After returning to the camp, changing clothes and having dinner, Cedric called Ansgar.
Ansgar prepared the tea and entered Cedric’s barrack.
“Did you enjoy your outing today?”
Ansgar had no idea where Cedric had been.
However, in the morning he had seen him emaciated from lack of sleep and stress, only to discover that now, on his return, he had even a small smile.
Cedric asked Ansgar as he drank his tea.
“Do you know about Viscount Fischer’s Family?”
“Why do you want to know about the Fischer Family?”
It was unusual for Ansgar to answer a question from Cedric with another question.
Cedric looked at him strangely. Then Ansgar answered calmly.
“The Fischer Family collapsed 18 years ago. The Viscount and Viscountess committed suicide by poisoning themselves, and their relatives, including their children, disappeared. It is virtually destroyed.”
Cedric was surprised and left the cup of tea.
Because of the amazement, he changed his posture, no longer resting comfortably in the chair.
“At the time of its destruction, Viscountess Fischer was Her Majesty’s lady-in-waiting. She was also a childhood friend of the Empress. Because of her low status, she could not become the head lady-in-waiting, but she was Her Majesty’s most trusted person.
“So, why did she commit suicide?”
“She assumed responsibility for the death of the two princes. Because she was in charge of taking care of them.”
He had not thought deeply about it until he returned.
Although he felt there must have been some reason for Artizea to make this request. He thought that once he met Viscount Fischer and bought the jewel, that would be the end of it.”
“Didn’t one of the princes die of smallpox?”
“Yes, that is true. But someone needed to take responsibility. The princess was the first to die, and a year later, both princes died. Then, as you know, rumors began to spread that it was a curse…”
“Yes, I know that.”
Although this was an incident that had occurred during his childhood, Cedric also remembered it, because at that time his family was reinstated to its original position.
“Did Her Majesty force her to commit suicide?”
“I don’t think so. But there must have been pressure.”
“Everyone knows that the Empress must have been very resentful of the Emperor for what happened.”
“Do you mean that the Empress was so resentful of losing her children, that the Emperor kept her under control for fear that she would pose a threat? Come to think of it, not long after that, Her Majesty’s Family had fallen.”
“There is no evidence that this was the Emperor’s doing. It is only a rumor that was circulating at the time.”
“But there was a harsh criticism that someone had to take responsibility. But no one could hold the Emperor responsible, nor attack the Empress directly. So, perhaps to protect Her Majesty, Viscountess Fischer gave her life.”
“But it is strange that the whole family has dispersed and disappeared, even though no crime has been confirmed.
“Yes, there are other suspicions.”
It could have been a murder.
Or it could be a larger plot than Cedric could ever imagine.
Cedric, who had met with Marcus Hanson today, could not help but sigh deeply.
He wondered if this was the reason why the Emperor had pardoned Miraila.
With the death of all the Empress’ children, the Emperor lost his rightful successors to the throne.
He only had his illegitimate children left. The mothers of his two daughters had too low a status. And then there was Lawrence, whom the Emperor loved more than anyone else.
The loss of his children could have made him feel lonely and depressed, causing him to lean on Miraila again.
“Is there any possibility of finding a descendant of the Fischer Family?”
Cedric asked, reclining on his chair again and interlacing his fingers. Ansgar hesitated.
“I can’t say for sure, but it can be tried.”
“I think we could ask around.”
‘Maybe this is what Artizea wanted me to do,’ thought Cedric.
“My duty is to serve you, but why the sudden interest in the Fischer Family?”
“I heard that the heirloom of the Viscounty Fischer is a jewel called, Saintess Olga’s Heart.”
“Yes. That’s right.”
“I need it. But with the Fischer Family in that situation, I don’t know when I’ll get it.”
He had told Artizea that he would give her the Saintess Olga’s Heart at their next meeting, but now he didn’t know when he could see her again.
He realized that he was already looking forward to the next meeting. At that point, he sighed again.
“You should go and check it out, after all, it’s a jewel.”
“If it’s a jewel you’re looking for, wouldn’t it be quicker to ask a jeweler? Eighteen years have passed. It’s very likely that it’s currently on the market. Also, rumor has it that most of the Fischer Family’s assets were sold back then to finance the escape.”
As soon as Cedric got up from his chair, Ansgar laughed.
“It is midnight, Lord Cedric. You don’t plan to go to the jewelry store in the capital at this hour, do you?”
“Of course not.”
Cedric, who had risen slightly from his chair when he felt inexplicably excited, sat down again.
Ansgar smiled and took Cedric’s empty teacup.
“On the other hand, Ansgar.”
“How can I give a lady clothes?”
However, Ansgar could not help but laugh slightly.
Cedric said firmly.
“It’s not what you’re imagining.”
“Yes, I understand.”
“It’s really nothing.”
Despite Ansgar’s answer, Cedric stamped his foot in discomfort.
After that day, the Marquisate Rosan was enveloped in a dark atmosphere.
Miraila, who had wrecked her room all night, beaten her maids and made a fuss, felt so weak that she did not have the strength to go out the next day and remained lying in her bed.
Her temperature had risen and her throat had become inflamed from screaming too loudly.
Like an obedient daughter, Artizea sat beside her, and was giving her hot lemon tea with a spoon.
Miraila said in a hoarse voice.
“Now that you’ve grown up, did you prefer to pretend last night that you didn’t notice your mother was angry?”
“No way. My brother called me and we talked for a while.”
Artizea responded obediently.
“I would never pretend not to notice my mother’s condition.”
“It’s true. When I grow old, the only person I will be able to trust will be my daughter. I live for you.”
Miraila hugged Artizea with a smile, as she sometimes did when she was in a good mood.
“If you are not feeling very well, why don’t you go with Her Majesty to the detached palace?”
“It has been very hot lately. Maybe it’s the best time to go to the Detached Palace. Besides, right in front, there is the sea.”
Miraila’s eyes glittered.
“We should go on vacation. Do you think Lawrence would have time?”
“If my brother is busy, you two should go alone. That way, you would have a more intimate trip.
Even if Lawrence didn’t go, it was a trip with the Emperor, so it wouldn’t be really intimate.
However, these words seemed to improve Miraila’s mood, and she giggled even with her sore throat.
The Emperor gladly accepted Miraila’s request.
The trip was organized and the procession began with unprecedented speed.
Artizea thought that the Emperor was doing this to gain time. And she was right.
At this point, the Emperor was probably reflecting on whether or not to allow the ceremony of the triumphant return of the Western Army.
He had been postponing the issue of the Western Army for a long time. He had refused for one reason or another all along, but if he were to give his consent now for the sake of Lawrence, it would be somewhat embarrassing. Now that Cedric had entered the capital, he could no longer postpone his decision.
In this situation, Miraila’s request represented the perfect excuse to gain time.
The Emperor would spend the next few weeks observing Cedric’s attitude before making a decision.
Although this would allow him to continue delaying his decision, he could be accused of neglecting his duties as a ruler.
On the other hand, if the demands made were not met, criticism would fall on the government.
In any case, public opinion would be directed in that direction.
This was also a good thing for Artizea and Cedric. Artizea now had a few weeks to do what she wanted.
And in the afternoon of the first day.
Three loaded carriages arrived at the manor house. Countless cloths, mannequins and boxes were being unloaded.
Butler Bill’s eyes were opened wide. This was not unusual. It always happened when Miraila bought clothes.
However, now Miraila was not here.
Emily, the owner of a renowned boutique, smiled happily at Bill as she got out of the carriage.
She was the dressmaker who made the most stylish, exclusive and expensive dresses in the capital.
And Miraila was a regular customer.
“Hello, Mr. Butler.”
“What brings you to this place? Madam went on vacation with His Majesty to the Detached Palace. I thought you knew, Emily.”
“I am not here today for madam, but for her daughter.”
“You mean Miss Artizea?”
“Yes. His Grace the Grand Duke Evron sent me. Oh, by the way, the times I’ve seen her I’ve noticed her outfit, and I’ve always regretted not being able to do anything to make her look better, only with that she would be as beautiful as her mother. However, today I am here to enhance her beauty, he told me that I could do ‘whatever I wanted’.”
Emily laughed out loud.
She knew Artizea’s situation very well.
Even if it was only a change of weather, Miraila was buying dozens of clothes.
There were some things the Emperor gave her, but there were also many things she bought herself. From silver and gold embroidery, to Eon embroidery which was the most expensive. She bought the most precious materials in the whole empire, and she had to have all the new designs to be satisfied.
Probably, not even the Empress could match her in terms of clothing.
But during her shopping, Emily never saw Miraila buying even one ribbon for Artizea.
Emily, who had a good eye, had noticed that the price of a dress from Artizea was only equal to one of Miraila’s scarves.
Her dresses probably didn’t fit her short, because at her age one didn’t grow that much anymore.
Bill’s eyes were still wide open.
Note: The next chapters will be edited by Kassy.
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