The Reason Why We Shouldn't Get Married - Chapter 2
* * *
Diana’s voice was so desperate.
“Diana…. That wound on your chest must be from when you fell earlier.”
“It’s just that the maids haven’t seen it until now. Come now, Diana, it was only a nightmare.” The Grand Duchess had a sweet look on her face. She whispered towards her, taking her daughter’s tiny hand in her own. “Philadelphia will protect you, so you needn’t be so afraid. Alright?”
Diana forced herself to nod.
“That’s my good daughter.” The Grand Duchess kissed Diana on the forehead, wiping away her tears. Then, she raised Diana’s hand. “Now, you need to wash your face again. You’ll need to go out after breakfast, so you should get ready. Can you do that for me?”
Diana quietly listened, kissing her mother on the cheek. Only then did the Grand Duchess smile, believing herself to have properly calmed Diana, allowing her to return to her normal thoughtful self. Leaving the Grand Duchess’ bedroom, Diana wiped away her tears, but the remnants were still there.
She couldn’t give up like this. She was given a second chance and she would not allow it to go to waste.
But even her father, who usually trusted her, and her brothers who always took her side, even if they teased her for being ugly, couldn’t be convinced. They didn’t believe Diana’s claims that she’d come back from the future. They only comforted her, believing this to be a simple case of pre-wedding jitters.
Well………I wouldn’t believe me either.
They all loved Diana, so they didn’t treat her like she was crazy at least. By the time Diana returned to her bedroom, she looked very defeated from Jesse’s perspective. She’d walked around all morning without getting ready, but to no avail.
Just as Jesse was thinking about how she could cheer Diana up, she suddenly stood up, a renewed look of bravery in her.
If this doesn’t work, I’ll just try a head on attack!
Truthfully, Iandrus didn’t really like Diana all that much either. In fact, between like and dislike, he leaned more towards dislike. Especially during their childhood, he would ignore everything Diana said and would often frown whenever he saw her.
His nickname ‘The Gentle Prince, Iandrus’ didn’t apply when it came to Diana. If Diana was fifteen, then that meant Iandrus was around that age, too. So, if she were to say she was from the future in front of Iandrus, he’ll think she’s gone crazy and immediately tell the rest of the royal family they should break up the engagement.
There was no chance they’d welcome such an unstable girl as a princess and the prince’s wife. And although they’d take her claim of being from the future as a lie despite being true, Diana would still be able to avoid getting married to Iandrus. Maybe she’d even be stigmatized as being insane.
But that was fine. Diana had no intention of getting married again anyway.
She wasn’t confident she could forget about the child she lost as she held her new baby in her arms. And she didn’t wish to repeat a marriage, where one’s anxiety and insecurities could eventually lead to their ruin. So she didn’t care what kind of label people put on her.
Fortunately, Diana’s brothers, older than her by five and seven years, were both already married. Soon enough, Diana would be expecting a nephew.
Even if Diana were to be ridiculed, no mark would be left on Philadelphia’s honor. With a smile on her face, she returned to her bathroom.
I don’t even need to put on that much of an act.
All she had to do was tell the truth. That way, Iandrus would think she’s completely lost it. Diana clenched her teeth. It starts today. After she meets Iandrus today, she’ll confide in him what she told her family. Even if her family didn’t believe her.
“What kind of dress would you like to wear today, young miss?” Asked the maids standing by her side. Diana was very opinionated, so she would often pick out her dresses on her own. Diana stared at herself reflected in the clear water. Her skin was as bright as the sun, unlike it had been in a long time.
“I want to wear a black dress.”
The color best suited for a bride was white. In the past, whenever Diana went to see Iandrus, she would wear a fancy, pearly white dress adorned with silver to express her excitement. The maids didn’t know what to do as they watched Diana mull over a black dress.
Black wasn’t necessarily a bad choice, but it was tradition to wear such a color at funerals. Sometimes, one could wear black at a party or a banquet, but the splendor of those dresses were unrivaled by what she would usually wear.
And it certainly wasn’t an appropriate color to wear now.
They’ll think she’s sick or something.
Or maybe a late puberty……?
The maids exchanged looks with one another.
“Are you sure you wish to wear black?” Jesse asked again.
“Yes, that’s right,” Diana replied firmly. The excitement of a new bride had left her long ago. Now, she only wished to express her grief. Diana never had the chance to mourn the death of her daughter.
She was such a good little girl, who loved Diana with all her heart from the moment she was born. Right until the very end, she was the only one on Diana’s side. Who continued to worry about her until the moment she took her last breath. Lost in thought, Diana played with her fingers.
But she was in the past and none of that meant anything now. It was unbelievable to think she was mourning the loss of a child who had not yet been born. And Diana intended to run away—far away from the fate her child warned her of.
In this world, she would never again meet that child.
That poor girl…. She could not allow her to be put to death again. Once was enough to endure such a cruel and terrible fate, so this time Diana would run away from Iandrus’ misfortune. That decision felt fair to her.
Eventually, Diana got the black dress she wanted.
Diana smiled brightly at the Grand Duchess, as if there were no problem. The woman burst into laughter as she watched Diana, walking down the stairs with her head held up high.
“Are you still planning on acting this way? I thought you decided not to be stubborn? Ah, don’t you understand your poor mother?” The Grand Duchess’ voice was filled with a mix of exhaustion and tenderness.
“No, I’ll do as my mother wishes. If Prince Iandrus accepts this marriage, that is.” Diana gave a meek reply. The Grand Duchess saw the will in her daughter’s eyes and sighed. She realized she didn’t have the will herself to fight. Eventually, the two of them entered the carriage together.
Looking out the window, Diana clenched her lips together.
* * *
Iandrus stared out the carriage window.
“Your Highness. Your Highness?”
“……..What are you calling me for?” Iandrus turned his head, his question sounding rather sulky. Cullen, having finally earned his attention, let out a long sigh.
“You’re acting absent-minded. What are you thinking about so deeply?”
“I’m not thinking about anything.”
“Doesn’t look like that to me. Ever since you last met the lady, she’s all you ever seem to think about nowadays.”
“…………I don’t think that’s weird.”
“It is. Before that, you kept saying you would never get married whenever she was brought up.”
“. . .”
Feeling his face flush, Iandrus turned his head away.
It had been a while since he’d gotten engaged to Diana. From the moment they were born, their future marriage had been decided. Iandrus was the second prince of the kingdom while Diana was the only daughter of the Grand Duke of Philadelphia.
Their marriage would strengthen the bonds between the royal family and Philadelphia, giving them the upper hand when dealing with volatile international situations.
But Iandrus wasn’t very fond of his fiancée. He didn’t even know her very well. Whenever he and Diana were seen together, all the nobles around their age poked fun at him. Not to mention how Diana herself always seemed kinda stuck up, as if she were already a princess. She must’ve been educated well on aspects of the royal family, thinking she knew him well.
How could he possibly bring himself to like Diana?
The Diana he’d met not long ago seemed different. She still seemed pretty haughty, like she did before, but her smile was different. She’d laugh and dance with that same smile and it made her look like a fairy. Compared to other girls her age, Diana was definitely the prettiest. She shone more brightly than anyone else.
And Iandrus was smart, so of course he could see that.
All the other noble boys appeared jealous of Iandrus for having the lovely Diana as his future bride. And because he was still only fifteen years old, he was at an age where he could still be swayed by the words of his peers.
And to be honest, Iandrus himself was…..
“……..It wasn’t because I hated her!”
“What are you talking about?”
“. . .”
Iandrus bit his lip. Cullen sighed again as he watched him, rendered utterly speechless.
“You must’ve just been embarrassed.”
“What? Absolutely not!”
“Sure.” Cullen gave a brief smile. “Our dear Prince is finally becoming an adult.”
“You’re only a year older than me!” Iandrus glared at Cullen, fanning his red ears with his hand.
“A year makes all the difference. How do you feel about meeting Lady Diana soon? Isn’t she going to get her wedding dress tailored today? They say brides are at their most beautiful when they wear their wedding dresses, right? Both of you are still young, but you never know…….”
“Ahem! What’s wrong with you? It’s just a dress.” Iandrus coldly cut his words off. But in comparison to how cold he was, Iandrus cleared his throat, his face red all the way down his neck.
‘Your marriage will determine the fate of this kingdom, Iandrus. Do you understand what your mother is saying?’
Iandrus would never marry Diana because he likes her.