36. Their Positions Have Changed (3)
—14 days remaining.
“C’mon, Lelouche! Let’s study!”
I made plans to study with His Highness Sazanjill in the mornings and after school. Meanwhile, during the afternoons, I’d have sword practice. As I thought, I couldn’t quit. I had to see it through until the end.
After school, Lumiere would also study with us. His Highness was shocked at my instructing Lumiere to balance eight books on top of her head.
“…I might cry, as well.”
Therefore, I stopped. I felt like I mustn’t cause the future ruler to shed tears.
Now that he mentioned it, I’ve never heard of any future ruler crying…
His Highness prepared his own teaching materials. The main points were summarized in a very easy-to-understand manner. His Highness’ commentaries on those subjects were also quite enticing. I was spending an unexpectedly fulfilling time learning trivia and other tidbits of knowledge that wasn’t limited to the exams.
—13 days remaining.
The cold air of the early morning turned my breath into a somewhat white mist when I exhaled. That day, His Highness Sazanjill arranged an empty classroom for us to use again. We were both sitting around one desk.
I stopped my pen, which I had been silently running across the page.
“Your Highness, have you been sleeping properly?”
I asked after I finished solving the problems. His Highness, who had created those problems, made a strange sound.
Let’s overlook the strange sound…
“The area under your eyes is dark blue. Are you sleeping properly?”
“I, isn’t that normal? I’ve been sleeping 24 hours every day!”
“Considering that we only have 24 hours a day, you must be having a wonderful night’s sleep.”
…For him to not even notice my sarcasm, it must be worse than I thought.
I closed the notebook and stood up. Finally, Sazanjill showed a semblance of awareness. He sat up and held my arm.
“W, wait, Lelouche! I’ll definitely help you!”
“…Then, Your Highness, I have a request.”
“What is it?! I will make it happen!!”
…Please don’t look so desperate? I’m the ungrateful girl who requested you annul our engagement, remember? Still, what a fool…
“Can you sit there and close your eyes for 30 seconds?”
At my unexpected suggestion, His Highness’s widened. Yet, due to my pleading tone, he relented. Although he seemed unwilling, he still closed his lapis lazuli eyes.
I counted slowly in my heart. It didn’t take long for His Highness’ breathing to relax.
That he wasn’t getting a proper amount of sleep was only natural. The moment our classes ended, His Highness would return to the royal castle and work hard on public affairs. Despite that, he still made time for us to study after school…
…At what time do you do your official duties?
To begin with, when did you even create these supplementary exam preparation notes for first years?
As I was flipping through a pile of such notes, I noticed a certain book was mixed within them.
Bringing public affairs materials to school isn’t good, you know…
…At the same time, I knew it was by accident.
Furthermore, notes were also sandwiched in the book. Words such as, ‘costume rental’, ‘garments for a national holiday’, ‘waste reduction’, and ‘approval of His Majesty’ greeted my eyes.
Is this an idea for a proposal?
…Really, he should be focusing on this more important matter than me.
“…What an absolute busybody.”
If you want to be useful to me, didn’t we already agree you wouldn’t intruding into my private affairs?
I didn’t feel like being sarcastic. Because …it was partly my fault. I didn’t know that he’d be that desperate after the annulment. Even if he wasn’t actually in love with Lumiere, I thought that he’d only be slightly depressed. I didn’t think that he’d go to such lengths to catch my attention.
…I am loved.
Only now did I realize that, but it was too late. What could a woman who’d die in 14 days do?
All I could do was stay away.
May you not be lonely anymore.
All I had to do was ensure that the path I was going to take was as bright as possible.
I gently brushed the bangs that obscured His Highness’ eyes. His face was pretty. I didn’t know he could make such a foolish expression. I didn’t know even though he was my fiancé that entire time.
…I barely know anything about you.
Had I noticed earlier, would I have made a different decision?
“I’m sorry, Sazanjill.”
For the first time, I called him without honorifics. That would be the first—and also the last.
I gently stood up and left the classroom so as to not wake him. It was about time for the other students to come to school. Of course, that classroom was off-limits—but, oh…
Leaving His Highness alone in an empty classroom wasn’t good, wasn’t it?
Regardless of His Highness Zafield’s denial, claiming that the assassination case was resolved was difficult.
Then, is this the moment the swordsmanship I’ve honed comes into play—?!
It was when I tried to turn around.
My heart skipped for a bit.
Looking back on the familiar voice, I saw the Silver Prince—His Highness Zafield. How rare. He brought a paper bag with him. It smelled delicious.
When he saw the look on my face, His Highness Zafield chuckled.
“You see, I bought some for my brother, too. Has Lelouche eaten breakfast, yet?”
That was right—during yesterday’s lunch break, light snacks such as cookies were no longer enough. The fact that my stomach rumbled lead to my getting laughed a lot during the training. It was still fresh in my memory. Just remembering it embarrassed me.
Why did I make such a blunder…?
The actual reason was simple—I didn’t have time to eat breakfast in the mornings.
When I looked inside the bag, I saw a lot of delicious bread. Oh, is that fresh cream? I grabbed a piece of the bread filled with fresh cream and took a bite on spot.
How sweet! I’m happy!
The moment I opened my mouth to take another bite, His Highness Zafield wiped the corner of my mouth before proceeding to lick his fingertip.
“Surprisingly, Lelouche is a glutton.”
“…Please keep that confidential.”
“Of course, being able to monopolize such a cute side of Lelouche is great.”
“Then, may I ask for more?”
His Highness Zafield tilted his head and asked, “Do you want a drink?”
Then, I told him.
“His Highness Sazanjill is sleeping in the classroom. Can you bring him to the nurses office?”
His Highness Zafield was flabbergasted to the point that his beauty was ruined.
I told him while smiling.
“Right now, he’s sleeping alone in that empty classroom. This is the perfect opportunity to assassinate him, right?”
“Like I said, that kind of joke isn’t funny!”
“Oh, is that so?”
I grabbed another piece of bread and left. “Thank you for the help.”
I could hear a big sigh from behind me… but, he was close with his brother. I was sure leaving him to His Highness Zafield would be alright.
***T/N: Gosh I could literally feel the creeping countdown to the climax…
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