Ellen had a confused face.
“Are you talking about Princess Lillian and Young Master Croix?”
Payne answered calmly.
He had a thoughtful look on his face as if he was thinking of something.
The subdued gaze contained complex signs that could not be described.
Ellen was even more confused after hearing the answer.
He had heard that there had been an affair between the two before.
Contrary to rumors, however, there was no contact between the Princess and Young Master Croix.
Except that their parents were close friends when they were very young.
At first, no one could not understand why such an indifferent and cold-hearted person as the young master would go all out to help Princess Lillian.
But it made sense if they were childhood friends.
The reason he helped the princess was probably because of old times’ sake.
It was hard to completely understand, but there was no other reason to explain it.
But now that the second prince asked to investigate the relationship between the two… was there something else?
Ellen nodded and answered, hiding the doubts in his mind. “Yes, I understand. I have some work left, so I’ll just leave. Please rest well.”
Soon the sun was setting.
The sky was colored with a twilight light, and a crescent moon suddenly appeared. As the sun began to set, the lights of the shops went out and the doors were closed and the people started to leave one by one.
The festival was over at once, and as evening came, the street quickly became quiet.
In the back of the alley, where there were few people, children were gathered.
The children’s attire was shabby and very old.
Some children were barefoot without shoes.
Not only did they look scruffy as if they hadn’t washed for a long time, but they were all thin as if they hadn’t eaten properly.
Normally, no one would have cared about the children.
But today, for some reason, a man stood among them.
He was dressed in a black robe and the hood was pressed down to cover his face.
His clothes were neat and his shoes were clean, so he didn’t look like a slum dweller.
The man gave the children a few coins and said something.
“Do not worry. That’s what we specialize in.”
The child who took the coin had twinkling eyes.
His clothes were messy, but his eyes were bright in the dark.
The man stroked the boy’s head once and got into the carriage.
The carriage he rode into the upper street after running for a while and then stopped in front of a certain building.
The carriage came to a complete stop, and he scrambled down and entered the building.
He walked through a long hallway and opened the door to a room that looked like an office, and inside, someone was sitting at his desk.
It was Noah.
His complexion was haggard, and next to him was a pile of unfinished papers.
He looked up at the man with a tired face and asked.
“Did you have a good trip?”
The man took off the robe he was wearing only after entering the room.
His face was revealed in the yellow lamp.
The man was the same man with Sarah who had overheard the conversation between the Crown Prince and Roxana a few days ago.
He grumbled in a disgruntled voice.
“It is certainly surprising that the Crown Prince killed and silenced the people for his government, but is there any reason for such a rumor? If the Empress Dowager or the Crown Prince finds out, they will not remain still.”
He glanced at Noah, who didn’t answer, and added.
“Isn’t the risk too high? Why would you want me to do something like that… the master of Hermes said he doesn’t even accept money.”
It was already rumored within the organization that Elvin had told the princess that he would not accept her service money.
The Duke of Lillian was one of the wealthiest families in the Empire, and his daughter was known for being extravagant and vain.
So when the man first found out she had visited the organization, he was thrilled with the idea that he was going to make big bucks sooner or later, but he quickly realized that his expectations were in vain.
In addition, the tasks that the princess commissioned were complicated and mixed with risks.
He was even more dissatisfied when he had to do jobs without knowing what was going on.
Every time the Princess came to the organization, the master would deal with her directly.
Since the relationship between the two seemed unusual, there were some bets on whether the princess would abandon the Crown Prince and choose Elvin.
The man thought the latter was right.
But if the Princess broke up with the Crown Prince, he had already lost his bet.
It was unfair that he lost the bet and wasted money, but it was natural for him to feel annoyed because he had to take on the cumbersome overtime work.
“Isn’t this too bad for us? Did the Crown Prince do anything wrong to our master?”
“Nothing you need to know. We just have to do what we’re told.”
Noah paid attention to the man’s complaint with a stern voice and lamented inwardly.
He never uttered it out of his mouth, but he knew well that the princess was firmly in Elvin’s heart.
Such a cold and indifferent person was unusually generous and delicate to her.
At first, Noah wondered if it was necessary to go through so much trouble for the sake of another woman. But the princess had notified the Crown Prince of the breakup of the marriage.
Maybe she had foresight and was noticing that things would come this way, or maybe ……
Was the master involved in the breakup?
Noah shook his head.
He felt tired just thinking about it, so he decided to stop thinking. He was concerned about his master, and at best he wouldn’t listen to his advice anyway.
So, it was pointless to continue worrying about this.
Taking a deep breath, I opened my eyes, and when I woke up, my whole body was drenched in cold sweat.
It must have been a bad dream, but when I woke up, I couldn’t remember what it was.
I could still feel my heart beating fast.
Chasing the light and turning my head, I saw the sun rising out of the window.
The morning air coming in through the open window was clear and refreshing.
“Lady, why haven’t you slept a little longer but woken up already?”
As I got up from my bed, Joan, who had just come in, walked up to me with a surprised look on her face.
“I slept enough.”
My body was heavy because I had trouble sleeping. But I felt so bad that I didn’t want to sleep any more.
“I’ll bring you a meal.”
“I will eat later. I have no appetite now.”
“The more sick you are, the more you need to take care of yourself. That way your body will heal faster.”
Joan said with a worried face.
At the same time, Tien, who was coming in with the washing water, responded.
“You have to take the medicine after a meal, so even if you have no appetite, try a little.”
I nodded my head as it was pointless to argue.
After going to the charity event, I had a fever again and lay in bed for a few more days.
Many people had to suffer because of the wind.
Annie and the maids, as well as the Duke and Stephen, came to see my condition from time to time.
Fortunately, when I woke up today, the headache that had been bothering me for days was gone.
But the maids looking at me were still cautious.
“By the way, I thought you were all better until yesterday, but now I see that your complexion is very bad. Maybe I should call a doctor.”
Joan went to get breakfast as she made the bedding.
Meanwhile, I headed to the bathroom.
When I got out of the shower, breakfast was already on the table.
I grabbed a spoon, drank a few drops of clear soup, and picked up the newspaper next to it.
There was some gossip in the newspaper.
On one side, there was also a short story about my discord with the Crown Prince.
It seemed that rumors of what happened at the charity event had already spread.
There was no mention of the fact that I notified the Crown Prince of the breakup of the marriage or of his atrocities.
It may be that he didn’t know because he was confined to the mansion now, but he seemed to have been quiet so far.
Less than a week had passed since the charity event at Marquis Flynn’s, so there was no need to be in a hurry.
Even if there were no rumors, if the news of the breakup spread, reporters would come to cover the story.
Of course, there would be various versions from those who couldn’t control their curiosity before that.
After all, I had done all I had to do, so I would just sit back and wait until the time came.
“Is there still no reply from the Crown Prince?”
“No. As directed by the young lady, I wrote and sent the divorce papers again, but there has been no news yet.”
Joan looked at me and added.
“It’s only been a few days, so let’s wait a little longer.”
I slowly turned to the next page of the newspaper.
“You haven’t gotten any reply yet?”
After a short breakfast, I got up.
“Well, there’s nothing to rush. But it’s not going to be resolved if we keep pushing time.”
Tien nodded as she cleaned the empty dishes.
Joan, who was most startled by the news of the breakup of my marriage, began to express her dissatisfaction and spoke ill about the Crown Prince.
“The Crown Prince will be fine as long as he is there. He had been taking care of that woman so far, but the young lady asked him to break up the marriage, so will things be resolved if he pretends not to know?”
“Even so, His Excellency is upset about that. It seems that he will be entering the palace to attend an audience with His Majesty sooner or later… Maybe when that time comes, even the Crown Prince will not be able to help it.”
“The princess was ill again?”
At the empress’s question, the servant quietly nodded her head.
The Empress looked down at her and frowned and clicked her tongue.
She sighed as she touched the flowers in the vase next to the window.
“What was the illness this time?”
“The princess has caught a cold.”
“A cold? In this kind of weather?”
At the words of the Empress, the servant looked out and saw that the sun was shining bright and there was no cloud in the sky.
Perhaps she wasn’t expecting an answer in the first place, as she looked down at the purple petals and sighed.
“Perhaps her body is weak.”
“The soon-to-be Crown Princess is not in good health, so His Highness must be very concerned.”
The woman sitting at the table put down her teacup and said.
The Empress looked back at that moment as if she remembered her existence.
She was a beautiful lady with brown hair.
She had a flower-like face with a pretty figure, and an elegant and virtuous aura added to her, so she couldn’t take her eyes off her.
“In the past, I was weak, so I often suffered from colds. It used to worry people around me. At such times, having someone comfort you by your side is a great help. When I was sick, my husband stayed by my side all night. I was really grateful for that.”
“Are you talking about the Grand Duke of Croix?”
The Empress asked with a surprised face.
Then the Grand Duchess of Croix smiled softly.
A look of shyness appeared on her face, perhaps recalling the memories of that time.
She was not young anymore, but she was undoubtedly
as beautiful as one.
“I can’t imagine.”
The empress blinked her eyes as if she did not believe it.
The Grand Duke of Croix had a reputation for being cold and indifferent.
And when she met him, he was indeed cold and arrogant.
No matter how much she thought about it, she couldn’t imagine such a man would watch and nurse his wife all night.
But looking at the woman in front of her, she seemed to understand a little.
It would be hard to find a woman as beautiful and tender as the Grand Duchess anywhere else.
She was smart and quick-witted, so it was natural to be cherished.
Even the empress herself a woman, she couldn’t take her eyes off the lovely Grand Duchess.
“The time has already come. I have an appointment with my husband, so I’ll leave first.”
The Grand Duchess of Croix stood up after looking at the clock on the wall once.
“I had a good time thanks to Your Majesty. It will be a pleasure if you call me again next time.”
“I have received a good present. The tea was very good and fragrant.”
“I am glad that you liked it. Let me know when the tea leaves run out. We will have someone send it to you.”
“Thank you always.”
“No, the pleasure is all mine. Then I’ll leave. Rest well.”
The empress looked thoughtful for a moment, as if thinking about something.
She then immediately instructed the attendant by her side.
“Call the Crown Prince.”