My memory of the events just before my death was mostly hazy.
I can only vaguely remember how I got to the execution table, and what kind of conversation I had with Ethan, but I couldn’t remember anything exact.
But this was clear.
Ethan Bronte and I are so similar that we make each other more like each other.
Ethan followed what I said.
That’s something only really good people can do.
A person like me only darkens Ethan and myself.
I clenched my fists.
“Go back, Ethan.”
I could no longer be with Ethan.
I was afraid that if I stayed with him, my desires would blossom again and I would walk the path of evil.
I was afraid of being blinded by evil and living that painful life again.
As I turned my back with a cold, Ethan, embarrassed, grabbed me and turned me around.
Then the tears I had been trying to hide fell in front of Ethan.
Ethan’s eyes trembled at the tears.
I couldn’t stand myself like that, so I tried to push him away.
I’m sorry, Princess.”
Ethan hugged me tightly.
“I was wrong.
So please…don’t Cry.”
Ethan begged, putting his head on my shoulder.
His voice trembled with fear.
He, who had brazenly asserted his innocence up until now, suddenly admitted his guilt and changed his mind.
Not like Ethan.
I was confused.
“Let go of me, Ethan… !”
I pushed him away.
Then Ethan’s face appeared again.
He was trembling with a look of fear.
Ethan with such a face broke people’s hearts, so I turned my head and looked away.
Is this even a mask designed to avoid the situation? Or are you afraid of losing your connection with the princess?
Even though I had seen him closer than anyone for many years, I still couldn’t really understand his insides.
I couldn’t understand Ethan’s sincerity, so I purposely kept eye contact with him for a long time.
I look inside his beautiful eyes, trying to find the truth hidden in them.
But no matter what I did, I couldn’t understand the meaning of that expression.
I was perplexed.
“It’s my fault.
I did it because I was jealous that they were close to the princess.
I wanted to be the princess’s only friend.”
Ethan grabbed my hand and confessed in a trembling voice.
“If the princess abandons me, I will be alone.”
In the end, a single tear fell from his golden eyes.
The dripping drop shook my heart.
“So, don’t hate me…”
Ethan said in a trembling voice, holding me tight.
With that sad face that didn’t even flinch an eyebrow.
I thought he was truly clever.
Because I couldn’t say I hate him.
* * *
“Did you send Hark back well?”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
After Hark had finished visiting the Empire Ubera, Carnan returned to his office.
Carnan nodded through the paperwork, then stopped and looked up to see his assistant, Robert.
“He was talking about Princess Dorothea.”
Carnan remembered the words of the people of Hark.
“It seems that the palace at Cerritian was impressive.”
The people of Hark said that they had a positive impression of Imperial Ubera because the Duke of Bronte and Princess Dorothea treated them well.
Carnan put the pen on him and thought.
‘Princess Dorothea seems very healthy.
She grew up very wise.’
After Dorothea Milanaire had gone down to the palace, news of her would have come from time to time.
When the plague circulated around Cerritian, Dorothea’s active relief greatly improved public sentiment.
There were many other places that Dorothea donated to, and it had a good reputation among the local nobles.
At a young age, she was praised for being clever and wise.
“A lot of people say that Princess Dorothea is a genius.”
At that, Carnan was silent for a moment in thought.
“Does the princess need more treatment?”
Reportedly, she is healthy enough to compete with Prince Raymond in a swordsmanship contest hosted by the Duke of Bronte.”
“Then tell her to come up.”
A smile spread across Robert’s face at Carnan’s command.
‘You are finally calling your daughter, whom you have been despising for a long time.’
“And take the episteme transfer exam.”
“Yes? Are you talking about Princess Dorothea?”
Assistant Robert asked in amazement.
“Then who would it be?”
Since Dorothea is from the royal family, there’s nothing wrong with coming out of the episteme.
Carnan just didn’t want to educate Dorothea, who can’t even handle the Light Spirit, to send her to Episteme.
It’s a waste to put the ball into a flawed Milanaire.
But if Dorothea is smart, it might be useful again.
“However, the princess has never received the proper education for the Episteme exam.”
Robert was perplexed.
Raymond also had professional teachers and received education from an early age, so he was able to pass the episteme exam.
Other aristocrats likewise burned their zeal for education to send their children to Episteme.
But, did the princess who was recuperating in the provinces enter Episteme?
To pass the exam in what is known as the best academy in the world, she studies alone without a teacher.
“If she is smart, we will know it.
If she can’t go in, she did her best there.”
Carnan said it didn’t matter.
Carnan did not expect Dorothea to pass Episteme.
After all, Dorothea Milanaire is not imperial, and the best place for her to live is calm and to die quietly.
This was a test for Dorothea.
A test to find out just how much Dorothea has known of her cleverness even in her ears on the islands.
Even if he doesn’t have to measure Dorothea, the Episteme test score will make it simple to determine Dorothea’s level.
‘I think she was smart.’
‘A few years ago, when we met in the garden ‘Alice’s garden’, I heard a little Dorothea memorize Milanaire’s family tree.’
‘Were you still reading books that are not appropriate for your age?’
‘Is that head useful for the imperial family? Or will it be poison?’
That was the only thing Carnan was interested in.
At Carnan’s blunt reply, Robert nodded awkwardly.
* * *
Early in the morning when the sun had not yet risen, Stefan was sharpening his sword.
He hardly ever used a sword after coming here, but he did not forget to sharpen his sword.
Stefan was a little overjoyed when Dorothea asked him to teach her swordsmanship.
‘There’s something I can use a sword other than training by myself.’
And teaching Dorothea swordsmanship, he felt more joy than he had expected.
Because Dorothea lived up to his teachings beyond expectations.
Stefan can teach one but Dorothea knows ten, or even a hundred, has grown to quite a level that can be dealt with in just a few years.
Stefan assured Dorothea that she would be as good as a knight when she came of age without major accidents.
To the extent that her status of being a rare princess was due to mastering sword skills.
He thought he had no talent for teaching as much because he could not talk, but seeing Dorothea, he seemed to know what the joy of teaching was.
In Stefan’s eyes, Dorothea seemed to have been born with a blessing from God.
Not to mention Dorothea is good, smart, wise, good at swordsmanship, cute and pretty.
Stefan did not believe in the legend of Milanaire or noble blood, but after seeing Dorothea, he said, ‘Oh, is that the royal blood?’
‘I used to think, ‘ Wouldn’t everyone be able to love a child like that?’
Stefan recalled his first meeting with Dorothea.
When Stefan first met Dorothea, she was a little far from the way she is now.
The first time he met Dorothea was when she was lying on the cold sand in a dark desert obscured by clouds.
That day, the Knights of Brightness were dispatched to the western desert with an order to find the kidnapped princess.
Stefan was the first to discover Dorothea in the cold, dark desert.
It was a miracle to find her in the wilderness.
Dorothea at that time was exhaling a shallow breath that was splitting into a small, slender body that was about to break.
When Stefan held Dorothea trembling in the cold in his arms, she was like a thing blown away by the sand wind.
He felt that it would break if he held her with even a little force, so he wrapped her in a cloak and hurriedly ran to the nearby village.
The day when Stefan was afraid of the darkness deepened every time Dorothea caught her breath and coughed.
He still remembered that it had rained when he arrived at the village.
Stefan Volunteering as an escort for Dorothea was a great job.
When he met Dorothea here again, Dorothy did not recognize him.
He didn’t seem to remember anything about that day.
Even with her small body, she greeted him with the dignity of a dignified princess.
Then Dorothea held out to him a small hand showing all the bones and veins of her hand.
It was soft as if it would break if he caught it.
So he hurriedly took it off.
‘What were the Emperor’s thoughts on sending this little girl to a distant place alone?’
‘I’m sure she is at the age to miss her family.
So It’s going to be hard to stand alone.’
It must have a deep meaning for the strict emperor, but it was hard to understand to leave that child alone no matter how much Stefan thought about it.
He also felt sorry for the little princess.
People used to gossip that she had been abandoned by the emperor.
Even the nobles who often visited the Imperial Palace smiled broadly in front of Dorothea, showing favor to her, but when they turned around, they stuck out their tongues.
‘Does Dorothea know about it? that she has been abandoned?’
Stefan continued to be concerned.
‘She probably knows.’
Because Dorothea Milanaire is smart enough not to show off what she knows.
So Stefan only thought Dorothea was a strong child.
until he hears that.
[You know, I had a very scary dream… In my dream, there is a person I really like and that person hates me.
In the end, he hates me so much…he is going to die by hanging himself in the room.]
Dorothea’s confession in the infirmary.
[I’ve been thinking about it for a long time… I was born killing my mother.
That is why I was born as a bad person from the beginning.
therefore…I can’t be loved and I was destined to be a bad person no matter what.’]
‘How could that little child have imagined such a thing?’
Stefan had never imagined that such an idea would reside in Dorothea’s mind.
Since Dorothea had overcome the kidnapping, Stefan was easily thinking that all the scars had healed, or that her healing was well.
The parts that she is too mature, the dryness that can be seen even in her laughter.
Even though Dorothea was signaling enough.
‘Fate to be a bad person… Bucket list to be good.’
Looking back, Stefan began to understand Dorothea’s unique behavior one by one.
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