“Sir… I passed?” She whispered. She did not even have the strength to stand up.
The man did not answer her question. Instead, he bent down to recover the hidden weapon from the ground. “You were required to defeat me or delay my attack before reinforcements came. Most assassins will give up if they fail on their first attempt, so you may want to delay the timing of your retaliation. Understood?”
“Yes.” She nodded, secretly speculating that this was what he meant by her passing the test. This thought made her smile.
“Alright, time to eat.”
His words reminded her that she had been starving. Unfortunately, she had knocked all the food to the floor except for the cup of hot tea. She licked her lips and took a sip from the cup, which contained chili spice that made her cough violently. She whimpered and laid on the floor, coughing hard.
“The tea.” (Diana continues to cough fiercely)
The head maid hurried forward to grab her shoulder, noticing how her lilac skin had turned red from coughing and how tears were welling in her eyes. Diana was in great pain.
“Oh, I forgot to mention that you must never take your eyes off the food you are eating. If you do, eat no more. Understood?” He opened his palm, revealing bright red powder that slowly dropped downwards.
“Had this been poison, you may have been dead by now. I am sorry to say that you failed the test.”
What he said made her look up in horror.
“But you just said—”
“I said that the head maid passed the test.” He glanced at Diana then disappeared quietly from the other side of the door.
She let out a cry and fell completely into the maid’s arms.
“Miss, I will bring a new meal right away… you must eat soon because you have a busy day ahead of you.”
“No, I do not deserve to be called ‘miss’…”
The head maid froze for a brief moment and returned a smile. “Nonsense. You will always be miss to me.”
Diana then realized that what she said was inappropriate, and that the head maid reminded her of such cleverly. Diana sniffled, pulled herself together and, in a boss-like manner, said “Good to know that you know. Can you help me get a new breakfast now?”
“Yes. Please wait. I will be back shortly.”
The head maid smiled brightly and left the room quickly.
When the head maid walked away, Diana curled up and groaned in a weeping-like voice. She groaned not because she failed the test again, but because she was angry at herself for being afraid of these events. She knew that sneak attacks such as this would definitely take place again and again in the future, and that real assassins would not have been as merciful as her teacher—in fact, her teacher did not even use half of his weapons during the sneak attack.
Yet, she was already trembling with fear.
“I totally failed.”
She lowered her head to wipe away her tears.
For a brief moment, she really hoped that it was poison in the teacup.