The morning after I had been utterly let down, I saw Freed off as he headed for work and idly sat on the bed in his bedroom.
Naturally I thought about him.
It's something I'd vaguely felt for a long time, but I noticed suddenly.
I can't help but see Freed as cool.
No, of course I know he's cool. It's natural of the beautiful prince hailed as flawless.
It's not in that sense, or rather I apply maidenly filter, or rather… Yup, it's that my beloved person looks cool.
Finding it too much to endure, I rolled on the bed. I'm so embarrassed I want to die.
I thought I'd been slightly strange since yesterday.
Since Freed helped me, my heart throbbed strangely… This is bad.
I'm happy to be on his side, I feel awfully lonely when we're apart.
I encamped myself in his office yesterday because I wanted to be with him even a little longer.
While in the office, I got my fill of his figure.
When our eyes met once in a while, for some reason both of us broke into a smile…
I recalled Brother nagging us to stop flirting each time.
No, I'm not flirting! I fiercely appealed to Brother, but now I understand.
Sorry, Brother. I was flirting. Yes.
Even now while remembering yesterday, I'm in his bed seeking his lingering scent like this. Hey, what are you doing, me! Return to sanity.
"I love… Freed"
As I tried muttering that, I received damage. Greatly perplexed I rolled left and right on the bed.
What are those maidenly thoughts! It's not like me at all.
Perish, perish, periiiiish!
I don't know what the hell suddenly happened to me.
But, looking back on my actions or feelings yesterday, I think that's probably the case. I remember this sensation.
―――― That's why I wanted to be embraced so much.
Once I noticed my feelings, I also understood the reason why it was desperately miserable not to be embraced yesterday. I didn't care about Prince Maximilian's matter. I wasn't hurt. I simply wanted him to embrace me because I love him.
"It's too embarrassing…"
I muttered flopped on the bed. My whole face, especially the ears, filled with heat.
However, now that it happened, after all I should tell him directly.
I received his feelings a long time ago. It's late, but if I tell him he'll surely, no, absolutely be happy.
If I do that, it'll be an openly mutual love. A dazzling normie everyday will begin.
My beloved is my fiancé…!
What should I do, I'm too lucky!!
Since I was born a duke's daughter, I thought I couldn't expect marriage out of love, so it's an unexpected joy.
Ah, but what should I do.
I grinned thinking of the sure lovey-dovey lover period, but suddenly I calmed down.
If I recognize I love him, I have zero confidence in refusing him.
I think I haven't refused him much until now either, but that's exactly why I'm scared that I seem to be gradually accepting everything.
Fundamentally, I'm aware I'm soft on my beloved.
It's simple to predict I'll respond as demanded.
Rather, I find it unpleasant how I seemed to assertively snuggle to him to get embraced.
"Aaaah… What should I do… I won't be able to refuse… Nn?"
While having fortunate worries, I suddenly noticed something odd.
Having recognized that I love him, I've been thinking of embarrassing things since a while ago.
Moreover, the impetus was being saved from that Crown Prince.
Yes, ever since I saw Freed immediately afterwards my heart has been violently pounding, it turned into the feeling of embarrassment.
… No matter how I look at it, isn't it too much?
The timing, and the various things.
"… Wait. Perhaps this could be what's called the 'suspension bridge effect'…?"
When I thought of it, plenty things applied.
Suspension bridge effect.
'A physically excited person realizes they are in love', it's a well know idea.
It hasn't been strictly proven, but the conclusion is that it's generally correct.
In other words, what I want to say is, because I had been attacked by Crown Prince Maximilian and with my mind in an excited state saved by Freed, I developed an emotion of pseudo-love, it's that kind of thing.
The template applies to the situation so much I'm astonished.
Come to think of it, until now I should've had many moments with Freed when my heart beat fast.
Still I didn't recognize those as love. I think they were in the grey zone.
Because, those weren't as clear as yesterday.
… Right, yesterday was overly easy to understand. That's why I came to realize I love him…
I see, suspension bridge… It's beyond my expectations.
What a thing. My state of mind perfectly fits such a clichéd development, it's like that, huh.
And yet, unaware, I thoughtlessly said stupid things like I'm in love, I'm too foolish. I'm an idiot, idiot.
"Bad… I'm glad it's before I said I love him…"
I couldn't possibly confess and then say that after all it was a misunderstanding. It'd be rude to Freed.
… Yup, I need to carefully verify this.
Are the current feelings brought forth by suspension bridge effect, or because I actually truly fell in love with Freed.
Before I reach that conclusion, I absolutely mustn't tell it to Freed.
I should keep these feeling a secret.
I got up from the bed, and having tidied up my hair stood up.
I left the bedroom, and headed for the room with the sofa.
"… There's still time"
The wedding ceremony is approaching, but there's still some time.
Until then let's exhaustively verify whether I really love Freed. This is an important matter. I need to proceed with caution.
Of course, if I'm convinced I really love him before the limit, I'll tell him at that time.
Even if the limit comes and I still don't know… Well, I'll just get married as planned.
As one would expect, I don't think the suspension bridge effect will continue for such a long time. Therefore, if my currents feelings continue until then, even if I don't understand them, it'll mean I really love him.
In case I reach the conclusion that I don't love him… Well, since that won't be the case I don't have to worry about it.
I nodded, and with then it's fine, finished my inner monologue.
―――― However, I should've noticed there.
That when I thought it's impossible I'd reach the conclusion that I don't love him and that it's a misunderstanding, I already recognized I love him.
Nevertheless, the me who kept being called dull ultimately didn't notice it.
"… Alright, until I understand whether I really love Freed, let's call Freed my beloved (provisional)!"
Carefreely I thought up such an inconsequential name.