I’m Done Being Your Best Friend - Chapter 22
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Count Parker’s ballroom was not that bustling when we arrived, in fact it was a bit deserted.
Daisy looked around and complained to me.
“I think we came too early today. We could have come a little later.”
I did not come at this hour because I wanted to hang out with you soon, I cannot even bear a second of seeing your disgusting face. I am trying to put out the fire in advance.
According to a newspaper article, one particular room on the second floor was seriously damaged after the incident. That was where the fire started, and where Heidi’s body was found.
Perhaps the cause of the fire had something to do with her. That room was probably the main lounge, where guests could stop by for a rest. If I keep Heidi out of there, would this catastrophe be prevented?
Anyway, I had to find Heidi first…I went with Daisy to the section where the food was prepared and got an overview across the whole hall.
Heidi was nowhere to be seen. Had she not attended yet? As I looked around the hall, Daisy with a whiskey in her hand spoke to me.
“Count Page is acting weird and suspicious these days.”
How could she say such a negative thing to someone who was pursuing her love? When I asked, Daisy took a sip of whiskey and continued. I could sense that something was on her mind, that was why she was consulting with me about it.
“After giving gifts that were out of my senses, the list of gifts suddenly changed and the presents after that were all to my liking, it was as if he read my thoughts. Well, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but appearing everywhere I go? Isn’t that really strange?”
“It must be fate.”
I did not believe in fate, but I wrapped it up like this.
I had sent a reply to George notifying that Daisy would be at the ball, so sure enough he would be here again this time.
I only told him the time of our arrival, the rest was up to George.
“Daisy, don’t you like Count Page?”
“Rather than that….I think it would be better to make a careful decision with much consideration.”
I wonder how George would behave in front of Daisy since this was a perfect occasion to associate with her and gain her favour, I just hoped that he would not ruin this precious chance. But for now, Heidi came first. Since I was here for the case, I would rather go up to the second floor than wait for Heidi who was nowhere to be seen. She would eventually come up to the lounge anyway.
As I was about to head upstairs, I heard a familiar voice from the other side of the ballroom.
“You are both here early today.”
It was Chloe. Wait, wasn’t Chloe’s presence meant that Heidi was also here?
Daisy, meanwhile, seemed uncomfortable meeting Chloe here. She smiled, but it was quite different from that from the time she met Logan on the street. Anyway, Daisy greeted her out of courtesy as Chloe was more or less a grand figure which could not be ignored.
“Greetings to Lady Grint, you are here, too.”
“I have a close relationship with Count Parker, it is natural for me to attend.”
“But today, you even approached to personally say hello to us like this…I don’t think you were there to welcome and greet us yourself last time, were you?”
“Because there was no one I wanted to greet at that time.”
Daisy shut her mouth.
Chloe’s tone sounded a little arrogant. I guess Chloe was the party that started it first for today.
I glanced alternately between them. Chloe was smiling, there was something ironic and sarcastic about her smile though it was subtle. Daisy, on the other hand, was smiling softly as well, but her facial expression had long hardened and her smile was somehow forced.
In a little while, Daisy will counterattack. Daisy was always like this, trying to relax and pretending not to get hurt.
But this time my prediction was wrong. Daisy’s desire to hold superiority over Chloe somehow did not work out so well as it was intercepted the moment George stepped in between.
“Oh, Lady Moore!”
George quickly greeted me and Chloe. But his main aim today was Daisy. He gave Daisy a soft smile as soon as he finished greeting.
“The party is not at its most lively state, yet, you are here early.”
“Sienna wanted to come sooner this time. You are quite early yourself, too.”
Now Daisy would be held by George for a while. This was a great opportunity for George. Dancing and talking with Daisy sociably, I wondered if George would do well…
Either way, it would buy me some time to be more engaged in Heidi’s case. I turned my head towards Chloe.
“But how come I don’t see Lady Coventry with you today?”
“If you ask about Lady Coventry, she went up to rest in the lounge earlier.”
The ball was just starting, it was unexpected of her to retire so quickly. Chloe seemed a bit confused about my bewildered reaction.
“Yes, I heard she is not feeling well today.”
It was certainly not the time to stand idly next to Daisy and get involved in her silly chattering. I was frustrated, but I hid my innermost feelings and displayed a worried look.
“It’s a ball and she is sick…isn’t it too bad? I would like to visit Lady Coventry and comfort her.”
“Then would you like to come with me?”
I glanced at the clock in the middle of the ballroom. Daisy told me that people evacuated the mansion at eight o’clock, when the fire on the second floor grew bigger and smoke overflowed the whole building, including downstairs.
I still have time. I went upstairs with Chloe to the lounge.
Maybe it was because the ball had just started, the hallway of the second floor was empty. It was understandable that they only found out about the fire quite late afterwards.
When there was such an event, with the exception of servants who served and organised the party, others seemed to have all stayed hidden in their rooms. Maybe they were kept out of the nobles’ sight as much as possible to maintain the class and elegance for the ball.
Had anyone been walking around here at this time, the fire would have been noticed right away. But it was a relief this time that I found Heidi before it was too late.
At first, a voice could be heard coming from inside the women’s lounge. Was she not alone? The other person might be the injured victim in the accident at that time. The newspaper did not mention who the injured people were.
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I grabbed the doorknob of the women’s lounge ahead of Chloe, and opened it without hesitation.
The two women stopped talking and turned to look at us. They paused for a moment when the strangers appeared. As I was about to go inside, I stopped as I glanced past them.
Heidi was not here.