Chapter 9 Part 3
“We are here to deliver a letter from your father, Duke Giluas Sorey.”
When Odette arrived at the dormitory, the Sorey family’s soldiers were already waiting.
Holding up an armband to indicate he’s a messenger, the soldier handed her a letter.
“From Father, huh… Well, I can imagine the contents.”
“Well then, I’ll take my leave now.”
After Odette received the letter, the messenger hurriedly left.
“… This spoiled the mood.”
Just a while ago, I was happily talking with Yuuki Grossalia.
Odette entered her dormitory and opened the letter in a tedious mood.
‘To my daughter, Odette.
I’m sure you would understand.
To live freely as a mage, you must fulfill the conditions I have set for you. If you don’t, you will be returned to the household as promised.
The daughter of a Duke family has the duty to live only for the family’s sake.
I hope that you will understand my intentions and come back obediently.
The private tutor and the maid were looking at Odette with concern.
“I’m fine. It’s always the same.”
“We are well aware of the conditions that Duke-sama has set. Either become Her Royal Highness Princess Iris’s knight escort or a C-rank mage within a year…”
“E-rank learns three types of high-level ‘Ancient Magic’. D-rank is capable of defeating designated monsters alone. And C-rank can step into the lower third level of the ‘Capital of Ancient Magic Civilization, Elysium’.”
The only thing a guild apprentice can do is wander till the second level at most.
I know it is hard, but not impossible.
And with a top-rank mentor in the ‘Magic Guild’, I can enter the lower levels of the ‘Capital of Ancient Magic Civilization, Elysium’ as an attendant. If I train well there, then I should be able to manage.
“I’ll take care of Father’s conditions myself. Leaving that aside, it’s about Princess Iris now. I made a promise to Her Royal Highness. That I would always be with her. Even if she ──”
(Even if, unlike me, she never ages.)
It was a promise I made as a child.
Despite hearing about her grandmother’s eternal youth, which her half-sisters were creeped out by when they were told, Odette took Iris’s hand and said, ‘I will always be by your side. I’ll never be scared of you. We’ll always be friends‘.
Princess Iris nodded with tears in her eyes.
For Odette, who was raised by parents who saw their children as nothing more than political tools, it is an important promise, something like a vow. That is why Odette went ahead and joined the same ‘Magic Guild’ as Iris.
In truth, Odette did not care about being a knight escort.
As long as I can protect my best friend, it does not matter what form it takes.
The only reason I became a candidate for the knight escort was to go along with the Duke’s ostentation.
“… But if only Iris had someone she could trust as much as I do.”
That might be something to celebrate.
Of course, I would not just give up quietly.
“Prove to me in this examination. Whether you are worthy of Iris or not. Yuuki Grossalia.”
Clutching the letter from her father, Odette murmured with determination.
The Duke’s daughter, Odette, and I were standing before Princess Iris.
This is a guest house in front of the royal palace. The parlor.
What I am wearing is a uniform provided by the ‘Magic Guild’. It had arrived at my dormitory this morning.
I am supposed to wear it to meet with the Princess.
“First of all, I would like to apologize. Yuuki Grossalia-sama.”
said Princess Iris, sitting across the table.
“I had intended for Yuuki-sama to be my knight escort and for Odette to study with me as a friend. But that’s…”
“It’s not Your Royal Highness’ fault. Father pushed me to become a candidate for the knight escort. Originally, Yuuki Grossalia should have become Your Royal Highness’ knight.”
“If Duke Sorey recommends you, then His Majesty the King will have no choice but to act.”
said Princess Iris, and gave me a detailed explanation.
When a royal family member turns thirteen, they can appoint their own personal knight escort.
Princess Iris had appointed me as her knight escort back in the Baron’s territory. That was confirmed by Barnes-san (who I later found out was a General) and the soldiers.
All that was left was for Princess Iris to obtain the King’s permission, and that would have been it.
However, the other nobles interfered.
They were furious because the princess’s knight escort was an illegitimate child of a Baron family.
They all went around recommending their own children.
Princess Iris insisted that it had been decided.
However, the royal family disapproved of it.
They insisted that a few of the nobles’ children be selected and tested to determine who would be the knight escort.
As a result, the Duke’s daughter, Odette Sorey, a boy from a Marquis family, and another boy from a Count family were chosen.
The four of us, including myself, who was chosen for the role in the first place, were to vie for the ‘knight escort’ position.
“I’m truly sorry, Yuuki-sama.”
Princess Iris bowed again.
“After I returned from the Baron’s territory, I became ill and had… a fever, which delayed my response.”
“A fever… are you okay? Your Royal Highness.”
“Yeah. I’m fine, Odette.”
Princess Iris smiled reassuringly.
“It’s just that I had a lot of fevers and… various dreams. That’s why I couldn’t get in touch with Yuuki-sama. When the fever receded, and I woke up, I discovered that they had made it impossible for me to send letters to Yuuki-sama…”
“So that I won’t be the only advantageous one?”
“Yes. Everyone knows that Yuuki-sama is the primary knight candidate.”
Princess Iris took my hand and told me.
“Now that the selection of the knight escort has become a matter for the royal family, I cannot insist on my opinion alone. However, even if Yuuki-sama is not selected as a knight escort, I will have Yuuki-sama stay by my side. As an apprentice, I intend to make sure that we have the best mentor.”
“Thank you very much, Your Royal Highness.”
That’s fine with me.
I was appointed as a knight escort for Princess Iris to learn more about her relationship with ‘Fila Village’.
If I can stay by her side as an apprentice at the ‘Magic Guild’, I will achieve my goal.
“I’m fine with that, too. Thank you for your consideration, Your Royal Highness Princess Iris.”
“Thank you very much, Yuuki-sama. And thank you, Odette.”
Princess Iris then bowed to Odette Sorey.
“You are the reason why I was able to talk to Yuuki-sama like this. By summoning two candidates at the same time, it doesn’t mean I’m favoring Yuuki-sama.”
“I’m honored to be of service. Princess Iris.”
“Please don’t be so formal. I had originally intended for Odette to be under the same mentor as me after joining the ‘Magic Guild’.
Princess Iris looked at us mischievously with one eye closed.
“But still, I was surprised. When did Yuuki-sama become friends with Odette?”
“I was on my way to the royal capital when she happened to call out to me.”
“A coincidence, huh… It was the same for me. Perhaps Odette was saved by Yuuki-sama as well?”
“… I will refrain from commenting on that, Princess Iris.”
“Oh? It seems that I’ve hit the nail on the head. Isn’t Yuuki-sama’s fighting ability amazing?”
“That’s why I will refrain from commenting on that.”
Her Royal Highness Princess Iris and the Duke’s daughter, Odette, seem to be having fun.
They really are good friends.