How to Hide the Emperor's Child - Chapter 155
What caught Gretel’s eye was a stack of books. A small book was sandwiched between thick herbal dictionaries.
<The Basics of Cultivating Herbs>.
Gretel picked up the book as if possessed.
This is a book I haven’t read much. Gretel, who wandered from place to place, rarely grew serious herbs in one place. Rather, it was Astelle who lived in the eastern countryside who needed this book.
Five years ago, she lent Astelle this book and taught her how to grow herbs. Astelle grew and sold basic herbs in the years that followed.
When Gretel opened the book, she found many hand drawings of grass and flowers. The method of cultivating fields and growing herbs was written in abundance. Seeing it gave her a new idea.
I think I can grow detox herbs like this.
The first detoxifying herbs found by Fritz were from the western estates. The flowers that had been in full bloom had withered and fell, and new buds had formed.
Everyone was very disappointed because the flowers that had bloomed well withered and the newly formed flowers had not yet bloomed. But when the flower withered, a tiny seed formed beneath it.
Gretel took the remaining flowers to make medicine, and then kept the flowerpot in the Empress Palace.
If it was an ordinary flower, the seeds would have grown by now.
‘Why didn’t I think of it?’
That’s because the detox herbs are a flower from the southern region. When plants are grown in different areas, they do not grow well due to different soils and climates.
Moreover, these unusual herbs are difficult to cultivate artificially.
There were many cases where flowers did not bloom or wither due to illness when grown on flat land.
There is not even any known information on how to grow detox herbs.
So I thought it would be impossible.
But the emperor needs this.
‘We can build a plantation in the Southern Mountains and let it grow there.’
It would be possible to build a plantation for growing medicinal herbs in the mountains if it was ordered by the emperor.
It may fail, and it may take years to develop properly. Still, it’s better than just waiting without trying.
There is still a few years of a grace period, so I can study it and grow it slowly.
‘First, I need to check if there are any seeds.’
It can’t be helped if the seeds didn’t form because the cultivation methods are different.
Still, there was a glimmer of hope.
Gretel closed the book with a hopeful idea. But at that moment, she saw a drawing among the piles of books. It’s a rough drawing of the newly discovered herbs.
It looks the same as the usual one, but there’s a special difference.
Gretel has always organized her drawings of herbs by region. That’s because it’s easier to find them later.
Even now, the papers with her drawing are stacked in the order in which they were usually organized.
Nothing strange about it.
The problem was that Gretel herself had been searching for information about the detox herbs a few days ago and was rushing out, so she left these drawings roughly piled up.
Clearly, there were some mixed orders in the middle.
I don’t have time to sort things out, so I roughly divided them up and left, thinking, “I’ll have to come back and organize them again.”
But now the papers are stacked neatly in order.
It’s a bit messy, but it looks as if someone accidentally dropped the paper and arranged it similarly again.
As soon as she saw that, she got goosebumps.
I wouldn’t have noticed it if I hadn’t remembered it carefully.
‘Who… … .’
Someone looked at these drawings.
Gretel ran to the window. The two windows in the room remained locked, with no sign of a human invasion. The door that had been locked with a key remained the same.
At first glance, nothing has changed. But surely someone has opened her books.
Gretel was alone in the room upstairs. However, after spending the last few days in the Empress Palace, she couldn’t come back here.
‘What were you looking for? Why?’
All that Gretel brought were clothes, books, and glass bottles of medicinal herbs and potions that she took with her when he traveled. There was nothing suspicious.
‘More importantly, who did this?’
Although she did not know the exact circumstances, Gretel knew roughly what was going on.
It was Astelle’s father, the former Duke, who was behind the emperor’s poisoning incident. He had been captured and imprisoned in the abandoned palace. She heard that almost all the people involved were taken in.
‘Someone suspects me- no… … to be precise, is there anyone who suspects Astelle?’
That’s strange. His Majesty the Emperor, the victim of the incident, knew everything about it and tried to protect Astelle.
‘Who the hell is watching me?’
Is he someone who investigates the poisoning incident? Who’s investigating such a thing at this time?
It’s beyond her comprehension. Because she doesn’t know anything about conflicts between nobles.
Gretel checked the locked door again with an anxious heart. She looked out the window and then slammed the shutters so she couldn’t see anything.
* * *
Gretel went to the Empress Palace the next morning to check the flowerpot.
The detoxifying herbs that Fritz brought from the western estate were left with only the stem and leaves. The withered flower lost all its dry petals in a few days.
Gretel looked closely at the place where the flower had disappeared.
As expected, small seeds were formed in the place where the calyx was located. Also, quite a lot of seeds were grown at once.
Gretel quickly ran to Astelle and shared her thoughts.
Gretel nodded. “If we make a plantation in the Southern Mountains and study it for a few years, we will be able to grow it.”
Astelle was pleased to hear her explanation, saying it was a good idea.
“I hope it goes well. I will prepare anything you need.”
Just as Astelle was about to give the order, Gretel stopped her.
“Let me find out more first. Do not expect too much, it might take a very long time.”
Astelle nodded her head. “I know. Still, it’s better than doing nothing.”
“It is.” Gretel agreed. She brought up a new topic hesitatingly, “Well… … Your Majesty. Actually, something else happened last night.”
Gretel, this time very carefully, recounted last night’s events… … .
“Who could that be?”
Astelle put on an astonished expression.
“I don’t know, but I’m sure someone came in and looked through my stuff.”
Astelle bit her lip with anxious eyes. She seems to have something on her mind.
“It is not known who was responsible for the poisoning incident, but I believe someone suspects me. He seems to have been keeping an eye on you since you are a pharmacist close to me.”
Astelle looked at Gretel and calmly said, “I’ll ask Fritz to secretly watch your hostel.”
* * *
Vellian gasped for his breath and ran through the garden. Seibel, who was walking quickly into a corner of the garden, stopped. As Vellian approached, he slowly turned around.
Although he had a calm face, Velian did not miss the look of frustration on his handsome face.
“Ah, it’s been a while.”
“Long time no see… … hah hah… …”
Vellian breathed heavily and became irritated with Seibel.
“It’s been a while you say? You kept avoiding me, didn’t you?”
“I didn’t. I just didn’t have time to come to the Imperial Palace because I was busy with work.” Seibel calmly made excuses.
Vellian forcefully held back his anger at that calm voice of his.
Since they are aristocrats of a similar level and their estates are close, the two have been pretty close since childhood.
Actually, there’s not much reason for them to be friends besides that. Both have very different personalities and hobbies. However, those conditions were sufficient for the young noble masters to become friends.
We’ve been friends for a long time, but you lied to me.
“What the hell happened? Why did you move the Knights strangely without telling me?” Vellian asked again, feeling betrayed.
“It was because I was in a hurry,” Seibel explained the situation while feeling a little sorry. “My father sent me an urgent message: the emperor is in critical condition, so hurry back to the capital.”
He told how he returned to the capital after receiving a message from his father, Count Ecklen.
He said, “His Majesty’s illness was the pretext that there were dangerous movements in the capital. After hearing that, I decided to secretly bring the Knights in. Why I didn’t tell you… … .”
Seibel looked at Vellian and sighed.
“You are always in the Imperial Palace. I was worried about what would happen if someone intercepted me after contacting you.”
“That… … .”
… … that’s right.
Vellian had no choice but to accept Seibel’s words. In fact, there was no reason for him to contact Vellian, who was only an aide to the emperor in the first place.
Vellian brought up what he was most curious about. “Then what happened in the capital? Why did the nobles attack you?”
The nobles who attacked Seibel are people Vellian knows well. They are the people who have been visiting the Duke of Reston.
Vellian continued to ask a question without waiting for Seibel’s answer. “Is it related to the empress? Is that right? That’s why the old duke was taken to the palace, right?”
He couldn’t think of any other reason than that. Because of the empress, Seibel had avoided him until now.
Vellian looked at Seibel with a triumphant look as if his guess was right.
But Seibel calmly shook his head.
“What are you talking about? Her Majesty has nothing to do with this.”