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The third step is napgil, notifying the bride’s family of the wedding date.
The letter to the fiancée’s house that Laplace brought was tied in red string, which symbolized fate. In the One-horned tribe, red lines were said to have been used by matchmakers to connect the ankles of a man and a woman. A couple that was connected in this way would never split up, and they would stay together for eternity.
Kronos unwittingly teared up when he saw it. He couldn’t bring himself to untie the red string. His hands trembled. “…Wife.”
“What is it?”
“I can’t do it…”
“Goodness. You’re so extra.” Rhea chuckled at her husband. Her husband was so ferocious when he was the king of gods, and he was infamous for being cold-hearted among his subordinates. But he was so sensitive with anything relating to his children, so she couldn’t help but laugh. Perhaps she loved him so much because of how much of a family man he was. Rhea comforted Kronos, “Look, honey. It’s not like our son is going anywhere. If anyone saw, they’d think he’s going somewhere far away. You can see him whenever you want.”
“He’s lived well without us. So don’t think of him as a child anymore. We should let him out of our arms so he can fly.”
“I know. He’s our son, so he’ll do perfectly well on his own without me worrying about him… But still…!”
“Goodness! They say men cry more as they get older, and it looks like that really is the case for you. You’re acting like this when our son is getting married, I can’t even imagine how you’ll act when our youngest—”
“Nooooo!” Kronos burst up.
Rhea looked at Kronos with a dumbfounded face. She questioned if this really was the same man who was wiping his face with a handkerchief moments ago. His face was crumpled like a napkin. It was like the king of gods from the golden age had returned.
“I don’t know who it’ll be, but I’m gonna kill them! I’m gonna kill theeeeeem! No, no. Let’s get rid of them before they meet our youngest. If we tell Yeon-woo and pull the wheel forward a bit, we can see what kind of punk it’ll be!” Kronos’ eyes blazed as he declared, and Rhea shook her head from side to side. Then, she untied the red string and read the content of the letter. She compared it to the dates they had already chosen.
Napgil was the process of the groom’s side choosing an acceptable date and sending the bride’s side a reply.
Rhea ignored Kronos, who was muttering to himself and planning the assassination of his youngest daughter’s future husband. She carefully wrote a date on the letter and tied it up again with the red string. “Laplace.”
『Yes, sir! I mean, yas queen!』A shadow rose next to Rhea and Laplace appeared with a salute. He had come so fast it was hard to believe he had just been with the other Eight Gods of Disorder. Laplace knew very well who held the power in this household.
“I’ll leave this to you.”
『Even if my body is destroyed from the hard work just like a few moments ago, I will complete this task no matter what happens!』
Laplace blabbered on and moved to accept the letter, but Rhea suddenly took the letter back with a stiff face. She said, “No. Don’t do that.”
“No matter what happens, do not get hurt under any circumstances. Even if it’s important, there’s nothing more important than your health and safety, Laplace.”
『M-Madam…!』Laplace suddenly teared up. No one had ever scolded him so warmly in the eons of his life! His heart was beating fast―although it wasn’t easily visible because it was covered by a lot of muscle.
“Understood?”Rhea continued to speak solemnly as if she was going to wait to hear Laplace’s answer until the end.
『U-Understood!』Laplace stood straight and saluted again.
Rhea grinned. “Yup. That’s our good boy, Laplace.” She pat Laplace’s head. Her hand was so warm that Laplace felt like he was going to melt on the spot.
『I, Laplace! Will continue to be your faithful bunny forever for the rest of my life! No, for all of eternity!』
“You don’t have to go that far. Just protect our family as you have so far.”
『Yes, ma’am! Then I, Laplace, will go and carry out your command! Forward! Swish!』Laplace made exaggerated movements again and left.
Rhea continued to wave until Laplace went out the door. Then, she realized her husband was looking at her with a face of respect and tilted her head. “Yes?”
“My wife…is so incredible. How do you have him wrapped around your finger like that? What’s the secret?”
“Secret, my foot. He just acts a little different from other people. He’s very nice on the inside.”
He acted a little differently? Who? Laplace? The bald punk who wore bunny ears on his head? Really? Kronos wondered if the meaning of the word “little” had changed. But when he saw Rhea’s eyes were still pure, he nodded hesitantly. He realized Rhea wasn’t joking, and she had been genuine. Perhaps she was able to control such a monstrous guy because of how nice she was… Kronos thought about how great Rhea was again.
* * *
Fourth, napjing. Fifth, cheonggi.
Napgil was when the groom’s side informed the bride’s side of when the marriage would be, and napjing was the exchange of gifts between the families now that the wedding date was confirmed. Cheonggi was the process of once again reviewing the permission to marry and the wedding date now that the families were closer. However, as all three were similar, the One-horned tribe did them all together.
While Kronos and the Martial King exchanged greetings again and again, the festival continued. Because each of the six steps of the wedding ceremony was being commenced, it took a while. It was even said the wedding ceremonies of the royal tribe members took over a month, so there was no set end date for when the festival was going to be finished.
The guests who initially said they weren’t going to be able to visit the village managed to clear up their schedules to come at some point. And since the village was open, those who had been curious about the One-horned tribe but hadn’t received invitations had come to the village as well. As a result, the palace of the Martial King and the annex where Kronos was staying bustled with people.
The return of the legendary Kronos and Rhea had spread in the Tower, and this was also where Yeon-woo, the ruler of the Tower, was staying. The main gods of Olympus also stayed near the annex as Yeon-woo’s family, and the members of Arthia were given rooms along the outer territory as Yeon-woo’s “close friends.”
Kronos was so busy greeting the gods of Olympus that he didn’t have the time to greet any of the other guests. Those who came in hopes of seeing Kronos and Yeon-woo from afar had to leave the annex without any success.
However, there were still beings who came to see the annex, and one of them was Leo, the lion constellation.
“There’s not much to it.”
Leo had a unique appearance with his lion’s mane-like hair, but there wasn’t anything special about him. He just looked like a well-built player from the rookie floors. This was a result of one of his traits as the lion constellation, Stealth, having been activated. He was like a waiting lion before the hunt. A lion’s giant body didn’t make any sound before it went in for the killing blow.
Stealth was the trait that made Leo into an outstanding predator, and the same went for the subordinates who stood by his side. Lions moved in prides, and the female lionesses under the lion were all outstanding hunters. They were all able to arrive at the village hiding their abilities.
Leo knew Yeon-woo had started targeting the stars, but he’d come under his nose without any fear. And after Leo observed Yeon-woo and the people around him, he came to a conclusion. Yeon-woo wasn’t anything to be scared of.
The subordinates Leo brought, Denebola and Algieba, nodded in agreement. They had seen many beings so far. The gods of Olympus, the members of Arthia, Metatron and Baal…but none of them stood out to Leo. Maybe Athena would be hard to handle for Denebola and Algieba, but definitely not for Leo. Or maybe the Eight Gods of Disorder from Night…but most likely not.
‘I was looking forward to them because of their great legends. But none of them stood out in particular.’ If Leo had to choose someone who concerned him, he’d choose the Resident of the Border. No, he could add one more being—Kronos. Kronos was already as strong, if not stronger, than his prime. However, he still didn’t make Leo feel threatened or wary.
Because of this, Leo was able to realize how much stronger he was than he thought. He was also brimming with confidence at this point. ‘The Black King might not be much since he just rules over these small fish.’
Of course, the Black King and the Heavenly Demon weren’t beings to disregard. To settle things with them, Leo needed more time and power. However, he had come to the conclusion that he wouldn’t need too much time.
“Hmm, it seems a bit of a shame to return so early.”
Leo’s original purpose, feeling out the enemy, was completed. But the mission had been finished so easily, and he wanted to do something more stimulating. If he went back to the Unreal World, all he could do was sleep for a while.
Since he was already out, Leo wanted to do something. Even better if he could see the face of the Black King’s main ego. He also wanted to see what the resurrected first star looked like. He asked, “How many steps are left in the wedding process?”
Denebola responded with a bow at his question. “I heard only the last step is left now.”
“The last step… That’s where the ceremony will be, right?” Leo lifted a corner of his mouth. “I wonder how angry the new groom will look and how angry he’ll be when the wedding’s ruined. Huhu.”
“Your wish is my command.”
“Your wish is my command.”
Denebola and Algierba quietly disappeared without having to listen for any specific directions. Leo’s smile deepened as he looked at the annex. “I wonder, I wonder…”
* * *
Fwip. Edora paused from where she was turning the page of her book and lifted her head at the butler’s summons. She currently had very deep dark circles under her eyes.
The Psychic Medium told Edora she wasn’t allowed to meet Yeon-woo before the ceremony, so she was trying to contain her frustrations and anger somehow. Yeon-woo was already skilled at making people wait, and she was annoyed that she couldn’t see him when they were so close.
“A guest told me to deliver this to you, Your Highness.”
“They said you’d know what it was after opening it…” The butler held out a wide but thin box as he spoke. Edora tilted her head, wondering if someone was trying to bribe her. When she opened the box, she was taken aback. There was a prettily written letter inside.
―From the third president of ###’s fanclub ‘Temper Cult,’ to the new bride.
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