Chapter 106

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Audience
And, the next day.

“Well then, Takumi-san, shall we go?”

Isaac-san whom I will have the audience together with is not wearing his regular knight uniform, noble-like clothes. Well, we also aren’t wearing our usual casual clothes, but considerably high-class clothes.
I didn’t think about the clothes to wear during the audience, but Cedric-san contacted Matthias-san beforehand, so the clothes were already prepared when we arrived at the Ruven House. Our physiques have been told to a clothing store which prepared several outfits, so we hurriedly tried them on after the messenger arrived. And finally, we did last-minute adjustments to the outfits we thought were the best.
Although overwhelmed, we were dressed nicely in no time.
I’m wearing black slacks and a white shirt, a dark gray long jacket on top. Allen has a frilly white shirt and navy blue shorts with suspenders. Elena is dressed in an embroidered pink dress with frills.

Wearing outfits that were tailored to fit us perfectly, we boarded the carriage.

“”Amazing~””
“Isn’t it? Looking at it from up close, it looks even more amazing~”

We looked out of the carriage’s window while gradually approaching the castle.
I have seen a few Japanese castles, but it’s my first time seeing a western style castle. It had a solemn atmosphere from afar, but it’s a masterpiece when seen from up close.
There seem to be various procedures to enter the castle, but everything was left to Isaac-san, so we kept advancing.

“This is it. As for manners, it should be fine if you follow my movements.”
“I understand. Allen, Elena, you have to be quiet when inside, okay?”
“”Yess~””

The room we entered was a large hall made of stone with a deep crimson carpet laid out on the floor and I caught sight of extravagant chairs in the most elevated place. One noticeably more gorgeous in the center, with slightly smaller chairs on both sides. The chair in the center is most likely the King’s, while the ones on the side are the queen’s and/or prince’s. This certainly has the feel of an “audience hall” to it.
There are a few people that I think are noblemen and knight guards in the hall, but…… the eyes of those people are examining us without holding back. It’s a very unpleasant atmosphere.
Because of this atmosphere, Allen and Elena are thoroughly glued to me. I pat the two’s heads in comfort. I seem to be tense to some extent too, so they became my anxiety medicine as well.

“His Majesty is arriving.”

After a short time, one of the knights conveyed such words, making Isaac-san and other people fall to their knees in a respectful bow. Following Isaac-san, I dropped to one knee and lowered my head. Allen and Elena imitated me and make the same posture, although a bit clumsy. Well, it doesn’t change the fact that they are glued to me.
Elena――what do girls do again in this situation? A lady’s bow…… courtesy? Or was it curtsy?
Pulling one leg back, pinching the skirt and bowing? I think that should be it, but…… oh well. They wouldn’t blame me for this, would they?

“Good. Lift your heads and make yourself comfortable.”

I heard the footsteps of several people, and when they stopped just in front, a voice resounded around the hall.
When I lifted my head in accordance to those words, I saw a man in his forties with bright blonde hair wrapped in luxurious clothes.
Royalty = beauty seems to hold true as the man in front of me was a handsome middle-aged man. I’m sure he was popular with women in his youth.
Both chairs at the King’s sides were empty, but one man was standing beside the King. It was a middle-aged man with a seemingly strict atmosphere, a grizzled blonde hair swept back, dressed in all black with sharp eyes and glasses. If we go with the pattern, he would probably be a prime minister or something.

“Hmm. So you are the adventurer who discovered the dungeon in Bailey. Excuse me for summoning you all of sudden. I’m the King of the Guardia, Tristan.”
“I’m serving as the prime minister, my name is Ford.”

The King addressed me in a very amicable manner. He seems like a very gentle person, but as a King of a country, I’m sure he’s not simply a gentle character~
When the King finished speaking, the man who stood at his side introduced himself. It seems he’s the prime minister just as I thought.

“It’s an honor to meet you. I’m Takumi, an adventurer. These children are Allen and Elena.”
“”…… Uniyu~””
“Ah…… I’m sorry about this.”

When I introduced the children after introducing myself, Allen and Elena suddenly hid behind my back. N~ With so many gazes on them, they aren’t able to do the greetings like they did with Rebecca-san, huh~ Well, there’s nothing I can do about that.

“Kuku. It’s fine. I won’t get upset at the young.”
“Thank you for your generosity.”

The King smiled warmly without blaming the children’s actions. When he makes such an expression, he looks even easier to talk with.
It really helps that he’s tolerant towards the children, but…… but you see~ it’s not like I’m able to hold a proper conversation either. Speaking with “desu” “masu” is my limit. I don’t know the proper etiquette when speaking with a King~ Well, he’s aware that I’m just an adventurer, so I would want him to forgive me to a certain degree.

“I would like to reward you at once, but I have to speak with Risner first. Wait a moment please.”
“Yes.”

When I acknowledged, the King’s gaze fell upon Isaac-san who was next to me.

“Good work. You are one of the knights if I’m not mistaken?”
“He’s of the Royal Guards, isn’t he?”

Eh? Isaac-san was a Royal Guard? I, I didn’t know……
Surprised by the prime minister’s words, I turned my head towards Isaac-san without thinking.
That reminds me, I didn’t hear the reason why Isaac-san was transferred from Shirin to the Royal Capital~ Hee~ So he became a Royal Guard. Royal Guard basically means the elite, right? That’s amazing.
N? Wald-sama is in the hall as a guard too, but the color of the uniform he’s wearing changed from dark blue to white. Because the knights I saw on the way and the knights at the door were wearing the familiar dark blue uniforms it doesn’t seem that the knights on the castle duty wear white uniforms……
Then, are those in white uniforms the Royal Guards……? Ehh!? Then, Wald-sama became a Royal Guard too?
Should we celebrate their promotion? N~ Let’s consult Matthias-san and Rebecca-san when this is over.

“Yes. I have become one of the Royal Guards the other day, my name is Isaac Risner. Originally, my elder brother who is the Risner Feudal Lord should have come, but I came in his place. First of all, I apologize in the Feudal Lord’s stead for he couldn’t come personally.”
“It’s absolutely necessary to settle down the newly discovered dungeon in the Risner territory as soon as possible. It would be foolish for the feudal lord Count Risner to leave his territory at this important time. Don’t mind it.”

While I was deep in thoughts, the conversation between the King and Isaac-san advanced.
Isaac-san has gotten permission to come in Cedric-san’s stead prior to his visit, but this exchange is apparently necessary for the other nobles to hear.
When the typical greetings finished, Isaac-san reported about the Dungeon of Ripples, including the information he obtained beforehand. Well, this was also to inform the people gathered in the hall.

“Continue working hard for the country in the future.”
“Yes, I’m willing to serve.”
“Hmm. Takumi-dono, sorry to keep you waiting. Well then, shall we talk about the rewards?”

The report ended with truly harmless and bland information.
And then, we moved to talk about our rewards.

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