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He then remembered the secret hallway throughout the imperial palace and wondered if they had used it. It was based on the assumption that the Duke of Cardian knew only a few people and that Celia would not know that secret hallway.
If the Duke had known, he would have assassinated Phil.
Michael raised his head and started to speculate. The emperor, Orkan, was bellowing angrily at Phil.
“You still look like you don’t know what you did wrong!”
‘If Phil did something wrong, he wouldn’t know it even when he was falsely accused of it.’
The emperor was considering it as well. He was upset because Phil’s tail was exposed while carrying it out.
“What did I do wrong? It’s unfair! What do you mean monster, I never thought of using those ugly things!”
Phil insisted over and over that he was innocent, but Orkan found him to be really pathetic. The fact that he had to think about it or that he did not create someone who could reverse all of his sins was a source of anguish for him.
“You moron! Do you believe it will be useful now?”
Because of the scale of the conflict, a few vicious punches were not enough to end it. He is completely clueless about anything else, but the Tower of Magic must have been involved in this somehow.
The audience fell silent when the emperor spoke loudly. The prince was instead awaiting what the emperor would say. The emperor directed that the third empress be imprisoned, fearing that she would interfere.
“From this day on, Phil Hermos, the second prince, will no longer hold the title of prince! I will deprive him of all of the privileges and rights that came with being a member of the imperial family, and you will be removed from your position as a member of the imperial family!”
Orkan gave Phil a menacing glare as Phil raised his voice in astonishment.
“He also attacked the Duke of Imperial Cardian and the Duchess went missing……It will be difficult for him to get away from the sin!”
For a moment, Phil wondered whether he should claim Celia’s safety. However, there was no way to prove it, and his charges grew more serious, so he remained silent.
“But Phil is inherited my blood……. You will serve a prison sentence of three months for your crime!”
Despite the emperor’s reprimand, Phil did not stop talking. He even tried to grab their weapons and kick the knights approaching him.
The emperor yelled out to the guards standing watch. The knights of the Imperial Palace emerged and lifted Phil’s arms from both sides immediately.
“What a jerk! Let me go! Let go of me!”
Phil yelled and walked away.
The emperor, Orkan, pressed down on his temples as if he had a headache. Michael examined the emperor’s expression.
“Your Majesty, are you all right?”
“It’s all right. I have three sons…… He is far too dimwitted. You should have had that power.”
Michael agreed but couldn’t confirm it in this situation.
“You don’t look well.”
Michael immediately ordered the emperor’s servant to call for a doctor. The emperor dissuaded him and entrusted the remainder of the schedule to Michael.
“You should get some rest. I’m glad to have a son like you by my side.”
The emperor stood up after giving Michael a little tap on the back of his hand. When Michael saw him get up from his seat, he respectfully lowered his head.
That explains why nobody noticed him giggling to himself. Michael fought the impulse to laugh as he watched the emperor leave the palace.
‘Soon……It’s just around the corner.’
✦ ✦ ✦
Leonis’ countenance changed as he learned about Celia’s power.
Celia’s power was ‘madness’. In other words, it was the capacity to influence others’ thoughts in such a way as to drive them insane or cause them to have visions. Although she could also do the opposite.
The best example was Leonis.
She didn’t use her abilities intentionally, but whenever she came into contact with Leonis, she stopped his thoughts and quelled his craziness.
“It looks like I have other power, but that’s about what I can use right now.”
Celia was nervous as she saw Leonis’s countenance was so engrossed after he learned it. As the goddess explained to her that the Montague family’s ancestors would someday turn their backs on her, she wondered what she would do in response.
As her power to drive sane people to go insane was nothing out of the ordinary.
‘Actually, it’s a terrifying power.’
“……I understand even if you hate me.”
When Celia spoke with a sombre face, Leonis looked surprised.
“That’s not true. It’s just… I was worried you’d ask me if you want to use this power for something else.”
“Using my power for something?”
She looked at Leonis curiously, but he didn’t tell her furthermore. He seemed to think it would be tough for him if Celia said she would do it.
“As for this power, I’m going to assume that only I am aware of it. As I’ve already said, your safety is my first priority, so don’t say, ‘I have this power, so please let me fight.'”
“No, you can’t”
Leonis frowned instantly. On the one hand, he was relieved because Celia possessed that power.
He was afraid that she would be kidnapped again.
He had no intention of changing his plan to increase her escort again, citing Celia’s power as an excuse, but he did because of how he was feeling.
‘It’s better to keep it a secret even from them.’
Knowing how important Celia was, he would not ask for anything dangerous, but many people wanted to use Celia’s strength as a last resort.
“Don’t you want to put your power to the test?”
Celia shook her head in answer to Leonis’s question.
“On whom do you test this power?”
Numerous people could be tested, including death row inmates and criminals, but Leonis did not mention them.
He reasoned that expressing it out of the blue would make him look bad in Celia’s eyes.
“You already have a lot of abilities, but I can’t believe such powe have been placed in you…… I can’t raise my head in front of my wife more and more.”
“What kind of power do I have?”
“There are so many that I can’t even begin to list them all……What kills me is that you are beautiful.”
For a split second, Celia blushed shyly.
“What kind of power is that?”
“Being as cute as you are right now is a power.”
Leonis smirked and moved closer to Celia as she averted her gaze. He held Celia in his arms and gave her a soft embrace.
Leonis, who stroked her cheek and made her look up, tried to touch her lips first.
Leonis tried to keep going even though someone knocked on the door, but Celia turned away.
“What is going on?”
“Madam, we have a guest from the temple.”
It was the butler, Albert answered. She guessed a peculiar guest came up to her without a servant or maid.
Leonis looked at Celia with a face full of sorrow.
Celia quickly let go of Leonis’s arm, kissed him on the chin, and got off the couch. Leonis gave a big sigh and put his empty hands down.
He tightened his teeth when he thought about her not letting go of an insignificant guest.
✦ ✦ ✦
“As expected, you were safe.”
Hellion made his way towards Celia while tears formed at the corners of his eyes.
Celia had no acquaintance with Hellion. She only said a couple of greetings after her father, the Marquis of Montague.
She just remained standing there, watching Hellion breathe a sigh of relief.
Whoever worshipped the god of heaven would be well acquainted with his appearance. Only six of the numerous temples dedicated to the god of heaven were scattered around the empire.
If you asked them who of the six High Priests was most likely to become the next Holy Father, the majority of them would say that it was High Priest Hellion.
Because he was a Hellion in a position comparable to the next Holy Father, the number of people who could make bonds with him was limited. They were aristocrats or imperial families with titles.
Celia, who was a young lady, could not even become acquaintances with a high-ranking aristocrat.
‘Because I’m the Duchess?’
On the other hand, Hellion served as the priest of the Great Church in the Imperial Capital. It was completely unnecessary for him to come all the way down here to show his affection.
“Thank you for your concern.”
Celia responded this way because she had no reason to pretend to be a church member. She had to hide the fact that she had returned until a few days ago, but now it was time for her to reveal it, so she welcomed Hellion.
IHellion’s expression changed from one of a surprise to one of pure happiness at the news. Hellion, who was pressing Celia’s palm against his own, lowered his head, trying to show his respect to Celia as he did to the emperor.
In a more literal sense, he kneeled down in front of Celia.
“High Priest! What are you doing……”
“We meet the owner of the oracle and the person who will bring a new divine beast to this land. Saintess.”
Celia was taken aback by the things that Hellion uttered while kneeling. Leonis went up to him to talk.
“I’m not sure what you’re talking about. You will have to explain your actions.”
Hellion did not waver in his convictions in spite of Leonis’ high-handed demeanour. Celia swiftly changed her direction of view.
They locked the door to the drawing-room, and the only persons who were let inside were those they knew they could rely on. Albert handled things this way because Hellion had come to hide his identity.
“I will explain everything to you. Duke.”
When he made this statement, Hellion’s gaze was fixed on Leonis.