Akuyaku Reijou wa Ringoku no Outaishi ni Dekiai Sareru 08
Chapter 8: Hartnight’s Anxiety and Growth
He slowly walked through the lavishly decorated corridor, and Hartnight reached the front of the guest room.
This is a place to welcome guests in the castle, but now the heroine Akari is under arrest here. A knight stands at the entrance giving off the implication of keeping watch.
「I have received an order from Your Majesty to not let anyone pass」
Hartnight orders the knight, but a strict notification was made by the king already. The serious knight does not hail the words of Prince Hartnight.
However, he really wanted to talk to Akari. Since the graduation party, Hartnight has not talked to Akari.
In addition, because she was under house arrest…..he was worried about the mental state of Akari.
「I will not stay long. I just want to look at the situation a bit」
If it’s the command of the king, Hartnight would usually obey it. Currently, it is King Alexander who leads the Knight Order, and not Hartnight.
He understand well that he could not bend the order given to the Knight Order.
However, this time Hartnight would not give in.
「Please, I, possibly……」
「……No. I may have made a mistake in my decision. I think that it is necessary to have a conversation with Akari in order to confirm it」
The knight listen to the serious words of Hartnight and open his eyes in surprise.
After the girl named Akari entered, he had become hopeless; and out of order. Those were the rumors he had heard. The knight at first thought that was nonsense, and a lie.
But Phyllene, a maid of Marquis Clementide who came to the castle for an errand had said,「My Tiararose-sama was hurt greatly by His Highness Hartnight……」 Yes, she cried ever so grievously.
Because all the knights had taken a stand at the gate of the castle before, they were familiar with Phyllene who comes to the castle often for errands. A person who cherished her master, the bright and lovely Phyllene is popular with the knights.
「For your Highness to think that, it makes me very glad」
「Really, just a little is fine」
Once again, Hartnight pleads that just a little is enough.
As a member of the royal family to ask a knight like this, it was absurd. Hartnight who hurted the immensely popular Tiararose, should he truly let him meet with Akari the knight wonders.
「……10 minutes, I will close my eyes to it, but just that」
「That truly helps」
To hurt a woman, it is against chivalry. But Hartnight is a prince of this country if nothing else. There is a possibility that he may lead the knights in the future.
――His Highness may be trying to grow.
If so, as an adult, I may need to give you a push. He understands the painful feelings of Phyllene, but the knight thinks that people will fail and grow from them.
But, of course, he does not forget to leave the door open for a while and observe the state inside.
It is not good for men and women before marriage to be alone in public places and it is the responsibility of the knight guarding the door if something happens.
But he quickly――regrets having let him in the room.
◇ ◇ ◇
To effectively use the allowed time of 10 minutes, Hartnight quickly steps into the guest room.
There was only Akari in there, sitting in a chair and reading a book leisurely.
「I wanted to meet you Hartnight-sama! I cannot leave the room, I thought that I would die in my free time with nothing to do!!」
Akari who greeted Hartnight with a smile, throws aside the book and runs over.
Akari who said it was boring, did not think about what happened at the graduation party.
Hartnight, after the graduation party, thought about various things and could not sleep at night……
「But I did not think that Aquasteed-sama would say such things to Tiara-sama. I hope Aquasteed-sama will not be deceived by Tiara-sama…….. what happened?」
「……My engagement with Tiara, I heard from father that it was dissolved. I did not hear anything about Prince Aquasteed, so I do not think that they are engaged」
「Is that so」
Akari had a clearly relieved expression on her face.
Was it relief due to the fact that the engagement between Tiararose and Hartnight was successfully abandoned or is it due to Aquasteed not being engaged with Tiararose.
Hartnight did not understand.
Until now,「Hartnight-sama」Akari had always admired him. The surrounding men, Akari’s brother-in-law and the school healer, Captain of the Knight Order, she was on good terms with various people, and he did not mind that much.
Of course it was because they were the capture targets, but Hartnight does not know about that fact.
「How Hartnight-sama canceled the engagement, that development surprising me. I was sure you were only intimate on the front after all!」
He intended to warn the indignant Akari, but Hartnight decided to bear with it as time was limited.
Now confirm the necessary things first.
「…… Akari, everything that Tiara talked about at that time, was it true?」
「Eh――? That time, what do you mean?」
Akari tilted her head and said,「I remember being talk to harshly and how difficult it was…….」
So in other words, referring to the contents that Tiararose said, the harsh words, were referring to the words about being careful that she disliked.
「Is that so」
「But, because I had Hartnight-sama…… It was very encouraging」
Akari who smiled shyly, then tightly hugged Hartnight. However, Hartnight removed Akari’s hand and separated from her.
Usually, Hartnight would tightly embrace Akari back while lovingly stroking her head. But now he cannot afford that.
Hartnight was trying his utmost to think for himself.
「Is something bothering you?, If you are fine with me, I will listen, please speak」
「That’s right, Did Tiara-sama perhaps say something? ――the villainess daughter, I never thought would be involved after the main part」
To the Akari who immediately assumed that Tiararose was at fault, Hartnight smiles wryly. The last words was too quiet to reach the ears of Hartnight, but they were certainly words meant for herself.
――Akari wondered what terrible words Tiararose must have said to Hartnight. Or else how would the character personality not match up here. Once a woman become twisted, it becomes troublesome.
「Ever since that, I have not seen Tiara. About the graduation party, I have been alone thinking about various things」
「What about the graduation party? It is true, I do not like being trapped here like this. I would like to go to Hartnight-sama’s place! When can I go, when will I be going to Hartnight-sama’s place?」
「……For the time being, it is still difficult. I know it is hard on Akari, but wait a little more」
「Is that so…… but, couldn’t you please hurry it up?」
Akari is appealing to Hartnight that she does not want to stay alone in this room anymore.
While Hartnight is still doubtful, but until now he has always cherished Akari. Of course there is a desire to give out.
However, it cannot be done with the judgment of Hartnight. Unless the king says so, they cannot decide what to do for the future and cannot move.
「Tonight――I will talk to my father. So until the results come to, endure it a little more」
「……I understand I am waiting for Hartnight. Also, please tell me about what happened with Aquasteed-sama! Tiara-sama did such terrible things to me, I want to save him before he gets hurt like me」
Aquasteed, the crowned prince of a great country, will never get hurt by a single woman. Hartnight thought so, Akari is just purely worrying he tells himself so.
He did not want other men’s name to be mentioned too much in front of him, but Hartnight does not have the mind to warn her.
――He wonders if he got tired.
Next to the sighing Hartnight, Akari is talking about how worried she is about Aquasteed.
Furthermore, he wanted to think over firmly about what happened this time. As he thinks about it more and more, Hartnight wanted to cry out.
Any more than this, this talk……it may not be good mentally. He thinks so, but Hartnight cannot push aside the lonely Akari who was still talking easily.
How to do it. Then the voice of salvation appeared when he started biting his lips.
「Your Highness Hartnight, it’s been 10 minutes」
「Ah, aah, I am sorry for being so unreasonable. Akari, I need to leave now. Although it is inconvenient, stay in this room a little more. If you need something, ask a maid」
Akari is dissatisfied with the voice of the knight. Swelling her cheeks and saying「Please do not go home yet」
Unlike Hartnight who just smiled wryly, the knight tears off Akari from Hartnight saying「it is an order」 Whether because she was surprised, Akari inadvertently moved backwards.
「Your Highness, Hartnight」
「I know. ……I will come again」
「Eh……? Wait a moment, Hartnight-sama!! 」
Hartnight nods to the words of the knight, and leaves the room immediately.
And the knight restrains Akari who attempts to stop him from leaving. I never thought there could be such a woman, the knight though as he watched Hartnight leave feeling exhausted.
◇ ◇ ◇
Carpets of vivid colors, complementing their master there. The glass placed on the desk was filled with luxurious domestic wine made using fruit juice.
And sitting in the chair is Alexander, the king of this country, and next to him his son, Prince Hartnight.
Although it was parent and child, there was a heavy silence between the two.
Now is the night after the graduation party, the meeting between Alexander and Aquasteed should already have ended during the day.
That’s why Hartnight is more nervous than usual. What on earth will his father say to him――……
「Hartnight, I heard you went to see Miss Akari today, didn’t you? 」
「……! Yes, I am very sorry for the selfish behavior」
The serious knight, he still reported firmly even though he said he will close his eyes. If that is the case, Hartnight sighs as the contents of their conversation would have also been reported.
He immediately apologized obediently, but appeals that it was necessary.
「Then, have you got something to talk about? 」
「I should have listened more to Tiara’s story. Without asking anything, I just took the words of Akari alone」
Clenching his hand tightly, the face of Hartnight has a pained expression.
However, which side should he go down on and apologize after going so far? Before that, he would be refused by her father, Marquis Clementide, let alone be able to visit her.
「You and Miss Tiararose, were engaged and tied up ever since you two were young. However, your actions were not fit as part of royalty, as a human being, it was not in any way justifiable」
「……Yes, I also, no――I have thought that. I met Akari today and thought about the two of them carefully. Akari likes me, but Tiararose…….」
Akari likes Hartnight. This is an undeniable fact.
――So, what about Tiararose?
In order to calm his breathing, Hartnight takes a deep breath once.
And then slowly speaks of what he felt himself.
「Tiararose looked at this country <Lapis Lazuli Kingdom>. and observed it closely. From the position of the nobility and the position of the commoners. And has immense pride. ……I think she understood her own future well」
「……That is so. Miss Tiararose has a firm understanding that she is the daughter of the Marquis in Lapis. That’s why she was watching Hartnight firmly. Am I correct? 」
「No, it is different……. I was cherished very much by Tiara」
――Hartnight-denka, please do not run away during lessons and trouble the teachers!
――Everyone trembles at first. ……I am also trembling. But, we are together. Because we are not alone, let’s do our best together shall we?
――Please have more faith in yourself! You are the crowned prince of this country!!
――Please master at least three languages. Aside from other countries, I will follow you as well.
――A knight’s top priority is the order of His Majesty. Your Highness must not be engulfed by your own desires!
Memories from when I was young started to surface.
It was true that the tone of Tiararose was strict, but it was all said and done for the benefit and well-being of Hartnight.
「And even so――I didn’t believe in Tiara and ended up hurting her」
「If you understand that, it means that you have also grown up. However, what happened this time is not light」
Hartnight, who nods with a serious expression, was already ready to accept everything. And so expecting, knowing, and accepting what was to come.
He was pleased that his son had finally grown up, but why could he not grow up before he could dismiss his engagement with Tiararose……Alexander sighed deeply in his mind.