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“Your Highness is jealous of Lady Regina.”
While Burnett was tying a ribbon around my hair, she said on something completely out of the blue.
“Yes. You haven’t spent any time with Her Highness since you entered the palace, right?”
Did I? Now that I think about it, the first time I went to the imperial palace, the emperor called me, and Princess Lotte called and ran away.
Because I was always busy, Alex and I had never actually shared a cup of tea together.
“Oh, no way. Is His Highness only saying that because of that?”
“Take a close look at the arch of Your Highness’s eyebrow.”
He had been furrowing his brows from before. Burnett stuck her finger between my eyebrows to tell me.
“Your Highness always frowns whenever something upsetting happens. That’s not the same thing as being angry at all.”
What? I was nervous for no reason.
So, Alex, who has no friends, seems childishly jealous because I am close to Regina.
He’s an adult, but I couldn’t help but laugh because he reminded me of Isaac.
“Lady Regina has arrived.”
“Yes. I’ll go.”
Finally, it’s time to show off the newly renovated Crown Prince’s Palace.
“This is my bedroom.”
As soon as Regina walked into the room, she quickly touched her ears and immediately altered the expression on her face.
“What’s the matter?”
“My ears, wait a minute.”
The moment Regina came to a stop, she took out the earring she was wearing. It seemed to be a magic item, as I sensed a faint magical power, but it appeared to react to the barrier my father put up.
It was impossible for any extraordinary wizard to break through the barrier that Archmage Christopher Valentine had constructed.
“It is because of the barrier. You can remove your earrings for a little while, but you can always put them back in later.”
“Yes. It was my father who made it for me, and do you still remember the princess’s treasure house that we visited the last time?”
I illustrated it with an example so that it would be simpler to understand. Barrier magic is so difficult that I don’t know how actually to use it, but while I was reciting at least the theory, Regina asked a lot of questions, and she had an interesting look on her face the whole time.
“Then, is Her Highness’s treasure protected by such a barrier?”
“Yes. That is the way things are.”
“Here, not only can no one see us, but no one can even hear us. Even if it is the Majesty of the Emperor.”
It’s possible that earlier exposure to the magical earrings caused Regina’s earlobes to become red and swollen. She didn’t come right out and explain why she was wearing magic earrings, but I was able to figure out who had given Regina those earrings to wear on her ears.
“I apologise. I am……”
“What exactly do you have to apologise for?”
You must have been following the instructions that Princess Lotte gave you when you went to look around the palace that the crown prince was staying in. Nobody, not even I, can say for certain what the answer is. However, Regina did not take any kind of active role in the spying that she did.
The corner I believed, was this. They said that the princess would never be someone who only trusted the words of her subordinates, so she would definitely use any means possible to spy on the inside, so she would just need to come into my bedroom where that won’t work at all.
Even if you know the location, you will clearly know that it is impossible to break in or eavesdrop on the conversation inside my room due to the barrier that is placed there. After sorting out this annoying matter, I sat down with Regina at the table.
“As soon as I get here, please assist me. I have to crack open each one of them, but I can’t do it by myself.”
Miscellaneous gifts were arranged by the ladies-in-waiting, but it is polite to open precious gifts yourself. In that sense, Regina and I sat next to one another and unwrapped the presents.
This time too, the emperor did not disappoint my expectations.
Each time he gave me a strange gift, but this time he gave me a 10-volume book with <Imperial Courtesy and Laws> written on it as a gift.
“Ciel must be nice. His Majesty the Emperor personally brought me presents like this.”
“Well, I can’t really say.”
Simply taking a look at the front cover doesn’t pique my interest, and when I say that the thickness of a single book is about the same as the length of my pinky finger, I’m not exaggerating at all. I am truly sorry, but I would prefer not to provide you with something like this. Regina took a closer look at the presents I had been given while I was busy muttering to myself angrily about the fact that I had more things to study than were absolutely necessary.
“It is surprisingly simple.”
Compared to the name Princess of Valentine, it may seem overly practical and simple. I smiled mischievously and asked Regina.
“Then what were you expecting, jewelry or something?”
Regina nodded. I’m sorry if I didn’t live up to your expectations, but in my family, we don’t typically give our children gifts that cost that much money.
“There is nothing wrong with me. I was disciplined for messing around with my younger brother, and as a result, I was not allowed to eat snacks for a week. This happened a month ago.”
“Yes. My mom is very strict even if she doesn’t look like that.”
I’m not sure if I’m crying because I miss them so much at this point. When the story came up, I wanted to see my mother.
“Are you crying?”
“Nope, I’m not crying right now.”
It was a struggle to hold back the tears that were welling up in my eyes. what actions I can take to make myself better in the years to come. Regina did nothing but stand there and observe me as I went through the motions of opening each present.
“It seems I’ve been misunderstanding all this time.”
“I just thought that Lady Valentine would be a more arrogant person.”
Strictly speaking, the original Ciel was exactly like that kind of child. On the other hand, unfortunately, I still have all of the memories of my life as a petit bourgeois.
Now that I realise how priceless the happiness I have right now is, all I want is for my sister and the rest of my family to experience the same kind of fulfilment. I am not the same person at all. It has absolutely nothing to do with me.
Well, I can take care of Alex.
“Excuse me for a moment.”
Burnett came over to me while Regina went to her bathroom.
“Ciel. Please accept my sincere apologies, but I want you to be cautious about what you mentioned earlier in the conversation.”
“A moment ago? What did I say?”
I don’t think there was anything about it that could be considered especially dangerous. Burnett gave a little shake of her head as she watched me tilt my head.
“I’m aware of Valentine’s simple approach to family life, but the Imperial Palace is not the place for that. It is important to keep in mind that having such an attitude in this setting has the potential to actually poison Lady Ciel.”
What exactly are you referring to in this sentence? At first, I assumed that she was merely making a statement, but Burnett’s facial expression gave the impression that she was taking the matter very seriously.
“Before Lady Ciel is a princess of Valentine, you are His Highness the Crown Prince’s most precious guest.”
Ah. I have, at last arrived at an understanding of what you are referring to when you say that. People who get a kick out of spreading rumours about other people are probably going to find it interesting to learn about my actions, which were so unremarkable that I even felt a little bit embarrassed about them.
“You got that right. It would be a hassle to offer explanations to Her Highness, the princess.”
Indeed, it is the imperial palace where strife ensues. They could set up ten or twenty different schemes with just one word that I said was insignificant.
What if people find out that Alex isn’t looking out for me like he should? Princess Lotte loves it so much that she might immediately push me to move in with her right away at The Lily Palace or, in the worst-case scenario, at Stan’s place.
To be under the same roof as Stan, who is eagerly waiting for me to be alone with him. Simply imagining the possibility of something terrible occurring caused me to experience chills all over my body.
“You must be careful.”
“Yes. I will.”
Regina’s earring was blocked by the barrier and removed. So, the story we just talked about may not have fallen into the hands of Princess Lotte, but Regina returned while I was listening to the warning to be cautious in the future just in case something unexpected happens.
“Ciel. What are you doing?”
As Regina sat down, the table began to rock, and a teacup promptly fell onto her dress. Her maids hurried, but Regina’s green dress was soaked with cold red tea.
“Oh, my God, Lady Ciel. Shall we take Lady Regina to her dressing room?”
Aha. If I were to show you all of my dresses, I have no doubt that you would consider them to be quite simple. Burnett, who had a reputation for being kind, was indeed a veteran who had survived in the imperial palace for a long time.
“That’s right, Regina. Since things have turned out this way, you should wear my dress.”
Fortunately, we were both of the same size. I put my arms in a cross-like position and followed Regina into the dressing room.
In fact, it has been on my mind ever since. The green dress that Regina had originally worn had fallen out of fashion for several years, perhaps because of the poor family of Count Netias.
I could understand why Princess Lotte chose Regina. Because she comes from a poor family and has no supporters to speak of.
“This is a gift from me to commemorate our friendship. Won’t you accept it?”
What kind of response will Regina have to my favour? Even though the dress fit her like a tailored suit, but Regina looked at her in the mirror and shook her head sadly.
“I can’t accept such precious things. There’s nothing I can do for Ciel.”
She politely refused. I quietly noticed Burnett. If Regina was in fact, the princess’s spy and she came up to me with the intention of stealing my information, I would have expected her to take advantage of my gift in an effort to impress me.
“Regina is the first friend I made after entering the imperial palace.”
I approached Regina and rearranged the hairpins that she was wearing in her hair. When we looked at ourselves side by side in the mirror, we couldn’t help but have a good laugh. Regina was quiet, but she had a lovely smile that made up for it.
In spite of her warm demeanour, I stared blankly at Regina.
No matter what this kid is thinking inside, I need at least one more ally. It stands to reason that would be my top pick as well.
“Ciel must have already heard of it, but the situation within the Lily Palace isn’t very pleasant these days,”
“Is it because of the phantom thief who only steals jewels?”
“Because it happened a couple of times. Her Highness, the princess, seems to think that there is a culprit among the people staying at the Lily Palace.”
Burnett stopped me and listened. Alex said he would give it some thought, but he couldn’t just throw open the door to this place, which was similar to a courtyard.
He said that just letting Regina in today was a big concession but that if he avoided it, the princess would give up on Regina and send the second and third Regina instead.
I’d rather figure out the solution on my own than make an innocent person the scapegoat for the problem. To do that, I need to be properly prepared for Alex.
“I will convince you. So, please relay that information to the princess as well.”
Regina nodded her head in agreement, even though she was concerned. Therefore, once I had the guest back, I questioned Burnett.
“When will His Highness return?”
“He said the meeting would be long today.”
“Then can you tell me that dinner will be served when His Highness returns?”
In order to win Alex over, we will need to make some preparations. I still had a secret weapon, in contrast to Burnett, who was getting worried.
Even though it appears to be this way, this is the body in which my three older brothers and I lived together. Aside from that, I have an older sister who serves as something of an all-around cheat key throughout this novel.