Thank you to Vibecheck for the second commission! Here’s another peek into Gilles’ daily life.
Note: These are short everyday stories of the men from the Rouge et Noir series.
“What should I do with this…”
Right now, I was troubled by the bottle of wine in front of me.
Its name was Corton-Charlemagne. It was obtained at a reasonably moderate price and this white wine, which was a vintage worth several thousands of dollars, was given to me by Arlen several days ago.
If it had just been one of his whims, then I would have sampled this quality wine that unexpectedly ended up in my hands without reserve; however, unfortunately, I wasn’t optimistic enough to be honestly happy at this sudden present.
“Is this that? What people call a gift to take to the afterlife…?”
The moment I received the wine, Arlen said this: that I should drink it quickly because there’s been wine that suddenly disappeared from the House’s wine cellar.
I had too much of an idea about the cause of this strange happening. If I remembered correctly, I had swiped several—no, it was at most an imperceptible number that could be counted with two hands. But they weren’t any seriously expensive ones. Save for one.
“… Is it normal to notice this?”
The wine cellar in House had several hundreds of wine in reserve. Their use was mostly to entertain guests of honor so, honestly, there shouldn’t be anyone who had an understanding of the brands and inventory in there.
—Or that was what I thought. At least, until the moment I received the wine and saw Arlen’s meaningful smile.
“That definitely meant he knows, huh…”
Arlen was most skilled in doing things in such a way that was like a silk string slowly tightening around someone’s neck while he enjoyed their reactions. I wasn’t just his aide for show, so I’ve seen it with my eyes to the point of getting sick of it. Now that things were like this, there was only one answer.
“I should prepare myself for the worst… No, what I should prepare might be my neck.”
The words I spoke as a self-deprecating joke echoed emptily in the silent room. Even though I was the one who said it, I couldn’t laugh at all.