Chapter 84: Visitor
The engagement of Edward-san and I was smoothly settled.
But it would not happen right away. The wedding ceremony would be held in two months. So far, the common people did not know about His Highness Rayford being under lock and key; he was still thought to be the heir to the throne. So, during the National Foundation Day in two months, Edward-san would be officially announced as the next king.
And after that, would be our wedding.
In two months—I would be Edward-san’s wife.
I had not talked to Edward-san about that matter yet.
But it seemed we would soon have the opportunity to a meal.
「……rol…Carol, are you listening? 」
「……What are you in a daze for? 」
Shrugging her shoulder with a sigh was Lilia.
Recently, even though it was not a day off, she would stop by every day on her way home from school. It seemed I caused her to worry, and I felt guilty.
But it was all right. I already decided to marry Edward-san.
「Anyway, since Carol left the academy, it’s been boring as of late」
「Has it? 」
「After all, Carol’s the only friend I have. Well, there are those who’ve been trying to get close to me just because I’m the daughter of a marquis. But I simply ignore them」
I, too, had people like those.
Or rather, in my case, my engagement with His Highness had already been talked about, so that might have been a par for the course. While this was a constitutional monarchy, it did not change the fact that a royalty’s power was strong.
But I was too busy with my studies, and I also had Lilia as my friend. So I ignored them.
「But, say……about His Highness Edward, isn’t it strange? 」
「What is? 」
「I don’t hear bad rumors about him. And it looks like he’s always been excellent. “If only he was the king’s eldest son…” it seems there were many people who were lamenting like that」
「……Is that so」
I had only met him twice, so I was not clear on his nature.
I only knew that he was an extremely rude person who mistook me as Wilhelm-sama’s grandchild.
「And to this day, there’s no frivolous talk about him. There’s not even a single suspicious relations with women despite being the Royal Prince’s eldest child. Moreover, the House of Raul’s territory west of Flarekista is vast and is reputed to be comfortable to live in by its residents. They have a silver mine. And because resources are abundant, it seems the taxes are quite cheap」
「So you see, it’s too perfect that it’s suspicious. But well, for me, since it’s Carol’s marriage, I’m glad that the other party’s good」
「Thank you very much, Lilia」
Thank you for your concern.
For her to look into Edward-san like that, it seemed it was because she was worried about me. I felt extremely guilty for making her worry so much.
And above all…
Ever since that day, Lilia…
—Had not once mentioned Wilhelm-sama’s name.
「Oh, that’s right. I found a good restaurant the other day, and I wanted to eat there with Carol……」
Strained conversations which did not bring up Wilhelm-sama.
I supposed that perhaps I too could respond with a smile. However, since there were dark feelings contained at the bottom of my heart, I could not bring myself to happily talk.
Would time ever settle these feelings someday?
When Lilia’s constantly changing stories turned into her complaints in the academy…
Knocks sounded at my room’s door.
「Ojou-sama, please excuse us……hii!?」
「What? Such a rude servant, screaming at the sight of other people’s faces」
「M-My sincerest apologies! 」
「My apologies, Lilia-sama. She shall be given a firm educating」
It was Mary and Richard who came in.
Mary still seemed terrified of Lilia and screamed the moment she saw her face. It is not like she will attack you, though.
Well then, what did they come here for?
「What is the matter? 」
「U-Umm…a guest…of Ojou-sama’s……」
「But Lilia is still here……」
「Aah, I don’t mind. I’ll wait for a while」
「Is that so? Then……who has come? 」
I shall postpone if it was the regular merchant.
Although, I had not made any particular appointments today.
「Th-That is……they seemed to be…from the Empire……」
「From the Empire? 」
「Y-Yes. U-Umm…she is a very beautiful…tall woman」
I did not know any women from the Empire.
My father would often visit the Empire as a diplomat, but I had never been there.
Was that person really my guest?
「She did not come to see Father? 」
「Yes……it is for Carol-sama, without a doubt」
「I have also confirmed it. She definitely came to see Ojou-sama」
「Is that so……」
I did not know what a woman from the Empire wanted with me.
But Flarekista was vassal state of the Empire. As such, if the people from the Empire were to be slighted, that alone might develop into a diplomatic issue.
At the very least, I supposed there was no harm in wanting to see me.
Well, courtesy calls for a greeting then.
「Well then, Lilia. Please do excuse me……」
「All right. I’ll just be talking to Mary」
「Then, Mary, please see to Lilia」
「Yes!? Eeh!? 」
「Come now, have a seat. Let’s have a good, long talk, shall we? 」
I heard Mary’s cry behind me. I had no idea what they would be talking about, but Lilia looked happy.
Now then, I shall see to the guest first. Leaving Mary behind, I headed to the drawing room with Richard leading the way.
「Oku-sama is entertaining her as we speak. Ojou-sama, please do be careful with your words……」
「What kind of position does she hold? 」
「That…I was not properly informed about it……」
Did such a high personage come? Without any prior notice, I did not think there would be anyone with such a position though.
Richard knocked on the door and opened it.
「Please forgive the intrusion. Ojou-sama, this way please」
「Carol, you have come. Take a seat here first」
Inside were my mother and one other person, a tall woman.
She was a beautiful blonde woman, but she somehow left a strict impression.
That woman fixed me with a sharp, piercing gaze.
「Pardon me……it is nice to meet you」
「Please take a seat first. I will then begin talking」
I sat next to my mother.
She had a somewhat scary aura. Like that of a warrior’s. Like she was a knight.
However, that woman began with a soft smile.
「Am I correct to assume that you are Lady Carol Ambrose? 」
「Yes. I am Carol Ambrose」
「I see……then, that is good. I am Helena Railnote」
It was not a name I had heard of before. However, I had heard of that family name.
If I recalled correctly, the Railnote marquis house was an age-old noble family in the Empire. The noble of the Empire who once had a friendship with my grandfather, Dukeridd Ambrose, should have been Lowefal Railnote1.
However, I had never met him.
「I am not much of a patient person by nature……it may be abrupt of me, but I want us to get to the important matter」
「I was entrusted with General Wilhelm Aibringer’s will」
My eyes opened wide.
Unexpectedly, it was such an important matter.
Why would you not let me forget about you—?
 Lowefal Railnote – ロウファル・レイルノート ↩