Chapter 1 - Part 1
Thank you theotea for the kofi! (2/2)
Griffith touched Lelia’s hand again. A warmth passed through his fingertips.
“Because we lived for you, we can’t erase our feelings for you in an instant.”
“But if we fight over you, we will all suffer together. So, I think we can be at peace this way.”
“If you marry one of us, what do you think will happen to the rest?”
Lelia didn’t answer. She couldn’t even guess because she had never imagined it. But Griffith spoke confidently, as if the results were being painted right in front of her eyes. It was a frightening idea.
“Obviously, our relationship will be distorted. It’s going to be messy and complicated. Pointing swords at each other, we’ll never be able to remember our childhood memories again. We’ll only hate each other…”
It even sounded terrible… Hearing his words, Lelia’s expression was distorted.
Griffith returned with a fresh voice, as if he had never scared her. “Of course, Lelia, everything is your choice and your decision. I will never force you.”
“But there could be a better way… I don’t know,” Griffith whispered sweetly.
It was a tone that seemed to be only for Lelia. The strength in her hand gripped tighter on the hem of her robe. Griffith says it’s only her own choice and her decision…
[As Griffith said, could there be a better way than this?]
No matter how much she thought about it, she couldn’t think of one. Lelia hesitated for a moment, then she looked at Griffith.
“But you didn’t want to come to the temple. Why are you here now?”
“… Yes, of course, for you.”
“As I said before, as long as you are prosperous, everything will be at peace. It doesn’t matter if it’s not for me. Even if I had to go back to my home country and kneel before my family, I could do it.”
At Griffith’s words, Lelia bit her lips tightly. She knew Griffith was extremely reluctant to bind himself to the temple. If he’s successful, his home country will do anything to take advantage of him. Yet, Griffith entered the temple on his own feet. Only for Lelia. Lelia felt like Griffith had sacrificed something big for her.
She felt sorry for Griffith, who was casually dressed in a white robe that he hated so much. However… Why was she being so anxious? Maybe it’s a trap. There is no choice that has only advantages. Griffith’s attitude was so friendly, and she felt that he had nothing to do with it, which made her suspicious and anxious. It was rather strange that it was put together so well.
Griffith asked affectionately if he had noticed her anxiousness, “If you have any other questions, feel free to ask.”
“It’s just… hard to believe. It’s impossible to have such advantages.”
At that, Griffith smiled lightly.
“Well, of course… It’s going to bother you a bit. You will have to read the Bible, worship, and pray without believing in God.”
Is it just that? Lelia asked Griffith with her anxious eyes, “… How long do I have to stay in the neutral zone?”
“Well… About four or five months a year?”
Lelia bowed her head and fiddled with her fingertips. If Griffith’s words were true, it meant she could return to the Superion territory and stay there for the rest of the year. Gradually, she leaned toward agreeing with Griffith. But there still was an important problem.
“However… You’re deceiving everyone. I don’t have any power, let alone divine
Lelia murmured a little, and Griffith smiled. Oh, she’s coming over. Griffith barely held back his desire to laugh by suppressing the corners of his mouth.
“Don’t worry about that, I’ll take care of everything.”
Griffith smiled, holding Lelia’s hand tightly without answering. Then he pulled her hand towards his lips and kissed the back of her hand. Griffith almost impulsively brought up the story of that time.
He suddenly remembered that Lelia came to his room and kissed his lips first. Of course, after that, a tragedy occurred in which he was deprived of his hard work by Oscar… His spine trembled when he remembered Lelia kissing him first. He will be able to afford more chances if they stay together in the temple in the future, so he will be able to experience it again.
“Good luck in the future.”
Lelia looked at Griffith smiling kindly and suppressed her strangely uncomfortable feeling.
Griffith took the gold bracelets and put them on her wrist. The bracelets were neither too loose nor too tight.
“It is a bracelet that contains divine power. With this, the priests will never doubt you. So, never let it go,” Griffith said.
Once again, she wondered how much divine power Griffith had. But she didn’t have to ask. Lelia stared at the bracelets that were fastened to her wrists, as she couldn’t sleep through the night. She constantly wondered whether this was the right choice for her. For some reason, the bracelets on both wrists felt heavy like shackles.
However, the bracelet with divine power made her condition better. Her body felt light and her head clear. It was as refreshing as if she was walking in the woods. With her mind cleared, Lelia thought about her future while holding her lap. Her first priority was for her mother to wake up. Then… Thinking of it gave her a headache.
It suddenly appeared, and she couldn’t shake the thought that it was her fault. She spit out harsh and venomous words and wanted him to hurt. Anyway, her words made a deep wound on her as well. But apart from her guilt, she didn’t want to return to the Imperial Palace again. She didn’t even want to send her mother back there. And…
Lelia recalled one of the things Griffith had said to her.
“We will always be by your side without forcing you to marry us. The five of us… We don’t have to part forever.”
Even thinking about it again, it was an unfamiliar and strange feeling. She was stunned, because she never dreamed that her friends would ask her to marry them. Kalix, who was angry with her, came to mind, and Oscar, who promised to make her an empress, also came to mind…
At the same time, it reminded her of Oscar’s shoulders, which had crumpled in pain. She wondered what the hell had happened, why he was in so much pain, and whether he was still in pain. She tried to organize her thoughts, but the more she thought about it, the more her mind became a mess. Her head hurt so much that she wished she’d been an idiot so she couldn’t think deeply at all.
Lelia couldn’t sleep until dawn like that.
Griffith hummed as he walked down her hallway. It was a temple he didn’t want to come to, but now he likes it quite a bit. It was a good thing he had to stick with this place in the future and live. After all, if he had Lelia, this place would be considered a paradise even if he was the emperor of Nicaea, which he hates so much.
A little while ago, Griffith had just come out of his room, checking Lelia who had barely slept. Lelia was lying on the white bed like a painting. He regretted why he didn’t do this sooner. His chest was pounding, and something of his was tight. As she slept on the bed, it evoked strange fantasies, but Griffith had no intention of ruining everything by being impulsive.
‘There will be plenty of time in the future anyway.’
Griffith laughed as he remembered Lelia, who would soon be in a different shape on this bed. He then carefully closed the door and headed out to his office. Griffith came into his office humming, found unexpected guests, and stopped. Romeo and Kalix were waiting in his newly decorated office with angry faces.
“You are here so soon.”
“You, you crazy b*****d. What the hell did you do?”
He calmed himself by showing both palms to Romeo, who was about to rush him.
“Are you mad about waiting so long? I’m on my way to see Lelia, who is barely sleeping, so calm down.”
When he heard Lelia’s name, Romeo rolled his eyes. But Kalix didn’t care. He grabbed Griffith by the neck and dragged him to the sofa. He made Griffith sit down with a forcible throw and asked, “Explain it properly, you b*****d.”
“… Friends are f***ing idiots.” Griffith muttered as if hurt. But inside him, a smile burst out.
‘Who says who’s a b*****d? Who is the b*****d?’
Griffith straightened his posture, arranging his crumpled priest suit.
“I never forced it. It’s Lelia’s choice.”
“Are you asking me to believe you?” Kalix asked, clenching his fist. Romeo sighed deeply and sat down on the sofa.
“She went to Oscar. Why is Lelia here?”
“… She was going to Oscar?”
Griffith’s brow furrowed. He didn’t even know that Lelia was staying with Oscar near the neutral zone. He only knew that the paladins had found and brought her. Come to think of it, he couldn’t ask Lelia why she was there.
Griffith realized his mistake and clicked his tongue. He was so happy that Lelia was in his grasp that he had forgotten for a moment. By the way, did he say she’s going to Oscar?
“She said Oscar was sick,” Romeo said. She said he was in serious condition… So he sent Lelia, but… “Why is she here?”
In response to Romeo’s reply, Griffith blinked as if he was uncomfortable and soon it passed by.
“The paladins found and brought Lelia here, who was lost on her way.”
Hearing Griffith’s answer, Romeo scratched his forehead and said, “We’ll take Lelia straight to the estate when she wakes up.”
“Really? You’ll regret it.”
Griffith smiled and started explaining. Unlike with Lelia, the story will soon end.
“What if Lelia returns to the estate? What do you think will happen in the future?
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