Returning to the mansion, Hestine immediately hear Berkian’s shrill voice.
“Hestine. Didn’t I tell you so many times? You are a saint and a lady of the Valkyr family. So, there is no need to listen to what other people dare to say.”
“… I’m sorry. I will try my best next time.”
“And if you’re thinking of talking to that vicious woman, you’d better give up.”
“Yes… I’ll keep that in mind.”
Hestine’s voice trembled and a deep sigh flowed from Berkian’s mouth.
The servants looked at the two and did their job as if they were used to it. There was no longer need to talk about the sight that had become a daily routine.
Berkian wrinkled his brow and brushed his bangs. Hestine’s head dropped endlessly at the action that clearly revealed his frustration.
When Berkian saw it, he briefly clicked his tongue and comforted Hestine.
“Don’t take my words too negatively. It’s all for you.”
“…I know that. So, I’m always grateful and sorry.”
“Yeah, I’m glad you know. Then go up and rest.”
“What about you, brother?”
“I have a few things to talk about with father.”
“Oh… I see. Don’t overdo it.”
“Okay, thank you. I think you’re the only one who thinks of me.”
After a small laugh, Hestine calmly went up to her room. Entering the room, Lizzie, a maid in charge, greeted her.
“You’re here. Are you tired? I kept the bath warm.”
Lizzie gently grabbed Hestine by the arm and led her to the bathroom. Hestine just moved as Lizzie led her.
Hestine, washed by the maid’s hands, changed into pajamas and returned to her room.
The sun was setting and night was approaching.
“Should I make some sweet cocoa before you go to sleep?”
“…No. I want to study.”
When the word study came out of Hestine’s mouth, Lizzie’s eyes opened wide and expressed wonder.
“Yes, I should study the new language.”
“But it’s almost time for you to go to bed….”
“It’s too early. There are still two hours left until ten o’clock.”
Lizzie closed her mouth at Hestine’s obstinate appearance. She would force Hestine to sleep like before but she couldn’t open her mouth recklessly because she remembered what had happened not long ago.
But if you’re going to boss around Hestine too…
Berkian Valkyr’s sharp warning. His piercing eyes that bound Lizzy, a mere maid, could not easily ignore the warning.
“…I can’t stop you because you’re so passionate. I’ll prepare the things you need.”
As Lizzie retreated, Hestine’s eyes folded glibly.
“Yes, thank you.”
Various books were quickly moved onto Hestine’s desk. Hestine turned on the desk light and looked into the book. The characters interpreted with great care by the bishop Hebra, who is proficient in the new language, entered Hestine’s eyes.
Strangely enough, I feel like I’m losing my strength just by looking at it.
Hestine kept his mouth shut, concentrating. She read it slowly, chewing on each letter, but his concentration did not last long.
“Ugh… I don’t know.”
Lizzie, who was waiting behind Hestine, laughed quietly as she groaned.
“Don’t overdo it. Even if you don’t know anything about them, no one will despise you.”
“…will it be like that?”
“Oh! Of course! No one can blame Hestine-nim unless they aren’t in their right mind in the first place!”
Lizzie huffed and shouted. She soon realized she was too excited and shook her head and coughed out a loud cough.
“What… If it’s the woman who is praised as a prophet in the world, I don’t know.”
Hestine just laughed helplessly as Adelia came out of Lizzie’s mouth. She felt like she heard a lot about her from all over the place today.
Adelia Sorne…. No, she’s now Adelia Yurpheon.
“I don’t know.”
Hestine recalled Adelia in silence. She had to admit it. Adelia’s changed.
She doesn’t hate her any more. It’s nothing but contempt.
In fact, Hestine knew. When Adelia was still using Sorne’s name, she wanted to apologize to her. Nevertheless, Hestine felt an unknown fear whenever she saw Adelia. This was an instinct deeply imprinted on her.
That woman will eventually try to hurt her.
So, for Hestine, it was uncomfortable to face Adelia. She wants to avoid her as much as possible
How did I come to think that way…?
Ever since she spilled wine on me? No, I didn’t feel so bad at the time. Is it when she cited my origin and qualifications? No, it wasn’t either.
Oh, I remember.
I began to fear her when I heard of her evil deeds from my brother.
– You better be careful. She uses very vicious tricks to drive people into a corner. There’s a lady who came to the capital from the countryside a while ago, and she was a commoner like you. Luckily, she was adopted by a baron. Oh, of course, the value of existence itself is different from yours. Anyway, the lady has been found dead ever since she spoke to her fiancé, Sir Izar.
She’s the culprit. Isn’t that obvious?
She got goosebumps as she clearly remembered the low whispering voice.
Hestine’s lips turned blue.
“…Lizzie, do you remember the case of Baron Nerof’s young lady?”
“Baron Nerof’s Young lady? Oh…! I remember! It was a very sad incident. I was still young….”
“…was the real culprit revealed?”
“The real culprit? They couldn’t figure it out. Based on the investigation it was suicide. Do you think they’ll find a suspect?”
Hestine murmured quietly.
“Of course, it’s not suicide. Everyone knows. Why would a young lady, who just became an aristocrat, take her own life?”
“Saint, this terrible story is not good for your emotions. Come on, go to bed.”
Lizzie strokes Hestine’s shoulder with a friendly touch and tries to lead her to bed. But somehow Hestine was dazed.
Embarrassed, Lizzie called Hestine a lady instead of her usual title, Saint.
Hestine’s gaze turned toward the book spread out here and there. She soon looked down at her small soft palms.
Suddenly, she had this question.
What did I do with my will?
Ever since she was sponsored by the Valkyr family, all her actions have been done by the duke.
Hestine had no complaints or doubts.
It was natural. The Valkyr family sponsored her so she just followed their orders.
Hestine’s blank eyes headed to the big, colorful mirror.
A slender woman who had not yet taken off her girlish shirt was looking at Hestine.
Hestine was startled at the sight of her in the mirror. She looked like a doll in the mirror, with an invisible solid thread tied to her limbs.
She felt suffocated for a moment. She didn’t know what to do now.
Should I stay like this or do something? What should I do? Will it be possible?
Hestine closed her eyes to the questions that followed.
“What’s wrong with you today, Saint? Did you happen to hear anything at the party today?”
Lizzie asked with an anxious voice at the unusual look of Hestine. The source of her power was Hestine. As such roots were shaken, Lizzie naturally became anxious.
“Lizzie… Am I… Am I really the saint?”
Lizzie cried out in surprise.
“What are you talking about! Hestine-nim is a saint no one can deny! You’ve already proved it through countless disasters!”
“…I sometimes have this question. I wonder if this is my strength? I don’t know if I deserve it.”
Hestine looked down at her delicate hands. Warm divine power flowed over her palm.
“I can’t do this. I think I’ll need a break for a while.”
“Is that so?”
“I’ll tell the duke well, and Hestine-nim, focus on your rest. Come on, get some sleep.”
Hestine lay in bed, led by Lizzie. Soon all the lights went out except for the candles on the bedside. The faint darkness induced sleep, but Hestine could not easily close her eyes.
There was a complex emotion above her eyes.
I forgot. The presence of the Holy Land.
Adelia sighed heavily as she rubbed her brows.
Relics. Relics of special power from ancient times. Each of the sacred relics had enormous divine power, and certain artifacts exhibited mysterious abilities.
However, the existence and exact ability of each relic were not known because it was top secret. It could be said that it was almost like a legend.
The Duke of Valkyr is secretly collecting holy relics…
Adelia received information from Bishop Berg that the Duke of Valkyr is collecting relics.
Why are they collecting holy relics?
The Duke of Valkyr is up to something.
What is he up to?
Adelia rose with a sigh. At that moment, Ivan opened the door and entered the room as if he had been waiting.
“The cardinal’s reply has arrived.”
“Oh, thank you.”
It’s the letter she had been waiting for, Adelia hurriedly received the letter from Ivan and opened it. Soon, a voice mix with confusion came out between Adelia’s lips.
“This is… an invitation.”