Huge thanks to milkisoo for the Kofis! (2/2)
“What is it? What do you want to talk about with such a scary expression?”
Leila smiled awkwardly to relieve the mood. It was her first time seeing such an expression on her friend’s face, so she was taken aback.
“Dismiss the knights first.”
There were too many ears around them. Although knight escorts were usually considered to not exist, she didn’t feel like allowing them to hear about her miserable situation.
“Sir, please take ten steps backward and continue escorting us from outside the tent.”
Leila ordered Anata’s Knights in the tent.
The Anata Knights hesitated for a moment, but decided to comply when they recalled Leila’s outstanding swordsmanship skills.
“Sir Hume, please assist the knights outside.”
Chloe also ordered Aiden, who was standing beside her. Aiden remained in the tent instead of following Herace to take care of the children.
However, Aiden had no choice but to accept her order after seeing Chloe’s firm gaze.
Emotions were swirling fiercely in her eyes. Chloe seemed to be able to beat Leila upon looking at her current momentum.
“…Please call me if you need me.”
All the knight escorts left, leaving Chloe and Leila in the tent. Chloe, who asked to have a talk, contemplated on how to begin.
It was Leila who broke the awkward silence. She felt like she was sitting on a thorny seat, it was hard for her to wait motionlessly.
“Have you been in a bad mood since this morning because of what we are going to talk about?”
“I’ve felt bad since I arrived at Anata Residence.”
“Because of this.”
Chloe handed two letters to Leila. The crumpled paper seemed to represent Chloe’s breaking heart.
“What are these letters…”
Leila read the letters she received from Chloe.
“I’m sorry to have read your letter without permission.”
Chloe apologized while Leila read the letters. Truthfully, she didn’t feel very guilty about it, but she apologized because it wasn’t considered honorable behavior.
And she apologized in advance so her opponent didn’t have an excuse to attack her before they officially started to argue.
“You, don’t tell me… Is it because of these letters that you came to the North?”
“…I’m sorry I lied. But why did you do that?”
Leila put down the letter after she finished reading it and turned her gaze to Chloe. Although they were very close with each other, she felt unfamiliar with the emotions she expressed. However, the misunderstanding could be cleared up!
“Oh, Chloe! I did it all for you.”
Chloe had imagined the situation several times, but she’d never imagined Leila’s expression to be like that.
Leila didn’t seem apologetic or embarrassed. Leila’s confidence, which was maintained even at this moment, made Chloe’s sorrow and despair seem like nothing.
“What? For me?”
Chloe couldn’t stop her voice from shaking with anger.
“I wrote this letter to help you because you seemed to really like Gerard. I hoped Gerard and you would end up together…”
“When did I-”
Chloe shouted at Leila for the first time. It felt like she couldn’t stand it without expressing her anger and frustration.
It was probably because it was the first time she saw Chloe, who was always quiet, so angry that Leila’s expression shattered. The situation was worse than she predicted.
“Sigh… when did I ask you for help? When did I ask you to help me get married to Gerard? How could you say that you helped me with so much confidence when you never asked me?”
Chloe sighed and tried to calm herself. However, it failed almost immediately. Her emotions were not controllable anymore.
“Don’t you have to ask to know my opinion? I, I, I… how much did you think about this?”
Chloe’s anger provoked Leila more and more.
“What did you think?”
“Honestly I wanted you to marry Sir Moore! That way we could live in the North together. However, you don’t seem to like him, so that’s why I paired you up with Gerard just as you wanted!”
Chloe got goosebumps while listening to Leila’s inner thoughts. She couldn’t believe she was hoping for Herace and Chloe to end up together! But she didn’t do that and paired Chloe up with Gerard!
Chloe cried out.
“My opinion? Where is my opinion in this?”
“Do you think I’m your doll? Or at the very least your daughter? You can’t do this to your daughter either. Who are you to me? Who the f*ck are you to me?!”
Chloe shouted out. Leila was the main character of this world, so people seemed to think it was natural that things happened the way she wanted them to.
The contradiction that craved freedom for herself but thought it was natural to control the people around her was Leila.
“…Aren’t you being too harsh? Do I mean nothing to you? I’m your friend! It’s because you’re my friend that I did it as I thought it would be good for-”
Leila failed to understand her friend who only viewed her intentions in a negative light. She did it all for her!
“You’re always like that.”
Chloe cut off Leila as if she had nothing worthwhile to say. Noble manners had long been neglected in their fight.
“If it’s good for you, you think it’ll be good for others. You always do that, you’re so self-centered.”
“…Do you have to say it like that?”
Leila had tears in her beautiful brown eyes as if she had been hurt by Chloe’s remark. She was shocked when her friend, who was usually quiet and inexpressive, spoke her mind without a hint of hesitation.
‘Did you always think of me like that? Am I the only one who thinks of you as a friend?’
Leila had a lot of things that she wanted to ask, but she didn’t dare to say it all. She was afraid to lose Chloe.
It was an undeniable truth that Leila cherished Chloe.
Sometimes she cared for her as a friend, but sometimes their relationship was deeper than friendship and milder than love. Sometimes she acted like her mom, sometimes like an older sister, sometimes like a friend, and other times like a lover.
However, Leila’s hurt expression toward the angry Chloe made her livid.
‘Right, you’re upset, aren’t you? You should be hurt as much as I do!’
Chloe knew that such thoughts would eventually lead to catastrophe, but her mind, which was dominated by anger, couldn’t function properly.
“You know what?”
“Gerard Blanchett would follow your words. The Knight Commander, who was supposed to protect the Imperial family, was stabbed to save you. When you collapsed, he found a drug that no one else could for you, and although he didn’t take an oath for you, you were the only… Lady to him.”
“…It was a long time ago, so I thought he’d be fine as the time passed.”
Leila knew, of course, that Gerard liked her. However at the same time, she thought he would be fine on his own as she had already been married for six months at that time.
“It was your idea. He must have been willing to do it since you asked him to marry your friend…”
Chloe spat out sharp remarks to hurt Leila. However, those words weren’t a one-sided blade. Chloe’s pain became worse as she spat out more remarks.
“All right, Chloe. I’m sorry.”
Leila apologized to end the situation. To be honest, she still didn’t think she was completely wrong. However, this situation where they were exchanging sharp words was painful for her. She wanted it to stop.
That attitude naturally made Chloe’s anger rise.
“No, don’t apologize to me. Just remember this. You didn’t help me, but deceived me. You laughed at me while I was content with my fake marriage until I found the hidden truth!”
“Oh, no, I just… wanted us to keep seeing each other even after getting married! I also thought it wouldn’t be bad for you to marry Gerard…”
She didn’t mean it like that, seriously. Her method might have been wrong, but that wasn’t her intention. Leila denied it but inadvertently revealed her hidden feelings.
“Yes! That was your intention. It was your intention to keep me close even after we got married. It doesn’t matter what I think or how I feel!”
Unfortunately, Leila didn’t know that such intentions were also wrong.
Leila didn’t know what to say anymore.
“I hate you, I really hate you. I hate you so much, Leila.”
Leila’s heart sank. She didn’t want to lose her friend because of something that happened in the past.
That’s why she had no idea what to say and started apologizing thoughtlessly.
“I’m sorry, Chloe, I was wrong, alright? …Even if I paired you because of my greed, isn’t it okay now because your marriage is going well? I don’t know why we have to fight like this because of something from eight years ago! It’s my fault. I’m sorry. I mean, we-”
Not knowing it would stab her friend’s vital point.
“…How do you know? Whether our marriage is going well or not because we pretended to be like that. You don’t know.”
Tears dripped down Chloe’s face while talking to Leila, which she had been holding back since earlier.
If this was a fight where the one who inflicted more pain on their opponent was the winner, then… It was Leila. Even though she never wanted to win this way.
Hi guys, as you know we are a free-to-read website and we only survive on ads. However, ads are not able to help us much longer. If you like what we do and have any spare, please consider supporting us to keep us alive: Link
Thank you for reading! If you enjoyed what you have read, do consider tipping us a little through: click here. Once we receive 6$, an advance chapter will be posted as a thank you. Don’t forget to mention the series that you’re supporting!