Idle talk – The People in the Dark, and a Collection of Brief Stories (1)
A Day in a Certain Knight’s Life
This is the Royal Training Camp of the Arland Kingdom. Here, knights and soldiers train daily. They use spears, swords, bows, and other weapons that suit them, training themselves and preparing for the coming battle, but today the atmosphere was a little somber.
“Princess is studying abroad, huh~ I hoped it would be a little later.”
A young apprentice knight, still swinging his sword, blurted out.
“Well, the academy over there is more advanced than the kingdom’s academies, so studying abroad is a no-brainer… but I also thought it would be a little further along.”
A nearby soldier blurted out in response. The knights and soldiers seem less motivated today. Fortunately, there is no one in command, and it is more like a voluntary exercise. If their superiors had heard what they were saying, they would surely be subjected to hellish training. Training in the Royal Army is that severe.
“Ahh… I guess I won’t be getting my wounds healed by the princess for a while…”
“Darn it!! I haven’t even talked to her yet!!”
The soldiers here seemed to be done with a lot of things.
“If she was free, she would sit in that shade over there and heal our injuries…”
“Yeah, the Healer’s healing magic leaves scars, but the Princess heals them quickly and without leaving scars. Moreover, it feels really warm when she does the healing.”
Soldiers and knight apprentices seem to just want to meet Alicetia. Indeed, Alicetia often came to see the military drills. It was so much so that the nobles would disagree with the knights, as they thought she secretly became a healer for the knights. She also healed their wounds, though.
“Our Princess is kind and gentle, though she has no expression on her face. Other princesses are apparently all selfish, we are blessed to be born in this country.”
“If we could enjoy peace without being invaded, I would have no complaints.”
The soldiers continued their conversation while swinging their swords. If they stopped swinging and slacked off, their superiors would sublimate it into a death-defying exercise. They cunningly thought that as long as they were waving their swords, they could continue talking until their superiors came.
“But… after all, the Princess will go to the battlefield too, right?”
This was the concern of the soldiers and knights. That is, that the Princess would go into battle. Naturally, the country’s upper echelons do not want her to go into battle, but since she is competent, there is a possibility that she may go into battle. This is a pain that the knights and soldiers cannot bear.
The country’s troops adore the royal family. They have always experienced hardship, and now the royal family is in danger of being severed. It is not that the troops aren’t strong enough. It is because Kings of the past naturally love their country and go to war for it. They have always inspired their troops by winning on the front lines. The price for this was the current situation, however.
The troops realize that the princess is no different. She is expressionless, but she is concerned about the future of her country. The knights and soldiers saw her swinging her sword in secret, so that her personal maid would not find out. Though, she was horribly untalented.
“I’m sure she will… but, the Princess is no good at fighting at all, right… she’s going to cry, right?”
Feelings of powerlessness. Since they cannot protect the country with their own strength alone, they had to watch the royalty make sacrifices. That is why they do not hesitate to offer their lives for the sake of their country. They are also proud. Many of them are from countries that were defeated by the Empire and incorporated into its territory. They know what happens on the battlefield.
They fear the madness and lamentations that abound on the battlefield. The gentle Princess has a strong sense of duty, but not the capacity to endure it. They knew exactly what she was getting into. If she went into battle, she will fight, even though her heart would break. It was an intolerable thing for those who cared about the royal family.
“We can only work harder to make the country a little more peaceful.”
“Yeah… and if anything were to happen to the Princess, His Majesty and the Crown Prince will get really scary, after all!!”
The King and the Crown Prince are, in a sense, synonymous with fear. Those two are cleaning up the country without the Princess’s knowledge. Often the people that try to incite rebellion against the Princess are gone before you know it, and the only one who is unaware of it is the Princess herself. Stopping treason is, of course, in a sense, a purge.
“Let’s not talk about it because I’m afraid… if we speak of it, His Majesty might really appear before us.”
“Yeah, let’s train harder!!”
“One, for the Kingdom, two, for the people, three, for the Princess.”
They swung their swords today as well. The third part of the call was a bit strange, but they were tempering themselves by swinging their weapons seriously.