Year 843, Ichitsu 15th
Palace of the Third Prince, Ryūthor Kingdom
After a tiring court session in the Kingdom’s courtroom yesterday; which comprised the King himself, the six Princes, all the important officials, and rich merchants, it was almost a normal occasion which happens once in a year where the daughters of the important officials and rich merchants are brought for the Princes to see and choose the ones they like to be as their concubine; the Third Prince was grumpy early in the morning. The Third Prince hated such court sessions where he is forced, to look at the daughters of the important officials and rich merchants, to choose a concubine. This has been happening for the past 10 years. The Third Prince had been avoiding attending such court sessions all along with the excuse of achieving more military merits by winning countless wars.
The Third Prince is about to be 26 years old this March 28th (born in the year 817). The First Prince got his first concubine at the age of 16 and got married at the age of 20 (aged 30, born in the year 813). The Second Prince got his first concubine at the age of 19 and got married at the age of 23 (aged 28, born in the year 815). The Fourth Prince got his first concubine at the age of 18 and will get married soon (aged 23, born in the year 820). The Fifth Prince got his first concubine at the age of 17 (aged 20, born in the year 823). The Sixth Prince, who is also the biological brother of the Third Prince, is just 16 years old with no concubines (born in the year 826). There are 16 princesses, but they all are of no value to the kingdom and have no succession rights. Among them, 13 princesses are all either married off or betrothed to the important officials or rich merchants or warriors with military merits. The rest of the princesses are all below the age of 14, and a woman is of-age at 16 in the Kingdom.
Everyone is worried about the Third Prince, Rydon, who is almost 26 and still has no concubines or flings whatsoever after all these years. This creates unrest within the Kingdom as well as outside the Kingdom. All the other Kingdoms are keenly watching over the movements of the Third Prince, the only biggest threat to them from the Ryūthor Kingdom. There are only 5 great Kingdoms in this world. They are Ryūthor, Hebista, Tessora, Barateak, and Trilaba. Hebista is a sworn enemy kingdom of the Ryūthor Kingdom. In this world, there are no guns and ammunition, there are only weapons like swords, spears, arrows, and daggers.
The Third Prince walked out of his room and headed down straight to the dining hall for breakfast. He saw a tall old man sitting in the living room with tea in his hands. The old man stood up when he saw the Third Prince walking down the stairs and bowed while addressing him as “Your Highness.” The Third Prince just glanced at him once and continued walking towards the dining hall.
“What is it, Advisor Jacob?” asked the Third Prince while walking.
Advisor Jacob is an old man around 60 who has been serving the Third Prince for more than 10 years. He generally advises the Third Prince about the actions that would have positive and negative effects on the Kingdom, the pros and cons of certain actions, the best way to solve certain problems that don’t have a negative impact on the Kingdom. He serves the Third Prince for the betterment of the King and the Kingdom.
“Your Highness, I came here today to discuss a serious matter which requires your co-operation,” said Advisor Jacob with a slightly hesitant tone. It’s a topic he didn’t want to bring up, but it has been way too long that he had to bring it up now.
“Not you too now, is it?” asked the Third Prince in a grumpy voice as he sat down at the head of the dining table, understanding the matter for which Advisor Jacob has come.
“Your Highness, we have been avoiding this matter in the past years in the name of achieving more military merits. I am afraid we cannot use this excuse anymore. I understand you are not interested in any of those women that were present yesterday and you are not interested in playing around with them for political support, but you need to at least have a concubine to satisfy your needs. You cannot stay chaste until the King finds you a suitable woman for your political marriage,” said Advisor Jacob as he sat on the first chair on the left side of the Third Prince.
The King always chooses the women who are supposed to marry the Princes. The Princes cannot object and can only follow the King’s orders and agree for the political marriage.
“A concubine?” scoffs the Third Prince.
“What if the woman that the King finds for you is not a suitable match for you? What if she is a cunning woman with ulterior motives? What if she is not a decent woman? What if she annoys you and interferes with your matters? What if she is not loyal and conspires against you? What if she cannot give birth to an heir for you? We cannot object or appeal to the King to change his decision, we can only obey the King, but that does not mean the woman would be a good person. We have seen how the wives of the First Prince and Second Prince are. You cannot just expect such women to satisfy all your needs, Your Highness. You need a concubine. One that is loyal to you, one that knows their place,” said Advisor Jacob with all the what-ifs reasonability he can gather.
“Hmm, a concubine to satisfy my needs, and be loyal to me. Where do you find such women and who would even want to be my concubine in the first place?” asked the Third Prince with a sarcastic tone.
Third Prince is known for his ruthlessness and bluntness. Be it in the courtroom or the war base, he’s ruthless to everyone around him that even men fear to be anywhere within 10 feet from him. Which woman would be daring enough to get close to him and, on top of it, be his concubine? This is something that doesn’t happen with other Princes. Even in the courtroom, the other Princes are afraid to get anywhere near the Third Prince. The only one who is not intimidated by the Third Prince in the courtroom every single time is the King.
Advisor Jacob understood the Third Prince’s concern and looked up straight as if in thought, and then two women in their 20s entered his field of vision. Those two women seemed to have been done with their work and waiting behind the sofa in the living room obediently, with their heads down, for further orders from the Third Prince. They have been the only personal maids for the Third Prince for a little over 10 years. Generally, maids are married off at once when they turn 16, but there are exceptions where the maids sacrifice their lives to serve their master. These two have their chastity intact even after being 20 years old. A weird idea popped in Advisor Jacob’s mind.
“Your Highness, how about taking her as your concubine?” asked Advisor Jacob as he pointed his eyes towards the direction of those two personal maids. He meant the one standing on the left, but he didn’t find anything wrong with the one on the right either. He just wanted to point at one of them so he didn’t bother pointing out anyone specifically.
The Third Prince looked at the direction Advisor Jacob was pointing at with his eyes and saw his two personal maids standing in the living room waiting for him to give them orders. He then looked back at Advisor Jacob and asked, “Which one?”
Advisor Jacob was astounded by the Third Prince’s question. He never would have thought that the Third Prince would even consider such a thing, as taking maids as concubines, and ask such a question. He then almost had an evil smirk, but he collected himself and answered the Third Prince with a pleasant smile and confidence “Both, Your Highness.”