Chapter 1. The beginning of everything
Sponsored by H 💖 (14/14)
Ellea, who made up her mind, stood next to Heris among the two and said.
“I’m sorry, Chaylen, but Heris is still a beginner and I think it’s right for me to be there for her.”
When Ellea chose Heris, Heris looked at Chaylen, elated that she had won.
Unfortunately, Chaylen had no choice but to give up.
“There’s nothing we can do.Then I’ll postpone the match with you.”
“I’d appreciate it if you did.”
“Did you get home safely that day? You were totally drunk and passed out.”
From his reaction, it looked like he hadn’t heard the rumors in the imperial palace yet.
Chaylen had no choice but to leave her with Terban that day, but he was bothered.
‘It’s probably best if you don’t know.’
Ellea didn’t intend to tell him what had happened that time, but someone else intercepted her reply before she could.
”I took the Princess home safely.”
“I see the Emperor.”
“I guess the Duke didn’t believe what I said.”
The three of them would not have known as they were conversing, but there were gazes glancing at them. There was no way that Terban didn’t notice it.
(*sorry, but he didn’t even know his precious handkerchief was missing for days, so I doubt he noticed anything.)
“How dare I? I was just asking out of concern.”
‘Why is the situation becoming like this again?’
Ellea knew very well that if she showed up with the two of them, especially Terban, there was bound to be rumors.
And so it was clear without looking that the longer this situation went on, the more troublesome it would be only for her.
Next to her, Heris, who was watching the situation more closely than anyone else, saw two men in a strange battle of nerves.
No matter how much they tried to pretend that they didn’t know, it was clear that they were wary of each other.
From what Heris could see, Ellea was definitely in the center of it. And she was worried that this situation was going to get bigger.
‘The situation has become quite interesting. It’s not just the Duke, but the Emperor as well.’
At that moment, a strange voice interrupted the four of them.
“Terban, are you ready? Everyone is waiting for you.”
The strange atmosphere that had formed there was broken by Shanil’s appearance.
Heris’ eyes could clearly see Shanil’s intentions.
Being aware of the rumors and didn’t want to cause any more misunderstandings between himself and Ellea, Terban ended the conversation and moved away with Shanil. A voice of concern came from afar to tell her to stay only in the tent.
“I’ll go now. I’ll see you later.”
Chaylen also moved away regretfully, and Ellea finally breathed a sigh of relief.
“He looks like he’s in a lot of pain.”
“I was going to stay still until the rumors died down, but it all went down the drain.”
Heris patted Ellea on the shoulder, meaning good luck, and they both hurried to pick out the horses to ride.
She brought two brown horses that looked good for Heris, a novice, and already people were eagerly boasting about their abilities on horseback.
Of course, Ellea had long since learned that it was a struggle to look good for someone else. She didn’t mind playing her own game; she stayed in a corner and teached Heris step by step.
From how to handle the horse for the first time to getting on and getting into position.
“This is the first thing I have to do, get the horse used to my scent.”
“Oh, I see. You don’t just ride him blindly.”
“Yes. Horses are living things. Treat them carefully and preciously.”
Next, Ellea showed Heris how to mount the horse.
“I’ll help you. Do you want to ride it?”
“Can I do that?”
“Of course. I’ll be next to you.”
Heris got on the horse with Ellea’s help. It was the first time she had ridden a horse and she showed signs of being scared.
“Don’t be too scared, because if you’re nervous the horse will feel it too. It’s okay, the horse won’t drop you.”
Ellea took a direct hold of Heris’s posture, then took a direct hold of the reins and made the horse walk slowly. Heris sat on it, trying to keep her balance.
At first she stiffened with nervousness, but after a while she felt strange instead.
“Wow, I can’t believe I’m riding a horse.”
“It’s more fun than you think, right?”
“Yes. But Ellea is much better at it than I thought. Didn’t you say you weren’t in good health in Zevenica?”
“Oh, yes. It was difficult for me too at first, but once I got interested, my skills improved quickly. I think I’m quite talented.”
Ellea said, deliberately flaunting her abilities, and Heris replaced her reply with a laugh. While they were spending time alone together like this, a rather fierce battle was taking place on one side.
The nobles were competing in their ability to arrive at a designated forest road on horseback as fast as they could. Chaylen in the meantime looked rather bored.
His gaze immediately went to Ellea and Heris, who were in a happy mood.
“I think it’s more interesting over there.”
Then a person came up to him.
“You look bored, Duke.”
“They’re not as good as I thought. I don’t want to be one of those people who brag about their abilities to make themselves look good.”
“You’re more confident than I thought.”
As Terban said, Chaylen showed confidence that they were not his opponents.
As Terban said, he could see the confidence from Chaylen that they would not be his opponent. Seeing the proud look on his face, Terban suggested first.
“Then why don’t you compete with me? I’d like to know how good you are.”
“With Your Majesty?”
“Yes. It’s okay if you don’t want to.”
What contained in those words was an obvious provocation. Terban was indirectly telling Chaylen that he should refuse if he wasn’t good enough.
It didn’t fit Chaylen’s personality to avoid a fight that found him. And if the opponent was Terban.
“Okay, I’ve come all the way here, and I’m not going to stay still. I accept the challenge.”
With that, the two stared at each other sharply.
Ellea and Heris suddenly felt that the space was noisier than before.
Not only the noblemen on horseback, but even the lady in the tent had come and were looking at somewhere intensely.
At the center of it all were two people on horseback. Terban and Chaylen.
“What’s going on?”
“Well. The atmosphere looks pretty serious.”
At that moment, at the sound of the announcer to start, the two men spurred their horses fast at the same time and ran at the same speed. Then they both disappeared into the forest.
Just by looking at the situation, Heris seemed to have noticed what was going on.
“Are they competing?”
“I think that’s right. People are gathered. It’s going to be quite fun.”
Helis, who was now used to holding the reins herself, showed a look of anticipation.
‘What will be the outcome of this intriguing match?’
“Why all of a sudden?”
“I don’t know the details, but they look serious. Ellea, who do you think will win?”
Ellea knew Terban’s ability better than anyone else. Besides, he should also know the geography of this place well.
With that in mind, she naturally thought that Terban had the advantage. Of course, there was no telling if variables would arise.
“Perhaps it’s the Emperor.”
“I think it’s going to be neck and neck.”
“Duke Chaylen will do everything in his power to make sure he doesn’t lose.”
While the people were each rushing about, the sound of horse hooves that had moved away began to be heard, and two horses jumped out of the forest.
Before the people who were watching had time to react in any way, the two reached the starting line almost at the same time.
It was so hard to tell who the winner was, so the decision was a draw.
The two men showed disappointment at the result. It was as if they really wanted to win this game.
Their breathing was calm, despite the fact that they had driven the horses at a fast speed.
“Unfortunately, this game is a tie.”
“Then there’s nothing we can do.”
“Then the match again next time. A tie is unpleasant.”
As Terban dismounted from his horse, Shanil immediately approached him and led him to the tent to rest for a while since he was tired from the game.
It was the same for Chaylen.
There were a lot of people who had the goal of befriending him today, and they soon flocked to him.
But Chaylen wasn’t too happy about it, but it was something he couldn’t refuse blatantly, so he went to the tent.
Then the people were gone, and the clearing was quiet for a moment. Ellea looked at Heris and asked,
“How are you doing? Shall we take a break too?”
“ I’m fine. I don’t want to go to that crowded place. They will be talking about the obvious.”
“I just got used to it, and I want to learn it well. Is that okay?
Ellea nodded, meaning ‘okay’. They walked in a quiet place, and Ellea stayed close by to match Heris’s speed.
Then there were several eyes that looked at the two of them with a disgruntled look.
In the tents, the noblemen and women were gathered around, conversing with each other.
In the center of it was Terban and Shanil.
“You didn’t have to come all the way here.”
“I just wanted to get some air after so long. I wish I could enjoy it with you, but that’s not possible.”
Shanil’s words were slurred, but they were also a reminder for Terban. Don’t forget why she can’t do activities with him.
That intention was obscured by the tone of regret, but she instantly noticed that Terban’s eyes were clouded as he looked at her.
Seeing how shaken he was by her words made Shanil feel even more at ease.
She was confident that their current intimate appearance would be able to calm the current rumors in the Imperial Palace.
As the conversation was ripening in such a friendly atmosphere, a knight rushed into the tent.
“I think you should come outside, Your Majesty.”
People’s attention was focused on the knight, and Terban asked with a serious expression.
“What’s going on?”
“It seems that something happened between the Princess and the young lords.”
Terban immediately left his seat at the mention of Ellea, and so did Chaylen, who was at the other table.
Curious as to what was happening, they followed him out.
The knights were at a loss for words, and there were two people who gave off an unusual atmosphere.
Ellea and the other one was a Young Lord and others, who were present here. Beside her was Heris.
At that time, the sinking voice of Ellea was heard.
”Are you afraid to back out now? If you talk about that level of things in my presence, doesn’t that mean you are confident? Therefore, let’s check it out. Whose story is true, and who owes who an apology?”
Just hearing Ellea’s words, he could sense that she was angry, and Terban hurriedly interrupted the conversation.
“What’s going on?”
The people bowed their heads at Terban’s appearance, but kept their mouths shut in front of the Emperor.
However, their gazes at each other clashed strongly.