Blemir looked at the switched-off communication channel and left the communication room.
He smirked as he walked toward the main hall.
When he had been disappointed in his expectation of the 2nd Consort, he had thought that it had felt much worse than this, but what happened just now made him change his mind.
Even if he hadn’t listened to his request to protect the 2nd Consort and the crown prince while he was away, he had thought he’d hear his request to slow down the transfer of the 2nd Consort to the White Rose Palace.
Blemir had offered several things that would greatly help the neutral faction, but his father refused to accept them.
No matter how neutral one was, one wouldn’t be able to stand alone as a maverick.
Sometimes, one had to give their flesh to the darkness that fell under the shadows to protect their greater beliefs.
Nevertheless, after the death of his sister, his father refused to care at all about the affairs of Barossa.
As if it was an excellent blemish for him and his family. Wasn’t it you, Father, who sent that quiet and kind woman to that troubled Barossa!
With a smile on his face, Blemir went up the stairs.
To relieve his burden, it was best for him to leave for Mergin territory as soon as possible.
After seeing off Marquis Blemir, Elisha sat again at the patron’s table, where the sumptuous snacks remained.
Even when Elisha called it, it yawned, lying face down on the space above the table.
Its tiny snout opened, revealing a pink tongue.
“You really need some education.”
As if it had heard Elisha’s words, Cotton Ball closed its snout and turned its head to the side.
Its grape-like nose twitches as if it had found Elisha’s words odd.
“Or you’ll get scolded.”
Whether it liked it or not, it turned its head up. Shak! Shak! and comb its fur with the hook-shaped scales that protrude inversely on the pink tongue.
When it became an adult, a Barcado was capable of crushing a human’s head in its mouth like a walnut.
Its biting power alone was great, but what was equally dangerous was the scales, which were densely raised once something was put in the mouth, firmly edged like iron so its prey could never escape.
Perhaps education is essential.
It pretended not to hear.
When Elisha tapped its forehead with her fingertips, Cotton Ball exposed its teeth, not having the self-awareness that it was a small thing.
She was bitten again.
Previously, it was on the side of the back of her hand, but this time it put Elisha’s index finger into its mouth and closed it.
As Elisha lifted her finger as it was, the small Cotton Ball was lifted and swayed in the air.
“Let’s see how long you can hold out.”
It would take a lot of strength to support a whole body with that small snout.
How long could it last
“Mother What are you doing”
“Class is over”
“Yes! But why are you doing that, Mother”
When Leon asked with eyes widened, Elisha answered.
“It’s being educated.”
“What kind of punishment does it get if it does something wrong”
“Is that a punishment”
Leon again checked the Cotton Ball hanging with its belly sticking out, biting his mother’s finger. Why does it look like it’s having fun with its tail fluttering
“Then did Mother do something to Cotton Ball”
“I think Mother is the one being punished.”
“That’s not true.”
Upon hearing the answer, Leon quickly grabbed his Mother’s hand and lowered it.
Then he removed Cotton Ball.
It was so evident that it was probably Cotton Ball who had done wrong, so Leon nagged it for a long time without asking correctly.
The Cotton Ball, who had been diligently pricking his ears at first, soon put them lower and lower until its body lay down with an exposed belly.
Elisha also vowed to keep Leon out of sight if she had done something wrong.
“Still, I’m glad it got along with Mother.”
What do you mean
“You exchanged punishment and became friends.”
She was going to say that punishment was not a give-and-take, but Elisha stopped herself.
As Leon was eating the snacks on the table, Elisha watched him while thinking about how to educate Cotton Ball.
A small, daily life story came and went, and Leon took out the petals from between the book he had brought.
He said that he had picked up the flowers on the way to class because it was not a flower that normally bloomed in this area.
Perhaps it had been blown away by the wind, and the pretty colored petals had fallen off.
She could tell from the pale sky-blue petals what they reminded him of.
Elisha said she liked this flower and they would find the flower’s name together next time.
“Mother likes one more thing today.”
“Is it that good”
When Elisha had just returned, she made Leon, who had been sad from thinking Elisha must have gone through a difficult time by herself, laugh again, telling him what she liked in Miyon Desert.
The feeling of freeing the whole body, putting strong power into the world, and enjoying it…
Then there were the things that didn’t entirely leave a big impression, but they were unique, memorable scenes.
The sand in the desert sprinkled like golden powder, the milky moonlight flowing over it, and the tail of the stars embedded in the black sky that had given her directions to Leon.
Then Leon informed her one by one of what he had found while waiting for her.
The new tea in the 2nd Consort’s palace, the yellow, juicy fruit with the seeds popping, the fragrant flowers, and prayers that he had made.
“Mother, I pray that your world is full of the things you like.”
“Yes! If I were the only one in your world, you would cry too when I cry.
If I get angry, the whole world will be sad, and if I’m wrong, the whole world will be colored with self-blame like the sunset.
Isn’t that right”
This was… This was… the story of Elisha’s past.
How monstrous she had been when she saw that child that she even erased everything else from her world!
She remembered that child.
She knew that a single wound could rot around the whole body as an adult.
That was why she hadn’t been merciful toward the nanny who had troubled the child.
The child wasn’t that old yet, and she thought everything might be okay this time.
She thought it would be okay if she comforted and hugged the child and started anew.
The child was choosing flowers in an empty world in fear, holding his breath, thinking: Once the vase is filled with flowers, if I can’t lift it up, will I have to throw it all away
Elisha felt guilty because the child was pitiful.
The fire had burned as if it would leave nothing but ashes back then, but now, tears slowly filled the sky blue eyes, adding weight as if they were about to fall.
“Mother, I hope you laugh even if I cry.
I hope there’s something to cheer you up even if you’re sad because I’m mad.
If I do something wrong, I don’t want Mother to be alone until I realize my mistake and return.
I want you to have something to comfort you.”
Tears eventually fell from Elisha’s eyes.
This child had forgiven and saved her a few times.
Elisha spread her arms, and the child quickly got up and fell into her arms.
He then wiped the tears flowing from her cheeks with both hands.
“No one will ever know that Mother is such a crybaby, right”
“Leon must also keep the secret.
Leon nodded his tiny head up and down.
A good day was added to the small daily life.
A few days later, Marquis Blemir headed to the Mergin territory.
Elisha turned down invitations from several nobles in the capital and spent most of her time in the palace.
Those who wanted to build power usually valued the connections between the nobles and tried to form bonds, but it was no use to Elisha now.
Most of the nobles already had a faction to which they belonged, and Elisha herself was enough to be the center of the faction.
“Please grant me a meeting just once!”
“Since you’re moving to the White Rose Palace, I’ve prepared a gift for you.
Please take a look!”
It wasn’t that much different from those who had visited to get something to eat from the 3rd Prince when Elisha had gone missing.
Most of the guests were those who had something or failed to belong to a big faction for some reason.
Sometimes there weren’t any guests, but in either case, it didn’t matter.
After all, Elisha did not allow anyone to enter the 2nd Consort’s Palace, except for those she had originally interacted with.
But there was an exception.
It was truly an unexpected visitor.
Or should I call you Princess Jaylene”
“Countess is fine.
To be his wife is my greatest pride.”
Elisha could not refuse the soft-smiling woman.
She should have given notice in advance, but even if she hadn’t, Elisha couldn’t neglect the princess who had stopped by Barossa for the first time in a long time.
With every step she took, the smooth, thread-like yellow hair fluttered, and her large, jewel-like purple eyes contained a vague melancholy.
She and Rohan’s story was endlessly talked about because of their identity and love that transcends hardships, but the other reason must be because their excellent appearances were suitable to be on other people’s lips.
Elisha led her to the drawing room.
She didn’t want to leave a memory of this woman behind the parlor where she often spent time with Leon.
“Is there something wrong”
“Why do you talk like I’m in a place I shouldn’t come to You’re married to my brother, so you’re like my sister.”
When the woman spoke amiably, Elisha felt goosebumps in her arms.
“We haven’t had any interactions so far.
Don’t you feel it’s awkward”
“It was because the 1st Consort was so jealous, so I didn’t want to be close with the 2nd Consort.
At that time, I was worried that 2nd Consort was not strong enough, so I was worried that you might get into a rough situation because of me, but now I don’t have to worry about that anymore.”
It sounded as though she was being considerate of others.
From the recipient’s standpoint, she was emotionally compelled to say I did this for you.
Elisha had always thought she’d never want to be friends with Jaylene, though she had never said it.
So she just answered casually and moved on.
Anyway, someone who came to see you must have something to say.
They usually did.
Jaylene glanced at Elisha carefully.
Her silver hair and white face were beautiful, but she had no expression on her face, just like a doll.
What would have captured the man who hadn’t given a single heart to her even though she had been by his side for so long
Because she didn’t want to know that, Jaylened wanted to tear the 2nd Consort to pieces so she’d disappear without a trace.
She wanted to take her parts from head to toe and observe them individually.
Jaylene lowered her richly shaded lashes to hide her eerie deep purple eyes.
“I heard that you are moving to the White Rose Palace.
You might become an empress in the future, so you should be treated differently.
I’d like to greet you regularly.”
“It would be faster for the 1st Consort to enter the Red Rose Palace than me.
The 1st Consort should receive the greetings first.”
It was difficult to get the support of the princess in an already complicated situation.
But of course whatever Elisha had to say was useless, and sure enough.
“What does the order matter His Majesty’s intention is the will of Barossa.”
So the problem was His Majesty’s intention.
She didn’t want to deal with it, but she had to because this woman was buzzing around in front of her.
“His Majesty has revealed his intention to choose the empress, but the exact story has not yet been revealed.
Has Princess confirmed His Majesty’s intention”
Jaylene was silent.
Of course she hadn’t.