IWDFLSB (Novel) Chapter 69

                                                     


 

C69

A whirlwind of silence took hold of the banquet hall. Most attendees remained silent, unsure how to react to this sudden turn of events. Out of the corner of my eye, I observed the Empress's reaction beside me.

"... "

The Empress was literally furious. The expression that could kill a person with just her eyes would have suited her well at this moment. It was a moment when the Empress's cruelty made people even more ashamed of reacting to this situation.

A noble closer to the stairs leading to the second floor shouted loudly.

"I salute the new Prince. Glory to Asteroth!"

Then several people repeated the same phrase.

"I salute the new Prince!"

"Glory to Asteroth!"

The behavior was contagious. One by one, the nobles who were just paying attention showed respect. It was the moment when Terence entered the imperial palace, receiving a warm welcome on the surface.

"Those people are probably followers."

The people who welcomed him earlier were the Emperor's closest collaborators. These were the people Terence had been busy meeting with until recently.

They, who had received news from the Emperor in advance, seemed to be in charge of leading the situation so that the atmosphere did not become uncomfortable.

"Oh?"

I made eye contact with Terence, who was in the distance. His smile grew even deeper. Wait, it's hard for you to look at me and smile right now. Because, at my side...

"You!"

The Empress clicked her tongue forcefully, as if surprised, and walked towards the door. It seemed she decided that Terence was provoking her. To be honest, it was difficult for me to think that he had no such intentions at all.

"Y-Your Majesty the Empress!"

"Your Majesty!"

The Empress's handmaidens hurriedly chased after their mistress. The Emperor, who was watching this, calmly calmed the atmosphere.

"It seems something urgent has happened to the Empress. But there's no way it can ruin the banquet. Please enjoy your part for the Empress."

"Yes, Your Majesty."

People responded unanimously, but there seemed to be only a few who would truly enjoy this awkward situation. The interrupted performance resumed, and several couples attempted to resume dancing.

"Oh, wait a moment. Shouldn't our prince also play among the youth?"

The Emperor affectionately patted his son's shoulder.

"If you like someone among these people, invite her to dance."

I could feel that people were nervous.

In this monumental moment, is the person the new prince invites to dance literally just "the person he likes"?

"There's a high possibility of a hidden political intention."

Many people might have had a common thought at this moment. The family of the princess who dances with the prince will be his greatest support.

Well, my expectations were very different. I knew, after having read the novel. Terence, as someone somewhat lonely and distrustful, rejects the Emperor's offer. He used the excuse that he wasn't good at dancing.

"Thank you for your consideration. So, I'm not good at it, so I'll just dance one song."

Yes, yes. Declining something like that...

"Sorry?!"

No, why do you suddenly accept it?

You have other intentions. Instead of declaring a unique place from the beginning, you want to leave space and encourage competition for loyalty among your followers!

"Oh, do you have someone in mind?"

When the Emperor asked with joy, Terence smiled shyly.

"I just want to have the honor of dancing with the most beautiful person here."

"Haha, let's see which lady is the most beautiful? Please note that this is the prince's personal preference, so other women shouldn't worry too much. For your information, in my opinion, the Empress looks more beautiful even after decades."

Did a person like this bother his wife by having a child out of wedlock? But people had to laugh and say things they didn't mean, like being jealous or calling him a romantic.

By the way, who is the most beautiful person? Recently, the faces of several people considered beautiful in social circles crossed my mind.

"It probably isn't Liena, whom Terence doesn't like. Is it Santa Arsia? The saint didn't attend today. I don't think it's good to have a first dance with a married woman, Duchess Luciano..."

Meanwhile, Terence descended the stairs and made his way through the crowd. The ladies who saw him up close blushed. Whether the Empress hated him or not, the fact that Terence was an attractive man remained unchanged.

Seeing that, I felt a bit lonely without knowing why. Unlike the novel, if Terence had a lover, it was difficult to maintain a deep friendship between a man and a woman, no matter how close they were.

"There's a high probability that the person he dances with also likes Terence."

Because he is a good person. My role was to wish happiness from afar to my friend.

But soon, those thoughts were destined to disappear.

"Excuse me, my lady. If you don't mind, would you like to dance a song with me?"

Terence extended his gloved hand.

Toward me.

"... Me?"

I quickly looked around, but everyone was looking at us. I didn't know where the crown prince had gone in the meantime, but there was no one around except me. In many ways, the person he asked to dance was me.

"What if he chooses me here?!"

Then I realized his true intentions. I see. I may not be the most beautiful person in the room, but I'm certainly the most politically irrelevant.

"There is no family behind me, and the relationship with Duke Cassius is not the worst."

Although I am close to Ambassador Leok, I am not the daughter of the noble Leok family and am only a personal benefactor of the ambassador's family.

In other words, his act of dancing with me was an expression that he had no intention of forming a definitive relationship with any power yet. At the same time, it also means that everyone has opportunities.

As there is no equivalent person in the novel, Terence would have simply refused to dance. However, in moments like this, it's best to socialize without sidelining others, which will make him appear more sociable and is good for his reputation.




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