The Witch Slayer Escort Knight and the Prince on Break
“Hey Percival, how long are you going to keep calling me ‘prince’?”
These were the words Alexis released one peaceful day. The location was his office inside the royal palace.
While signing off on a document and adding it to his pile of finished work, he grabbed another document from the overflowing pile taking claim to the majority of his desk…….and then asked in a completely dead tone.
It was probably because he had grown so weary of work. After putting together all the documents he had already signed off on, he filed them away and reached out for another document again……and reached out towards his cup of tea instead after thinking about it for a second.
The figure of Alexis holding something that wasn’t a pen in his hand made Percival’s eyes go round as if it was the first time he had ever seen such a thing.
Speaking of the Alexis in the past, he would never interrupt his public service work just to partake in a pleasant chat. He was a man who would silently perform his public affairs work, taking a break only during pre-scheduled time. Truly the appearance of a humble and hard working good prince.
Yet here he was arbitrarily saying, “Let’s take a short break” after a small pause. He even cleared away documents both signed and unprocessed to give himself a little extra room as he pulls out a cookie from his desk drawer. As he laid back in his chair, the ‘short’ part of his earlier statement was looking more and more unlikely.
Following his change, Percival–who was sitting on a sofa in the room sorting through his own documents released a bitter smile. Meanwhile Monette, who was sitting down across from him, smiled while telling him, “You’ve become quite twisted.”
Alexis pulled out two more cookies from the drawer and tossed them towards his two friends sitting away from him. This would have also been unthinkable for the previous Alexis.
Percival raised his hand in the air and skillfully caught it. Monette watched carefully as the cookie made an arch through the sky and raised her iron arm to do the same…..and then the *konk* of the cookie hitting her helmet rung out.
Monette held down her helmet with the back of her hand to stop the ringing. When she turned her gaze towards Percival and Alexis, they both immediately looked away. She knew they were doing their best no not laugh at her, but that actually made her even angrier.
“……..so, what were you talking about?”
When Monette asked her question in a low voice, the intimidation and meaning of, “Don’t you say anything about that,” came across loud and clear, so despite his trembling shoulders, Alexis raised his face without saying anything.
Although the corners of his mouth were still slightly raised, he pretended to not have seen what had happened to Monette. Although he was only a few steps away, he had unfortunately missed it. If he had seen something, or admitted to seeing something, she would most certainly come over and stomp on his feet……….like she did to Percival.
“Lady Monette, that really hurts so I would like you to forgive me soon……”
“I don’t know what you’re talking about. Hey, you have two feet. Don’t you think I lost weight?”
“I was wrong to laugh! Please, your armor lightening magic doesn’t work like this!”
No magic works on the witch slayer Percival. So if Monette were to step on his feet, naturally the armor lightening magic wouldn’t work either, so not just Monette, but the entire weight of the armor was being dug into his foot. He quickly apologized with tears in his eyes as he could not handle the full weight of it all, making Monette eventually smile underneath her helmet feeling satisfied.
She then turned her attention towards Alexis who also had trouble holding back his laughter. When he realized where her sight was set on, Alexis quickly hid his smile and returned to the story about what Percival called him. Percival also took the opportunity to piggyback off the subject change and asked, “What is wrong with the way I call you?”
What a pure white master-servant relationship. Monette muttered so underneath her breath, but she decided to not interfere with those two’s conversation. She finally stopped trampling on Percival’s foot and returned to her seat on the sofa.
“What is wrong with calling you Prince…..?”
“I am helping Uncle with his duties, but I have not yet decided whether I will succeed him. Because whether you could actually call me royalty right now is in question, I feel like ‘Prince’ no longer fits me.”
“Well, but calling you in some other way is……”
“Percival saved me from my cursed fate. I have no problems letting idle formalities go.”
“I am honored to have you say so.”
To have Alexis show such gratitude beyond their master-servant relationship, an impressive color spread across Percival’s expression.
In fact, Percival had saved Alexis who had been cursed by a witch and isolated to his bad reputation and rumors of infidelity. There was the fact that the curse did not work on him because he was a witch slayer, but that was a mute point.
While the rumors of infidelity were prevalent and the evaluation of Alexis hit rock-bottom, he still wholeheartedly believed in Alexis’s innocence. He did not mind throwing away his family name and his position as a royal knight and took Alexis away from the royal palace. He moved forward with a conviction, and he led Alexis to peace while receiving jeers from his associates.
Alexis was now thanking Percival for that loyalty, and he was telling him to abandon formalities as a show of appreciation and trust.
It was impossible for a knight to not be pleased by that type of praise from their master.
“I never knew you were thinking so deeply for me. Then let me respond in kind and allow me to address you as ‘Akkun’ from this day forward.”
“So that wasn’t a dream.”¹
“Akkun, is that no good as well? If it is something that you hate, then please tell me right away Akkun.”
“Wait Percival, I cannot grasp the sense of distance here. When you suddenly give me a nickname like this and change the way you address me, I can’t tell if we have grown closer or drifted farther apart.”
At least choose one or the other…….was what Alexis was trying to say. But hearing his reaction, Monette sighed a little in her helmet,
“It’s good isn’t it, Akkun-sama?”
and decided to jump in.
She thought it would be interesting to poke the bear here.
The Prince who wanted to throw away some level of formality and the loyal knight who wanted to become closer to his liege, it was a beautiful story of friendship…….but watching them dance around the issue was fun to watch.
That is that; this is this. Even if everything was going to end up the same, she still wanted to poke it.
“Do you hate it after all, Akkun-sama?”
“Monette, you are using two honorifics for my name now.²”
“Akkun, I apologize if I have been rude. Even though you were in line to succeed the throne, I still took a rude attitude towards you……”
“So Percival is completely unable to gauge the distance.”
Alexis shook his head completely unable to know what he should do.
………and, then the sound of knocking echoed in the room, silencing all three of them. Monette’s helmet creaked a little as she turned to look at the door, and Percival’s gaze followed right after hers.
Only Alexis wrinkled his brows and said, “I have a bad feeling about this,” but those words of his accidentally acted as a signal allowing their new visitor to come in.
The door opened slowly giving way to……,
“Hey hey guys, you sure are making a lot of noise. Have you finished your duties properly, Akkun?”
a laughing Ordo.
“So he came after all……. I figured you’d come down here to poke fun.”
“I was just passing by and heard you all talking about something interesting, and I obviously had to join in.”
“It’s that kind of personality…….I mean, whether I’m finished or not, this type of public service work is Uncle’s job. I’m doing it right now because some guy forced it all onto me.”
“And I’m grateful for it. Akkun.”
“Shut up old man.”
Alexis glared at him and spoke with a low voice, but Ordo just laughed. On the contrary, “Don’t you like your nickname, Akkun,” he fueled it.
Of course course neither Percival nor Monette wanted to be left out, and they both started calling him, “Akkun,” and “Akkun-sama” respectively.
“Everyone seems to be having fun…..alright, call me as you wish.”
“Oh my, wellllllll, then allow us to do just that. Aaaaaakkkkkkkuuuuuuun. Have some bread, Aaaaaakkkkkkkuuuuuuun.
It goes without saying that the person who brilliantly entered the room without anyone realizing it and shoved a piece of bread into Alexis’s mouth was Gina. She was looking absolutely beautiful today as well, but her allure was made that much more thanks to the smell of fresh baked bread clinging to her now………….and her voice also sounded quite bold.
Attracted to Gina’s charm, Monette stood up and ran towards her yelling, “Gina!” but a loaf of bread was gently shoved into the mouth of her helmet. ‘Surely this was a different way of greeting’, thinking so, Monette gladly accepted it.
Then Monette’s gaze inevitably fell towards Gina’s feet where Concetta was lazing around meowing. He quickly walked over and stretched out his fluffy fur covered paw and set it on Monette’s iron feet.
Does he want me to embrace him? Guessing so, Monette lifted him up. Concetta’s eyes narrowed in pleasure telling her she had been right.
But then he started meowing out and crying again. His mismatched colored eyes were looking towards…….Alexis.
“Alexi-…………..Prince Akkun-sama, it looks like Concetta wants something from you.”
“And so the number of honorifics on my name has tripled. Concetta, is there something you need? Do you want some bread?”
Come, putting the loaf of bread back into his mouth, Alexis extended both of his arms out. Concetta responded to the open invitation by jumping out of Monette’s hug into Alexis’s outstretched arms.
Watching that familiar scene and dedication, Monette thought to herself, “He is being used by a magical cat.” Well, Alexis didn’t seem to mind, so it was okay.
Monette was about to turn her helmet away with a smile on her face, but she suddenly stopped when she realized Concetta wasn’t trying to eat the bread hanging from Alexis’s mouth.
Normally he would devour into the bread without mercy, yet now he wasn’t touching it even though he had not yet had a bite to eat. For some reason today he was just sitting in Alexis’s arms staring at him.
“Konfeffa, huts hong?”
“Prince Akkun-sama, it seems that Concetta is trying to tell you something.”
Concetta was staring up at Alexis while opening and closing his mouth.
While Monette was watching him to see what he was doing, Alexis was staring right back into the eyes of the cat resting in his arms.
Soon the surrounding people also noticed, and they turned their eyes to see what was going on. Gina alone was watching on with a smug look on her face saying, “I worked hard in supporting Concetta up into this point!”
When Monette called out his name, it seemed to act as a signal and a small meow leaked from Concetta’s mouth. However afterwards, Concetta opened his mouth again revealing his white fangs before silently closing his mouth once again.
Whenever Concetta opened her mouth, a small growl would come out, and the fur on his back would stand on end before smoothing out in conjunction with his mouth.
Then Concetta’s eyes changed, and he stared at Alexis as if he had made some grand decision. He shook his fluffy tail out, and all his fur stood on end and stayed up.
All of the surrounding eyes were focused on Concetta. Among them, Alexis–the man holding the cat in his arms–was watching him with worried eyes and once again asked, “Konfeffa?” with the loaf of bread still in his mouth. Monette tilted her helmet to the side curiously while Percival and Ordo gathered behind to look over her shoulders.
Receiving everyone’s attention, Concetta slowly opened his mouth once again……,
and raised a cry heard by all.
The sound of a pin could be heard dropping in the distance as the room relaxed.
What eventually broke the silence was the loud applause and cheering from Gina who was shouting, “You worked hard Concetta……!!” What followed was a loud *Fuun* from Concetta vigorously puffing out his chest in pride.
Monette’s eyes were wide open underneath her helmet. Alexis as well was stunned……yet he still made sure to stroke Concetta’s head as the cat started eating away at the bread handing from his mouth.
“Thank you of course. I could feel the friendship,”
were Akkun’s words after dozen minutes or so had passed.
Ordo had gotten tired of laughing so much, so he returned to his office, and Gina had gone back to the kitchen in order to restock on bread. Sitting on Monette’s lap as she sat on the sofa was a curled up and sleeping Concetta while Monette herself felt her helmet swaying as she started to nod off.
Meanwhile, Alexis, who had returned to doing some of his public service work was muttering to himself. Percival was resting on the sofa next to Monette while looking over some of the documents himself. Then he made a small smile as he replied, “I know.”
“We were communicating our friendship.”
“To that extent, you all played quite a bit.”
“That’s just the type of relationship us friends have……….Alexis.”
Hearing so, Alexis looked up in surprise to see Percival smiling at him. Then, after a small sigh, Alexis returned a bitter smile right back to him.
1. He’s referring to the bonus in chapter 33.
2. As in, she is calling him with -kun and -sama.