“… so what am I supposed to do here …”
Transformed into Lady Demy, Princess weakly sighed.
She was in a cathedral in the noble district.
It was past dinnertime, late at night when everyone had fallen asleep. Moonlight filtered in through the solemn mosaic windows. That faint light was the only thing illuminating her steps in the unlit dome. There were many public establishments in the noble district, libraries, theaters, and art galleries. This cathedral, spreading the teachings of the Born Light, was one of those establisments. Unlike other buildings, it was located in the outskirst of the noble district, not a few commoner visitors came seeking salvation and peace.
With the altar in her eyes, Lady Demy took one of the almost a hundred pews, sitting alone in one of them. The dome, capable of holding every citizen during special events, was wrapped in silence; it was rather chilly.
Lady Demy’s weary sighs echoed throughout the Dome again. Knowing Maar’s incident, she had done all she could as the Princess to fight her own falsified seal. However, it all ended in vain only because it would cause trouble for a great many people. Receiving a direct remonstration from her father had been the final straw.
[Please believe in Her Highness the Princess one more time. She will not abandon you]
“So much for that …”
She hung her head. This was her limit.
Born as Royalty, she never intended to live in peace like everyone thought. But that is, after all, no more than her symbolic power as the ‘princess’, the moment she spoke out in government her powerlessness was laid bare. The feeling of loss from the near total defeat felt like worms eating her body.
— Frustrating. I hate myself for being unable to do anything.
Whenever she felt the need to hang onto something, she would always come to this cathedral and pray.
With her faith to the heavens as fuel, she would seek guidance and find a way forward.
By offering her prayers, the future will be bright. That was what she believed.
But now, that wasn’t the case. Rosé came, but what she sought right now wasn’t the god looking down from the heavens.
“… Yuuki-san …”
She whispered, raising her face at the ceiling.
“Would I trouble you if I came to see you”
The one she was seeking help from was the one she fell in love with.
Even if that was a false, warped, artificially implanted love.
That didn’t matter. She loved Yuuki.
Although she felt uneasy, since it’s Yuuki, she felt she would be ‘forgiver’ if she fell in love with him. Luckily, Yuuki was a good person.
A man that would rise in anger at injustice.
Even if she was selfish and said too much, he would only make a troubled face and accept it.
A pure and innocent Princess would surely not be able to experience these passionate emotions.
… compared to him, Glenn and the other noble boys were just the same as trash in her mind …
So no matter how it began, she did not think it was a mistake to be charmed by him.
It was no longer important to Rosé whether or not these feelings were fake or not.
“… Right. I shouldn’t show my unsightly side to Yuuki-san”
I have pride as a princess. I’m a royal. One who reigns
Revered as a saint, I have to use that and continue to be someone who gives hope
I have to show that, I have to show the best ‘me’ to Yuuki-san
The next time I see Yuuki, the next time I make him spoil me, this matter will have to have been settled
Demy willed herself and stood up.
The grand cathedral doors opened.
There was a visitor other than herself this late at night.
She thought it strange, and sent her gaze there.
A petite girl in civilian clothes walked straight at her.
Demy was surprised.
It was Maar. What coincidence.
She was carrying a large bouquet and turned to her.
It was plucked from wild flowers, the assortment of flowers were a mess, unlike purchased ones.
She also saw Demy and bowed deeply.
“Good evening. Such a coincidence, isn’t it”
She called out to her, but said no more and made another bow.
She looked lifeless. There wasn’t a speck of excitement or emotion at suddenly meeting someone she knew. She didn’t seem at all like the living girl lavishing smiles the noon before.
… did something happen? I have a bad feeling about this
Maar headed for the altar, laid the flowers there, and said a short prayer.
“This late at night, did something happen?”
Asked the question, Maar answered in a toneless voice.
“— they found mother’s body”
She swallowed her breath.
The mother that was thought to have run away after becoming the wealthy merchant’s apprentice.
“She was washed away in a river outside town. The body was so waterlogged they couldn’t identify her, but they found me from the missing person’s items”
A drowned body will quickly lose its living form.
It was only luck amid misfortune that her mother could be identified.
“I pray for her happiness in the next world”
She was pressed with unreasonable debt, lost everything, and right after she saw hope in Princess Rosé, her dear mother was found dead. Such an unfortunate child.
… I knew I’m not the one who could save this girl!
“This matter weighs heavily on Princess Rosé. She will surely lend a helping hand. Please endure for a little more”
Maar fell silent for a while, then said.
“… Princess, will she come and save us?”
“Yes, I’m sure of it”
“When mother was alive, she used to say this a lot. ‘become a pure girl, like Princess Rosé'”
With a dark, gloomy voice, Maar continued.
“She probably doesn’t think that anymore”
What … was that?
“Why didn’t Princes notice the fake seal sooner? Where was she, what was she doing when our house was taken away? Was it so hard to use royal authority to call back the fake seal? But in any case … mother … isn’t coming back”
Why? How did it come to this?
Is she saying I – Rosé killed her mother?
“It’s my turn to be the merchant apprentice now. I have to pay back the debt, after all. … please pray for me so I don’t end up in a river like mother did”
Maar left her behind. She heard the cathedral door shut.
Demy … Rosé fell down hard on the cold floor.
Why is she blaming me?
I said the seal was a fake, right?
Why won’t she understand?
I, … I worked hard …
I’ve done everything that I could!
[Princess doesn’t understand how we are living]
“That’s — That is right, but — !!”
Having somehow fought back the urge to scream, Rosé put her hand on the floor.
Large teardrops dropped onto the marble and spread out.
I don’t even know what’s right anymore
The people that respect her, but would change their tune as soon as they met with misfortune.
The bureaucrats’ indifference and alienation. Her father, who won’t listen to her.
And most of all, herself, who couldn’t do anything but run around in circles.
The words that she desperately held back came out.
“… no more …”
If this is the way it is
I shouldn’t have been born a royal
If I weren’t a princess I would never have been engaged to Glenn, I wouldn’t have been manipulated by a bug. People wouldn’t praise me on their own, they wouldn’t have put me on a pedestal and push me off
Ah. Aaah. I can’t take this anymore. Rosé felt something inside her crumble down. Aaaah. No more. Enough. The powerlessness was suffocating her.
I, I’ve had enough …
She couldn’t even stand up on her own …
— there was a man who called out to her.
It was Yuuki. Yuuki came for her.
Yuuki came for her, who couldn’t stand from all the hopelessness.
He gently supported Rosé and said
“It must’ve been tough. You’ve worked hard”
He comforted her with sweet words.
“… Yuuki-san …”
Ah, so amazing, Yuuki-san
He comes running to me when I’m suffering
Rosé’s heart was filled with bliss.
“Rosé, I’ve come for you. Let’s run away”
“Yes. Quit being a princess, and come with me to my world. Be a normal girl in my world — and live as Demy just for me”
It was such a baffling temptation.
Just my Demy. What a wonderful sound.
Rosé’s answer was obvious.
“Yes. I’ll go. I’ve had enough of this world. Please take me and go!”
“Yes, let’s go. Right now”
Then Yuuki stretched his hand to Rosé’s neck.
“Eh … guh!?”
Yuuki was strangling Rosé’s neck, smiling.
“Yuu … ki … san?”
She desperately raised her hand, trying to resist, but the strength of a man is too different.
All Rosé can do was groan and squirm.
“It’ll be fine, Rosé. Don’t worry. We’re only going to to a world just for the two of us. I’ll come for you right away”
“— why … like this …”
“There’s no other way. This is the only way. You know it too, right?”
“This is the only way we can run away from Arina”
So Yuuki finally noticed his childhood friend’s madness
There’s no way to reach Arina’s power. Death is the only way to escape it
And Yuuki chose Rosé to accompany him
“— all right”
I don’t mind, I’m done with this horrible world
If I’m to die by Yuuki’s hand, there would be no greater happiness
“If that’s what you want …”
Rosé stopped struggling and surrendered her body to Yuuki’s killing intent.
She crumbled down, he stood up.
Her consciousness was dimming, like it was her bridal night. Rosé smiled.
“Now what might you be doing?”
“” — !? “”
Just before it was all over.
Inside the cathedral, love and hate embodied itself.
The pews were blown away. The building swayed.
“Huhu. Say, Yuu-kun”
chink, chink, each step she took made a metallic sound.
She was holding a pointed, crooked, long rod-shaped thing.
“Yuu-kun, Yuu-kun, Arina’s Yuu-kun♪ Where did you leave Arina and go~?”
It was just a little bit more, but she came along.