Empress Frédérique squinted.
Then she made a sound that was either out of pity or of discontent.
I quietly stood next to her and waited for a response.
Sending a reply to Queen Christanne was something that could not happen. I was not the real Prince Jesse.
I had to worry and contemplate a lot before meeting Elise so writing a letter to his biological mother was quite the trouble.
The difference in our handwriting would be clear as well as our tone and writing style.
[……Do you swear to give your life to protect the Almighty God?]
[Do you swear to only follow the will of the Almighty God as you move about the world?]
I could hear Cardinal Boutier’s easygoing voice in the front.
Christelle and Crown prince Cédric were repeating the Vow of the Holy Knights in unison.
A magnificent silver and white ether was overflowing in front of both of their hearts.
I was watching them with satisfaction before turning to look at the Empress.
Secondly, I did not want to do anything that would make her doubt me.
Of course, I was one of her people after receiving the title of Marquis as well as her son’s friend and partner.
However, I was fundamentally a foreigner.
I had no desire to give the Empress, who already had to be wary of everybody, an extra thing to worry about.
It would be a lie to say that she would not think about what I would send to the leader of a hostile nation.
“Very well. Do as you wish.”
“Thank you very much, your Majesty.”
I quickly responded. She tapped on the armrest before suddenly changing topics.
“What you did in your territory.”
“Yes, your Majesty.”
There were more than a few things I did in Sérénité, but if it was something the Empress could openly discuss, it was most definitely the incident with the Haas siblings.
I anxiously looked at her.
“It was quite entertaining. Good job.”
I was temporarily at a loss for words. I was shocked because I never expected to be praised.
The Empress smiled and seemed to be looking into my soul.
“I heard a long time ago that the merchant guild leader was some half-baked clown. However, I am the Empress.”
She did not finish the sentence. However, the meaning was clear.
As someone who needed to consider all sorts of important matters of the Empire, personally investigating and judging a young merchant guild leader of a free city was unreasonable.
She probably didn’t have the time to do it either since there were probably a lot of more important public matters.
‘So, the fact that we revealed Emille’s wrongdoings and handed him over to the troops……’
It seemed to be at least removing a splinter from underneath her fingernail. Probably.
“Thank you very much, your Majesty.”
I barely managed to respond.
“It is late but I also wanted to thank you for fixing the Confessional. It feels wonderful whenever I go in because it looks brand new.”
I thanked her for that as well because I happened to see the Confessional next to the platform. The Empress tilted her head.
“That’s good. Although that was not something I ordered.”
“I am the Empress. I do not have time to pay attention to fixing the temple.”
‘That is true.’ My mind was chaotic because I heard a similar story when I thanked my teacher last month.
‘Then did the Imperial Carpenters voluntarily make the time to fix it?’
I fell deep into thought as I looked toward the Cardinal and the two Holy Knights.
The Holy Knight appointment was already heading toward the end.
The Cardinal placed her hand on the Imperial Crown Prince’s head and blessed him. He had his eyes closed.
[……From this point forward, the Almighty God will ratify your authority as an Archbishop for all eternity.]
Archbishop! The crowd let out a gasp that was close to a cheer of delight.
I had expected this to happen but expecting it and the Vatican actually accepting him as one was completely different.
The first Holy Knight of the Empire taking his first step as an Archbishop was the happiest of occasions.
Some of the believers were crying and clapping.
I could see Eva tapping her feet in the priests’ seats.
I was turning around when I made eye contact with the crown prince.
‘It’ll be fine.’
I silently mouthed.
What he was worried about should not happen since Christelle and I would help him.
I had no idea whether he understood me or not but his orange-colored eyes seemed much calmer than a few days ago.
‘That’s a relief.’
[Your authority as an Archbishop……]
“Long live the Riester!”
The room was extremely festive as the same blessing was given to Christelle’s head.
The moment the MC smiled brightly and motioned toward the ceiling…
‘Bang!’ A spray of water exploded like fireworks.
The believers cheered. The solemnly seated Bishops found this to be marvelous and entertaining.
It was also amazing that the candles lighting up the area were not touched at all.
“Now please stand……”
I heard a bishop whispering through the noise.
The two main characters got up from the cushion and stood on either side of the Cardinal.
Holy music started filling all the way to the temple ceiling as well.
The choir started singing hymns once again.
Following the Cardinal’s lead, the two young and beautiful Archbishops slowly started walking toward the door.
Believers bowed and prayed toward them as they passed.
Priests holding a large symbol of the Church of the Almighty God and a tulip followed behind them.
I smiled brightly and clapped.
Although they did not become the sword master and young lady couple like the original novel, a Holy Knight couple that did not let water nor fire stop them was quite nice to watch as well.
“A large number of holy stones are being mined in Aightz Village, your Majesty. According to the report from the Imperial knights, it should be at the level of a decent mine.”
It was a report from Captain Hervé Duhem. Frédérique innocently gasped in admiration.
She and Aurélie had returned to her office in the Empress Palace as soon as the Holy Knight appointment ceremony had ended.
The Empire’s state of affairs had been busily moving these days for positive reasons.
Although there had been two assassination attempts toward Prince Jesse, the rest of the events could be called miraculous.
First, the crown prince earned the Sword of Wisdom from the Flaming Star, which lessened the danger of his body shrinking and allowed him to complete his succession confirmation ceremony, and Christelle de Sarnez also awakened as a Holy Knight.
Furthermore, they were both appointed as Archbishops, just one level below that of a Cardinal.
A Cardinal-Grade Holy Knight originally from the Holy Kingdom also moved to the Empire.
Five divine beasts, who are called the messengers of the Almighty God, also reside in the Imperial Palace.
One of them is a divine item but either way, it was not lacking in inspiring faith and loyalty among the citizens.
Furthermore, holy stones, which have been considered weapons for only the Holy Kingdom until now, started being produced in the Empire as well.
Frédérique exchanged profound gazes with her contractor.
She had expected enough for around ten carts and thought that the process of mining the holy stones would bring life to the village.
However, the amount to be mined in this small territory that belongs to the Imperial family was apparently the size of a mine usually only found in the southern parts of the Empire.
That was completely unexpected news.
“What you said was correct, Aurélie. That punk seems to have received the Almighty God’s love.”
“I’m always right.”
The Cardinal smoothly responded to the Empress before savoring her coffee.
She was still in her formal attire just without her mitre.
Frédérique chuckled and turned back toward Johann, who was standing next to her as her guard.
“Your hypothesis was correct too.”
“It was just that your wise judgment was correct, your Majesty.”
The Holy Knight candidly responded.
After seeing that the sun halo weed and holy stones were found together, Johann Geens hypothesized that the plant and the ore might come from the same place.
It was possible since things that were really rare suddenly showed up at once.
The Empress gave the order to thoroughly search the mountain to find the sun halo weed colony and, as hypothesized, the holy stones were found in the ground beneath the medicinal herb.
“If that is the case, it seems highly likely that there are holy stones under the sun halo weed habitat by the border.
“Yeah. It looks like I’ll need to send a message to the Duke’s House of Blanquer. The Blanquer Duchy is the nearest territory.”
“……Now that I think about it, the reason that personal communication with the House of Blanquer resumed is thanks to that punk as well. I have no reason to send him back to the Holy Kingdom.”
The Empress commented in a mischievous voice.
Aurélie felt that her contractor was truly happy and smiled.
A man who had been silent the whole time started talking at that moment.
“Your Majesty, Your Eminence. Please excuse me but I must strongly recommend that you stay far away from Prince Jesse Venetiaan.”
The room instantly turned cold. Everybody focused on the young face of the speaker.
Hervé felt it becoming uncomfortable and the muscles in his face twitched.
The Empress dryly responded.
“I’ll keep that in mind.”
“I know I am stepping out of line but this is not something that can just stop at keeping it in mind, your Majesty. I can say with certainty that he is a dangerous individual.”
“Captain Modeste Bacary.”
Hervé Duhem ended up stepping in.
He had watched the Empress for a long time as her trusted Captain of the Imperial Guard and was pretty certain that there would be future trouble if he did not calm this situation right now.
The Captain of the Imperial Guard smiled elegantly toward the seer. It was something he had learned from his brother.
“Her Majesty highly values what the Prince has done until now for Riester and for his Royal Highness. Thank you for your noble counsel but I do not think that this is the right time for that.”
“I had to inform her Majesty as quickly as possible.”
Modeste’s silver eyes sparkled sharply under his glasses. He had his fists clenched as well.
The Empress’s voice was finally calm.
“What is the proof that the Prince is dangerous? Did you get a revelation?”
“No, your Majesty. I have stronger proof than that.”
“I did not feel anything from the Prince, your Majesty.”
A scary silence filled the room. The person who broke the silence was not the Empress but her shadow.
“I am curious as to what you mean by that. I would like to hear an explanation.”
The mint-colored eyes curled up like new moons. A breeze started swirling around Johann.
The seer did not lower his head even at the Holy Knight’s gentle threat.
“It is exactly as I mentioned. I have been receiving unexpected revelations since I was three years old. How the coachman of the passing carriage would die or how the horse might end up… these things were visible in front of my eyes. I would hear voices when I wasn’t seeing things and even received prophecies through my dreams. The inside of my mind has never been quiet.”
“I am somewhat informed about your specialty. So what?”
“……However, around the Prince is completely silent. I do not see or hear anything and there is nothing. I cannot predict anything about his highness at all.”
He seemed a bit scared. The seer looked even younger now.
The autumn breeze bleakly roared outside the window.
Hervé could not tell whether that was because of the weather or because of the Holy Knight’s threat.
“That means that what his highness is thinking or what he will do in the future in the Empire are all things that nobody knows. Furthermore, people standing by the Prince seem to be affected as well. Earlier during the ceremony……”
Modeste clenched his teeth. He seemed ashamed at his uselessness as his cheeks turned red as well.
Your surroundings were silent as well, your Majesty, while you were standing by his highness. This is the first time something like that has happened in my life.”
The Cardinal imitated the Empress.
Nobody said a thing in the room after that.
Frédérique finally started speaking as the last bit of breeze disappeared into Johann’s white hair.
“That must be why you put on those glasses. Is it a magic tool to help with your magical aura?”
“……Yes, your Majesty.”
“I guess it was useless.”
She commented, almost as if she was mocking him. Aurélie stepped on the Empress’s boot to tell her to control herself.
“I understand your concern. It seems I must pay attention as the sovereign of this Empire. I’m sure nothing good will come from ignoring the warning of the Fleur-de-lis. However…”
The corners of her lips gently curled up.
“For Frédérique Riester the person, that is a warning I quite like.”
Curiosity was visible in her cherry-colored eyes.
Modeste blankly dropped his jaw in shock while Aurélie held back a sigh.
The Yves that she knew had been a troublemaker who loved to take unexpected actions since her days as the Imperial Princess.
She did become calmer since becoming the Empress, but it was impossible to change her natural tendencies.
She was certain that the Empress was delighted that the fact that the person whose next steps could not be seen would make her the same if she was by his side.
This would not be good.
“……Thanks for your wise advice, Bacary. You may leave.”
The Empress’s soulmate could only smile bitterly while sending out the seer.
“My ears are itchy……”
“Oh my. Someone must have said something bad about you, Your highness.”
Christelle joked as I scratched my ear.
I then looked around with a ghastly gaze.
The attendants got scared and cowered.
The crown prince, who seemed unfamiliar to this superstition of an itchy ear, scowled.
“Is there someone who still dares to insult you?”
“Of course not, your Royal Highness.”
I quickly answered.
Who would dare to insult me when I was walking down the hallway of the Empress Palace while surrounded by two Holy Knights, who were basically national treasures?
Even my brother and Eunseo would not be able to do so if they were here.
“Anyway, there was no need for the two of you to come with me…… Thank you very much.”
I did my best to smile as I added on.
After safely completing the ceremony, we were headed to see the Chief of Staff to receive the letter from the Queen.
I was planning on going alone, but how did things end up like,
“Holy Almighty God!”
Someone shouted out loud and popped out from a side path.
I gasped and froze in a mute state!