Watashi wa Teki ni Narimasen! 10
Chapter 10: Smile of the Thorn Princess
But, did Alan have a noble friend of the same age in the game?
Memories of the game is ambiguous in some places.
Even though I remember the strategy routes and party formations, where the knights are posted, others are hazy.
At that time, I enjoyed clearing it as soon as possible……even if I skipped the dialogue scenes. It was satisfying and fun to win.
In my memories, there was a male who will become a companion of Alan, it seemed like it was a dependable person just before the end of his youth that had experienced the bitter and the sweet……
As I was agonizing over this in my mind, Reggie first headed into the depths of the forest.
In order to make sure that we will not be seen when going around the outer edge of the forest.
The runaway horse-drawn carriage which still had the subordinate of Earl Patorishiel on board, if he goes around the outer edge of the forest and returns to the original point, we might be found.
I quietly followed Reggie.
Walking in the forest is something not often done in this life.
Although in my past life during summer vacation, I did things like mountain hiking somewhere with a lot of forestry, this is a world where strange grass that generate static electricity are growing. It is better to follow someone who has knowledge.
Sure enough, there was a suspicious plant that blew out dubious purple smoke when touched, Reggie hastily grabbed my hand and ran away.
「You, why would, you bother touching such a suspicious thing……」
I apologize to the breathless Reggie.
The plant that I touched was wrapped around the tree with vines, and bored fruits like grapes.
Moreover, it smelled something sweet, as I was thinking that it looked delicious Reggie noticed my actions, and pulled me away just as the grape-like fruit popped and started spraying out purple smoke .
「That……was poisonous, though it is light you will get numb」
If you get numb and your movements dull in such a forest, you will definitely become a human sandbag for the beast.
「I-I will be more careful…….」
I apologized while saying I would take more care as he was catching his breath. Lately it seems like I have been apologizing a lot.
「Maa, just be more careful in the future」
While sighing, Reggie said so.
He doesn’t complain that I am annoying, or question further if I truly understood, he is honestly quite a tolerant person. To say nothing of my parents’ house, even at the Earl’s house「Listen to what I say because you are living a good life!」so it is not surprising in his outbursts of anger to throw things at me.
But my throat is dry because I ran.
Also because of the issue with the thundergrass just before that, my voice seems to be even more hoarse. I want water…….but then I heard a faint sound of discharge briefly and looked around the area.
「Are there thundergrass in this forest?」
It seems that Reggie also heard it as he was looking around for the thundergrass.
It also seems that Reggie has better eyes than mine, as he found it.
This time, he grabs my wrist tightly, as to prevent me from acting arbitrarily.
We found it before long.
Deep in the forest. In a place with a very low indentation, there was water that flowed smoothly between the rock and the trees, and a place where water accumulated like a waterfall.
For some reason, Thundergrass are gathered around it.
「Ah, I see, because there are too many, they are trying to enlarge the habitation range」
「Eh, this, habitation?」
They seemed to be just circling the water though.
「Thundergrass also need water. In order to cultivate, while gradually securing water they slowly gather their friends, when it accumulates to a certain extent, they will burn the surrounding trees little by little. I heard that’s apparently how they cultivate. This is also my first time seeing this」
「But if they burn the trees in the forest, will they not accidentally cause a forest fire? I feel like the thundergrass will also be burnt down」
I know that they generate electricity and scatter sparks to burn things, the trees that get hit will generate heat. If there were any dry trees or dead leaves at the fallen place, they will catch fire.
「That’s what the water is for, Sometimes they will moisten the area around them, so it will not spread the fire. But sometimes they are unfortunate and the fire will spread, and then the thundergrass will also be burned up」
As expected it is a risky cultivating method, these thundergrass.
Hearing the explanation that a forest fire might occur due to this, but I feel that this is natural.
「Well, this is certainly troublesome, is it not?」
「I guess so」
To the agreeing Reggie, I proposed a suggestion.
「These thundergrass, we should get rid of them」
「How? If I use just a sword against the electricity of the thundergrass, wouldn’t my hands get electrocuted?」
To Reggie’s surprised expression, I gave a little laugh.
In the first place I cannot wield a sword. So I would like to try another way.
There is a lot of water.
There is electricity.
……I think we should experiment.
And if everything goes well, we can obtain drinkable water! Bathing water in addition! To be able to obtain clean safe water without boiling, how wonderful.
I cannot help that I am thirsty, I hurriedly looked for a big stone. I found a stone that can be lifted properly, but there is moss on it. Looking again, I found something slightly smaller, but dry on the surface.
Next I tie a growing vine on it.
I chose a soft one, it is flexible but durable, so it seems like it will not tear immediately.
I held the stone with the attached vine, and moved next to a tree near the spring, thundergrass crackle about giving off an impression of「Do not pass here!」like it was their territory.
While Reggie had a puzzled expression, I moved like a pendulum with the tip of a vine and threw it to a spot where the spring water was collected.
Thanks to the momentum, when the stone dropped, the water splashed up greatly.
It fell on the surrounding thundergrass――
「It was more flashy than I thought……」
In the surroundings of the puddle, the remains of carbonized thundergrass rolled about. Even when I poke it with my fingertip it collapses altogether.
Because of the water, and electricity running through their body, they became charred-black.
In the ashes of the lying grass, I join my hands unintentionally.
「Prayer*……Please enter Nirvana」
Why did I say a prayer, is it because the grass were living and able to move?
While thinking about such things, I reach for the spring water quickly.
It is really mild when I bring it to my mouth. It was cold and refreshing.
「Is Reggie also thirsty?」
Turning back towards him, Reggie stood there completely motionless.
Even though I called out to him, he stood silent for a while but eventually started laughing.
Even after he drank water, he continued laughing, and then asked.
「You said you were adopted by the Earl, but where did you come from before then? A commoner house? Or was it a knight’s household?」
Perhaps my behavior was so violent that he thought that it was unlikely that I was a noble’s child. Because it is not necessary to hide it, I talk lightly.
「It was almost the same as a commoner. It was a quasi-noble house」
「Then you owned land?」
The quasi-noble are the lowest of the aristocracy and are essentially land owners. To compensate for the royal family’s finances, this is a noble rank which the King sold in exchange for money. It seems like the naming rights of a dome or facilities.
「To a certain extent…… but it seemed that it was sold off bit by bit every year. But still it seemed that we were not too poor」
Because it is all hearsay and speculation, I can only speak ambiguously.
If they were totally poor, they would not be hiring servants or having new silk clothes made every season. On the other hand, the number of servants were decreasing by one person every half year. It seemed that their assets were decreasing.
Because it was like that, when they were offered to sell me for money, they immediately agreed.
「What is the name of the original house Kiara was in?」
「That’s right……. my mother passed away when I was too young to read the letters」
To Reggie who is curious about me suddenly, I took a break and I sat on a dry fallen tree nearby. Reggie also sat next to me, so in my heart, I felt just a bit embarrassed.
Because my age is now, it is about the age of a junior high school student in the previous life. Although there was co-education in the previous life, it would be around the age of being aware of the opposite gender.
But in this world I have not been involved much with boys of the same age in the first place.
I was tormented by my stepmother and hardly allowed outside the house, and at the Earl’s house the servants heavily gave off the impression that they were not there to associate with me.
At the school I basically only talk with girls.
……Now that I think about it, if I didn’t have the memories of my previous life, it wouldn’t even be surprising if I was unable to communicate at all.
「You do not talk much about your former family ……besides your deceased mother, they were not very kind towards you」
Just by avoiding it, Reggie seems to have guessed it.
But I am relieved he found out. Most people believe that their family unconditionally loves them. That is why most would not understand that the feeling of not being loved.
Even the nurse the nobles left them to, everyone, the family thinks of them. Even if there is something, it seems that one would usually think that the love towards them will not be damaged.
They try to force the image that family is always beautiful. 「There is not such a thing, surely your father would have loved you. Because it is family. In the end you should be able to understand」Words like that.
The monks used words like those to relieve people. On the other hand, Reggie who can understand it…….
「Reggie, your family was also unkind wasn’t it?」
As I say that, Reggie smiles softly.
「There is a person who understands, I am glad」
At that moment, I felt a sense of trust with him.
It may be because we were able to share feelings that would usually be difficult for others to understand.
Of course, I do not know if Reggie felt the same thing as me. But――
「Kiara’s story, I want to hear more about it」
From trying to know me, it felt as if Reggie’s heart had allowed him to trust me.
In that moment, just a bit I felt comforted.
「Oh, it seems like it would have been fine if I did not come」
There were no footsteps earlier.
There was completely no sign until just now, that person just appeared suddenly.
Beyond the pool of spring water stood a girl with bluish-silver hair.
Glossy smooth hair that extend to the waist, to the waist, clothing of black and red.
She had big and beautiful eyes that look like purple jewels, enchantingly white skin, and as her light red lips moved, I gazed in amazement.
「Lately, the increasing number of thundergrass trying to enlarge their territory in the forest had me quite troubled. What is with those grass, trying to burn down the trees? I would be troubled if my pets burned, it would be even more troubling if the forest burned down」
To the figure of a girl who speaks as if talking to an acquaintance, I blink over and over.
……Un, it’s real.
The kind of feeling of whether this picture was truly real or not.
This girl is the Thorn Princess.
Even though she was living in this forest, it looked like she just came out of the palace, her hair and clothes are all beautifully arranged.
When I saw her in the pictures it was not there, but she had a scent of dead leaves, the contrast is great.
Immediately after I fell from the carriage, and after throwing the stone at the thundergrass, I wanted to fix my appearance. For sure, my hair is a mess…… The uniform of the church school is also surely dirty.
As I started patting my skirt hastily, a surprised expression appeared on the Thorn Princess.
Hmm, did I do something?
「You……do you know me?」
When asked, I finally understood the meaning. Though she did not give any name, I immediately recognized who she was so of course she would be surprised.
In a hurry I tried glossing it over.
「Ano, I heard that the Thorn Princess lives in this forest, and seeming as a person just suddenly appeared inside the forest……I thought you must be」
「You looked like you could tell from looking at my face though……」
「No no, there is no such thing」
I continued to deny it, and finally it seems that she was convinced.
Although she had a somewhat suspicious expression, she did not know me and could not pursue it. She then moved her eyes away from me.
She looks at Reggie and takes a breath.
Reggie’s eyes also meet hers.
――This is bad, Reggie is outside the target age of the Thorn Princess!
「Ano! He’s a little developed, but he’s only twelve years old!」
What on earth are you saying? That was the kind of face Reggie had.
Uuu, I think I said something weird. However, this is to save Reggie from the Thorn Princess, I will be in trouble if he is thrown out of the forest.
The Thorn Princess stares at me in silence.
「You, as I thought are you my acquaintance or something?」
I just did it again. Aaauh. People in this world did not know that the Thorn Princess has a fetish for young boys!
「No no, I just heard it from a rumor, that’s all, hahaha」
The final laugh was meant to mislead her.
Then the Thorn Princess smiled slightly.
「Is that so…..you, I see」
I did not hear it well, but she seems to have murmured somewhat disturbing things. When a beautiful girl looks like that it gives off the impression of a devious villain, I am really scared.
「Oh well, anyways thank you for getting rid of the thundergrass. It saves me the trouble of doing so. So do you two want to get out of the forest?」
Thanks to defeating the thundergrass, apparently she seems to be favorable to us.
「Well, we separated from our companions. I have someone I do not want to encounter with my friends, so we are trying to avoid detection by walking around the outer edge of the forest……」
「You are truly the Thorn Princess, are you not?」
Reggie talks directly to the Thorn Princess.
I became nervous. Because if male whose age is out of the target range talks and her mood ends up falling, I would be troubled.
But it seems I did not need to worry.
「That’s right, I am the one who has watch over the kingdom ever since the beginning to the end. Are you suspicious because I am young? But I have kept this figure forever」
She quietly answers and smiles.
Oh, she was friendly.
Did she truly believe that Reggie was 12 years old? Reggie seemed puzzled, but it’s best not to push our luck too much.
「Ano, we will hurry ahead then, so we will excuse ourselves」
Because of my memories of the past life, I tried to leave the place in a very polite Japanese-like manner.
「What you are trying to meet up with, I wonder if it is the carriage stopped at the side of the forest 100 meters from here? Is it two horse-drawn carriages and one hooded carriage?」
「? Can you see them?」
She gives a small laugh.
「In the forest, I can perceive it as long as it is nearby. If there is anything going on in my home, I have to be able to clean up quickly」
While she said that, what I imagined was a sight motion sensored camera installed in the trees of the forest.
Perhaps because I perceived the perception of the Thorn Princess as something similar to a security system, I nodded, but Reggie was surprised.
「Do you understand everything that happens in the forest?」
The thorn princess answered like it was common sense.
「If I am determined, I can know what is happening outside of the forest you know? Like what kind of bride came to the royal family. I know the hometown of the bride, too. People living in the kingdom too, and their destinations. For a reasonable price, I can also tell you what you want to know」
To the Thorn Princess who talks like an all-seeing witch, Reggie hardens his expression.
I wonder why.
Because it seemed that it was better to leave anyhow, I pulled on Reggie’s hand and tried to leave in front of the Thorn Princess.
Then Reggie showed me a bitter smile as he returned to himself, I say goodbye to the thorn princess and walk ahead.
「Well, then this time we will really excuse ourselves」
I though she would chase after me, but instead.
The moment when I was called, cold fingertips touch my hands.
When I turned around looking back, the smiling Thorn Princess was now near me.
Moreover, what was grasped in my hand, was a small polished rounded glass pendant with a red stone. There is a black color that gently stains towards the edge, and it looks somewhat ominous.
「I only give this to girls specially. If you lose it……I do not know what will happen?」
What is up with this scary item? And aside from that it is even cursed!
But if decline it and offend the mood of the thorn princess here, and she ends up not letting me out from the forest that would be bad.
Therefore I fake a smile, and ran away on the spot.
At that time, I could not understand the reason why the thorn princess gave me such a thing.
It would be a long time before I knew her true intention.