Ruler Vol 5 Chapter 8

 


Author: Anit666

Editor: Weasalopes


【Sam’s POV】

 

“If you do not accept my proposal, I’ll kick you out of the Hero party, you know?”

Oh, threatening is it, then? Did she get swallowed in conceit just because I said that fighting by the side of Heroes has been my dream?

Good grief.

In cases such as these, the target being threatened- me in this particular case- would often get swept in their emotions. They would think something like, ‘Oh, so you want me to be your fiancé, right? I’ll show you just what it means to be my fiancée!’

And that’s where they fall into that trap. Now, is that the trap Cecile prepared for me? Or does she know better and this is just bait?

Time to find out.

I leaned into her ear and whispered back.

“That would be too unfortunate. Seems like I have no choice.” I could almost see her smile widening. “It was nice working with you. Until next time.”

I drew back with that.

Yes, this was the strategy I chose. I’ll do the opposite of what she expects of me to do; I’ll go along with her threats and withdraw from the Hero Party myself. Of course, this strategy is based on the assumption that Cecile would be unwilling to let go of me, especially because I have a connection with Solomon.

Now, what would be her move?

“Wait a moment!”

However, the one that stopped me wasn’t Cecile. It was Cryus, one of my competitors for Cecile’s hand. In other words, he was the other suitor.

“How may I help you?”

He made his way towards me and stood in front of me, as if blocking my way.

“Where do you think you’re going?”

“Uhhh, back to travelling? I mean, the Third Princess hasn’t really left a choice for-”

Shit.

As Cryus’ body started trembling, a grin belonging to a victor arose on Cecile’s face. In other words, I had fallen into her trap.

“You piece of shit!” He barked. “Just how much do you plan to insult our and the Princess’s feelings?!”

I see, so he’s one of those types that have too much pride. And he’s only 19 years old. Wow.

Cryus’ loud shout shook the air and made the other guests step back, leaving only me, him and Cecile at the centre. Cryus took out his sword and declared.

“I, Cryus Gale, the commander of the Third Order of Knights, hereby order a duel!”

“I refuse.”

I have no intention of getting caught up in a cliché situation here. Things would move too quickly if I did and I would not be able to step out.

“I see.” He spat. “Die then!”

“Stop!”

Aaah, I see. That’s what she was truly up to.

Words of praise were the only things that I could mutter in my heart as Cecile appeared between us to break our fight.

“You must not kill him, Cryus!”

She said, ordered almost. Her tone was firm and was able to stop Cryus easily.

“But Princess!” Even though he was shouting, his tone was one of respect. “I cannot allow this man to trample on your feelings!”

And what about mine, oi?

“But what about his feelings, Cryus?”

“What?”

Cryus eyes widened.

“I’m sure that my confession must have come out of the blue for him.” She put her hands in front of her chest and her head drooped down. “I can understand, you see……. Being suddenly asked to marry a woman he barely knows anything about must have surprised him. But instead of taking this opportunity to become a part of the royal family and have his future secured, he calmly analysed this situation and decided to curtly refuse so as not to hurt me any more than necessary. Really, this just shows that I fell for the right man.”

I see, so this is where I lost. Not only did she predict my reactions, she utilised them fully to create a situation beneficial for her, which in this case is getting the support of the masses.

I have no other choice but to accept her proposal; or at least find a common ground, as that is the only way to remain in the Hero Party. Even if I remain stubborn here and refuse, Cryus would not let this matter go and would try to hunt me down with the help of his Third Order of Knights. In fact, depending on how he uses his words, the entire country would come after me.

Of course, the possibility of such a thing happening is low, but it’s still there nonetheless. I cannot ignore it.

While I was thinking that, Cecile turned to me.

“I’m sorry for putting you in such a tight spot, Sir Samael.” She bowed. “However.” Her eyes quivered as they became wet. “Would you please not at least consider my proposal? I do not need an answer right now; we can just get to know each other first. If you still do not accept me, then I will stop pestering you.”

Wow.

Now then, how should I answer? I have more than 14 ways to get out of this situation without agreeing to Cecile’s proposal, but their effect is ultimately undesirable for my overall plan.

All right then.

“I understand, your highness.” I bowed. “I shall consider your offer.”

Good grief. I can now understand why she’s known as the Blood Princess.

“Really?!” Her expression blossomed with a wide beaming smile- her acting’s top-notch as well. “Thank you!”

As the party hall erupted into an opera of claps and cheers, Cryus glared at me from behind Cecile, spat on the side, turned, and walked away. Lantz, on the other hand, simply smiled wryly.

“Now then, shall we discuss this in more detail somewhere private?”

She signalled to behind her with her eyes.

“Sure, why not?”

Let’s get this over with.

“I’ll leave the rest to you, Maria.”

She turned to her side and ordered her maid. Judging from her attire and her commanding gaze, Maria was probably the head-maid of this mansion.

“As you wish, your Highness.”

And so, she took my hand and we exited the party hall into a hallway. The moment we did, she let go of my hand and started walking, her back asking me to follow her.

For a while, the click-clacks of her heels were the only sounds piercing through the silence hanging over this dimly lit hall. I looked outside from the window, and the moon was shining brightly in the dark night, as if mocking me for falling into Cecile’s trap.

Just like Earth, this world had only one moon which was white in colour. However, the moon here was a bit larger (by 37% to be more exact), and its colour was closer to a shade of pale yellow. The residents of this world called it ‘Prin’.

“You’re more heartless than I thought, Princess.”

Since we were now away from prying eyes, I decided to strike at the heart of the matter.

“What do you mean, Samael?”

She asked without stopping or looking at me.

“Using someone’s love for you to your advantage; you are quite the strategist.”

“Strategist, huh?” She mocked, but I wasn’t sure whether it was aimed at me. “If I indeed committed such an atrocious act, wouldn’t ‘Demoness’ be a more fitting term for me?”

“Demoness?”

Her strategy was indeed interesting and ingenious, but it wasn’t cunning or nefarious enough for someone to believe that a human couldn’t have thought that up.

“Playing with someone’s heart like that…… who else could do it if not a demon?”

Ahh. It’s simply a case of misunderstanding human nature.

“Are you calling me a demon?”

I’d need millions of hands to count the number of hearts I’ve played with, feelings I’ve trampled on, dreams I’ve crushed and hopes I’ve blasted to smithereens. But even so, I know that I’m a human.

I could not have done that if I wasn’t one.

“So, you’ve also played with someone’s heart?”

“I’d like to exercise my right to remain silent here.”

“You are an interesting one.”

She giggled. I feel that I’ve been told this more often than I’m willing to admit.

“However. If you think that this is enough to make you a devil, then you’re nothing short of naïve.”

“What?” She gasped and stopped walking. “What do you mean by that?”

“Your actions were entirely human; you did nothing more than utilise what was at your disposal to achieve your goal. Those were the actions of a bona fide strategist.”

“What about Cryus then?” She narrowed her eyes and clenched her fists. “What about his feelings?”

If I wasn’t wearing a mask then I would have smiled here.

“Let me ask you; was that act truly evil?”

“Of course, it was.”

“Let’s shift our perspective a bit. What do you think will happen with him now?” She remained silent, her eyes asking me to continue. “He’ll suffer. He has been rejected after all. But a time will come when he’ll get out of that and start everything from scratch. So by cruelly trampling on his feelings, you have opened up a new path for him; a path much more beneficial and progressive than the one he was on.”

A case where he would be unable to let go of his obsession with Cecile could also arise. When that happens, he may try to take her by force, but that would only mean that his feelings were simply worthless.

“Even if your actions today were just your veil of hypocrisy, as long as they produced ‘good’ somewhere, you remain human. But even if you manage to commit a truly evil act, you’ll just reach the pinnacle of humanity. In other words, no matter what you do, Cecile Constantine, you will never stop being a human.”

Her mouth opened and closed more than once, but in the end, she was unable to say anything to refute my words. No, it was more like she was thinking something else; her eyes were not even looking at me anymore. Under normal conditions, she would have been able to point out the flaws in my weak argument.

After some moments of silence, Cecile finally muttered with a defeated sigh.

“I see……. So this is what he meant.”

“He?”

But she simply smiled slightly.

“Nothing. Let’s go now.”

And so I followed her, whose steps had become lighter than before.


 


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