How to Tame My Beastly Husband — Chapter 97. Tattoo (1)
Translator: Atlas / Editor: Regan
Raphael’s hand caught the back of her neck to draw her closer, then nudged her chin up to kiss her. Annette’s eyes fluttered in surprise. But instead of pushing him away, she closed her eyes, accepting his kiss. It always felt like being devoured.
As he kissed her, her eyes slitted open, and she saw his beautifully shaped black eyebrows, drawn together in a frown. Somehow the sight made her sad. Someday soon, she would have to leave this man, because he didn’t love her.
* * *
Raphael had lived his life far from his family. If he were to name the members of his family, there was only one he would claim: King Selgratis. His half-brother was a stranger to him, and he had believed his mother’s brother dead. There was nothing more to say of it.
It had left him with mixed feelings about families, at least until Annette became his wife. Though he would die before he let it show, Raphael was very nervous about meeting his wife’s family. His relationship with her father was already terrible, but he hoped it would be better with Arjen and Claire. They were both very close to Annette.
Claire had turned out very different than he expected.
When he heard that she was from one of the most prestigious families in the Empire, he had expected another impossibly arrogant noblewoman, given his experience with the Bavarias. But Claire had shattered those notions. Raphael still felt a bit irritated every time she showered Annette with kisses, but other than that, she was a very nice person.
But what would Arjen Bavaria be like? The genius son of Allamand. A man recognized by the Empire, who had a higher and larger social hierarchy than the Kingdom of Deltium. It wouldn’t be so strange if he was as arrogant as a king.
Before even meeting him, Raphael felt a competitiveness toward him, like an acknowledgement between two superior men. Though his mastery was different, Raphael had also been a prodigy from a young age, and he took it for granted that he would always have the admiration of others for those skills. He didn’t want to suffer in comparison to his brother-in-law. Raphael wanted to impress his wife.
But her brother was a rare genius.
Life was never easy. Raphael crossed his arms, frowning with displeasure as he watched the carriage approaching in the distance. Perhaps it was because of his high rank as an official of the Chapelle Empire, but he had an incredibly splendid carriage. The blue and gold carriage looked as if nothing less than a silver-haired prince would step out of it.
Not long after, the door opened, and for a moment the features of the young man inside were obscured by the light of the sun. As he stepped out, Raphael’s eyes widened at the sight of the famous Arjen Bavaria.
“Welcome, brother!” exclaimed Annette, hurrying forward with a smile.
Arjen’s delicate beauty was very similar to his sisters. He had long blond hair that reached to his collarbones, and even if he were annoyed, he would never have looked intimidating, with that slender build and unimpressive height, no more than 5’7. Posted only on NovelUtopia
The stress of the meeting gave an anxious cast to those beautiful features, but somehow even then he looked charming. All of this was surprising, but it was something else that shocked Raphael. He couldn’t tear his eyes from the object on the left side of Arjen’s face.
On that pale, perfect cheek was the tattoo of a black spider.
Raphael was honestly shocked. Tattoos were only for mercenaries and slaves. The first wore them to demonstrate their courage, and the second to identify their owner. Nobles would never consider tattooing their bodies.
And even mercenaries only tattooed their bodies, never their faces. Why would the famous Arjen mark his face with something so conspicuous?
But it seemed Raphael was the only one troubled by it. Annette and Claire both hugged Arjen with no sign of noticing it at all.
“I think you’ve gotten even prettier, Annette,” he said. “I’m sorry I couldn’t come to your wedding.”
“It’s all right. I’m glad you could come now, in spite of all your work.”
Having greeted his sister, Arjen finally approached Raphael. Those purple eyes, so similar to Allamand Bavaria’s, looked him up and down before he extended a hand to greet him.
“This is the first time we’ve met,” he said. “I’m Arjen Bavaria. Thank you for inviting me to your home, brother-in-law.”
Maybe he felt like a snake to Raphael just because he was Allamand’s son, but as he shook the other man’s hand, he was surprised at how cold it was. Suddenly, Arjen realized what Raphael was looking at, and his hand lifted to his left check.
“You…can see it? The tattoo?”