this chapter is brought to you by mio
as translator, proofreader and editor!
The slug sedan chair was just as fast as the butler, Tanma said. It could run for days at the full speed of a horse.
Perhaps because I was distracted by my worry and anxiety, we were able to dash to the capital without my motion sickness acting up.
My mood was complicated when I came back to the place I had grandly promised to flee from. However, there was no time for me to feel sentimental.
We went straight to the funeral ceremony of the Head of the Ezzarson Guild. We couldn’t take Kelber with us, so he had to stay at the accommodation with the butler.
‘It really is a funeral ceremony fit for the head of Ezzarson.’
The scale of the funeral ceremony clearly showcased the financial power of the Ezzarson Head. Both the scale of the event, as well as the procession that had gathered to say their final goodbyes to him that seemed to have no end to it.
I brushed past the grieving people and headed inside the venue.
“Isn’t that the Princess of Darchez over there?”
[t/n: the princess they’re using to refer to meliara is the one used for daughters of high ranking nobles (namely dukes and grand dukes), not the royal one.]
“I thought she was living a secluded life at home after her engagement with the crown prince was broken off, so what is she doing here?”
There were quite a lot of people who ended up recognising me.
“Don’t tell me, did she come here just to harass people?”
“She couldn’t have, no matter how crazy a woman is.”
As expected, there wasn’t a single gaze of goodwill here. Although I wasn’t too happy with them whispering about me, my concern for Linden was too great to care about their curious eyes.
However, I had no choice but to stop in my tracks when I found Linden inside.
He was smiling while making conversation with other people. He was lightly making small talk with other people, as if nothing had happened.
“He looks better than I thought he would.”
Lecht, who was standing next to me, said.
My heart sank at his words.
The fact that it looked like that to Lecht just showed how much it was choking Linden up by hiding it inside him right now.
“There’s no way he’s fine.”
Just look at what sort of existence was the head of the Ezzarson Guild to him.
<His grandfather was the only one left in this world who cared unconditionally for him. He was the only one left that would unconditionally be on his side. To Linden, losing his grandfather was as if the last candle in his life had been extinguished.>
He was the only pillar Linden could lean on after losing his mother.
I knew it. The reason why he was smiling right now.
<But he had to keep going. All alone, without any shelter or shield. No matter how dark or cold the road ahead was, he had to keep going. Because as soon as they saw a gap in his defence, the hyenas who were sweeping his surroundings with their flashing eyes would push him into the abyss.>
Because this place was swarming with people who would bring him down, the moment he showed any weakness.
Just how many of those who came to this place had really come to mourn the death of the Ezzarson Guild Head? Everyone was here to check on Linden’s condition and how that would factor into their future plans.
“Did Princess Darchez just come here to provoke His Highness the Crown Prince? Is she going to threaten to support the Second Prince from now on?”
“What a pathetic thing to do. Would that even work? Even a passing dog would know that the Duke of Darchez has no choice but to support Her Highness the Empress.”
Even the people who turned up to mourn the person who passed would slander me like that.
I turned my gaze to where they were. When my cold gaze me theirs, they shuddered and turned away. It was as if they had never been talking about me at all.
“Seriously, this is the worst.”
They didn’t even have the courage to talk bad about me to my face. Although I wanted to give them a piece of my mind, I held it in. I didn’t want to cause an unnecessary bitch fight at the place where we were sending off Linden’s most cherished person. I took a deep breath and headed back to where Linden was.
But I had to stop before I could even take more than a few steps. Since there was a voice that called out to me.
I didn’t expect the Princess to be here.”
I let out a deep sigh since the voice had a sharp edge to it. What is it this time…
I had just clicked my tongue at the fact that no one had the courage to talk shit in front of me, and it seemed that someone who would talk shit openly in front of me had now appeared. I was dumbfounded at the incredible timing.
Vowing not to cause a big scene even if it were just for the sake of Linden, I turned around and had my breath taken away.
This was truly out of my expectations. Tall with broad shoulders. Handsome facial features and neatly styled blond hair. In addition to that, his eyes, which seemed as if you were looking into the deep sea, made him an objectively ‘beautiful man’. But…
‘You look like him?!’
The man in front of me had the same face as the man who had hit-and-run me! Although my senses had been fuzzy since I had been overwhelmed by the profuse bleeding and pain, I still remembered the face of the person who killed me. How could I forget? Although the colour of his hair and eyes were different, it was definitely his face.
My heart pounded loudly with a ‘thump, thump’ sound.
Was it fear? No, it was clearly anger and injustice.
I had tried so hard to survive. In a world where there had been no one by my side, I had still endured it, regardless of my circumstances, but my life had ended in vain, all because of that bastard.
Although I had already buried it in my heart since it was my past life that I couldn’t go back to, that didn’t mean that sense of injustice had disappeared either.
“If I had known you were coming, then I wouldn’t have brought Livi.”
At the words he said with a click of his tongue, I saw a slender woman digging into his arms with her shoulders trembling. She had soft platinum hair, and a face so pretty it reminded me of a doll. With white clothes that seemed to shout, ‘I’m the saintess’ to anyone who saw her, I could tell who she was, even if it was my first time meeting her.
Crown Prince Ziken Srengito von Bakarta.
Olivia Duncan, the saintess of the sun god.
It was the appearance of the original male and female lead.
* * *
pls do not share this anywhere or the transmigration gods will transport u into boku no pico !! this translation has been stolen from mioscorner.com, pls only read there i’m begging u :kneels:
The volume of the whispers around us grew even louder. Although my heart was raging at the thought of the hit and run, I tried to soothe my anger by reminding myself that they were two completely different people.
“I greet the Crown Prince. I am Meliara.”
I had long abandoned the Darchez name, so I only announced my name.
“I hope you’ve also been healthy during this time, Saintess.”
As a bonus, I also greeted the female lead.
Although I wanted to yell, ‘Don’t date that bastard, go find another man instead!’, I still swallowed those irrelevant words in the end. Anyway, she was happy being by his side in the novel, so I reminded myself once again that the male lead and the guy who hit me were two different people. However, the following words of the Crown Prince didn’t help my resolve at all.
“Healthy? Your teasing is getting worse by the day! After what you’ve done to her…!”
He once again pinned the point of me trying to poison her on me again.
Though of course, it was a bit unfair to say that ‘I’ did it since it was something that ‘this body’ had done before I crossed over. However, now that I had taken over this body, it was something that I had to deal with. Now, it was meaningless to try and separate ‘me’ and ‘my body’.
Suddenly having inadvertently poked at the other party’s trauma in a moment of carelessness, I smiled apologetically.
“I would like to extend my sincerest apologies regarding that situation. Although you might be disgusted at my words, it’s the truth.”
Due to the nature of the situation, it was clear that making a material offering of compensation in apology would only worsen the situation anyway.
“I’m really sorry. I’m glad you’re okay.”
I bowed my head sincerely.
Even though she seemed pretty when I saw her in writing, she was even prettier when I saw her in person.
To think you dared to poison such a pretty female lead. I couldn’t believe that the previous owner of my body had done such a terrible thing that I could only imagine.
‘To be fair, no matter how pitiful Meliara’s background is, she was still probably reviled as a villainess.’
Because using your own wounds as an excuse to hurt others is still an evil thing to do.
I was worried that the female lead might have developed a trauma because of me and was thinking of how to convey my sincerity when the crown prince by her side suddenly raised his voice.
“Ha! Are you trying to make it as if such a dangerous incident had never happened? Instead of begging for forgiveness on your hands and knees, can you only use your mouth…!”
I looked at Ziken, who suddenly had a wild outburst, in bewilderment. …What’s with him?
“Do you know how vulgar your prideful appearance is right now? Apologise properly!”
Don’t tell me you’re annoyed because I’m not crying and begging on my knees right now? …What the hell?
It was correct that I was contemplating on how to convey my sincerest apology. However, it was ridiculous to hear that someone was unsatisfied at the fact that my apology wasn’t more servile and humble.
And it wasn’t the saintess, who was the one who was receiving the apology, but the irrelevant crown prince who spoke up.
“I had no intention of pretending it never happened at all.”
For a moment, I was so angry that I almost let loose my suppressed feelings and said, ‘You stay out of it’, but I spoke as calmly as I could.
“I do feel genuinely apologetic, and I will continue to say sorry until my feelings have reached your heart.”
After shifting my gaze to the saintess and saying my apologies one more time, I continued.
“If the Saintess will believe my sincerity if I beg on my hands and feet, then I am willing to do so. Even a local kid knows that pride is the most unnecessary thing in an apology.”
I added, pointing out that none of what he had said applied to me.
The truth was, I thought that I’d only be putting a burden on the shoulders of the kind-hearted saintess if I had just recklessly cried and begged on my knees in the first place.
No matter how close to death the good-natured female lead was, she would have had no choice but to forgive her upon seeing such an appearance from the villainess. I had given her the simplest of apologies since the forgiveness I would’ve received would’ve been ‘extorted’ rather than truly willing.
However, I couldn’t help but feel annoyed when I heard that it was my pride that had something to do with it.
“By the way, Your Highness.”
But there was something even more unpleasant than that.
“Why would Your Highness force such an apology? As far as I know, Your Highness doesn’t have the qualifications to say such a thing to me.”
“What did you just say? Qualifications?”
“Ha! Livi is mine. I’m well qualified enough to make sure she receives a proper apology.”
Staring at him, who was speaking proudly, I said.
“That’s exactly what I’m pointing out. Didn’t this all happen because of Your Highness’ extremely liberal view on love?”
He furrowed his eyebrows.
The Empire was a place where polygamy was permitted. However, it was only legally permissible, and ‘an affair’ was still not something that was easily accepted.
That was one of the major reasons why everyone still looked down on Linden and rejected him. Since the emperor had taken Linden’s mother as a queen even in the presence of the empress, simply because he had ‘taken a fancy’ to her.
[t/n: the raws don’t actually say queen, but it’s referring to an empress (황비), just not one with a status as official as the legal empress (황후). i’m just using different terms for differentiation purposes.]
“I’m not trying to absolve myself of all fault.”
I added an explanation, just in case the female lead had misunderstood me.
“My fault is mine alone. I admit it. I will definitely apologise and live my life with those feelings.”
Attempting to poison someone was bad. I had no intention of denying that.
“But isn’t Your Highness’ fault a fault too?”
But apart from that, this man’s fault shouldn’t be absolved either. Just like how no matter how much of a villainess Meliara was, the duke’s fault of abusing her would not disappear.
“If I can ask the other party to apologise, just like Your Highness did, then I’d like to ask Your Highness to apologise.”
I held out my palm and said expressionlessly.
“Please apologise for cheating on me, your fiancee.”
In the novel, the villainess was too busy blaming the whole situation on ‘the bitch who bewitched His Highness’.
But no matter how much I thought about it, if the man was someone who was in his right mind, then he should have ended his relationship before going to his new woman in the first place. Rather than saying it would be politically helpful and setting up a non committal bridge, then finding love somewhere else.
Love or power.
If you had chosen love, then you should have given up cleanly on a political marriage and thought of other ways to gain power. If you had chosen power, then you should have buried the love in your heart, even if it tore it in two.
Wouldn’t you have been able to properly become an emperor if you could at least clearly determine and carry that out? At least that was what I would’ve thought.
Ziken’s face turned red and blue. This very expression showed that he seemed to think I had a point. The words he finally uttered with a crimson face after repeatedly opening and closing his mouth like an idiot was…
Just look at the way he raised his voice since he had nothing to say. Wow, how ugly… The male lead who had seemed infinitely cool when I was reading the novel was actually so ugly in person.
It was when I was about to tell him to keep it to himself since I didn’t want to hear anything unless it was a sincere apology.
“I couldn’t bear to hear anymore.”
A deep voice flipped the atmosphere.
Lecht, who was watching everything from behind me, walked out to stand next to me. People’s eyes turned to him in an instant.
“I held it in since I thought I’d get scolded for intervening.”
Lecht said, wrapping his arms around my shoulders and pulling me into his arms.
“But I can’t stand seeing you being bullied anymore.”
While the words he whispered to me were sweet, the look in his eyes was full of a savage force that seemed as if he were about to tear into Ziken at any moment now.
few things this chapter:
1) idk HOW ara remembers all of these quotes word to word bc girlllll,,,i can barely remember plots of some of the webnovels i’ve read, let alone like three quotes for my english test in high school, what makes u think i could remember shit if i transmigrated ??? i’d fr be the first to die LMAOOOOO
2) clown crown prince has appeared once again ew
i think our ara did a great job going against him by herself, legit SLAYYYYY when she schooled him period girlboss u don’t need no mane <3333
3) also what ara said abt choosing love or power makes sense, like gaining the throne means making sacrifices, whether it be for love or power. that’s why i never understood half the manhwa’s plots like it made me so frustrated when the villainess was the lawful fiancee and the crown prince or whoever is just blatantly cheating on her in front of everyone like ???? (looking at u kill the villainess, don’t come to the villainess’ stationary shop and i’m sure many others smh) like how is everyone in the empire ok with that ??? (in the case that polygamy is not accepted in the empire)
LIKE BRO ???? THIS ISN’T HANNAH MONTANA YOU CAN’T HAVE THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
they fr trying to catch them all like they’re in pokemon or smth smh