The Impact Of The Villainess' Fake Marriage On The Ending - Chapter 46
Kael followed immediately as soon as the portal’s records were found.
After setting the destination to the same place, Kael was greeted by the dark forest where Adeline had arrived.
“It’s the outskirts of the capital.”
“Yes, Your Grace. It’s like the forest at the southern end of the capital.”
Although he always fought in the north, there was no place Kael hadn’t gone to in the empire.
As soon as he saw the forest, he found out its location.
“Search the area.”
“Yes, Your Grace.”
As soon as Kael finished speaking, the well-trained hounds sniffed Adeline’s scent as ordered.
It had already been three days, and since it had rained yesterday, the chances of finding her were slim, but he couldn’t waste even the faintest hope.
Kael and the other knights also searched for signs of Adeline, hoping to find a single clue.
But it was all in vain.
The several hounds stopped, unable to pick up on Adeline’s scent, and the human trail had disappeared completely in just a few days.
“And the surrounding area?”
“The north and the west lead to a swamp, and there are no buildings to the east and the south.”
It was a fairly large forest, but it was an area that Kael’s knights were able to search without any burden.
They quickly scattered through all directions of the forest. They looked everywhere except for the swamp, where no one could enter, and there was no place for people to hide.
‘What if they moved from the forest to somewhere else…’
The more urgent his mind was, the calmer he had to be.
The longer it took him to find Adeline, the longer her suffering would last.
Kael was anxious to reduce the time for even a second, but he knew better than anyone that the more he was like that, the more lost he would be.
‘There’s no clue I can get from searching this forest.’
After searching here for a good while, there was no information he could find.
They had clearly taken Adeline somewhere else after using the portal, and he had to find out where.
“How long would it take from here to the Imperial Palace?”
“At full speed, half a day would be enough.”
Kael’s eyes flickered coldly at the mention of half a day.
‘They were trying to buy some time.’
The emperor’s strategy could be seen.
In order to find Adeline’s whereabouts, he had to visit the emperor, and in order to have an audience with the emperor, he had to go to the imperial palace. He intended to torment Kael by making him go all the way there and lose even more time.
Kael climbed on top of the horse, trying hard to hold back the anger that was about to overflow.
“Shorten that as much as possible.”
“Yes, Your Grace!”
Even just one second. He had to find Adeline even just one second sooner.
“You have a somber expression, Your Majesty. I heard there was a lot of good news at the political office meeting, so why are you so serious?”
“Doesn’t the situation look serious? What do you mean she still hasn’t confessed!”
The emperor jumped out of his chair and walked to the captain of the Red Knights standing below him.
“The time will come soon. It’s not easy to hold out with the body of a noblewoman.”
“Ha. I’ve been hearing that since the first day. But her mouth is shut even though she hasn’t eaten, drank any water, or slept for three days!”
He looked completely different from the time when he had so confidently threatened Adeline.
The reason why he was like that was because Adeline hadn’t opened her mouth even after being in this extreme situation.
She was locked up, but she was both the grand duchess and the lady of the Tien family. He could never torture her in a way that would draw blood.
So, the captain cut off her water and food, and he bound Adeline to a box where she had no choice but to stand up to prevent her from sleeping.
The method of not sleeping was a terrible torture that no one could endure, let alone a noble lady.
But even though Adeline was trapped in agony for a few days, she did not confess.
“Didn’t you say she was clearly the culprit?! You said I didn’t need to have any doubts!”
“Yes, that is correct. I’m sure of it. She’s just holding out because she is a stubborn woman. But she will soon surrender. I can assure you, Your Majesty.”
“What if she doesn’t? What if the Grand Duchess’ words are true and she is really innocent?”
“That’s not going to happen. There has never been anything wrong with the information ‘that person’ gave me, Your Majesty.”
The emperor calmed his rage when the captain mentioned ‘that person’.
‘That person’ was an informant who provided crucial information to the Red Knights.
Only the captain could contact them, but he also did not know their identity. It was the same for the emperor.
Someone who gave crucial information that was never wrong in return for not revealing their identity. It was ‘that person’.
“It was only a year ago that you avoided assassination thanks to ‘that person’, Your Majesty. Remember that moment. There is no need to doubt.”
The emperor shut his mouth with a sour face when he mentioned his life being saved.
“That’s right. I trust you. But the Grand Duchess has to really be the culprit. If the real culprit is anyone else, the capital’s relationship with the north and the east will cross an irreversible path.”
In fact, considering these risks, he shouldn’t have even started this.
However, the emperor trusted the captain’s words, and now there was no going back.
“Don’t worry about anything, Your Majesty. Isn’t the fact that the incidents have stopped enough evidence?”
“It happened every two to three days throughout the month, but nothing has happened since the Grand Duchess has been locked underground. It has gone way past the cycle.”
The emperor nodded in agreement.
No matter what, Adeline had to be the real culprit. Otherwise, the emperor would be held responsible for all of this.
“Your Majesty. His Grace Grand Duke Inver requests an audience.”
“What? The Grand Duke? He’s already here?”
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
He had already expected that Kael would come after some time.
But that time was much faster than expected. It was obvious that he put everything aside and came running like crazy.
“Tell him we can’t meet today. I’m too tired and can’t…”
“Y-you can’t do this, Your Grace!”
As the bewildered emperor tried to refuse the audience, Kael suddenly opened the door and walked towards him in big strides.
The guards tried to stop Kael, but they were frozen in place by the intense pressure and threatening mood he exuded.
Kael’s mood was that unusual.
“Where is she?”
“How dare you come here like this all of a sudden and act violent! Do you not know who I am?”
“I am using words to ask you because you are the Emperor. Where is she? The Grand Duchess?”
The emperor gulped without realizing it.
He feared that he might lose his life here if he did something wrong.
“I can’t tell you. The Grand Duchess is currently a suspect in a murder case. So, please cooperate with us for a smooth investigation.”
“She is a suspect in a murder case?”
“That’s right. The black mark murders that have been taking place in the capital. The culprit is the Grand Duchess.”
“Is there any evidence?”
“There is. Do you think I caught someone innocent? We are investigating because we have evidence.”
Kael smirked at the emperor’s reply.
It was some sort of anger, a mixture of sneer and laughter, obviously smiling but not at all seen as a smile.
“I heard you took the Grand Duchess three days ago. However, seeing that it is still under investigation even though you have evidence, it seems that you have not received a confession.”
“What are you trying to say?”
“The laws of the empire hold everyone innocent until their sins are determined. Your Majesty knows that better than I do.”
Kael’s cold eyes turned to the emperor.
A chill that seemed to freeze his heart just by facing Kael struck him.
“Your Majesty is kidnapping the innocent Lady of the North and interrogating her.”
“I will make sure you pay the price, Your Majesty.”
He managed to turn around and get out of the office, pressing down on his desire to wield his sword right away.
The emperor would never tell him where she was, even if he nagged him.
Somehow, Kael had to find a clue in his conversation with him.
“Yes, Your Grace.”
The eagerness to rescue Adeline made Kael even more cool-headed, and he calmly sought clues from the emperor.
There was only one organization that could quietly investigate the murders that had turned the capital upside down, and secretly whisper to the emperor that the culprit in the case was Adeline.
“Find the base of the Red Knights. Regardless of how you do it, find out as soon as possible. Adeline must have been captured by them.”
“Yes. I will do so.”
“One more thing.”
“Yes, Your Grace.”
Kael, who caught scent of the Red Knights, ordered him to find them, then stopped Vero for a moment.
“If they touched just one strand of hair of Adeline in their base,”
“Kill everyone there.”
Hearing the dark command filled with terrible rage, Vero bowed his head to follow his will immediately.
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