“Your majesty! You have worked hard! Welcome home…… Ah… this miss is……” Luna blankly watched me carry Freya off the horse. She caught Freya with puzzlement. Freya leaned on Luna, looked at me and said: “Your majesty, if you have time, I would like to speak to about my plans for the next step. For the first step I already have……”
I cut her off: “Go and rest first. Eat, wash up, sleep and then we’ll talk about it. While I don’t have much time, I can spare a day or two. I won’t let you overwork yourself until you’re rested. I can’t just exploit you. Since you’re going to help me by my side, you need to prepare yourself to work hard.”
She looked at me and nodded. Luna looked at me confused. I said: “Luna, take Freya to wash up first and settle her living arrangements…… If there are any problems, discuss it with the head-maid.”
“Alright. But your majesty, you need to rest first……”
“I’m going to pay her majesty a visit. I’ll be back real quick. Of course… if I don’t come back after a long time, that means… mom kept me there to eat dinner. And I’m absolutely certain it’ll be her cooking. When that happens, you must remember to come and bring me back. I’m serious!”
The bowl of purple soup resurfaced in my mind… The burnt-rubber taste appeared in my mouth again and wouldn’t go away. That thing is my nightmare in this lifetime. I trust that there’s no one who would be willing to drink a bowl of burnt rubber. But I’ve tried it. Mom said it was a medicinal concoction used on the battlefield, but I reckon it’s a fatal poison!
“Alright, your majesty.”
Luna didn’t smile. Instead, she wore what looked like a forced smile. She looked at me with an expression like she was mad as if she didn’t accept my decision. It was similar to how Lucia looked at Mera which really surprised me. But I quickly caught on and understood what was going on. Elves are extremely jealous creatures. Could it be that Luna thought I brought home another maid to look after me with her causing her to get jealous?
You’re jealous of this too?!
I looked at Luna and said: “Ah, Luna, you don’t have to worry. She is originally a noble. I don’t intend to make her my servant. You alone are enough.”
“I’m not angry!”
Although Luna said that, I noticed that the corner of her mouth crept up into a relieved smile. However, that was the smile that scared me. Surely the jealousy of elves is a little excessive. If a personal servant doesn’t allow me to have a second personal servant, Lucia would probably grab a blade and chop Luna up to vent her anger if she found out I hugged Luna.
Heck, she might even hack me.
I think…I think it’s better not to mention it……
I silently walked toward the inner court. Nier wasn’t by my side this time. I didn’t see her at the inner court either. Alice wasn’t there either. Only Castell came up to me to welcome me. In his hands were clothes stained with blood. He smiled when he saw me and said: “Your majesty, you were very successful today. I never thought you could be so resolute. While your method was very extreme, the results were very good.”
“Thank you, Castell. Is her majesty in?”
“Her majesty is in the bathroom. If you head over, I believe that her majesty would be very happy. Her majesty has not worn this to go out to battle in a long time. Her majesty is in a very good mood. Perhaps it is because she had held it in for a long time and could finally let it out. However, your majesty, there is something I would like to speak to you about.”
Castell cleared his throat and then continued, “Her majesty’s birthday is coming up. Although she receives peculiar and amazing gifts from many places, I feel that what her majesty wants most would be a gift from you. I think you should prepare something to make her majesty happy.”
“You’re right.” I paused for a moment. To be honest, I don’t have a clue as to when Vyvyan and Elizabeth’s birthdays are. It’s not excusable for a child to not know their parents’ birthday. But I’ve just arrived. Yeah, I just arrived.
“Please prepare a present then, your majesty. Her majesty’s birthday is in two days’ time. I think you still have plans for your next move, but I believe it is best to pause for a moment for her majesty’s sake.” Castell bowed as he smiled and added, “After all, it is to your benefit if her majesty is happy as well. That is all. I still have to deal with this clothing, so I shall take my leave first.”
I watched Castell leave and suddenly realised I don’t know what mom likes. Mommy doesn’t usually dress up or use make-up. If I’m going to cook a meal, well, there aren’t many ingredients here, not to mention I can’t cook…. So what sort of thing can express my love for her as my mother? Carnation?
Come to think of it, back when it was mom’s birthday, I just gave her a call. The only birthday present I can think of is a cake. Am I supposed to make a cake here? Come on, I can’t even make dinner let alone more complex sweets.
What does mom like? I think mom likes me. What, am I supposed to tie myself up with a silk ribbon and offer myself up to her? If I did that, I bet Vyvyan would massacre her way here and the second war for their son would begin.
As I thought about it, I found I’d arrived at the bathroom. I changed my clothes. The maids by the side walked up. They didn’t ask me anything. They just bowed and then pulled the door to the bathroom open. The bathroom had three separate sections as aforementioned. Nier usually goes to the section with freezing water while I like hot water.
Mom sat in the warm-water area, with her back against the edge. On the tray by the side was fruit and wine. Two maids stood to a side. Mom’s long hair was like kelp floating on the water. A few strands of black hair stuck to mom’s snow-white shoulders. Mom heard the door behind her but she didn’t turn around. She just smiled and said: “It’s you right, son? You’re back a little bit late, son.”
“Yes. I was held up for a bit.”
Mom turned around and looked at me somewhat nervously. She extended her hand out and said: “Come, son. Come and bath with me. I won’t be so rough this time.”
I was slightly surprised. I didn’t think she’d remember what happened last month. Mom looked slightly nervous. It looks like she was afraid that I’d get angry again. I smiled helplessly and walked up to mom’s side, and sat into the water. Mom sat properly this time. It doesn’t look like what happened last time will happen again. But now I feel a little awkward.
After a moment of silence I said to mom: “Mom, thank you for helping me today. If it wasn’t for you, I don’t know how many guns I’d have had to square off against”
Mom smiled as she shook her head and said: “That’s because I’m your mom. Mommy will definitely protect you. While mommy didn’t protect you when you were young, mommy will definitely protect you now.”
Mom glanced at the scar on my chest and bit down on her lips. I gently reached my hand out and hugged mom’s arm. Mom shivered intensely and then revealed an expression where she wanted to smile but didn’t dare to be audacious. She kept her lips pursed together tightly. I smiled and said: “Mom, it’s alright, I won’t feel that you’re rough this time.”
“I-Is that right……?”
Mom turned around stiffly. She had trouble deciding what to do with her hands and feet. She looked at me to check my reaction and said: “L-Let… let mommy hug you then… as long as you’re not angry……”
I smiled and opened my arms.