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Published at 19th of November 2020 08:18:41 PM


Chapter 24

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Chapter 24




 

An elegant smile and an aloof stride. 

 

I walked deeper into the hall, and though no one had given any order, the crowd of guests parted to make a path for me. 

 

As my purple eyes flashed everywhere from behind the black veil I was wearing, exclamations rose up from the guests. Contrasted against the many white and light-colored dresses, my black satin dress, lacking any sort of decorations, drew eyes to it like a dot in the middle of a piece of paper. 

 

“Ca…Mother, why are you here!” 

 

“What do you mean, ‘why are you here.’ I couldn’t stop worrying and had to come.” 

 

Relax your expression a little. Is this a place I don’t have access to? 

 

I narrowed my eyes at Lania who’d immediately blocked my way. 

 

Lania’s eyes shook slightly, unable to withstand the glare through my narrowed eyes and barely managed to recover, crinkling her glaring eyes into a smiling expression.

 

“I was a little surprised. I had thought I was helping you by hosting the celebration instead, since Mother has said in the past that you found it uncomfortable and tiring to take on this role…”

 

“Until when can I keep burdening my daughter with such heavy obligations.”

 

“But will you be okay, after all, this position is by the Emperor’s side.”

 

It’s not okay, just get the fuck out of my way already. 

 

To say such words with such elegance and grace, she was very talented.

 

But I wouldn’t back down easily, since I’d come here with a purpose. 

 

At this time, around thirty beavers were lying on the grass holding their front teeth. 

 

“There’s no need to worry about me. I’m more worried about my eldest daughter.” 

 

“What would make Mother worry about me-”

 

Since you’re unnecessarily standing in my stead as hostess.”

 

“…..”

 

*Grind*

 

Each time I gave her another answer, I could see Lania putting a little more pressure on her teeth. 

 

I didn’t miss a single beat and gave friendly greetings to the approaching noblewomen. 

 

“My, it looks like you’ve come to help my eldest daughter.” 

 

“El-eldest daughter, then are you really…”

 

“It looks like you don’t know who I am. You all spoke very well about my illness and seemed to know much about me, so I assumed that you knew me very well.” 

 

“Ah…Haha. We only spoke of you out of worry…”


 

“If you are worried, feel free to visit me, and I will welcome you at anytime with open arms.” 

 

“……”

 

I won’t bite. As long as you guys can keep a muzzle on me.

 

The noblewomen simultaneously gulped as I took a good look at them one by one.

 

Lania looked like she wanted to skin me alive, but she knew exactly who was here.

 

I lightly ignored Lania’s frozen form and bowed deeply to the star of today’s show. 

 

“I give my humble greetings to His Excellency, the one blessed by the Supreme Lord Therez. I am Duchess Evendell, surnamed Catherine.”

 

I bent my knees in greeting the way Lady Mellow taught me.

 

The pressure shooting out from his eyes alone tickled my forehead.

 

“Rise.” 

 

“I am honored.” 

 

So this is the famous tyrant. 

 

It felt like time slowed down as I waited for his permission to lift my head. 

 

For a cold-blooded villain, his voice had a pleasant pitch and was quite dignified.

 

Like one I’d heard somewhere before…

 

“Ah…”

 

Nah, I’m just imagining things. 

 

The moment I looked up and met his eyes, my head was dazed by the unrealistic beauty of the emperor.

 

“What’s wrong? Do you have something you want to say to me?” 

 

“N-no, Your Majesty.” 

 

Can a villain be this good looking?

 

I had nothing to say except that God must have put superfluous effort into this guy. 

 

I didn’t want to act like a country bumpkin who’d drool at the sight of a man’s face, but I was someone who wasn’t even qualified to be a country bumpkin as one who’d turn into a swan every now and then.

 

‘Wow, this is.’

 

After I’d transmigrated, the men I’d always seen consisted of aged workers at the Duke’s Household, so I couldn’t help but compare them to what I was seeing now. 

 

Of course, I’d seen other men when I went out to town that time a few days ago, but it was difficult to think of the man in front of me as the same kind of human being as the rest of us.

 


“…Hm.”

 

Anyway, the glint from his eyes had a lot of pressure coming from them. 

 

My heart belatedly pounded as the emperor’s red eyes stared at me. The pressure in his haughty blood red eyes relaxed a bit as if he became interested in something. 

 

“So you’re seeing Jihm for the first time?”

 

“Of course. When else could I have seen you before.” 

 

“How interesting. You seemed to look at me as if you knew me.” 

 

“…That’s entirely impossible, Your Majesty.”

 

Unable to hide my confusion, I tried to broaden my smile. 

 

I wasn’t stupid, and it was a sin to not remember someone with this much beauty. 

 

‘But how can I bring Haniel up in a natural way while in conversation with him.’

 

It would have been difficult to forget my purpose for coming here. They hadn’t publicly announced the princess’s disappearance yet, so I couldn’t even bring up anything about Haniel. 

 

I needed to be on the lookout for an opportunity for us to be alone together. 

 

I checked to see if there was a window of time I could use to do this, looking at him sideways time to time, but failed. 

 

“…..”

 

 It wasn’t just because he was the emperor, but also the presence he had was good enough to be the main character wherever he went. Even as time passed, it was hard to withstand the countless gazes heading towards the person next to me. 

 

I guess I can’t do it right now. 

 

While I was taking a step back for the moment, his low voice echoed throughout the hall.

 

“What are you all doing? Have you all come to this place just to spectate Jihm.”

 

“…But we can only begin if Your Majesty begins the dance.”

 

“Dance?”

 

Hah.

 

His face turned cold as if he was listening to a bunch of nonsense. The handsome guy next to this handsome guy– no, I surmised him to be an imperial prince– stepped back with resignation on his face. The emperor shook his head in complete annoyance. 

 

“Do what you normally do. Whether you dance or wield your swords around, I won’t care about any of it, so just…”

 

Immediately get your eyes off me.

 

No one could reject the emperor’s short, unspoken command, which seemed to work like a charm. 

 

*Fwip,* people turned their heads away at once in natural motions and smoothly segwayed into dancing. 

 

It was still unnatural for so many people to now not look only at this place, but at least the gazes were now gone. 


 

‘…Really a tyrant.’

 

Despite feeling disconcerted, I also felt admiration rise. 

 

I thought Lania and Rebecca were the typical boring villainess characters, but this tyrant seemed a little different from the others. 

 

I couldn’t understand why he wasn’t able to be the main character of the novel with that appearance, but I could roughly guess how he’d come to earn an infamous reputation. 

 

‘It’s that terrible temper.’ 

 

So it’s obvious why his younger sibling ran away. 

 

As I remembered the frightened, shivering Haniel, I continued to keep my guard up against this man. 

 

Fortunate or not, I wasn’t the only one who showed interest in him. 

 

“Your Majesty, the crowded hall must seem a bit stifling.”

 

“Lady.” 

 

“I deeply apologize that I was not able to properly serve you when you have graced us with your presence. Would you like to go outside for a moment to avoid the eyes of other people?”

 

Always looking for an opportunity, Lania naturally slid in next to him. 

 

She spoke eloquently, as if she’d prepared her words in advance for such situations. 

 

 “Though it’s rather conceited for me to say, the late Empress admired the scenery and walkways around this area. I also believe the newly-constructed gymnasium and stables are worth looking at. We also acquired a new white stallion from the Levante Palace, if Your Majesty likes the sound of it, we can escort you to the stables for you to ride the horse…would you like to go together? 

 

“With who?”

 

“Ah…”

 

Lania’s smile faltered at the emperor’s inquiring yet indifferent set of eyes.

 

“Of course, as the eldest daughter of the Evendell family, I will escort you…”

 

“I believe the head of this household is your stepmother.” 

 

“…….”

 

Oh my, to think that I would receive the support of the tyrant in my lifetime. 

 

*Taptap.*

 

I slowly started to smooth out my dress, my movements relaxed.

 

Knowing my eldest daughter, I could guess that my turn was coming up. 

 

Three, two, one….

 

“That may be so, but my mother still has not greeted the guests. Isn’t that right, Mother?” 


 

“What was that?” 

 

See, what’d I tell you. 

 

Smoothing out the creases in my dress, I looked at her with a bright, innocent face.

 

Though I’d purposefully drawn the emperor’s gaze towards me, I lifted a hand to my mouth with a confused expression.

 

 “Ah, are you asking me, Duchess Evendell, if I wanted to be the escort?” 

 

“As I thought, that would be tiring for you, no? You’ve been confining yourself and have hardly been outside. You wouldn’t know the places I had just mentioned-”

 

 “You’re absolutely correct. How could I possibly know a place like the gymnasium or the stables.”

 

“See that, Your Excellency! Mother-”

 

“…I know only about the Palladium Lake.” 

 

“…….” 

 

Lania’s brightly smiling face cracked. 

 

Before she could open her mouth again, I quickly lowered my head in a shy manner.

 

“It’s merely the only place in Rohan that is home to the big-beaked birds, white swans from Ingka, tortoises the size of that chandelier, and the legendary lenox with its seven-colored fur.”

 

“…….”

 

And one of your siblings lives there, too. 

 

As I looked at the emperor through my veil, his face morphed into a funny expression. 

 

He seemed to be holding back his laughter, but before I could take a proper look, he resumed that polite expression of his.

 

“Hm, that doesn’t sound too bad.” 

 

“…The late empress expressed how much she liked the lake as well.” 

 

The noble eyes that neared me with his approaching step traveled down from my face.

 

Just where are you looking. 

 

His red-eyed gaze descended until they became fixed on my shoulders, and my head followed his gaze. 

 

But before I could ask what he was looking at, he suddenly lifted his hand toward me. 

 

“Oh, oh my,” 

 

Save me! 

 

…I then opened the eyes that I’d tightly closed. 

 

Seriously, I thought that I was already being cut down



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