I sat up. I could see two children quietly standing in the darkness.
“Hey guys, what is……”
I suddenly felt as if I was suffocating. I quickly grabbed my neck.
There was nothing there. But even though there was nothing there…
I could not breathe. Neither my voice nor even my breath was coming out properly.
I slowly crumbled down while looking at the children standing in front of me.
The expressions on the Bellang twins’ faces that were visible because of the moonlight looked extremely unfamiliar.
The faces that had always been smiling at me were as cold as ice sculptures.
‘What is going on?’
“Synkie, prepare the sacrament.”
“Just focus on what you’re doing, Peter. He’s resisting.”
‘ ‘Synkie’ and ‘Peter’?’
Those weren’t those children’s names. At least they weren’t the names I knew.
I did my best to stay conscious even as my face turned purple from suffocation.
“Don’t rely on your mana. Try to pull out more Divine Power.”
‘Synkie’ was giving ‘Peter’ advice. That tightened the force around my throat even more.
These children were trying to kill me. I could at least be sure of that.
I didn’t know how they were doing it, but the twins were trying to commit murder without putting their hands on me.
“Ugh, ahh, mmph!”
“He’s stronger than I expected.”
“Your highness, please just accept your fate. This is the will of the Almighty God and his majesty’s decision.”
These punks who haven’t even been through puberty were saying such scary things.
I could feel the vein popping out on my forehead. I clenched my teeth and shook my head.
‘Like hell I would accept this.’
“It’s almost complete.”
I became dizzy. Everything was getting blurry from a lack of oxygen.
I couldn’t help but feel that this world was ‘real.’
There was no way that such a slow shadow of death could be fake.
Eunse, my brother, and my mom’s faces flashed in front of my eyes.
Renault Bellang, no, Peter, was saying terrible things with an innocent look on his face.
I glared at the boy and desperately tried to recall what I had just read in the < The Theory and Reality of Controlling Divine Power >.
My mind was hazy, so I couldn’t recall very well. I had no confidence that I would succeed.
However… I still had to try.
“I’m going to start the sacrament.”
It was a hundred, no, a thousand times better to grasp at the straws and try something rather than to die without doing anything.
I tried to do whatever I could to come back to my senses. I had to focus.
A small golden circle appeared underneath Synkie’s feet the moment I started to pray.
‘I pray to the great Almighty God of the continent. I don’t know if you will accept my prayer, but please. Please save me.’
“Wait, Peter. Did you just……”
“I can do it. Hurry.”
“You idiot, not that!”
[Get lost, you bastards!]
A golden circle exploded out of my body.
The two boys’ bodies were sent flying as if they were bullets because of my ‘Divine Oracle.’ I could finally breathe again.
The walls were cracked, and every window in my bedroom was broken.
The chandelier was shaking violently along with the ground.
The books I had scattered around the room were flipping pages as if they were reeds blowing in the wind.
The golden circle under my feet was the only thing that was shining brightly in the darkness.
[Cough cough, don’t get any closer!]
My squeaky voice echoed through the Divine Oracle.
The two boys’ feet seemed to stick to the ground as they got up as if someone had super-glued them to the ground.
“H, how does he have such……”
“Huff, huff…… Huuuuuuuuu……”
I urgently breathed in and out over and over. My coughing would not stop.
My eyes were hot from the tears that gathered during my suffocation.
“Unbelievable…… There’s no way you have so much Divine Power!”
“Did you really steal a Divine item or something?!”
[Won’t you shut the hell up?]
The two bastards were shouting too much.
I said that because I was annoyed, but the Divine Oracle was applied once more and the boys’ mouths were closed shut.
I caught my breath and looked underneath the bed.
It was exactly as I had read in the book. This perfect circle that was radiantly glowing gold…
This was the ‘Holy Domain,’ an aether circle’s simplest form that protected the priest from all external forces.
It was the thing that appeared when I made that vow to Benjamin.
As long as the circle is open, everything I say can be activated as a ‘Divine Oracle.’
The strength of a Divine Oracle varies depending on the Divine Power of the priest who activated the circle.
The Divine Oracle would not work if the opponent had a stronger Divine Power than the caster.
Basically, the fact that these punks couldn’t do anything because of my Divine Oracle meant that their Divine Power was much lower than mine.
[Don’t bite your tongue. Do not think about committing suicide.]
Regardless of their identities and the reason behind why they wanted to kill me, I needed to keep them alive for now.
I needed to figure out the details of this issue and come up with a plan to prevent this kind of danger from happening again.
They still called me ‘your highness’ respectfully and said that it was ‘his majesty’s decision’ to kill me.
Did the Holy Kingdom……
“We are the Imperial Guard! Drop your weapons!”
The door that had become weaker because of how my circle released easily fell off.
Vice Captain Élisabeth was in the front of the group of knights that charged in with their swords drawn.
The already messy room instantly turned into a loud flea market.
A few of the Guards who seemed like the Elite stood in front of me as if to protect me.
Benjamin came with them and quickly supported me as I staggered.
I managed to see that his face was pale.
“Get down! Do it now!”
The other Imperial Guard members bound the two criminals.
The two boys whose mouths were shut closed frowned as they flailed around.
The knight who was trying to drag Steve Bellang, no, Synkie out of the room, looked stupefied.
The boys’ feet were stuck to the ground and would not move.
“Prince Jesse, please release your Divine Oracle. It will be difficult to arrest them like this.”
Vice Captain Élisabeth realized what was going on and quickly addressed me.
But it was hard for me to even open my mouth.
I didn’t know whether the adrenaline was gone or if I was finally feeling the sequelae of fear, but I could not put any strength into my body.
My legs were wobbly, and I had a terrible headache.
It felt as if my body was crumbling down.
I felt as if my soul and body had split, as I thought I was still looking forward, but my body seemed to be falling to the ground.
“Call the Imperial Doctor over immediately!”
“Damn it. Hey you, go escort Her Eminence, the Cardinal!”
That was what I remembered hearing before I fainted.
* * *
“Does he really plan on living quietly?”
I heard a man’s voice I did not recognize. It was a low voice that woke me right up.
It was a soothing voice, as if a voice actor was performing.
I wanted to open my eyes to see who this guy was.
Unfortunately, although my mind was awake, my body was not listening to me.
“The flow of his aether has stabled.”
“That means that he should wake up soon, right?”
I recognized the voice asking that question to be Vice Captain Élisabeth’s voice. The man did not respond.
I just hear a chair quietly being pushed back.
“Cédie, will you be back?”
She seemed to be talking to the other person. However, all I heard was the footsteps of the man moving away.
I finally thought that I might be dreaming.
I wasn’t feeling frustrated or suffocated, but the fact that my mind was awake but I couldn’t move my body made me feel as if I was having a nightmare.
I got sleepy again once I had that thought. I didn’t resist it and fell back asleep.
* * *
“Ah, you are finally awake.”
When I opened my eyes, I……did not see an unfamiliar ceiling. It was the same wallpaper that I had been seeing for the past week.
‘I guess I’m still Jesse Venetiaan. I’m not back to being Jung Jesse.’
I was disappointed that I didn’t wake up at home with Eunse and my brother before slowly turning my head toward the person who spoke to me.
A middle-aged woman was warmly smiling at me.
Her magenta hair was tied in a side ponytail and flowing over one shoulder.
Her beige-colored eyes looked warm as they observed my condition.
I was intrigued because this was my first time seeing a monocle.
“You fainted because of aether overload. I’m glad you recovered faster than I expected.”
“Who, cough. May I ask who you are……”
I asked in a hoarse voice, and she handed me a cup that was on the side table.
I had a case of déjà vu as I drank the water.
The ceiling wallpaper was familiar, but this was actually not my room. It was just a room with the same wallpaper.
Well, my room was probably out of commission after everything that had happened.
I thought about my ‘dorm room’ that had cracks on the walls and every window broken.
‘Man, I destroyed a room just one week into possessing this body.’
“My name is Aurélie Boutier. Have you heard my name before?”
My jaw dropped on its own.
Aurélie Boutier. Of course, I knew her name. How could I not know?
She was a famous person who appeared in every book that I read.
The Imperial Prince’s godmother. She was someone who had rejected the Duchess title twice. She was the Empress’s close friend and her ‘Religious Partner.’
“It is an honor to meet you, your noble Eminence, Madam Cardinal.”
“It’s nice to meet you too, little prince. There’s no need to get up.”
The Empire’s only Cardinal quietly chuckled as she greeted me.
She motioned for me to lie back down as I started to sit up.
I never expected such a colossus to appear in front of me like this.
Cardinal Boutier was an important character in QNW that Eunse frequently mentioned.
‘Madam Au was shielding Crapdric in front of Christelle, and wow… Even I almost fell for it. She’s such a smooth talker.’
She played the role of the matchmaker who connected the MC Christelle with the male lead.
Although I could calm my nerves after meeting Vice Captain Élisabeth, I felt like I would throw up after meeting the Cardinal.
“First of all, I wish to apologize to you on behalf of the Imperial family. The Empire is partially at fault for this incident as well. Her Majesty was unable to come because she is currently busy, but she expressed her deep regrets. She promised to accommodate anything you want.”
Cardinal Boutier furrowed her eyebrows. I tightly clenched the empty cup.
This person plays an extremely important role in the novel and was extremely close to the Imperial family.
I would gain no benefits from getting involved with this person in the long run.
But because of that same reason, the information I could get from her would be extremely high quality.
I had almost died right before I fainted. I managed to save my life because I had studied so hard, but……
If I had fresh knowledge I learned from a person in addition to what I had learned from books, I might have had a better grip on my powers and been in a much better situation.
I couldn’t let the same thing happen again. I made up my mind to safely get back home.
In order to do that, I needed to make the most of the opportunity I was given.
“Your Eminence, I wish to hear an explanation. Could you please explain all of it to me?”
“Sure. I’ll tell you everything.”
She gently took the cup from my hand, poured some more water in there, and returned it to me.
She then filled a cup for herself as well.
“Who were those guys? Where are they now?”
“If you are talking about the siblings, Synkie and Peter, Synkie is a priest while Peter is a Holy Knight. They are children the Holy Kingdom sent to assassinate you.”
I had expected this, but it was still so cruel. Those guys were too young to do such a task.
“How was that possible? I heard that every attendant had to go through a rigorous check to get into the palace.”
“You are right, but they somehow managed to get their hands on the checking process as well.”
She took a sip of water. Her expression made it seem as if the situation had been horrible.
“Baron Bellang is a noble from a small countryside territory on the southern end of the Empire, and his faith is extremely deep. The Baron couple decided to send a child to attend to you after hearing about how you would be coming to the Empire. Their first child had already become the young patriarch and would succeed his position, so they decided to send the twins, their second and third children, to take the attendant selection test. Both the parents and children were happy to do that.”
‘I visited Baron Bellang’s Estate when I was younger. The Baron couple were extremely nice people.’
I recalled what Vice Captain Élisabeth had said.
“After passing the documentation process, the two children got onto a carriage to come for their interviews. They couldn’t even think about using portals because they are so expensive. They lost their lives to some bandits while going through one of the dangerous forests in the south. The driver lost his life there as well.”
I could tell what happened next even without hearing the rest.
“Those bandits then disguised themselves as the Bellang twins.”
The Cardinal nodded her head.
THE POOR REAL BELLANG TWINS :CRY: