Chapter 211: Back to Peace (4)

Although Violet wasn’t politically savvy, she also wasn’t stupid. She had seen Milton and Queen Leila preparing the country for war every day, so how could she not know?

That was why she had a thought.

Queen Leila was the epitome of a great queen. Not only had she given Milton the title of Grand Duke, but she also allowed him to rule by her side with equal power. And because she managed the country brilliantly with her clever political sensibility, she gave Milton the peace to concentrate on military affairs. 

Sophia was also remarkable. Aside from her position as a Grand Duchess, she possessed great talent in architecture and civil engineering. Every time the Lester Kingdom’s territory increased and new distribution networks and cities were needed, Sophia delivered the maximum results on a small budget. A Grand Duchess usually didn’t deal with this kind of thing, but Sophia’s talent was outstanding and was of much help to both the kingdom and Milton.

Looking at these two ladies, Violet couldn’t help but think, ‘What can I do?’

Violet had zero political acumen. According to Milton’s stats, her Intellect was at 30 and her Politics stat was at 20. In other words, it was impossible for her to help out with the internal affairs of the country. In the end, there was only one path she could take: the path of the sword. 

When she lived in the Florence Principality, she had unwittingly picked up the sword due to her siblings’ animosity. Later on, she had been forced to wield her sword to protect the people around her as she was driven into the battlefield. Now, she had to ask herself: do you like the sword?

‘No, I don’t.’

Although she was a genius with swords, she was reluctant to wield one. The reason for it was simple: everything she had done since she started to wield a sword had been forced; it went completely against her personal will. She had even developed a split personality disorder to protect herself from such an environment.

She hated swords. She hated wars and she hated killing, even the enemies. But…

‘In the end, I only have the sword.’

Putting aside her likes and dislikes, she needed a sword if she wanted to help Milton. Eventually, she ended up picking up her sword again in Milton’s absence. When she did, her skills improved so much that even she was surprised. Unlike before, she had picked it up with a different mindset. She had been forced before, but now, she chose to wield it and that different mindset bore fruit. She became a Master in the time Milton was gone. 

***

“If I became pregnant now, I can’t go out into the battlefield. We don’t know when another war would break out, and the child won’t be happy to be born in such a situation.”

Milton felt complicated as he listened to Violet. Another Master had been added to the country’s strength. If it were just this, it would have been great news. But, he felt sorry that his own wife was giving up her happiness as a woman and instead was taking up the sword again with the intention of being helpful on the battlefield. However, he couldn’t tell her to put down her sword. This world was still unstable and another war was bound to break out. He couldn’t exclude someone so talented from the war just because she was his wife.  

Violet smiled softly as she watched Milton struggle in the middle of his conflict between personal and public affairs.

“Don’t worry about me; I’m fine.”

“Violet.”

“Once you make the world peaceful and it becomes a world free of wars… I’ll have a child with you, my love.”

“The day will surely come when you give birth to our child.”

In Violet’s mind, Milton had given her the best possible answer he could give right now.

Milton vowed to himself to keep this promise.

***

Milton was busy with his domestic affairs once he returned from the war. While Queen Leila handled most of the country’s domestic affairs, there were still some things that Milton had to take care of himself. Starting with the maritime trade, which was the main economic activity of the Lester Kingdom, to the management of the Grand Duchy, there were plenty of things for him to do. 

But most importantly was the task of cleaning up after himself. In the process of quelling the uprising in the North, Milton had dropped a giant bomb - democracy. Thanks to that, the riots in the North had been stopped, but in contrast, the nobles were feeling uneasy now.

“What on earth is democracy?”

“It says that its basic ideology is to hire talented people regardless of status and give everyone the right to participate in state affairs.”

“Hm… Maybe that’s republicanism…”

“Hey hey, watch your words.”

“Ahem… I’m just saying.”

The nobility showed considerable discomfort with the idea of democracy but no one was crazy enough to openly protest against the royal family. Currently, the royal family’s power was stronger than ever in the Lester Kingdom. Milton controlled the military and the economic power, while Queen Leila had complete control over the political sphere and held the country’s judicial authority in her hands. On top of that, the people’s support was so overwhelming that no nobleman dared to go against the royal family. Instead, if the royal family told them to die, then they would at least have to pretend to die.

However, their anxiety was growing to the point that the royal family didn’t know what would happen to the embers of their fear if it was left alone. That was why Queen Leila decided to deal with it during the New Year’s banquet. At the beginning of the year, the New Year’s banquet was held so that all the nobles of the Lester Kingdom could gather and greet their monarch.  

Queen Leila was planning on announcing to the nobles what democracy was and implementing it within their government. And while she was doing that, she planned to put the nobles’ dissatisfaction to rest as well.

“Will you be alright? Even if the nobles are quiet right now, they probably won’t take this lying down.”

Milton brought this up worriedly to Leila during their teatime.

“It’ll be alright. With the royal power as strong as it is now, if I told the nobles that starting from tomorrow, they were to start wearing shoes as gloves on their hands, they’ll listen without saying a single complaint.”

“Well, that’s… probably true.”

Milton agreed with her. The power of the royal family had never been this strong in the history of the Lester Kingdom. Even in the early days when the founder of the Lester Kingdom was establishing the country, the royal family’s power hadn’t been like this. Authority, military power, financial power, fame… 

Currently, in the Lester Kingdom, there was no one in front of the royal family. That meant that there were no political means to keep the royal family in check. Queen Leila intended to use the current situation to implement the democracy that Milton advocated.

‘Well, it might be too unreasonable to implement it as it is.’

That was why Leila had reworked the concept of democracy to her liking, but even Milton didn’t know that.

***

The New Year’s banquet hosted by the royal family began. 

“Oh ho… This year’s banquet is as luxurious as always.”

“I agree. If you compare it to the previous ones, this one is certainly bigger than before.”

“Doesn’t this just prove that the country is getting stronger?”

“Hahaha… that’s right.”

The Lester Kingdom’s nobles who had existed since the time it was a small country laughed delightedly at the size of the New Year’s party. The banquet hall was lavishly decorated with gold and jewels and had soft music played by an orchestra of over 100 musicians. There were famous regional alcohol from all over the continent and rare foods that even the nobles would not normally eat were scattered throughout the banquet hall.

“Oh? What is this black cake?”

A young lady from a noble family asked in amazement as she looked at the black cake. Then, as if he was waiting for someone to ask, a young nobleman jumped in to answer her.

“Ho… this is a precious and rare thing.”

“Count Longdran. Do you know what this is?”

“Yes, based on the smell, it appears to be made out of chocolate. It is said that it’s made by processing a fruit called cacao which grows in the southern continent.”

“Really? So it’s made by processing a fruit from the southern continent?”

“Yes. It’s also said that this fruit is highly valued because it relieves fatigue and helps you focus.”

“You’re very knowledgeable, Count Longdran.”

“Haha… I’m always a smooth talker in front of a beautiful lady.”

There were even those who were busy attracting women by showing off the knowledge that others didn’t know. The atmosphere of the banquet was relaxed and friendly.

“Her Majesty, Queen Leila von Lester of the Lester Kingdom is here.”

Then, Leila entered the banquet.

While she was usually reluctant to dress up, her attire was appropriately lavish for this banquet. She wore a white dress decorated with seed pearls[1] and red rubies as accents. Her hair was gently curled up with a generous amount of jewelry on her. The number of jewels she had on herself was over a hundred and each jewel was so valuable that even a noble would find it difficult to afford it. Dressing up like this might make any other noblewoman look gaudy and tasteless, but not Queen Leila. No matter how much she dressed up, her clothes and jewels would never match up to her natural beauty.

And once Queen Leila appeared…

“A treasure of the kingdom and a great hero, His Grace, Grand Duke Forrest has arrived.”

With the introduction of a servant, Milton appeared dressed in a black suit and a white shirt.

“Oh? What is the Grand Duke wearing?”

“It’s the first time I’ve seen it, but… it’s impressive. It’s sharp and sexy.”

“It fits him so perfectly.

The women gossiped as they looked at the suit Milton was wearing while the men were quietly admiring his appearance. 

“He looks imposing.”

“I don’t know which designer made it, but I’ll have to order one too.”

Milton clenched his fists as he saw the people looking at him.

‘Good, it worked.’

Truthfully, Milton had always been uncomfortable with the men’s clothing in this world. He didn’t like the leggings that clung to his legs and he didn’t like the ornaments he had to wear on his shoulders. Not to mention the feathered hat and the long and well-groomed beard that all the nobles thought was the most fashionable thing.  

For Milton, who had the memory of modern people, all of this had been difficult to accept, that was why he had mostly worn a knight’s uniform rather than a nobleman’s attire in public. At least that was a bit better than leggings.

But this time, it was impossible for him to wear his knight’s uniform, and so, he had made a suit. Thankfully, he didn’t have to worry about being ridiculed for wearing unusual clothes. Based on his rank and his popularity, it would have become fashionable even if he wore sweatpants.

With Milton and Leila’s appearance, the other members of the royal family soon followed. Sophia entered carrying young William while Violet held Elizabeth’s hand. Elizabeth wore a pale pink dress and when she toddled into the middle of the banquet hall, everyone found her to be delightful. 

“Oh my, she’s so adorable.”

“How could she be that cute? It’s like an angel has come down.”

“She looked just like Her Majesty the Queen. When she grows up, she’ll be a beauty who has the entire continent in the palm of her hand.”

Listening in to all the compliments from the noble wives, Milton couldn’t help but feel proud.

‘My daughter is definitely the cutest.’

Once the royal family was seated, the New Year’s banquet began. Leila first gave the New Year’s speech on behalf of the royal family.

“I would like to express my gratitude to those of you who have always supported this country. I hope that everyone will continue to do their best to take care of the people and help develop the country this year as well.”

Once her speech ended, all the nobles applauded. Elizabeth had been slightly started by the applause at first, but she copied everyone else and applauded her mother as well.

‘How adorable!’

‘She’s so cute! She’s like a doll!’

‘I want to take her home.’

Elizabeth’s cuteness once again won the hearts of the noble ladies. 


1. While the raw had it as 진주 가루, which is pearl powder, pearl powder is generally used for skincare so I changed it to a smaller type of pearl that could be used to decorate a dress

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