— Is she disappointed because I could not protect her?
Becoming anxious about the possibility that she might now hate him, he called out Tiararose’s name. As his voice came out with an embarrassing crack, he ended up laughing at his own insecurity.
Reacting to his voice, Tiararose’s body trembled in astonishment.
Indeed, this is not the usual Tiararose.
“I’ve put you in danger because I was unable to defend you, Tiara. That was inexcusable of me, and I truly regret it.”
“I’m sorry, Tiara. — I could not protect you. Am I no longer worthy of your love…?”
Tiararose’s eyes opened up wide, and stared at him with a blank expression.
Overflown with feelings of love, and not knowing what else to do, he threw himself into Tiararose’s arms and held her in a tight embrace around his own arms.
Without caring about the fact that the glass had fallen and the sheets had gotten wet, he buried his face into her neck.
Please hug me back, please.
That was without a doubt Aquasteed’s deepest desire.
“That, um… ah, I…”
Tiararose’s trembling voice reached Aquasteed’s ear.
However, he was not expecting the words that soon followed.
“Why is Your Highness Aquasteed here?”
“Of course, I know about Your Highness Aquasteed. Still, I believe we haven’t interacted yet…”
Looking at Tiararose, who was frowning as if she was troubled, Aquasteed’s eyes opened up wide in surprise. What she said just now can only mean that —
“Tiara, do you… do you know me?”
“Of course. We were in the same class in the academy…”
Tiararose smiles because of course, there was no one who did not know about His Highness Aquasteed. At the same time, that smile reveals a desire to be rid of shame.
“My memory seems a bit vague. Why am I here?”
— Did she lose her memories?
Still, Aquasteed was somewhat relieved since she seemed to at least remember some things about herself.
“This is Marineforest, Tiara.”
“Huh? Ah, that’s it. I came to Marineforest — but why did I come to Marineforest?”
Tiararose tilted her head in doubt.
She thought that she had only lost her recent memories, but that didn’t seem to be the case.
Trying to calm down a perplexed Tiararose, Aquasteed gently caressed her back — but he soon removed his hand as her body trembled in shock.
The memories of their engagement and their marriage were completely gone.
Tiararose, with her face turning red, uttered an apology. ‘Sorry.’ Even though there is nothing for her to be sorry about, she felt that she had to.
And while still feeling uneasy, she asked if her maid Philiane was there.
“Oh, yes. I’ll go call her now, so rest some more.”
“Thank you, Your Highness.”
— What should I do now?
Tiararose quickly crawls back into bed as she sees Aquasteed leave the room. She’s wearing a nightgown, so she’s thinking about waiting until Philiane comes to help her change before doing a few light stretches to loosen up her stiff body.
Soon enough, the door opened, and Philiane came in rushing.
“I’m glad you’re safe…! Does it hurt anywhere?”
Looking at Philiane shedding tears out of worry made Tiararose feel that her situation was far more serious than what she had originally thought. Philiane checked her temperature and diligently massaged her body.
“It’s okay, Lady Tiararose. For the time being, please get some rest.”
“… But His Highness Aquasteed is here, isn’t he? I can’t be resting here…”
Tiararose explained Philiane that being asleep and leaving the Crown Prince Aquasteed alone was a disrespectful thing to do.
“It is not disrespectful at all. His Highness Aquasteed was deeply concerned about you, Lady Tiararose. He has said that first of all, we should put your physical condition back in order.”
“His Highness Aquasteed said that…? I wonder why is he so concerned about me?”
I hope I haven’t caused any troubles.
I can’t help but feel uneasy about this situation, but if Aquasteed has told me to rest, I should probably do so.
— I will make sure to properly thank him later.
With a smiling face, Philine had told her that she should just rest for today.
Since she was not feeling particularly sleepy, Tiararose was reluctant to agree. She said that she wanted to at least have a book or something to read, to which the maid readily consented.
“I’ll prepare some tea. Then …I’ll bring some sweets to cheer you up. Now, I’ll go prepare some food, something good for your body.”
“Well then, if there’s anything else you need, please let me know.”
‘Don’t ask the other maids, please make sure to call for me’ said Philiane sternly.
First comes my current situation, the rest can wait. I had settled for leaving the talk about what to do next for another time.
“A doctor will come before your meal. I’ll bring a book to you after that.”
After telling me to rest for a while until that time, Philiane left the room.
◇ ◇ ◇
As soon as Philiane had come out of the room, Aquasteed asked her to brief him on Tiararose’s condition.
“There seem to be no problems with her physical condition. However, she does appear to have lost all memories about the time spent with you, Your Highness.”
“… I see.”
Philiane looked at Aquasteed as he clenched his fist.
What will become of that husband you have no memories of?
He is a doting husband to that extent, so how much blame can he endure?
What if the amnesiac Tiararose, that same Tiararose he loves so much, never recognizes who Aquasteed really is to her?
If she needs to go back to Lapis Lazuli for treatment, what would he say? Would he want a happily smiling Tiararose to stay, even if she has no memories?
“Your Highness, about Lady Tiararose…”
Despite his uneasiness, Philiane asked Aquasteed about it.
Wondering if his insecurities had been perceived, Aquasteed replied ‘It’s all right’ with a gentle smile in his face.
“No matter what, I love Tiara, and I’m confident she will love me again.”
And without a worry in his face, Aquasteed turned his sight to the bedroom’s door.