My Dear Grand Duke on a Leash - Chapter 36
Chapter 18.2 — How to create a child (6)
“It’s a thought that only His Highness Narkissis could come up with. As the only person who has built a personal friendship with both princesses throughout his life, he knows Princess’s warm personality well enough to figure out where to exploit your weaknesses easily.”
An idea that only Narkissis could come up with.
Both the notion of blackmailing an innocent princess with the lives of her sister and nephew as collateral and the vile act of planting a bomb beneath the seat of a pregnant woman, detonating it without hesitation, carried equal levels of repugnance.
The dreadful scenario of her pregnant sister being taken hostage loomed in his mind, knowing that the affectionate woman couldn’t witness harm befall even a single puppy die. Even if it meant sacrificing herself or being trapped in a loveless marriage with a man whom she had no interest in, resigned to a life of puppetry, she would still willingly embrace such a fate to rescue her beloved sister.
The muscles in his handsome jaw tensed at how tightly he clenched his teeth.
“From now on, please trust me. I’ll protect you.”
“The Grand Duke… me?”
The promise of protection felt unfamiliar, seeping in with an unfamiliar sensation. Though spoken on impulse, Cain seemed to perceive it differently.
“Though it may not be convincing at this moment, I’m the heir of the Acheron Duchy. Please no longer worry and trust in Acheron.”
Could there be any vow more comforting than this?
In that moment, the anxiety that had tightly gripped Riette’s throat until now dissipated like sugar dissolving in the rain.
Had those words been uttered by another, they might have sounded like arrogant boasts, but when they escaped Cain’s lips, they became an impenetrable fortress. His calm and composed demeanor, as if he were merely introducing himself, only reinforced the genuine nature of his pledge.
“Hey, Grand Duke.”
Riette opened her mouth a few times as if hesitating and then, as though she had made up her mind, spoke resolutely.
“How about we get married, just for a year?”
Cain froze in place as if a hammer had struck him. The words he heard left him bewildered, unable to fully comprehend their meaning.
In the meanwhile, Riette, with utmost seriousness and unwavering resolve, pressed on with her words.
“Of course, marriage isn’t something that can be done so hastily, but the Grand Duke said that you would marry a woman he wouldn’t love anyway… Then, isn’t it okay if it was me?”
She was determined to safeguard her sister and Chalonné at any cost, even if it meant making the agonizing decision of entering a loveless marriage.
After all, that was the expected path for royal unions.
The opportunities bestowed upon her mother and sister were extraordinary, reserved for the fortunate few. Such precious blessings were not meant for her. Just because she witnessed her sister’s life unfolding before her eyes did not entitle her to partake in the same joy.
Once again, it was just a fleeting daydream, as always.
“I’ll play the role of a double agent. I’ll provide false information to His Highness Narkissis, and in turn, the Grand Duke will use me to uncover the vulnerabilities of His Highness. So, this benefits me and the Duke as well!”
His vision blurred, overwhelmed by the situation unfolding before him.
Cain found himself at a loss, unsure of where to begin or how to address the preposterous statement. As was his habit, he suppressed the words that were about to escape his lips, captivated by the clarity and beauty emanating from those shimmering green eyes. Perhaps it would be wiser to decline with a gentler expression, refraining from sounding like a reproach.
“That means we would have to enter into a time-limited marriage where we would part ways after one year. I can’t reveal the weaknesses of my family to someone who will leave.”
He let out a deep sigh.
Cain yearned for Riette, his first love, to find happiness in Chalonné.
The sinister plot orchestrated by Narkissis, exploiting their lifelong friendship as mere pawns, wasn’t unexpected… but it was confined to the realm of Chalonné, not Helios. Seeking a suitable bride and returning to Helios would signify the end of their encounters. If, by chance, their paths were to cross, they would maintain a courteous distance. This predetermined fate had been established from the very beginning, binding the two of them.
…Therefore, it would be prudent to establish clear boundaries at this juncture, preventing things from deepening any further.
“Furthermore, the Helios Grand Duchess I desire isn’t someone like the Princess.”
His words were so cold that they could be felt even in his tone. However, Riette’s eyes sparkled in response as if she found something intriguing in his chilly demeanor.
“What kind of woman do you want?”
Cain silently gazed at Riette.
As the afternoon sun penetrated through the foliage, it bestowed a radiant glow upon her figure, casting an ethereal aura akin to that of a sacred angel draped in pristine white. Her golden locks resembled the abundance of an autumn field, while her soft eyes held the essence of the earth itself.
Rosy cheeks adorned her visage, and delicate lips completed her enchanting countenance.
“A composed, merciless, calculating, and cold woman. A woman who is necessary for the position of the Helios Grand Duchess. I need a partner who will solely be a political wife.”
Certainly, no matter how hard she tried, it would be impossible.
“Still, even if I don’t know about other conditions, I can definitely keep the most important thing…”
Saying so, Riette expressed her sincere determination towards him, even clutching her fist tightly.
“…A politically devoted wife who will never love each other. I have the confidence to be nothing more than a facade for the Duke. Sincerely!”
As Cain’s lips twitched involuntarily, an indiscernible bitterness pricked between his ribs like a thorn.
Want to read more? Up to  advanced chapters are available on Patreon:
For update pings, novel discussions and/or to send mistake reports, join our discord server~!
Please consider sending some love either through the translator’s Ko-fi or by leaving a rating/review for this series on novel updates~!