Chapter 19

 

 

***

Around that time, a never-before-seen silver flame filled the sky. 

 

The smoke from the flame faded a little, and the words ‘Happy Birthday Bernique and Rosiane’ were clearly revealed. 

 

At that moment, Bernique’s eyes and mine met. He smiled brightly at me. 

 

Whenever he shows a smile like that, I always smile along without knowing it. 

 

“Happy birthday, Rosiane.” 

 

In that moment, Erdos’ friendly voice tickled my ears. I hugged him a little harder. 

 

‘Dad’, why is it so hard to say that word? 

 

We watched the fireworks for a long time and came back to our seats. Then, at Erdos’s beckoning, the servant came up with something. 

 

No way. Again? 

 

“Bernique, keep up the good work.” 

 

He held out a sword to Bernique. 

 

“This is Dwarf’s sword.” 

 

“Thank you, Father.” 

 

Bernique, who looked at the sword with his eyes shining, looked just like a boy his age, and he had a smile on his lips. 

 

No, come to think of it, it also seems strange that a 9-year-old boy likes a real sword….. 

 

Being here makes me feel a little bit different. Sometimes things that don’t matter to others amazes me, and things that amazes others doesn’t matter to me. 

 

A lot changed in just half a year. 

 

“Rosiane, take it.” 

 

“Thank you.” 

 

What Erdos offered me was a luxurious velvet box that weighed quite a bit for its size. I calmed down and opened it with a different feeling than before. 

 

“Gasp–.” 

 

Noticing what the contents were, the sound of people gasping was heard. I forgot to breathe and stared at the object in the box. 

 

Why is this coming out of here? 

 

Looking up at him with bewildered eyes, he hugged me and kissed my forehead. Then, he asked with a look of anticipation. 

 

“Do you like it?” 

 

“This, this is… Are you really giving this to me?” 

 

My whispering voice shook badly in his ear. 

 

“I should give this much for my daughter.” 

 

I barely held back in asking if he was crazy, and looked down at the not two or three but a four-line rivière that lay on my hand. 

 

[rivière – a necklace of precious stones (ex. diamonds)] 

 

I broke into a cold sweat and my mouth dried up. I know the identity of this. Anyone who reads the original [Prince!] series can’t help but know. 

 

‘Ardhel’ 

 

The necklace that the young lady of the Duke of Abdrach, aimed for, suddenly came into my hands. 

 

“But……..” 

 

I bit my lower lip to hide my trembling voice. My goal was to stay quiet as far as I could. 

 

It was too much for me, but not for the real Rosiane. 

 

I had to change his mind somehow. If not, I should at least make him withdraw it in front of those nobles whose eyes were shining with interest in the midst of boredom. 

 

“That……..It looks too big for me.” 

 

“Well, if that’s the problem, we can call in people right now and adjust the size.” 

 

That would be even worse. 

 

“Ah, I mean, it’s not about the size. It’s too flashy, and um it’s very heavy, and…….” 

 

“Do you, perhaps, not like this Dad’s present?” 

 

Erdos asked with a sad expression. I shook my head not knowing what to do. 

 

“It’s not like that, but this…  this won’t suit me…” 

 

“Who dares to think such a thing, Rosiane. If anyone thinks so, I’ll meet with them personally. So don’t worry.” 

 

He said he would meet them, but he was probably ready to wipe out those who thought so. 

 

No, more than that, what about the heroine? She’ll be the empress later and wear this, and I, the princess, shouldn’t have it! 

 

Even when the people who attended the banquet and I were in shock and horror, Erdos and the princes were calm. 

 

They had an expression saying ‘of course you should be given this much’. No, if someone has something to say, at least come out and stop him. 

 

“Th, then, why don’t we just take it out for when its my debut party? I don’t think I can take care of it yet. It’s a precious gift, but I’m scared that I’m young and I don’t know anything about it.” 

 

Of course, I’ll have to find another excuse when the debut party comes. 

 

Everything else is fine, but not ‘Ardhel’. Even more so because the seats of the empress and queen are empty. 

 

Putting me in a higher rank than Nanuk, what a mess. No way. Never. 

 

“Please? It’s because I want to cherish my first gift more. So let’s just put this back in the treasury and I’ll settle for the cute tiara for now, can’t I?” 

 

As I tilted my head while holding the tiara on top of my head with both hands, Erdos’s stiff expression melted away. 

 

“Ahem well, there’s nothing that can be done. If Rosiane really says so, let’s do what you want.” 

 

What a relief. I think I’ve crossed a big mountain. I smiled at him, hiding my breath of relief.

 

* * * 

 

I returned to my room after finishing the banquet, with perhaps shocked and frightened the nobles. 

 

It was weird to have a birthday party. Receiving congratulations and receiving gifts. Even though all I did was receive, no one scolded me. 

 

“It’s been a dreamy day, really.” 

 

I closed my eyes and visualized what happened today. A day when I felt like I was going to drown in the deep affection they gave me. 

 

When I thought of the celebratory big cake for nine-year-olds that was cut after the gift presentation ceremony, I felt myself smiling. 

 

It was the knocking that broke my thoughts. When the door opened, a series of princes followed Erdos inside. 

 

“Did you have a good time today, Rosiane?” 

 

“Yes, I really enjoyed today.” 

 

Erdos’ question was answered immediately. I’ve never had a day like this before. A day dedicated entirely to me. 

 

Erdos was stroking my hair softly, rubbing it with warmth, and I swallowed a gasp when Eryte suddenly embraced me. 

 

“You cute little thing! Ah, really! I can’t help but give you a kiss!” 

 

On the forehead, on the cheeks, and on the corners of the eyes, his ticklish lips fell. I was frozen in this strange situation so I couldn’t move, I just rolled my eyes. 

 

In the end, he was so engrossed in the situation that he inhaled as if he was going to rip off all of my soft cheeks, and after getting a smack from Erdos, he was kicked out of the sofa and that’s how the kiss hell ended. 

 

“Are you all right?” 

 

“Yes, I’m fine.” 

 

Leaving behind Erdos, who looked at Eryte with a ferocious gaze, Nanuk asked quietly. 

 

They didn’t leave my room for a while. 

 

Eryte shouting loudly in an awkward manner, Erdos scolding him, Nanuk whispering, Bernique embracing me affectionately, and Leav appealing so hard. 

 

Being alone in the midst of this picturesque scene, I suddenly felt so foreign. 

 

“You know, sister, even though I told brother to brighten the colors, he insisted…” 

 

“How was the cake? It was the best, right? As expected this brother is the best, right?” 

 

“Rosiane, you like this dad’s gift the best right?” 

 

“How was the fireworks? It was my idea to write a phrase…..” 

 

“Rosiane, come to my gallery. There are many other versions….” 

 

Maybe that’s why I feel that way because everyone was talking over each other. Like that, their chatter went on for over two hours. 

 

It wasn’t until I yawned in tiredness that they seemed to come to their senses. 

 

“You must be tired, Rosiane. It’s time for bed now.” 

 

“Yes,.. I was very happy today.” 

 

I was afraid it’s going to be a dream when I close my eyes, but it was a fun day. Erdos kissed my cheek briefly and stood up. 

 

“Ahh, Rosiane! Can’t we sleep togeth…..” 

 

It wasn’t until Eryte’s whining was stopped by Erdos smacking his head, that they rushed out of the room. 

 

And so, buried under the covers, I fell asleep right away.

 

* * * 

 

As soon as the banquet was over, my body, which had become very hot, finally found stability after a week. 

 

Behind my blurry vision was Bernique’s weeping face. 

 

“Rosiane!” 

 

My mouth felt hot and my head was pounding. As I lifted my heavy body, Bernique carefully supported me and made it easier for me to raise my upper body. 

 

Bernique, who handed me a glass of water as I had a dry cough, pulled the rope and called a doctor. He cried a lot and wiped the corners of his eyes. 

 

In the midst of that, he didn’t take his eyes off me as if I’ll disappear, his eyes were only filled with me. 

 

“How are you feeling?” 

 

“Yeah, I’m feeling a lot better. Thank you, Bernique.” 

 

You always cry when you see me. Somehow, I was overwhelmed with a feeling of discomfort. 

 

Yes, I know now. Those who protected me day and night for a week. Their worried faces filled my vision when I opened my eyes after losing my consciousness. 

 

I guess I’ve grown to love them. What a ridiculous thing to do. 

 

“It’s better not go outside for a while because your body is very damaged. 

 

It was a conclusion made by the doctor who rushed over to look at me. I’ve been busy for a while, so its better to rest. 

 

I had been running around for half a year now. I didn’t even know what I had spent that time thinking about, so I laughed. 

 

After a brief kiss on my forehead and telling me to get some rest, Bernique’s worried eyes followed me until the door closed. 

 

The room quickly became silent. I got up from my seat and sneaked up to the window. 

 

The view was filled with blooming red flowers. It was a beautiful flower that shines all four seasons, Rosiane. 

 

“Rosiane, huh…..” 

 

At that time, with what emotions and what thoughts did he have when he gave the name? I love you so I want you to be loved. Something like that wasn’t meant for me. 

 

Even when I was alone and raised by my grandmother before I even felt the love of my parents, I never longed for love. Because I always thought that it was something that I can’t afford to have. 

 

I thought that love might just be an illusion. For those who dream of fantasies, it is nothing more than a fantasy. 

 

But when I abandoned my name and gave up my life. A miracle, yes, as if it was a miracle, I found love in my life as Rosiane. 

 

It wasn’t my soul, it was a dancing thread of fate connected to this body. It was a tangled thread that could neither be broken nor cut off. 

 

The insignificant me could not have anything, but the noble Rosiane could. The total amount of love given is not fair to anyone, it is given only to those who walk in the light, and I was just someone who sank into an abyss where no one could find me. 

 

However, Rosiane is different. A child born out of love. A child blessed more than anyone else. 

 

Maybe, even my parents, who I couldn’t remember, thought of me like this? 

 

“Now that I’m here, it’s all futile thoughts…” 

 

The complaint inside me leaked out.

Perhaps the biggest emotion that I had felt while living as Rosiane for the past 6 months was a sense of betrayal, nothing more, nothing less. 

 

If you pour water into a cracked bowl, it will all pour out. 

 

Even if they pour out their affection, I’ll only be a very big broken vessel, so I won’t be able to take it completely nor be able to handle it. 

 

So I was very sorry. To them and to  Rosiane. 

 

It was a life that I didn’t even want so why do I have to feel like this. 

 

Perhaps, I just repeatedly fainted or just repeatedly dreaming. Those were my thoughts over and over again. 

 

[i think she’s referring to when she thought that she was just dreaming when she became Rosiane.] 

 

“Just why did I end up here..” 

 

The princess in the romance fantasy novel I read for the first time. 

 

At the beginning of the development in the novel, she was already dead so she wasn’t that important. But then, I became that character, and with a clear significance. What should I do now in the future? 

 

I’ve lived a life without purpose enough. I couldn’t afford to hope for anything because everything I wanted was scattered like a mirage. 

 

But Rosiane was different. She was in a position where she could get her hands on anything. 

 

If it were her, how would she write this novel? Wouldn’t it be a sweet, dreamy and hopeful writing unlike me? 

 

Again, I felt guilty that I couldn’t be like that. 

 

Because I’m not her, and she’s not me. 

 

“Ah……” 

 

I could see Nanuk walking in the distance. Stopping for a moment, he stared at the window where I stood. 

 

Our long gazes met, and his crumbling smile bloomed. And as I smiled to his face, I was enveloped in a terrible sense of shame. 

 

I don’t know. What the hell is wrong with me? It would be nice to just accept everything and enjoy life. 

 

‘You always have too many useless thoughts.’ 

 

For a moment, I remembered what Jiwoo had always said. Breaking my thoughts, I heard a knock. Nanuk strode towards me. 

 

“Are you okay?” 

 

He asked, with his cold hands on my forehead. Maybe it’s to see if I had a fever. 

 

“I’m okay.” 

 

Yeah, it’s fine. Let’s put off our complicated thoughts as Jiwoo said and focus on the current situation. 

 

So that depression doesn’t eat me up anymore. So as not to drive Rosiane to death again. 

 

Yes, I think this is my role. For her who couldn’t give her love to them, a doll that allows her to give her love to the fullest. 

 

I’ll do whatever they want. That’s it. 

 

Somehow I felt a little at ease.