Chapter 16

Chapter 16

Vanessa said that if I look at paperwork in poor lighting my eyes will get worse, thought Erna. Vanessa, who periodically came to her room late at night, nagged Erna as if she were her mother, for lying down and reading documents like that. So, whenever Erna happened to look at papers, she always remembered to ensure she had the best lighting.

Erna had settled down comfortably on the emerald-green sofa, soaking up the warmth from the fireplace, when the door swung open. She deliberately pretended to be focused on her work and didn’t bother to look up as the sound of heavy footsteps approached and then stopped. After a moment of silence, Kalion asked in a low voice, “What are you doing?”

“I beg your pardon?”

“What are you doing in my place?”

“What do you mean, your place? This place isn’t reserved for anyone, is it?” Erna was right about that. This was a space that was meant to be shared by the two of them. Who was he to say this spot belonged to him? Erna cockily pointed to the tea table where she had sat yesterday and said, “There’s space for you over there.”

Kalion glared at her for a moment, but she wasn’t perturbed by the look he gave her, rather, she was annoyed at him for declaring this to be his space. He walked over to the smaller table and unceremoniously put the papers he’d brought on it.

It was a table and sofa that made even Erna feel a little too big for it when she sat there. She wasn’t sure what type of people the previous owners were but they must’ve had smaller figures than the two of them, which was probably the reason why they used such a cute little table and sofa.

Wouldn’t it break if he sat down? she wondered. Erna didn’t have an issue sitting there, but for Kalion, it was a completely different story. Curious about what would happen, she looked at Kalion in anticipation but her curiosity wasn’t satisfied because he unexpectedly turned and walked out of the room. Is he upset or something?

Erna got up, wondering why Kalion had gone back to his room, but he soon reappeared carrying his desk and she stared at him in awe. It was pretty solid-looking and large and should’ve taken at least four people to move it, however, he was able to carry it on his shoulder! He set it down on one side of the bedroom, left again, and returned with his chair, then sat down as if nothing had happened, and began working with his usual expressionless face.

Erna was flabbergasted as she looked at where she was sitting and where Kalion was sitting. At first, the emerald-green sofa and large wooden table where she sat, had been like the center of the room, but where Kalion’s desk was placed down, that now looked like the center of the room. Kalion looked like the owner of the room and it felt as if she was the guest. Erna felt like she had lost to him.


Erna walked toward the place where the wizards stayed, reluctantly. It had already been four days since she’d started spending time with Kalion. As per their agreement, five out of seven days of the week they were to spend time in the same space for two hours, and on the fifth day, they should make efforts to make a child. On the seventh day, they were not to see each other for the sake of their mental stability!

The day we promised to make an effort is already tomorrow. Erna became depressed thinking about it especially when she recalled a week ago when she’d gotten drunk and acted so stupidly. She knew she couldn’t repeat the same mistake and this meant that she had to handle the situation with full sanity. To be honest, I’m still not confident, she thought uneasily.

Erna had a feeling that there wouldn’t be much difference between last time and this time and she feared how bad it would get. As she pressed her pulsating head with her hands, a voice called her.

“Your Highness!” Orpé was calling her and waving her hand.

“What’s going on, Orpé.”

“The sorcerers we sent out are back! They said they couldn’t wait to see you.”

The words brightened Erna’s face. The people Orpé spoke of were those she’d sent out of the capital a week ago with an explicit order. Erna hurried towards the building where she taught the sorcerers. As she entered the conference room, familiar faces rose and greeted her. “Your Highness!” they said in unison, “We’re back!”

Erna was called ‘Your Highness’ but they regarded her more as a close teacher. They came running and hugged her excitedly. Just like Orpé, they were wizards she’d found, taught, and nurtured and she smiled wholeheartedly as she hugged them back. “Is everyone all right? Is anyone hurt?” she asked.

“Of course not! We are one of the toughest groups out there,” replied one of the wizards.

“You said you wanted to see me in a hurry. What’s going on?” Erna asked, concern evident in her voice.

“That’s because we just couldn’t wait to see you!”

Erna embraced them in her arms, looking lovingly at the wizards hanging on to her. They were the people she trusted and cared about and she had to protect them at all costs.

“That’s not all though. We’ve got something we need to give you.”

The words made Erna’s face even brighter. Her order had been for them to investigate the remains of the ancient ruins in Hessenguard. When Hessenguard had been established, it was said that diverse and powerful magic was preserved in the tower. Therefore, quite a few records were showing that the first Hessenguard Duke was a wizard, but that was in the distant past.

Over the years, magic had gradually begun to disappear, and by the time the previous Grand Duke had arrived, there was no magic left to even move the kingdom properly. Records showed that if even a little magic was left, Hessenguard would not have been invaded by other kingdoms, Erna remembered. That was almost a thousand years ago and people these days looked at such records and couldn’t believe that there had been such magic, saying that it was an exaggerated account. But she thought it might have some truth, that’s why she ordered the wizards to look into it and she couldn’t believe they found a small trace! Erna sparkled with anticipation as the returned wizards opened their mouths and said simultaneously, “Have you heard of the Forest of Irgis?”


As ten o’clock approached, Kalion compiled the documents he was reviewing and put them neatly together. As he was about to head to the couple’s bedroom with them in hand, he recalled that tomorrow was the day the two of them promised to make an effort. I don’t think much has changed. Kalion thought that once the two spent more time together, it would gradually make them more comfortable with each other.

On the first day, it was indeed different and he wasn’t annoyed at Erna’s every movement. To be more precise, he was too busy to even care about her. The documents given to him by Vanessa were twice as much as usual, and everything in it was important. In order to attend the next political meeting and discuss everything, Kalion was deeply invested in studying them, even reducing time for practicing with the knights. But it feels a little bit weird, he thought. It was usually Cedric who claimed he was going to die from overworking whenever Kalion entrusted the knight with work. So he thought Cedric was going to complain and was pleasantly surprised when Cedric had said, “Don’t worry, I’ll take care of the knights, and you can just relax.” Strangely enough, Cedric had looked very determined and offered to do everything. Then, unasked, he started to bring food that was known to be good for one’s health. Cedric’s attitude was suspicious, but it was better than his complaints, so Kalion didn’t pay any more attention to his behavior.

Would she be on the sofa again? Before opening the door, Kalion recalled the sight of Erna he had seen for days now. She had always been lying on the sofa, looking at papers. Come to think of it, there is one thing I got used to. Recalling Erna’s habit of talking to herself, he sometimes noticed her murmuring something to herself while she read. Of course, he didn’t reply to anything that she was saying after she’d told him that it was one of her habits. He also knew Erna would not appreciate his comments and she’d just glare at him for interfering.

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Kalion opened the door expecting to see her lying down on the sofa but was surprised to see the sofa empty. Assuming that she hadn’t come yet, he turned his head and got a fright when he saw her standing near the wall, in front of the large map. Kalion wondered if she was looking for a place she didn’t know again, but he noticed that she seemed to be looking at the forest of Irgis.

Why does she care about that forest? he wondered. Having received the same document, Kalion also saw the contents of the forest of Irgis. The request for reconsideration was because they wanted the knights to come more regularly, as monsters were appearing more frequently there than anywhere else. However, many areas within Hessenguard had similar problems, so it was not an area of great concern.

After a moment of questioning, Kalion shook his head. It wasn’t a matter of his own anyway. As he was about to sit down, she asked, “Have you ever been around here?”

Kalion looked up, shocked as she spoke in a voice of pure curiosity, without any negative feelings directed at him.



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