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“What’s going on?”
“I’ve heard that the third prince is attending Viscount Larsson’s banquet. I don’t know what’s going to happen, so I’m going to go there.”
“Then we can postpone our departure by a day.”
“We can’t do that.”
As a result of Leonis’ stern remarks, Celia’s face was full of a feeling of unfairness.
“Why? I’d be in the mansion anyway. I can’t even wait for Leon?”
“It would officially state that I am in the carriage with my wife. A person of similar person will accompany me in the carriage, so please bear with him even if it is uncomfortable.”
They needed to get the second heart piece from Prince Giel, who seemed to be planning the worst. Celia was worried that it would be possible.
“However……Leon has a strong presence, but will that disguise work? He is the fake one, but I can disguise it in order……”
“Don’t worry about that.”
Leonis’ plans differed from what he had told Celia. His plan to get a second piece from Prince Giel at the banquet was right, but his intentions to go were not.
He discovered a clue as to where the monster that entered the Duchy of Cardian on their wedding day originated from.
Thus he planned to raid the place where the monstrous spider was supposed to be created. Because Prince Michael was monitoring them, it was necessary to create a fake.
Celia seemed to believe that something was off the table, but she didn’t ask any further questions. He seemed to have other plans, but she believed he’d tell her after today.
“Who’s going to stand in for you?”
Leonis told her in low voice. Celia was also familiar with him. He was one of her escort knights, and his physique and temperament resembled him.
“I thought I’d go with Leon.”
Celia grunted, and Leonis looked bewildered as if he hadn’t expected such a rebuke. Celia smiled and reached for his neck.
“Instead……Will you be safe when you return?”
Leonis glanced at Celia as though possessed throughout the sweet kiss that followed.
Leonis then brought Celia back into the bedroom and hugged her again.
✦ ✦ ✦
Celia got inside the carriage after he decided to use the sorcerer’s spell to disguise his fake face. Leonis would have been watching Celia enter the carriage from a safe distance away where no one could see him.
‘Is there anything else I can do to help you?’
The most important secret, Michael’s birth, has already been revealed. He also figured out how to break the curse, and the first piece was already in Celia’s hands.
She might have been devoted to the capital’s Temple of the Heavenly God, but she chose the Duchy of Cardian because there were so many eyes on her. Celia now possessed it, disguised in a ring that could be used as a magic purse.
It was ideal for Celia because it was more convenient to carry than the old magic pocket in the shape of a bag.
‘Aside from that……the Princess’ secrets have yet to be useful.’
She had already told him that Phil was holding Lucy, whom Princess Amelia loved. That if she only secures her, Princess Amelia will follow the advice of this place.
Leonis knew that Michael had poisoned his wife, Vivian. He just didn’t tell the Duke of Carta about it yet because the situation wasn’t right.
Celia went even further, revealing that Giel was in fact in love with Vivian.
“……Prince Giel? Why didn’t he stop Michael’s engagement?”
Because Vivian had a child before being married, it was her escort knight’s child who escorted her. Giel, her childhood friend, knew the child was stillborn in the womb.
That was why he hid the fact while dating Vivian later. Vivian was not suitable enough to be his wife.
He was thus indecisive until Michael and Vivian married, which he regretted when she ate her poison and collapsed.
“You are a pitiful little boy.”
The Duke of Carta was well aware of Giel and Vivian’s affair. It was supposed that Michael was also conscious of the problem. Only Michael accepted Vivian Carta as his wife for the sake of his position.
When Michael saw that he poisoned her without spending the first night with her, his intention was obvious.
To take advantage of and throw away.
It would not have been necessary to poison Vivian to usurp the Duke of Carta’s power. Even if it was tough to convince Vivian.
‘This too…… It’s information that I still don’t know where to use it.’
It was also about a hidden passage in the imperial palace. The Imperial Palace was riddled with secret passages, and there was a special sign at the entrance.
It was also the way Lily discovered and used to enter the Imperial Palace in the original novel.
Celia has yet to try it. First of all, it was because she didn’t have time. After all, Leonis was always by her side, and her maid and escort knights accompanied her even when she went out.
“Madam. Should we leave?”
Celia nodded as Miline, her maid, said that. With Celia’s approval, the Dukes of Cardian began their long procession.
‘Are you planning on arriving in the evening?’ Leonis will begin work around that time, so he won’t be able to return until at least tomorrow morning.’
He stated that he had no idea what was going on, but that if things became complicated, it could be delayed by a day or two. Celia sighed and looked out the window, her face casting a glum expression.
It was the first time she had been apart from her husband in this way since their marriage. Her anxiousness caused her mood to swing.
✦ ✦ ✦
Leonis confirmed that the Duchess of Cardian’s carriage had moved away and left. The duke’s capital palace included a secret entrance to keep him hidden from prying eyes.
The door opened softly when Nile, who was in the lead, pressed the button. Their moves through the dark hallway conveyed assurance.
Leonis listened to Zeppel explain the operation as he stood by his side. Prince Michael had already taken control of the Imperial Army’s army, but he was not satisfied with it.
Young Generals and families that had produced knights from generation to generation were recruited, and sorcerers were given money to study monsters behind the scenes.
Monster research was illegal not just in the Magic Tower, but also in the Imperial Family.
Even if he had the evidence, he had no intention of accusing Prince Michael immediately. The emperor did not express it openly, but he had shown a laid-back attitude toward the incidents committed by his children.
He wouldn’t try to defeat Michael until he brought in proof that Michael wasn’t the emperor’s son.
The fact that Prince Michael was doing it from behind would encourage the other two princes and empresses to battle for power on their behalf.
From Leonis’ point of view, it was good for the three princes to point their swords at each other. They’re already keeping each other in check, but he wants the conflict to get heated.
Enough to see blood.
A secret passageway led to a mansion located on the outskirts of the capital. It was the mansion of a count who went bankrupt and committed suicide.
Although it is widely thought that it was abandoned due to debt and other competing interests, it was held by one of the Duke of Cardian’s close companions.
Leonis’ subordinates appeared with a horse hidden nearby. It was already getting dark outside. The banquet of Count Larsson must have begun.
It was attended by Baron Nicole, who would act as decoys. Nicole was one of Leonis’ closest acquaintances, but because of his status, he was also not well known to the aristocratic society.
However, since he had a strong desire for revenge against the emperor, he was concerned about how he would treat his son, Giel.
‘We’ll figure it out.’
Leonis was most concerned about Celia’s safe arrival in the duchy. The distance between the capital and Acylus, the Duchy of Cardian’s capital, was long, but it could be covered in half a day using the teleportation magic circle.
‘It won’t be a problem.’
Leonis hurried to speak, intending to return to Celia’s side as quickly as possible.
✦ ✦ ✦
The carriage sped to the teleportation magic circle’s post. She needed to get into the Duchy of Cardian before dark, so the road was cramped.
Celia looked out the window with a sad expression on her face. Will, who is portraying Celia alongside her doppelgangers Leonis and Miline, tried but failed to appease her.
‘It’s really sad that Leonis isn’t here…… Is this empty nest syndrome?’
It was evident that he had a crush on Leonis, but Celia didn’t think about it that far. Miline stated as she took a deep breath.
“Don’t worry, the Duke will be fine.”
“I know that.”
Knowing and worrying are two different things. Even if he is safe there, it is unknown whether he will be able to return without getting hurt anywhere.
On the other hand, Miline and Will seemed to like Celia taking care of Leonis. Celia felt relieved that Leonis was surrounded by good people once more.
‘In the original story, these people must have all died……’
Because no one matches Will’s description in the original novel, he may have died on the day Michael sent the giant monster spider. In the hands of Leonis, who is mad by the madness of the curse.
Celia thought that she was lucky that something like that had not happened again.
“Madam. It seems we have reached the post.”
She didn’t appear surprised when she visited the Duchy of Cardian after her wedding, but it was also a place she visited on her way up to the capital.
Normally, a carriage bearing the Duke of Cardian’s coat of arms would pass through without being stopped, but this time it seemed to be dragging on time.
‘What is it?’
Miline rolled down the window and beckoned to the nearby duke’s knight, as it took longer than expected. As the knight approached, he inquired as to what was going on.
“There was a problem with the magic circle, so we decided to limit the number of people who could move at the same time. The commander directed me to call the wizard of the post.”
It looked like they were calling a wizard to check if the magic circle was safe. Celia and Will were greeted by the knight, who then left.
She had a strange and unsettling feeling.
‘What the hell…… it stinks.’
It had the smell of a battleground. When the armies of each country clash and the battlefields are filled with bodies. The stench was mixed with that of a beast consuming the body and the rotting corpse.