Fortunately, no one saw me use magic thanks to the dust. It was almost at the same moment that an ominous screeching sound reverberated and a giant bird emerged from the paper.
Black flames flickered.
I wasn’t able to express the color red in the drawing, but the bird with each feather I painted meticulously now wrapped its wings around me, protecting me.
Warmth to me, but to my enemy it exuded a heat that could melt one’s brain.
Birds made with such specs had an incredibly good defense effect. Stuck in this certainly safe condition, I checked what attacked me.
And I was amazed.
It’s a spear. If it had hit me, I would have been pierced and killed instantly.
The bird I created by my delicate sketching did not collapse with that single attack. Admiring its strength and my drawing skills, I looked at where Lacius stood.
He’s not there.
The sparring field was empty.
I blinked once, wondering if I had seen it wrong, and this time I saw Ziontin’s face.
“Dame Adles, where’s Lacius?”
When I asked, Ziontin struggled to keep her face from crumpling.
“Didn’t I tell you to go back earlier?”
“I asked where Lacius was.”
“The leader went to catch the one who dared to attack you during the match.”
It was a wise decision.
I was safe anyway, and the one who failed to assassinate me must be in the middle of running away, so Lacius must go after him.
Ziontin looked completely annoyed, maybe because her battle was interrupted, but she still stood close to me. It feels like she’s guarding me.
Not wanting to let this chance to get close to Ziontin slip, I let out a deep sigh, loud enough for her to hear.
“Ummm, I guess I’m really hated here. I can’t even count how many times my life has been threatened now.”
“What is that bird?”
“It’s a life-saving bird I bought from the back alley. If I hadn’t bought it, I’m sure I would have been skewered already. When I’m alone, things like this always happen…”
I felt Ziontin flinch a little. She must have remembered how coldly she told me to go back alone earlier.
I smiled bitterly and shook my head.
“Lacius was just really worried about me. I’m sorry. I haven’t been to the capital for a long time, so I still don’t know this place well… I have never been mean to anyone, but I still keep getting hated like this…”
Yeah, that’s right. In the original story, villainess no. 4 was indeed evil, but what did I do?
I’m not guilty of anything other than grabbing Lacius and giving him one strong kiss. Besides, we didn’t even use our tongues!
I dropped my head, because I was genuinely upset. Then, Ziontin’s atmosphere became rigid.
‘Is it working?’
Ziontine Adles, a passionate knight who wants to protect the small, delicate, and weak.
To be honest, I’m not small, and I’m neither delicate nor weak. But it depends on what I say. As long as I can make the situation favorable to me, that’s enough.
I fixed my gaze to empty air going for an autumn woman look who seemed somewhat lonely.
‘Argh, these floaters!’
The atmosphere was broken a little by the things floating in my vision over the clear sky, but I persevered until tears welled up in my eyes.
Then a moment later, Lacius returned wearing a terrifying expression. A man covered in blood was caught in his grasp and was being dragged away.
“He tried to harm my future wife. Lock him up in a dungeon.”
Lacius said that she was his soon-to-be wife. I guess he got used to it now after saying it a few times.
I waved at the man who tried to get money by harming others and got dragged away to his execution, feeling no sympathy. Ziontin then gave me a strange look.
“Is this really normal for you?”
“There’s no use in talking about it anymore.”
“If you are threatened with death this seriously, you must tell his highness. They dare try an assassination within the Capital of Terran. Whoever is behind this should be investigated immediately and punished severely.”
Ziontin was exceedingly just. She was strict with laws and rules, and she couldn’t stand people who broke ethics. She doesn’t spare even the unfortunate victims..
I finally turned my head toward Ziontin.
A teardrop that I barely squeezed out of my cold eyes as I stared at the blue sky finally fell.
“Oh, I’m sorry. I really… I know it looks ugly.”
“It’s just, ah. It’s been a while— It’s been a while since I went out… That’s why I thought it would be okay as long as I don’t go to cafes or exhibitions like everyone else. I thought… ”
I hurriedly squeezed the corners of my eyes and wiped them, blurring the end of my words. Then, I quickly changed my expression and smiled brightly.
“It’s okay, I’m unharmed. That’s what matters.”
Ziontin’s facial muscles contracted.
I got up from my seat and approached Lacius, who was coming up the stairs. It was a typical scene of a knight and a lady that anyone would see in books.
But while others were looking at our reunion with remarkably warm expressions, I buried my face in his chest and asked Lacius in a rough tone.
“What is that?”
“It’s an assassin.”
“No, I know that. Where did you catch him?”
That’s what matters.
Lacius wrapped his arms around me and pretended to pat me, pressing his lips to my ear. His hot breath tickled me, but I did not writhe and stayed still.
“Near the glass greenhouse.”
Because I read the original story, I knew how important the glass greenhouse was.
Where other people just pass by. A place you don’t pay attention to. No one would find the glass greenhouse strange even if an assassin was caught there.
However, the glass greenhouse of this imperial palace was the place where villainess no. 1’s wicked schemes were plotted.
“Do you know anything?”
“No, more than that… The servant disappeared.”
“Yeah, they can’t leave their spots arbitrarily right?”
Lacius furrowed his brow. Then he turned around and looked at the field, and the servant was standing there again near the practice swords with a pretty clean face.
“There was no one there earlier.”
“Yeah, he left.”
“I get it.”
That’s all I can tell him. Whether or not the servant was a double agent will be revealed by Lacius.
I pretended to cling onto Lacius’ arm and took a step forward.
I did not forget to give a friendly farewell to Dame Ziontin and Sir Luke while leaving the knights’ sparring field.
Ziontin still didn’t seem to have a good impression of me, but she definitely softened a bit. Somehow, I had a feeling that my plan of seducing Ziontin would work out well.