Yelena glanced up at the sky.

It was dark.

Sunset usually marked the end of the day’s training.

That meant someone was voluntarily practicing even after the regular training.

Yelena entered the training grounds to try to uncover the identity of the passionate knight.

At that time, the knight, who was catching his breath with his sword hanging down his side, rasped, “…Haa. One day I’ll catch up with Your Excellency’s toes.”

Yelena wondered what that meant but soon remembered the identity of the knight.

A few days ago, that knight was also there when her husband was sparring with the other knights at the training grounds.

‘It seems like the target is still my husband’s toes.’

At that time, he had insisted on his ambition and quarreled with a fellow knight.

Yelena suddenly felt sorry for that knight.

He was working so diligently but became constantly frustrated since he set his goal too high.

Yelena thought she should help.

She approached the knight with a compassionate heart.

“Sir.”

“Who… oh, Madam?”

“You’re training alone at this hour. You’re working hard.”

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“No, this is nothing. Everyone normally does this. I just happened to be practicing in the training grounds today.” The knight answered, scratching his nape as if he was embarrassed by the praise.

“Sir, what’s your name?”

“My name is Max, and I’m from the 7th Knight’s Division.”

The order of knights was divided into a total of thirteen divisions.

It wasn’t in order of ability. In the past, it indicated the sequence of joining, but since last year, the order was assigned by drawing lots.

“Yes, Sir Max. Actually, I unintentionally overheard you a while ago, and… your goal is the Duke’s toes?”

“Pardon? Oh, that’s… ”

“Do you really need to aim for his toes?”

“What?”

The knight named Max probably targeted his toes because it was at the lowest level.

But Yelena shook her head.

“The toes are also a part of the Duke’s body, so it might be difficult for you to target it right away.”

“Then what do I aim for…”

“Shoe soles.”

“…!”

“Aim for the shoe soles first. If you’ve achieved it, then next is the toe cap, and then the whole shoe.”

The knight’s face gradually lit up with enlightenment.

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Yelena gave him serious advice.

“Once you’ve reached that point, you can start aiming for the Duke’s toes again. Do you understand?”

“Yes! I understand!”

The knight called Max answered back very loudly.

Yelena nodded in satisfaction at his response.

“Then, stay strong.”

“Thank you!”

Yelena turned around and left the training ground.

Max’s eyes glistened as he stared at her retreating figure.

As Yelena walked out of the training grounds, she found a group of loud-mouthed knights.

But as she listened, she heard one man being berated intensively by his colleagues.

“Are you talking about that again?”

“I’m so sick of it, man!”

“Whenever you drink, you always go back to eight years ago!”

“Our dear, Colin, we’ll confiscate your wine for ten years at every meal.”

The name of the knight who was under heavy attack seemed to be Colin.

She wasn’t very interested.

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As Yelena tried to pass by, one particular voice caught her ear.

“Aren’t you curious about how the Duke was when he subdued the monsters up the mountain?”

“How wonderful the Duke was back then and how great his performance was; talk about it back in your quarters.”

“Yes! We don’t want to know…”

“I want to know.”

“Who– Ma-madam?”

Yelena was suddenly among the crowd and spoke while looking at the knight named Colin.

“The subjugation story, if you don’t mind, can you move over there and tell me the details?”

Colin blinked blankly, and his face was soon flushed red with excitement.

That day, Colin unleashed his memories of eight years ago that no one had ever bothered to hear.

Yelena paid attention to Colin until the end as if it was the most interesting story in the world.

“I enjoyed your story. Thank you, Sir Colin.”

After Yelena left, Colin wept alone and wiped away his tears.

‘For this humble knight… Madam… I have no more regrets.’

Colin’s eyes glistened brightly as he wiped away the tears.

* * *

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