Azur Lane: Episode of Belfast Volume 4 Chapter 1 Part 7

「As a matter of fact, this year’s Beauty Pageant has been canceled, effective immediately.」

「Huh? Cancelled? But why?」

「Yes, about that…… It’s actually a result of various overlapping circumstances, but I won’t go into too much detail here. What is important here is that the event itself has been canceled anyway, and for this year’s School Festival each faction is going to use this here theater to perform some kind of a show for everyone else to see and enjoy.」

Belfast, who has been listening closely up until now, finally decided to open her mouth and speak up..

「Your Majesty, what kind of performances is the Royal Navy faction going to show to everyone?」

Elizabeth took a deep breath upon hearing that on-point question, keeping her hands on her hips at all times, and then she puffed out her chest in a gesture of pride as she exclaimed,

「The Royal Navy is going to hold a stage play here!」

Along with those words, Warspite who was beside Elizabeth all this time but was keeping herself to the back, loudly applauded her words.

「And why did you happen to decide on a stage play specifically, Your Majesty?」

Belfast asked her calmly, unfazed by Warspite’s deliberate applause, most probably a previously-agreed-on maneuver the purpose of which was to divert attention from the main subject. .

Even Edinburgh, who had been in a daze at the announcement of the Beauty Pageant cancellation and declaration of the Royal Navy’s stage play performance, suddenly came back to her senses.

「A-Ah, oh yeah, that’s right. So as long as it’s not something really urgent and we do not need to rush then —— I mean, huh? Ah, I see. While we were gone, you must have had some sort of general meeting with Hood-san and the rest and came to decide on something like that, right, Your Majesty? Aha, ahahahahaha.」

Edinburgh smiled in a really forced way, trying her best to just accept reality as it was being thrown right at her.

However, there was no response from Elizabeth and Warspite, who were just standing on top of the stage, not knowing what to say.

「H-Huh? Huh, oh my……?」

Faced with something like that, Edinburgh was once again at a loss for words.

「This does not seem to be the case here, it would seem.」

Belfast said so with confidence in her words.

「I-It was decided with a meeting! It certainly was not because I neglected my duties and forgot to check the message that was sent to me beforehand! Not at all!」

For some reason, Elizabeth suddenly yelled those words out loud in a panic.

「A-And besides, does it even matter right now!?」

Saying that, Elizabeth pointed her right index finger at both Belfast and Edinburgh, who were still standing in the audience seats.

「Now listen to me, and listen well! If I said that we are going to make a stage play, then a stage play is what we are going to do! Because this is what the Royal Navy is all about! Our homeland has produced many excellent playwrights into the world, and they have produced many equally excellent plays! A whole lot more than all the other nations of the world grouped together! ed a lot of excellent playwrights, and it’s a faction with more active plays than anywhere else. Now, if you understand, just nod your heads!!」

Before she could even take a breath, Elizabeth said all those words and put her hands on her knees while rocking her shoulders up and down in apparent exhaustion.

Apparently, Her Majesty just wanted to use the momentum of the situation in order to convince them, so that they would not ask any unnecessary questions.

It was actually the course of action that Belfast could understand to a certain extent.

Belfast then cast a quick glance at Edinburgh, while letting out a small sigh inside of her mind.

「Nee-san, apparently it will be better if we do not pry too much into that matter.」

「…Yes, it would seem that way. See? Warspite-sama is also holding her head in a gesture of despair.」

Just as Edinburgh said, Warspite was holding onto her head and sighing before she knew what she was doing and managed to stop herself from doing just that. From that fact alone, it was clear that some kind of incident had happened, that ultimately must have led to this very situation.

「…… I think I understand the situation now. So? What do you want us to do, Your Majesty?」

Belfast immediately spoke up.

「To be perfectly honest, both Nee-san and I are pretty much amateurs when it comes to knowledge of theater…… Is there really something that we can be of help with here?」

「…… Ah, the notion of having no experience won’t be that much of a problem here.」

Warspite opened her mouth while massaging her temples as if she was in pain up until now.

「The reason as to why we called you here is not because we wanted you to share with us your knowledge and experience when it comes to theater.」

「Well, if it is not about that, then what kind of business could you possibly have with us?」

「If possible, I’d like to ask the two of you to find me some good source material for the script of the entire play. The script that must be written by tomorrow at the latest.」

Belfast cocked her head slightly upon hearing those words.

「The source material, Your Majesty?」

「Yes, that’s right. The source material.」

It was also at that moment that Edinburgh joined in on the conversation.

「Just to be perfectly clear, by “source material”, surely you do not mean some of the ingredients or toppings used in the creation of sushi, Your Majesty? Because that would honestly be the specialty of the Sakura Empire, and there is little to nothing that we can do to assist with that particular matter……」

「What, no! Of course not! What are you even talking about!? I’m talking about the script stuff! The ideas and all that!」

「Ah…… So that’s it, huh?」

As a maid, it felt way more natural to Edinburgh to imagine the cooking ingredients in this particular case, but upon hearing the explanation, Edinburgh just nodded her head in complete silence.

「In short, I want you to come up with the idea for a ​​written script using the Maid Corps as a model!」

Once again, Elizabeth opened her mouth and another convoluted explanation escaped from it.

「Using us as a model, Your Majesty?」

Belfast’s eyes unintentionally opened really wide upon hearing this.

As expected, she would never imagine that they would be chosen as the source material for the play that the Royal Navy was going to perform.

「Yes, that’s right. If we are going to perform a long-awaited stage play, it should be only natural that we are going to do it based on a subject that is entirely unique to us and which no other faction could possibly hope to replicate. Besides, since I will be writing the script, I would pretty much like to narrow the subject down to something that I am well familiar with. And if that is the case here, that pretty much leaves us with the maids as our main theme.」

「Since we will observe your daily lives and routines in order to adapt them for the best possible script that there ever was, we would like to observe as much of you in your natural habitat while you are going about your daily routines as possible. Now then, is there actually someone who could perform some interviews for us?」

Belfast was at a loss for words and answer after hearing Warspite add that other part of the explanation.

「We will collect data on your daily lives around the dormitory…… but I wonder if there is anything exciting that can be used as a base of a story……?」

「Honestly, Your Majesty, I don’t think that the job of a maid is all that exciting of a profession in the first place……」

Edinburgh murmured those words, and Belfast nodded her head in agreement.

To begin with, for the shipgirls who belonged to the Royal Navy faction, the existence of a maid was nothing all that out of the ordinary. And besides, pretty much everyone around the dorm knows that the maids are always very busy working every day to make the lives of others in the dormitory as comfortable as possible.

「It seems that finding a suitable person to do it is going to be very difficult, indeed.」

When Bel-chan said so,

「—— I’ll do an interview!」

For a moment out there, everyone thought that they had misheard those words, but that was not the case here.

Someone right next to Edinburgh, on the other side of Belfast, was staring at Elizabeth and Warspite, who were standing on the stage and looking equally as surprised as the maids themselves.

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