>I followed the maid and headed towards the terrace.
My heart pounded at the thought of finally meeting the original antagonist of this novel.

“Elisabeth!”

A noble young lady with pink hair and gentle eyes approached me.
It was Susan, Douglas’s younger sister, who shouldn’t be here!

“Sister, I have something important I must speak to you about, so I got myself another invitation from an elderly relative.”

I had a strong fondness for the character Susan, who was frail but strong-willed.
So much so that I even left negative comments on the chapter where she took her own life.
However, it was troublesome when that tenacity was directed at me.

“I know it’s rude, but could you reconsider cancelling the engagement with my brother?” 


“Susan…”

“Just once, please reconsider.
You’ve always listened attentively and gave me your unwavering support when I talk to you.”

“I’m sorry, Susan.
It’s over between Douglas and me.”

“Then what about us?” Susan asked uncertainly.
Her eyes shimmered with tears.

“I love you as much as my brother, and I’ve been waiting for the day we could become a real family.”

It must’ve taken all of Susan’s courage to convey these words.
I wanted to hug Susan, who was trembling like a fawn caught in the rain.
If Douglas hadn’t arrived at that moment, I might have.

“Susan, what are you doing here right now?”

“Brother!”

“My sister pestered me to escort her… I didn’t know it would cause trouble for you instead.
I apologise on her behalf.” Douglas bowed his head deeply.
He seemed uneasy about this situation.
It must’ve bothered him as well to realised that even his sister’s plea couldn’t sway me.

“It’s because I don’t want to lose her.”

“Still, you can’t be like this.
How uncomfortable do you think Elisabeth would be because of us?”

“I’ve committed a grave offense.
Please forgive me, sister.” The deer-like siblings, on the verge of tears, clasped their hands together.
I screamed silently inside.

‘If you guys keep acting this way, I’ll feel too guilty! Truth is, I’m not really used to playing the role of a villain!’

Brother deer asked cautiously, “Elisabeth, you don’t look so good.
Why don’t you get some fresh air?”

“Let’s go together, sister.
That terrace over there seems nice!” Sister deer, of all things, pointed to the terrace where the villainous emperor happened to be hiding. 

“Would you mind if I accompanied you, Elisabeth?” Brother deer looked at me with hopeful, sincere eyes.
I answered coldly on reflex, “I’m sick of you.”

The faces of the innocent Nettleton siblings grew pale.
Even if Susan hates me because of this, I couldn’t allow her and Nicolai to meet.

“I’m really disappointed that you’d resort to using your frail sister to try to persuade me.”

“It’s a misunderstanding, Elisabeth!”

“Just leave me alone.
I’d appreciate it if you’d disappear from my sight.” Susan shed a tear at my hurtful words, even though I didn’t mean any of it.

“This is all my fault.
Please don’t hate my brother too.”

“I’ve made you uncomfortable, for that, I apologise.
However, I’m not so callous that I’ll exploit my only sister.” Douglas seemed genuinely hurt.
I found it difficult to shake off the guilt, even though I believed this was inevitable.

‘If I’m going to fully embrace my role as a villainess, I better commit to it wholeheartedly.
Compassion is a weakness reserved for the fools.’

I turned my back coldly, leaving the two of them behind.
It was a flawless portrayal of a villainess, one that even the original Elisabeth would approve of.


I boldly pushed aside the terrace curtains.
It couldn’t be helped even if it’s against normal etiquette.
Three individuals, a combination of men and women, were intertwined on the plush sofa.
With the masked man in the centre, the two women were in the midst of staging a strange scene. 

‘What, two at once?! Did you just bagged them6?! Sort them as burnable trash!’

I found my gaze involuntarily drawn to him, even though I didn’t want to.
Reluctantly, I must admit, but the man possessed a captivating beauty.
Between the undone buttons of his shirt, his well-defined pectoral muscles stood out prominently.
His shoulders were as broad as the Pacific Ocean, and his powerful thighs were thicker than most women’s waists.
From the muscular body that exuded sensuality, yet retained suppleness and grace, a deep intensity emanated.
Jet-black hair cascaded over the mask, and amidst it, languid emerald eyes gleamed like a sated beast.
A forgotten fear surged over me.

T/N: Alright, I have translated over a few thousand words to get to this part.
I was so excited for it, the (English) words were already dancing in my head when I was reading this part.
Adios, Douglas.
The alpha male lead is here, y’all.
 The novel art is so bad though…

‘Could someone really get executed for just a slip of the tongue? Don’t tyrants execute people on a whim?’

Nicolai, who had been observing me keenly, asked in a low, grave tone.

“Do you want to join in as well?”

To be continued…

Translator’s Notes:

1 I didn’t translate ‘tteokbokki’ and ‘yukgaejang’ because I think those two dishes are well known enough in their own right.
By the way, thanks to the ever-rising popularity of Korean culture like K-pop, Kdrama, in 2021, a whopping 26 Korean words were actually added to Oxford English Dictionary.
In case for those that aren’t familiar with Korean cuisine, ‘tteokbokki’ is a saucy rice cake dish, eaten as a snack, and ‘yukgaejang’ is a spicy beef soup.

2 This is similar to note #1, but it calls for a wall of explanation rather than just a note lol The source of the sentence goes something like this  ‘고추장, 청양고추, 캡사이신이 그립다.
불맛 (bul-mat), 엽기맛 (yeop-gi-mat), 응급실맛 (eung-geup-shil-mat), 지옥맛 (ji-og-mat)……’

‘Bul-mat’ is a Korean term that translates to ‘fiery’ or ‘grilled’ flavour.
It refers to the smoky and charred taste that comes from grilling or cooking food over an open flame (think of it as similar to the Chinese’s ‘wok hei’).
It’s often associated with dishes like grilled meat, barbecue, etc…

‘Yeopgi-mat’ can be translated as ‘bizarre flavour’ or ‘eccentric/quirky taste.’ It refers to unconventional or unusual flavours that deviate from traditional or expected taste profiles.
These flavours can also be a combination of unexpected ingredients, intense seasoning, or uncommon flavour pairings.
It’s also a term often used to describe unique and experimental/novelty food creations that aim to surprise and challenge the taste buds.

‘Eunggeupshil-mat’ is a playful and colloquial expression used to describe extremely spicy or intense flavours that can leave a burning sensation similar to the urgency and intensity of a medical emergency.
‘Eunggupshil’ literally translates to ‘emergency room.’

‘Jiog-mat’ translates literally as ‘hellish taste’ or ‘taste from hell.’ It refers to an extremely spicy or fiery flavour that’s known to be incredibly intense and challenging to handle, suggesting a level of heat that can be comparable to the fiery depths of hell.

All these terms don’t have a direct English equivalent that can capture their specific cultural connotations.
‘Yeopgimat’ for example, is a concept is deeply rooted in Korean culture and thus their culinary experience, the full nuance may not be fully conveyed in a single English term.

3 유교걸 (yu-gyo-geol) is a buzzword that combines the word ‘유교’ (Confucianism) and the Konglish word ‘걸’ (girl).
The buzzword is also a pun on a K-pop song by Lee Hyori called ‘U-Go-Girl’.
‘유교걸’ translates literally as ‘Confucian girl’, but the lyrics to U-Go-Girl preached a message of telling women to be bold and confident in themselves (be an alpha girl), which is the exact opposite of Confucianism.
The word is popularly used to refer to women who have a ‘traditional mindset’ (I quote that loosely) that disapproves of excessive exposure or explicit personal behaviour rather than expressing genuine beliefs or support for Confucianism.
It’s commonly used when one feels a sense of aversion to behaviours that are considered way too extreme by Korean standards (like the lyrics to WAP  )

I was debating how to I translate this word.
Before deciding on ‘inner prude’, I actually considered its literal meaning, and also ‘inner Confucian’.
But I want to leave no room for doubt for the readers that she’s just being a prude when its convenient for her, rather than, you know.

4 Refer to point number 3.

5 ‘몸에 좋은 약이 입에 쓰다’ This is a proverb that was derived from a Confucian saying ‘良药苦口’ (liang-yao-ku-kou).
In hanja, it would read as ‘양약고구’ (yangyak-kogu).
The original meaning of the saying is its literal meaning; good medicine taste bitter, but good for our body.
It’s still being use in that sense, but it has also evolved to convey the idea that sometimes the truth may be unpleasant or difficult to accept.
There isn’t any exact equivalent in English, but a similar concept can be found with sayings like ‘a bitter pill to swallow’ or ‘the truth hurts.’

6 Honestly, I don’t get this sentence, she was outraged at what looked like a threesome, but the sentence ‘저걸 쓰봉에 담아버려?!’ really confused me.
I thought perhaps it’s some kind of slang, a cultural thing? But whatever search term I used just tell me there’s no other meaning to it than what it means.
‘Throw that (thing) into the trash.’ However, why the question mark at the end of the sentence? To break it down, as far as my understanding goes,

‘저걸’ (jeogeol) is a contraction of ‘저 것을’ (jeo geoseul) which means “that thing” or “that one.” ‘쓰봉에’ (sseubong-eh) means “in the dumpster” or ‘into the trash can.’ ‘에’ (eh) is a locative particle indicating the location ‘in’ or ‘into.’

‘담아’ (dam-a) is the causative form of the verb ‘담다’ (damda), which means ‘to put’ or ‘to place.’ ‘버려’ (beoryeo) is the casual, emphatic form of the verb ‘버리다’ (beorida), which means ‘to throw away’ or ‘to discard.’ The verb ‘버리다’ implies getting rid of something or treating it as no longer useful or valuable.
When combined, ‘담아버려’ (damabeoryeo) expresses the action of forcefully or decisively putting something away or discarding it, often with a sense of finality or disregard.
It can imply a lack of concern or care for the item being discarded.

When I can’t wrap my head around a sentence, this is how I will break it down (I use this simple method for every language I know).
Was my understanding of this sentence wrong? What was being thrown into the trash? The Emperor? The act of threesome itself? Does this go back to the ‘Confucian girl’ thing? Yeah, obviously it was too scandalous for her, but how tf do I translate it so it makes sense?!

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