blood who couldn't even remember faces, but for Bella it was like life.
So she closed her eyes and started to poison.
After the death of the second prince's mother, he was taking his own food to the annex once a week.
It's been a few months.
But the second prince is not dead yet.
"When I see him lying on his bed every time I go, I feel like he's poisoned, but......."
Why aren't you dying?
Bella's face became a crybaby.
If the kid doesn't die, she dies.
Innocent families die.
Bella recalled the scrawny second Prince.
Such a child.
It would be comfortable for everyone to die soon.
"Add more poison next time."
The Empress glanced at Bella's trembling shoulders and said.
"Th, thank you!"
Bella's voice was watery.
It was a relief that she had a chance again, not to die.
The empress, who looked at Bella irritatingly, waved one hand.
It meant get out of her sight.
Bella was just thrilled, even though it was like chasing a bug.
She wiped away tears and laughed as she left the Empress' bedroom, killing her footsteps like a habit.
I'm so glad, I'm so glad.
It was fortunate that it was not me who died, but the second prince who no one cared about.
* * *
"Here's a report on sales at the clothing store."
Clarivan handed me a bunch of paper in neat handwriting.
"And this is the age distribution of the customers you mentioned and the results of a simple survey."
That was what I asked of Clarivan the other day.
It was an event where visitors to clothing stores were asked to be excused in advance and given ribbons or buttons that could be attached to their clothes if they answered a simple survey.
Those who felt sorry to buy the same ready-made clothes as others were willing to participate in the small props that could be decorated according to their preferences.
"There are certainly overwhelming female guests. And age is...... in their 30s and 40s."
"Maybe it's because women who used to make clothes at home prefer to buy ready-to-wear."
"I'm sure they are. Hmm......."
While I was lost in thought for a moment, Clarivan waited beside me.
No, not for nothing.
Although I didn't say anything, I didn't seem to know what I was going to say in his sparkling eyes.
"You said you'd open a branch this time?"
"Yes, I'm looking for a suitable position in the same Heslot market."
"What does my father say?"
"I think he's very busy because he's in charge of the management...."
It must be hectic for someone who always reads to run such a busy business.
You'll need some time to adjust.
I nodded and said to Clarivan.
"Even if you're in a hurry, please pay as much attention to decorating the interior and exterior as you can to the main store. Just because it's cheap, you have to avoid the image of ready-to-wear being cheap."
"And if possible, I think we'd better start with clothes other than the original women's clothing in time for the opening of the branch."
"Different kinds of clothes?"
"This time, my grandfather matched the clothes of Lombardy employees, and the sewing workers had the experience of men's clothing."
It cost money to make prototypes after setting a new example, so I'll have to do everything I can.
"Relatively simple-designed, low-decorated men's clothing will leave a lot of margins in the clothing store."
"But the main customer base is women, is that okay?"
"Because the main customer base is women, I think men's clothing will do well."
I said, tapping on the report with my fingertips.
Clerivan thought for a moment about what I said and 'tipped' his knee.
"Ah! A woman in her 30s and 40s would buy her spouse's clothes, too!"
"As expected of you, Lady......."
Clarivan is so moved that he can't even speak.
Maybe it's because it's the first time he has seen a smart Lombardi.
I understand that, Clarivan.
I stretched out my short arms and patted Clarivan on the shoulder.
And held out the other hand.
"You have to give me the order sheet."
"Oh, here you are."
Clerivan put a bunch of papers full of numbers on my hands.
In fact, I didn't mean to pay attention to the details of the money coming in and out.
There was only one item I looked for in this complex order sheet.
"That's a pretty good margin?"
"Yes, I think that's what happened because we were trading in large numbers through the top of Lombardi and the guild."
Clarivan said proudly.
It's a matter of course.
How much profit a merchant makes is the most accurate standard of ability.
I handed over a couple of pages of the report.
And I finally found what I wanted.
There is a need for some adjustment, as I thought.
"Raise the wages of textilemen and seamstress a little more."
"What? That will reduce the rate of clothing stores."
"I suppose so, but these are the people of Lombardy after all?"
People who live on the land of Lombardi, work for Lombardi, and pay taxes on Lombardi.
That's why it doesn't mean much to save money for them and make more.
"And if you raise wages, you'll naturally increase the efficiency of your work. We'll have to find more and more hands in the future. Not to mention it's easy to save people then."
Clerivan nodded, raising his glasses.
"I see, from a macro perspective, it's a way to give up a little margin right now and instead solidify Lombardy itself."
As expected, Clarivan is quick to understand.
He was reading between the lines without having to explain everything.
Standing up from my seat behind Clarivan, who rummaged through the reports in a studying position again, I walked to a nearby bookcase.
I was worried that my study might be full of books for children.
The last time I read People in the South, the books were rather set at the level of adults.
Looking through many interesting books that could help me right away, I suddenly realized one thing and asked Clarivan.
"It's almost Lombardi's scholarship day, isn't it?"
"What? Yes, it is. But how could you......."
Lombardi scholarship students who gather once a quarter are called Lombardi Kids.
Lombardi's sponsorship, or to be exact, is a group of people who grew up with the sponsorship of my grandfather and settled down in all walks of life.
Clarivan is one of them.
There are nobles and commoners, but what they have in common was the strong sense of belonging, bond, and deep loyalty to my grandfather.
Lombardi Kids is considered as a powerful weapon as the family's property, so Viege used to attend with my grandfather on the day they gathered.
"Where are we meeting this time?"
"The place has been designated as the Lombardy mansion. However, I received a message that there could be a change in the date."
Since each person has a key position, usually a few weeks ago, the date and place were already set.
Is something wrong with my grandfather?
It was all up to my grandfather anyway, so I had to watch.
"Then he'll come, too?"
The man who was small and couldn't hide his age but had a tremendous presence at the same time.
"It would be nice to open up in advance."
I murmured, recalling a gray-haired middle-aged woman I had seen for a while in my previous life.
After 'deep class' with Clarivan, I left my study.
Some time ago Gillieu and Mairon started taking sword lessons.
It was Shannanet's decision to exhaust the twin's energy, which exudes tremendous beagle beauty day by day.
In my previous life, it would be a good choice because they were the two who went up to the top when the tournament was held in each country.
"Because the weather is nice. Why don't we go for a walk?
It's time for the twins' sword class to end soon.
Slowly took steps to go to Shannanet together.
And it was time to enter the quiet road to the annex's haze.
Something flew hard into my face with a thud of air.