I Reincarnated As A Noble Girl Villainess But Why Did It Turn Out This Way? – 251
Part 4 “Appropriation” – Introduction
Episode 28 Accompanist Contest – 2
**TL Note: The author has replaced this chapter with “On A Certain Day – 2” as Chapter 250. Chapters have been rearranged accordingly.**
Emilia was a bit shocked.
That’s just how fierce Stephania’s gaze and voice were.
Emilia looked like a cornered rabbit, perhaps because Stephania had been so forceful in her approach. But as a matter of course, Emilia was in a much higher social standing than her, so there was little need for me to read too much into things.
I took a step back. By doing so, I made both Emilia and Stephania turn their attention to me.
That single movement seemed to be enough to make Emilia somehow understand.
“…Let’s think about it after a proper greeting.”
I could hear someone trying to hide her laugh somewhere down the corridor. Her reply had been as sharp as they come.
Though her voice seemed to quiver, Emilia spoke with decisiveness. She then turned around and started walking towards the lecture room as if nothing had happened, without waiting for the next words of Stephania, who was stunned by Emilia’s unexpected counterattack.
I quickly followed after Emilia and nestled up to her.
Behind us, I could hear Tira having a word with Stephania’s attendant, so I felt relieved to leave the follow-up to her. Though there was a chance Stephania could end up chasing after us regardless of that.
“I’m sorry to have left it to you like that.”
Emilia exhaled deeply but quietly enough so that no one around her could notice. She seemed nervous, and quite surprised to have come up with such bitterness after feeling so cornered herself.
Well, Stephania was in the wrong, after all. She seemed to have been in quite a hurry, but still showed a complete lack of etiquette towards Emilia. Due to the high social standing of her own family, this wouldn’t be too much of a problem, but “Archduchess Rindarl” was a stronger hand than Stephania’s.
“No, don’t worry, after all, she didn’t disrespect only me, but you as well, Lady Kaldia…”
Her sentence became more muffled towards its end, where it withered so much it was hard to hear what she was trying to say.
…So that was it? She was glad to have been able to get back at her for inconveniencing both of us?
As we entered the central lecture room, Emilia took another deep breath to squeeze all her anxieties out of her lungs. She must have been concerned that Stephania could have been following her all the way here.
Thanks to Stephania having taken some time from us, most of the seats had already been taken. I saw Eric in the front row, so I took Emilia there.
During her lecture, I was pretty much left to go off on my own. Being constantly whispering things into Emilia’s ears would speak ill of my honor, so it would be better to just leave her to either the crown prince or the archduke’s family.
After hearing his name, Eric turned around with a bright expression on his face. It was a lot different from the boring face he had been making just a few moments ago.
If only he would keep that bright look on his face, the other students wouldn’t keep him at arm’s length so much… Only a few students were trying to get closer to Eric this year, perhaps because of last year’s turmoil and the scars left by his former proud behavior. I heard that he joined the student council, but it seems that he is still far from taking the position of Chairman due to his unpopularity with the rest of the students.
“Oh, you’re here! Good morning, Lady Emilia, Kaldia.”
“Good morning, Lord Eric.”
Eric responded to Emilia’s gentle bow with a grandiose nod that yelled “there, there” at her. Then he took her hands with his as if trying to hold water with them, a gesture that had a slightly romantic undertone to it.
They seemed to be quite close. Out of the four candidates, Emilia appeared to be most open-hearted with Eric. Eric has a very friendly side toward those who butter up to him, and he is also a very caring person, so he’s probably following Emilia’s frankness with his own open-heartedness as well.
…If this was nothing but the game I used to play in my previous life, Emilia would probably end up together with Eric as long as things kept going this way.
In reality, I feel that they’re a really good match in terms of position even in the current situation. I haven’t been able to accurately measure Emilia’s perception of the “Imperial Court”, but I think it’s quite possible that Emilia has seen the possibility of getting herself married into the Dovadine family, at least as a means to strengthen their diplomatic relations with Rindarl.
Though for that specific purpose, it would be easier to have her marry Grays instead… But that depends on how important Arxia is to Rindarl.
At any rate, as a “guest” from a defeated nation, Emilia’s eventual marriage for political reasons was set in stone. Developing a relationship as freely as in the game would be impossible for her.
While I was thinking about such things I couldn’t really speak about, Emilia and Eric seemed to be enjoying themselves, and had quickly begun to chat about the topics of their respective essays.
I couldn’t help but wonder how she managed to keep such an innocent face…
“Well met, Kaldia.”
I felt a tap on my shoulder. It was Zephyr. After I answered his greeting by slightly raising my hand, he said hi to Eric and Emilia, and then we all took our seats.
“I’ve already noticed this in a previous lecture we shared some time ago, but you look somewhat different, Your Majesty Emilia.”
“Do you think so?”
“Yeah. How should I put it…? Like my father. The way you act reminds me of him somehow.”
“That’s amazing. If her education turns out as splendid as Margrave Maudon himself, then it will all be worth the effort.”
“Eh? Are you grooming her, Kaldia?”
“What makes you think that? I’ve just made preparations for her education.”
Zephyr sighed, and then his expression changed as if he had just remembered something before shoving some books onto me.
“Here. Your chamberlain gave me these.”
“I approached that lady attendant of yours –who looks a lot like you, mind you– since she seemed like a total newcomer. Then, since I happened to get in the way of her work, I brought you these books as an apology.”
He then started laughing, but what was he doing, talking to chamberlains of other houses and getting in the way of their job?
“I understand the interest in technological development, but to focus it around war is a very ‘you’ thing, eh, Kaldia?”
“In the event of a war, we could inevitably end up deepening relations with several other countries. We have people from what used to be Altran in our territory, and from the southern nations as well. I just thought it was a good chance.”
“But there are more peaceful ways to develop technology, right?”
…Well, yeah, he’s certainly right.
“What topic did you choose, Zephyr?”
“About Rindarl’s Jewelry Technology”
“You’re no different from me.”
After I unconsciously said that, Zephyr burst into laughter, as if he hadn’t been able to keep it to himself any longer.