“Royal Father! What do you mean by that poster?! Valletta is… Lady Delight is innocent!”
Milrode raised his voice.
The Emperor sighed as he looked at his son, who came into his office arguing that such treatment was absurd.
Since early times, he always did his best and worked hard in whatever he did to become a son that lacked nothing.
He was able to immediately push out the other princes to become the Crown Prince with his abilities.
The problem was that he was too stiff and had a ridiculously upright mind set.
He was a child who only walked forward with justice and righteousness with no flexibility or whatsoever.
“You can’t just ignore the event that occurred with the Magic Tower’s Master. Above all else, do you have any idea how many high-ranked priests have suffered?”
“However, what does that have to do with Valletta?! She was just with that ruthless man…!”
The Emperor roughly put down the pen he was holding.
Milrode flinched and shut his mouth.
“Milrode, sometimes when you want something, you have to know how to use your power. If you think you can beat the Magic Tower’s Master by abiding by the law and with your sense of justice, you’re gravely mistaken.”
“I know that you sincerely liked Lady Delight. I’m sure it’s great if the person who will stay by your side for the rest of your life, and the woman whom you love will be your Empress.”
Milrode took a deep breath at the Emperor’s placating words.
He used to imagine that.
However, the Valletta Delight that he reunited with was colder than what he expected and showed not even a little sign of welcoming him.
It caused bigger damage than expected to Milrode.
He thought he was taking good care of her. She has never called him by his name, but there were times when he felt he got a little bit closer to her.
Yet when they met again, she just had a troubled expression on her face. It was an expression that was at a loss and not knowing what to do.
“You’re someone who will become an Emperor and there is nothing you can’t have. Fortunately, even after Count Delight’s death, your engagement is still valid. There is nothing that we cannot force on.”
“I… I want to make Valletta happy, I don’t want to make her mine forcibly.”
The Emperor sighed at his frustrating words. How can there be something this frustrating?
He was fit to be Emperor, but it was clear that it would be better if he would take after his younger siblings about his hardheadedness.
“That child was tamed by Count Delight by his own hands since she was young. No matter how much you approach her with all your heart, you will never be able to truly see who she is.”
“What does… that mean?”
“No matter how much you give your heart to her, she would cut it off, and was taught not to refuse any order at any time.”
The eyes of the wrinkled Emperor bent. He smiled tenderly and held Milrode’s hand, then let out a short sigh as if he was looking at a pitiful child.
“The Magic Tower’s Master, for generations, is always born without feeling any emotions. In exchange for being emotionless, they will remain level-headed in any kind of situation. That is innate to a Magic Tower’s Master.”
“… Yes, he surely did not have any sense of guilt for doing something coldblooded.”
“That’s right, he has no morality. And that child was made from scratch.”
Milrode’s face contorted.
No matter what he did or how friendly he was, Valletta’s expression never changed. To the point where her expressionless face and monotonous voice has become her trademark.
“Why would someone do something so cruel…”
“Because that child has too much power. Gillian, the best alchemist in the Imperial palace, can produce a maximum of three advance-grade potions in a course of one year. But that child can make two advance-grade potions a day.”
Milrode’s dark blue eyes trembled slightly. The Emperor did not miss his hesitation.
A child with an overflowing sense of justice only needs to dip it’s feet in muddy water once to realise that it wasn’t as dirty and unpleasant as they thought.
“Yes, who would leave alone a being who lays gold. The Magic Tower’s Master must also be aiming for it. To hold that child in your hand, will give you riches instantly.”
The Emperor smiled kindly, masking his greed.
“The moment others realize that child’s value, you will not be the only one who will reach out a hand. Only the Imperial Palace can protect her from those greedy people.”
Milrode clenched his fists.
She was clearly powerless. Even when they last met, it seemed like she was just being swayed by the Magic Tower’s Master.
Even from before, she always had a thin body and tired-looking expression.
“If we leave her alone like that, a stranger would get their hands on her and exploit her for the rest of her life. That’s why, don’t you think it’ll be better to protect her as the Empress?”
“… Still, a poster is too much.”
“It was just a missing person poster. The Magic Tower issued a wanted poster. It’s obvious that she ran away from there.”
Milrode raised his hand and rubbed his face roughly.
It would be nice if she only stayed in one place.
Even from before, she had never depended on someone else. She did all the hard work alone.
It was upsetting and unfortunate, yet she never bothered to show it.
Then once in a while, that slave, who became the Magic Tower’s Master, would help her without asking for her opinion.
‘… He has always been overbearing.’
Even when he was a slave, he was a strange being.
Even though he would constantly lower himself to her, it felt like their relationship was a horizontal one and not vertical.
And Valletta accepted that strangeness naturally.
(T/N: Horizontal relationships are relationships where members have equal standing whereas vertical relationships are those where one member has greater power, authority over the other.)
“Don’t forget that you should always protect the Imperial Family first. It will be difficult to find her if she is determined to hide, but the search will continue.”
“Okay, I’ll trust you.”
Milrode nodded and turned around.
The Emperor let out a long sigh when he saw the Crown Prince leave after causing a commotion.
He was the perfect Crown Prince, it’s a pity that he lacks 5%.
“Are you there, Gillian?”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
A man in black robe came out from somewhere and bent down.
The Emperor looked straight at him with a satisfied expression. Gillian was the President of the Imperial Family owned Alchemist Association.
“Let’s find someone who can be your junior. You’ll have to retire soon, so we need someone to fill in your vacancy.”
“There’s a huge chance that she is being protected in the underworld.”
“Tsk, those rats… Or maybe she found a different way since she is smart.”
The Emperor gently stroked his chin.
It might not be bad to find it first, because his son would surely be soft on that thing.
Before long, the Emperor’s muddy blue eyes flashed greedily.
“We will find it.”
“Sure, this time as well, I look forward to it.”
“Yes, My Great Majesty.”
He then slowly disappeared in the darkness.
[ Blue eyes sparkled in the darkness. After that day, that boy who only wished for one thing as he practiced his sword, was close to being an adult.
The sharp tip of the sword pulled out from the scabbard and pointed at the opponent reflected by the moonlight.
The sword shined with blue light, surging with a raging murderous intent. An uninvited visitor came to the place where he was meditating.
He slowly turned his body. Reinhardt blinked his eyes with his back facing the moonlight. A smile spread on his face when he realized the situation. His excitement could be felt from his eyes.
“You…has it been 7 years? I stepped into this world for the first time in a while after my awakening, and you’re still alive?”
Reinhardt laughed in a low voice.
“How fun, I honestly didn’t expect you to grow this big. I actually completely forgot about you. There’s a lot of people that need to be replaced. Anyway, it’s a little bit worthwhile now. What‘s your name?”
“What are you going to do once you know my name?”
“Everyone who has value should have a name. I can’t just call you b*st*rd number 2, right?”
Reinhardt, who was standing in the air, came down and lightly stepped in front of the boy. The boy swallowed his breath as he looked at the man with a beautifully fluttering robe, but with a menacing appearance.
“That day, I vowed that I would kill you.”
Reinhardt’s expression immediately cooled down at the boy’s words and shrugged his shoulders. There was an elegance in his every action. Like he grew up inherently having everything.
“Why are you mad at me for mercifully killing those people who wouldn’t have been able to live outside normally even if they leave that place?”
“A person like you who was born with everything won’t understand. That there are people like that who still want to live!”
“Strength, power and authority. Despite being someone who has been confirmed since birth to be the Magic Tower’s Master, have you ever bowed your head under other people?”
Reinhard sarcastically smirked, giggled at his words full of bravado, and let out a breathy laugh. Without a word, he lifted his head up and looked at the full moon in the sky, then lightly turned his body.
“So, your name?”
“Therion. It’s Therion Leon!”
“Hmm, there’s a new palace that I haven’t seen. All right, I’ve decided.”
Reinhardt smiled as he said that and snapped his fingers. The sword in Therion’s hand corroded in an instant as if it had rusted, and permeated into the boy’s arms.
The disintegrating iron powder seeped into the boy’s arm like it was engraving a tattoo. The boy screamed at the sharp iron powder that penetrated his body. The iron powder stamped a stigma into Therion’s arm. A gray-colored snake coiling around Therion’s arm was formed.
Reinhardt smiled brightly as he looked at the man groaning in pain, covered in dirt on the floor.
“I need you to entertain me for a while, Therion.”
“There are things that I wanted to do, but my hands are full. Thanks to you, I wanted to raise one, and it worked out well.”
Reinhardt said ambiguously and backed away lightly.
“From now on, you’re my sword. Let’s torture all those insects together.”
An unfriendly voice whispered softly. The last thing Therion saw was the afterimage of the beautiful man with a happy expression on his face. ]
Valletta suddenly woke up from the soft bed and took a death breath.
The bed was damp with cold sweat. She stiffened and looked right and left.
The world was not dark. Outside the window was a dim daybreak and she could see the sun rising from the distance.
Valletta’s fingertips trembled. She lowered her head slowly while holding her breath.
“A dream… no, it’s not.”
It was obviously the story from the novel.
She now remembered. The name of the male protagonist in the novel was Therion.
One day, he recognized his talent and entered the Leon Family to receive support, and she also remembered that he was given the last name as well.
‘… That child?’
He has blue eyes, and Reinhardt also said that he has a talent for the sword. And that event that happened when he was locked up in the nurturing room. All the conditions matched up perfectly.
She thought that it would at least disperse Reinhardt’s interest in her, but she never thought that she had something he could be interested in on her side.
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