I Sought Out the Tragedy’s Scheming Mastermind - Chapter 14
Translator and Editor: nieye
“Eliana, why didn’t you speak honestly from the start?”
“The Empress Dowager wanted to keep it a secret.”
“Then I don’t understand. My mother told you to keep it a secret, so why tell me?” Verkley returned, his voice filled with doubt.
Eliana quietly sat down on his bed and peered up at him.
She made eye contact, but his gaze was not directed at her.
But Eliana knew he could see her.
Eliana replied with a bright smile.
“My master is not the Empress Dowager. It’s you, Your Majesty.”
Verkley looked speechless.
Eliana continued without giving him a chance to intervene.
“I’m with you, Your Majesty. That’s why I told you. Now, do you understand?”
There was a flash of agitation on Verkley’s face before it disappeared.
As if something was stuck in his throat, he didn’t talk.
Eliana rested her hands on Verkley’s hand.
“The Sun of the Empire is you, Your Majesty, not the Empress Dowager.”
“That’s quite bold of you to say when my mother is purer than me. Are you not afraid of the consequences?” Verkley’s voice was incomprehensible.
Afraid of the consequences?
It was frightening, bowing down to Verkley. She unconsciously let out a laugh.
Verkley’s expression hardened, but Eliana deliberately pretended not to see it.
Eliana squeezed Verkley’s hand tighter.
Eliana’s hands were warm, and soon, their temperatures would be similar.
A lukewarm temperature that was neither cold nor hot.
She wanted to thaw him with her warmth rather than be consumed by his cold.
She wanted him to take her warmth as if he were assimilated into her.
Eliana lightly kissed the back of Verkley’s hand.
Suddenly, Verkley’s hand tensed under her lips.
Eliana pretended not to feel his reaction. Her face looked as innocent as ever when she said,
“My body has already become yours, Your Majesty. Even if Empress Dowager wants to kill me, I will stand by your side.”
“…Are you merely saying that because I’m the emperor?”
“No, not at all.”
Eliana denied Verkley’s question without a second thought.
She didn’t want to side with him because he was the emperor.
It was because of his potential power.
A demon. A living divine being from the Itdeoni myth that could destroy the entire empire.
That was precisely why she wanted to be on Verkley’s side.
‘Do you have feelings for him?’
For a moment, Eliana recalled Hera’s question.
Feelings for him?
There was no way she’d do something as stupid as fall for a man who was going to kill her, right?
But he might as well believe she did.
Because there’s nothing more foolish than the feeling of love.
If he believes it’s love, it’ll seem reasonable why she wants to stay by his side.
Eliana sweetly whispered to him with the face of a woman in love.
“I just want to stick by your side for a long time.”
Eliana gently placed a hand on his thigh and lifted herself until their faces were close.
Since he had to look down at her, his black hair wrapped around Eliana like a curtain.
Verkley knew Eliana was coming close, but he didn’t stop her.
Rather, he dipped his head closer to Eliana.
Her hand strained against his thigh.
The corners of Verkley’s mouth crept up.
Then he softly whispered,
With that, Verkley inched toward her a little more.
Eliana’s eyes fluttered close.
His lips were cold yet as electric as his hands.
Verkley wrapped one hand beneath Eliana’s neck and chin and held her fragile shoulder with the other.
Eliana grasped onto his thigh firmly and steadied her upper body.
He nipped at Eliana’s lips carefully as if he were dealing with something precious.
The sensation was so unfamiliar, and Eliana automatically flinched.
She tried to pull away, but Verkley wouldn’t budge.
He softly skimmed over Eliana’s lips.
Then, Verkley invaded Eliana’s mouth.
A strange sensation filled her mouth, gently sweeping around.
Their kiss was never-ending, and naturally, Eliana started to breathe heavily.
He held her and adjusted her so she was more comfortable.
Verkley was as breathless as Eliana.
His breathing grew restless, but they did not stop. His body was as cold as ice, but his breath was hot.
This was different from mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
It was a little more sloppy and passionate, with emotions in the mix like a fire burning inside them.
She never dreamed that such ferocity could be hidden under a beautiful face.
Eliana was just hanging on, completely losing control of Verkley before she knew it.
Moments later, Verkley released her lips.
Eliana inhaled a deep breath.
Verkley brushed his fingertips across Eliana’s lips and whispered with a wistful face.
“I wonder what you look like.”
Eliana snapped back into reality at his words and brightly asked,
“Do you want to touch me?”
When Verkley did not move, Eliana guided his hand to slowly explore her eyes, nose and lips.
Verkley outlined Eliana’s face with his fingers.
She knew it was an act anyway, but Eliana followed his lead.
It tickled whenever his hand moved along the contours of her face.
It was the first time someone had touched her face like they were molding clay.
By the time she had gotten used to his hand on her face, he pulled away with a certain shyness and stated,
“How would you know when you can’t see me?”
Verkley smiled softly at Eliana’s coy retort.
“You don’t have to be beautiful. You’ll always be enough for me.” His voice was gentler than ever.
Neither of them confessed any feelings for each other.
She only asked if she could stay by his side, and he said yes, then their lips touched as a reward.
But Eliana knew.
That he will carelessly use her beauty for revenge.
So many ladies-in-waiting were used by him and then disappeared without a trace.
So that smile of his is fake.
Eliana was never unaware.
But she decided to let herself be used because his side was the safest right now.
Eliana smiled at his reply, pretending to be happy.
“Your Majesty is naturally beautiful, so that means I don’t have to be.”
Eliana’s bold words made Verkley laugh cheerfully.
The face in front of her was bright with laughter, but no one could tell whether it was fake or not.
There was only speculation.
* * *
Verkley played the role of a blind emperor, blindfolding everyone.
For over ten years, they’d become accustomed to neglecting Verkley, and it was Verkley himself who allowed it.
Nothing special was happening that day.
The only special thing was his severe headache.
His headache was not curable.
It was like his body was crying out to him because it could not withstand the demon’s power.
Verkley, sensitive to his annoying headache, stared at the woman who gawked at his face.
He was already awfully skilled at observing another person while pretending to be blind.
The woman’s hair was curly, a golden yellow that flowed down her shoulders.
Meanwhile, her light lemon-golden eyes were softly trembling.
It was ridiculous watching her mouth gape open as if she had seen something so entirely shocking.
“…Is he a sculpture?”
Verkley heard her murmur very low.
Hera paid no attention to her, so it didn’t seem like she heard, but he had.
He had been wary of this strange woman since a while ago, so he heard clearly.
While he thought she was curious, his face hardened at the words that emerged from her lips.
“That can’t be a human being.”
It was clear she was analyzing him.
Verkley looked away from her and gave off a chilling aura.
It might’ve been a sensitive reaction. Maybe she didn’t know who he was.
Soon, he believed he was just overreacting because of his headache.
“I-I greet Your Majesty. I am Eliana Mussieux.”
Verkley reached a hand out toward Eliana, who greeted him.
Since Hera brought her in, he’d deal with her appropriately.
He knew that Hera was desperate to find out who he was.
Perhaps she and the woman brought in to watch over him were on the same side.
Verkley was on the verge of laughing. This current situation was like a comedy.
But as soon as Eliana took his hand, he sensed that this encounter was unusual.
For a second, Verkley forgot that he was supposed to be acting and slapped Eliana’s hand in surprise.
He was confused.
It felt like something soared through his fingertips.
The headache that had been a plague to him disappeared as soon as their hands touched.
His head felt clearer for the first time in a while.
T/N: Hello! I’m nieye, the translator/editor for this novel. If you’d like to support me, head over to my Ko-fi (っ˘ω˘ς ). Thank you for the love <33