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Story 15: Dream Within a Dream

His Eminence Shion was there that day during tea time, bringing me a souvenir from Gihinia, where he had gone for official business.

“So there are hot springs in northern Gihinia?”

“Yes. There are many hot springs in the mountains of Gihinia, including the Duke of the North’s villa, and the hot springs of Gihinia are said to be good for wounds. There are also long-term lodgings for bathers, and I have stayed for a while in a nearby cathedral.”

His Eminence Shion was Archbishop of Gihinia before he became Archbishop of the Royal Capital, and he still occasionally travels to Gihinia.

“Have you taken a bath in the hot springs?”

“Yes. Gihinia is also a city of hot springs. I don’t think it’s possible for sister-in-law can’t to go, but there are several large public baths that anyone can enter.”

“Is it a public bathhouse?”

“Yes. There are no residential facilities attached, but it is a hot spring that even travelers can enter if they pay an entrance fee.”

I see. I’m sure it’s a facility like a public bath or a stopover hot spring.

“The Treatment Center is run by the Cathedral, and the hot springs there are also very good. If you get a chance, sister-in-law should come too. It is customary for members of the royal family to visit Gihinia to see the treatment center and also to use the hot springs there.”

“Oh! If I get a chance, I will ask Nigel-sama to take me there.”

“……I’m sure my brother as expected, won’t be indifferent to sister-in-law’s begging, but please don’t be discouraged if he refuses. My older brother probably doesn’t understand the true meaning of words, such as ‘hot springs,’ or ‘vacations,’ or ‘rest.’”

“It’s okay. I know that His Highness is a hard worker.”

I laughed at His Eminence Shion’s joking manner.

Perhaps I was really attracted to the ‘hot springs’ at that time.

That is why I had such a dream.


……Huh? What’s this all about?

I woke up and found myself in a tatami room, somehow.

A dream, perhaps?

Maybe I’m not awake yet.

Memories of the past …when I was Maya? No, no.

I could instantly deny that. Because my hands were small as proof that this is not a memory of the past.

Beautiful white hands with no scars…groomed fingertips and beautifully painted nails…

This is Arthirea’s hand.

…But also…

I turn my head sideways with the awkwardness of a squeaky un-oiled robot.

“What is it?”

Why is His Highness…

Why is His Highness Nigel here?

And he’s also wearing a yukata.

Surprisingly, it looks good on him, o…it doesn’t feel strange.

I don’t think this is my wifely desire.

“No…what are you doing? Your Highness.”

“No, I just thought it was an interesting tea set.”

He opened the tea chest containing the tea set and looked at it with curiosity, picking up the tea canister and putting his face close to the teapot.

Ah, yes…It’s more of a dream than a memory from the past, isn’t it?

It’s a tatami room with a lacquered table, and if you look around, it’s a completely Japanese room…I’m sure that this is the Japan that Izumi Maya lived in.

It’s definitely strange that I’m here as Arthirea, and also that His Highness Nigel is here.

So this is definitely a dream.

But maybe it could be really fun

I was glad to be with His Highness, and it was interesting to have Him in this space that was familiar to me.

At this time, since I’m already here, I might as well enjoy being in a dream for a while.

It’s a dream anyway. I’m free to do a few things.

“This is a special tea set specifically for green tea.”

‘I’ll brew you a cup,’ I said as I picked up the teapot.


Even so, it’s a mystery to me as to where we are.

At any rate, it’s not my room.

Is it somewhere I’ve traveled to or something?

If it was so memorable in my dreams, I shouldn’t be hard to remember it right away, but I couldn’t remember it at all.

I twisted my head and pulled the pot closer.

In Maya’s memory, a kettle that could be used to boil water immediately was the norm, but apparently this place used a slightly retro thermos pot.

It’s not my parents’ house…

I don’t have any place in mind, but if I had to choose, I would say it has the look of a hot spring resort somewhere.

I warmed the bowl and put the water back into the teapot for about a minute.

When I poured the water into the thin, white bowl, a refreshing aroma arose from the bowl.

“A nice scent…”

The dark yellow-green color reminded me of fresh green.

I carefully brewed a cup of tea and offered it to His Highness Nigel.

“Here you are, Your Highness.”


His Highness holds the teacup in his hand while half of his consciousness is taken up by the thermos pot.

I brought the pot over to His Highness.

You can play around with it as much as you want after you drink the tea…but only if you don’t break it.

“…The scent is different, isn’t it?”

“Yes. There is a wide variety of green teas, depending on the area of origin…This is sencha.”

No matter what the tea is, it will be very different from the green tea we drink in Dardinia.

“Your Highness, if you would be so inclined, you may have some of these sweets.”


“Yes. It’s wrapped in this film.”

I go ahead and put the plate with the steamed buns in front of me.

“…This one?”

“Yes. It’s a manjuu bun. Inside is a sweetened bean paste that I used in the pancake sandwiches that you ate before.”


His Highness had an idea of what I was talking about and opened the film of the manjuu with an awkward hand, an expression of understanding.

“What’s this?”

“Please throw it in the trash.”

His Highness threw away the trash with some regret and brought the steamed bun to his mouth.


“It’s a pastry…So I think it’s just right to have it with this tea.”

I think that red bean paste and green tea are an ironclad combination. Just like the ones you get at Dardinia, bean paste and black tea are not bad, but I think green tea is best with bean paste. If possible, I like using a strong green tea.

The sweetness of the bean paste is just the right amount, and the astringency of the tea is sweet enough to enjoy the afterglow of the bean paste, and then the astringency of the tea and the harmony of the flavors.

This, I think, is the perfect marriage!

I moistened my mouth with tea first and then put my mouth on the steamed bun.

The skin and the red bean paste must have been made of brown sugar in abundance. The unique sweetness of brown sugar spread in my mouth.

The red bean paste wrapped in the thin skin was a carefully made koshi-an, and it melted smoothly in my mouth.

I’m a fan of mashed bean paste, but if brown sugar is used, the koshi-an is delicious too.

I have a feeling that if His Highness had heard the voice in my heart, he would have said something like, ‘You must be a good foodie.’ He’s right, though.

“Your Highness, do you like it?”


“Then I’ll do some research when I get back. I can almost manage the ingredients, and if I can get some brown sugar, then it will be perfect.”

I wish I could remember it when I wake up.

“Brown sugar…”

“Yes. I’ve never seen it in the royal court.”

“What kind of material is it?”

“It is a sweetener made by boiling down the juice of sugar cane. It comes in a variety of shapes, from blackish slabs to granulated pieces.”

Brown sugar looks and tastes different depending on the creator.

But I probably seen anything comparable to brown sugar yet.

“Can you make a sweetener by boiling down the juice of sugar cane?”

“Yes. So, the juice they squeeze out can be used to fertilize the fields.”


His Highness Nigel has an expression of interest.

“But it is strange.”

“What is it?”

“The fact that Your Highness is in my dream. That’s very typical of His Highness, even in a dream.”

“…Is this your dream?”

“…Now…maybe it’s His Highness’s dream…but it seems more likely that it’s my dream.”


“Apparently, this is like a hot springs inn.”

“Hot springs inn?”

“Yes…look. This page is typical of a hot spring here.

I open the page with the sticky note from the magazine that was left in my room along with a guide to the inn and show it to him.

I’ve never stayed at an inn here, but I know why it was in my dreams, even though I’ve never stayed at…!

This is the inn where Maya’s parents came for their honeymoon. When I saw the magazine, I vaguely remembered it.

…It’s a place I had always wanted to go to someday.

“What is a hot spring inn?”

“Um, well, it’s an accommodation. It might be similar to the Gihinian bath houses for bathers.”

I don’t know much about Gihinia’s facilities, but…

I realized that I must have had this dream because of His Eminence Shion’s story.

Did I really want to go to the hot springs that badly…?

It seems that it’s hard to know what’s going on inside m mind, despite my own circumstances.

“I see.”

“Your Highness Nigel, I’d like you to take me to the hot springs in Gihinia sometime.”

It’s in a dream, so I can coerce him without a care in the world.

“Why? Is there something wrong?”

“Not really, but I want to take a bath in the hot springs. I want to take a relaxing dip in the hot springs and wash my life away.”

“Wash you life away?”

“I’m not sure how to put it, but I’d like to have a hot spring to soothe my body and mind and energize myself for tomorrow…I’ve been confined to the palace for a long time, and I’d like to spend some time together outside, just the two of us, in this way.”

“…Two people…”

“Yes. We haven’t even had a honeymoon, have we? So I’m fine with this instead of a honeymoon…I know we’ll actually have a lot of company, but there’s a better chance for us to be alone outside than in the royal palace.”

“What is a honeymoon?”

“Well, it’s when newly married couples go on a trip together.”

“Would you like to go on a trip? What purpose does it serve?”

His Highness looked as dubious as ever.

Even though a dream, it’s a funny one, just like His Royal Highness the Crown Prince.

“Well…the couple will travel alone to a strange place and deepen their relationship while working together for the first time?”

I feel like I’m saying this to myself, and I feel like there’s something different about it.

No, I feel like the honeymoon is something sweeter, fluffier, and softer, but and I don’t know how to tell His Highness that…

However, His Highness seemed fine with that explanation.

“I see…Then I’ll be sure to take you to Gihinia one day.”

His Highness Nigel said with a faint smile.


“Your Majesty, I have been informed that a departure has been arranged.”


It was just before noon when I received the news that it was decided to go on a trip together.

To begin with, I rarely leave the Royal Capital unless there’s something wrong because of my overprotective husband.

I think the last time I left the Royal Capital was when I left home…

It was years ago.

“So? Where will we go?”

“It’s Gihinia.”

“…Gihinia? Is this the Gihinia that His Eminence Shion used to visit?”


“I’m looking forward to it.”

The fact that the two of us could vacate the royal palace together was a sign that the country had been peaceful.

And moreover, Nigel-sama must be very confident in my safety to take me out.

“You’ll be doing the honeymoon, won’t you?”


There is a faint image in those words that is pulled from the depths of my memory.


“I promised to take you there someday.”

Nigel-sama may or may not have noticed my condition, but he continues to speak.

Huh? That was a dream…

“…Well, it was in a dream.”

Then he looked up from the papers he was facing and looked at me.

“I wonder which dream that was…”

I murmur as I trace back to a distant memory.

“Come on…it doesn’t matter which dream it is. As long as it’s just the two of us, it’s the same thing.”

Nigel-sama laughed.

“Yes, I agree.”

I laughed too.

“It’s a honeymoon…At best, let’s try to get along like newlyweds.”


Nigel-sama was in a very good mood, but I felt like there was something disturbing about his words, and I tilted my head.

Nigel-sama looked at my face and smiled even more happily.


“Why can’t I go too?”

“That’s because this is their honeymoon, they say.”

“That’s not true, Phil. Father and Mother have already been married for a long time.”

The young boy with his mother’s golden hair and father’s blue and silver eyes pointed out extremely calmly.

…Really, seriously, this is definitely Nigel’s child.

Inwardly, shuddering at the thought of such a terrifying child, Phil-Lynn turned his beaming smile on the young prince.

No matter how young he is, no matter how much he calls him ‘this’ in his heart, the one in front of him is the next king…His Royal Highness the Crown Prince. If he opens his mouth as usual, he could be accused of disrespect.

He’s a kid, he ain’t figured out a lot of stuff yet…

The tone of voice that is acceptable to the king and his wife is not acceptable to a young child who is still inflexible.

Although, it’s important to know what the world is like around here…

Or should he say the truth about his parents rather than the world?

“That’s right, Your Highness.”


The young child looks at Phil with a serious face.

“Which would you rather know, the truth or the real truth?”

Phil-Lynn decided that he shouldn’t make up for it in a strange way.

It’s a pity that he is required to be self-aware at such a young age, but as the crown prince who has already been crowned, it can’t be helped.


But the young prince clearly shows his awareness of the situation.

“The truth is that it’s an action to prevent the loss of both the king and the crown prince in the unlikely event of an accident.”

“…So, what’s the real story?”

“He promised to be alone just the two of them, and he doesn’t want to be disturbed, even by his own child.”

“…Is it bad?”

“Yes, he promised her in a dream. He said he was taking her to Gihinia for their honeymoon.”

“So I don’t have to take it personally.”

Phil-Lynn then announced gravely, as if to declare that it was too late.

“Unfortunately…your father and mother will be newly-weds for the rest of your life.”


T/N: Luthy and Nigel have a kid!! And from the sounds of it, he’s just like Nigel, haha.

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