Chapter 13.
If The Sun Is Too Bright, You Can’t See The Stars


While she was off guard, his knee hit Marianne’s forehead.
For a moment, it felt like a star was appearing in her vision.
The physical pain she experienced for the first time in her life successfully made her dizzy.


At the same time, Marianne curled up in pain.




The expression disappeared from Kristoff’s face.
No, it was the moment when his previous expression disappeared, and was replaced by anger.


His eyes were as keen as ever, and the air surrounding him exuded an air as sharp as a razor.
The man felt like he would cut his hand if he got a little closer.


He strode up wordlessly.


“Don’t disturb me.
Get out of my way!”


The man shook his legs once again.
Marianne’s hand, which was barely holding his leg, fell.


The man turned his back hurriedly.
And at that moment.


“How dare you.”


Kristoff threw a punch at him.
The man’s jaw turned to the side.


He opened his eyes wide with a puzzled look, as if he didn’t know what had happened.
He stumbled and collapsed on the spot.


Marianne opened her eyes wide, forgetting that she was injured upon seeing the unfamiliar appearance of Kristoff, who had lived as a nobleman, a dignified intellectual all his life.


She had never seen him swing his fist.
And he was so skillful.


“How dare you? Do you know who this woman is?’


Kristoff spoke with pressure in each letter, as if biting on his boiling anger.
Then he took a step closer to the man who had collapsed.


      Kristoff swung his leg without hesitation.
There was no time to stop him.
The man couldn’t even scream when he let out a strange noise and became limp.




A velvet pouch fell from the arms of the collapsing man.
A blue jewel rolled out through the loose straps of the pouch and landed at Kristoff’s feet.


Marianne only blinked out of bewilderment, and Ian looked surprised, staring alternately between Kristoff and the man.


She could hear the sound of a whistle as the police came to the scene.
Meanwhile, Kristoff was staring at Marianne with his deeply subdued eyes.






Kristoff called her name.
It sounded as if he hadn’t spoken for a very long time.


Marianne only looked back at Ian and the police officers, dropping her shoulders after they took him away.
She tried to speak calmly, pretending not to know her agitated mind.


“It’s not the right place to talk.
Shall we move? There’s a park nearby.”


She returned the cane to the dazed gentleman standing at a distance, and said, “Thank you.” before setting off.


She could hear quiet footsteps following behind her.
Marianne bit her lips as she realized her determination decreased just by looking at his face.


Dusk gradually began to fall.
The park was sparsely populated by children, and had a different tranquility from the middle of the day.
Marianne, who was looking for a suitable seat, finally sat on the empty bench.


“Hold on a second, Marianne.”


Kristoff, who was staring at her, suddenly turned around.
Marianne seriously thought about whether she would run away as she was looking at his back as he walked away.


However, the idea was dispersed before she began to form it.
This was because he couldn’t have figured out about the boarding house and came all the way here.
The person behind him must be Marquis Schneider.


What should she do……?


Marianne looked up at the sky dazedly.
A quiet sigh slipped out from her lips.
Kristoff, whom she met again, was still able to make her heart beat.


She suddenly remembered the first time she fell in love with him.
He was elegant and graceful, as if he was in a different world all by himself.
The relaxed and bold appearance as if he was the owner of it.


The rumor failed to capture even half of his beauty.


Nevertheless, Marianne knew that if she held his hand as it was supposed to be, she would repeat the same mistake again.
Expectations, and disappointment, which ended with despair.


She didn’t want to return to that time anymore.
She had felt enough despair until now.


She closed her eyes tightly and opened them again to relieve her shaking heart.
Just as Marianne clutched the hem of her dress.


“Here you are.”


The black shadow engulfed her face.
Marianne slowly opened her closed eyes.
In the middle of her slowly opening sight, there stood Kristoff who was holding out a handkerchief.


“Put it on your forehead.
It’s already starting to turn red.”


Kristoff wore a faint frown.
At first glance, she thought to have heard a swear word, “D*mn it.” Marianne, whose eyes opened wide, soon smiled faintly.


That was impossible.


Kristoff was the grandson of Marquis Schneider.
He received the highest level of education since he was born and attended a private school which was exclusively reserved for the upper classes.


His words and behavior were always well-educated.
Sometimes, he was so out of their league that his opponent felt pressured.
Marianne had never seen him say anything harsh before.


Therefore, there was no way such a lowly-spoken swear word came out of his mouth.
She might have heard it wrong.


“Thank you.”


She received the handkerchief from Kristoff.
When she took the cold handkerchief to her forehead, she felt the pain belatedly.
Her whole forehead throbbed.
Ugh, a brief groan slipped through her lips.


“I’m gonna kill you, you son of a b*tch.”




Marianne’s eyes opened widely in shock again.
She guessed that she wasn’t mistaken this time.
He looked like he was angry.
Or, she thought he was sick.


Why is that?


Kristoff was extremely rational, and he wasn’t the kind of person who sympathized with people’s pain.
He was better at coming up with a solution rather than offering sympathy.


From what Marianne knew about Kristoff, he must have told her to sue the other person and introduced a lawyer he knew well.
It was because the man didn’t have enough free time to deal with violent and trivial incidents.


However, Kristoff was staring at her forehead with clenched fists.
His cold and firm gaze seemed to suppress the rising anger within.


Marianne hid her bewildered mind beyond her indifferent expression.
She could hear his slow breathing.


There was a sheer silence between the two, which wouldn’t be strange if it broke at any time.




Kristoff suddenly clenched his chin.
He thought he had a lot of things he wanted to say when he met Marianne.
There were a lot of things he wanted to ask her.
He even thought he would explode in anger.


However, none of it came out through his mouth.
Clenching his back teeth, he managed to open his lips.




A low, husky voice came out of his lips.
His voice was so small that if she didn’t listen carefully, she wouldn’t have heard it.


However, the anxious Marianne didn’t miss what he said.
A wave of air swept past her.




“Let’s go back.
It’s enough for you to run away from me.”


Running away.


Marianne quietly stretched the corner of her mouth at his remark.
Kristoff looked puzzled at her faint smirk that seemed like it would disappear at any moment.


He was never embarrassed no matter how crucial the witness the opponent brought and he was never surprised by a situation that occurred unexpectedly, but he was speechless and just stared at Marianne’s face.




He nervously called her name again.
Then, he caressed his chin with his dry hands.
His voice was fast and impatient.


“Wouldn’t it be better for you to return before the rumors about your disappearance leak out? Unless you want to be preyed on by those who are thought of as hyenas.
Nobody knows you’re here yet.
That’s why you better return now.
Let me take care of the rest.”


Marianne stared at him with her blue eyes which seemed to hold the entire universe in them.


Without saying anything.


For what seemed like a very long time.


Kristoff has always been the winner of the silent battle.
He was a patient man, and he had never been afraid of the silence surrounding him.


He couldn’t endure the prolonged silence and spoke up again.
For some reason, he felt thirsty.
His stomach was wriggling.
An ominous feeling flowed down his back.


“I’m reviewing Veronica’s case again.”


Marianne’s eyes shook for the first time at his remark.
Kristoff finally breathed out a sigh of relief.
Only then did he become convinced that the person in front of him was actually Marianne.




He recited her name again.
As if a child, who could only say that.


Marianne, who was quiet again, slowly moved her lips again.
He never took his gaze off her red lips.


“I’m not going back, Kristoff.”




If Marianne lamented sorrowfully, Kristoff would have comforted her well.
If Marianne was angry, Kristoff would comfort her as he used to.


However, Marianne simply shook her head calmly.
In a determined manner, where he couldn’t find any gaps.


At that moment, Kristoff sensed that something had gone completely wrong.
He felt a chill on his nape.


“I admit that Veronica’s case was a trigger to this.
However, I didn’t make such a huge decision only because of that.”


Marianne looked up at him calmly, as if saying, “I’m not such an impulsive person.”


Kristoff’s heart sank.
His face turned white.
The icy grip seemed to have gripped his nape.
If not just because of Veronica, then he wondered about her other reasons.


The feeling of helplessness, which had been pressuring him for several days, slowly crawled up to his head again.
Kristoff unconsciously took a step foward.
If he didn’t, he thought Marianne would disappear.




This time, she called his name.
However, there was no emotion in Marianne’s voice.


D*mn it.


Kristoff gritted his rear teeth.
Having had a fierce legal battle in court for a long time, he had the ability to instinctively recognize when the opponent would say a crucial remark.


The tight atmosphere and the momentary wave, which was like pulling a violin string, led him to guess it.
And Marianne was now trying to tell him a crucial story.


He did not want to hear that.
He thought he shouldn’t reach it.
Kristoff hurriedly spoke up.




But it was late.
Before that, Marianne’s voice already broke the silence between them.


“You have always been my sun from the first moment I looked at you.”


He was.


The preterite sharply scratched Kristoff’s nerves.
His determined eyes, which had always been confident, shook uncontrollably.


“Dazzling sun.
And I was one of the countless stars hovering around you.
The small, insignificant star that only shines when it receives your light.
The star was so pitiful that one failed to figure out why you proposed to me.
Of course, I also couldn’t figure it out either.”


Marianne, you’re……”


Marianne slowly raised her hand and stopped him as if she wasn’t over with her talk.
Kristoff groaned softly and closed his mouth.


“However, it felt great.
However, I was happy, Kristoff.
Because I thought the more you shine, the more I shine as well.
However, I realized it at some point.”




“If the sun is too bright, they can’t see the star.”




Marianne, who slowly lifted her gaze and faced Kristoff, gently pulled up the corners of her mouth.
Her smile was kind, the one she always used to  show to him.


However, somehow it felt very far away as if it wasn’t his.
Or, it felt as cold as a frozen lake.


“That’s why I decided that I’m going to shine on my own now.
I want to be a star that can shine without you.
I’m tired of leading a life with expectations, disappointment, and despair.”


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