The Fake Saint Decided to be Real - chapter 10
The sound of sniffing came from Euteran. Ignoring the unpleasant laughter, I passed by in front of Euteran.
At that time, my wrist was held firmly. It was my left arm where I usually wore Astein’s silver thread bracelet.
“Where are you going? Go back in.”
“What are you doing?”
“Go in and change into the dress I gave you.”
“Let go of me.”
“No. Why should I?”
I shook my hand as hard as I could to shake him off. But the strength of the Euteran’s grip on my wrist became stronger. The pain came to my wrist. I might get a bruise later.
Then, Selemion’s small voice came from behind.
“You’re going to get bruises on My Lady’s wrist. Please treat My Lady gently, Young Master.”
“Who are you? A maid who rebels against the future Marquis… Is there any reason for you to stay in this house?”
I hated the sight of Euteran, who even set a blade to Selemion because of me. How could the Marquis and his son be so alike? The father-son relationship was exactly the same as before the reversion.
“Don’t think a girl who’s raising a Prospective Saint’s.”
I shouldn’t have lost my precious things like that. One such pain was enough at that time.
So I had to be strong.
“Hey, Freya. You must have forgotten, but don’t you know how important the relationship between the Saint and the successor of Marquis Futor is? Have you forgotten how well you should look to me if you want to be a Saint?”
I didn’t need to be a Saint. I really wanted to reveal to the world that I was a fake Saint right now and ran out of this house.
It wasn’t just because I couldn’t find Ellaner that I still remained here.
Because I had to watch and stop the Marquis’ plot that threatened Astein, I remained because when I left right away, he might destroy my precious things.
I was willing to endure only until I had the strength to protect what was important for me.
“So, if your father knows, he will not like it. Who would be suspected if a prospective Saint’s wrist had a bruise?”
However, what I said barely Euteran’s grip loosened, and soon he let go of my wrist. I covered my sore left wrist with my right hand. There was a red handprint on the wrist.
Thankfully, Selemion quickly noticed and asked other maids to bring the ointment. I soothed my wrist with it and glared at Euteran with all my might.
“I have a partner to go with, so if you’re done with everything, why don’t we go our separate ways?”
Euteran stared quietly at my wrist applying the ointment. I didn’t like the gaze, so I quickly applied it.
“Will the medicine work? What if it gets bloated?” asked Selemion.
“It’s all right. The medicine is enough.”
Fortunately, it didn’t seem to be bruising.
After applying the medicine, I walked past Euteran again, frowning between my eyes. Fortunately, he didn’t touch me this time.
Instead, he was chasing behind me.
“Have you changed a lot since I was away?”
I didn’t want to answer every single question. I just ignored him and tried to walk down the stairs silently.
“Besides, my father asked me so much to be your partner… is he the guy who gave you this dress? It’s vulgar of a woman who will be a Saint to meet any man.”
—You, have you slept with that knight? You’re a fake Saint so you’re fooling around with men? Dirty thing, I told you not to tarnish the name of the Futor family, did I?
The past overlapped with his words. That was why Euteran actively sought Ellaner.
I clenched my teeth at the contempt.
“Your father and your family, who made me a prospective Saint, are equally vulgar.”
The provocation I made this time seemed to have gone too far. As I saw Euteran raised his hand.
If I got slapped like this, my lips would bleed and I wouldn’t be able to go to the banquet, right?
I had been trying to protect Astein by being by his side for one day… I wanted to be his partner once. But I didn’t think that dream will come true.
I closed my eyes tightly and clenched my teeth to the point where my jaw hurt. Just in case it would hurt less.
Then, the fragrant aroma of lilac spread through my nose. The low, stable voice that sounded a calm lake reassured me.
As soon as I opened my eyes, he was there. Grab the wild arm of Euteran, with a terrifying face.
“Why are you here? Who gave you permission to come in?”1
“Why are you here? Who gave you permission to come in?”
“It’s you… No matter how much I hate His Majesty, I don’t know if a boy who hasn’t yet inherited his title will call me like that as a blood-related descendant of the Imperial family.”
Was it because of Astein who had succeeded his family? I heard a commotion in the mansion.
No, the commotion might have already begun because of the uninvited guest. The Butler and the knights guarding the entrance arrived late and flocked under the stairs.
“Your Excellency the Grand Duke, no matter how high is your position, you can’t just enter the Marquis of Futor’s mansion like this.”
The Butler protested. But Astein ignored it and glared at Euteran.
“It’s to protect the prospective Saint.”
“What qualifications do you have?”
Astein and Euteran growled at each other, glaring as if they wanted to kill each other.
“What’s the fuss?”
Even the Marquis intervened in the mess. He ran with both eyes wide opened, as his son was held in Astein’s hand.
“Grand Duke, what is this?”
Astein released the hand that grabbed Euteran only after the Marquis came. Euteran frowned, looking alternately at me and Astein. He looked very angry and was disgusted.
“Father, my sister will not go to the banquet with me. Do you think that she has been in and out of the temple these days and lured a man?”
In the words of Euteran, anger was on the face of the Marquis. He turned an arrow of anger at me.
“Did a prospective Saint do something to be misunderstood? Did you not feel ashamed? You don’t have to go to the banquet with Euteran. Go back to your room right now!”
Then Astein came forward. He was wearing a white tailcoat and a blue cape. I recognized the meaning of it and opened my eyes wide. Don’t tell me….
“It’s ridiculous that the family made insulting remarks to the prospective Saint.”
“Grand Duke, what do you mean?!”
“Well, it’s not that the Marquis realizes it, though.”
The voice of Astein gave me strength. With a little ridicule, he pushed the parchment to both men. It was stamped with the seal of the temple.
“I don’t think you and Lady Freya will go together the banquet,” said Astein to Euteran.
There was displeasure on the face of the Marquis who had ripped off the seal. Euteran took it and read it aloud.
“I will entrust the escort of the Prospective Saint, Freya Futor, to the preliminary holy knight, Astein Dandellion, to attend today’s banquet as a partner to protect the Saint. Auntie wrote this?”
Both men’s eyes trembled. They must have felt betrayed because it was a letter from the Holy Woman.
Astein watched them leisurely and smiled at them. Waiting with a shrug of his shoulders, he came before me with a confident step.
“I look forward to your kind cooperation, Lady Freya.”
He reached out his hand to me. I looked at his big hand. I wanted to put my hand on it right away, but I couldn’t do it because I could see the Futors glared at me.
Can I really reach out my hand to his?
“Wait, sister! What nonsense is this order? Does it make sense that the temple dares to intervene with the will of our family?”
It seemed that Euteran wasn’t able to accept it.
“Stay back because there’s information that some people are aiming at the prospective Saint so I have to protect her.”
There were those who are aiming for me? Was this propaganda? I had never known of this before my return.
“What do you mean?” Marquis asked with suspicious eyes.
“There are some people who tried to assassinate Lady Freya with the illegally traded weapons.”
Was the target of the assassination operation that the Marquis was preparing turned to me?
Marquis’ face became a bit complicated and distorted.
The current situation seemed to be incomprehensible. At the same time, I seemed to realized the meaning of the situation I was going with Astein.
“That’s impossible! They will never aim for Freya….!”
The Marquis stopped talking and looked at Astein. But Astein wasn’t the man to lose that gaze. He took the gaze at ease and continued his business-like remarks to the Marquis.
“For the sake of emergency, all the knights of the Grand Duchy have consulted with the temple by escorting the prospective Saint. Also, this was requested by the Emperor and the Empress.”
There was power in Astein’s words that the Marquis didn’t have. Not frivolous, not hasty. He just wanted to follow orders.
There was an uneasy murmur spread between the Marquis’ servants and knights.
“Father, can a prospective saint go with a random man? If this leads to a scandal…!”
Euteran couldn’t continue his speech because Astein had pulled out his white sword.
“What on earth is this?”
Astein’s voice was low and spread to the Marquis coolly as he said, “Can you even insult the prospective Saint and say that you are the successor of the Futor family?”
In the end, the words silenced the Marquis.
“I can’t believe you’re the Empress’ and the Saint’s brother. It’s good to see what you usually do, in front of me as an outsider.”
The silent Marquis meant Astein’s victory. Euteran and the Marquis remained silent, unable to find a rebuttal.
Now that this happened, I was worried that he might try to kill Astein who came into this house alone. Marquis Futor wouldn’t let Astein who had insulted him go.
Astein didn’t even know that.
“Now that we’re done talking, I’ll take the Saint with me. Knights of the Grand Duchy are guarding around the mansion.”
The Marquis shut his mouth tightly at the words the knights of the Grand Duchy were coming. When his father shut his mouth, Euteran had to vent his anger with only a harsh breath.
I saw them with a little strange eye.
For me, they were infinitely scary and the ones I wanted to avoid earnestly. I couldn’t believe they’re stuck with Astein’s words.
I felt cool and anxious. Obviously, they were not the ones who would step down like this. Especially Euteran. He was a cunning snake more than the Marquis.
“Then let’s all meet at the Imperial Palace. Lady Freya?”
Astein reached out to me.
I pondered for a moment in front of the two who were staring at me as if they would eat me if I held his hand.
I’m afraid I’m going to upset Astein again.
Then suddenly, Astein’s hands and eyes waiting for me caught my eye.
I could trust him. It’s Astein.
Then, I put mine on his big hand. His hands were a little hotter than I thought. It felt good somehow. Astein’s rough hand, with a little callus, drew me to his hide.
I went by his side, I always had a lilac scent wrapped around me softly.
“Sister, please don’t do anything wrong.”
Euteran warned me in a slightly pent-up voice. Astein snorted as if he was laughing, and led me down the stairs.
Through the path opened by the knights, we walked quietly to where the carriage was.
Just a prospective saint and a prospective holy knight. Bound by a deity with nothing more or less.
To those people who saw us, I hoped that we would appear to be just faithful servants of God.
A carriage was already waiting outside the building, enduring the attention of people.
“Here it is.”
The carriage of the Grand Duke of Dandellion. It was as if it had shaped Astein into a carriage. Purple decorations carved on a silver background. And it was as big and spacious as he was.
It would give you a sense of stability and comfort like Astein.
“Are you uncomfortable with the seat?”
“Not at all. Like the Grand Duke… it’s comfortable,” I spoke curiously.
Astein, who was sitting opposite me, smiled at my answer. And he gave a war voice that was different from what he used to the Marquis.
“It’s an honour to have Lady Freya in my carriage and to be a partner for the banquet.”
I blushed slightly at his words. I felt like I had become a common aristocrat and went to a banquet. For the first time, a normal routine was given to me.
The deviation was unfamiliar to me. Also my partner, the man I care about.
“Me too.” I answered shyly and hid my excitement.
“They say it’s going to be more colourful than usual today because it’s a celebration of the Imperial family’s descendant.”
The moment I heard him, I suddenly felt a pain in the back of my head. The ordinary banquet had been turned into a celebration of the Empress’ pregnancy. I forgot about it.
“Excuse me, Grand Duke? Today’s banquet, were you planning to come?”
It couldn’t have been comfortable to celebrate the once-lover having another man’s child.1
“If I don’t go when His Majesty has invited me, I’ll be damned. I’m just going to show my face.”
Yeah, you didn’t want to be there, but because of me…. I was not considerate. That he might be uncomfortable.
In the first place, being with the Emperor itself would’ve been painful.
“Then come back early with me. I’m sorry, you must be uncomfortable. It’s because I’m asking for a partner.”+
Astein’s eyes widened at my words. But soon his eyes narrowed.
As if what I said was nonsense.