「About Ricolette’s treatment…….」
Muttered His Majesty as he powerlessly slumped onto his chair and saw Ricolette out.
「It seems that we need to bring out the poisoned bowl, it might be necessary for her to commit suicide」
「I feel sorry for my older sister, but we can’t just execute the royalty. As the Prime Minister Guremont said, the poisoned bowl might be the best solution」
His Majesty closed his eyes and silently contemplated.
「I……. do not wish for Ricolette to die」
「This isn’t appropriate, older brother. Older sister rebelled against older brother. The rebels can’t be pardoned, or the empire won’t have any face left」
「Father told me to lead the empire together with my siblings. I won’t be able to face my father in the afterlife if I spill my sibling’s blood. It wasn’t Ricolette who wished to rebel in the first place」
「This might not be the case. Ricolette’s vassals, the house of Kurumfar, instigated the rebellion. She won’t be able to escape the responsibility」
「That is right. Order sister’s ideals deny the structure of the whole empire. Such people can be a source of the future unrest if left unattended」
「That might be true but won’t her faction rebel if something happens to her that will diminish the empire’s power but I can’t just ignore her even with my father wished so……」
His Majesty started muttering again.
「……I will think about it. Everyone, you can leave」
「I know you have a lot on your mind, but I humbly plead for a swift decision」
The prime minister deeply bowed and left the room. After that, Prince Viras followed after the prime minister. I quietly followed behind him.
「Wait! The barrier master is not allowed to leave my side! You are to stay close to me! 」
Are you serious? I want you to spare me from staying in the same room as a mentally unstable person. I silently requested for a rescue from Prince Viras and the prime minister with my eyes.
「Understood, Your Majesty. However, this barrier master doesn’t serve the imperial palace. Even with His Majesty’s order, we can’t be unreasonable to him. As such…..」
「I know! Do you want me to reach a decision as soon as possible? 」
「Correct. I humbly plead」
After saying his piece, the two left the room. They run away…..
His Majesty closed his eyes and ceased all movements. I could only hear his breathing.
「You probably think of me as a pathetic man」
Unexpectedly, His Majesty said in a powerless voice.
「No, I don’t think so. On the contrary, you are a gentle person」
「Say no more. Without your presence, I’m a coward who afraid to even face the rebels」
「That might be true. However, I think that cowardice is an important ability for those, who stand above the others. You listen to various people and think over various things. I consider this Your Majesty’s talent」
「Fuh, you saying this as if you know me」
「I’m aware that I’m overstepping my bounds. His Majesty is gentler than anyone is. That’s how Your Majesty was raised, and Your Majesty yourself was inclined to this side. I think that it is wonderful. Your Majesty is fine as you are. But if I’m to add something to complete the image, you need to find「strength」」
「Strength? Are you encouraging me to learn martial arts? 」
「No, that is not correct. You are not only kind but also thoughtful. On the other hand, it also created a lot of unease. It makes it hard for Your Majesty to make any decision, because it may backfire in the future. I think that Your Majesty needs to obtain the heart that can’t be swayed by anxiety」
「Does it look like I’m suffering from anxiety?」
「Yes. Your Majesty looks very kind, but at same time weak and anxious」
「You sure say a lot for the barrier master」
「I apologize for my conduct. When people sincerely wish to「become stronger」or「not be defeated」they do become stronger. I have been a slave in the first place. No one wished to save me, I was about to be drowned by anxiety. Fortunately, I was taken in by the good people, but even there, I was scared of being abandoned. Every day I was saying to myself「I need to become stronger」「I can’t lose to anxiety」. After that, I naturally ceased to be anxious. It was thanks to my teacher」
「You muttered to yourself every day? It is the first time for me to hear such a story」
「Yeas, most likely, no one will ever tell you. I never heard about it from anyone except my teacher」
Fumu, I see, His Majesty started muttering again. When I strained my ears,
「I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose, I won’t lose….. 」
he said as if chanting. Is this person really okay?….
It has been about 1 hour. The prime minister and Prince Viras appeared once again. His Majesty was still chanting. The two noticed, aligned their eyes, and asked in concern
「Your Majesty, did you make a decision?」
「Older brother, the poisoned bowl and everything else has been prepared」
Hearing these words, His Majesty slowly opened his eyes. His Majesty looked at us and said as if breathing out.
「My younger brother Viras, Prime Minister Guremont, the barrier master. I decided. I will tell everyone my decision now」
We held our breath in suspense.
「Ricolette will live. This is my decision」
The two raised their voices in surprise.
「Your Majesty! Are you sure? I never heard about the rebels, who were left alive! 」
「Even like that, her life shall not be taken」
「Older brother! If we do this, we will be forced to pardon every vassal, whose subordinates decided to rebel on their own volition! It will create future troubles. There is a saying 「kill one to warn a hundred」, we should」
「Prime Minister Guremont! My older brother doesn’t understand anything! We should settle the matter of the poisoned bowl ourselves! 」
「Hah, in this way 」
The two tried to leave the room.
「You two, wait」
Resounded His Majesty’s calm voice. The two faltered and looked at His Majesty with surprise on their faces.
「This is my will」
Faced with his overwhelming atmosphere, the two unconsciously lowered their heads.
It was a moment of awakening for the 15th Emperor, Hideta Shua Hito, who later was titled as「benevolent emperor」 and became the most respected emperor in the history of the Hideta Empire.
Why do I suddenly feel disappointed in the prime minister? ↩