Doted on by the Crown Prince 36
- Coral Tea
Aishira was invited to the tea party in order to make a report of her visit with the queen of the sea fairies.
Delicious tea along with cakes that Tiararose had made was prepared for them in the drawing room.
The reason that Tiararose, Aquasteed, and Aishira were here was so they could talk about the sea fairies who would steal the sweets.
At the door, both Tiararose and Aquasteed’s guards stood watch.
However, a tea party that was about making a report would not have the most pleasant atmosphere.
Tiararose felt bewildered by how gloomy Aishira looked. Aishira had received a great shock over the fact that the queen of the sea fairies had not accepted her.
She who had been loved by the sea fairies more than anyone else in the kingdom. She must have been confident–that she would be able to get along with the fairy queen as well.
“The queen is a different matter. Even if the fairies are fond of you, it will still be difficult to make the queen feel the same. Don’t feel too down about it.”
Aquasteed said as if it were the most normal thing. Aishira nodded weakly.
“Princess Aishira… I too am not liked by the sea fairies.”
“Thank you. Tiararose.”
Tiararose was liked by the king of the forest fairies and others. However, she was disliked by the fairies of the sea.
And while that made her a little sad, she also thought it was kind of arrogant to want all of the fairies to love her as well.
Of course, it was an otome game that she had really loved. It wasn’t that she didn’t have a hope of being loved by all kinds of people. But in the end, she had the biggest love of all in Aquasteed.
There was not one speck of her that felt that she needed more.
“I met with the queen of the fairies and was sent away. I swam down into the sea many times after that but…”
Aishira clenched the fists that she had on her lap.
It was clearly difficult for her to speak, but she continued slowly.
“–But, I am no longer allowed to reach the palace of the fairy queen. No matter how deep I swim, the sea just continues on forever.”
There were tears at the corners of Aishira’s eyes now. Tiararose quietly offered her a handkerchief. She understood that this was troubling for her, but she hoped that she would not blame herself too much.
Aishira thanked her and wiped at her eyes with it.
Ultimately, the result was that–nothing had been resolved at all in the present.
Tiararose did not care too much, as all it meant was the continued robbery of her sweets. But Aquasteed felt differently.
His beloved wife’s sweets were being stolen. And who knew what would happen next? He had to eliminate all uncertainty.
“In regards to this issue, I will just have to–… Grail?”
Aishira was unable to get any information, so he would have to do something. It was just as Aquasteed was thinking this when the air in the room suddenly changed.
He immediately recognized what had happened and called the name.
“Hehe, I decided to pay you a visit.”
It was Grail, queen of the sky fairies that had visited.
Just as Tiararose happily called her name, another voice sounded from the side. It sounded very annoyed.
“What, so you are just going to ignore me?”
Grail, queen of the sky fairies and Keith, king of the forest fairies. And both had appeared at the same time.
Tiararose’s voice rose in surprise. Aishira shrank back a little as she was overwhelmed by the sight of two important people.
“I heard that you and have been having tea with Grail recently. It is good to see you, Tiara.”
“It has been too long. I am so very pleased to meet the king of the forest fairies once a–”
“Please don’t with the formalities. Well, it is good to see that you are happy.”
Tiararose and Keith had not met since the wedding.
Tiararose considered thanking the fairy king, but Keith hated such formal things.
He invited himself to one of the chairs and began to pour himself some tea.
Tiararose would have poured him the tea herself, but it was also very much like him to do it himself. She chuckled.
He drank it down in one gulp and noisily placed the cup on the saucer.
Grail warned him with a “What bad manners.” but Keith did not seem to pay any attention to it.
“More importantly, don’t you have a gift for them?”
“You are a fairy king as well. Can you not have better manners? Oh, yes. I brought some coral tea with me today.”
The fairy king and queen talked without much regard for their surroundings.
Tiararose then asked Philiane to bring a new set of teacups for them. She had never heard of such tea. What could it be?
She looked curiously at the package that Grail pulled out.
“You are the ruler of the sky fairies, but you brought coral tea?”
Aquasteed looked at Grail suspiciously.
Fairy kings generally had a strong connection to their forest, sky or sea. Corals were from the ocean, so they were a part of Pearl’s territory.
It seemed very strange for Grail, who was the queen of the sky fairies, to bring this as a gift.
“Exactly! Well, actually this was something I got from Pearl. But it is so good, so I am sharing it with you.”
What came out of the bag were small corals.
These were then dropped into the newly prepared teacups. Once some hot water had been poured over them, a mild ocean scent and sweet floral scent spread around them.
Tiararose couldn’t help but exclaim, ‘amazing.’ And Grail smiled happily.
“Right? It is one of my favorites.”
Moving next to Tiararose now, she began to explain how it was especially good with some milk.
–However, Aquasteed immediately stood up and put an end to it.
He pulled Tiararose closer to him and shooed Grail away with his hands.
“Tiara is my wife. Do not get so close to her.”
“Humph. You are so heartless, Aquasteed.”
Aquasteed had no desire to hide his almost childlike territorial instincts. Tiararose’s heart began to beat faster. He was usually not this bold when they were in public.
–Was he really so disturbed by me and Grail becoming friendly?
She could not imagine why. And no answer seemed to be coming for this. She tilted her head to the side. Still, she made no attempt to remove herself from Aquasteed’s tight embrace.
She was embarrassed but also very happy.
“You really do adore her… Oh, it makes me jealous.”
Grail said with defeat as she moved over to a different chair and began to pour everyone some tea.
Aishira humbly accepted her cup, her eyes were wide with wonder at the idea of using coral for this. After all, Aishira’s corals were the best in the whole kingdom.
But she had no idea how to make tea from them. She considered that she may have been given this knowledge had the queen of the sea fairies liked her. And her spirits fell even further.
“Now, now Keith. Have a seat. Oh, by the way. I’m afraid that we’ve intruded rather suddenly, I hope you weren’t busy?”
After setting up the table, Grail looked at everyone who was present.
Usually, it would have just been Tiararose, Aquasteed, and Grail here having a tea party. Seeing such an unexpected person such as Aishira here seemed to have caused a bit of a surprise.
Aquasteed shook his head as if giving up and said, “It is fine.”
Well then, let us have tea together–and with that, they heard a small splash of water.
Everyone turned their heads with a “?” and saw that from the inside of the teacup was the small face of the fairy queen, Pearl.
The only people that were present who knew Pearl was Grail and Keith. And Aishira who had visited the palace.
Aishira had assumed that they would never meet again, and so her eyes widened in surprise.
Grail smiled happily and held up the teacup which Pearl had appeared in.
“Hehe. I did wonder if I would be able to meet you with this coral tea.”
However, Pearl only looked annoyed and refused to utter a single word.
“Ummm, Grail? Who is…”
“Ahh, you have not met, Tiararose. This is the queen of the sea fairies, Pearl.”
The atmosphere became very strange then. Tiararose opened her mouth timidly. Hearing that the person was the queen of the sea fairies had caused her to become very nervous.
She had not thought that they would ever meet. Aquasteed seemed to have felt the same way, but he immediately stood up and thanked Pearl.
But Pearl only ignored the two and glared at Grail with sharp eyes.
“Oh, Pearl. Why must you be angry? That is very bad, you must answer their greeting…”
Grail said in a troubled voice. Pearl finally opened her mouth.
“You will not give me any orders! Especially dressed up like that in spite of being a man!!”
Tiararose was so stunned by the sudden revelation that she let out a small cry.
To think that the beautiful lady she had been having tea with was a man… She could not believe it.
–Prince Aqua seemed to have been jealous of Grail… Perhaps he knew that Grail was a man?
Such was the theory Tiararose considered.
That must be why Aquasteed did not want her to meet with Grail alone. Surely he would not have been so unreasonable if it had been a woman.
–These fairy kings were the most interesting characters.
A pompous but handsome man, a beautiful transvestite, and a haughty, princess-like girl. That was just like an otome game sequel should be. Thinking of it like this, the characters made so much more sense to her.
“Grail, you idiot!”
That was the last thing Pearl said before disappearing into the teacup with a splash.
Tiararose could only look on in silence as she witnessed this.
Finally, Grail broke the silence with a quiet voice.
The voice was much lower than usual. Androgynous.
“She said that she hated men. So I thought that we could become friends if I dressed like this.”