(I'm not protecting her because she's my wife or because I love her. It's because I can't bear to be accused of killing the royal family. I have no choice, I have no choice at all.)
At about the same time Lucas started to make excuses to himself, Valerie quietly stood up and looked at Olga.
Then she said.
"Olga! Your anger is justified. Very well. Cut me down!"
"What!? Hey! What are you talking about!?"
Lucas was shocked at this.
(She doesn't care what people think! Don't make up your mind on your own!)
While Lucas was beating his chest, Valerie took off her gauntlets and wiped her bloodstained face with her sleeves, showing the dignified atmosphere of a warrior.
"It is true that I could not protect Her Highness. But I swear on my honor as a knight. I did not murder her Highness."
"You Human-eating Demon! Don't call yourself a knight!"
"...As I thought... you don't believe me..."
Valerie smiles sadly, and Olga silently closes her eyes and takes a breath. Then she raised her sword high again.
"Fine. I do not wish to make you suffer. I will cut off your head with a single blow."
Lucas, who had been pushed out of the situation in an instant, let out an involuntary yell in his mind.
(Wait! Wait! Wait! Don't create a world of two people! That may be all right for you, but it's no fun for me!)
Now he can't choose his means. Lucas rushed toward Olga with a desperate look on his face.
"Wait a minute! If you kill the Commander now, you'll be the next one suspected!"
At Lucas's words, Olga suddenly stopped moving.
"...What do you mean?"
He had done it.
Lucas said in a ridiculing tone to Olga, who was squinting her eyes in displeasure.
"That's because I testify so. Her Highness and Valerie were killed while I was sleeping! And the murderer was you, Olga!"
"What! Hey! That's absurd! That's so absurd! No one would believe such a false testimony!"
(Yeah, I know. I know it's impossible.)
But Lucas smiles with a big smile on his face.
"Believe? Of course there is! I'm not talking about me. I'm talking about the Commander. Every knight knows the stupid straightness of our Commander. His Majesty the King and His Highness the Crown Prince know it too. So, I don't need to tell you who's more believable... me or you!"
"Let me say it, you're getting carried away!"
Olga stared at Lucas with her face twisted in anger.
She looks as if she might attack him with her sword at any moment. But so be it.
Anyway, Lucas doesn't care about the truth. Let the dogs eat it.
What he needs now is to get out of this situation where Valerie is the murderer of the princess.
He will kill Olga and frame her as the murderer, and everything will be all right.
But the next moment, Valerie inserts herself between him and Olga, who are glaring at each other. She embraces him and whispers in his ear.
"Danna-sama... it's all right, it's all right. Really... I can die smiling just knowing that you have worked so hard for me. I'm proud to be your wife."
Valerie smiles with a face that looks like it's about to burst into tears.
But Lucas, on the other hand, looks as if he is exhausted and flicks his finger on her forehead.
"Don't get me wrong. I just don't want to get involved in this."
"Ah, eh, well, I'm... sorry."
Valerie's face is frozen with a puzzled expression, and Olga's eyes are filled with contempt.
An uncomfortable silence lingered in the small room, and even the head of the Princess, still lying on the floor, seemed to sigh.
"...What a despicable person you are. You asshole. You piece of shit!"
"I've never denied that I'm an asshole."
Lucas said, and Olga shrugged her shoulders with a look of utter disgust on her face.
"Fine. I'll take your word for it. Let's take Valerie to the capital and give her a fair trial. Then we'll have nothing to complain about!"
"Yes, that's fine."
For now, he could at least buy some time.
Then, the only thing left to do is to somehow get the evidence that Valerie did not kill the princess. Worst case scenario, he will just have to make up the evidence.
But Olga grinned at Lucas as if she saw right through him.
"Well then, Lucas, you will go to jail."
"Of course, there is no guarantee that you are not in on it. We can't risk some kind of a cover-up after this. I'll have my men investigate thoroughly after we retrieve Her Highness' body. Pray that they find even one of the hidden doors!"
* * *
"Yawn, what a noise..."
Hilarie rolls a white sheet over her brown naked body and sits up in bed.
"Mmm...is it breakfast yet?"
Millie in white underwear scratched her neck rubbing her sleepy eyes.
The sun had not even risen yet, but there are sounds of horse-drawn carriages, neighing horses, and people's voices coming from outside.
In fact, it is not so noisy, but once it starts bothering them, they can't stay awake.
Their rooms are on the second floor of a separate building.
They are assigned to a room far away from the rooms of the Princess and the other maids.
Perhaps it was a bad idea to make a big fuss on the first day of their arrival, but they are completely isolated. When they appealed, "We will take care of Her Highness..." it was too late and they couldn't even approach her.
"Honestly, I wonder what we're doing here..."
With a look of displeasure on her face, Hilarie walks over to the window and peeks out below.
The heavy rain from last night had already stopped, and she could see the big carriage, the one reserved for the Princess, being pulled out into the puddle-filled square in front of the gate.
"Hmm, what is it? Is the princess getting ready to go home already?"
She saw a silver-haired maid loading an empty wheelchair from the back into the carriage. Several knights and Olga are watching.
"Hey, hey, Millie, what is going on here, huh?"
"Hmm? What's going on?"
By the time Millie got out of bed and peeked under the window, Olga had just finished loading the wheelchair into the carriage and handed a wooden box to the maid, who was saying something to her.
They opened the window and listened attentively, but they could not understand a word of what she was saying.
The maid nodded her head and started walking toward the coach, holding the crate close to her chest.
There is no one in the carriage with her, and she climbed up on the coach and took hold of the reins.
"Hey, hey, she's going away by herself, isn't she? Is she going to be all right?"
Hilarie's concern is understandable.
After all, they are in the middle of a war.
They have heard that farmers whose villages were burned to the ground have become exiles and are now making a living as bandits.
While Hilarie is tilting her head, the carriage started to move as slowly as a buffalo waking up from sleep.
"Don't you think it's a bit... suspicious?"
It is a strange scene.
The storyline is completely unclear.
However, Millie answered her question with a yawn.
"Well, it's all right. Our job is to protect the princess."
They lost interest too easily.
"But that's not important. Let's have breakfast! I'm hungry!"
The two girls changed into their usual maid uniforms and headed for the cafeteria.
When they stepped into the dining room, some of the maids are talking to each other in a serious manner.
"Hey, hey, what are you talking about? We want to join you..."
When Millie suddenly interrupted the conversation from behind, the girls choked up and jumped out of the way at once.
"Don't be so surprised!"
When they realized that it was Millie and Hilarie who had interrupted them, the maidens all looked relieved.
"I'm sorry. We were talking in private. Don't worry about it. It's not something an outsider should get involved in."
"Eh, don't be a stranger! Don't call me an outsider... okay?"
"Right, right! I'll tell Her Highness!"
The maids looked at each other.
Then, they looked at each other with a troubled look on their faces and one of them opened her mouth.
"Actually, Her Highness..."
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