1. Tea Party
“Excuse me, but are you Lady Tiarize?”
Although the wording was polite, it failed to conceal the speaker’s surprise.
Tiarize was a little tired of the grand tea ceremony, and left when she saw the chance.
…she’s Baron Schmia’s daughter…
She had heard some rumors concerning her—good and bad—mostly bad.
Even at the tea ceremony earlier that day, she was the central topic. It seemed that she was still the center of the attention. It was said that she was dense and couldn’t read the situation.
“…I’m sorry, but who are you?”
“Ah, pardon me. My name is Schmia Bergner. Um, actually, there’s something I would like to discuss with Lady Tiarize.”
Her eyes, which stared straight at me, bore no evil. Under the gaze of those round eyes, I bitterly opened my mouth.
The Baron’s daughter called out to the Duke’s daughter… this was considered a discourtesy, but I wondered if she was aware of that.
“…what is it?”
I wanted to point out her manners—or the lack there of—but there was a high chance she would respond with pale, teary, face. Then, she would “apologize” in a way that would attract the attention of the surroundings—in other words, she would drop a bomb on me.
Other noble ladies had experienced exactly that.
I didn’t want to get involved in such a thing.
…I wondered if I could use my authority as the Future Queen to dismiss her. Other than that, I couldn’t find any other methods of escape.
As of the moment, the aristocracy was split into two factions.
One was, ‘We shall open this girl’s eyes to her wrongdoings!’
While the other was, ‘The careless, laid-back, group that doesn’t want to get involved.’
Incidentally, both consisted of only women.
It was because the men were entirely unreliable.
They would always look at her as if she was some kind of hamster or a small animal, When confronted about it, they would retaliate, saying that ‘it isn’t love’—
—saying that ‘she’s just like a little sister to me.’
At that, we, the aristocratic women, would all cringe in disgust.
I had heard about engagements coming to an end because the men were told to choose between his ‘little sister’ and ‘fiancée’. Most of the time, they would defend said little sister instead.
“This might sounds intrusive, but… uhm, you and Lord Williant have been arguing as of late, right?”
‘Lord Williant’ she referred to was, yes, His Highness.
Even me, who had been engaged to him for ten years; who was his fiancée; referred to him as ‘His Highness’. Yet this girl was already addressing him informally like that? How ridiculous.
Should I point it out—no, let’s just pretend I didn’t hear anything.
I was but a humble person who chose the path of retreat rather than owning it up to her. It seemed that almost all of the nobility had already quarreled with or because of this girl… that already sounded troublesome in of itself.
Certainly, I had a quarrel with His Highness recently—but how did she know that?
“Yes… but of what relevance it is?”
“I’ve heard from Lord Williant—that talking about the shape of a cloud angered Lady Tiarize.”
I was a little irritated. It was indeed so, but the way she phrased it made it sound like I got mad because of a childish reason.
Just so you know, Schmia, you’re the actual reason we got into an argument.
The quarrel was as followed;
His Highness and I were walking in the garden to deepen our engagement. At that time, the clouds that suddenly appeared brought me back to the past.
“How nostalgic, I remember when I saw clouds like these in the past… ‘the clouds are so close, it feels like I can touch them!’—do you remember me saying that?”
“Yes, His Highness were there too, and commented how clear the air was in the winter morning.”
“…ah, was that the time you said the clouds looked like cotton candy and you wished you could eat them?”
“You said they looked so fluffy, they might be edible—… wasn’t it you who said that?”
His Highness’ face looked troubled—that was when I realized it.
Only her flowery brain could produce such a statement—yes, Baroness Schmia.
He probably confused me with her.
His Imperial Highness had forgotten the memories of the time we spent together, and instead recalled a recent conversation with Baroness Schmia.
I couldn’t help but be shocked.
“Fufu, Your Highness, how could you? It seems that there’s a discrepancy in our memories—or, could it be, you recalled someone else, instead? Who could that be, I wonder?”
I uttered so to him, withholding my disgust.
His Highness had an unusual reaction of raising his eyebrow. However, he kept on walking—suffice to say, our conversation ended there.
Recalling that event made me feel biter.
Baroness Schmia, whom was currently in front of me, said anxiously.
“Lady Tiarize, His Highness has confided his problems to me. He stated his bafflement towards the reason of your anger… Then, this was what I said. ‘Lady Tiarize might be a Duchess, but she is also a maiden. If you forget about her precious memories, of course she would be angry…’ I then told him to reflect deeply on it, I’m sure he will do so…”
Does she know the word ‘enough’?
She told him to reflect, she said… If I leave her now, would she misunderstand my action?
Who does she think she is? A member of royalty? Or perhaps, the saint? No, not even a saint would be this brazen—not even the royal family.
Aah, enough already…
…this is why I HATE talking to this girl…!
I unconsciously raised my voice to her. She stiffened up immediately.
“I’m sorry. I don’t feel so good. I’ll excuse myself now.”
“S, sorry! I’m sorry! This is entirely my fault isn’t it!? I made you uncomfortable, didn’t I—!? Forgive me…!! I did this with regard of Lady Tiarize in my mind, but I ruined it, didn’t I… I did it again…”
She did it ‘again’…? So she also patronized other noble ladies besides me?
How pitiful-looking. I must had unleashed some of my irritation at her. I could already see from her pale face.
“You’re lying! Just before, you looked angry!”
“Don’t worry, I’m fine.”
“I’ve made Lady Tiarize angry, right? You are mad at me, aren’t you? It’s because I said unnecessary things…”
Can! You! Stop! Screaming—!?
Was she perhaps getting back at me? What a wonderful personality she had.
She was persistent, too. Did she want to force me to be angry? Do you want me to hit you?
But I had an image to uphold as a noble lady. I couldn’t just raise my hand or my voice like that… although my guts found those ideas alluring!
“…Baroness Schmia, excuse me.”
Uwa, she starts crying!
I wondered if an aristocratic lady was allowed to burst into tears just like that…
A proper lady didn’t weep in public. The fact that she turned to waterworks this fast…
This is bad…
Rumors would start swirling around about me making her cry, mostly amongst the gentlemen!
Women would probably understand my perspective, but not those gentlemen whom were intoxicated with her!
I reluctantly handed her my handkerchief—all the while feeling disgusted about the entire thing.
“Wipe your tears… I’m sorry, but I was being honest when I said I don’t feel so good, so I’ll take my leave now.”
I quickly turned my heels and left the place.
Oh, I so don’t want to be involved with her again…!
“Tia, did something happen?”
I was enjoying the annual tea ceremony with His Highness—of course not, I jest! When he suddenly said so. By the way, we hadn’t spoken about our most recent quarrel.
That was fine. If he were to bring it up again, I was certain I could turn the tables.
“…I don’t know? Why do you ask?“
“You look tense.”
“…this is my usual expression.”
His Highness laughed a bit—which was unusual for him. It sounds bitter. Then, he brought the teacup to his mouth.
“So, did something happen?”
Huh? Did he ignore my previous statement?
“…No. I’m being honest, nothing happened.”
“Fuun, I see.”
Then, the tea ceremony was over.
**T/N: OH, YOU FUCKING THOT!!!!!! ///RAGE PEAKED IMMEDIATELY/// *KEYBOARD SLAM