Chapter 47

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The most surprised one was Cedric.

It was because he hadn’t been told at all about this.

“Tia.”

He reached out and grabbed Artizea’s hand.

Artizea gently shook his hand and looked at Cedric.

“Would you please bring me the box I left in the carriage? The one I got from Sir Freil.”

“Tia.”

Cedric made a voice that seemed to try to appease Artizea. Artizea said again.

“It’s something that can’t be left in the hands of others. Even if it’s called the Empress’s Palace, there will be the eyes and ears of His Majesty the Emperor somewhere.”

Artizea was right. Cedric stood up. Then he gave a little greeting to the empress and went out of the audience room.

Artizea stood up and knelt again before the empress.

The empress asked, languishingly leaning on her back.

“I can’t believe you’re suspicious of my palace.”

“Your Majesty is well aware that this is true.”

A suspicious person like the emperor must have planted people in close proximity like the palace. The empress did not find any fault in her.

“So, you will be my lady-in-waiting?”

“Yes.”

“It seems that there was no discussion between you two.”

The empress said so.

“It’s my decision.”

Artizea’s face had no color. So, both eyes with strong will were deeper and a new blue light was shining.

However, she couldn’t fully understand the inside of it.

“Is your mother so shameful?”

The empress asked to shake Artizea.

The more noble she is, the less likely she will be a lady-in-waiting.

It was usually an unmarried sister or cousin who became the lady-in-waiting. If not, a niece or a guardian that’s educated to be a lady-in-waiting.

Someone you can trust among the vassals. These ladies aren’t just women who take care of miscellaneous things and become companions. It is a henchman.

However, Artizea met the Empress for the first time today. It is not that the Marquisate of Rosan has had a relationship with the Riagan Duchy in the past.

As such, it is inappropriate to speak of loyalty or pledge.

Even if she is the Marchioness of Rosan, what would she benefit from being the Queen’s lady-in-waiting as the Grand Duchess Evron?

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She didn’t know again when she was fighting for power in the middle of the imperial palace, but she had no reason to be beside the empress, who had been living in seclusion like now.

“If you follow me, it doesn’t mean that you’ll be my lady-in-waiting. Did you dare compare yourself with the Peschers and use me because you want to make your mother angry?”

Artizea lowered her eyes down and said.

“The relationship with my mother is already broken. I don’t want to bring shame to the Grand Duchy of Evron. It’s better to be the Lady-in-waiting as Grand Duchess of Evron rather than Milaira’s daughter.”

“Do you think I’ll listen to that? Even when in public in an official position with Gregor?”

The empress said, with a quiver.

If it’s her husband’s nephew’s wedding, she doesn’t have to go out, but if it’s her lady-in-waiting’s wedding, she’s compelled to attend.

That means she has to be in the same position as the emperor. And she couldn’t pretend to not know each other while being in the same place as the emperor.

“Your Majesty will accept my will, because she wants revenge.”

“How would it be revenge for me to harass your mother?”

The empress said coldly.

“Yes, I hate Miraila. No one likes the mistress with or without love for her husband.”

“….”

“When my child died, Gregor hugged that bitch and her son and said that it was all for her. He gave what my child should have inherited to her son, killed my own family, tore up the family fortune and distributed it to those who flattered her.”

The empress sharply gnashed her teeth.

“Nevertheless…, how could Miraila be the object of my revenge? For Gregor, to love his mistress is nothing but entertainment. Isn’t it really something he does for that bitch to beat someone who doesn’t kneel in front of her as an excuse?”

The Empress’s anger echoed in her reception room.

“It is to split the power of the nobles in half by separating the flatterers and those who don’t, and to overthrow the servants by purging those who speak offensive things in advance!”

“Then, you are going to let His Majesty Emperor have his will for the descendants?”

Despite being the daughter of that Mililla, Artizea was not at all withdrawn or afraid.

“The Emperor is a greedy person. Power is not shared with his children. The Emperor will hold that power until the moment he stops breathing, and then he will pass it on to a child he loves enough to be considered his alter ego. Lawrence is most likely right now.”

“….”

“But everything that he will inherit should have been brought to life by the Empress. Do you want His Majesty to do all of it at will? He was not alone in his own power to ascend the Emperor. How much stake does Her Majesty have on the throne?”

The empress was silent for a while. Then in a split voice she said.

“You’re excellent at stabbing people and encouraging anger.”

“I’m overwhelmed with awe.”

Artizea bowed her head deeply.

Anger and desire move people easily. Fear and restraint are far more useful means of manipulating a person.

Even though the Empress noticed it, she said again.

“Gregor’s throne clearly contains my share. Do you want that? Is it the empress’s seat that you want?”

“What I want is to have the power to regain my rights and to have the power to not be so obsequious with others again.”

The Empress would not believe that justice or the right path, or that she decided to follow it. It would be easier to understand if she says it was for ambition or vengeance.

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If she didn’t know Cedric and Licia, Artizea would have done it herself. So Artizea replied that way.

“Because it will be the greatest revenge for those who despise me.”

The empress shed a laugh afterwards.

“It’s of no use to me. If I follow your will, what will you pay me back?”

“I will make His Majesty the most lonely and miserable person in the world.”

Artizea answered so without hesitation. The empress lost her words.

Even the empress’s maids did not dare to open their mouths.

The sharp air filled the audience room.

Artizea was neither anxious nor worried. She would not know if it was to make someone happy, but she was confident if it was to make someone miserable.

Even if he dies lying on a bed decorated with gold, nothing will remain in the hands of the emperor.

“Do you know that your words can sound like treason?”

“I can turn it around, but I know that’s not what your Majesty wants to hear. I told you that I can do exactly what you want.”

The empress changed her complexion.

It was then.

The door opened carefully and the attendant said politely.

“The Grand Duke Evron is back.”

Cedric returned with a box.

He noticed the tension in the audience room, but instead of letting go of the embarrassment, he came inside, pushing the air out in a calm and stable manner.

Cedric’s presence softened the atmosphere of the audience room with heavy pressure.

He put the box down on the table.

Cedric knew that while he had been away there was a serious and heavy conversation.

But he didn’t dare to ask on the spot or act without notice.

Instead, he raised Artizea to support her and asked in a gentle voice.

“Why are you on your knees?”

That alone loosened the tension.

The empress looked at the box and asked.

“What is it?”

“This is a gift that Tia has been preparing to give Her Majesty. Saintess Olga’s heart cannot be a gift because it was what Her Majesty deserves.”

Countess Martha approached.

Cedric reached out and stopped the Countess from opening the box.

“I don’t think you should open it now.”

Artizea smiled as it seemed that Cedric looked through her and said it.

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She said, as the empress sighs at Cedric.

“How did you find a wife like this?”

Cedric had an embarrassed face. He didn’t know what kind of conversation went, but he had guessed what the empress wanted to say.

“I think she’s great.”

“I heard rumors say you were in love.”

“That’s right.”

As the empress sighed, she exhaled a long sigh.

“It doesn’t mean that she thinks immaturely because she’s young, but….”

Nevertheless, there was a stir in his chest.

There was no reason to trust. The only thing Artizea now has is the Marquisate of Rosan’s wealth and Cedric.

However, despite the fact that Artizea knew nothing, she succeeded in regaining the Marquisate of Rosan back.

Her ability to deal with people was excellent and her goals were clear.

There are rumors that she fell in love with Cedric, but the empress thought it would be a lie.

The size of her ambition and the confident young attitude that Artizea revealed reminded the empress of her own youth.

However, she contained in it her coldness and objectivity that the empress of her girlhood did not have.

She doesn’t believe that Artizea can persuade others with the greatness of her own ambitions and purposes; it’s rare for people her age to do so.

It wasn’t something that she came up with like saying that she would pay in return. She is precisely aiming at the empress.

Such a woman is not caught up in emotions and she does not go wrong.

The Empress spoke to Artizea in a relaxed voice.

“Most people are committed to blood ties and families, but some people choose their own partner to be loyal to.”

“I’m overwhelmed with awe.”

Artizea bowed her head. The empress seemed to have seen through her and who she was willing to work for, beyond her ambitions and hatred.

The empress said slowly.

“I know such a person, so I’m not going to deny the Lady Heiress’ desire.”

And the empress beckoned.

“Martha, I want you to bring it from my bedroom.”

“Your Majesty….”

She knew what the empress was saying, and Countess Martha asked back in surprised.

“If I received a gift from the Lady Heiress, wouldn’t it be customary for me to give a bigger gift than that. She’s getting married, so I can’t be neglectful anymore.”

“Yes. “

Countess Martha politely replied, and she withdrew.

The Empress looked at Artizea with her tired face.

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All of her dignity that she had worn so far seemed to be worn out, exposing her original face.

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