Side Story 02: Hans and I
Unusually, I had a lot of spare time.
I was alone in Ojii-sama’s mansion.
Nico was in a different room with Prince Al on some royal business.
Nii-sama and Gill were talking about something with the Farland noble boys.
The younger Farland noble boys went somewhere.
But I didn’t want to go with them.
Those little boys shouldn’t be looked after by a two-year old infant. Plus, I’m a weak little girl.
I’ve been exhausted since I’ve had to play with the little ones these past few days.
Why are you laughing when I haven’t said anything? Stupid guard.
Ojii-sama and Oji-sama are busy, and even Natalie was taken to the kitchen because the mansion was short-staffed.
That was why I was left with this guard who laughs at anything.
“Isn’t it fine occasionally? You have too many people at your side, Lei-sama. You like having quiet, alone time don’t you?”
And yet, it was somewhat frustrating because he knew me too well.
“I’ll show you around the mansion a bit if you’re bored. I don’t think Marquis Neville will have any problems with this.”
I like to relax but I’m at Ojii-sama’s mansion. He did show me around before, but I still want to look around.
Hans lifted me up in his arms even though he rarely did this.
“Everyone in this house is like an ally. I wouldn’t have let Natalie go to the kitchen if they weren’t.”
Natalie looks after me and picks me up if it’s necessary. Hans always kept both his hands free to protect me.
We usually moved around with the three of us. It was really unusual for Natalie not to be with us.
“Then, why don’t we go talk about Dean-sama’s past?”
I looked up at Hans. Hans’s hold on me was steady and comfortable.
“Yes. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been subjected to his whims. He always says ‘I’m going out of the royal capital for a bit’, but he goes all the way to the northern fief.”
It’s probably something else.
“He threw that line at the Supervision Department and left as soon as he could since he predicted that they would say yes. People felt sorry for me since I was the special forces captain back then.”
That’s kind of cool. Hans smiled wryly and shook his head when I looked at him in admiration.
“Ah, the special forces are guards for the Four Marquises when they leave the royal capital. In short, they rarely have to work without someone like Dean-sama around, so they’re special.”
I thought Hans was cool and funny.
“Aren’t you thinking of something rude?”
I averted my gaze.
“Let’s go to the entrance.”
Hans walked out of the entrance and stopped for a moment. Then, he didn’t look at the mansion, but at the vast prairie and hills beyond the mansion.
“Maybe he was suffocating. I think he wanted to see this kind of view when he left the royal capital to go to the north. I remember when he got off the dragon, he just stayed here forever gazing into the distance instead of going into the mansion.”
“Yes, it was tough being around him. I honestly wished that he would hurry up and go into the mansion.”
Otou-sama can be a nuisance sometimes.
What did he think about while standing in the winter wind?
“Wait! Ojou-sama! You’ll catch a cold! I think that’s what I used to hear.”
“Dean-sama would scowl and wonder what was happening, and she’ll bump into him.”
Don’t tell me that’s…
“That’s right, it was Claire-sama. She stared at the surprised Dean-sama with sparkling eyes and then suddenly looked disappointed. Then she reached out to Dean-sama’s eyebrows and fuhah.” My guard really laughs easily.
“Hit his eyebrows.”
What are you doing?
“She said, ‘I heard that you have wrinkles between your eyebrows, but you don’t’.”
Otou-sama would be troubled even if she criticises him.
“‘That’s not something I know of’,
‘Oh my, violet eyes, how pretty’,
‘Don’t you listen to what people say to you’,
‘It’s cold, so you should go into the mansion’,
‘I wonder who stopped me from doing so’,
His body shook with laughter.
“Claire-sama didn’t listen to what others had to say. It was also interesting for us to see Dean-sama get flustered since he’s usually the one manipulating people. He fell in love with Claire-sama straight away.”
I can’t believe that’s how they met.
“Well then, I guess we’ll go to the place where they had tea for the first time next.”
“I had no choice. The Four Marquises must always be watched when they leave the royal capital. Dean-sama must have found it suffocating, but he acted as if we weren’t there.”
“Lei wnowsh.” (Lei knows)
That was how Otou-sama was like at the beginning.
Hans swayed me gently.
“You probably do. I can’t tell you how much Dean-sama mourned when he lost Claire-sama.”
“Did you shee him Hansh?”
“Yes. I watched over him at the funeral until she went into the tomb. I just watched though.”
Graces said the same thing. That’s right. Even if they want to do something, they can’t, and they have to do things they don’t want to do.
“Hm, for what Lei-sama? I didn’t do anything.”
“Thanw you for wathching over Otou-syama.”
I felt the hand that was holding me tremble a little.
“Well, shall we go?”
“Yesh tho thhe thea pwace!”
“At that time, Dean-sama, buffo.”
I’m sure Okaa-sama knew about Hans too.
But she probably didn’t know that he laughed so easily.
I felt like I heard her say that she did know that he laughed easily. His expression always changed easily when he stood behind Dean-sama.
You’re right, Okaa-sama…
Hans is staying by Otou-sama and my side now.
“Lei-sama, did you hear what I said?”
And he’s very chatty.