The Black Knight by Akatsuki Momoka
Translated by imperfectluck
Chapter 5 – Explanations and invitations
After that strange werewolf Gardo left.
A bit off the highway, in an opening in the forest.
The three mages chanted the spell, and a dome-shaped shield expanded from the ground.
The female mage summoned a ball of light, to illuminate the area.
“Thank you very much.”
I thanked the three of them.
The people gathered here are, the royal family, five maids, two knights, two swordsmen, three archers, three mages, six horses, Hayate, and finally me.
“No, since you saved us all, thank you very much.”
With red hair and brown eyes, it was the cute female mage that spoke up.
Her height reaches to about my neck, she’s wearing a pale pink robe, and she’s holding a long staff with a red magic stone embedded in it.
I think she’s probably about the same age as me.
“It’s all good.”
When I said so, she lowered her head.
It seems that her face has become red.
“Hohoho, it’s good to be young. Well then, black knight, how about we have a chat now?”
While laughing with a happy face, the emperor spoke up.
If you misunderstand things like this, I’ll be troubled.
After all, I’m a woman.
I took off my helmet.
Everyone was shocked to see my face, and shouted in unison.
Predictably, due to my voice, everyone thought I was a “man.”
It seems that all the women other than the empress and the princess are rather disappointed.
The female mage looked as if she had lost her soul or something.
“I’m sorry for surprising everyone like that. My name is Chie Saitou. I’m 17.”
As I said so, I placed my helmet on Hayate who was next to me.
It’s tiresome to keep holding it all the time.
“Chie Saitou? Not only is your appearance one I’ve never seen, I’ve never heard of such a name either.”
“Your skin color, hair color, and even the shape of your face, I’ve never seen anything like it.”
It seems that everyone was in agreement with the emperor and the prince’s words.
Well, it was just like Amaterasu-sama said, in this world there’s no black hair, black eyes, or oriental people at all.
That also means my yellow skin color isn’t here either.
Anyone would be surprised to see such a person here.
“It’s understandable that everyone would be so surprised. There’s no other humans like me here in Eldoa.”
“Well then, from where might you have come from?”
Conrad-san asked the obvious question.
“……Conrad-san, was it? What happened to your casual speech up until now?”
You don’t have to be so formal with a little girl like me.
Heck, I was lost until just a little while ago.
“No, to be rude by using casual speech to such a strong knight as yourself would be most embarrassing. I realized it when you appeared riding the legendary black unicorn……”
He said so with such a serious face.
This is no good…
Although he can’t be compared to Yuusuke, for a handsome guy to make such a face, my heart did skip a beat.
I’m still a woman, after all!
“There is no need to use formal speech with me either. Also, I do not mind if you call me Conrad.”
On top of forbidding me to use formal speech with him, I was told to call his name directly without honorifics.
“Ok… Oi Hayate, what’s with this face of yours that’s saying to praise you more?”
When I looked at Hayate next to me who looked as happy as if it was about himself, he had such a triumphant expression.
I’m pretty amazed.
Is this guy really the legendary unicorn?
“Ahem. As for the question about where I’m from, it’s a secret because it’s a complicated matter.”
“I see… Then, how about your sword? I’ve never seen its kind.”
It’s good that the emperor is so understanding.
The emperor requested an explanation about Sakuya.
“This is called a katana, it’s a weapon from my country. My katana’s name is Sakuya.”
“Sakuya? What’s that?”
The princess tilted her head in puzzlement.
“Sakuya means a night with no moon. It’s talking about a new moon. This pure black katana Sakuya is supposed to represent the new moon.”
“Would it be alright if I held the sword to take a closer look at it?”
“Sure, I don’t mind.”
I removed Sakuya from my left hip, and passed it while still in its sheath to the prince.
“Chris, what’s the matter?”
The emperor asked the prince.
“Father, I can’t pull the sword out of its sheath.”
“What? Let me see it…… Oh, indeed. Chie, what exactly is this?”
The emperor asked me a question.
Everyone around seemed to be curious as well.
“Well, actually Sakuya is a custom-made katana for me only.”
“For you only?”
“Nobody else can pull it out.”
I told them so, but there was a follow-up question.
“However, if nobody else can pull it out, wouldn’t it be meaningless if it was always kept out of its sheath?”
After saying so, he tilted his head.
I asked the emperor to return Sakuya to me, pulled it out of its sheath, placed the sheath on my left hip and went over to Conrad.
“Conrad, try holding this.”
Although it didn’t penetrate into the ground, there was the sound of something heavy falling onto the ground.
“What! What’s with this weight!?”
As soon as I passed Sakuya to him, Conrad crouched down from trying to hold on to something so heavy.
“Does everyone understand now? After Sakuya leaves its sheath, other than me -”
“I want to try holding it!!!!”
“That won’t be possible!!!!”
Everyone panicked at the unbelievable statement, and I grabbed Sakuya away from the princess that tried to hold it.
Everyone around seemed to be rather flustered as well.
“No, now’s not the time for ‘eh~!’”
You’re just a 13 year old kid, I won’t let you touch something so dangerous!
The princess looked like she felt wronged and puffed her cheeks.
“Chie-sama, I’m so sorry!”
The maid with brown hair passed the princess to another maid that had thinning white hair bunched up in a ball on her head, with a wrinkly face, and she was wearing a black dress with long sleeves and a long skirt, with a frilly white apron, she looked like a kindly old lady as she received the princess.
“This is no joke…”
The elderly maid was fed up with the princess’s antics.
It wasn’t just her, the other maids, the soldiers, and even the prince seemed to be fed up as well.
“Hahaha, Elene’s quite the tomboy.”
“Oi you, it’s not a laughing matter!”
The emperor’s words were a little out of line, he interjected as if he was being a comic.
Is it entirely natural?
Well, even more than that, before long it makes you wonder if this princess will make it an be alright.
As I was thinking so, I sheathed Sakuya.
“Alright, let’s return to the topic at hand. Although I was interrupted in the middle, once Sakuya has been pulled from its sheath, it cannot be used except by me.”
Everyone muttered in convincement.
“That’s everything about the katana. Are there more questions?”
“Uhh, what about the matter of your voice being different earlier?”
“Ahh, as for that…”
The elderly maid that took the princess earlier asked the question this time, so I took my helmet from Hayate’s back, and began my explanation.
“The magic stone embedded in the helmet near the eyes, can change my voice. After all, it’s important to hide my gender, if I don’t completely hide all information about myself, I don’t know when I might get ambushed by the enemy.”
“You’re careful to that extent, eh.”
Conrad’s eyes had a look of respect to them.
Even though I’m the younger one, he’s using formal speech with me, it feels strange to be respected like this.
“Oh yes! How’d you get to know the black unicorn?”
The elderly maid asked another question of me.
This person, it seems like this is what she wanted to hear the most.
The others all seem the same way.
“Well, even if you ask… When I was taking a relaxing stroll by the lake, Hayate appeared in front of me, and I didn’t really do anything in particular.”
Incidentally, the fact that I met him literally just a moment ago, I’ll keep that a secret.
“……Nothing in particular?”
I’ve lost track of how many times today that the princess’s questions have caused everyone other than the princess herself to be taken aback with dumbfounded expressions.
It can’t be helped.
After all, someone so outside the norm like me, appeared alongside the legendary black unicorn.
“Eh~ How boring~!”
—- *Everyone falls over*
At the princess’s words, everyone just about tripped and fell.
“Oi you~…… Don’t you understand what an important time this is!?”
The prince got mad and started shouting at the princess.
Perhaps her antics trouble him more than anyone else here?
“I mean, come on~”
It seems that this princess is searching for excitement.
I’m guessing that, she wants to be acknowledged by a unicorn like Hayate, and expects to be able to go on a grand adventure.
However, I myself have only come to this world for only a few hours so far.
I’ll be troubled if you expect a grand adventure.
While thinking along those lines, I enjoyed watching the prince and princess fight.
“Truly, I don’t know what to do about her……”
The emperor was shaking his head.
This person is also struggling as well, eh.
Maybe in the royal family, the men are all the straight ones to the women being the funny ones in the comedy duos?
“You’re such a baka! In the first place, do you know how low the chance is to see a unicorn?”
Ah, this child definitely doesn’t study.
Since you’re a country’s princess, isn’t it bad if you don’t study?
“You really don’t know anything, do you?”
Prince, aren’t you tired from being so angry?
“Uhh, could you guys stop for now?”
I’ll listen to it later.
“It’s all good. Chris is just working off his stress right now.”
“Instead of working it off, I think it’s increasing.”
His dialogue just now seems to naturally be like a comic’s.
This prince is going to develop high blood pressure one day.
While I was thinking that, everyone was also thinking similar things, and watched to see how the course of events would unfold.
“There’s only been one person in 500 years! Frankly speaking, while you’re living, to meet and be acknowledged by a unicorn as a worthy knight, the possibility of that happening is close to zero!”
Aww~, even though I thought the prince was pretty cool up until now, the image has been completely shattered.
Well, nobody’s perfect.
“That’s already amazing by itself, but this is the legendary black unicorn that acknowledged her! The black unicorn that nobody has ever seen before!”
The prince’s momentum pressured the princess as she fell silent.
An analogy would be, it’s as if a small animal froze up in front of a predator.
Although she’s a bit pitiful, it’s what she gets.
“After explaining things to this extent, do you see how amazing of a knight Chie-dono is!? She’s the strongest knight in all of Eldoa!!”
Prince, I’m really sorry, I’m not that amazing.
“Even so you, you’re being quite rude to her. Anyways, you’re always, always-”
It seems that the prince has accumulated quite a lot of complaints against the princess, and the topic has gone off on a tangent.
I think I should stop them soon.
“Hai, that’s enough. Your Highness, the princess looks like she is regretting her words.”
Phew~, I’ve settled the situation somehow.
I can understand the princess’s feelings well, because I’ve been scolded by my brother before saying “don’t just stay shut in your room, get out some!”
I bent over and looked the depressed princess in the eye.
The princess’s height, reaches up to about my chest when I’m in my armored form and is probably about 155 centimeters tall.
“Princess, please don’t be so down. His Highness only yelled at you because he’s really worried about you.”
I laughed and grinned while saying so to the princess.
“…But onii-sama is always angry at everything I do…”
I asked the depressed princess.
She seems to be quite down.
If she had dog ears and a tail, they would surely be hanging down.
“When I take too long to choose my clothes, when I thought I’d try to cook, when I sneaked into the armory, when I sneaked out of the castle-”
“………Wait, hold on just a minute here!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Conrad and the military personnel, the maids, and I, had our thoughts in perfect synchronization.
No, really, wait a minute.
The first two are fine.
But the last two are surely bad!
“……Please, princess, don’t do anything dangerous.”
The elderly maid spoke up.
Everyone, including me, nodded.
It’s really dangerous, princess.
“But like, I’m so bored~”
The princess puffed out her cheeks again.
When a beauty is doing it, it’s really cute.
Wait, that shouldn’t be right.
“Princess, an armory is a place for the storage of deadly weapons.”
“I know that already!”
When I said so, the princess got angry.
Well, at least she knows that much already.
“After all, it’s dangerous to handle or touch things I don’t know, of course I know that already!”
After hearing that, the princess fell silent.
Really, what an idiotic princess.
Even though the soldiers and maids of the castle are working so hard for the royal family’s safety.
This time, something caught my attention.
Maybe, this princess…
“Uh, princess, would this happen to be your first time out of the castle?”
“Yep, you got it.”
The prince answered my question for me.
“Could it be that, you also don’t go to school?”
“Yes. It’s not the case for me, but Elene doesn’t know anything about the world, and she won’t even know what to do after leaving the castle. Also, the city is dangerous right now.”
“……So what you’re saying is that, Your Highness attends school, correct?”
As if they were saying of course.
At seeing so, I thought while pulling on my face.
It’s like this after all!
No doubt, that’s why she’s always seeking something exciting!
I stood up with my back to the princess.
“……Um, I think this may be rude but I’ll say it anyways. Are you all bakas!!!!!!?”
By reflex, I yelled.
However, no regrets!
When I looked around, everyone seemed to be taken aback.
At this time, the elderly maid replied to me first.
“Hey! What is this, calling us bakas!? No matter how important you are, we won’t overlook such verbal abuse!”
The elderly maid was shouting at me angrily.
Also, everyone seemed to be waiting for my response, and other than the princess, they were all glaring at me.
Everyone seems to have the same opinion.
And so, I spoke up to them.
“Yep, you’re all bakas. Like this, it’s natural that the princess will try dangerous things! She’s even quite pitiful!”
Hearing this, the maid tilted her head.
What’s this! I thought they were such a good family just a little while ago, turns out they’re useless!
Another family’s matters, I didn’t want to involve myself in them, but I can’t take it anymore!
“Ok, listen up. A normal girl that’s the princess’s age, should be going to school, studying, and playing with friends! While living with everyone like that, she’ll naturally learn the ways of the world, and the children around her will stimulate her own abilities and cause them to bloom!”
This time the emperor was speaking.
“That’s right! For example, with people around you you can grow up to be a proper person, you can become a person who can analyze the situation at hand well, everyone has some sort of ability of their own, school’s perfect for improving those kinds of things! As evidence, isn’t His Highness himself a good example!?”
The prince was flabbergasted.
“Yep. What did Your Highness learn in school?”
“Eh? Things like the history of Eldoa, magic, and swordsmanship.”
“Then, do you have a rival that you don’t want to lose at those things to?”
The prince immediately answered.
“I have an important job to do as the next emperor! For that reason, losing to that guy alone is……!”
It seems that he’s got quite the rivalry going on with someone.
“I don’t know who you’re talking about when you say that guy, but… Just like in the case of Your Highness, school is a good place to develop rivalries. And precisely because of such a rival, Your Highness is able to firmly understand your role, as well as have clear goals.”
Everyone seemed to be taken aback.
They seem to have finally realized it.
“And yet, the princess isn’t allowed outside of the castle because it’s dangerous, that’s the worst thing you can do when raising a child. Does the castle have that many people besides you all? Nobody ever thought about such a thing?”
I said so as I was amazed.
Everyone had expressions as if they were being punished.
“On top of that, even though her own brother is allowed to go outside to do whatever he wants, she can’t do anything she wants, has anyone ever really considered the princess’s feelings?”
I looked at the emperor and empress as I said so.
“Your Majesties, I know that you must be terribly busy personages but, it couldn’t be that you’re leaving your own children to be raised by the maids?”
The royal couple grimaced.
Looks like I guessed right on target.
“If you do such a thing, the children might even get the mistaken impression that they’re not loved by the parents, no?”
“Eh? They love me?”
—I’m in shock!
Everyone, including me, was shocked at the princess’s unexpected words.
This is bad, it seems that this princess has already considered things up to this point.
I looked the princess in the eyes.
“They do, princess, Their Majesties are very worried about you. But, their daughter’s behavior is also a problem for them. Do you understand?”
“Well then, please be more aware of your own position from now on, and be more careful for your own sake around dangerous things.”
“I got it.”
Yep, it’s good that she can be so easily taught.
“As for Your Majesties, please properly spend even a little time with your family.”
They seemed to be properly paying attention to me.
“And as for Your Highness, please listen properly to the princess’s complaints. Since you’re her older brother, you should at least be on her side.”
Ok good, the prince should be good like this as well.
“Then, everyone please take the princess’s feelings into more consideration.”
The soldiers and maids apologized together in unison.
Well, that should be enough lecturing now.
Somehow, I just realized that sweat was running down my back unpleasantly.
I, just instinctively said something so self-important to the royal family!
Ahh~, I’m such a baka!!
I withdraw my previous statement about having no regrets!
While I was busy regretting everything in my mind, the emperor spoke up.
This is bad, I might have made the emperor angry………
He walked towards me, and stopped right next to me.
“Please, become a knight of my empire!”
The emperor’s words were so unexpected, that a weird voice escaped me.
“This is the first time I’ve met a knight such as you! No, I’ve never even met such a person like you!”
“Eh? No, I think that people like me should be just about everywhere?”
Even more so, since I’m just a commoner.
Well, he seems to be able to analyze situations faster than most, even I’ve realized this.
“No, there’s never been anyone that’s dared to point out my bad points like you have. However, you did that to me. It’s not just me, nobody’s ever pointed fingers at anyone here before. If someone likes you joins us, our empire might undergo a great change!”
“I also implore you to join us!”
Conrad also came running up to me, saying so.
“I want to follow you! Although it’s quite embarrassing, I was called the strongest in the empire. However, I’ve realized clearly in the ogre raid earlier that I’m still quite unskilled. And so, I’ve thought so ever since meeting and speaking with you! You’re the one that’s truly worthy of being called the strongest!”
Conrad said so with strong conviction behind his words.
Oh no, I have no interested in being the “strongest,” I’m quite embarrassed.
“I’m especially impressed with your reasoning just now. With so little information, you were able to reason so much. By all means, I would like to request you join our military!”
After Conrad finished speaking, all of his subordinates also bowed at me and asked me to join.
Indeed, if I entered the military instead of a guild, there should be many benefits to that as well.
I’ll be able to see what this country is like, and if I’m successful and get promoted I’ll even have subordinates.
More than anything, if I get far in my career, I’ll be able to acquire social status.
In any world, after all, there are those in power.
Of course, there will be bad people among them.
I might not be able to do anything to those guys if I’m in a guild, but it’s a different story if I’m in the military.
More than that, in order to live in this world, of course I would want a place where I belong.
I also have my promise with Amaterasu-sama, so I only had one answer.
And like this I’ll join the military, and incidentally be able to improve the public order of this empire!
“From now on, I’ll be in your care.”
“Ohh! You don’t have to be so formal, Chie!”
The emperor was happily shaking my right hand with both his hands as he said so.
And so, I decided to join the Imperial Army.
Alright! I’ll work hard from now on in order to get promoted!
Come to think of it, Conrad said he wanted to follow me from now on.
What’s Conrad’s position?