At the time when Eugene was meeting with Charlotte, Kasser was hearing reports from his man about the investigation which he had ordered. After leafing through the pages of the report with an impassive expression, Kasser tossed it back on the table. And all the while he was buried in his thoughts in silence, the man who brought the report, remained standing as firm as a rock with bated breath.
“Alright. You may take your leave.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
The man waited for a moment before he retreated and took his leave, just in case the king had any other instruction for him.
Kasser then stared vacantly at the report which was sitting on his table. He tried to reach out his hand for it but eventually flinched and pulled back with his hand clenched instead.
Not long ago, on the day his birth mother came to ask him for more money, Kasser gave out an order to conduct an investigation of his mother. Although he already had an inkling about it, what was written on the report was much more pathetic than he imagined.
‘What an absurd woman she is.’
If only she had not given up on her position as the queen by not divorcing his father, her life wouldn’t have turned out this badly.
Kasser couldn’t help but to wonder if his so-called mother ever had a will of her own as her whole life has been constantly swayed by either her parents or siblings. He only recently found out that Sang-je was taking advantage of Anikas, and that means there literally was no one to aid the woman to become independent from others.
After a moment of contemplation, Kasser got up from the table and opened the window leading to the balcony to call Abu by force of habit. But the scene from the window eventually stopped him—elaborate buildings of various heights instead of the vast land of the Hashi kingdom.
Only then he remembered that he was now at Holy City, and not his kingdom where he could just run across the desert on Abu’s back whenever he needed to clear his mind.
‘This is ridiculous.’
He had no idea why he was so bothered by the tidings of his birth mother to the point that he had forgotten about where he was just now.
Kasser stood for a moment by the opened window before he stepped into the balcony. The turmoil in his thoughts were subsiding as he gazed at the unfamiliar scenery before him. It really helped a lot just by trying not to think whenever the mind was troubled.
Just then, he sensed someone’s presence behind him, followed by the voice of his chamberlain.
“Your Majesty. The queen is here.”
“Let her come in.” Kasser bid at once.
A moment after his chamberlain took his leave, Kasser went back into his study. The door soon opened and from there he saw his wife walking into the study alone. He couldn’t remember exactly when, but without being asked, everyone naturally gave them privacy whenever they were alone.
Kasser silently watched as she looked around the room with her eyes wide, trying to find him. He saw her breaking into a broad smile as soon as she spotted him standing in front of the window by the balcony. A sudden ache in his heart, a strange pang of pain startled him a little.
Eugene trotted over and threw herself into his arms at once. He then instinctively wrapped his hands around her body to pull her closer to him. She buried her face deep into his chest before looking straight his blue ones, her rosy cheeks evidently betraying her irrepressible excitement.
“The assistant manager from the boutique was here just now.”
“That was fast. I was expecting him tomorrow.”
The assistant manager had indeed informed Kasser beforehand that it would take at least one day for them to process the purchase, as they needed time to prepare the documents required for the transfer of ownership. However, after seeing that the Desert King purchasing every item displayed in the showcase without any hesitation, the assistant manager concluded that the king was an impetuous man. And since it would be a disaster to lose such a bold customer, he quickly changed his plan and decided to deliver it before the king decided to change his mind.
“Do you like it?”
“Do I like it?” Eugene laughed out loud as if it was a ridiculous question. “It’s exactly what I wanted. How did you know I fancied that kind of necklace? Perhaps you can read people’s minds too, can’t you?”
“…I just thought you might like it.”
Burying her face once again into his chest, Eugene tried her best to suppress a laugh from escaping her. She couldn’t help but to find him adorable, to see him play innocent without mentioning a word about the treasury to her. Thus, Eugene decided to play along by making an even greater fuss about it on purpose.
“Thank you so much. I really love it. It is by far the best present I’ve ever gotten in my whole life.”
Kasser felt like he couldn’t be more content to receive such a fervent response from her. And the smile on her face alone was enough to make his efforts worthwhile.
‘What to do now?’ Eugene murmured inwardly, resting her head on his chest.
It was on her way to the study when she realized that everything she had planned before arriving at the Holy City had long gone awry.
Despite her agreement with Kasser to act indifferent to each other in public, they ended up showing the exact opposite to so many people today. And without doubt, words will spread out and reach Sang-je’s ears in no time.
However, Eugene didn’t say anything about it to her husband.
In fact, she had discovered how shallow and materialistic she was earlier in the boutique, as she couldn’t quite deny how thrilled she was to hear all the envious murmurs breaking out among other customers, while waiting for the jewelry to be packed.
And if they are to be on everybody’s lips anyway, she thought it would be better to show how happily married they truly are to the whole public. Besides, it upset her just to imagine him being cold and indifferent to her, in awareness of others.
“Let’s change our plan.” Eugene said, looking up from his chest.