She and the Victory Celebration Party 2
“Honestly, Lidi. You don’t understand at all”
While hearing Freed grumble such complaints, I was led along to a man of high status who looked to be past forty, and a woman who appeared to be his wife.
When he noticed us, the man’s eyes happily sparkled.
“Freed!! Is this Princess your fiancée”
“It’s been a long time. Esteemed Uncle. Yeah, she’s my fiancée, Princess Lidiana”
Unconsciously I fascinatedly watched the man who called out to Freed with a charming smile.
The man in front of me who has darker blond hair and gives off a more composed impression compared to Freed is looking here with a sweet smile similar to Freed’s. The smiling faced built upon his experiences in life is wonderful.
“Nice to meet you. Princess Lidiana. I’m Garay. Freed’s uncle. Next to me is my wife, Sarah. I’ve heard Freed brought his fiancée today. I couldn’t calm down, so I came”
With his self-introduction I matched him to the portrait in my memory. Of course I know of him.
Lord Garay. Freed’s uncle. The current King’s younger brother.
Currently second in line to the throne, following Freed. His wife certainly came from a marquis house.
“I am sorry for the late greetings. I am Lidiana”
It’s not the time to be fascinated. I straightened myself in panic and returned my self-introduction.
“When I said I want to introduce you to someone, it was about my Esteemed Uncle. I believe there’ll be many opportunities to meet from now on. I want to little by little increase your acquaintances”
Apparently for the sake of me not used to the Royal Palace, Freed seems to have tried to introduce royalty close to him. I appreciate this thoughtfulness.
“Lidi will have to do lots of things as my Princess Consort. If there’s something I can do, I’ll spare no efforts”
Seeing Freed stroke my head with narrowed eyes, Lord Garay made a greatly interested face.
Or rather, Lord Garay, it’s absurdly refined.
I felt dizzy just watching him ooze mature sex appeal.
“Hou. I’ve heard rumors that Freed is obsessed, but it looks to me they aren’t necessarily lies. It’s wonderful you appear close”
“I don’t know what you’ve heard, but I’m literally obsessed. Esteemed Uncle is also the same as ever”
“Haha. I guess”
He readily agreed and pulled his wife towards himself. Their splendid appearance made me remember something.
Freed said the Royal Prince set the precedent, probably he meant him.
Lady Sara who was hugged obediently settled inside his arms. She seems like an obedient petite person.
As Lord Garay has a large firm physique, in his arms she looks even smaller.
She’s wearing a calming moss-green dress with a thin stole on top and has elegant pale features.
“Freed’s ‘King’s Flower’ is a blue rose, huh. It’s a matter of course, but it’s a splendid ‘True King’s Flower’”
While hugging Lady Sarah, Lord Garay observed my ‘King’s Flower’ and said so.
“‘True King’s Flower’?”
“What Freed, you haven’t explained yet, huh”
Hearing this phrase for the first time, I made a questioning face and Lord Garay poked Freed in astonishment.
“I explained the gist of it. But certainly, I haven’t explained about ‘True King’s Flower’. It’s a mere name, so it’s not an important talk”
Saying so Freed shrugged his shoulders, and Lord Garay nodded.
“Lidi’s ‘King’s Flower’ has a beautiful color, right? That trait appears only in the direct line of descent, moreover only in the first-born son’s ‘King’s Flower’”
“It’ll be quicker to show than to explain. Sarah”
Interrupting Freed who tried to explain, Lord Garay looked towards his wife.
Lady Sarah who until now was silently following her husband, when called out took a step forward.
“Lady Lidiana, this”
When she took off the stole, there certainly was the ‘King’s Flower’ on her chest, but… how should I say it, overall the color was poor? I understood the flower symbol was anemone, but the color could hardly be called brilliant.
“Anemone, isn’t it?”
When I asked to confirm, Lord Garay nodded.
“That’s right, its color is purple. But, it’s considerably different from Princess’s, right? The clarity of the shape and color of the ‘King’s Flower’ signifies the thickness of blood. Freed’s ‘King’s Flower’ is so brilliant because he’s the direct descendant and the first-born son”
“Lidi has only seen Mother’s ‘King’s Flower’…”
Their talk made me recall Queen’s ‘King’s Flower’. Certainly, her ‘King’s Flower’ was a splendid white lily, it had a beautiful color.
“Lidi’s or Mother’s ‘King’s Flowers’ are specifically called ‘True King’s Flower’. It means the ‘King’s Flower’ of the first-born son in the direct line of descent”
“Is it really just a matter of naming?”
Seeing Freed nod, I became convinced for now, but honestly I’ve never thought of the difference between ‘King’s Flowers’ until now. It’s probably same for Older Brother and others.
It’s a well-known story, but inside the Wilhelm Kingdom, with exception of the ‘King’s Flower’, chest tattoos are treated as irreverence to the Royal Family and are punished as lese majeste.
Especially imitating the ‘King’s Flower’ results in severe punishment, no citizen would attempt it even as a joke.
That is to say, a chest tattoo on a woman almost definitely identifies her as Princess Consort.
There’s no way something as rude as approaching a woman and staring to confirm her ‘King’s Flower’ is possible. So, there’s no opportunity to learn of the difference in color or shape.
After finishing the explanation, Lord Garay and Freed began talking once again.
It seems their talk got lively since they met after a long time. Freed also has happy expression, surely they’re close as an uncle and nephew.
I and Lady Sarah took a step back to not hinder their talk, but they still were interrupted at once.
With the surroundings becoming noisy, a young man with arms entwined around two beautiful women who exuded charm walked here.
It’s Lord Garay who noticed before everybody else. With eyes wide open in astonishment, he intently stared at the man called Andre. At the same moment Lady Sarah’s complexion became pale.
“Why…? Is this child here”
While seemingly trembling, Lady Sarah muttered. Looking next to me, Freed also stared at the man with severe gaze.
Even when I called out there’s no reply. The three of them stared at the man without moving.
The man accompanied by two beautiful women confidently came this way and stood in front of Freed.
“Freed, it’s been a long time”
Despite greeting it’s been a long time, his eyes aren’t smiling at all.
On the contrary I sensed hatred.
“Andre… Why are you here”
“What. Is it strange I’m here. I was also royalty originally. What’s wrong with coming to congratulate my excellent cousin”
He said he’s come here to congratulate, but his voice doesn’t sound like that at all.
The man spoke challengingly in a voice filled with hatred, then moved his gaze to me.
Corners of his mouth distorted. Even though he has orderly looks, for some reason I felt intense disgust. Reflexively I clung to Freed’s arm.
Freed changed his position to protect such me.
“This princess is who you have feelings for, huh. Well, she’s pretty flat, but it’s not like nothing can be seen”
“Andre! What are you saying! Apologize to Princess Lidiana right now!”
Freed twitched at those excessive words and was about to respond, but Lord Garay shouted faster than him.
“Why are you here. You aren’t allowed here. I should’ve said it already. Never come here again. Why did you do something so self-centered!”
“Father, you’re annoying. No matter what I do I’ll be self-centered, won’t I. You know, I was a little interested. What kind of woman did Freed, who looked at me like that, fell in love at first sight with”
I couldn’t help but find the eyes of the man sending fleeting glimpses here disgusting.
As I strengthened my grip on Freed, he pulled my shoulder close as if to make me feel safe.
Feeling relieved I breathed out and weakened the grip just a little.
Seeing my unusual, frightened state, Freed directed a gaze filled with fury at the man.
“Andre, don’t think the rude remark towards my fiancée will be forgiven with just an apology”
The man didn’t even flinch at Freed’s threat. On the contrary, with his arms still wrapped around two beauties, he scowled at Freed.
“Hmph. What do I have to fear at this point. Absurd. It’s pathetic you of all people were declawed by such woman”
“I won’t forgive you for insulting her. It’s one thing to selfishly resent me, but would you stop involving her”
The man strongly responded to Freed’s words.
“Resent!? Wrong! That’s you, bastard!!”
“Andre, that’s enough”
Lord Garay stood between Andre and Freed.
He turned towards Freed and lowered his head a little.
“I’m sorry, Freed. My son said a terribly rude thing. My son’s misconduct is my responsibility as the parent. I don’t mind however you punish me later, so could you leave it to me now”
As Lord Garay seriously said that, before I noticed Lady Sarah also moved here and silently bowed her head.
Seeing this I pulled the hem of Freed’s clothes.
“Freed… I don’t mind it”
As I looked up at him while saying so, Freed blinked and reluctantly let go of his anger.
“… I got it. If Lidi says so, I’ll leave it to Esteemed Uncle. Esteemed Uncle, I’ll leave him to you only once. If there’s the next time, I’ll absolutely act on my own”
Lord Garay strongly nodded to Freed’s clear declaration.
Lady Sarah also bowed her head even deeper.
“Of course. I’m sorry. I’m indebted to you”
“If you want to be grateful to somebody, it’s Lidi. I haven’t forgiven him”
“Thank you, Princess Lidiana. I will return the favor one day”
As a look filled with determination was turned to me, I slowly shook my head.
“No, I do not mind it”
Bowing my head a little, together with Freed I left the spot.
I understood the man looked past Lord Garay at me with a hateful scowl.
Afraid of his gaze with insanity mixed in, once again I strongly clung to Freed.
“Hey, who was that person? I heard he was Lord Garay’s son, but”
I walked down the corridor together with Freed.
Originally, the plan seemed to be to withdraw after greeting Lord Garay. As the timing was good, we slipped out of the victory celebration party right away. Now I’m walking together with Freed back to his room.
He was a disgusting man.
His appearance characteristic only of royalty with blond hair and blue eyes made him a beauty similar to Lord Garay, but his gaze filled with intense resentment and dark circles around his eyes ruined everything. I’m confident I remember most nobles’ faces, but I can’t remember him at all.
“That man’s name is Andre. Esteemed Uncle’s eldest son… I’ve talked about it before. If you cannot obtain the ‘King’s Flower’, you will be chased out of the Royal Family. Andre is that”
“So… that’s how it is…”
Come to think of it, Lord Garay had two sons. I recalled one of them had the name Andre. Surely the story goes that he’s undergoing treatment for an illness and shouldn’t have been seen in years. I couldn’t recognize him since his impression changed too much, but he doesn’t seem to resemble the portrait from several years ago.
“Because the matter of ‘King’s Flower’ is a secret from citizens, officially he’s undergoing a treatment for an illness. It looks like instead of a partner, he’s having women serve him to do something about divine power. It looks like it’s not going too well though…”
At those words, I thought back on Andre’s state. Certainly, he had two plump beauties serve him.
“I never again wanted to be involved with him, this wasn’t the plan… But, royalty who fail to acquire the ‘King’s Flower’ are banished to the outskirts and are supposed to remain under house arrest until death, and yet how in the world did he come here… And if he was found out to have come here forcibly, he’d be driven away, he should have understood that and yet… What is he thinking?”
Looking at Freed he was pondering a little, then apologetically said sorry.
“I’m sorry for involving Lidi in our stupid quarrel. It was unpleasant, wasn’t it. You don’t have to care about what he said”
“I’m fine, but…”
A line Andre said is on my mind a little.
His eyes when he said to Freed “That’s you”. His gaze that seemed to say the main cause of resentment is this made me feel sick.
I’d be lying if I said I don’t want to hear it. However, Freed probably doesn’t want to talk.
I understand that from the atmosphere.
So I won’t ask, but…
“… Are you okay? You aren’t depressed?”
I called out to Freed who’s walking next to me. Ever since meeting Andre, his state looks obviously different.
Freed must have not expected to hear that at all. As I anxiously looked at him, he incessantly blinked and muttered in a soft voice I give up.
“… You’ve noticed, huh. I was only recalling the past a little. Sorry. I’ve made you worry, haven’t I”
There’s no usual force in Freed’s smile as he said so and looked into my eyes.
My chest ached terribly. I didn’t want a forced smile like this.
Not being able to look him in the eyes I extended my hand in silence. And like that I simply stroked his hair.
“… Good boy, good boy”
“… I’m not a child”
Without caring about Freed’s bitter smile, I continued earnestly stroking his hair.
The softness of his hair felt good.
“… Don’t force yourself to smile. However, I think human hands can heal and make one feel pleasant”
I meant to say it seriously.
Not sure what he thought, but Freed strangely returned to himself.
“… Then, not only with your hands, I want Lidi to comfort me with your whole body. Ah, come to think of it, tonight I can embrace you until I’m satisfied, right?”
The hand stroking his head was caught and fixedly stared at.
Freed brought the seized hand to his lips and just like that dropped his lips on my palm. My senses were aroused, and I leaked a strange sound.
“Since I saw Lidi’s cute appearance during the day, I’ve been enduring, okay? I’m depressed, right? Can you comfort me with your body?”
This talk that’s just like Freed rendered me speechless.
How, did he make that connection… I don’t understand.
Even though I stared at him wanting to know his true intention, nn? I could only tilt my head and not say anything.
… Even so, in an instant I somehow realized that his words and actions are bravado meant to deceive me.
I thought that perhaps the line that he wanted to be comforted just might be true.
Before I noticed, I naturally nodded.
Silence fell only for a moment.
I smiled a little at the thank you that resounded after a short time.
Next two chapters are R18, please look forward to them~