The princess had plunged the dagger into her own shoulder, causing Rezette to be at a loss for words at the sight of the horrific scene. His hands, which had been trying to stop the bleeding from the princess’s shoulders, were now covered in blood.
“You’ve promised to take me safely to Van Yela,” Elise said through gritted teeth.
It was only then that Rezette truly understood the princess’s intentions. She had no intention of facing her noble death as much as she could fight it. Not only did she want to avoid death, but she also intended to use her own body to convince him.
For a few days after the princess had harmed herself, she almost compulsively tried to harm her own body. Rezette couldn’t leave her alone for even a moment.
The emperor’s order was that the princess was to be brought to the capital, but with the condition that she not be seriously injured. While she would face a death sentence upon arriving in the capital, Rezette didn’t know why the emperor had included such a condition. But as a knight, he didn’t question the emperor’s orders, he simply followed them.
But even so, it would be shocking for him to share a barracks with the princess. She was, after all, a member of the royal family of Argan, a powerful and well-respected country on the continent of Grandel. Rezette had no personal resentment towards the royal family of Argan, and if he had to describe his feelings towards them, it would be closer to liking.
Rezette remembered his visit to Argan several years ago as a goodwill ambassador. While the empire’s prestige had declined compared to its heyday, it still maintained a classical dignity.
The emperor of Grandel at the time, Aseica III, was just 19 years old. Rezette vividly recalled their first meeting, when the young emperor, having just shed his boyhood, greeted him with a smile. “You are the hero of Van Yela. Welcome to Grandel, Archduke of Kyrstan.”
Despite knowing full well the reputation of the feared “slayer” Rezette Kyrstan, the young emperor showed no fear. It was no surprise, as Rezette was known as a “hero” on the continent of Grandel.
Rezette also remembered the emperor’s twin sister, Princess Elizabeth. He had only caught a glimpse of her at a banquet, but her beauty was indelibly etched in his memory. Her silver-white hair cascading down to her waist and golden eyes, the symbol of the Argan royal family, were enchantingly beautiful. The emperor was also handsome, but he couldn’t compare to the princess. She seemed otherworldly, as if she existed in a dream separate from ordinary people.
There were few women in the world who could inspire a sense of awe, but the princess was one of them. It was no wonder that Rezette recognized her immediately upon seeing her.
Now, the princess who had fled to his barracks was still as beautiful as ever, but her youthful innocence was gone. Her face was etched with despair and precariousness, the marks of someone who had experienced the hardships of life. Even so, her pitifulness was noble, a characteristic she had possessed since birth.
Rezette couldn’t help but sigh as he gazed down at the princess, who lay on the extra bed with her eyes closed. He knew she wasn’t sleeping, though – she had been on high alert all day, always fearing that he might leave her side even for a moment.
So when he left the room for a while, she took the opportunity to loosen the bandage on her shoulder and reopen her wounds. They were already inflamed and unhealed, so it was no surprise that he couldn’t bring himself to leave her side.
Despite Rezette’s reluctance to engage with the princess, she continued to speak to him, asking him questions that he couldn’t ignore. As a loyal servant, he knew that he had to answer her, no matter how much he wished he could avoid the conversation.
“Yes,” he replied, his voice short and curt. He knew that he didn’t have to say much more – the princess’s word was law, and no one dared to ignore it.
The princess’s smile was one of shock, but it quickly faded as she opened her eyes and looked directly at Rezette. He couldn’t bring himself to meet her gaze, instead lowering his eyes and avoiding her golden orbs-like eyes.
Elizabeth raised an eyebrow at this, clearly surprised by his behavior. “Do I need to make another cut on my body to be able to have a proper conversation with you?” she asked, her voice laced with frustration.
The last princess of Argan had a strong personality, in a sense. Rezette couldn’t help but speak up, despite his reservations. “Your Majesty, it seems like you know how to cherish your body,” he said, trying to be careful with his words.
The princess let out a bitter laugh. “When you arrive at Van Yella, you will die immediately, so what should you do with it? I will use it until I can gain something from it,” she replied, her voice laced with a poignant tone. Despite her elegant manner of speaking, there was a hint of desperation in her words.
She grabbed the bed with one hand and tried to sit up, her movements rough and careless. She didn’t seem to care about preserving her own body, and as a result, the bandage that had been changed just an hour ago was already starting to bleed again.
Rezette’s forehead creased with worry.