Chapter 32 - Yiyi's request
Yiyi (Point Of View)
Spring Day 8, Year 728
Late at night, my Lady and I arrived at the dormitory. Without giving any order, she went straight into the bed. With nothing else to do, I then returned to my sleeping quarters.
I sat at my table while my cheeks rested on my hands while thinking about my Lady’s sad expression. My heart ached. So I tried to think of a plan on how I can help her.
Hmm... If I could remember, I’ve been with her for more than four years already. That’s before she attended the Royal Academy.
I know that I’m just a maid and I don’t have the right to interfere with her life. But she’s my savior—I already promised to serve her for life. If it could exchange for her happiness, then I think my sacrifice would be worth it.
At first, I’m so excited when I was assigned to be her personal maid. My Lady is a very warm-hearted and lovely person. There’s nothing a maid or a slave would ever want other than to have a good master. But, being kind in this power-hungry world would only make someone be taken advantage of.
And that’s exactly what happened to my Lady. She was taken for granted. If not for her position being the daughter of a duke. I think she would’ve already been sinking below the depths of the sea. Without anyone willing to help her.
When she first attended the Royal Academy, there’re dozens of people who wanted to be her friend. In addition that she was the fiancee of the crown prince, people flocked at the gate just to greet her in the morning. And another batch of greetings in the afternoon.
This event happened for a few months. But when the people learned that the Crown Prince favored a Lady named Rosie, the people who supported my Lady were divided into half: Those who clung to Rosie, and those who tried to suppress her to gain favor from my Lady.
The battle between Rosie and my Lady Yume started. People called it that. But to me, it’s just one-sided bullying. Not my Lady doing it of course. But Rosie who covets the position of the crown princess is the one who started the harassment.
I knew these things because gossips are one of the pastime pleasures of servants. Even the guards and staff wouldn’t want to miss this opportunity. So it’s easy for outsiders like me to know the happenings in the Royal Academy.
First, she dealt with my Lady’s supporter by being the pitiful victim herself. Those who tried to harm her were punished by the Crown Prince. If I would praise her for something, it was her top-notched acting skills. This forced the supporters to leave, plus, put all the blame on my Lady.
Second, she showed everyone who’s in charge by parading herself with the Crown Prince in every corner of the school, every day. I meant it when I said every day. People who saw her clinging intimately to him will know not to mess with her. Solidifying her status.
Third, I don’t have concrete evidence of who did this. But nasty rumors about my Lady started to spread around the school. And I believe that it was instigated by none other than Rosie herself. I guessed that it’s a plot to lower my Lady’s qualification to be the crown princess.
These circumstances happened for three whole years. The only thing I hated is how my Lady only brushed these off her shoulders. Never tried to clean her reputation. Not doing anything to prove her innocence. Even though she was so diligent to study and improve herself. But in my opinion, addressing the rumors should be her top priority.
Finally, today, another thing happened to my Lady. And my hunch detection meter is hitting its peak, saying that it’s something to do with Rosie. I don’t know what exactly it’s. But even I, know that this will be their last year of school. And also the last chance for Rosie to get rid of my Lady, entirely.
A strong shiver went down my spine. But it didn’t stop there. Goosebumps started to appear all over my skin, staying there for a while. I conceived something dreadful will happen, soon.
“I’m scared,” I mumbled. Headaches started to form. I massaged the sides of my forehead to suppress the pain, rubbing it in circular motions. Then I slowly moved it upward along my hair as I spread my fingers all over my scalp. I pushed both thumbs firmly into the pressure points. “Haaaa... My Lady needs help, but who?”
I sighed... I screamed... I shouted...
I tried to flip the table but it was too heavy. “How can someone skinny like me who can’t even lift this table, be of help?” I whined, kicking the table instead — Thud! — “Ouch!”
The pain made me twist and lean on the bed.
Think, Yiyi, think... I jumped on the bed. I rolled around until I fell on the ground — Thud! — Instead of standing up, I stayed there and thought. “A person who can hit an aristocrat or even royalty for my Lady’s sake, without caring about being punished. And most importantly, a person who wouldn’t be seduced by the vixen. My Lady needs a dependable friend...”
Ah! A thought suddenly came to my mind. “I forgot something important!”
Yesterday, when my Lady and I went incognito into the school grounds. We followed a foreign noble called Ryu Astre. There, we saw that he’s someone that matched the description I was looking for. A dependable person who’s not scared to go against a high-ranking person.
And after misunderstanding the meeting between him and Rosie, I forgot to tell my Lady about it when she immediately rushed off. When she left, I was stunned on thinking what to do next so I didn’t move. There, I saw everything. It’s only Rosie who was like a fly buzzing around Sir Ryu. He was innocent.
Thud! — I lightly smacked my head, for forgetting something important — Thud! — and another smacked for accusing Sir Ryu from the start.
Now I remembered. I need to talk to him as soon as possible. So I stood up. I lay down. I slept.
Ryu Astre (Point Of View)
Spring Day 9, Year 728
La~ La~ La~ The Day~ So good~ I forgot~ That I’m so handsome~
I hummed. I sang. And I whistled. Lazing my back on a thick branch of a tall tree. My mood was at its peak while holding the Fire Dragon Sword. Cleaning it up with a cloth to remove the specks of dirt that dared to touch its blade. I felt like a kid who received a brand new toy.
Because I finished my training early, I’d a lot of time for cleaning. But by looking at the displeased faces of the boys who were grumbling, below. I could tell that my voice was monotonous. But I didn’t care. No, I did care. However, whenever I hear or see the boys complained, I make my singing louder.
“Oh, my head!” Roy said while holding a sword, brandishing it repeatedly. He was the first one who ran out of patience, voicing his complaint against me.
My mood got a little bit irked when he disrupted my perfect performance. For revenge, I clicked my tongue and said, “Roy, add another one thousand swings.”
“What? But I’m already exhaust—”
“Two thousand,” I commanded.
“Pffft,” Gavin laughed.
“Another one thousand for you too, Gavin.” His face cried out. Then I quickly shifted my gaze to Blake whose mouth was wide open, looking at me while preparing to say something. When he noticed, he aborted by quickly shutting up his mouth; averting his eyes. He then returned his focus to his training. “As I told you guys, If you want to graduate from training, then defeat me in a duel.”
Hearing my last words made the three mumbled their curses. I bet they regretted begging me to help them in training as early as today.
Now that these extras have been taken care of, I continued to clean my swords while doing another singing performance... Maybe I do have talent in performing? That’s what I thought.
I trained them with a sword and talked trash about them at the same time. Not only this will hone their physical skills, but also improve their mental capabilities against taunts. And I think it will be effective, somehow. I just hoped that they wouldn’t keep grudges against me.
The incident yesterday at the Old Smith, the shop of Gavin’s grandfather, was solved swiftly, and while at it, my friends got inspired when they saw the skills of the Shadow Assassins in handling the situation. That was why they’re here, training.
“Roy, you should straighten your back more!” I shouted, “Gavin, do spread your feet into shoulder-width apart! Blake, don’t put your weight on your heel! You guys, bend your feet more and stick into it. Don’t lose balance! You guys are already 2-Star swordsmen but still leaves too many openings!”
This training will last for a month until the team’s recruitment day. This training also served another purpose. That’s to show off. Yes, so that the upperclassmen would see them perform. This will boost their chances to be scouted, probably.
I was cleaning my sword when I accidentally slid the cloth into the edge, cutting it in half. When the other half of the cloth slowly glided to the ground, I saw an orange-colored hair lady sitting beside the bush. She was currently holding some kind of twigs while looking at me, I wondered, “Is that a disguise?”
The both of us stared at each other for a minute, then she said, “H-Hello, Sir Ryu. I’m Lady Yume’s maid, Yiyi” — Bam! Hearing the Princess’s name made me startled that I accidentally slipped off the branch — “Ah! Sir Ryu, are you alright?!”
“Y... Yes... I think,” I replied, groaning while my buttocks swell from the pain by hitting the ground. “Anyway, what can I do for the Princess’s maid?”
“Princess?” Tilting her head in confusion.
“I mean, Lady Yume’s. Hahaha. So, what can I do for you, Yiyi?”
Yiyi fidgeted with her hands for a while. Then she looked at me with a strong determined look as she said, “S-Sir Ryu, I want you!”
“Oh, is that al—What?!” My face flushed, eyes widened, and jaws dropped.
Roy, Gavin, and Blake dropped their swords, at the same time.