What can I do?
I’ve been thinking about that for a long time.
From the moment I decided to live in this world, there was a feeling somewhere in my heart wondering, ‘Is it okay for me?’
Living here meant that I would live as a special person, the Crown Princess.
I was just a normal, ordinary person in the other world…
Even though I had no doubt that I was Arthirea, it was difficult for me not to have negative feelings about myself.
…The lost memory of Arthirea Luciane until she was twelve years old.
A special girl, born as the daughter of Duke Elzevert, and raised as the Crown Princess.
The Other Me…
It was a contradictory entity that seemed to be a separate self, even though I thought of it as myself.
I can’t get it back anymore…
But I still had to live here, and I wondered what I could do if that was the case.
Although I was something of a recluse, from the beginning I had enough knowledge to live as the crown princess.
…A physical effort to the point of being absorbed in my body
The manners, rituals, and dances…Even if I couldn’t remember it as a memory, the body still remembered them properly, so it wasn’t difficult to remember them again as my own.
But that was very different from regaining the actual memory.
I can make all kinds of jarring excuses, but the main purpose of the ‘feeding operation’ was to get a grip on his stomach and keep myself safe. In other words, I wanted to protect myself.
But really, it wasn’t just that.
Because I wanted him to recognize the me now, not the me that was lost.
It seemed that for me, being recognized for something that Arthirea hadn’t had or lost, was the same thing as having my new self accepted.
I want to stand next to His Highness. I want to be worthy…
And yet, every time I thought about it, I couldn’t help but think about my lost self.
The sense of loss caused by lost memories is left empty, never to be filled.
This feeling of loss is not something that can be understood by anyone, and perhaps I can’t share it with anyone—because there is no substitute for what has been lost.
When I opened my eyes, the first thing that came into view was the budding greenery and spring flowers. When I finally got used to the view, I realized that this was my bed.
…Was I dreaming?
I couldn’t remember what I was dreaming about.
Only the outline of sorrow remained in my chest, and my cheeks were wet.
As I got up from my bed, I heard a sign of a person.
“…Your Highness, are you awake?”
‘Excuse me,’ she says, and then Alice comes in.
“Has your fever gone down?”
“…I don’t know, I’m still a little hazy.”
“I will call a doctor.”
I think it’s an overreaction, but it can’t be helped.
I am the Crown Princess.
I know exactly where I stand, so I’ll keep my mouth shut.
I wonder what’s happened after everything.
I had no idea how much time had passed.
“Excuse me. How are you feeling, Your Highness?”
“Lilia…I’m a little fuzzy, but I’m fine now.”
“Please don’t overdo it…When His Highness was holding you when you returned, I stopped breathing for a moment.”
“I’m sorry. I was stopped on my way out…”
“I know what happened.”
Lilia sighs, saying that Lady Elaine was also in trouble.
“…Why the Duchess?”
It was the daughter of Marquuis Rhodelia who had inconvenienced me.
“If Lady Elaine hadn’t stopped you, Your Royal Highness’ condition would not have deteriorated so badly.”
If it had been the young lady who had stopped him first, His Highness probably wouldn’t have stopped in the first place.
It was because she was the Duchess that he listened to her.
“The Duchess herself is not such a bad person…”
“Yes…but that’s why she gets taken advantage of because of it.”
“Yes…I don’t even think she knows how to doubt what anyone say…”
It was strange that even if she was used that often, she still didn’t notice it.
“So? How long has it been since the night of the evening party?”
“Your Highness was in bed for two whole days. It is now the evening of the third day since then. Aren’t you hungry, Your Highness?”
Being told that, I was suddenly hungry.
“…Yes. Please prepare a light meal. My stomach might be surprised if I eat suddenly, so please bring something easy to digest.”
“Then we will bring you some of Your Highness’ favorite egg porridge.”
“Please rest again until it’s ready.”
“If I sleep too much, my body may become dull.”
“You’re face still doesn’t have a good color to it yet…How about your feet? Don’t they hurt?”
“They’re feeling better now.”
Gently, I peek inside the blanket.
Seeing the gauze against my toes, I think I might have developed blisters or something.
“You don’t need to sleep, but please just lie down.”
It’s hard to be selfish enough to still want to stay awake when I’ve been told that much.
I have a long memory of being an adult, so I’m embarrassed by things like the spoiling of a child.
“…Hey, Lilia. Do you know what happened after the evening party?”
“Is it the disposal of the daughter of Marquis of Rhodelia?”
“Uh, and all that and more.”
“For now, the the daughter of Rhodelia has been sent to her estate. From now on, she will live a monastic life in her own church.”
“…In the church?”
“Yes ‘The Duke of Grachie has ordered her to be disciplined with a strict commandment. He says she cannot come out until she reflects on everything.”
Once again, my consciousness fell into a whirlpool of sleep, wishing that I could reflect on it properly.
In the end, it wasn’t until ten days had passed since the night of the evening party, that I returned to my usual condition and met His Highness.
“Good morning, Nigel-sama.”
“Good morning, Luthia.”
It was the time I’d come to the breakfast table in ten days. Of course, I hadn’t seen His Highness in those ten days either.
On the table was a plain omelette with a soft, buttery aroma, a crisp croissant that was finally becoming satisfying, and a row of freshly-boiled and steaming sausages.
Even though I didn’t say anything, he had taken the trouble to serve hot food while it was still warm, and the plate he had gently touched was warmed up.
“Thank you for your sympathy, Your Highness.”
I received a few sympathy cards and flowers, but he was too busy to come for a long time.
“Thank you for your concern.”
“Are you okay?”
“Yes. The doctor said I am fine now.”
I know that they are all anxious, overprotective people, so I have to keep the doctor on my side or else I’d never be able to leave my bed.
His Highness puts his own forehead against mine.
“…The fever certainly seems to have gone down.”
“Yes. To be honest, I’ve been sleeping way too much.”
I looked into His Highness Nigel’s blue eyes with a surprisingly close proximity.
A heartbeat races loudly.
“If so, then good.”
While I think the doctor’s report should have been sent to His Highness, I’m also very happy with this kind of trivial skin-to-skin contact.
“…I’m sure you’re fine now, so how about a little walk from now on?”
“Yes. I’m happy to.”
I reflexively nodded. And the joy slowly permeated through my body.
Maybe this is a date?
“Is your work okay?”
“Yes, it’s fine, because I don’t have any particular problems right now.”
His Highness Nigel’s expression seemed very soft.
…What is this? I feel embarrassed to look His Highness straight in the eye.
My heart has been beating so fast in my chest for a while now, it’s bad for my heart.
I’m way too conscious of him…
Thanks to that, it was the first solid breakfast I had in a long time, but I ended up eating it without really tasting it.
|♡| Table of Contents |♡| Support me! |♡|