Chapter 14 - The Peaceful Solution
Desperation shone through the emperor’s eyes as he waited for the answer. It almost seemed as if he was confident of finding out the answer if Venio answered his questions. Deciding to play dumb, Venio put on an innocent look and responded, “Brother, as I didn’t get her agreement to disclose…”
“Oh, forget it! You just don’t want to tell me! Get out!”
“It’s just that I really can’t share that kind of information. I should get going.”
After he finished speaking, Venio left the room with a refreshed look on his face, imitating a pure knight. But he was caught by the tick, also known as the red witch.
“Your Excellency, I didn’t think you would be at the palace today. I really didn’t expect to meet you here, what a coincidence! Perhaps we are meant to…”
“Well, I have some free time today. May I ask where you are headed?”
“Then, will there be anyone else along the way…?”
“There’s no woman along the way.”
“Oh, okay. I’ll be on my way, then.”
The woman in the red dress disappeared bashfully, but Venio wasn’t sure how she had interpreted his words. The woman’s name was Nevira Bedelium, and she was known as a two-faced witch amongst the upper class.
She was a red-haired vivacious beauty. Known as the queen of social circles, she was known as the ambassador. Through her, Venio got to know a brand new world as he had never experienced anyone chasing after him into the bathroom like she did, then talking about what a coincidental meeting it was. While he couldn’t claim to be living and entirely normal life, she was indeed a very interesting human being.
‘But that was just the beginning.’
One day, he discovered that she stole a wine cup he had used from the royal palace, and when the attendant found out about it, Nevira killed her to keep her lips sealed, then buried her. That’s when he realised that she was capable of killing. From then on, he started calling her ‘the tick’.
“No matter what I say to her, she never listens.”
It was impossible to control someone who wouldn’t listen. The more he thought about it, the more tired he felt. He had once thought about offending the Bedelium Duchy, however, it was certain that the amiable emperor would really get angry.
“Find a peaceful way. Peaceful… peace…” he muttered.
He had been evading her well so far, but having finally encountered her after a long time, his face displayed the extent of his vexation. All of sudden, he stopped walking. With a face blank of any expression, he started thinking deeply about something until night fell.
An amplified light gray color was the first thing he recalled. The woman he couldn’t forget had inexplicably sad eyes. Then, he thought about the offer she had made him, and the desperate look she had in her eyes.
It had been a while since he took so long to come to a decision. But now that he finally made the decision, he immediately headed off somewhere.
* * *
Laila returned to her room with the memo and painkillers that the doctor left for her. She couldn’t even understand herself and wondered why she suddenly became so scared back then.
“Why am I, suddenly…? This is nothing.”
She felt dizzy. Suddenly overcome by a wave of nausea just as she was about to lie down on her small bed, she stood up abruptly.
She turned around and caught sight of her bed. The moment of her death surfaced in her mind, overlapping with her vision. She couldn’t stand the sight of the bed she died in.
Laila headed outside. The whole world was soaked in rain. Earlier, the smell of the rain was pleasant, but now, it was suffocating her. Laila looked down at her hand.
The memo from the doctor was still in her hands. It was chilly, but the paper seemed warm.
It was strange, but still, she held the paper that was giving her warmth desperately with both hands. After a while, she started hearing the calls of birds that were still not asleep.
She stood there quietly, listening to the sound of leaves rustling in the wind. She realized she was feeling better than before.
‘How troubling. If I get used to this painkiller, I’ll have to see the doctor again.’
Laila stood staring blankly at her dwelling.
‘I’ll go back in later.’
She started walking cautiously in the opposite direction from her dwelling. She always walked like this, as if she were walking in a foreign place for she owned nothing under her name. She was still thinking like this subconsciously.
Laila was almost at the end of the garden. The wall seemed to be welcoming her.
“There are flowers on the vines now,” she muttered, noticing the green vines climbing vigorously on the slightly inclined wall.
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