TC Chapter 4

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A subordinate who went out to explore answered.

「“It’s been a while since we can’t see her anymore.
The footprints can no longer be seen because of the snowstorm.
It’s hard to find them.”」

     Maybe she gave up.

He didn’t expect her to be able to follow this rugged mountain road from the beginning, but life as a hunter was never easy. 

She couldn’t be accepted as a member of the organization if she wasn’t strong. Especially since there was no precedent for female hunters in Lycaon. 

He tried to act as if nothing had happened. 

He didn’t specifically attack the bandits to save her.

She was lucky she was saved while he was on assignment.

After that, whether she lives or dies, it has nothing to do with him. 

But, oddly enough, he felt as if he had left something important behind.

When he first saw her, she was being chased by bandits and she had no shoes.

However, the look on her face was sincere when she said that she would become a Lycaon.

It was a dangerous look that did not know its own limits.

I can’t.”」

He stopped talking and called someone.


「“Yes, captain.”」

As Sosa reached his side, he said quietly.

「“I’ll bring the woman myself, so you can take the men back to the village first.”」

「“Yes? But it’s dangerous to go alone because of the heavy snowfall!”」

「“……… I don’t want anyone else to die because of me.
Besides, there’s a good chance the bandits are still nearby.
They must be very angry with us, they will do anything if they find her again.”」

While speaking seriously, Sosa also nodded with a serious face.

「“All right.
But you have to come back safe.”」

Don’t worry, you go first.”」

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His comrades showed great interest in her. 

Everyone wondered if the woman would really follow them, and hoped that she would pass the test safely. 

When Sosa and the others went first, he hid until they were far away before transforming into a horse. 

Only Sosa knew that he was from the ‘kelpie‘ clan that could transform into a horse. 

He ran very fast for a long time, until his mane fluttered. 

Finally, he found a blonde woman lying on the floor in the middle of a narrow path. 

She did not give up, but she collapsed. 

The more Jackal thought about it, the more ridiculous it was. 

     I’m not afraid of death. 

He, who was between life and death many times, felt a little sorry for her, who easily utters such words out of her mouth. 

But for some reason, she reminded him of when he had left his village.

He, too, was determined to do anything to survive on the day he left the village.

When he approached her, breathing heavenly, she lifted her head and narrowed her eyes at him.

He clicked his tongue as he watched a faint smile of welcome creep over her pale blue, quivering lips. 

He felt as if he had found a deer that had died, had come back to life. 

But she looked at him and smiled.

「“I don’t know if a horse resembles its owner, but… … What a smart and handsome horse.”」

As soon as he heard those words, he showed an unusually bewildered expression on his face. 

Fortunately, it wasn’t that obvious because he was a horse, but he had already started to like her.

Jackal wrapped Asha’s body with the wolf fur he was wearing before his transformation, then carried her on his back and ran. 

He was concerned that her skin had touched his naked body, but he flinched when suddenly she buried her face in his back. 

While transforming into a horse, his senses, especially his sense of smell, multiplied several times. 

The fragrant and subtle scent emanating from her body pierced his nostrils and he couldn’t come to his senses. 

Jackal shook his head, trying to ignore it, and sped up his steps to reach the village as soon as possible. 

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He wondered if he would get frostbite and cuts on his fingers or feet if he was exposed to the cold for too long.

While he was sitting quietly in front of the fireplace, contemplating, the doctor and Yuri arrived.



She bowed slightly to him.

Jackal relaxed his expression and said.

“I’m sorry for asking you to do this all of a sudden.
It doesn’t look right to me to do it myself ……..”

“It’s all right.”

Yuri smiled. 

She was one of the few female members of the organization. 

Yuri muttered playfully as she soaked the towel in warm water.

“But if you are going to have a partner, I don’t think it would be bad for the captain to do it himself…….”

He startled in front of the fireplace. 

Yuri secretly giggled. 

She gently wiped Asha’s frozen body with a warm, wet towel.

“Oh my God, look at these limbs! If you hit her, she might break!”

The doctor diagnosed Asha’s condition.

“She’s in very bad shape.
I can’t believe she made it through the mountain in this body.”

Jackal’s face grew serious.

“Is that all…….

She’s weaker than normal people.
I think it would be good for her to get enough rest.”

When the doctor and Yuri quietly left the room, Jackal, who was left alone, looked at Asha.

She had many large and small wounds. She had a body that never seemed to have lived as comfortably as a princess.

She was so light that he could barely feel her weight.

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It was then that he became curious about her story. She managed to get out of her village with this fragile body.

“Forgive me………”

He blinked at a faint murmur. 

A tear fell from her closed eyes.

“Forgive me…….
please…… .”

Jackal sighed softly and now looked at her with pitiful eyes.

She must have lived a harder life than he had imagined. 

Then he wiped her tears with his hand.

“I will do anything…… please…..that child’s life…….
save him….
Your Majesty….”

His eyes widened slightly, and his hand stopped in mid-air. 

He couldn’t understand why the words ‘Your Majesty‘ came out of her mouth.

Soon, a deep wrinkle formed on his forehead.

* * * * *

Asha will never forget the first day she met Emperor Karaf.

An imperial flower and a butterfly, the fateful mate sent from heaven. 

Unlike his reputation, her first meeting with him was neither romantic nor peaceful.

She was a slave.

A slave from the northern provinces was sold to enlighten the Emperor. 

The day her village was destroyed by Count Delphinium, Asha was dragged away with her hands tied, unable to even wear a pair of shoes. 

While desperately running away from the terrible sight of the entire village burning, she was caught by the knights and beaten hard. 

But at that moment, a bright golden light suddenly appeared on her body, and a butterfly pattern miraculously appeared through the torn dress. 

Upon hearing the auspicious news that a butterfly had appeared in the Empire, Asha was taken to the Imperial Palace. 

And, without even being properly dressed, she met the Emperor for the first time. 

Asha was kneeling on the floor in a torn dress. 

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She heard a terrifying low voice right in front of her.

「 “…….Raise your head.”」

Asha gently lifted her face drenched in a cold sweat. 

On the shining golden throne, embroidered with red roses, a splendid-looking man sat proudly cross-legged.

Asha had heard the rumors that he was a slaughtering, bloodless, tearless tyrant. 

But the moment she saw his face for the first time, she thought that he was a terrifyingly beautiful man. 

Perhaps because he is a flower that symbolizes the empire, she dares to guarantee that no one is as beautiful and fascinating as any man or woman she has ever seen.

She wondered why so many women were so thirsty for his love, but she thought a man like him could fall in love at first sight. 

The problem was that he was a cursed tyrant……..

It is said that all those who inherit the blood of the Imperial Family in the Etzheim Empire are born with the ‘Flower Spirit‘. 

However, those who became emperors always had a ‘rose‘ in their heart, a symbol of the Imperial Family, and Karaf Rode Etzheim was a special ‘black rose‘ among them. 

It was the first time in history that a black rose had appeared in the Empire. 

It is said that when the emperor blooms, he can keep the empire safe from unknown plagues and monsters. But the black rose was unprecedented. 

An oracle once said that when a black rose was born, it would have powerful power, but it would lead to the Empire’s ruin as he could not control his power. 

Thanks to this, the nobles were busy checking and demeaning him even though he was born with extraordinary power. 

And as that prophecy came true, Karaf was cursed and turned into a tyrant before he could flourish. 

He looked down at her arrogantly, tilting his chin and narrowing his eyes. 

His bloodshot red eyes stared up at her.

It was as if a wild beast was languidly looking at the prey it had caught.
And the Emperor was the predator.

A sneering smile crept around his mouth as he was looking at Asha.

“Your appearance is worthy of consideration.”

Asha, who was the lowest class citizen, was given the title of ‘Vanessa‘, the butterfly of the Imperial Palace. 

The servants and aristocrats of the Imperial Palace believed that true ‘blooming‘ would occur only if they had sexual intercourse, so they did their best to push her into the emperor’s palace, and soon an unforgettable first night with him came.

On the night of the faint crescent moon, two shadows overlapped the emperor’s bedroom.

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