I Raised Him Modestly, But He Came Back Obsessed With Me - Chapter 70
Two days have passed since Cersinia met Archen. She looked for clues in what Archen had told her but it was in vain. It was very difficult to find out about it unless someone gave her a hint or told her openly.
Because of this, she delayed her departure. Also because Ben’s face, who was in pain while talking about his past, kept appearing in her mind. Before she left, she wanted to help with anything she could. She wanted to make him more comfortable than he was now. It was the least she could do for him.
“It would have been nice if I could help…”
Verne, who was walking with her, muttered as she looked at Cersinia, who was in agony.
“You’re helpful enough.”
Cersinia smiled slightly at Verne’s words, but Verne still felt uncomfortable. She wanted to help Cersinia somehow, but she didn’t know anything about her Master, so she couldn’t help.
“Shall we go out to Fabian Street?”
Verne’s eyes widened at the suggestion.
“I thought I’ll be able to hear something about it if I went to a cafe.”
The first place she heard the story about Ben was at a cafe, so she thought she could hear other stories.
“Good! I think it’s a good idea.”
The two diverted and started walking towards the Duchy’s main entrance.
Someone called her from behind. Cersinia turned around at the unfamiliar voice.
“As expected, you’re Lady Cersinia.”
A man with a playful smile stood tall in the middle of the hallway.
“Huh? You are…?”
Verne was surprised and pointed her finger at the man. Cersinia looked at the man without erasing the vigilance written in her features.
The man with shining blonde hair, which looked like the sun had carved out itself and sprinkled it on his head, had blue eyes like the sea. He had a high nose bridge, soft lips, clear skin, and a well-shaped jawline. He was good-looking and it was obvious that he was quite popular with the ladies. In addition, his long, straight legs, wide shoulders, and solid-looking physique were a little similar to Ben’s. Of course, Ben was superior in every aspect.
“I knew I would meet you sooner or later.”
The unfamiliar man wittily rolled his eyes and laughed at something he deemed funny.
“L-Lady Cersinia, we have to run away!”
Verne sensing the danger, grabbed Cersinia’s arm.
“Run away? Why? Do you know him?”
“I-I will explain later. How can he be here…?”
“Verne, what’s wrong with you?”
Verne was stunned. On the first day she saw that man, he persistently asked about Cersinia, so she had to run away. Verne knew that kind of person well. He is a man who had great power and so dug into people’s backs. She had experienced the same type of person as him before. There was only one conclusion, he was someone who wielded all his power so people could pay off their debts and went after people.
“Th-That man is a loan shark!”
“He’s here to ask Lady Cersinia for your debt!”
Cersinia’s mouth opened in absurdity.
‘What does this mean? How could a loan shark come to collect a debt when I don’t have any debt?’
“F-First, we need to get out of here quickly. Come on.”
Verne pulled her arm, but Cersinia stood still, staring at the man without blinking.
“Huh, I’m not a loan shark.”
The man burst into laughter and smoothed his chin. It was the first time Cersinia saw him but something felt familiar to her.
Light blonde hair and blue eyes. She was used to it as if she had known him for a long time. And the clothes that the man is wearing. Unlike Ben’s dark red uniform, the dark blue uniform had a shawl made of golden embroidery, covering his shoulders. The collar and buttons were gold, and they were absolutely gorgeous. The patterns drawn on the sleeves and shoulders were unique, they had both human and animal on them.
Cersinia’s face, which had been looking at the pattern for a long time, hardened. There’s no way she wouldn’t know. It was the clothes of the male protagonist described in the novel.
“I see, please be merciful of me and my maid’s disgraceful attitude towards you, Your Highness the Crown Prince.”
Cersinia hurriedly bowed.
“What? Crown Prince?”
Verne jumped like a spring leaf and freaked out.
“Do you know me? How?”
The Crown Prince looked over Cersinia with curious eyes.
‘Wouldn’t it be strange not to know?’
The Imperial mark, the symbol of the Empire, is embedded in clothes that look incredibly expensive. Even a child who was passing by would recognize it.
“Not many people can wear the emblem of the Empire, You Highness.”
In response to her answer, the Crown Prince exclaimed,
‘Oho, look at this.’
“I-I beg for your forgiveness. How dare I not recognize Your Highness…”
Verne lay flat on the floor.
“It’s okay, so get up. It was quite fun.”
Even after he forgave her, Verne trembled like an aspen tree and didn’t get up from the floor. Cersinia had no choice but to grab Verne’s arm countless times to raise her.
“I-I made a mistake… What should I do…”
“Verne, it’s okay. Your Highness already said that he forgives you.”
But Verne couldn’t hear her. She kept shivering, and her complexion turned pale.
“Yes, Your Highness.”
“She looks very surprised, escort her to her room.”
A man named Eric, who appeared at the Crown Prince’s call, walked towards them.
Eric helped Verne, who was losing her strength and lead her to her room.
“I want you to give me your time. I have a lot of questions.”
The Crown Prince smiled at Cersinia. Cersinia stiffened as chills came down her spine.
Her crimson eyes trembled slightly, unable to understand him. The fact that Verne recognized and shouted at the Crown Prince meant that the two had already met before.
‘But why are you curious about me and not Verne?’
That being said, it was strange from the beginning. The Crown Prince didn’t call Verne but called Cersinia’s name. She had never met him or told him her name, but he seemed to have known about her.
Cersinia swallowed her dryly. Her heart became stronger than before since she had already encountered the female protagonist in an unexpected place, but she couldn’t help being surprised.
‘Why do I keep getting involved with the original characters when I did everything to not meet them?’
So far, nothing went as she planned.
“Lady Cersinia, where would you like to go?”
It was impossible to reject him, as it would be seen as arrogant or worst. Watching him walk comfortably as if it was his own house, Cersinia opened and closed her mouth countless times before speaking.
“I think the garden would suffice.”
* * *
At that time.
Ben stopped briefly at the lake not far from his mansion on the way back from patrolling the estate. The lake was sparsely populated and quiet. It was a remote place, so only a few people knew it, and he always go there when he had a lot in his mind.
In particular, the scenery was so beautiful. The sun shone brilliantly on the still water which shimmered like diamonds were sprinkled on it. He always wanted to come here with Cersinia. But it became impossible.
Her cold rejection, which came back to his mind, made him bury his face in his hands.
‘It can’t happen.’
Cersinia’s face kept lingering in Ben’s head.
“What should I do…”
‘How can I win her heart?’
At this point, he felt like Cersinia was someone that he won’t be able to reach for the rest of his life.
‘Do I really have to let go of her like this?’
He lifted his tired face and looked at the surface of the water swaying quietly in the wind. He ran away because he was not confident to face her. He always wanted to declare that he would never leave her side whenever he met her eyes. But now there was no more excuse to hold her back.
Their relationship was very fragile. If he lets go of her, it will break off immediately. He really wanted to reveal his ugly but true feelings to her. The ones that demand of him to keep her by his side for the rest of his life, even by force.
Archen walked towards him, who was sitting in front of the lake with a troubled expression.
“The Crown Prince is said to be in the Grand Duchy right now.”
Ben jumped up from his seat.
“It seems that he found Lady Cersinia as soon as he arrived.”
Before Archen could finish his sentence, Ben walked away from the lake with a very hasty pace.
* * *
Cersinia and the Crown Prince were sitting facing each other in the garden.
“I greet you formally. My name is Limapheus Belfar.”
It was a quick greeting. Cersinia came to know his full name only when they settled in the garden, and warm tea came out.
“I see Your Highness the Crown Prince. My name is Cersinia.”
She roughly copied the lines she saw in the book whenever someone greeted the male protagonist. Cersinia couldn’t understand this situation at all. Who would have imagined that she would be sharing tea with the crown prince?
‘Isn’t he the one who killed Cersinia in the original story?’
She was sitting with a person who might kill her in the future. It was really awkward.
“Alex, no, I’ve heard a lot about you from the Grand Duke.”
With the excited expression on his face, Limapheus stared at her intently.
“Is that so?”
Cersinia knew well that the Crown Prince was lying. Because she knew better than anyone that Ben wasn’t the kind of person who would talk to anyone about her.
“Are things going well in Rafleche Village then?”
Cersinia’s shoulder shook in astonishment.
‘How much does he know?’
‘Did he do a background check on me? If so, did he get reports of my power as well?’
The atmosphere became cold. Cersinia was terrified that the Crown Prince would know of her existence and be wary of her.
“The Grand Duke came at dawn that day and threatened me. I had a hard time getting things done quickly.”
“Pardon? What are you talking about?”
It was her first time hearing this, so Cersinia was quite taken aback. Limapheus gave her a strange smile.
“As expected. Did Lady think it was easy to simply be strip Count Dexter of his title?”
“No one can go beyond the power of the Lord in the territory except His Majesty the Emperor. And in order to gain authority over a territory, one should get rid of its Lord.”
Cersinia shut her mouth tightly when she had realized what he meant.
“Not only that but Count Dexter was the vassal of Duke Kailos. It looked like the Grand Duke had declared war, don’t you think?”
‘Why didn’t I think about it until now?’
Looking back, there were a lot of strange things. Count Dexter’s title was stripped off in good timing, the capture of Goredon, who had escaped, and the fact that Ben handled everything that happened in the village without a single difficulty. Now that she thinks about it clearly was something that couldn’t be done simply with the power of the Grand Duke. She just wanted to forget about it, so she had never thought about it properly since it had never been a good memory.
‘How many efforts Ben has made for me…’
Cersinia was still confused, but Limapheus quickly grew tired of the subject.
“Well, this has become a heavy story, and I want to hear something about Lady Cersinia.”
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He leaned his body a little closer to her as if he had a lot of questions.
“Get away from her.”
At that moment, an angry voice separated the two.