As expected, the child was the crown prince.
She had already guessed that from the child’s black hair and red eyes.

He had a cute face with chubby cheeks, but his attitude wasn’t cute at all.

It seemed that the prince was trying to enter the drawing room, but collided with me as I came out and fell.

The crown prince, who got up from the floor with the help of the maid, shook his butt with his hands and looked straight at me.
There seemed to be a lot of discontent.

“Who are you?”

The prince asked me

I greeted him by bending my knees slightly and lifting both sides of my skirts.

“Hello, how are you, Crown Prince? I am Mirabel…”

Honestly, I was conflicted for a while because I didn’t know how to explain my name in the current situation.

So instead of giving my last name, I just said my first name.

Originally, the last name I had always used was Hale, but if I followed my father’s real name, it would be Houston, and if my mother’s, it would be Crichton.

“Last name?”

The maid answered the Crown Prince’s question.

“From the Grand Duke of Crichton, She’s the Granddaughter of the Grand Duke.”

“There was a girl in the Grand Duke’s family? You mean there was someone else besides Elliot?”

The prince leaned on his waist with his hands and tilted his head.

Even while watching the puzzled prince, I didn’t feel the need to explain.

“I’m sorry I bumped into you.
I’m glad you look fine, so I’m leaving now.”

“Huh? Huh.
Okay… No, wait!”

The prince, who had been answering meekly, called me belatedly and stopped me.

I was about to pass by the prince, but I stopped and turned around at the call.

“Did you just come out of this drawing room?”

The prince pointed to the door I came out of and asked.

I nodded my head in the affirmative.

Then the prince came closer to me.

“Who is in here? Is there someone else besides His Majesty the Emperor?”

The prince had a slightly angry face.

The only people in the drawing room were His Majesty the Emperor and her mother.

So, the other person the prince was talking about must have been a reference to my mother.

I got a little displeased and frowned.

“What’s the matter?”

“Because the person in this drawing room made Her Majesty the Empress cry.”


“I will go and punish her in place of Her Majesty the Empress.”

I lost my words for a moment after the crown prince’s words.

I understand now why the Crown Prince was trying to enter the parlor.

Inside this drawing room were the Emperor and my mother, the Emperor’s former lover.

My mother left the Emperor to fulfill her love, but assuming from the conversation they had earlier, it seems that the Emperor still hasn’t forgotten my mother.

However, the Emperor married someone else, so he has a spouse.

The Empress must be sad to hear that her husband is meeting his former lover.

Maybe that’s why she cried…

I looked at the Crown prince with a troubled heart.

It seems that the Crown Prince was angry and ran all the way here when he saw the tears of the Empress.

“My mother is in there.”

I spoke carefully, and the Crown Prince looked at me with his eyes wide open.

“So, it was your mother who made Her Majesty cry?”

“… maybe.”

“Well, then…”

I smiled lightly as I watched the Crown Prince panic.

“Go inside if you want.
I won’t stop it.
But let me tell you ahead of time that my mother had no intention of making Her Majesty sad on purpose.”

If it’s a misunderstanding, it’s better to solve it.
I don’t know how much this little child will understand.

It was just when I was going to step aside.


I heard someone shouting in a low voice.
It was coming from behind.

“Her Majesty the Empress…”

The Crown Prince noticed someone behind me and muttered.

When I turned around and looked at the place where I heard the sound, there was a woman with beautiful blond hair.

According to the words of the Crown Prince, that person seemed to be the Empress.

“Oh, my God, I came just in case, did you really come to trouble, His Majesty the Emperor?”

The Empress approached with a stern expression and stood in front of the Crown Prince.

“I’m here because I can’t forgive the person who upset Her Majesty.”

“Adrian, Aiden, you don’t have to do that.
And what upset me was… No, that’s enough.
Let’s go back.”

The Empress held the Crown Prince’s hand.

Then she stared at the parlor door for a moment before she stopped.

Green eyes that opened wide as if in surprise were staring at me.

I bowed politely to Her Majesty the Empress.

“Hello, Your Majesty.
My name is Mirabel, daughter of Cornelia Crichton and Gale Houston.”

“You’re the daughter of the two?”

Her Majesty looked at me with a puzzled look on her face, and then laughed bitterly.

“Did they ask you to get out?”

I nodded at Her Majesty the Empress, who was looking at the parlor.

I was told to go out for a while.”

“Yes… Then will you come with me? If you go and enjoy some refreshments with Aiden, time will pass quickly.”

The Empress held out her hand towards me.

I only looked at the Empress’s hand for a moment.

Can I really follow you?

Even when I hesitated to hold hands, the Empress calmly waited for me.

“Yes, Your Majesty,”

In the end, I answered while holding the Empress’ slender and soft hand.

The Empress’s hands were incomparably softer than the hands of my mother, who did hard work.

I glanced at the Empress’s hand.

I felt sorry for my mother, thinking that she used to have such soft hands.

I followed the Empress to her palace.

In the backyard, there was a pure white stone building and rose vines climbed up on the pillars and harmoniously adorned the building that might otherwise look monotonous.

Inside, there were tables and chairs for four people to sit and rest.

“Sit down here, please.
Is there anything you can’t eat? If you have, tell Bridget.”

One of the maids bowed her head when her name was mentioned.

“There’s nothing I can’t eat.
There’s nothing I don’t eat.”

“That’s the same as Cornelia,”


The Empress smiled softly as she raised her head to the words she had spoken.
Then, instead of answering immediately, she turned her head and looked at the maid.

“Bridget, bring me some refreshments.”

I will prepare it right away, Your Majesty.”

Bridget was away for a while to prepare the refreshments.

The momentary silence was awkward and uncomfortable, so I turned my head to look around.

Well-maintained landscape trees and flowers were the first things that caught my eye.
Next, the statues that were dotted around came into view.

“Isn’t it pretty?”

The Empress, who looked at me with a happy smile, asked me.
I smiled at her and nodded my head.


“Of course it must be pretty.
It’s a garden that Her Majesty the Empress herself designed.”

Crown Prince, Adrian said curtly, pouting his lips.

The Empress looked at Adrian with a frown.

In the end, Adrian snorted and turned his head away.

Meanwhile, Bridget, who returned with the trolley, prepared refreshments in the order of the Empress, Crown Prince, and me.

In front of the Empress, a scarlet tea was prepared, and in front of me and the crown prince, juice made from grinding fruit was prepared.

“Thank you.”

While I was greeting them, Adrian took the cookie and ate it first.

I took a sip of juice first.
The sweet aroma of apples tickled the tip of my nose.

The sweet and refreshing taste was impressive.

Then I picked up a cookie and ate it.

However, the cookie itself was too sweet for my taste.

“Your mother, Cornelia, is my friend.”

I couldn’t eat any more cookies and put them down on the plate in front of me, then the Empress said abruptly.

“I don’t know if she still thinks of me as a friend, but anyway.”

The wind blew and scattered my long hair.

The Empress, who had unintentionally reached out to me, paused for a moment and then retrieved her hand again.

As I blinked my eyes as I looked at her Empress, she smiled at me silently.

After that, the Empress did not speak to me at all.

In fact, I thought she might say something more to me, but it seems that I was wrong.

Adrian looked at me with narrowed eyes from time to time.

He seemed to have a lot of complaints, but he can’t complain since the Empress is sitting next to him.


I heard my mother’s voice in the distance, along with several sounds of movement.

I turned my head with pleasure and found my mother standing nearby.

But her mother’s gaze was not on me.

When I turned my head and looked in the direction my mother looked, the Empress was at the end.


The Empress called my mother first.

Then my mother hesitated and walked slowly this way.

“Long time no see, Empress.”

Then she greeted the Empress.


The Empress didn’t say anything to her for a while and just looked at my mother.
My mother didn’t speak to her first either.

After such an uncomfortable time, it was my mother who spoke first.

“Have you been well?”

As if her mother’s words were a trigger, the Empress’s breathing became rough.

The Empress bit her lower lip to suppress her overflowing emotions.
But it was all marked on her face.

“Cornelia, you…”


“Because of you, I have lived in hell for eight years.”

Eight years.
I knew what it meant.

This is because it has been 8 years since the Emperor and Empress got married.

“James always waited for you, and I had no choice but to look at James like that.
Do you understand how I feel?”

I wondered if she was resenting my mother, but strangely, there was no resentment in the Empress’s voice.

“I’m sorry,”

My mother couldn’t bear to look at the Empress, so she looked at the floor and apologized quietly.

Then the Empress burst into tears.

She raised her hands, covered her face and began to sob a little.

My mother slowly began to approach the Empress.

Adrian tried to intervene, but I reflexively grabbed Adrian’s hand and stopped him.

Because I thought we shouldn’t disturb them.

Adrian looked at me as if he was mad at me, but he didn’t shake my hand.

Meanwhile, my mother stood in front of the Empress and embraced her with her two hands.

I thought she would shake it off, but the Empress cried quietly in my mother’s arms.

“I hate you so much, and I resent you… l… Still, seeing you safe… I couldn’t get angry.”

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