Episode 26: My Wife (4)
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Complete silence filled the room.
The warriors, Umiru and the court ladies were all losing their minds, but they couldn’t say anything and only held their breaths.
A terrifying energy was emanating from Tarkan. It was like the chilling silence before a storm.
Breaking that silence, Tarkan slowly asked, “What is this talk?”
Dionna fell to the floor on her knees, trembling.
“P-Princess Consort must have m-misunderstood something. I never…”
“You told me that when you came by the bridal waiting room on my wedding day.”
Aristine butted in, surprised.
If she stayed quiet, she would be turned into a liar.
“W-W-What are you talking about?! When did I…!”
“Isn’t that right, Durante?”
When Aristine said that, Durante gave a slight bow of his head.
“The princess consort is right.”
Dionna looked like she was about to faint. She grabbed Tarkan’s trousers and clung to him.
“No, no, it’s not true. Please, Your Highnesss…”
“Wow, amazing,” Umiru whistled, “So you’re telling me, that you went to the bride’s waiting room on her wedding day, and told her not to touch the groom because he is your lover?”
Umiru flashed Dionna a smile.
Her smile seemed as pleasant as always, but it was laced with a deadly blade of hostility.
“And because of that, our princess consort is making excuses to you, that nothing happened yesterday,” Umiru said and chuckled.
Even if she was a real lover, it would be ridiculous to say such words to the legally wedded wife.
However, Dionna didn’t even have any relationship with Tarkan.
“P-Princess Consort, how can you…no. I didn’t say anything like that…”
Tears welled up in Dionna’s eyes.
She didn’t even know what she was saying anymore and squeezed Tarkan’s cloth tightly.
But his gaze never turned to her.
It would have been better he directed a cold and indifferent gaze at her.
But Tarkan was only looking at one person.
Because he was looking at that woman, he didn’t even glance at her even though she was crying and begging like this.
Hearing a low voice call her name, Dionna flinched.
This voice was Mukali’s.
The expression she saw on Mukali’s face earlier bothered her but even so, she didn’t think he would abandon her in this situation.
“Brother Mukali, I’m being falsely accused!”
Dionna exclaimed and turned to Mukali.
The look she expected on Mukali’s face was nowhere to be found.
Compassion, pity, a sense of responsibility.
Those emotions should be littered across his face but why.
Mukali was clearly admonishing her. His face was clearly scolding her, asking how she could do such an unbelievable thing.
Same went for Jacquelin and Durante who were sitting right next to him.
Their eyes were filled with scorn.
Dionna mumbled and shook her head.
This can’t be. The warriors had to be kind to her.
‘This isn’t…,’ Dionna bit her lips tightly, ‘This isn’t even that big of a crime!’
After all, there was no way Tarkan could love Aristine. It was a marriage in name only.
Diona was going to be the one at Tarkan’s side in the end.
‘There’s nothing wrong with me informing her a little earlier!’
Shouldn’t everyone be more inclined to her than a princess of another imperial family which was an enemy state at that?
‘You should be taking my side!’
But all she got from the warriors was cold gazes that she had never received before.
Dionna mumbled and shrunk her shoulders, then she spun around and spoke to Tarkan.
“Your Highness Tarkan, you know how much I, Dionna, have been dedicated to you from a very young age. So has my elder brother.”
Dionna hung onto Tarkan while mentioning her late older brother.
Her brother died because of Tarkan, so no matter what, she knew he couldn’t just ignore her.
However, Tarkan’s gaze was still locked on one person.
Aristine answered his call, feeling a little unsettled.
She seemed to be paying attention to Dionna, so Tarkan grabbed Aristine’s hand tightly.
Only then did her purple eyes turn completely to Tarkan.
Tarkan spoke with emphasis, stressing one word at a time, “I have no relationship with this woman.”
Aristine’s eyes darted toward Dionna.
As that gaze fell on her, Dionna’s face flushed red.
Aristine instantly felt uncomfortable.
Tarkan squeezed her hands again and Aristine looked back at him. He was looking at her quietly, almost as if he was urging her for a response.
Aristine reluctantly replied.
After seeing the way things went and watching the reactions of the people in the room, she realized that Tarkan and Dionna had nothing to do with each other.
Whether she was suffering from megalomania or delusions, Dionna had simply been beating her own drums and making up a play all by herself.
Tarkan felt frustrated when Aristine gave a vague response but continued to look at Dionna.
He thought she might still be misunderstanding something.
He looked into Aristine eyes and spoke in a firm tone, “She has never been special to me, and there had never been any passion.”
Aristine’s gaze started turning to Dionna again, so Tarkan gently cupped her cheeks with his hands.
They were so close that their foreheads were practically touching.
Their eyes could only see each other.
“Even my mother never thought of Dionna as a daughter-in-law.”
Tarkan’s golden eyes peered into Aristine’s eyes like it was cutting through her.
Aristine was captured by his eyes, unable to think of anything else.
“There is really nothing.”
Aristine stared at Tarkan, not saying anything for a while.
‘…He has nothing to do with Dionna.’
Somehow, that fact felt like a cloud on a spring day.
Once those words left Aristine’s lips, Tarkan’s mouth curved into a smile.
It was a smile that seemed imbued with sunlight.
The expressions of the people watching them was lukewarm. This was a serious situation, but Aristine and Tarkan were off in their own world, acting silly.
If other people felt like that, imagine how Dionna felt.
Her face was distorted like a demon.
Tarkan released Aristine’s cheek and stroked her smooth hair.
The people watching this affectionate and intimate display unconsciously turned red.
Aristine had no decorations in her hair because she was dressed comfortably so it seemed even more intimate.
After Tarkan let go, Aristine was finally able to look around. And she was startled when she saw Dionna.
Her appearance usually brought nothing but admiration. But her usually charming and mature appearance was nowhere to be found.
‘Then again, every single word that Tarkan said…’
It was enough to make her panic.
‘Honestly, I think I would be so embarrassed.’
Aristine looked at Dionna with pity.
Feeling that pitying gaze, sparks flew from Dionna’s eyes.
“Who asked you to pity me?!”
Dionna sprang to her feet and rushed at Aristine.
No, she tried to run but she couldn’t even reach Aristine. Because Durante was holding her arm.
“Let go of me!”
Dionna struggled agitatedly. She was blinded with rage.
Even now, Aristine’s gaze was degrading her.
Dionna was infuriated that the sympathy she was hoping for, was coming from Aristine of all people.
Especially since Tarkan, Mukali and the other warriors were looking at her like a worm!
Aristine’s sympathy only made her angrier.
‘How dare you pity me!’
Fire blazed in Dionna’s eyes.
But no matter how much she wriggled her arms, Durante didn’t even flinch.
Aristine looked at Dionna who was being held in place by Durante and thought to herself.
‘I think she needs to calm down.’
She knew that Dionna made ridiculous claims, but they didn’t exactly put much strain on Aristine.
She didn’t really care what Dionna was doing, it was more of an annoyance. Besides, she only thought of using Dionna and Tarkan’s relationship as a negotiating card.
If Dionna knew what Aristine was thinking, she would feel even more enraged and humiliated. She was so wary and antagonistic towards Aristine, but the person concerned didn’t think much of her, let alone think of her as a rival.
There was nothing more depressing and insulting than that.