The Empire’s Only Princess - Chapter 60
It’s been a while, but the smell of dawn from him was still there.
I made him rise then went up to the podium in a formal manner. Shuiesha sat on his knees under the platform and bowed his head.
“Do you swear to fulfill your duty as a knight, carry out justice, and risk your life if necessary, for me, the Princess of the Esteria Empire, Rosiane de Esteria?”
The voice, which was lower than before, calmly echoed through the banquet hall.
“If so, then declare it.”
The black hair, like ebony, gleamed in dark blue under the light. Shuiesha slowly raised his head up.
The eyes that still remained bored, indifferently met my gaze.
“I, Shuiesha, will be loyal to my lord for the rest of my life, until the moment the spark of life burns out…..”
Shuiesha paused for a moment. I looked at him nervously thinking he couldn’t remember the rest, but strangely, there was no change in Shuiesha’s expression.
His eyes strongly stared at me as if he were going to eat me. Like I always felt, they are eyes with a strange light.
“…… I swear to be with you.”
For a moment, his golden eyes blazed silently under the abyss. Unlike the nobles whose lines are set, a knight’s oath is something they think of themselves.
So, what Shuiesha just said also came out of his head.
Together until the end…… The weight of his life weighed heavily on me.
After completing his oath, he lifted his sword above his head. Perhaps it was not a ceremonial sword, the sword that was heavier than expected, weighed heavily on my hands and chest as if it were the weight of a life.
As he lowered his head again, I carefully drew the sword and tapped his shoulders one after another for a total of three times.
“Shuiesha, I, Rosiane de Esteria, who accept your oath, appoint you as my escort knight.”
This ended the first crisis. I carefully put the sword in its sheath and returned it to him. Our eyes briefly passed over each other, but I had to come down straight from the podium for the remaining others.
It was so hard to appoint Shuiesha, so I was worried about how to pick again for the rest.
* * *
In the end, I failed to meet the amount of four people. After selecting a total of three escort knight, including Shuiesha, a short maintenance period passed and a banquet was held.
“Please, Your Majesty. Everyone in the conference room is waiting for you to return…..!”
The aide who came late begged my father looking like he was about to throw up blood.
“Tell them to keep waiting.”
At my father’s firm tone, the aide stumbled as if he was about to collapse.
He’s angry because of his boss, but he can’t even say that—even on Earth, it was scary to be fired from work, but you’ll be decapitated here.—I knew that feeling so well that I grabbed my dad’s sleeve and he turned his eyes to me.
“Dad, I’m fine now. It seems to be urgent, you should go now.”
“….Really? Are you sure you’ll be okay without Dad?”
I nodded vigorously as a sign not to worry. Then, I saw an imagination where my father’s non-existent dog ears were drooping.
He seemed so sullen so I stroked his cheek and his lifeless eyes twinkled.
“….Then make sure you stick with Lora.”
“Of course. I will.”
My father, who didn’t pay attention to the nobles who were busy greeting, kissed my forehead and left. Behind him, a large crowd followed.
“What a very tiring position.”
“Well, would you like to go and meet the knights you appointed?
“Yes, let’s go.”
On one side of the banquet hall as I was guided by Lora, there were the knights I had chosen.
With an indifferent tone of speaking, maple-colored hair which was tied high and haughty maple-colored eyes was Lenia de Shermei,
“Have you tried this? It’s a premium strawberry cake with cream that gently melts in your mouth, the chocolate stuck in the middle—.”
Velasco de Freil, a cute-looking figure with braied brown hair and brown eyes, who chatted constantly,
And Shuiesha who was only sipping a drink as if he’s not interested in everything. These three were the knights who will be responsible for my safety in the future.
“I see the Glory of the Empire!”
All the knights except Shuiesha shouted at the same time. There were some people who glanced at our location because it was so loud.
“You don’t have to greet me like that in the future.”
If you shout that loud every time we meet, my heart will not survive.
“…..You can lower your voice, too. I want you to be comfortable.”
This is gonna take some time. I have a question for Shuiesha. But, in a place like this, where there are many eyes…….
“Uh, I’d like each of you to give a brief introduction one by one…”
“On the balcony”, before the words even came out, the two people except Shuiesha began to introduce themselves one after the other.
“I am Lenia de Shermei. My father is a Marquis who was also a former knight. It’s an honor to serve you.”
“Your Highness, Your Highness. Have you tried strawberry cake? It’s really delicious, so go ahead and try it! Oh, right. Did you just ask why elephants are so big?”
Lenia frowned at Velasco’s outrageous words.
“Stop with such words and behavior in front of Her highness. Also, Her Highness ordered an introduction.”
“Oh, my! Look at me! I didn’t even hang out the laundry and came here. I’m sure it smells rotten. Oh, right, the self-introduction! I’m Velasco de Freil, my parents are lords from the countryside, and I was staying in the Knight’s quarters before the ceremony. Your Highness the Princess. It’s an honor to serve you!”
Talking in one’s own world, it seems like Dortha. No, maybe worse.
After their introduction, their eyes turned to Shuiesha, and I opened my mouth belatedly.
“I was going to say do it one by one on the balcony, but everyone already did it. At least, Shuiesha should do it.”
“No, Your Highness.”
Lora firmly stood in the way.
“You won’t even tell me the reason, don’t say no, Lora.”
It was frustrating not knowing why Dad and Lora reacted like that at Shuiesha’s Serenata swordsmanship.
Leaving Lora, who bit her lips, I went out to the balcony with Shuiesha. Because it was May, it was quite breezy in the balcony.
“What happened? You were a Knight?”
I asked as I sat on a chair. Shuiesha shook his head.
“I wasn’t one, back then.”
I briefly recalled the conversation I had with him in the underground of the gladiatorial arena. Don’t tell me, it can’t be. I shook my head and looked at him.
“…..Am I cool now?”
He suddenly asked. Only then was I certain. This is an extension of the conversation at that time. (ch45)
I answered as I looked at the golden eyes that were clear under the sun.
“Yeah, you’re cool.”
Shuiesha, who nodded his head slightly, looked at me with a proud face and I burst out laughing. He tilted his head as if he didn’t understand.
“Why are you laughing?”
If you look at Shuiesha, he somehow looks like a wild animal. At first, he was wary, on some days he came and gently touched, on some days he didn’t show up, and on some days he stayed by my side.
“Because you’re cute?”
Shuiesha tilted his head at my answer. As he did that, his soft hair at the back of his neck shook gently.
“Yes, I think so.”
First of all, I like the fact that he is a cat. Of course, he himself, said he was a person.
Shuiesha, who was in deep thought for a moment, asked.
“Do you laugh when something is cute?”
“Probably? When you see something cute, your heart tickles, and a smile forms around your mouth.”
A wellow cat, a white cat, a black cat….. Just thinking about those makes me smile because it’s cute.
“Then do I need to laugh too?”
“Because you’re cute.”
I stared blankly at Shuiesha, wondering if I heard him wrong, and soon laughed out loud.
“You look a little different from your previous laugh.”
Shuiesha seems to be unfamiliar with emotional expressions, but he seems to have a pretty good eye.
“This time, I laughed because it’s really funny. By the way, Shuiesha.”
“Serenata swordsmanship. What’s that?” The question I was going to ask stayed in my mouth for a while.
But I couldn’t bring myself to ask. Come to think of it, the reason why Dad and Laura didn’t respond well was because they were convinced that there is no one who could use the Serenata swordsmanship anymore.
I don’t know what caused them to show such reactiond, but it’s certain that something bad happened to the swordsmen who used Serenata Swordsmanship.
I didn’t want to risk asking a question that might be a offensive, so I just smiled and turned the conversation around.
“Let’s go in now. Lora must be very angry.”
Shuiesha’s unchanging expression collapsed for the first time.
“So some people have horns.”
[t/n: the root word for “anger” in kr also means “horn” Shuiesha misunderstood Rosiane’s words as “Lora’s horns will come out” its also the literal trans which still makes sense but it means “very angry” here.]
Those words were so serious that this time I couldn’t even make fun of them, so I quickly corrected him.
“No, it doesn’t mean that a horn will really grow, but uh, well in a word, it means ‘very angry’.”
Shuiesha, who opened the balcony door, briefly answered.
He slightly nodded his head. Maybe he didn’t talk to people because he grew up as a cat?
As we approached then after leaving the balcony, Velasco said in a cheerful voice as if singing.
“Wow, it’s my first time seeing the silent knight speak.”
“The silent knight?”
“He was called like that because he doesn’t open his mouth except during training.”
Looking back at Shuiesha with startled eyes, he only sipped the juice and didn’t answer back.
“Well, anyway, please take care of me from now on.”
A vow is cannot be broken easily. I smiled as I looked at them, who are now my people.
* * *
Erdos headed straight to the Archives of Arke Palace after the meeting.
Most books are kept in the central library of the Imperial family, but the secret history books recorded by historians and historically important official documents were separately kept here.
Documents that only the Imperial family can look into. Erdos stepped in here for the first time in a long time.
He walked a little faster and pulled out the record from 731 years ago, exactly six years ago. His hand, quickly turning the pages, stopped only when he reached the middle of the book.
He carefully read the part with the personal information of those related to the Serenata family two or three times, but couldn’t find the name “Shuiesha.” There were no children of the same age.
“Yes, Your Majesty.”
Deus appeared from somewhere like a shadow at the low voice that called him.
But Erdos’ eyes were still fixed on the book. His eyes shone darkly.
“See if there were any survivors of the Serenata family six years ago ‘that day’.”
“I accept your command.”
Like the moment he appeared, Deus disappeared silently.