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    Around the time Seongjin was slowly getting used to his new life while doing physical training in the corner of his room, rumors began to spread in the palace that the ruffian prince had become a bit strange.

    It was because the Pearl Palace, which had not had a quiet day due to the loud cursing and the sound of objects breaking almost every day, had remained calm like a tranquil water surface for several days.

    At first, people thought that the prince still didn’t have the energy to cause trouble after being sick, but they gradually began to notice the prince’s change.

    “I heard he doesn’t complain about the food at all? In the past, it was rare for him not to overturn the table.”

    “He used to make a fuss demanding snacks all the time, but these days, he doesn’t even look for snacks at all. I heard his food intake has decreased a lot too.”

    The unrest slowly arose.

    The servants, who had been careful with their words as much as possible because of the Empress who kept a close eye on them and controlled them, began to gossip here and there, avoiding the watchful eyes as the peaceful daily life continued.

    “Why is he so well-behaved? I’m rather anxious that something might explode.”

    “Didn’t he say his memory is still not intact? People don’t change easily. Once he recovers, he’ll probably cause trouble again in no time.”

    “Who knows? I heard he has completely changed as a person. After having such a high fever, perhaps his mind has become a bit strange?”

    “Shh! Saying his mind has become strange, what if someone hears….”

    And such rumors were being reported to the Chief Chamberlain without fail through the densely placed eyes and ears within the palace.

    “…This is truly a strange situation.”

    After hearing the reports from the attendants, Chief Chamberlain Louis stroked his chin and fell into thought.

    “It’s not rare for one’s personality to completely change like this after suffering from a high fever or trauma.”

    Even with the attendant’s additional comment, Louis silently shook his head.

    Prince Morres’ change was clearly surprising and welcome.

    However, the Chief Chamberlain was actually a little more concerned about the Holy Emperor’s attitude towards it rather than the prince’s change.

    He had been by the young emperor’s side every day since he ascended to the throne. So he knew well how much effort the emperor put into managing the Pearl Palace without variables.

    He personally appointed the servants and strictly limited visitors. He separately managed the accounting books and even directly reviewed and selected the applications for the resident knights in charge of security.

    Therefore, it was rather strange that he had not made any mention of it and was only quietly observing even after Prince Morres’ sudden change.

    The trigger for the change was clearly the unexpected fever, but would it be too much suspicion to think that this was also under the control of his lord?

    “It just so happens that the time for Prince Morres’ audience has come.”

    In any case, it seemed he should personally visit the prince and observe him closely before that.

    Stroking his cleanly shaven chin, the Chief Chamberlain made that decision.

    ***

    “I hope you had a peaceful night.”

    “Yeah, more or less.”

    If there was someone Seongjin saw most often after Edith, it would be the resident physician of the Pearl Palace.

    This elderly physician named Ninnias was too scruffy-looking to be an imperial palace physician.

    Every time he opened his mouth, the smell of alcohol wafted out, and his red nose gave off a hint of alcoholism.

    Such a shabby old man examined Seongjin twice a day, every morning and evening, under the pretext of regular checkups, but everything he did was not very reassuring.

    With eyes that looked bleary, either from presbyopia or not having sobered up properly, he would roughly check Seongjin’s complexion and nod his head, but it was doubtful if he was properly looking at anything.

    He also felt Seongjin’s pulse with hands that trembled from a severe case of delirium tremens, but his shaking fingers weren’t even properly touching the pulse point.

    “Good. Very good.”

    What’s good? Can this person be trusted as a physician?

    As Seongjin turned to Edith, who was standing beside him with a dumbfounded expression, she sighed and answered.

    “Sir Ninnias mainly takes care of the resident knights of the Pearl Palace. Your Highness originally had a separate personal physician….”

    According to Edith, until recently, several reputable imperial palace physicians were serving as Morres’ personal physicians.

    They were physicians who were quite renowned even among the most recognized “Liora School” in the Imperial Capital.

    However, when the prince collapsed from a fever and they couldn’t provide proper treatment, they fell out of the emperor’s favor and were all demoted to minor positions.

    Now they would be going around the slums treating patients with epidemics.

    What, then shouldn’t they quickly send a new personal physician? Why is the treatment of a prince who nearly died like this?

    “Hehehehehe”

    Ninnias, who had been quietly listening to Edith’s story, suddenly let out a low chuckle.

    “Isn’t it a fitting job for them? Those bastards from the Liora School always spout nonsense about how they are fighting epidemics on the front lines.”

    At the physician’s sudden cynical remark, Seongjin and Edith widened their eyes and stared at him.

    As if he had blurted it out without thinking, the physician looked more startled than them and quickly tried to do damage control.

    “Ah, of course, I respect the teachings of the long-standing Lyora School, which is the only one recognized by the Delcross Council! Of course!”

    [He’s good at spouting words he doesn’t mean.]

    The Demon King swiftly added in Seongjin’s head.

    [The old man just thought, ‘Serves them right, those good-for-nothing Lyora quacks…’]

    Well, even if the guy didn’t tell him, anyone could see from the physician’s disgusted expression that his talk of respect was all nonsense.

    It seemed more like a personal grudge against the school itself rather than personal feelings.

    Naturally, Seongjin had no choice but to ask the following question.

    “Then, Physician Ninnias. Which school are you from?”

    The physician stared at Seongjin for a moment with a blank look.

    His eyes seemed unusually out of focus, but Seongjin felt like the old man was properly looking at him for the first time.

    After a brief silence, Physician Ninnias slowly shook his head.

    “I humbly apologize, Your Highness. I am just a lowly pharmacist who has learned bits and pieces here and there.”

    “…..”

    “I was fortunate to catch His Majesty’s eye and obtain a stable job in my old age, but I have never properly belonged to a school.”

    [He’s lying.]

    Even this time, Seongjin could grasp the physician’s true intentions before the Demon King hinted at it. The old man’s expression was really honest.

    “Anyway, I don’t think there’s a need for daily check ups anymore, Your Highness. You have completely recovered from the fever.”

    The physician hurriedly gathered his examination tools and stood up.

    “From now on, eat a lot and freely do outdoor exercises, focusing only on regaining your strength. And….”

    “And?”

    “As your inner Aura activation seems to be a bit weak compared to ordinary people, I think your recovery will be faster if you put effort into Aura cultivation.”

    Having only recently begun examining Morres, this old man clearly did not know much about the ruffian 3rd Prince.

    If they had been Morres’ original personal physicians, they definitely would not have said that last part.

    The moment the word Aura came out of the old man’s mouth, Edith’s eyes sparkled as she turned to look at Seongjin.

    “……?”

    This woman, is she expecting me to throw something?

    When Seongjin stared at her blankly, she soon muttered with a sulky face.

    “My only joy….”

    Edith, you’re not a frisbee-chasing dog, so why are you finding joy in that?

    Anyway, even without the physician’s recommendation, Seongjin was also thinking that it was about time to start managing his diet and begin outdoor exercises in earnest.

    “Edith, can you tell the kitchen to reduce the seasoning in the food from now on? And ask for plenty of salads without dressing. You don’t have to bring in any food that I don’t touch from now on.”

    It didn’t seem like the right atmosphere to ask for a low-salt, low-carb, high-protein diet, so he would have to roughly pick and choose on his own.

    How much knowledge do people here have about nutritional components? Judging by the looks of it, it seems to be somewhere between the Middle Ages and the modern era on Earth.

    Edith couldn’t hide her puzzled expression at the unfamiliar order she never expected, and Seongjin added while rolling his shoulders to stretch.

    “Oh, and I’d like to go to the training ground. Can you guide me there?”

    ***

    The training ground of the Pearl Palace was originally created for Morres’ personal swordsmanship lessons.

    Of course, it had not been used for a while after he quit swordsmanship early on, but it was being cleanly maintained by the administrative official who was mindful of the Empress’s watchful eyes.

    As a result, at some point, it had turned into a place where the guard knights residing in the Pearl Palace comfortably did their personal training instead of the far-off knight corps training ground.

    But now, all the knights had stopped their training and were standing in the corner of the training ground with disapproving eyes. It was because the suddenly appeared pig 3rd Prince was monopolizing the not-so-large training ground.

    The prince was circling the entire training ground at a speed that was neither walking nor running.

    ‘What the hell is that ruffian bastard doing, suddenly getting this urge?’

    The knights’ eyes were not kind as they watched the prince panting and leading his large body.

    Unlike the strictly disciplined maids, the knights were relatively less influenced by the Empress.

    It was common for them to treat the prince rudely. Even now, some knights were openly throwing contemptuous glances.

    However, for Seongjin, who had already set the goal of physical training and learning Aura and had begun to charge forward, the knights’ unpleasant reactions were not a consideration at all. He circled around a few times, grunting, then wiped his sweat with his sleeve without even glancing at the knights and briskly entered the Pearl Palace.

    What on earth just happened? The knights belatedly looked at each other in confusion.

    It was a situation where he should have exploded in anger for not properly greeting him with respect, but that ruffian quietly exercised and disappeared, ignoring them?

    The knights, who blinked their eyes for a moment, soon resumed their personal training and thought.

    ‘There are all sorts of strange things in life….’

    Everyone thought it was just a one-time whim.

    However, the next day and the day after that, the knights saw Morres appearing around the same time and circling the training ground.

    “Ugh! Huff! Cough! Heuk!”

    [Hey, hey, you’re suffocating. Are you already dying after just a few laps?]

    ‘What the hell is with this trash-tier stamina…?’

    Seongjin frowned while panting unsightly.

    Originally, he planned to lightly train for a few days to build muscles that could support his skeleton and then start high-intensity aerobic exercise once he lost some weight, but….

    ‘No, isn’t this already aerobic exercise at full power?’

    He had only walked a few laps around the training ground, but his lungs felt like they were going to burst and his heart was beating like crazy. His whole body was drenched in sweat as if he had been caught in the rain.

    At this rate, when will he build up his stamina and when will he learn Aura? Annoyance slowly welled up.

    The knights muttering in the corner with displeased expressions were also irritating for no reason, and the sweat soaking his hair and flowing down was stinging his eyes.

    As he was irritably rubbing his eyes, a dry towel suddenly appeared in front of him.

    He took it in a daze and looked up to see an elderly man with a genteel appearance smiling at Seongjin.

    ‘Who…?’

    The old man was standing with a few attendants. Judging by his white hair, he seemed to be quite old, but his back was straight and he was wearing a neat outfit without a single button out of place.

    When his eyes met Seongjin’s, the old man took a step back, raised his right hand to his chest, and bowed his head respectfully.

    “Greetings to the Prince.”

    It was a picturesque and polite motion. The attendants following him also bowed their waists in unison.

    As Seongjin blankly stared, not knowing how to react, the old man showed a slightly flustered expression.

    “Oh my… I did hear that you had some confusion in your memory after the fever, but I failed to properly consider that. I apologize, Your Highness.”

    He maintained an extremely polite attitude toward the young prince. He was someone who had a respectful attitude ingrained in his body.

    Seongjin inwardly admired him and wiped his sweat with the towel.

    Seeing that, the old man smiled again and said with a slight bow.

    “I am Louis Feltre, the Chief Chamberlain of the Imperial Palace. I assist His Majesty the Holy Emperor by his side.”

    “…!”

    Suddenly, someone like the final boss’s right-hand man appeared.

    Seongjin’s lips stiffened for a moment, but the old man, not noticing this, received the sweat-soaked towel and continued in a bright voice.

    “How can you already be doing such intense physical training when it hasn’t been long since you got out of bed?”

    “Well, just for exercise…”

    “With such a valiant young prince, won’t the knights of the Pearl Palace be inspired to work even harder? This is truly a joy for the imperial family and a blessing for Delcross.”

    Seongjin looked around with a dumbfounded face.

    No, old man. Read the room before flattering. Look at the knights’ sharp eyes over there. They look like they’re about to shoot lasers at any moment?

    The Demon King clicked his tongue.

    [Wow, this guy is serious? This is complete blind devotion from another world?]

    It was true that the Chief Chamberlain had a pleased face as if looking at his praiseworthy grandson.

    Seongjin slightly averted his gaze and fake coughed.

    “…Uh, ahem. Louis. So why are you here…?”

    Although Seongjin awkwardly trailed off, not used to speaking informally to an elderly man, the Chief Chamberlain did not seem to mind much.

    “After you collapsed from the fever, His Majesty’s concern was immeasurable. He postponed state affairs and personally looked after the Pearl Palace, and later, he even refused the healing priests and personally exerted tremendous divine power to finally subdue that terrible fever.”

    “That… I heard that happened.”

    I’m not sure, but let’s just go with that for now.

    “Fortunately, you have risen from your sickbed in good health, but His Majesty is not easily reassured and has commanded me to closely observe your condition before the audience.”

    “Oh… that’s, uh, much appreciated.”

    “So, considering that your health is still recovering, His Majesty says he will personally visit the Pearl Palace for the tea time if you wish.”

    What? Pardon? Visit, you say?

    Noticing Seongjin’s confused expression, Louis quickly added an explanation.

    “Ah, it seems you have also forgotten about the regular audience time. His Majesty has been having regular tea time with the princes and princesses at least once a week.”

    “…!”

    Does the emperor of a country have time for that?

    It was not welcome news for Seongjin, who wanted to avoid meeting the Holy Emperor as much as possible.

    “As you know, His Majesty’s interest in his children is extremely special, so unless there is a major event in the empire or an unavoidable change in schedule, the audience schedule has never been postponed until now. In the case of Prince Morres, however…”

    However?

    “There were many instances where the appointment was canceled on the day of the audience. It was common for you to suddenly send a message right before the audience time saying that you were feeling unwell…”

    “…..”

    “As a result, recently, His Majesty has been asking for your intention in advance and personally visiting the Pearl Palace most of the time. This time as well, he told this humble one to ask you.”

    Morres, you crazy bastard! You frequently stood up the Holy Emperor? Is this guy in his right mind?

    Seongjin felt cold sweat running down his back.

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