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“I’m also relieved to see your healthy face. I was very worried that you would lose your heart because of my brother’s actions.”
“Thank you for your words, but I came here today to get some peace and quiet… I don’t know if it’ll make me more concerned.”
Michael smiled and observed Leonis, who didn’t fall for it right away and maintained his neutrality. His intentions were obvious when he dared to attend a banquet at these aristocrats’ social clubs.
‘The only thing that mattered was whether the Duke chose to support Giel or myself..’
“Hmm, then, how can I help the Duke in calming your heart? My foolish brother will not be able to attend the banquet, so how about giving a definite answer?”
Michael had no control over the situation, but he could make it happen. Leonis, on the other hand, shook his head, his eyes gleaming.
“No. How dare I wish for that? However….”
Michael gave Leonis a stern look as if to tell him to speak up. His red eyes were terrifying, but since he was a member of the royal family, he couldn’t avoid him.
“…..My wife wants to have a tea party, could you please put her request in so Princess Amelia can come?”
“Do you mean Amelia?”
Michael appeared to pause for a moment after hearing the unexpected name. The nobles who had gathered there were also loud. He planned to invite another lady, but the tea party would take place at the Duchess of Cardian’s residence.
The place was the Duke of Cardian’s, but he was curious about the type of high-ranking noblewoman who would attend. Princess Amelia, on the other hand, was in a slightly different position.
She didn’t have a proper tutor due to her low status as the daughter of the emperor’s concubine, so if Prince Michael invited her, she wouldn’t be able to refuse.
It was also the invitation from the Duke of Cardian.
“…The Duke seems to care about his wife quite a lot.”
“Is there anything wrong with that?”
It was a widespread story that Prince Michael Hermos loved his wife who was lying in bed. In reality, though, it was completely different.
Leonis, the Duke of Cardian, was also aware of that because Celia had already told him. Michael smiled, but with the sad expression he’d come to expect.
“I’m jealous of the Duke….. All right, I’ll talk to Amelia.”
He would not expect the Duke of Cardian to back Fifth Princess Amelia because of this. She was just a princess who was kept by the emperor because her powers had manifested.
As proof of that, the emperor did not attach a single escort knight to her. If any of the empresses wanted to kill her, they could do so as many times as they wanted.
Such was Amelia’s current situation; A princess whose name was not even worth killing.
‘It wouldn’t be bad.’
Amelia seems to have a weakness for Phil, but… Phil wouldn’t even tell Amelia not to go. On the other hand, if he tries to manipulate her through Amelia, Leonis might not notice.
As a result, Michael didn’t seem to mind if the Duchess of Cardian was put in a difficult situation. No, it may be better for her to be in a difficult situation.
It will be easy to win the heart of the Duchess of Cardian.
✦ ✦ ✦
Oh no… !
The fact that the divine beast no longer came down to earth had occurred before he was even born. What happened to Saint Agnes shocked the Heavenly God Church.
The saintess could not give an answer and died of illness without saying anything about the curse, and the religious order of the Heavenly God Church was reduced by half compared to before.
Still, the Heavenly God Church was one of the top three churches in the empire, but it paled in comparison to the glory of the past.
When High Priest Hellion saw the beast with the head of a white eagle, large and hard brown wings, and the body of a lion, he knew it was a divine beast.
It resembled a griffin, but the last divine beast seen in Saintess Agnes’ torch was just that.
‘The divine beast….. No!’
The divine beast was being hunted. A three-clawed dragon charged in and attempted to bite the divine beast. It was a dream, but Hellion kept a wary eye on them.
The battle was between a giant dragon and a divine beast with divine light, but the dragon emerged victorious. The dragon sprayed its black mist at the divine beast, poisoning it and eventually breaking its neck.
Hellion wept and fell to his knees.
How dare they attack the divine beast that carries Nedesmer’s will… Not even a dragon could be pardoned. However, the blasphemous act did not end there.
The dragon intended to place it’s filthy front paws on the divine beast’s corpse before cutting off its chest. As the divine beast’s blood-dripping heart was drawn out, Hellion looked at them with a puzzled expression.
Even the divine beast’s heart was sacred. It was emitting a faint light despite being soaked in blood.
With its claws, the dragon who laid down the heart split it into four pieces. The dragon then swallowed its heart whole.
A dazzling light poured from the dragon’s entire body when it closed its large mouth and passed it through its throat. Hellion looked at it with a blank expression on his face.
‘The divine light…. Is-Is this possible? Is this allowed?’
The dragon’s body, which had grayish-brown dirty scales, shone brilliantly in gold at that point. Even the dragon’s reptilian eyes glistened with divine light.
The entire world seemed to kneel at his feet in the light.
With an arrogant expression on its face, the dragon spread its wings and looked up at the sky. It was beginning to darken.
‘Right! The God of Heaven will not allow this!’
Black lightning fell between the clouds and struck the dragon. He could see the dragon screaming in pain.
The dragon raised its yellow eyes and looked around, then spit black blood on a knight in white armor with dragon patterns. Without even raising his head, the knight was drenched in black blood.
His white armor was stained black, and the curse’s poison seemed to have spread throughout his body, but he sat motionless, kneeling on one knee.
The dragon spit all of the black blood out and let out a long scream. It was a satisfactory smile.
Hellion was enraged at the sight that any priest would despise. The dragon looked at him at that point, as if it was aware of his presence.
He was enraged, but it was a dragon, and he was only a human. Hellion panicked as he realized he couldn’t stand up to the dragon.
When he turned around, he noticed a woman dressed in a white robe. Her face was hidden by her hood, which was pressed so tightly against her robe that only her hair could be seen.
She had pink wavy hair. The woman held a large egg in her arms.
‘Egg? No way….’
The dragon was running and spewing black flames horrendously. Even though he was terrified, Hellion grabbed the woman and tried to run away together.
But before that, the egg she was holding cracked, releasing a white lump of light. It quickly grew in size and took on the appearance of a huge tiger with silver fur.
The tiger had heavenly light wings on its back. It resembled a Nedesmer god’s symbolism.
‘Is this a new divine beast?’
Without fear, the divine beast charged headfirst towards the dragon, who appeared to be 20 times his height. Hellion’s face was amazed with fear as he considered the possibility of seeing the next generation of divine beasts.
The dragon was far too large and powerful, but the divine beast was no bigger than a giant tiger.
‘Aaaahhh….. No! Just run away!’
Even though Hellion screamed in anguish, the divine beast continued to fight the dragon despite hearing the howl. Hellion searched his surroundings for help before noticing the woman approaching the knight, kneeling on her knees.
She was giving the black-armored knight flowers.
He couldn’t possibly be unfamiliar with the flower. That’s what priests would receive and handle until they were sick of it.
The flower had the appearance of a lily flower, with only the body part of the flower being purple, making it a lovely yet elegant flower.
The knight stuffed the flower that the woman had given him into the gap of his armor. He then took her hand in his and stood up.
In the meantime, the dragon and the divine beast were engaged in a fierce battle.
He noticed the knight wielding a spear approaching the dragon. The knight’s eyes could be seen through the hole in the helmet on his head, but the fearsome red eyes made Hellion tremble.
The knight’s spear deflected the dragon’s front feet as it was about to pierce the divine beast’s chest.
With a terrifying force, the knight began to push the dragon. The dragon’s venomous breath and raging flames could not stop the knight.
Hellion didn’t even blink as he stood there, staring at the knight and dragon. He could see the knight’s armor, which had been stained with the dragon’s black blood, coming out gradually and turning shining white.
The knight who had fully transformed into a white knight threw the spear embedded in the dragon’s body aside and drew his sword. The dragon’s breath was suffocated by the sword that cut through its scales.
The dragon, clutching the snake entangled in its left foot, sank heavily to the ground. The sight of the dragon collapsing filled Hellion with both relief and fear.
He realized that this was an unusual dream.
The dragon’s shape suddenly turned into a torn strewn insignia on the floor. The dragon’s crest holding a tangled snake in its left foot was the crest of the current imperial family.
The knight, who was standing with his feet on the insignia, was staring at someone. Hellion followed his gaze and fixed it on the approaching woman.
She walked past Hellion and came to a halt in front of the knight. The knight knelt down at his feet as if it were natural, and the woman placed a flowery wreath made of penina flowers on the knight’s head.
The wreath was transformed into a crown of light, which adorned the man’s head. The knight snatched the woman by the waist and seemed to remove his helmet.
As if blessing them, the divine beast guarded their backs. Hellion shivered and looked around, trying to figure out who she was.
However, the light obscured it, and neither the knight’s nor the woman’s faces were visible. Her wavy pink hair was all he could see.