She’s so Cheeky for a Commoner! 64

Aug 02 2022

Assassination Attempt  

※Told from Salas Lilium’s perspective.

“Mmn…! I’m just exhausted~!”
“You mustn’t, Yuu-sama, have some dignity.”

After Claire François and her maid left, I rebuked Yuu-sama for stretching in his chair.
We were still in the royal palace’s audience room.
As we had cleared the room, only Yuu-sama and I were left in it.
While Yuu-sama had always taken a familiar and approachable disposition to those around him, this sloppiness went beyond that.

“I got it, Salas.”
“Do you really understand?”
“Yup.
Simply put, you’re saying I should give up on it, right?”
“!!”

As I stumbled over my words, Yuu-sama was all smiles as he continued.

“I mean when I heard they might have a way to solve my problems, I did feel kind of hopeful.”
“Yuu-sama.”
“But well, if that’s their solution… I know there’s no way that the palace could accept it.”
“…”

Yuu-sama rested his chin in his hands as he gazed off into the distance.

“I am this kingdom’s third prince.
I was raised as such, and want to repay that upbringing.
That’s not something I’d simply betray.”
“I am grateful for your understanding.”
“But well…”
“?”

Then, in a lofty tone as though he was dreaming,

“Thinking, what if, I had the chance to live as a girl, wasn’t a bad delusion to entertain.”
“… A delusion, and nothing more, do I hear you correctly?”

I asked to confirm.

“Yup, just a delusion.
My responsibilities as a prince, and all the associated obligations, if I could just let it go―just how wonderful that would be.”
“…”

My intuition told me that Yuu-sama’s resolve was wavering.

The options that girl, Rei Taylor, had presented to him were truthfully not very realistic.
If one simply considered the royal palace’s current state of affairs, it was impossible.
That was precisely why.
It was precisely because it was impossible that the option appeared so sweet to Yuu-sama.
No matter how he may deny it with his words, from now on Yuu-sama would always be under the temptation of that sweet impossibility.

If that were to happen―

“Yuu-sama, please be careful not to entertain and find yourself ensnared in such foolish delusions.”
“I know, Salas.
You may leave.
I’ll just be resting.”
“… As you command.”

I bowed.
In the end, Yuu-sama still appeared to have the expression of a maiden trapped in a sweet dream.

 ◆◇◆◇◆

Later that very night I was in my room at the palace―or rather, that was where I would normally be, but tonight I instead found myself at a dilapidated manor at the outskirts of the capital.

“… It’s me.
Let me in.”

Only moments after I spoke, I heard a click as the door unlocked.
In all likelihood, I had been under watch as I approached the manor.

“How strange for ya to come here in person.”

The one who came to greet me took the silhouette of a man wearing a black mask.
My masterpiece―Alter.

Alter seemed to blend in with the dark, unlit room.
I couldn’t see any of it, but there should be a number of beds lining the messy space.

“Something suddenly came up.
I ask that you dispatch an assassin..”
“That is sudden… So? Who’s the target?”
“Bauer Kingdom’s third prince―Yuu Bauer.”

“… Eh?

Alter’s words were listless.

“Hey now, didn’t ya say you’d support Yuu for the throne? Ya seduced that poor Lishe and had quite the plan going, yeah?”
“That’s all out the window.
That’s no longer of use to me.
I need to cut my losses, or I’ll be the one that suffers.”

It’s true that Yuu was once a useful pawn to me, but recent events called that into question.
Not to mention I also had Sein as my trump card, though Alter’s recklessness had almost cost me him too.

“Hmm…? Did something happen?”
“It’s nothing you must concern yourself with.”
“Whatever ya say.”

Along with the apathetic response, Alter shrugged.

“So, when d’ya want ‘er done.”
“As soon as possible.”
“If ya give me the word I can get it done as quickly as tomorrow, but what’s the all important prince’s schedule like?”
“There are no problems there.
Tomorrow, Yuu is scheduled to visit an orphanage.”
“… Hah, that’s good to know.”

It appeared that Alter picked up on what I wanted to say.

“In that case, one of the ones I pulled from the church should be good, yeah? If ya need one right away… How about her?”

Alter pulled the sheets off of one of the beds on the side of the room.
On that bed, one of the church’s nuns was sleeping soundly.

“Acquired her just the other day.
It seems that the royal family is onto us, so it was rough getting her, ya know?”
“Enough of your boasting.
Will she be of use?”
“Well, I am the one who did the prep.
Rest easy, she’s ready and waiting for your commands.”
“Very good.”

I approached the nun who lay on the bed and touched her cheek.
The nun very slightly opened her eyes.
I stared into her eyes and cast my Suggestion magic.

“Oh, my dear, precious little daughter, can you hear my voice…?”
“… Yes… I hear…”
“I have a request, you will listen, won’t you…?”
“… Yes… father…”

I gave the nun information about the target as well as how to perform the assassination.
Rather than giving precise instructions, it was best to leave some room for flexibility.
That was the biggest advantage of using a living being who possessed their own will.

“… And that’s all.
Do you understand?”
“… Yes, father…”
“Alright then, recite my instructions.”
“… First―”

The nun appeared to understand the plan.
With this, everything should go well.

“Well then, I’ll leave the rest to you.”
“Yeah sure, night night.”

Without replying to the flippant voice, I left the manor.

 ◆◇◆◇◆

The next afternoon, the royal palace was in quite the panic.

“What about Yuu!? Is Yuu safe!?”
“Please calm down, Lishe-sama.
It’s all okay, your prince is safe.”
“How do you expect me to be calm!? Yuu was just about to be assassinated, don’t you understand!?”

Cutting straight to the point, my plot to assassinate Prince Yuu failed.
It appeared the information had somehow leaked, and as a result of an anonymous tip, the Spirit Church had decided to strengthen the prince’s guard for today’s visit.
Internally, I couldn’t hide my frustrations.
For assassinations, it was vital that the first attempt succeed.
The target would surely be on guard for the foreseeable future, and it would be a while before that vigilance would relax.

“Salas.”
“Sire.”

Rousseau called my name.
Just what did he need from me at such a busy time.

“Do we have any leads to the culprit?”
“I am afraid to say that we still do not.”
“What did the Spirit Church say?”
“The offender had gone missing for a couple of days, they claim it is unlikely that the assassination has any relations to the church.”
“I see.”

Rousseau appeared to be in deep thought.

“Demolish the monastery where the attempt took place, I demand strict protest against the church! No, even that would be far too gentle a punishment!”
“Lishe, calm down.”
“Your Majesty, how are you able to be so calm! Your son was nearly assassinated, don’t you understand!?”
“That’s precisely why I must be calm.
I must carefully consider why such a thing happened, and what I must do moving forward.”
“That’s far too easy going―”

For a while after that we were entirely focused on soothing Lishe, who had broken out into hysteria.
It only ended when she suffered an anemic attack and her maid assisted her back to her room.

“Salas.”
“Yes sire?”
“Do you think there will be a second attempt?”

Rousseau’s words didn’t seem to contain even a shred of doubt for me.
I chuckled internally before meekly responding.

“I’m afraid to say, but we should likely remain vigilant.
Not only for Yuu-sama, but I believe it would be best to assign additional guards to Rodd-sama, and Sein-sama as well.”
“Hm.”
“Beyond that, I believe it would be best to strictly regulate any information regarding this case.
It would be a scandal should this information make it out.”
“That stands to reason.
Very well, carry things out in that manner.”
“Yes! I will do so immediately.”

I left the area to relay my instructions to the guards.
What a foolish king, he doesn’t understand anything.
Indeed, it is I who deserves to reign over this kingdom.

“… Salas, just what is it that has driven you to such lengths…”

Rousseau appeared to mutter something under his breath, but his words never reached my ears.

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