Why is the Grand Duke here?
Roseline was embarrassed, but she did not show any expression and only bowed her head slightly to give respect.
The Grand Duke did not accept her greeting, but he did not ignore her either.
He stood by her doorway, still and staring at her.
He took off his black cloak to reveal his dark gray uniform with ornate patterns adorned with silver.
His hair was black and his skin was pale, even his clothes were achromatic.
It seemed that only the space he was in had lost its color.
It would be so had it not been for his twinkling blue eyes.
“Are you Roseline Crimson Rose?”
Why did he ask for my name when he already knew it?
“Yes,” Roseline nodded.
The Grand Duke walked towards the table and sat across Roseline.
He was a large man even when sitting down.
Even in the late afternoon sun, he exuded a dominant presence.
I thought his eyes were beautiful, but seeing them up close, they’re even more amazing.
Unlike ordinary people, his eyes were sharp like a warrior, but there was a sense of intimidation that could not be explained by that alone.
At first glance, Roseline thought they were spears forged in ice, but up close, she saw raging blue flames that seemed to devour everything that came close.
Her body tensed from just a single glance from him, feeling as though those fiery eyes would devour her.
It was strange, to feel like being swallowed by people’s eyes.
“Roseline, do you know me?” he suddenly asked, breaking Roseline from her trance.
“I heard other people call you Grand Duke.
There is only one in the Empire, so I thought you would be Grand Duke Melchor Postenmeyer,” she replied.
“You know my name.”
“Yes, because you’re well known.”
It was difficult not to know the name of the one and only Grand Duke of the Empire.
Political lessons discussed the history of Grand Duchess Postenmeyer, as well as the size of the empire’s territory in ancient times, and the influence of the subordinate families.
“Roseline, you are eighteen this year.
Your mother and six-year-old brother are under police custody.
Am I right?” asked the Duke.
“You’re right,” Roseline paused, “Is this an interrogation?”
“Do you only have one brother?”
“Yes,” she nodded.
“Do you have an older sister with a big age gap? Or a cousin like your age?”
“There is not.
There are no immediate relatives in the Crimson Roses.”
The Crimson Roses have been passed down by one son for nearly a few hundred years.
Her grandparents had no children, so they were worried that it would be the end of their generation until Roseline’s father was born.
It was a strange tradition for the Crimson Roses to bear children late after continuing miscarriages, but it was rarer for a couple to bear two children.
Is there anyone out there who resembles you?”
“I didn’t have much interaction with my mother’s relatives.”
“Even more distant relatives are fine.
Is there a woman like you with red hair, green eyes, and maybe ten years older than you?”
“Red hair and green eyes are the characteristics of the Crimson Rose family.”
Perhaps she was mistaken, perhaps she was not, but she could sense a faint disappointment from him.
As if he was dismayed that she didn’t know someone who looked exactly like her.
“But what does this question have to do with my father’s gambling allegations?” she inquired.
“Gambling allegations, yes.
We have to talk about it.”
Strange, Roseline thought, was he talking about something completely unrelated before?
The Grand Duke subtly avoided Roseline’s gaze and picked up the documents laid on the table, scanning each page with pretend seriousness.
Finally, he asked, “Did you know that you killed the lives of twenty knights of Her Majesty?”
“It was self-defense,” answered Roseline.
“I did not commit a sin, but they were going to drag me away.
To prove my innocence, I had to resist.”
“Why do you think so?”
“That’s what I learned at the academy.
It’s also in law school textbooks.”
The Duke looked at her intently.
Silence lingered in the space between them for a brief moment until he finally spoke.
“It’s not a bad thing to put into practice what you learned.
But the world doesn’t work that way.”
Did that mean she should have been caught? When the Blue Knights attacked, they were already accusing Roseline and the rest of her family of criminals.
If she had conceded obediently, wouldn’t it mean that she had admitted her sin?
“Do I have charges for injuring Her Majesty’s knights?” she asked.
“No, you won’t.”
‘No, you won’t.’? Can he use ambiguous words during an interrogation? Roseline was doubting the Grand Duke’s ability as an interrogator.
“According to the testimony of the knights, you severed only the tendons of their wrists as precise as a broom sweeps dust from the hallway.”
“Yes, I did.”
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