Kasser stared at her wordlessly, his face unreadable as he waited for her to go on. Seeing him look at her attentively made Eugene fidget as she continued, “I think he has multiple names, and the name ‘Cage’ is what he used when he was acting as an information broker.”
Before meeting with Kasser, Eugene rehearsed the lines in her room, making sure to choose each word carefully so she wouldn’t slip up. She couldn’t tell Kasser the whole truth, so she decided to omit some parts of the narrative and she had to make certain that it all blended seamlessly, not wanting him to grow suspicious.
“One of his other names is Rodrigo. A servant of… Mara.”
After her meeting with the chancellor, Eugene realized that she couldn’t handle all of this by herself, given the fact that her memory is pretty unreliable. With that notion in mind, she decided to come clean to the King and tell him what she could, and ask him for help. He’s the only one who could cover up Jin’s past actions no matter what it was. He was the Desert King, the ruler of this kingdom after all.
Kasser’s expression remained unreadable even after hearing Eugene’s words. “What does his other identities have to do with you?” Kasser asked, raising one eyebrow. His voice remained calm, and he didn’t falter one bit even when the servants of Mara was brought up.
Eugene was surprised to see him unfazed. Marianne told her before that the king did not trust the servants of Mara, but despite his mistrust towards them, he remained neutral, not showing anything that resembles hatred and disgust.
“Because I kept meeting with him even though I knew that he was one of the servants of Mara, and even gave him a large amount of money.” Eugene answered.
“But all you did was purchase information from an information broker, and paid him for it.” Kasser said, still confused with Eugene’s apprehension.
“I paid him much more than the average brokerage fee costs.”
“If the buyer and the seller agreed on a certain price, then that’s not something one should make a big deal out of.” Kasser said nonchalantly, making Eugene nervous even more. She didn’t want to deceive him by making it as simple as overpriced costs, what she wanted to do was to confess what Jin had done, and for him to make a decision based on that.
Eugene took a deep breath. “It wasn’t just a simple trade by a buyer and seller. I wouldn’t have brought this up if it were that mundane. I recalled that I was funding the servants of Mara, and—“ Eugene gulped as she continued, “He called me a Saint.”
Kasser’s calm expression suddenly shifted into a furious one. “What a vicious man, resorting to such methods just to deceive you.” His voice raged, making Eugene flinch in front of him.
“He’s trying to trick you into believing his lies.” Kasser muttered as he continued “Did he somehow found out that you owned a lot of money?”
It was clear that Kasser’s anger was directed towards Rodrigo, not Eugene. Eugene realized that he must have concluded that she was naively scammed of her money, making Eugene scoff to herself. She really thought that he would understand what she’s trying to say, but this misunderstanding says otherwise.
“Your Majesty. That’s not what I’m trying to say.” Eugene said, slightly frustrated that she had to prove what she’s guilty of instead of defending herself.
“I get what you’re saying.”
Eugene fell silent, not knowing how to make him understand.
“You’re anxious about the fact that he called you one of their Saints, am I right?” Kasser asked.
“Yes.” Eugene deadpanned.
“If you used that title given to you to take advantage of people, then you’re guilty of a terrible crime. Did you do anything like that?”
“I-I don’t know. I don’t remember.”
“You don’t remember because you didn’t do anything like that. If you did, I would definitely know about it.” Kasser said, trying to ease Eugene’s worries away.
Eugene nodded her head upon hearing Kasser’s affirmation. Jin had snuck out of the castle to meet with Rodrigo, but it couldn’t have been very frequent. Jin would be undoubtedly caught if she went out several times. Eugene realized that living as a villainess queen entailed having a lot of watchful eyes, eyeing her everywhere and anytime.
“You’re a queen. The power you have over this nation is much more than any power you could ever have from any title, and there was nothing you could have gained with being called a ‘Saint’.” Kasser told her.
Eugene stood gaping at him, his reasoning perfectly logical. But what concerns her is what Jin had done, which cannot be explained rationally.
‘Then what could be the reason behind funding all that money into the servants of Mara?”
“I should be the one asking you that.” Kasser said.
Eugene didn’t realize that she had voiced her thoughts out. “Well, I must have kept this relationship with the servants of Mara a secret for a reason. Even if I didn’t follow through with it, it’s still a crime to plan something like this.”
“What do you mean?” Kasser asked.
“You know.., like summoning Mara or something like that.” Eugene didn’t realize how absurd she sounded, prompting Kasser to snort at her remark.
“Summoning the vile God for what?” Kasser said as he bellowed in laughter.
“Your Majesty.” Eugene frowned, she was angry that he would take everything she had said lightly. Kasser noticed Eugene glaring at him. He tried to stop his laughter as he composed himself, forcing his cheeks so stay still as he formed a non-convincing frown.
“If this is how you’ll react, then next time when something happens you won’t find me telling you any of it.” Eugene said, clearly irritated.
Even in her aggravated expression, Kasser still found her so beautiful, and he had to push his desires away since all he wanted to do was kiss her lips repeatedly. And if he did smother her with kisses, Eugene would definitely grow even more upset. The time they had together was already fleeting, and he didn’t want to waste any more time with Eugene being mad at him.
“Calm down. I didn’t mean to make fun of you. It just seemed illogical.” Kasser explained.
“What do you mean?”
“Mara. That’s the god that the servants serve. Is it even possible to summon a God?”
It was possible in Eugene’s novel, but that’s it. It was just a novel.