“I don't have much left…”
Counting the pouches lined up on the bed, I muttered dejectedly.
The medicine I've brought with me has been running low. Though that's a given since I've been handing them out to people left and right.
There's still some seasick leaves left, but my antidiarrhoeal drug and the intestinal medicine have basically ran dry. On the other hand, I didn't get to use any of the bandages.
I checked each pouch carefully again before putting their contents back in when I felt a gaze on me.
I raised my face and met eyes with a certain escort knight. I eventually ended up averting my eyes every time though.
Don't you feel awkward if you keep staring like that? Not even in the slightest? Well, it wouldn't be Klaus if he picked up on these things though, yeah.
“…If you have something to say then say it.”
“No, nothing in particular.”
“Keep staring at me like that and you'll poke a hole through me.”
I tapped on a pouch before giving a sigh.
Klaus was brooding over my words with a hand under his chin.
“It could simply be my habit that I stare at your highness, though…”
Cure that twisted habit of yours! Right now!
“I have given some thought on it, but I didn’t mean to tell you.”
So, the answer to my question is a 'no'?
I don't know if he's just acting or if he really has a screw loose in his head, this guy.
“So, what were you thinking about?”
I blurted out the question on a whim without much interest.
Klaus silently muttered 'it's really nothing important'.
“My Lord said that helping others is second nature to you.”
I was surprised at those words.
“That’s not true.”
“Your actions of "helping others" including ones that you don't even realise, even when you're the one who pulled the short straw you didn't stop. It's true isn't it?”
He wasn't teasing me. There were no trace of hatred or disgust in his voice either.
But somehow I was irritated.
"I didn't pull any short straw."
"Even if you help others, they are only a drop in the ocean. Even if "Mary" saved the life of a maid, it still wouldn't be considered the achievements of a "Princess".”
Klaus looked straight at me and I held my breath.
I thought back to the conversation between Wolf and Paul.
In the end, Princess Rosemary was considered to be a selfish, spoilt princess. Some people still think favourably of me, but that's because of my brothers' and father's various achievements, and the fact that I'm their relative. It had nothing to do with my own accomplishments.
Klaus didn't hold back and went straight to the point. When I realised my blunder, I looked down. My clenched hands left wrinkles on the bed sheets.
“But even so, I can't just leave anyone in need alone, and I believe that that person is you.”
A weird voice leaked out.
I raised my face only to meet with his eyes once again. Klaus tilted his head curiously as I staggered.
“Yes, that's it.”
I thought for sure he was going to lecture me.
Looking at his face, he was telling the truth that that's all he wanted to say.
“Is that so.”
My shoulders dropped.
Thinking about it, Klaus has always been like this. He can be weird at times, but right down to it, he's a sincere and honest guy.
Not everybody knows this though.
“Are you done with that?”
The ship suddenly shook and I exclaimed in surprise.
I grabbed onto the sheets to stop myself falling out of bed. Klaus also offered his hand, but it wasn't that big of a shake so I didn't grab onto it.
“I wonder if that was a big wave.”
“That's because the wind is strong today.”
Just as Klaus said, the wind had been strong in the last few days. I didn't know whether this was a good thing but it seemed we will be ahead of schedule.
“It looks like we'll be arriving in Flamme earlier than expected.”
Even if I wasn't prone to get seasick, I still missed being on land.
I also wanted to eat fresh vegetables already so I was happy if we arrive early. Yes, in contrast to me who was on cloud nine, Klaus' expression was grim.
“Arriving too early is also a problem.”
Eh? Wasn't it better to arrive early?
“In the path ahead we will have to pass through small islands, and at this rate it will be during nightfall.”
“So there's a chance we could be grounded?”
“That’s not all…"
Klaus' words were heavy.
He was so serious it's not like him at all.
I waited for him to continue, but he hesitated.
“I shall assess the situation. I'll make sure that the sails are smaller and take other measures so please don't worry.”
Klaus walked towards the door.
He looked back at me once, and after a brief silence he left the room.
“What's that all about?”
I repeated the question in my head out loud.
I recalled the map I had remembered and followed the ship's route in my head.
The small islands Klaus mentioned were probably the ones south-southwest to Flamme. There's no choice but to go through them if one wanted to dock at Flamme's port town.
Many small uninhabited islands were known to cause countless ships to ground at night when it is harder to see. But from Klaus' attitude just now, it seemed that the islands were not the only danger out there.
The ocean is scary after all. Storms, thunder, big waves, sharks and… ghosts? As if.
'Un~' After I tried thinking about it to no avail, I let out a small groan.
I laid down on the bed and closed my eyes.
I think I've calmed down now.
In the beginning I was nervous about leaving my country. Apart from Mia’s heatstroke, since nothing had happened since then, I had grown conceited.
One shouldn't forget; the ocean is a scary place – a man who had strayed from the path is much more frightening than any ghost.
I will come to realise this fact later on.
TN: Another chapter before I go MIA for a few days. Please blame my exams.
This chapter, although small ended up taking as long as the last one because of all the d e e p talking. I wanna cry, but I won’t. I won’t I say!
The “Lord” that Klaus talked about is probably Sir Leonheart or The King, but since he used “私の主は” I don’t know which one it is. It’s basically Lord vs Master, unless I get this wrong of course.
If you find anything wrong with this one, even if it’s stuff like “this part is confusing” or “this sentence feels off” then leave a comment below. It doesn’t hurt to learn how to write English along the way…