Translation: Kurehashi Aiko
Editing: Team Foxsunes
Somehow, that sight made me feel extremely anxious. I even grabbed onto the hem of that man’s black robe and squeezed it tightly without even realizing that myself. Then, I could feel that man’s hand gently being placed on top of my own hand. I looked up only to see that man’s usual expression, which to me seemed to be strangely soothing now of all times. He then opened his mouth to speak, and his expression changed slightly.
「Here in the Azure Desert, the one in charge is the person who invented a special compass made out of magical stone and knows how to use it. So first and foremost, there is no need for us to worry about getting ourselves lost.」
「That’s right. And even if you yourself don’t know how to use it properly, there are those who know how to do it. You could say that this is their specialty. Not that we do not have someone like that here with us.」
Says the princess while looking at the man with her amber eyes, which were glowing brightly in the rays of the setting sun. No way, are you serious? I looked at that man’s face with a confused expression myself.
「Edi, please don’t tell me that you can use a device like that……」
As soon as I said those words, that man quickly nodded his head without saying anything. Then, after a moment of brief silence:
「More or less. To begin with, I am the one who made improvements to the device, making it much easier to use in its current form, as compared to the primary version that was not all that user-friendly.」
In the past trading and far travels were pretty much impossible to do without a working compass, so making it easier to use was a huge improvement for almost all people, especially those dealing with trade. It was a really huge feat to accomplish, one to which I could only say ‘Really?’ in admiration. At the same time this sudden revelation was making me want to laugh. Just how high-spec is this husband of mine, I wonder?
This situation right now was so ridiculously amusing that I just could not stop myself from laughing just a little bit. But seeing that apparently I was the only one who thought about that that way, I soon stopped and cast my eyes down, feeling embarrassed and a little bit guilty at the same time.
I also let go of that man’s black robe, but that gesture did not accomplish anything, for that man was still placing his own hand over my own. Seeing that display of affection, the princess even laughed in amusement, muttering ‘My, oh my!’ and other lines like that. I know that it was not his fault, but it would be great if he could realize that flirting like that in front of other people, especially the princess, was not that great of an idea. But even if I try to cast that man a discreet glance for him to let go of my hand, his expression remains unchanged and his hand shows no sign of moving away anytime soon. That man! Why was he capable of acting like that only in those kind of situations! I wanted to open my mouth in order to complain to him, but it was at that moment that something strange occurred.
CLUNK! At first it felt that the wheels of the carriage stumbled upon something on the road that made it all bumpy and shaky, but over time the shaking and swaying of the whole vehicle started to grow even stronger. At the same time, you could hear the frantic sounds of the distressed horses coming from outside of the carriage. Apparently I was the only one in here who was distressed and on alert because of that, for the other three seemed to be completely calm and relaxed, even though the shaking was quite intense.
「So, it seems that they have come.」
Said Heinrich in a voice so quiet and composed that I had a hard time actually hearing him through the sounds that the carriage was making. It seemed to me that the three of them knew that something like that was supposed to happen in the first place.
I wanted to ask what exactly was going on here right about now, but before I could do that I heard a woman’s sad voice and a man’s angry voice somewhere outside of the carriage, gradually growing closer. It was something I was unable to quite comprehend. The only thing I was able to somewhat understand was that apparently the carriage was currently under attacked by someone.
I wanted to know what exactly was going on out there, even if only for a little bit. So I wanted to look out the window and have a look for myself, but it was at that moment that that man’s white hand covered my eyes, preventing me from seeing anything.
When I peeled off that man’s hand and looked at him, his expression seemed to be just like the usual, but since I have been living with him for so long now I could see that there was an ever so slight sight of tension on his face. So from what I could understand, even though he was looking calm, apparently there was at least some sort of cause for concern in this current situation. I wanted to open my mouth but at the same time the man turned away, summoned his trusted staff into his hand and went to open the carriage’s door.
「Princess, no matter what happens, do not let Filmina go out of the carriage.」
「I know, you do not need to remind me. Anyways, do your best out there and stay safe no matter what. Oh, and please, could you try to limit the damages done to the carriage? Or avoid them completely? It was paid from the precious taxes of the people, so I would like to avoid having it damaged or destroyed if I can help it.」
「I will see what I can do.」
The princess and that man looked at one another, exchanging serious looks. But from the tone and content of their conversation, I was not sure whether or not they were serious or if they were joking. No, now was hardly the time to contemplate things like that. I looked at Heinrich next, hoping that maybe he would be able to explain what was going on to me, but he only smiled at me gently without saying a word. He then turned towards that man and nodded his head at him.
「Goodness gracious, you are so worried about Filmina, but I do wonder who is going to protect me?」
「You are more than capable enough to protect yourself. Or do you still wish for someone to protect you, knowing full well that we are heavily underhanded here?」
「Of course I know that. And it is true that I am more than capable enough to take care of protecting myself. I was just messing with you, seeing that you want to play the role of a knight in shining armor so much.」
「Was that supposed to be a joke as well?」
After that, and reminding the man not to overdo it one last time, the man opens the carriage’s door and goes outside. Out there, I could catch a glimpse of the knights with their swords drawn, fighting against the mysterious invaders. Their opponents were people who covered their heads and lower portions of their faces with long cloths. In terms of their clothing they looked much like Arabian bandits from the ‘Tales of One Thousand and One Nights’ from my ‘former’ world. Even though there were no cavalry or ‘elite-looking’ units amongst them, the knights were having a hard time fending them off thanks to the unfamiliar sandy ground they needed to fight on.
I held my breath as I watched the man exiting the carriage and joining the knights fighting near it. Heinrich stood up as well, walking towards me but staying slightly behind, looking in the exact same direction that I was.
「I see that when the Pure Black Wizard decides to do something, there is nothing you can do in order to persuade him not to do that.」
He murmured that in a calm and collected voice that hardly ever suited a situation like we were having here right about now. Then he stepped outside of the carriage and jumped off to the ground, joining that man and the knights in their fight.
「Do not open the doors under any circumstances. We shall open them ourselves once everything is over.」
After saying that, Heinrich shut the door close and went towards the ongoing battle. For a single moment silence returned to the carriage’s interior, with the sounds of battle being completely gone. However, I was more than aware of the fact that just outside of that door there was a fierce battle going on. If I were to exit the carriage right now, I would only be a nuisance to the defenders. I realize that. However, I could not stand the fact that I was left here to be protected by the princess, if I was her assistant, not the other way around.
Can’t wait to see more? Want to show your support? CLICK HERE to be a patron and get additional chapters ahead of time!