Ashen Crown Prince and the Princess of Neighboring Country 2
My thinking stopped for a moment.
The woman’s words revolved in my mind over and over.
Eight. The woman certainly said so.
Why does she know.
It’s a fact I have eight Side Consorts, but that information shouldn’t have leaked outside the country.
And that woman knows it.
That can only mean one thing.
She has some method to obtain Sahaja’s secrets, nothing else.
I mustn’t let her go.
I have to at least determine what that method is.
I thought so, but unfortunately, I missed the opportunity as Crown Prince Friedrich reached the limits of his patience and appeared.
I greatly want to bring that woman home, but it’s unwise to cause trouble in the middle of the enemy territory.
It’s the correct decision to leave the woman for now and wait for a favorable opportunity.
Thinking so, I expressed my lack of will to fight with my posture and attitude.
Crown Prince Friedrich seemed unwilling, but he reluctantly let go off my hand he’d been grasping.
But, the emotion that filled his eyes hurt.
I’d rather crush you, they said――――.
The corners of my mouth rose as the intensity of this man’s glare felt like it’d shoot me to death.
Seeing this man conflicted over being unable to do what he wanted, I wanted to laugh with all my heart.
Once again I thought after leaving the evening party venue.
Pedigree, appearance, knowledge, and ability.
Everything passes. I’ve got no complaints.
No, if I had to find a fault it’d be the part where she’s controlled by emotions as “Like”, but I can say this is but a trivial problem.
Even though that aspect rendered me speechless, she seems to understand it’s an odd way of thinking for a noble, so I don’t particularly need to worry about it.
But, ultimately what impressed me is her ability to gather information.
I didn’t think she’d leave me speechless like that.
That woman – Princess Lidiana will be my Princess Consort.
The Princess Consort position that’s been empty for a long time.
I’ll make that woman assume that position.
She’s somebody’s? That doesn’t matter.
Sahaja gets what it wants.
To declare I would steal her, as I left the venue, I send her a strong look.
When that man realized it, he scowled at me as if to say he won’t forgive me.
… Ah, that’s right.
I looked at that Crown Prince as if to address him.
Crown Prince Friedrich.
Your taste in women is correct. I could even say it’s perfect.
As expected of the flawless Crown Prince to choose that woman, I want to openly praise you.
―――― And, your insight is also perfect.
Just as you fear, I’m interested in your fiancée.
I’ve decided to steal your woman and make her my Princess Consort.
He sent me a provocative gaze.
The silent pressure was terrifying, but as I felt the best, having found Princess Consort candidate, it had no effect on me.
I left the venue with a feeling of satisfaction, and that’s how we arrive at the present.
“… Your Highness?”
While I thought back on the matters just now, Fabius reservedly asked a question.
“What. I feel unusually good. I wish you wouldn’t disturb me”
“Excuse my discourtesy. However… I haven’t received instructions”
“Ah, about Shinigami”
Recalling the matter I’ve already lost the interest in, I just found it troublesome.
It doesn’t matter to me whether Shinigami is dead or alive now. I have many tools I can use, but all those things are replaceable, nothing more. Shinigami too.
It’s the Princess Consort candidate whom I cannot replace.
For me now, there’s nothing more important than obtaining what I’d found.
“Your Highness, may I say one thing”
“There was something strange in the report from those dispatched. It’s well-known Shinigami only has one eye, but according to the report, for some reason that was not the case for Shinigami in Wilhelm”
I raised an eyebrow at the report.
At those words, my half-heartened feelings tensed.
“Does that mean both his eye work?”
“Yes, it seems they thought it was a different person, but since there was somebody who knew Shinigami, and that the person had the nerve to talk with Apostate normally, it seems it convinced them he’s the Shinigami himself”
Certainly, if he can normally converse with Apostate, whose strength stands out among assassins, the suspicion he’s a sham disappears.
Even so, why doesn’t he have one eye… huh.
I clicked my tongue.
“He found a contractor… We were too late”
I explained to Fabius who made a mystified face.
Father or I wanted that Shinigami no matter what only because of his clan.
“Shinigami is from Hiyuma clan. At young age, members of Hiyuma clan undergo a ceremony where the clan’s secret art is put into their left eye. The secret art can only be used once the contract is established. The fact Shinigami has both eyes means he’d already made a contract”
“Hiyuma clan… was it?”
I nodded at Fabius who hadn’t heard of it.
“It’s natural you don’t know them. At present only limited number of people know about that clan’s existence. A clan that demonstrates their power for the first time when they find a contractor called master. Their loyalty is absolute”
A superior tool you needn’t fear betrayal from.
The outstanding talent enough to be desperately desired by statesmen.
In fact, Father committed a severe mistake trying to obtain them eight years ago.
When they refused being his subordinates, Father flew into rage and foolishly destroyed the clan.
The only survivor was Shinigami.
In order to obtain the last survivor, Father left Shinigami who was still a child in the custody of ‘Red’ and decided to wait for him to grow up.
Speaking of what happened later, before he could be obtained, Shinigami destroyed ‘Red’ and fled, leaving a bad aftertaste.
I’d heard he received the Curse of Sahaja from the Guild Master of ‘Red’ and died, so I was surprised from the bottom of my heart when I heard he’s alive in Wilhelm.
I didn’t expect him to be alive in the slightest.
The Curse of Sahaja is not that easy.
He survived safely and even found a master.
It’s beyond unexpected.
I’ve read in the old literature that when members of Hiyuma clan find a master the secret art is released, and even physical abilities increase.
From the beginning Shinigami boasted enough strength to famed as the strongest in ‘Red’.
I have no doubt he’s become more troublesome.
And in that case, his master is absolutely on my mind.
“… Is his master… Wilhelm’s royalty?”
According to information, the previous time Apostate encountered Shinigami was within the Wilhelm Castle.
This time it was the same.
That means a person related to that place is very likely his master… huh.
I’ve heard it’s considerably tough to be acknowledged as Hiyuma’s master.
It’s unlikely that a half-hearted person would be acknowledged.
Then, that should exclude those with lower positions.
it should only be limited to excellent people with high rank.
Wilhelm’s high ranking nobles…
Thinking this far, it clicked with me.
The woman who knew of my eighth Side Consort.
The information that hasn’t leaked anywhere. Only a limited number of people within Sahaja might know it.
Of course, it wouldn’t be strange if Shinigami knew.
Even if he’s not Guild Master, as the person sitting on top of ‘Red’ it wouldn’t be strange for Shinigami to have information about my Side Consorts.
“Could she… have heard it from the Crown Prince”
Crown Prince Friedrich. He’s also worthy of Shinigami’s service.
In addition, the Crown Prince’s close aide, that woman’s older brother is also a possible candidate.
“No, that’s wrong”
Judging from that woman’s way of speaking, I feel the impression that she had really heard it directly is correct.
If it doesn’t relate to their master, Hiyuma clan wouldn’t listen.
It may be that he taught the woman information under orders from his master, but it’s not information you’d report on purpose.
That’s because, even if it’s highly classified information, the number of my Side Consorts increasing by one is just that.
Would it be necessary to teach a mere Duke’s daughter information that’s not directly related to his master or to politics.
“I see… After all, it’s Princess, huh”
Having collected my thoughts, I smiled meaningfully.
I’m likely correct. Shinigami’s contractor is that woman.
I wouldn’t be able to believe if she was an ordinary woman and would deny had I not known the real thing, but fortunately I got to know that woman directly.
If it’s that woman, I can agree.
She’s a woman who has the hidden ability to gain Shinigami’s allegiance.
“Ku ku ku…”
Unconsciously laughter spilled.
The truth was so enjoyable I couldn’t hold back my feelings.
I see, I wonder if Shinigami will follow when I obtain you.
“I have to obtain her more and more”
Once again, I recalled the woman with the indescribable added value.
Even without Shinigami I wanted to obtain her, but now it’s beyond that.
I’ll obtain her no matter what it takes.
From now on, this woman is absolutely necessary for me to conquer this continent.
Thinking this far, suddenly I remembered the brilliant blue rose tattoo on the woman’s chest.
The proof of Princess Consort of Wilhelm’s royalty. The rumors have it that an inextinguishable tattoo that’s like a mark of that man’s ownership is also inside her womb. I have to scrape off that too.
Marks of that man’s ownership are unnecessary.
When I obtain the woman, should I first of all have her undergo surgery to remove it and carve another mark instead.
―――― Hmm. It’s not a bad idea.
Just imagining my mark carved on that woman satisfied my lust for conquest.
Now that I decided, I have to move to obtain that woman.
Just what measures should I take for that sake?
With a smile on my face I immersed myself in thoughts for a while.
Father still doesn’t know that Shinigami had found a contractor.
And in order to crush Wilhelm, he should be desperate to kill that Crown Prince.
“… Very well”
Having collected my thoughts, I nodded. I changed and revised my plans for the future a little.
“That’s right. First, should I have Father show me what he’s got. If it seems to go well, I can lend him a hand. If he acts poorly… Hmm”
With my eyes I ordered Fabius to come near.
Still kneeling, he came to my side.
“It’s an order. ―――――――― Do you understand”
“I understand, Your Highness”
Having received my words, Fabius deeply bowed.
After passing the instruction, I relaxedly leaned on the back of the carriage seat again.
Now then, how will Wilhelm and that Crown Prince move.
And will Father’s plan turn out well.
Either way, it doesn’t matter to me, however it turns out I will move to my own benefit.
I’ve already given out instructions for that sake.
What’s left is to wait for the finish.
“Ah, it turned out fun…”
Wait for me, Princess Lidiana.
I spoke to the person in my memories.
Whether you’re engaged or already married, that doesn’t matter.
I decided. That’s everything. You have no right of veto.
If Crown Prince Friedrich is an obstacle in obtaining you, I just have to deal with him first. Afterwards, I’ll relaxedly go meet you.
Thinking about the desired future, spontaneously laughter welled up.
Isn’t this the first time in my life I’ve found something so fun.
Again my mouth slackened.
I spoke to the woman once more.
―――― Stepping over Crown Prince Friedrich’s corpse, have a wedding ceremony with me.
A jet black wedding dress will suit you well.