「So is what the storytellers said really true!? That only a single person stood in front of the castle gates and cut down a thousand enemies!」
I have been granted an audience with Her Majesty, Celestina, the Queen of the Malt Kingdom……or it should have been an audience.
「How about the giant spider which crawled out from the depths of the earth!? How big was it!? The spider I saw last night in the bathroom was this big.」
The girl seated on the throne could not even reach the floor with her legs, but she kicks them back and forth while talking excitedly. All I could see is a child who’s talking about made-up stories she heard from somewhere.
「Your Majesty, don’t tell me you are going to invite those vulgar people like the storytellers to the royal palace? That won’t do. If you want, grandpa1 can tell you, so……」
「No! The stories told by grandpa are dull and boring. I’ll turn into an old woman just from listening to them.」
If this was a scene in a room of a common residential house, it would be a pleasant chat between a young girl and her grandfather, but unfortunately, this is the royal palace. Since we got interrupted, I’ll only say what is necessary.
「By the way, Your Majesty, I heard from the messenger that I was invited this time to discuss topics of peace and trade.」
I give the man called ‘grandpa’ a glance while speaking to the young girl. It is clear to me this girl has no experience, so the actual person closest to being the King and the influential person is this elderly man.
「Mu, talk to grandpa about those difficult subjects.」
「I will handle it in place of Her Majesty.」
The man called ‘grandpa’ is the Lord Regent2 named Marquess Lavoy. And sure enough, someone was appointed to her as the Regent as I expected.
「Our country has agreed upon a mutual non-aggression pact with Treia Kingdom. We have continued to uphold that pact for close to 50 years.」
「Treia has disappeared.」
「Disappeared? Where did it go?」
「Your Majesty, here are your sweets.」
「Ooh, I love sugary confections!」
Perhaps feeling bored from the conversation between myself and the Lord Regent, Celestina interrupted and was given some confections by the maid at her side.
「Indeed, the Kingdom of Treia has disappeared, and your nation has become the new neighboring nation. Although our neighbours may have changed, our desire for peace has not, however we have attempted to bind a non-aggression pact many times and have not been able to get a favorable reply.」
Of course nobody would accept. In the first place, a mutual non-aggression treaty is signed only when both parties view each other as a threat. There’s no meaning to signing an agreement of equal terms with an opponent who you can easily crush, and our King is not that naïve to do so.
「So sweeeeeet! I want more.」
「Your Majesty, if you eat more, your teeth will be eaten by bugs.」
「During that time, because you have also mobilized your army, we don’t feel at ease either.」
I have certainly moved soldiers for the patrol. But only 2000 of them, which should not be enough to make a country feel threatened at all.
「The heroic tales of Lord Hardlett has reached the southern countries by word of mouth of the storytellers as well. If such a brave general moves his army, your heart can no longer remain calm.」
「I will apologize for that. However, that is ultimately part of the process of dealing with the aftermath of the war, and the fact that my soldiers have been returned to their place should have made it clear I have no intentions to invade.」
「Yes, though that may be so, I would feel at ease if the pact is signed as proof.」
Fumu, it seems he wants me to sign the non-aggression pact no matter what. I’ve discussed with Leopolt and I don’t particularly mind, but I give Tristan a glance.
「Going on about ‘peace this’ and ‘peace that’……they’re practically screaming ‘I’m scared’ and ‘I don’t want to fight’. I don’t see what’s wrong with it? We’re not going to attack them anyways. If they’re going to be so childish, they shouldn’t be a threat to us.」
Fumu, so I guess it’s fine to accept.
「As was said earlier, we have no objections to signing the non-aggression pact.」
The tension in the air quickly settles.
「This is wonderful. So……is it safe to say that Goldonia’s royalty also think the same way?」
「The agreement is ultimately between your country and mine, however I don’t think the Goldonian Kingdom would oppose this motion.」
「Ooh! Then let’s sign immediately!」
That is only for now though, since there’s no way I can see inside the King’s heart. I wonder if they know that If the King so desires, he could give the word and they will vanish from the face of the earth even though I’ve signed the non-aggression pact with them.
「I don’t know if they’re just laid back or what.」
I share the same sentiments, but don’t say it out loud Tristan or they’ll hear you.
A table and chair is brought out and placed in front of me. They then take out the document for the agreement, which they must have composed beforehand. These guys are well-prepared.
「Your Majesty, your signature please.」
The Lord Regent presents the document with Celestina’s signature to me. What messy handwriting……also, since she ate sweets with that hand, some sugar is stuck to the paper.
I let Celia confirm once just in case before I sign it. Even if I don’t pay too much attention, I can just ignore the things I don’t like later. What will stop my invasion is an army and castle walls, not some scrap of paper.
「What a perfect couple, since you both have messy handwriting.」
Shut it, I know my writing is messy. I’ve had someone else write all the letters for me recently so it has gotten worse.
「Next is the issue with trade.」
When I look over at Celestina, who is seated on the throne, her head is rocking back and forth and she looks as if she’ll doze off any second.
「It’s about time for your afternoon nap.」
The maid on the side comments with a troubled look on her face.
「Then we’ll just get Her Majesty to approve later.」
「Understood. Now, Your Majesty, let’s go.」
「Nnyuu……let me hear more when I wake up……」
After saying that, the little queen falls asleep on the maid’s back. How appropriate for her age, she’s just a spoiled child and nothing else.
「Then, shall we change locations?」
That’ll be nice, I want to be in a place I can sit more comfortably. I’d prefer if there are some pretty maids too.
The place we were guided to was a harmless and inoffensive meeting room. Besides the prime minister who came along, there were two other men sat in the room. Unfortunately, there were no pretty or big-breasted maids.
「I have brought them, Diego-sama.」
「Umu, good work.」
As soon as Lavoy enters the room, he bows deeply to one man. I don’t get it. If he was appointed as the Lord Regent, the only person ranked above him should be that little girl, who is the King.
「I apologize for the late introduction. I am Diego II…… perhaps it is better to address me as just Diego now. I’m Celestina’s father.」
「Well, how rude of me……」
I’ll at least bow to the former King. Today’s constant use of manners is really suffocating me. I thought for sure both of her parents died and the young girl had to succeed the throne out of necessity, but the previous King is still looking quite healthy. He certainly isn’t young, but he hasn’t gone senile yet either. At the very least, I think he might be the better King than the girl at the moment.
「That child was enthroned at an early age after all, so there are not many people she can casually converse with. The servants are unable to talk at length out of fear and respect, and I’ve been told talking with Lavoy is boring.」
「Pardon me for being inexperienced.」
Diego looks into the distance and continues talking further.
「Her blood-related brothers are also unable to make any decent conversations with Celestina……so it’s quite rare for her to talk freely with someone as you did.」
I intended to hold back, but it might not have been enough. If you were so worried about that, it would have been better not to cede the throne to your daughter.
「Hahaha, you look puzzled. Is it that surprising for me to hand over the throne to Celestina?」
「I am curious to know why.」
「I see, I see, then I shall explain prior to our negotiations for your interest……」
Diego seems to love to talk, since I didn’t even ask him much but he just keeps blabbing on and on.
「So he’s going to keep talking……」
Tristan seems astounded and sighs. Celia also seems surprised.
The details of the conversation was as follows:
Besides Celestina, Diego has two sons. Both of them are in their mid-20’s and already respectable adults, but both of them are extremely evil. The eldest son is gloomy and tricky, while the second son is arrogant and rude and has a nasty personality, unable to agree with a virtuous person like Diego. On the other hand, Celestina is the cute, youngest daughter who adores her father after her mother died of illness.
Then, Diego had a thought. If he were to die, there would definitely be a dispute over who succeeds and in the worst case, his cute Celestina may be killed and turned into a tool for political strife.
And so, he thought of a clever scheme to make Celestina the King while he was still healthy so her brothers would not be able to lay hands their on her.
Thus, the little girl became the King. And they all lived happily ever after.
「Surely, that’s a stupid move. I feel sorry for the citizens too.」
Tristan mumbles in a really soft voice, while I also nod greatly. Well, they can do whatever they want, since this concerns another nation.
「Telling outsiders of such important information regarding their nation is also quite unbelievable.」
We remain shocked and give a sidelong glance at Diego, but he cheerfully continues telling his story.
「My daughter is a really kind child. Marquess Mulney, the messenger who was sent to you, was actually from a Baron family, but it seems he dived into the cold river during winter time to save the children who have fallen. After hearing that, my kid was extremely moved and she awarded him with the title of Marquess.」
I’m not even surprised anymore. There’s no use complaining about what a child does.
「There have been many similar cases after that and our nation now has eight Marquess families, all because of the kindness of that child’s heart.」
How ridiculous. Even though they have the rank of Marquess, it is in name only. He isn’t using the young Queen as a puppet, but has given her actual authority.
Diego must want to treasure his daughter. But he will definitely regret it. A virtuous person will only be happy when everyone around him is also virtuous. I’m sure he doesn’t know about that. But, let’s proceed to the trade talks.
「As for trade, the only things our country can export is wheat and alcohol.」
I expected so, since we’ve investigated. My territory also has flood control and cultivation and various other things but getting the farmland on track takes longer than commerce and manufacturing. Securing food for us will not be a problem for us in the near future.
The finer details will be adjusted by Adolph later, but for now, we have agreed to start trading.
「Umu, umu, so now my country will be stable again. I am also relieved and will be able to continue to live at ease.」
Misunderstanding my strained smile, Diego starts talking once again.
「Lavoy has aided me when it comes to domestic affairs and diplomacy, but not so much with military…… My stupid son is quite the proud man, but even looking at it favorably as a parent, his military talent is quite limited. I wouldn’t know what to do if you were to wage war against us.」
Hearing that, I wonder what would happen to this man if I were to breach the non-aggression agreement and invade him. Of course I won’t do that though, since the ceasefire between Magrado will become void in autumn.
「But I have a brave general on my side as well.」
With that said, Diego looks at the man behind him.
This guy hasn’t said a word since the very beginning and has just been standing there at attention. I did think his ceremonial attire seemed too luxurious for a guard.
「I’ll introduce you. This is our nation’s finest general, Margrave Brutus. This man settles all the conflict that happens within this country. He deliberately moved from the capital to live here and is a devoted man, who keeps his eyes open for any foreign enemies!」
「My life is dedicated to the royalty of the Malt Kingdom.」
Brutus bows quite reverently, but being a great general in such a peaceful nation is quite suspicious, and this man has an indescribable atmosphere about him.
「Count Hardlett, I am looking forward to working with you.」
As soon as we shake hands, this guy squeezes my hand tightly accompanied with murderous intent. It would irk me to let this guy do as he pleases, so I return the favor by glaring at him and squeezing back.
I can hear his bones start to creak and Brutus releases his grip instinctively. I won.
「What are you doing……?」
I’m basking in my victory while Tristan sighs behind me.
「Father~ are the guests over here?」
I can hear Celestina’s voice. She’s probably woken up from her afternoon nap. I’ll have to think about what to talk about next.
Celestina wanted to talk with me to no end and it was night before we knew it. After finishing dinner, we received rooms inside the palace, and not just any room, but ones quite close to the Queen’s bedroom. As expected, the people around her tried to object but even though she’s just a kid, she is still the Queen and her orders cannot be overturned by them. The child’s tantrum was allowed just like that. The only person capable of stopping her is the former King, but Diego only spoils his daughter, so rebuking her is the furthest thing from his mind.
「……So that’s how it was. Interesting, right?」
「Yes, what a pleasant conversation.」
Celestina continues talking about all sorts of things while walking around in her nightwear inside the room she granted me. Most of it is childish and silly, but the girl doesn’t appear much in the royal palace so to her, it’s valuable experience.
「Lord Hardlett is so kind. Just like a real brother.」
Even though she’s just a child, she’s the King of another nation, so I can’t tell her to shut up and go to sleep. However, her face is frighteningly pretty despite only being a kid. She’ll definitely become a beauty who turns heads when she grows up. I can’t act cold to a potential pretty lady.
「I have heard that Your Majesty already has brothers, am I wrong?」
Celestina instantly becomes less talkative.
「I hate both Hilario nii-sama and Pablo nii-sama. They’re just ingratiating on the surface and will look at me with scornful eyes at every chance they get.」
As I’m sitting on the sofa, Celestina pounces on top of me. The two attending maids let out a short shriek. I quickly catch her, lift her up and stand her up slowly.
「You’re quite strong, your arms are all bulky with muscle.」
She grins broadly as she bounces on the bed, rolls around and kicks her feet playfully.
「Your name……Aegir was it?」
「Yes, Aegir Hardlett.」
「Then it’s fine to call you Aegir, right? Hardlett is too long.」
I don’t know how to feel about the King addressing me by my name, but this is just a child’s whim.
「I don’t mind.」
「Then it’s decided! Aegir, tell me about the dwarves next!!」
「Understood. All dwarves, including the females, have hairy armpits and between their legs just like dense forests……」
Eventually, it gets later into the night and Celestina’s eyes start to get heavy, so she returns to her own bedroom. At first, she wanted to sleep here, but the attending maids chased her back. If by some chance my finger goes into her, it might cause a war after all.
Seeing how the Queen has gone back, Celia, Catherine and Tristan peek out from the servant’s waiting room beside the bedroom.
「Nice work babysitting.」
Tristan isn’t as respectful as Adolph or Leopolt. I’m not saving him even if he gets hanged.
「I was so nervous about when you were going to take your dick out.」
I’m not into little girls.
「More importantly, was there anything said today I should pay attention to?」
「Let’s see……the trade ratio for wheat is relatively cheap and……」
Then Tristan speaks out over Celia.
「That man called Brutus will stir up a rebellion soon.」
Everyone freezes. Celia stops mid-sentence and freezes with her mouth still open.
「And your proof?」
「By elimination. If you take away the camouflage and actions he apparently used to make sure he won’t be doubted from the heroic tales and stories of his career the former King was babbling on about, you are left with the preparations for a rebellion.」
「What do you mean by soon?」
「From what I heard, his roughness stands out from his recent actions. I don’t know if he couldn’t hide it anymore or if he didn’t need to hide it anymore, but all I know is that will happen soon.」
I look at Celia, but she shakes her head to tell me she doesn’t understand either.
「I see. Well, I’ll keep that in mind.」
「You’re not going to doubt me?」
「I decided to employ you, you know? There’s nothing you can do even if you doubt your own actions. We can think of what to do after if we’re wrong.」
「Haah……again with the fortitude to do so.」
With that said, it would be troublesome if he betrays me now. If I decide to go back home and find out he’s surrounded the entire capital, it won’t be funny.
「You don’t have to worry about that. If I get you killed, it won’t just end in rebellion, but Goldonia would start a war, so at the very least you are safe until you get back home.」
That puts me at ease, but the Queen’s fate is quite sad.
「After becoming King, you can’t escape it. Even if you feel sorry, there’s nothing you can do.」
「That’s not true. She’s going to become an unbelievably pretty lady, just five more years and she’d be the best woman and……」
「Let’s sleep now.」
「I’ll get the floor ready.」
You guys are really in sync. But Tristan, what do you think you’re doing?
「No, I just thought that the sofa over there looks easier to fall asleep on than in the servant’s room.」
「Are you dense or something?」
Celia is scowling at Tristan after becoming lightly dressed, while Catherine crawls under the sheets and gets naked.
「The three of us will be having sex now, but you’ll be there?」
「I-if you peek, I’ll kill you!」
Tristan lets out the biggest sigh of the day as he continues to be yelled at by Celia, picking up the blanket and hiding in the servant’s room. After that, the three of us had an intense session of lovemaking.
Protagonist: Aegir Hardlett. 22 years old. Spring.
Status: Goldonia Kingdom Count. Great Feudal Lord of Eastern Area. King of the Mountains. Friend of the Dwarves.
Citizens: 140,000. Central City Rafen: 15,000
Troops Commanded: 1800 (excluding bow cavalry)
Assets: 49,300 gold (Labor -200) (Military Call-up -300) (Gift -500) Loan: 20 000 gold
Weapons: Dual Crater (large sword), Dwarf’s Spear, High-grade Steel One-handed Sword
Family: Nonna (wife), Carla (concubine), Mel (concubine), Kuu (lover), Ruu (lover), Mireille (lover), Leah (Self-declared Sex Slave), Casie (ghost), Miti (lover), Alma, Kroll (non-virgin), Melissa (lover), Maria (lover), Rita (head maid), Catherine (lover), Yoguri (Neo Neet), Pipi (follower), Sebastian (butler), Dorothea (lover, in the capital)
Children: Sue, Miu, Ekaterina (daughter), Antonio, Claude, Gilbard (son), Rose (foster daughter)
Subordinates: Celia (adjutant), Irijina (commander), Luna (commander), Ruby (Luna’s follower and lover), Myla (peace officer), Leopolt (staff officer), Adolph (domestic affairs official), Gido (escort), Tristan (follower), Claire & Laurie (official merchant), Schwartz (horse), Lilian (actress)
Sexual Partners: 122, children who have been born: 11
- Nat: He’s addressing himself as jiji, although he isn’t technically her biological grandpa. He’s just an elderly man. Similar to how people might refer to an older man as oji-san or onii-san. I don’t think this is in a mocking fashion as in geezer, or old man but maybe because she refers to him this way and he’s just using this to try and speak to her like a child. You know how sometimes you talk like a child when you talk with a child… ↩
- Nat: Sesshou is someone who helps the monarch who is still a minor. I’lll translate it as Lord Regent as suggested in the comments. ↩