9.2 The Forest Crystal and Mukmugris
Behind the window was the faint, dawn, light. Looking at the shadows on the curtains, it seemed to be snowing.
As a resident of the Royal Palace, Dia woke up fast.
She really wanted to sleep more, but there was no time for that.
In that case, it was much easier to wake up before dawn.
“…How about you sleep a little more? It’s still dawn.”
“By the time the maids come, I must be finished with washing my face and tidying up. That way, I can dismiss them, and enjoy my personally brewed, poison-free, tea.”
While Dia was explaining, Noin combed his hair using his fingertips.
Dia fell in love with the beauty of his light blue hair, which spilled from between his fingertips.
Why was it that her heart felt really relaxed, calm, and whole when Noin was beside her? Even though that man would be abandoning her…
“From today, I’ll stay with you to take care of you. The gradually established magical foundation has reached its completion. It’s also really troublesome to develop a soundproof barrier amidst conversation, therefore, this way, less time and effort are needed. Along with that, I’ve made some alterations… in short, they won’t be coming anymore.”
“…did you do anything to my maids?”
When she asked Noin so with concern, Noin stared at her.
Despite not knowing each other that deeply, Dia didn’t dislike her maids.
Still, if this had something to do with her revenge in the future, she had no choice. Besides, it wasn’t impossible for one of those maids to be the one who laced her water with poison. The possibility increased considering the fact they were the ones delivering the water jug to her room every day.
Nevertheless, she wasn’t as heartless as to be able to turn a blind eye to someone’s suffering.
If those maids were attacked, or maybe, suffered the same fate as that knight…
So it turned out, Dia wasn’t as invincible as she thought she was.
Just now, when he stared at me, was Noin stunned?
“I rewrote their memories, assigning them to another place. They think you’re no longer here because your engagement was annulled.”
“…Does the spell only affect those who were assigned to this room?”
“No, it affects everyone in this part of the Royal Palace. Fairies are good at charming and rewriting memories.”
Until now, she had only known of their existences.
Only now did she learn about their specialties. It was really unique, Dia was amazed.
For a moment, a thought even occurred—
—maybe the same memory altering spell could help me escape from here.
But she immediately rejected such stupid thought.
Even if I manage to flee the Royal Palace—what then? Would I be able to escape this kingdom? To alter the memory of an entire kingdom, is that even possible? Compared to that, changing the maids’ duties are but a speckle of dust…
Therefore, she decided to throw away such an inconvenient hopefulness that would only incite more sadness.
“…Who will take care of me from today? I think I can fulfil basic necessity just fine, but… for that ball, I have to rely on a servant for dressing me up and tying my hair…”
“You say that, but based on my personal experience, you can’t even get out of your dress on a daily basis.”
“Well… I can do as much as washing my face and combing my hair?”
“Ho, then please explain what you define as ‘washing your face’.”
“Wiping your face with a towel?”
“Huh!? What do you mean, ‘after that’?”
When Dia’s gaze started to swim, Noin sighed.
“You’re amazing. Enlighten yourself to what those vials in front of the mirror stand for.”
“In the book of Remialia… after a lady cleans her face, she will paint it—ah, putting make up on?”
“Yes, and those are called cream and lotion.”
“…Cream and lotion…”
Taking a breath, Dia could only manage a small nod.
It was as if her whole world had been upturned—what she thought was simple turned out to be complicated.
Incidently, the maids used to change her attire at night, before leaving her alone to take a bath and wash her face. It was her routine before going to bed, so obviously, she didn’t put on any make up. During winter, warm water would be used.
“B, but, I know about hand cream, you know!”
“You don’t even know about lotion, what are you being so proud about?”
Dia started to worry about what if there were more complicated routines out there in the world that she didn’t know of, and became increasingly anxious.
Just knowing that there were lots of complex procedures out there made Dia even more fed up with life.
“…Other than that, there’s another thing I’m concerned about. Who’s that person there by the window? Is… it, dead?”
“The fairy that is supposed to take care of you. It’s all because of your doing, by the way. You grabbed it by the wings.”
Dia rushed towards the lump that she almost couldn’t see because of the dim lighting. She could feel the chilly winter breeze.
Anyway, as long as it’s not a person of this Royal Palace, then I can rest easy.
Would she still need to get out of the warm quilt and waste her time outside?
She was a little worried because Noin had lied down to sleep beside her again—but then, she convinced herself.
Both Noin and Mukmugris are forest creatures. They are one and the same. Just think of him as a Mukmugris.
“Umu. Forget my previous words, I shall return to bed. That supposedly dead Fairy over there, I shall check after I woke up.”
“With such a commendable sense of crisis and priority, it’s amazing how you remained alive until today.”
“Well, it’s no exaggeration to say that twice the good sleep is the biggest treasure of mankind. Where in the world is anything better than that?”
Dia made a firm statement based on her own view and returned to inside the warm quilt, curling up with happiness.
It had been a long time since she felt that safe after waking up.
Regardless of Noin, or that Fairy who was crumpled down, she could trust herself to someone and slept with peace of mind.
Today, tomorrow, then the day after tomorrow…
The day after tomorrow was likely to be her last day, well, better to worry about that later—
—the most important thing was tomorrow’s Evemeria.
Now that she had been ordered to not leave the room, would she still be able to see that large ornamental tree in the courtyard?
She was a little lonely when she thought so.
At the very least, she wanted to leave that world after having seen those beautiful things. That way, she might be able to say that she enjoyed her life, even if a bit.
On her last day, she didn’t know where Noin would be, but surely, he would be watching her.
***T/N: Ok can I call him Mama Noin now?