He had two children with Empress Sione whom I had already seen.
On the surface, it was right that he appeared in front of his third child who had just entered, leading the boat.
So I was even more scared that the rumors were true.
‘He went out hunting in the woods where your mother lives, and he was injured, so mother cured him.’
‘I think everyone in the world is swearing mother.’
‘I was wondering why my baby had a shadow on his face, and that’s why….’
‘The third children should have been Ioella, but they said I was born and she is being pushed back…..’
‘Baby, if I had known in advance that he had a family, I would never have kept seeing him. Back then, I was so foolish that I didn’t even know he is the Emperor and believed his words that he is the illegitimate son of a nobleman.’
‘…Does mother love His Majesty the Emperor who deceived you?’
‘I used to be.’
‘You’re not now?’
‘Zero’s eye color is returned to its original color.’
When asked if she loved father, his mother said that Zero’s eyes had changed color.
‘It’s a cat I’ve had since I was young. Its name is Zero.’
‘Where is it now?’
‘Well, it disappeared before you were born.’
‘So does Zero. Maybe it’s better not to love him.’
If you don’t love, you don’t expect anything. There will be no pain waiting for someone who will not come.
‘Because my mother didn’t love His Majesty….. I’m glad.’
‘Why….. did you think that?’
‘I don’t want my mother to cry.’
‘Just like this…. mother and me…. with the maid…. the three of us live.’
‘Yes, the three of us. Let’s live happily ever after, without crying, and always laughing.’
I thought I’d rather be glad.
‘You are my world, my everything. The existence that made this mother, who was abandoned by her family, still alive.’
‘Happy birthday in advance, dear.’
But, maybe even that was too much when we only want to live with the three of us.
‘Leaving His Highness the Prince…. she left a message of apology for going first.’
‘…maid of honor.’
Crying and laughing. I couldn’t do anything.
One day when I felt cold to get used to the morning when I had to open my eyes by myself.
I was spending time in the flower garden without thinking, and I heard a crying sound, so I turned my head.
A cat with both mother and father’s eyes color was staring at me.
When I stepped away to approach, the cat laid down a brooch in its mouth and slowly disappeared.
That was the first and last strange encounter with Zero, my mother’s cat.
‘Do….. you happen to know who Zero is?’
‘…Zero? Did your mother tell you?’
‘A few days ago… We bumped into each other here. The eyes color were different…. pink and…. gold?’
‘Foolish thing. I always told it not to be so close to humans.’
‘I knew she was affectionate, but… she didn’t erase her love until the end. I can’t believe it. What a fool… ‘
It was a pure lie to say I didn’t expect it.
Even until the moment she was burned to ashes, my mother still loved my father.
* * *
“Never….I was never going to make a precious person again.”
“Even if I put it in my heart, one day I will be alone…. living my whole life without cutting it out, I didn’t want to do it again.”
Before Charelize lost her memory, she knew all about it, but she had never told her deepest feelings.
“Until I hold that little hand that gave me a chance to live… That’s how I lived.”
“What you can’t remember… it’s not your fault.”
“It’s not that….”
“She died first, leaving His Highness the Prince alone.”
More than not knowing because Charelize wasn’t there from the beginning.
She thought it was harder for him to be alone because he had no one he had been with.
I couldn’t get used to recalling the memories we had together by myself and realizing that it was a time that I would never come back.
Rona, Delphir, my baby, my mother. Because the were the people I wanted to be with for the rest of my life.
Charelize could understand Arensis’ mind.
That’s why she apologized even though she couldn’t remember.
“My mother and the maid of honor are both dead, and a few new servants have arrived. I told them not to go into my mother’s room, but they couldn’t resist their curiosity.”
“I’m not the one who cut off their tongues. At the same time, His Majesty the Emperor was inside.”
Charelize narrowed his brow as soon as she heard that the person who responsible for ordering her to be burned at the stake had come late.
It was like seeing the Duke of Marsetta. Although I can’t find the trace of his guilt towards my mother.
At least I could see that he wanted to ask for forgiveness from myself and get back to normal father and daughter relationship.
“If I had done it in the first place, they wouldn’t have been here the whole time.”
The cut off their tongue is also rumored happened because he did it.
He replied if he really did, they wouldn’t be able to work here now.
“For the first time that day… I was angry with His Majesty the Emperor. I don’t know what the people who came into my mother’s room said, but at least it would have been better than he who ordered the burn.”
“For My mother… I’m not cruel enough to kill servants who I have never seen their faces, just because they came into mother’s room.”
“Just like he did to my mother… If he had put a knife in my throat for being arrogant, I’d feel better inside…it’s too much for him to just say he’s sorry….. I was so angry.”
Arensis removed the black cloth that covered the picture frame hanging at the wall.
A portrait of a woman with light blue hair and pink eyes smiling warmly was seen.
“All of a sudden… I drew her because I thought I might forget my mother’s face.”
“… she is the mother of His Highness the Prince.”
Charelize opened her eyes wide when she noticed that the person in the portrait was the same woman in her dream.
“There are three people who could enter this place, except me.”
“Now… there’s only one left.”
Arensis looked at Charelize and said.
“With your Highness permission, I will bring Baroness Azwell… May I ask why you’re sitting still when you don’t get along so badly?”
“Even if you smile ten times, you’ll be a bad person if you frown once. I knew no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t be a good person forever.”
“So, I just chose not to laugh. Especially for people who hate me.”
No matter how hard I try to say it, I can’t believe it.
Or even if I explain to someone who already hates me that I didn’t do it.
“What’s the point?” Arensis seemed to have learned how to give up first.
“When I think about the time not too long ago when it wasn’t there at all… I don’t regret it, your Highness.”
“Well, that’s weird. I don’t know if it’s a waste of my life and I don’t regret it, but when I see you, I unconsciously react to my heart first even without any memories.”
“I don’t know anything else, but that day… at the tree, I want you to remember what you said to me.”
“…at the tree?”
Not knowing what Arensis was talking about, Charelize tilted her head.
Seeing that, Arensis smiled lovingly, raising one corner of his mouth.
“I will never forget the day when you reached out to the child that everyone had give up.”
He carefully extended his hand to her.
I can’t see the various scars on his palm.
For those who saw only white and long fingers, it would have seemed to have grown up beautifully.
Arensis didn’t hide his palm from Charelize.
Again, he took everything out of control to Charelize.
When it came to Lillian, I remembered the Duke Marsetta, who always didn’t listen to me and scolded me.
How frustrating it is. I knew how insipid it must be.
That I wasn’t loved by my father. That I lost my mother.
I learned that I shouldn’t reveal my feelings recklessly. That’s why I don’t know how to give my side.
I and Arensis had many similarities. That was soon enough to be a connection.
Charelize took Arensis hand.
I didn’t want to worry too long. I didn’t even want to give a reason why I did it.
Even if I can’t find my memory, it’s not as hot as the days when I have lost memories.
I thought it would be enough if we could keep each other’s hearts connected and warm.
Although I may not be able to overcome it right now because I was betrayed by Delphir, who I loved enough to give my life.
I didn’t think I’d throw away the hand I’m holding now.
“There are a lot of similarities. We have.”
“That’s what brought us closer. But… I love you… It’s not just because it’s similar.”
The same goes for Lili, who has both light purple and blue eyes.
I already knew. However, it was the first time I heard that he love me directly.
“It’s okay to live. You don’t have to laugh, when you cry you also pretty….. because you’re the one who told me everything. I love you so much, so I said I didn’t regret it. That day, I held your hand.”
Looking at Charelize, embarrassed and at a loss for control, Arensis continued his words.
The sunlight that came late to the place where he was always alone is very warm.
In a place where he always cried with bated breath, Arensis laughed for the first time in a long time.
Only thanks to one person, Charelize.