༺ Ciel Midford (3) ༻
“It has been a long time, kid.”
The Emperor of Ernes uttered those words with a regal tone.
His wrinkled face was no mere decoration, as the Emperor wasn’t fazed in the slightest by Ferzen’s arrival.
“I’ve heard of the aftereffects of the incident at the Imperial Academy. Has your arm healed completely?”
“Your Majesty, this servant is unworthy of your concern.”
“I have decided to exempt tax in the province of Louerg for three years to reward you for your commendable actions in that unfortunate incident.”
“This servant is most grateful, Your Majesty.”
“Good…… Now let us enjoy this banquet.”
Does Brutein want to participate in the upcoming battles for the succession……Or is this kid acting on his own volition?
As he considered the potential ramifications of Ferzen’s actions, the Emperor glanced at his sons, the First and Second Princes, who both had clueless looks.
As he saw his sons’ reactions, the Emperor’s expression became complicated.
If his second son gained the support of Ferzen and, by proxy, Brutein, his ascension to the throne would be secured. On the other hand, if Ferzen chose to stand by the First Prince, things wouldn’t change much.
The assets belonging to the ‘Lord of Louerg’ were pitiful, as the province was nothing but a frozen hell localized at the edge of the Empire. But the influence behind the title of ‘Second son of Brutein’ was another thing entirely.
‘Did he come here to interfere with the succession conflicts, or……’
The Emperor could only sigh regrettably.
Elizabeth’s talent to read a person’s innermost thoughts would have been useful in this scenario, but he gave up on this idea due to the restriction of only being able to use this ability once every three months per individual……
‘For now, I should watch him closely.’
The Emperor quietly glanced away from Ferzen as he resumed his conversation with his lovely wife, and after a short while, they retired from the banquet.
After all, the main characters of this banquet were his sons.
* * * * *
The joyous melody of the banquet slowly morphed into a slow tune, as if to calm those who were present.
The aristocrats, who now had composed themselves, continued their conversations, but they would sometimes glance at Ferzen, watching his every move.
But the man in question didn’t care about their curiosity, as he grabbed a glass of wine and started to savor the drink.
“Ah……I’m sorry, I’m so sorry…….”
Still a little dazed by the sudden events, Euphemia took a wrong step and collided with Ferzen.
Should I just pretend this didn’t happen?
If I punished Euphemia for her sudden misstep here, the Second Prince might think this is the sign to start our little performance.
As Ferzen continued to ponder over his next actions, the surroundings became agitated as a figure approached the couple.
“Who would have thought that I would ever see a Brutein here……Today must be my lucky day. Don’t you agree?”
A woman with navy blue hair, who irradiated a commanding and cold aura, despite wearing bulky and warm clothes, remarked.
For a moment, Ferzen didn’t recognize this woman, but as soon as he gazed at the crest embroidered on her clothes, he knew who she was.
The First Princess of the Elmark Empire, no……
The Empress — Gremory Elden Ishtar Elmark.
“I wasn’t aware that frowning at someone is a way of welcoming a guest. Be at ease, for I am a legitimate guest here.”
She wasn’t intruding here.
This, of course, would mean that she had received an invitation, but to think that she managed to evade Brutein’s information network……
‘What could the Imperial Family be thinking by inviting this woman here?’
There were seven descendants of the previous Emperor of Elmark.
But now, the only one remaining is her, Gremory.
The other six died either by poison, terrorists, or monsters…..
Although every other Imperial heir died, her own circumstances remained a mystery.
Almost as if all of this was on purpose.
At the time, one of the most popular rumors was that when the Third Prince became paranoid, he went to her palace, knelt, and licked her boots to gain protection.
But in the end, he, along with the other six, died.
Gremory Elden Ishitar Elmark, an absolute monster who became the strongest Auror Knight at the age of 28.
It was also because of her that I suspected that Ciel would only grow in strength if he managed to survive the frozen wilderness of Louerg.
Because this woman in front of me intentionally freezes her body to the point of getting severe frostbite to stimulate the reconstruction of the cells by her mana.
“Forgive my rude behavior……I was simply surprised since I never expected to see the Empress of the Elmark Empire here, so I ask for your understanding.”
“Hm, for a turtle who likes to hide inside its shell, you have an eloquent way with your words. I would like to talk to this scared bird of your wife who is hiding behind you…..but let’s leave that for another time since I have other matters to deal with.”
Empress Gremory pointed at Princess Elizabeth, who was standing in the distance, seemingly waiting for her.
Recognizing her presence, Ferzen performed a cordial bow, with Princess Elizabeth responding by gracefully holding the hem of her skirt with both hands.
“I hope you enjoy the banquet.”
“I also pray that you enjoy your talk, Empress Gremory.”
After taking a moment to look at her retreating back, Ferzen gazed down at Euphemia, who was anxiously clinging to him.
“It seems that I have underestimated the impact of this atmosphere on you.”
Euphemia’s mind was akin to a tempestuous ocean, as the constant fear of Ferzen meeting Ciel in this banquet started to make her stomach ache.
“Then let us get some fresh air.”
Euphemia nodded her head vigorously at Ferzen’s suggestion.
The young woman was so relieved that she didn’t even notice Ferzen’s hand around her waist, and for a moment, she also forgot about Ciel.
As they stepped away from the crowded and colorful banquet hall and into the terrace, the couple was greeted by the cool breeze of the Imperial Capital.
At that moment, Euphemia truly relaxed as she took a deep breath.
“I won’t tell you to get used to this, but aren’t you overreacting a bit?”
“If you are having such a hard time, perhaps this would help you a little.”
Ferzen brought his wineglass to her lips, matching the same area where his lips once touched.
“I’m fine, but……”
The young woman didn’t wish to rely on wine in a place like this, but Euphemia had no choice but to drink it, as Ferzen had already tilted the glass, allowing the sweet and savory wine into her mouth.
Perhaps because the wine had a high alcohol content. Her face immediately blushed as she felt a burning sensation in her throat.
Euphemia waved her hands to try and cool the heat, but……
Ferzen suddenly enveloped her in a hug and kissed her passionately.
The sudden feverish kiss, coupled with the heavy stench of wine, made Euphemia’s head spin as her tongue continued to be attacked by Ferzen.
With just one kiss, she was reduced to this state.
After this long and wet kiss, Euphemia wiped her lips with the back of her hand.
Her lower abdomen ached.
Her nipples were already standing proud against her undergarment.
Euphemia heaved a heated sigh as she tried to deny her own lustful reaction to his kiss.
The young woman was undoubtedly intoxicated at this moment.
But rather than being inebriated by the wine, she felt drunk by his ministrations.
“What the actual fuck…… Are you two doing in the Imperial Palace?”
Euphemia was startled and hid behind Ferzen’s broad back, when she heard a familiar yet unknown voice
“I know this guy is as shameless as he can be, but you should at least have some sort of decency. This isn’t even funny. Don’t both of you know the concept of time and place?”
Upon venturing into the terrace, Yuriel, who had watched the couple’s interactions from the beginning, pointed her finger towards them and started to lecture them.
But for Ferzen, there wasn’t anything more ironic than this.
Because the woman who was preaching to them about decency was wearing an Azelia’s dress in the most indecent way possible.
“Yuriel, if you still have the thing that we call conscience, you would stay here on the terrace until the banquet is over. Your……Hobbies are something quite dangerous for our society.”
“Wha…… What do you mean?”
“Forget it. It’s even more disappointing that you seem to be doing this unconsciously.”
Even though his words were a little cryptic, Yuriel realized what Ferzen was referring to as she tried to cover her bosom with her hands.
However, this act was as meaningless as a man trying to cover the sky with the palm of his hand.
TL NOTE: Lmao Yuriel if I had 1/4 of Yuriels rack I would die happy
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