Display of Trust
Though a surprise attack took place, Queen Vera insisted on completing the tour before returning to the imperial palace. She fearlessly gave her particularly impassioned speech before everyone at the end as planned, lightning the fire in the hearts of countless people, something they hadn’t felt in a long time. She couldn’t be any more eager to immediately behead Ikana and hang her head before the masses. Her official ascension was instantly met with waves of cheers and the despair of the opposing faction.
They managed to get through the ambush safely despite the dangers. Liu Yue, however, had her clothes torn due to her transformation. She’d be nude if she reverted to her human form. As such, she decided to wait to return to the palace before reverting and asking her sisters to bring her clothes.
Queen Vera walked next to Liu Yue and stroked the latter’s huge claws. She complimented, “What a big fox. Your fur is magnificent.”
Liu Yue nodded. She couldn’t speak, but it was obvious she was happy to hear the compliment from the way she wagged her tail. Liu Yue was very happy since the Moon Fox Tribe was proud of their fur. Queen Vera grabbed a strand of fur. She asked, “May I pluck one?”
Queen Vera’s request startled Liu Yue. Liu Yue was against it, but she couldn’t really refuse Queen Vera; hence, she nodded after a moment of hesitation. Queen Vera stopped to think then took the short sword the youngster passed her. She cut off a strand without hurting Liu Yue. Queen Vera scanned the soft strand of red fur. With a smile, she said, “If a scarf was made with this fur, I don’t think any woman would be able to resist…. Hahaha, sorry, sorry, I shouldn’t have made such a joke in your presence. Sorry, sorry.”
Queen Vera patted Liu Yue’s leg. Liu Yue hopelessly walked toward the palace. Queen Vera was evidently excited and elated even after the ambush; she laughed the entire way. The four sisters, on the other hand, weren’t so keen. After all, they were the ones who came under attack.
Vera was flummoxed as to why they were the ones targeted. Logically speaking, their target should’ve been Queen Vera. The last incident could only be considered accidentally hurting the wrong target, meaning they only fired at Queen Vera as she happened to be with them. If the enemy wanted to bury Queen Vera below the rubble, they should’ve blown up the buildings when the first carriage passed by, but they didn’t. Instead, the enemy spared the first carriage and went after the second one. The possibility of the enemy not knowing which carriage Queen Vera was in could be ruled out because she was waving the entire time.
“Why did the assassins come after us sisters? There’s no logical reason for them to target us, is there?” pondered Vera.
Daisy sat in a demure posture to one side. She still had her tight grip on her bloody sword. She wasn’t afraid during the battle. Fear kicked in after the adrenaline wore off, nevertheless. It was as if the dagger did hurt her, but the pain was delayed. In the past, she’d imagined she performed as dominantly as her parents when she fought. After a real fight with her life on the line, she was scared and worried. Discovering she lacked the courage to kill was depressing. When she saw the assassin cry and plead for his life, she freaked out. She didn’t know why she was scared, but she felt that, if she cut him down, she’d lose something precious. She didn’t know what she was afraid of or what that precious thing happened to be.
Vexed, Daisy beat herself up. She questioned, “Is it courage that I lack? I’m Mom’s daughter. I’m the daughter of the most outstanding Valkyrie, yet I don’t even dare to kill someone. What in the world am I doing? Have all the blessings and help Mom gave me all these years gone to waste?”
Nona gently hugged Vera. Vera looked ghastly pale because she required mana replenishment. The issue was Nona was too embarrassed to replenish her sister’s mana in public. Vera couldn’t stop her eyes from turning red, which was proof that her true nature was returning. The Galadriel Tribe didn’t require fresh blood, but their innate nature would awaken when they faced a lack of mana.
Concerned, the youngster leaned his head toward the window and asked the three, “Are you… all right?”
Nona gently shook her head: “Not too good. We need a good rest tonight. Otherwise, our bodies won’t be able to handle it.”
“I understand. I shall speak to Queen Vera. You can skip tonight’s gathering. We will arrange for food and drinks to be sent to you. Also, I am very sorry, Princesses… I am your bodyguard, yet I exposed you to danger…”
Nona expressed, “Don’t mind it. It is not your fault; you are, after all, Queen Vera’s bodyguard. Our bodyguard did not follow us, and we did not get hurt.”
The way the youngster gave the reins a firm tug hinted his guilt. Overwhelmed with shame, he trotted behind the carriage. He kept his head down in silence. The three sisters didn’t blame him, but Nona inadvertently hit him where it hurt with one thing she said.
The youngster was no longer Queen Vera’s bodyguard. Queen Vera’s bodyguard was the young man in white, not him, yet he left his post on his own accord to run to Queen Vera instead of protecting the four sisters. He did out of instinct. Still, it was a blunder he couldn’t shirk off. He failed to live up to Queen Vera’s faith in him.
The youngster went up to Liu Yue’s side and, in a soft voice, said, “Sorry…”
Liu Yue’s ears twitched. Puzzled, she looked down at the youngster. He had his head down in silence. The next step he took, though, a gust of wind swept him off his feet, literally. He found himself in the air. He shrieked as if he was drowning. When the view in front of him settled, he finally realised Liu Yue was dangling him from her mouth, hanging onto his cloak.
“Miss Liu Yue, what are you doing?! Sorry! Sorry! Put me down… Whoaaa!!”
Liu Yue swung the youngster, and then spat him up. He screamed as he frantically swung his arms. Upon grabbing onto her fur, he realised he was sitting on her back. He didn’t know what she had in mind. He was careful to not touch a strand of fur. Liu Yue just calmly continued walking. Nona put one of the curtains down. Befuddled, she asked, “Does Liu Yue like having people on her back?”
“No, she doesn’t. She only allows someone onto her back if she trusts them.”