Chapter 1. Prologue
And the graceful, natural conversation that flowed like water. The Princess probably wouldn’t remember a word she had said. It didn’t mean that she had a bad memory. The correct expression would be that she didn’t think it was worth remembering and let it slide.
It was a little unpleasant.
Even though it was a hunt, there was no way the animals would be walking around in the middle of winter. They’ll catch a rabbit or a fox or something that they had released in advance to get in the mood.
This was a hobby that the nobles with humanity did not like very much.
And speaking of humanity, Karzen, who trampled on human lives with his feet, was quite interested in this hunt.
“Do you like it, Raha?”
Karzen burst out laughing at the unenthusiastic reply.
“Yes, you won’t like it if it wasn’t a big beast.”
She often hoped Karzen would get throttled by a beast, but unfortunately, that had never happened. Still… The silver fox was quite cute.
Its eyes were black and it looked gentle. Raha thought she would raise it. Shed spent a lot of time alone, so she thought it would be a good idea to bring him an animal to keep him occupied.
Although not as pure white and shiny as Shed’s silver hair, the silver fox also looked oddly similar to him in some ways, perhaps because of the ears.
Raha felt a little happy when she thought she would tease Shed by saying that he looked like this small, cute silver fox.
“It’s good to raise it.”
“It’s not seriously hurt. As expected, Your Majesty’s ability is amazing.”
Duke Winston approached and said.
“You may raise it as you wish. Princess.”
“Why are you raising such a small thing? It’s an odd number too.” (Karzen)
“If I get one more….” (Raha)
“No, Raha.” (Karzen)
Karzen stabbed the silver fox’s eyes mercilessly with his dagger.
There was no scream, because Karzen had smashed the silver fox’s skull before that. The sound of bones cracking. The flowing cerebral marrow. The red blood from the silver fox splashed horribly on Karzen and Raha who was nearby.
Raha blinked slowly. Raw blood splattered near her eyes, and on her eyelashes.
Just like when she showed Karzen her face covered with Shed’s semen that day.
“Your Majesty! Princess!”
Duke Winston raised his voice. The attendants began to rush out with wipes and hot water.
The twin said with a pained expression, even as he was bathed in the hot blood.
“I think you should wrap your neck with this.”
Raha accepted the silver fox’s corpse that Karzen handed to her. The animal, whose breath had been mercilessly cut off earlier, still had a warm temperature.
“Do you like it?”
Raha looked away from the silver fox and was angry.
“I don’t like it. You dirtied my clothes.”
“Oh no. I didn’t know blood would splatter over there. Are you angry?
“Don’t be angry, Raha. You’re too lovely.”
Karzen beckoned. The temporary chamberlain, who was holding his cloak, hurried over. Karzen put the emperor’s cloak on Raha himself. The emperor’s cloak, decorated with tambi hair, velvet and jewels, was very heavy for Raha.
She wobbled lightly, and Karzen looked at her with strange eyes. When their eyes met, he finally smiled.
“You should dress warmly, Raha.”
“I’ll change my dress. It’s got a lot of blood on it.”
Raha’s entire front was covered in blood. The same went for her face. Karzen slowly stroked Raha’s eyes and cheeks with his bloodless fingertips. The blood bled like ink on her white skin.
“It doesn’t matter, just stay where you are.”
“My twin is beautiful, and a little blood spatter won’t matter.”
The blood that was hot on her chest gradually cooled. Nevertheless, Raha had a nonchalant face. She was still holding the dead fox that Karzen had given her. The red blood flowed as she walked, wetting her stomach and dripping down under her legs.
Duke Winston, who had retreated for a while, looked unexpectedly perplexed at the sight of Raha. Of course, sometimes in the hunting grounds, when your clothes get wet with blood, circumstances don’t allow you to change them right away. ….
This was something that should never have happened in such an imperial forest. Very much so if the subject was a lovely Princess of the imperial family.
Karzen sat down in the prepared seat. After sitting down, Karzen wiped his face with the hot water that the temporary chamberlain had brought him and said,
“Duke Winston. Don’t leave yet, let’s have lunch together.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
The Duke of Winston replied, as Karzen wiped the blood off with a towel.
“Of course, Lady Jamela, too.”
“I would be honored, Your Majesty.”
Jamela looked at the Princess, who stood there meekly. There was a bloody smell emanating from her. Her face was covered with blood stains that had been rubbed and wiped away by a gentle hand. The bloodstains on her front had dirtied the large light blue jewel necklace. The fox, held like a doll in her arms, had long since run out of breath…….
Even though she couldn’t talk easily, the Princess seemed fine. With an embarrassingly calm face, she cherished the silver fox that the emperor personally killed. It was an appearance that no one could imitate.
The graceful atmosphere was, after all, that of the legitimate Princess.
Karzen casually wiped his face, but that was all. He always kept the Princess with him for a long time, so it will be the same this time.
If that was the case, it would have been better to start the conversation first and win the emperor’s favor. Jamela smiled and opened her mouth.
“Let’s have lunch together.”
“I’m about to become a family member, and I’d like to spend some time with you.”
Duke Winston was perplexed. But Jamela’s face was so innocent, so calm, so gentle. The only expression that floated lightly was one of awe for the royal family, or in other words, love mixed with curiosity about becoming a family.
Raha’s long eyelashes fluttered twice like a fan.
Raha replied briskly, then looked at Karzen.
“I would like to change my clothes. Your Majesty, we can’t spoil everyone’s appetite by appearing like this.”
Karzen, who had been watching Raha with narrowed eyes, nodded his head in agreement.
A few moments later, Duke Winston bowed three times as was customary and sat down on the other side of Karzen.
It was not a dinner table, but a smaller, more intimate table for eight. In the center sat Karzen, and on the other side sat Duke Winston.
To the left of Duke Winston sat Jamela, and across from her sat Raha.
The atmosphere was even less formal than earlier. By all accounts, it was the perfect seat to cement the closeness between the families.
As Jamela looked at the blue-green dress that Raha had changed into, she suddenly had a different thought.
The pure gold necklace she was wearing was still there.
Come to think of it, didn’t she wear a pure gold necklace last time? It was something she couldn’t recall in detail.
The meal continued smoothly. The quality of the food had improved and the textures of the steamed and fried dishes were wonderful.
A dish of fresh oysters with lemon juice was perfect for Duke Winston’s palate. It was rare for a noble family to surpass the imperial family in only one dish. Jamela looked at the food in front of her. The fermented soybean kiln smelled so delicious, cooked in a cast iron pan and covered with a sauce made of simmering wine.
The famous confectionery kiln was hard to take but tasted great and was a new dish to have for dinner.
“You put a lot of effort into it, Your Majesty.”
“How can it be my skill? It’s Raha’s skill.”
“Thank you, Princess.”
Raha smiled without much change.
“We’ll be a family soon…So I have to pay attention.”
Then Raha looked at Karzen.
“Isn’t that right, Your Majesty?”
At least Raha was the only one who noticed that Karzen’s reply was a little later than usual. No, it would have been like that normally.
But there was another lady here who had been paying more attention to them.
“They say Medyo is the bird that flies over the moon.”
Jamela’s graceful voice rang out.
“I’m wondering if it’s true that only a great hunter can see Medyo flying over the silver moon. Have you ever seen it, father?”
“I haven’t seen it yet either. Come to think of it, His Majesty will be able to see it soon.”
Karzen tilted his chin at Duke Winston’s words and opened his mouth to say,
“Yes. It’s time to catch the silver bird. I must give it to the Young Lady as a gift.”
The silver Medyo was a bird that was given as a kind of customary gift before the emperor proposed to the empress. The emperor would catch it in person and present it to her, and then they would eat it together on their wedding day, a tradition of the Delo imperial family that had been passed down for generations.
“I’d forgotten all about it.”
Karzen chuckled, and Duke Winston laughed.
“It’s going to be a rather short outing. You have been very busy, so it will be good for you to take a break.
“Yes. That would be nice, too.”
Duke Winston asked, as if he had just remembered.
“When do you plan to hold the wedding, Your Majesty?”
“I think this spring will be a good time, since national weddings have been held in the spring for generations. Of course, the most important thing is Your Majesty’s preference ….”
“Then it’s spring.”
Karzen pondered for a moment. And then he took a bite of bread at random.
“Spring is the season of national marriage, but spring comes every year.” (Karzen)
“Your Majesty’s words meant…….”
“A year later in the spring would be good. The eastern border is still very problematic.” (Karzen)