Chapter 22 - Discovered
Isabel shook her head. She was not lying. Even if she had entertained the idea that he would pay her some attention because of her hair color, she would have always followed him regardless.
“I don’t think I’ve seen you before,” he nodded slightly at her appearance but remained unconvinced. “Who are you?”
As she expected, Agares had not recognized her. He had seemed overly intoxicated and out of it that day, after all. Otherwise, he would not have slept with a woman like her.
“You’ve been watching me all day today.”
Isabel was again surprised at his words and shook her head.
“Wh-what…?” she stuttered. “What? N-no…”
“No, you say? Do I look that stupid? You’ve had your eyes on me the entire time.”
“…W-what are you saying?”
“I felt someone staring at me all evening while I was at the banquet. Wasn’t it you? The wallflower lady.”
Isabel was startled upon hearing that he had felt her gaze and that he had even noted enough about her to call her a wallflower. He knew that no gentleman wrote their name on her dance card and that she stood at the wall. She was so surprised that she froze up and could not respond to him.
At the same time, she was ashamed. She had been happy to learn that he was aware of her existence, but she was simultaneously embarrassed that he exposed the fact that she was a wallflower who no one was willing to dance with. Then she wondered if he knew about her chasing and watching him.
“W-what are you…”
“What’s wrong? You’ve been tailing me and spying on me the entire time, no?”
“Hmm. You have black hair.”
Under the darkness of the shadowy hall, her hair looked black.
“Did you dye your hair?”
Agares reached out and touched Isabel’s hair. That alone caused an electric current to flow through her. Her body was stiff and tense. She could scarcely believe she was currently speaking with him.
“Yes, if I look closely, it’s violet,” he muttered, holding her hair with a gloved finger as he did with the previous women and observing it under the light.
Most people would not have known because her hair did usually only look black, but Isabel’s hair was actually violet. Under the sun, her hair would turn a glossy purple.
She did not understand what was going on and looked up at him. His red eyes were clear and alert. He seemed to notice her gaze even before his eyes met hers and approached her slowly. Isabel opened her eyes wide. Right when she registered that his eyes were closing, Agares’ lips touched hers.
His tongue slipped through Isabel’s lips—an impolite maneuver. Isabel, however, was too distracted to even think that. The warm and smooth tongue parting her lips pressed on hers and created friction as it moved in her mouth. She found it hard to breathe as he rolled her tongue up and thrust deep into her mouth. Isabel could not react properly to his actions and had no choice but to follow his lead and move her tongue.
His tongue tasted faintly of wine, and his embrace emanated a sweet fragrance. Isabel then realized that she was in Agares’ arms, kissing him and entwining her tongue with his. Her head spun at the sounds coming from their locked lips. The wet sound of tongues entangling one another reminded her of that night.
The man who had invaded Isabel’s lips without permission and did as he pleased slowly backed away. As he parted from her, he licked her lips with his tongue, leaving a smacking sound as they separated. His apricot-colored lips were now red from the stimulation. The lipstick she had applied was also smeared faintly on his lips. Isabel’s cheeks flushed. She licked her wet lips.
“It’s you,” Agares said.
“What, what are you talking about?”
“It was you.” He smiled gently. It was a sweet smile that could have melted anyone, but a chill ran down Isabel’s spine instead. “It’s you. The woman who ate me and ran away.”
She did not know whether to be surprised that he remembered the incident between them or shocked at his vulgar words.
“P-pardon? W-what are you talking about, Your Highness?”
“It is you. You ate me and fled.”
“E-eat and flee…w-what?! N-no.”
Isabel shook her head desperately as she repeated his words in surprise. She absolutely had to deny his accusations. While he had been unconscious, she had indeed impulsively given her body to him, but she had never thought that she would get caught. She had not even imagined that he would recognize her.
“Are you also the one who drugged me at the banquet three days ago?”
Now that was a misunderstanding. She had not been the one to drug him, but she did realize that he could easily misunderstand it as such from his perspective.
“T-t-t-that…t-that wasn’t me. T-the…d-drug wasn’t me. I swear, Your Highness. Please believe me!”
Isabel shook her head in surprise. It was true that she had slept with him while he had been intoxicated and properly conscious, but she was not the one who placed him in that state.
“Oh, so you’re saying you didn’t drug me, but everything else was right? I guess you were the one who slept with me, then.”
“A-a-ah! Y-your…Highness. I-I…was…wr—! Sorr—!”
Isabel shrank back and shut her eyes. She was done for. He now knew that she had secretly spied on him, the Grand Duke, followed him and spied some more. And, as if that had not been enough, she had even slept with him while he was unconscious. He was certainly within his rights to be furious with her and, of course, demand her punishment.
‘Ah…I knew I shouldn’t have followed him anymore. I should have been content with just that one night and continued on with my life.’
In actuality, no, she did not even care that she was going to be punished for her actions. She had already accepted that. Rather, it was the fact that she would never be able to see him again that made Isabel despair. She had made a terrible decision to follow him out of habit today.
Isabel was caught in her agony, thinking he would call the guards and arrest her right away. Her body was trembling severely when she heard an unexpectedly affectionate voice soothe her.
“It’s okay. I’m not angry.”
She opened her eyes slightly. Agares had approached her and was looking down at her.
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