The meeting lasted almost two hours, during which Dina explained the plans for that day and gave instructions to each one of the parties.
To be honest, each party in this meeting was powerful enough to cause a commotion through the empire if it was known that they were supporting a prince in the battle for the throne. The fact that not one, but five were supporting Dina was enough to make her the favorite contender for the throne.
Of the five factions, the Church was the official religion of the empire, the Ferret Family was one of the three most powerful noble families, the Imperial Institute had ties with many powerhouses and noble houses throughout the empire, and Hidden History represented the will of the elders of the Imperial Family.
Even the Red Skull Gang, the weakest of the five factions, was a giant that controlled the entire underground of the capital. Although it was not as strong as the other factions, the manpower and information network it had was enough to evoke envy from many noble families.
Moreover, these were not the only parties supporting Dina, but the strongest.
Nobody could have expected that in the short period of a few months, Dina would go from a helpless princess without any political power, to a giant with enough influence to shake the entire empire.
And the most surprising part of everything was that besides the parties in this room, nobody else knew about Dina’s true power.
When the true power of Dina is shown to the empire, I’m sure that many people will be shocked.
After the meeting finished, the visitors left one after another.
The first one to leave was Dina. She wanted to stay to spend more time with me, but she was very busy now that the emperor’s birthday was approaching. Thus, she left together with Louise and Daisy.
Grandpa Creig left after her, followed by Safelia and Clara. Clara seemed reluctant to leave, so I had to promise her that I would visit her after the emperor’s birthday.
Finally, Alice’s group was the last to leave.
Before leaving, though, Alice looked at me with a complicated gaze. She seemed like she wanted to tell me something, but in the end, she did not spoke.
Instead, she approached me and gave me a tight hug.
“Miss Alice?” I asked with a raised eyebrow.
Alice said nothing, just hugging me for a while.
When she finally released her hug, she looked straight to my eyes and tiptoed, pecking my lips and putting on a brief bitter smile.
“… Prince, no matter what happens, you are the only man that I have ever loved.”
I looked at her for a few seconds and heaved a long sigh after seeing the brief flash of pain in her eyes.
In truth, I have an idea about what she is going through right now.
Alice is a ‘Seer’, and she is being ‘taught’ by Ysnay. If I’m not mistaken, right now she must be when she has to make a choice.
However, I’m not sure what she is going to choose.
In the end, I just patted her head and smiled softly.
“I trust you.” That was everything that I said.
Alice opened her eyes wide; and in the next instant, tears appeared on the corner of her eyes as she turned around hurriedly.
“You should not.”
Then, she ran off towards the carriage.
I watched her leave with a complicated expression on my face.
Ysnay said that every ‘Seer’ is the same. The nature of their abilities means that Seers are unable to suppress their desire to control everything around them.
The harder it’s to control something, the more they want to put it under their thumb.
And Alice, as a ‘Seer’, is the same.
… To be honest, I agree with Ysnay’s opinion.
I have seen several Seers through my multiple lifetimes, and every one of them has finally succumbed to the temptation of power.
However, I hope that Alice can be different.
That way, she will show Ysnay that what happened back then was not something unavoidable, but just the result of her greed for power.
Mm, I should pay more attention to Alice after this. Perhaps, I can tilt the balance towards my side with a bit of work.
In the end, though, everything will depend on Alice’s own choice.
I sighed and got ready to return to the mansion. But at that moment, someone hurriedly approached me from behind.
When I turned around, I saw Marana walking towards me with a dark expression and eyes full of killing intent.
“Boss, we have trouble.” She said.
My expression immediately turned serious.
Marana knows that I want to keep the fact that I’m related to the Red Skull Gang secret, so unless the situation is very bad, she would not appear here.
“What happened?” I asked.
“The gang was attacked. Many of our men were injured and killed.”
I frowned. It looks like it’s pretty bad, huh.
At the same time, in a carriage that just left Prince Claus’s mansion, a white-haired young lady was in a daze.
“Young miss, what is wrong?” Butler Aaron asked in concern when he saw the expression of his young miss.
“It’s due to Prince Claus, right?” Hannah, the personal Knight of Alice, snorted with a dissatisfied look. “I knew that it was not a good idea to meet him today!”
Alice smiled wryly and shook her head.
“… Don’t worry. It’s just that… I’m not sure about what is the right choice…”
Butler Aaron looked at his young miss and frowned. Then, he let out a soft sigh.
“Young miss, you like Prince Claus, right?”
Alice did not reply, but the slight blush in her cheeks was enough as an answer.
Aaron put on a complicated expression.
In fact, he had noticed it already. Since the day that Alice met Prince Claus, she had been interested in him.
And now, her feelings had long surpassed simple admiration.
Otherwise, his young miss would not have so much trouble deciding.
For a young girl like Alice, it was very hard to choose between power and her first love.
Actually, Aaron did not know the right answer either.
Much less when the first love of her young miss was someone as mysterious as Prince Claus.
Thus, he could only give a few words of advice to the girl that he watched grow as her own granddaughter.
“The only advice I can give you, Young Miss, is to not regret your choice later in the future.”
Alice smiled bitterly and shook her head.
“It’s not so easy, Uncle Aaron… It’s not so easy.”
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