Remarried Empress - Chapter 30
Chapter 30 – Wet Tears (1)
Would the Eastern Emperor fight a life-and-death duel with the Prince of the West? The latter whom was invited as a guest, with the former’s concubine dividing the two?
It would be quite a spectacle . If it became known to the public, the already much-criticized lives of the nobles and royal families would become the subject of further mockery and gossip .
Of course, with or without the rumors, the fight should be stopped .
“Calm down, Your Majesty . Prince Heinley, you are our guest . ”
I raised my voice at them, and to my great fortune they were not fools .
“Please take your seats . ”
They both sat down, and the meal continued quietly . I’ve never had such a trying meal the eve before the special banquet .
My stomach turned . What on earth was happening? Was it because of Rashta or Sovieshu? Or perhaps both?
No one was in the mood to eat anymore, so I finally set down my fork and patted my mouth with a napkin . After only half a meal, I stood up to see the guests off instead of offering them dessert . It would be rude to keep them in this uncomfortable atmosphere, and we would meet again tomorrow evening in any case .
I made for the hall and the guests quickly followed me, leaving behind Sovieshu and Heinley in the dining room . As soon as the door closed, Princess Soju came up to me and spoke with a frown creased on her face .
“I hope we can talk more tomorrow, Your Majesty . Tonight’s not a good night for conversation . ”
“Of course . I hope so, too . ”
Meeting Princess Soju might have been the best thing to have happened to me this New Year’s celebration . Her strong, funny and friendly nature was a joy to be around . I hugged her and whispered a fond farewell .
“Please come tomorrow . ”
Princess Soju smiled and nodded, then left with her knights down the hallway . I gave my farewells to the other nobles with more formality .
When there were about a handful of nobles left, I saw Rashta approach me . I thought she had something to say, but instead of talking she stood by my side . Why was she here? I wanted to ask her that, but Emperor Sirim of Blue Bohean approached next .
“Please come and see Rashta tomorrow . Thank you for coming tonight, Your Highness . ”
As soon as I bowed, Rashta mimicked me, as if we were seeing him off together .
“Uh…yes . ”
Emperor Sirim answered in a stammering tone, and he looked between me and Rashta then turned away . He seemed to think I was bowing to him together with Rashta .
Rashta turned to look at me and asked in an amiable voice, “Are you alright, sister?” This situation was absurd, but there was no convention or precedent that I could use to stop her .
I deliberately broke away from Rashta and approached Marquis Samonew, one of our allies . However, Rashta followed my footsteps again and smiled coquettishly at him, making the Marquis laugh . She continued this until there was only Grand Duke Kapmen left .
Did she have to courage to approach him? She came up to him, speaking in a gentle voice .
“My Lord . ”
At that moment, goose flesh erupted on my skin . Her voice had suddenly changed . Earlier, she had been bright and playful, but now her tone had taken on a deeper quality . She was imitating my voice . It wasn’t a perfect recreation, but it was close .
“Will you be attending the special banquet tomorrow?”
Her words evaporated in the air as the Grand Duke passed us in silence . It was more embarrassing that Rashta attempted to imitate me, rather than the Grand Duke Kapmen passing by me as well .
“Miss Rashta . ”
She smiled and said in her usual sweet voice, “Yes, Your Majesty . ” It was not the same person who looked at me like I betrayed her in the dining room . I suppressed my feelings and spoke as calmly as possible .
“I planned to ask you this after the New Year’s celebrations, but now I have to know . ”
“What is it?”
“Why did you lie to everyone and say that I sent you gifts?”
Rashta’s eyebrows lifted in confusion .
She waited for me to continue . Her conscience was pricked, surely .
“Rashta didn’t lie, Your Majesty . It’s true that the Empress sent many gifts to Rashta…”
“I don’t know where this misunderstanding comes from, but I did no such thing . ”
“What? Are you angry because Rashta said she wrote the letters…?”
I stared at her in silence, and Rashta clasped her hands together as tears started to form in her eyes .
“But Viscountess Verdi said the Empress would never come forward . In fact, she would the Empress would be embarrassed by this . So I didn’t mean anything . I was only trying to play . ”
“And I helped you, too, Your Majesty . ”
“You helped me?”
Rashta looked about ready to cry again .
“You didn’t want anyone else to know you were the letter friend . Why are you always so scary to Rashta?”
Before I could say anything more, the door opened, and both Sovieshu and Prince Heinley appeared, their faces stiff . They seemed to have been arguing with each other inside .
“…Heueu . ”
Rashta’s tears finally broke . Sovieshu looked at her in surprise, then approached her and wiped her wet cheeks with his sleeve .
“Rashta? Why are you crying?”
Sovieshu glared at me as she sobbed harder .
“What happened, Empress? What’s wrong with Rashta?”
“I asked her a question . ”
“What did you ask her?”
“I asked why she lied when I never sent her gifts . ”
Sovieshu’s expression tensed .
“You asked her about that?”
“She’s been telling people, so of course I did . ”
Who else should I have asked? I stared at him wondrously . His lips were tightly pressed together, and he looked alternately between me and Rashta before he sighed .
“If Rashta is mistaken, shouldn’t we just let it go?”
“I cannot allow my name to be used this way . ”
“You don’t have to confront Rashta . It’s my fault . I sent her gifts in your name . ”
My head spun . Sovieshu gave her gifts in my name? Rashta opened her eyes wide and looked at Sovieshu, her tears clinging delicately to her lashes .
“Is that true, Your Majesty?”
“There was a misunderstanding because of me . ”
Sovieshu nodded and murmured an apology, but Rashta shook her head .
“No, Rashta is so happy . You did it for Rashta . ”
I clenched my fist . I was the one who was gossiped about because of Sovieshu’s and Rashta’s mistake . And it was Rashta that Sovieshu apologized to, while Rashta thought it touching .
Before, I had distanced myself from Rashta . I told myself that I should ignore her, that I should look away, and that I didn’t care . But now—I clearly hated her .
And more than that, I hated Sovieshu .
I impatiently spoke up .
“If this is your fault—”
Sovieshu, who had been immersed in the romantic mood between the two, turned his head . He looked surprised to see me, as if he thought the issue resolved .
I stared coldly into his eyes .
“You have to take the blame, Your Majesty . You admitted responsibility . ”
“No matter the circumstances, you shouldn’t assume another’s name . Isn’t that right, Your Majesty? ”
Sovieshu looked at me in bewilderment .
“Do we really have to deal with that here?”
“Yes . Now that you’ve admitted guilt, shouldn’t you be held responsible?”
Sovieshu’s complexion paled . I noticed him discreetly glancing between Rashta and Prince Heinley . His pride was injured in front of a distinguished man and the woman he loved, but the pride he wanted to preserve was not the pride of an emperor, but the pride of a man . Should I help him protect that?
“What do you want? Do you want me to cry like Rashta?”
“I want you to apologize . ”
“Please apologize for using my name . ”
“I’m sorry, all right?”
“And since Miss Rashta has been spreading false information, I hope that she will take responsibility and correct it . ”
Sovieshu exhaled .
“Is that really necessary?”
“Are you afraid you will lose face, Your Majesty? Because my face has already been crushed . ”
“If your face was crushed simply from sending gifts to Rashta, then you are poor and shallow from the start . ”
“It is also poor and shallow not to correct it . Please take care of it as soon as possible . ”
“The Empress should do it herself . Don’t you dislike other people speaking in your name?”
“Of course . ”
“Why are you so narrow-minded? You were never like that before, were you?”
“I should say that to you . And don’t speak impolitely to me, Sovieshu . ”
User rating: 4.4