When I thought of the Crown Prince, I naturally remembered the memory of that day.
Despite the fact that the Duke’s daughter was being humiliated in public, people only looked at her with mocking stares instead of helping her.
Even the people who usually liked to go out and say they were gentlemen or chauffeurs were especially quiet that day.
Actually, the memory of that day was quite shocking. It was wildly frustrating, but I left the place in solitude with no one coming forward. However, at some point such things became routine for Roxana. It was shortly after Claire showed up in the social world that Roxana began to fall apart in earnest.
Claire was as sly as a fox and as persistent as a snake.
She was like a person who existed to drag Roxana down. Thanks to Claire, Roxana also tried to be as careful as possible on official occasions.
However, Roxana had the personality to do whatever she wanted for the Crown Prince.
And Claire was very well aware of that.
Under the light of a gorgeous chandelier, the couple was confronting a woman. The onlookers watched the three of them with interesting gazes. The man and woman were all beautiful, but unlike the gorgeously dressed man, the woman standing beside him was a bit shabby in her clothing. (Claire)
However, the gold bracelet on her white, thin wrist looked very expensive.
“Are you deaf, or is there something wrong with what I’m saying? Why don’t you answer me?”
The flamboyantly dressed woman asked with wild vigor.(Roxana)
Claire seemed to be very scared of this situation right now. Everyone was upset by Claire’s pathetic appearance, and the Crown Prince by her side gritted his teeth bitterly.
A murmur erupted from the people.
The people stared at Roxana coldly.
Everyone wants to be a hero.
I think it was natural for them to be angry, because they adore heroes, because a fragile beauty was being bullied in front of them.
“I’m sure I told you to stop.”
The Crown Prince warned in a low voice.
The woman gave a gasping fake laugh.
She was the most flamboyantly dressed of the three.
She looked a little sharp, but her appearance itself was not bad.
But the thick make-up made her look ferocious, and the frown on her face, as if she was terribly angry about something, made her look bad.
The woman was the real Roxana.
“Was it my fault this time, too? I only asked her where she got the bracelet from. Jeremy, I’m your fiancée. You haven’t forgotten that, have you?”
Roxana squealed, pointing at the bracelet on Claire’s wrist.
As people’s eyes focused on him, they could see the confusion on the Crown Prince’s face.
As everyone watched the situation, Claire quietly opened her mouth.
“This is a relic that my grandmother gave to me. It was normally kept in my jewelry box, but today was a special occasion, so I brought it out for the first time in a long time. I don’t know what kind of misunderstanding the Princess may have had.”
Claire’s demeanor was calm, her eyes were very clear, and she didn’t seem to be lying.
People sighed, feeling sorry for Claire. They even frowned uncomfortably at Roxana.
“Misunderstanding……….Do I look blind to you?”
Roxana laughed. Her eyes were filled with disbelief.
“Even if you sell the old shabby house you live in, you can’t buy that bracelet.”
The people’s expressions worsened at the excessive accusation. But the indignant look in her eyes couldn’t possibly be that.
“If you’re so brazen, why don’t you let me check out that bracelet? Then we’ll know where you got it.”
“Roxana, stop being so cocky.”
When Roxana grabbed Claire’s wrist and tried to force the bracelet off, the Crown Prince shook off her hand. He looked at Roxana with a disgusted stare. While Roxana froze, feeling dumbfounded that the first time her fiancé did that to her, the Crown Prince walked away, taking Claire with him. All that was left was the murmur of the people and the infantile glances of the enemies.
Roxana, who grasped the mood a step too late, was at a loss, but she soon left her place, swearing loudly.
In fact, Roxana’s suspicions were quite reasonable.
The bracelet on Claire’s wrist was the one she had seen the other day on her visit to the Imperial Palace.
She still remembered wondering a bit about the women’s accessory as it was on the Crown Prince’s desk.
The jewelry bracelet was certainly elaborate and pretty.
However, there were plenty of jewels and trinkets piled up in the duchy, and Roxana could have more if she wanted.
She just wondered a bit why there were women’s things in her fiancé’s room. But she let it go without a care, thinking that it probably belonged to the Empress, but the bracelet on Claire’s wrist today brought up a memory of that time. She had a good memory, and since it was something she had seen the other day, there was no way she would forget it.
And yet, how dare Claire tell a lie so brazenly?
And the Crown Prince was on Claire’s side.
But unfortunately, there were only two people who knew that fact, aside from Roxana, the Crown Prince and Claire.
The two of them had already sided with each other, so in the end she had to fight the battle on her own.
Since that day, the Crown Prince and Claire began to stick together openly.
And now, Roxana’s reputation was fatally damaged.
Claire cleverly provoked Roxana in the same way almost every time.
Some days Claire revealed her gifts from the Crown Prince, some days she spilled small secrets between her and the Crown Prince, and some days she would proudly stand close to the Crown Prince.
Their arguments ended up with finger marks on Claire’s face and her beautiful dress ruined by wine.
Ostensibly, Claire seemed to lose every time, and Roxana seemed to win every time.
But after every such fiasco, the Crown Prince always showed up, blamed Roxana, and took Claire away.
After that, all that was left was the people’s condemnation.
Once the commotion was over, Roxana became an evil woman who always used her power to bully the powerless Young Lady.
The one-dimensional anger of the way Roxana dealt with Claire just looked ridiculous in their deep minds, like a child’s prank.
Roxana couldn’t even make a decent threat, let alone be too cruel.
So it was only natural that she was ignored. For Claire, dealing with a girl blinded by love was as easy as eating a piece of cake.
It was obvious to whom the people would side with: Roxana’s, who lost her reason and went crazy, or Claire’s, who looked fragile and wept sadly.
“The Duchess died early, didn’t she? That’s why the Princess turns out this way.”
“It seems the Duke’s love for children was truly amazing.”
“The Duke spends most of his time on the battlefield defending his country, so how can that be his responsibility?”
“Neither the Duke nor the Duchess did that, who on earth she is….”
Some people attributed Roxana’s wrong behavior to the fact that the Duchess left this world too soon.
They taunted Roxana, who was never taken care of by her parents from an early age, so she never learned anything while growing up. The Duke’s political opponents also said that every time Roxana acted in a way that lowered the prestige of the duchy, it was because the Duke had mishandled the education of his daughter.
Of course, not everyone was stupid. Claire was in the Crown Prince’s favor, and the Crown Prince was considered a strong possibility to inherit the throne in the future.
If Claire was to stay by the Crown Prince’s side until then, who knew what her future would hold.
That was why many people were trying to make connections with Claire.
Roxana knew very little about politics and was not that close to her father, the Duke of Lillian.
He spent most of his time on the battlefield, and his time in the capital was very short.
Just seeing “Mochi” fall now made a difference, so Claire was able to interact with a lot of people and solidify her position while maintaining an imposing relationship with the Crown Prince at a low status.
Indeed, it was Claire who pushed Roxana into the mud in a short period of time, but it was Roxana who destroyed herself by being swept up in the shallow tricks.
It was not easy to be ignored by others even with such high status and status as Roxana. Although Roxana was actually young, she didn’t know how to think as deeply and was impulsive as they were when compared to other nobles of her age.
In any case, prejudice, once engraved in people’s minds, would not go away easily.
That was why she didn’t want to go to the trouble of putting in the time and effort to restore and maintain her reputation.
The worst would be getting a slap on the face.
If Claire would endure a few insults in front of Roxana, people would feel sorry for her and it would be Roxana who would be vilified. So there was far more to gain than to lose from Claire’s struggle with Roxana.
So it was only natural that Claire wasn’t afraid of Roxana.
Roxana was already notorious in the capital. She believed in power, liked to bully others, was jealous and had no sense of propriety.
She didn’t intend to correct this misunderstanding.
It was not easy to get rid of prejudice once it’s engraved in people’s minds anyway.
Moreover, the fact that Roxana was not a saint, but a villainess, was not so bad for her either.
Unlike a saint who has to work hard to gain the favor of others, worrying about her every move, people would not suspect her if she acts carelessly.
I will use only what I need from Roxana’s reputation: status, position, money, and even notoriety.
Everything I have available will be used to protect me.
To do so, cleaning up the surroundings was a top priority.
By now, the time had come to round up rumors that were spread out of control.
I also had to get a better grasp of the situation in order to be prepared for how the royal family and Claire might try to reach out to me again.
Even though my mind was complicated and painful, I needed to move on.
Because I couldn’t stay drunk with dreams forever.
I looked at Annie with a tired face as I spoke.
“Please bring me the letters that were sent to me.”
Annie had a stunned look on her face earlier, as if she was quite surprised to see me reprimanding the maids.
But without asking, she replied with a small nod that she understood, and then left the room.