In the Carriage
When I asked Artur and Finne for a diagnosis, they told me Liselotte was ‘just asleep’, so I decided to send her home.
After carrying her to the Marquis of Riefenstahl’s carriage, which had arrived to pick her up, I sat down next to her.
The guardsmen employed by the Marquis had offered to carry her for me, but I refused. I had absolutely no intention of letting any other man carry Liselotte, especially when she was sleeping so peacefully with that smile on her face.
To be honest, my arms were getting tired, but I couldn’t hand her over.
Sitting with the still sleeping Liselotte, we rode in the carriage.
I would be lying if I didn’t say I was a little overwhelmed by the situation, but I had no intention of doing anything inappropriate.
“…And so, this ancient witch, the same one called the Great Calamity or the Black Death, really is that ancient witch? There’s no doubt about it?”
Soon after the carriage pulled out of the school grounds, I quietly asked the Gods that.
It’s true that Liselotte and I were the only people there, but I knew that the Gods were watching. So, I couldn’t get away with anything inappropriate. No, it’s not like I would have done something even if they weren’t watching. Please don’t misunderstand.
The great Coebayashay answered.
『I’m sorry. I should have explained earlier, but going by Liselotte’s diaries from the fan disc, I didn’t think the witch would come out this soon. From now on, any time Liselotte’s wavelength is similar to that of the witch, she’ll be targeted.』
As I listened to the terrible portents doled out by Coebayashay, I found myself tightening the arms that were holding Liselotte.
『After Liselotte’s heart finally gives way to the witch’s influence, she is possessed and turned into a horrible monster that tries to kill Finne. After killing Finne, her aim is to destroy the country. After destroying the country, she wants end the world. The only way to stop it is to take the tragic decision to kill Liselotte. At least, that’s how it goes in the game scenario. But the key to preventing that tragedy, Sieg, is you.』
I am the… key…? Coebayashay laughed softly when I looked confused, not understanding what she meant at all.
『That’s because Liselotte is deeply in love with you, Sieg. In the game, Sieg rejects her, which causes her to fall into the abyss of despair. Even though she didn’t care at all if others pushed her away or shunned her for her villainess actions, she was unable to handle the fact that you had turned your back on her as well, Sieg. So as long as you never come to hate her, Liselotte should be fine.』
Is it really true, even to that extent?
Does she really love me so that much her heart would give in if I pushed her away?
My cheeks were tinged with a hint of crimson.
『I didn’t want to say this so early since it feels like I’m being kinda pushy, right? Saying that the fate of the world depends on your love, or something like that is a bit… But, ah jeez, y’know, it’ll be fine, right?』
By the time Coebayashay had finished her speech, I realized that I was completely blushing. It was a little shameful.
But if that meant that I was already in love with Liselotte, then that should be fine…
“Well… It should be okay, I believe? Now that I know just why she acts the way she does, she’s surprisingly cute.”
It was embarrassing, but I had to admit it. There wasn’t any denying it. Liselotte is really cute.
Right now, the thought of abandoning or hating her seemed utterly impossible.
“That being said, the Ancient Witch, huh…?”
Ever since the times of yore, stories of a foul witch that spread evil through the land had been told to scare children at night. Even if its body was destroyed, it would cast a black shadow across the earth and possess victims like Liselotte. It was the incarnation of pure evil.
Thinking about the terrible thing that aimed for the life of my fiancée and future queen made me hug her all the more tightly.
“Y-Your Highness…!? Liese!? M-My deepest apologies for whatever has occurred!”
At Liselotte’s home, it didn’t take long to encounter her father, Marquis Riefenstahl.
After seeing me walk through the doors, carrying Liselotte in my arms, he looked so astonished it took him a moment longer than usual to remember to bow.
Wondering why he had come to greet us personally, I returned his greeting. It seems that when he heard that something had happened, he had rushed home as fast as he could. I may have overstepped my bounds.
“Liselotte fainted back at the academy. Right now, she’s just asleep. I asked Artur, the son of Count Richter, to look at her. Please be at ease. She was just exhausted in both mind and body and is now sleeping peacefully. I would like to take her to her room now, if I may.”
As I finished talking, the Marquis shook his head in sheer panic.
“No, I couldn’t possibly! I couldn’t bear to burden Your Highness anymore than I already have…! Hey, somebody, quickly…!”
I shook my head as the Marquis turned to call out to his household servants.
“No, I have no intention of leaving my fiancée in anyone else’s arms. Please guide me to her room.”
Hearing my words, the Marquis simply stood with his mouth agape as if they had left him dumbfounded.
Is it really alright for the foremost general of the country to be caught off guard like this? I couldn’t help but think that.
After staring at my face in stunned silence for a while, his violet eyes, identical in shade to Liselotte’s, began to well up with tears.
“Wha-!? W-What’s the matter, Marquis!?”
When I shouted that out in a panic, the Marquis finally opened his mouth as he wiped away his tears.
“Ah, no, it’s just that it made me think…”
“Oh, I see. Of course, you would think ill of me doing this, as a father…”
Even if I was her fiancée, there was no father in the world who wouldn’t hate the sight of his daughter being hauled away unconscious to a private room like this. It can’t be helped, I might have to entrust Liselotte to her father or one of his maids instead.
“No, that’s not the case at all! It was just I was so happy I got a little emotional… It’s as if that child’s dream really came true…”
Surprisingly, as he dried his eyes, he denied my words and instead said something completely incomprehensible.
“Yes. It was when Liese was only 5 years old. I was the only one who heard her dream back then. Back then, I told her that it wouldn’t come true, but she never gave up, as if she couldn’t give up. It drove her on all the time, and she never stopped thinking about it.”
Just what kind of dream was it?
Looking at my puzzled face, the Marquis gently smiled. It seemed he had no intention of letting me in on his secret.
“…Isn’t that great, Liese?”
As he said that, he gently stroked Liselotte’s head with an expression wholly different to that of the general I had always seen in the royal palace. An expression he only kept for one person, his expression as a father.
“Ah, I am deeply sorry to hold you up in such a fashion! Liselotte’s room is this way, please follow me.”
Saying so, the Marquis started walking.
The way he suddenly changed the atmosphere like that, it seemed impossible to bring up Liselotte’s dream as the topic of conversation once more.
『That dream of hers she had as a five-year-old, could it have been…?』
Apparently, even the wise Endow wasn’t quite sure.
『This is one of the pieces of information in the extra materials. But, it’s not exactly something we should be saying.』
I felt a little impatient hearing Coebayashay’s coy words.
『I see, it’s something that the person themself should say, right?』
That said, even if it seemed like the Gods were having fun with their secret at my expense… Ah, the fluttering in my chest as I looked down at Liselotte in my arms was more than enough to wipe any irritation away.
Edited by: mazaran