Favored By The Villain - Chapter 99
Chapter 99 – Inspection Tour of the Southern Region
“Has anyone here ever talked to Levisia about her problems?” She asked, cupping her chin in her hands. “Or has Levisia ever consulted her concerns with you?”
Elizabeth frowned and looked over at her siblings, who were all shaking their heads. Cassian only gave out a weak shrug. She was about to respond to Merril when Lidan piped up.
“I’m amazed Levy hasn’t opened up to you, given how much you like to harass her.” He smirked and nudged Siaphyl with his elbow.
“Yes, surely she would have opened up to you by now…” Siaphyl’s words died in his mouth when Elizabeth shot him a look that could kill a man. He slinked behind Lidan, who was also avoiding her glare.
When the two cleared their throats, evading her stare, she flipped her hair over her shoulder and let out a snort.
“Levisia has everything she could possibly need her, and she is well tended to. What makes consulting her troubles so important?” Elizabeth flicked her hair over her shoulder. “She is a Kraiden. Is that not enough?”
Even as she spoke, her insides were boiling at the thought that Levisia was talking to someone else and not her.
“Oh, how curious. So, that must mean that Levisia only voices her concerns to me. Like the other day, for example, when I was training her.” Merril clasped her hands together. “The poor dear was so distracted that she couldn’t even hold her sword properly.”
“What?!” Elizabeth yelled, her voice echoing through the corridor. “Why did she talk to you? What did she say? Merril!” She reached out to grab Merril by her shirt, but she skipped out the way with a beaming grin on her face.
“I guess Levy must prefer me, sister dearest.” Merril spun round and laughed, which irritated Elizabeth even more. Sparks flew from her hands, and it was only due to Lidan and Siaphyl holding her back that Merril was still standing.
“Oh, I would absolutely hate to break up this lovely interaction we are having, but we still need to meet with the Emperor.” Cassian heaved himself off the wall he had been leaning on. “To think I am related to you all. I pity you all. It’s almost impossible to describe your lack of communication or stupidity. Now, prepare yourself. His Majesty is waiting.”
Elizabeth cursed. She had been so caught up in the bickering between her and her siblings, she had completely forgotten the reason she was there in the first place. As she lined up in front of the audience chamber, ushering her siblings to do the same, Cassian stepped forwards to knock three times on the door.
“Cassian, Merril, Elizabeth, Lidan, and Siaphyl Kraiden. We are here to see the Emperor.” He spoke loudly, before dropping back into position. After a few seconds of waiting, the double doors swung open, allowing for them to enter.
As Elizabeth walked up to the throne, she looked around to see that there was no one else in the audience chamber save for the Emperor and the guards. And themselves, of course.
At the foot of the throne, Elizabeth was the first to drop down on knee in a low bow. The others followed, though Elizabeth did not miss how Lidan’s bow was sloppier than hers.
“We are here, Your Majesty.” She said, keeping her head bowed. “You wished to speak to us?”
“Yes, I did. You may rise.” The Emperor said, his voice soft and calming. Elizabeth, just as she was the first to bow, was the last to get to her feet. Lidan, by comparison, shot to his feet.
“Your Majesty, you’re looking pretty pale today.” Lidan said, to which Elizabeth promptly elbowed him in the side and hissed at him to keep quiet.
“Lidan. As quick witted as ever.” Crow’s feet appeared at the emperor’s eyes when he laughed. His response caused the siblings to look at each other in confusion. Elizabeth could tell what her siblings were thinking: there was something unusual about the atmosphere. Something none of them could put their finger on. Even Lidan, the one who had made the joke, seemed concerned.
“What is it you wanted to speak to us about, Your Majesty?” Cassian broke the uncomfortable silence hanging over them.
“I’d like to advance the timing of our inspection tour of the southern region.” The Emperor got to his feet. “Ideally, within the month.”
Elizabeth’s mouth dropped open. A brief glance at her siblings suggested that it was news to them, as well. The inspection of the southern region was not due to take place until several months. For it to be called forwards was unheard of.
“Furthermore,” The Emperor looked down at the siblings. “Aurora is also scheduled to return from her studies within this month to join the inspection.”