Upon seeing me return to my original form, the imperial prince growled with hatred.
“Haha, anything goes, huh. . .Can’t you just die for the sake of world peace?”
“Unfortunately, I don’t think I can meet your expectations.”
“Why not? You know it yourself, don’t you? With your transformation and teleportation. . .just by being here, we are constantly plagued by the fear of being killed at any moment. Your very existence is a threat. . .Aren’t you a descendant of the Demon King, not a saint?”
In response to the greatest insult that could be directed towards the royal family of Acardi, Diark let out a voice that could be interpreted as either anger or a scream, and Theodore angrily pointed his sword at his throat.
“You don’t seem to value your life. . .!”
“Wait, Theodore, it’s okay.”
“But Ester. . .Even if you forgive him, I can’t!”
With the tip of his sword still touching his throat, Theodore glared at the imperial prince. I was glad that he was angry for my sake, but it was not good to point a sword at the imperial prince, even if he was a criminal. So I took his hand and made him step back. To prevent him from attacking again, I kept my distance from the imperial prince.
“It can’t be helped. It’s a fact that excessive force is a problem.”
I could understand the imperial prince’s feelings to some extent. With my magic, I could easily kill foreign dignitaries, even more easily than the Grose Baehr that the imperial prince had raised with care.
If I were an enemy, I would be a threat. I was breaking the power balance that should have existed.
“But of course, I have no intention of using it for evil deeds. . .let alone to kill people.”
If I wanted to, I could have killed even the imperial prince. Even if it led to war, killing Diark and his family would have ended it.
But of course, I didn’t want to do that. Saint magic is meant to protect loved ones, not to kill people. If I were to use this power for such a thing, as the imperial prince said, it would make me something inhuman. . .a demon king.
The power of knights and soldiers, too, was originally given to protect families and countries from demon beasts. It was not meant to kill people in war.
That’s why I wanted to prevent it from happening.
“You can say anything with your mouth.”
“That’s true. So please don’t make me want to use it.”
As I replied, he closed his mouth with a resentful look. But his kol pulled out a gun from his pocket, thinking, “This monster acting like a god. . .In order to maintain Verde’s absolute monarchy, we must kill this princess by any means necessary.”
Without knowing the imperial prince’s true intentions, the emperor gave orders to the knights.
“Take Clovis to the Black Tower in the west.”
As the knight took a step forward to restrain the imperial prince, he said.
“Let go of the idea of starting a war… but I will kill you.”
As he said that, someone attacked from behind him.
“. . .Tsk!”
From the length of the black hair tied behind the man with a long sword, it could be inferred that he was related to the imperial family.
“Tch, he blocked it. . .oh well. Kill him, Oscar!”
“As you command, Father.”
Sensitive to the murderous intent towards me, Theodore quickly sensed the surprise attack and blocked the sudden strike. However, he seemed to want to obey his father’s orders without hesitation and continued to attack without flinching.
To think that this old fox would involve even his own child at a time when he was about to be taken into custody…!
“Don’t bother. . .I won’t let you lay a finger on Ester.”
“Bother? That’s not for you to decide.”
While exchanging such words, I couldn’t keep up with the speed of the two swordsmen swinging their swords, so I looked away from them and turned my gaze to the imperial prince.
The imperial prince aimed his gun at me.
As if he had noticed my small cry, Theodore quickly moved in between me and the imperial prince, protecting me while fighting off the attacker. . .but his outstretched hand still couldn’t reach me.
Before I could even think, my body moved.
I must have heard the sound of a gunshot countless times in just the past few days since I arrived here. I didn’t have time to think about such things.
“Ugh, ah. . .!”
It hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts. . .
Theodore’s scream, which drowned out my painful groans, came from a little distance away, and Diark’s voice immediately sounded right next to me.
Although I felt like all my senses were being taken away by the pain, when I cast a healing spell on myself, the wound caused by the bullet that hit me near my heart disappeared, and the pain subsided as if there had been nothing there from the beginning.
While taking a breath of relief, I asked if Diark was okay, but Theodore grabbed my shoulders with a fierce expression and shook me.
“Isn’t it you who’s not okay!? What are you doing!!”
“I don’t even know what you’re talking about. . .”
Seemingly distraught, Theodore rushed over as well after slamming the prince’s son onto the floor with an unexpectedly excessive force. It was probably because several of his bones had been broken. While I didn’t want him to attack again, I didn’t want him to bleed to death either. I discreetly applied healing magic to him, enough to prevent him from dying but not enough to fully heal him.
“Ester, Ester. . .I’m sorry. It’s all my fault. . .”
“No, it’s my fault for not thinking.”
The emperor’s nephew had his gun pointed at me, but his kol was aimed at Diark. It was a feint.
To teleport with Theodore, even the slightest touch was enough, but there was no time for that. Ideally, I would have teleported next to Diark and grabbed him, then teleported again… to escape. Unfortunately, it didn’t go as smoothly as planned.
The prince’s action wasn’t to kill Diark, but rather to make me shield him. There was no time to just listen to the core’s voice, but considering his aim was focused on the tall Diark, it was probably not a mistake, as the trajectory was too low for me.