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    The war was over. The rumors spread to the capital faster than anything else. People whispered about the emperor’s army returning whenever they met. The ruler of the country returned after six years. However, the words that came out of their mouths varied.

    The emperor led all the fights to victory and returned. No, the Emperor died. That’s why the war ended. The emperor’s army was originally led by his commanders. The emperor is just a figurehead, and the title of the King of Slaughter belongs to someone else. And so on.

    As time passed, the falsehoods covered the capital more than the truth. As if someone had maliciously spread them in advance. And in the Minister’s Palace, where the rumors originated, an angry voice echoed in the awkward atmosphere.

    “The emperor is dead? Are you claiming to have seen the emperor’s death with your own eyes? How dare you?!”


    The decorative plate that was pushed by Norhox’s hand shattered with a sharp noise that seemed to tear the eardrums. The fragments of the plate scattered in all directions and even bounced off the legs of the attendant who had just arrived at the palace. He looked at Norhox, who was venting his anger at his report, with a bewildered look.

    “Yes, I clearly saw with my own eyes the emperor being crushed under a pile of rocks. He fell for the bait that looked exactly like Abel and walked right into the trap. There’s no way anyone could have survived… Ugh!”

    The attendant who was speaking couldn’t avoid the flying candlestick and let out a groan. Although he turned his head to avoid it, his forehead was torn, and blood flowed down his face. Clutching his wounded forehead with his hand, he gently asked the enraged Norhox.

    “Why on earth are you doing this….”

    “Why am I doing this? Ask that idiotic look of yours!”

    With a scream, the sound of objects falling and breaking echoed throughout the room once again. Norhox couldn’t control his anger and approached the attendant, seething with rage. In his hand was an important letter he had received that morning. The sender was the son of a relative who had been planted as the commander of the 3rd Battalion.

    “The emperor you claim to have seen crushed to death under the rocks is currently leading his army back here. Alive and well.”

    Norhox spat out the words through gritted teeth, and the attendant’s face turned deathly pale. He couldn’t believe it. He had definitely seen countless rocks fall from the cliff, and he had seen the emperor beneath them. Even if the emperor had tried to escape the falling rocks, he had already been deep within the trap, unable to avoid all of them. The enemy king had even joked about it being the grave of Karas, looking at the mountain of rocks. The attendant barely shook his head, still facing the enraged Nohox.

    “Th-that can’t be true. I wasn’t the only one who saw Karas die. The enemy king saw it too, just like me.”

    “The enemy king who became an exhibit after having his head cut off?”

    His head… cut off?! The attendant’s eyes widened in shock, and he felt as though his breath had stopped. He had rushed all the way from the Crimson Valley without resting, eager to deliver the joyous news of the Emperor’s death. He deliberately didn’t send any messenger birds because he thought his achievements would be diminished if he announced it in advance. Naturally, he had expected a grand reward waiting for him at the palace, but instead, he found only Nohox’s fury.

    “How on earth did you handle the situation?! Karas is alive and well. Moreover, he killed the enemy king and led all the wars to victory!”

    Though Norhox repeated the same words, the attendant still couldn’t believe it. However, someone else appeared to confirm his words were true.

    “And by now, they should be near the original borders.”

    A calm voice from the doorway added an explanation.

    “The news of the emperor’s return has already spread throughout to the capital.”

    Truyde, who had been standing in the doorway for some time, entered the room and crossed the messy floor strewn with broken items. He looked at Norhox and twisted his lips.

    “Fortunately, thanks to your quick actions in believing the emperor’s death, negative rumors about the emperor are spreading.”

    Truyde, who looked back at the attendant again, asked him as if it was strange.

    “But did you really see the emperor being crushed by the rocks?”

    “Yes, I definitely saw it with my own eyes.”

    “Did you also see his body?”

    “Well, that…”

    “So, you ran here excitedly claiming that the emperor was dead without even confirming his body.”

    Although it was a quieter voice compared to Norhox, it felt like a harsher rebuke to the attendant. Truyde smiled as he scanned the trembling attendant up and down.

    “You seem to think that the emperor’s survival over the past six years was just a matter of luck. However, you should have confirmed his head was cut off before you came here.”

    The attendant finally realized the reality and knelt down on the floor.

    “I, I have committed a sin worthy of death.”

    The question of how the emperor came back to life did not occur to the attendant anymore. His forehead, which was wounded, did not even hurt. It was a situation where his neck could be severed at any moment. However, no matter how much he lowered his head, the anger between the two did not dissipate. Especially Norhox, who still couldn’t control his anger, threw the letter he was holding onto the floor.

    “D*mn it! How could you fail so miserably that Karas is still alive? And he even gave me the order to prepare a Regas! Do you know what that means? Huh? It’s a mockery. He’s rubbing our failure in our faces, showing off! D*mn it, and he specifically wants a Regas with blond hair and green eyes? It’s a useless command meant to insult me! This is all your fault!”

    Finally, Norhox drew his sword. However, he stopped his movement as the attendant’s desperate words came out of his mouth.

    “If, if it’s someone with blond hair and green eyes… it’s him!”


    Norhox narrowed his eyes and demanded a clarification, the attendant nodded his head frantically.

    “Th-there was someone who came with Karas into the trap. He was a very beautiful person with blond hair and green eyes, and he jumped into the trap first to distract us. It was as if Karas was throwing him as bait as if he had already known about the trap beforehand.”

    “Bait? Are you sure Karas was with someone?”

    As Truyde showed interest, the attendant looked up at him with a pleading gaze.

    “Yes, I’m sure. I was also surprised that Karas brought someone with him…. Ah, the blond man was also crushed under the pile of rocks. It’s,it’s the truth.”

    Truyde turned his sharp eyes towards Norhox. Norhox’s eyes narrowed as he listened to the attendant’s words with a furrowed brow.

    “Perhaps it’s not such a useless command after all.”

    At Truyde’s words, Norhox glared at the attendant again.

    “Karas, who had no interest in anyone, brought a beautiful person with green eyes and blond hair with him….”

    Muttering to himself, Norhox dismissed the attendant away with a harsh tone.

    “Leave the palace. It’s better not to show your face near the palace until I call for you. Do you understand?”

    The attendant, relieved by the fact that his life was spared, ran away as if he were crawling on the ground. Truyde asked Norhox, who seemed bothered by something, about the blond person who was said to be by the emperor’s side.

    “Shouldn’t we ask more about the blond person who was said to be by the emperor’s side?”

    “Hmm, why bother talking about the bait that was buried under that pile of rocks? What’s more important is the emperor’s true intentions. Has he finally taken an interest in someone or is he merely mocking us? Or…”

    Norhox smirked as he looked at Truyde.

    “Perhaps, it could be a small revenge to take away the toy that is Duke Truyde’s taste.”

    Truyde’s eyes narrowed, but Norhox added in a calm voice.

    “It is a well-known fact that those who want to catch your attention, the real power of the country, have almost gathered all the blond young men with green eyes over the past six years. Even among those who enter Regas, there are no green-eyed blonde man to be found. Naturally, even the emperor, from his distant battlefield, might have taken an interest, wondering if there’s something special about a Regas with blond hair and green eyes.

    Truyde’s expression briefly turned cold, but soon turned into a gentle smile.

    “Specialness, huh. Lord Norhox, have you found it? Recently, I heard that a Regas, whom you cherish, is a blond person with green eyes. Ah, right. Since you couldn’t bring him out, I guess you couldn’t find anything special about him. Or perhaps, you don’t have the money to bring him out.”

    This time, Norhox’s eyes filled with anger. However, he could only grit his teeth at Truyde’s following words. The calm voice that flowed out touched on the flaws that Norhox had been trying to hide recently.

    “You wouldn’t have time to find something special when you can’t even afford a house for yourself, let alone give one to your beloved Regas. Isn’t that, right? You’re on the verge of losing your own house, after all.

    “Where did you hear such nonsense…?”

    “Is it truly nonsense that soon there will be two bankrupt families among the King’s Hearts? Especially when the emperor has returned safely, and you, a pathetic fool, have no way to stop those war profiteers?”

    At the sudden change in his tone, Norhox raised the sword in his hand, trying to strike back. Even though he gritted his teeth, he couldn’t help but tremble in humiliation.

    “How dare you….”

    “Yes, I’m speaking to you. Why should I show respect to someone who is obviously about to go bankrupt?”

    “Truyde, you b*stard!”

    Clang! Norhox couldn’t hold back any longer and drew his sword with a loud shout. However, Truyde’s laughter only grew louder even when the sharp blade was aimed at him.

    “Do you want to kill me? Me, who’s your only salvation?”

    Truyde took a step closer to Norhox, lowering his voice as if threatening.

    “Listen well. With the emperor’s return, there will be no one to help you. The other King’s Hearts will be too busy protecting their own interests, so don’t even dream about seeking their aid. Understand? Your only chance to survive is through me. I’m the only one who can kill the emperor.”

    Norhox, still clenching his teeth, glared at Truyde. But Truyde, seemingly unconcerned, continued to smile.

    “I’ll give you one chance. Kneel before me right now. Then I’ll leave you with at least a roof to shelter from the night dew.”

    Norhox remained motionless, gripping his sword like a statue, but Truyde could clearly see him trembling. In fact, Norhox’s pupils were shaking like waves. Truyde laughed inwardly as he watched him. The balance of power held by the five families from an equal position will soon eventually collapse. And he will be the one to trample on everyone who has fallen. With one hand on the emperor and the other on the King’s Heart.


    As Norhox’s sword fell to the ground and his body collapsed, Truyde smiled, his eyes narrowing in satisfaction.

    ⊹˚. ♡.𖥔 ݁ ˖ ⊹˚. ♡.𖥔 ݁ ˖

    Abel listened to Melmond’s awkward explanation while the butler bandaged his wounds and wrapped a fresh bandage. He listened to the reason about why Karas wouldn’t let him go out without covering his face, even on the ship.

    “Um, so you see. Somehow your appearance came up in front of the Commander-in-Chief, and it was mentioned that your beauty attracts a lot of attention from the soldiers, which could interfere with their duties.”

    Abel’s mouth hung half open. He had already gotten used to his small and weak body. However, being called ‘beautiful’ always felt like it was about someone else. To someone who had lived his whole life carefree as ever, the idea that his looks could disrupt duties and missions was completely foreign. He was not even used to his face because he rarely looked in the mirror. But what came next from Melmond’s mouth was even more surprising.

    “Moreover, your appearance…”


    Melmond, who was surprised by Abel’s reaction, turned his gaze to the empty space with an embarrassed expression.

    “If someone sees you, their expectations will rise and it will cause discord in their family… and thus have a significant impact on the country’s development, ahem.”

    Even when he said it for the second time, it was still embarrassing. Melmond finished with a forced cough and concluded while looking at Abel.

    “Anyway, your appearance poses such risks. So, you must always cover it.”

    The butler had already rewrapped the bandages, but Abel held his arm in the air and muttered absentmindedly.

    “You’re joking, right?”



    “Haha, hahaha. Come on, you must be joking, right?”

    Abel, who had become frozen, suddenly burst into laughter, unable to believe Melmond’s response. However, neither the butler nor Melmond laughed along. Instead, their expressions became more serious.

    “I’m talking about you. This isn’t something to laugh about.”

    When Melmond pointed it out, the butler also chimed in.

    “That’s right. Young master, you need to take your appearance more seriously. It’s dangerous to go around with your bare face exposed.”

    Abel fell into a daze again.

    It’s dangerous to walk around with his face exposed. He had heard that a few times before his reincarnation. Back then, it was literally dangerous, but he still walked around with a big smile. Eventually, even the children who cried when they saw him started to smile back.

    But now, to hear the same thing because he’s beautiful? And that the only solution was to cover his face? It made him feel even more uncomfortable.

    At least before, he didn’t have to cover his face.

    When Abel slumped his shoulders in frustration, Melmond and the butler exchanged worried glances.

    “Do you hate covering your face? Because it’s stifling?”

    Melmond asked on behalf of them both. Abel weakly shook his head.

    “No. It’s just that I keep receiving more help.”

    Then he looked up and faintly smiled. To others, it seemed more like a sad expression rather than a smile.

    “I’ve gotten used to having a weak body and constantly fainting. So much so that at some point, I began to take receiving help for granted. Moreover, I started to think of myself as weak. Mentally as well.”

    Melmond and the butler could not say anything to Abel. They couldn’t exactly tell him to ignore his weak body and act otherwise. Abel seemed to realize that the atmosphere had become awkward because of him, so he quickly added with a chuckle.

    “But now that the inflammation of my wound is subsiding, all I have to do is drink the snake wine and get better, right?”

    “Yes, while drinking snake wine….”

    Melmond, who had nodded in agreement, suddenly stopped talking as if something had occurred to him. Drinking the snake wine wasn’t a problem, but if he did, wouldn’t the person who’s also using the same room as him see that alluring sight?

    Then came the question from last night. The bed!

    “Ah! How did you sleep last night, exactly?!”

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