Chapter 14. Elodie the Solver?

 

 

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How did this happen?

 

I had no choice but to sit awkwardly at this unscheduled meal.

 

The dining room of the Perdia mansion.

 

All the members of Perdia were present here, including the first prince, my fiancé, who was sitting next to me.

 

“It must have been a sudden visit, but you welcomed me like this. I don’t know how to repay Perdia’s hospitality.”

 

At the words of the first prince, the Duchess replied with an elegant smile.

 

“It is rather an honor to serve his Highness the Crown Prince. I hope the meal suits your taste.”

 

“It’s as good as an imperial dinner.”

 

“I’m flattered.”

 

Hahaha.

 

I was sick of the pretentious greetings exchanged between the Duchess and the first prince.

 

While Jansi and Carlot also participated in the conversation and helped each other out, I only nibbled at the food in front of me.

 

‘I want to go back to the annex….’

 

I was sure this dinner wasn’t planned.

 

But how did this uncomfortable dinner come about?

 

To understand, time must turn back several hours.

 

***

 

Perhaps because I went out yesterday, by the time I opened my eyes it was late past noon.

 

As I yawned and stretched out, Martha entered the bedroom.

 

“Miss, what are you going to do today?”

 

“I’m just going to practice my powers today.”

 

The practice, of course, referred to making an antidote for the Duchess. It was a truly clever decision to claim the power of ‘destructing poison’ for myself.

 

Fortunately, it didn’t cause any suspicion.

 

I had to decide when to start because once I started, I couldn’t leave the bedroom because of the toxins that remained in my body for several days.

 

After a quick wash, I sat down at my desk and laid out the poisons I had received from the Duchess.

 

“Don’t come in until I call you again.”

 

“Yes, miss. I’ll tell the other servants in the annex not to come near the bedroom. Please pull the rope if you need me.”

 

Having gotten used to it while I made the antidote a few times, Martha reassuringly left at my request and went outside.

 

The first poison I picked up was an extreme poison that paralyzed the respiratory tract. If even a single drop was ingested, it would make it impossible to breathe and lead to death by suffocation.

 

“This …. Is poisonous enough to lie in bed at least three, no four days.”

 

But there was nothing else I could do if I wanted to earn independent funds.

 

It was just when I took a deep breath and opened the lid of the poison.

 

Knock knock– 

 

I looked at the door at the sudden knock. When my concentration was suddenly disturbed, I naturally had no choice but to become irritable.

 

“I told you not to come in before I call you.”

 

“It’s…. the First Prince. His Highness has come to visit.”

 

‘First prince?’

 

If it were the first prince, I sent a letter of refusal to his dinner invitation yesterday, under the pretext of being sick. 

 

It was annoying, but I couldn’t shut the door to the imperial family, so I had to show my face. 

 

“Take him to the drawing room.”

 

“I was going to.”

 

Before Martha could finish her words, a familiar male voice came from outside the door.

 

“Princess, are you okay?”

 

‘…Why is he in front of the bedroom?’

 

There was no such rudeness as this.

 

Even if we were engaged, I couldn’t believe he came all the way to my bedroom.

 

However, since the opponent was the royal family, and a candidate to be the next powerful emperor, I could not express my dissatisfaction.

 

Since I dared to refuse the invitation of the imperial family, I was the one who acted rudely first, so I couldn’t say anything to the first prince.

 

Ugh.

 

I was not wearing an outdoor outfit, but a simple indoor outfit, so it might not fit the formality, but that didn’t matter.

 

The person who invaded without giving me time to prepare should understand.

 

As soon as I opened the door, I saw the first prince standing there naturally as if he were the owner of this house.

 

He was dazzling even today.

 

The slightly disheveled silver hair matched his unique, relaxed atmosphere.

 

Green eyes looked at me carefully.

 

“Are you still not feeling well?”

 

“Thanks to you, I feel much better.”

 

If the first prince had come a little later, she would have already drunk poison.

 

I didn’t want to show that side of me because I had already collapsed in front of his eyes once.

 

‘Because he’ll get pissed off if he mistakenly thinks I’m doing something stupid again.’ 

 

Rather, I was curious about the reason why the first prince visited me. There was no way that he came here because he really wanted to know how I was feeling.

 

“Did you come to see my father?”

 

At my question, the first prince nodded.

 

“I came to discuss a problem with the Duke, but I remembered that the princess said she was not feeling well.”

 

“You saw that I’m okay, so you should go now.”

 

As I euphemistically said, “please disappear”, the first prince shamelessly took a step into the room.

 

“I have plenty of time to have a cup of tea with the Princess.” 

 

“Oh no. I’m out of tea leaves.”

 

“Then it doesn’t matter if it’s water.”

 

What’s wrong with this human being?

 

The first prince pushed into the room and proudly occupied the sofa.

 

Martha, who had brought a tray, brewed tea, and served it. Adenmir took a sip from the teacup and smiled.

 

“You said you don’t have tea leaves, but it’s a special tea from Krundell.”

 

“I guess there was some left.” I muttered.

 

Even if I answered bluntly on purpose, the first prince showed no sign of displeasure.

 

Then suddenly, the eyes of the first prince, who was drinking tea, turned to Martha. For quite a long time at that.

 

I tilted my head.

 

‘Did he have a crush on Martha?’

 

Unfortunately, Martha’s ideal type is a prettier-looking man.

 

Eventually, as Martha dragged out the tray, the prince put down the teacup and said quietly.

 

“It would be better to fire servants who do not know how to properly serve their master, Princess.”

 

Far from falling in love with my maid, I was bewildered at his unexpected suggestion of dismissal.

 

“Did my maid do anything rude to you, your Highness?”

 

Then the first prince narrowed his brows as if he didn’t even want to think about it.

 

“When you collapsed the other day, that maid wasn’t even surprised. How can she be so calm when her owner has collapsed?”

 

“Ah……”

 

“You look shocked, I understand.”

 

I resisted the urge to smack my own forehead. “Haha.”

 

“It would have been a shock if the person I trusted acted like that.”

 

The first prince tried to sympathize with me, but I could only laugh awkwardly.

 

It was even funnier because it was not a joke, but serious advice.

 

‘No, it’s not funny.’

 

Our poor Martha……. I couldn’t talk about the unfortunate Martha anymore, so I quickly changed the topic.

 

“It seems my father is waiting for you.”

 

“I’m meeting my fiancée; the Duke will understand.

 

I don’t think so…….

 

At the time when I took a sip of the tea with a sour face.

 

The first prince’s gaze moved over my shoulder to the desk.

 

There were poison bottles there that had not yet been removed. He wouldn’t immediately recognize that it was poison just by looking at it, but just in case, I subtly blocked his view with my body.

 

Contrary to my concerns, the first prince quickly took his gaze away.

 

“You look fine, so the Princess will attend as well.”

 

“What are we going to attend?”

 

“Evening supper. I was invited by the Duke; I heard the whole family is attending.”

 

What a sudden bolt of lightning is this. Even having a family meal once a month is annoying, but even a family meal with the prince included.

 

“Because I’m still not feeling entirely well–”

 

“You look fine. Aren’t you pretending to be sick?”

 

“That’s not–”

 

“I will tell the Duke. You have some time until dinner, so prepare slowly.”

 

“Wait a minute, Your Highness!”

 

Bang.

 

The first prince went out without even listening to my answer.

 

His attitude as if he were the host of the dinner was ridiculous.

 

“Guess he isn’t a royal family member for nothing….”

 

I frowned and raised my middle finger in my mind.

 

Martha, who had been waiting outside, came in with a curious expression on her face.

 

“Miss, what did His Highness say?”

 

“He wants you fired, Martha.”

 

“What? Why? There’s no maid who thinks of you as much as I do. Ha, really me?”

 

Even as I nodded at Martha’s words that she would strongly support the breakup with the first prince from now on, my thoughts went elsewhere.

 

Dinner.

 

‘I don’t want to go!’

 

***

 

…. I thought that very strongly, but the Duke sent the butler himself, so I had no choice but to come.

 

Anyway, since I came to the dinner, I held up the spoon in earnest with the thought that I should have a delicious meal.

 

The conversations of my family except for me were heard like background music.

 

The Duke brought up the main topic first. It was also the reason why the first prince personally visited this place.

 

“Yes, I heard that Angellus is going to start a military supply business in earnest,” The Duke commented.

 

Jansi replied with a smile, “Since there have been frequent exchanges with the Namma Tower recently, it seems that the making of magic tools has already begun.”

 

I just tried to listen, but I couldn’t because I knew the story already.

 

It was an incident in the book, so I knew how it would go.

 

The main culprit behind the incident was the Angellus family.

 

It was one of the four major families endowed with the power of regeneration, and the head of the house was the one who was frantic in raising its honor and inflating its wealth.

 

Perhaps his head hurt thinking about it, because the first prince opened his mouth with a frown.

 

“It is said that they are winning bids for all the mana stone mines, which are the subsidiary materials for magic armor.”

 

This was the problem.

 

Producing munitions was not a problem. But Angellus business tactics were very dirty.

 

Wasn’t he blatantly trying to ruin one of Perdia’s businesses by monopolizing the main supply of materials? 

 

Of course, Perdia also owned a mine, so there would not be a big problem right away, but if it went on for a long time, it would be difficult because the supply and demand of materials would become unbalanced.

 

“It’s a big deal,” the duchess said with a laugh.

 

‘Isn’t she too relaxed for someone who’s in trouble?’ I thought to myself as I diligently chewed my dinner.

 

“Then, how about we also buy the magic stone mines? I think it would be good to secure a little more.”

 

Jansi came up with a solution, but it was quickly dismissed by the first prince.

 

“We’re a step late. They have already won most of the bids for the mana stone mines. There’s no point in stepping up now,” Adenmir contradicted.

 

While they had a serious conversation, I enjoyed a leisurely meal.

 

I didn’t feel a sense of crisis because I already knew the future.

 

‘They’re doomed.’

 

Angellus.

 

Perdia, who struggled for some time, soon came up with a solution. It was Jansi’s trick in the original story.

 

Of course there were trials and errors and losses in the process, but in the end, Perdia won.

 

As a result, it worked out well, and I didn’t think it was my business to intervene, so I turned off my attention.

 

And then.

 

“Elodie.”

 

“………?!”

 

At the sudden call of my name, I stopped munching on meat and raised my head.

 

The Duke was looking at me.

 

“Eat and then answer.”

 

The Duke waited for me while I chewed and couldn’t answer because there was food in my mouth.

 

Gulp.

 

I quickly swallowed the mouthful of food and asked the Duke, “Why did you call me?”

 

“I am wondering what you think of this situation.”

 

Everyone in the dining room was surprised by the unexpected words.

 

I was surprised too.

 

A Duke who has never asked for my opinion before, asking me what I think now?

 

‘The Duke is strange……!’

 

Calling me, attaching an escort to me, even asking for my opinion. Why are you doing something you have not done before?

 

The starting point was when I realized my previous life.

 

Jansi smiled awkwardly and dissuaded the duke.

 

“Father, I think it’s too difficult for Lili to answer.”

 

It was natural to say so.

 

I’ve never been interested in family affairs.

 

‘I was careful, fearing the Duchess would keep me in check if I took any interest.’

 

Carl kept his mouth shut the whole time, and the Duchess just smiled gracefully.

 

Even without saying, it was clear that everyone was thinking the same thing as Jansi.

 

But the Duke did not give in.

 

“Jansi, I didn’t ask for your opinion.”

 

The cool gaze momentarily disrupted Jansi’s smile.

 

“…….I was  presumptuous, Father.”

 

“Elodie.”

 

Instead of answering Jansi, the Duke called my name.

 

I was conflicted.

 

I knew of a solution to this predicament, but it was something that Jansi would come up with in the future.

 

If I say that now, it would be uncomfortable because I would take Jansi’s credit.

 

But if we intervene now, we can prevent meaningless trial and error….

 

Soon I came to a decision.

 

“There is a way.”

 

The Duke nodded as if he knew it.

 

Of all things, Jansi asked me, “What’s the way?”

 

“The solution is….”

 

PHOTO

 

***

 

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