Chapter 1: A naive princess.
Her father, Gaius, has always hated Apollonia.
Although he tried not to show it, he was especially cold towards her.
No, maybe it was a coldness born out of disgust.
It was when Apollonia was three years old that fell down and reached to him for help when she learned of his disgust towards her.
Instead of helping her, she saw her father smiling eerily.
Of course at that age her feelings are vague, but as time passed she could feel the certainty of that emotion.
He rejoiced when Apollonia made mistakes and denied her achievements.
He managed to cleverly hide it from other people, but from his gaze, his touch, and his attitude, she could feel his twisted hatred.
Apollonia didn’t know why he was so displeased by her .
The person who took care of her was her maternal grandfather, Pascal III, and sometimes her mother, Princess Elenia.
In the first place, she never bumped into Gaius or her brother, Paris.
Only once did she ask her maternal grandfather and the emperor, Pascal III, about the reason.
“Does my father only love Paris”
Pascal III, whom she expected would give no answer, unexpectedly replied.
“I guess it’s because Paris is his father’s successor.
You don’t have to worry about it.”
“Then what about me”
“You’re incomparable with Paris.
Because you’re my successor.”
He replied with a loving smile.
If Gaius loved Paris and hated Apollonia, then the emperor seemed to only love Apollonia and was indifferent towards Paris.
And she did.
Although it wasn’t publicized, Apollonia was directly educated by the emperor as his successor.
In terms of ranks, of course, her mother would be number one.
But she hated politics so much that she refused her position as successor.
But, there was something strange about the emperor’s explanation.
“But why hasn’t Paris become grandfather’s successor”
“I’ll explain to you when you’re older.”
The emperor stroked her head without further explanation.
That was the end.
Apollonia devoted herself to various studies including imperial studies.
She was fluent in 4 languages and showed remarkable insight in politics, history, and economy.
The throne naturally belonged to Apollonia.
Not once did she think otherwise.
But it was not long until her father took everything away in front of her eyes.
It was the day of the emperor’s examination.
Pascal III tested Apollonia whenever he had an opportunity.
It would be easy if he gave a copy of a book and made questions out of it, just like an ordinary teacher would do, but regretfully the test was not that simple.
It was common practice to read the whole bookcase, instruct her to memorize it within a month, and then give out random questions.
The task of writing a review of the achievements of a successful emperor with another continent’s language which was taught for half-year was also not a big deal.
Occasionally, he threw her into a complicated maze to see if she could find her way out alone.
After a few days of starving, the emperor smiled proudly, seeing her crawl out from the maze.
The emperor said that she should develop an ability to adapt in order to be prepared when facing a bigger crisis.
The test of that day also hurt her head as always.
“Write an in-depth analysis of the relationship between Pascal III and the Great Leila Luperion.”
It seemed like simple writing, but what the emperor asked was a dozen pages of dissertations.
In order to study the great history of the empire in 8 generations, she went to the imperial library.
It was there, where she learned the story of her grandfather and his reputation as the best soldier in the empire, even being recognized by his enemy.
Her studies began with the history of the imperial palace and even discovered a rare book about Princess Ellenia.
At that moment, Apollonia was still blind to the horror that would soon follow.
Unbeknownst to her, it would soon be the last time she would witness the appearance of her mother.
Fragments of the fallen teacup scattered causing disarray.
Princess Ellenia, breathing hard, sank towards the marble floor.
Bright blond locks resembling the sun scattered down on the ground.
She couldn’t believe the experience of her bleeding mouth nor the wretched pain she felt in her heart.