Chapter 324. My Mother’s Concern (1)
Translator: Aura / Editor: SaWarren
As soon as I made it known that I was pregnant, the priest who was helping us lead the ‘Great Prayer’ event waved his hands hurriedly,
“It came close to becoming a serious problem. You absolutely must not eat this food, Your Majesty.”
He had a frightened look. It was probably because the imperial family was at a critical point since the time of the former king.
The priest quickly removed the food.
“Is it okay to do this?”
When I asked him just in case, he waved his hands again and said anxiously,
“Of course, of course. We cannot harm the future of the Western Empire while praying for it.”
As we exchanged a few words, murmurs began to be heard all around. Most of the nobles had bright faces and voices.
For both the nobles who supported Heinley and those who did not, the succession issue was important.
Moreover, the fact that I was a foreigner was both a weakness and a strength.
Since I shared no blood ties with any family in the Western Empire, all the nobles wished to become my child’s future aides.
Heinley kept a gentle smile and, once the commotion died down, decided to continue with the event.
When we all met for lunch at the end of the event, old Duke Zemensia approached with a glass of wine.
“My sincerest congratulations, Your Majesty.”
There were already many nobles who came up to congratulate me, but I didn’t expect the old Duke Zemensia to do so as well.
Isn’t he Christa’s father? I don’t think he’s someone who really wanted to congratulate me.
It wasn’t easy to accept his congratulations without hesitation. Although I thanked him with a smile, I could not let my guard down since I did not know his intentions.
The old Duke only showed his true colors after he pretended to be friendly,
“Still it was unfair.”
“The Empress’s pregnancy is a national celebration and everyone’s hope, but it was kept secret for two months. Even we nobles didn’t know that Your Majesty was pregnant, and we never ceased to be worried about the succession issue.”
Oh… I wondered if the food that was harmful to the pregnancy had been served intentionally, and if so, who had done it.
There was a high probability that it was this man who was behind it.
Some nobles who were talking excitedly about the baby were startled to hear the words of the old Duke Zemensia.
They seemed to be those who had on at least one occasion expressed concern about the succession and the rumor of my infertility.
Old Duke Zemensia whispered in their ears like a snake now that they were immersed in joy. He had hinted with his words that, ‘the empress must have kept her pregnancy a secret to test them’.
“It was necessary to be careful in the early stages of pregnancy.”
Heinley spoke calmly with a smile. Then he withdrew the empty glass from my hand and this time struck back.
“Besides, it hasn’t been said all the time that nothing is wrong, that there are other things to worry about, that affairs of state are more important right now. The fault lies with those who didn’t believe us, with those who had malicious thoughts.”
As Heinley and old Duke Zemensia exchanged sly smiles, the faces of several nobles darkened at Heinley’s words.
That night, my ladies-in-waiting, my parents, and even my brother made a fuss.
“It was unfair of you to keep it a secret even from us! Ahh… I’m glad you’re pregnant! Still it was unfair! But I’m happy… Ahh!”
Laura repeatedly got upset, cried and rejoiced.
“So, first we have to prepare the baby’s clothes? Or rather some toys? No, no, what’s more important is the crib…. What design would be ideal for the crib?”
Suddenly, Rose began to talk about what she knew. Countess Jubel, who had extensive experience in marriage, pregnancy, and parenting, boasted with raised shoulders,
“What could a young lady who is not married know about that? Leave it all to me, Miss Rose. Leave it to me, Your Majesty.”
However, Rose did not seem ready to give in,
“Countess Jubel. I have seen and heard many things, so I can handle it too.”
“Your, Your Majesty. Is it alright for you to remain standing? No, you need to lie down, or rather sit down.”
Mastas panicked, as if I had suddenly become a sick person. Once I sat up, I turned to look at my brother and he looked very pensive.
Is he pacing around the room because he can’t sit still for a moment?
In contrast, my father didn’t move or say anything, wiping his tears with a handkerchief. He seemed to want to congratulate me wholeheartedly, but unfortunately he had a lump in his throat… every time he opened his mouth, the words wouldn’t come out.
At first, my mother repeatedly patted my father’s back to comfort him, but eventually told him to get out of her sight if he wanted to cry. My father became saddened, stood against the wall in a corner and began to cry louder.
As I smiled awkwardly, my mother put her hand on my belly and gently stroked my hair.
“My dear daughter. You are still too little for me. I can’t believe my little girl is going to be a mother…”
“Mother, I’m not really little.”
“You’ll understand when you have your children. No matter how much they grow up, they will always be to their parents little and helpless.”
My elder brother, who had been reprimanded severely instead of being treated like a helpless person every time he got into trouble, moved his lips as if he wanted to complain.
“But I’m nervous.”
“I want to raise my child well.”
My mother wrapped her arms around my head and patted me on the shoulders. My mother’s sigh ran through my hair.
“I don’t know if I can do it, mother.”
“You were an exceptional child. Very smart and obedient.”
“It’s not easy for a smart person to teach others. It’s fine if your child takes after you, but if by any chance…”
My mother’s gaze drifted for a moment between my brother and my father.
“If by any chance your child is not so obedient, I worry that you won’t be able to handle it.”
I must never tell my mother about Heinley’s childhood.
“I’ll do my best, mother.”
“I wish I could stay by your side to help you.”
I also wished my mother could stay here with me…but my mother loved the Eastern Empire. Unable to ask her, I rested my forehead on my mother’s chest.
Just then, my brother asked as if he had read my mind.
“Mother, can’t you stay here with Navier?”
I had some hope too, so I looked at my mother.
“I’ll think about it… Honey, you can turn around and come over here.”
“Wife… our… our Navier… our Navier is still a baby, but our baby… Ahh.”
My mother frowned at his words. Seeing this scene, Mastas pressed her lips together and lowered her head.
My father smartly hurried away, turned around and took out his handkerchief.