Chapter 1. The fiancé is back
04. Leila Astera
The party was over, but the heat didn’t cool down until the next day.
This was because Leila’s story had spread throughout the social world.
It was shocking that Leila officially declared her breakup with Philen, but the most talked-about among the people was that Kalian granted Leila the baron title.
“Oh my God. I can’t believe he’s giving a title to a woman. Is His Majesty sane?”
“It is said that if you’re blind to love, you can’t make right judgments. His Majesty must be trying to hide the fact that she is a mistress with that.”
“That means he cherishes the lady that much, right?”
“I feel sorry for Duke Williot only.”
Regardless of age or gender, they talked about the relationship between Kalian and Leila. While the talk about Philen came up once in a while.
And so, the rumor about Leila being Kalian’s mistress became solid as if it was true.
Because of the fact that Kalian granted Leila the baron title, the nobles gathered at the Duke of Giltian from early hours.
“This is nonsense!”
The young nobleman slammed the table, enraged.
“I can’t believe he’s giving a title to a lady! His Majesty can’t do that unless he’s out of his mind!”
The other nobles ranted and raved as they agreed with him.
“Let’s rush to His Majesty right now and tell him that it absolutely can’t be allowed!”
“It’s no use though.”
“How can you know that?!”
“Because I’ve already done it.”
A nobleman who had already met Kalian during the morning audience groaned and touched his head with his hand.
“I told you it wouldn’t work. When I said that, he threw the Imperial Codes of Law before me.”
“Codes of Law?”
“Yeah. Looking for a reason why Leila Thebesa shouldn’t be granted the baron title.”
When he said that, they had no choice but to step down quietly without saying anything.
Because they already knew that they couldn’t find such a law even if they searched in the Codes of Law.
“So there’s no point in going and saying it can’t be allowed.”
“We can say that it is a custom, not a law!”
“You can’t overturn the Imperial order with customs alone. Rather, you’ll be ridiculed for bringing up old customs, you know?”
“Then, what should we do?! Are you just going to watch that lass take the title?”
“That’s not what I meant…”
When Duke Giltian put down the cup hard, the noisy room became quiet at once.
Everyone kept their mouths shut like clams and read Duke Giltian’s mood.
On the other hand, Duke Giltian calmly tilted the pitcher to fill his empty cup.
The heavy silence was broken when Duke Giltian, who was drinking water silently, emptied his newly filled cup.
“It’s obviously obsolete to stick to the custom. But if you want to break the custom, you must have a good reason.”
Duke Giltian’s gray eyes flashed eerily.
“Let’s listen to His Majesty’s excuses on this matter and decide what to do with it.”
The scarecrow for practice was smashed. It was the same with the wooden sword Philen was holding.
Philen threw away the broken wooden sword and grabbed a new one.
Next to him were piles of broken wooden swords and scarecrows.
“Bring a new scarecrow.”
At Philen’s order, the servants quickly removed the broken scarecrow and brought a new one.
Philen mercilessly struck the scarecrow again.
What was in front of him was an ordinary practice scarecrow that could be seen everywhere, but in Philen’s eyes, he looked like Kalian.
A rogue who seduced Leila with his good-looking face and authority as an emperor!
I should have known from the moment it was written down on the official test announcement that women are allowed too.
No, I should have done everything I could to stop Leila from taking the official test.
Had it been, such a thing wouldn’t have happened.
There would have been no such thing as losing Leila to such a guy!
He was resentful to Leila, who fell for him, but he hated Kalian more.
He couldn’t believe he used the aide position as bait to shake Leila’s heart and induced her to break her engagement. As if it’s not enough, he even gave him such humiliation.
Had Kalian not been the emperor, he would have thrown a white glove to his face and challenged him to a duel.
It was very annoying that he had to leave the banquet hall without doing anything.
WHAT IF HE’S AN EMPEROR!
The more he thought about it, the hotter he got. Philen spat out abusive words and swung his wooden sword hard.
With that blow, the newly brought practice scarecrow was smashed.
Not only that, the handle of the wooden sword that couldn’t overcome his power was also broken.
The debris was stuck in his palm, and blood was flowing profusely.
Philen looked at his bloody palm indifferently as if it didn’t hurt at all.
“Are, are you okay? Duke!”
“H, hurry! The doctor!”
The servants next to him were making a great fuss even more.
Philen glanced at those servants as if they were annoying, then picked up his coat.
“Duke! Since the doctor is here, the treatment…!”
“I don’t need it.”
The servant turned and hurried after Philen.
“Where are you going?! Duke!”
He kept thinking about it while beating the practice scarecrow, but he thought it would be better to talk about this with Leila again.
Not enraged like yesterday, but calmly.
Only then would he be able to hear what Leila truly thought.
Philen didn’t think what Leila said yesterday was sincere.
Just as he spoke out of anger, Leila would be like that too.
So he had to properly explain to Leila what the problem was and convince her to come back.
But why do I have to explain it?
If she begs to come back, I still have to act, thinking about whether to accept it or not…!
Philen, who stood tall in his place, exhaled a small breath and swept his hair up.
The servant looked at him and spoke carefully.
“How, how about getting treatment first? If Young Lady Leila sees that hand, she might be scared and run away.”
At the servant’s words, Philen looked at his injured hand.
It was definitely bizarre.
Even though it looks like this to me, will Leila be terrified at this?
As if waiting, the servant led Philen to the drawing-room where the doctor was waiting.
The doctor removed the piece of wood from Philen’s hand and said while suturing the torn wound and applying the bandage.
“The wound is deeper than I thought, so it would be better to be careful for about a week.”
“Are you telling me not to hold a sword?”
“If possible, it is better to do so.”
Don’t hold a sword for a week to a knight?
It wasn’t a very pleasing request, but he nodded for now.
“I will prescribe medication to be applied and oral medication to keep the wound from getting worse.”
“You did a good job.”
“I’m just doing what I had to do. Then I’ll get going.”
As soon as the doctor left, Philen visited the butler.
“I’m going to Leila. Prepare the horse. No, I’ll go to the stable.”
It would have been a big deal if I delayed more for no reason and Leila went to work.
The day after the party, she usually goes to work in the afternoon, so I still have time, but it was just in case.
Feeling impatient, Philen went directly to the stable, got out his horse, and immediately left the mansion.
It was a fact that I knew too that if I became the emperor’s aide, I could receive a title.
But I never thought for some reason that it would be me.
I didn’t even dare to wish for it.
But granting me the baron title?
I couldn’t believe I became a baron.
My lips were dry at things I couldn’t even imagine in my dreams.
It seemed to be why I was asked to choose a word out of the blue a few days ago.
That meant that from then on, he was planning to grant me the baron title…
“He should’ve told me in advance.”
If he had, I would have prepared my heart.
But in fact, even if I prepared my heart, nothing would change.
Rather, if I had known in advance, there’s a high possibility that I would have made a series of mistakes because I was nervous.
Still, this is too sudden.
And then there’s Philen and Andante too…
I heard bad things happen at the same time. I guessed that words were right.
I licked my lips that dried out of tension and grabbed the hem of my humble skirt tightly.
I thought hard about what to do next, but there’s no answer.
The more I thought about it, the more complicated my mind became.
…shall I solve the baron problem first?
I thought it would be good, so I got ready to go to the Imperial Palace and went down to the first floor.
Sarah, who was working diligently in the kitchen, noticed me and ran to me.
“Where are you going?”
“The Imperial Palace.”
“Yes? You said you were going to go this afternoon.”
“I was going to, but I think I have to go early.”
In this situation, I couldn’t wait patiently at home until afternoon.
“Then please wait a little bit! I will call a carriage.”
“There’s no need.”
To organize my complicated mind, I was thinking of walking to the Imperial Palace.
“Then I’ll be back.”
“My, My Lady. I’m going to the market today, do you need anything?”
“No, I don’t need anything.”
“Then I will buy just my own. Have a safe trip, My Lady.”
I left the house with Sarah seeing me off.
As I was walking straight towards the Imperial Palace, I heard the sound of rough horse hooves behind me.
Naturally, I stepped out of the way.
But the sound of horse hooves stopped behind me.
What is it?
Bewildered, I turned around and found an unexpected person, then I froze.
“Are you on your way to the Imperial Palace?”
Why is he here?
No, since it happened yesterday, it’s only natural for him to come to see me, right?
I expected it, but it still baffled me.
When Philen got off his horse and stood in front of me, I stepped back, wary of him.
“…what brings you here, Duke?”
Philen chuckled at my words.
“Duke? It feels distant.”
Of course, it is. Because I meant what I said.
“If you’re not busy, give me some of your time. I have something to tell you.”
“…what if I refuse?”
“There’s nothing I can do.”
His mouth was smiling, but his golden eyes flashed dangerously.
He seriously intended to take me by force if I refused.
Of course, if I rebelled or screamed, no matter how hard Philen tried, I was able to attract the attention of the people around me, but I couldn’t do that.
If I did that, tomorrow’s morning newspaper would have our matters published.
Our story would always be on everyone’s lips.
I wasn’t afraid of that, but I was worried Kalian’s situation would be complicated just because of me.
I didn’t want to cause any problems as much as I could.
After contemplating, I eventually accepted Philen’s request.