Translation: Kurehashi Aiko
Editing: Team Foxsunes
「Edi, you remember that there was something I wanted to talk to you about, right?」
「Ahh, that’s right? What’s with that? Is there something you would like to ask of me?」
「Yes. In fact, I do.」
When I nodded my head in confirmation, that man looked at me, his spoon stopped half-way towards his mouth with a huge portion of food still on it. His dark eyes were opened really wide in a gesture of shock. Certainly, it was rare for me to ever admit that I wanted something from that man so openly. However, it should not be all that surprising that I would like to make a request of him from time to time. So that shocked expression was completely unnecessary in my opinion.
Basically, it’s not that I think that I lack anything in my life at the current moment. Quite the opposite: I am very much satisfied with my life and I don’t think I could possibly ask for anything more. However, this time the situation is slightly different from the usual one.
This time around I needed to say things properly, otherwise, I would never hope to be understood. That would be too scary. So I put my own spoon down right next to my plate and I start talking with a serious expression.
「I was thinking, and I came to the conclusion that I would like for us to take a little break from each other’s company.」
THONK! That man blinked a few times upon hearing my words, and they must have shocked him so much that he forgot that he was still holding a spoon in his hand. It slipped from his hand and fell down towards the table, splashing its contents onto the table and even managing to land perfectly in the middle of that man’s plate, splashing the food all over the place. As a result, the tablecloth and that man’s whole outfit were being stained with thick stains of soup and sauce. I rushed to his side right away to try to clean up the mess he had made, but despite that fact that man still continued to stare at me in disbelief, his eyes wide open and his body frozen stiff.
「Edi! Are you alright? It was really hot, did you get burned anywhere!?」
I procured a tissue and wanted to wipe that man with it as fast as I could, but just as I was to do that, he reached out towards me and grabbed me by my hand. I was surprised that his grip was so powerful, and when I turned to look at him I saw his sharp gaze staring ruthlessly into my eyes.
「How many times?
「Eh? How many times what?」
Is there something that you are dissatisfied with? Or maybe it’s because I’m not showing you enough love and affection?」
「It’s true that at first there might have been quite a lot of things that left much to be desired…… Even your family was oftentimes mentioning just how weird it seemed for a married couple to be so distant and constantly on guard when being together all the time. After all, a married couple should be more affectionate towards one another. I am also sure that your parents and mine used to have quite a few heated arguments or quarrels in their time. Could it be that it’s because I have indulged myself too much in your kindness? I have no idea it was this bad, but you should have told me so if you were feeling dissatisfied instead of enduring it all on your own like that……」
「E-Edi, could you please try to calm down for at least a moment here……?」
That man started to spew word after word out of his mouth so fast that I could not possibly keep up with them and as a result, I had little to no idea what exactly he was talking about. What also seemed to aggravate me was the fact that his voice was still so forceful even though he was clearly being distressed, while my own voice was so silent and lacking in any power. It was just weird to me. No, there was something else to it as well. That man was talking so much and so fast, but his voice seemed to sound pretty much bleak and without any vitality to it. I also could not help it but realize that the man’s hands were shaking quite a lot, so it was probably not his fault. I wonder if it was just because that man felt embarrassed right now? No, it must be simply because that man felt overly happy. What that man probably meant to say was something along the lines of: if there was ever something I have done to upset you, please tell me about it and I will see to it that I won’t do it again. At least that’s what I think, and I also think that reasoning like that is basically wrong.
I put my hand over that man’s hand he used to grab me with, and then I gently take it off my hand with a smile. When I happened to visit my parent’s house a few days ago, my mother was there. “You should not spoil that man so much” was what she said to me. I can see it now that it was exactly like she said. Looking at it now, even though my mother always seemed like a quiet and refined lady that listened to her husband and did everything exactly as he told her to, in fact, she was the one who was holding his reins and manipulating him into doing things exactly as she wanted them to be done. So if my mother was telling me I should not spoil the man too much, she was probably right and knew exactly what she was talking about. So perhaps following her advice just this once should not be all that bad of an idea.
「Right now I am very happy and content with my life. I don’t like the idea of us parting for a while, but I know that it won’t be the kind of farewell that lasts for good. According to what the princess have told me, it is going to last for about two weeks at least……」
Upon hearing my words, that man finally came to a halt and the waterfall of words that was coming out of his mouth finally came to a stop. Just like a broken record, his mouth was opening and closing even though there was no sound coming out of it, and he just grabbed my hand again. It was clear to me that he simply could not believe what he just heard. I wanted to say to him that it was hurting me and that he should let me go, but seeing a tinge of sadness and hurt in his eyes, I reluctantly chose to stay silent.
I didn’t think it would be possible in the slightest, but could it be that this man was actually afraid of something? I know I said that I would be away for about two weeks, but it is only just that: two weeks. Nothing more and nothing less. We still had the time before our departure, and we did not go there to have fun or anything, but in order to attempt the pre-marital meeting. And adding to that the time needed to actually get there, it would amount to four weeks total at best. So it’s not all that long.
I would be away from that man for about two weeks. For the first time in quite a while, I would not have him by my side and I would be completely on my own. I know that for that man it might seem like a really long time, but if you put that into the perspective of being separated from him for over seven years during which that man attended the Magic Academy, this timespan was barely a moment to talk about. To overreact like that to such news is a sign that he perhaps has very little faith in me and does not really trust me…… Just when I was about to point that out, the man opened his mouth and spoke up in a muttered tone.
「Why? Do you really need to go all the way there together with the princess?」
「I don’t know if there is any reason behind the decision, but the princess asked me herself to accompany her on this journey. And since the princess considers me to be her dear friend, and I like to think of her in the same way, is it not only natural that I would like to be of help to her? …… Hm? Ara? Edi? What’s wrong? Did something happen?」
I only noticed that now, but there was a deep wrinkle cutting through that man’s forehead. Really now, what is going on?
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