‘The Crown Prince will forget about Ancia and only look at me. All the people of the continent will praise me for being the most beautiful Crown Princess in the history of the Empire. I’ll be so famous that every man would want to catch a glimpse of my face at least once.’
But imagination and reality were really so different. Far from admiring Joanna’s beauty, Blake didn’t even spare her a glance.
The future she had dreamed of since childhood was slowly fading away.
“If I lived in the capital, I would’ve married you!”
Joanna shouted desperately, but Blake replied coldly.
“You’re testing my patience.”
“You’re going to marry me? How dare you think of taking over Ancia’s place?”
He had been angered.
She thought he would compliment her saying she was 100 times more beautiful than Ancia, so why did it turn out this way?
“Y-your Highness…I mean…”
She stammered, thinking of an excuse, when suddenly Blake asked her.
The moment Blake heard her answer, his expression changed.
“The annex? I said Rose is an important guest of mine. Are you looking down at me?”
“I-it’s for your sake! She could infect you with her disease!”
Blake slowly became more and more annoyed at Joanna, but Joanna didn’t notice it.
“I heard you picked the girl up from the valley of chaos. She must’ve been carrying some kind of disease! You shouldn’t be deceived by her!”
“My curse looked much more hideous than her.”
“Th-that’s not it…I’m just worried about you.”
“Get lost. Never appear in front of me again.”
“Your Highness, I…!”
Joanna tried to think of another excuse. However, the moment their eyes met, she had no choice but to shut her mouth.
The servants came in and put a large full-length mirror in the middle of the room. Then, they quickly left once they were done. I didn’t get the mop I asked for after all.
The dust covering the room kept sending me into fits of coughing. I wanted to go outside, but when I remembered the people were whispering about me, I hesitated.
I didn’t want to make a fuss, so I put up with it and opened the window quietly. After searching every corner of the room, I found a mop under the bed.
Fortunately, the bathroom was functioning well. Of course, the water was as cold as ice, but that was manageable.
I diligently cleaned every nook and corner one by one. It was really dusty and reminded me the first time I moved into my own house.
As I was cleaning the table diligently, the door suddenly opened.
When I turned around, I saw Blake standing there. He looked angry.
He approached me and grabbed my hand.
“Why are you doing this?”
“Your hands are cold.”
‘I’m really alright.’
“You should’ve come to me! You should’ve told me! Why have you been putting up with it?”
“No, I’m sorry. I should’ve stayed with you…”
I wrapped Blake up in a big hug, wanting to comfort him and tell him to not blame himself.
I shook my head at this apology. At the same time, a question rose in my mind.
Why is he so kind to me?
Joanna was really as beautiful as described in the original story, but Blake didn’t spare her even a single glance.
“Let’s get out of this room right now.”
Blake left the room, holding onto my hand tightly.
When we passed by the servants in the hall, their eyes widened in surprise.
As soon as we entered Blake’s bedroom in the main building, he held my hand tightly and checked my condition.
“Are you hurt anywhere?”
‘It’s alright. Nothing happened.’
I had only cleaned up a little. In fact, I was more concerned about his arms.
“My arm? It’s perfectly fine now.”
He smiled lightly, but I was still worried.
Why did Ser leave Blake’s power intact? I felt uneasy when I remembered Rakshul suffering from Tancinol. Ser had the ability to make it happen again.
“Do you want to see?”
“So you’re trying to get me to strip for you.”
He’s going to drive me crazy! His way of speaking is the same as before!
‘I’m just checking for injuries!’
He pulled his sleeve up to reveal the wound. His arms had healed and looked as if he had never been injured in the first place.
“Don’t stare at it too much. It’s embarrassing.”
I was startled and pulled my hand back.
But Blake smiled and took my hand. His hands used to be very soft, but it had roughened up and become sturdier over the years.
“Is there anywhere else you want to check?”
I hurriedly shook my head. I was curious about his wounds on the other arm, but since the wound on this arm had healed, the other one was also probably okay.
I pointed at the bathroom door.
I wanted to wash my hands.
“Do you want to take a bath?”
I shook my head.
I wanted to soak myself in warm water, but I couldn’t take a bath just yet since Blake was still in the room.
“Do you want me to call the maids?”
I shook my head. The maids’ revulsion when they looked at me was still fresh in my memory. I didn’t want to show them my body.
“Okay. Then I’ll prepare it for you.”
I shook my head again.
Blake was still as nice as when we were younger. It was the first thing I noticed about him back then. This aspect of him hadn’t changed one bit despite the years.
The maids came in and prepared my bath.
After taking off my clothes, I saw my thin body that was covered in scars.
Ser had suffered severe burns from the Tenlarn Palace’s fire, and then she spent a thousand year in that hellish place.
There was no way she could stay sane.
And without the goddess’ soul, this body wouldn’t last long either. I didn’t blame Ser.
I just wanted her to keep her promise after I died.
As I soaked myself in the warm bath, the fatigue that had accumulated in my body seemed to have slowly dissipated.
Why is Blake so nice to me?
He didn’t notice that I’m Ancia, did he?
I doubt that…
I couldn’t speak or write and my appearance was also different. There was no way he could recognize me.
After taking a bath, I changed into a new dress that the maids had left behind.
The quality of the dress was very high, perhaps because Blake had ordered them.
When I left the bathroom, a delicious smell entered my nose.
The table in my room was filled with delicious foods.
“Aren’t you hungry? Come here and eat.”
“It hasn’t been long since you recovered, so I told them to make a light meal.”
Taking care of Blake’s meal used to be my job, but now our positions had been switched.
I realized once again that a lot of time had passed, and felt a little wistful.
“Is it delicious?”
Blake grinned as he beckoned me to keep eating.
Weirdly enough, he seemed to be getting happier by the day. His smile was the same as when we were younger. While I was busy eating the salad, Blake suddenly said, “You must’ve liked the perilla leaves.”
Perilla leaves? Turns out it was one of the salad’s ingredients.
In the midst of the fresh vegetables, perilla leaves were also mixed in. Before, I used to eat it often, even though I couldn’t finish it.
“That’s unusual. People usually avoid it because of its unique scent and taste.”
I used to grow perilla leaves in the greenhouse of the Amoria Palace.
Blake had always admired me for eating the perilla leaves. Not only in Asteric Empire, no one on the entire continent ate it.
Even back then, people who enjoyed eating perilla leaves were quite rare.
‘I didn’t know these were perilla leaves.’
“You didn’t know?”
‘It doesn’t taste good.’
I pushed the salad bowl aside.
Did he test me by bringing salad with perilla leaves on purpose?
Did he notice that I’m Ancia?
No, that couldn’t be true.
I finished my meal quickly and downed the tea in one gulp.
Blake smiled and said, “Your actions are the same as my wife’s.”
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