Home Post 284-chapter-19-2


As Ariel hastened her steps to leave the palace, Racine headed in the opposite direction. His legs, which had been moving at ghostly speed, gradually slowed down.

Reaching his destination, he recalled Ariel passing by as he opened the door.

He didn’t expect to run into her again at a time when access to the imperial palace was strictly controlled due to the visit of the Grand Duke, a southern hero who had returned in secret. It was unexpected. However, that was all he felt about her. He had no other interest.

Racine’s attention was drawn to something other than the girl herself.

‘She was carrying something strange.’

He recalled the white, rectangular object that had been in the Princess’s hand earlier. It was larger and thicker than a playing card, but it was thin for an object with more complex functions.

It was unusual, if anything, but it didn’t seem threatening.

‘What could it be?’

He was curious about the object but not eager enough to investigate it.

As he entered the reception room, even his brief curiosity about the object disappeared. After he closed the door behind him and walked over to the figure sprawled on the sofa, the man who had been lying down turned his head. A few disheveled strands of hair clung to his forehead.

It was Lexius, his close friend. He spoke just as he was sprawled out.


“When did you arrive?”

“Everyone says the same thing when they see me.”

“I guess it’s because you’ve been away for a long time.”

“If you turn it around, it means you didn’t care enough to know when I arrived.”

Lexius muttered under his breath with a disgruntled tone.

It was probably not because he was genuinely curious but rather because he was annoyed by the obligatory questions about his well-being without any interest. Meaningless conversations tend to get tiresome with repetition, and since Racine’s question also fell into that category, his response was not only lukewarm but also filled with discontent.

In the end, Racine waved off the greeting. It was out of character for him anyway.

“What about the South? How was it?”

“It wasn’t great. There are so many corpses that I smell rotten.”

“Besides that, what’s new?”

Lexius’s gaze wandered through the air as Racine corrected himself. He was probably recalling his time in the South. His fingers, stretched out beneath the sofa, flicked something a few times.

“Not as good as I thought. I think I’ll have to go there one more time.”

“Then, the Academy?”

“Oh, I have to go. I have to.”

It was an answer that didn’t seem to have much enthusiasm. It wasn’t as if Lexius had any particular interest in the situation in the South, either. He was merely doing something that would benefit his reputation. Once his accumulated reputation reached a stable point, he would lead a carefree life with the wealth he had accumulated over the years.

‘Seeing that he’s been riding the Crown Prince’s line lately, maybe he won’t completely leave politics after all.’

The man in front of him, who had returned from the war, was close to the Emperor’s faction. It seemed that he could know his age and youth from seeing him reach out to the changing powers.

As his speculation reached the current political situation, Racine stopped thinking.

Hasty speculations led to wrong judgment.

He watched the other’s actions and tended to accept only what was clear. In reality, he wasn’t particularly interested in others beyond that. He had simply come today to see his friend’s face. He had to at least greet a friend who had returned from the war.

Just because he had such a thought, Racine didn’t really know what comforting words to say.

A brief silence passed.

With Racine keeping his lips sealed firmly, Lexius, on the opposite side, sighed before he scratched his forehead and closed his eyes. It seemed he was trying to find a suitable topic for conversation with Racine.

“I didn’t know because it’s been a while, but I heard the Crown Prince was sick.”

Racine’s expression, which had remained impassive for a long time, was broken as Lexius delivered the intimate news about the imperial family. His eyes, containing yellow irises, widened albeit slightly.

“He’s sick?”

In response to his question, Lexius, on the other hand, furrowed his eyebrows with a puzzled look.

“A guy who has been in the capital all this time doesn’t know about that? It seems like you can be rather indifferent.”

“No, apart from that, I don’t understand. It’s a little strange that the Crown Prince should be sick. It’s not like he’s run out of magic.”

“I find it strange, too, but he really is sick. It didn’t seem like a front for propaganda.”

If that was the case, it was even harder to understand. Someone with such vast magical power couldn’t fix their own condition and was unwell. Even if there were significant reasons, it was difficult to understand. Nonetheless, since speculating alone wouldn’t give any answers, it seemed faster to ask the Crown Prince himself.

Just as he contemplated visiting Devoncia, Racine suddenly remembered the person he had encountered earlier.

Black hair. Fair face. Black eyes. Long eyelashes. A serene expression. She was the woman he had encountered in the imperial car with Skylar.

As he thought of the Crown Prince and her, a strange conjecture arose in his mind.