Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero Chapter 96

Chapter 96- Imperial Palace Ball (2)

༺ Imperial Palace Ball (2) ༻



  The Imperial Palace Ball, hosted by the Imperial Family, was an honorable event that every noble wants to attend.


  Being invited here in itself becomes an important measure that proves one’s position and influence in noble society, and even among the same nobles, some receive an invitation to the Imperial Palace Ball and some do not, and this fact alone divides their ranks.


  Therefore, for the imperial nobles, the Imperial Palace Ball was an important place for honor and power beyond merely attending a party, and the scale of the ball was as grand and splendid as no other party could compare.


  The symbol of the imperial family, the White Dragon Albinisis, meant the banquet hall decorated with platinum and marble was so beautiful that it was dazzling, and the chandeliers adorned with sparkling jewels added a brilliant light to the entire space.


  As the classical performance of the imperial orchestra spread quietly through the banquet hall, the nobles, dressed in luxurious clothes made of top-grade silk and velvet and expensive accessories, danced to the music or enjoyed all sorts of delicacies while having conversations.


  The most noticeable person at this Imperial Palace Ball was, of course, the First Prince Wilhelm. He was both the protagonist and host of this event, and he was also a hero wielding the holy sword.


  However, if it was limited to women, the story changed a bit. The woman receiving the most attention at this ball was not Frida, the ‘Iron-Blooded Knight’ member of the hero party, nor was it Greta, the ‘Ashen Witch’.


  It was Marian.


  “Beautiful lady, your red hair catches my eye like a blazing flame. Would it be alright if we danced together to this song?”


  “Hehe, I appreciate your offer, sir… unfortunately, I do not know a dance that goes along with this current song. I plan to wait until a song I like comes on.”


  If you were to ask what her favorite song was, or if you were to say you’d wait until the song she wanted to dance to came on, it was proof of foolishness.


  It was behavior that revealed either a lack of perception to recognize the subtle rejection of the lady, or the absence of basic manners for a gentleman.


  “Oh… I see? I understand. Well, I’ll be off….”


  As the nobleman wearing the leopard mask left his seat in embarrassment, Marian let out a small sigh so that others could not hear.




  With that, the number of noblemen she had turned down had already reached sixteen.


  Normally, refusing to dance to this extent was considered rude in social circles, but Marian had no such worries.


  She was the sole granddaughter of Marquis Kalshtein, one of the seven heroes of the continent and the commander-in-chief of the imperial army, and boasted a brilliant beauty suitable for her, being the daughter of Red of the Spiritual Mountain Ivian, who was once acclaimed as the most beautiful woman in the empire.


  Refused a dance request sixteen times? Such rumors only served to elevate her status even more.


  But even with all these refusals, the number of nobles subtly watching Marian did not decrease at all, and the passion in their gazes was only growing stronger.


  Whether they found the flower on the cliff even more beautiful, or thought they’d be different even though everyone else was rejected…


  ‘Nobles, indeed…’


  Marian was grateful that this ball was a masquerade. If not, she would have had to put much more effort into hiding and managing her expressions.


  Of course, even with the mask, she couldn’t hide her distinctive red hair, so it seemed that people around her had already realized who she was…


  Then, another man approached Marian.


  As she was preparing to reject him again with a contrived smile on her lips, she felt something familiar about the man in the deer mask.


  Unlike others who had asked her to dance, the man spoke to her in a more relaxed tone.


  “You’ve been through a lot, Marian.”




  Only then did Schultz’s gray hair catch Marian’s eyes. She didn’t recognize him for a moment because he wasn’t wearing his usual glasses.


  Schultz realized where she was looking, and pointed to his eyes with a light laugh.


  “Oh, this? My vision isn’t that bad. And isn’t it strange to wear glasses on top of a mask?”


  “Hmm, I see… But you’re not about to ask me to dance, are you?”


  “Me? Haha, not at all. I don’t want to be the seventeenth.”


  “Well, in that case…”


  Marian silently allowed Schultz to join her.


  Schultz handed her a glass of champagne with a smile. Marian, realizing that it was actually non-alcoholic despite its appearance, nodded in appreciation of his thoughtfulness and took a sip.


  It was a truly strange feeling. In social circles, Marian always maintained her guard up, but strangely enough, she felt relaxed at that moment. And it seemed that Schultz felt the same.


  She had met Schultz several times in social circles, but perhaps because he was the son of a noble back then and now somewhat a friend, things felt different?


  ‘Why did I come to think of him as a friend…?’


  It was probably because they had built camaraderie under the stern instructor who was always drilling students in the back mountain every day.


  Marian said with a light chuckle,


  “Your favorite hero from the Seven Heroes of the Continent is over there. Why don’t you go and chat with him?”


  Schultz shook his head with a wry smile.


  “Um… no, I’ll pass.”




  “Just… It’s a bit complicated to explain here. You know, don’t you?”


  Schultz evaded the question decently, and Marian nodded slightly.


  Both of them, as children of high-ranking nobles, had heard many rumors related to the Hero Party, and they already knew that the majority of these rumors were quite credible.


  From the reason the Hero Party was formed, it was abundantly clear that there were political motives, and considering the things they had done to build a criminal record, it was hard to see them in a purely positive light.


  In fact, everything Saladin said about the Hero Party at the beginning of the school year was not wrong at all.


  It’s just that everyone, while fully aware, kept quiet in consideration of the authority of the royal family and the mood of the next Emperor.


  “Doesn’t it feel strange?”


  “What does?”


  “Just, all of this. There was such a commotion during the day, but these people are here enjoying the party as if nothing happened. Pretending as if it’s been resolved safely, as if everything is okay… when the actual problem solver is someone else.”


  Marian’s gaze shifted towards Prince Wilhelm, who was at the center of the ball. Despite the Ball, there was no one who did not know that he was Prince Wilhelm. After all, there were only two men with silver hair and red eyes in the entire empire.


  Furthermore, the prince didn’t even seem to have any intention of hiding his identity, blatantly wearing a white dragon mask. The nobles, all gathered around Prince Wilhelm, pretended not to know his identity while accommodating him and lifting his spirits.


  If pretending not to know while knowing is the nature of the nobles, Marian thought it was quite similar to this Ball.


  Schultz spoke softly.


  “Marian. There are many eyes watching here.”


  “…Yes. I suppose there are.”


  Marian lifted the corners of her mouth into a radiant smile. The beautiful sight of her smiling prettily as if to show off made many noblemen’s hearts flutter, but Marian paid them no heed.


  Schultz asked in a curious tone.


  “It’s a bit surprising. Marian, you… in plain words, you are the flower of the social circles, aren’t you? I thought you would be unfazed by all this.”


  “The more you know, the deeper you see. And…”






  In the past, she used to think all of this was natural. While the Marquis Kalshtein was on the battlefield, the Marchioness was responsible for Marian’s education. Marian received education befitting a noble lady, and she grew up as a noble lady should.


  She learned how conspiracies and schemes intersected amidst the glamorous parties, what meanings were contained in the subtle gestures and expressions of the nobles, and how to behave so as not to be ridiculed by others.


  Investing enormous costs in the parties, buying dozens of dresses, adorning herself with numerous accessories; she thought all these things were simply a necessary part of maintaining a noble’s life.


  She believed that receiving the envy of others and standing in the high strata of society was the essence of a noble’s life.


  However, her views began to change a bit as she interacted with a variety of people in Opal Black Class.


  Marian was not as good with the sword as Gwyn, nor as skilled in magic as Oznia. She wasn’t as excellent in spirit magic and archery as Titania, nor did she have a natural physique like Batar.


  While Marian was confident in her eloquence and perceptiveness when dealing with people, these were learned traits. Things that anyone could master if they learned them.


  If compared with other commoner students of Opal Black, she might have an edge, but when asked if she is overwhelmingly superior, she hesitated to answer.


  If there were some commoners superior to nobles, and nobles inferior to commoners, then on what grounds is the argument based that nobles should rule over commoners?


  “I’m not really sure….”


  In the end, Marian held her words back.


  Because these thoughts were too delicate to speak rashly.


  Marian was proud of her grandfather, who was the commander-in-chief of the Imperial Army and one of the Seven Heroes of the continent. However, the answer he gave when she expressed her thoughts directly in front of him still remained vivid in her heart.


  “Marian, I’m not a hero. The real heroes are the soldiers who risked their lives and fought under me. Without them, I would really be nothing.”


  She didn’t understand what he meant back then.


  But now, she felt as if she was beginning to vaguely understand.


  The reason for this realization was surely because of a certain man. Despite achieving numerous feats fighting against a crisis where humanity almost went extinct as a mere soldier, he refused all honor and power, simply working as an instructor at the academy.




  A month had already passed since the semester began. One might say it was only a month, but eighteen was an age in noble society when one could consider marriage or engagement.


  Especially considering the countless engagement proposals showered on the Kalshtein family, it was about time for Marian to start seriously looking for a partner.


  ‘Should I be more proactive?’


  If she was too leisurely and a good man was taken right before her eyes… she would be so regretful that she wouldn’t be able to sleep at night.


  ‘Should I have made a partner proposal… It’s already too late now. There’s a party at the main house in the summer, so maybe then I could bring it up-?’


  At that moment.


  Amidst the chaos of many gathered people, the entrance of the ballroom suddenly fell quiet. And everyone’s eyes were focused in one place.


  Marian’s eyes naturally turned to the entrance as well.


  A girl with silvery hair and a white fox mask was walking in. Thanks to her unique imperial family’s silver hair and elegant demeanor, everyone in the ballroom instantly recognized her as Princess Elizabeth, the third princess.


  And Marian could see a man standing next to Elizabeth.


  He wore a black mask, but it was not difficult to recognize him. His hair and eye color, his height one head taller than the average male height in the empire, and the half-exposed facial features beyond the mask were all too familiar.


  ” Instructor… Eon…?”


  Seeing the two of them walking arm in arm as if they were lovers,


  Marian, doubting her eyes, was lost in a daze.







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Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero

Abandoned by my Childhood Friend, I Became a War Hero

Score 9.00
Status: Ongoing Released: 2023 Native Language: Korean
After experiencing heartbreak from being abandoned he enlisted in the military. And then, he became a war hero.


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