Horizon:Volume 3B Chapter 45
Chapter 45: Classmate in the Depths of the Darkness
The depths of the night
Tend to flatten people out
Point Allocation (Not referring to their breasts)
Someone sat in the dark night.
It was Mitotsudaira who wore a Far Eastern girl’s coat over her shoulders and had a skirt placed below her butt and thighs. She took a slow breath, sat up a bit, and looked around.
They were currently resting in preparation for their early morning departure, but she could not sleep.
…It’s so hot.
Her body was filled with heat, but it was more of a swollen heat than a flushed one. She felt pain and itching across her body and it all throbbed too much to sleep.
She could always have Naito cast another pain reduction spell, but…
…Margot is tired, too.
The battle was over and the Hexagone Française forces had withdrawn.
“But this is still a complicated situation.”
She thought about the result of that battle and the present situation.
…Musashi and Hexagone Française agreed to a ceasefire and the chancellor should have been released.
“But I never thought my mother would ignore the ceasefire order.”
Was it wrong to think that was very like her mother?
Hexagone Française’s vice chancellor had ignored their orders and was imprisoning another nation’s chancellor, so it had to be an awkward situation for them. Before withdrawing, Henri of the Three Musketeers had said Hexagone Française would continue trying to convince her mother before they reached her.
According to Henri, Hexagone Française’s internal situation meant they could not afford a conflict with their vice chancellor. Mitotsudaira sympathized with them, but at the same time…
…There isn’t a doubt in my mind that my mother isn’t thinking about that. This is all about having fun and sating her hunger!!
But others could easily view it differently, so Henri had suggested another method of restraining her.
…We have to continue our mission.
No, that was not quite accurate.
…We have a new mission with my mother.
Henri had given them the mission that Masazumi and Mazarin had settled on aboard the Musashi. It was a mission for Hexagone Française that took place inside M.H.R.R.
<Work with Hexagone Française’s vice chancellor, travel with Musashi’s chancellor to the tower outside of the M.H.R.R. city of Magdeburg, and meet with Rudolf II who is confined there. Acquire the memo he has from Great Chancellor Carlos I concerning the Princess Disappearances.>
The details would be sent in a letter carried by a black bird spirit.
“Even my mother won’t be able to touch the chancellor if the mission specifies to travel with him.”
But would she really? A capricious beast was a frightening thing.
And that mission also required them to meet with Mitotsudaira’s mother and travel with her.
Her thoughtful mind and body were filled with heat and refused to work properly.
The others were the same. Naito and Mary were both injured and exhausted.
After the battle had ended and Henri’s group had left, she had been the first to sit down. Her wings were stained with blood in a few places and the fingers of her right hand were dislocated.
According to her, the dislocation had allowed the damage to escape and kept them from bursting, but she had soon pretended to cry and said, “Ma-yan, it hurts.”
Mary had expressed legitimate concern and started to heal her, but her uniform was cut in places or otherwise disturbed. She was likely injured, but she had a way of prioritizing others.
…And after the reduction spell and my previous healing, I can’t let myself be too much trouble.
Mitotsudaira had declined to be healed. She had asked Mary to heal Naito, herself, and Tenzou first.
Building a fire was bad for the forest, so they had used a spell to cook some light food in a kettle and make some plans. Tenzou had taken the first watch and that led to the present.
But Mitotsudaira was wide awake and unable to sleep.
Mitotsudaira took in a breath to cool her body.
The air filling her lungs was chilly and contained a hint of dampness and flavor.
As her body cooled, she could tell it was loose, dull, and swollen.
…Maybe that’s why I can’t gather my thoughts and calm down enough to sleep.
What had happened to the chancellor? What was her mother doing with him?
What had happened to the Musashi? What did the other nations want to do with Musashi?
And what should she do about all of this? What did she want to do about it? She acted like she understood it all, but there was a great barrier standing in her way.
If they did not do something about the Reine des Garous, Musashi had little chance of victory when they faced Mouri in the history recreation. But the fact remained that not even Futayo could touch the woman.
“And no matter how much thought I give this, if the chancellor is eaten…”
It will all be over, she thought while sticking her hands into her hair to hold her head. But then she heard a sudden sound from below.
She heard the moving of underbrush and rustling of clothes as someone got up. Based on the direction it came from, she knew who it was. It was Mary.
Mary must have realized she had noticed because Mitotsudaira heard a voice before she could wonder what the girl was doing.
“Can you not sleep?”
She could hardly say she could sleep, so…
“Judge. That’s right.”
She naturally gave that answer and the small fact that she had exchanged honest words with the girl seemed to calm her heart a little.
…I really am obedient, aren’t I?
It was too dark to see her face clearly, but the weariness was beginning to leave it. The superiority of her Loup-Garou blood may have been helping her or it might have been the effect of the exchange during the previous battle and of the rice ball.
Regardless, she could now clearly acknowledge that she had shared the battlefield with the other girl.
And so she spoke first this time.
“This is a difficult night to sleep on.”
“Judge. You’re right. …I can’t sleep either.”
Mary walked over while still crouched down, but she did not approach any further than Mitotsudaira’s feet.
“Lady Mitotsudaira, may I see your heels? You were dragging them a little as we walked earlier. Your shoe was rubbing you, wasn’t it?”
“I don’t need-…”
She trailed off and was not sure what to say, but Mary smiled and spoke in her stead.
“I can’t seem to calm down, so can you help me out a little?”
Toori woke in the darkness.
He was leaning back in a chair with his arms dangling over the back.
He was also completely nude.
He tilted his head when he noticed this.
“Did I strip when I was drinking? Well, the God Mosaic is set to activate automatically, so that’s not a problem.”
But where am I? he wondered as he looked around the dark room again.
He had a number of thoughts, but none of them were going to help. It was dark, so…
“I guess I’ll go to sleep. …Oh, I’m wearing shoes! I’m a maniac!”
At any rate, he was in the dining room and he guessed the neighboring room was the guest room.
“I doubt Nate’s mom wouldn’t prepare a bed for her guest.”
But, thought the naked boy in front of the door’s entrance. He put his hands on his hips and puffed out his chest.
“If Nate charged in shouting ‘Chancellor!’ right about now, she’d probably kill me.”
But I’ll go to sleep and wait for her, thought the idiot while scratching his head and continuing into the back room.
Something isn’t right, he realized. Why am I going back here to sleep?
“I can always spend the night sleeping in that weird position on the chair.”
No, more importantly…
…What’s this smell?
It was not quite a good smell. Nor was it a strong one. Whatever it was, it lingered, refused to go away, and wafted in from that back room.
…This isn’t a smell.
It was an aura, a presence, and a sensation that all mixed together into a vague feeling of anticipation.
The anticipation told him he would find something back there, so his body reacted on its own.
His legs had taken him three steps forward by the time he noticed their movement.
…Oh? Why am I headed that way?
But his legs refused to stop and they slowly walked onward.
…Wait. Wait, wait, wait.
A part of his mind was telling him this was a bad idea, but the usual side of him had a different thought.
…I really want to see what’s in that room!
What could it be? It isn’t everyday I feel this much anticipation. The most recent time was three days ago when Horizon crouched over to pick up a spoon at mom’s shop. I’m not sure if that’s really what you call anticipation, but it made even me gasp in surprise. You’re a frightening girl, Horizon. Oh, but my gasp sensor also reacted when Asama’s fastener came a little undone on her way up the stairs yesterday.
“What is it this time?”
His feet had grown unsteady at some point, but the idiot entered the next room regardless.
“If you’re asking for help, I don’t have much choice.”
Mitotsudaira noticed a hint of a smile in her voice as she removed her shoes. She undid the ankle fastener for her tights and revealed her feet. Mary gasped slightly.
“Heh heh. It’s slow, but Loup-Garou skin absorbs blood to heal. It’s much like how spirits and other ether life forms absorb ether to form their bodies.”
“I see,” said Mary. “Then I need to heal you before you absorb that blood or my efforts will be meaningless.”
Her tone made it clear she could do it.
…Tenzou has gained quite a capable wife.
As she gave that impressed thought, a soft green light appeared at her feet and first touched her calf.
“Sorry. Did that hurt? I was loosening your body’s ether pathways with a massage.”
In England, she had learned the bottoms of her feet were sensitive, but…
…My lower legs are too!? I was careless!
At any rate, she felt her back and shoulders suddenly go limp.
“That’s due to the circulation in your foot, Lady Mitotsudaira. As a Loup-Garou, the flow of ether is especially important. England’s Celtic healing spells pass the ley line ether through your body to remove any toxins and normalize your body, so it might help you relax and get to sleep.”
Even as she listened to Mary, she could feel the swelling in her back and the other heat across her body vanishing.
…The Celts have frighteningly good healing techniques!
At the same time, something else bothered her.
“But isn’t this an Hexagone Française forest? Don’t your spirit spells use-…”
“Judge. The spirits are impartial as long as you do not pollute the forest. Just like your mother had no connection to the nation, spirits are generally independent beings. It is all reliant on whether I can communicate with them effectively or not.”
The girl laughed bitterly.
“I had difficulties at first, but there is really nothing to it. England’s control of the ley lines ensures there are always spirits nearby, but…”
Mary struck empty air.
“Come,” she called and something appeared there.
“Light,” said Mitotsudaira.
“Judge. It is important to call for them. The spirits are always out in the open in England, but they are still hidden and watching us here. It’s easy to think they are already showing themselves in a forest this large, but they are cautious and want to relax at home.”
Mary’s cheeks were illuminated by the light and there was a fresh injury there. It would eventually disappear, but it bent as she smiled and she pulled an ointment from the small bag hanging from her waist hard point part. The scent was enough to know it was made by crushed plants.
“I will use a Far Eastern divine charm to make a compress. If you keep your tights off, the charm will remove the impurities from your body, so can you do that?”
“Judge. By the way, where did you learn to mix Celtic healing spells and Shinto spells?”
“Judge. While working at Lady Asama’s shrine. They use medicinal plants with Shinto healing spells and this is the same. My way uses a lot of plants you can only find in Europe, so I need to learn about the Far Eastern plants eventually.”
What a capable girl, thought Mitotsudaira as her hostility continued to vanish.
Suddenly, Mary said something else.
“I think Musashi’s chancellor is still safe.”
That was what was bothering her. Suddenly hearing the forefront of her worries confused Mitotsudaira.
“Wh-why would you say tha- hyan!”
“Eh? Oh, s-sorry. Did I start too strong?”
Control yourself, control yourself, she thought while biting her lower lips.
Meanwhile, Mary massaged her foot and spoke.
“To be honest, the spirits and wild animals are still cautious.”
She then realized what that meant. This was the Reine des Garous’s territory and she was a forest predator.
“You mean my mother still hasn’t filled her stomach?”
“Judge. If the predator had calmed down, the spirits and animals would have relaxed. Since they haven’t, it means Musashi’s chancellor is safe for now. And if that is still true in the morning, I think it will be safe to assume the Reine des Garous has decided not to eat him. A wolf eats at night, after all. But…”
Mary tilted her head.
“That is all I can say. …I don’t actually know when or how she eats. Do you know, Lady Mitotsudaira?”
It was hard to say that she did. Her mother had not eaten anyone since Mitotsudaira had been born. But she had heard some things from her mother or from other people.
“She has young men surrender to her and then eats them. And she does it at night. At times much like this.”
“Surrender to her?”
Mitotsudaira more or less knew how.
“Um, well, it’s nothing too strange. She…uses a woman’s weapon.”
Toori passed through the door-less entrance and found a bedroom. The dark room contained cabinets and shelves, but the light from the small window shined on the bed.
The bed was already occupied.
It contained the Reine des Garous.
She had the blanket pushed against the wall, she leaned diagonally against it, and she looked at him with her knees pulled back just a bit.
She was completely naked.
“So, well, uh… She uses a woman’s weapon to get the man to surrender.”
How did the Reine des Garous lure in the men?
After giving a brief explanation, Mitotsudaira looked back to Mary. She was afraid the girl would think she was being inappropriate or vulgar, but Mary nodded with a perfectly serious expression.
“That is…a serious problem for Musashi’s chancellor.”
“Y-yes, i-it is.”
She understood me! thought Mitotsudaira in surprise.
“I hope my mother does not try anything so unbefitting of her age.”
“Judge. But your mother is currently a student.”
“Um, well, it’s enough of a crime to wear a school uniform when you have a daughter in high school, but I think it’s even more criminal to use that along with a woman’s weapon.”
She was unsure she should be discussing a family member’s shame like that, but Mary tilted her head.
“I don’t see the problem. Isn’t her woman’s weapon that silver cross? Won’t she just be beating Musashi’s chancellor with it until he surrenders?”
…She didn’t understand me at all!!
She suddenly noticed Naito getting up from beyond Mary. Naito waved a hand in front of her face to say it was useless and lay back down.
…H-huh? Aren’t you going to help me!? Or at least say something!? You’re just leaving it be?
From his scent, she could tell Tenzou was crawling away from them. She wanted to throw a rock at him, but she could not when Mary was watching.
Meanwhile, Mary tilted her head.
“Was I…wrong? But don’t you need strength to make a guy surrender?”
What am I supposed to do? she wondered just as Mary smiled.
“But your mother might be able to manage without strength. She is very beautiful, so Musashi’s chancellor might let his guard down enough for her to sneak up on him.”
This was a new kind of comment that left her unsure whether Mary was complimenting her mother or saying the chancellor was going to die.
…But it seems Mary has little understanding of that kind of thing.
She decided that was up to Tenzou. She also had a feeling Naito or Kimi would interfere, but there was no stopping that if it was destined to happen. But for the time being, the “beauty” that Mary had mentioned was somewhat similar to the “truth” that Mitotsudaira had tried to explain, so she began to speak based on that slight misunderstanding.
“I’m not so sure. My mother is pretty old.”
“But she has an excellent figure and she stands straight and tall.”
Mary answered with a smile, but Mitotsudaira sensed something off about it.
Huh? she thought.
She soon realized what it was, but decided to ask to be sure.
“Um, Mary? How would you describe me in that regard?”
“Eh? Oh, you have an excellent figure, too.”
…I knew it!!
For the first time, she realized that someone satisfied with their own size would place anyone above or below them in the general category of a “decent figure”.
From the point of view of England’s representative, both Mitotsudaira and her mother were nothing more than different types of “well-formed figures”.
…She’s on my side!!
But another thought occurred to her.
…But wait. That doesn’t solve anything concerning my mother’s seduction of the chancellor.
She held her head in her hands and Mary spoke to her.
“Um, Lady Mitotsudaira? Is something the matter?”
“No, um,” she hesitated. “I have a feeling the chancellor is going to surrender to her.”
What were the chancellor and her mother doing?
With the moonlight on her exposed skin, the Reine des Garous looked to the boy.
“Come join me.”
She raised and bent the fingers of her left hand to beckon him over.
…It has been a while since I played this game.
Quite a few divine courrier had been coming in from the chancellor’s officers, but she had ignored them all. A Loup-Garou royal was having some fun tonight for the first time in decades, so it was crass to interrupt her.
…I haven’t done this for over twenty years.
This was a “game” Loup-Garous played.
Starting with the War Cry, there were several techniques lupine races had as predators. That included their fangs and claws, but Loup-Garou royals and nobles had nearly spiritual bodies and could alter the surrounding ether to lure people in.
Their mind would be taken from them, they would subconsciously realize they did not stand a chance, and they would stop moving and offer up their own heads.
The fear of a predator was transformed into the pride of being eaten.
Long ago, she and the others had made a game out of seeing how quickly and deeply they could achieve that state. At first, all of the men would show hostility and harbor doubts about the temptation, but they would eventually be unable to resist any longer and would try to take sexual advantage of the situation.
But as they drew closer, the temptation would grow stronger. Their “desire to become one with her” would begin as a sexual desire, but ultimately…
…We exist on entirely different levels and that difference creates to the relationship between predator and prey.
Once they approached, they would realize they could no longer escape. So instead of resisting and being crushed, they would choose obedience. They would choose to sleep with her and be painlessly eaten.
“Is something the matter?”
She narrowed her eyes and lowered the ends of her eyebrows as she lured him in.
The timing of her question and the tone of her voice were perfect. It had been a long time, but her instincts had not dulled.
…Even as a mother, I still have what it takes!
She had her husband’s permission. While eating breakfast, she had said she was going to “deal with a boy who is after our daughter”.
Her husband was quite tolerant, but he had told her not to push herself too much while she licked butter from his lips.
…I don’t know what he meant by “pushing myself too much”, but th-that isn’t a problem here! I’ve still got it! I really do!!
When I get home, I need to “devour” my husband in a way that doesn’t involve eating him!!
She somewhat missed the others who would be watching from the shadows back in the day, but she gave the same soft breath she would back then. She gently twisted her hips to point her navel toward the boy.
“Will you join me?”
He did not respond, but he had to be reacting. No one had ever resisted the Reine des Garous’s seduction and no one ever would.
…This really takes me back.
In this opening stage of the game, some lower level Loup-Garous would fill the room with erotic scents or slip something into their food.
That was one way of enjoying yourself, but the higher level Loup-Garous viewed the seduction like a kind of sport. They would try to get their prey to surrender without relying on anything but their own ability.
This boy was Musashi’s chancellor and student council president as well as the one her daughter referred to as “my king”, so he was well worth being her prey.
And if her daughter’s king surrendered to the Reine des Garous’s seduction and was eaten, she would stop pretending to be a knight and return to being the obedient child she had once been.
…She will probably hold a grudge, though.
This might break the bond between mother and daughter, but that was fine. Musashi’s plans sounded like a game and she could only imagine they had been made up on the spot, so the second in line to ruling the Far East should not be going along with that.
…So I will make this boy mine.
Once he is part of my flesh and blood, will my daughter start referring to me as her king?
She called out to him again and gently crossed her arms below her breasts to show them off.
The naked boy took a definite step toward her.
The motion and footstep toward her confirmed that she was still attractive, so she pictured her husband’s face.
…Honey! I’m still in top form! I hope you’re ready for when I get back!
She mentally struck a triumphant pose.
Two girls hung their heads while exchanging words in the dark forest.
“D-don’t worry, Lady Mitotsudaira. I don’t think Musashi’s chancellor will give in to strength.”
“Yes, he definitely isn’t the type to give in to strength, but I’m worried about something else.”
“Eh? What would that be?”
After a brief pause, Mitotsudaira whispered her answer.
“Her excellent figure.”
Thoughts moved rapidly through Toori’s mind.
…Um, is it just me or has this gotten kind of amazing?
What even is this? All of a sudden, there’s this wife. A Loup-Garou, but a wife. Is this what you call a Wife-Garou? That’s gotta be it. And she’s the Reine des Garous, so is she also the Reine des Femmes? Or maybe not. Anyway, this is Nate’s mom in front of me. Oh, man. My first time’s gonna be with someone’s wife? Isn’t that pretty sinful? And it’s a classmate’s mom, too. Isn’t that pretty amazing? Or will this make me less hesitant from here on out? Oh, but come to think of it, if all my time studying porn games pays off here, will Nate and I be brother and sister? Um…huh? If anything, wouldn’t I be her step-dad? Which is it? I don’t know Oh, but what’s with this wife in front of me? Her boobs are huge and her waist is all like…like…
“Wh-why are you twisting around like that?”
It’s supposed to be you, okay!? And her butt is more like th-th-this…um…
“Uh, what is that gesture? A trapezoid? Mt. Fuji?”
Sorry, but it’s your butt! Except I’m not sorry at all!! Anyway, what’s with this wife? If you like things big, she’s pretty much perfect. Her husband’s got a hell of a wife. I give her a perfect score!
But looking at her like that and comparing her with Nate… Nate, you’re way too different. And given your age, is your boob destiny already set in stone? Nate… Nate, you can cry if you want.
“Wh-why are you crying all of a sudden? Are you okay?”
Shut up. I’m crying for your daughter! Dammit, dammit! Give back Nate’s boobs! Give them back!! Give back the boobs! And make it a double! In French, that would be deux! Okay, I’m even starting to confuse myself now. But something tells me this is dangerous. After all, this is a wife and a classmate’s mom and a wife. I feel like I’m overlooking something important, but she’s a wife. That part’s for sure. …Now that I think about it, this could be a hidden camera show or something. Once I take three more steps, Tenzou’s gonna barge in holding a big sign saying “Surprise! You’re on Ninja Camera!” Damn you, Tenzou! I’ll never forgive you! I bet you can’t even tell me how much trouble I went through in England to get you a girlfriend! Well? Can’t do it, can you? Then you lose! Not that I actually did anything back then. Ah, this wife needs to stop wiggling like that. I’m gonna start moving! I’m gonna walk right up to her!! And I’m really afraid this is a hidden camera show. I mean, it’d take a third generation blacksmith to match the hardness I’ve got going on here. If this is a hidden camera show, Horizon’ll kill me once they measure that physical evidence.
Oh, crap! Horizon!!
This ain’t good. What do I do if she finds out? And if Nate or someone shows up to rescue me right now, they’ll definitely find out! And with the parent connection, Nate’s gonna find out no matter what! I’m screwed! Or am I? Can Nate and the others wait a while to show up? Well!? No, calm down. The trick to calming yourself down at times like this is to do math in your head. Um. 2378905 x…There’s no way I can multiply that!! Are you stupid!? Know your limits here!! So how about addition!? 65333 + 95829 =…No, when I see more than two numbers in a row, my brain refuses to think! I lose my focus and try to escape by looking at the wife right in front of me. Ha ha ha …No, don’t look! Don’t looooooook! O-oh, I know. I need to think about some other girl! I feel bad, but that’ll definitely distract me! Yeah, another girl’s the way to go! Like when Horizon gets the bread from the other side of the register and bends down like this. Then her butt goes like this and…um…
My hardness is only growing from that.
Crap. This is hopeless. Completely hopeless. I’m doomed to an erotic death. I’m definitely going to die. Is this fate? No, there has to be some other option! I’ll ask the angel and devil inside me. They’ll give me opposite answers, so I just have to trust in the one that sounds like it’ll work!!
Okay, my angel and devil. What should I do about this fate?
Devil: “Fighting fate is hard, so don’t do that.”
Angel: “Going along with fate is easy, so keep doing that!!”
Those may be opposite answers, but they mean the same thing!!
Oh, dammit. Her husband gets to indulge in this every night without having to worry. Damn, that must be nice.
“U-um, wh-why are you crying again? Excuse me?”
Don’t give me that worried look while wiggling around like that!
…I-is this boy okay!?
The Reine des Garous saw him react differently from all of her previous targets.
He was only three steps away. Normally, they would choose to kneel before her at that distance.
But this boy was not normal.
A normal person would not be muttering under his breath, would not suddenly start wiggling around, would not hold himself in his arms and shout “Ahh!”, and would not slowly begin to cry.
Earlier, he had turned toward the door and started saying, “D-don’t watch! There’s no thief here! There really isn’t!!” She had initially thought he had gone insane, but it seemed to be some kind of act.
He was approaching and he had a sleepy expression, but she could not let her guard down. If he did return to his senses, she would be forced to make him surrender by force.
…But the Reine des Garous has never before experienced the disgrace of having to make a man surrender by force!
Everything had been set up perfectly, but would she have to handle this like a common beast?
However, a sudden thought occurred to her.
…D-don’t tell me my charm has faded as I’ve aged.
Feeling uneasy, she decided to strengthen her seduction. She exposed her body to the moonlight once more and faced him. She gently spread her knees, reached her hand toward him, and undid her hair.
“Feel free to join me.”
She lowered the ends of her eyebrows.
“Do you not want to?”
As soon as she said that, the boy took another step.
She had drawn him closer and she rejoiced that she still had it.
…Now, kneel before me! Yes!
He bent over right in front of her.
She knew she had won.
…I did it! Honey, I really do still have it! I do!!
She thought about her daughter and how this would solve everything. She only had to finish things here.
She relaxed her body, faced him, and called out to him.
“Get down on your knees and crawl into bed. I’ll give you all the attention you want.”
She called out to the boy who was bending forward in front of her.
Beams of blood shot from both his nostrils and the force sent him flying backwards.
Rather than a fountain of blood, it shot from his nose in a straight line. The Reine des Garous took evasive action on reflex, but she suddenly came back to her senses.
“W-wait. You’re draining the blood yourself!? Just how helpful are you trying to be!?”
The force of the bloody stream sent the idiot slamming into the wall behind him. He then bounced off it and collapsed forward.
He collided into the floor starting with his naked crotch.
A dull sound and a prying sound came from the floor.
Musashi’s chancellor did not scream, but his expression did immediately grow serious.
He let out a grunt of air and collapsed limply into a manji shape.
The Reine des Garous watched the series of events in a daze, but…
A puddle of blood formed around his face on the floor.
She was taken aback when she confirmed the scent of the spreading blood.
“Wait. Um, uh?”
Flustered, she directly shouted her thoughts.
“What is going on!?”
“Huh? A-a disturbance is running through the forest’s spirits and animals.”
“What do you mean by a disturbance? Did my mother cause it? Or the chancellor?”
“Hm.” Mary brought a hand to her forehead. “It seems more like the Reine des Garous is confused.”
…The chancellor must have done something.
She was certain of it and there was nothing she could do about that.
But what had he done to disturb her mother so much? She did not want to think about it, but Naito suddenly sat up and gave her a thumbs up. She did not know what exactly that meant, but she got the general idea. She looked the girl in the eye and Naito lay back down.
“But,” muttered Mary while glancing around their surroundings. “The spirits are wondering what they should do and if they should help. It seems there is quite a commotion at the Reine des Garous’ place.”
“I have a feeling everything is going about as well as normal.”
“But… Yes, I think everything will be fine.”
Mary smiled and held up Mitotsudaira’s foot.
“Because the Reine des Garous has given her heart to a human once before.”
Mitotsudaira had an idea what she meant and Mary confirmed it.
“That is why you are here in the first place.”
Mitotsudaira listened to what Mary said about her.
“I have studied Far Eastern history and master Tenzou has taught me a lot, including your inherited name. …You have inherited the name of Lord Mito Mitsukuni, haven’t you? According to an aside in the Testament descriptions, he performed a pilgrimage of the Far East and researched a variety of things.”
“Y-yes. Judge. That’s right.” She shrugged. “I had been thinking of taking someone with me and making my own pilgrimage of the Far East after I graduate. Tomo has mentioned wanting to visit the different nations to investigate the mysterious phenomena there, so I had thought she might want to join me. But…”
“That would be difficult in Musashi’s current situation, wouldn’t it?”
Mary gave a troubled smile, but she made sure to say what she had to say.
“According to the Testament descriptions, Lord Mitsukuni was an unwanted child, wasn’t he? He was apparently the child of a master and his maid.”
Mitotsudaira knew about that. She had looked into it herself and others had made sure to inform her. But Mary continued.
“That is why his mother was ordered to kill the child; but the family that looked after her disobeyed their master’s orders, allowed the birth, and raised Lord Mitsukuni in secret. And…”
“I think that is similar to the reason your mother hid her position as the Reine des Garous until yesterday.”
“It was to hide that such a powerful being had entered human society and to hide herself when her body was under the strain of childbirth. Also, if people knew you were the Reine des Garous’ daughter, they might try to take you hostage. But she could prevent that by hiding her identity.”
“Then why did she send me to Musashi?”
“Probably to make people think you were not such an important individual. You may be second in line to ruling the Far East, but you were also a knight sent from Hexagone Française and therefore a puppet working for Hexagone Française.”
That was true. People had once pointed that out to her. They had told her, hurt her, and twisted her. She sighed while remembering all that. She hung her head and rested her forehead on her hands.
“You’re right. …I was sent there so the other nations would think I was unimportant. And I really was just a child when I was sent away.”
“There are some things I do not understand, but one thing feels certain to me now.”
Wondering what it was, Mitotsudaira raised her head and saw Mary tilting her head.
“You were not an unwanted child, were you?”
Mitotsudaira felt a chill at Mary’s words.
But not because she was angry or upset at the girl.
This was different. The chill felt like it was stroking her spine.
…Mary doesn’t know if she was wanted or not.
She had not been born to the correct mother and she had led to the death of the mother she had been born to. That second point applied to her twin sister Elizabeth as well, but…
“Mary, have you…ever resented your birth?”
“No, because I have no one to resent. But…I do wonder why.”
“You ask something you can never know the answer to?”
How long had she been wondering that? Mitotsudaira had no way of knowing; but Mary’s smile deepened.
“It’s fine. Master Tenzou gave me the answer.”
Mitotsudaira wondered if she should record this conversation and share it with the others later. But she noticed Naito open a Magie Figur as she lay on her side, so she left it to her. At any rate, she asked a question like an interviewer.
“U-um… The 1st special duty officer did? How?”
“Judge. …You see, I’ve been thinking recently. A lot may have happened between my parents and I may be looking at this in a convenient way, but…”
She held a hand to her cheek.
“I feel so happy when I’m with the person I care for, so I hope my parents had times like that too.”
Naito gave a thumbs up and Mitotsudaira replied via eye contact. She heard Tenzou collapse in the underbrush in the distance, so he had likely given up. At any rate, Mary continued while blushing.
“So can I assume the Reine des Garous had times like that too?”
“It isn’t my place to say.”
“Then!” said Naito while suddenly standing up.
Her bandaged wings shook, she held up her recording Magie Figur, and she gave a crescent moon smile.
“Mito-tsan, I want to hear about how your parents fell in love!”
“What? Wh-why do you want to know that all of a sudden?”
“Because.” She wrapped her arms around Mary’s shoulders from behind and the two of them looked up at Mitotsudaira. “I want to know how your mom ended up accepting your human dad. …It could even help us find a way to keep the chancellor safe.”
Mitotsudaira felt it was rare for Germans to be this motivated by pure curiosity, but she decided it was fine. It was late at night, this was a gathering of girls, and she had heard the general story before.
“Fine then. …It’s a pretty ridiculous story, though.”
As she began to speak, she wondered what her mother and the chancellor were doing.
Mitotsudaira’s mother and Musashi’s chancellor were intertwined on the bed.
“C-come on. Settle…settle down. Stop moving.”
“Nwah! O-ow, ow, ow. Wait. Seriously, stop rubbing me like thaaaaaat!”
“You’re a boy, so put up with it for now. I can’t believe you’re making this much of a fuss over some disinfectant.”
The mother was straddling the chancellor and pinning him below her butt. She looked down at him where he lay sprawled out with tissues in his nostrils. The idiot had gone limp from the healing charms placed across his body.
“D-dammit. I tried to resist, but now you’ve rubbed that disinfectant towel all over me and placed charms over my hair. My pride is in tatters.”
“And my pride as the Reine des Garous insists that I heal you after you were injured in my house.”
But, she sighed while wearing a shirt. I’ve finished treating his injuries.
“Anyway, I have to apologize. The floor in here is made of hardened wafers, so of course falling down that hard was going to leave you covered in scrapes. The floor used to be chocolate bars.”
“I was wearing my shoes, so I thought it was a wooden floor. I thought the contents of my God Mosaic would slide, but it caught on the wafer pattern. I haven’t felt a scrape that bad in a long time.”
“Anyway,” said the Reine des Garous as she looked down at the boy.
She had put his underwear and waist hard point parts on him. The ether gathered in the hard points regulated his body temperature and gave a barrier of air to support him while living on the Musashi, but it also regulated his blood pressure and heart rate when injured. So…
“Have you stopped bleeding?”
“Hmm. I still feel something stinging in my throat.”
“What a waste.”
She said that partially as a complaint and started to sigh, but she stopped herself.
This had been brought on by her failure to predict what would happen. This boy was a guest, so if she had failed to make him bow to her, it was due to her own lack of skill.
…My old friends would have laughed at me if they had seen that.
But she had another thought as well.
…At this point, it’s probably impossible to make him bow.
The room smelled of blood and disinfectant, so the mood was all wrong.
She had brought several dark green moss creatures in from outside and they were cleaning the floor
“Cleaning.” “Thick.” “Bleeding.”
…The mood could hardly be worse.
With that serious thought, she tossed the towel to the moss creatures. They called it a reward, but she wondered if it was really that great.
“Anyway, you bled an awful lot.”
“To be fair, I did eat a lot of meat for dinner.”
Musashi’s chancellor had a wet towel on his forehead to cool the heat in his face. The towel covered his eyes, so she could not see his expression.
“I’d really been holding back, so it had all kind of built up inside me.”
“After all, I’d had a lot on my mind. But as I thought about all that, I suddenly decided ‘to hell with it!’ and relaxed myself. That’s when it all came at once.”
Oh? thought the Reine des Garous.
“So you gave in?”
“Yeah. I mean you’re super sexy. And it all looked like it would feel really great. I started thinking no one would blame me if I explained the situation.”
“I think it was too much for me.”
She felt heat when she brought a hand to her cheek, but there was no point in denying it.
…So he did surrender to me?
He had simply been too honest in his acceptance and she had gone in too strong. He had forcibly tried to oppose her, so she had gone in even stronger and ended up with a forced result.
And the boy said something else.
“For what?” she asked.
“I brought shame to you.”
The Reine des Garous stared at Musashi’s chancellor.
He groaned in thought and placed his right hand on top of the towel covering his forehead and eyes.
“You see,” he said. “Horizon’s definitely part of the equation, but I also don’t like blaming others for something I did. And Nate said it’s rude to compare a woman with another one. So if you were doing your best to show off your beauty, I need to give a proper answer without thinking about anyone else. And if I was better with words, I’m sure I could convince Horizon of that.”
“But I can’t. I don’t have confidence in my skill with words, I have no idea what I should do, and I’m afraid of making some people angry or making them dislike me. But in the end, you’re the one that ended up losing out from all that.”
…This boy really does take things seriously.
So she opened her mouth and spoke while leaning down on him.
“Um, to be honest…I really was going to devour you. Oh, and when I say ‘devour’, I don’t mean it sexually. I mean I was going to literally eat you.”
“You have nothing to apologize for. This was a battle between predator and prey…and, well…”
This was only her second time to ever say this.
“Even if it was a situational fluke, you defeated me.”
“Don’t say that.”
The boy sounded certain of himself here.
“Don’t say that. I was the one that messed up. That’s what happened.”
She was left speechless and she stared at the boy as he gave a weak smile.
“Whether we’re talking about sex or dinner, Hexagone Française’s vice chancellor and the Reine des Garous isn’t allowed to make mistakes, right?”
“But the Reine des Garous can’t have a victory just given to her either.”
“Then one day, once I’m the king of the world, let’s have a rematch.”
The Reine des Garous was dumbfounded.
She had someone she could call her king. She had promised to serve them, her allegiance to them was certain, and that person’s brother would one day rule Europe.
…But a king of the world?
Would the boy pinned below her only call himself a “king” once he had become something even greater than that?
She suddenly wondered if she ought to kill him now.
After all, his face was hidden and he was defenseless below her.
Now is my chance, she thought while reflexively raising a hand.
But then he spoke.
“Sorry I’m not up to the task yet. I’m an idiot and I can’t seem to do anything right.”
She heard him sigh.
“You may have been planning to eat me if I was more skilled, but not even that happened. If you think you would’ve eaten me if I hadn’t started bleeding, then you’re basically saying I’m still too inexperienced.”
She realized that her conceited words and actions had hurt him.
So she lowered her head.
She relaxed her shoulders.
I see, she thought. That’s right.
…The Reine des Garous cannot lay her hand on an inexperienced child.
She would wait until this boy had grown into a man who could actually oppose her. That was how the Reine des Garous did things. And this boy faced her while viewing her as the Reine des Garous.
They had both understood that previously, so suddenly laying a hand on him here would be lying to herself and betraying this boy.
Also, her king and the others who had desired her position as Reine des Garous would be disappointed in her.
So she faced the boy. She looked directly into his unseen eyes.
“I have no intention of looking down on you. …You were trying to stand on equal footing with me, weren’t you? But you do not yet have the skill needed to do that. And yet… I’m sorry for pitying you for that.”
“Eh? Oh… It’s fine. That was just a little complaint. I can’t say things like this in front of the others. Also, I definitely lost to one person.”
“Your husband. …Nate was born because he defeated you, right?”
She felt her pulse quicken and her body stiffen.
“Ow, ow, ow, ow. You’re squeezing my hips between your legs! Tap, tap, tap! Ohhh! What’s this!? Boobs! These are nothing like Nate’s!”
“You’ve felt my daughter’s?”
She glared at him, squeezed until he screamed, and then sighed.
The boy also relaxed his body and his mouth bent upwards below the towel that hid his eyes.
“I’m jealous of your husband. He gets this all to himself every day, doesn’t he?”
“But,” he said. “Why did you leave here? From what I saw outside earlier, there’s a fruit tree…well, forget that one. But there’s a spring and it’s a nice environment, don’t you think?”
She trailed off as she began to think and then smiled a little.
They were alone together in this hidden house at night, and…
…I am his guardian right now, aren’t I?
It was a little much for a child’s bedtime story, but she wondered if it would work nonetheless.
“A lot happened a long time ago.”
I can tell him about that, she decided while lying down next to him.
“Long ago…well, not that long ago. Yes, it was when I was a bit – just a bit – younger than I am now.”
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