Daughter of the Emperor Volume 1 Chapter 12
“This is where you must survive. So how about it? You like it?”
‘Ah, this crazy fucker.
There no answer (cure) for you.’
I internally sighed.
‘Even if there is no answer(cure) for you how could it be to the point where there really was no answer at all?’
I am at loss for words.
I feel as if someone just simply handed me a pen and asked me to solve the seven greatest unsolved mathematical problems.
As we looked into each other’s eyes Keitel smiled wordlessly.
Looking at his smile made me want to say something to him and I automatically opened my mouth, but before I could say anything I was quickly interrupted by a knock on the door.
The knocking sound echoed in the room.
“Your majesty, Earl Cesklov is requesting an audience with you.”
The servant voiced.
That seemed to serve as some kind of excuse.
Keitel looked at me for a moment and then he put on his “mask”. His face changed instantly. It was as if he didn’t put on his “mask” properly for a moment as you could see an icy expression instantly spread across his real face.
I guess it’s the kind of “mask” that could envelop your whole face.
I had no idea who Earl Cesklov was, but I did recognize the face of the servant who came to open the door of the study as he politely lowered his head.
Keitel let out a low breath.
It was more like a quick breath then a sigh to me.
He quickly walked to my bassinet and lowered me down. He also didn’t forget to pet my head for no reason before leaving.
‘Am I a dog?’
I wanted to stick it to him for some reason.
The way he patted made me wonder whether he was patting a pet or was he caressing his child. I honestly didn’t know.
“Just play here by yourself for a moment. I will be back soon.”
I nodded my head.
Then I plopped my whole body down instantly to give him the message, “Fuck off.”
I wanted to play with my toys but Keitel had taken all my toys away and they were no longer in the bassinet. Instead, they were all sprawled around the floor out of my reach.
Keitel laughed at me one more time and left the room. No, to be more accurate he went back into his study.
The creak the door made as it shut echoed throughout the room.
I played around with my fingers.
When I was big I used to look at babies’ hands and wonder, “How could that be a hand? They are just insisting it is a hand when it’s so tiny.”
But now that I was a baby, it was different.
I felt this hand was just right and didn’t feel small to me at all.
I guess this is what you call a matter of perspective.
In fact, I felt Nanny or Keitel had unnecessarily large hands for some reason.
I won’t bother wondering why those words came out that way.
‘Ah, When can I make human words that can actually be understood?
Why is it that I can understand words but can’t actually say any?
Am I a mute?
I heard kids learn fast, so I should be able to speak soon right?
As I waited for the day I can speak clearly, I laughed cheekily.
That’s right, just as nanny said, I need to talk a lot to widen my vocabulary.
Our Nanny’s sense about childcare knowledge is always right! Yup, that’s right!’
I felt I was exaggerating my reasoning a bit but I didn’t care.
I will talk a lot, listen a lot and then talk some more.
Then one day, I will like to be able to tell my crazy dad, “You are a seriously crazy bastard.”
‘Ah, why is it so hard to pronounce “Crazy bastard”?
Then should I put this word for later use and simply use the word idiot instead?
Idiot.’ (T/N she thinking about Keitel)
For some reason, I was playing by myself by lifting both my feet with my hands when I heard a crunching sound as the door opened.
It was because of my baby supplies that were near the door.
‘What is it? Is a maid coming in?’
I quickly lost interest and naturally turned my head back to my original spot. After all, a maid’s job is usually all the same, there was not a big difference. She would probably clean the room or throw out the trash.
In this particular case, she would have to clean the messy room the damn Emperor made but that was about it. It was all that kind of work after all.
Instead of something like that I was more invested in my feet.
‘Can I raise them?!’
That was something you couldn’t do when you grew up since your body grew bigger. Your arms and legs were too long for it. If you were inflexible you couldn’t do it too.
‘It is… biting your own feet!’
When you were a baby, everyone has the famous picture of biting your own foot. I too have a picture of myself as a baby biting my own feet, but when I grew bigger my flexibility went to shit so I watched fascinated by other babies doing it wondering how could they do it?
That position required your arms and legs to be short and you had to be flexible or you couldn’t even make the attempt. After a short time thinking about it, I decided to try.
This position actually worked, I was stretching with my arms but it didn’t pull at my hips.
‘A young child’s flexibility is really something else!’
I was moved and getting excited by my self when at that moment I saw a dark shadow on top of me. I instinctively looked up at the sudden darkness and then I froze in that exact position.
I thought it was a maid but he was not a maid.
The guy who walked closer to me was wearing a servant’s bland uniform that didn’t stand out in the royal palace and in that man’s hand was a knife.
I couldn’t even breath, my face instantly paled and I froze.
As soon as the cutlery with its shiny white light entered my sight, my heart fell into my stomach and my whole body shook with fear.
‘I had forgotten. No, I thought I had forgotten it.’
Even when I was in another body, my body reacted automatically to fear. My hands were shaking like a quaking aspen tree and my mouth ended up letting go of the feet I was biting on.
The man was not a servant and he definitely wasn’t a maid either.
He was a guest who came to kill me.
My past memories resurfaced.
A white knife.
A red hood.
The hand that stabbed her continuously without any care or mercy.
‘Is it repeating, is this how I die again?’
I couldn’t even bring myself to cry.
I was completely white with fear and couldn’t bring myself to make any noise.
I heard that if you are paralyzed with fear you really can’t move or take any actions because you are, well, “paralyzed”… I guess that turned out to be true.
If I cry, Keitel would come.
If only I could cry for my daddy next door to save me, yet I could not bring myself to cry.
I could only tremble and wait for my death to approach me soon.
“I am sorry to say this, but you need to die.”
The man raised his hand and that was all I could bear to see and I flinched, closing my eyes.
Somebody, please! I can’t die like this again!
Is this how I die? I have now finally mastered the art of sitting up and after all that I have to die here meaninglessly?
In this way?’
I grabbed the tips of my fingers that had gone cold and called earnestly for someone inside my mind and prepared myself for the inevitable pain by biting down on my lips.
Through the lips starting hurting it couldn’t be helped.
Yet, no matter how long I waited, the knife didn’t come down.
I found myself opening my eyes unconsciously.
The assassin tried to quickly lower the knife into me.
But something flew by even faster than him.
The guy let out a scream of pain as he grabbed onto his arm.
What flew by was a short knife.
As I heard something being opened, I struggled around to get up on my feet. Then I sat down, leaning against the safety guard and raised my head to see what was going on with my own two eyes.
Keitel, who had taken out his sword somehow, was coming towards me.
‘How in the world did he enter the room?’
I couldn’t figure it out.
In a flash, he quickly slashed the guy’s back and his head off.
Blood splattered everywhere in the room.
Red and warm liquid splashed onto my cheek.
“A guy like this.”
Keitel raised his head.
In his eyes was the bloodthirstiness I always saw hidden in the corner of his eyes.
It was now blatantly there on his face for all to see, and it was even more terrifying then I thought possible.
“How did he enter the royal palace?”
Somehow, a servant I had never seen before opened the door that connected to the study.
Keitel shook his sword clean and ordered in a cold voice as the blood drops splattered everywhere
“Call the Royal guards (Household troops).”
Then Keitel let go of his sword.
At that moment I suspected that there was something wrong with my eyes.
As soon as Keitel let go of his sword, the sword melted like snow in the air and disappeared. There wasn’t even any sound of it falling or disappearing.
There was nothing left behind.
“Clean the corpse.”
After Keitel coldly gave his orders, he walked straight towards me. On his way towards me, he stepped on an arm but he didn’t seem to care.
The metallic smell of blood was in the air.
I scrunched my face as the rusty smell of blood covered my entire nostrils. It was strong enough to make me almost gag.
Keitel lightly lifted me and laughed as I made all kind of faces.
“Didn’t I tell you?”
It was a bright smile with a hint of contempt.
“This place is disgusting to the point that it is tiresome.”
I froze once again.
This time it wasn’t due to fear but from the coldness that this man seemed to emanate.
‘How deep was this disgust?
How thick was his contempt?’
I didn’t know where to start or how to navigate through all this darkness.
I swallowed back my dry mouth.
“I just hope you won’t be too surprised by this.”
He stroked my cheek.
The blood that was splattered on my cheek was now on his hand
“It would be troublesome if you got surprised just by this.”
Cerera was holding my shivering body. My body was shaking all over to the point that it was pitiful. Cerera’s worry and shock was contagious and made me scared all over again.
I was too shocked to realize the reality of what was going on around me, but now I felt something.
My cheek could feel Cerera’s soft skin and it was hot.
The trembling that remained in my body and the trembling I could feel coming from Cerera’s body became one, driving me into an unspeakable feeling.
“What should I do? Her body is ice cold.”
I honestly didn’t know why Cerera was shivering so much when it all happened to me.
If I said that the memories of the white knife that were engraved into my brain were scarier then the sight of all that blood that would be a lie.
If I said that I didn’t find it all horrifying that would also be a lie.
If I had been a real baby that didn’t understand what was going on, it would have been better, but my previous death overlapped with this current incident and had shaken me to my very core, leaving me in a very bad state.
It had been terrifying.
I realized how bad it was as I stared at my paled fingertips.
It was white and ice cold.
A child’s body temperature was normally higher than an adult so I often sweat a lot. This was the first time my body had become this cold.
Cerera who was holding me also realized this fact.
A loving voice called out to me.
When I heard that voice, only then did I come to the realization I was still alive.
Only then I felt relief.
As if I had finally let go of a burden that I was struggling to carry on my own, I tried not to cry.
However, at that moment, my tear ducts decided to finally let it go.
The tears that blurred my sight was hot.
My throat hurt too.
The muscles that were aching by themselves without my knowledge were crying out in pain to me.
‘So it is possible for mental anguish to show its effects upon the body…’
Somehow, Cerera’s face became blurry.
When it became blurry to the point that I could no longer make out her green eyes, I burst out crying.
‘It was so scary, really really scary!
I had wished to be saved with a heart of a drowning man grabbing onto to a plank.
I had wished to be saved at that moment and in the past, I also had wished in the same way.
I wanted someone to save me.
I didn’t want to die, I called out earnestly to be saved.
However, not a single person tried to come over and help even as they all stood there listening to my cries for help and my pleas to be spared.’ (T/N she talking about her first death)
The cries of a baby were really sorrowful, the sounds of my cries were heartbreaking even to me. I cried that sorrowfully.
Cerera hugged me tightly and shared the warmth of her body as she tried to appease me. She patted my back as she whispered to me not to cry. Then she wiped my tears away and gave me small kisses all over my cheeks.
The kisses were slowly calming me down and I gave a sigh of relief.
This was proof I was still alive.
That was proof I had survived.
This very air I was breathing was all proof I was still alive.
I had thought that I would turn into a cold carcass. The death I had wished for was not that kind of death.
I had feelings of being wronged because I had died in that way.
Then, when I opened my eyes I was in this body.
If I said that I hadn’t felt absurd that would be a lie, and to top it all off, I was born of all things as the daughter of a tyrant! If I looked back on it, it was just six months full of dissatisfaction from that point.
‘She’ had felt that she had been so wronged during that time.
“She is crying to death.”
A pair of red eyes looked down on me.
He came in after I could somewhat see in front of me since I cried all my tears away.
Our daddy, my father, Keitel Agrigent.
The sound of crying slowly got smaller.
I let out tear-filled coughs since my throat was sore from crying so much, but Cerera wiped my tears gently with a cloth each time to make sure no marks remained.
I could feel her consideration as she tried not to wipe too hard.
‘Thank you, mother.
As usual, my mom is the best!
If mom wasn’t here who could I stick myself to?’
Only after I sobbed out my heart could I finally stop crying.
“How much can a baby remember ?’
For some reason, Keitel’s hand movements were soft.
‘That’s right, do you feel sorry for me too? Thank you.
For your pity.
I didn’t dislike the cold hand that touched my forehead.’
I did feel a bit awkward.
I mean, I know what this hand did earlier in front of my eyes.
He ended a life without an ounce of mercy with that hand.
‘Without a moment of hesitation…
Was it because it came down to that man’s life or my life?
I didn’t feel like Keitel did anything wrong.
I don’t care if that makes me a bad person.
I was just so grateful to him for coming at the right time as if he was answering my silent cries for help. Even if you are a crazy bastard you really are still my father.
Alright, I acknowledge you as my dad!
Since you saved my life I will coolly accept you as my father.’
I looked up at him as his hand fell from my hair to my cheek.
He wiped the tears from my eyes away.
Even I could see a clear teardrop that got on the end of his finger.
My damp eyelashes felt uncomfortable.
I don’t know why I felt so wronged…
‘Why did I feel so dissatisfied?
I can’t even remember now.
I just remember just the fact I felt that way, And…
Ah, I have no more energy.
Did I cry too much?’
At that moment Keitel took the finger with my teardrop and placed it near his mouth.
I could see his red tongue lick the end of his finger.
Afterward, he gave me a small smile.