About a minute after I sat on the left, Cisen sent Marquis Jacques’ younger sister in. My first impression after seeing her closely…
‘Ah, God Actilla…’
She was so pretty.
When a person is starved, they tend to become quite ragged. She must have suffered even more because it must have been difficult for her to even sleep in the cold wind and dew outdoors. Nevertheless, while she was thin and ragged, she didn’t look ugly in the slightest. Without staggering at all, she walked in front of me and fell onto the floor like a butterfly on a flower.
“I see Your Majesty the Empress. I’m Sylvia Jacques, the daughter of Roberta Jacques and sister of Marquis Henry Jacques.”
I thought she had come to seek forgiveness for her mother and brother. Wasn’t it common in any era and in any country to risk their lives for those in power who have imposed harsh punishments? Regardless, there was nothing I could do about them now. It was only because Raniero liked my idea that I’m still able to escape from the hunting grounds right now.
So, even if this person asked me for mercy…
‘…I wish she wouldn’t be stubborn about it, at least.’
If this woman doesn’t back down and extends this out, she may have to be pushed into the hunting ground as well.
I didn’t want to do such a thing.
As I pondered so, I glanced down at her, thinking about what I would say if she asked for leniency from me.
“I’m deeply aware of the consequence of my mother and brother committing the horrific crime of framing Your Highness. It’s also my deepest sin that I couldn’t stop them…”
Saying so, she lowered her head so deeply that her forehead touched the floor.
I couldn’t stand the situation and opened my mouth.
“You can’t change something that has already been decided. In addition, you shouldn’t have been waiting outside for five days in the cold wind like that. If you’re going to ask for mercy, go back.”
Fortunately, my words came out in a calm, steady tone.
Shaking her head so violently, her hair—like silver thread—fluttered on her back and fell to the floor. Her figure was so pitiful that my heart was weak.
…It could be her strategy to look pitiful like that? I need to get a hold of myself. To survive in the relentless Empire of Actilus, I have to stay alert!
“…I’m not asking for mercy for my mother and brother. To catch someone’s flaws is to be prepared to expose your own flaws as well. I…I think they reap what they sow. It’s not that my heart isn’t broken for my family, but I’m not trying to make outrageous demands out of those personal feelings.”
Her words trembled like snow falling in winter, but they flowed out in a neat and orderly logic. I was perplexed as I only thought that Sylvia had come to ask for mercy from me.
If not, what did she come to me for…?
As soon as I widened my eyes and blinked in confusion, Sylvia took a deep breath before speaking as clearly as she could.
“I understand that one of the vacancies was created when Roberta Jacques stepped down from her position as Your Majesty’s handmaiden. Please, instead of my wicked and foolish mother, let me serve you as your handmaiden.”
Because it was an unexpected development, the answer to such a request was obviously not prepared in my head. My head, which had been overworked so far, began to pivot. All of a sudden, red lights rang in my head at the same time. I didn’t know that anyone other than Raniero Actilus could ring the red light in my head like that.
Even though I hadn’t even thought of it until a while ago, when I recall my memory, it was a familiar development.
…The enemy’s child becoming my servant?
In novels, dramas and mangas, situations like these were widespread. And, the ending usually comes with me getting stabbed in the back.
‘Is she trying to get revenge for her mother and brother by poisoning my tea when my guard’s off by trying to aim for an opportunity to be next to me…?’
Of course, if you want to assassinate someone, it would be best to be a subordinate of that person. Besides, that woman may have had a grudge against me from the beginning. After the esteemed Madam and Marquis Jacques’ positions were taken away from them, I heard why they hated me so much.
‘…It was because her daughter, who was prepared to be the Empress, was pushed out because of me.’
Perhaps, it was this pretty and pitiful woman who hated me the most?
I was a bit reluctant to start with doubts without evidence, however…
How would we really know? After all, in the Actilus Empire, where nothing and no one was on my side, there would be no harm in being a little suspicious and careful. If I suspected her and this woman was really innocent, I would feel sorry for her, and it would be over for her. On the other hand, if I believed her and she had a scheme, everything would come back to me like a dagger.
My goal is to survive. Shouldn’t I buy all the time I can?
Anyway, guessing her intention, let’s say it was good up to this point.
Still, if this woman had bad feelings for me, how was I supposed to behave here? Could I say I don’t want to hear her words and leave her like this? Or do I pretend not to know anything…?
My pupils began to shake endlessly.
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Comments for chapter "Chapter 20"
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