A Saint who was Adopted by the Grand Duke - Chapter 108
Updated: Apr 10
Khalid entered the garden, delighted that Esther had called for him.
He followed Dorothy to the garden and soon spotted Esther sitting calmly on the terrace.
He tried to call for Esther before stopping for a light greeting towards the eerie looking Judy and Sebastian.
When they didn’t even respond, he awkwardly passed by them.
‘Don’t be nervous.’
Esther took a deep breath as she observed Khalid approach closer and closer.
She used to tremble at every encounter they had, but it wasn’t as uncomfortable as before, now that she had seen him a few times.
Rather than freezing as before, she gradually overcame the trauma and began her bright and new life.
“Lady, here is the juice.”
The maids arranged two glasses of orange juice and refreshments on the table.
Khalid slowly sat across from Esther while carefully eyeing her.
Esther’s voice was dry and low-pitched.
“Thank you for allowing me in. I’m so glad I didn’t leave without seeing you.”
Khalid’s glimmering blonde hair gently fluttered against the wind.
‘Why did I even like him?’
She used to think Khalid was the coolest guy in the world, but now she didn’t see anything impressive about him. Perhaps that was due to the influence of the handsome figures around her.
In terms of appearance, Sebastian was superior.
Khalid smiled with joy. He would never dream of Esther’s current thoughts.
“The mansion is really nice. Is it because this belongs to the Grand Duchy? It’s very similar to the Temple.”
Esther sighed. She watched Khalid continue the conversation, pretending to be friendly despite having been rejected several times.
“I clearly said I wouldn’t meet you, so why did you come here?”
He arrived with determination, but it wasn’t easy to bring out the conversation as he intended. Khalid slightly hesitated and took a sip of his juice.
“Actually, I’m not on vacation.”
Esther, who seemed uninterested in Khalid the whole time, finally faced him properly.
Khalid’s face turned red when her pale pink eyes met his.
He pulled out his holy sword from its sheath and placed it on the table.
“Can you see this?”
A sword studded with a red ruby, symbolizing the eyes of the Goddess Espitos. Esther couldn’t help but recognize the sword that had stabbed her countless times.
“It’s a holy sword.”
“You recognized it so quickly? That’s right. I was appointed a paladin a few days ago.”
Although a bit surprised at Esther’s nonchalant attitude as she recognized the holy sword, Khalid continued.
“There were many people who were far better than me, but it must be my luck.”
It was a word of encouragement, but strangely, Esther’s attitude was cold-hearted.
Embarrassment could be read in Khalid’s eyes as he honestly confessed his reason for visiting the Tersian territory.
“The first mission I received as a paladin was regarding you. That’s why I came all the way to Tersia.”
Esther’s eyes grew bigger as she listened to his words. She didn’t expect Khalid to so conveniently disclose his mission.
“Are you surprised?”
“A little bit.”
Khalid sighed bitterly. Esther must have been surprised that she was involved in a Temple mission out of nowhere.
“How should I say this…”
Esther paid close attention to Khalid’s behavior.
She didn’t say anything and only blinked her clear eyes, fearing she’d rush and prevent him from speaking.
“Actually, the Saint told me to bring your blood here.”
A small glass bottle was pulled out of Khalid’s pocket. The vial was placed on the table beside the holy sword.
Esther bit her lower lip gently. As expected, Rabienne must have been suspicious of her.
As a matter of fact, seeing that she asked for blood already says so much about her being sure Esther was the Saint.
Esther’s eyes sharpened.
“Did she tell you why?”
“No. I wouldn’t have been so worried had she told me.”
Esther decided to think positively of Khalid, looking at how he told her all this.
Esther didn’t trust him, but she could feel his tremor as he confessed to her.
She thought that since Khalid had not yet been thoroughly controlled by Rabienne, their conversation would be relevant.
“What do you think, Khalid?”
“… It’s not normal.”
“Yes, it’s rather peculiar and strange to ask for my blood.”
“Actually, I don’t really understand why they would need your blood. You already left the Temple.”
As Khalid conveyed his confusion, Esther took the opportunity and continued.
“But will you follow that order? Because it’s the order of the Saint?”
“There’s nothing I can do about it. I exist for the Temple and for the Saint.”
Esther shook her head slowly as she observed the flustered Khalid.
“No. What Sir Khalid should believe in isn’t the Temple or the Saint, but Goddess Espitos.”
Khalid was caught off guard. He struggled to speak, an expression of helplessness on his face.
“That… I’m not sure what that would be yet. Can’t you just share a little bit of your blood?”
Even when Khalid eagerly pleaded with her, Esther’s firm attitude did not change.
“Sir Khalid is an outstanding person, so I’m sure you understand how absurd this request is.”
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Esther stimulated Khalid’s emotions as she stared into his eyes.
He wouldn’t have brought himself to say this in the past, but Esther was no longer the Esther he knew.
“You’ve been training for a while now. There is no use of blood anywhere in Espitos’s teaching. Furthermore, I am no longer a candidate.
Sir Khalid is a holy knight serving the Saint. I believe you should lead the Saint down the right path.”
As Esther’s voice softened, Khalid’s face naturally loosened.
He then gradually came to think of what would happen if he broke away from the stereotype that he should devote his loyalty to the Temple and followed his thoughts.
“You’re right. I don’t think that is the case either.”
Khalid clenched his teeth and put the glass bottle back into his pocket.
“But I don’t know what to do. This is the Saint’s order.”
“I don’t think unconditional faith is a good thing. Go with your rational thinking, for the Goddess.”
“What if it’s a test?”
“You’re taking another’s blood. How would she know whether it’s actually mine or not?”
“But how could I lie to the Saint…”
Khalid seemed very embarrassed as Esther suggested he trick the Saint.
“You are the one who will make the choice, Sir Khalid. But it’s rather strange if the blood has to come from none other than me.”
Khalid’s strong faith and loyalty towards the Temple rattled at her words.
But in the end, Khalid’s doubts about the whole thing and his heart for Esther prevailed. It hadn’t been long since Rabienne became a Saint, so it was possible for her to make a slight mistake.
“That’s true. After talking with you, my thoughts were sorted out. Thanks.”
After hearing her thoughts, his mind cleared.
Khalid stood up, feeling fortunate to have been freed from the endless headache.
“I hope Sir Khalid always makes the right choice as a holy knight who worships the Goddess.”
It was Esther’s heartfelt advice and warning to Khalid.
“Please take good care of the Saint in the future. And watch out carefully.”
“What does that mean?”
“It doesn’t mean much.”
Esther smiled brightly.
It was the first time Esther smiled while facing Khalid. He blankly gazed at her expression.
“Will you not leave?”
“Uh? Yeah, I’ll go.”
Khalid leaped in embarrassment, turning to leave, when he hesitated and looked back.
“This isn’t the last time, is it? Will we be able to meet again?”
“If Sir Khalid is on the right path, that’s possible.”
After the conversation he had with Esther, Khalid decided what course of action he would take next.
He would either put his own blood or animal blood in the vial, hand it to Rabienne, and complete his mission.
Esther fell on the chair, losing all the energy she mustered when dealing with Khalid.
“I still have a long way to go.”
She wished dealing with him would’ve been easier, but their past memories weren’t something she could easily disregard.
Still, she would have to stay strong if she wanted to face Rabienne in the future.
“What was the content of the revelation?”
If Rabienne had noticed Esther’s existence, the revelation would have already come down. She was curious about what was said.
Meanwhile, Sebastian and Judy crept towards the exhausted Esther.
“Did he bother you?”
“It’s not like that.”
Judy picked up a chocolate from the table and put it in Esther’s mouth so that she could cheer up.
Esther lay flat on her stomach as she munched the sweet, slowly coming to her senses. She felt much better whenever something sweet was in her mouth.
“We’ve seen him at the well, right? He came from the temple.”
“Why’s he here again? Did he really come to take you back to the Temple?”
Judy was anxious for Esther. He never liked it when those belonging to the Temple roamed around.
“What are you talking about? Why would Esther go back to the Temple?”
Sebastian, too, went wild, albeit unaware of the details.
He couldn’t see her very often as it was, but to think of how many times they would be able to meet if she went to the Temple.
“That’s never going to happen. Esther, if they try to take you from the Temple, I’ll help too.”
Sebastian reliably stretched out his right hand to Esther and replied.
“Yeah. I’ll help you anytime. My mother and father will do everything.”
It was reassuring that Sebastian’s family, one of the four major duchies, would be on her side.
They would certainly be necessary if she wanted to compete with Rabienne later.
Esther smiled brightly and linked her pinky with Sebastian’s.
“Uwah, we… touched fingers.”
“Where did this come from? Look at your tiny fingers.”
Judy teased Sebastian, who was delighted over barely touching one of Esther’s fingers.
Despite Sebastian’s fuss, Esther stood from her seat indifferently.
“Then I’ll go in.”
“You’re leaving already?”
Sebastian, who had initially come to see Esther, expressed his disappointment.
“Yes, I’m going to rest in my room. Have a good time with Brother Judy.”
Esther entered the mansion immediately after.
Sebastian pulled his hairs off in regret over Esther’s finger disconnecting with his when he spotted something.
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“Huh? Did this bloom earlier?” (Sebastian)
“I don’t think so. All the flowers bloomed in less than a second.” (Judy)
The flowers near where Esther was sitting, which had not yet spouted, bloomed brilliantly.