4.2 The King and the Minister -Interlude-
“Well then, let us proceed in accordance to our previous arrangement.”
“…Hahaha, it seems that you too, Count, have some sort of plan in mind.”
Thus I replied with a cheerful laugh that contrasted his.
- The Minister’s PoV
After the Minister departed from the King’s side, he found himself standing by the side of a window—
“Hence, from now on wards, the House of Brent refuses any kind of further involvement with the affairs of Duke Westin. Gilbert is on his own now. I shall give him one chance to properly apologize to my daughter and that shall be it.”
“I have to tell you thought, that kid finding it within himself the will to properly apologize is already a spectacular turn of events on its own.”
The Minister did not demand any direct sanction, however, the King made a casual remark while shrugging his shoulders.
“I, who belong to the rank of Count, is about to exact punishment on a member of the royal family. Towards this, Your Highness isn’t even batting an eye?”
“I’m willingly closing my eyes upon this. Let’s say your resignation letter greatly moved me.”
—I wonder, what kind of misdeed have I committed upon the kingdom, or perhaps, was it committed by the kingdom itself? …For this tragedy to befall my daughter…
That was his one particular reason for resigning.
Should Gilbert have come today and tried something funny, Liliana and Raymond would be there to intercept him first. The thought about his eldest daughter and son granted the Count a brief respite.
“Do not think lightly of that letter for the intent behind it is true. Your Majesty should keep your word and separate the two.”
“I did not demand any kind of punishment for Gilbert, because I know how pointless it would be. I doubt that lad’s even aware of the word ‘repent’, or ‘reflection’.”
—Because punishing him will bring me nothing ,not even any hint of satisfaction.
It’s utterly meaningless to do so.
To face ourselves, our mistakes, is a very painful thing to do.
And I believe that he is incapable of enduring said pain.
Or at the very least, not yet.
“’Do not show your face to my house ever again’… is what I would have liked to say every time I saw him, but then, I feel the only thing that would change is the target of his obsession. I bet he’ll just find yet stranger things to obsesses over.”
Like the Queen, for example.
“Your Highness, treat this incident as how you would a ‘national interest’, and this humble servant of your kingdom shall nobly swallows his anger.”
—and if this approach of mine remains futile in the end…
‘That shall be it’—the Minister kept his silence, but the sharp glint of his eyes told of the extent he was willing to travel.
“Well-understood. To further proof the authenticity behind my volition, I hereby stand here to declare it again with my own mouth—The royal family shall fulfill their responsibility of healing your daughter, til the end.”
“…Even better if you did so since the start.”
“Please don’t say that… this was truly an unforeseeable event.”
And by no means it was.
For Anne Marie to be driven to the wall by him and finally break like this…
Anne Marie was an excellent daughter, and Gilbert too, was an excellent person. He thought of himself as one, thus he failed to notice anything or anyone else outside of his own self.
“This heart-rending outcome has stirred the heart of my dear wife, Maria.”
“It is true, and truth to be told, mine feels the exact same.”
Tragically, that was also the exact reason behind his daughter’s ailment.
The ‘injury’ was precisely in her heart.
Hence, she became like that.
“Minister Rick, you said that my brother doesn’t know the meaning of both repentance and reflection—however, I don’t concur.”
“…Should I be asking why?”
“If I were to guess your evaluation of him right now, he must be positioned in the ‘lowest-of-the-low’—I should just say, if this annulment were cemented, it’ll also affect Anne’s evaluation of you.”
Exactly, I’m sure if that daughter of mine were to know about this matter, she wouldn’t ever give up in pursuing it.
The Minister was silent for a while.
“Likewise, if we don’t end things now, attachment will likely grow between them.”
“…Well, yes, that could happen…”
That wasn’t what the King had meant to say, yet, it was also an undeniable fact—and he believed that the true meaning behind his words were conveyed to the Minister.
—suddenly, it came into his mind:
“In the first place, does the Anne Marie of today approve of the divorce?”
“She should.” The Count asserted.
“Certainly, when my daughter was young, Gilbert was second to none in her heart. When the betrothal was decided, I remember how happy she was that day, and then, …then, I rarely heard about her since…But just by looking at the current her, I can already determine the shift in her feelings. With a little persuasion, I know I can get it through her regarding this matter.”
“Back then, when she was still well, did she ever say anything to you?”
“Nothing at all. She gloriously upheld her role as a Duchess and did not reveal any circumstances of her house—not in the slightest.
But now, no matter how much I think about it, I think her aim wasn’t to assure us that everything was fine, but to convince her own self that it was.”
“You mean, she was self-suggesting?”
“Yes, that. Not only is divorce prohibited without the King’s permission, she’s also too devoted to engage in extramarital affairs.”
Hence, no matter what kind of human scum her husband was, she was obliged to stay with him forever.
“Or maybe because the thought of spending one lifetime with someone you cherished was good enough for her—regardless of whether or not he reciprocates it. Since I, myself, thought along that line.”
…Until now, I’ve never thought of it that way.
“If what you said is true…”
“Nevertheless, once Anne Marie recovers in the truest sense, whether or not she still loves Gilbert will be put to question.”
—to treat Anne Marie with all our might.
The young King repeated what he had promised to the Minister.
**T/N : Sometimes translating the title could be confusing because the author use the term chapter no longer, but the day i-xx. Anticipates for the next chapter k! Since it will be juicy!