Villainess Wants to Live Freely El POV

http://ncode.syosetu.com/n5260fe/25/

 

I am the second prince of the beastman kingdom known as Ashtel. Today I have turned five years old, and as a result, Father and Mother are allowing me to visit the city just outside the castle. Of course, with knights and servants accompanying me. And I have to go in disguise.

“Your Highness, it’s dangerous if you wander too far away from us.”

“All right, all right.”

I’ve always wanted to get outside of the castle and experience all the fresh, new sights that were waiting for me.

That was my mistake…….things might’ve turned out differently if I’d been a little more cautious……..

I caught the scent of something that smelled delicious and ran over to a nearby food stall.

“Y-Your Highness!”

Without waiting for the knight to catch up with me…….

“What do you sell here?”

“This and that and cute little kids, so welcome. And here……”

“W-What!?”

Before I realized it, there were two big, strong-looking men standing behind me……

 

 

 

With no memory of how I got there, I woke up trapped in a dark, gloomy room without any windows.

“…….where, is, this?”

The only door refused to budge, and I didn’t know what else to do.
I think a few hours went by, but without the light of the sun, I had no way of knowing for sure. That was when the man from the street stall walked in, and saying it was time for dinner, left behind a meal. I was able to count the coming days as they passed from when I was caught by counting the number of meals I was brought with one coming in the morning and another at night. During that time, two men would regularly come into my cell and start kicking and beating me.

I didn’t know when or even if I would ever be rescued, so I had started thinking that it might be best to just give up and die like this. That was when Duke Winsley saved me.

“What is……I want a thorough investigation, and transfer this boy to the orphanage in my territory for protection. …….It must have been awful for you. But everything’s going to be all right now.”

I was taken to an orphanage for safekeeping, but I wasn’t there for very long before Duke Winsley came to see me.
By then though, I had already fallen completely silent due to the mental damage caused from the constant beatings…..

Both the Duke and Duchess of Winsley were very kind to me and knew I was the second prince of the Ashtel Kingdom. But, there was a chance that the people who kidnapped me might come back, so Duke Winsley talked to my parents and it was decided that I would live with him until the mastermind of the dark auction was caught.

“I haven’t told my daughter that you’re a prince. The walls have ears, and we don’t want that information leaking out. But, if she ends up acting rudely towards you……although I assure you she’s not the kind of girl who would do such a thing……..I am still prepared to be punished in the unlikely event.”

[It’s all right. Thank you for protecting me here.]

I did my best to thank the couple for everything they’ve done to keep me safe by writing out a few words on a sheet of paper.
It’s really manly to be willing to protect someone while also being prepared to be punished for it. At least that’s what I think. There’s no way I would punish him. But, what kind of girl is his daughter going to be…… All the daughters of duke houses I know in Ashtel are strong, selfish beastmen who constantly get into bouts of strength. I can only imagine this daughter as being someone troublesome. I don’t feel like we’ll be able to get along…….

Chapter 21El POV (2)

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