The Abandoned Empress Chapter 323 - TAE 323
The Abandoned Empress Chapter 323
Update 4 months ago
So, I was embarrassed when Duke Jena furtively asked me about her. I had never thought of any other woman than Lady Monique because her status as my fiance was decided when
she was born. I took it for granted, no matter how much I hated her. In other words, any other woman than Lady Monique was not an option I could take.
Was it because of that? Given how much I hated her, it would be natural that I kick her out of the palace right away, I couldn’t do so because I was concerned about the forces that supported her, but also I felt a strong rejection of my toying with the idea of accepting another woman.
So, I could not imagine myself attending an official event with a woman other than her, let alone another man standing next to her.
So, when Duke Jena asked me that question, I cut him off, saying that I would give it a thought.
I blankly looked at Jiun, who came running to me recklessly, complaining about her learning. Her behavior was so ridiculous, but I decided to put up with it, thinking to myself that she acted like that because she felt comfortable with me. I had a lot of work to do at the moment, but as she kept begging me to get out, on the one hand, and I was troubled because of my father’s critical condition, I put down the pen silently.
While letting her endless stories in one ear and out the other, I walked through the garden with her. When I breathed in the fresh air, I felt like I got some of my heavy load off my chest a bit.
When I was walking along with a lighter heart, I suddenly saw something silvery moving among the trees. I stopped walking on the spot. As if she also heard Jiun babbling on, Lady Monique turned to me while walking near the tree.
“I’m honored to see you, the little sun of the empire.”
While staring at me politely, she showed due manners to me.
I made a hollow smile when I found her not swayed at all even if she saw me taking a walk with someone who was not my fiancee. Confirming her indifferent attitude, I felt like my lingering affection for her was gone for good.
What did I expect from such a woman? To her, I might be only a political partner that she wanted to use me for the political interests of her faction.
She remained indifferent to me when I prohibited her from meeting the emperor, when I notified her that I would attend a party with another woman, when I announced the breakoff of my engagement with her, and when I got married to another woman and decided to take her as my concubine, not empress.
Her face with no expression, her empty eyes and her flat voice. I almost got goosebumps, watching her treating even her father coldly. She was no longer a human. She was only a doll working for the political interests of her faction.
However, Jiun was different. She laughed, cried, got angry and threw tantrums. She was like a real person who showed a clear change in mood. I was annoyed when she made outrageous or childish remarks, but I could laugh it away without any difficulty.
I thought I loved her. I believed it was certainly love, even if I could not know it exactly because I had never been loved. Unlike the doll-like woman made only for the emperor, I thought Jiun only looked at me, so it was natural that she loved me.
I don’t know when it started, but strangely enough, I often got annoyed and angry. I couldn’t figure out why, but I got more irritated when I saw my concubine, Lady Monique. I really hated her indifferent look as well as her lackluster eyes. Perhaps I was more annoyed because I felt she looked at me like the late marquise who she resembled so much.
As I was already on edge, I often acted recklessly even before I organized my jumbled thoughts. I even cut a servant who rubbed me the wrong way. Despite that, I felt satisfied and even joyful rather than thinking my punishment was excessive.
Stopping by the Royal Knights Division building, I stopped for a moment when I heard several royal knights talking to each other. Stopping Earl Penril who came out to greet me, I listened to them silently. I was speechless when they said that although Lady Monique’s status was concubine, she was like the queen, and that she had a strong backing unlike the current empress who had no support base at all once she lost favor with the crown prince.
How cunning she is! I told her to help Jiun, who was lacking as the empress in many ways, but she had been acting like the real empress until now?
I made a feigned smile at a young knight’s confident remarks and other knights’ nodding at him.
Oh yes, the next emperor should be produced by the Monique family because the concubine from the Monique family is clearly different from me who had a commoner’s blood and Jiun whose family background was questionable.
It looked like even Monique thought of herself like that. And that’s why she was ignoring Jiun, who was superior to her in rank.
Duke Lars found fault with me, while pretending to act politely.
I was dumbfounded to hear that. How cunning and persistent she is! Not content with controlling the women’s palace and making a fool of the empress, she even pressed the duke to have me sleep with her?
I gnashed my teeth in spite of myself. Is the pro-emperor faction treating me like a stallion? Well, they wouldn’t care about my intentions at all because they are only concerned about producing the next emperor from their faction. To them, I am only a nominal ruler as well as a stallion to succeed the imperial family, nothing more or less.
I made a feigned smile. What did I expect from them? Anyway, the only ruler they trusted was the late emperor. If I had not been the only successor, they would never have served a dumb man like me. Even if there was another successor than me, they probably would not care at all.
The same was true of the concubine. She was a woman made only for the emperor, so she would have embraced anybody if some other man than me had succeeded to the throne.
When I went to the empress’s palace with a troubled heart, I saw Jiun crying. She said it was all her fault and that she was sorry for interfering with me and Lady Monique. Then she asked me to go to Lady Monique. Curious why she said that, I called a maid serving her to explain what’s going on.
She revealed that she had been to Concubine Monique’s palace today. The moment I heard it, I blew my top. I clearly warned her not to approach Jiun. Did she now go as far as disobeying my order?
I went to see Lady Monique to give her the last warning. Despite my threatening attitude, she was unusually composed and calm. Despite my dishevelled outfit, she arrogantly asked me to respect her opinion, with her perfect posture. The way she looked down at me and spoke to me as if to remind me that she was different from me who had a commoner’s blood was testing my patience and reason.
Oh, you were a woman like that from the beginning. Unlike me, who was always ignored because I was clumsy, you were always praised for your excellence. You received everyone’s love when I was craving for their attention. Nevertheless, you just focused on what you were doing, while belittling everything I could not have despite my hard efforts.