Original novel in Chinese by: 御 我 (Yu Wo)
Part Twenty-one—translated by Trespasserby
The store clerk had clearly been startled by the sword. He stared, wide-eyed, at Sword Spirit for quite some time. It was only after Sword Spirit urged him once again that he snapped out of it. Looking apologetic, he said, “I am truly sorry. The gown outside has been reserved by the daughter of Duke Biggs, the Lady Marisa.”
Sword Spirit and Meng were both stunned. They hadn’t expected to hear a familiar name here. Aren’t Duke Biggs and Marisa the father and daughter pair from the palace?
Sword Spirit never thought that peacock would actually reserve such a plain and simple dress. Could it be that she doesn’t want to be a peacock but rather a dove?
“Everyone knows that His Highness, Prince Edward, likes white and favors clothing with simple, flowing lines. At this ball, every young lady will be wearing angelic white, and the style of the garments will be simplistic. It’s been really difficult on us, having to make a hundred or so. Every dress has to be as simple as possible, and everything the designer sees every day is white. While each dress must be simple, each must also be different. Tears are about to fall from his eyes from making them.” The store clerk grimaced.
“A hundred or so?” Sword Spirit perked up his ears as he listened, simultaneously imagining the scene. Several hundred women all wearing white… It would probably resemble a dance held at a hospital, full of nurses running around everywhere.
“Sword Spirit, should we look for a white dress too?” Meng asked in a small voice.
“No!” Sword Spirit suddenly shouted. Meng wasn’t very eye-catching to begin with. If she wears the same color as everyone else, won’t she fade into the crowd? He immediately asked, “Store clerk, do you have any other colors? We are in urgent need.”
Shocked, the store clerk hastily replied, “Y-yes. Plenty. Recently, every color other than white has had poor sales. I think we have blue, red, orange, green, pink…”
“Pink and blue,” Sword Spirit decided in an instant.
The store clerk nodded and immediately opened a wardrobe off to the side. Inside were many gowns. He pulled out a sky blue dress and a pale pink dress. The sky blue dress was the same style as the white one outside. Both of them were a mermaid design, but the blue one was somewhat more complex, with a collar shaped like a flower. The pink gown had a ruffled skirt made with lightweight gauze and a bodice trimmed with many pearls set into the shapes of small flowers.
Sword Spirit was still deciding between the stylishness of the blue gown and the adorableness of the pink gown when Meng tugged on Sword Spirit, saying quietly, “I-I like the pink one.”
Sword Spirit glanced at Meng in surprise. It was her first time expressing any opinion on fashion. Feeling that it was a good start, Sword Spirit immediately signaled the store clerk to bring the pink dress over. Blushing, Meng took the gown while handing Sword Spirit to the store clerk, and walked into the changing room.
“This girl is really refreshing. She seems to be the type that Prince Edward likes,” the store clerk suddenly commented.
Sword Spirit shot a look at the store clerk, and said somewhat dismissively, “How would you know what type Prince Edward likes? You two really close?”
Sword Spirit had only thought to ridicule the store clerk a bit and never expected the store clerk to casually reply, “Naturally. We met ten years ago. Prince Edward didn’t like the royal tailor and felt that the clothing he made was too elaborate. He went out to look for clothes on his own and took a liking to our garments right away. Since then, all of the prince’s formal wear has been made by us.”
Sword Spirit’s eyes widened. What a coincidence!
The store clerk cast a look at Sword Spirit and explained, “Otherwise, did you think an illustrious duke’s family wouldn’t have their own exclusive designer, and would deign to visit our clothing store? Don’t look down on our business. Almost all of those one hundred-odd girls who ordered tailored gowns belong to the nobility. Everyone knows His Royal Highness’s clothes are made by us.”
The store clerk suddenly looked left and right, and then secretly told Sword Spirit, “Please don’t say that I haven’t looked after you. Stay a bit longer. Everyone believes that His Royal Highness has already sent someone to pick up his suit, but that’s not actually the case. His Royal Highness always comes in person. To avoid the crowds, he usually comes in very late, and in addition, he has ordered many pieces of clothing this time. He even had casual wear made this time too. Discussing the design and trying on the clothing and such will probably take several trips.”
Sword Spirit’s eyes gleamed. This really is excellent news. What better opportunity is there to meet with the prince?
Sword Spirit looked over. Meng timidly poked her head out from behind the curtain, completely unwilling to show anything else.
“Hurry and come out,” Sword Spirit urged.