Cage Devotion～The Engagement was Broken and I was Locked Up. I Will Never Forgive You~ - Chapter 9
Translator: MadHatter Editor: MadHatter
He can no longer tolerate the time without Kitty.
Elias tried every trick in the book to keep Kitty with him.
“I’m giving you an order, stay here!”
He would order her to stay, just as he had commanded her when he had been her former master.
“Kitty, come play with me. Come on, let’s play a game of tag… that you used to love to play.”
He sought to tempt her.
“Listen, if you leave me, I’ll punish you later!”
He threatened, raising his fist in the air.
Nevertheless, Elias came to the realization that none of these methods had the same effect on her as before.
Kitty was a slave whom Elias had discarded with his own hands.
Despite the fact that he was no longer her master, she continued to express her affection for Elias. Elias cannot leave this room, but she will always have the initiative, and she may leave whenever she desired. In the end, Elias can do nothing but hang on to her capriciousness, fawn over her, and beg for her mercy.
Kitty would fulfill Elias a handful of his wishes the following time she returned if she left in a positive mood.
She was pleased to offer Elias food that she had made herself, for instance, at his first meal. When he complained of boredom, she brought him some books. She would stock him with books on forensics, which he used to read a lot, on civility, and even a thick book on imperialism, which she must have found somewhere.
“You didn’t steal this, did you?”
Elias unintentionally said, to which Kitty purred and turned her face away. There was neither a confirmation nor a denial, as usual.
She also brought him a bow when he grumbled that he couldn’t exercise (there were obviously no arrows, so it was evident that something had to be done with strings) and flowers in a vase when he claimed that the room lacked color. Kitty appeared eager to put up her best efforts in order to appease the overly frustrated prisoner.
On the other hand, what a dreadful thing it would be to offend this adorable jailer.
Elias once followed her outside to take a peek, but he apparently went off too far and incurred the wrath of the highly indignant guard.
Kitty growled at him and came dangerously close to clawing him before disappearing with the same momentum. Elias, who had been left behind, drank all the water from the jug, and by the time he was hungry and thirsty, she had not returned at all. He wandered around the room with his arms crossed, settled on the bed in a huff, went to sleep before he knew it, and still no sign of her when he woke up.
Elias had a fleeting flash of terror in a space without the passage of time. What if she never showed up? It would be appalling. Water might still be possible to obtain in the bathroom, but food would have to be prepared by Kitty. Until this point, he had been vaguely naive, convinced that Kitty would never forsake him no matter what he did, that Kitty would pardon him for anything he did. But this was the reality, the proper state of affairs.
Kitty’s absence was not simply due to the fact that he was bored to death. She was Elias’ caretaker, and if she were to abandon her duties, Elias would literally lose his lifeline. Kitty could kill Elias with the slightest malice. Alternatively, even if she herself had wanted to come here, for whatever reason―mainly because she had been given another assignment, or because she herself had fallen ill―Elias would have no way of knowing why he ended up here.
Confined, Elias had no way of knowing. Not a hint of anything.
In his panic, he clawed at the door, scratching and calling her name.
Kitty, Kitty, come back to me. I’ll do anything you say. I’ll do anything for you.
His nails eventually broke, leaving a pattern of scarlet lines on the door. He was about to quit since his voice was hoarse when he heard a faint echo from beyond the huge wall.
The door slowly opened in front of him, exposing the wet cheeks of his face. Kitty peeked out and beamed at Elias’ disheveled face.
He didn’t curse or beg for forgiveness but simply embraced her, unable to even articulate. It was as if he was a little girl who had strayed and was finally reunited with her.
Elias was stroked by Kitty as she patted his back and gave him a knowing look.
Fortunately, or unfortunately, Elias did not notice the kitten’s eyes sparkling with a dangerous glint.
After that, Elias’ haughty demeanor toward Kitty lessened, if not vanished entirely. He was continuously watching her expression, and if there was even the faintest indication of displeasure, he had to act quickly to fix the situation.
Having to play the beast woman’s game was a major blow to his self-esteem as a prince and a human man, but what good would it do to be alone here, putting on an air of superiority? No matter how much Elias tried to act like himself and be high and mighty, Kitty was practically his master in this room. He reminded himself of that.
There were so many unknowns, so many absurdities in his new life, but the equation was clear.
That was to please Kitty. In other words, to improve Elias’ life.
That was to make Kitty dissatisfied. In other words, Elias’ death and demise.
Elias has never really surrendered to his emotions, despite how sharply their relationship has gone up or down. He contemptuously continued to maintain his identity. Regardless of his apparently miserable position, deep down he still believed that he was better than this beautiful beast, and he had not given up hope that one day he would leave this place and prove it to himself.
Kitty could not and would not answer Elias’ questions. Elias, too, gave up on the futility. He decided to change his plans a little and bide his time.
As a matter of course, Kitty arrived daily (though that being said, Elias can only guess, since he had no sense of time) to take care of Elias, and she did so with great care and attention, eventually leaving. Retaining her as she left would put her in a good mood, but Elias knew from several interactions that going after her too deeply and making outwardly conscious gestures and actions would be fatal. He will not make the mistake of adding or subtracting anymore.
Among the items Kitty brought for Elias was an hourglass. For Elias, who had no idea what time it was, this was a valuable tool. It served as a predictor of Kitty’s next arrival. Kitty often shows up after turning over the sand four times on average. less frequently, roughly twice. Ten times was the longest case. He was totally in the dark as to what she was doing outside. Even if he wanted to ask, Kitty would not speak. No matter how impatient he was, she would continue to meow.
The time drifted on aimlessly. Days? How many weeks? Elias didn’t even recognize… if a month had passed. Even if he were to mark somewhere and count the days, there would be no way to know when a day has passed. He could consider using the hourglass as a reference point, but if he dwelled too much on that, he would become despondent.
The gradual, incremental process of devouring caused Elias to feel weak. Kitty was his keystone.
One day, as Kitty was leaving, Elias stopped her by holding her from behind. Elias’ audacious gesture caused Kitty’s tail to wag in return.
“Comfort me, Kitty. You’re all I have.”
While his arms were crossed around her chest, he whispered in her ear. Oddly enough, the words were almost the same as that time, but had he noticed?
The lovely beast squinted her gold and silver eyes as she followed Elias’ lead to the back of the room. With the same captivating, slightly intrigued, and expectant glance, she gazed up at Elias.
He softly placed his lips on hers as he lowered her onto the bed and began to take off her clothes, but Elias’ hands stopped. He hastily shook his head as if to convey there was nothing wrong when Kitty stared at him before resuming his motions. But he frequently turned his attention to her chest.
There, in addition to the tattered red collar, were three keys threaded with a string. One belonged to this room. He had watched it from the side where she held the keys many times in her hand.
Elias’ throat rumbled. The beast looked up at him while being pinned down. He slowly reached out his hand toward her – and the next instant, the world inverted.
Kitty jerked her head and arched her back over Elias, startling him. The sound of keys clattering and swinging could be heard as the beast quickly brushed her own hair with her hand while pulling her master down onto the bed and mounting herself. Elias’ eyes swiftly followed it, and he felt a searing gaze from above him as soon as they did.
Kitty’s steely gaze met his as he lifted his eyes. She opened her lips slowly while holding the keys in one hand and shaking them with the other as they dangled from her bare chest.
“After all, my Lord, you are a rather heartless man. Is the outside world so much more exhilarating than me?”
His degree of shock was such that his voice was not coming out. Kitty, who was still positioned on Elias’ abdomen, whose face had turned red and blue and whose expression had twisted and hardened, leaned forward and put her hands on both sides of his face. Up close, the woman was a beauty. It was only when she spoke properly that Elias realized that the silhouette, the gestures, the look of the person behind the veil and Kitty’s silhouette, the gestures, the look – they were exactly one and the same.
How could it be that she has been so close to him?
It made him want to burst out into laughter at his own stupidity, but at the same time, fear and astonishment were surging up inside him.
No wonder he couldn’t make the connection. The woman with the distinctive voice and Kitty, who never spoke at all, were the same person―
The woman laughed bewitchingly as she perched on her master’s abdomen, who was almost dizzy with shock. Her voice was undoubtedly that of the woman who had brought Elias here, the same demonic one that had once cackled at the near-broken Elias on the other side of the door. It was a voice that penetrated deep into his ears, into the very core of his being, but it was not unpleasant at all; in fact, it was a voice of such beauty that he wanted to listen to it forever.
“It was surprising, wasn’t it, but that’s enough! I have been procrastinating on revealing the secret because my Lord, you are so endearing. I was wondering when you would realize it, when your face would contort! But now that it has come to this, I suppose we are done playing games.”
Could there have existed a creature that could laugh so wickedly and hideously and still retain their dignity and beauty? Elias was speechless and fixated on her the entire time.
Her ears twitched above her head and her white tail wagged loosely around her waist.
“Let me state my name once and for all. In front of you, I am only Kitty. But I am much more than just that. My name is Bastito=Putra=Ilidis=Alessandro=Marius. Some call me Bastito II. I am the humble queen of a beastly nation, my Lord.”
Elias realized his initial mistake. Perhaps it was her secrecy, but even so, the humans were all ignorant.
He should have thought more deeply about the meaning of her stripes.
A tiger cub could never have been tamed like a kitten.
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