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He knew who owned this laboratory because he had been following them up to this point. Given how well the traces were covered, Michael was obviously the owner of this villa.
But what was the meaning of all these traces?
While he was contemplating, one of the wizards approached him with a bewildered face. He held a communication crystal ball in his hand.
— Your Excellency, Your Excellency…….
Even the knights surrounding Leonis became pensive after the wizard’s next words and just glanced at him. The energy that began to seep out of Leonis’ body was terrifying.
The culprit was Michael or Phil, one of the two. The place is set up as if it belonged to Phil……
“……I will go to the Second Imperial Palace.”
If it had been Michael’s plan all along, he would have encouraged him to kidnap Celia amid the chaos to make it look like Phil was the one who committed the crimes.
Conversely, if Phil was doing what was shown here, it was highly likely that Celia had been kidnapped and taken to his palace, as he had previously targeted her.
No matter who this was, Celia was most likely in Phil’s palace.
But, even if it was a small possibility, what if Michael dragged Celia to his palace?
Leonis shifted her gaze to Nile.
“What about Nicole? Is he finished?”
“He has completed the task and is on his way out.”
Nile responded with a nervous expression on his face. Leonis’ eyes gleamed unnervingly.
“Go back to Prince Giel and inform him of the situation. We’ll have to keep Michael distracted. Check out the dogs you put on Michael.”
“I understand, Your Excellency.”
“There is no need to explore this place. I’ll return with Celia. We need to be more prepared for the worst-case scenario.”
When Leonis spoke, the knights all knelt at the same time. Leonis gave them a quick look before turning around. Zeppel and the knight followed Leonis.
‘If you dare hurt Celia, you will pay the price!’
✦ ✦ ✦
Michael sat back and enjoyed the aroma of the tea as he stared out the window. The moon appeared exceptionally bright because the night sky was cloudless.
“The Duke of Cardian would not have died……”
Taking advantage of the chaos, he received word that the knight sent by Phil had kidnapped the Duchess of Cardian. Because the Duke of Cardian appears to have suffered serious injuries, including a broken arm, an investigation team will be formed in the coming days.
The monsters’ traces led to the underground laboratory he had worked so hard to build.
The game is over if there is a connection between Phil and the Duchess of Cardian is discovered in Phil’s Second Imperial Palace.
Phil will never be forgiven by the Duke of Cardian, nor will the Emperor protect him.
He also experimented on humans to transform them into monsters, thus it was evident that accusing him at the Magic Tower would result in his expulsion from the throne.
There was only one Giel left.
‘Giel has a weakness that can’t be against me…… ‘
Michael inhaled the tea once again, recalling a beautiful woman lying in bed all day. A cheeky woman who dared to marry him while carrying a child with another man.
Even if she died as a result of a pregnancy loss, it didn’t mean she was expecting a child. Michael assumed it was all because she had insulted and humiliated him.
Such is the mysterious power that comes down to the imperial family, who dared to mock me as the prince!
‘That girl is still useful.’
If Giel spoke words of resignation, and if he rose to the position of the crown prince, the Duke of Cardian was the next in line.
He killed the Duke of Cardian, passed the curse on to the Emperor, and after then he killed the emperor, he blamed Giel for the crime and executed him.
He’ll be able to create more magic knights by then. He has complete control over his surroundings and is free to move around as he pleases!
It was a brilliant plan to bring a monsterized human to the Duchy of Cardian under the guise of escorting convicts, then use a spell to turn them into demons.
No one questioned Leonis’ statements about bringing prisoners because he generally transported sinners to the fortress and executed them.
‘The Duchess of Cardian……Will she become a bit of a waste?’
She will be transferred to the Second Imperial Palace before the night is over. Phil is a jerk to everyone except the Emperor and Empress, so it was inevitable that the Duchess of Cardian would suffer.
‘It’s just a small price to pay for future generations…… Be patient. Isn’t that the life of a noblewoman?’
Michael inhaled the drowsy aroma of tea and took a sip in his mouth. The tea he was drinking today had a sweeter flavor.
It felt like the emperor’s seat was one step closer.
✦ ✦ ✦
A faint light could be sensed through the tight, musty-smelling fabric. As Celia found her hands and ankles tied, she realized she was in the sack.
Celia recalled the whispers of her goddess as there was a beep sound in the air, and she remembered the curse that could be lifted. It was about her divine power, and she wasn’t a weakling.
‘I don’t know if the others are safe.’
The scene in which the carriage flipped was the last thing she remembered. Meanwhile, witnessing Miline and Will rush to cover her was enough to make her remember
‘My head is buzzing……. It also hurts.’
She wanted to move, but she didn’t want anyone to see she had already awoken.
“Please come this way.”
Even though she was in a sack, it was strange that she wasn’t carried like a bale. They, the ones directing the kidnappers, seemed to know what was inside.
Nobody asked as to what was in the sack. Celia was wondering about where she was and even holding her breath.
If the man had carried her on his shoulder with her stomach pressed against his back, she would have been in pain, but they were carrying Celia in their arms.
‘……Judging by their accent and intonation earlier, I think they worked for an aristocratic family.’
She couldn’t be sure. However, she thought it would be unusual if they were people who used monsters to attack the duke’s carriage and kidnap the duchess.
The sound of a man’s footsteps echoed down the empty corridor. The barely noticeable footsteps of the person leading the way ahead, on the other hand, were barely heard.
The fact that it was a rather spacious building with a smooth floor reminded Celia of the Imperial Palace.
‘Would he ever do something like that?’
Lily was seduced by Michael or Phil in the original story, and she was almost kidnapped by Phil several times.
However, Phil never used a monster to attack the duke’s carriage. Using a monster was Michael’s strategy.
‘However, Phil is the only one who dares to kidnap me……’
Michael was also trying to get his hands on Lily in the second half. But only after confirming Leonis’s love for Lily that Michael did do so.
It was an action to grasp Leonis in his hand.
‘Leon…… He will come.’
It was normal for him to come, but the process was a stumbling block. Leonis’ irrational behavior could have derailed their plans.
On the contrary, he could act calmly to save Celia safely, but the problem was the curse within Leonis.
Leonis’ emotions seemed to influence the madness of his curse.
If he had been greatly enraged by this, he could have stained the imperial palace in a sea of blood.
There were only a few who can stop Leonis. Before that could happen, she needed to get out of there.
‘But before that……’
Celia became anxious. She knew the existence of her divine power, but she was much more so because she had never felt the power building up in her body.
‘No, I have to do it. Even if Phil is disgusting…… I am using my power!’
✦ ✦ ✦
Her body was placed on the floor. Celia tensed as she noticed someone close to her untying the straps on the sack that was carrying her.
Should I continue to pretend to pass out? But I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Wouldn’t I be able to deal with it only if we check what’s going on…….
The maid bowed her head respectfully as she opened the sack and checked her inside. Celia frowned, trying not to let her fearful expression show.
“Where am I? Who are you?”
“This is the Second Imperial Palace, the residence of Prince Phil. We are the Duchess’ servants, by Prince Phil’s order.”
Are you going to take care of me?
Celia was startled and looked around. No one seemed to have moved her here. Just the imperial family’s maids were present.
‘Why in the bathroom……’
“Your Highness has ordered the Duchess to be dressed up. I’ll prepare your bath, so please follow me.”
At the words of the maid, Celia looked around in bewilderment. There were a lot of them, and from what she could tell, this wasn’t the first time this had happened.
Celia was so enraged and afraid that her head was aching. The maid approached her in blank expression and untied the straps that had bound Celia’s wrists and ankles.
She tried to touch Celia’s clothes one by one, but Celia shook them off reflexively.
“I’m going to wash by myself! Everyone get out of here!”
Although the goddess had informed Celia of the power, she had not yet grasped what it was. She couldn’t be more confident to deal with eight maids all at once.
“Shall I bite my tongue here? So will you listen to me?”
The maids looked at each other as Celia spoke sharply. Although they had the prince’s orders, they seemed to have decided that it would be better not to provoke Celia too much.
They lined up and ran out of the bathroom. The last maid said, pointing to the neatly folded clothes on one side of the chest of drawers.
“Wash and put on those clothes……If you think otherwise, you’d better give up. If you don’t put it on yourself, we’ll put it on for you.”
After finishing her words, the maid ran out of the bathroom. Celia got out of her sack and stood up. She then proceeded to the drawer where the clothes were kept.
When she lifted the hem of the clothes, she found a see-through negligee, lace-up underwear, and a silk robe that could cover it all.