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Although it was rather embarrassing for me to say, honestly speaking, I seemed to have the wrong preconception in my head of what the demon realm would be like. I had imagined an almost stereotypical red land, a black palace, et cetera. But all such preconceptions flew away as soon as the light from the teleportation circle dissipated and the world unfolded before my very eyes.
“Welcome to the Demon King’s Palace.”
“Wow!” I held nothing but admiration now.
I was right about it being a vast expanse of land. But on the contrary, it wasn’t the gloominess or red that I couldn’t see an end to, but the greenery. The endless sky seemed refreshing and the floating clouds seemed fluffy like wool. The scenery was so picturesque that one could even paint a picture out of it.
However, the most awe-inspiring thing there was the towering castle. Unlike my preconceived notion that it would be crude and unsophisticated, it seemed to be even more refreshing and clean than the imperial palace. Although it was luxurious and grand, it didn’t go over the top and didn’t feel heavy either, not the slightest bit gloomy at all.
“Welcome, my lady.” Tanma, the butler, greeted me at the main gates. It wasn’t his human appearance that I usually saw, but his appearance as a demon, his horns blatantly out in the open too. He had his usual smile on his face, but it somehow felt different from usual.
“It’s been a while, Butler.”
I hadn’t been able to meet him for a while after he took Frody away, perhaps because he was getting things ready at the Demon King’s Palace so he could welcome me properly.
The butler nodded slightly and led me inside.
“You said that the Grand Duchy is like a mini version of the Demon King’s Palace… Is the Demon King’s Palace really that much better?”
The density of the splendour was in two completely different realms, even in this garden that we had just walked past. It was a place where every single petal hadn’t been left untouched by the gardener. The level stone path and even the lighting that would illuminate it the pathway at night had been perfectly maintained.
“Everyone seems to have paid more attention since the lady was coming.” Tanma said, letting out a laugh when I couldn’t hide my awe at the surroundings.
No, was this really something that was possible simply because they ‘paid more attention’?
That’s how we arrived in front of the castle gate.
The eyes of the gatekeeper seemed to sparkle as they looked at me. Their affection that was openly directed toward me was to the extent where it felt slightly burdensome.
Although the thing standing guard with the gatekeeper seemed like a demonic creature, it was also the first time I had seen that sort of species before. It seemed like a sable, but its stripes looked like a skunk’s, and its large tusks were reminiscent of wild boars. Although it seemed like a kid that was cute in various ways, it made one nervous for no reason, perhaps because it was bigger than a brown bear.
I shifted closer toward Lecht as I saw it wave a tail that was thicker than an elephant’s trunk at me. I wanted to hug it at least once and shower it with affection, but I thought that my ribs would definitely break if it hugged me, even once.
“We’ve prepared something small to welcome you, my lady.” Tanma said as he opened the door with the gatekeeper.
And the moment the door swung open, a thunderous roar suddenly erupted.
“Welcome, Your Majesty!”
“Ahhh! Her Majesty has come!”
Voices that were unexpectedly filled with joy and welcome. Lecht entered with his arm wrapped around the shoulders of me, who had stiffened and froze on the spot.
Vibrantly coloured petals were scattered over my head as I walked on a path that had been covered by a red carpet. Long ropes on either side of it were preventing the crowd from rushing onto the red carpet. There were also guards stationed to control them, who were screaming like crazy. Even those guards seemed to be unable to stop glancing at me, unable to focus on the task at hand. It was too obvious that everyone here welcomed me.
“Those bastards who are still waiting anxiously for Your Highness in the demon realm must be so jealous that I’ve become Your Highness’ exclusive errand boy!”
“Everyone will just be happy to hear that Miss Ara is coming back.”
Muso and Lydia’s words suddenly flashed in my mind. So what they had said hadn’t just been said to make me feel better, but it was actually the truth. There had actually been this many people waiting for me.
It seemed like the tears would burst from my eyes at any second now, so I tried my hardest to put on a smile. Although they were tears of joy, the only thing I wanted to show them, who were watching me, was a happy smile.
“The butler’s standard of ‘something small’ seems to differ greatly from mine.”
“This must have seemed too small when compared with my lady’s standards.” Tanma said playfully, despite knowing exactly what I meant. “Don’t fret. A grand-scale welcoming party has also been prepared separately.”
Just how large of an event were they planning to hold? However, I suddenly had the thought that by receiving their welcome, reducing the size of the event would also seem as if they were reducing the love they gave me. Letting them show their affection toward me to their hearts content was also a precious act in itself.
“Then I’ll look forward to it.” As I whispered while smiling, the cheers around me grew even louder. I thought that it was a good idea for me to follow Lydia’s advice and choose the most splendid dress amongst the clothes I had been given.
“Ara.” Lecht called my name amidst the shouts that were even more formidable than the ones during the proclamation ceremony. I turned my head toward him without concealing any of my overwhelming emotions.
It happened in a flash.
Lecht’s lips brushed against my forehead, then left just as quickly.
The cheers which I hadn’t thought would be able to grow any louder, became even rowdier to the extent where I wondered if the Demon King’s Palace would be able to stand it without collapsing like this.
“Why all of a sudden…!” In any case, my heart that had already felt overwhelmed with emotions, raced so fast it felt like it was about to explode. I felt as if it were about to jump out of my mouth with its thumping.
“I’m making sure that no bastard here has forgotten. That you’re my woman.”
Lecht smiled smugly at my face that was now burning red. At that smile that seemed like the smile of a wolf who was pleased at catching a mouthwateringly appetising piece of prey, my heart couldn’t stand it any longer.
I buried my face into Lecht’s arms with a strange groan. I had to hold onto something because it felt as if my legs were about to lose their strength at any moment now.
As if he knew somehow, Lecht lifted me up into his arms and walked to the end with the endlessly growing cheers at his back.
It was a blessed moment that was mixed with happiness and embarrassment.
* * *
pls do not share this anywhere or u will always stub ur toe when u walk past a door frame !! this translation has been stolen from mioscorner.com, pls only read there i’m begging u :kneels:
“I heard that they’ve arrived.” A demon with a single horn in the middle of their forehead said as he finished contacting his old friend that worked in the Demon King’s Palace.
“Hmmm~” The person who received their report let out a long nasally sound. It was just a sound, yet the shoulders of the demon who had just delivered the report started to tremble slightly. It was due to the powerful force of enchantment that had engulfed his whole body for a moment.
“Saintess, my saintess. You really have no sense of fear.” Frody murmured as he looked down at the forget-me-nots that were blooming before him, despite it not being the season for it. “It would’ve been safer for you to continue staying in the human realm… I wonder just how many people are after you in the demon realm, Saintess.”
Frody uprooted the forget-me-nots. He examined the sensitive flowers from a few angles before lifting the corners of his mouth. “Just like me.”
Murmuring softly, he dropped the forget-me-nots onto the floor. The heavy scent of gold osmanthus began to spread simultaneously as he trampled the flowers underfoot. Since the scent wasn’t able to completely devour the remaining scent of the forget me nots, it simply absorbed the flowers’ vitality instead. The scent of the gold osmanthus became even stronger the longer it continued to do so, and the forget-me-nots that had bloomed eventually all withered.
“And the thing I told you to prepare?”
“…Though they’re still trying, there hasn’t been a definite response either.” The subordinate standing by his side replied, trying his best not to breathe in the scent as much as possible. The difference in ability between him and Frody were evident, so if he so much as inhaled that scent even once by accident, his rationality would be eaten away by it.
“Oh… that’s quite troublesome. I only got it after breaking the rules and playing a joke on the Grand Duchy.” Frody smiled at his subordinate. It was a smile that was expressed with his eyes so charmingly that it would’ve been able to captivate men and women of all ages without fail. “Don’t you think?”
“If there’s any possibility of me having no choice but to make the saintess disappointed, then…”
He walked lightly toward his subordinate. His mischievous aura that could be seen when he was facing Ara and Lecht had completely disappeared, now only replaced by a bleak energy.
“I would be very upset, right?” Standing before his subordinate, he whispered, leaning down and looking into his eyes while doing so. A tiny light shone in his blue eyes, poking his subordinate’s soul.
“I’ll make sure it’s ready within the time frame!” He shouted, already pale with fright, as Frody stood back up from his bent back.
“Then. You should do so. After all, it’s none other than a present for our precious saintess.”
Humming to himself, Frody brushed past him. Only after he disappeared into the darkness and the sound of his footsteps couldn’t be heard anymore did his subordinate finally let out a breath.
And with Frody’s disappearance, the scent of gold osmanthus also disappeared along with him like it had never existed in the first place.
* * *
Lecht disappeared soon after, seemingly having been dragged away by Tanma, who had nagged at him about having all his work pushed back.
After leaving me with the words that he would come and see me in the evening, as expected, the one that came to see me was none other than Solte, who had come on behalf of him. Apparently she had come over to the demon realm even earlier than Tanma in order to prepare my room for my arrival.
Both glad and relieved to see a face I knew, I allowed myself to be guided leisurely to the floor that I would stay on.
“Hold on!” But as I was listening to her explanation, I suddenly discovered an embarrassing part. “Who… the dress room?”
“This is your dress room, my lady, and that is His Majesty’s dress room. In any case, I thought it would be better for them to be separated rather than all lumped together so that it would be more convenient when you’re selecting what clothes to wear, so I made it like so.” Thinking that I didn’t understand her reasoning, Solte calmly added an explanation. Even though I was just flustered by what she had said.
“No, why is Lecht’s dress room in this room…”
Solte tilted her head at my question. “I thought it would be inconvenient for the dress room to be far away from the room, so I arranged it like this. It was like this in the Grand Duchy as well… are you perhaps uncomfortable with this?”
No, why does the conversation between Solte and I always seem like it’s one wavelength apart? I wasn’t curious about that part.
“I mean, why is ‘Lecht’s’ dress room in ‘my’ room…” I felt like I knew the reason why after I phrased the sentence like this.
“Aha.” Solte smiled, finally understanding my meaning behind the question. “Because this room is my lady and His Majesty’s room.”
“H-Huh…? Why? How, why?” I was so flustered that I even lost the ability to speak properly.
Solte, who finally managed to understand me, tilted her head again and said, “The aide… so I arranged it like that since the butler, Tanma, specifically ordered me to do so. Did he not inform you beforehand?”
No…! This is my first time hearing about such a thing!
At my face that was full of embarrassment, Solte let out a ‘hmm…’ as if she were contemplating over something before smiling. “I didn’t think there would be a problem for the two of you to share rooms a little quickly since the two of you will be married soon anyway.”
“Oh, though of course, there are many people here who call you, ‘Her Majesty’ already since they’ve already promised to pledge the rest of their life to you a hundred years ago…”
No, wait. So you’re saying that the reason why Muso calls me, ‘Her Majesty’ is because he already sees me as Lecht’s wife?! I thought he was just calling me, ‘Her Majesty’ because he couldn’t find a way to over exaggerate and call me, ‘my lady’ in a very Muso-like way!
“Back then, there weren’t many people who could celebrate it with the two of you together, so the truth is that everyone is expecting for the two of you to hold a ceremony this time.”
“Naturally, I am also looking forward to your wedding, my lady. Since according to His Majesty’s character, he will definitely make it grander than any other demon king’s wedding.”
So how did it become that my own wedding ceremony had already been settled without me even knowing? I felt so aggrieved, yet I couldn’t even find the words to retort when I saw that even Solte was smiling with her eyes full of anticipation.