The New Empress - Chapter 1
Birds swarmed in the blue sky full of mellow clouds.
This peaceful place is the first great empire in history to unify a massive continent.
The symbol of the Apollinerian Empire was the Bowerbird.
Serving birds was a custom that had been handed down since ancient times.
[The first goddess will descend to earth in the form of a bird, and everyone will serve the bird.]
The first line of the chapter, which appears in all the history books of the empire.
It was the founding myth of Apollinerian’s. In the distant past, the goddess who descended to this land gave the chosen ones the ability to change into a new…
The people of Apollinerian believed it was their roots.
For that reason, all the people of the empire liked and regarded birds as sacred.
Even each of the five most ancient aristocratic families had different birds as a symbol of their family.
Also, bird hunting was forbidden by law.
The law clearly defined the distinction between inedible birds and edible birds.
The people of the empire believed that all birds with feathered wings were messengers of the goddesses and regarded them as blessings.
There was a legend in the empire around the lines of…
[When the goddess, (Divine Bird), made of silver and gold descends to earth, the empire of Apollinerian will enjoy eternal glory.]
It was an oracle from a distant past.
The interpretation of this oracle was different. The emperor’s child will be born in the form of a ‘bird’.
The emperor will turn into a ‘bird’. Of the five aristocratic families who serve different birds, the empress should be met, and so on and so forth…
In their own way, people have been waiting for the (Divine Bird) to descend onto this land. On a peaceful day hundreds of years later.
A fist-sized egg descended down to earth from heaven.
* * *
A large golden door opened, and a beautiful blond man entered the large room.
The room was as brightly decorated as the man’s appearance. It was natural for the room of the emperor to be splendid.
The man was Rishar Apollinerian, the young emperor of the Apollinerian Empire, who unified the continent.
Before becoming emperor, he was a knight and hero of the empire who had traveled the battlefield since the time he was a prince.
Rishar walked toward the window with his long legs. His expression filled with wonder.
By the window, Durahan, his eagle, was bobbing his head.
Durahan was a large Harpy eagle about the size of an adult.
His gray-haired bird was just as gorgeous as his owner.
Nicknamed “King of the Sky,” “King of Birds” and “Best Predator.”
Rishar raised him since he was a kid. They’ve been friends for a while now.
“What’s with the egg, Durahan?”
Asked Rishar in a low voice. He raised his brow.
There was an egg in a large cage that he had brought for Durahan.
It was slightly larger than the average egg.
“Did you lay it?”
Durahan was a male.
When Rishar gave a suspicious look, Durahan snooped without answering.
‘Was there a female bird he met?’
“Betrayer,” said Rishar, who was sitting on the sofa.
Even his bird, Durahan, had a mate.
Rishar pressed his temple to play with an upcoming headache.
It has been two years since he became the emperor. Throughout those two years, his servants have been nagging him with the same words.
“Your Majesty, you can’t delay it any longer. You must meet the empress as soon as possible.”
The reason for his headache was not because he didn’t want to meet the empress.
Rishar was the one who wanted to meet his future empress more than anyone else.
But he didn’t want to marry someone who the servants chose strictly based on their conditions.
He wanted to meet someone whose heart was drawn to him, as she is the companion he will spend the rest of his life with.
It was a ridiculous wish for an emperor, but he was not just any ordinary emperor.
He was the only enemy of the former emperor and his wife. He was the one who unified the vast continent during his time as the prince.
He also reclaimed some of the land’s territory from the invading barbarians from other continents and wiped out their troops.
To the people of the empire, he was a proud hero.
If he wanted to, he could make a woman of slave status, not a commoner, an empress.
Nevertheless, the servants poured in letters of recommendation from aristocrats starting with, “Is it possible for…”
But Rishar never condescended to the letters of recommendation they sent him.
He was simply a man seeking a natural encounter.
His parents were largely responsible for the formation of such value.
When they were young, Rishar’s parents ran into each other at a festival and fell in love without knowing each other’s identities.
Rishar was the fruit of love between those two.
Raised as the only precious child of the imperial family, he looked at his loving parents and dreamed of his future.
Like the main character in a fairy tale.
‘Someday I’ll fall in love like fate.’
The dream of his childhood was still valid.
It was a dream that would cause the knights who traveled the battlefield with him to faint if they discovered it.
On the battlefield, he was a cold-blooded man who shed no blood or tears, and at the palace, he was a cold-hearted man who wouldn’t even give his servants a little smile…!
In fact, even adolescent boys and girls dreamed of a fateful love these days that was unlikely to happen…
No one would believe in it.
Even Rishar was a single man who had never held a woman’s hand before.
It was the heart he had cherished for his future partner.
However, he couldn’t wait until the end of his life.
He was the emperor of the empire.
The reason for unifying the vast continent was to fight against the tribes who were trying to divide the human race.
It was time to stabilize the imperial power and keep those who targeted the human land in check.
He was responsible for protecting his people.
To do so, the emperor’s concubine had to be solid.
‘You need to see the sky, to pick the stars.’
Rishar looked irritably at the papers piled up on the table.
The emperor had so much work to do.
There was no time to find the love of fate.
‘I should have started dating when I was a prince like my father.’
Unlike his father, Rishar had to travel the battlefield when he was a prince.
Somehow, a feeling of unfairness seeped in.
Rishar sighed heavily and got up with his papers.
His short break was over.
Now, after another political meeting, he had to go command the knights in training.
The wind blew gently through the open window. It was a pleasant early autumn.
Durahan was dozing off with his eyes closed as he braced the wind.
For a moment, Rishar gazed at the peaceful landscape.
Soon, he turned and left the emperor’s room.
And at that short moment,
Neither Rishar nor Durahan… no one for that matter saw it.
The egg in the cage started to wiggle slightly.
* * *
Late night came upon the palace.
Durahan, leaving the egg he had picked up in the afternoon, slipped through the window.
The big cage in his room was Durahan’s easy place, but it wasn’t home.
Durahan flew into the vast forest behind the palace. That forest was the home of Durahan.
An empty emperor’s room.
The egg, enshrined in the cage, wriggled.
But when the door opened in the room, the twisting egg hardened.
As if it shouldn’t be seen moving.
It was Rishar, the emperor, who opened the bathroom door and stepped inside the room.
Dressed in his usual outfit, Rishar sat on the sofa.
Then, a knock came at the door. Rishar ordered the person to come in with a low voice.
It was Count Crusoe who opened the door and came inside.
He put some warm tea on the table in front of the sofa where the emperor sat.
“Your Majesty, you have no special schedules tomorrow morning, so please take a break.”
“Nice to hear that.”
Count Crusoe glanced at the emperor.
He was a member of the loyal family who had served the royal family for generations and was no different from his close friend who had known the emperor since childhood.
“You seem troubled.”
Count Crusoe said in a sad tone.
Rishar said with his eyes, ‘Are you kidding?’
Count Crusoe was one of those who shouted “Meet the empress,” twelve times a day.
The worst of the worst.
“Well, Your Majesty… I’ll be straightforward with you. Aren’t your expectations too high? No matter how I say it, you are… Hmm.”
Count Crusoe, who was grumbling, shut his mouth at the emperor’s threatening glare.
It was a secret that no one knew that the emperor awaited for his fateful love.
The servants complained that it was because the emperor was just as strict as a dirty character.
In fact, Rishar boasted a very harsh character.
He was different from the benevolent and compassionate former emperor.
He didn’t even know it was because of his long years on the battlefield. Even his mouth was hoarse.
“If you’re done, get out of here.”
He did not hesitate to make such harsh remarks.
Count Crusoe grumbled inwardly and tried to get up.
Then, his gaze suddenly reached the window.
“The window is open. I’ll close it.”
Either way, Rishar opened the book he was reading with an uninterested face and drank the tea.
Closing the window, Count Crusoe casually glanced at the cage.
‘I wish you were as interested in women as much as that bird you’ve raised since childhood… Huh?’
But there was something strange in the cage.
“Your Majesty, what’s this? Is it an egg?”
“I don’t know, Durahan brought it.”
“Wasn’t Durahan male? Is it his food…?
Count Crusoe looked at the egg in wonder.
The emperor’s gaze, who wasn’t interested, also watched it.
“Hmm… I’ll be going now. Rest well, Your Majesty.”
Rishar’s fine forehead crumpled.
Count Crusoe blinked, asking, “What’s wrong with you?”
“That egg, didn’t it just move?”
At the words of Rishar, Count Crusoe turned and looked into the cage.
“What do you mean, Your Majesty… how would the egg move? The wind must have shaken it.”
“You just closed the window.”
Count Crusoe looked at the egg with a lazy expression.
“Bur, shall we throw it away?”
“…Just leave it alone for now.”
“Maybe it’s an egg possessed by a ghost.”
“…Yes. Then I’ll leave you be.”
Count Crusoe was a coward who was afraid of ghosts. He hurried out of the emperor’s bedroom.
‘Are my eyes mistaken?’
Rishar, who was left alone, tilted his head.
He was so tired that he didn’t know if he saw anything.
He’s been under more stress lately rather than when he was on the battlefield.
He threw his gown and headed to bed.
Then he stopped.
Rishar turned his head and looked at the cage.
‘I’m sure… it just moved again.’
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