A letter from Onee-sama
“Hey… Hey you! Hold the parasol properly, will you! Do you want me to get sunburned?”
The seasons began to shift and it was now early summer.
Having completed our work with the Order of the Academy, we found ourselves heading back to the dorm.
Though the sun was setting, its rays remained quite intense.
When the commoner spaced out and exposed me to those rays, I gave her a stern word.
If Lene were the one holding my parasol―no, there was no use in thinking something like that.
“Ah, I’m sorry, Claire-sama.
My eyes were just lost in you, my hands must have slipped.”
The commoner rushed to correct the parasol’s position.
“I don’t know or care what you mean when you say you got lost, but make sure to do your job properly.
Do you understand?”
“I’m truly sorry.”
I forced the aggressiveness, but even I could tell that I just wasn’t my usual self.
I knew the reason.
I lost Lene―that was the root of everything.
Though the specifics differed, I considered both Catherine and Lene sisters.
We had practically been raised together, but now, one of them was gone.
She had always been a huge part of my life, and I just took it as fact that she would continue to be… So losing her in this way really hurt.
“How about some sweets once classes are out?”
The commoner made an abrupt suggestion.
“What’s this all of a sudden? I don’t particularly fancy sweets right now.”
Perhaps able to understand that sweets were mentioned, Relaire happily hopped atop of Rei’s shoulder, but my heart didn’t move.
“Even if it’s the crème brûlée that you seem to love so much?”
“… Didn’t you already give that recipe over to Lene?”
I suddenly recalled that time when Lene and I ate the crème brûlée the commoner made.
We wouldn’t be able to do that anymore either, would we.
Just as that sank in,
“Let’s try and cheer up a little.”
“I don’t feel particularly different from my usual self.”
Even if I had to force the facade, it would be unthinkable for me to lean on the commoner for emotional support.
I swiftly turned to face away from the commoner.
In response, she seemed to think a little before,
“What is it?”
Spouting that delirium.
No, it’s not as though her erratic behavior was anything new to me…
“Of course not! Just where do you think you could find a servant that asks to hug their master?”
“Hm? I mean, I’m right here?”
“Don’t give me that look!”
But well, I suppose that absurd exchange may have helped a little.
Even if I didn’t have Lene by my side, I needed to keep steady.
Otherwise, she’d laugh in my face the next time we met.
“What is… Hey, isn’t this the third time we’ve had this exchange?”
“No, the fourth actually.”
“You’re so petty! Enough of that, just say what you meant to!”
“I love you.”
Her blunt affections caught me a little off-guard.
Though it was different from the gentle love that Lene would envelop me with,, it was clear that this commoner was worried for my well being in her own way.
That said, it remained fact that her disposition, speech and conduct all came off as playful and disingenuous.
“Yes yes, and I despise you.”
As I tried to quell my hesitations within, I churned out my routine response.
“I just don’t get it.
With the way things were going, I was sure this was my chance…”
“And just how did you arrive at that conclusion!? In the first place, what do you mean that you had a chance, a chance at what!?”
“Eh? You want me to say that out loud? Oh my, Claire-sama, how naughty~”
“You know you’re the one that brought this up in the first place, right!?”
While reluctantly responding to the commoner’s idiocy, we arrived at my room.
The commoner retrieved the key and opened the door.
It would seem that Catherine had concealed herself as usual.
Really, just when would I be able to liberate her from this cramped room? But interrupting that train of thought,
“Claire-sama, there’s a letter, it’s addressed to you.”
The commoner extended a single envelope toward me as she spoke.
“Who’s the sender?”
“! A letter from onee-sama!?”
I was surprised, I hadn’t expected to hear that name.
With vigor that would be unbefitting of a lady, I stole the letter from the commoner’s hands and checked the envelope myself.
There, I found the name Manaria Sousa written in distinctly recognizable elegant lettering.
The envelope was also sealed with Sousa’s royal emblem, so there was no mistaking it.
I returned the envelope to the commoner and had her open it.
As she did, a refreshing scent wafted through the air.
It appeared that the letter had been perfumed.
Once it was in my hands, I eagerly read the letter paying close attention to each word.
She apologized that she hadn’t been able to contact me for the past while and stated her intent to come to Bauer’s Royal Academy as an exchange student.
“Claire-sama, we should be going to the cafeteria.”
“Go on ahead, I’ll catch up with you after I’ve read the letter.”
“In that case, I’ll wait for you.”
The commoner may have said something, but all that was on my mind was my onee-sama.
“Onee-sama here… at the academy…”
After I read the letter in its entirety, those words escaped my lips.
“When you say Onee-sama, are you referring to the Manaria-sama who sent the letter?”
She’s the first princess of the Sousa Kingdom, and the woman of my admirations.”
Though the commoner appeared disinterested, I continued.
“It seems she’ll be coming to Bauer as an exchange student.
Her letter contained an apology that she couldn’t inform me earlier.”
“Oh? That so?”
“Just now, those words seemed forced… Or perhaps upset?”
“You’re imagining it, Claire-sama.”
Did I say something to upset her? Well, there was no reason that I should bother myself over the likes of a commoner anyway.
Still, Relaire curiously peered into the commoner’s face.
“Claire-sama, we should hurry on to the cafeteria.”
“I suppose you’re right.
Ah… but my heart feels so full, I might not have much of an appetite.”
Though I still felt disappointed that I had to part ways with someone as precious to me as Lene, just like that, I had also received the chance to rekindle an old bond.
There was more to life than just the bad.
“Ah, is that so? Come on, we should hurry.”
“You, are you sure that you aren’t upset?”
Contrary to her choice of words, he expression showed clear displeasure.
“Could it be that you’re feeling jealous?”
“An immediate response!?”
I thought there was a possibility, but that’s really what it was!?
“Haven’t I already gone lengths to make my affections for you clear, Claire-sama?”
“Yes, of course, that again.
I’ve heard that joke more than enough now.”
“What would I need to do to prove my sincerity?”
“There’s nothing that you could… Ah, but―”
The words from a certain poem came to mind.
“Would you offer a floss flower to the scales? Then, the truth of your love will be shown without fail.”
When I melodiously recited my favorite line from the poem, the commoner gave me a cold look and said,
“My, so you were aware of it?”
Amour’s poem was a legend traditionally passed down in Bauer for many generations.
The legend spoke of a tall man and a stout man.
Both of them had fallen in love with the same holy maiden.
The two men were both set to become influential figures in their country, and each claimed that he loved the maiden more than the other.
As the two influential figures fought and competed to prove their love, the country fell into chaos and the maiden was at a loss for what to do.
When she prayed to The Spirit to end the conflict, she received the divine scales and a message.
『Have each of the men make an offering to the scales.
They will reveal the one that is to be your husband.』
Then, by decree of the scale, the stout man became the maiden’s husband and the tall man went on to become a fine king.
The line that I recited was what the maiden said as she showed the two men the scale.
“Claire-sama, do you like those sorts of stories?”
“Well, I certainly don’t dislike them.
Isn’t it just so romantic?”
Come to think of it, Manaria-onee-sama was my first love.
Though I should make it clear that my feelings were the result of several misunderstandings…
The commoner wore a gloomy face as she said,
“I don’t dislike romance stories, but I can’t say that I like Amour’s Poem very much.”
I tilted my head in curiosity.
From my perspective, it looked like her head was filled with thoughts of nothing but love and sex all around the clock, so I thought that she’d love Amour’s poem as well…
“I mean, there wouldn’t have been a story in the first place had the maiden just made her own decision.
The fact that she forced the two men to compete over her is absolutely wicked, she’s the furthest thing from a saint!”
The commoner held nothing back as she spoke.
No, I mean, in some ways what she said made sense, but that wasn’t the point.
“You’re missing the point.”
The commoner clearly didn’t understand the feelings of a maiden in love.
I decided that I would personally correct her.
“I’m sure the maiden was simply unable to choose.
When one truly falls in love, I’m sure that it’s not an easy task to discern who one likes more or less.”
While I thought that line may have been a little naive, I felt confident in my reasoning.
“I can’t decide who I should love, or exactly how much I love them.
Please, if possible, someone… Anyone, give me the answer.
The earnest wish of those lost in the throes of love… That is, without a doubt, the emotion that was captured in this poem.”
Even I wished to experience a romance like that.
I thought that it sounded nice to have someone yearn for me, so deeply that I’d be at a loss for how to respond.
Just how many times have we had this same exchange today?”
“I can not BELIEVE…!”
The commoner’s words, devoid of any allure flared up my anger.
“But well, I suppose that someone like you who simply makes light of love could never hope to understand such subtleties.”
It became clear to me that I couldn’t expect a romance like what I saw from Amour’s poem from the commoner, so I hurried to the cafeteria.
“But I’m not joking~”
I heard her say that behind me, but she wasn’t fooling anyone.
(You say that, but in the end you’ll leave me too, won’t you? Just as Lene already has.)
The scars of losing the people precious to me had made me cowardly… Though I wouldn’t actually realize that for a little while yet.
Translator Comment: Okay but knowing what happens from here on out thanks to ILTV… Claire do you REALLY want to experience a love like in Amour’s poem…? Though I do definitely understand there’s a difference in perception looking at the situation from outside and experiencing it yourself…
Welcome back, and I’m really glad to be able to share Chapter 4 of SSCC with you all! I know the Love Scales arc is a fan favorite, and a lot of people were curious for Claire’s perspective in this chapter.
As always I had a lot of fun translating it, and I hope I can convey that fun properly (:
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