One random day, afternoon. Since Lady Emma’s condition has vastly improved, I’ve been keeping my visits to the Eicher residence to the bare minimum, and have begun to throw myself into my studies with a passion.
I was heading for the library, and had just passed through the corridors facing the garden when a golden bullet slammed into my stomach.
“Sister, sister, sister!!!”
The true identity of that bullet was Johan. The mop of hair an even brighter shade than my own was grinding itself into my stomach.
Dear little brother. For heaven’s sake, please ease up. I’m afraid your sister’s internal organs are about to squeeze out through her mouth.
“Princess Rosemarie, are you hurt?”
My guard knight stood behind me, at a loss. Oh, I guess he knew the golden bullet was the Second Prince, and that was why he couldn’t stop him.
While I was wondering what I should do with my dear, puppy-like little brother, another voice that wasn’t mine addressed him.
Johan’s small body went ramrod straight in shock.
The one who appeared, carrying a wooden sword for training, was an intelligent and beautiful boy. It was my older brother, Christof.
“We were in the middle of training. Go back.”
The cold inflectionless way Chris said that was really intense. Though I knew intuitively he hadn’t meant those words for me, my spine instinctively straightened itself out as well.
Of course, in his surprise, Johan clung to me even harder. Why do children have so much strength in their hands? Big sis is seriously about to have her intestines regurgitated.
Lowering those ice blue eyes of his, Chris sighed, and Johan’s body jumped again. He was frightened by each and every one of Chris’s actions. Exactly what type of training are they doing…?
“How are you, brother? My deepest apologies, it seems like I’ve interrupted your training.”
I knew he wasn’t in a good mood, but I tentatively greeted him anyway.
Chris shook his head “no”. He stayed emotionless the whole time, but the eyes he turned to me were kind.
“It’s not your fault. For some time now, Johan has been very depressed at not being able to see you.”
It seems like once he saw me, Johan abandoned his training and started running in my direction.
I was careless. I’ll need to pay more attention to the paths and the times I take them.
I bent my knees, looking into the face of my little brother who stood just a bit shorter than me. Big, slanted upward eyes becoming damp, Johan called for me.
It wasn’t like the little brother who had become emotionally attached to me wasn’t cute. Even if he also happened to be spoiled, a crybaby, and a deeply jealous pain in the butt.
However, if I let him have his way here, nothing would change.
“Johan, apologize to our brother.”
My stern features reflected in his wide open green eyes.
Ohh, I’m so sorry, Johan.
The useless sister who was only sweet to you is gone.
“Our brother is taking time out of his busy schedule to help you train. You insult his generosity.”
Apologize. When I said it again, Johan’s lovely face distorted in tears.
The hands seizing my clothes let go, and instead clutched tightly onto his own trousers. Holding back his tears, the tip of his nose turning red, my little brother hung his head and said in a small voice—
“I can’t hear you. Raise your head, look at your brother, and say it again!”
The expression on the guard knight standing close to the petrified Johan became inscrutable. Chris was also staring at us in amazement.
Because I’ve decided to shift gears, going from the sweet sister to the Devil herself.
Johan shouted in a loud voice, his back straightening with a snap, and my fierce expression finally softened.
Well done. Good boy!
Nodding in satisfaction, I turned to face Chris—
—and promptly froze on the spot.
I’m not surprised because Chris had accepted the loud apology with a wry smile, no.
Behind him was someone who had obviously been standing there for a while.
Wearing clothes that looked easy to move in, he also held a practice sword, one similar to the one Chris carried. He had probably been teaching Chris and Johan how to wield it. By the way, he’s known as the strongest swordsman in the whole kingdom.
Spiky black hair, and dark eyes with a perceptive glint in them.
Looking up at him, I noticed a tight body with a good amount of muscles running up and down its length. This wildly handsome guy was observing me as if I were an amusing furry specimen.
“What’s wrong, Rosé?”
It’s not “what’s wrong” after all this time.
Please, brother. Tell me it’s not true. That I just. Became a different person. And made himmisunderstand.
“Who…is that man?”
“Oh. He’s our sword instructor, and also a part of the Royal Knights.”
When Chris mentioned him, he kneeled in front of me.
Taking my hand with reverence, he lifted it until his lips almost kissed the skin. His breath grazed my fingertips, and I stood transfixed in spite of myself.
“Please forgive this worthless servant his impudence for daring to approach you. I am a member of the Chivalric Order of the Royal Knights, Leonhard von Olsen, and undeserving of the great honor of your royal presence.”
The sweet, low voice I’d been dying to hear was speaking to me.
When I finally got the chance to meet him, I’d planned to bump into him a little and tremble cutely from embarrassment. He probably had the worst possible impression of me now.
(At the scene of the most important meeting in my life, you can find—…yes, I did it, I’m guilty!)
I’ve waited so long for this moment, and my first encounter with the future Commander of the Royal Knights was just shot by me.