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Thank you for the Ko-fi Heath Bar! (3/5)
It wasn’t an advantageous move in many ways. Everything was going well, so there was no reason for him to appear in front of the Duke.
But at that moment, another strange thing happened.
As Lucerne burst through, slamming the door open and strode in, Elisha’s heart was strangely relieved and reassured. Her body, which had been trembling in front of the Head, calmed down, and her pulse gradually became steady.
‘What’s wrong with me?’
She was puzzled by her own condition. In her previous life, she had passed situations where her throat was about to be blown off dozens of times, but this had never happened to her before.
“Lucerne, are you rushing in like this because something serious has happened? I’ve never seen you like this before,”
Gaju noted as he observed as if studying him. Lucerne answered calmly, without moving an eyebrow.
“You can’t take someone else’s wife without permission. If you wanted to meet me, I would have gone out if you had told me in advance,”
Lucerne said without looking at Elisha.
“Indeed, it looks like this woman is important to you. You run like she is a treasure, stolen by a thief.”
“I can’t stand it when someone else takes even one of the worn-out basins rolling around my house. How much more precious is a woman who sleeps in my bed every night,”
he retorted without a smile. Elisha wondered if he was being sarcastic. Besides, what he said was an utter lie. He was a person who neglected expensive art and golden ornaments that were languishing around the house.
“Why are you so angry with my wife that you dragged her to someone else’s house and harassed her?”
Gaju’s eyes narrowed. He was trying to figure out whether Elisha would become a weakness for Lucerne, and whether this was just him being grumpy or being possessive.
“I heard a lot of rumors about your wife, so I brought her here to see for myself and determine if she is a villainess or not.”
“Why does someone who never cared about my reputation care about my wife’s reputation?”
“… … .”
“Elisha, come here.”
When his command came down, Elisha felt a chill and she went and stood behind him. His hard back looked wide and big. He was like a wall.
“Since you are so smart I can’t pry your dishonest mouth open, I wanted to hear your wife’s opinion on this matter. Regardless, whether I make my family speak or dance, it is my decision and within my authority.”
This time, the Head spoke without any expression. Elisha’s heart was pounding. It was like watching two different types of beasts face off.
“Why is this woman in the family of the Lord? She’s my woman.”
“Aren’t you a member of my family and under my power? Yours is mine, and I have no influence on those who favor Cartier money?”
“This woman is mine, because I bought her with the money I earned from green bonfire sticks. If you have any objections, complain to Jacob, who didn’t recognize this gem. I can’t stand people touching my belongings.”
“Ha, what a cheeky bastard.”
“Didn’t you know my nature and still accepted me into the family? This personality of mine hasn’t changed since I was five, so it’s too late to get angry about it. If you don’t like it, you should have disciplined me as a child.”
Elisha thought this conversation was not good for her heart.
‘Who else would be able to rebel against Gaju as much as Lucerne?’
She was shocked. No one in this country could touch Lucerne carelessly. But if the Head drew his sword, even the imperial family would not be able to protect him.
“So what were you so curious about?”
“What are you going to do in this situation? But your wife was grilling me with her three tongues!”
Only then Lucerne slowly examined the Lord’s face. And realized that the emotions that lingered on Gaju’s face were not ones of anger, but rather a sort of acidity and interest—those were his feelings towards Elisha.
Lucerne’s momentum softened slightly.
“Aren’t you angry about the Pope’s election anyway? What does she know?”
“Does your wife really have nothing to do with Rosaria becoming Pope? Didn’t she whisper into your ear and manipulate you?”
“Whether she whispers or not, she chooses what is best for me, so what’s the problem?”
“What are you talking about?”
Gaju seemed dumbfounded by the couple’s absurd sophistry that continued like a game of tossing a ball. However, his outrage was already somewhat relieved by talking to Elisha.
“You know what your wife says? She insists it doesn’t matter if you’re an illegitimate child or not, since you have some control over Rosaria. Does that make sense? Can Rosaria be your parent?”
Elisha realized that Lucerne’s outspoken vitriol was certainly inherited from the Lord. It was a venomous tongue.
Lucerne replied calmly.
“Have you gone insane, Lucerne?”
“Rosaria-nim is a parent of mine. She is my godmother.”
“… … what?”
“I grew up in a temple, and Uncle Merha raised me myself. But because I was born outside of my family, I didn’t have godparents until I was ten.”
A godmother or godfather is an oath of guardianship between aristocratic families. Usually, one who is close to a parent becomes the godfather or godmother.
A godfather or godmother pledge is a promise to take care of a child’s parents in the event of a crisis. In prestigious families, a godfather or godmother was always chosen for a child’s first birthday party. Since he was of illegitimate birth, he naturally had none.
“I see. I didn’t pay attention to that part.”
“At that time, the Lord was not interested in me. I understand.”
Elisha began to wonder where Lucerne stored his nerves of steel needed to say such things.
“At the age of ten, we held a big birthday party to thank the gods for helping me grow up to the age of ten. But by the time I was ten, I had neither a godmother nor a godfather, so I was in a lot of trouble at the temple. I wanted to leave an official record, but there was no guardian behind me.”
The Head’s hand paused.
“Did Merha refuse to stand as your godfather?”
Lucerne nodded her head.
“When everyone was troubled, Rosaria-nim, who was at the Great Shrine at the time, said that she would put her name as my godmother. She’s such a weak-hearted person. Would she abandon me because she’s become the Pope?”
Gaju had a thoughtful expression on his face.
“So what will Merha do?”
“I was just on my way to meet Rosaria-nim. She’s my guardian and godmother, so how can she be harsh to my uncle? People are calling for the death penalty, but we can block it.”
The Lord’s hand twitched at the word death penalty.
“He killed the Prophet. The death penalty is usually unavoidable, but… … . With the exception of this time, after a few years of formal detention, I promised to release him”
“… … So, you mean a member of the Cartier family should be imprisoned?”