The Villainess Carries a Strategy Guide – Chapter 44

Chapter 44

The postponed dance party was held one week after [winter]. The venue was the usual lecture hall. All the chairs were cleared out and replaced with a standing eating space and an orchestra.

The dance party at the academy is different from evening parties, as there is no need for formal introductions or trickery between peers and it is easy to participate in. I have been looking forward to it, and even now, as I stand in front of the venue, I want to enter quickly.

A dance party does not require an escort. Nearly half of the students come alone. But if you have a fiance, it is normal to enter with them. That’s why I was waiting for His Highness in front of the venue.

When His Highness met me, he stared at me without moving. Silence continued for about three minutes now… His Highness, usually a conversation starts from the man’s compliment. Is there something wrong with me today that you can’t even speak polite words?

I became uneasy and checked my appearance. The color of my dress is pale sherbet green. In fact, I went to a tailor with Emilia and Melinda during the winter vacation and made it. I was worried that the color would make me look too childish, but they said, “The color is cute and young, but the shape is adult-like dress.” and did not compromise.

“It definitely suits you,” said Emilia, gripping her fist, while Melinda said, “Let’s emphasize your chest, your chest.” As a result, the dress ended up looking just like that. The skirt part was tightly gathered at the waist and then followed the curves of the body in a loose, flowing line, known as the mermaid line. The upper body was designed with a halter neck and the back was wide open, exposing the shoulders. Although the chest was completely hidden, it was actually emphasized.

The tailor, why did they make it so seductive? Can I really wear it? Should I go with another dress?

Although I thought that far, Emilia came to me with tears in her eyes and begged me, as usual, and I gave in. I am still weak(have a soft spot) to Emilia after all.

By the way, when Emilia said “You can make everyone at the Academy fall for you with this dress,” I almost seriously tore the dress apart. However, I lost to Emilia’s strength.

I’ll just have to accept it and move on. That’s what I decided a few days before [Winter]. I have to wear it, there’s no choice. It’s more embarrassing to be shy about it and not wear it properly.

On the day of the ball, I started preparing in my room in the dormitory from afternoon. I loosely curled my hair and let it hang down on one side. I also showed off my collarbone and back boldly. I wore long earrings that elegantly swayed with my movements. I deliberately turned the decorations of my necklace to the back. I wanted the delicate chain and jewels to dangle on my bare and exposed back. I also tried to give off a mature and moist look with my makeup.

I looked back on all my preparations and saw His Highness’ silence… Yeah, maybe I’m being too hasty.

“…”

“Your Highness, it’s been 5 minutes… Are we not going inside yet…?”

I couldn’t help but open my mouth as I couldn’t bear the silence anymore. I can see students passing by us since a while ago. And I feel like they’re staring at us. If they say it’s just my imagination, then so be it, but I feel like I heard someone say, “His Highness and Rebecca-sama are flirting again.”

“…Does Rebecca want to make me angry?”

“?! N, no!”

“I see, I see. If that’s the case, then there’s nothing we can do. Let’s forget about the ball. Let’s spend the whole night alone in my room.”

“Your, Your Highness, let’s go to the ball! The top three and five high will be announced!”

“I don’t care if it’s in your room.”

“Your Highness!”

I seem to have touched upon the strings of His Highness’s heart (I seem to have tugged at His Highness’ heartstrings.). And I seem to have strummed those strings that I don’t even understand well. The battle of whether to go or not between His Highness and I continued, and it became even more intense when I said, “Your Highness, the tuxedo really suits you, it looks cool. So let’s go.”

Furthermore, 4.5 minutes have passed. It seems that His Highness has lost interest in going to the ball. It’s probably impossible for us to enter the venue now even with a trick. Since Phantom Beast is on standby, we can’t borrow Christina’s power either.

… I don’t know, maybe it’s okay not to go. It also looks fun to talk with His Highness all night.

And that’s when my heart was about to break down. A man and a woman stopped near us.

It was Nii-sama and Cectiara-sama. They were very beautiful and very picturesque.

“Hey you two! Are you perhaps not planning to go to the ball? Then, when Your Highness is selected as one of the top three, I’ll be the one to tell you that I’m withdrawing! No need to thank me. By the way, the Duke of Slutarch won’t give Rebecca to a man who can’t even be one of the top three!”

It was exactly like a crane’s cry.

***

As soon as I enter the venue, all eyes in the room turn to me. I smiled and responded, as it was something I was used to. Today, those in this place are not only students and teachers. Parents of students, alumni, and even important figures in the country are here. The “Three Strong” and “Five High” are famous figures within the country, and they will eventually become important figures. So it’s understandable that there is a strong political color(flavor) here.

As the gathered gazes start to scatter, I finally let out a sigh of relief. This dress makes me feel like my defense is lacking, and it makes me a little uneasy.

Then, His Highness wraps his arm around my waist and pulls me closer to him. Even when I look up, he is standing straight and looking straight ahead. His attitude is dignified. He is bearing the gaze of the women around us, yet he doesn’t show any signs of tension. It’s amazing.

“Rebecca, don’t leave my side even for a moment today.”

He is even more expressionless than usual, but his voice sounds like he’s crushing a worm.

“Yes.”

Since there is no room for argument, I respond like that and a lovely silver color approaches from the front. She is wearing a fluffy pink dress. Emilia’s dress choice is easy. She looks good in anything. However, how many people are there in this world who look as good as her in a girl-like(girlish) formal dress?

Emilia came to the venue alone. Many men, including Gadd Maysen, were aiming for the seat of Emilia’s escort, but it seems that she didn’t have a favorite gentleman.

“You did it, Rebecca-sama! Some people left due to nosebleeds or fever, about 10 of them.”

Emilia is more lovely than ever, jumping around. She tells me the reason for His Highness’ recent actions and I lose my words. “Wait, what? They left just from entering?”

As I look around the venue, I spot Melinda and her escort Fried in the distance, smiling like flowers. Without hesitation, I rush towards them. Melinda tries to escape with a smile on her face, saying “Come on Fried-sama! Something seems to be happening over there! Over there, come on over there!” but she is ultimately captured.

“No, I’m not [captured].”

“Melinda, that dress really suits you!”

“It’s true! Neher-sama must have complimented you too!”

“Yes, he was actually complimenting me when you came, so Rebecca, Emilia, can you please return us to our original two?”

“I’ve never seen Melinda with her hair tied up before. She’s really good at doing it herself too.”

“Yes, that was also something Neher-sama complimented me on, so back to our original two.”

Melinda had her hair tied up, with small white flowers scattered throughout. Her hair color also matched, making it look like flowers floating in the night sky. Her dress was knee-length with white lace sleeves and a neckline.

“Rebecca? Rebecca! Are you listening?!”

“Hey, it’s a white lace dress with a design that makes your skin see-through. It changes from the chest to a beige lace dress with overlapping lace. It’s perfect for Melinda, who wants to look like a girl and is cute and pure.

“Hey Rebecca! Can you stop intentionally not listening to me?!”

As I was looking at my cute friend while blocking my hearing, the pillar clock rang. I could see the principal on the distant stage. It was time for the ball to begin.

His Highness who was talking to Fried beckoned me. I settled into my designated position next to him and listened to the principal’s speech for the last time this year. His familiar voice echoed through the hall again tonight.

“I am happy to have reached this day. Tonight is the end of the year. I hope you will enjoy talking to your friends, shaking hands with your rivals, and having a great time until morning. Now.”

When the principal paused his speech and started again, he had a white paper in his hand.

There were the names of the three strong and five high of the year.

But my mind was somewhere else.

In the scenario, at this moment, the next moment, the voice of “Wait.” starts and Rebecca’s conviction begins.

I pressed my forehead against the shoulder of His Highness and closed my eyes tightly. I blocked my sight with His Highness so that I couldn’t see anything.

1 second, 2 seconds——3 seconds.

When I counted to three, I felt something warm on my back and opened my eyes slightly.

“We will announce the three strong and five high this year.”

What I heard was the ordinary words of the Principal and the applause of the people around me.

On my left, Nii-sama was smiling and sending applause while whispering something to Cectiara-sama. On my right, Oswald was talking to his sister while also clapping. Lancelot was in the underground prison, and Ouka was sealed and disappeared.

And then, His Highness put his hand on my back and pulled me close to him.

What is this feeling? It’s like I’m happy, like I want to cry, like I’m relieved, like I’m at a loss.

Around me, the gentlemen and ladies, all kinds of people, were watching the stage with applause. I also returned my gaze to the stage in response.

[It’s over], I clearly feel it. The most reassuring thing was definitely the warmth of the hand on my back. Not just this time, but always. When I think about it, it was always His Highness who broke the scenario.

“Thank you…”

I said it in a really small voice. Just now, just at this moment, I overcame the scenario.


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