Zero no Tsukaima:Volume12 Story1 Chapter2
 Chapter 2
In the morning, female students were seen traveling from dormitories in a separate section of the Academy of Magic to the main section where the dining hall was. Since the male dormitories were located in the main section, the guys gazed out at the arriving girls from the second floor balcony, while chattering about the breakfast menu.
Saito had his elbows propped up against the balcony. He, along with Guiche and Malicorne, were lazily gazing out at the girls as well. Saito spotted Tiffania amongst the girls and waved out at her. Noticing his wave, she waved back.
Guiche asked Saito,
“Even with those magical weapons there, you certainly are good at keeping a straight face.”
“You’re the strange ones. Boobs, boobs, boobs… you’re turning into boob fiends.”
“Well, one look at those things would certainly turn anyone into one as well.”
Guiche looked at Saito with a worried face.
“You… Don’t tell me that Louise’s magic is having an effect on you? Perhaps, you can’t see anyone but Louise because you are her familiar. Is something like that the case?
Malicorne also gave off a look of concern.
“Yeah. I don’t know about Louise’s magic, but it’s strange. This time, Saito, you didn’t join us. And it was a really good chance to check whether they were real or not…”
Guiche and Malicorne looked at each other, nodding in agreement at the thought.
“Don’t say stupid things. Look, I’ll teach you guys one thing.”
Saito crossed his arms with a look of pride.
“Umm, for instance, pretend that we were dogs.”
“I don’t want to be a dog.”
“This is only an example. Look, if we were dogs, we would have a bone in our mouth. That bone in your mouth took a lot of effort to get. But then, you see a brand new bone. What would you do?”
Guiche immediately answered.
“I’d pick it up.”
“Idiot. What would you do with the bone you had been using up to this point? Throw it away?”
Guiche’s face lit up in realization.
“Basically, you want to say this? The bone I have used up until now is Montmorency. The new bone laying around is that strangely large-chested Tiffania, Her Majesty the Queen, and Marianne from the first year Seger class, and another from that class with flowing locks of dazzling, marigold…”
“I don’t know how you have time to keep tabs on such things. Anyways, that’s what I mean. It’s impossible to keep both of the bones.”
Saito nodded his head in confirmation.
“Basically, you already have a bone in your mouth, is the idea?”
“Yep. The bone that I have now will get mad. That kind of attitude is what’s important now.”
“In other words, you…”
Guiche had a grin on his face as he poke Saito in the side.
“So you have properly caught that Louise in your mouth? You should tell us all the details of it.”
Saito shook his head “no,” but somehow he was still full of confidence.
“Not yet. But soon…it should only be a matter of time.”
“You’re really trying to tame that shrew of a girl, huh!”
“I’m seeing if acting a little cold at her will do anything…”
Saito stretched a hand up and looked up at the sky. He carried on,
“I-I, I’ve been unwillingly wagging my tail. Damn it, even now I keep going at it… Look… I’m going to return all the humiliation I’ve tasted until now and then some…”
Saito looked up at the sky trembling with resolution as he clenched his fist.
There’s the reliable Saito that Guiche is used to.
“That’s the assistant commander for you. That’s right, we can’t let the girls make fools of us. It offends my pride.”
“Pride aside, I think that this level of punishment is not enough. I probably need to reexamine her attitude.”
Guiche narrowed his eyes as he turned to Saito.
“I’ve been wondering about this for a while…”
Amidst all of this mindless chatter, a strangely serious tone appeared.
“What if you stayed here for the rest of your life?”
Guiche hung his head down, looking a little embarrassed.
“How should I put it… I really don’t know much about this country. There’re some cute girls here, but I don’t know if I can get used to being a noble. If Louise were to throw me aside, I’d get some land for myself. With only one person, I should be able to fend for myself.”
Being asked that all of a sudden, Saito became a little timid. Because of this, Saito turned his head away.
“What kind of atmosphere is this, asking me such a thing?”
“Sh-Shut up! It’s fine, right!”
Guiche also turned away.
Saito looked up at the sky.
Living his life on this world, huh…
Maybe due to Louise’s magic, the ‘I want to do what I can for this world’ spell holding him had lifted and a pang of homesickness was felt.
After all, it’s still hard to cut ties with his family.
But hearing Guiche’s remark just now, what was this feeling budding in his heart?
It was a different feeling than just a longing for Louise.
He wasn’t just feeling timid about it. The feeling was strange, but somewhat good.
Looking at Saito, Malicorne softly mumbled,
“Hey, Assistant Commander.”
“Huh? What is it?”
Returning to normal, Saito looked towards Malicorne.
“What about the ones that don’t have a bone? What do they do?”
Malicorne calmly asked. Saito and Guiche exchanged looks. Then, the both of them gave off comforting smiles.
“Wh-What should be done indeed.”
“Tell me please.”
Malicorne asked with a smile that beamed with grace, like that of a clergyman. Guiche pretending to know, dodged his plea,
“Well, gentlemen! It’s about time for the ladies to take their seats, as breakfast should be brought out shortly! Let’s head back to the dining hall!”
Saito also dodged his plea.
“Oh Sun, tell me please.”
Ignoring the two that left for the dining hall, Malicorne had turned towards the sun and cried out.
After breakfast at the Academy of Magic, there was a thirty minute break before classes began.
During that break, among the first year Suen class, a golden haired fairy was leaning on her elbows, giving off a listless sigh.
It was Tiffania.
While she thought it would be good to see the outside world, it was somewhat exhausting.
Those words were silently muttered.
Today was not the only day that she was this worn out.
With Saito's and everyone else’s guidance, she had arrived in Tristain. The various things that needed to be done started off small, but quickly grew to take days. Since the first day of this, Tiffania had been deadly tired.
Arriving in Tristain, she was greeted by Cardinal Mazarin and former queen Marianne, but she was unable to meet her cousin, Her Majesty Queen Henrietta. Henrietta’s absence was due to a goodwill visit to Romalia.
The toughest thing to cope with was parting with the orphans that she had taken care of. A Tristanian monastery had decided to take them in, but both Tiffania and the children had cried when it came time to part. Thinking back to when Tiffania asked if they should return to the village, the children shook their head ‘no.’
“We’ll be fine. Don’t worry about us.”
Said Jim, the oldest of them, as he rubbed his eyes and smiled.
However, there was little time to feel sad at the parting, since Tiffania had to arrive in Tristain within that day. With Agnes, the Commander of the Musketeer Corps, escorting her, Tiffania had to go to the Academy of Magic.
The situation was explained to Old Osman, who arranged a room for Tiffania. After a day of rest, Tiffania was introduced to her classmates.
About ten days have passed since then.
Since everything Tiffania saw and heard were new to her, each day was like a year’s worth of experiences. The environment of Tristain’s Academy of Magic was vastly different than that of Westwood Village. Instead of only children and little forest creatures in Westwood Village, there were hundreds of nobles around her age here. This was enough to make Tiffania’s eyes spin.
Her troubles didn’t stop there.
Due to her passive nature, she was hoping for a peaceful school life. However, her appearance wouldn’t allow for such a thing wherever she went.
But the worst part was that she was not aware of the cause of her mental exhaustion, which was actually due to the effect that her appearance had on others. This unintentionally caused a lot of jealousy and grudges.
That listless, sighing Tiffania was approached by three guys.
It was the same guys that have hovered around her since her admittance. Of the three, a tall, freckled guy bowed in front of Tiffania.
Tiffania had temporarily used the name of the village where she grew up as her surname.
While it was a peculiar name, she had to use a name uncommon to nobility in order to not unearth the disgrace surrounding her existence. By using such an uncommon surname, her true identity of being from a distinguished family would be hidden.
Well then, the freckled boy began to pull Tiffania out of her daze.
“Lady from the White Country. Your skin is as white as the name of that country, while your eyes dazzle like a burning sun! Well then, would my lady care for a drink? If you need anything, this Charlot will be at your service.”
Immediately, the boy named Charlot was pushed away by someone.
“Nonono! Please allow me this duty!”
Although the duty was simply fetching a drink, something of little importance, these Tristain nobles fought over it like it was a big deal. The troubled Tiffania gave an awkward laugh while waving a hand. Since arriving at the Academy of Magic, this gesture was used most of the time to deal with these situations.
“Thank you, but I’m not thirsty.”
With pleading grins, the three momentarily shook their heads. Charlot and the rest knit their eyebrows and continued trying to get her to open up.
“Well, would you like to accompany me horse-riding this afternoon?”
As one of them said this, another group of five appeared.
“If it’s a ride, I shall invite you too.”
“I as well.”
“No no. I was here first…”
“My horses come from Albion!”
“Please pick which kind of horse you like. If you like speed, there is the Mecklenburger breed. Albionian horses have high stamina. I, of course, own horses of both breeds.”
These eight guys worshipping Tiffania were clamorously arguing. The topic was of course who Tiffania should go with.
The troubled Tiffania covered her face with the brim of her hat.
“Umm. I can’t be in the sun much… So I can’t really go on a ride.”
Using the excuse that hid her secret, Tiffania refused the offers. But she ended up digging herself into a bigger hole.
As if waiting for that reply, Charlot smiled widely.
“I thought so, but I have prepared just the hat for that problem. This white, feathered hat has a wide brim and is very fashionable in Tristania.”
He pulled out a large, white hat, composed of superb material. The brim was twice as wide as the brim on Tiffania’s hat.
“Please, try it on.”
Charlot reached for Tiffania’s hat. Tiffania quickly held onto her hat, shaking her head.
“It’s alright. Thank you.”
Holding onto her hat, she dashed towards the classroom. Charlot, being left behind, stood there dazed.
“Does she dislike my hat that much?”
The other guys began poking fun at Charlot.
“Hey Charlot! Because of you, the mood with our “Golden Fairy” has been wrecked!”
Among the girls nearby that overheard this clamor, one clicked her tongue in disgust.
She had long, golden hair in twin tails. While she was short, she wore an air of arrogance that bore down on those around her. Her strong-willed, blue eyes lit up with anger.
The girl turned towards the corridor where Tiffania had disappeared into and spat out venomously.
“That girl does not know how to attend to gentlemen. Well, since she seems to be from the countryside, it can’t be helped I guess.”
The girls around the golden haired, twin-tailed girl nodded in agreement.
“I agree! And on top of that, that girl still has not greeted her Highness Beatrice! That will not do even if she is a country bumpkin!”
The girl called Beatrice smiled with pride. It seems that the surrounding girls were her followers.
Beatrice had noble, cute features that drew others’ attention. Before Tiffania’s arrival, she was the most popular girl of the first years. However, Tiffania had easily ended her reign. Just the other day, the guys that were chasing after Tiffania now had worshipped Beatrice like a god.
“While she may be raised in the country, calling her a ‘bumpkin’ seems rather rude.”
Beatrice said this with a belittling sneer.
“I apologize, your Highness!”
A brown-haired girl bowed repeatedly.
“It’s just that being born from the house of Duke of Guldenhorf, I am strongly connected to the present queen of Tristania, Henrietta."
“That is so, your Highness! The royal blood originated from the aunt of King Phillip the third that ruled 2 generations ago, who married the brother of the previous head of the Guldenhorf family.”
“Blood of the Tristania royal family!”
One of the girls shouted, which prompted the rest to join in.
“Blood of the Tristania royal family!”
“On top of that, while the lands of the Guldenhorf family are small, they are respected as an independent country!”
In regard to Beatrice’s homeland at the time of this decision, the king announced the Guldenhorf lands as an independent country. Well, it was a so-called independent country, but in actuality, it still followed the military and foreign affairs of Tristania, just like every other region.
However, if you got past this fact, it was like any other independent country. Beatrice included, it was proper etiquette to use “your Highness” to refer to a member of her family.
“Basically, making light of me is the same as making light of the Tristania royal family. That girl was brought up in Albion, so it is understandable that she knows nothing of Halkeginia, but not showing proper manners is inexcusable.”
“It’s as you say, your Highness!”
“Well, we just have to teach that ‘islander’ proper manners.”
Beatrice smiled deviously.
Coming out of the classroom, Tiffania held her hat tightly with both hands as she scurried down the hallway. Leaving the main hall, she arrived at the courtyard.
Finding a remote area of Vestri Square, Tiffania let out a deep sigh and sat down on the edge of a fountain near the Flame Hall.
The outside world that she had wanted to see was a lot more noisy, rowdy, and fast-paced than she had ever imagined.
She looked up at the sky.
Only the blue sky was the same here as in Westwood village, thought Tiffania. While the village may have been a bit boring, the days were fun and peaceful…
Thinking back to those days suddenly brought tears to her eyes. Tiffania hid her face under the brim of her hat.
Were the children doing well? Were they feeling anxious and uneasy like her? Worry about her uncertain future, tears spilled from Tiffania’s eyes.
Crying with her head down for a while, suddenly a voice called out to her.
Tiffania lifted her head up. Five girls from her class stood there looking down at her. Tiffania stood up in a panic.
The brown-haired girl stretched out a hand to the golden, twin-tailed girl as if introducing her. She questioned Tiffania,
“Are you aware of who this person is?”
Uh, who was this?
She knew that this person was in the same class, but no name could be thought of.
“I-I’m sorry. I do not believe that I’ve learned your name.”
Reacting to Tiffania’s timid answer, the brown-haired girl opened her eyes wide in surprise.
“How can you possibly have not learned of the name of this person? Naturally, you should have already made your greetings upon arriving at the Academy."
“I’m really sorry, but I’m still not used to being here…”
In any case, the girl looked quite angry. Tiffania fumbled with her words.
The twin-tailed girl ran her hand through the right lock. Her gesture gave off an air of satisfaction at cornering her prey.
The brown-haired girl continued the introduction.
“This esteemed person, is the great Beatrice Yvonne von Guldenhorf."
The brown-haired girl replied arrogantly as if inquiring her if she knew of Beatrice’s prestige. She gave off an air as if she herself was also the daughter of a Duke.
Having spent all her life in the forest, Tiffania was ignorant to worldly affairs. The name of the Guldenhorf family that carried across the nation wouldn’t be known to her.
Although she was angry, Beatrice forced a smile.
“Well, well. Nice to meet you, Guldenhorf-san.”
There was a short pause.
Beatrice’s temple twitched. The brown-haired girl frantically shouted.
“Miss Westwood! You don’t know of the Guldenhorfs? The esteemed person standing here is none other than the daughter of Duke of Guldenhorf, her Highness Beatrice!”
Tiffania had an embarrassed look. Tiffania’s understanding of the world’s rules was near non-existant. In other words, the concept of royalty and the class system was foreign to her, similar to the outlook that Saito had upon arriving here.
Well, she understood the words “Duke” and “your Highness” and about how these positions related to the world. She also was aware that special treatment were given to them.
However, this understanding was skin deep since she had no actual experience. Basically, Tiffania had little understanding of the language that needed to be used in these situations.
Suddenly presented with these high societal terms, Tiffania was confused.
Uh, this was a place where everyone equally sits in the same desks, was it not?
Why was there a need to use such titles?
Thinking about the question, she had only just arrived here. For now, Tiffania obediently bowed her head in order to not further anger the girl.
“I’m really sorry. I grew up in the forests of Albion, so I am ignorant of the happenings of Halkeginia. I appear to have disrespected you, so I apologize, uh, your Highness.”
“Is that how you offer your apologies to your Highness? Ugh, you really grew up without proper manners!”
“I can’t believe they allowed such a girl into a prestigious Tristanian academy! What would others think!”
“…I’m sorry. I’m really sorry.”
Tiffania bowed her head many times. However, the girls in her class would not settle for such a country bumpkin robbing all the hearts of the guys.
“Miss Westwood. How can I take your apology seriously when you leave your hat on?”
The brown-haired girl exclaimed with a chuckle.
“That’s right! It’s as Lisette says!”
Tiffania held onto her hat.
She couldn’t let them take it away because it would show her long ears. That would reveal the elven blood that Tiffania had, which would cause a lot of trouble.
She would probably be chased out of this place.
No, it would not stop there. Tiffania was fully aware of how much the people of Halkeginia hated elves.
Tiffania’s face paled.
If her ears were seen… Would her Void spell “Oblivion” be enough to erase their memory?
Was five people at once too many?
While the task was not impossible, this place wasn’t isolated like in the forest. It was at the Academy in broad daylight.
Anyone could possibly see the spell. If a classmate were to see such a suspicious spell, she would definitely be chased out. Tiffania was in quite a pinch.
Her elven blood needed to be kept a secret.
Yet, her Void magic could not be used.
If that was the case, there was no way she would take off the hat.
“That hat, take it off.”
Tiffania shook her head.
“I’m sorry. I can’t take off this hat because…”
“Because you’ll get sunburnt, right?”
“Y-Yes. That’s right, so…”
Tiffania nodded a few times.
“We are not talking about being outside for the day. It’s just for a few seconds.”
Still, Tiffania continued to hold onto her hat, not moving an inch. Growing angry, Lisette, followed by Beatrice’s companions, reached out for Tiffania’s hat.
“Hey! Take it off now.”
“Pl-Please… Let me go.”
Grabbing ahold of the brim of the hat, they got into a scuffle.
“Hey, what are you doing?”
A guy’s voice called out, which caused the girls to turn around. A black-haired guy with a shocked expression was standing there.
Tiffania ran up to Saito as if he were Buddha rescuing her from Hell. Latching onto his arm, her face hung down in embarrassment.
“Hey, what’s wrong? Were you being bullied?”
Tiffania didn’t reply.
Saito looked at the five girls that had surrounded Tiffania moments ago. Crossing their arms, they returned stern looks.
This is none of your business, right? Go away.
Feeling this kind of aura, Saito trembled.
Saito was reminded of a particular group of high school girls that he saw back in Japan. The group was known for ganging up on other people and bullying them.
Tiffania was truly a very beautiful person, which infuriated other girls. Honestly, such trifling matters are the same even in Halkeginia.
Since this is like a fantasy world, it’s even moreso likely to happen, but it seems to be that bullying has no connection to what world you are on.
Saito was troubled, but for now, he couldn’t overlook this.
Furthermore, the one being bullied was Tiffania, who they had brought here. It was their responsibility. If he did not do something now, eventually they would have to deal with it anyways.
“What are you girls doing to Tiffania? Don’t you think that what you are doing is dirty? As people… Ah, or rather as nobles?
Saito was trying his best to maintain his dignity in front of the first year girls. Flipping her blue cloak back, the brown haired girl gave Saito a cold glare.“You girls! You girls, you say! Did you all hear that?”
“We heard that! Using such crude words as ‘you girls!’”
The group of first year bullies looked at each other and shouted loudly. Saito’s head began to hurt.
“In any case, no bullying, ok?”
Lisette completely ignored Saito’s plea as she approached him.
“You! Do you know of this person?”
Lisette’s hand pointed towards the shortest girl in the group, a girl with blond twin tails and a look of arrogance.
“Nope. Not at all.”
Seeing Saito’s blank look, the girls immediately raised their voices in a chorus,
“Well! What a country bumpkin! She is her Highness, Beatrice Yvonne von Guldenhorf. She is upper nobility!”
Saito scratched his head with a troubled look.
“Well, even if she is upper nobility…”
The golden, twin-tailed girl called Beatrice examined Saito up and down. Then, she talked with a sneer,
“I’m not familiar with people around here, but are you a Halkeginian?”
Nope. He was an Earthling, but that couldn’t be said. Saito mumbled a response.
“No, I-I’m from Rub’ al Khali…”
In order to hide that Saito was from another world, he had been saying that he was born in Rub’ al Khali.
Beatrice narrowed her gaze at Saito. Then, she nodded in understanding.
“You are…Hirigaru Saiton of the Knight Corps of the Water Spirit, right?”
The first year girls looked back and forth at each other.
The fact that Saito’s name as a distinguished knight who had stopped an army of 70,000 was certainly known. Furthermore, he was the assistant commander of the Imperial Guards. The girls began looking at each other nervously.
It appeared that this group of girls whom waved around authority were weak against higher authority. Saito threw out his chest, as he exclaimed boastfully,
“Yeah, I’m the assistant commander of the Knight Corps of the Water Spirit, Chevalier Hiraga. Her Majesty’s Imperial Guards. Upper nobility, upper nobility in-deed.”
His act was like something out of a Japanese drama.
However, Beatrice was not intimidated.
“So, what of it? Imperial Guard or what not, I do not bow down to a mere knight.”
Saito’s face paled. This brat… Isn’t scared of the Imperial Guards. Don’t tell me that she is someone important? Uh oh?
At that moment, a savior appeared.
“Oi, Saito! What the hell are you doing? Did you finish preparing the straw dummies for practice after classes?”
Nearby stood Guiche and Montmorency. Yes, the tide has turned! Without looking back, Saito yelled loudly to them.
“Hey Commander, good timing! I was scolding these first years a little. They are being a little cheeky here and there.”
“What is that! Outrageous!”
Enthusiastically, Guiche walked over.
Deep down, Saito shouted in triumph.
It’s too late even if you get scared and cry, Beatrice!
After all, Guiche’s father of the prestigious Gramont family was general of the army.
Furthermore, Montmorency apparently came from a time-honored lineage.
Well Miss Noble Girl, Duke or whatever, I’d like to see you bluff your way in front of nobles with ancient lineages. Saito proudly puffed his chest.
But… Beatrice’s face did not change when she saw Guiche and Montmorency approaching. Instead, Guiche’s face paled upon seeing Beatrice.
Beatrice casually lifted her chin up.
“It’s been a while. Guiche-dono.”
“A-Ah… Well, well, your Highness Guldenhorf…”
“How is your father?”
“W-Well. Thanks to you…”
The situation was strange. Cold sweat dripped down Saito’s forehead. Guiche’s spirit had taken a trip somewhere, replaced by a strangely submissive attitude. Montmorency was also fidgeting uncomfortably.
“Well, well, Miss Montmorency is also here? I have started attending this academy this year. Please take care of me.”
With an attitude unimaginable of underclassmen, Beatrice addressed Guiche and Montmorency while they bowed their heads at her.
“Please take care of me as well. If you have any troubles, please let me know.”
“By the way, Guiche-dono.”
“I would like to congratulate you on your promotion to the commander of the Imperial Guards. However, could you please tend to the proper instruction of your subordinates? This discourteous knight is no different than a mercenary or thief.”
Beatrice inaudibly beckoned her followers to leave with her.
As she was leaving, Beatrice addressed Tiffania, who had been ignored up to this point.
“Do you understand? At least when you are around me, you will take off that unsightly hat. Wearing that hat in my presence will be a serious insult to the Guldenhorf family. Oho-oho-ohoho!”
Laughing loudly, Beatrice left along with her followers.
As Guiche and Montmorency weakly waved goodbye, Saito bit his lip,
“Hey, Commander! Montmorency! What’s with that! Being looked down upon by underclassmen!”
“No, that girl is bad news.”
“Your families come from an ancient lineage of nobility, right!?”
“It’s just as you say, but the Gramont family has served the royal family for generations. Because of this connection, it is only natural that I set aside my dignity and be humble to the Duke’s family.”
“That is also the case with the Montmorency family.”
“Then why were you bowing so much?”
“Actually, the reason goes back to a long time ago.”
“The Gramont family has been honored as military leaders of the nobility, but has been poor at managing territory.”
Saito had a bad feeling.
“Don’t tell me that your family borrowed money?”
Bingo. Guiche gazed out distantly.
Montmorency’s face also got red in embarrassment.
“Our family is also in a similar situation.”
Guiche smacked his chin to collect himself.
“Duke of Guldenhorf’s family has enough money to manage an entire country. You should also be on good terms with them.”
“Don’t be stupid! Like I can be on good terms with a girl like that!”
“Hey! Forget about that fuss with her! She has her own bodyguards that accompany her! If you get her angry, they will whisk you away!”
Her own bodyguards?
“What the hell is with that?”
“What, you didn’t know? Don’t be so indifferent to these things…”
Guiche drew Saito, Tiffania, and Montmorency’s attention to the main gate.
“Look over there.”
Saito scanned the area.
In front of the main gate of the Academy of Magic, a vast field of grass stretched out. Before anyone realized it, quite a few tents had been set up there!
On top of the tents were flags bearing the crest of a yellow dragon. Several armored wind dragons were hanging around the tents.
Guiche explained to Saito, whose jaw had dropped,
“Those are the bodyguards of the Guldenhorf family, the aerial armored brigade ‘Luftpanzer Ritter’.”
Saito vaguely recalled that name. Ah, hadn’t Kathy and the others gossiped about the same brigade at breakfast the other day?
Being the same time as all of the indecent flirting, Saito barely recalled that talk… Oh, it went something like this…
“During the last Albion war, Duke of Guldenhorf didn’t allow them to join the alliance, because it was their prized brigade. With the destruction of the Albion dragon knights, they are now said to be the strongest dragon knights in Halkeginia."
Right now, 24 dragons could be seen. At Tarbes, Saito, having fought in Albion, was fairly familiar with the abilities of dragon knights. Just a small troupe of them would be equivalent to thousands of ground units in battle ability.
“Ugh, why did she have to bring dragon knights to school?”
Saito’s statement dwelled on that point.
“The rich nobility probably like to show off.”
Guiche criticized, forgetting about his own nature.
Saito looked towards Tiffania.
Tiffania looked at Saito worriedly.
“Tiffa, don’t worry. Military brigade or whatever, I said that I would help you. Don’t let the hat ordeal shake you up.”
Tiffania bit her lip as she nodded.
“It’s alright. It would not be good to trouble you all… I appreciate the feeling, but I should take care of it myself.”
“Saito, it may be just as Miss Tiffania says. If we say anything about it, we may end up in a bad position, too.”
“Hey! These are the last words I would’ve expected to hear from heroes of the Gallia expedition. Compared to that time, the Duke’s daughter should be a cakewalk.”
“No, it’s not that simple.”
Guiche wrinkled up his forehead.
“During Tabatha’s rescue, we were under disguise when we entered Gallia, right? Actually at this academy, there is no one besides us that knows about that incident. Furthermore, Gallia did not give an official complaint, so her Majesty overlooked the incident.”
“At this academy, angering royalty of another country will certainly not be overlooked by her Majesty. You are part of her Imperial Guards, right? Angering the Duke’s daughter is unspeakable.”
Hearing this from the two of them, Saito was troubled.
At Saito’s present state, Tiffania gave a reassuring smile.
“Thank you, Saito. I’m happy for the thought.”
“It’s really alright. Wearing a hat during class is my fault. After all, it’s bad to lie about it.”
Drawing upon some determination, Tiffania nodded.
“I’m really sorry for worrying you.”
Tiffania pitter-pattered away. Saito continued to stare at her golden hair as it trailed in the wind.
After classes and practice, arriving at Louise’s room, Saito consulted Louise about today’s events.
“It seems that Tiffania is somehow being bullied by her classmates.”
Louise sat on her bed listening to Saito.
“Leave it alone.”
“How cold! You can’t be saying that. She’s being bullied. That timid Tiffania is going to get bullied to death. Hey Louise, your family also has the Duke title, right? Say something to that spoiled brat, please.”
However, Louise did not budge on the issue.
“It’s not our problem to be dealt with. It’s her class’s problem. If third years stick their head into this problem, it would unnecessarily put Tiffania in a worse position.”
Louise calmly replied, but Saito couldn’t accept it. He pressed on,
“While what you say may be correct… But Tiffania doesn’t really have anyone to rely on here. At least, we should be there to help her…”
“That’s why I’m saying that it’s unnecessary.”
“Unnecessary! Of course! After all, we brought her here!”
The blood rushed to Saito’s head, as he raised his voice.
“You know, from now on that girl is a noble. And as a noble, she can’t live without being alone at times. Because of that, she needs to be independent. Becoming helpless at just a little bit of teasing, she won’t survive living in Halkeginia. She needs to pick up the pieces of herself afterwards. That’s what it means to be a noble.”
Louise said in a strict tone.
Looking at that face, Saito was reminded of what happened a year ago.
Louise was being made fun of by her class.
Saying things like ‘zero’ and ‘idiot,’ Louise didn’t have a single friend.
Holding onto her pride as a noble, Louise faced up to the golem…
Comparing with Louise, Tiffania was now in a similar position. This was definitely not something to not take seriously.
“Also…that girl like me is also a bearer of the “Void.” She has to shoulder the destiny of a special noble. Really, if she needs to rely on someone for such a little thing, someday she’ll be crushed by her own problems.”
Saito was completely speechless.
It was just as Louise said.
Looking at Louise now, she had at some point, little by little, paddled across her river of problems.
“Hey you, when someone is trying to have a serious talk, don’t fall asleep.”
“…Who’s fault do you think it is that I’m losing sleep?”
Louise leaned her head back and appeared to have fallen asleep. Having been completely ignored, Saito scratched his head in confusion.
In bed, Louise’s face blushed.
She felt embarrassed about her earlier behavior.
No matter what kind of bully, isn’t it better to say something? If it was said that the La Valliere family were Tiffania’s guardian, that would be a good warning.
Her earlier statement was certainly correct.
If you were to deal with every case of bullying, there would be no end. Being the bearer of the “Void” regardless of whether she wanted to or not, Tiffania had to be ready for any danger. Hostility, be it mean classmates or strong enemies, could be around any corner.
But… That was not her real intention.
She was actually a bit envious.
Lately, although she had been cold to Saito, she thought of him being stuck on Tiffania. That kind of thing made her furious.
But, of course she wouldn’t say a word about it.
She couldn’t forgive herself for being envious, thought Louise as she bit her lip under the covers.
Being envious, not reaching out to Saito when she should, ‘I’m… the worst,’ Louise thought.
Because she was like that, did Saito become cold to her?
As those thoughts began coming up endlessly… Sleep took over. Hidden under the covers, tears spilled down her face.
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