~~TLC: Lunate ED: champion9124~~
Having decided that the tower will be open to everyone, a guard was stationed at the entrance to control the amount of visitors, as too many people entering the structure at once posed to be dangerous.
A lot of people, who wanted to try climbing the tower that suddenly appeared there, crowded the gate plaza that was usually empty at this time. Merchants have already started recruiting earth arts users, capable of creating small copies of the tower structure to be sold as souvenirs. Healing type water arts users also used this chance to sell their services, as they positioned themselves on the resting areas and sold the recovery services for the climbers.
Meanwhile Yuusuke and Sun, who were half-forcefully taken to the palace, were resting in a huge, luxurious room.
After eating dinner, which was served for them in their room, Yuusuke went to a different room to rest, trying to shake the heavy thoughts that were partly worry, and partly anxiety away. It was not that he could not trust the people living in the palace after the recent incidents, but he did not believe that every important individual in the palace would be as open hearted as Violet.
“They looked unique in some sort of way….. I mean they looked eccentric.”
“Did anyone tell you that?”
Yuusuke was startled by an unexpected voice as he was talking to himself while circling around the room.
As he turned towards the door, Violet was standing there with Sun, who had been taken along. Princess was wearing a red dress, but she had let the twin-tails down,leaving her figure framed by her long, red hair. Sun was wearing a long one-piece dress. Having gotten used to seeing the girl in the village clothes she was always wearing, seeing Sun in an open dress was certainly a refreshing sight for him. Noticing Yuusuke’s gaze, Sun, ashamed, attempted to cover her chest.
“Hmmmmmmm… Wheeeere do you think you are looking at, Yu-u-su-ke?”
Having let her beautiful, silky, red hair down, Violet looked like a graceful and refined princess of a kingdom, yet inside she was definitely the same old cheeky girl.
“Don’t even bother, Violet… By the way, what happened? Why are the two of you together?”
“I brought you some dessert. Oh, and I also wanted to talk with you for a little while more.”
As the two girls entered the room, they were followed by a maid, clad in full maid uniform, who, after saying, “Excuse me”, entered the room while pushing a trolley used for delivering food. She arranged the plates filled with juicy fruits, and then poured honey on top of the dishes. This was Violet’s favorite dessert.
“Wooow, this sure looks sweet!”
“Hey, mind your manners.”
Sun laughed at Yuusuke who waited patiently for the dessert to be served and was now grumpy, complaining to Violet:
“This princess really has no manners.”
As soon as the servant disappeared in the corridor, they three started enjoying the dessert.
“How is it? It’s tasty, right?”
“Mhhhm, how about it Sun, are you enjoying it?”
“Uhm… Don’t you think this honey is really sweet ?”
Violet did not usually eat a dessert as sweet as this – she ordered to make it sweeter as to impress them. Thus, she now tilted her head at their unexpected reactions. Yuusuke seemed to be slightly disappointed by the food, while Sun somehow seemed to talk only about the honey.
“What’s wrong, did your lips got stuck together with the honey? Or is it that you can’t appreciate the taste?”
“No, it’s… somehow the dessert seems to be lacking the harmony of taste. It feels like anmitsu (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anmitsu) that was made to be too sweet.“ (NOTE: in original it was called あんま味. After discussing it with my teacher I decided to leave Anmitsu here)
“These fruits, they seem to taste a lot like the rara fruits. They look like freshly ripened fruits that just became edible, but I grew too accustomed to the ones, prepared by Yuusuke.”
Yuusuke has opened the customization menu and, while Sun tried to delicately phrase her thoughts, has changed the sweetness parameter of the fruits to his personal setting. Noticing light effects fluttering around the dessert, Violet turned towards Yuusuke with a blank expression.
“Here, try it.”
Yuusuke took a bit of the customized dessert and pushed it into Violet’s mouth.
“What’s this superb taste? Isn’t this an entirely new dish? “ – Mumbled princess with a full mouth.
Violet could not believe the extent of Yuusuke’s divine arts that made him capable of even such feats. She knew of water arts that allowed to control the moisture of the food, but it was her first time seeing an art that affected food on such a grand scale.
“Can you do anything else? What other things can you do with your divine arts?”
“Hm? Mmmmmmm… If it is not much, I guess I can also modify the clothes.”
Yuusuke became worried that he might have revealed a bit too much about the truth of his real capabilities, as the princess came to him while leaning forward from the curiosity. As his power had a lot of peculiarities, he thought it would be better to spare her the details. Having decided on that, he changed the topic.
“It looks like someone has released an evil beast in the nearby fields. I guess the only ones to do something like that around here are those guys from the Blue Garden.”
There was also the matters related to Zeshald. Lowering her voice, Violet told them about the damages that Blue Garden harassment has brought upon them.
Blue Garden has blocked off nearly all of the main roads in the border regions, making peddlers from foreign countries take long detours. This resulted in stagnation of money circulation and instability of prices, and it seemed that this situation would not be resolved in the near future.
“Father seems hesitant to use force, bureaucrats are also useless, and now Zeshald has gone over to their side…”
Violet sighed, resting her chin on her hand. She seemed to have discouraged herself with those words.
Her unhappy expression, along with her well featured face and dignified look, gave off some sort of mysterious aura when viewed from the side. Her closed, red eyes that always radiated determination, and her hunched small form that still retained childish features, looked very frail for a moment, and made Yuusuke feel that he wanted to protect her.
Having thrown a piece of honey covered fruits into her mouth by a precise throw, she spoke with a full mouth:
“I will order a carriage to bring you back to your village tomorrow after breakfast. Rest well tonight.”
“We will accept your offer.”
After finishing the dessert, the two girls left Yuusuke’s room. As Sun’s room was next to the one they just left, Violet said her goodbyes and returned to her room in the upper floor.
“You also go and get some rest, Sun.”
“Okay… Uhm, Mr. Yuusuke.”
Sun hesitantly approached Yuusuke, gently held his hand for a moment, and then quickly drew it back. Last time Sun willingly touched Yuusuke was when she was washing his feet. The true meaning of this gesture was, [“I trust you”].
“Good night Mr. Yuusuke.”
“A… ah.. gnight.”
Trailing Sun with his eyes as she entered her room, Yuusuke also returned to his room, bewildered.
[“What the heck was that?”]
The next morning, after finishing the breakfast that was served again in their rooms, Yuusuke and Sun went down to the first floor of the palace and climbed into a carriage that was waiting for them accompanied by a group of soldiers. Sun was wearing the city clothes that she got as a souvenir. Sadly, the clothes which were torn yesterday, seemed to have been disposed of.
“Heeeey~~! Wait a bit Yuusuke!”
“Your highness! Running like that is improper!”
Soldiers, who were slowly preparing the carriage for departure, saw Violet noisily running towards them, followed by Krielov who was scolding her, and became visibly tensed and quickly corrected their postures.
“Do the same thing that you showed me last night to these as well?”
Sun could not hide her amusement seeing Violet holding a basket of high class rara fruits in her hands.
There were eight large rara fruits in the basket. Having customized seven of them to be sweet, Yuusuke changed the spiciness parameter of the last one, before returning it to the basket.
“It seems one of them was a failure.”
“What? Which one?”
Seeing Yuusuke say that with a smirk on his face, Sun shoulders started to shake from the amusement as she has also eaten one of those once before. Sun could only manage to eat one third of that fruit. Violet, confused by their amusement, was looking forward to the desert, this time with slight anticipation.
“I was pleased with you two. Come to play with me again, Yuusuke.”
“I might come again if I have business in the city.”
Soldiers bustled, protesting against a flat out refusal to their princess’ invitation. Krielov also formed a complicated expression. Even if this mysterious person did not think much of visiting the palace, he could have made his intentions clear in a more subtle way.
Having left the palace and riding through the city in the carriage, Yuusuke talked to Sun about what they will do after returning to the village.
“Miss Bahana is probably worried sick.”
“Uhm… She is giving her all when it comes to protecting me.”
They discussed about various things, such as going to aunt Bahana’s place as soon as they return to the village, watering their field, or what happened to the fish that was left behind. Unconsciously, the distance between them shrunk to an arm’s reach, a far cry from two days ago, when they could not even be near each other.
Finally, the city guard carriage, which seemed to fly on the highway, has brought them back to Rufk village before noon.
Unfortunately for the young man, princess Violet was also fond of spicy food, thus having tasted the fruit that he labeled as [“a failure”], she got hooked on the new flavor. Moreover, this taste could only be created through the usage of Yuusuke’s divine arts.
“I want to meet Yuusuke…”
Hearing Violet silently say things like this to herself only caused Krielov’s worries to pile up.
“Uuuugh… So did sir Zeshald intended this person to get close to the princess all along…? It’s impossible, but still…”
Various misunderstandings, that were caused by the black haired youth recently, made the close aide feel butterflies in his stomach.