Aobara-hime no Yarinaoshi Kakumeiki Chapter 1
Heilland (original Romanisation: hairurando)
Ealdar (original Romanisation: earuda-ru)
Egudiel (original Romanisation: egudieru)
FYI, this is an isekai (parallel world) story and chapters 1-2 are part of the prologue
Chapter 1: Prologue – The Seductive Poisonous Rose
That night, the main road of Egudiel—the royal capital of the Kingdom of Heilland—was overflowing with people.
Strangely enough, the night of the Star Festival was on the very same day—it was a festival celebrating the founding of the nation by the first king, under the blessing of the Guardian Star. Normally people would all be holding lanterns in their hands which they would float down the River Elam, a river that traverses Egudiel.
However, instead of lanterns the people seemed to be holding hoes and axes. Their figures were like those of demons consumed by hatred. Harbouring fury in their eyes and with distorted mouths from animosity, they shouted unanimously as they marched.
"KILL THE DOG OF EALDAR!!"
"KILL ANYONE THAT DEFILES HEILLAND'S HONOUR!!"
Heilland's flag, which was dyed in the deep blue hue of the night sky, was being waved in every place as fires sent smoke rising around the Royal City. Both carried the sign of a violent and tempestuous conflict brewing in the kingdom's midst. As time passed, the stream of people increased more and more, stretching far and extending all the way to the magnificent Egudiel Castle that towered high at the heart of the royal capital.
As the descendant of the Chester Family who had governed since the founding of Heilland, the present Queen of King Fritz—Alicia Chester Jorum—was hastily fleeing together with her retinue.
She had sky blue hair that shone as though it confined the sky, as well as matching crystal blue eyes. With pale skin like silk, she who was born with unparalleled beauty was once admired and praised by the people as 'The Blue Rose Princess'. Yet, not even the beauty of the Blue Rose Princess could be used as a tool to pacify the masses now.
"Alicia-sama, there is not yet any sign of the mob beyond this point."
"There is a canal ahead. If you decide to go up there, we shall clear the road ahead.”
"I know already. You don't have to tell me."
Alicia's retainers were rushing to help her escape, but she was slow to react. Her eyes clouded with impatience as she restlessly asked the people around her whose interests lay in a different place to hers.
"Is His Majesty…is Fritz-sama safe? I do not see him around. Surely he hasn't fallen into rebel hands…"
Although her retainer's voice was spiked with irritation, albeit only faintly, Alicia’s ears were not able to discern it. Since she was worrying about her husband whom she loved, but who had not shown up since the revolt began.
Naturally, it was not safe even for Alicia herself. At the same time that the sun sank into the horizon, the seething wave of rebels was already closing in on the outside gate. The people who had risen up comprised not only commoners, but others such as young nobles and even the Imperial Knights were joining in—it was only a matter of time before the rebels would fill the castle.
As Alicia anxiously turned to look behind, her attendant persistently continued.
"There is no time. Only you, Alicia-sama, have inherited the blood of the honourable Chester Family. If the Queen is not here, who will rule over Heilland? Please endure this for now and make haste ahead."
"What are you saying?! The one who should rule over Heilland as its King is Fritz-sama. I will not permit you to disregard His Majesty!"
Her retainer's words were right. But ironically, the person who had spoken at Alicia only made her strengthen her decision.
"I shall go to Fritz-sama's aid. Only those who share the same resolve should follow me."
Not one of her retainers responded to her loud declaration. Nevertheless, their eyes could not hide their true thoughts. Alicia, having looked around at her followers with her beautiful eyes, turned around after letting out a sigh.
"Fine, nevermind. Go on ahead and clear an escape path. That's an order. I shall bring His Majesty with me without fail."
Alicia rushed into a complex hallway alone; her long glowing hair streamed behind. The sound of swords crossing in the distance played a rhythm, but fortunately there were no signs of any rebels obstructing her path.
She knew that the majority of citizens despised King Fritz, who was the legitimate child of the neighbouring Ealdar Empire's absolute monarch and the Empress Elizabeth, and whose name was first in the list of the line of succession to Ealdar's throne.
By way of fate of two nations sharing a border, a great number of wars were fought between Ealdar and Heilland. Their marriage, too, had only been arranged following the death of the late King James after he had been struck by an Ealdarean soldier's arrow in the previous war. Many people saw it as a display of domination of the defeated country by the victorious nation.
But Alicia loved Fritz even if his homeland was her father's enemy. From the moment she met him at a royal court ball, Alicia had already completely lost her heart to him.
Yes, even though King Fritz's heart was not in the slightest suitable for herself…
"Your Majesty!! Fritz-sama!!"
After running through a great number of halls, she finally spotted the back of the person she loved, and called out with all her heart and might.
The Hall of Time—it was a hallway where the statues of great successive kings and saints stood in rows, letting one truly gain a sense of Heilland's history. And right in the middle of it, the man that Alicia had called out to turned to face her.
When his face, framed by soft wavy blonde hair, and so beautiful and graceful that one could have mistaken him for an angel sung about in traditions, turned toward her, the smile on Alicia who was trembling with the joy of being reunited, stiffened.
The handsome King, who stood still between a countless number of pillars, wandered his gaze behind as he embraced a woman in his arms. Though she felt beholden to him, Alicia's heart twinged at the sight of Fritz covering his mistress as though he were trying to hide her.
If one were to use a single word to describe the person being hugged by the King, it would be 'cute'. She could not possibly match up to Alicia's dazzling beauty, but her big and round eyes did not know of fear. Above all, her impressive red hair attracted and fascinated all who saw her. (T/N: 'cute' + evoking feelings of wanting to look after her)
This was something Alicia had known since a long time ago, but for it to suddenly appear before her eyes once again, it was as expected, heart-breaking. The only one that resided in King Fritz's heart was her—Charlotte Yggdrasil.
"There they are!! In the Hall of Time!"
For a short while, the two stared at each other, but loud voices from behind Alicia startled her back to her senses. The noises of an innumerable number of footsteps hitting the stone floor relayed the reality that they had very little time remaining. Shaking off the feelings that wanted to pursue her, Alicia pointed out the way out to King Fritz.
"Please hurry, Your Majesty. Please head towards the canal. My retinue will be awaiting Your Majesty there."
"But, what about y-"
King Fritz opened his mouth, appearing to want to say something, but then stiffened his expression and nodded as though he had changed his mind. And then from his short moment with the red-haired girl, he anxiously brought his arm around Charlotte's shoulder in order to take her away from there, running off through the hallway lined with a countless number stone statues.
As soon as she let her beloved King and his mistress escape, Alicia felt despair.
And before her wish to send him off could even come true, roughly ten armed men came rushing into the Hall of Time, making thundering noises from the rough scraping of metal.