Ch. 96 I Promise (2)
The girl continued.
” My name is Elena Blaise. What’s your name?”
“You don’t have name?”
When Carlisle closed his mouth again, Elena thought she must have made a mistake.
Carlisle didn’t turn down her pity. Despite his position as crown prince, he deserved some sympathy. No one else felt sorry for him because he was the prince and had the Orb, but he was only a thirteen-year-old boy.
“Don’t worry. If I tell my mother about you, she’ll take you in. Why don’t you work at our mansion if life in the palace is hard?”
He desperately wanted to leave behind everything that was holding him down and live his life as he pleased. His mother told him to gaze high as a bird, but he just wanted to be free as one.
“Of course. So are you coming to my home? I’ll watch the opera with you, and we can go to the bakery…I’ll show you a lot of other fun stuff. Promise!”
Carlisle looked down at Elena’s outstretched pinky finger, then linked it with his own. He almost burst into tears at that moment. He really wanted to live that life with her.
“You should call me Lady from now on. I don’t know about the Imperial Palace, but that’s how the servants call me at home, or they’ll get in trouble. But I’ll let you to call me by my name when we’re alone.”
“…I’ll worry about that later.”
“Tch, the strictness is different from what you’re used to.”
And so Elena and Carlisle spent all day exploring Freesia Palace. When she saw Carlisle’s small cuts, she tore the hem of her dress and bound them. He took her to a place only he knew and showed her the statue of the dragon, then they went to the man-made lake to splash their feet in the water.
Elena didn’t know it, but Carlisle was deliberately guiding her to the deserted areas. He wanted this joy to last forever. But contrary to Carlisle’s desperate wish, the time came when she had to go.
“Len! Where are you?”
A voice came calling for Elena. Soon there were also other voices calling out, “Young lady!” and Elena suddenly realized where she was.
“Oh! Mother! I think I’d better go. I’ll talk to my mother right away to come and get you.”
Elena stood up and made to return to her mother, but Carlisle already knew. This was the end.
At Carlisle’s urgent call she turned back. He handed her the Orb ring without any hesitation.
“Please take this.”
“What is this?”
“It’s a ring.”
“Ring? My mother said I shouldn’t accept things…”
Carlisle tried to explain, but the voices of those looking for Elena were getting closer. He didn’t have much time to tell her the little details.
“This is…this is my memory of my mother. I can’t keep it, and I want you to take care of it for a while. I want to you make me a promise.”
“Keep it. I’ll come back for it for sure.”
“Yes, I promise!”
Elena beamed, and a bittersweet feeling welled up in Carlisle’s chest. It was impossible to know if he would die when he left for the battlefield, and since he couldn’t use the wish on himself or his family, he wanted to use it now.
‘My wish is…’
The Orb glowed faintly, as if reacting to Carlisle’s mind.
– Tell me your wish, master.
A voice in his head spoke to him. It was his first time hearing it, but it sounded strangely familiar at the same time.
Like he knew this would happen.
‘Save Elena Blaise from dying.‘
If he somehow miraculously survived the battlefield and returned to the palace, he wanted to keep the promises he made to her. He wouldn’t leave in vain.
There was also the prophecy that his partner would live and die in misery.
‘…Then don’t die.’
Elena suddenly stopped running towards the search party and turned and waved at Carlisle. He smiled faintly at the sight and raised his hand as well.
‘If I survive, I’ll come for you.’
At that time, he was not old enough to fully understand what it was like to have a companion or to be married. Their meeting happened on a day he was only thirteen. He thought he might die soon anyway and made the wish on a whim. But that simple day embedded in his heart, never to be forgotten, and when Carlisle lived his life in hell, he always thought of Elena.
The first time he killed someone, it was when assassin came to his quarters…And at the moment his arm turned into that of a monster’s. Whenever he felt pain and hardship, he turned his mind to that special day. The promises Carlisle had to keep, the reason to survive in hell, and the last stop he had to reach. It was his salvation.
‘…I’ll see you again alive. I’ll ask if you’ve been coming to see me or if you haven’t missed me as much as I have you.’
The idea took root in him like plant. It grew strong in Carlisle’s heart without sunlight or water, until it was like a huge mass of greed. Carlisle still clearly remembered the night when Elena first came to rescue him in her black armor.
– Please marry me, Your Highness.
Who would have thought that although she had forgotten all about him, she had asked to marry him on her own.
‘…Without knowing how I feel.’
A brittle smile spread on Carlisle’s face as he stared out the window towards Freesia Palace. Zenard, who was standing quietly behind him, interrupted him in a low voice with a report.
“Your Highness, Lady Blaise has arrived at the palace. I informed the servants to take her this way, so they’ll be here soon.”
Carlisle was about to turn away from the window when–
The door was flung open, and Elena strode in, completely flushed. At the unexpected visit Zenard called out to her in a stuttering voice.
Behind her were servants rushing after her.
“Your Highness, no–Caril, why didn’t you tell me? When we first met in the palace, you didn’t tell me that you were the crown prince.”
Carlisle’s blue eyes widened in surprise, but soon a pleased expression stole over his face. He barked and order to Zenard and the servants standing by the door.
“Yes, Your Highness.”
At his command everyone else quickly hurried away, and before long there were only two people left in the spacious room.
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
Carlisle gazed at her for a long time, as if he were savoring her presence. It felt like the end to a long journey before they finally met each other.
“You remember me now?”
“If you just told me, I wouldn’t have had a hard time remembering.”
Carlisle felt joy despite Elena’s annoyed expression. In fact, even if Elena had not saved him on that day, he would have come back and proposed to her. Perhaps he was desperate to have her at all costs.
‘If I say that I want her, even if I have tear down the Blaise family that she holds so dear…’
Would she run away?