They met immediately.
Seeing Carla’s white mantle wave in the castle’s corridor, Ria called out to her.
“Yo. What’s up?”
“Hi. Until Hime-sama’s preparations are complete, I’ll be reviewing my training.”
Although Carla seemed cool with her response, that pretty face had collapsed in Ria’s arms.
Just thinking back to it what enough for Ria’s chest to tighten. A wicked lust was overflowing form a part that wasn’t there.
“So then, mind if I tag along?”
“Please, feel free.”
With a perfect smile, Carla responded.
Then, those two looked at the sight of knights lined up in a row practicing.
Whenever some knights sought advice, Carla would answer.
Nodding as though in a feverish dream, they would head back to training.
Carla was smiling faintly. Being watched by her, the knights practiced with extra vigor.
It was a mystery that no one was looking at her with lustful eyes. Maybe they thought that falling in love with a goddess would be insolence?
Well, if they just focused on training, they would probably get their superior’s attention.
(Though even so, even Carla eats and poops… Probably.)
Despite Ria thinking about such disrespectful things, Carla was standing in a dignified manner next to her.
A single knight stood in front of Ria.
“A moment, your highness?”
He was standing upright. The man seemed to be a serious person.
“Yeah, what is it?”
“I’ve heard that your highness uses a katana. In truth, I also use a katana. If it is alright, please instruct me.”
There certainly was a katana on that knight’s waist.
That put Ria in a good mood. As the knight hoped, she went to stand in the practice area.
So long as she could wield a katana, she could concentrate. Ria was that kind of a living thing.
She instructed him in general forms. She crossed blades to show him, but he wasn’t that skilled.
Carla called out to Ria after she returned.
“When you truly fight, it’s easier to understand.”
“It’s also different when watching from the side.”
That was probably true.
Just by looking at Carla, one could feel Ria’s body temperature rise if they touched her.
But, she wondered.
Even after sheathing her katana, she still couldn’t think of anything but her.
They were that.
Probably, her feelings were that.
The thing known as love.
“Now then, how about us talk now?”
Clapping her hands together, Guinevere began to speak. Without going into any useless preamble, she declared the start of their conference.
The cabinet members that directly participated in the nation’s administration, as well as Ria’s group, were there. Though they’re called her group, that didn’t include Gig and Maal since they were representing the ogres and the beastkin. They would get their individual time.
Though it was probably fine to bring Serge, he also didn’t go since he would be introduced as a scheming child.
“First off, the purpose of this conference is the concentration of power in the northwest part of the continent to last out the millennium. After that, I don’t care.”
“Exactly, and for that Cordova must be destroyed or made to surrender, as well as reform its government.”
“What do you mean by reform it?”
“First of all, reform its laws. That country is too strict with its criminals.”
What did Ria mean when she said Cordova’s laws were strict? To put it simply, they were rigid to an extreme degree.
Filled with set precedents, there was no room left to take circumstances into account. Still, people were excessively deemed as having committed national treason. Their government gave the people no rights to object either.
With its censorship of certain ideas, it was pretty much a socialist country. Its nature was even worse, like a despotic country.
(Maybe Serge should have come after all?)
Ria thought to herself.
(He’s read a lot more than me, he’d probably have a few ideas on it. Let’s speak to him directly after this.)
“Also, it’s not limited to Cordova, but remove demi-human discrimination. That part might be a little difficult though.”
The population of beastkin in this region, although not exact, was probably even larger than the amount of humans.
Though it was strange that it hadn’t already happened in this country, the cause might be because a lot of people’s livelihoods depended on hunting and gathering. To begin with, even in Ria’s previous life, theory had it that large villages had consolidated together in order to have the population necessary for agriculture.
“Demi-human discrimination… Although segregation is a problem, it’s not something that’s particularly rejected either.”
However, there was a clear distinction between demi-humans in the surrounding regions.
Since their ecologies were different, it was natural that coexistence would be difficult as well. That’s also excluding foolish examples such as strong people that don’t conform with physiology.
“However, with things like problems with food and land rights, conflicts will occur.”
The minister of state was nodding.
“That might be something for the future, but right now our problem is the millennium. For the food problems, I think the propagation of agriculture is still necessary. However, both beastkin and ogres are fundamentally love meat…”
This time, it was Maal and Gig’s turn to nod.
“Well, the food problem will be dealt with one way or another. I just want the dwarves’ metallurgy techniques and magic stones produced from labyrinths. If we have those, to be frank, I have confidence that we wouldn’t lose against Cordova.”
There seemed to be plans to mass produce the golem that Guinevere was on.
Cordova’s military might was famous, its heavy infantry’s outfits were given magic defenses and its cavalry were mobile and strong. However, when taking into account how its wars developed and the way it ruled afterwards, it wasn’t a real threat.
“To win against Cordova, we just need to tear down their logistics and military engineers.”
Cordova’s largest advantage was that it was a nation specialized in war.
It maintained a national highway, it built fortifications, it transported military equipment and provisions, and had a moving army.
Its principles were the threat.
“With that, if we don’t come together into a large alliance, I think that we won’t be able to overthrow Cordova.”
The minister of foreign affairs and the intelligence chief were explaining that even if there were countries that declared Cordova as their absolute enemies, it seemed there were also countries that sought to survive under Cordova.
But both kinds of countries had something in common: they feared Cordova.
Although they said ‘under Cordova’, those countries only did so because they were afraid. They figured that they would want to weaken Cordova’s power or destroy it if they could.
“So, the one to become the symbol of this anti-Cordova’s buildup of power… is you!”
With a snap, Guinevere pointed towards Ria.
“You~ are~ Casalia’s~ Ojou-sama~. Cordova’s~ main~ house’s~ Ojou-sama~”
Guinevere was twirling her fingers in circles while talking funny.
“If it’s you~ other countries will follow~”
Then, she stopped suddenly.
“Do you have the resolution?”
With that said, Ria was stumped.
To become the symbol of something. She had experienced that in the past.
Most of all, all of the ogres were under Ria’s leadership. Their soldiers would die if it were for Ria.
If it were them, they wouldn’t object to running into a battlefield. But then she would be burdening them with something from a foreign country, wasn’t that arrogant?
“From your father in Casalia, you will get the title of archduke and establish a grand duchy. Then you will oppose Cordova. So?”
(I see, so that’s Guinevere’s plan huh?)
“I can’t manage a country…”
“Leave it to me, I’ll be the regent. Realistically, Manesh dukedom would become the grand duchy.”
However, the country called Manesh would likely disappear.
“And I would like you to make my son your adopted son. That would preserve Manesh’s legitimacy.”
(Ah, so that’s it.)
“And though I wanted you to choose a king from one of our aristocrats… I’ll ask your frankly. Are you truly homosexual?”
Hearing the blunt question, the ministers’ faces tensed up as expected.
Even so, Ria didn’t think the queen was being audacious, and she wouldn’t start lying here.
With an exaggerated sigh, Ria shrugged her shoulders and answered.
“It’s true. From the moment I was born until now, I’ve never harbored feelings towards a man.”
Towards Ria’s declaration, the cabinet members faces were aghast.
People would usually conceal something like that. Well, although male homosexuality was famous among aristocracy, they didn’t think she would answer so resolutely.
“It’s no good even if it’s a handsome youth that looks like a beautiful girl?”
“Impossible. There were many handsome youths in Casalia’s court as well, but even so I only thought the women were good.”
Toward’s her hardcore declaration of homosexuality, the cabinet members were drawing away.
Carla was thinking over Ria’s interests, but she simply stood behind the queen with a face that said nothing.
“Well, I don’t mind living in the same residence for political reasons, but don’t expect anything for the night. For that, give me a bride.”
Many of the courtier’s faces reddened towards her frank manner of speech.
Since this country’s governing body’s average age was relatively young, there seemed to be people who couldn’t overlook it.
“A bride huh… that should be possible.”
The queen also said something unreasonable.
“Someone that’s a high ranking aristocrats’ daughter, still unmarried, and beautiful of course…”
She looked behind her.
“Carla, will you do it?”
At that moment, the assembly hall blew up.
“Definitely not, definitely not!”
“Carla-dono is the only one that can’t!”
“Carla-sama is everyone’s!”
“Better yet, please marry her majesty!”
(You’re pretty popular, Carla-sama. That’s probably understandable for a country’s savior though. Unexpectedly, even the queen isn’t as popular?)
At any rate, Carla still wasn’t married even now because of them sabotaging each others’ attempts. As for Ria, she couldn’t help but saying GJ though.
“Right! A man like her, to Carla-sama…”
“She isn’t… a man right?”
(Why’d you all suddenly get quiet there? Oi.)
“… Isn’t it fine?”
“Yeah, it’d be different if she were a man.”
“This could even be a reward!”
“There it is!”
(Oi oi, their speech suddenly turned towards something incredible.)
“So, we won’t go against Hime-sama’s proposal, but…”
Everyone’s gazes were collected on Carla.
She wasn’t the usual saint, but neither was she blushing. She spoke with a faint smile.
“As your highness desires.”
It was a political and diplomatic stage.
In order to utilize Casalia’s influence to the maximum, they would immediately send messengers.
Although a person at the level of a cabinet member would naturally become an ambassador, Carlos would be travelling with them. The purpose was to tell a detailed story to Ria’s royal father of what happened after going out to travel.
Lulu would also be going. She would be explaining the various circumstances to Agatha.
Although it was arranged that he would be going together with them as a representative from the ogres, Gig was exempted from this. The main problem was that he just didn’t understand political conversations. They would pick up someone from the ogre area on the way.
Moreover, they would also similarly pick up and adult beastkin on the way.
Although it would be best if Ria herself went, she had to do things like getting acquainted with the domestic aristocracy and negotiate with foreign ambassadors. She had a ton of work to do.
“Take care of yourself. Carlos, I’ll kill you if you do something strange to Lulu.”
“I swear on my pride as a knight.”
Carlos declared that while trembling slightly.
And so, the two left Manesh.
Shizuna called out from behind Ria. Thinking about it, those two had always been with her the whole time she’d been travelling.
Ria turned around, smiling faintly.
“Lonely huh… will you comfort me?”
Being hugged as though she were gently being wrapped up, Shizuna’s face reddened.
Though Ria and her comrades moved into the residence that Carla owned, there weren’t many chanced to meet with her.
Carla, who held the role of secretary as the commander of the queen’s bodyguard, was busy. Living in the inner palace everyday, Ria herself also had many domestic things to take care of.
The periods where Serge was away also increased. He was contributing towards the development of the queen’s magic weaponry. There were also a lot of cases where he received magic instruction from Guinevere herself.
Irina was also distant from Ria, learning the fundamentals of the sword from the knights. And she wouldn’t part from Maal.
Consequently, Ria was always with Shizuna and Gig, but…
As for Ria and Shizuna, they shared a bedroom.
Although Shizuna’s title was tentatively Ria’s guard, she was actually her mistress.
She participated in the knights’ training, and although there were few scornful aimed towards her since she displayed her skill, she didn’t think that being thought of as someone’s lover was shameful.
Shizuna was innocent after all.
Meeting Ria, although she knew what making love to someone was, she didn’t really feel like a homosexual.
Deliberately keeping her in mind, Ria didn’t pursue her every night.
When she had little time, she would kiss her cheek, whisper sweet words into her ear, and sleep.
The calm days continued.
Since Carla and Ria didn’t share beds, Shizuna was relieved. Though Carla was her legal wife, it couldn’t be helped since it was a problem of social status.
When she slept while actually being held in Ria’s arms, even though she would remember her inferiority complex towards Carla’s beauty, Shizuna would console herself.
When Carla was settled into the position as Ria’s wife, Ria spoke to her.
“Since we aren’t a true couple, if you can find a man you really like, it’s fine to leave me.”
“That won’t happen.”
Carla made that assertion with her usual calm smile.
On the evening of such a day.
Ria, who had quietly slipped out of the castle, was wandering around the town near the castle.
That wasn’t her goal. Her goal was to get out of the castle.
A bat flew through the dark night.
Stopping on a small street, there was a maiden with flaxen hair wearing a hood.
“It’s not that it’s hard for me to enter the castle or anything. Its barrier is weak.”
After complaining like that, Asuka started talking.”
“Cordova is stirring.”
The upheaval had began.