It was quite obvious what was going to happen.
Ravia’s return would undoubtedly be delayed as long as she was at the villa, and Heint held on to her.
Or worse, she couldn’t return to the mansion at all.
Then, Tidwell would find it odd that she broke her own word and didn’t return home for a long time.
But if Heint could report Tidwell to the Emperor before Tidwell discovered Ravia, the situation might get much better.
Setting aside Tidwell’s feelings, there was nothing a prisoner could do.
But I must be aware of the man who pulled the strings.
Tidwell’s close friend who pushed him over the edge so he could swallow Leontine without hesitation. He informed the Emperor of Dark Flower and persuaded him to believe Tidwell would make a great prey.
And Herod’s plan worked quite well in or Ravia’s previous life. As Tidwell murdered the entire Leontine and took over the family at his whim, the Emperor was having trouble getting rid of the only Leontine left who succeeded the duchy.
But it was a different story now.
Now that Ravia had seen through Herod’s scheme, Tidwell’s punishment was inevitable.
It was clear that Herod had partnered up with Tidwell and would also bear the consequences if things continued this way.
This meant that Herod would soon try to save Tidwell.
Ravia even asked Herod to look after Tidwell as part of their agreement.
After a little deliberation, Herod readily answered Ravia’s request to look after Tidwell.
-Alright. We’ll be good to go if we can solve the biggest problem.
-The biggest problem?
-What else is there? I’m talking about His Majesty.
The outcome won’t be good because they left him in the Emperor’s hands to be dealt with in accordance with the law.
-It would be good if we could just deal with the problem with money, but I suppose that would still be difficult.
-Do you have any solution?
-In this situation, we have to make one even if it doesn’t exist.
Herod replied as if it was only natural, and spoke again.
-Fortunately, His Majesty’s intention is quite easy to read. Emperors who attempted to suppress the underworld throughout history would often be only looking for a justification.
Serving as the foundation for the underworld, the slums were built by individuals who were not given governmental support from the start.
As a result, from the monarch’s perspective, it was simply rubbish that was difficult to deal with.
So there must be a proper justification to touch that rotten rubbish.
It was either when the Imperial family needed a distraction from the power struggle or when they faced a major backlash from the public.
-Why would the Emperor bother to touch the underworld now that Blue has risen to power? We need to add oil to the fire.
So they needed to fan the flames as well as prepare the bail money for Tidwell at any cost. Herod said.
-I have to do it anyway. I’ll be doomed if I don’t look for Tidwell because we’re both in the same boat.
It was something he already had in mind even if Ravia hadn’t asked him. He wanted Tidwell to not suffer much damage regardless of his sin.
Ravia had planned it that way. She originally wanted to stop Tidwell from hating her and to lessen his sorrow over losing Leontine.
But if things went on like this, the story would be different.
‘If the Emperor’s troops chased after him as soon as he began to wonder about my absence…’
Anyone would think that Ravia’s outing had something to do with it.
Tidwell would misunderstand and believe that Ravia was trying to abandon him.
The only thing that could stop Tidwell was prison, but Ravia and Herod had already made a deal.
If Herod saved Tidwell, the next thing that would happen was obvious.
Misunderstanding that he had been betrayed by Ravia, Tidwell would kill her. Ironically, Heint’s attempt to save Ravia was only driving her further into the abyss.
Thankfully, that was just her presumption. Ravia smiled sourly. Why was it so hard for her to receive love peacefully?
Now that the circumstance had reached its lowest point, no apology could ever make her feel better.
Because she had gone through the worst imaginable things over something that wasn’t her fault.
Ravia realized that she couldn’t forgive Heint.
Despite this, the years of negligence had caused her to welcome the apology like rain during a drought.
The two opposing feelings were continuously at odds with one another.
If only my father had realized it a bit sooner, just a bit sooner…
Caught in her own conjecture, she tried to swallow the thought only for her to spit it out.
The more she swallowed those thoughts, the more it tasted of very bitter food.
She hurriedly spit it out, but the bitterness lingered.
In a hurry to shake off the bitterness, Ravia opened her mouth.
“…I can’t forgive you, Father. I just can’t accept it. Your apology means nothing to me.”
Heint’s expression got progressively more forlorn as he listened to Ravia.
However, he had apologized without expecting much from the start.
He then skilfully masked his expression.
“I figured so. It won’t be easy to change one’s mind with just words. I don’t wish for that either.”
There was only one thing that he wished for.
Heint beseeched. The constant fear of losing his daughter overtook him.
Was it because Ravia’s expression was still as empty as ever? Or was it because of the fear that he was taking the footsteps of King Lear?
He continued to feel he would never see Ravia again. Thus, Heint begged earnestly until Ravia finally heaved a sigh.
“Alright. I’ll stay here. So you can go.”
“When did I ever go against your wish?”
Ravia replied dryly, but Heint was unable to smile. Ravia was willing to stay here per his wishes, but it seemed that his anxiety didn’t fade.
So Heint still had so much to say to her, but sadly, time didn’t wait for them.
Vincent, who was waiting outside, knocked on the door.
“My Lord, you must leave right away. The carriage is waiting outside for you.”
He was about to leave for the Imperial Palace after saying his final words to Ravia, but he suddenly realized that Ravia had arrived alone.
It must have taken him a long time to return from the Imperial Palace. Heint then agonized for a moment.
“Vincent, I can’t leave Ravia alone, so you should stay here.”
“But then My Lord will have to go alone.”
“I’m not alone because I’m with the coachman. Going to the Imperial Palace isn’t tedious work that requires an escort.”
That was he said, but everyone in the room was aware that Vincent was stationed behind to keep an eye on Ravia.
But it didn’t affect Ravia at all.
“Have a safe trip.”
She just said that with a smile.
Heint was filled with uneasiness and spoke to Ravia before the carriage door was closed.
“I have something to tell you when I return.”
“Is that so? I’m surprised you still have something to talk about.”
“It’s about your mother. I just realized that I never told you anything about your mother.”
So please don’t break your promise and remain here.
Heint pleaded internally before he left.
The sound of the horse’s gallops resonated through the villa’s yard, leaving only her along with Vincent.
Once the carriage was completely out of sight, Ravia’s smile faded completely.
“I should return to the mansion.”
She had no intention of granting Heint any favor from the start.