16.1 The Pie Stew and The Hairdresser
“Lady Dia, I’m very sorry but, since there are foreign agents coming in and out in today’s ball, would you please refrain from going out? In case something happens…”
Staying cooped up inside her room all the time was nice, but Dia suddenly wanted to see the inside of the royal palace she had lived in for the past thirteen years.
Despite so, when she tried to leave her room, she was stopped by the escort knight. She was forced to return to her room once again.
The coldness of being scolded severely even though she hadn’t done anything wrong stuck in her chest. As she shrunk a little, Dia returned to her room.
Even though her fingertips weren’t trembling and she herself wasn’t crying—Dia was shocked by her wavering heart.
She wondered if Dilvier was next door—Dia gently placed her hand on her chest and looked for him.
…I see… I didn’t realize it until now, but I’ve must be traumatized by that knight…
Because they reminded her of that night—she stretched her back to shake off the fear.
Then, when she had closed the door of her room, Dilvier put his hand on her.
“In order to prevent you from making any unexpected moves, the royal family must have ordered the escort knight to be stern with you. If you wanted to leave, then there’s another door available, but it is up to you.”
“I don’t want to force the matter, but I wish to reach the corridor in front of the library and also the place where I can see the other side of the main gate from the royal palace—I feel that such a place existed somewhere in the royal palace.”
“Oh? I thought you were talking about the garden—can you tell me why you want to visit those places?”
“If it’s the corridor in front of the library, it’s because that’s the place where I reunited with Noin… and I want to see the scenery from the main gate because I want to get a glimpse on what I will do from now on. I want to get a glimpse of what lays across that gate—a glimpse of the many faces of the people living in this kingdom whom I don’t know. Because what will happen to them after I made this selfish decision won’t matter to me anymore, at the very least, I want to see them for the last time.”
Dilvier smiled and nodded after listening to her.
It seemed that magic would be put on the knights who would escort Dia to the ball so Noin and Dilvier could share the same sight as Dia.
She was truly intimidated by the knights, but to think that they would easily fall victim to Dilvier’s magic—she felt a little ashamed.
In truth, I just want to see a Mukmugris…
But tonight was the birthday of the first prince.
In the royal palace, the aristocrats would always gather to greet each other before the ball begun. Thus, the area where the Mukmugris usually appeared was off-limits to prevent any of those aristocrats from getting lost.
Dia was planning to ask Noin if he would bring those Mukmugris with him should the Kingdom of Fashitar become a difficult land for them to thrive in in the future—but she would worry about that later.
Dia still belonged to Fashitar.
She would like to believe that her life was her own—despite so, the fact remained the same; this body belongs to Fashitar.
Therefore, once her revenge has been executed and she was free, that would be when she would pursue her wishes again. Perhaps, she could achieve more wishes—
—because Noin told her to do that.
Before drinking Supri at tonight’s ball, she could think about a lot of things she wanted to do.
That being said, it was too sudden, therefore Dia couldn’t come up with anything on spot.
“…I see, you’re in the room.”
“Mu. The one who should’ve been gone is back.”
It was Noin, who was supposed to have left the kingdom. He had appeared almost at the same time after Dia had returned to her room.
It seemed that the quality governed by Noin was greatly influenced by the festival. Nevertheless, because he had spent most of his time dealing with Fashitar yesterday, today, right at the opening of Evemeria, he had to return to his own castle at once.
“You’ve took care of your work very quickly, I see. I should’ve reminded you to actually finish it properly so you don’t get summoned back in the evening.” Said Dilvier.
“My older brother is in the castle and wants to know more about the situation. I’ve done most of my job for today, so I will move on to fix the problems of the headquarters.”
“Lord Rical is present?”
“Yes. If he’s there, a lot of problems can be avoided.”
…Is this Lord Rical perhaps the King of the Midnight Thrones?
When Dia traced her hazy memory and tried to recall the appearance of the man on the throne, Noin unexpectedly helped her.
“The one you tried to lift up during that ball was none other than Rical—my older brother.”
“…I have no recollection of almost lifting up a King…” Said Dia.
“Lord Rical is His Royal Highness, while Lord Noin is his second brother from the top.” Said Dilvier.
“—and I attempted to lift up such a person, seriously…?” Said Dia.
“You stumbled upon him after you fell down during the dance.” Said Noin.
“What I stumbled upon at that time was a mysterious furball—not a spirit.”
“—and that is precisely my brother.”
Relying on Noin’s words, Dia desperately sought out the figure inside her memories—despite so, all she could recall was a blob of mysterious, leaping, fur!
Dia tried to hold him because she thought he was a strange creature in the castle of the Night Kingdom. But so it turned out he was heavier than she thought, thus the six-years-old her was unable to lift him up in the end.
…and that’s Noin’s brother.
“Could it be, you can also assume such form, Noin!?”
“He is able to do that because he controls the elegance of the night—suffice to say, I am unable to.”
“…That’s, even as a fairy, I don’t understand it, either. So don’t think too deeply about it.”
“…But it was about the size of a garden racoon dog, but the softness of its fur was similar to a Mukmugris’…”
“Oi, stop gazing at me like that—I won’t transform into that beast.”
“…That’s unfortunate.” Said Dia.
“What a shame…” Said Dilvier.
Although she could only recall a pile of fur, if it was a member of the royal family, then he was quite a tolerant person. He didn’t try to punish the child who tried to lift and hug him…
…When she met him again, if he still assumed that form, she would try to figure out where his eyes and nose were, by all means.
Dia realized their conversation had eased her heart.
During her last night, there was no sign that a messenger from the royal palace would come. She also had no escort.
It was also quite expensive to tailor a new dress—therefore, a new dress for her to attend that night’s ball never reached her room.
Dilvier told her that she was probably expected to wear one of her old dresses.
“After all, it was only a few days ago that my engagement was broken… if a new dress is tailored for me, rumors would spread…”
“As expected of the first prince who’s reputable for his high intelligence—but this is just unbelievable. What a sloppy step he has taken. I have prepared a selection of dresses, so please choose one and wear it.”
“These dresses are…?”
“Lord Noin prepared them.”
Dia turned slowly to Dilvier, whom was smiling.
Behind the secret space beyond the wall, there was a kitchen she had never seen—hearing their conversation, Noin could be seen briefly nodding.
Not only was he wearing a simple white shirt, both his sleeves were carefully folded—was he about to cook?
“It’s a fairy embroidered dress made in Weim. If the people of this kingdom stay close to you for too long, due to their low magical zone, they may lose their fingers—however, other than that, there is nothing to worry about.”
“…That’s quite catastrophic for humans. What else do you need to tell me about this dress—does it also explode, perhaps?”
“It’s a natural occurring process called ‘magic pollution’. Human beings crystallize and begin to scatter from their body’s extremities due to coming in contact with magic that exceeds their value of resistance.”
Dia screamed at the horror of Dilvier’s explanation.
Dia had just learned the word ‘resistance’, and she wasn’t even familiar with it, yet!
When she realized a low magical zone meant the same as having low resistance, she felt terrified. For the first time, she was reminded of how horrible the consequence was.
At the same time, it was also the word that expressed the despair held by the humans of Fashitar whom couldn’t leave that land.
No matter how much they would like to pass through the Forest of Hydratartz and return to their homeland, if they stepped foot on land brimming with magic, they would be reduced to sand due to their lack of resistance.
She wondered if there were any who attempted to leave the forest.
She wondered if they then wailed as their limbs started to scatter away, turning into mere sand—all because they just wanted to return home.
Perhaps it was the same yearning Dia had before. She wanted a glimpse of what was across the royal palace’s main gate because she couldn’t open it herself, nor could she escape from there and go somewhere.
***T/N: At this point I am just grateful that the SpiritTalk of this chapter is still inside my realm of understanding… 10/10 would hug Marietta while putting on that dress.