19 Awakening Ceremony Part 4

"Would you like to dance with me, Lord Eden?" she asked, a lovely smile on her lips.

'Would you have a look at that?'

I mused quietly to myself; her movement seemed so natural. I could see why Eden had fallen into such an obvious trap.

Everyone's attention was drawn to her request, which surprised them because they expected our dance to be the first, but her initiative was unexpected.

"With pleasure, Princess."

I smiled back, observing a quiver in her smile as I broke my childhood vow to call her by her name.

When we got to the center of the hall, the folks around us moved to the sides to make room for the dance.

Angelina extended her gloved hand towards me as the music grew louder, a sweet smile on her lips.

In response, I bowed, the tails of my suit jacket flying with the gesture.As I held her hand in mine, our eyes met, and a wordless understanding passed between us.

We moved as if in a dream as the waltz began. With each beautiful step, her robe flowed about her, the fabric murmuring on the marble floor.

My motions were flowing, a result of the numerous hours we had spent as children honing our bodies in dancing.

"This is quite a surprise, Princess," I whispered softly amid the strains of the symphony. "I didn't expect you to be such a skilled dancer, especially when all you did during our dance classes was whine."

"Appearances, Lord Eden, can be deceiving. I may not look the part, but I've taken plenty of dance lessons since then." She responded with a slight smile on her lips. Her eyes, on the other hand, had a trace of glare, reminding me of less-than-pleasant memories from our past. Yes, she would frequently beat me up if I did not play with her.

"You've changed a lot over the years,"I said this as I swirled her around, her gown flowing gracefully.

"You, Lord Eden, have changed as well. You used to be a lot more casual with me, calling me by my first name. It's all titles now."She looked at me with interest, her eyes scanning my face.

"In a world where betrayal and schemes are commonplace, one must be ready to change course at a moment's notice."I held her stare with my cerulean eyes.

My statements brought sorrow to her eyes as I pointed out how she had betrayed my trust by agreeing to her father's request to cancel our engagement, and now she was plotting against me.

The music grew louder, and our steps pulled us closer together once more.Our gazes stayed locked, and the rest of the world seemed to fade into the background.

"Doesn't it ever get old, Princess?Are you constantly on guard, manipulating, and plotting against those who care about you?"Her gaze was drawn to the question. Our movements are still perfectly coordinated.

"Eden, the world does not revolve around you. Stop playing the victim card; I'm also sacrificing. It's a matter of survival. I'd go to any length for my kingdom."

Her eyes shift from grief to resolve as she responds.She also eliminated the Lord section; it appears she grew tired of talking in circles.

"If the world turns against you, I'll stand beside you, not your kingdom."I basically said whatever came to mind at the time.

But I meant it when I said the world would turn against her, and Eden in the game went to great lengths to save her, even sacrificing his humanity to do so.

"If the world turns against you, I'll stand beside you, not your kingdom."I basically said whatever came to mind at the time.

But I meant it when I said the world would turn against her, and Eden in the game went to great lengths to save her, even sacrificing his humanity to do so.

The force of my words struck her, and she tightened her grip on my hand before slightly releasing it.

"Trust is a luxury few can afford, Princess."

I stated it again, my gaze briefly averting before returning to meet hers."But it doesn't mean one should shut themselves off entirely."

"Is there still room for trust between us then?"

Her brow furrowed in thought as she seemed to consider my comments.

"Not at all, Princess. I'll never trust you again, not after what you've done and what you're about to do next."The statements were cutting and intended to sting both her and myself. But I kept saying it.

The waltz reached its peak, and our motions slowed as the music swayed.

As we rocked to the beat, I drew Angelina closer, our bodies practically touching.Her warmth permeated the layers of fabric that separated us.

I murmured, whispering in her ear,"And stop acting, Princess. I'm not going to go along with your scumbag father's and your ideas."

We came to a gentle stop as the music faded. I let her go, and she took a step back.

"Thank you for this dance, princess," I replied softly, returning her look.

I turned and walked away, leaving her in the heart of the ballroom's magnificence.

The mob whirled around her, pleading dances from her.As I stepped back, I couldn't help but think about our conversation.

Angelina was no longer the person I had once admired, and the next time I saw her, it would most likely be at the academy.

and until then, I had to find a means to get rid of these residual sentiments since I didn't want them to bond me to her. I died for her, but she didn't give a fuck about me, and I don't want to love a woman like her, not now or ever.


'How long will this fucking ceremony last?'

As I sat in the corner of the hall, I couldn't help but feel frustrated. An hour had passed since my dance with the princess,

but there were still other young ladies who wanted to dance with me, which I graciously denied.

There were also children from other Duke families who approached me, some to congratulate me and others to tease me,

which I disregarded since the last thing I wanted to do was dispute with a 13-year-old child.

'You are awfully quiet, Edda'.Edda has been keeping her lips shut ever since we came; she speaks very little throughout the ceremony, which is pretty surprising. I mused as I inquired.

[What do you need to talk about?]She inquired without emotion, although she appeared irritated for some reason.

'There is nothing'.I didn't want to irritate her any further, I said as I looked around the corridor.

Many named characters are present here right now, some of whom became steeping stones for the hero and others who became his buddies, which meant they were automatically his underlings.

Some of the sub-heroines may be seen here, and to be honest, I loathe them all; they are far too innocent in this dog-eat-dog world.

Yes, they had everything a person could want as children, but that doesn't explain their naiveté.

In the game, all you need is some sweet talk and differentiated treatment, and they'll be yours.

And if it's the same here, I'm giving up on trying to save any of them.

Many of them died throughout the game, some for plot progression, others for the hero's character development, but aside from the main heroine, many of the sub-heroines would perish.

And I'm not doing it for sympathy; I'm doing it because they have value, they are better than their peers in some manner, and they will be useful to me.I will never forget the type of world I am now living in, no matter how much Eden's memories influence me.

My gaze shifted across the hall as I realized some people were missing, including the king, princess, four dukes, and the queen, who did not attend the event.

'"I'm sure she didn't want to face me."I assumed that because she is the one who promised my mother about my marriage with the princess,

her inability to do anything as her family members are basically ruining my life didn't make things any better,

and as a result, her relationship with the king and the princess is very stressful, but after what happened today, she will be more attentive towards the princess, which will make her guilt towards me lessen a bit, and me being an asshole in the game didn't help much either.

Slowly, she will grow to believe like others, much like my marriage annulment with the princess was for the best, but they never recognized that it was their petty politics that made me the way I was in the game.

Even if they did, recognizing their own mistakes was improbable; nobility did not operate in this manner.

Shifting my focus away from the dismal notion, I noticed another missing figure in the hall: the second main heroine from the first game. Aeloria Starfayre, who will be known as "the Gentle Sprite,"

She came from the same baron family that discovered the hero; she was your standard heroine—kind, delicate, and someone who wouldn't hurt a fly but nevertheless loved the hero who had slain hundreds.She is a hypocrite through and through.

'I should stop judging individuals based on their game performance.'I noted these words since some people will be different from their gaming counterparts,

and it was too soon to pass judgment on anyone, especially because I didn't know them well enough to make such an assessment.

Well, if she is missing, it means that the event of the princess is going to start, and all I need to do is just chill out and wait for this ceremony to end.


'Didn't I raise a red flag?'

[Eden, we have an issue.]Edda contacted me out of nowhere, since she had been quiet for some time.

'Fuck, I really did it,'I cursed my bad luck; I can't enjoy my alone time without drama.

'What exactly is it?'I asked Edda why she had called me out, and instead of responding, she showed me an interface.


Quest Interface

Quest Title: Rescue of Princess Angelina

Quest Type: Side Quest

Quest Level: A-Class

Rewards for Success:

10,000 Experience Points (XP)

Penalties for Failure:

Death of Princess Angelina

Continent war, shifting 5 years earlier.

Time Limit: 30:00


'What the fuck is this, Edda?'I exclaimed, my mind racing to process the gravity of the situation.

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