CHAPTER 18: THAT SON’S SCALE
A few days earlier, Hwan-Seok, who had sent Hwan-Seong outside, admitted, “I’ve drunk poison.”
The King furrowed his brow. “Poison, you say?”
“Yes, it is not enough to be dangerous to a male whose magical powers have been awakened.”
Hwan-Seok was obviously a prodigy, but he was still only twelve, so he had not fully awakened fully his magic. Magical senses were awakened at any time between the ages of ten to seventeen, but generally speaking, the awakening took place some time closer to the age of fifteen.
“So someone sprinkled poison on the palace ground?”
“And the intended target was Princess Sang-Hee?”
“And you didn’t want Hwan-Seong to hear because he might fly off the handle?”
“He’s my little brother, but still I am unable to control him when he flies into a rage.”
The King studied Hwan-Seok’s face as he continued, “It is less harmful to us than to a little girl, so I ingested most of it and collected some for analysis.
Hwan-Seok had deliberately ingested most of the poison, out of concern that it might hurt Sang-Hee and tried to cover up his unusual protectiveness for a lowly female by downplaying its significance and danger. (T/n: Aww, damn it! Hwan-Seok!! you cutie!!.。･:*:･(✿◕3◕)❤(◕ε◕✿)･:*:･。.)
The King laid his hand gently on his second son’s head in a gesture that was meant to acknowledge the ordeal his son had endured.
Hwan-Seok was instantly cured. “Thank you, Father.”
“Have you deduced the perpetrator?”
“I am only certain that a princess could not have done it on her own. Only someone of rank high enough to be able to bring poison into the palace could have pulled it off.”
The King tapped Hwan-Seok’s forehead lightly with his finger.
“Leave it to me. You are young and still deserving of protection. Allow yourself to be protected while you can.” (T/n: how sweet of the King!!)
The King left Hwan-Seok’s room, closing the door behind him. He opened his fist and studied the paper which contained the poison powder his son had discovered.
It poses little harm to boys, but it is enough to kill a girl. Was Sang-Hee really the intended target?
He couldn’t say. Is there someone who would benefit from Sang-Hee’s death?
Sang-Hee was just a little girl! Who would have a motive to kill her? What am I missing?
He went back to his room and found out that the scholar, Alex, is waiting in the room.
“Your Majesty, I have an urgent message.”
“Alex,” the King interrupted.
“Yes, Your Highness.” Alex nodded. He had noticed the King’s agitated state but knew better than to point it out. The King, he knew, would not want to admit he was anything less than perfectly composed, much less acknowledge the reason.
Alex diplomatically offered a justification for the King’s anger. “Your Majesty must be upset that the second-born prince was nearly harmed.” But he secretly thought, Oh give me a break. The prince barely had a cough, What’s the emergency? He mused. Clearly, you’re panicked at the mere thought that Princess Sang-Hee could have been harmed.
The shrewd scholar held his tongue, for he knew the King would be aghast to admit that he was distressed over a lowly daughter.
The King agreed, “It is a problem. We need to investigate how the poison was smuggled in. A prince was put in danger, so it was imperative to take immediate action.” (T/n: Yeah, yeah. the Prince. pfft)
“I see,” Alex thought. You’re concerned that a prince was put in danger. The princess is far from your thoughts. Alex was amused. Perhaps Your Majesty was also just a tiny bit distressed that the Princess was in danger as well?
A few days after this exchange [roncess Suyeong had been executed. Furthermore, the number of queens was reduced from twelve to eleven. Both a princess and queen were both put to death.
“Princess Sang-Hee, are you upset by this?” Alex asked his younger charge.
Sang-Hee titled her head, falling to grasp his meaning for a moment.
“Did His Majesty happen to pass through?”
“Yes, a few days ago.”
Sang-Hee smiled to disguise the churning in her stomach, She remembered the terror of being rendered literally senseless, of losing her sight and hearing.
“The day I opened the drawer…that’s the day His Majesty came.”
Alex smiled, “That’s what I thought.”
“What does that mean?”
“It’s nothing. His Majesty seems to be very protective of you.”
Sang-Hee kept her mouth from forming the sarcastic remark, “Yeah, Right!”
Alex continued, “It seems you have not been much affected by your sister Suyeong’s death. By the way, didn’t you feel something both icy and hot pass through your head that day?”
I opened the second drawer. A letter.
There were two envelopes. One was the letter I had written to Jinsu. But he had clearly ripped it up right in front of me.
What the hell is going on? Nothing in this world is as I’d expect. I learned two hours could pass in the blink of an eye, letters ripped into pieces could just…yes…magically reappear whole. I thought the letter had been destroyed and had humiliated myself by crying before Suyeong! That bastard!
But what was this? There was another envelope. It was addressed to Mutt. It must have been left by the First-Born-Brat Hwan-Seok.
There was nothing remarkable in the letter contents. “When’s my birthday?” was all it said.
August 15th. Of course, I know your birthday! You really think I’d memorize all the princesses’ names and faces and neglect to learn your birthday? It’s practically a requirement to memorize the princes’ birthdays. Why would he write me a letter with such a stupid question?
The First-Born-Brat, Hwan-Seok, wants me to write a reply.
Yes, that must be the reason why. However sophisticated he pretends to be, he was still a child at heart.
Sujin looked at Sang-Hee curiously, “What’s so funny, Princess Sang-Hee? Do you have some good news?”
“Oh, it’s nothing.”
“I’m so pleased to see you in a good mood. All the other princesses are quite downcast.”
The princesses were recuperating from a tremendous ordeal. They were subjected to rigorous interrogation by the knights about a matter unknown to me. I seemed to be only one exempt. (T/n: I bet’cha those princesses were tortured to confess -.-)
“The Knights might pay you a visit as well.”
“I’m not sure, but it has something to do with the 17th born princess’s execution.”
I was about to say something when the door swung open.
I did have a door, but I might as well not have had one. Expecting to hear “Fetch!” or “Mutt” I steeled myself. To my surprise, I saw neither of my bratty brothers.
“F-Father!” I recovered and said, “How do you do?”
As the Scumbag acknowledged my greeting, my body began to float. However much I resisted, my mouth was forced open. Scumbag seemed to inspect the inside of my mouth then declared, “All clear.”
I felt something strange then. It was as if something both cold and hot was flitting through my head. I was unable to focus on it because of the odd sensation, my arms and legs began to flail seemingly of their own accord. Every time Scumbag flicked his finger upward and downward, I ascended and descended. I must have shrieked many times. My speed and my position in the air kept changing.
My room happened to be on the eleventh floor, and my body whizzed down to the ground floor and then back up seemingly at random.
I’m not your ragdoll! I wanted to plead with the Scumbag to be more careful. But I remembered that this man had ordered the execution of his own daughter and stayed silent. (T/n: You need to say the magic words!!)
“Daddy! Save me!”
Then it all stopped. My body floated to my bed and was laid gently down. I was under a spell. Then Scumbag turned on his heel. Who would argue with me that he wasn’t a Scumbag? What horrible manners!
“Our investigation here is closed.”
“Yes, Your Majesty,” said a sonorous voice. Knights must be outside the door. Why would the King personally wait be conducting the investigation? Whatever the reason might be, the people outside might have thought something dreadful had happened, since I was shrieking so much.
Oh, the humiliation! The knights must think I’m a lunatic!
But wait. I hadn’t been subjected to any interrogation. I had screamed a bunch of times and I had shouted “Your Majesty!” and “Father!” Now that I thought about it, I was jerked more violently when I called out “Your Majesty!” I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but there was something going on. (T/n: Bwahahaha….I’m dying…Ah. Sang-Hee you are quite dense yourself pffftxDDD)
Sujin studied me carefully. I knew I was pathetic, but her penetrating stare was annoying and she wistfully asked, “Princess Sang-Hee, why do they give you special treatment?”
I wanted to smack her too. What dod you say? Did that look like special treatment to you? I felt as though I had come back from the dead! That was a rollercoaster ride from hell.
“If His Majesty was so kind to me, I would never have another wish in my life. This is, of course, a secret. Please don’t tell anyone. If anyone knew I dared to even harbor such a wish in my heard, I’d be killed for my audacity.”
I was dumbfounded.
One year had passed, There was a wave of executions in the palace. All of them were hushed up as though they had never happened. (T/n: Obviously all those who dared to harm Princess Sang-Hee o3o)
bully princess will have her adult-coming-of-age, as Your Majesty wishes”
The King nodded, “Proceed as usual.”
“And what else?”
“The thirty-third-ranked princess will have her first excursion outside the palace.”
The King cupped his chin in his hand. He asked, “When will that be?”
Yeonghun Choi, the retainer making his report, tilted his head in surprise. He wondered why the King would ask about such mundane matters. He was just reporting the princess’ schedule as a formality. There were far more many important matters to be reported. At the moment, there was the matter of the third-ranked prince’s magical awakening. The King certainly is acting strangely.
He responded to the odd question, “It’s in four days, Your Majesty.”
“Is that so?”
“Two knights will accompany her as usual.”
“As you like.”
Three days later. The door swung open. “Fetch!”
Princess Sang-Hee, who had been lying in bed, bolted upright. She did not retrieve the ragdoll.
Hwan-Seong observing that she was not retrieving the doll today as she had before used magic to retrieve the ragdoll he had hurled so far. The ragdoll floated through the air into Hwan-Seong’s grasp. Sang-Hee plied him with her charms, burying her face in Hwan-Seong’s chest, “Oh, I’m so happy my brother is here!” Hwan-Seong rubbed his nose chuckling.
“Oh, right Mutt!”
During the year, Sang-Hee had continued her charm offensive, getting Hwan-Seong to treat her with more consideration.
“What is it, Your Majesty?”
“You’re going on the excursion tomorrow right?”
“Yes, I’m already so anxious.”
It was quite natural that she should be nervous; it was to be her first time outside the palace. Everyone knew the world was a hostile place for women. “I’ll be going too because I’m a knight,” Hwan-Seong boasted, sticking his chest out and staring at her as though expecting her to shower him with gratitude.
Why does it have to be you?
Luckily, a sturdy-looking knight would also be accompanying them.
Fueeeeh, he-here’s a…*pant*….another chapter…..*gasp*…… and prolly…the last….*dead*
Gaaah, I CAN’T FEEL MY FINGERS anymore. TToTT
but well, we’re in for a new arc!! YATTA!!~ TBH, I was planning on posting this tomorrow and leave you guys hanging for a while. Well as I’ve said before, before I started to pick this up, I’m a reader so I know what a reader feels….and as a reader who suffered great cliffs from my dai senpais (in translating novels,
such as Este-sama, Miaka_Mei and Vsukio, Haseo, Cuppa, everyone in MBC, ISOHUNGRY, Volare, Fantasy-books,Lotus Translation, NovelsReborn, SnowyCodex, AsianHobyist and many more)there is that unexplainable sadistic urge welling up (◡‿◡✿) teehee~ Then i realised that a new arc is coming so after struggling with the rising sadistic urges…I decided to post this chapter xD
WASN’T HWAN-SEOK SUPER SWEET? and innocent! He didn’t tear up her letter and at the same time he must have felt jealous that Jinsu can receive a letter from Sang-Hee so he also left a letter to get a “reply” -3- and the King~ aigoo…the indenial “Daddy” who’s starting to get a daughter complex!! pfft.
BTW You guys I’d appreciate it if you can rate this novel or something in novelsupdate (despite having so little chapters, for now) on your free time^^