Atelier Tanaka Volume 3 Chapter 2 Part 7
We arrived back in Kalis after half a day.
A distance that would usually take five days to travel, was covered in just several hours. The reason for this is, of course, Christina. Originally, we were supposed to travel in an official government carriage that Neumann had prepared for Ester-chan.
It was just a few minutes before we were supposed to depart when Christina had a fit about how slow the carriage would be, so she decided to continue her burgeoning airbus company. She demanded Sophichan, Ester-chan, and the noble mage get on her back.
I was left to fly behind her.
As I stared at her panties from behind, I was reminded of my time as a university student.
When I went to hang out with some friends, they all got in a car and told me there was no more room. I was left outside on my own to chase after their vehicle.
If it was the summer, we’d be able to talk when they stopped at a street light.
But in the winter, their window would stay closed to keep out the cold air. It was so lonely.
Ah, it’s painful to think about.
Christina was still stubbornly refusing to transform back into her original dragon form. Due to this, Christina’s back was overcapacity and Allen was forced to hang from her leg. There’s never been a day where I’ve appreciated my flight magic more than this day.
Neumann witnessed what Allen was forced to do and declined to ride on the dragon.
He said he would prefer to travel slowly on the road.
He’s a wise person.
Then, after sacrificing a few human rights, we arrived in Kalis on the same day.
My feet finally landed back on the ground just before dusk. We landed at the normal place, the noble mage’s garden. It seems Christina’s homing instinct guided her back to this place.
“Let’s rest for tonight. We can visit the castle tomorrow.”
Ester-chan proposed this.
“Until then, I’ll make the necessary arrangements with my father.”
That seems to be the natural thing to do.
I don’t want her telling her father about me, but since Ester-chan is so motivated, I can’t stop her. I’m just praying she doesn’t tell him too much about our relationship. I’d prefer that he never become involved in my life.
“I understand. Then, everyone can do as they wish for tonight.”
“We’ll meet back up at the castle tomorrow, right?”
The noble mage nodded and we each went our separate ways.
Tonight I’ll be able to eat a meal prepared by Sophichan back at the dorm and I’ll have the first chance in a long while to sleep in a soft and fluffy bed made by her. Nothing else can heal my body as much as that. I want to return to my normal daily life.
The noble mage returned to his mansion.
Allen at first seemed unsure of where to go but eventually left to the Central Order.
I left towards the dormitories with Sophichan and Ester-chan. Since we’ve become neighbours, it’s been a normal occurrence for Ester-chan to come eat with us. Thanks to this, I’ve had plenty of opportunities to worship Rebeccsan’s thick butt and thighs. Big butts are better than big breasts.
However, something was slightly different this time.
There was one more person following behind us but she was keeping her distance.
“Ummwhy are you coming with us?”
Don’t ‘what’ me.
Why is she following us?
“This isn’t the direction of Mount Pepe.”
She spoke as if I what I said was completely stupid.
If you know that, then return home. Go back to the mountains.
I don’t want this loli dragon staying in my home. I can still recall the power behind her punch. I won’t be able to sleep at night knowing a creature that powerful is in the dorm with me. Even if I want to lick her butt, I don’t want to live with her. I won’t be able to be at peace in my own home.
It’s something like I’m okay with her being a sex-friend, but she’s not fit to be my wife.
“Umm, well we’re heading this way. If you’ll excuse us.”
I turned right to go down a street going in the wrong direction from the dormitory.
Ester-chan and Sophichan followed after me without saying a word.
Similarly, the golden-eyed loli dragon took a right turn.
That was your cue to leave us.
“is something wrong?”
“no, I’m fine.”
“Is that so? Well, our place is over here.”
This time I turned to the left.
Ester-chan and Sophichan silently followed after me again.
And the loli dragon, who was a little further behind us, turned left as well.
What am I supposed to do with this lonely loli?
Is she crazy? Obsessed? She seems to be displaying characteristics matching that description.
“did you need something from me?”
“Nothing in particular.”
“Is that so? Then, please go home to Mount Pepe.”
I could sense Ester-chan and Sophichan growing nervous.
I’m starting to feel the same way.
If things stay like this, she’ll keep following us forever.
It will be troublesome for all of us if I allow this to continue.”
“shouldn’t you be going with him?”
“Who is ‘him?'”
“The nobleman that left us not long ago. If it’s that guy he wouldn’t have any problem lending you his roof for the night. There’s no doubt that he’d give you a large room, comfortable clothes, and a delicious meal. We’ll see each other again tomorrow.”
The loli dragon swayed back and forth, seemingly deep in thought.
The tension in our small group rose.
And her words that followed were
“All right, I guess. I’ll follow your suggestion.”
“I think that’s best.”
“You’re not going to try and run away?”
“Of course not.”
A slight pitter-patter echoed through the empty streets as Christina ran off.
She looked cute as she ran off but within that loli body is a monster that could kill hundreds in an instant.
During the night that we returned to Kalis, Sophichan and I slept like the dead. Since we were both involved heavily in the conflict, we accumulated a tremendous amount of stress over the past couple of weeks. After arriving back at the dorm, we didn’t even eat anything before passing out for the night.
And my neighbour, the blonde loli, didn’t return to the dorms with us. She went to her family’s house somewhere in the capital. As she said earlier, she’s going to speak with her father about her plans for tomorrow.
Personally, I doubt she’ll receive an audience so quickly. However, I’ve repeatedly heard about how much power the FitzClarence family holds. Ester-chan even invited me to dinner with her father before we separated, so she’s clearly serious.
But I declined and our night passed by quickly.
And before I noticed, the night had passed and it was now the next day.
Ester-chan came to my dorm early in the morning to walk with me to the castle.
As promised yesterday, the noble mage was waiting for us. This time Ester-chan guided us inside. Just like when we had returned from Mount Pepe, we were all kneeling on the red carpet before the throne.
It was similar to the scene yesterday, but Ester-chan and the noble mage were kneeling with me.
According to what the loli bitch told us before we entered, we’re supposed to give a detailed report to the King about everything that happened over the course of the conflict. Sophichan was left back at the dormitory after Ester-chan gave her some spending money. The loli dragon was similarly left at the noble mage’s mansion.
This left only the three of us to face the King.
If possible, I would’ve liked to be left at home as well.
“Raise your heads.”
The King, who was sitting on his raised throne, said this.
In addition to the owner of this castle, there was a large crowd of nobles wearing luxurious clothing lined up alongside the walls. I’ve experienced an audience here before, but this crowd seems to be much larger than the last time.
Everyone is curious to hear the results of Viscount FitzClarence’s first campaign. They want to know how she dealt with her first time being in charge, how she was affected by the assassination attempt, and many other things.
“The conflict with the Pussy Republic only just began recently but I’ve received reports that you’ve managed to resolve everything. Is this true, Viscount FitzClarence?”
“Yes. That’s correct, Your Majesty.”
“Oh, that’s an incredible achievement. Many were unsure of you receiving such a high position, so it makes me proud to hear of your success. I’d love to hear about everything that occurred.”
I don’t know if they spoke before this meeting but the King seemed rather amiable.
I’m counting on you, Ester-chan.
It’s up to you to allow this soy sauce face to return safely to Sophichan.
“If my memory serves me right, it was fifteen years ago. During that time, we also quarrelled with the Pussy Republic. Back then, I remember the entire country suffered considerable damage and that combined with a bad harvest led to difficult times for everyone.”
“Yes, then I’ll first report on the results of the battles.”
“All right. Continue.”
By the way, where is Ester-chan’s father? I’d assume that he’d want to hear about his daughter’s first achievement as a viscount. According to rumours I heard at the school, her parents pamper her.
Without moving my head, I carefully scanned the room.
But I couldn’t see him. If he were here, I’d expect him to be standing in a prominent place amongst the crowd.
In the meantime, Ester-chan had already started her report.
“during the battle we had around one hundred regular soldiers and three thousand adventurers and mercenaries combined. In order to command them, the knight from the capital.”
We were surrounded by nearly a hundred nobles and yet Ester-chan wasn’t showing any signs of being nervous.
This loli bitch is pretty impressive.
To be honest, I want to become a well-adjusted member of society like her.
I remember receiving a call from the company president asking me to give a detailed report on a current project before an important meeting. It was stressful enough to make my knees tremble.
“You’re saying you were able to hold off an army of over 40,000 troops with just several hundred.”
“Yes, that’s right.”
Ester-chan’s report was reaching its climax.
“Is something like that actually possible? No, if Lord Fahren was with you, it doesn’t seem like a completely impossible situation.”
The King showed signs of assent as he thought on Ester-chan’s words.
And the gathered nobles all seemed to follow a similar train of thought. Many of them were whispering to each other while directing their gaze to the noble mage. His reputation is as strong as ever.
“No, Your Majesty. That’s not the case.”
Don’t say anything unnecessary, Ester-chan.
“This result was not due to Lord Fahren’s efforts nor my own.”
You don’t need to tell him while I’m present.
You’re basically telling everyone that the man responsible for the victory is far more powerful than that magic obsessed noble.
I won’t be free to do what I want if she goes on to say whatever she wants.
“Is this true, Viscount FitzClarence?”
“Do you object to this claim, Lord Fahren?”
“The words of Viscount FitzClarence are true.”
“H-Hmm, this truly is hard to believe.”
When the ossan nodded, the King let out a low grumble.
And everyone else turned their attention to the one other person kneeling before the King. A lowly commoner that had somehow become involved in the world of the nobles. Ester-chan and the noble mage had confirmed that they weren’t responsible for the victory, so that left only one person.
“If so, who was it?”
“Yes! It was this man here!”
Ester-chan pointed at my soy sauce face.
And in an instant, everyone’s attention even the King’s focused on me.
Ah, my stomach hurts.
This girl made that bold declaration surrounded by her vassals back in Tricklis. I can understand why she did it, but I still feel like there were better options available to her. Maybe if she bows her head to each of her vassals they won’t force her to keep her promise.
She really has chosen to go down the hardest route.
“I remember that person. You were there when my daughter was cured.”
Do I have permission to speak?
Well, since he addressed me directly, I should probably speak. I’ll keep it short.
“Yes, my name is Tanaka.”
“Do you have anything to add to Viscount FitzClarence’s words?”
What should I do?
I can tell just by looking at the faces of the nobles that none of them believe I could ever be responsible for this. I get a sense that they’re all thinking that this commoner is just getting in the way. If they choose to believe I’m lying, it could be considered a terrible sin. A future where I live out the rest of my days in prison wouldn’t be hard to imagine.
I feel bad for Ester-chan who’s trying her hardest but I need to control the story here.
“Viscount FitzClarence is just being overly kind. I’m incredibly grateful that a foreigner like me is able to receive such gracious words. However, it is the Viscount that was in command during this entire conflict. She is also the one solely responsible for our victory. Your Majesty, all credit for this victory should be given to her.”
“Hmm, is that so? Your story doesn’t seem to match hers.”
“Y-Your Majesty! This man has a propensity to avoid accepting credit he’s rightfully due!”
The loli bitch was trembling.
Today’s Ester-chan is stronger than usual.
However, despite the increasing nausea I’m feeling, I can’t lose here.
“I know this entire ordeal has been a great burden physically and mentally on the young viscount. When I consider her future and the future services she’ll provide to this country, what seems most important to me is protecting her life at the academy.”
“A lowly person like me doesn’t deserve to make a request of a great king like you, but I believe it is important for such a young girl to attend school. I humbly request that Viscount FitzClarence be granted time to finish her studies before taking over as lord of Tricklis.”
I looked over at Ester-chan.
Tears were forming at the corners of her eyes and she was gritting her teeth.
It was a selfish request on my part. I’m sure she’s upset.
“Your Majesty, I agree with the commoner’s words.”
The old man beside the King spoke up. He was standing in a similar position the last time I was here. I believe he is Prime Minister Mordred. If the shota prince’s words are true, he’s also partially responsible for this conflict breaking out.
Why would someone like him speak up?
“Why do you say that, Prime Minister Mordred? She was just given that land only a few weeks ago. Besides, such a young girl managed to accomplish something so great and it was only her first time in command. She is deserving of her position and for us to remove her rank would be a dishonest act. I won’t do it.”
“Viscount FitzClarence is still young. We should take this time and prepare her for her future reign by allowing her to continue her studies. By allowing her to do this she’ll continue to bring us further success in the future. I believe this wholeheartedly.”
“Hmm, your words hold truth to them. Viscount FitzClarence has achieved something great but she is still lacking in knowledge, experience, and connections needed in order to properly manage her territory.”
“Therefore, Your Majesty, I believe this is for the best.”
The King fell silent for a few moments, clearly deep in thought.