there was no need to explain herself, but under his pressuring gaze, she couldn help but open her mouth.
”I didn throw myself at anyone, nor did I have a pleasant dream after owing a barbarian like you a life debt. Id rather you let me fall and embrace my death there. ”
”How dare a mere woman as you talk like that to the Emperor?! ”
”Execute her! Burn her at stake for her sin! ”
The Priestess ignored peoples jeers and cursed at her.
Either way, she was doomed to die. Why should she bother to act politely in front of these people if that was the case?
Her land was burned down, and her people were dead. All because this person brought these men here.
Thinking about people who lost their lives and Maya, who desperately fought to save her, was enough to boil her blood.
The Emperor looked unbothered by her sharp words and walked closer instead. Using his armored hand, he pinched her chin and forced her to look up. She didn avert her gaze and defiantly looked back at those beautiful but wicked eyes.
She could almost see her future, dyed in red blood in his eyes.
The soldiers tacitly agreed that the womans life would end now and respectfully lowered their heads.
”Holy Maiden from the Land of Oblivion. State your name. ”
The Priestess: ”… ”
He pinched her chin harder, making her grimace. ”Speak, and I might just pardon your little guards life. ”
Her eyes widened upon hearing that. ”Where is Maya? What did you do to her? ”
”She fought valiantly, but alas, war is war. She is dying as we speak, but I don mind sending a physician her way if I feel generous. If you are as wise as they said, you will know that her life and death depend on your choice now. ”
The Priestess clenched her hand into a fist. Letting herself be ordered around like this was infuriating.
She knew she shouldn trust him, but whenever she thought about Maya currently hovering between life and death, her heart ached so much.
”I said I have none of that. I don have a name. ”
There was a flash of surprise in the Emperors eyes for the first time. He narrowed his eyes dangerously, but her clear eyes told him she wasn lying.
The Priestess was anxious because she thought he wouldn believe her.
Surprisingly, he released his hold from her chin. Then he raised his hand with his palm in front of her face.
Following the gesture was a loud and bold declaration from him.
”Since no one called you by your name, I will bestow you a new name and life. You will now be called Aisha in the name of Emperor Archibald Lywellyn Ambrose. Remember this name for the rest of your life, and never forget who you belong to. ”
”Glory to the Empire! All hail Emperor Archibald! ”
The Priestess, who had now received a name from her enemy, could only stand there blankly.
For as long as she remembered, everyone around her always called her the Priestess. Some people secretly called her Ominous or Monster behind her back.
However, none of those was her name.
When she asked the nanny who had been watching her grow up what her name was, the nanny was startled. Then, she answered with a grim face that a mortal name wasn fit for a holy being such as her. Because she was the most precious existence in the land.
But if that was true, why did her parents abandon her?
Why was there no one by her side?
Why do they look at her with fear and contempt?
As she had these questions in her mind, sometimes there was a whisper telling her that she was neither human nor a monster. She belonged to neither side and was destined to live forever in solitude.
No one would remember her, and she would die alone without anyone crying for her.
However, this person she had just met today and destroyed her homeland granted her something that no one dared to do, as if he was trying to defy heaven.
The Priestess was repulsed by the idea of receiving a name from her enemy. Still, a part of her that constantly desired an identity solely belonged to her won over that.
Her life could end anytime now, but in this brief moment, she couldn help but think that the name Aisha was the most beautiful name she had ever heard.
And Aisha would be her name from now on.
She wasn a nameless Priestess anymore.
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