Yasashī Shinjitsu to Seiryaku Kekkon Volume 1 Chapter 18
Yasashī Shinjitsu to Seiryaku Kekkon Vol II Chapter 18
She awoke to the sight of Leandroth with a face full of smiles.
heir morning kiss was prolonged as his hands roamed her body. After what seemed like a long time, Leandroth pulled back, he looked like he was in a good mood.
‘You can sleep a little more. Would you like to have lunch with me today after the meeting?’
‘Do you have a meeting?’
He hugged her tightly; raising his face to look at her Leandroth smiled wryly, and gave her a peck on her cheek.
He seemed apologetic.
‘In the daytime, at the office…reason may be preserved, wouldn't it?’
Hmmm, she did not trust that sentence.
‘Well, see you later.’ He said as he rose out of bed and went to his room.
He bathed, dressed, prayed, took a light breakfast and went to the morning assembly.
After the tedious morning assembly, he went to train with the Imperial Knights. Leandroth like to take time out to exercise in the morning.
Matilda realised that she had been remiss in her fencing practice; she should ask Leandroth to train with her, with this thought, Matilda fell asleep again with a sense of yearning and happiness.
That morning, she had a written request for what she wanted for lunch to give to Julia, the chief of staff, with an itemised list of foods.
She was told that the chef was a man of middle years, named Park, who had always been uneasy about the emperor’s meals, but could not disobey the Grand Chamberlain. Nevertheless, she was surprised to see vegetables at lunch.
Matilda left her rooms with a company of Imperial Knights and Maids. Back home in Icecoreta, as long as she wasn't leaving the castle, she had been able to roam about freely without followers from her childhood. Although, she felt it was extraordinary to move around with such a large company, she knew it would be a problem to go about alone.
She made her way to the Ironmongery workshop where armour and other items were made.
It was fun to talk with the craftsmen who were very proud of their work. They showed her how they worked with different metals, and how they repaired the harnesses, she was also told of the varying styles of working metals in the country.
She had ten imperial knights and four maids, this made the small room rather crowded, yet they could overhear the conversation from the next room,
‘You don’t have to worry about the orders of the Grand Chamberlain.’
‘But this might make things hard for me.’
It was rather like an interrogation of a perpetrator. The person became somewhat displeased and eventually came out.
The chef looked up to see Matilda and her retinue waiting outside the door, he could not hide his astonishment.
She was dressed quite simply. She wondered if there had never been a princess who dresses as simply as she did.
Julia, who had followed the chef out of the room, gave Matilda a wry smile, but Matilda does not reprimand her.
Matilda smiled at the chef and said, ‘Our head chef in the palace of Icecoreta once said to me; cooking is life and I would like to think that you have this sentiment as a chef. I hope that you would do your best to serve foods that are delicious and appropriate.’
When she was younger, Matilda heard about recipes she thought sounded delicious so she pestered their chef to teach her. Because they were delicious, she wondered if she could serve the food to her father, but the chef would just ruffle her hair like a doll. (Zuben: I have a confession to make: Writing saccharine nonsense like this kills me softly.)
On her way back to her rooms, Matilda was told that it was not protocol for the Chief of Staff to speak directly to the Empress, but Matilda had not thought of it, she had worked amongst the court of her kingdom and worked with members of her father’s palace staff? Matilda was told that it would seem like she was patronising Julia and any action that Julia took would seem prideful because she supposedly had the backing of the future Empress. Julia shrugged.
However, to be a member to staff whether chef or not, he would be a member to the aristocracy. There is protocol for the interaction between the royals and other ruling classes, and between the ruling classes and merchants classes, and others. To work in the Palace, one was required to submit a family tree over several generations.
‘You are the Empress, you can do whatever you want.’
Was that a careless sentence? Although, the tone was too nonchalant.
‘I am not the Empress yet,’ she said just as nonchalantly. She wondered if it was challenge to her, but she decided to hold back for the time being.
‘If there is nothing else, Your Majesty, I will return to my duties.’ Julia said with a smile
‘Oh, yes, I wonder…?’
Perhaps, she hadn’t meant it in a snide way, Matilda thought as Julia curtsied and walked way.
‘Oh, lunch is a real meal!’ Leandroth said as he entered the dining area from his office.
‘It is a strange feeling,’ Laughing gently, she picked a loaf of wisteria bread.
As Leandroth wished, they were alone, without attendants, at lunchtime. The air between them was comfortable. There was roast chicken and vegetables and bacon soup, fried fish with olive oil and herbs, sliced pork cut with slices of mustard, and thinly sliced baked bread. And for desert; many fruits and baked confections.
Because the sea was far from Icecoreta, the seafood was mainly dried or pickled. She wasn't used to fresh fish, so she poked at the fish with her fork in an awkward manner. Leandroth saw this and laughed,
‘You seem to have bad manners.’
She wondered how long he had been watching her. Leandroth laughed and said, ‘You’re so cute and funny,’
‘When the two of them are in line, I wonder if I am being praised or insulted.’ Matilda said - a bit confused. (Zuben: You and me both, deary.)
‘Cute,’ he said with a smile. The atmosphere was sweet, and she got strangely embarrassed, but she decided to laugh, ‘The squid or octopus is really delicious, although, it does feel a little strange when eating.’
‘There’s something we say in Icecoreta, that may not be appropriate to say here or will mean something else,’
‘What is it?’
‘Is a bee larva or beetle larva?’ she said with a small smile.
‘Haha, please don’t describe food as insect larva, but it is nutritious and delicious, isn't it?’
‘It is unexpectedly delicious…’ he added
‘Really? But how did you…?’
‘From the rations given during the mountain border war in Icecoreta,’ he replied, and continued with his meal. Not adding more to the subject.
‘I fought as a mercenary from age fifteen till I was nineteen,’ he said. He held up a sword decoration that was tied to his waist, ‘Looking at this makes me feel nostalgic, this is an apple decoration you made,’ he dropped the shabby accessory and returned to his food.
Matilda blinked in surprise, ‘Eh…?’
She ruminated on his words, and nostalgic apples.
The number of people who could protect the Ringoen Gardens and agricultural regions had decreased, even if they tried recruiting new soldiers, it would have been hard to get the new recruits trained and ready. Matilda had overheard her father and the ministers in discussion about the situation so she suggested, ‘Why don’t we hire some mercenaries?’
Matilda’s face bloomed red; she put down her cutlery and put her hands on her cheeks.
‘Ehhhhh? How come you have that?’
‘Baradda and Carbo are indebted to Acedo, aren't they?’
She remembered those names…
The men were part of the mercenary team that were hired; they got injured and therefore could not continue working as mercenaries. Acedo had hurt his left hand, and could not use a sword any longer, so he had been worried about his future prospects. He had been reticent and reluctant when he newly arrived at Icecoreta; but he began to get along with a lady manager of one of the farms, and now he was married to her and they were living well together,
‘…Mr Acedo is now the proud father of two children.’
Leandroth laughed, ‘He is truly taking care of his wife.’
‘But, why was the Crown Prince working as a mercenary?’ she asked, without being able to hold back. He looked tense for a moment then relaxed,
‘It was an odd situation and the ministers were rather outraged by it… but I did it every time. My father said to me, “Once you start, you must see it to the end”. The solicitation of the mercenary corps by the Princess of Icecoreta was famous.’
It was? She did not understand it.
Unless it was about of war, the ministers of state sighed in boredom. But that was not really useful to the people; she had been angered to tears. She wanted to slam her hand on the table in anger at the memory.
‘Were you Rain?’ She felt that she would have remembered such beautiful golden brown hair even if she didn't remember their face.
‘When I was younger I had red hair, so even when the colour changed, I dyed it while I was with the mercenary company.’ He said nonchalantly.
A person with red hair…
“What are you doing to the battlefield even though you are a woman? Are you here because you’re curious or to watch swordplay of that red haired brother, Ross?”…
Zuben: I've been working on this for the past few days, 'Please be more serious' was done when I got tired of this one. Dear readers, there is no smut for three more chapters, at least 😭