After my birthday party ended, it finally got a little quieter around me. After all, there had been such a fuss about getting me into a fancy dress, and I had been so worried that I might mess up my dancing despite all my practice, I’m finally able to breathe a sigh of relief now. Since I have a bit of time now, I figured I should spend it in my field. I put on my work clothes for the first time in a long while, and got myself fully equipped and ready to go for the field.
Today I’m going to use the fertilizer I received from Jared as a birthday present to prepare for the summer harvest. With Keith’s help, I had just finished preparing the fertilizer for using when Jared came in.
“Oh, Katarina, you seem to be working hard as usual today, eh.”
“Ahh, Prince Jared. Thank you very much for coming to my birthday party and for your present. I was just about to get to immediately using your present just now.”
“It’s that so, I’m glad to see that it’s been of immediate use. Since you requested this present from me, I’m not surprised. ……Well, I had originally wanted to give you an accessory befitting of your dress, but…… You wouldn’t accept that.”
Jared smiled wryly as he said so. Well, that’s so. He had wanted me to give me accessories and dresses, but I had refused him outright.
As for why, it’s because my overly doting father always buys mountains of accessories and dresses for me…… Actually, I’m a bit troubled by how many there are now.
For the game’s Katarina, it seemed like she could change her dress and accessories every day of the year without trouble, but…… Unfortunately, I’m not like that. In the first place, I don’t like gaudy dresses. It’s because they’re hard to move in.
I can’t think of those sparkly dresses with absolutely nothing useful about them as anything I would wear unless I lost in a punishment game. Also, because I’m always in a crouching position while outside working in my field, I don’t need that many dresses. For the same reason, I don’t need that many accessories either. It would be a terrible waste after all if I were to lose them in my field.
I had told these reasons to Jared and my other friends, forbidding them from getting anything like dresses and accessories for my birthday presents.
As such, Jared had listened to my request, and given me fertilizer as a birthday present, but……
“But, since Katarina is turning fifteen, and will become mine soon, you should really be more aware of your appearance to others, maybe it would have been better to give you dresses and accessories after all,” said Jared with a thinking look on his face.
Becoming his, and being more aware of my appearance? Ehh~ If that’s the case……
“But I think everyone should already know that I’m Prince Jared’s fiancee……”It’s such a famous topic that there really shouldn’t be anyone that doesn’t know. Well, if it wasn’t like that, it wouldn’t serve his purpose as a defensive measure preventing other girls from bothering him.
“Well, that’s so, but…… Even if they know about it, there’s still many people that don’t approve of it.”
Indeed, I’m not a beauty like Mary is, having a villainous face instead, since my specs aren’t high, it’s said that “she doesn’t match up to Prince Jared in anything but status” and it’s a fact that there’s so many girls that don’t approve of us being together……
I don’t particularly have any intentions of approving our betrothal either though…… Rather, if I could get rid of this betrothal that’s only being used for Jared’s convenience as a shield against other girls, I’d really like to, but……
However, Jared has brought up before “this betrothal thing, it’s bothersome so let’s change our status already,” while he smiled ambiguously for some reason.
Then, Jared confronted me directly with that ambiguous smile of his.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
Keith interrupted suddenly, putting himself between Jared and me with a rather dark expression on his face. Hm? I’ll get lonely if I feel too left out, you know?
“Ahh, Keith Claes. Don’t you know how rude it is to interrupt a date between two betrotheds? And what’s with that grim expression on your face, it’s such a waste of your fine looks.”
“Unfortunately, the only one that believes this is a date, is you, Prince Jared. And as for why I have a grim expression, it’s because no matter how much I warn nee-san, I always still have to watch out for bad insects swarming around her.”
“Bad insects, I wonder who that could possibly be referring to?”
“……Those that were thinking about doing improper things during the dance party, Prince Jared.”
“Mmm~. I don’t think you need to be worried about those sorts of people.”
“What, how could you say such a thing!”
“I mean, since she’s my own fiancee, making her mine and claiming her as my own surely wouldn’t be anything improper.”
“Who belongs to you! Right now, she’s still only your betrothed!”
Somehow, Keith and Jared had become fired up about some subject I don’t understand at all…… If I’m being left out of the conversation this much…… I feel rather lonely. I might as well get started working on the field. As for why I’m being left out completely, I can think on the reason by myself later.
At hearing a clear voice behind me, I turned around and saw Mary coming over this way with a large smile on her face. Behind her were Sophia and Alan as well.
“Eh? Everyone, you came here together?”
Even though they’re all my friends that often come over to play with me, it’s rare for all of them to show up together.
“Yep. I invited them to come with me.”
“Yep. Since I had heard from Keith-sama that someone was planning improper things at the dance party the other day, I thought that I needed to shore up my defenses, I felt it would be better with more people around so I invited Sophia to come along as well. Oh, and Alan too.”
Did an incident of some sort happen during the party? I didn’t even know. And what’s more, Keith didn’t even tell his nee-san, nor did Mary let me know…… I’m really getting left out of everything…… I’m so lonely.
And so Mary and her fiance Alan have arrived…… It seems like something complicated is going on…… Well, it’s good that Alan doesn’t seem like he’s very worried about what’s going on, but…… Things seem to be so different from the game.
“By the way, Katarina-sama. Was the book I gave you as your birthday present suitable to your tastes?”
“Ahh, that it was. Mary, Sophia, Alan, thank you very much for the wonderful presents. Man, it was so interesting that I’ve finished an entire book already. ”
For my birthday this year, Mary, Sophia, and Alan had picked out wonderful books all for my sake. Well, it was probably mostly Mary and Sophia that had chosen them. After all, because Alan would never know what to get for me as a present each year, Mary would always help him pick something out.
This year, Mary had decided to give me books as well, so she discussed things over with Sophia who gave me books every year and the three of them picked out books for me together.
Since I’ve received this many recommended books, I’m really happy about it all.
“I’m glad to hear that you’re enjoying them so much. As expected, it’s better to give presents like these rather than watching you dig around in the soil and maybe even injure yourself.”
“Is that aimed at me? Lady Mary Hunt.”
Jared who had been so passionate with Keith earlier had noticed Mary’s arrival, and greeted her.
“Oh my, if it isn’t Prince Jared. So you were here. How do you do?”
Mary performed a wonderful curtsey like a proper lady. As expected of a lady among ladies. I have to take notes from her.
At receiving such a wonderful greeting, Jared flashed a beautiful smile back at her.
“Heh heh heh. I wonder what you could have been referring to, Lady Mary. I’ve heard about it, you know. That someone seems to be going out of their way trying to interfere with my relationship.”
“Well, it’s rude to say that it’s interfering with your relationship. I’m merely trying to get along better with Katarina-sama.”
“Lady Mary. Since you’re Alan’s fiancee, wouldn’t getting along better with Alan be the better thing to do?”
“Indeed, that’s why I’ve considered things properly and also invited Prince Alan to come along with me as well.”
“Lady Mary. Even though you used to be so lovely…… Year after year, your personality gets even more wonderful.”
“Oh? I’m so honored to be praised by you. But even so, I’m not even close to Prince Jared’s level.”
“No, no. There’s no need to be so humble.”
Now it’s Jared and Mary’s turn to get all fired up about something…… And what’s more, why is it that Keith encouraged Mary by saying “Mary-sama, please keep up the good work?” And when Alan’s name was mentioned, he said “eh, huh?” like question marks were floating above his head.
Once again, I’m being left out…… Huh? Isn’t this everyone here now? What’s more, they’re talking about something I don’t understand again…… Somehow I’ve become so lonely…… I can’t help but feel like I’m being teased a little.
“By the way, Katarina-sama. What was your present from my onii-sama?”
Sophia asked me with a smile on her face. Her adorable smile blew away all of my worries.
“Ahh. I liked it very much. I’m very thankful for the necklace that Nico made for me.”
That was my reply to Sophia.
For some reason, the others that had all been leaving me out of the loop simultaneously raised their voices. Then –
“Katarina, what’s this about a necklace?”
“Nee-san, didn’t you say that you didn’t need any accessories and that you definitely wouldn’t accept them?”
“That’s right. Since you said that things to wear were useless because they would get lost or dirty, you definitely didn’t want them?”
“I also heard the same thing from Mary……”
Everyone seemed to be shocked as they raised their voices. Mmm. Indeed, it was like that. I had no interest in dresses or accessories so I had refused all of them. However……
“……I’m actually really happy about it because it was a necklace that appeared in a story I really loved. It doesn’t have any jewels in it, and it wasn’t something expensive, so that’s why I accepted it.”
That’s what it was. What Nico had given me was the same necklace as the one the main character of my favorite romance novel had.
While I have absolutely no interest in accessories, as an otaku I’m still weak to collecting things of characters in stories. I had been so excited at being able to get “the same thing as the main character.”
“If you’re all that interested in it, I’ve actually been wearing it secretly under my clothes today.”
When I brought it out from under my work clothes to show everyone, everyone’s faces darkened for some reason. As I expected, it was wrong to wear accessories under my work clothes, eh……
“Hehe. I gave onii-sama advice on this. After all, he’s the only one that’s older than everyone, and has the least time to spend with us so it was unfair.”
Sophia said so with a lovely smile appearing on her face. At seeing her smile, everyone was frozen still in complete silence for some reason.