This BL Novel Is Ruined Now - Chapter 49
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“Are you neglecting us because you’re hanging out more with Reina?”
Benedict’s voice was full of mischief, but in response, Ethan just raised his eyebrows as if it was no big deal.
But as they saw this, both Emperor Enoch and Grand Duke Benedict looked at each other with slightly widened eyes.
“What kind of reaction is that, huh?”
“Has this rascal changed?”
Ethan set down his teacup and stared straight at Benedict, who then opened his lips to speak once more.
“Your reaction just now really isn’t like you, Ethan.”
“Very human, right?”
And at their reactions, the corners of Ethan’s lips slightly curled up into a smirk.
“Have I ever been a human being, I wonder.”
“Well, if we classify you according to your species, you’re definitely human. But isn’t it more like you’re just wearing the skin of a human being?”
“At least, a human who didn’t know to laugh. But I guess that’s not the case anymore?”
Ethan briefly glanced at the giant framed portrait behind Enoch and Benedict.
Right. Rather than the first emperor of this country who was depicted in that portrait, Ethan himself was someone who never expressed anything.
“Now that I’ve got a closer look at him, isn’t this kid dragonfolk? When it comes to putting on an expression on his face, seems like he’s even worse than you, Enoch.”
It’s only natural that Benedict said this.
And when Ethan heard this, he was only a five-year-old child at that time, only beginning to realize the differences between himself and others.
“It’s absolutely out of my expectations that I’d ever see you change before dying, Ethan.”
Benedict gave a slow clap as he said this, and in agreement, Enoch nodded along.
“You both would live hundreds of years longer than me though.”
“Ah, that’s right. Let me correct that— I didn’t think that you’d ever change ‘before you die’.”
Enoch leaned back and crossed his legs.
“You should have gone together, really. Why didn’t you?”
Ethan knew what he was talking about without him having to explain. He was surely referring to Cressen.
“Do I have to go?”
“So why didn’t you go there?”
Ethan glanced up and met the emperor’s green eyes.
Individuals who could hear the echoes wouldn’t be read by others who could likewise read them. However, when Ethan looked into those green eyes, which were as verdant as a lush forest, it always felt as if he was being laid bare in front of the emperor, as if his innermost thoughts were completely exposed.
Still though, the moment Ethan turned his head and looked out of the window, he looked like the very picture of disinterest.
“Even if it’s fun, it’s absurd to cling onto a plaything,” Ethan muttered.
It was an exceedingly nonchalant voice that made it sound like he had nothing to do with this at all.
Benedict narrowed his eyes.
“She’s not going to be a simple plaything though.”
After pointing this out, however, Benedict did not say more. In any case, Ethan would need time to realize this. Just as Benedict himself had done so in the past.
“By the way, it’s been decided to postpone bringing Reina in.”
When the grand duke said this instead, Ethan nodded as though he had already expected this.
Reina’s value and usefulness was fully confirmed through the smallpox last time. Still, before that, she was a member of a powerful household.
“It’s not sure yet if Reina will give a positive response towards the reform.”
“That’s very astute of you.”
As a beautiful voice flowed through Ethan’s lips like this, the grand duke grumbled in disappointment.
“You’re seriously so uptight. I thought you’d be dismayed at least.”
“What’s there for me to be dismayed over?”
When Ethan asked back, Grand Duke Benedict raised one eyebrow. Then, sitting up from his previously lax posture, he shrugged his shoulders playfully.
“Who knows. That remains to be seen.”
‘You must be feeling so regretful right now. It’s just that you couldn’t realize it yet.’
Just like Benedict himself in the past.
“Anyway, I wanted to let you know. We’ll observe Reina a little longer. Even if you become a little upset in the future, try to hold it in.”
After concluding in this way, Benedict burst out into a guffaw as if he was still viewing the situation with mirth. At the sight of this, Ethan wriggled his eyebrows, which moved like caterpillars.
“…There will be nothing for me to be upset over.”
“Doesn’t seem like that to me. It even looks like you’re upset now.”
“Not. At. All.”
“A strong denial is a strong affirmation, you know.”
“…I’ve said no multiple times now. But since you keep mocking me, let me be clear. Reina is not someone special to me, to the point that I’d be upset about anything related to her.”
“Hmm. Yeah, sure. I’ll believe you— for now.”
* * *
In one corner of the forest, at a brook.
“Paul, that stupid punk. Should I really go ahead and poison him?”
Reina stood up from where she was sitting, forcibly suppressing the urge to kill a certain someone. But at that same moment, an arrow flew straight at her from afar.
“Ah~ What a shame.”
Casually moving her head to the side as she dodged, Reina looked towards the source of that playful voice just now.
“’Ah, what a shame,’ huh? Are you crazy, dear friend?”
After Reina picked up the arrow and turned around completely, there, she found the very person who not only dragged her all the way here to Cressen, but also dragged her out of bed at an ungodly hour this morning to the rapids of the forest.
“Don’t you dare try to act cute. I’m barely holding back the urge to beat you to a pulp right now.”
Reina smiled sweetly as she said this to him, looking him dead in the eye as she snapped the arrow in half right then, imagining that it was Paul’s wrist.
Getting a bad feeling that things might turn messy real soon, Paul turned sideways and furtively tried to take a few steps back.
“You shot an arrow at someone from the same team just now, but you’re trying to run away? Is that what you’re trying to do?”
Paul immediately flinched, but he soon shot out of Reina’s sight.
“I’m speechless, seriously.”
Left alone just like that, Reina let out a heavy sigh, shaking off the hands she used to snap the arrow.
“What’s the point of this survival game even…”
No matter how much she tried to think about it, in the end, Reina could only see this as an excuse for everyone to come out and play.
“What sort of crazy people even play survival games in ‘the’ rapids of the forest.”
And why did everyone look like they liked it? Seriously, everyone’s nuts.
“Knowing that the Imperial Family even gave their consent for this makes me want to grab the back of my neck because of high blood pressure, tsk tsk.”
Then, at that moment.
There was a rustling sound coming from the other side. She trudged along, thinking that it would be Paul.
“You ran away like that earlier, only to come back with your tail… Elijah?”
As if caught by a hunter, Elijah immediately tried to dart away from his spot. However, he soon had no choice but to collapse helplessly back down.
After he let out a groan like that, Reina soon noticed why that was. Anyone would be able to see it—his ankle’s obviously swollen.
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