Chapter 281: Chapter 281. Extra Story III: A Wicked Woman Is A Wicked Woman Forever, Part IV
Editor Group: Liber Reverie
After such a brief meeting with the noble ladies, Aria went straight back to her room.
As soon as Aria sat down at the table, Ruby brought out the tea right away. However, her expression was strange, though she would have heard the whole story. Aria hadn’t been long with her, but for her character, she had grasped for days. She absolutely wanted to talk about something.
“Did you know that?”
So when asked the truth, Ruby quickly answered yes. She looked as if she had waited to be asked to herself.
“I was the only one who didn’t know even though it’s about me. Is there another Crown Princess who is more foolish than this?”
“I didn’t know when to tell you. I’ve been waiting for the right time.”
Ruby’s answer to the self-criticizing Aria had no hesitation. It was as if she was looking at Annie, who had become a little bit more intelligent. She seemed to want to take this opportunity to become her source of information.
It was not a bad idea to have even a maid who had her roots in the Imperial Castle. No, she needed a maid to deliver the news quickly before something as unpleasant as it was now. Yeah, Ruby would be perfect for it. She was looking for a chance to squeeze in from the start.
So when she allowed the role, Ruby, whose eyes were glistening, began to tell her everything she knew, to sell someone like Annie to gratify her self-interest.
* * *
It was an unexpected person who welcomed Asher, who had finished his work in the evening and left the office. Aria moved to his side and made a smile with her eyes.
“You’re out now.”
Instead of asking why she had come to meet him, how long had she been waiting, or why hadn’t she made an indication when she had come, Asher chose to embrace her with his hand around her waist.
“I wish you had sent someone to tell me in advance.”
“I just arrived. And sometimes it wouldn’t be bad for me to wait for you first.”
As he was speechless at the words, he stared silently at Aria in his arms. ‘Is there anything else I can say about my lovely wife?’
“Was it bad that I waited at will?”
Aria asked Asher, deliberately blinking up and down with her rich eyelashes. She looked so pretty.
Asher made a brief grunt and answered by putting his lips to hers.
“What if someone sees you?” Aria tapped him lightly on his chest and grumbled.
But it wasn’t because she didn’t like it, even if anyone saw it. In the first place, it had happened at any time, and when the two had been together, they had never cared about the eyes around them. So none of the servants, who followed Asher and Aria, blinked their eyes.
“As I’ve said, I would like everyone in the empire to see and recognize this if possible.”
‘Wasn’t it Asher, who crossed the capital in a dazzling carriage?’ Aria, who recalled the past scene, buried her face in Asher’s breast and laughed in a low voice. It was a smile saying she was pleased.
With her lovely figure, Asher kissed Aria on her head. It wasn’t a conversation in which they talked about important things, but it was a precious time.
Asher and Aria, who had been spending such a short time together, soon joined hands and headed for the dining room. It was quite a long way from Asher’s office to the dining room, so everyone could see the two walking hand in hand around the Imperial Palace.
It was not appropriate for the Crown Prince and Crown Princess, who should always keep their elegance and antiquity, to act that way, but no one cared because it had already become common to hold hands when they were heading somewhere.
“So, you didn’t answer what I asked.”
Halfway to the dining room, Aria said to Asher, faintly giving her hand strength.
“I asked you if you felt bad that I acted at will.”
“Oh, you mean the first question you asked me.”
It was a question that he didn’t have to answer. Nevertheless, Aria still needed an answer from Asher. She was sorry for him, but it was because she had gone all the way to the office to hear the answer.
“I can’t be in a bad mood, no matter what you do, no matter what you say.”
“What if I become the wicked woman again as I behave at will and not the generous and benevolent Crown Princess, like the rumors in the past?”
“You mean your true self? I’d love that. That way, no one will stand in our way.”
Of course, it was a prerequisite that it didn’t ruin state affairs, but it seemed to be true that he wanted Aria to become the wicked woman of the rumors and only see him.
“… You should not change your mind.”
Aria, who got the long-awaited answer, left a very significant answer. Her other hand tickled his fingers and urged him to promise.
However, the actions of Aria brought about a crisis rather than a definitive answer from Asher. A crisis of skipping dinner and going back to their room right away.
“Shall we? Sometimes eating in the room is not a bad idea.”
But the crisis was also what Aria had hoped for, and she smiled softly and leaned on Asher’s arm. Asher quickly put his hand around Aria’s waist and turned toward his new destination.
* * *
After finding out that Jessie and Annie were listening to idle gossip, Aria began to act with them in a showy manner. She had been busy, and she had been intentionally separated from Jessie and Annie, but it had become toxic, so it was natural for her to come with them.
In addition, unlike when they had just entered the Imperial Castle, they had some adaptation and had no need to move apart from them because she had some spare time.
“You don’t have to get me a dress like this…” Jessie seemed unfamiliar with her handsome features, and she omitted her following words. Her face was full of awkwardness. She was a woman who knew her place, so she tended to be overburdened with luxury.
But Aria didn’t think so. “Jessie, it’s natural that you can’t adapt overnight. But don’t you have to adapt for Hans?”
Jessie blinked and asked Aria for an answer as if she didn’t know why she was mentioning Hans. ‘What does Hans have to do with my flashy outfit?’
Aria gave Jessie the answer in person. “Even though you are of humble origin like me, you deserve to be dressed as the lover of Hans, who is only recognized for his ability in the Imperial Castle.”
Even if his abilities were outstanding, a commoner was a commoner. He was a commoner who was recognized only for his abilities. No matter how rich and powerful a commoner might be, excessive luxury gained nothing but jeers.
‘Why should I dress like a noblewoman, who is not even a commoner in wealth and power, but a lover of a man who is recognized only for his ability?’ Jessie seemed to be incomprehensible.
Aria asked as if Jessie was foolish. “Jessie, why do you think Hans will remain a commoner all his life?”
Jessie opened her eyes wide as if she didn’t know what that meant. The commoner had always been a commoner. They had been a commoner all their life unless their status was elevated by marriage. That was impossible for men but possible only for women.
But Aria had no intention of letting Hans stay in that status. It was natural for the commoner to be a commoner forever, but not by law. A commoner could become a nobleman at any time if he was granted land with a big accomplishment.
Of course, this had been only in the early days of the empire that the situation had been unstable and war-prone, and it was almost impossible now that the aristocrats with power and money were in full, but it was not completely impossible now even if there was support from a powerful figure like Aria.
Had it not been for rumors, she wouldn’t have thought of turning Hans into a nobleman but not now. She thought it would be better to turn Hans into a nobleman because she knew how unfair and bitter it was to be discriminated against by his origin.
‘Jessie, you don’t know how I think.’ Aria stared into Jessie’s eyes, which were still full of questions.