Chapter 1. The fiancé is back
The conference room became quiet as if cold water had been poured.
Up until now, everything about Natsha Kingdom was done by Ver and so they thought Ver was the one who made it, but Leila?
The nobles, who praised the data until their mouths were dry, shut their mouths like shells.
The other nobles gave them stinging glances and silently criticized them.
Even Duke Giltian, who was talking gallantly, shut his mouth, and only Kalian who was smiling in this situation.
Kalian bit his tongue to hold back the desire to grab his stomach and burst out laughing at any moment.
“I think this is enough to show Sir Thebesa’s ability… what do you think, Marquis Valdir?”
As he pointed it out again, Marquis Valdir’s face turned white.
Marquis Valdir glanced at Duke Giltian.
His slightly twisted lips showed that he was in a bad mood.
It was bad enough for Duke Giltian, who could control his emotions better than anyone else, to reveal it on the outside.
Marquis Valdir felt a cold sweat run down his spine.
I have to answer well.
If I say something weird, I’ll be bitten by two wild beasts.
Marquis Valdir clenched his fists and opened his mouth slowly.
“N, now that I look at it, I see a lot of loopholes in the data.”
Kalian tilted his head and looked through the data.
“Maybe because I’m a fool, I can’t see any loopholes. So, would the Marquis kindly explain it to me?”
Marquis Valdir hurriedly looked through the data but found no significant loopholes.
If I force myself to find it, I can find it, but if I get caught in another thing, it’ll be a pain in the ass.
Marquis Valdir, who had become a honey-eating mute again, lowered his head deeply.
At that moment, Duke Giltian opened his mouth.
“It seems like Your Majesty thinks Sir Thebesa deserves the title.”
“Of course. She deserves the title well enough. Haven’t the Duke seen the data?”
“The data is definitely great.”
Duke Giltian looked through the data half-heartedly.
“But we cannot evaluate Sir Thebesa’s ability just by looking at this alone. A more objective and accurate evaluation is needed.”
In a word, it was meant to produce visible results.
It’s all as expected.
They reacted as Kalian had expected without an inch of error.
Even Duke Giltian, who was like an old fox, couldn’t stop smiling.
Kalian covered his mouth with his hand to hide the laughter that came out.
Now all that was left was visible results.
This, too, was already in his mind.
The child care institution for war orphans.
If Leila handled that perfectly, they wouldn’t be able to talk like they do now, saying to show them her right ability.
Although it was purely the emperor’s authority to confer titles, it was for Leila that all these cumbersome plans were made.
If he ignored the nobles’ opposition and sealed Leila to a baron, she wouldn’t be recognized in the noble society in the future.
Was that all? It was clear that Leila would have a lot of trouble working as an aide.
Like it or not, she had to keep running into them.
This was what Leila was worried about.
That’s why Kalian was trying to prevent them from saying anything else later.
As he was about to wrap up, Duke Giltian suddenly opened his mouth.
“Since Your Majesty appreciates Sir Thebesa’s ability so highly, I want to make a proposal on behalf of the nobles.”
I can’t believe Duke Giltian makes a proposal first. It’s unexpected.
“What’s your proposal?”
“As Your Majesty knows, this diplomatic meeting is a very important meeting that may change the territorial waters. So…”
When Duke Giltian beckoned, the official from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs put the diplomatic delegation’s list in front of him.
“I would like to include the competent Sir Thebesa, whom Your Majesty highly regards, in this diplomatic delegation.”
After leaving the conference room, Kalian went straight to the office to meet Leila, but then he stopped walking.
It’s because he felt Hiltine’s presence behind his back.
Looking back, Hiltine was there as expected.
“Why are you here? Didn’t I tell you to guard Leila?”
He knew he was still preparing for the wedding even though Leila had declared their breakup.
But Philen’s obsession with Leila was gradually crossing the line.
Last night, Kalian, who witnessed it with his own eyes at the banquet hall, put Hiltine on Leila.
But why is he here?
When he looked at him strangely, Hiltine put his hand on his chest and reported politely.
“Duke Williot left the capital while Your Majesty was in the meeting.”
He couldn’t believe he left the capital when he thought he would hold on a little longer.
Kalian’s eyebrow went up slightly at the unexpected report.
“Is he going back to his estate?”
“I haven’t checked it yet. Shall I find out?”
Kalian thought for a moment, then shook his head.
“No, no need.”
As long as Philen left the capital, it didn’t matter where he went. His actions didn’t matter.
What was important was Leila’s safety.
If Philen had left the capital, there’s no need to put Hiltine on Leila any longer.
But just in case, should I keep putting him on her today?
After all, you never know where a crazy person will go.
“Guard her a little more today and if there’s nothing wrong, focus on finding it again.”
Hiltine left and Kalian headed to the office where Leila was waiting while seriously thinking about how to bring the story out to Leila.
‘Get ready to sign’ obviously means to sign the document stating that I’m sealed as a baron.
I’m really becoming a baron, huh?
Just thinking about it makes me nervous and my heart races.
Leila, who was waiting for Kalian to return and taking a deep breath to control her trembling stomach, opened her eyes wide when she heard the unexpected news.
“Yeah. They want you to attend this diplomatic meeting with the Natsha Kingdom.”
Oh, my God. Diplomatic delegation?
Leila looked at Kalian, as surprised as she was when she heard that she was sealed as a baron.
Kalian sighed deeply.
“I told you to get ready to sign, but instead of signing the document, I brought a burden.”
“N, no. It’s okay.”
Leila hurriedly waved her hand.
She knew he had done his best to make her a baron without noise.
So she didn’t resent or blame Kalian, but she was still bewildered.
Diplomatic delegation was made up of competent people as they were representatives of the Empire.
Can I join them in such a place?
She was worried that she might just humiliate him.
Leila wiggled her hands without saying a word.
“If you don’t want to, you can refuse.”
Her eyes that had been looking at her hands went up and met his blue eyes.
“There’s no need to force yourself.”
“…what happens if I refuse?”
“There’s no big problem. It’ll just be a little harder for you to become a baron.”
It wasn’t a little, but Kalian hid it on purpose. There’s nothing good about telling the truth.
“I was in a hurry too, if I think about it. Originally, I didn’t intend to make you a baron this quickly.”
Kalian stroked his chin.
“I was planning to do it when you made a contribution while working as an aide, but I rushed because the nobles spread a useless rumor.”
“The rumor that you’re my mistress, not an aide.”
When Leila’s face turned a little white, Kalian frowned.
“Don’t tell me, you didn’t know it yet?”
“…I didn’t know.”
Of course, I thought she would know, but it turns out she doesn’t.
Surprised, Kalian frowned.
“You’re deafer to rumors than I thought.”
Leila placed her hand on her chest and bowed her head modestly.
“You don’t have to apologize. I didn’t mean to blame you.”
I just realized that I need to be more careful in the future.
“Anyway, once again, you don’t have to accept their proposal. Even if you don’t join the diplomatic delegation, I still can make you a baron.”
It just takes a lot of effort and time to be recognized by the nobles.
But Kalian was sure it would never be long.
If the child care institution was done properly, they would have no choice but to acknowledge Leila’s ability.
However, one thing was that there wouldn’t be much noise if she made a good solution to the diplomatic delegation.
That’s why he wanted Leila to accept it as much as possible, but he didn’t intend to force her.
Because it was a risky job.
If this was done wrong, even if she was given the title, Leila could have the dishonorable label of incompetence for the rest of her life.
So, he wanted to give her the opportunity to choose.
Leila, who was silent for a moment, asked.
“Your Majesty, do you want me to refuse?”
“No, I want you to accept it.”
Kalian knew Leila might feel burdened with this answer, but he didn’t want to lie, so he answered honestly.
“That way, they won’t be able to say anything else later.”
“And if I do it wrong, it will backfire.”
“It’s the same for other things. Whatever it is, there are risks.”
That’s it. Then, Leila nodded.
“And I think you can do it well enough. That’s how much I trust you.”
There’s a firm belief in Kalian’s eyes looking at Leila.
His gaze came heavy, and Leila gently pressed her chest with her hand.
Even though she didn’t want to betray Kalian’s trust, she wanted to proudly show her ability to the nobles who ignored her.
…especially to Philen.
She wanted to show him that she could stand alone without him and the Duke of Williot.
To do that, she should accept the proposal to join the diplomatic delegation, right?
The thought of being part of the diplomatic delegation made her heart race and her breath quicken.
When Leila let out a deep breath, Kalian, who thought it was a sigh, added.
“Again, I’m not forcing you to do it. Apart from trusting you, there are risks involved, so if you don’t want to do it…”
“I’ll do it.”
Leila replied before Kalian could finish his words.
Her black eyes firmly looked at Kalian.
“I will do my best to repay Your Majesty’s trust.”