My Past Life is Riddled With Many Sins - Chapter 17
Suppressing the urge to sprint away at full speed, Regina walked away like any other passerby, making sure to blend in.
Skyler was the last person she should encounter now. After all, Yekarna and Skyler had shared a relationship that was intensely physical and primal. For Regina, his mere presence was an embodiment of impropriety and obscenity.
“Do you feel this way all the way over here?”
“Show that expression only to me, my Empress.”
“Didn’t I tell you? I’m confident about anything that involves the body.”
Memories she didn’t want to recall horrifyingly creeping into her mind, and Regina flinched. She shook her head to dismiss them.
This life was meant to be lived away from pleasure. A healthy life. A sound mind. For that, she needed to avoid him as much as possible…
“Where are you rushing off to, miss?”
“I’m sorry, but I’m in a hurry.”
Regina responded stiffly to the man who suddenly addressed her from behind. She needed to minimize her presence, but he was carelessly approaching her.
One of the drawbacks of the imperial capital was the persistent street vendors wherever she went. If they only talked, it was bearable, but some would grab the arm or shoulder without permission.
From her experience the past few days, Regina had learned how to deal with them. Don’t make eye contact and continue on her way.
‘But he had quite a nice voice.’
She almost turned around, captivated by it. Unless he was extraordinarily unattractive, it was the kind of voice that would make women mindlessly follow.
Just as she was admiring the uniqueness of the Imperial Capital’s street vendors, her shoulder was grabbed.
The voice was appealing, but who knew he’d have such bad manners.
Regina furrowed her brow and swatted away the hand and came face to face with the offender. And then, she froze.
“It has been far too long, hasn’t it? Your Majesty.”
The handsome red-haired man, Skyler’s reincarnation, was smiling broadly with his eyes gently folded.
No wonder his voice was so attractive to be an ordinary tout!
He lightly touched Regina’s jawline and tucked a stray hair behind her ear. His gaze was dreamy like someone out of his mind. It was reminiscent of how he was when he was with Yekarna.
That was his look when overwhelmed with bliss or extreme excitement.
When he entered battle with those eyes, he returned drenched in blood. Among people who saw him even once, none was not afraid of him. He earned the nickname the ‘Mad-eyed Swordmaster’ and ‘The Emperor’s Mad Gardener.’
‘To me, it’s just the eyes of a slightly mad cat.’
His condition seemed a bit off, but… wasn’t it somewhat cute?
No, this wasn’t the time for such thoughts. She could reminisce about her past life when she was alone in her room.
Feeling his fingers tracing her face, Regina broke out in a cold sweat. She was unprepared for such an unexpected reunion.
With no other option, she decided to feign ignorance, a tactic she had previously used with Friedrich. She looked at him with the most innocent expression she could muster.
“I’m sorry, I don’t understand what you’re talking about.”
“Don’t you recognize me just because I look different? I recognized you immediately, which is disappointing. I am Skyler, Your Majesty.”
His drooping eyes momentarily gave her guilt, but Regina continued to feign ignorance.
The libertine Yekarna had certainly wronged this man in many ways. It wasn’t without reason that he was considered one of the suspects who assassinated Yekarna. Friendly as he may seem now, there’s no telling when he might seek revenge.
If she wanted a peaceful life, it was best to act as if she remembered nothing.
“Sky….ler? I don’t know anyone by that name.”
The smile slowly faded from his face.
Was it working? Seeing his face harden, Regina had high hopes. Perhaps he might just accept it and leave. True to his character as the former Margrave of the Cold North.
“Is that so?”
He accepted it surprisingly easily and then added with a sly smile,
“That’s fine. If your mind doesn’t remember me, I can make your body remember. I’ll teach you who I am until you realize… ”
Before he could finish his lewd insinuation, Regina cut him off with a scream. She had almost forgotten about this man’s outrageous tongue for so long!
“If you keep this up, I’ll call the guards. You know, touching an underage citizen of the Empire results in severe punishment.”
Desperately, she played her trump card. Any sane person would retreat faced with such a strong move.
Technically, she was neither underage nor a citizen of the Empire, but what did it matter? Boldness was necessary to live unscathed in this world.
He asked, sounding completely bewildered. Regina, though feeling guilty, was also slightly offended by his reaction, which suggested he hadn’t considered for a moment that she could be under twenty.
‘Do I look that old?’
Annoyed, Regina retorted sharply.
His question that was asked without a hint of hesitation, further irritated Regina. Nineteen was the age just before one is considered an adult. Essentially, he was suggesting she looked as old as she could possibly be while still being underage.
After a brief silence, he opened his mouth again.
His tone suggested this was his final compromise.
This guy, really.
Regina regretted the words as soon as they left her mouth.
In a moment of anger, she had blurted out a ridiculous age. It wasn’t right. Not seventeen but fifteen. It was absurdly unreasonable.
She had made the mistake out of the impulse of the moment. Regina scrambled to think of a way to salvage it.
“Pffft. That’s a bit much, Your Majesty.”
Until he laughed as if he had heard something absurd too.