“Confined, but why……”
I heard Ganael’s voice on the other side of the hallway at that moment.
The young boy’s golden eyes sparkled as soon as he noticed me and he walked over.
He must have been planning to visit my room since he had some snacks in his hands.
“Ganael, are you okay? Are you hurt anywhere?”
“Yes, your highness! All that happened to me was that I fell asleep for a bit.”
The child smiled, saying that he was happy that I woke up earlier than expected.
I was relieved to see that he didn’t have any sort of sequelae, but it was hard to smile back at him because of the upsetting news I just got from Benjamin.
Ganael must have noticed that as he looked back and forth between Benjamin and I.
“Are you very hungry, your highness? Should I tell them to prepare your meal right now?”
“Why don’t we go inside the room to speak, your highness?”
Benjamin and Ganael led me into the room.
I peeked behind me while walking through the door he had opened.
My Juliette Palace family was still tearing up as if they were looking at the main character of a tragedy.
We sat around the balcony table where we could see the summer sunset.
I decided to have a simple dinner with the viennoiserie that Ganael brought with him.
No matter how upset I was, there was nothing I could do while I was hungry.
I had two pieces each of pain au lait, pain au chocolat, and pain aux raisins.
They were all warm and delicious because Laurence had just made them in the kitchen.
Moving my mouth and consuming some sugar definitely seemed to clear my mind.
The chrysanthemum tea made with the teapot in my bedroom was savory and a bit bitter, making for a good combination.
“Although her Majesty did not say so herself, I can’t help but wonder if the confinement is for your protection, your highness.”
Benjamin stealthily started to speak. I made eye contact with him.
It seemed like quite the extreme measure, but it was plausible knowing the Empress’s personality.
“The issue with Sir Johann Geens…… Is something only a very few of the involved individuals know about. The Imperial Palace and The Duhem Marquis’ Estate have called the incident a ‘suburb demonic beast appearance.’ It is not a big topic of discussion in the Imperial Capital as it happened in the outskirts and there were no casualties.”
According to his explanation, this incident was covered up as a large demonic beast that appeared in the forest, attacking the Imperial family’s carriage and the Imperial Guards.
The information that the Juliette Palace family and the commoners knew is the following.
‘His Royal Highness, Young Countess Moutet, young lady Sarnez, and Prince Jesse did a great job taking down the demonic beast. Furthermore, Prince Jesse advanced as an Archbishop in the process.’
“……I guess there was no choice but to cover it up.”
It wasn’t an embarrassment to the Imperial family that they didn’t know that Sir Geens was a Cardinal since he was a Vatican authorized Archbishop.
However, it was a serious issue that he revealed his strength as a Cardinal on the Empire’s territory and tried to kill me.
In addition, this was already the second assassination attempt on my life.
“Yes, your highness. The situation would grow so big and uncontrollably if people learned that you had been in such a threatening situation. According to Lady Natalie in the Empress Palace, Duchess Blanquer had been at the Imperial Capital but urgently returned to her territory last night after receiving an Imperial Order.”
“Yes, your highness. It is to fortify the eastern barrier.”
I gulped. It felt as if the Empress’ Imperial Wrath could be felt all the way here.
She probably figured out that Prince Consort Werner was behind this situation.
There was no reason for the Empress to accept the bastard committing such atrocious deeds in her territory.
In fact, it would not be weird for her to take this as provocation from the Holy Kingdom.
I remember when the twin assassins were charged with ‘attempting to kill a member of the Imperial family’.
‘Damn it, a war really might start because of me. How was the situation resolved before? I don’t really remember.’
It looked as if I would need to go through the old articles to find out.
“Do you think that this might lead to an armed conflict?”
I cautiously asked.
Ganael, who had been listening to our conversation with an anxious look on his face, shook his head.
“I don’t think so, your highness! Her Majesty…… She probably wants to protect the late Empress Céline’s legacy. She is the one who is most proud of her mother’s achievement of ending the Warring Era.”
Benjamin nodded his head in agreement.
“Her Majesty has criticized her grandfather, the late Emperor Romero, many times for refusing a truce. Although the situation is different from then, she is not someone who would decide to send the troops in so easily. She is probably just being careful by strengthening the security at the border.”
“That is a relief.”
I barely managed to respond.
‘In that case, my confinement was done instead of closing off the entire Imperial Palace.’
“Suddenly closing off the Imperial Palace would have led to public anxiety so she must have decided to seal off Juliette Palace.”
“That is my hypothesis on the matter, your highness.”
Benjamin responded. Demy was trying to get on my knees so I moved him into my arms as I started to think.
If I was the me from not too long ago, I would have happily welcomed the confinement.
It would have been a way for me to keep distant from the main characters while eating three square meals a day and living safely until the end of the war.
But I do not feel that way now.
I wanted to see what I could do for Sir Geens and inform the Empress and Cardinal about his situation.
I knew better than anybody else that he was not free of any crimes.
However, I did not think that Sir Geens should pay the price for the whole ordeal.
There was the issue with Eva as well.
That child had decided to become the young Duchess after being encouraged by Vice Captain Élisabeth and me.
The results weren’t out yet and she has not fully become mentally independent from her brother, so it was irresponsible to leave her side.
‘……An indefinite confinement really is bad right now.’
I opened my mouth.
“Umm, what happened to Sir Geens?”
I asked the most urgent question.
I was anxious that they had done something to him during the day that I was asleep.
Benjamin pulled out a gold card from his pocket instead of responding.
“Her Eminence sent this card.”
I quickly opened the card. I found a note written in small and delicate handwriting.
‘Cédric explained the situation to me.Johann is having a nice dream thanks to you.
I read it a second and then a third time.
My heart sank at first, thinking that ‘having a nice dream’ was a euphemistic way of describing death.
However, that part about Imperial Prince Cédric explaining the situation gave me pause.
I slowly recalled what I had said to him.
‘I hope you can capture Sir Geens alive. He is someone who needs help. He will be tortured by Prince Consort Werner again if we allow him to escape.’
Had he shared that part with his godmother?
‘I would be very thankful if that is the case.’
The Cardinal would thoroughly investigate the situation before giving him a punishment that fit the crime.
It was highly likely that she convinced the Empress to do the same.
‘In that case, ‘having a nice dream thanks to me’ should mean……’
“He’s in the Imperial Palace.’
I quietly mumbled.
Even without opening my circle, the people in the Imperial Palace were said to have nice dreams because of my ether.
The information about Sir Geens having a nice dream thanks to me should mean that he was imprisoned in the Imperial Palace and not the Imperial Capital’s prison.
His ‘eyes were closed’ since the Cardinal gave the Divine Oracle.
It might be better for him to stay asleep as thinking about his son would put him in a lot of pain if he was awake.
‘I hope I can give him some good news when he wakes up.’
“Yes, your highness.”
“Please ask, your highness.”
I struggled to speak. I wanted them to understand the situation first so that they would help me.
They also had a right to know about the situation as they were victims of Sir Geens as well.
I could not force them to help me if they didn’t want to do so.
I took a deep breath before saying the first thing.
“Sir Geens has a son.”
The next day. The third day of confinement.
Ganael looked like a goldfish after crying to sleep while Benjamin seriously expressed his thoughts that it would be better to go to war with the Prince Consort.
I had to work very hard to console the two of them in very different ways. At least my heart felt lighter.
I was happy and thankful that the people around me agreed with my thoughts about the Prince Consort being the main culprit for everything.
Ganael mentioned how sad he felt for Sir Geens multiple times.
It was something I had been unable to say out loud.
“Here are some snacks, your highness.”
Ganael came out to the balcony and placed some financiers and plum blossom tea on the table before quickly leaving.
The young boy was constantly gathering intel on the happenings of the Imperial Palace on my behalf.
Benjamin was trying hard to get me permission for an audience with her Majesty.
The investigation in the Imperial Palace seemed to be going quietly and meticulously.
The attendants of the different palaces- the imperial servants in the laundry room, the blacksmith, the stable keeper -basically everybody was called over by the Imperial Guards at least once.
Nobody dared to say anything since they were doing this in the name of a ‘surprise identity verification for the fortification of safety in the Imperial Palace.’
Crown princess Elise was scheduled to arrive in a week and the Imperial Crown Prince’s confirmation of succession was to happen next month.
I was a bit sad to hear that Sand, who knew nothing about the situation, was confined to his lodgings as well.
“Prince Jesse, you must be so lonely!”
I stopped moving my quill pen and raised my head.
Someone was in the garden shouting up toward the balcony.
I leaned my head to see some familiar gardeners.
It seemed as if they could not approach because the number of guards around Juliette Palace had tripled.
I smiled and waved at them.
“I am okay. Please take care of the divine beasts; I sent them to the flower garden.”
The gardeners bowed in response.
Three or four of them even took out their handkerchiefs to wipe their tears. I must have seemed extremely pitiful to them.
‘Mm, it’s not that bad.’
It was not that difficult to just stay in the palace.
Although I couldn’t go take a walk in the garden, have tea time outside, go receive confessions, or see any outsiders such as Christelle……
I was unable to even have an audience with the Imperial family or the Cardinal, but I was so busy that I could not feel frustrated.
I had a lot on my mind and a mountain load of information to organize.
“Percy, you really can’t open the ark again? Do you think it will be very hard?”
The chimney bird on the railing chirped with his innocent eyes.
Although I did not speak bird, I could tell that he was changing the topic.
He had the same look on his face whenever I brought up the ark since last night.
I gently sighed and drew an X in my notebook.
– Nikky and the ‘provisos’
– Existences with the secrets and principles of the world
– Christelle, the Imperial Prince, Benjamin, Eunseo’s chair
– Can I open the ark from my side (X)
It was not urgent, but I wrote it down since it needed to be mentioned and organized.
I stared at the words, ‘Eunseo’s chair’ for a while before turning the page.
‘Let’s think about that later. There is nothing I can do about it right now.’
“Multiple people saw that you were a divine item but nobody seems to be bringing that up.”
Percy hopped over and landed on my index finger.
I caressed his chest with my thumb and started to write again.
-Magic tool notebook
Then I stopped. There was nothing else to write about this either.
The notebook that did not have a single ink splatter on it was actually a magic tool with an extremely strong defensive ability.
Anything that might be a weapon was not issued to a diplomatic hostage like me, so, having no other options in this urgent situation, I asked Benjamin for his paper cutter and tried to stab the notebook with it yesterday.
The results were the same.
The notebook released a red mana and blocked the blade before restoring the ripped area as if it had never happened.
I didn’t know whether the crown princess gave this to the prince or the prince himself packed it, but either way, it was definitely helpful.
I did not test it anymore because I was worried that there was a limited amount of times it could defend.
I pushed aside the thoughts about the notebook and the ark before returning to the part I was looking at earlier this morning.
There were multiple past issues of the < Biweekly Riester > on the table along with some history books.
– Sir Geens and little boy Geens
– Sir Geens is currently asleep in the Imperial Palace (location unknown)
– Son is imprisoned in a prison of the Holy Kingdom (sick, needs medicine)
– Transfer, special pardon, servitude, etc.
“National holiday, a national holiday in the Holy Kingdom……”
I mumbled as I read through the magazine. A short flash of light disturbed me at that moment.
I scowled and covered my face. It had been like this last evening as well.
A piece of glass or something similar reflected the sunlight going into a Romero Palace window in my direction. It was hard for me to open my eyes while sitting on the balcony facing it.
It must be an attendant doing that, but I had no idea why they were doing it.
‘Do I need to tell someone about it? Are they coming out to clean a mirror or something?’
Ganael returned to me at that moment. He was breathing heavily as if he had run over.
“Did something happen?”
“That, huff. His Royal Highness, he… has sent everything, huuu, all of the presents for you that came to the Imperial family’s safe!”
‘What is he talking about?’
“The first floor is full of all sorts of valuables, huff… There was no room to even step through things, your highness. It seems to be his way of telling you not to be so depressed… Benjamin-nim……”
I thought about the orange-eyed young man out of reflex.
The things he said at the Commerce Center naturally came up as well.
‘There is not enough room in the safe.’
‘Ah. ‘I’ll confine all of the things in the safe with you in the palace. I am doing it because we have no more room in the safe so don’t be depressed about it……´ Is that what he is trying to say?’
“It’s okay. We have a lot of empty rooms.”
I answered. Ganael blankly stared at me.
Oh clueless Jesse is best Jesse.