What the heck. She sat crookedly on the sofa and lifted her head to look at the Crown Prince. The Crown Prince smiled even more and stood in front of the sofa where she was sitting.
The Crown Prince, was tall and handsome with his hair neatly brushed over to the side. Lucifella somehow felt an unpleasant feeling despite his clearly likable face, as if her chest was being squeezed. It was not that the man was scary, but her heart was racing.
“What are you doing here?”
“Lucy, are you still mad?”
‘Are you mad?’ Was it normal to simply ask, 'Are you mad?' to the woman who jumped into a lake, begging him for his love?
“More than that, Lucy, there’s a limit to recognizing signals just by looking at your eyes. It’s difficult for me to keep coming to the royal family lounge.”
No wonder this room was at the very end of the hall.
‘But why the hell did this bastard come here?’ Lucifella observed the man in front of her with a wary expression.
“What were you going to do if the Empress or Yiojif came in? You’re lucky I came in first, so think ahead from now on."
Standing in front of her was the Crown Prince. Lucifella chose to keep silent because he was someone with whom she should not talk carelessly.
“Can’t you say something?” he asked her, but he was coercive as if giving orders.
When Lucifella still didn't answer, the Crown Prince sat next to her. He brought up his hand and stroked her chin, then touched her lips with his thumb before his hand dropped down below her shoulder.
She stood still to see what he was doing and grimaced at the subtle gesture of his. She tried to slap his hand away, but he grabbed her wrist firmly.
“It’s no fun if you keep resisting it.”
As Lucifella was about to get up, the Crown Prince pushed her with a strong grip and forced her to lie on the couch. His heavy male body crushed her.
"I missed you. Ugh! I really miss you."
Twisting her body, she tried to escape, but the Crown Prince reached out his hands and pressed her arm down with tremendous force. In an instant, her lips were forced open and his tongue pushed in. At the same time, his other hand fondled her chest.
‘Shit!’ Lucifella spit curse words inwardly. He had asked her if she was angry but then suddenly started acting this way. ‘Are all Yansgar bastards insane?’
“You didn’t get had by that scumbag who used to go around killing women, did you? You are still my Lucy.”
“Let go of me……!”
‘This crazy bastard!’ Lucifella tried to push him away, but she was too weak. Was there such a huge difference in power between men and women?
Even in this irritating and filthy situation, Lucifella felt a sense of resentment. She was also a human being, but how could their difference in strength be so great?
He tried to kiss her again, but when she shook her head to resist him, the Crown Prince clicked his tongue and lifted his face, looking down at Lucifella angrily. Seeing his furious expression, he looked like a complete madman.
“I told you to stop being angry.”
"Your love has touched me. So now you have to accept my love calmly."
Touched by love?
"You were really impressive, Lucy, to jump into the lake with that weak body to prove your love for me."
Lucifella frowned. From what she heard, Lucifella had jumped into the Imperial Palace Lake while begging the Crown Prince for his love. However, was it to prove her love? Was there something more? She tried to retrace the memory.
Lucifella moaned and bit her lips as her head suddenly throbbed and ached. The Crown Prince's voice came from somewhere, however, seeing that the Crown Prince's mouth wasn’t moving, the voice was clearly in her head.
A scene began to appear in her mind that Estelle as a stranger had never seen before.
Earnestness. With that desperate expression on her face, the real Lucifella was looking at the Crown Prince.
Although their relationship was known publicly, Lucifella wanted it to be officially recognized that they were lovers.
If that happened, she would be able to suppress the bitches of the socialite girls, especially Lady Clorence. But the Crown Prince didn't want that.
That caused them to fight, and it wasn't long before rumors spread in social circles that the Crown Prince had dumped Lucifella. And now, the Crown Prince was humiliating her in front of other people.
“I wish you wouldn’t bother me anymore.”
At those words, the people around the Crown Prince giggled and laughed.
With an earnest expression on her face, she hoped that he would smile at her, formally telling her that she was his lover.
“Doesn’t the Lady have any pride? Why are you so persistent?”
Despite the words that broke her heart, Lucifella struggled to maintain her composure.
“Now, get out of my sight.”
Hearing his words, Lucifella smiled brightly at him in happiness. Her Crown Prince, Temir, had given her his signal.
Not long after they quarreled, the Crown Prince and Lucifella met in secret. The Crown Prince confessed that his love for her had not changed and promised her the position as his Empress. However, he put a condition on Lucifella.
“Show me your love by giving me your life, Lucy. You know, we've been lonely for too long, so we don't believe in love. So, prove your love; prove that I can trust you. Show me that you deserve to be my lifelong companion, the Empress of Yansgar.”
Lucifella told him she would do anything she could to show her faith.
"Lucy, listen carefully. I will treat you coldly, but it's only because His Majesty and the Empress, my father and mother, don't like you, so I am trying to protect you,” said the Crown Prince.
The Emperor looked at her with displeasure, and she didn't know what kind of character the Empress was, but she believed Temir if he said she was displeased.
“I also need a justification to accept your love.”
"What should I do?"
“If I say ‘disappear’ at the banquet, show me your proof.”
Lucifella nodded her head happily.
‘I'd be happy to do that. Temir, I'll do it again and again if you want. If I could be by your side, if we could love each other without any hindrance, if we could never be lonely anymore.’
That was why Lucifella smiled broadly at the Crown Prince's insult. Then, without hesitation, she plunged into the Imperial Palace Lake. To prove her love to the prince, she wanted to show that she would risk her life. And the last thing she saw as she was drowning was...
“Aren’t you a pure bastard?”
Seeing the real Lucifella's memories, Lucifella, no, Estelle was outraged. So, without hesitation, she kicked the Crown Prince right between his two legs.
The Crown Prince’s desperate screams of agony echoed through the royal lounge.
His hand fell from where it had been stroking her body as it wrapped around his crotch area, and the Crown Prince scrambled across the common room, screaming in pain.
The last thing Lucifella had seen as she sank into the water of the Imperial Palace Lake was the Crown Prince, pointing his finger at Lucifella as she was dying and bursting into laughter.
She had realized that her own lover, whom Lucifella had loved before her death, had made her play a game with her life. And she had lost.
Jed was not feeling well that day as he had met his second-most-hated person in the entire palace.
The Duke of Ruirk, whom he hated the most, would not be attending because he claimed to be in charge of the Imperial Palace's security during this banquet and went to the guard area. That was good. However, because of the Emperor's invitation, he was forced to face that trashy human, Crown Prince Temir.
A few hours before the banquet, the Emperor had summoned Jed. The Crown Prince Temir and 2nd Prince Yiojif were seated in the drawing room.
When he met the Crown Prince, his face immediately lit up with a smirk.
“It’s been a while, Duke.”
“It’s been a while, my lord.”
He didn't know what that smile meant. After all, everyone already knew that Jed's fiancée was Lucifella, and that the Crown Prince was her ex-lover.
He was not surprised that the Crown Prince was making fun of the situation. There was no way that filthy bastard would let that pass.
He heard that the Empress had sent a personal invitation to Lucifella Aydin even though she was ill, but Jed didn’t believe it. It was evident that the Crown Prince was behind it. He was not unaware of his twisted personality.
The Crown Prince himself did not like Jed or the late Duke of Heint, as they had been unkind to him from the beginning. Jed also disliked the vicious and promiscuous Crown Prince.
The Crown Prince did not say anything about Jed and Lucifella's engagement in front of him. That was wise. If he insulted him by talking about his fiancée, the Emperor next to him wouldn't let him get away with it.
The actions of the Crown Prince, this time, directly touched Jed's nerves. He was mocking not only Lucifella but also Jed.
The Emperor was looking at the Crown Prince and Jed alternately.
It was clear he had summoned him because he wanted to check to see if Jed harbored any resentment towards the Crown Prince because of the engagement he was forced into by his father's will.
“It’s been a while, Duke.”
At that time, the 2nd Prince Yiojif greeted him by asking for a handshake. Black spectacles slid down his nose. Seeing that clumsy figure, Jed smiled bitterly inwardly, he was getting tired of watching that ridiculous façade.
“Your eyes seem to have gotten worse.”
“I read a lot of books.”
Jed deliberately squeezed Yiojif's gloved hand hard, but Yiojif smiled kindly at him. When their light greetings were over, the Emperor finally spoke.
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
The face of the Emperor, who had been wearing a hard mask, softened at once. The old Emperor smiled.
“Boy, you don’t have to be so rigid.”
The late Duke of Heint and the Emperor had been close friends, and the Emperor loved the young Jed. The Emperor smiled as if looking at his son, but Jed's expression remained the same. No matter their relationship, the Emperor was the Emperor.
“Looks like the late Duke made a mistake. You're getting into an engagement that's embarrassing for you."
"It’s not like that. I think there was a reason."
He wished there was a reason. If he put himself in such a horrible situation, there had to be a good reason.
Otherwise, he would do whatever he could to cancel it.
“I want to believe that you will not have an uncomfortable relationship with Temir, right?"
Jed smiled at him.
“Matters of the past are just matters of the past. This is not going to break my relationship with His Majesty.”
The Emperor chuckled at his answer. The Crown Prince also looked across at him and smiled.
"That is fortunate, Duke. I was afraid of losing the Duke."
Losing? How so? From the beginning, he and the Heint family were not even on the Crown Prince's side. He laughed bitterly at the Emperor's act of openly giving power to the Crown Prince.
Jed looked at the Crown Prince, Temir. The young man with his hair neatly combed over had a handsome appearance, as if he was part of a painting. But Jed was always in doubt.
‘Why is he the Crown Prince?’
Emperor Baidu was not a fool. Then, why did he appoint Temir, the 1st Prince, as the Crown Prince? In Yansgar's succession to the throne, the eldest son had priority, but it was just ‘priority’.
The Emperor could decide his successor. Was it because of his love for the 1st Empress who gave birth to the Crown Prince?
The Emperor had appointed ten-year-old Temir as the Crown Prince, and from the time he was mature enough, he had been steadily gathering his powers.
Jed looked at the 2nd Prince. Yiojif was smiling with his good-natured face. The Emperor may have had the idea that he seemed a little lacking and that a docile Yiojif could not lead his empire.
But didn’t the Emperor know that Yiojif was better than the Crown Prince?
Jed saw the male imperial family in front of him. They looked alike, but at the same time they didn't look alike.
When the time came, everyone got up from their seats. Following the royal family to the banquet hall, Jed secretly glanced around, looking for his fiancé as they would have to dance today in that troublesome place in front of many people.
He quickly found her.
His fiancée had stunning looks; it would make his mouth hurt to find the words to compliment her. She was a beautiful person, and it was only natural that a person wearing all kinds of beautiful things would look even more beautiful. This was an objective evaluation, not an outright biased opinion.
The royal family was at the upper level on a dais. Due to its high location, Jed could look down at the entire hall, and he realized that people had gathered around Lucifella. It couldn’t mean anything good. He had heard she wasn't feeling well, so she was probably having a hard time.
Then Lucifella was looking at him. Was she looking at him because he was her fiancé? But it was an illusion, and her gaze shifted to the person next to him, the Crown Prince.
He knew she would. Even knowing that, he felt upset. Shouldn't she protect her fiancé’s reputation? The Crown Prince also must have noticed that gaze, so he glanced at Lucifella once and looked at Jed. At his triumphant smile, Jed's mood quickly went from bad to worse.
She was indeed a woman who was consistent with making him feel bad. Jed glared at her. He thought that even if it weren't for the Empress's invitation, Lucifella would have come. Jed deliberately did not approach her.
Wasn't she supposed to be concerned about how people would look at her? Staring at the prince openly like that, people were talking about it. Or was it that she did not care about what people thought? Well, she wouldn't even have jumped into the lake if it had mattered.
What was Count Aydin doing? Did he really leave his daughter like that? Looking towards Count Aydin, he saw him talking to Duke Idris.
She looked around, turning her head, and then headed elsewhere.
What was she going to do? As Jed watched her with a frown on his face, she went up to the second floor.
Jed looked back at her and turned his gaze to where she was standing.
People were gossiping about her. All the people who were unfavorable to Lucifella turned their attention to Jed to look at him, seemingly after whatever was said.
Jed kept a blank expression, opposite of what they expected. He gave a warning glare to those who stared at him.
“I am thirsty. I will be back in a few minutes.”
The Crown Prince, who had been standing for a while, went down to the banquet hall. He received greetings from those who approached him and mingled with the group. Then the Crown Prince naturally slipped away and disappeared to the second floor. Was he going to meet Lucifella? Was it a sign that she was looking for the Crown Prince and that she wanted to meet him? Damn it! Were they really going to play around like this?
Jed cursed inside. He didn't know when he would get married, but it would be very far in the future, and he would divorce her as soon as possible so that she would remain on the list of nobles making a sensation. It would be very disgraceful, but it would be more honorable than continuing to watch this scene.
His anger rose. Thinking about it, Lucifella was reprehensible. She promised to dance with him today, but she took a secret meeting right in front of him?
Then he made eye contact with Yiojif. His smiling face said he knew everything.
His mind being read by Yiojif, of course, made him feel shitty. He thought about what to do. Then, without realizing it, he found himself heading to the second floor.
Was a person who went to dig out a lover's infidelity so sleazy? Jed thought that if he ever got to date another woman, he would never date someone who already had a lover. He didn’t want to experience such a crappy feeling ever again.
As the banquet had not yet begun, there was no one in the hallway leading to the break rooms.
He searched for Lucifella and the Crown Prince, but Lucifella didn't seem to be on the second floor. Then, his gaze reached the far end of the room. The resting place of the royal family. Jed frowned and headed towards it.
As he drew closer, Jed sensed some people inside.
The Emperor, Empress, and Yiojif were also in the banquet hall, so it had to be the Crown Prince. At the same time, a woman's voice was clearly heard.
It was obvious whose voice it was. Jed forced himself to calm the fury he felt at the unquestionable dishonesty.
Then the door opened.
What? A roar of pain leaked through the door. Jed frowned and walked over to it.
“I will kill you! How dare you do this to me?”
Jed thought he must have heard wrong. The prince was clearly screaming in pain and anger. Lucifella's voice followed.
“If you want to kill me, try to kill me.”
“You should tell His Majesty that you did something worse than a dog to a woman and then got kicked in your dick! I am proud.”
Her words were overly clear and trashy language, but they contained all the keywords that Jed needed to understand the situation.
As Lucifella came out of the room, their eyes met, and she quickly glanced away. She had the face of a person who was caught red-handed.