Elven Forest (21)
“You’re back, Your Highness. Oh, you have some grass on the corner of your mouth.”
Lucia cheerfully hugged me and then gently picked the grass off my face. Honestly, I felt something was off when I woke up.
“Why do I randomly have the smell of grass in my mouth…? Did I chew on grass while I was sleeping?” I mused.
The White Deer King was also asleep. She must’ve been absolutely exhausted since she didn’t sleep last night and got hurt. I stretched my back out, as sleeping on the straw hurt my back. A maid came over to take my cloak. Lucia nimbly and jovially hugged my arm: “Let’s go. Let’s go and eat, Your Highness. We don’t have many peaceful days left, but we’ll get to have a good rest for the last few days.”
“Yeah, I don’t want to think about what recently happened, either. It was just too much…”
I sighed. I rubbed my head then Lucia’s. Lucia flicked her short her: “I’m not a kid anymore; stop rubbing my head!”
I continued rubbing Lucia’s head and chortling: “You don’t like, this, Lucia?”
“It’s not that I don’t like it… It’s just… mm… it feels as though you’re treating me the same way as Vera and Nona… It doesn’t feel as though we’re husband and wife.”
“Okay, okay, okay.”
I kissed Lucia’s lips. Lucia lingered for a moment then wrapped her arms around my neck to respond. The two of us leaned on the wall in the imperial palace to kiss. I was planning to let go after a light kiss, but Lucia got hooked and clung to me.
“Kids, I know you two are in love with each other, but kissing in the corridor, where people are coming and going, without any misgivings is going to impact the imperial family’s dignity, and it’s not polite, is it?”
The two of us took a knife hand to the head each in the midst of our kiss. We separated as if we were electrocuted. Lucia quickly wiped her lips. Mommy Vyvyan stood before us with a smile. Lust still burning her face, Lucia quickly bowed to apologise: “Sorry, sorry, Your Highness… I promise to never do it again… I will not do it here again…”
I wasn’t sure if it was due to Mom’s hair and the flame that made her eyes concealed in the shadow of her hair… particularly frightening… Additionally, after what Mom did, I was even more afraid of her doing something… Anyhow, Mom then shifted her gaze on to me. I quickly bowed to apologise: “Sorry… Mom. We got carried away after my successful return. Sorry. I’ll be mindful next time.”
Mom pulled us into her embrace with a smile. She rubbed my head. With a smile, she expressed, “Good. As long as you know your mistakes, Mommy will forgive you. Let’s go, kids. While Lucia isn’t my biological daughter, you have married my son. Hence, I will treat you as my child. Let’s go eat now. Mommy specifically made many of your favourite dishes. Come.”
Lucia was panic-stricken in Mom’s arms. In fact, she didn’t even dare to budge. She still saw Mom as the majestic Queen.
Dinner was indeed delicious. It was tasty and blissful, which was typical of Mom’s cooking. I basically didn’t eat anything all day, so I had a big appetite. Mom happily caressed my head with her hand when she saw me chowing everything down. She pushed several plates over to me. She was eager to see me eat it all. I didn’t say anything because I was in a rush to eat. Mommy Vyvyan was busy serving me food, so she didn’t speak. Lucia, who had the privilege of sharing the dinner table with Vyvyan, was worried about failing to meet the etiquette requirements, leading to her being on edge. Nevertheless, it wasn’t awkward despite the silence until I set my fork and knife down.
After a maid cleared my utensils and served up wine, Mom finally spoke out: “Son, what do you want to do with the child? If you don’t have anything you want to do, Mommy thinks it’s better to lock her up. She is a dark elf, after all. Whatever you want to do, it’s better to lock her up in the dungeon first, for she really will die once she’s discovered.”
I nodded but didn’t comment for the reason that I didn’t know what to do with her. I said that I didn’t want to kill her, but, given that she did something that outrageous, she needed to be punished for it. It’s a good idea to lock her up for the meantime.
Lucia checked Mom’s mood and cautiously opined, “While the child did do that, I do not think that she has to be punished, does she? It did not result in any severe consequences, after all. She concocted the drug and used it in the forest, but nobody would go to that forest. In addition, the animals did not rush out of the forest. Had the white deer not been in the imperial palace, I do not think that anything would have happened.”
Mom responded with a small nod: “Son, what do you think? Frankly, she’s a dark elf, but I can’t bear to kill the last dark elf, since she wasn’t an evildoer who committed an atrocious crime.”
Mom then shook her head and rubbed her face. Her lips curved up: “How did I become sympathetic as my son would? That is what I have in mind right now, however. Son, what do you want to do? I’ll leave her fate up to you to decide.”
I scrubbed my hair with a helpless smile: “Don’t put it all on me now… How did it randomly end up on my plate? I do want to protect her. In saying that… this has to do with the Galadriel Tribe’s reputation. Thus, I can’t just outright save her. I think…”
“Oh yeah, if you don’t feel reassured, I have another report that I can share with you.”
Mom stood up. She picked up her cup of wine and knocked it straight back in one go. Elves were quite fond of wine, a trait which also applied to Mommy Vyvyan. She narrowed her eyes and put her cup down: “The child is actually connected to Mera. She didn’t mention it, but Mommy saw Mera’s face in her mind…”