Chapter 25 - An Outrageous Past
Cecile picked up the bunch of grapes and chose one of the ripest among them to bring to the emperor’s mouth. She wanted to share what she liked best with this man, too. It was the first thing she wanted to do upon gaining a family. Estian turned rigid at the suddenness of her action. Who in the world could dare to put food in his mouth? And what’s more, put a grape in it of all things? He loathed grapes, as the first poison he was afflicted by was contained in one of these berries.
The juice he had tasted from what trickled from her mouth was so very sweet, though.
‘Perhaps this too, then…’ Estian tentatively accepted the grape in Cecile’s fingers between his lips. He hesitated fleetingly before crushing the berry with his tongue and teeth, and a refreshing flavor of fruit permeated his mouth. Curiously enough, he found that it tasted good.
Never had he imagined becoming able to eat a fruit he had not, no… could not eat for the past 20 years, and in an instant at that! As he swallowed the grape, a smile spread across Cecile’s face below him. The sight of her smile prompted Estian to call his schedule to mind. Inspecting the knights, holding a meeting with the ministers, so on and so forth.
‘All of no consequence.’
These matters ‘of no consequence’ were affairs which he had never skipped since the day he was enthroned as emperor, yet why was he feeling them to be so worthless today?
‘Not like it’s a big deal to skip out just once.’
Kane would have begged to disagree upon hearing his thoughts, jumping up and down while crying, ‘But it is a big deal!’. Regardless, Estian gently bit down on Cecile’s fingers still lingering by his lips. She flinched briefly and seemed about to draw back, but she did not take out her fingers. Rather, she began to fondle his face with her free fingers as if challenging him to do more.
Estian closed his eyes at the sensation. He found that it did not feel bad. In fact, he actually wanted to continue enjoying the feeling. Thus Estian gained certainty in one thing.
‘This woman just might be able to do it.’
Estian began to speak. “There’s no need for you to achieve the same feats, or anything harder than what I did. You’ll be able to climb above me in an utterly simple way.”
Estian laughed. “Like so.”
With that said, he lifted Cecile by the waist with both hands. The world spun in a circle for Cecile all of a sudden, and she saw that she and Estian had switched places.
“Yo-your Majesty!” She exclaimed. Finding herself on top of Estian in the blink of an eye, Cecile grew red in the face. ‘He meant climbing above him in the literal sense?’
“How about it? Simple, right?”
‘Are you kidding me…?’ She had almost exclaimed outwardly, but fortunately, she was not relaxed enough to do so. Cecile contemplated as to how she should reply when Estian drew her into his embrace and whispered, “Do you think anyone in the world has ever climbed on top of me?”
“You are the first.” Estian raised a hand to sweep back Cecile’s hair. “You only need to do one thing: become the master of the infamous emperor and have him at your beck and call. That’s all you need to do to raise your name above my infamy. To become known as the villainess who holds power over the worst tyrant of all time. All that is mine will become yours.”
Cecile stared intently at him after he finished. Moments later, she asked what had been on her mind for a while now. “That’s a very attractive thought, but I’m having trouble understanding how it’s going to save me.”
‘Do bad things in order to live? Shouldn’t it usually be the opposite?’
“Won’t I end up being hated by more people for doing bad things?” she questioned.
“That’s a given. But some hope for that to happen. Some of those also happen to be my enemies.”
As the conversation grew complicated, Cecile attempted to get off the emperor. She could not shake off the feeling of needing to assume proper posture with a paper and pen in hand, jotting down notes as she listened. But Estian’s hands caught Cecile by the waist as she was about to climb down.