Sorry for no update last week! Here it is 😊
* * *
Liarte opened her eyes as the morning came.
She could hear Michael’s soft voice.
She submitted the painting that had been hanging in his room for a while.
Although she found a tutor, she has two to three months left before she officially attends the class.
“Are you awake now?”
Blinking her eyes, Liarte found him sitting next to her, looking down at her.
“You must have been very tired. Are you feeling better?”
“Why are we together?” (tl/n: a statement I would never want to hear in a relationship EVER)
“Don’t you like it? I love being with you.”
He said in a friendly way as their eyes met, with a sweet smile on his face.
“Sleep a little bit more.”
“It really is Michael.”
While focusing on painting, she thought of Michael a lot, but it was different from meeting him in person.
Somehow, her feeling of dissatisfaction seemed to be relieved a little.
Liarte grabbed Michael’s hands and hugged him. She could feel his body stiffening up.
“You’re going to sleep like this more often, huh?”
Michael’s voice was low so as to not wake Liarte.
She closed her eyes and rubbed her face lightly.
“I’m going to sleep some more.”
“Please stay like this.”
Michael immediately closed his mouth as he unwittingly said the wrong words. It was because it was not something he would normally say in this situation, although he was sincere.
Liarte soon opened her eyes slowly.
It was thanks to the situation, that seemed too full of reality to be a dream.
At first, she thought Michael came into her room. But when she opened her eyes, she saw that she was in Michael’s room.
‘Isn’t this the sofa in Michael’s room?’
On the long sofa, Liarte was lying down, and Michael was sitting next to her.
The sight of the diamonds on the ceiling shining in the sunlight felt unreal.
“Why was I sleeping here?”
“I brought you in because you were dozing off in the hallway. I couldn’t find Merlin for some reason.”
Liarte rose to her feet. Last night, she finally submitted her work to the painting contest.
It was after she asked Merlin to move the painting since she couldn’t trust anyone else.
“I remember I asked Merlin to submit the painting.”
“Are you talking about the drawing you’ve been working on lately?”
Liarte came up with something to buy for Michael using the prize money from the contest.
Then she called him.
“I’ll be sure to win the prize.”
It didn’t matter if she failed to make a connection with Duke Haron.
Her first goal was to win the prize by a hair’s breadth.
“You can do it, Liarte.”
Michael smiled brightly. Liarte decided to give a clear notice on this opportunity.
“And tell Carmen and Aaron not to manipulate the results, either.”
While living in Birche, Liarte came to realize that the three rich men were somewhat strange.
Michael went silent for a while.
Her watery eyes were looking directly at him.
“If I don’t tell you now, you’ll use your influence behind my back to win the prize.”
She was correct, so he couldn’t think of an answer quickly.
The world that Michael saw was dark and corrupt.
‘There’s no such thing as a fair result. Especially in the field of expensive painting.’
Of course, there will be people who are competing fairly.
However, those who always had help from behind or had a lot of wealth and power were bound to prevail.
Like in most competitions, the winner would have already been decided.
“I want to win awards for my skills.”
In Birche’s standards, winning was a skill. But what Liarte said was well understood.
“Yes, but if you have a problem, promise me you will tell me so I can help you.”
“All right, I promise.”
Liarte knew well that the world was not a beautiful and fair place.
Even now, Liarte hasn’t touched the letters meant for her, and they were slowly accumulating in Birche. It was a trick to try and get Liarte to somehow cooperate with them.
Among them, only the letters from the Duchy of Elheim increased day by day.
Carmen told her not to dispose of the letters.
“If something happens, those letters may be of great help.”
The letters were left to rest and accumulate upon his advice.
“By the way, what did you draw?”
When Michael asked, Liarte felt her heart slightly sinking.
“You really don’t know?”
“No one told me.”
She couldn’t say that she drew Michael’s eyes, which was the most beautiful thing for her.
Somehow, it will become difficult for them to look directly at each other if she tells him.
“I drew something precious.”
“What is it?”
“It’s a secret, but I’ll let you know if I win the competition.”
She liked the finished picture very much. She thought she would be happy even if she didn’t achieve anything in the competition.
“You look like you’re in a good mood, Liarte.”
Liarte guessed that he was smiling.
“I did my best to draw it, I’m relieved.”
“That’s good. When you’re happy, I’m happy too.”
Michael’s hands were warm.
The feeling of a large hand turning her flowing hair over was vivid.
“Good night, Liarte.”
Before she knew it, Michael was hugging her as if protecting her.
The sofa was wide, so it was enough for the two of them to lie down together.
They didn’t know who first thought that this time would be forever.
Liarte fell asleep again, erasing her thoughts on the torch she painted.
* * *
The Crown Prince uttered a wild curse.
After the fire at the palace, the view of the people watching the Crown Prince changed.
They seemed to criticize The Crown Prince more than Birche, who dared to set the palace on fire.
It continued to scratch his arrogant pride.
Furthermore, The Crown Prince’s prestige was further damaged by Elheim, who declared that they would not put the fire out.
The Crown Prince threw all the pottery and glasses on the floor.
Even then, he couldn’t get rid of his anger, so he grumbled.
Count Fedes, who is familiar with these kind of situations, was still waiting for the Crown Prince’s anger to stop.
“It doesn’t make sense to me. Why am I nailed to the floor when I’m clearly aiming at Birche?”
The Crown Prince, who was talking to himself while looking in the mirror, took the mirror off and threw it on the floor.
What hurt his pride more was the reaction of the Emperor.
The Crown Prince followed Empress Tarentia and ignored the Emperor.
Hearing that the Emperor asked why he touched Birche, he was immediately frightened.
It was also the Emperor who took care of Elheim’s work, who said that they wouldn’t put the fire out.
‘All I have to do is to get Liarte Elheim.’
The Crown Prince thought as he breathed. Still, he didn’t realize his arrogance.
Birche, which should have originally collapsed, was still alive, so if only Liarte was taken away, the Crown Prince’s position will return to its original state.
The only question is how to take her away.
It was then, a knight who hurriedly knocked, immediately opened the door, and approached the Crown Prince.
No matter how low their authority is, a knight who comes in without permission will be executed.
The knight, who felt that he was living in a moment from the Crown Prince, flinched.
“The Duke of Haron is here.”
It was at that moment not only the Crown Prince but also Count Fedes opened his eyes wide with a look of surprise.
Isn’t the Duke of Haron the unknown family that is always shrouded in veil?
“Have you ever suspected that he could be an impersonator? To bring in such a suspicious man with no identification.”
“They brought the seal of the Duchy of Haron, and he showed me a ring from the Royal Family.”
Then there was a high probability that it was real. The Crown Prince nodded as he exchanged looks with Count Fedes.
“We can’t keep a distinguished guest waiting for a long time. Show me where they are.”
“Yes, Your Highness.”
The Crown Prince remained uncertain about this until the knight took him to the drawing room where the Duke of Haron was.
There were repeated doubts that it can’t be the Duke of Haron.
Of course, there was also a possibility that it was Duke Haron.
Why did the family who erased their presence without any activity come to see him now?
In the drawing-room, there was a man wearing an antique hood.
“Duke of Haron?”
“I apologize for the sudden visit, Your Highness.”
“Is it really you?”
“If you can’t believe it, I’ll show you my seal and ring.”
Surprisingly, Duke Haron’s hands looked dull with calluses. He took out his ring and seal and held them out to the Crown Prince.
“Your Highness will know if it’s real.”
It was real, but the Crown Prince was still confused.
“You really are the Duke of Haron, but why did you suddenly come to me?”
“Because I heard about the fire.”
The opportunity for the public’s opinion of the Crown Prince to be plunged into the abyss.
It was the Duke’s words that stopped the Crown Prince who was about to be angry.
“All of a sudden, I heard a report that all the flames had died down at some point.”
It also meant that the Duke of Haron’s intelligence was still strong even if he is living in seclusion.
“I want to meet the person who put out the fire. I need your help.”
The Crown Prince felt that heaven hadn’t abandoned him just yet.
“He’s right on our side.”
A brazen lie was spouted.
The seal inside the hood seemed to move as if it was about to happen.
“But I can’t let you through this bridge without knowing what the Duke of Haron is thinking.”
The Crown Prince smiled vaguely.
“Help me, then I’ll introduce you to him later.”
It was so important for the Duke of Haron, who had been missing for a long time, to visit the Crown Prince himself.
The Duke of Haron looked troubled.
“It’s not that hard to help.”
The voice in the hood came out in a low tone.
“However, I tend to not show mercy to those who deceive me.”
Even if Birche and the Emperor investigated the event, it was not known why the fire suddenly died down.
The Crown Prince was confident that he wouldn’t be caught.
“If you consider what I need, I will cooperate for the time being.”
There was nothing he couldn’t do to restore the torch.
Duke Haron, who acts as the genius painter Jen Walker, has finally been revealed to the world.
* * *
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