“Your Highness, the Archduke and Count Howell said they left the portal. You must prepare, my lord.”
The tense heat between the two cooled fast as if water poured on them at the sound of Lannister’s voice outside the door.
The two pressed their lips against each other’s skin and faced each other with short, heavy breathes. The excitement in their eyes was so thick it seemed to take shape and drip out.
Grinding his teeth and swearing, he stood up. Then, returning to his usual relaxed demeanor as if nothing had happened moments before, he extended his hand to Dahlia.
Dahlia also stood up, holding his hand, her face regaining its composure.
“Call Amelie. I need to get ready.”
“No, I’ll go alone, so don’t take a single step out of this place. Let’s just say you’re not feeling well and need to recuperate.”
“But your father is coming.”
“We got married, but we haven’t received the emperor’s approval yet. In order to be protected by the Guide Attribution Act, the marriage must be authorized by the emperor. So, wait quietly.”
In a fit of rage at the word “wait quietly,” she glared at Jurgen while buttoning up her buttons, then turned around and stood in front of her closet.
“Don’t forget, Sir Edelred. We had a contract, not a love marriage. Therefore… .”
Dahlia took out a blue dress, examined its front and back, and hung it nearby.
Then she stopped and turned to Jurgen and said clearly:
“It means that you and I have an equal relationship. So don’t give me orders.”
“Don’t give orders?”
Holding back laughter, as a smile permeated his lips, he stood in front of the mirror and started getting ready. When he took off his comfortable shirt and pants, old scars were revealed all over his body. It was a testament to his struggle to survive.
Jurgen wore a prepared uniform with a dry smile.
Gerald Von Klose knew he dragged Dahlia into the gate last night. He recognized his sister with his animal-like instinct and tried to rush at him.
Even though they were “brother and sister,” ultimately, they were not blood-related. And yet they were so close. No matter how much was attributed to guiding, Gerald’s attitude toward Dahlia was closer to obsession.
Jurgen recognized his eyes towards her were those of a man and not of the simple affection for blood kin.
Putting on his jacket, he fastened the ruby-studded buttons one by one and picked up the sword resting on velvet.
‘We don’t have much time. Send her to me.’
‘She is the woman who will become my wife.’
‘You’re afraid you’ll lose her to me, Edelred?’
‘As you know, I have a personality that doesn’t let go of what comes in my hand.’
‘Do you believe that you alone can protect her who is Liberty? Well… . Now it’s only a matter of time before rumors go around. Then the hunt will begin.’
The smile disappeared from Jurgen’s face.
As guides with the power of Liberty began to disappear. People also said that its seeds had dried up.
Since the beginning, those in power wanted Liberty. To them, Liberty’s abilities were like water to life, causing an addiction stronger than any drug. So, Liberty’s life was short. They were overworked and preyed on by those in power that could obtain them for their lust. A Liberty’s gender didn’t matter. Whether a man or woman, a noble or a commoner. The Sentinels were both Liberty’s slaves and masters.
But beginning one day, Liberty’s powers began to disappear from the world. Sentinels in power started to go mad. Like the current Emperor Louis, he had imprinted on a Liberty that died and caused him to go amok, so he was imprisoned in the castle.
‘There is something I must hear from the Emperor, Edelred. To do that, I need Dahlia Von Klose.’
Jurgen kicked his sword and turned around. Upon opening the door, the waiting Lannister politely bowed.
When he went down the straight stairs in the center of the hall, servants who were busily preparing to greet the master ran up and lined up.
“Entry to the outbuilding is prohibited. Especially… . If a black hawk approaches the annex, you may kill it.”
Lannister’s face turned white at that cold command. If they killed the Crown Prince’s phantom beast, Delmon, terrible things would happen.
“I will keep an eye out.”
So, after making a wise decision, Lannister answered. Then, Jurgen peeked out and crossed the garden leading to the front gate, narrowing his eyes.
“I’m serious, Lannister. I mean it.”
The Lannister, who swallowed, bowed his head deeply.
“Yes, my lord.”