“Hahaha. I’m not worthy to be with someone like her. You shouldn’t say such things to someone like me. I’m afraid I’m going to take you seriously, Your Highness.” (Fay)
Fay laughed brightly, saying this. …No, he laughed it off.
“I am not worthy, but by all means, I hope you will find a man worthy of the princess, the most wonderful man. And that I will be invited to the princess’s wedding party. …Of course, I’ll just be cheering on the side while in attendance!” (Fay)
Fay cheerfully said so.
…So, you mean, “I don’t have the stomach for it.” is that it? Is that okay?
Yes, there is no malice in it. That’s the kind of face he has.
“I have heard that the princess is a beautiful woman. So, yes… She deserves a magnificent man equal to Her Highness, or a legendary hero!” (Fay)
“I-I see… Umm. I see. Like a legendary hero… but you too.” (Prince)
“Oh, yes, yes! Speaking of legendary heroes, the mural downstairs was quite amazing! This guy didn’t even want to leave the wall…” (Fay)
…At that time, Fay poked me with his elbow while saying so.
“Oh? You are…” (Prince)
Perhaps because of Fay’s mention, the prince shifted his gaze to me.
…While pretending to be interested in me, probably trying to figure out what I am.
The prince who wants to get Fay in order to get the Red Dragon may be thinking of doing something about me in order to get Fay.
…The point is, it’s not a very pleasant stare. I don’t like this kind of gaze.
“Oh. He’s our family painter and my best friend. He’s an interesting guy… and I thought I’d give him a tour of the Royal Castle for his study.” (Fay)
Saying that, Fay pulled back half a step to give the prince a better look…
…Then I turn my head a little, bowing so as not to be rude, and tug at the hem of Fay’s clothes.
“Hmm? What is the problem?” (Fay)
Fay bent down a little and put his ear next to me. I say in a hushed voice, but in a voice that even the prince can vaguely hear,
“Um, I feel ill…” (Tougo)
As I say this, I tell myself, “I’m not feeling well. I’m not feeling well. I’m not feeling well.”
“Hey, wait, are you okay?” (Fay)
I nod and act like I’m not feeling well. My center of gravity is a little off, my hands are a little cold, and my blood is a little bad. “I’m a little pale, a little pale, a little pale.”
“…Your complexion is a bit sallow. I see…” (Fay)
Fay quickly looks into my face. Of course, my complexion is probably not particularly bad. However, the prince doesn’t know if the complexion of my face hidden by the bangs is really bad.
“I’m very sorry, Your Highness. It seems my companion is not feeling well.” (Fay)
Fay lowers his head gracefully. It was a bow that clearly conveyed the intention of “Please forgive my rudeness”. I followed suit and bowed.
…Then, as expected, the prince seemed to have lost his excuse to keep us any longer.
“Hmm. That’s no good. You should use the break room.” (Prince)
“Thank you, Your Highness.” (Fay)
“Hmm. Please come back and talk to me again.” (Prince)
The prince looked a little regretful, but at least on the surface, he smiled at us and sent us on our way.
…and we made it out of the venue without incident.
The next room after we left the venue was a break room.
I was allowed to sit on a couch there, get some water and drink a little, and then Fay escorted me to rest for a while.
…I wonder if this was the right thing to do. For the time being, we are able to escape from the prince’s presence… but Fay could have probably managed somehow without me. Fay is very good at talking.
In general, I wonder if it was a good thing that I ran away from there and came out. I hope it won’t harm the reputation of Fay and the Redgarde family.
“Alright. Well done, Tougo.” (Fay)
“I guess.” (Tougo)
Fay said in a quiet voice as he sat down next to me and smiled.
“The next thing to do is to kill time until the end of the party, and then go back and talk to the right people at the right time. So let’s just relax here.” (Fay)
Fay says so and laughs, but… I’m a little worried.
“…Um, just now, it was quite rude, wasn’t it? Won’t they get angry at you later?” (Tougo)
“Hmm? Well, that’s fine. Even if it’s a little rude, they can’t complain about it because we have a person feeling ill. Besides, they are rude enough, you know? All they want to see is the Red Dragon.” (Fay)
“Is this okay for the Redgarde family?” (Tougo)
When I asked again… Fay smiled happily.
“Hmm. About this, I’ve already discussed this with my father, my brother, and the Red Dragon.” (Fay)
“I was happy that the Red Dragon became my summoned beast. But I also knew it wouldn’t stop at that. Me, my dad, and my brother all knew it wasn’t going to end there.” (Fay)
…was this the path since that moment? Fay and his family are thinking more about the Redgarde family than I do.
When the Red Dragon appeared, of course they knew what it would bring.
“There are dragons whose names remain only in legends. It’s a great asset, and I’m sure there will be people who will want to use it as a symbol of their authority.” (Fay)
“I see.” (Tougo)
It’s all coming out now.
The prince is probably the same way, and the Dioren family members are probably the same way… No matter what you do, people like that won’t go away.
“…But you know what. Even after all that, I don’t want to lend my strength if I don’t understand ‘what is the power being sought for?’ I don’t want him to be a symbol of authority.” (Fay)
Fay said this and clenched his fists tightly. At the same time, a flame-colored gemstone glinted in his chest. It was as if the red dragon inside was responding.
“That’s why I won’t lend my power to those who won’t answer, ‘Why do you need power?’, and I’ll throw away all those who aim for the Red Dragon as a ‘symbol of authority.'” (Fay)
“And to show that Red Dragon is not a symbol of authority, I ride the Red Dragon when I go shopping in the neighborhood and play with Red Dragon in public!” (Fay)
…If there is a Red Dragon that is treated like a bicycle, they wouldn’t look very grateful. That’s for sure.
Also, if you see a Red Dragon playing with people, it also doesn’t seem very grandiose. I don’t think I’d be very happy if I saw a Red Dragon playing with people.
“So, my father and brother have agreed to shake those who come close to us because of the Red Dragon. The Redgarde family’s position may have been slightly worse because of it. It’s too late for that.” (Fay)
“…Um, is the Redgarde family notorious?” (Tougo)
“The Redguarde’s reputation is not bad, but it’s not good either. There is no need to go to such lengths to flatter the king. And thankfully, we are located in the middle of the Spirit Forest. That’s the reason why we pay less taxes. So, they can’t complain, and as long as we do our jobs to the extent that they don’t complain, that’s all that matters.” (Fay)
I guess the point is that the Redgardes are not trying to be liked by the people at the castle.
…I don’t know much about the royal castle, so I don’t think it’s good to think like this, but somehow, I felt relieved after hearing Fay’s words.
“So, Tougo doesn’t have to worry about it. It’s all decided by us.” (Fay)
“Yes. I understand.” (Tougo)
If that’s the case, I’ll use any number of fake illnesses if that’s the case. Fay can use me as an excuse to his heart’s content.
“Well then, I guess I’ll get you a drink.” (Fay)
Fay got up from the sofa and got a drink from the drink server in the break room.
He also brought one for me. I gratefully accepted a glass of the drink.
“It’s a break room, but there’s something else besides water. Good job…. Damn, I got thirsty when I was talking to His Highness the Prince…” (Fay)
Fay laughed while saying that.
…then the door opened.
We closed our mouths. While I was at it, I pretended to be unwell…
…but it wasn’t necessary.
The one who opened the door and entered wasn’t the prince, nor were they someone related to the royal castle… it was the woman who looked like a work of art from earlier.