HCM – 44

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‘Duke Atreille will interfere, but… … . It’s not hard to wield a wench!’

If only he could take advantage of Aslei’s curse and disperse the forces of the Duke of Tintalion, he could wish for nothing more.

The emperor looked at his two sons. Compared to the Duke of Tintalion, they were absurdly incompetent, but they were still his children.

They were always growling over the throne. There had been a Crown Prince above them to keep them in check, but the balance was distrubed when he had died in an accident.

The emperor, who suspected it was an assassination rather than an accident, had yet to promise the crown prince position to either of the two princes.

“You must have heard the rumors about the Duke of Tintalion.”

The emperor broke his silence on the matter by secretly calling the two princes. They had always been compared to Aslei, so the two princes had a strong animosity towards him.

At least the first prince, the previous crown prince, had been a man of character who had the qualities to become a saint, but his two sons did not.

The emperor was sure that no matter which of these two princes became emperor, he would not receive the same loyalty as the dead prince. Is the third more likely?

“Go and kill the Duke of Tintalion, whether it’s disguised as an accident or by borrowing someone else’s hand.”

If Aslei could be killed before the previous Duke returned, the imperial faction might be able to raise a new Duke who suited his taste.

Through marriage to the remaining Duchess, Frisia.

For him, his task would be to convince Duke Atreille, but he thought it would be possible. A son-in-law who was cursed and turned into a monster would be a flaw in the Atreille Duke’s family as well.

“Whoever kills the monster will be emperor. Do you understand?”

The two princes’ eyes lit up at the bait offered up by the emperor.

❁ ❁ ❁

The curse alone was strange. Because in the world before her return, Aslei had never been cursed.

‘Is it because I changed the future? Is that why it changed?’

He was not as interested in Marianne as before, and they did not become lovers. Instead, all that happened was there was a rumor floating around that Aslei had been cursed.

It would be nice if it was just gossip but a few days later, news broke out that the curse had intensified and that Aslei had become a giant monster.

The aristocrats in the capital were greatly shocked, and public sentiment was forming that the culprit, a wizard, should not be left alone.

If such a thing happened to the great noble Duke of Tintalion, they might not be safe either.

There were also voices that the tower should be closed and the wizards should be slaughtered. Jeremy Wood, who is known to have cursed the Duke, was a wizard of the Tower!

Marianne was confused. Why would Jeremy put her curse on Aslei? Of course, he acted strangely, unlike before his return.

‘You don’t remember, do you?’

It was not impossible, since it was Jeremy’s heart that had been sacrificed for her return. Jeremy, unlike her other men, was the first to notice Marianne’s feelings for Aslei.

He tried to persuade her to give up on her feelings and even revealed his hostility towards Aslei. Marianne pained to use Jeremy to come back again if her life was ruined again, so she couldn’t push him away completely.

Had she been doing well with Aslei, she would not have continued her relationship with him. Jeremy was the decisive factor in Aslei divorcing her.

‘What should I do? Do I have to go back in time again?’

The problem was that the magic tower was closed, so the magic book that was used at that time could not be obtained. Before her return, she was kicked out by Aslei and lived in the tower, so she was able to do that. She could have been helped by the spirits.

‘It’s impossible to be helped by the spirits right now. I can’t even see them! It’s a problem I have to solve on my own.’

If she asked Jeremy, he would risk his life to her bidding. But it was clear that he would check the contents of the book she would ask for.

Knowing the contents of her book, he would realize that she needed his own life as a sacrifice.

‘Jeremy shouldn’t know the book. Even if he has memories of a past life like me, his memories won’t be perfect.’

Since he was used as an offering, perhaps he had fragments of memories. He didn’t even know what she had done because he hated Aslei only with the fragments of his memory. Like a fool.

He might be a substitute for Aslei, but he couldn’t be Aslei. Even the baby in her womb wasn’t Jeremy’s.

Marianne didn’t feel any sympathy for him. Because it was Jeremy who drove her and Aslei’s relationship into an irrevocable state. She thought Jeremy had to pay the price.

‘… … Anyway, I have to go!’

From the moment she heard that he had been cursed, she knew she had to go to him. Wasn’t it even said that Aslei is missing now?

If anyone could find Aslei, it would be her, not Frisia!

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