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09. The Prince and the Big-Breasted Man (4)

Translated by: 𝐸𝓇𝒾


“To receive such high praise from the Empire’s top swordmaster, who has said that even if you were to join the Knights immediately, you would not fall short. You’ve achieved excellent results in a short period of time, young lady.”

“Everything is thanks to Your Highness’ grace.”

“Young lady will be assigned to a separate temporary search operation unit. However, there is a condition that you must move together with Sir Castel.”

“Is Sir Castel going to participate in the investigation?”

“Thanks to you, young lady, Sir Castel will be able to work outside for the first time in a long time.”

Eve glanced briefly in the direction where Castel was sitting. The man’s face was stiff and expressionless, making it impossible to tell what he was thinking.

“To go through all that trouble for me… There’s really no need for you to go to such lengths.”

“I’m just following orders.”

“Since I granted the young lady’s request, wouldn’t it be fair for you to grant one of my requests as well?”

“What? A request, you say? If you simply give me an order, I will obey.”

Although the conversation seemed to be flowing in her desired direction, for some reason, Eve felt a chill running down her spine. For now, Eve decided to focus on the fact that she had been granted permission to participate in the search operation and patiently waited for Edward’s next words.

“Well, then… Young lady, would you mind us stepping away for a moment?”

“What? Ah, yes. I understand.”

Eve stammered in response to the man’s sudden request, and Alberic looked at her with a wavering gaze that was somehow unsettling. She could almost hear a nagging voice in her head telling her to please stop being rude and behave with dignity. Eve gave him a wry smile and left the office, escorted by Edward. As the two of them walked, she heard the light footsteps of two knights following them from a few steps behind.

“May I ask where we are going?”

“To my study. It’s perfect for a quiet chat. And there’s something I want to show you.”

“If it’s something you want to show me, then…”

“It’s a secret. But I guarantee you’ll like it too.”

Asking in a hushed voice, Edward also replied in a low tone.

They turned to the left, passing through the courtyard. The study they arrived at, upon confirmation, boasted a spacious size, approximately equivalent to three individual rooms, and existed in a separate location rather than being a small space connected to his office.

The knights and the librarian who managed the study reluctantly but obediently vacated their positions at their master’s command to leave him and the lady alone, and soon the study became empty. Up until that point, Eve hadn’t thought much about it. She even harbored disrespectful thoughts of knocking him unconscious if necessary.

“We need to go further inside. This way.”

Edward gently led Eve and walked them to a secluded corner of the study. Despite not being the main palace, the study attached to the Crown Prince’s palace had a considerably substantial size, and Eve, forgetting that it went against etiquette, turned her head around, observing the tall bookshelves filled with numerous books.

“Do you like books?”

“Ah, yes. Books are luxuries. They aren’t easily obtainable, so whenever I have the chance, I read whatever I come across.”

“Ahhh. Right. You spent your childhood years in an orphanage.”

“Money was better spent on food, so I couldn’t easily buy it because I wanted it.”

It wasn’t just Eve’s story. Didn’t she, Ju-yeong, too, experience a childhood without the luxury of knowledge? The books she could have were, at best, the textbooks distributed at school, exercise books that teachers who knew her situation would occasionally provide, and discarded books that caught her grandmother’s attention while picking up waste paper.

Edward, who had been observing Eve’s face lost in thought, stopped walking. Sensing the pause in his movements, Eve suddenly snapped back to attention. As Eve lowered her arm, Edward familiarly pushed a few books back into a hidden space at the innermost part of the study. Eve felt a strong sense of déjà vu at the sight.

‘Why do the kids here like to create secret spaces in the study so much?’

Of course, the revealed secret room didn’t seem to serve an ulterior motive like Alberic’s hidden chamber. Inside the exposed secret room, there were bookshelves and a few books visible, but Eve looked at Edward with a puzzled expression. Edward, seeing Eve’s subtle expression that seemed to doubt what he meant by showing this to her, smiled.

“If you’re really doubtful, stay right there. I’ll just get the item out.”

As if there were no other intentions, he picked up a book from the secret study and came out. The door to the secret room closed again, and Edward handed the book he held to Eve. It was a cobalt blue hardcover book with no title written on it. Even though there was nothing written on it, one could tell the book was precious by the gold trim around each corner.

“Take a look at it.”

At the man’s urging to read it right there, Eve obediently opened the book. As she read the words written inside, her eyes widened in surprise, then twisted oddly. Eve knew this book.

“What on earth…”

“Ah, as I thought…!”

Eve couldn’t hide her bewildered expression and raised her gaze again to look at Edward, the same gaze she had dropped with the book. He was smiling brightly with delight. His smile was so radiant that Eve involuntarily took a step back, taken aback.

His face, resembling a finely sculpted gemstone, seemed to come alive as a subtle blush adorned his cheeks and formed a joyful, vibrant smile. Eve, whose eyes were stinging, eventually averted her gaze from him. As she did so, Edward confidently approached, closing the distance between them, and suddenly pulled Eve into a tight embrace, his arms enveloping her waist.

“As expected, you also remembered this time, Eve.”


Feeling uncomfortable with the sudden display of affection, Eve attempted to break free from his arms, but in that moment, his voice caused her to freeze and stiffen. Edward, sensing the tension in Eve’s body, buried his face in the crook of her neck as if he didn’t mind her resistance.

“You’ve grown so much, just as I expected. How could you have grown this much? You always surpass my expectations.”

“… What do you mean?”

“You remember, don’t you? The forgotten god, the grace of God for allowing to turn back time, the last holy maiden… and this book.”


“I missed you. Really, I did. I can’t tell you how eagerly I waited to see you again.”

Edward’s soft lips touched near her neck before pulling back. Eve forced her malfunctioning mind to sort out the situation.

Edward called her Eve, not Evelyn. Just like that day in the game when he took away the ruined young lady’s name from her and confined her to the underground of the Crown Prince’s palace.

Eve hurriedly pushed Edward away and took a few steps back. Eve, who suddenly drew back, bared her teeth and growled. Nevertheless, Edward continued to gaze at her with a beautiful smile and gentle eyes.

“What, what do you know?”

“Well, let’s see. That you were screaming that you would kill me…?”

Edward maintained eye contact with Eve and continued speaking calmly.

“You cursed that you would never forgive me. You cried out in horror at the sight of your swollen belly, and there were times when you went on a hunger strike for several days, trying to get rid of the child. I remember the countless times you tried to escape. Ah, you even tried to flee with Castel to a foreign country. Even though he doesn’t seem like it, that man is soft-hearted, so he must have been easily taken in by you… That’s right, I remember when you told me about getting whipped by your cousin. Callisto also hid your body, and Duke William proposed to you. I’ve also heard the story of the wolf of Sidus tearing you apart limb by limb to death.”

It was all part of the game’s content. He didn’t know anything beyond it. Eve’s complexion turned pale. An unidentified horror, as if a game character were speaking from within the game console, stimulated Eve’s nerves.

The game was no longer just a game. The characters were alive and moving. Was this truly 「living」?

Eve tried her best not to utter nonsense and forcibly suppressed her emotions, focusing on Edward’s voice. She had to confirm 「what」 he knew.

“So, how did your escape plan end up after all? Were you happy after abandoning and leaving me behind?”

“Fuck you. Abandon? Leave? Bullshit. Who turned who into a human wreck first? Don’t pretend to be the victim. Did you completely go insane, you bastard?”

“Hahaha! Well, you’ve truly become a completely different person. Even that pleases me.”

“You’re spewing nonsense. If you remember all that and have a conscience, shouldn’t you have pretended not to know me? You should have lived as if you were dead, with a repentant heart all your life. What you’re doing now is nothing more than deceit, you disgusting bastard.”

“Call it a deception, but it’s fine. I missed you. I longed for you. In this hell that repeated itself dozens, hundreds of times, only you were alive and moving. So how could I not long for you?”

Suddenly, Edward’s demeanor became sharp like an awl. A dismal murderous look briefly flickered on his face before disappearing.

“Even if it was you who pushed me into this hell.”

“Ha… How ridiculous, really. Don’t shift the blame onto me. It’s disgusting.”

“What you obtained from Vermell is the book’s copy. The original is over there. There are contents that were intentionally omitted, so take it and read it.”


“We’ll talk again after that. Should we start heading back now?”

Edward asked her after gathering his emotions and composing his expression, while still looking at her with eyes overflowing with lingering feelings. Perplexed, Eve looked at the face of the man who calmly smiled and extended his left arm, at a loss for what to respond with.

“Ah, young lady.”

“… What now again?”

“The journey provides fresh experiences. It’s fine to talk informally when it’s just the two of us. I will make a special exception for you and allow it.”

“Ugh… You perverted bastard…”

Unable to withstand her disgust any longer, Eve rolled her eyes and muttered curses under her breath. Edward, enjoying the moment, chuckled once again and intentionally slipped his left arm under Eve’s right arm, in a gesture of escorting her, before taking a step forward.

“Still, be cautious when there are ears listening. What if you get caught for insulting the royalty?”

“Damn it, seriously…”


Silently, Eve followed the man’s lead, quietly sorting out her thoughts. Honestly, her relationship with the male protagonists had changed a lot over the past two years, so she didn’t really see the point in following the flow of the hidden ending. However, this was not just a matter of simply breaking the game’s route.

‘Suddenly, a regression? As it turns out, it was a time loop story? What kind of development is this! The developers must be messing with me. No, on second thought, this is ridiculous. You can’t do this to me! How can you secretly give a character a secret setting that wasn’t even in the game? This crazy messed-up game!’

With a complex expression on her face, lost in various thoughts, Eve chewed her lips. Meanwhile, Edward, stealing occasional glances at the blue-colored book nestled in her embrace, wore a satisfied smile.

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