Aelia looked at the dress, but was unable to hold back her excitement any longer and eventually took off the clothes she was wearing.
She said, “Let’s try it on because I should check it’s fitting.”
She excused herself and changed her clothes.
She was accustomed to dressing herself without the help of any maids.
She had no one to help her even in Yuriana Castle, but she did the same here.
She looked embarrassed in her dress.
During the three months it took to make this dress, her body became thinner.
Living in her outer castle, food gradually became scarce.
Aelia had to send several letters before the small amount of food was delivered.
Those who knew of her illness whispered that she was under her own curse.
She thought to herself that they were somewhat right.
But today, after receiving this dress, I felt like all my troubles had disappeared.
Aelia put on her dress and looked around at herself in front of the mirror.
“I need to reduce the size of it.”
She murmured and smiled.
While she was wearing the dress, she decided to practice doing her makeup for her wedding day.
I carefully applied my makeup in the mirror and practiced the smile I would wear that day over and over again.
She, who had been forgotten by everyone for a very long time, will appear in front of the people again.
Although she was afraid, Aelia did not let her fear overwhelm her with the expectation that she would no longer be lonely.
She started writing a letter with a happy face.
‘Cyril oppa, the wedding date has finally been set. You must have had a hard time making excuses to our family because of your ugly younger sister. I tried on a wedding dress for the first time today. It was so difficult to choose one dress out of more than ten. Seeing the maids looking exhausted made me feel sorry for them. ‘My dear brother, I am so sorry and sorry that I have to leave all the work of taking care of our family to you and living a luxurious life here all alone.’
Aelia, who had been writing her letter, raised her head at the sound of the horse’s hooves.
Aelia was alarmed and ran out towards her window and saw that the man she was about to marry, Prince Rollins and his men were entering the outer castle.
She ran out of her castle frantically, her heart was pounding. Rollins is here.
He came to see her again.
Aelia’s heart pounded as she realized that their wedding was really close.
Aelia, who had rushed all the way to her door, stopped.
She was reminded of the popular belief that a groom should not see the bride in her wedding dress before her wedding.
She looked around, found the blanket she had hung up to dry, and draped it over her shoulder.
Meanwhile, a handsome-looking man with red-tinged hair came into the castle, just as she said.
Although she had learned the etiquette of the royal family, Aelia’s castle was not a place where he needed to be polite. Rollins greeted her as he entered the castle.
“Aelia, it’s been a while.”
“Your Highness Rollins.”
He looked at Aelia and his expression scrunched up.
The black spots had spread almost all over her body, and now the white parts were spread here and there like dots.
It was not a healthy-looking skin color, but rather a rough black color, as if it had been burned.
Aelia said with embarrassment.
“I’m sorry it’s like this. But when the groom sees the wedding dress before the wedding…”
Seeing her like that, Rollins was able to easily say the words he had prepared.
“Rita said she wouldn’t want to meet with me if I didn’t sort you out.”
He was referring to Rita Brea, the daughter of Marquis Alex Brea.
I was nowhere near a social circle, but she was a celebrity that even I knew about.
“So I came to talk. I have no intention of marrying you.”
At those words, Aelia was so dazed that she couldn’t hear properly for a moment, but Rollins’ cold gaze brought her back to her senses.
Rollins continued calmly.
“They say that when a person dies, if he or she is too obsessed, he or she will come back as a ghost. You’ve been asking for a wedding dress so I sent you one and you seem to like it.”
The blanket fell from Aelia’s blue hands. She had been dreaming a futile dream just a moment ago.
If I decorate myself, you will love me. That I would be able to meet other people and that I would no longer have to be alone.
The thought made her tighten her corset until she couldn’t breathe, and she put on makeup until she couldn’t recognize anyone.
Thanks to this, her face was as white today as if she was wearing a mask.
There were ups and downs, but I finally wore my wedding dress.
White was a terrible color to her, as pitch black spots covered her body.
She made that black color disappear too. The Crown Prince, whom she first met when she was thirteen, was six years older than her, and he seemed to have no interest in younger children and went around seeing other women.
And for a moment, he gave her his affection before she got sick, but after she got sick with an unknown cause, he kicked her out of the imperial castle.
Aelia plunged for his brief affection. He was the only man in her life.
The day they first met, he was her first love, who laughed cheerfully and asked what a little girl like her was going to do with him.
So I wanted to marry him. For the past seven years, that has always been the dream of thirteen-year-old girl and soon-to-be twenty-year-old Aelia.
Even though she was forced into a relationship by the emperor, she still thought that today, when she wore a pure white dress, she would finally be able to become his wife.
Aelia approached Rollins, looking fascinated by something about him.
Rollins’ luxurious leather shoes held him back, as if he was reluctant to even approach her.
“Look in the mirror.”
His sharp words pierced Aelia’s heart like an awl.
The dazzling white dress made her look even more hideous.
Rollins said nervously.
“I am the crown prince of this country. At least I have the right to marry a woman with a clear skin. Rather, you are trying to marry me like that, is a deception against the royal authority, Aelia.”
“Why are you talking about that now?”
“I didn’t know you would stick to me so tenaciously. I couldn’t break off the engagement with you because it was an order from His Majesty the Emperor. Damn, how unlucky I was.”
“Doctor…. You’ve never called a doctor for me.”
Aelia’s words were filled with venom at the thought that she was going to die anyway. You’ve never paid attention to me, you…
When the Hwangseong doctor said that he did not know the cause of her disease, Aelia asked Rollins to call an outside doctor or wizard, but Rollins did not respond even after seeing her condition getting worse.
But now he was making an excuse that, he didn’t know that I would cling so tenaciously to me?
It’s just that he forgot my very existence and now he’s talking his true feelings openly. It felt like all the air around her was there to strangle her.
As the tears wiped off her makeup, her pitch-black skin was revealed, covering almost all of her face.
That spotty face made even the knights, who were trained not to change their expressions, frown. Aelia said.
“I’ll go back to Yuriana Castle right now.”
“Don’t talk nonsense. If I don’t kill you here, His Majesty won’t allow us to break off the engagement. You’re just a daughter of a goddamn country-saving hero.”
“Don’t insult my father.”
Even as Aelia sobbed, she glared at him.
Even her eyes, which should have been pure white, had black dots here and there.
Rollins responded with a sneer, then turned around and spoke to the knights.
“Shut down the castle and burn it down immediately. The Aelian plague could spread.”
Rollins didn’t even felt like she was a person anymore.
It was nothing more or less than a pitch-black beast that gave him troubles.
As Rollins left the castle, Aelia seemed to have given up everything and sat down on her seat, without moving.
And that day, Aelia’s castle burned down.
Her wedding dress was burned, along with her.