A Saint who was Adopted by the Grand Duke - Chapter 80
Although this was the hand of the person she loathed the most in the world, Esther thought rationally and slowly accepted her approach.
“Yes, I also look forward to your kind cooperation.”
“Then I’ll have to go. I must prepare for the next order. It requires much effort.”
Rabienne seemed like a child thrilled for a family picnic.
The reason for this event was Cespia’s funeral, but not a tear could be spotted on her stunning face.
“Come to me whenever you wish to see me. I might not be able to meet you as I’m busy…but I’ll try to make time.”
Rabienne immediately turned around after achieving her purpose. Until the very end, she held the attitude of a person bestowing her favor upon Esther.
Esther’s face chilled as Rabienne left. She rubbed the hand that came into contact with Rabienne against her dress.
As she advanced towards the pillar, a person suddenly appeared.
“What? Did you know each other? You seem quite close, don’t you?”
“…Since when have you been here?”
There was an uninvited guest who arrived here before the two. He even recognized Esther.
“Right before you two. What’s wrong with your face? Do you remember me?”
“I do, Prince.”
Damon, with his arrogant and high-nosed character, was naturally difficult to forget once encountered, even if one didn’t strive to.
“I didn’t mean to eavesdrop, but it somehow just happened. Though, was it true that you knew Rabienne and that you were adopted from the temple?”
Esther’s expression hardened.
She thought so the last time, but he truly maintained a knack for asking rude questions so openly.
“…I’ll head back in case my father is waiting.”
Esther turned around and acted as if she didn’t hear his question. There was no need to be involved with this person any longer.
But within a few steps, Damon surpassed Esther and extended his arm to block her way.
“Wait a minute.”
Esther sighed as she continued staring at the arm obstructing her path.
“Is there anything else you wish to say?”
“Yes, will you marry me?”
She doubted her ears at his overly casual remark.
Esther blinked several times, flustered by his words.
“Exactly what do you mean?”
“I originally intended to engage with Rabienne. However, not only was she previously engaged to my brother, but she’ll also be incapable of marrying when she reaches adulthood.”
“So… I’m next?”
“You weren’t a candidate, to begin with, but I think it’ll be alright after seeing you again today. You’re not from noble blood, but being the Grand Duke’s daughter is enough to have the public explode.”
Esther gazed at Damon, her eyes full of pity.
A self-righteous person who thinks the world revolves around himself. He is similar to Rabienne in many different ways.
“I’m sorry, but I don’t like the idea.”
Esther looked Damon in the eye and stated her thoughts plainly.
Damon seemed overtaken with shock. Perhaps the boy didn’t think he would be rejected.
“Wow. Is this a topic someone would think to refuse? I’m Damon. I didn’t intend to say this, but… I’m going to become the Crown Prince soon.”
He whispered into Esther’s ear like a person conveying a secret. Esther panicked and fell from him.
“Find someone else.”
“…You really don’t like me?”
“It’s not because I dislike the Prince, I simply do not favor the thought of getting engaged. I am sorry.”
However, no matter how much she denied his proposal, Damon didn’t seem to listen.
“Your opinions don’t matter. I will speak to the Grand Duke directly.”
“Of course, then.”
Even if the Prince informed Darwin, he wouldn’t have permitted his bluff.
Esther was confident that Darwin would not disregard her will.
Damon’s arm slipped from the shock. He stood blankly.
Perhaps it was due to the unbound astonishment that Damon no longer held Esther from leaving.
“A chance like this doesn’t come often. Think carefully! I’ll send you a formal engagement soon.”
Instead, he shouted at Esther’s back as she continued. Of course, Esther never stopped to look back.
It was only after she entered the building that a sigh left her mouth.
‘How is Noah so different?’
Although they were both princes, their personalities differ entirely. She compared the brash Damon to Noah.
No matter how much she contemplated, Noah seemed a much more suited candidate for the title of Crown Prince than Damon.
To be specific, Damon had close relations to the temple, so if he became Emperor, he would contribute to the evil foundation.
‘Everything is bad, in many ways.’
Esther glanced back and shook her head. Her impression of Damon turned out to be the worst.
Damon fanned his scowling face. He had just been rejected by Esther.
“Can you believe it?”
Simply having the Grand Duke’s status covering her back did not change the fact she was adopted.
He couldn’t get it through his head. How could she treat him, a Prince, in such a way?
“So many young ladies wish to engage with me. Tch.”
Damon frowned before setting foot inside the temple.
He was instantly surrounded by Priests, his face still red from anger. Embarrassment rushed throughout his body.
In the meantime, he spotted Darwin nearby. Damon pondered a moment before approaching him familiarly.
“What is it?”
Even if they existed in the same space, it wasn’t necessary for them to converse. Darwin sent him an annoyed glance.
“It’s been a while. Although I ran into the Duke amidst the official meeting, I didn’t think I would be able to speak with him.”
“You seem to have a business. You may get to the point.”
Darwin swiftly cut Damon’s gibberish.
“You’re still the same. Alright. Then I’ll get to the point. I wish to engage with the daughter of the Grand Duke. What do you think?”
Unlike when he addressed Esther, his tone was polite.
However, Darwin’s eyes emitted a cold stance.
Damon flinched in response to Darwin’s obvious glare. He stepped back.
“It is as I said. In the past, the Grand Duke didn’t have a daughter, but now he does… She is also of the appropriate age.”
“I don’t understand how you came up with such an absurd idea. Unlike the Prince, I am not on friendly terms with the Temple.”
Darwin fiercely gazed at Damon, not caring to hide his negative feelings.
“I think now is the time to restore your terms. I will gladly serve as a stepping stone.”
In the end, he implied for Esther to be used as a means of politics. Darwin’s irritation reached its peak.
He took a step closer to Damon.
His sense of intimidation that had been obtained as a result of the war was not endurable for Damon, a prince who grew up like a greenhouse plant.
*TL/N: AHAHA, a greenhouse plant, PLEASE
Damon avoided Darwin’s gaze. Sweating profusely.
“Do you like my daughter?”
“Ah, I’ve seen her here and there a few times.”
Darwin calmly leaned to gaze at Damon. His large size appeared menacing.
“I am offended that you are suggesting an engagement lightly with such a heart. Am I a joke to you?”
Damon flusteredly shook his hands in a wild manner.
“Th-that is absolutely not the case. I simply favor the daughter of the Grand Duke…”
“Then be more polite. I will not tolerate your actions simply because you are a prince.”
Damon was still too young to negotiate with Darwin.
“I didn’t mean to make you uncomfortable. I was rude.”
“Yes. Be careful next time.”
Damon lowered his head to greet Darwin and fled the temple.
He could only breathe properly after leaving Darwin’s sight.
“Huff, I thought he was stabbing me with his eyes. Why’s he so scary?”
It was obvious to think that the Duke would be glad to have the child with unknown origins join in a political marriage.
He didn’t expect Darwin to react in such a way.
“I’ll have to approach him more carefully. I was too complacent.”
Damon condemned himself and resolved to adjust his plans in approaching Esther.
For Damon, who sought the title of Emperor, both the temple and power of the Grand Duke were too attractive for him to let go of.
Esther and Darwin achieved their objectives and left in the same wagon.
Each carriage arrived at the same time, but they decided to leave in one.
Esther glanced at Darwin from the side.
‘He’s been like this since before.’
Darwin’s expression stood unfamiliar from the moment they parted.
Darwin cleared his throat as he noticed Esther’s uncomfortable figure.
“Aren’t you tired? It’ll be a while before we return, so lie down and close your eyes.”
“It’s alright. What happened earlier?”
Darwin opened his mouth after pondering a moment.
“Prince Damon offered an engagement with you. Have you two ever met?”
Esther frowned as soon as she heard Damon’s name. Darwin didn’t miss that small change.
“I ran into him twice by chance. That’s all. He told me that too, but I didn’t think he’d approach father right away.”
“Your opinion is the most important thing to me.”
“I don’t want to.”
Esther shook her head violently, her face teary.
How difficult it was to earn her current lifestyle. She couldn’t and didn’t want to imagine leaving her dear home anytime in the future.
“Can’t I just keep living with father?”
Darwin’s lips slightly parted at Esther’s whiny attitude. He seemed truly moved.
“Of course, you can. That’s a good idea. You’ll only suffer when you leave the house. It’s better not to get married.”
Esther happily leaned her face against Darwin’s arm. She felt more relieved hearing it from him.
“But isn’t it good for father if I’m engaged to the Prince?”
“Well, I am satisfied with my title as the Grand Duke. I just wish for you and the twins to grow up well.”
A gentle smile formed on Darwin’s lips. It was his warm appearance as a father in which only Esther recognized.
Esther recalled the day she left from Temple to Tersia.
She couldn’t help but laugh as she recalled her absurd thoughts of how Darwin would throw her away somewhere along the way.
Esther leaned and stared up at Darwin. Her pink eyes curved into beautiful crescents.
“Father, thank you.”