Huge thanks to Sahsah San for the kofis! (5/5)
Tariq seemed to be observing the mood, before moving forward.
“Your Grace, I would rather give her my clothes.”
When Slarhan looked at him in puzzlement, Tariq realized that he wasn’t wearing outerwear.
“Oh, this… In that case, I’ll get a servant to bring outerwear over.”
Slarhan didn’t seem to mind, but Ellier could understand Tariq’s concerns fully.
Slarhan must have had such a thought process, ‘Someone feels chilly. So I should give them something warm in advance. Ah, this should be good enough,’ and handed his jacket over without thinking too deeply into it. However, as his aide, Tariq would have to pay attention to the honor of his Lord and the opinions of others.
The same held true for Ellier.
For a slave from Rubelfast to be following the Duke, it was a surprising enough event. If she was caught with the Duke’s jacket on her shoulders, the damage from the rumours will spread was unimaginable.
Perhaps it’s too late.
“He’s right. It’s too much for a slave to be wearing the Duke’s clothes, it’s too much. Your consideration in itself is a point I should be thankful enough for.”
Ellier hurriedly took off his coat and carefully handed it over to Slarhan, bowing.
At that, Tariq’s expression flashed with the unspoken meaning of, ‘Your head is screwed on right.’ But the problem lay with Slarhan.
“I don’t understand why it has to be so complicated.”
“If that’s the case then I’ll ask instead. Which of the two holds a greater sin, the Duke giving his clothes to the slave or the slave refusing to accept it’s Master’s favor?”
Although Ellier made a face of embarrassment, inwardly, she was cursing Slarhan.
This was an abuse of power.
In this situation, it’s impossible for a slave to tell the Duke that he’s wrong.
Fortunately, Tariq quickly sided with her.
“Your Grace, it is very burdensome for a slave. If a slave, who isn’t even a regular servant, walked around in the Duke’s clothes, there wouldn’t be anyone that doesn’t know of this slave from tomorrow onwards. What happens if the servants become jealous of this slave because the Duke favours her?”
Perhaps his line of reasoning worked, as Slarhan picked up the jacket held out by Ellier. Just then, a quick-witted servant ran over and put his outerwear over her.
“I’m Vedell. You can return the jacket to me later.”
As he whispered softly, he blinked at her, before quickly walking away.
He seemed to be of the same age as Slarhan, but seeing as how he was so sharp, he seemed to be a cut above the rest.
After letting out a short sigh, Slarhan looked at her before turning around and moving forward again.
The place he headed to was the training grounds.
When she spotted the training grounds from afar, Ellier became a little excited.
The metallic sound of swords reverberating into her ears made her heart pound.
She wanted to run over immediately and run wild while wielding the sword. How many years has it been since she last held a sword…
As he watched Ellier look around with her eyes wide opened, Slarhan spoke with a tone of indifference.
“This is the training ground for the Knights of Ventiark. Starting from tomorrow, you’ll train your physical strength here.”
It was an unconventional order. It didn’t make sense for a slave to train her physical strength in the training grounds used by knights.
Tariq was probably thinking the same thing, and his eyes widened.
“Your Grace. Isn’t the knight’s training ground a bit too dangerous? If she was hit by flying stones in the wrong way…”
Although his words were seemingly out of concern for Ellier, it was obvious that he was displeased about the fact that the slave would be setting foot in the knight’s sacred training grounds.
“Well, that’s true. Then, you can use it only after 5pm when the knights have finished their training.”
Ellier gave an annoyed smile and glanced at Tariq. However, Tariq didn’t dare to protest anymore and could only purse his lips tightly.
It was apparent from both the incident with the jacket and giving permission to use the training grounds that Slarhan did not treat others differently based on their status or identity.
Ellier sighed quietly and nodded.
Whether it was to run away or to make a deal with Slarhan, both required her to have a healthy body, so physical training was essential.
‘That’s good! Since it’s like this, I’ll make full use of Slarhan, you punk!’
Ellier repeated to herself her firm resolve without telling anyone else.
If there was a need to pick the most fussy master from the Jade Palace, where the Empress and her children lived, it would undoubtedly be the Third Princess, Ellor del Solen.
Empress Lavienne was indeed a noblewoman from a prominent aristocratic family, although she had strong pride and was dignified, she did not fuss about every little detail.
The First Prince Renscher and the Second Princess Luria were both not boisterous people.
However, the Third Princess Ellor was completely different.
Growing up, she was praised for her beauty from a young age, the flower of the Imperial Family has always wanted to reign as the queen of high society.
It was understandable as she was such a beautiful woman.
Shiny and voluminous hair that were a clear shade of blonde, emerald eyes glimmered brightly underneath delicate eyelashes.
Her poreless red cheeks, and her smile was bewitching despite her innocent impression.
She was gorgeous, and constantly surrounded by others. She like to flaunt and also spreaded rumours without hesitation.
In addition, perhaps she was well aware of her strong background, she started things without thinking about the cleanup, and did them with great confidence.
Such an Ellor became odd suddenly half a year ago.
Ellor, who had attended a party and returned late the previous day, instead of sleeping in until noon as per her normal routine, she opened her eyes at around 10 in the morning, and started to speak of strange nonsense.
“This is… my room…?”
“Yes, Your Highness. Are you feeling unwell? I’m a little worried as you seemed to have drank too much yesterday… ”
“What is today’s date?”
“Yes…? It’s January 5th, 892.”
“January in 892? The year of 892 is… That’s right… It’s 18 years ago…”
“Your Highness, are you really alright? Did you have a bad dream?”
“Ah, no, don’t worry about it. Go to the library right away and borrow the Imperial Family’s genealogy.”
“What? Why are you talking about the Imperial Family’s genealogy all of a sudden…”
“If I told you to bring it back, go and bring it!”
“I’m— I’m sorry. I’ll be right back.”
When the maid went and brought back the Imperial Family’s genealogy like the wind, Ellor turned the pages of the book like a crazy person, and checked the genealogy of the current Imperial Family.
“It’s not here…! It’s really not here!”
“Your Highness, what are you…”
“Have you ever heard of the name Lilliette?””
“Lilli…Lilliette? That’s… I’ve never heard of it. Shall I ask the other ladies-in-waiting?”
“No, it’s fine if you don’t know.”
Briar, who has worked as a maid for Ellor for a long time, had never seen Ellor smiling so happily before.
It was a smile of relief, and seemingly possessed everything in the world.
Ever since then, Ellor has changed for some reason.
Although she had a picky personality, she was usually uninterested in things that had nothing to do with her. However, she began to observe the actions of the two other Imperial concubines and her half-brothers and half-sisters.
She paid attention to the political situation and seemed to order someone to gather some information.
Also, she cut back on gatherings with her peers, and instead attended gatherings of powerful nobility. She had also begun greeting the Emperor, whom she had ignored as if they were complete strangers, and started to issue orders with meanings that were unknown.
Others thought that this was just one of Ellor’s whims, perhaps a passing wind, but Ellor wasn’t who she used to be anymore.
‘For the next half a year… I have to gather as many people over to my side as possible before Father announces about his successor.’
Although Ellor felt tired after she returned from reciting a poem she didn’t like amongst the older ladies, she stared venomously at the dates once more.
After half a year, the Emperor will announce that he’ll choose a few candidates to compete for the throne.
In her previous life, Ellor was tired of it and gave up, but that turned out to be a big mistake.
‘This time, I’ll definitely take both Clyde and the throne.’
She had deeply regretted her life’s failures, so she offered her soul to a demon. In return, she returned back in time to 18 years ago.
Up until now, everything has been smooth sailing so far.
This was before the competition for the throne, and most importantly, there wasn’t any Lilliette.
Her wish to send Lilliette back to a non-existent past has indeed come true. As she was enveloped in a dazzling light, she seemingly fell into a deep sleep, but when she opened her eyes, she was 18 years in the past.
Although she had signed a contract to give her soul to the devil if she didn’t achieve her goal, she felt like she had escaped from her bleak reality and was confident that she could achieve her goal, she felt that she had gotten a great advantage.
It would have been nice if she could go back to when she was younger, but this wasn’t that bad either.
In any case, as it was before the successor announcement, even if it wasn’t long, she had plenty of time to prepare for various events.
Such as putting a hallucinogen into her brother’s, Rensher’s, winter clothing, and sending him off to recuperate.
‘Older sister Luria wasn’t interested in the successor position anyways, so Mother will have no choice but to support me. In the first place, it was a foolish idea to push Renscher as the successor.’
Even in her previous life, Rensher was completely unreliable.
The only thing that he could be held in esteem for was his status as the eldest son from the Empress.
However, soon that ‘bloodline’ will become meaningless.
If it was truly so, he should have had hope and wisened up, but he constantly complained that the position of Crown Prince that was rightfully his was taken away, showing how little ability he had.
“Furthermore, you tried your hardest to throw away your younger sister.”
That was the most unforgivable part.
When that detestable Lilliette became the Emperor thanks to Clyde, she who tormented Lilliette was in mortal danger, Renscher didn’t help her at all.
“It’s the truth that you had hurt Lilliette in particular! What if we’re shunned because of you?”
He said that while shaking off her hand violently.
It was probably fortunate that such a person did not become the Emperor. Even if he did become Emperor, he wouldn’t have rewarded his younger sister for the hard work that was done for him.
‘It’s a past life, so it doesn’t matter anyway. What matters is this life. I know the future, so I can claim both Clyde and the throne.”
Just thinking about it made her smile.