Troublesome Royalty’s Luxurious Mansion
After a few hours of moving forward with a tense air, the horse-drawn carriage slowly came to a stop.
I sluggishly moved my helmet from the cushion, sleepily muttering, “Percival is a liaaaar…….” while peering outside with half closed eyes.
Apparently we have reached the inspection point at the territory’s boundary. There were a few guards that ran up to meet the carriage, and their eyes looked dizzy when their gazes met with mine. They are most likely surprised to see a full body suit of armor peeking out from the carriage their lord is riding in, but that was nothing compared to the look they gave when they saw that the unfaithful prince Alexis was in the carriage as well.
One person ran up to the carriage in a panic, but he made sure to control himself enough to speak quietly so that only Ordo could hear him. I guess trying to smuggle such a suspicious group into the territory was useless.
In contrast, Ordo calmly raised his hand, “It’s alright. Let us pass,” and finished the issue with a word. With that signal, the security bowed their heads low and left us.
Once everything was settled, the horse-drawn carriage finally started on its way once again, and Ordo cackled with a large smile spread across his face.
“It was bad to take our time like this. Security is a nightmare every day like this.”
Ordo’s tone sounded oddly satisfied despite the content of what he was saying.
In the first place, he seemed to have confidence in his defenses which is why he was so daring while performing certain actions.
As if to say, “I do not allow other people to enter my territory so easily,” but I decided that none of that had much to do with me and shrugged my shoulders before directing my eyes back out the window. After awhile, there was a second check point that did perform an examination of the carriage–probably to make sure we were not rebels holding their lord hostage and sneaking into his territory.
It was very different from the country’s border that we passed through before that went without the guards even looking inside the carriage to see who was crossing over and ended after the driver and guards had a friendly chat.
We have fled from the royal palace to this place, but will we be able to rest?
Maybe if I had magical feet, I could just jump up into the clouds and relax up there.
I thought about fluffy cloud bedding as my helmet rested back onto a cushion, sleep taking hold of me as Ordo continued to brag about the surrounding lands.
Ordo’s mansion was big enough to leave me stunned as I looked upon it, decorated with fancy trim yet having a sturdiness to it that left it intimidating like a fortress. A fountain was set up in a fine garden, and in terms of of gorgeousness and luxury, it would in no way lose if compared to the royal palace.
Although there were some places with so many decorations that it felt too conspicuous, but even that served to give off that air of intimidation a commoner would feel walking to a nobelman’s mansion. Is it not actually a very homely mansion?
The interior did the exterior a service, having high quality carpets that spread over long corridors and expensive vases and suits or armor lining the side as decorations.
Ordo walked down one of these halls in a dignified manner, and for the first time since I met him I felt the dignity that came from being a lord.
Besides the looks of reverence and respect that the servants gave Ordo as he walked past, the servants mostly just stared at the rest of us and frowned.
Is this not a little too rude? However, Ordo vouched for us, and after hearing his words, the servants had a relieved look spread across their faces before they gave him another bow and left.
“In order to sit on the throne, you have to solidify the ground underneath you.”
These were the words he said in the carriage.
Indeed, it seems that his territory is firmly compacted and upheld.
Walking behind such an Ordo, I stopped my feet because Percival had fallen out of line with the rest of us and was looking at a suit of armor standing at the side of a hallway.
Tilting my helmet in curiosity, I aligned myself next to him and took a look at the piece myself. It was a decorative suit of armor that had most likely never been worn. However, the expression Percival wore as he stared at it was completely serious.
“What’s wrong Witch Slayer Percival?”
“………I feel thorns in your voice when you call me like that.”
“It is just your imagination, Witch Slayer Percival.”
“Of course. I guess I’m just being overly cautious.”
“That’s right Witch Slayer Percival. So what are you doing? Was there something strange about this armor, Witch Slayer Percival?”
Emphasizing the ‘witch slayer’ part to try and work out some of this strange feeling bubbling in my stomach, Percival gave a small sigh before his gaze returning to the suit of armor lined up in front of him.
Unlike armor for actual warfare, this one was polished beautifully and kept a sword decorated with ornaments tied off to its side. Would it be too luxurious to call this a masterpiece?
“It is fine.”
“Well, it is certainly a wonderful suit of armor.”
“But it’s just fine. It is not cute.”
My eyes opened wide in surprise at Percival’s words.
Armor lined up on the side of a mansion hallway, if it looks fine then that it enough. Wanting it to look cute is something nobody would want at all. Wearing hair ornaments on top of the helmet and a gorgeous dress overtop the chestplate, is that what he means? It’s more funny than cute.
Even so, Percival was looking at the armor and giving himself a self-satisfied nod. Is his expression just a tad too sunny for the type of self-evident observation he is making?
A voice called back to us to keep walking. Still, I do not know the reason at all for his observations causing my eyebrows to crease and furlough together underneath my helmet, but before I could ask him what it was he was going on about, Alexis called back to the two of us to quickly join back up with them.
“I cannot check all of them to be sure, but my armor was not cute at all, and the rest of these decorative pieces are just fine.”
“Percival, what are you talking about?”
“No, it’s nothing.”
I chased after him, my helmet still tilted in confusion as Percival continued to walk on while muttering something to himself.
We walked further into the mansion, and eventually we ended up in Ordo’s private office.
It was a spacious and luxurious room decorated with art pieces collected from both masters and amateurs. I do not feel like gauging the value of this room alone.
Although it was so elegantly furnished, Ordo walked through paying little care to trinkets and baubles he put out, so I directed Robertson up to the ceiling and asked him if he wanted to make a web for himself. If these decorations serve for no other purpose than to show off his wealth, then I am sure he will not mind if a spider makes a cozy little home for himself.
Although a real avid collector may faint if they were to hear such a thing.
I do not care whether a person has authority or not, but doing something like this is certainly refreshing.
In such a room, Ordo urged each of us to take a seat on his sofa. The feeling of my body sinking into the fluffy cushions was pleasant, and my accumulated stress from sitting in the carriage for so long finally had a release.
“I’m afraid I’m not too good at opening wine bottles. Gina, Monette, do you have any requests?”
“My, I don’t mind. Whatever Ordo chooses will be fine with me.”
Gina laughed gracefully at Ordo’s offer.
I wonder if her voice was more energetic now because she had finally been offered some proper witchlike hospitality after all this time. By returning the choice for the wine back to him, it is most likely because she wants him to set the degree of hospitality with his choice of wine.
Ordo gave a bitter smile as he realized the trouble he was in. If he put out a cheap wine that does not match the mansion or his position within it, it will damage the witches’ moods. But if he puts out one of his most expensive wines, that is as good as a declaration that he will do whatever necessary to keep us happy.
“I see. Offering a witch hospitality is difficult just as the rumors said.”
“Do not think too deeply on the subject and please use your own instincts. In some cases, there are witches who find favor in receiving just a cup of water. Monette, what kind of wine will Ordo serve us witches? Please look forward to the answer.”
“But I can’t drink wine in the first place……”
I answered with a half-joking reply, but Ordo used it as an escaped and beckoned for one of his maids to bring over some juice from the corner of the room. He probably only thought of offering wine as an option due to its symbol of wealth, but with my words, he could use juice to pass the hurdle……..although even I could tell he was feeling embarrassed about going this route.
Preparations must be made in case a witch ever visits him again in the future……he was clearly thinking such things.
“We will prepare some juice for Monette. What kind is good?”
“Whatever Sir Ordo offers me will be fine.”
“Please have mercy on me, Miss Monette.”
He was sweating more than I thought possible, so when I saw the despair in his eyes, I decided to obediently put in a request. Ordo gave a relieved nod followed by a particularly bitter smile. Then he clapped his hands twice, and the maids got to work.
After waiting for awhile, the drinks and some cakes were carried into the room.
Ordo apologized looking ashamed while saying, “I try to avoid living too luxuriously at night,” while gesturing to the cookies and tarts lining the trays. I wonder if we were looking at the same food. I obediently went to work and accepted his hospitality.
The cookies were moderately sweet and fragrant while the tarts were rich with plenty of fruit. If he was seriously apologizing saying that this was a frugal snack, then the pastries around the world would cry right now.
Then, relaxing both my body and mind with the combination of the soft sofa and the delicious drinks and confectionery, the tense air that had dogged us all this time began to drift. That was probably why it came up,
“Could you explain what is going on?”
With a glass of poured red wine, his thick brown hair was combed out to make him look like a lion. He had the air of royalty even when driven to this remote place, yet the intimidation I felt from him before had drifted. Plus right now I did not feel like hiding anything or telling lies right now anyway.
With this atmosphere, I slowly opened my mouth after taking a sip of my juice.
“……..Everything has been caused by a single witch…….my sister Emilia has caused all of this.