“If you don’t like it, say it out loud.”
Elysia barely turned her head at the sound of Eleon’s voice.
Standing in the gloomy darkness, he was the first she saw.
Wearing thin and light armor on his shoulders and chest, and holding a sword in his hand, Eleon looked like a giant from below.
“How…how did you get here…….”
Instead of answering, he strapped the sheath around his waist and walked over to her.
Eleon held out his hand, but as if she had been beaten when she was kidnapped, her body ached as if her joints would give out every time she moved.
Besides, she was dizzy from the smoke she had inhaled a while ago.
When Elysia couldn’t get up, Eleon sighed briefly and hugged her gently.
His arms smelled familiar.
The unrealistic sentiment brought Elysia to tears.
“You got hurt?”
“Are you sick?”
“…… I’m fine.”
Eleon picked her up carefully.
As if he knew every nook and cranny of the palace, he quickly escaped the surveillance net and exited the palace through a narrow passage whose purpose was unknown.
The familiar forest in front of the northern wall of the Imperial Palace and Hadunsha was visible.
Eleon walked effortlessly through the dense, pathless forest.
Then, shortly after, a horse appeared tied to a tree.
Elysia was nervous and tried not to breathe in case she made a mistake, but finally she was able to breathe the air.
How did Eleon get here?
Elysia was kidnapped by Sabiel.
Today was the beginning of her death as mentioned in the original plot.
Elysia’s last moments were about to begin.
Am I seeing an illusion?
The familiar feeling and scent of sandalwood were too vivid to think of it that way.
Eleon with her in his arms flung himself over the big black horse.
“Sleep if you are tired.”
She has never ridden a horse with such instability.
“I think I’m going to fall.”
“That will not happen.”
As Eleon took the reins, the horse began to run slowly.
Her head banged against Eleon’s hard chest each time she jerked up and down to the same sound as a horse’s hooves.
There’s no way I can sleep.
Despite that though, Elysia immediately fell asleep as if she had passed out.
* * * * *
There was a commotion at Count Harrington’s manor house.
Countess Harrington, who was usually elegant and noble, jumped up with a face red and pointed her finger at Karina.
“How could you, how could you do this?”
“Countess, please calm down.”
Karina’s maid, who was perplexed, did not know what to do with the enraged Countess Harrington.
“I’m so sorry.”
Karina only lowered her head and sobbed like a criminal in front of her.
“I was happy to have you as my adopted daughter. I tried so hard to be nice to you. How can you tarnish your family’s honor?”
“My lady. Please calm down.”
When Countess Harrington looked at the maid, she suddenly slapped her face.
With a tremendous sound, the maid’s face swelled red in an instant.
“What the hell do you think you’re doing?”
“Countess. I am terribly sorry.”
“You didn’t tell me when this young lady who doesn’t know anything about the capital do something so serious!”
“I’m so sorry, Countess.”
Tears also fell from the eyes of the maid, who repeatedly apologized due to the fierce criticism.
“Who is the father of the child?”
The trouble began when the maid who took care of Karina informed the Countess that she was not in good health.
This is because Karina, who looks young and healthy, missed her period, and left irregular blood stains on her bed sheets.
She wondered if her lady’s hard days had begun, so she fetched a hot water bag and changed the sheet on her bed to a darker color.
It was very important and basic for a maid to check the health of her master.
For every aristocratic family, it is very important to have a healthy heir.
The maid informed the Countess without delay. But the Countess, who expected many courtship letters to arrive for her beautiful Karina, accompanied her to the doctor.
Until that moment, everything was fine.
However, no one expected the results of the examination.
“I can’t believe a virgin is having a child.”
The Countess muttered in exasperation and pounded her chest.
“I’m going to cut my own throat.”
Karina could only whimper and cry.
“Who is the father of the child? Speak. Then we can find a way.”
Karina, who had been crying, moved her lips a little.
“His..His Highness the Crown Prince.”
The face of the Countess, who had been fanning her reddened face with her hands, lit up in an instant.
“I see. I believed you wouldn’t be the kind of kid to run and cause an accident.”
“Why didn’t you tell me earlier? I must tell the Count immediately. Don’t we have to see His Majesty right now?”
“Sob sob sob.”
Karina cried even sadder, seeing the countess act as if she had grabbed a lifesaver with a hopeful expression.
That lifesaver is rotten.
After spending a night with Sabiel, his attitude changed as if it had never happened.
Karina tried to meet Sabiel for a while, but after learning that he was deliberately avoiding her as if he was making fun of her, she immediately stopped visiting the Crystal Palace.
All she believed in was herself.
She herself firmly believed that destiny would lead her to happiness.
It will continue to be as it has been up to now.
「“I’m fine. Lady Karina, your destiny will find its place.”」
「“Oh, thank you. Thank you so much. I’m glad to hear those words.”」
「“You have nothing to thank me for. Your fate must have guided you here.”」
How reassured she was to hear that from Rona, no, Elysia.
She didn’t care if she was the granddaughter of the old lady fortune teller or the priestess Elysia.
The future Elysia “knows” about her was more accurate than anything else.
And Karina clearly felt the unknown and intense flow of fate.
There was something about that man.
He gave Karina new hope and the strength to live.
First love doesn’t always come true.
After a while, she forgot about her first love, Sabiel, and waited to have a relationship with Eleon.
But contrary to her hopes, meeting Eleon was difficult for her.
Eleon had already disappeared when she returned to the ballroom after seeing off Elysia, who said that she was going back because she wasn’t feeling well at that moment.
And after that, she sent letters expressing that she wanted to meet Eleon, but none of them received a reply.
Also, after a while, she heard that Eleon visited the Duke of Yuter’s manor every day to meet Elysia.
「“I didn’t know him at the time…… I know who he is now. He is Grand Duke Clevent. The man who danced with you a while ago.”」
How lucky Karina felt when she found out who he was and his name.
「“It was as if time had stopped. It felt like we were the only two left in the world. I didn’t know him, and we only met for a few minutes, and I had the feeling that destiny was whispering to me that he is my……”」
It would have been better if he was the one to dance with her for the first time in her debut.
Missing a chance due to a fight with Sabiel, Karina looked at him dancing with Elysia throughout with regret.
She took Sabiel’s hand for her first dance.
Furthermore, Elysia confirmed that she felt the same way.
However, when rumors spread that Eleon was passionately courting Elysia, Karina, who was waiting for her destiny mate, felt like a fool.
A heat spread through her body, and then suddenly her spine went cold.
She was angry with Elysia, and when she thought of Eleon, she cried because she was sad that he didn’t recognize her.
Karine then felt resentful when she thought of Sabiel. She holds a grudge against him.
In the end, the reason why she was so terrified and anxious was that the Crown Prince lured her.
Sabiel. I’m not going to forgive you.
A deep resentment towards Sabiel settled in Karina’s heart.
However, with Elysia’s help, she had some tea and talked to Eleon.
Elysia had no feelings for Eleon.
Moreover, for unknown reasons, the Duke wasn’t fond of Eleon’s visit.
Marriage was an important milestone for both families.
No matter how passionate one side is, it cannot be done unilaterally.
Karina felt more and more relieved every time she arrived at Duke Yuter’s manor.
Rather, she was convinced that she would be able to win Eleon’s heart, even if it took a while.
It was at that time that she found out she was pregnant.
When her healthy body skipped her period, she felt an uncomfortable throbbing sensation as if something was clumping in her belly.
No way… No way, this can’t be happening.….
Although anxious, Karina could not secretly call a doctor.
It was because the Countess had never given her an allowance.
After some time passed, she was confronted by her personal maid.
“The child is the precious blood of the royal family. Why didn’t you tell me before? I don’t know either. Ho ho ho.”
The Countess seemed relieved, but Karina was not.
She wouldn’t have been so miserable if Sabiel loved her. But he was a cold and cruel man.
He was a capricious man who whispered words of love at night and dumped the woman the next day.
Although Karina was naive, having grown up in the countryside, she knew that such a man was a bad man.
She couldn’t entrust her happiness and well-being to this man.
“Stop crying. It’s not good for the baby.”
Even the soft voice of the Countess seemed to drag Karina into the depths of the abyss.
* * * * *
Elysia barely came to her senses.
After a few blinks, she saw the room she was lying in.
The low ceiling and neat but simple furniture.
She was in a strange place.
Eleon brought me here.
She had no idea if this place belonged to the Duke or Eleon.
The door opened and Eleon entered.
Her throat was sore.
Then, Eleon handed her a cup of warm milk.
As the hot milk passed down her throat, the cold air that had gathered from inside her body seemed to melt.
At the same time, her head ached and she felt like throwing up even the sip of milk she had just drank.
“You…… How did you get there?”
Seeing him blow away Sabiel with his sword, even before she passed out, was the first thing that came to her mind, even after she had only just regained consciousness.
Eleon’s expression seemed heavy and complicated.
Elysia felt unknown anxiety.
“That…… You’d better talk to the Duchess.”
Before Eleon could answer, Mariela entered the room crying.
Elysia couldn’t understand.
Eleon looked at the mother and daughter with an expressionless face, and then quickly walked away.
Mariela burst into tears.
The handkerchief she held was so soaked that it became useless to wipe away her tears.
“I… I have something to tell.”
“What’s going on?”
Rather, she felt uncomfortable seeing Mariela and Eleon on the same side, after disagreeing when Elysia said that she would not return to the duke’s residence and would stay by Eleon’s side.
Tears welled up at the corners of Mariela’s eyes as she looked at her.
“I…… I am Won Yoon-Ji.”