AIWTRO Chapter 118

AIWTRO Chapter 118

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Raw Provider: Jessica
TL: Ms MTLer


“…”

Bella slowly clasped her fan and looked at the necklace. 

She didn’t look angry; in fact, her expression didn’t change at all. But her silence was enough for anyone to guess how furious she was.

A cold silence descended. No one dared to speak.

After a while, Bella finally opened her mouth to speak.

Bella: “Countess Rheol.”

As soon as the Princess said her name, the Countess knelt in front of her. Her shoulders were shaking like leaves in a tree.

Countess: “Your Highness…”

Bella: “If you have something to say, do it now.”

Countess: “P-please kill me! Kill me! I lost my mind for a moment! For a while, I…”

Bella: “Since it’s your wish to be killed, I’ll listen to it. Guards, take the Countess away.”

“Yes!”

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The capital guards grabbed both of her arms.

As if she didn’t expect the Princess to act this way, Countess Rheol’s eyes widened.

Countess: “L-let me go! I-I was wrong! Your Highness! Your Highness! Forgive me! F-for old times’ sake, please forgive me… Let go of me! Argh!”

She struggled as hard as she could, but it wasn’t enough to shake off two strong soldiers.

Thinking that she might really die if she was dragged out like this, she desperately resisted while grabbing the doorknob.

It was only after Arabella motioned for them to release her that they did. When the guards let go of her arms, Countess Rheol fell to the carpet like a paper doll.

When she lay on the floor, catching her breath, she soon came to her senses and crawled toward the Princess.

As a noble lady, a famous figure in society, she and the Princess were close. It was thanks to their acquaintance that Arabella attended the charity auction today.

Wouldn’t it be possible to be somehow forgiven if she leaned on their old friendship?

Holding onto that faint hope, she begged.

Countess: “I-I was wrong. Heuk, please forgive me, for old times’ sake… Heuk.”

“…”

Arabella looked down coldly at the Countess holding onto the hem of her dress and said. 

Bella: “There’s one thing I don’t understand. Will you faithfully answer me?”

Countess: “Y-yes! Of course!”

Bella: “Why did you do this? I’ve been very curious about it.”

Countess: “That… That…”

Countess Rheol glanced sideways at Keira. The Princess didn’t seem to have remembered she was related to the Weinberg family.

‘Don’t let suspicion go to Lady Cosette!’

It would all end if it did.

Only Cosette, who would later be recognized as the next elementalist, would be able to restore her position after showing such disgrace today.

Countess: “To the Marquis of Edinburgh… Heuk, I have a personal grudge against him. I resented him so much, I even hated Her Ladyship. It shouldn’t have happened, but I couldn’t control my emotions for a moment. So…”

Bella: “A personal grudge. What for?”

Then Keira got up from her seat and said.

Keira: “Your Highness, may I answer for her?”

Bella: “Does Lady Keira know the reason?”

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Keira: “Yes. While waiting for the results of the search, I pondered why Countess Rheol went to such lengths when I’d never even met her. I was so puzzled. Why would she have done this at the risk of being caught…?”

Bella: “You seem to have figured out the answer, please tell me.”

Keira: “Because the Rheol family is related to Count Weinberg.”

Countess: “N-no!”

Countess Rheol shouted in denial. The only thought that filled her head was to make sure people wouldn’t grow suspicious of Cosette.

Countess: “P-please listen to me! G-give me a chance to explain… Hmph!”

A quick-witted attendant covered her mouth.

Bella: “Go on.”

Keira: “As you may know, my maternal grandfather is suspected of having framed and murdered Rowena Weinberg. And didn’t the Edinburghs and Weinbergs quarrel just recently?”

Bella: “Hmm, that’s right.”

Keira: “If I lose my place in the social world, who will benefit the most from it? If you think a little bit, you will know the answer.”

Bella: “…Miss Cosette.”

Keira: “I suspect that the Weinbergs might be behind this.”

Bella: “Hmm.”

Tapping her chin, Arabella pondered about it. It sounded pretty convincing. 

She beckoned the attendant to release Countess Rheol.

Bella: “Now, let’s hear from Madam.”

Countess: “T-this is slander! Your Highness, please… Please, believe me! Believe me, just this once. This incident was all done by me alone! Other families aren’t involved! I-it’s my fault! If there’s evidence, I will present my head!”

“…”

Of course, such evidence wasn’t there. Even if there was, Cosette wouldn’t have let it go.

Even Keira had guessed that fact.

Nevertheless, she brought attention to the Weinberg family to elicit a strong reaction from Countess Rheol. 

Desperately insisting on the innocence of another family while she was being accused would definitely instill suspicion.

‘If you can’t find any physical evidence, make them confess it.’

The Countess was caught in the trap set by Keira. Since she was cornered, she couldn’t afford to think rationally.

Unsurprisingly, Arabella’s expression remained cold. 

Bella: “Get up.”

Countess: “Yes?”

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Bella: “I told you to get up.”

Did that mean she forgave her? The friendship she had built up with her Princess so far wasn’t meaningless.

Countess Rheol, trembling in her hopes, stood.

Bella: Lift your head.”

Countess: “Y-yes…”

Would she now pat her on the shoulder and say she’d turn a blind eye just this time?

Countess Rheol lifted her head, trying not to show the relief on her face.

But…

Slap!

The moment she felt a stinging shock on her check, her hopes were shattered. 

And Countess Rheol, legs trembling, staggered and fell again on the carpet.

Bella: “It sounds like you’re saying that since there’s no evidence, you want me to investigate further.”

Countess: “Y-Your Highness!”

She had her head pressed to the floor the whole time she begged for forgiveness, but now she could see Arabella’s expression– there was no sympathy, and her eyes were unbearably cold.

At that moment, she realized that in the face of this rage, friendship meant nothing.

Bella: “How dare you use my name to commit such a heinous thing? What was that? You wouldn’t be able to forget that night? Did you come up with the contents of the vulgar letter yourself?”

Ha. A short sigh burst out of Arabella’s mouth.

Bella: “How fearless are you to do such a thing! This is Imperial deceit!”

When Arabella mentioned ‘Imperial deceit,’ Countess Rheol trembled and fell to the floor.

Countess: “I-I was wrong! I have committed a grave sin!”

Bella: “Take her away! The disposition will be decided at a later date.”

Countess: “N-no! Your Highness, please forgive me… L-let me go! Argh!”

Countess Rheol called to Arabella desperately, but the Princess did not give her a single glance. 

Silence returned to the lounge as the guards dragged Countess Rheol out.

Bella: “Ha…”

Arabella sighed, rubbing her forehead.

The Princess’s ladies-in-waiting supported Bella and escorted her to a chair.

“Your Highness, hold on.” 

“Anger is bad for your health. So please calm down, Your Highness.” 

Bella: “That noble person would do something like this…”

“So that’s why.”

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The ladies finally remembered. Who was the one who secretly talked about what was going on between Keira and Erez? 

It was the Countess of Rheol and her daughter. 

‘It’s been thoroughly planned from the start…’

‘How creepy.’

Just imagining it happening to them made them shudder.

They stared at Lady Keira, sitting on the sofa a short distance away, quietly sipping her tea.

How could she remain so calm in this situation? Compassion arose along with admiration for her.

‘You’ve been humiliated by some crazy woman.’

‘What a pity.’

One of them approached Keira and spoke to her.

“Are you okay, Your Ladyship?”

Keira: “Now that the misunderstanding has been cleared up, I’m alright.”

“That… I’m sorry I misunderstood you.”

The young lady who said that scratched her cheek in embarrassment.

She had been fooled by Countess Rheol’s schemes and stared coldly at Keira. 

Even though she was only fooled for a short while.

‘Still, it wouldn’t feel good.’

She met Keira’s eyes hesitantly. But with a faint smile, Keira said.

Keira: “It’s okay. I would have misunderstood, too. Now that it’s been resolved, it’s alright.”

“Ah, then I’m glad!”

The other ladies, encouraged by the reaction, approached and apologized to her one by one. 

Claire was also in that group.

She lowered her head and said.

Claire: “I’m sorry for earlier, Your Ladyship… I was tricked like a fool…”

Keira: “The misunderstanding has been resolved, so it’s all right. I don’t care a bit.”

Claire: “But I’m so sorry…”

Keira: “Well then, lend me your ear for a moment.”

Claire: “Pardon? Ah, yes.”

She couldn’t say no to a situation where she had to ask for forgiveness.

She moved her ear close to Keira’s lips.

Keira: “You look good together, the two of you. I wish you all the best.”