As Lilyca had expected, her mother was very upset, but she calmed down when Lilyca assured her several times that she was okay.
Then, Lydia whispered.
“Don’t worry, Lily.
I’m sure Atil will regret what he has done today.”
Surprised, Lilyca looked at her mother.
What did she mean by regret
Lilyca didn’t want that at all, but talking like this should be fine if it made her feel better.
She never thought that her mother had the power to make a prince regret anything.
Lilyca nodded her head to cheer up her mother.
Lydia smiled and hugged her daughter tightly at her words, then let her go.
“Lily, I ordered a new present to make you feel better.”
Seeing the long gift box, Lilyca widened her eyes.
She had no idea what was inside.
When she opened the gift box, there was a parasol inside.
It was a small parasol made of lace and jewels.
“It’s so pretty.”
Lilyca was amazed.
Bryn, next to the little girl, exclaimed.
“Is this the Elzerk Lace”
A real Elzerk Lace.”
[Cristal’s NB: Lace Making is the looping and braiding of thread such as cotton, linen, or silk to create fabrics with patterns of holes.
The development of lace making is based on the mastery of other textile handicrafts, primarily weaving and embroidery.]
Lilyca tilted her head at Lydia’s words with a smile.
Bryn quickly explained.
“It’s lace from the Elzerk region.
It is very delicate, so it takes a long time to weave, and the price is very high, but it is famous for its beauty.”
The handle was in gold and the parasol in ivory.
It was almost as if a fortress could be bought with just this parasol.
Although most of the parasols were large and thus, carried by an attendant, Lydia coupled the bustle dress with a parasol, making the ensemble more attractive and fashionable than the crinoline.
She also ordered a small children’s parasol for Lilyca.
People may say it’s too extravagant for children to use, but Lydia didn’t even listen.
It was most important for her to do something for her daughter.
Lilyca asked, her eyes shining.
“Can I go for a walk now”
Lilyca picked up the parasol with a broad smile.
The parasol was much heavier than expected.
It was all the more so because she was thinner than her peers.
But she didn’t want to disappoint her mother, so Lilyca pretended to be fine.
“I’ll hurry up and go right away.”
Lydia nodded with a satisfied smile.
Lilyca grabbed the parasol with both hands and went outside.
When she unfolded the parasol, the hanging crystal decorations bounced the sunlight into iridescent shards.
“Oh my gosh.”
Taking a deep breath, Lilyca put the parasol on her shoulder.
It was a little lighter that way.
As she leisurely strolled through the sunny garden, Lilyca turned her parasol in a circle.
Pieces of light were scattered all over the place.
The new pair of young goatskin shoes made a light hoof sound, and Lilyca’s heart became lighter with each step.
If only the spring wind hadn’t blown.
As the parasol was swept away by the wind, Lilyca felt her body jerked away.
Shouted Bryn, surprised.
Lilyca shouted, but the strong spring wind blew her parasol away in an instant.
Thinking that the parasol would fly away, Lilyca couldn’t think things through and she started running after the parasol.
She gave up the idea of running along the garden’s path.
Skipping through the grass and small streams, Lilyca ran.
“Princess! Do not run!”
Bryn shouted from behind, but Lilyca’s eyes were fixed on the parasol.
Fortunately, the wind stopped and the parasol seemed to fall to the ground, so Lilyca speeded up one last time.
Right in front of the parasol, she tumbled over.
“Haha, did you run after the parasol and fall”
At the sound of laughter, she finally realised that she had stumbled upon someone.
She scrambled to her feet, pressing the hem of her skirt.
“I’m really so…rry.”
The reason her words slowed down by one beat was that the person in front of her looked too fancy.
In Lilyca’s heart, the most beautiful person was always her mother, and this person quickly became second.
She had never seen anyone like this other than her mother.
His silver hair shone as if it had been wrought by the moonlight, and his features were coolly glamorous.
It was a beauty like a silver blade refined to the extreme.
Now, was he twelve Thirteen
The boy grinned.
“Are you okay”
Only then did Lilyca come to her senses and quickly apologised.
The boy laughed again.
He picked up the parasol that had fallen and spun it around.
Sunlight shone on his silver hair, colouring it with the crystals’ sparkle, and Lilyca stared blankly.
“Isn’t it too heavy for her to lift A lighter one would be better.”
His gaze was on the parasol, and then back on Lilyca.
She is a really popular princess these days.
I’m sure she must be the only one carrying a parasol like this.”
He talked strangely as if he were saying things about someone else, whereas she was just in front of him.
“I thought she was an extravagant villain.
I didn’t expect that.”
Lilyca frowned at the remark.
If he was talking about her mother, she would have been angry, but he was just talking to himself about her.
However, to preserve the dignity of a princess, she puffed her chest and admonished him sternly.
“You shouldn’t judge people based on rumours without seeing them in person.”
“Yeah, but gossips are really fun.”
With a smile, the boy got up from the ground.
He reached out his hand and Lilyca took it before standing up.
It was then that the boy’s attire caught her eye.
He was dressed as gorgeously as he looked.
He wore a vest and a blouse with richly embellished sleeves.
Lilyca was impressed by the fact that he was dressed in an informal attire inside the Imperial Palace, and despite that, his appearance wasn’t diminished in the slightest.
“Lord Bharat, be polite.”
Bryn’s voice came from behind.
The boy grinned and gracefully put the parasol on his shoulder, making a curtsy.
Lilyca opened her mouth involuntarily.
It was the most elegant and stylish curtsy she had ever seen.
Even Mrs Glenderin couldn’t curtsy like this.
He curtsied while wearing pants, which was rather unique, and it immediately caught her attention.
“Can I also do it this way”
Lilyca said with sheer admiration.
Bryn frowned at his smirk.
“It’s really nice… No, it’s really elegant.”
At Lilyca’s words, the boy tilted his head and burst into laughter.
He stopped laughing and spoke softly.
“Are you serious”
What he did was enough to be seen as a mockery, but she was admiring what he did anyway.
“But I am serious”
At Lilyca’s words, the boy giggled again.
“The child is called Fjord Bharat.
It is Bharat’s finest masterpiece.”
The last words were full of sarcasm, and Lilyca didn’t know if Bryn was talking to herself or not.
“Nice to meet you, Lord Bharat.”
“Just call me Fjord.”
Lilyca muttered his name before asking abruptly.
“Would you mind teaching me your curtsy”
“Teaching a princess how to curtsy”
“Yes, I’ve never seen anyone do a curtsy like that.
I really want to learn.”
He scratched his cheek.
“I need the permission of the imperial family to teach the princess.
Why don’t you get it first”
“Oh, that’s right.
I had no idea.
I’m sorry for asking so suddenly.”
Seeing the young princess apologising seriously, Fjord made a strange expression.
He smiled bitterly and folded the parasol before giving it back to her.
“I don’t think the tactic to make fun of you is going to work.
Let’s just go back home.
You won’t hear good things if you say you met me here.”
“I’d like that as well, Princess.”
Bryn chimed in.
Lilyca nodded in response.
Bryn seemed to want to leave this place as soon as possible.
Lilyca followed her through the woods and looked back.
Fjord, who was standing there, curtsied again, and Lilyca waved her hand without realising it.
As they left the forest, Bryn let out a sigh.
“I didn’t expect to meet Bharat here.”
“What about Bharat”
Bryn said a thoughtful, “Ummm,” while raising her eyebrows.
“I think it’s something I can’t talk about.
The same goes for Mrs Glenderin.
How about asking the empress”
The composition of political dynamics between families was not something a maid could explain, nor was it a story for an etiquette teacher, who was not powerful in the least, to tell.
“Yes, but he was a very beautiful person.”
Lilyca said with a sigh.
Bryn asked with a smile.
“More than the Empress”
“No, Mother is always the best! There is no one in this world more beautiful than my mother.”
But he was the second most beautiful person.
And yet, the iridescent reflections on his silver hair lingered in her mind.
Curious, Lilyca quickly headed back to her mother.
As the audience had just finished, Lydia welcomed her daughter comfortably.
“Mother, do you know a Fjord Bharat”
“Of course, I know.”
Lydia knew the name well.
Wasn’t he Duke Bharat’s masterpiece
Was he around twelve by now He’ll be dead in three years.
Fjord Bharat will die mysteriously, and Duke Bharat will go even madder than he was now.
“Why are you asking about Fjord Bharat”
“We met in the garden.
He picked up my parasol.”
Lydia frowned at her daughter’s words.
“Fjord Bharat In the garden of the Sun Palace”
Lydia was deep in thought.
The Duke of Bharat was aiming for the throne.
The head of the aristocracy, who was perfectly opposed to the imperialists, was the Duke of Bharat.
However, he was not satisfied as the head of the aristocratic faction and he wanted to overthrow the imperial family.
Before her return, Lydia stood with Duke Bharat and aimed for the Crown Prince’s life.
If the Crown Prince died, Duke Bharat would be able to take over the throne.
Apart from the current Crown Prince, there were no direct descendants of the Takar family.
A golden opportunity created by non-other than Duke Bharat himself.
Even now, the Crown Prince’s mother was of humble birth.
In terms of lineage alone, Duke Bharat was closer to the throne.
The ‘power’ that only a Takar could use, and the greatest weakness of Duke Bharat.
‘Bharat can never defeat Takar.’
Lydia, who knew the identity of the current emperor, snorted.
She had been on Bharat’s side, had lost her daughter, and had been burned at the stake as a traitor.
Lydia clenched her teeth and corrected herself.
‘Lily died because of me, and I was burned because of my stupidity.’
If possible, she did not want to be entangled with the nobles or the imperial family.
If it had been possible to get out of the slums other than by contract marriage, she would have done it.
However, this was the best way to utilise the knowledge that Lydia had acquired after returning.
‘But I haven’t thought much about Fjord.’
He was an outsider from the beginning because he was a person who had died on the way.
Rather than that, what would come next…
As soon as she remembered it, she frowned, and Lydia changed her mind.
Why was the son of the leader of the aristocratic faction wandering around the Sun Palace It can’t be good.
Looking at her brooding mother, Lilyca mustered her courage and spoke up.
“Mother, by the way, Fjord is very good at doing a curtsy.
I want to learn, but I need permission…”
“A curtsy from Fjord Bharat I’m sure he’s a boy.”
“That’s right, he is a boy, but… He’s really good at doing a curtsy!”
Was it okay to say yes with what happened with the crown prince
‘He’s going to die in three years anyway, so it’ll be okay, right’
Besides, it was the first time her daughter had asked for something first.
Atil had broken his promise to come to Lilyca’s tea party, she had said she was fine, but Lydia knew she was still saddened inside.
So, she wanted to do something for her daughter.
Lydia went through her plan mentally.
Her goal was simple.
Earn money while acting as the empress, settle down after the divorce and live happily ever after with her daughter.
She had no intention of being too greedy.
One life was enough to burn everything under the sway of desire.
Now, even the crown of the empress rolling in her hand was nothing more than a toy.
All she could think about doing was staying true to her contract with the emperor, swaying the social world, and saving money frugally before retiring with her sweet daughter.
‘But it’s easy to get stabbed in the back if you retire.’
She was thinking of leaving while maintaining some good connections.
So that if anything happened to Lily later, she could respond efficiently.
She had no intention of leaving the aristocratic society without a single connection.
I’ll ask the Bharat family.
But I don’t know if it’ll work out.”
It was not bad to throw a stone at the Bharat family.
‘Let’s see what kind of ripple is drawn and how the fish move.’
Lydia, who had worked as a minion under Bharat, had a rough idea of his plans.
However, it was always necessary to check.
“Really Thank you!”
Lilyca smiled brightly and hugged Lydia.
Lydia laughed lightly.
Now, when she held her daughter who had gained weight, it felt soft and nice.
The sound of her laughter was pleasant and cheerful.
‘As expected, my daughter is the cutest in the world.’
The problem was that other people seemed to have noticed that her daughter was the cutest in the world.
Suddenly, Lydia hugged her daughter tightly, recalling the emperor, a dragon bird saying nonsense about being her father.
‘I’ll never give you Lily! I’m Lily’s only parent!’