Predatory Marriage — Chapter 196. Nausea (2)
Translator: Atlas / Editor: Regan
She felt so nauseous. Leah gagged and retched into the bushes, vomiting in agonizing spasms until she staggered, clinging to a bush.
“Haa, ha…” Gasping, she pulled out a handkerchief to wipe her lips. She couldn’t believe she had been able to hold back her nausea for so long. She was so dizzy, she had to cover her eyes with her hands.
Normally, she would have just said that her stomach was upset to avoid eating. Cerdina often hinted that Leah needed to be careful with her diet if she wanted to keep her figure, so surely she would have preferred if Leah skipped breakfast.
But as much as Leah wanted to please her, strangely the thought that she should hide her nausea filled her mind.
Why am I doing this?
It seemed that something had been wrong ever since she met that strange man the night before. There was a cracking sound in her ears, an echo of the noise she heard every day.
Lately, Leah had eaten very little.
No matter what she ate, her stomach rejected it. Fortunately, she had gotten sick from being out in the rain, so she had an excuse not to eat. She had no appetite.
Sometimes even a light soup made her nauseous, so she secretly vomited. Watching Leah get thinner day after day, Blain was furious. He wanted to expel all her ladies-in-waiting from the palace, but she managed to dissuade him.
Though she felt nauseous no matter what she ate, there was something she craved. It was a taste she couldn’t clearly remember, but she longed for it even as she ate and vomited day after day.
Even as she grew thinner, the emissaries for the wedding celebration arrived, and Blain went to welcome them personally.
The banquet was expected to last for two weeks as delegates arrived from countries all over the continent. Leah hoped for many diplomatic connections and accomplishments while so many were in Estia, but Blain was opposed to her meeting them. He even tried to dissuade her from attending the welcoming banquet.
“You don’t have to go.”
Before, she would have meekly done as she was told, but on this occasion she strangely had the will to argue.
“It would be impolite. The emissaries came for the wedding celebration…”
Kurkan had also sent emissaries, and she was surprised to discover that their King had come with them. She wondered if the man who had spoken so much nonsense in the rainy garden really was the King of Kurkan. Though warnings sounded in her mind at her own dangerous curiosity, she wanted to meet them.
“What will the others think if I don’t attend?”
Listening to her persuasion, Blain suddenly grabbed her hand, looking at the ring she wore as he entwined his fingers in hers.
“Do you love me, Leah?”
“I love you,” she replied, with the affectionate smile that pleased him. Blain looked intently at her, beautiful in her exquisite dress.
“…Even if she’s a shell, she’s definitely mine.” He murmured softly, and finally agreed to allow her to accompany him. “Let’s go together. I think it’s all right to show you off in front of them.”
Together, they walked into the banquet hall. Night had fallen, but the palace was so brightly lit, it was as if it were day. Though the music from the banquet hall flowed out the doors and windows, it could not diminish the gloomy atmosphere of the palace. The two walked together, trailed by attendants and ladies-and-waiting, down a long, brightly lit corridor until Blain came to an abrupt halt.
At the opposite end of the corridor, a group of strangers appeared. Tall, brown-skinned, and beautiful, they were obviously Kurkan, and led by a man with golden eyes.
When the man stopped, all the Kurkans behind him did the same. Leah stared at him, and he stared right back at her.
Those eyes were so peculiar, just as they had been the first night she saw them. The golden eyes shone as if they were filled with light, drawing people in. Leah gazed into them as if hypnotized, and only shook herself when she felt the eyes of the other Kurkans upon her.
All of the Kurkans were looking at her, and for some reason there was anxiety in their eyes. Suddenly, she felt uncomfortable, having her arm linked with Blain’s.
“Let the light shine upon Estia.” The man with the golden eyes said with a deep voice, and his eyes looked only at her. “I’m Ishakan, the King of Kurkan.”
At that moment, she had the strongest sense of déjà vu, as if this moment had already happened before.
Just as her lips parted to speak, Blain let go of her arm and caught her by the waist, dragging her toward him so that she staggered, clinging to him.
“Thank you for coming all this way, King of Kurkan!” Kissing her on the cheek, there was a twisted smile on his face as he added, “This is my future wife.”