Huge thanks to Sahsah San for the kofis! (3/5)
Slarhan shook his head.
He then walked towards the slave girl and lifted her skinny frame. Her weight was so light that it was ridiculous.
On the surface, she seemed to be a feeble and powerless slave, but he still couldn’t forget the spiteful eyes the girl had when she told him to kill her.
He laid the girl down on the bed and pulled the blanket up to her chin.
Just then, Mrs. Adler, the maid that was assigned to look after the slave girl, returned with a small basin of water and a towel.
“Oh dear, it seems like she has passed out again. You could have just left her for me to move her to bed.”
The girl’s body was so light that even Mrs. Adler, an older maid, could carry her around easily.
“What about this girl’s meal?”
“I fed her some broth made from boiled vegetables and barley. Now that she has awakened, I was thinking of feeding her mild soup.”
“Has her fever gone down a little?”
“It has improved a lot. It seems that it was a little too much when she greeted the Master, so she might wake up again tonight. She should get better soon.”
“Her recovery is too slow. Give her some more medicine.”
“Oh, considering her condition when she first arrived, she has gotten much better quickly. Where did you get this medicine? No matter how I look at it, it seems to be a very expensive drug.”
“Well, I don’t know if it’s medicine or poison”
Although he had fed the girl his own blood, he wasn’t expecting her to be loyal to him just based on that incident.
She was, indeed, an extraordinary child.
The young lass that endured for half a year in the terrible Rubelfast, and even chose to die as a human rather than live as a slave.
That level of spirit could not be easily found, even within the Knights of Ventiark.
Additionally, even when it was a situation where she should be frightened of everything in the world, oddly enough, she faced them all with an air of composure.
The way she prostrated on the floor earlier too. It definitely wasn’t a look of submission. It was filled with, “I’m only doing this because it’s the law of the world, not out of my own will.”
But the reason the necklace filled with his mother’s magic reacted to this child still required further observation.
“What exactly is her identity?”
“She said she doesn’t remember anything, and that she might have lost her memory as she had inhaled too much poisonous fumes. She’s still young, yet so pitiful.”
Slarhan’s eyes turned sharp for a moment.
How would a child that doesn’t remember anything know about cigars from Avalon and Fidelo?
Slarhan watched as Mrs. Adler wiped Ellier’s face with a wet towel for a moment, before quietly walking out of the room.
The butler stood outside the door, seemingly waiting for him to exit.
“This is a personal letter from His Majesty the Emperor. It was sent suddenly, so I have yet to find out what had happened.”
Speaking with a voice filled with displeasure, he handed Slarhan a letter from the Imperial family.
Slarhan broke open the extravagant red seal of the envelope and unfolded the single paged letter inside, finding an unexpected message written with all kinds of lofty phrases.
“They’re going to deliver Father’s body.”
“What? Didn’t they say that the body couldn’t be found?”
“It seems that they’ve gotten tired of this bullsh*t.”
The 17th Emperor of Paldinas, Noah Renier Solen.
As the older brother of the previous Duke of Ventiark, he was a human incarnate of secular greed and inferiority.
Throughout his adolescence, he kept feeling inferior to his outstanding younger brothers, and even after he became the Crown Prince and was crowned as the Emperor, he kept being suspicious and jealous of his brothers, constantly keeping them in check.
The former Duke, Irdel Ventiark, who had endured such oppression and followed the suspicious order to inspect the Empire’s Southwest region where disputes had been occurring without complaints, eventually returned as a corpse.
However, the Imperial Family did not even disclose how he died and whom he had died because of. They had only sent over the Irdel’s cleanly severed head.
When he requested for the entire body to be retrieved other than his head, he had to hear that they weren’t able to find his body.
Even when the Ventiark family offered to investigate the area in question personally, they refused with all sorts of excuses.
A letter from such an Imperial Family had just arrived, saying that they would deliver the rest of his body.
“Isn’t this enough to start a rebellion?”
“It may be so. He might be planning to turn the Ventiark family into rebels and then wipe them out of Paldinas’s history completely.”
“Such a plan does sound plausible.”
Slarhan gritted his teeth, then scanned the letter in his hand again.
“But why, of all things, now?”
“I’ve heard a while ago that something big seemed to have happened to the Emperor. Afterwards, that brazen person seemed vacant and empty.”
“Yes. Not long ago, he was bedridden due to a mild cold, and it has been like that ever since. Everyone kept saying that it wasn’t a cold, but the omen of an incurable disease.”
“Is he trying to make amendments before he dies?”
“I will send someone to find out the exact details.”
Slarhan nodded and handed the letter back to the butler.
As the butler, who was following Slarhan to the office, glanced at the door that Slarhan had stopped by, and asked carefully.
“That slave child… Do you think she will survive?”
Although he spoke carefully, slight dissatisfaction could still be heard in his voice.
He wasn’t cold-blooded, and although he felt sympathy for the young slave that was dying, he couldn’t understand why his master had given the slave a storage room, or even a room inside the Castle to nurse her.
No, the problem lay in that Slarhan bought a slave, as the Ventiark family doesn’t use slaves.
The reason he went to Rubelfast with Tariq was to make sure that none of the Ventiark’s family knights that left with Irdel had been handed over to slavery, and not to buy slaves.
Still, the butler did not lecture Slarhan, who had brought back the slave.
Slarhan was someone that went above and beyond Duke Irdel Ventiak, who was universally praised for his greatness.
Even though he was only twenty-two, he took full control of Ventiark within half a year and managed the affairs so perfectly that he did not feel Irdel’s absence.
Although the butler’s evaluation of Slarhan was that of a great person, and that he probably would have a profound reasoning behind his actions…
“Of course she’ll survive. Such a strong willed person wouldn’t die so easily.”
“She isn’t an ordinary child. A girl that’s around 15 years old surviving in Rubelfast for half a year…”
“Let that child use that room until she’s fully recovered.”
The butler immediately raised his head with eyes wide open.
Housing a filthy slave that’s on the verge of her last breath in a room within the castle made him quite worried, but he closed an eye as she was staying in a warehouse.
But the fact that it’s a warehouse didn’t mean that it can be used by a slave.
Other servants used the annex or the servant’s quarters on the first floor, so it was absurd that he would be staying in a room on the second floor with a slave.
However, despite being able to guess what the butler was dissatisfied with, Slarhan did not change his words.
Instead of a sigh, the butler greeted him and left. The office became quiet.
It was actually the young slave herself that Slarhan was worried about.
Of course, she was an interesting existence, but given his current situation, that level of interest was nothing more than a wind passing by.
Due to Irdel’s death, he felt a sense of crisis, as if a sword was about to descend on the fate of not only himself, but all those connected with the Ventiark family.
Perhaps, delivering Irdel’s body was also a trap.
Perhaps the intention was to annihilate the last remaining bloodline of the Ventiark family.
How much more loyalty must he display, and how much more of his lack of defiance must he display, in order for the Emperor to stop his mad oppression?
There wasn’t any way for him to figure out the Emperor’s intentions now. As such, he had to place his hopes on something, even if it was a small hope.
‘There must be a reason why Mother’s power pointed to that child.’
He fiddled with the pendant on the necklace left by his mother, who possessed incredible magical powers.
The necklace that was silent for a long time, trembled in front of that child. He thought it was his imagination, so he reached out with his hand to clasp it, but the pendant pulsated like a heartbeat.
His mother was a very wise woman, and he had faith that her power wouldn’t direct him to something that could harm him, so Slarhan bought Ellier immediately without a second thought.
Perhaps his mother’s magical powers pointed to the child, intending to teach him what he lacked the most.
“Just kill me!”
Those eyes that stared at him looked more alive than anyone else, even though she told him to kill her.
Slarhan let out a deep and heavy sigh, and looked out of the window.
The clean glass window reflected his indifferent eyes, which only had a sense of obligation and responsibility left.
The dreary loneliness in those eyes deepened.
It was late that evening when Ellier woke up.
When she opened her eyes, it was dark everywhere, but the candles were lit in the room, so it wasn’t to the point where she couldn’t recognise the objects in the room.
Ellier stared blankly at the ceiling, reflecting on some of the things she had learned.
‘That day, Slarhan bought me from Rubelfast, and this is Ventiark’s territory. In any case, I was kept alive because of him, right? Never in my dreams would I have thought that I’ll be saved by Slarhan… Come to think of it, he should be twenty-two because he is six years older than me…’
Ellier, who was quietly calculating her’s and Slarhan’s age, realized something and jolted out of bed.
‘Oh, wait a minute! If that’s the case, then the Emperor would be announcing his successor next year!’