Chapter 62.1

Rezette fixed his icy gaze on the woman standing before him, his eyes shimmering with an unsettling intensity. Genovia, in a burst of frustration, slammed her hand down on the desk as though trying to shake loose some hidden truth and demanded, “Back then, and even now, do you still believe I’m insane?” 

Five years ago, Genovia Irrien had first encountered Rezette Kyrstan as a young and impressionable girl teetering on the precipice of adulthood. It was a tale as old as time itself. A loyal knight to the emperor and the formidable steward of the prosperous Rotiara estate, Genovia had fallen head over heels for him the moment their eyes had met.

Despite the ominous rumors that swirled around him, Genovia had scoffed at the warnings. Rezette had treated her with utmost respect, welcomed her advances, and even shared dances with her on numerous occasions. He was also the benevolent duke who annually undertook the daunting task of cleaning up the chaos that befell Norella – whether it was the aftermath of a demonic assault or the scourge of smallpox.

In every conceivable way, he appeared to be the ideal suitor. Moreover, the emperor had already chosen her as a suitable match for his younger brother, making it all but certain that she would eventually become the duke’s wife. Whether the wedding occurred sooner or later, what could possibly go wrong? She had been so naive, surrendering herself to him with a heart full of innocent fantasies.

“Now, as I reflect on it, I must have been mad myself. It’s only natural that you would have thought so,” Genovia muttered, her lips trembling and parched.

It was at that moment that the girl’s illusions came crashing down around her. Everything she had once held as unshakable certainty now revealed itself as a mere mirage. Genovia drew in a trembling breath, her emotions running deep.

“Nevertheless, Duke,” she began with a hint of determination, “let’s talk. Irrien still has a keen interest in Rotiara. It’s not just me; my father continues to keep a watchful eye on this place. Moreover, I still want you by my side, you know?”

Rezette’s response came quick and dismissive. “Are you still lost in your fantasies?”

“No,” Genovia replied firmly. “Fortunately, I’m not. I simply wish to observe you closely, to see you living your life alone.”

“Believing that’s possible is a delusion in itself, my lady.”

“We shall see,” she retorted. “In any case, you owe me. Lately, His Majesty has been expressing dissatisfaction with your performance, and I should attempt to appease him, shouldn’t I?”

“That’s something I’ll manage on my own,” Rezette asserted, his composed demeanor unwavering.

Glancing briefly at the time, Rezette realized it had been two hours since his arrival for Elise. He passed by Genovia without another word.

“Prepare to depart. That’s all,” he commanded sternly.

However, their journey to the capital would not unfold as planned. Genovia Irrien was privy to Elise’s deceptions, a woman unable to keep her silence and nursing a deep grudge against her. In Rezette’s eyes, there was no reason to spare Genovia Irrien.

“Ask Elise if I truly desire to leave,” Genovia taunted, her posture defiant as she stood tall with her back straight.

The venom that had previously tainted her pretty face vanished, as if it had been nothing more than a fleeting facade. With a cheerful smile that seemed to question why she had been so upset in the first place, she turned to face Rezette.

With the matter settled, it was time for me to retreat as well. Genovia, gracefully lifting the hem of her dress, bid a polite farewell. “Very well then, leave as you please. I wish you a pleasant evening, Sir.”

There was no response from the man.

After exiting the duke’s office, Genovia proceeded alone through the corridors of Rotiara Castle, her thoughts in turmoil. “Ugh… how repulsive.”

Thanks to Rezette Kyrstan’s unexpected rejection, old memories resurfaced. When was it again? It was the day the Duke had returned from his triumphant battle against the demon that had attacked Norella. She had used the pretext of having something important to discuss with him to boldly lead him to their secret rendezvous spot and had audaciously kissed him.

When he had narrowed his eyes as if struggling to contain his desires, a shiver had coursed through her entire body. She had believed, with inflated expectations, that this man desired her as well.

What had happened after that…?

Genovia abruptly halted in her tracks, then buried her face in her hands, cursing herself softly. “You foolish woman…”

When the dazed and battered Genovia finally regained consciousness, she found herself alone. Her clothes, partially disheveled by her own actions, clung to her body, revealing the remnants of numerous magical injuries.

Shortly thereafter, the castle maids hurried into the room, explaining that they had received the duke’s orders to escort her back to her chambers. Genovia, battered and bruised, received medical attention, and it took three long days for her to awaken fully.

However, the most troubling realization that had haunted Genovia that day wasn’t the fear of her near-death experience or the magical scars etched onto her body. It was the painful revelation that when she had attempted to seduce the man, his response had not been desire, but rather a murderous rage—an indescribable shame.



not work with dark mode