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I returned to my room and had my clothes changed. Then, I was taken to a corner in the interior part of the castle. As expected, it seemed to be a private area for the royal family. The design was similar to the royal castle of Sibyaku or something similar.
A simple gate was attached to the passageway on the way and there was a gatekeeper in front of it. It was different from the castle of Sibyaku, and it was probably off-limit from here on out. Of course, I was invited as a guess, so I went through the gate and went inside.
When I passed the room, there were three people there.
First of all, there was the old man that I had seen earlier.
The other was an old woman of the same age as the old man. She was a woman with blonde hair and blue eyes. Her appearance gave a little psychological resistance to be called an aunt. The last one was a girl who was next to ‘that 5’ blonde hair and blue eyes woman.
That 5 was probably the daughter between ‘that 4′ and His Highness Prince Consort. I immediately guessed that. The facial parts were very similar.
‘She looks a bit younger than me. However, unlike Carol, she tends to look down and doesn’t even look at my eyes. If it were Carol, the impression is quite different, considering that she would be staring at me with sharp eyes. She looks like a shy person, and it seems to be awkward.’
‘That reminds me, I called it in the mind ‘that 4’ or ‘that 5′ when I think about it even though I know the name of Her Majesty the Queen and her daughter.I once asked the carpenter the name of the daughter.
Her Majesty Jacoba and Her Highness Telor. I see, these two look alike.’
“It’s my first time to see you.” (Yuri)
When I entered the room, I gave an informal thanks. This was done by a person who didn’t need to kneel or done by a person who was often in contact with the Queen.
Although it was my first meeting, I was invited. This place wasn’t a throne area, so a respectful bow in the environment of friendly dinner might be strange in terms of TPO. It shouldn’t be considered as rude.
When I thought about it, getting invited by Her Majesty the Queen at the beginning was a bit exaggerated.
“I’m Yuri from the Hou Household. I’m extremely grateful to be invited to the dinner today.” (Yuri)
And I gave a polite greeting.
“Alright, at ease.” (Jacoba)
As the Queen, Jacoba, said, I finished my informal greeting.
Then, the queen gestured to a seat in front of her.
“Please excuse me.” (Yuri)
I pulled the seat and sat there.
The greeting was over, so I looked around the room again. It seemed to be a surprisingly small room.
It didn’t feel like a dining room, and the table was a round table for four people. The high quality wallpaper had an oil painting on it, and a candle holder chandelier was hung on the ceiling.
This might be good enough for the dinner meeting in the private area that didn’t invite a large number of people. After that, the prince consort opened his mouth.
“I’m good with the introduction. I don’t need to introduce myself like my wife. The one sitting on the left side is our daughter. Come, introduce yourself.” (??)
And he urged Her Highness Telor.
“Ah… uhmm…” (Telor)
She began to talk with a voice that seemed to disappear.
‘Y-yeah. I wonder if she’s shy. After all, this isn’t the type in our royal family.’
“I know who you are. You are Her Highness Telor, right?” (Yuri)
While giving a bitter smile, I supported her with a rescue boat. I was the type who wasn’t good at talking friendly to people who I met for the first time, so I understood how she felt.
“As expected, you’re enthusiastic at studying.” (Jacoba)
The one who said that was the Queen Jacoba.
“I know that much. Her Highness will be the Queen in the future.” (Yuri)
“Well, yes… by the way, I have to say this before we talk. It seems that our imperial guards have done a great deal of rudeness.” (Jacoba)
‘Aah, yeah. That was the main subject. Considering the motive that I was invited in the first place, I think it would be unpleasant to say an apology after eating.’
‘Even so, Her Majesty the Queen is kind of sharp. The type is different from our Her Majesty the Queen. Carol may look like her when she grows up.’
“I told His Majesty the Prince Consort that I don’t care about it. It seems to have become a big deal, but I haven’t lost anything specifically.” (Yuri)
“Is that so? If you say that, it will be helpful for our country as well.” (Jacoba)
‘I think it’s a delicate line whether or not it becomes a diplomatic problem but… Well, considering my household status, it’s a splendid lineage, so I guess they want to take care of the issue immediately. This is probably the right answer because it’s not a time when diplomatic mistakes can be allowed.’
“No, we should be the one to express gratitude. If we don’t lend us support when coming to see the battlefield, that would be troublesome to our country. Since Your Majesty the Queen forgave me with a generous heart, I’m really grateful. I have no right to get angry.” (Yuri)
And, I also gave a suitable greeting.
‘This is probably the greeting to the lead of the observer group. However, I don’t intend to stop by Reform to have an audience with them. I’m going to take a detour on the crucial moment.’
‘I didn’t come here for sightseeing, and this actually interfered with my unit in the first place. Due to the nature of the operation, I go, see and return on a route that doesn’t make contact with the army that actually fights. That would be ideal.’
‘Her Majesty the Queen will pay a lot of money to send out reinforcements to others, so there’s no need to worry about that. That’s the opinion, but my opinion is different. Anyone who imitates such a military service officer will not be welcomed by anyone because it causes trouble. I mean, if you use the large city as a stepping stone by acting like a hero who doesn’t read the air, you will create trouble and will be scorned.’
“Even so, the unit that you lead will gain benefits by learning a lot. You don’t have to hold back.” (??)
“Yes. If anything, I will ask you.” (Yuri)
“Hmm… More importantly, enjoy your meal today. I’m telling the chef to put more effort into making it.” (Jacoba)
‘I’m looking forward to it. I wanted to say that, but… I don’t know the taste especially in this situation, but since I haven’t had a proper meal of a person, I am really looking forward to it.’
As I was eating the appetizer, the main meat dishes came next.
“It’s stewed reindeer meat.” (??)
What I was served was a dish with some sauce on top of the stewed meat.
‘This seems to be reindeer meat. Reindeer is an animal that is rarely seen in the Shaalta Kingdom, so I have never eaten them.’
‘It looks like lean red meat and venison. No reindeer is also a kind of deer, so this is also venison, right? Well at least, it is unlikely to be able to distinguish between the deer and elk meat.’
“This is really delicious. I’ll have it.” (Yuri)
When I cut it with a knife and put it in my mouth, the oil had a unique taste, which was slightly different from ordinary venison, spread in my mouth. It was well stewed, and the smell of alcohol remained slightly in the sauce. There was a taste, but no smell. The flavors and simmers might have eliminated the delicious taste.’
“How is it?” (Jacoba)
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Her Majesty the Queen asked.
“Yes, it tastes great.” (Yuri)
After answering, I thought that I should praise a little more.
“I hadn’t eaten reindeer meat for the first time, but it had a wild flavor unique to the north.” (Yuri)
‘Yes, it should be fine this much. In fact, quirky meat isn’t bad if the smell disappears. I can enjoy the unique pleasure of satisfying the nourishment that was lacking in a long cultural life.’
“Hmm, I see. It seems you like it… by the way, it’s a continuation of the previous discussion.” (Jacoba)
I answered while putting a small piece of meat in my mouth.
Slicing meat into small pieces is more about necessity than eating etiquettely. This will reduce the time of munching and will allow me to have a smooth conversation while having a meal in between.
“From the content of the previous talk, it seems that you stayed outdoors and came out from the forest.” (Queen)
“That’s right. It was very cold because of the season.” (Yuri)
“I see. The people of the Hou Household… they are bold.” (??)
The old man said.
‘Bold… It’s the first word that came to me after my consciousness occurred.’
“There is no such a thing. It’s something that every merchant does, as much as inns.” (Yuri)
‘Or rather, camp preparation is a part of the march, and the higher ranks will watch the lower rank Knights to set up the encampment, so we practice it in the school of Knights. Indeed, at that time, the encampment tools such as tents and others were full equipped, so it wasn’t hard unlike a random encampment. Anyhow, it’s embarrassing if I can’t do it alone since I almost become 18 years old soon.
“However, it’s rare to hear a heir of a General household travels alone in a field trip.” (??)
‘Come to think of it, I haven’t heard of it either. No, rather than heard it, I have seen it. By the way, I met that guy recently.’
“Gino Toga, whom I met along the way, was on a tougher trip than I was.” (Yuri)
When I say it, the couple opened their eyes lightly and closed their mouth exactly like they should. It was similar.
“Did you meet him?” (Queen)
“Yes, when I was making a bonfire in the forest, he came through the trees and asked me if I could set it overnight.” (Yuri)
“That is…” (??)
They looked somewhat bitter.
‘Aah, isn’t this similar to how Gino sounded bothered?’
“No, it’s not like he didn’t have a bonfire ready. However, if two people surround a single bonfire, they can use twice as much firewood, which would be beneficial for each other. It was a good encounter. That’s it. Well, after that, we talked all night.” (Yuri)
I easily defended myself. After all, I didn’t need to talk about the details.
“Hmm… I see. It would be nice if he was in good health.” (??)
“Even if he was in good health, he didn’t take any lodging along the way. He seemed to finish his meal with the meat hunted with a bow.” (Yuri)
“Is that so?” (Queen)
I easily distracted them.
It seemed that they weren’t having much interest. They were surprised that I saw Gino, but they didn’t care that Gino was traveling. For them, he might have nothing to do with them anymore.
“He didn’t look particularly bad. Please rest assured.” (Yuri)
They became silent. It might be a topic that they didn’t want to talk to people from other countries.
“It seems that he was heading to Shaalta, so I gave him a letter of introduction to my father so that he could get a job. He may end up working in the Hou Household.” (Yuri)
They might have not notified me about this, but I said it for the time being. That was because I didn’t want to be in trouble later.
“Hmm, that’s fine. We put a lot of trouble on him. I want you to go easy on him if you can.” (??)
‘There seems to be no particular problem. Well, I’m not sure if Rook likes him though.’
‘I’m glad they didn’t say something like ‘That’s why he knows the information he shouldn’t know. I want him to deliver the letter as soon as possible. In any case, he could be a dead body. Gahaha.’
“Yes. I’ll try.” (Yuri)
“Excuse me.” (??)
The plate of meat dish was taken away, and a new dish came. The next one seemed to be a fish dish.
“This is a giant trout dish with salt and herb.” (??)
Without being said specifically to anyone, the maid brought a cart. When the lid opened, there was a salt dome-like object on the platter.
When the maid poke the salt on the spot, there was a whole giant trout in the dome. She cut the fish as it was with a knife and a flat spoon. Then, she serve it on each plate.
‘Is it grilled with salt? Every time I think about it, I feel that the countries of Shanti are devising a lot when it comes to cooking. Despite the fact that they can’t get spices easily, they can cook delicious meals with spices, fruits near the equator, and green onions with a strong scent that can be counted as five pungent roots.’
Her Majesty got it first, then the Prince Consort, then me… in a word, it was prepared in a clockwise order.
A plate was set in front of me.
“I remember eating the same dish with Gouk-dono.” (??)
The old man said it. When I looked at him, he had a serious look.
It wouldn’t be strange that Gouk was treated in the same way. Or rather, it should be natural since Gouk came with a lot of reinforcements unlike me.
“At that time Gouk-dono looked at Telor and said that she looked like his daughter. Speaking of which, is her daughter your cousin?” (??)
I almost tilted my head involuntarily. I looked at Telor.
‘Uh yeah… she looks like Syamu, isn’t it? What’s this…?’
Telor was surprised when looking at my eyes, and she looked down.
‘Syamu is certainly not the type who is super friendly to the people she meets for the first time, but she isn’t a shy person. From Gouk’s point of view, did he mean that she was similar because they were the same super indoor type?’
“What’s wrong?” (??)
“Ah… aah, I’m sorry. She’s my cousin. Her name is Shamu, and we get along very well.” (Yuri)
“Is that so? You probably know this, but Gouk and I have known each other since the two previous Crusades. However, when we first met, he wasn’t leading the army yet…” (??)
‘The two previous Crusades are probably the 13th Crusade. That was forty years ago.’
‘At that time, the country called the Dafide Kingdom which was located further east of Kilghina was put to end and destroyed. I hear that a large number of people came out just like this time.’
‘Gouk should have been a youth at that time, but he seemed to have participated.’
“I see. That’s interesting.” (Yuri)
“The next time I saw him, he was a parent. He said that he was able to earn time to have a child. I didn’t think it would happen at that time, but…” (??)
‘…Was there such a motive? Indeed, it was exactly as Gouk said, and thanks to Gouk stopping the 14th Crusade, they were able to spend a peaceful decade. They have to thank you.’
‘What would have happened if he failed? In light of this point, even if Gouk dies, Rook succeeds and the Knights are being rebuilt smoothly. Thus, Gouk’s intention has been completely achieved. However, it’s a matter if everything ends well, but I can’t help wondering why he was considering the assault of Eagle King which is risky.’
“Actually, my cousin and I enjoyed an easy school life thanks to Gouk-ojii. I believe he would also be hoping for it.” (Yuri)
“If you say so, it will be easier for us too.” (??)
“I also want to help you in your battle if I can afford it, but it seems difficult when I’m not experienced.” (Yuri)
‘For the time being, how should I express my intention without making the other side feel bad. It’s troublesome to talk to unfamiliar people.’
“Hmm, you don’t have to overdo it. Since it will involve those lives of precious people in your unit, we can’t apologize if something happens to them.” (??)
‘Needless to say, this is about Carol. I would like to say that everyone is precious, but Carol would still be exceptional. Rather than saying sorry, if there is a possibility that Carol would be kidnapped or become a prisoner, the army would also have to send out troops. Then, from their perspective, it would be a huge burden. Don’t do anything unnecessary because you’ll be in trouble if that happens. That would be an honest fact.’
“By the way, this fish dish is splendid…” (Yuri)
Then, I changed to a topic that didn’t really matter to the main subject.
“Well then, thank you very much for today.” (Yuri)
“Hmm, be careful on your way home.” (??)
“Take a good rest, alright.” (Jacoba)
And then, I left after being sent off by the three.
“If necessary, I’ll have someone deliver liquor to the bedroom…” (??)
“No, I’m sorry. It’s true that I don’t drink…” (Yuri)
Whether they thought it was my abstinence for the public, I said something like that and declined politely.
‘I will never drink until I’m twenty years old. If I drink here, they may tell the people in the dormitory that they have seen me drink it.’
“Well then.” (Yuri)
I bowed again and returned to the guest room.
- This chapter is the last chapter of Volume 6.
- The character ?? is the prince consort. He didn’t give his name in the last chapter.
- By the way the conversation of the Queen and the Prince Consort are probably exchangeable because I can’t really detect which is which. For your information, the way they are talking in raw is almost the same and there are no clear difference between the two. Hence, I apologize for any mistakes on the conversation part.
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