Martel, the 5th prince in line, usually liked to read books and lived in a separate mansion close to the Imperial Palace’s library.
At Martel’s residence, where normally scholars from the empire came and went, only doctors and priests were busy moving around.
The knights in charge of the place were anxious when Emperor Rudolf appeared on the premises.
“You don’t have to go in just yet, it could be contagious for…”
Rudolf pushed the knights who were asking him to stop and entered the room where Martel was lying.
“Kug Kug Kug! M-majesty…”
“Martel! What the hell is happening to you?!”
Rudolf saw Martel and couldn’t hide his sadness.
Just the day before, he saw his kid with a mild cough who seemed to be fine, but now, that same kid had rashes all over his body along with blood here and there.
It wasn’t just that. Every time he coughed badly, he ended up vomiting and getting a seizure.
“Majesty… Am I… dying?”, asked Martel.
“That won’t happen. Now that I see it, it isn’t a serious disease. You will be able to get up and run rather quickly.”
When Martel asked with fear, Rudolf tried to look as comforting as he could for his son.
After a while, Martel managed to calm himself down and fell asleep after taking the medicine given by the doctors.
“What in the world happened?”
“I-I don’t know either. His symptoms look similar to smallpox, but there are signs of tuberculosis…”
“All this, pathetic! What were you all doing before his body reached this point?”
“It was because the illness progressed suddenly… Hik!”
When Rudolf pulled out his sword, the doctor’s face became pale.
“I am going to ask you once more. Can you cure Martel?”
“T-that… Your Majesty, please let us be!”
The doctor who was hesitant about giving out a definite answer fell on his knees and asked for forgiveness.
It was because he wasn’t confident about curing an illness that he had seen for the first time.
If the doctor made a false statement about fixing the child, and if Martel died, then three generations of his family would be killed for deceiving the emperor.
“You are the Imperial doctor of the Imperial palace?”
The furious Rudolf wielded his sword.
Even in the presence of the Queen. Moreover, the kid was the youngest and cutest of them all, who was like candy to one’s eyes.
The emperor couldn’t forgive an incompetent man who couldn’t help his precious youngest child before reaching to that point.
“Get rid of this trash right away!”
The knights dragged out the body of the doctor who got killed. The other doctors and the priests who saw that scene could only tremble.
Rudolf pointed his bloody sword toward them.
“All of you, don’t even think about hesitating. Think about how to treat the prince. Otherwise, you will be punished!”
“Move quickly if you understand!”
At the scream from Rudolf, the doctors and priests rushed over to search for a kind of treatment.
Rudolf could only sigh with anxiety and a shuddering heart.
He slowly approached the elderly servant.
“Are you the prince’s servant? What happened? Did Lian ask to check on Martel?”
“T-that isn’t it…”
Seeing the dark expression of the servant, Rudolf could feel his heart break.
He had an ominous feeling rushing over him, but he wasn’t ready to believe it.
No matter how unfortunate or serious the issues could be, it couldn’t be any worse than Martel’s.
However, his faith was entirely betrayed.
“The prince is in pain from an unknown disease, Your Majesty.”
“Right now, are you all trying to mess with me?!”
“H-how could we even try to do that? After having breakfast this morning, he said that his stomach hurt and was feeling nauseous, and then his head started to hurt and suddenly…”
The words of the old servant were interrupted
It was because another knight ran in to give another report.
“Your Majesty, Prince Barto fell!”
“W-what do you mean?” Asked Rudolf.
“During his swordsmanship practice, the prince lost consciousness, and he has a high fever along with rashes all over his body.”
“This! This makes no bloody sense!”
The news didn’t end there.
Soon there was another shocking news that the rest of the princes and the princesses were suffering.
When things reached that point, everyone’s eyes turned over to the emperor.
All the princes and his daughters passed out just a few days after spending some time with the emperor.
If it was an epidemic, the empress and the emperor were at risk.
“Your Majesty, even now, you need to be checked…”
“Shut up! There is no need for a checkup!”
Rudolf’s entire body was in pain.
Although he wasn’t suffering from any illness, the reality that his children were suffering in front of his eyes was ripping his heart to pieces.
He had never experienced such pain.
This was much more painful than the time when his bones were breaking on his path to become a great knight or the time when he was fatally wounded while fighting Kauren, the general from Devildom.
This was unbearable pain, and he didn’t know how to suppress it.
“Save them! Whatever the means you need to use! Lian, Barto and the other kids too! Otherwise, all of you will never be able to escape death!”
The proud emperor, who was proud of being stronger than anyone else, could do nothing. The entire Imperial Palace was rushing with people because of it.