Chapter 469. Birdhead’s Nursery (1)
Translator: Aura / Editor: Tiny Zebra
Every thought was more terrifying than the last. And although the thoughts themselves were shameless, the inner voice conveyed serenity and intelligence.
‘Stop! How can you think that in such a solemn voice!’
Grand Duke Kapmen shouted in his mind as he hurriedly looked from side to side.
He had never been subjected to such gruesome thoughts. He wished to hear no more.
“Stay ten feet away.”
Grand Duke Kapmen coldly warned Dolshi, still looking for the culprit.
Finally, he saw a woman sitting with good posture beneath a large tree. She held a thick book in one hand and wore glasses. The book was titled ‘An In-Depth Review of Tactics and Strategy’.
‘That woman’s inner thoughts… Are completely unexpected given her appearance and present occupation!’
Her expression was so solemn and wise that one would never imagine she could think such nonsense.
Grand Duke Kapmen approached the woman.
As he walked, he realized that this was the place where he once collapsed with painful longing for Navier. For a moment, the sad memory of his unrequited love clouded his mind…
But then he noticed the woman again, and their eyes met.
Since Grand Duke Kapmen had come too close, the woman raised her eyebrows and asked coldly,
“What’s the matter?”
At the same time, her inner voice cried out,
‘Wow, what a stud! Up close, he’s even more handsome. Such virility and manliness! If a man like this said, ‘Princess Charlotte, I want your love,’ I would not hesitate to run into his arms. It’d be ecstasy!’
Grand Duke Kapmen’s lips quivered. He had never met someone whose words and inner thoughts were so remarkably different.
He had met people who show a kind smile while holding a dagger behind their back, but he had never met a person with such a serious expression and such a naughty imagination.
‘Why does he look so nervous as he stares at me? Oh, my! There is but one possibility… Did this man really fall in love with me at first sight?’
“No…that’s not it…”
It seemed like only yesterday that the first autumn leaves began to fall. In the blink of an eye, the wind became colder and the air chilled the tip of one’s nose.
Sovieshu ordered a table to be set up on the terrace, took his diary and sat there.
Once a servant brought the chestnuts and sugar in melted lard, accompanied by a bowl of soup so hot that he would need to blow on it to eat it, Sovieshu held his diary open with one hand and lifted a spoon with the other.
Eating alone was boring. It was always better to be distracted by something to shake off that feeling.
But while his eyes were on the diary, his mind wandered.
— Marquis Karl, I read in the court records that the woman named Rashta spoke rudely and yelled a scandalous accusation. Was it true?
He recalled the Marquis Karl’s puzzled expression from a few days ago. Sovieshu lost his appetite, clicked his tongue and closed the diary.
After that first petition asking him to remarry or at least bring Sheir to the palace, a series of similar petitions followed.
The woman named Rashta made a statement that shocked the entire audience at the High Court.
And now, the Empress’s seat was vacant and Grand Duke Lilteang, the next in the line of succession, was in a delicate state of health. The people had reason to be uneasy.
Since Sovieshu didn’t want to marry any other woman than Navier, he thought it wouldn’t be a bad idea to bring Sheir to the palace. Sheir would be an excellent shield against those who insisted Sovieshu remarry. Besides, if he was going to bring Sheir to the imperial palace eventually, he had better do it before he fell into someone else’s hands.
His reflections over, Sovieshu set down his spoon and called Marquis Karl.
“Did you send for me, Your Majesty?”
“Bring Sheir. If it will have to be done anyway, then the sooner the better.”
Marquis Karl seemed surprised for a moment, but quickly bowed dutifully.
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
His surprise was short-lived, for he knew it was only a matter of time before this happened. Moreover, the night Sovieshu was of the same opinion .
“Ah, Your Majesty. About the investigation of the Zemensia Family, which you previously ordered.”
“Is it completed?”
“Duke Zemensia had many friends, but none were close. After all, his family was once the most powerful among the nobility. He must have had many followers, but few true friends.”
“Still, there must be some with whom he was close.”
“Yes. Duke Zemensia was especially close to his cousin, Marquis Ketron, and Duke Liberty. Both were also close to the former queen.”
“What are they doing now?”
“Marquis Ketron was involved in the murder attempt on the Empress by Duke Zemensia, but shifted his allegiance in favor of the Empress soon after the former queen’s death. As a result, he saved his own skin. However, he has hardly been seen since. He rarely leaves his mansion.”
“What about the other one?”
“Duke Liberty had also sided with the Empress before the former queen’s death. I heard his position remains the same, although he seems more reserved these days.”
Sovieshu was thoughtful for a while. There were many things to consider in order to successfully collude with foreign nobles. Besides, what he wanted was to get rid of Heinley, not to harm Navier.
He had to evaluate all possible scenarios. If things went wrong, Sovieshu might be betrayed and his intentions exposed.
After waiting for Sovieshu’s answer for a long time, Marquis Karl asked carefully.
“What shall we do, Your Majesty?”
“Sound them out in secret.”
“As you command.”
Marquis Karl bowed and left. But soon after he returned.
Sovieshu, having barely eaten, had just ordered the servants to take away the food.
“What is it?”
“Someone from the Western Empire has come for the boy.”
“Where are they now?”
Sovieshu stood up. Navier had resorted to Emperor Heinley’s help to convey the message, but it was a personal request from her, so no official envoy would be sent. It was likely that someone close to Navier was sent.
‘If I take good care of them, they will say good things about me to Navier.’
Sovieshu quickened his pace.