“My father probably regretted abandoning me when he found out I would graduate as second seat.
I was told to assist Denis, but I didn’t want to be used by the Duke family.
Line-sensei offered me work at the palace, and I jumped at the opportunity.
Anything was fine if I could leave the Duke family.
I realized that it was to be Princess Sofia’s consort candidate and thought I had to run away.”
“Because of the body that can’t have children?”
“Yes. Because I am a failure.
I would be useless as a consort in that sense.”
Did you feel relieved after saying it? That’s why you understood, right? he smiled.
Have you given up on everything? I feel like you might set off on a journey somewhere without holding onto anything at all.
Chris might, perhaps, when the time comes for me to choose a consort,
Have been planning to distance himself from me.
. . .Will Chris be gone from my side?
I can’t agree to that.
Even if this is considered selfish, even if I’m thought of as a spoiled Ineligible Princess.
I held Chris’ cheeks, which were turned away from me,
I forced him to turn his face towards me.
“Even so, I want you to become a consort, Chris.”
“Huh? . . .You heard what I just said, right?”
Chris’ face was surprised, not hiding that my answer was unexpected.
I realize there were expressions I had never seen before, even though we’ve been together all this time.
I knew something was going on with Chris’ family.
I didn’t ask, thinking the day would come when I would hear it.
Certainly, I was surprised to hear Chris’ story, and I understand that he has been struggling with it.
But I know the real Chris, and I still wish for Chris to be with me.
“Yeah, I heard. But my grandfather is the one who stayed by my side until the end,
So he told me to choose someone I can trust.
He said to choose someone who cares about this country like my grandfather did.
If I don’t choose Chris and Kyle, I’ll regret it.”
“No, but. . .”
“Even if we can’t have children, there are Eddie and Emilia.
The royal family can continue even if I don’t give birth.
I can’t believe it’s best for my child, who has Kokodia’s blood, to inherit.”
“Princess. . .Does that mean?”
Considering the possibility of worsening relations with Kokodia, I couldn’t avoid thinking about it.
In the case of war, my blood could be an obstacle.
Even if there is no war, if I, who have Kokodia’s blood, become queen,
I’ll be meddled with and demanded.
I don’t intend to comply, but it could affect my descendants.
“We don’t know if our good relationship with Kokodia will continue in the future.
At that time, having a king with mixed blood from another country might be a problem.
So I won’t choose a consort with my childbearing as the primary concern.
I want to choose someone who will support and protect this country with me when I become queen.
Please, Chris. Protect this country with me.
I want you to be with me to the end.”
The peace of this country was built by my grandfather.
I want to protect a country where the common people don’t starve, where they can live with ease.
I think there is no one who understands this feeling more than Chris and Kyle.
I trust them. Both of them.
That’s why I want them to live with me to the end.
“I want you to be with me forever.
To Chris and Kyle.
Become my consort, I want you to support me. Is it wrong?”
“. . .Won’t you regret it?”
“I won’t? Will Chris regret it?”
“. . .I won’t. Kyle and I promised to protect the Princess.
We’ll stay by your side and protect you until the end.”
When I hugged him joyfully, he picked me up.
Even though he’s referred to as a boyish figure, he’s much bigger than me.
“Sofia, promise me this.
If you find someone you love, think about having a child too.
I don’t understand sexual desire itself.
I don’t think of Sofia in that way.
So even if Sofia is with someone she loves, I’ll always be by your side.
I won’t leave even if you have a child. Remember that.”
“. . .I wonder if the day will come when I fall in love with someone.”
I never fell in love with anyone in my previous life either.
I did care for the Emperor, who was my childhood friend,
And I lived to the end as a witch who protected the country for his sake.
. . .Even now, I don’t understand the feeling of love.
I wanted to be happy and reincarnated,
But I still have a strong desire to protect my country.
I was starting to give up on the idea that I’m still me even after being reborn.
“It will surely come. When it does, don’t hide it; tell me.”
“Mm. Got it. I’ll tell you first.”
“Okay, it looks like it’s time for dinner; let’s go back.”
When the barrier was undone, Kyle had come close to pick us up.
He seemed to be worried because we were late.
“I was worried because you were late. Did something happen?”
“Yeah. I was talking with Chris.
I have something I want to talk about with Kyle as well, but let’s do it tomorrow.
It’s already dinner time, and I’m hungry.”
“Talk. . .Got it. We’re off tomorrow; shall we go somewhere?”