She was sent by God - Chapter 10
Agnes was perplexed because she didn’t marry Laslo Arpad in the hopes of achieving that.
“Is that important?”
“It’s important to you.”
There was seriousness in Laslo’s expression. He straightened his body.
“Sutmar is about to collapse, as you’ll see when you get the ledgers from Niall.”
“It’s like a beach sand castle on the verge of collapsing from a single wave.”
Laslo continued glumly while gazing at the burning candle.
In shock, Agnes leaned forward. Laslo, on the other hand, remained calm.
“Due to repeated bad harvests, tax revenue has decreased dramatically, and the attacks of the beasts have recently reached their peak; everyone is trying not to talk about it, but more and more people are fleeing over the mountains.”
She didn’t anticipate it to be that serious. Agnes bit her lip. She had left the bookkeeping to Niall and had paid no attention to the matter. Because of this, she didn’t expect it to be as severe as it was, despite her vague knowledge that the financial situation wasn’t so good.
“It’s a vicious cycle where civilians die or get hurt because we can’t stop the invasion of beasts. Those who are scared run away, leading to further tax cuts. Without money, we can’t strengthen the army, and naturally we cannot stop the beast invasions either.”
His heavy sigh was depressing.
Without knowing what to say, Agnes just stared at Laslo.
“Are you unaware of the reason Prince Sebastian permitted the princess to marry me?”
“If you’re lucky, you’ll have more than ten years; if not, you’ll have five; this territory has a limit to how long it can withstand this.”
He provided a rather bleak forecast for the estate’s future. Agnes was at a loss for words. There was nothing she could add to what he had said; it was a future that was very likely to occur.
“I didn’t spend the night with you.”
He then brought up the subject.
“Because it would be easier for you to start over if you didn’t have any children.”
In contrast to his initial hesitation, Laslo explained calmly.
“I’ve been taught not to create anything I can’t properly take responsibility for, Princess.”
Hearing the words that came out of his mouth, Agnes felt strange.
“If this land collapses in a few years, you won’t be able to live this way; I’m used to eating and sleeping on the ground, but I can’t force the princess to do so just because we’re married.”
“Then the children…”
“You know that a couple without children is not considered a real couple by God, which means you will never be subjected to me for the rest of your life.”
Agnes took a quick breath. She felt as if someone had smacked her in the back of her head.
– No, it’s nothing. Master asked me something.
– What did he ask?
– About the days that one can and cannot conceive a child, that is.
She suddenly recalled what Ney had said at the time with a nervous expression.
At the time, she didn’t give it much thought.
It wasn’t until much later that they slept together.
Despite the fact that Agnes had naturally spent many nights with him, there had never been a pregnancy sign.
She had no idea he was thinking this way.
Why had she been angry with and hostile toward him? If she had asked him why, wouldn’t that have altered their relationship?
Agnes’ heart hurt so much that she was unable to meet his gaze directly. Her throat began to fill with regret. She lowered her head in shame.
The tears that flowed into her eyes caused her voice to tremble. She repeatedly tried to clear her throat, but it didn’t work.
“I’m going to die here,”
“What are you talking about?” Laslo was perplexed.
“I will die, heuk, here in this castle. Never, I’m never going to run away again.”
She was speaking to herself rather than to him.
She made the promise on the pole that pierced his rotting arm.
I’ll never run away leaving you.
When Agnes started crying because she could no longer contain herself, Laslo became agitated. He looked through his coat for a handkerchief, but nothing was suitable. Laslo was unsure of what to do.
“I’ll die with you here, in this castle.”
“No, there’s no need for that.”
“ha… Tell me, Princess.”
“If you accept me as your wife, let’s go to the temple together to perform the ritual of the oath.”
If they carried out the ritual in front of God, not even death could separate the involved parties’ souls.
“Ritual of oath? Do you even know what that is?”
Laslo was perplexed by what she said.
The ritual of oath. Even couples who were incredibly in love would not carelessly perform this ritual.
Agnes wiped her tears away with her sleeves and spoke firmly.
“I know that. I would rather die as Duchess Arpad than as Princess of Nirseg.”
“However, that does not obligate you to perform the ritual.”
“I have no intention of ending this marriage; I’ve already made up my mind about that.
Laslo’s facial expression was contorted. He wasn’t angry or embarrassed, but he was breathing in and out with an odd expression on his face.
“… It could get more miserable than it is now, with bad food and only a cold stone floor to sleep on.”
She just stared at his face, not saying anything.
“Think about how well you spent your days at the palace. As time goes by, the situation will get worse, but it won’t get better. There’s a possibility that a life you’ve never imagined living is what’s awaiting you.”
“I don’t care.”
Agnes’ eyes shone with an unbreakable will.
If Sebastian’s absurd claim that she is suppressing a rebellion is not stopped, death will reappear for them in three years.
“Think about how well you spent your days at the palace; as time passes, the situation will worsen, but not improve; there’s a chance that a life you’ve never imagined living awaits you.”
She would never abandon him for wealth and honor now.
“Do you really think you won’t regret it?”
“I’ve already had enough regrets.”
Laslo didn’t understand everything she said, but he didn’t ask any more questions.
All he remembers are her eyes shining in the darkness.
“Please allow me to reintroduce myself: my name is Bushke Herschko, and you may call me whatever you like, Madam.”
The elderly woman in the deep red cloak arrived on time. Agnes greeted her with a smile.
“I’m sorry for calling you at such an early hour.”
“I don’t mind at all.”
Agnes invited her to take a seat on the sofa in the drawing room across from her. Bushke sat down and drank the tea that her maid had poured for her.
“It has a pleasant fragrance.”
“It’s a type of tea leaf imported from the south of the Yerika Mountains; if you like it, I’ll have the maid send you some.”
“No, I’m happy just to taste something so precious.”
They began with some insignificant small talk. Agnes was fiddling with her teacup because she had no idea where to begin. She gathered the courage to speak and did so.
Ney and all the other maids had been ordered out of the room just in case.
“I am in desperate need of your wisdom, so please don’t take my questions lightly and respond honestly.”
“So what if… No, did you know that His Majesty’s condition is critical?”
“I heard it from Sir Beller.”
“When I left the palace, he was already gravely ill, to the point where His Majesty couldn’t even recognize me, his own daughter.”
She could taste bitterness in her mouth.
The king adored his youngest daughter, Agnes. However, by the time she was an adult, his illness had advanced to the point where it was difficult for him to do anything but lie in bed.
Naturally, Sebastian and Vivian, who were already adults at the time, alternated in running the government.
“When the king passes away, Sebastian will likely take the throne, and I have nothing against that.”
Bushke drank her tea instead of responding.
“I don’t care about the throne. All I want is a peaceful life. That’s why I’m here. To live the life I want to live.”
Agnes tried to be as truthful as she could.
“If, just what if, what if Sebastian’s two sons pass away soon after his coronation?”
The unexpected question caused Bushke’s face to become a little stiff.
“But aren’t the princes still young? Even if both of the princes die at the same time, the queen…”
“What happens if the queen also wanders into death?”
“Wouldn’t it be possible to choose a new queen?
“No, Sebastian isn’t going to do that.”
With unwavering confidence, Agnes spoke.
She also held this belief.
When the two princes and even the queen died, the officials demanded that a new queen be chosen.
She had never imagined that Sebastian would use his sword to slaughter the royal family officials.
“I know what I’m saying makes no sense.”
Bushke didn’t seem convinced.
The princess attributed this to her poor language abilities and added any additional, more plausible theories that came to mind.
“It’s not an impossible situation.”
After some discussion, Bushke finally realized what the princess was trying to say.
If that occurs, he will attempt to kill the madam, who is the most formidable heir apparent.
“What can I do to prevent that?”
“Is there another option, such as giving up succession rights, so he won’t kill me?”
Bushke leaned slightly forward.
She had a worried look on her face. Which was completely comprehensible.
Agnes’ body trembled and her face turned pale.
“There is no need to worry about it right now; it’s still in the far future and it’s unlikely to happen.”
“No, I want to be ready for any future. Please let me know if you have any ideas.”
“Hmm… There are only two ways that come to mind at the moment.”
Agnes’ face gained color again. Bushke, on the other hand, tightened her mouth.