After leaving the basement, I behaved more modestly.
I knew the weight of what a 14-year-old girl and a 15-year-old girl said was different.
My mother raised me as the proud eldest daughter of the Rivero family and personally set an example for a noble lady.
I was a great student who followed it faithfully.

My mother no longer set an example to me after the day I left the basement.
She was in charge of another student instead of me.
My younger siblings.
My cute and lovely siblings.

The children who were so demanding and busy whenever I was free, such as asking me to read a book, sing a song, or braid their hair, became mature in a year.
I was really surprised.
I thought they weren’t my brothers.
But they don’t call me sister anymore.

The maids in the family, who listened to my order like they did to my mother, began to ask the headmaid if they could do something I ordered.
I didn’t like all that change, but what could I do? It was all a cajolement that interfered with love between me and him.

I wouldn’t have started love if I was going to give in to it.
I wouldn’t have asked the bold question if he fell for me when I saw his trembling eyes.

I wonder if it was because life in the basement was hard.
I often catch a cold.
My cough didn’t go away.
I was born healthy, so I felt strange, amazed, and afraid of such minor illnesses.

My mother took me around as soon as I got over my cold.
It was a walk, viewing an exhibition, but there was always a man at the end of the journey.

A beautiful man.
A cool man.
A handsome man.
A wild man.
An intelligent man.
A man with a good sense of humor.
A man with a fine voice.
An attentive man.
A rich man.
A man who knows what honor is.
A man, a man, a man.
I’ve met so many men.
That was the first time I knew there were so many cool men in the capital.
They were all great people.

I found out a little later that my mother’s aimless outing was actually my marriage interview.
I didn’t leave any room for those men to develop into my lover or husband.

Mother told me.

“Tite, Yohan the Cardinal is a wonderful man, but there are other people in the world who are more wonderful than him.”

“Of course.
There must be gentlemen who are better than Yohan, just as there are some young ladies who are better than me in this world.
But mother.
There’s only one person I love.
His Eminence Cardinal Yohan.”

“You should change your mind.
Then you can choose one of those nice gentlemen to marry.
You can be happy, Tite.”

“No matter who comes, I can’t be happy if it’s not Yohan.”

My mother cried.
I was so heartbroken, so I hugged my mother and cried together.
When I remembered how many people were hurt because of my love, I regretted it.

I wish I could give up.
How I wish I could turn it back.

If I had known my love would be so adamant, I would have turned away from him.
If I knew my love would be so stubborn, I would have not wavered as well.
But I noticed his love and couldn’t turn away.

Oh, my God.
If it was such a painful love, why did you let me meet him? But I prayed again.
Oh, Holy God.
We were meant to meet eventually even if you disturbed us.
We love each other because fate led us.

My father’s anger reached its limit when I rejected all those men.
My father locked me in the attic, not in the basement, and shouted.
That the god was the one who arranged my marriage.
That there’s nowhere to accept a madman unless as the second wife of a despicable man who doesn’t know honor and manner.

“If you even refuse this marriage, I’ll tie you up and never let you out of the house again!”

“Father! You can’t do this! I love Yohan! Yohan loves me, too!”

“Shut up!”

“Please let Yohan know! I’m sure Yohan will oppose this marriage!”

“The Holy Father’s condition is at stake, and the whole capital is in agony, but you…! You…! I regret that I raised someone like you as a daughter with love.”

My father nailed the door.
I cried alone in the attic.
The Holy Father was like Yohan’s biological father.
And when the Holy Father died, it was obvious that the next pope seat belonged to Yohan.
When he became a pope, Yohan would really accept his mission utterly as his own.
Also, he wouldn’t notice that I’m getting married without his knowledge because he was distracted by His Holiness’s condition.

If I get married, I will have a family, so I have to commit to it.
As I said earlier, I didn’t mean to break a fine family.
I also have to give up Yohan when I get married.

So I decided to escape.
If I got married, I would never come back to the capital again.
I would never see Yohan again.
Let’s give myself a gift like I gave him my hair as a gift.
Let’s go after looking at the face of my beloved Yohan for the last time.
That’s what I thought.

There was a window in the attic that a small person could barely get through.
However, underneath it was the outer wall of the mansion, where there was no place to step, so I couldn’t guarantee my life if I fell.

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