Chapter 1 - Part 1
Thank you Veronica Collazo for the kofi! (2/2)
Lelia had a dream a few days ago.
It was the day she talked to Oscar all night long. That next day, when she thought of going to Sena and handing her the medicine, she realized that her head had complicated things. Her conversation with Oscar relieved her tension.
“Oscar, go back to the temple… but how have you been?”
In fact, it was a question she wanted to ask from the first time they met.
Oscar replied softly, “… I always missed you. I waited every day for your letter to come.”
“Didn’t your father bother you?”
“I didn’t really care. Because when I think of you, everything is fine.”
Lelia laughed at the words. The same was true of Lelia.
Even though Lelia was hungry, cold, and lonely, Julianna was surrounded by her maids and blushing her cheeks. It was the same when she held back her envy for Princess Julianna, and when she saw the twin princes who treated Lelia like a worm. It was the same when she alone healed the wounds of her heart that she had received from Emperor Perseus. Thinking of her friends, she was okay with anything.
What’s better than having friends like hers? What does she envy about Julianna? She doesn’t envy her at all. Thinking about it that way put her mind at ease. Having friends was always helpful.
“… You?” He asked, as Oscar looked at Lelia with a small smile.
“I…” Lelia said as she hesitated for a moment.
Whether to tell him or not, she didn’t want to be honest, but she wondered if it would be okay.
“Actually, I pretended to be okay with the letters, but… I was very lonely and alone. I was by myself in a small tower with no one around.”
“I was hungry and scared… but I was fine too. The memories at the temple were so happy, I thought it would be okay to be a little unhappy in the future.”
Oscar moved his fingers without saying a word. Oscar’s heat touched the tip of her little finger. As she leaned against the wall side by side with him, only their little fingers intertwined, she felt strange. She felt like she was back in her childhood. The Oscar of her childhood had much smaller hands, shorter in height, and her… Lelia pouted her lips as she looked at Oscar’s hand again, now much bigger than hers. Then, Oscar’s voice was heard.
“I’m sorry I didn’t recognize you in the first place.”
“I’m sorry for looking at you like that.”
Lelia smiled slightly at Oscar’s apology. She, of course, was afraid and hurt, but… Now that she thought about it, she didn’t mind. Yet Oscar regretted the moment of their first reunion, and distorted his expression as if dying.
“Everyone is saying they’re going to get their revenge. But what were you going to do after getting revenge?”
“You must have returned to Hraesvelg to take over the throne?”
Lelia raised her eyebrows at his firm answer. What then? She asked a small question, and Oscar answered again without hesitation.
“I was going to die.”
“I was going to die with you.”
“Wow, what kind of joke are you making? So cruel…”
“Then I could be where you are.”
Oscar had a serious expression on his face, as if he knew nothing about jokes. Lelia was so surprised that she bit her mouth, as goosebumps appeared on her back. Oscar seemed serious. She really thought he was going to go die.
Lelia turned her head to him, as she somehow choked her breath. When she thought about it, she seemed to understand why Oscar was so blind to her. However… Lelia thought of excuses she kept coming up with, and then she shook her head.
“… I tried to survive,” she answered frankly.
She wanted to tell Oscar about who she was, and how she had lived. Oscar would then probably understand. Lelia talked about how precious she is to the Duke of Superion’s family. Will this make him think again? She wondered if she could rebuild this relationship, like a tangled thread.
Lelia confessed a few things about her childhood. Hunger, following the Emperor’s orders to the Neutral Sector, and the wounds she received by her twin brothers upon her return. She was shy, but she also told him that Julianna was envious of her. Oscar listened to her Lelia story with a calm expression. Then, as soon as Lelia finished speaking, she felt his little finger pressing against hers.
“Should I kill her?”
“If you want… I can kill anyone.”
“… Again, stop with those bloody jokes, Oscar.”
Lelia was embarrassed and dismissed it as a joke, but she knew Oscar was serious. Did she bring up her story for nothing? Lelia sighed a little and smiled. The morning light was bright as she had a little more of this sloppy conversation. After the talk, Oscar seemed to be a little more comfortable.
The closed eyelids slowly opened. Lelia stood up, looking at the somehow unfamiliar, yet familiar ceiling. She was in her room. In the Superion Territory.
She turned her head to see Romeo looking at her with a worried expression on his face.
“I’m glad. Kalix, that monstrous b*****d could find you so quickly… I should’ve kicked him out earlier.”
Romeo grinned and ruffled Lelia’s hair. Lelia, who had been absent-minded, immediately opened her eyes wide and asked, “Uh, mother… Where is mother?”
“You mean the one who came with you? She’s in another room.”
“Is she awake?”
At Romeo’s words, Lelia slowly got out of bed. She needed to hurry to the room… she had a lot to explain to her family.
“Everyone in your family knows. Kalix roughly spoke of it. You said your mother was alive?”
Lelia hurriedly walked into her room. She had to change clothes first, but she was distracted. In the end, Lelia found herself unable to walk a few steps, as the strength in her legs loosened and she collapsed.
“Are you okay?”
A friendly voice came. Romeo slowly got Lelia up and put her back on her bed.
“Calm down for a moment.”
“Oscar… I thought Oscar was sick,” Lelia said, blinking her eyes.
The last memory of Oscar was still not good in her eyes. His painfully wrinkled shoulders, and the expression on the other side of him, seemed to not make sense.
“Even if he is our friend, he is a madman who kidnapped you. I was expecting something like that to happen one day… It just happened so suddenly.”
Romeo clicked his tongue. He shook his head as if he was someone he couldn’t get along with.
“So Lelia, forget him now. Aren’t you going crazy because you kept on being nice to him? He’s no longer a friend.”
“How… How can you say that?”
Lelia’s voice mixed with her weeping.
“… Lelia, are you okay?”
“Oscar, really… he felt really sick. Really.”
As Lelia spoke and cried, Romeo’s expression began to grow serious. Is he really sick? Romeo knew nothing at all. He thought it might be similar to a seizure he had when he was young, but Lelia’s reaction was so serious.
“Calm down, Lelia. Huh?”
“I want to go back. You- help me, Romeo.”
Lelia recalled the magic scroll that Romeo gave to Kalix. Grabbing Romeo’s arm, he nodded his head in agreement.
“Calm down for now. Since you… Yes. You must see your grandpa. Everyone is worried about you.”
At Romeo’s words, her heart calmed and Lelia nodded her head. But she was still worried in her heart.
“Lelia, how are you? Are you okay?”
Inside the Duke’s large office, the Superion family gathered where the vassals usually met. Grandpa held a serious expression, Uncle Xenon a firm expression, and Aunt Atias had puffy eyes. Next to her was Uncle Carius who was weeping.
“Elizabeth was alive, I didn’t even know…”
A shadow fell on her grandfather’s face. It was a face that was both happy and sad. Lelia told them everything – she had met her mother in the Neutral Zone and what she had heard about her life. However, she didn’t say why her mother couldn’t wake up. She wasn’t confident she could explain that she had resurrected her mother who had been murdered. She said only that she collapsed in shock after her mentor died. Uncle Carius cried the whole time.
“But since we found her again… It’s fine now. As soon as she wakes up…”
Her grandfather muttered in a helpless voice and buried his face in his palm. Lelia looked at her family, and spoke.
“She lost her memory… She won’t even recognize you all when she wakes up.”
She told them so that they wouldn’t be too upset if she didn’t recognize them. She made the memory recovery pills again, but for now, waking her up was the priority.
Why hadn’t she woken even now?
Before coming to the office, Lelia went to the room where her mother was and watched her sleeping for a long time. Her mother, who slept well, was exactly how she was yesterday. Looking at her, she was worried that the “Elixir” was wrong. Is it a medicine that saves lives, but never wakes them up? If that’s the case, what should she do? She tried to ask Alchemy for help, but it did not give any answer as to whether there was any way to do it. She bit her lip in nervousness. It was then.
“It’s all over now, just as father said. We have to make sure this never happens again,” Uncle Xenon said bluntly. As her grandfather looked up, Uncle Xenon spoke with a determined expression. “I will never lose my family to anyone again. Even Emperor Perseus or Oscar Hraesvelg, who took Lelia with him. Even for him.”
Aunt Atias’ expression wrinkled at Uncle’s words.
“Are you saying you don’t want to tell Emperor Perseus about this?”
“Yeah, I agree.”
Contrary to her aunt’s astonished question, she calmly replied that she agrees. Yet Uncle Karius looked conflicted. Since he had personally seen Perseus in distress.
“… Elizabeth will never go to him again. If he wants to see her, he will come. Anyway, I won’t send her to the castle anymore. Even if Elizabeth wants to, she will never go there again,” Grandpa said firmly.
That was natural. They were once a couple, but not now. After all, Emperor Perseus had a new empress and children. The duke pondered for a moment, then turned his gaze to Lelia.
“Lelia, you too. How surprised this grandpa was… Are you hurt anywhere?”
“… No, Grandpa.”
Lelia wrinkled her expression while replying softly. First Romeo, and even her family. They were all talking about Oscar like he was the world’s first and most unscrupulous individual.
“Oscar… I heard that he sent a marriage proposal.”
“Yeah, I saw it. He’s the one who took you away, so why would I allow it? I thought there was going to be a war.”
“You couldn’t have left without talking to us. So I didn’t believe it.”
At her grandfather’s words, Lelia bowed her head.
“So that’s it, Lelia.”
“Sir Kalix, how about marrying that young man?”
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