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Later that afternoon, Clarisse went into town with Jean, and after stopping at a bookstore and a pharmacist, she bought some much-needed winter garments. She bought a simple brown warm leather coat and several dresses made of the warm, thick material recommended by the madame. Not being confident in her own taste, she left it to the madame and Jean, who were surprisingly good advisors with good fashion sense. When the madame heard that they were going on a trip near the water, she decided to recommend warm underwear that she could wear underneath; she brought a few options from the back of the store and had them choose from the selection available.
Jean suggested that they contact the dress store in the capital to see if they could find some winter dresses, but Clarisse said that what they had here was enough and he didn't have to worry about it.
She did not bring Mary with her, so she didn't know if Mary had spent time with Sid or not, but when they returned home that evening, both Sid and Marius were already back at their mansion, and Mary did not say anything, so she didn't ask any questions. After Clarisse and Jean had retired to their bedroom, it was already time to go to bed, and as Clarisse sat on her bed, she muttered,
"Sid-sama looks a lot like Cedric-sama..."
"Cedric? Who is that?"
"Mary's childhood friend from the Viscount's family. If the baron's house had not been ruined as it was, he would probably have been engaged to Mary. I think Cedric-sama probably had a fondness for Mary and not just in the way you would feel toward a childhood friend."
Mary's image is frequently portrayed as harsh, owing to her harsh demeanor. Her actual appearance, on the other hand, was quite appealing to the point where she could easily compete with Clarisse; if ten people were asked what they thought of her appearance, all ten of them would probably consider her a beauty.
She has beautiful dark hair, calm gray eyes, and a slender physique, which is not bad in any way, but - because of the way she speaks and acts - Jean thought that Sid's preferences might be a little different from others. It was a surprise to learn that there was another man who wanted Mary as a wife.
"What do you mean by resemblance? Face?"
"Well, if we're talking about facial features alone, I think Sid-sama is more handsome...but his smile reminds me of Cedric-sama's."
Jean sat down on the sofa and thought about it.
"Where is this Cedric man now?"
"Only to the extent that I met him when he was with Mary at the time...I didn't know him that well. As you know, I rarely went to soirées... I just remember he was four years older than Mary, so he may have already gotten married by now. "
Indeed, when the barony was demolished, Clarisse mentioned that she was only eight years old, making Mary only 12 at the time, which was a long time ago, and Clarisse herself was also a child, so it's no wonder she didn't know what happened to Cedric afterward. The baron's family had separated, apparently, but Cedric must have known that Mary had joined the Farenheit household in the royal capital as a servant. Hence, the fact that he had not shown his face since then means that he abandoned her.
"Do you think Mary liked Cedric?"
"This is just my guess, but I think she probably did love him. But since Mary has such a personality, I have a feeling that she cut off her past once and for all when the barony was ruined, and I don't think I ever saw her display any emotions regarding Cedric sama after that.”
'That's certainly... very Mary-like.'
"Why did you suddenly remember Cedric?"
Was there any sign that made Mary think of Cedric?
Clarisse smiled bashfully when he asked that, and Jean couldn't care less about Mary's story at that moment; he just wanted to hug her and love her, but he managed to contain himself with rationality.
"That was this morning when I told Mary about Sid-sama... Mary's face turned bright red, and she was so flustered... I wondered if she liked Sid-sama. And when I thought of that, I realized that Sid-sama looked like someone else...and I remembered Cedric-sama."
'I see...it's worth checking out...'
Clarisse must have just remembered it somehow, but now with the mess of the Farenheit family being cleared up, Cedric might be worried about Mary and investigate her whereabouts, and since Mary is now in a different position from when she was a maid in the Farenheit household, he might think that he could meet with her if he wanted to.
Since Jean felt happier and more contented than he had ever been in his life with his companion, Clarisse, he thought it would not be a bad idea to look into the background of the woman his breast brother was interested in. He asked Clarisse for Cedric's full name and made a note in his head to have Marius look into it secretly tomorrow.
Then he lay back on his bed, pulling his beloved fiancée to his side, and thought about suggesting to Clarisse that it might be a good idea to not take Mary to the lake.
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