Chapter 446 [Bonus chapter]The Second Son of the Forger Family (3)
“You believe that the count’s beliefs are false?” Regaleon asked in a neutral tone.
“Of course it is!” Arnold raised his tone because of his emotions. “My mother had been faithful to him once they were married. She had told him many times that I... I am his son. But he does not believe her words.”
“And why does your father not believe your mother’s words?” I asked.
“Because their marriage was a forced one.” Arnold replied. “My mother... she was the most beautiful lady in the city in her youthful days. She was a daughter of a lower noble family and was engaged to her lover that is a merchant who is but a commoner. My father was infatuated with her and he... he did ways to get her.”
“Those ways were not good, I suppose?” Regaleon asked.pᴀɴᴅᴀ-ɴ(0)ᴠᴇʟ.ᴄᴏᴍ
“My mother had many suitors, my father included. My father, he courted my mother honorably at first, but in the end, it was a merchant commoner who won her heart.” Arnold said. “It did not sit well with my father, my mother’s decision. One night my grandfather held a party for the nobles in the city, my mother’s family were also invited. That night my father he... he put something in her drink and he...” He was not able to finish his story, but I already knew what happened.
“Oh my, the countess... she had such an experience.” I was shocked.
“How did you know about your parent’s past?” Regaleon asked to know if the story is legit.
“If was my grandfather who told me.” Arnold replied. “When they knew what happened and that my mother got pregnant because of that night, my grandfather asked my mother’s parents for her hand in marriage to my father. Because the news had been widespread and also reached the capital city as well, to save my mother’s dignity her parents agreed.” pᴀɴᴅᴀ ɴ(O)ᴠᴇʟ
“So, hers was a forced marriage.” I said with a heavy heart. “Your mother abandoned her love to save not only her dignity but your brother’s as well.”
Illegitimate children born in noble families were not accepted well in the past. That goes for unmarried noble women who bore children as well. The scrutiny in high society were harsh in the past and that was one of my agendas that I was able to fix when I became empress.
“My grandfather felt guilty for what my father did to my father until his death. He knew he robbed my mother of her happy future.” Arnold said. “That is also why my grandfather treated me kindly as well, even my father harshly rejected me.”
“Then why does your father think that you are not his son?” Regaleon asked. ρꪖꪕᦔꪖꪕ(ꪫ)ꪣꫀ ꪶ
“The time when I was conceived coincidentally fell the same time when my mother’s past fiancé came to the city. As a merchant, he was traveling frequently. He does not reside in this city but met my mother in one of his travels here.” Arnold replied. “My mother and her past fiancé secretly met for the last time. My father knew of this and when I was already in my mother’s womb. My mother explained that nothing happened, that she and her past fiancé met to close that chapter of her life to say goodbye...”
“But your father did not believe her?” Regaleon said.
“You are correct, your majesty.” Arnold lowered his head in sadness. “My mother swears that I am my father’s child, but he does not believe the word she says.”
“That is what jealously can do to men that steals another for their selfish reason.” Regaleon replied. “Your father was insecure due to how he was able to get your mother, and because of that jealously can cloud his judgement.”
“Thank you, your majesty, for believing my story.” Arnold said with gratitude.
“Your sister Angelica, she is not your mother’s child perhaps?” I asked.
My question was based on how the count doted on his daughter, but the countess does not hold any love towards the youngest child.
“How did you...” Arnold was left speechless to my question. “W-What you said was correct. Angelica was born from one of my father’s mistresses. After I was conceived and born my father, he... he changed as my mother had said. At first, he showered my mother with love, but after me he changed. He started to sleep with other women. After that, he took mistresses. He was sure to not leave seeds on those mistresses a sick form of showing respect to my mother, but Angelica’s was conceived unknowingly. Because my sister looked like my father, he took her and added her to our family’s registry.”
“Infidelity in one’s marriage is one of the things I would like to be punished in my empire.” Regaleon said. “Because infidelity has gone unchecked in the past, it has become a norm especially to the nobles.”
“The law in infidelity is one of the laws being reviewed now, your majesty.” I said to Regaleon. “It is just a matter of time until the law comes to you for approval.”
The laws in family matters are under my jurisdiction. My team had prepared the law for infidelity and monogamy these past years. Because many nobles were against such laws, we were having a problem getting it approved. My team has been working hard for it to pass.
“When the law comes, we will give the just punishment to your father.” Regaleon said to Arnold. “But I believe there is other sins that he needs to pay for, him and your brother. Tell me about this place and what you know about your father and brother’s ‘business’.”
“I will tell you everything, your majesty.” Arnold said with a serious look. “But please spare my mother and also my younger sister. They do not have any knowledge of it. They are innocent.”
pAɴᴅᴀ ɴ(O)ᴠᴇʟ “You are not asking for yourself as well?” Regaleon asked with a raised eyebrow.
“I am also at fault with knowing and not reporting to it to your majesty sooner.” Arnold bowed his head. “I will take any punishment you see fit, your majesty.”
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