Chapter 52 - Reaching the Capital
The carriage continued towards the capital without a hitch. The journey to the capital was not boring at all. The reason behind it was that for the past six years, aside from the Crucia Festival, I did not leave my territory even once. Hence, the journey was filled with things I had never seen before.
Looking at it, wasn’t I basically Rapunzel? Of course, it was a little different given that I chose to be confined.
If I go to the Capital, I’ll only be inside the palace, so It’ll be the same.
I would really have to stick around Leonard once I got there. It didn’t matter since there wasn’t anyone to meet anyway–
Ah, right, there was Enoch.
“What did you do with the letter I sent last time? The Emperor– No, did you send it to Duke Thepherone?”
I felt awkward even though I said his name out loud. Duke Thepherone. I never thought that a change in the throne would take place without even shedding a drop of blood. I didn’t even think that it was a possible feat.
“…Why do you want to know?”
“We’re reaching the Capital soon. Just in case I meet him, I need to know if the letter reached him.”
At my nonchalant response, Leonard gazed into the distance without answering.
What’s wrong with him?
I waited for a response without saying anything just in case, but Leonard did not say anything. It was Gerald who answered me after a long silence, instead of Leonard.
“Haha… I guess he doesn’t remember.”
I thought he remembered everything related to me. Was that not the case? The standards were too vague.
“It probably didn’t reach Duke Thepherone. We didn’t have the time to pay attention to that.”
“Then, Duke Thepherone has not received my reply?”
“Come to think of it, I guess so. I should have paid more attention in advance, sorry.”
“No, you must have been all over the place. I was going to refuse anyway, so don’t worry about it.”
I quickly waved my hands at Gerald, who was bowing his head. It wasn’t as if Duke Thepherone would come to visit just because I didn’t reply. If he came because of this, there would be a huge crowd gathering in Amelio County.
I was going to write a letter to Gilbert as soon as I arrived at the palace anyway, so I’ll mention that together too.
As I thought about that, we passed through the gate leading to the Capital. That was why I never expected it. I didn’t think there would be people who would come to see me just because I didn’t write back.
* * *
As soon as we passed through the gate, the carriage which was running well gradually slowed down.
There’s still a long way to go until the Imperial Palace though?
I glanced at Leonard while wondering, but he didn’t seem to know what the situation was about either. When the carriage stopped completely, Leonard, who was looking out the window, got down first.
“What’s going on?”
Some Knights appeared behind the horseman who was stuttering. The Knights bowed their heads in unison upon confirming Leonard’s face.
“Greetings to Your Majesty, the Great Sun of the Empire.”
At the Knights’ greeting, Leonard waved his hand as if he was annoyed. I could feel a commotion rising in the people around when they heard His Majesty the Emperor.
Oh, he looked like an Emperor when he acted like that though?
“Was it you lot who blocked my carriage?”
“Apologies. We didn’t know that it was Your Majesty’s carriage–”
“Then whose carriage did you think it was?”
Just like Leonard usually did when it was difficult to control his emotions, a surge of cold aura emerged this time too. The Knights trembled at the pressure. It was praiseworthy that they did not faint right away. Their legs trembled and their faces turned white as if they were about to collapse.
Huh? They looked familiar.
“Perhaps, are you Enoch’s–”
I inadvertently uttered the name from my old memories that came to mind. Then, the eyes of the Knights who were shaking in front of Leonard turned towards me all at once.
Ah, right. The carriage door was open.
Leonard shuddered when the Knights’ uttered my name from their mouths. At once, he directed a doubtful gaze toward me. Come to think of it, they didn’t recognize Leonard.
“These are the Knights who came to Amelio County with Enoch four years ago.”
As I got out of the carriage, I whispered quietly in Leonard’s ears. Now that the Knight had uttered my name from his mouth, I could no longer sit still in the carriage.
“Hello, it’s been a while. It’s been four years, right?”
“You remembered us!”
The Knights covered their mouths in unison and shed tears. I think I heard one of them swallowing their tears.
“How can you be so warm-hearted!”
I didn’t really try hard to remember. It was because I had a good memory and I couldn’t forget it. However, it was useless to mention it. There was also no point in saying that now.
“Milady, could you come with us to the Duke Thepherone House for a moment?”
“Huh? The Duke Thepherone House?”
Why the Duke’s house all of a sudden?
“Sir Duke wants to see you, Milady. He said you’d probably know if we mention the letters—”
Oh my God. I didn’t expect him to send Knights if I didn’t reply. How did he know I would come to the Capital?
“Please, Milady. I’m sorry, but could you come with us–”
“That’s not going to happen.”
At the response that cut them off, the Knights opened their eyes wide. Of course, I wasn’t the one who answered. It was Leonard, who was looking at the Knights standing beside me with a cold face. Leonard leaned on the carriage and tilted his head slightly while raising the corners of his lips.
“Why are you standing still and staring? I am telling you–”
With a face that didn’t carry the slightest hint of a smile, “This won’t happen.”