Chapter 40: Unacknowledged Thoughts
Time has passed, and it is the day before the national holiday.
Today is the final day of preparations for the celebration; the decorations are being paraded through the streets of the Royal City.
Residents of the Royal City were expected to cooperate.
We’re right on track.
An unknown man walks into the warehouse.
He has a bag strapped to his back and a rattle in his hand.
“Now! Seize him!”
Three knights jumped out after hearing the knight commander’s voice.
The terrified intruder tripped over nothing.
The knights held the man as if they were leaning over him.
“D-Darn! How did you know…?”
“Are you a moron? after everything you’ve done. The day of the anniversary is your next best chance—that is obvious to anyone who thinks about it.”
“L-Let go off me! I’m just a hired gun!”
“Oh, yeah. Then who hired you? Tell us everything you know, or else…”
His Highness Rayne casts a glance at the Knight Commander.
The Knight Commander nods and places his sword against his hip.
The man trembles at the slightest indication of intent.
“All right, all right! I’ll tell you!”
“Good and honest; now you tell me.”
“… Is it true?”
“Yes, it’s a name that does not appear by chance—not only that, but it’s the name of a nearby nobleman you know well.”
the night before the national holiday.
I received a report from His Highness.
According to the information provided by the captured man, the order was given by Schwigel and the others.
That was understandable.
But I learned something unexpected.
One of their associates was someone I was familiar with.
“The explosives and the mage were provided by a nobleman named Salerio—It is not an arbitrary name—he is involved in some way, shape, or form.”
“I’m not sure if this is a personal act or if the neighboring kingdom is involved, but it’s clear what they want: to cause trouble in this country.
Salerio-sama did that?
In the worst-case scenario, this could lead to war.
The fact that someone I know is attempting to instigate a major conflict.
“What should we do?”
“…We can’t do anything now because, even if it’s true, there’s no solid evidence.”
“But, if the person who was apprehended testified…”
“They’ll just say they don’t know anything about it; we can’t do anything until we have proof; I spoke with my father earlier, and we came to this conclusion.”
There is nothing we can do at this point.
If we make a mistake, the entire country will be in chaos.
This peaceful and tranquil land could be turned into a battleground.
To avoid such a situation, extreme caution was required.
“For the time being, there is only one thing we can do—we need to keep the anniversary on track.”
“Isn’t that risky? The parade will be held in front of a large crowd, and they might target His Highness and His Majesty.”
“They will not—for example, the explosion was small; if they really wanted to kill us, they could have made a bigger mess and switched heads, but the people would not have followed.”
As a result, they will do nothing that day.
That was His Highness’s prediction.
Nonetheless, I am concerned.
It may also endanger His Highness.
“Don’t worry. On that day, we will take every precaution—we are still here to complete our tasks—we’ll demonstrate to them that we are a loving couple.”
“——I don’t regret it either.”
Suddenly, he starts talking.
He has a solemn expression on his face.
“You told me before, didn’t you? That you don’t regret marrying me?”
“Me, too—I’ve never regretted marrying you.”
He firmly shook my hand.
“It was certainly in my interest—I chose you because it was convenient.”
“But as we spent time together in the castle, I realized that I had taken your presence in my scenery for granted.”
His grip on my hand tightens slightly.
I noticed a slight tremor.
“I’ve never dealt with love, romance, or anything like that, so I can’t give you a definitive answer—I just think. I can’t imagine anyone else in my scene but you. I can’t bear thinking about it any longer.”
“Now, I’m really glad you’re my wife.”
These words brought joy to my heart.
It was excruciating.
I was depressed.
The pain was all I could think about.
His single thought saved my life.
“Me too… Your Highness…”
My eyes welled up with tears.
It’s something I’ve always wanted.
I’ve been alone since I lost my family.
All I wanted was someone in whom I could put my trust.
It is now in front of me.
“Hey, Phyllis, tomorrow at the parade――.”
The day of the parade.
The streets are festooned with bright decorations.
not just decorations.
A special grant allows the light to change into seven different colors and fly freely in the sky.
There is a lively hustle and bustle everywhere.
A royal carriage rides through the streets of the royal city.
As we ride by in our large, ceilingless carriages, we wave to them.
“The Queen is stunning today!”
“Princess Lena-chan! She’s gotten so tall!”
People adored them.
and he is as well.
“You’re very well-liked, aren’t you?”
“Hahaha—you can’t call yourself royalty if no one likes you; it’s difficult for all of us.”
His Highness and I are sitting next to each other, holding hands.
However, this is insufficient to convey the message.
“It’s Her Highness Princess Phyllis—those rumors…”
“Shh! They can hear you.”
Some have called our relationship into question.
That is why we will demonstrate them.
What we’re going to do is not very commendable in public.
No other country’s royalty would ever do such a thing.
We face each other.
His Highness’ hand is resting on my cheek.
“Phyllis, whose wife are you?”
“You are, and always will be, His Highness Rayne’s.”
“Yeah, keep it that way.”
Our lips meet.
They make far less contact than an embrace.
Nonetheless, they are in sync with one another.
It’s an odd and wonderful connection.
We are a fake couple.
We hold hands to benefit each other.
But, unbeknownst to each other, to us…
Maybe we were attracted to each other.
The tale of the unsuspecting prince and his wife continues.