FMDF – Chapter 2

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The next day, I started my daily routine in the morning. It doesn’t have to be as fancy as going to a banquet, but you still have to dress up properly. I think you see it often in the morning dramas. The villain always has a splendid appearance. Today I wore a dark blue dress that matched my dark hair and black eyes. Of course, strong red lips. It is a style that stands out at a glance in the temple, which is mainly white.

The butler, Uross, had a carriage with the marquis’ large text on it waiting in advance. I climbed into the carriage with the gentle support of the maids.

“Take good care of Kaelus while you’re back.”

“Of course, Lady Hestia,”

I nodded slightly at the butler’s reply.

The carriage ran briskly through the street. A stable ride that is incomparable to the little carriage I used to ride. This is why everyone is singing good teas, expensive teas, and songs. My heart is a little fluttering.

Before I knew it, I arrived at the temple. The retainers, who were contacted through an errand earlier,  came out. You must have been very embarrassed to see the marquis who you had never heard of.

When I stepped down calmly, one of the new retainers bowed his head.

“Welcome, Marchioness, ma’am…….”

A voice that seemed unsure whether I’m really a marquis or not. However, the carriage that came in has the real imperial marquis’s writing. In this country, if you steal the symbols of the nobility, you will be punished severely, so you have no way to impersonate the most known aristocrat. I don’t need to confirm it. If you’re suspicious, you can come to the Marquis yourself.

“You sound like you’re not very happy to see me come.”

I answered with a curt answer on purpose. Then his tone became new and polite.

“That can’t be. Please forgive me if you are offended by my inexperience.”

“Hmm……”

It’s really bitter, but there’s one thing I’ve learned in my long life. If you want to be respected from the beginning, never give a good impression. Funny enough, it’s the same that people in this world, in the real world, take advantage of good people.

I walked straight behind the new building that came out to the information station. I lowered my eyes and glanced around. Curious retainers were hiding and watching me one after another. It’s like a cockroach that disappears as soon as my eyes touch it.

The person sitting opposite me was not Daeshin Hall, but a high-ranking new building located right below it. I can’t be offended even if I’m offended, but that wasn’t the point now.

“The purpose of my visit today is to get back the land that the Lord of Illion donated a while ago.”

“!”

The expression of the high priest hardened at my sudden request. Is it so uncomfortable that you’re telling me to say it again after I’ve already said it? But I didn’t hesitate and said what I had to say.

“I am legally married to him and have the right to recover my spouse’s impulsively wasted property. I want you to return it quietly before things gets noisy.”

“What an impulse, Marchioness. That’s ridiculous!”

I expected them to refuse, of course. It’s my turn to argue.

“I’ll say it clearly. Wasn’t the Marquis’ donation of land to the temple strictly for the current Crown Princess, who was praised as a saint at the time? But now that she’s not in the temple, of course, the usage is gone.”

“What was given to the Saintess was also ultimately dedicated to God.”

“No, I can tell you for sure. If you want proof that the marquis donated the land to the Saintess, I’ll show you. I’m giving you the best chance to keep me quiet before I appeal to the Emperor, but you don’t appreciate my consideration.”

The land of Kaelus, which was donated to Diana, was immediately devoured by the greedy temple. Still, I was afraid of Kaelus’ eyes, so what? He treated Diana to the land. But now that there is no one to pay for it, shouldn’t they also give up the land?

The retainer shook his head in a sweat.

“I’m sorry, Marquis. I don’t think we can solve this problem on our own.”

“Then bring in a higher level than you. I’m not going to move here until then.”

“Well, if that’s the case…….”

It doesn’t matter if things get bigger. If only I could let the world know the coldness of Diana, who is praised as a saint.

He glanced down with pride and crossed his legs. The retainer seemed to find it difficult, so he hurried out.

Moments later, a middle-aged man dressed as a minister came in. A familiar face. It’s someone who used to be Diana’s mentor. Of course he doesn’t know me.

“Marchioness.”

I answered him politely with a smile of a smile in my eyes. “My name is Hestia, Minister.”

“I’ve heard roughly that you asked to return the land Marquis Kaelus donated….”

“Oh, you’ve heard correctly.”

I laid my upper body leisurely. Even if the opponent is a minister who is the highest leader of the temple, I should never show nervousness. Didn’t I say that before? The other person always finds it easy to look easy.

I smirked. Equipped with a relaxed tone and expression, I opened my mouth once again.

“As you know, Kaelus must have had a special feeling for Diana, as you are closest to the Saintess. The donation of land also worked for that reason. But now she’s the Crown Princess, and the land is useless to her, so I’m going to have to get it back.”

“Even so, Marchioness. The Marquis also expected that the land would not be entirely owned by Diana. So even if it’s owned by a temple, it’s not entirely unexpected.”

Daishin’s smiling poker face has not yet collapsed. Then I’ll have to let that smile go away from your face.

“Then I can’t do anything. You’re not backing down after all this talk. As I said to the retainer earlier, if it is not resolved here, I intend to appeal before the Emperor. I will also emphasize the harshness of the saint that the world praises. A wicked woman who used the pure love of Kaelus for her own sake. And the temple using it….”

“Marchioness!”

Oh, yeah. Finally that giggling laugh is gone.

“Oh, was that too obvious? This will make you have a lot to think about. Protecting the land or not, the authority of the temple will fall to the earth.”

Of course, this one incident will not undermine the image of the temple. But what if my persistent attacks were added afterwards?

“My demands will not stop until I get the land back. Of course, going to the Imperial Palace is also a nuisance. So I told you. I want to end it quietly.”

I provocatively put my face in front of the distorted minister’s face. Then I whispered as if I were a villain.

“If I tell the crown prince, I don’t think it’s going to end with just a disgrace”

“Well, what…….”

I grinned at him for a moment when he stammered.

“The Crown Princess, who serves as the loyal dog of the temple. If I talk about using pure love to expose the two people that stole the great land, I’ll make some people quite happy”

“This…”!

“The dead Princess Letona left a very good legacy. You know because you have eyes and ears. Some aristocrats still doubt the commoner-born Crown Princess. And it’s a temple that’s holding hands with such a crown princess…….”

The minister was speechless with his mouth wide open. Don’t tell me you didn’t think I’d come out as a threat like this. But what should I do? I am not a noble nobleman of this world, and I am a devil who is ready to play hard to the fullest.

“I’ll show you an amazing magic of cutting off the donation of the temple. If I sound like a bluff, you’ll see. What’s really going to happen.”

“…what a disrespectful remark to be a proud aristocrat, Marchioness.”

It’s hard to say that, really.

“Whoa, what’s the point of embracing such pretentious pride? So just give me the land back quietly, Minister.”

His eyes shook little by little by little.

“If I return the land…… Would that be possible…?”

“Oh, of course! That was my only purpose from the beginning.”

The minister staggered to his feet. He opened the door and went out, and soon returned with a thin envelope.

“This is the donation certificate that the marquis wrote himself. Take it back.”

I took the document out of the envelope. I nodded as I looked through the paper.

“Okay, let’s write the land return memorandum right away, Minister.”

You have to be thorough in everything. The movement of property is best left as a visible document.

The visit to the temple was not as long as I thought. After successfully achieving my goal, I returned to the marquis.

“How was your meeting, Hestia?”

I came out politely and waved the envelope in my hand toward the butler that greeted.

“Yes, I had a lot of fun. Fortunately, we were able to communicate well.”

Uross’ eyes, which received the envelope, widened sharply.

“No, really… Did you get the land back?”

“Of course. It was originally Kaelus’.”

Uross smiled broadly.

“I will hand over the matter to Hestia. Hehe.”

“Oh, please don’t. I’m not very good at housekeeping..”

I waved my hands in a hurry. The purpose of my paper marriage to Kaelus is to taffy Diana and Helios. Therefore, the Marquis’ housekeeping is not mine.

I quickly changed the subject.

“How about Kaelus?”

“Oh, he’s a lot better than yesterday. He had some fruit punch and salad.”

“Phew, that’s a relief.”

If you have an appetite, it means you’re out of the worst. I breathed a sigh of relief.

Uross discreetly recommended. “Why don’t you talk about your visit to the temple?”

“Me? No. I’m sure he’ll feel uncomfortable because I’m still unfamiliar.”

“But…….”

I appreciate his kindness. But isn’t Kaelus in love with Diana? I don’t want to draw attention to him for no reason.

“Whoo-hoo, by the way, I have big mental exhaustion since I’ve been arguing with the minister. I want to rest now, Uross.”

“Oh, then I’ll send a maid soon. Rest peacefully. Lady Hestia,”

He immediately backed out of my presence.

I succeeded in retrieving Kaelus’ land documents from the temple, but in fact, this is only a small beginning. We have to think about the butterfly effect this will bring.

First of all, Diana. The minister of the temple will surely contact Diana. A woman titled Marchioness, who they don’t know where she came from, reported that I took away the land devoted to her. Since the temple did not spare both material and physical support for Diana to become a crown princess, it is obvious that he will ask for help from the crown princess if he goes through such an “unfair” incident.

My presence will soon be known to the Crown Prince and his wife. But instead of looking for me right away, you’ll try to meet Kaelus first. But if his condition doesn’t recover enough to meet the Crown Prince, I’m forced to answer Helios’ call on his behalf.

I’m not afraid. No, I’m rather looking forward to it. It is surprisingly fun to step out of the extras’ position and actively intervene in the world. I wonder how the past I knew will change.

But the most exciting thing among them is to see Kaelus go back to his old self. He doesn’t have to smile at me. It’s just enough for him to live his life without thinking about death.

I came out to look around the returned land with the marquis’ property manager. Fortunately, it has been well managed. Well, there’s no way a money-loving temple would have left this altar-like land. The vitality felt in the fertile arable land made me feel good.

When I returned home as the sun was tilting westward, the butler greeted me with a serious look.

“People came and went from the palace.”

“Oh, really? Were they looking for the marquis?”

“I only sent the letter back, but I think it was from the Crown Prince. I gave it to him, but I don’t know if he’ll read it.”

Kaelus’ condition has not yet recovered enough to handle public affairs. In addition, only later do people know that he attempted to harm himself. Please, Helios shouldn’t have dug more into Kaelus’ wounds with his hasty words.

“Okay. If the marquis hasn’t read it yet, please bring it back quietly. Let me check. Probably because of the land recovered from the temple.”

“Yes, Lady Hestia.”

Uross followed my instructions faithfully.

It’s fast, too. Judging from the interval between the visits to the temple and today’s contact, it seems that Daishin went to Diana immediately after being robbed of the land document by me that day.

As I was changing into my indoor clothes and taking a break for a while, the butler came to my room. But somehow, his expression was unusual.

“?” 

“Well, Lady Hestia. The Lord calls.” said the butler in a discreet tone.

“!”

For a moment, my heart was pounding. Kaelus said he’d meet me first! I expect his reaction to be embarrassed by what I’ve done. The tension was tight.

“Okay, I’ll be there now.”

I looked in the mirror reflexively. I’m finally facing my favorite, and I can’t be too comfortable! But the butler, who stood at the door senselessly, was forced to follow me to the room of Kaelus.

“Kael, I brought Hestia here.”

“Come on in.”

A dull voice that I don’t think is angry or anything. I entered the room with a trembling heart.

My Kaelus. Wearing a proper robe. It’s not the same random appearance as before. The long silver hair and expressionless face are somehow cool.

“Did you call, marquis?”

His hands naturally gathered in front of him and his speech became polite. My favorite pose.

The butler retreated quietly and tried to retreat. But Kaelus called it up.

“You stay there, too.”

“Oh, I will.”

With Uross standing, Kaelus’ purple eyes finally turned straight at me.

“You did something very interesting.”

It is not yet known whether he is angry. I bowed his head and affirmed.

“I’m sorry for being selfish, Marquis.”

“Did you say your name was Hestia?”

“Yes, I am the adopted daughter of the lord of Elea.”

It sounds ridiculous, but I didn’t introduce myself properly until a few days after I got married.

Kaelus’ eyes narrowed.

“I guess you’re not an aristocrat by nature.”

“I’m afraid so.”

“Well, it doesn’t matter.”

Fortunately, he didn’t care too much. What does status have to do with it? It’s a word that only works in modern times. Rome said to follow Roman law, so in the world of Rofan, it is right to follow Rophan’s law. It is only natural that Kaelus clearly identifies my origin.

“Uross.”

“Yes, Mr. Kael.”

“Why didn’t you kick her out?”

The words themselves may be read in a rather unpleasant tone, but the actual tone of Kaelus was as businesslike as just to confirm the facts.

The butler answered politely.

“She knew in advance that there would be trouble and came here to stop it. And she’s very worried about the marquis. She didn’t want any wealth or gain.”

Kaelus’s gaze shifted to me.

“That’s strange. Why did you want to marry me?”

It’s my turn to answer.

“I’ll be honest with you. I’d like to hear an apology from the Crown Prince and Princess. And I want to help the marquis never think of death again.”

The clean expression was oddly disturbed.

“What did Diana and Helios do wrong to you?”

“It’s….”

I took my breath with a slight blur at the end of my speech. Their fault is the despair of my favorite. Which made even living meaningless.

“……It’s not my fault. I just want them to regret any of their choices so far.”

Kaelus tilted his head to the side, as if he didn’t understand. Then Uross interjected in a timely manner.

“I don’t know if you remember, my lord. Hestia has the ability to see the future.”

“Whoa.”

Only then did his head rise again. I guess he really didn’t know. It was all written on his face.

“But is that the reason why you chose me?”

I almost choked up at the casual question. Because from the beginning, there was no other option than Kaelus. So instead of answering, I asked him back.

“With all due respect, may I ask you a question?”

Kaelus’s eyes froze. But he did allow it.

“What’s going on?”

“Do you like what I’m trying to do? If not, I’ll write my divorce and leave the house immediately.”

Yes, I’m not asking for your own reasons. It’s important if you don’t like me to mess around. What will Kaelus say, who loves Diana and hates her at the same time?

Kaelus did not immediately respond. Instead, he handed me a letter in an insincere manner.

“It’s from Helios. Read it, and since it’s your job, make sure you finish it with your own hands. Honestly, I don’t want to do anything right now.”

I quickly received the letter and read it. The content was, in general, that someone pretended to be your companion and threatened the temple, so please find out what happened.

While I was reading, I heard Kaelus’ bitter voice.

“Honestly, I’m curious about the end of this love affair. Do whatever you want. I’m not going to intervene.”

Oh, so you’ll overlook whatever I do. Love and hate are a piece of paper. I somehow understand the complexity of Kaelus.

“Thank you, Marquis. I’ll take care of the Crown Prince. But I need your help to prove that I’m not a fake.”

“I’ll write him back in my handwriting. Helios should be enough.”

“I can’t ask for more. Thank you.”

I stooped a little. with Helios’ letter in one’s hand.

Kaelus slowly got up from the sofa and headed to bed.

“All right, get out of here.”

That’s the end of the conversation. His voice was full of annoyance.

I and the butler immediately withdrew from the presence of Kaelus.

The butler soothed me carefully.

“He hasn’t fully recovered, so please do not be offended.”

Friendly Sir Uross, I replied with a grin. “It’s all right. I appreciate it if you don’t mind it.”

“But you’re the Marquis’ wife…….”

Even if you are a fake married couple, it seems to mean that you are a married couple. But I wasn’t genuinely offended.

“Uross. I really don’t care. Rather, the Crown Prince sent a personal letter, so I should meet him in person and give the Marquis’ reply. Please prepare for the trip.”

“Oh, I will.”

The butler sends the messenger to the palace to get the date of my visit. Until then, I can relax and think about what to say to Helios.


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