Finally got around to uploading cover illustrations (including color pages). I’ll be keeping them up to date with the light novel volume the web novel translation is covering (it’s volume 6 now), so please do check them out.
She and the Date
Author’s note: ※ From now on date chapters will continue, but they proceed on the premise of familiarity with ‘Her Secret’ extras.
In case you haven’t, I recommend reading them first.
“Ufufu, I’m looking forward to it”
“Princess Consort, I understand you are in a good mood, but please stay still a little longer”
“Ah, I’m sorry”
When I held still in a fluster, with a bitter smile Clara who was working on my hair shook her head in denial.
Today is the day of Freed’s town inspection that we agreed on before… It’s a date under such a pretext.
From the morning I set up in a room in the general area and have been preparing here.
“Properly speaking, Princess Consort, you shouldn’t be preparing in such a place. However, today you will be inspecting incognito. It’s better to prepare here. We will be awaiting your return, so please come back without committing any blunders”
“Yeah, I understand”
Having received Clara’s advice, I nodded.
Because I’ll be going out incognito, the usual dresses and makeup are impossible.
I asked Brother to bring me the dresses and all sorts of things I need for going to town.
“Certainly, if you wear this dress, your status won’t be exposed. All that’s left is makeup…”
“Sunscreen is enough. If I have full makeup, I’ll look out of place. It would run contrary to the purpose, so please keep it as simple as possible”
“It’s regrettable, but it can’t be helped, I understand”
After nodding, Carla applied simple makeup, and saying “There we go” set aside the makeup kit.
I was relieved by the result I saw in the mirror. To finish as I requested, as expected of Clara’s skills.
Right now, Clara is preparing me for going out per my wishes like this, but actually we had a quarrel earlier.
When I claimed I could prepare myself for going to town alone, Clara who heard that vehemently protested. “Princess Consort preparing herself alone is unthinkable!” she said.
It was yesterday evening when I gave in to Clara’s firm insistence.
“Now, His Highness is waiting”
As I received a coat from Clara, I stood up.
When I opened the door and looked around, beside the door a black haired man, who was leaning on the wall with his arms crossed, smiled as he recognized me. Experiencing momentary déjà vu, I stood stock still.
“Such a look suits you too, Lidi”
Rousing his body, the black haired man – Freed came here and saying that presented his hand.
In confusion I tried taking his hand as usual, but saying that it isn’t it, Freed intertwined our fingers.
… In slang it’s called lover’s link.
Freed gently smiled at me who stuttered.
“It’s because we’re going on a date today. We aren’t the Crown Prince and his fiancée, just a normal pair of lovers. It’s not strange to link our hands like this, right?”
I don’t know how I should answer Freed who smoothly says things like a pair of lovers. There’s just one thing I can say, recently the times Freed has been treating us like lovers in love with each other rather than betrothed have been increasing. Moreover, he’s profusely sweet…
If I disliked it I’d shake it off, but naturally as I am now I couldn’t do such a profane thing…
I absolutely feel like I’m digging my own grave.
… Uu, my feelings haven’t been exposed, have they.
I had an unpleasant premonition, but I decided to ignore it.
The moment I ask questions, I feel like he’ll bite into it.
As the image of a wolf lying in wait with its jaw wide open crossed my mind, my body shuddered.
It’s just my imagination… It’s okay, it’s just my imagination.
I desperately shook off the unpleasant delusion and breathed out. Rather than that, Freed’s appearance is a bigger problem.
“… Freed, you’re going looking like that?”
“Nn? I wonder if it doesn’t suit me”
“No, that’s not it, but the hair…”
When I verbalized my bewilderment about the black hair that feels out of place, Freed held up his hair with his free hand.
“It’s how it was when we first met. It feels like a lie that it’s only been several months since then”
It’s the same appearance as I saw at the masquerade ball. But, since it’s naturally the first time I see him with black hair without a mask on, I’m strangely flustered.
Or rather, my heart races at his extremely lustrous black hair.
But – observing Freed from head to toe once again, I scratched my cheek.
What should I do with it.
For the time being I pondered. Freed is dressed like a son of a lower class noble, but the aura he unconsciously emits can only be thought of that of an heir of an important noble, or a young head of a family.
Truly the Crown Prince! He’s far above what clothes make him, but the moment I thought of him going to town like this until now, a dry laughter escaped me.
While suspicious of whether it’d really be fine, I made prediction that probably everybody would keep distance.
“… Stay still for a moment”
I don’t want to walk around with such a conspicuous man.
Thinking that I need to do something, I reached my hand to his hair and messed it up.
Afterwards, I did some fixes that came to my mind. The mental image is of Brother going to town.
I asked for Clara, who was standing by, for cooperation, and arranged a thin coat with casual design.
“… For natural feeling it’s better if you’re a little more disarranged. Also, loosen your collar. Like this it looks quite out of place”
“Does it? Until now I’ve been inspecting looking like this”
“… In that case, I think everybody probably kept distance, seeing an important person came”
“That wouldn’t have much meaning… I understand, is this fine?”
Freed loosened his collar obediently.
Coupled with the fixes that I and Clara added, Freed’s appearance became slightly casual.
Well, with this much it’ll work out somehow…
“… Yup, I think it’s fine like this”
“Lidi is going like this? Should I use magic?”
As Freed asked, I shook my head.
Nobody will say anything this late if I walk through town looking like this. I have many acquaintances, and am well-known in places I’ve been going to for years, so it’s something I’m used to.
“In my case, I think I’ll be suspicious if I disguise myself… As a matter of fact, I have many acquaintances”
“Ah, you’ve been going to town often, haven’t you”
“… I guess so”
As we joined hands once again, I was urged to walk.
I’m relieved I wasn’t questioned. It’s painful being suspected despite my innocence.
With my hand joined with Freed’s, we went through the general area.
Surprisingly, just by blackening his hair he isn’t recognized as the Crown Prince of his own country by anyone.
As we naturally walked through restlessly working court ladies and royal guards, I took a sidelong glance at him. After all, I think his hair is his distinguishing feature. Because Wilhelm royalty is famous for blond hair and blue eyes, they’d surely attract attention.
Come to think of it, I was also deceived at the masquerade ball.
But, the fact that his beautiful looks naturally attract attention doesn’t change. With his status of the Crown Prince hidden, he’s now showered in unreserved passionate gazes.
“… Hey, those are incredible looks”
“Why are happy about them”
The gazes are excessively unabashed, but that makes them all the more fun. As I told him, who’s walking by my side, he returned a short reply that he’s aware.
“The eyes are directed at Lidi. Have you noticed?”
“Nn? It’s jealousy, right? I don’t care about that this late”
I’m afraid to say I got used to the piercing looks of young ladies thanks to many times I’ve been with Will or Brother. If I minded every single one, my health wouldn’t last.
That’s why I unconsciously filter them out, but I wonder if it’s a mistake.
When I tilted my head not understanding what he’s getting at, Freed made a strangely hopeless face.
“Hmm, that’s not it. Well, if you don’t notice, that’s fine. Come closer. Lidi, won’t you be my insect repellent”
“You want to show off? Well, fine”
The end of my sentence was mixed with laughter. Getting caught in the moment, I got closer to Freed as he pulled my hand.
I felt the young ladies’ gazes grew fiercer, but I only shrugged my shoulders. It’s so expected it made me laugh.
Leaving that aside, as he let go of my hand, and this time wrapped his arms around my waist to show off intimacy, I looked at him astounded.
“Wait, we’re going that far?”
As I send him a reproachful look, Freed said casually.
“This isn’t much different from usual, right?”
“That might be so, but it’s different from when we’re the Crown Prince and his fiancée. Nobody will turn a blind eye to us. Look, we’ve attracted attention again…”
The envious looks don’t matter, but as a matter of fact, it’s being looked at with lukewarm eyes that’s the most embarrassing.
That is to say, that’s how the royal guards and court ladies are looking at us.
What’s with those eyes.
I only feel like running away.
“You’re fine being glared at by young ladies, and yet that’s what embarrasses you. I understand. Then, let’s hurry up and leave this place. The carriage is waiting”
When I lightly pinched his hand embracing my waist, Freed let go surprisingly easily.
But, as if in exchange, he again joined our hands intertwining our fingers.
Since it just can’t be helped, I resigned myself.
As he led the way, we boarded the prepared carriage. Inside was warm, the temperature seemed to be controlled with magical art. I took off my coat and sat on the seat.
At the same time, the carriage began slowly moving.
“We don’t have guards today?”
Inside the carriage filled with the noise of wheels, I casually tried asking Freed sitting next to me.
It’s strangely embarrassing sitting close while holding our hands.
Inside the carriage feels like a narrow secret room, it’s too much.
I desperately suppressed my face from reddening, and repeatedly breathed to calm myself.
Seeing such me, Freed’s mouth slackened.
“I wouldn’t take guards to a date with Lidi. They’d be in the way. Although I say that, the town garrison has been informed about me and Lidi coming in disguise, so naturally they’ll deploy soldiers within their capacity. But we don’t have exclusive guards today”
“I see… Hey, wait… what’s this so suddenly”
As I nodded, Freed silently drew his face near.
Realizing he was about to kiss me, in a fluster I pushed him away.
As soon as we’re alone he does this.
“Mu… Why do you refuse”
Freed made a disagreeing face as I refused him.
But that’s my line. With a snap I thrust my finger before him.
“Think about the time and place! We’re in a carriage, we’ll be going out, and it’s still daytime!”
I meant to state a sound argument, but it didn’t get through to Freed. With both hands he slowly enclosed me to the wall of the carriage, and again drew his face near… I can’t escape this.
“… I know that. But, it’s fresh seeing Lidi as a town girl…. You’re very cute. I absolutely want to take you home like this. Hey… please, just a little”
“That’s not the problem, in the first place you said that yesterday too… Nn”
That you won’t overdo it last night, is what I tried to say, but in the blink of an eye my lips were sealed by Freed who closed the distance. Resistance was futile.
Still, I tried my best for a while, but realizing its futility, I gave up on resisting.
Even though I should hate it, I felt like I was only delighted.
The instant I opened my mouth to gasp for air, as if he was waiting, he thrust his tongue in. With teary eyes I glared at Freed who began a passionate kiss. Of course, he’s unperturbed. Rather, he looks delighted.
“Fufu, dressed like this you don’t wear a corset… Lidi is soft and feels good… I wish you’d always be like this”
Freed’s hand caressed my body.
When I reacted with a twitch, Freed, who slipped his hand under the hem of my dress before I noticed, laughed a little. The laughter that reminded me of a ferocious carnivore made my body shudder.
When he looked at me again, I realized.
No good. He won’t stop.
Rather, it’s easiest to let him do as he likes.
I sensed from my experience so far, that I didn’t want to acquire, that resistance is futile and embraced his back with the hand that had been trying to push him back.
Of course, there’s no way he wouldn’t notice. The smile he directed me intensified.
“I’m happy you accepted me, Lidi”
“Shh… Make as little noise as you can”
At his unreasonable request, albeit weakly I shook my head.
That’s why stop, is what I meant to say, but it seemed to have the opposite effect.
Freed, who only became more excited, nibbled on my earlobe.
“Yup, I’ll make you feel better. It’s alright. I won’t go all the way…”
… In the end.
By the time we arrived in town, Freed had done various things to me.
Before we even walked a little, I was already extremely tired, but what the hell does this mean.
It’s truly frightening that I can’t refuse.
And I feel we arrived in town behind the schedule, but I wonder if it’s my imagination.
… No, let’s stop thinking about it deeply. It’s surely just my imagination.
I took a sidelong glance at Freed in great humor next to me and breathed out.
Well, can’t be helped.
To forgive that, even if I say so myself, I was the most amazed by myself.