Forget Vivian Chapter 12

Author: Byuon Editor: Nine Knight

“Then, of course we will.”

“Estella is very sociable, so she’ll get along well with the kids. Arianne is… well, it would help if you would laugh a little. That way, people will be comfortable around you.”

“That’s right. I laugh a lot.”

“… When I’m gone…” It was a very subtle whisper.

A hatch was drawn over Arianne’s blunt face, “Don’t say such things! Why did you come all the way here?!”

Arianne was gasping for breath, but when she noticed Estella running around the restaurant, she kept her voice down and calmed her breath.

Seeing that, Eve thought, ‘I can’t do this today.’

It seemed too early to bring up the story of the child’s father with Arianne.

Instead, Eve smiled prettily and spoke once more, “Do you want to have a dog?”

“… Suddenly?”  

“I think Estella will like it. I want to give her a white little puppy. What do you think?”

Arianne nodded silently. It seemed like a good idea. Truthfully, she was in favor of doing anything if it’s something Eve is determined to do.

“Let’s just turn in for the night. It’s too cold to do anything.”

“Let’s go see the puppies tomorrow morning. Juliet’s house has a puppy.”

“Great.”

“Then I’ll bring you one. Or shall I bring two?”

“Bring just one, Eve. I’m afraid to run after so many dogs.”

Arianne spoke softly and patted Eve’s dry back.

Eve was prodded by Arianne’s hand and she went up the stairs, while calling for Estella.

Arianne sighed and checked the restaurant one last time.

“What is that?” Arianne narrowed her eyes and stared at the large figure shimmering in the alley.

‘Did I see it wrong?’

Arianne tilted her head and followed Eve and Estella.

“Arianne! We will have a dog!”

Estella, who was very excited, made a lot of noise as she ran around.

‘Oh my. I think that’s enough excitement for her.’

 

  ***

 

Samuel’s finger tapped the desk impatiently.

He felt himself getting more and more sensitive as the days progressed.

While he was up all night looking at the documents and working, the anxiety and fear inside him were building up one after another. He felt like a simmering pot of boiling water that was about to spill.

Before his incessant tapping, Samuel had been looking at the dark purple button on the end of his sleeve.

‘This is pretty, Samuel.’ All of his thoughts are of Vivian again.

It was the cufflinks that she put on Samuel’s sleeve, while telling him that she had chosen it herself.

Was it the first day, the second day, or the third day after they got married?

He can’t remember exactly when he had received it.

He was nervous because it was the day that he was just putting the prestige of the duke on his back and entered the palace for the first time in years.

He wondered what he had told her back then when he received it.

“Hah…”

The nobles, who had been arguing for some time now unexpectedly flinched when Samuel let out a dissatisfied sigh.

Furthermore, next to him sat the Duke of Endless with his eyes closed and his arms crossed.

But even as the people looked at Samuel, he was still thinking of Vivian.

He was reminiscing about her.

What did Samuel reply to her when she asked him if she was pretty with a blushing face? 

‘I’m busy. You have to leave now.’ Samuel put his finger on his forehead.

Why are these memories only showing up now?

Poor Samuel Rubentas. Did you even deserve to be with Vivian?

When no more noise escaped his lips, the voices of the nobles began to rise again.

“Your Majesty, we have to put an end to this. The arrogance of the kingdom of Anatole knows no bounds. They must have forgotten who we are!”

The situation of the authorities can be said to be divided into the Southern faction and the Moderate faction.

Even today, the hard-line Southern faction, who are wary of Anatole, a small country facing the south, kept on insisting the necessity of war.

“No, no, Your majesty. We cannot allow the people of the Empire who are still suffering the scars of the war one hundred years ago to suffer any more wars. It’s only been a century, my Lord. Consider the people of the Empire who are just now forgetting the fear of war.” Count Sylvester said.

Count Sylvester, who was the Head of the Law Department and Count Brooke, who oversaw the administration of the Kingdom, were part of the moderate faction.

They are the ones proposing to keep Anatole in check through diplomatic means.

On the other hand, Earl Terra, who manages the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Earl Robert, who leads the Ministry of Finance, belonged to the Southern faction.

Samuel raised his head crookedly and thought, ‘These people are getting too worked up on this issue.’

As Samuel’s cold face turned toward the floor that was filled with the nobles, the people who were fighting like dogs quickly shut their mouths and looked at him with expectant eyes.

Among those who remained silent from the beginning was Paul Theodore.

He went straight to the palace after three weeks. He had recently returned from the mission of bringing Lily Rubentas, the last descendant of the imperial family, to her mother’s house.

He briefly told Noah what had happened in the meantime.

After hearing Noah talk with tears in his eyes, Paul concluded, ‘Let’s not broach the subject.’

There’s no way that the idea of provoking the Emperor was a good one.

Of course, in the past seven years, Samuel had never been in a good mood, but he observed that his condition seemed to have worsened these days.

He couldn’t even help but notice the bottles that were piled up like a mountain everywhere he went. Did the Emperor drink like an alcoholic now?

‘Crazy, crazy.’

It was obvious to him that Samuel was not completely sober as he had a rough face and seemed like he was not sleeping well.

He did not look good at all, but it seemed his body was used to it.

Nevertheless, he attends the meeting with a somewhat decent facade.

‘It would be foolish to attend the meetings in such a state.’

When Samuel became the Crown Prince, Vivian was the happiest.

Vivian won’t like it if she finds out that Samuel was neglecting his duties.

‘If you’re going to regret it like that, why the hell would you do that to her?’ Even as his friend, he could not understand him.

Paul turned his head and looked at his father.

Count Theodore, who is the Head of the Knights Templar, remained passive.

Paul hated seeing his father throw himself into the mud and get involved in factional fights.

If that happens, the cool and upright Emperor, Samuel, will also put Paul on the same line as the hostages.

“Can I say a word?”

A heavy bass sound cut through the air.

The nobles, who looked into each other’s eyes, kept their mouths shut.

“The reason why the story of the Anatole Kingdom has come out like this is because of the princess who decided to return to her home country at will.”

“That’s right.”

“But didn’t diplomatic ambassador Anatole promise?”

“Yes?”

Samuel removed his face from his fingers and stood up. His aqua hair naturally swayed to the side and followed his slow movements.

His strands flowed as natural as ice melting in spring, but there was a sense of alienation which was due to his sharp purple eyes that peeked through the length of his hair and slightly obscured his vision.

“The diplomatic ambassador of Anatole made a promise to the imperial family. A new ‘hostage’ will arrive soon.”

Samuel’s right hand touched the cufflinks.

The meaningless hand gestures were somehow cool.

It was given to him by Vivian and over time became worn out because he wore it every day.

Paul’s eyes turned to it, ‘Ugh.’

There was still no news from those who were dispatched as the search team for that day.

‘Give me something, or that child will wither to death while still alive.’

“Ambassador Anatole promised us two months. If the hostage doesn’t come….”

Samuel’s ferocious gaze swept across the occupants of the room until it landed on the person he was searching for, “Someone has to take responsibility. Sir Paul.”

“Yes, my lord. As ordered, I sent a couple of imperial knights to tail the princess who was leaving.”

Samuel nodded his head, “That’s right.”

“… I didn’t know that His Majesty had already made his move. If the promise is not fulfilled after two months….”

“Sir Terra. The Empire has already made a lot of examples for Anatole. A minister of diplomacy who broke the example of a subordinate country and behaved arrogantly, a princess who behaved arbitrarily, and finally, a tribute that has not been given for a year. Because of these, the neighboring countries have not started to look down on the Empire.” Samuel’s voice was crisp and sharp.

It had been a long time since the tribute was delayed on the pretext of drought and flood.

But Anatole’s royal family was always wealthy.

Enough to buy new sailing ships from other countries.

Samuel was a planner who guessed everything and prepared in advance.

So there’s always plenty of room for their empire to move around the playing field.

Indeed Samuel remained a formidable monarch.

But there was only one person who made him tremble, Vivian, the princess who had left him.

Samuel frowned at the growing pain in his chest.

“… I will follow their will.”

“What’s next on the agenda?”

As the meeting continued, Samuel’s fingers remained on the cufflinks during the whole ordeal.

Every little thing he recalled seemed to be the reason for Vivian’s departure and fueled Samuel’s fears.

He pricked his ears and waited for Noah to come with the news of her, but it has been quiet for seven years.

He couldn’t decide if this lack of information was fortunate or unfortunate.

Regardless he could not stop the thoughts that nagged at him, ‘You’re alive, Vivian…I know you are.’

Maybe it’s a good thing they don’t have any contact.

Thanks to the news that Vivian did not die, Samuel could cling to the hope that she was alive.

 

  ***

 

Chirp—

The little white bird, who sat on the window sill of Samuel’s closed room tilted its head, whined and tugged at the window.

The window swung open as the white bird let out a sigh and stumbled in for a few times.

It then flew over Samuel’s head, who was still asleep for the day and surrounded by bottles of empty wine.

The bird landed on his chest and flew up again, but even this did not wake Samuel.

The white bird flapped its beak as if pitying the lone figure and left the room.

Still, a white feather remained where the bird had sat.

The feather soon permeated into Samuel.

 

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Comments (1)

  1. Thank you for the update TL-nim! This story has so much pain it drenches my heart.. lets hope the ending is happy and cheerful :’)