Returning to the Capital
Ten days later, I was riding a horse as I entered the capital followed by Ysnay, Aunt Dayana, Aunt Sera, Katherine, Rose, Andrea, Lina, and the men of Eternity’s Fangs.
Soldiers were lined up at our sides, forming a path towards the palace and looking at us with worshipping eyes as thousands of people cheered happily behind them.
Yes, we were back in the capital.
And right now, we were being received as heroes after a successful war campaign.
It had been almost fifteen days since the battle in Fort Mist, and the news of our victory arrived at the capital several days ago. Due to that, the news that we defeated the daemons already spread to the empire.
The news was not complete, and it did not include information about my true strength (I’m still hiding it from the emperor). Fortunately, the people that were in the fort at that time were the trustworthy men of General Anson and me, so there is no fear of the information leaking.
The daemons also know about it, though, so I cast a wide-scale suggestion on them, making them forget to mention it to others. That way, the information will not reach the emperor easily.
The cheers of the people were deafening, and their excitement could be clearly sensed. Well, we were the heroes that repelled the daemons. Plus, we forced them to sign a ceasefire treaty. Hence, this treatment is normal.
For the record, the rest of the soldiers stayed behind in Fort Mist. General Anson said that he could use them to strengthen the fort.
And due to the ‘strange’ death of General Liko, the soldiers were unable to reject General Anson’s orders and could only stay behind.
By the way, the news of General Liko’s death arrived at the capital as well, but his death was covered as ‘an assassination by the daemons’.
Many people could see that something was fishy with his death, but there was no proof. Plus, news about how General Liko abandoned Fort Mist before the decisive battle against the daemon army had spread throughout the empire, so nobody was idiotic enough to stand for the dead general at this point in time.
On the way to the palace, I could see many people cheering for us, some of them were familiar, including Teacher Tear, Sara(Susan’s mother), Marana, Akilah, and Raven, of Eternity’s Fangs, and Louise and Claire as well.
I waved my hand to each one of them and continued the parade until the palace with a gentle smile on my face.
When we arrived at the palace, the emperor, the empress, and the crown prince were waiting for us outside.
Dina and Lena were standing behind them, besides a red-haired young man (A clone of mine disguised as ‘Clark’), and the important nobles of the empire.
As soon as the emperor, the empress, and the crown prince saw me they smiled warmly and greeted us with expressions of approval.
“Welcome back to the capital, Prince Claus.” The emperor said with a serious tone. “It looks like you performed greatly in the battle against the daemons. Well done.”
“Than you for your praise, your majesty.” I bowed with a flattered expression.
Inwardly, though, I wanted to laugh loudly.
No matter how much the emperor, the empress, and my dear eldest brother tried to hide it, I could see the stiff expressions on their faces.
They were probably cursing in their minds right now and wondering how in the hell I managed to survive again.
Of course, I kept my respectful expression outwardly. Now was not the time to mock them.
I could also see stiff expressions on some nobles behind them. Earl Carlson Riea was looking at me as though he wanted to kill me, not bothering to hide his killing intent, and the nobles in his faction had obviously displeased gazes.
I did not care about them, though. Instead, I directed my gaze towards my sisters.
As soon as Dina and Lena crossed gazes with me, they smiled softly with warm gazes and eyes full of affection.
I smiled back at them. Just like them, I feel happy about seeing them again.
Unfortunately, now is not the time for an emotive reunion.
After the greetings, the emperor proceeded with the victory ceremony. He praised me as hypocritically as he could, calling me wise, strong, and talented. And finally, he rewarded me with a medal for my valor.
I wanted to snort disdainfully. Bah, someone else with my war merits would have gotten a tittle at the very least, and you gave me just a medal?
Well, it’s not as though I care about that.
After all, the emperor’s birthday is seven days later.
And after that, a new emperor will sit on this empire’s throne.
After the ceremony ended and Prince Claus left, the emperor returned to the imperial hall.
He sat on his throne silently, looking at the empty hall with an unfocused expression.
Finally, after almost five minutes like that, he asked something to the air.
“Why did It fail again?”
But nobody answered.
“The plan was foolproof. No matter how strong his teacher is, she should not be strong enough to go against the entire daemon army for herself! Not even with the help of Anson!”
Nobody replied again.
The emperor’s face turned ashen white. A mix of guilt and hatred appeared on his face as he thought about his fourth child’s face.
With a tired sigh, he looked up at the ceiling and smiled bitterly.
“… Is this your revenge against me, Silna?”
Every time he looked at the face of his fourth child, he could not help but remember the woman that he loved.
Claus’s face was exactly the same as hers, just more masculine. But precisely due to that, Grand could not endure the guilt and self-hatred he felt when he looked at him.
It was as though he could see the eyes of Silna looking at him with hatred and disdain.
“… It was not my fault.” He said with a hollow expression. “It was not my fault.”
In his guilt, he failed to see the woman in the entrance of the hall, looking at him with a bitter smile.
Shaking her head, the woman turned around and left the hall, her face pale and filled with gloom.
“… Even now, you can’t forget about her. Is she as much better than me?”
With a self-deprecating smile, Lilia chuckled softly.
But her eyes were flashing with a ruthless glint.
Current schedule: 10 Chapters/week