After finishing her conversation with Shinji and Kuroumaru, Tsubaki went back to her room. Alone with her lady-in-waiting, she exhaled heavily as she finally released the tension that had been holding her back.
「I'm fine. I'm just a little tired... can I have something to drink?」
「Then I'll get you something to drink」
Tsubaki sits down on the cushion and the lady-in-waiting leaves the room, her gazes out of the window.
（I am glad that Kuroumaru cooperated with me. Now I can take one more step forward...）
She thinks back to Kuroumaru's face, who understands Tsubaki's concern for the future of the country, and puts practicality before a man's pride. His surprise and conflict when he heard Tsubaki's story. And finally, the look of determination on his face. His willingness to devote himself to Tsubaki makes her happy, but at the same time, it makes her feel guilty for him.
（Would Kuroumaru be angry if he knew that I am going to give my body for country? Or does he feel sad... No, it's useless to think about it）
As they parted, Tsubaki sees Shinji's eyes and knows that he will visit her room this night. She does not regret giving her virginity to Shinji. An exceptionally erudite wizard from another country, he is clean in appearance, kind to women, and a gentleman. Tsubaki can say that he is honest and likable, without the roughness of Garoumaru.
However, he has no loyalty to the country. Her honest feeling is that she would have given her all if she were allowed to do so to a man like Kuroumaru, a man who would risk his life in the service of his country.
However, the reality is not so sweet, and without Shinji's help, the probability of the country's destruction is high. Now that she has witnessed the difference in magic technology between Soukai Country and Tenshou Country through the previous assault on the royal castle, the country has no time to lose. Therefore, Tsubaki decided that the only way to fight against them is to put her trust in Shinji, and it is essential to have a way to keep in touch with him.
Fortunately, based on Shinji's conditions, she knows that he has no intention to take over Soukai Country. Of course, Tsubaki will continue to accept Shinji's offer, but she will be careful not to be taken out of power.
「Princess. Sorry to keep you waiting」
The lady-in-waiting returns with a tray, which she places quietly in front of Tsubaki. She serves the dishes and teacups in turn, and pours warm tea from the teapot.
「...How long have you been thinking about such a thing, Princess?」
「Well. I've been vaguely aware of the need to do something since my brother's death. It was only when I met Shinji that I had something concrete in mind」
「Are your thoughts your own, Hime-sama? Are you not being forced by him to do so?」
The lady-in-waiting is right to be concerned. It is common practice in this country to support a man by stepping back. Knowing well that it is a sign of her loyalty to her master to ask a question that might cause her displeasure, Tsubaki smiles to reassure the lady-in-waiting.
「This is my will. I'm not forced to do it. However, I am in a situation where I have to force myself now. I am the princess of this country and I must do what I can」
「Princess... I'm sorry for asking such an impolite question」
「It's all right. I'm glad you're concerned. Thank you」
Smiling, Tsubaki looked at the flowers in a vase on the desk. Following her gaze, the lady-in-waiting notices the flowers and looks at them curiously with red petals that she has never seen before. Seeing her, Tsubaki touches the stem of the flower.
「Shinji gave me this. Isn't it beautiful?」
「Yes... and it smells good, too. I've never seen this flower before」
「It's a flower like the ones in his country. It grew from a seed and bloomed so fast. There really is a lot of magic out there. I'm so glad I could help...」
「Thanks to your efforts, Princess」
Tsubaki, who has returned to the soft tone of her private life, looks at a beautiful flower with her maid. They continue their conversation happily, not realizing that the flowers were given to Shinji so that he could move into this room and be with Tsubaki this very night.
* * *
At night. Most of the people in the castle are asleep. But Shinji appears in Tsubaki's dimly lit room, lit only by the moonlight coming in through the window. Before he teleports, Freri inspects the surroundings of the room and finds no one in the room except for Tsubaki, so Shinji can stand in front of her safely.
「Good evening, Princess. I'm sorry to keep you waiting...」
「Don't worry about it. It was more convenient for me」
Sitting upright on a futon laid on the tatami mat, Tsubaki was wearing a thin yukata. During the daytime, she wears not only layers of kimono but also stuffing due to a custom that does not allow the lines of the body to show, and now that all of these have been removed from her body, she has a magnificent bulge that can be seen at a glance.
Tsubaki's face was red with shame as she exposed herself in her nightclothes, which normally only her husband could see after the marriage. She tries to calm down during the waiting time, saying that she should not be shy because this is a necessary ritual, but when she is in front of Shinji, her heart starts to beat faster.
（Oh... this is unexpected. She has nice breasts. I couldn't see them at all over her clothes. Maybe it's because of the custom of not only not showing the legs but also not showing the line of the body）
（He's watching me... don't be shy. This is necessary for the country. I am the princess of Soukai Country. I only do what I have to do...）
Tsubaki takes a deep breath to calm her beating heart, not knowing that within Shinji, who had intended their relationship to be a one-time-only one-time affair with only a lewd crest, a desire to enjoy sex as well as a sense of duty has sprouted inside her.
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