“It’s because…I was wondering why his Highness isn’t at the banquet.”
Damian was the crown prince and without a doubt, has the right to attend.
However, I was worried he couldn’t attend the banquet because of the Emperor’s bad mood.
Seriously, the emperor of a country should be able to be bolder/better than that.
The Emperor doesn’t have to be that petty, right
Damian thankfully shook his head with a relieving smile.
“Didn’t I offend the Emperor with today’s blessing”
“Well, you did but…”
For the time being, it’s better to lay low and stay away,” Damian advised in a low voice.
Laying low isn’t that bad compared to getting on the Emperor’s bad side.
I mean Damian’s already on his bad side but we don’t want to make him angrier, right
While nodding my head casually, I remembered Damian’s blessing earlier.
“Oh, I have one more question.”
“What is it”
“Back in the courtyard, how did you handle the power so well”
Damian had suffered from a fever before because he struggled to control the power of the divine beast.
Recalling the time when Damian collapsed to the floor, my heart became cool like I had just swallowed a large chunk of ice.
I remembered his body temperature that was scorching hot, and his face that was as pale as a ghost’s…
Damian shrugged his shoulders.
“I don’t know how exactly, I just somehow had this feeling I could do it.”
“…wait, your Highness.
Did you take that risk just because you ‘felt like you could do it’”
I looked at Damian with a dazed expression.
His Highness doesn’t know how precious he is! Why does he throw himself in harm’s way
Unable to bear my constant judging gaze, Damian slinked his gaze away.
“The feeling back there…I was.
I was confident I could do it.”
“Where did you get that confidence from”
I was confused.
Damian narrowed his brow slightly.
He muttered to me, divulging his thoughts.
“Because you were by my side, I felt like I could do it.”
“What, you’re saying I’m the reason That can’t be right!”
“But what if it’s true”
Damian looked at me with a saddened expression.
After a while, he sighed and continued.
“To tell you the truth, I don’t think I can do it again.”
“But haven’t you done it once already”
“That was then…I don’t even know how I did it, so I don’t know if I’ll be able to do it again.”
Damian seemed pretty frustrated with himself, so I struggled to suppress the desire to hit him over his recklessness.
*Sigh* ‘Don’t beat yourself up over it, Damian.’
Damian grumbled and pondered for quite a while.
Then he glanced at me.
Why are you looking at me like that
He slurred his speech trying to say something.
“Looking at you gives me peace of mind.”
Yeah, that is hard to get out, isn’t it
I stared at him pitifully.
Indeed, in the original novel, there were very few people who awakened the power of the divine beast.
Among the few who had awakened the power, only one had succeeded in awakening the power of purification.
So to say it’s difficult is an understatement.
Just as I was about to convince myself.
“It may come off as weird, but when I’m with you everything feels like it’s going to be okay.”
….Yep, that sounds really weird.
I didn’t mean to, but I reacted immediately with a somewhat disgusted expression.
Noticing my disapproving reaction, Damian continued with a downcast face.
“Don’t make that face, please,” pleaded Damian.
“Okay, I’ll try.”
I struggled to push the tips of my lips upwards.
It was then Damian changed the subject.
“About the fever.”
“Are you feverish”
Ever since I’ve known you, I’ve never had another fever.”
Damian’s words left me feeling strange.
Come to think of it…
The first and last time Damian was sick was when he was eight years old.
He’s changed since then.
He’s such a strong boy, it completely escaped my mind!
“And about today’s harvest festival.”
“Honestly, the Emperor hurt my self-esteem at first, but I was still with you.”
Before I knew it, Damian recollected what happened with a faint smile.
He ended that note tenderly.
“I knew it would turn out well.”
His frank words came out of nowhere, I was speechless for a moment.
He slowly turned the other way.
His golden and scarlet eyes stared out the window, into a distant place I couldn’t figure out.
“Do you remember what her Majesty said”
“What about it”
“On the day of the harvest festival, I mean the real festival outside the palace…there’s a lot to see and do.”
Oh, she did say that.
I nodded slightly.
She also said there would be a lot of snacks and fun things to do.
Especially the sight of endless floating lanterns, like a Milky way flowing on the ground from far away.
I want to see all that scenery with you.”
“…will that day ever come” I unknowingly asked in a skeptical voice.
Perhaps because I was born in the palace and only lived in and around the palace grounds, I couldn’t imagine leaving this place very well.