Chapter 6: The Strongest Onmyouji, Sleeping Together
As I was thinking about what I should prepare for tomorrow, there was a knock at the door of the room I had been assigned.
I thought it was a servant, but when I answered the door, I found Ifa standing there, dressed in her nightgown.
Looking a little anxious, Ifa says.
“Seika—kun, a while ago, a maid came to my room and she told me that His Highness Cecilio wanted to see me……”
“…… What? You? At this hour?”
“She said he wanted to talk to me…..”
I pull a face.
Hey….. there’s an order to this kind of thing.
The first thing to do is to send a song with a love letter. …… No, this was a story from my previous life.
I mean come on, even if you’re a hundred steps ahead of me, how much of a position does he think he’s in….. No, this was also in a previous life and the other party was a noble man’s son, not a prince.
No, calm down. I’m confused.
But what’s the deal with that prince? She’s not your lover, she’s not your lady-in-waiting. I mean, really, is this really the time to be worrying about women?
“What should I do?……”
I waved my hand at Ifa, who looked like she was about to cry.
“Oh, you don’t have to go. I’ll tell His Highness about it.”
“Umm, yeah. It’s just that…….”
“…… perhaps you’re anxious to be alone in your room?”
Even though there is a room for visitors, this is the official residence of the proto-vassals. No wonder.
“Then, do you want to sleep over here?”
“Okay. Come here.”
Ifa nodded, and I smiled and invited her in.
I remember that in my previous life, a disciple who had just lost a parent or had been burned in a war would sleep beside me and my brothers and sisters because they were afraid to sleep alone. I remember that somehow.
But in the case of this girl, I’m having a little trouble with my …… eyes.
I knew she was skinny in her uniform. Come to think of it, Ifa is getting bigger too, so it’s no wonder since she’s growing. ……
No, let’s not go any further.
I said as I turned off some of the lights.
“I’ll stay up a little longer and sleep on the couch later.”
“Eh? I’m sorry. I’m just a servant…….”
“No problem. Children are not reserved.”
“Seika-kun, you’re younger than me….. Then… how about we sleep together?”
“Well, look, the bed here is big, so …… two people can sleep together.”
I smiled a little as I replied to Ifa, who said fearfully.
“Well, let’s do that. Then I think I’ll go to bed too.”
As I turn off the light, Yuki wriggles on my head and says in my ear.
“Eh …. Seika-sama. If so, Yuki is going somewhere……”
“Why? I’d rather you not go out right now because they’ll find you if you do.”
When I whispered back, Yuki was silent for a moment, and then she squirmed back into my head. What was that about?
I turn off the last light, and Ifa, who was stiffening next to the bed, says.
“What….? it’s okay. Come on in.”
I rolled up the quilt as I lay down on the bed, and Ifa slipped in as well.
I thought about it as I gazed absentmindedly at the canopy.
I was a little worried about leaving Ifa here alone and entering the mountain. I’ll leave the shikigami here just in case. I’m certain much attention won’t be paid to me, so I’ll have to make sure I have the right formula.
The room was lit only by moonlight.
Unlike in Japan, the nights are quiet even in summer.
There are no rice paddies because rice cultivation is not popular and thanks to this, you don’t hear frogs or insects croaking.
Maybe this would be a good time to talk.
I say to Ifa, who shouts in a crazy voice next to me.
“What do you think of Prince Cecilio?”
I was so surprised to hear her voice take on a puzzled tone.
“What do you mean in particular. ………..?.”
“Have you given any thought to the idea of joining His Highness’ Harem?”
“Eh …… I haven’t thought about it! Why suddenly ask about that…?”
“You don’t have to hold back. You can be honest with me.”
“Why …… am I so annoying?”
Ifa says in a quivering voice.
“I apologize for yesterday. …… I’ll learn to use magic properly. I’m going to learn to read in languages other than the official one… I promise!”
“No, no… that’s not it!”
I lay back and look at Ifa next to me.
The girl’s eyes were wet even in the dim light.
“It’s a misunderstanding. It’s not that you got in the way.”
“If that’s the case…. Then why?”
“I don’t think it’s a bad idea.”
I’m just saying.
It pains me to break my promise to Mabel, but …… I still think we should talk about this properly.
“Although it is only a tributary state of the empire, it’s the rear palace of the royal family. Unless you are the daughter of an influential nobleman, it’s not a place you can enter even if you really wanted to. You might have a hard time if you don’t have any backing, but I think you’ll be able to make it. You may have a difficult time getting in because of me, and you’ve made so many friends at the academy….. If you want, I can arrange for your release in Astilia. And you can stay here in this country.”
“I don’t wan’t that……”
“Of course you don’t have to decide right now. You’ll have some regrets because of school. But think about it. You will be an adult soon.”
“What about you, Seika-kun?”
“Seika-kun, don’t you think anything of me entering the rear palace?”
I give it a little thought and replied Ifa who spoke with a quivering voice.
“I’ll be lonely… But…… everyone has to go their own way eventually.”
Efa wipes her eyes and smiles at me.
“Thank you for thinking about me. I’m really glad that Seika-kun became the master.”
“I’m not too keen on it, but …… I’ll give it some thought.”
“Then…… good night, Seika-kun.”
Having said that, Ifa turned to face the other side.
After gazing at her expressionless profile for a while, I turned my body onto my back, closed my eyes, and murmured to myself.
“Good night, Ifa.”
The next morning.
When I woke up, Ifa was already gone.
The sun had already risen. I had slept a little too much.
“Seika-sama …… that was somewhat harsh.”
As I was getting dressed, Yuki, who was sitting on the table, spoke to me.
“What is it?”
“It’s about last night, sir. She was told that if she wanted to enter the rear palace, she could. …… I’m gradually taking pity on the girl……”
“What about it?”
“Before, I told you that …… that slave girl was in love with you, Seika-sama.”
“Huh? What are you talking about? When did you tell me”
I buttoned up my shirt and was dumbfounded.
“You’re still pulling out the same old story from more than a year ago?”
“Yuki understands. She’s been in love with you, Seika-sama ever since that time. Of course, even now.”
Yuki seems to have a strange fondness for human colorful affairs and is definitely preoccupied.
I sighed and said.
“You know what? This time, no matter what, it’s Ifa’s problem. Whether she accepts or rejects the invitation is her decision to make. I’m not going to get in the way. I’ll just leave it to her.”
“Is that what you believe in….?”
I explained to the puzzled Yuki after a little bit of stammering.
“…… Remember that girl I had as an apprentice? You see, she was good at astrology and cooking.”
“Ah, she had good dexterity.”
“Oh, yeah. And there was a boy who used to come to my place all the time, obviously for her.”
“I think he was the son of a nobleman. The girl seemed to enjoy talking to him and seemed to be in love with him.”
“Yes. I did complain to him once, though, right? “.
“Oh….. yes. You said something like, “You come here too often,” in a slightly frightening tone….”
“And then he stopped coming to the office that day, didn’t he?”
“Do you remember what happened?”
“………… She didn’t talk to you anymore. For about ten days.”
“I’ll tell you now, that was quite a shock for me.”
“Seika-sama, you were more upset than I’ve ever seen you.”
“I’ve never had a student hate me like that before.”
I remember the time when she told me in tears that she didn’t have any master. I wondered if this is how a father feels when his daughter hates him.
I wondered what would have happened if he had not come to see her again.
“I’ve decided since then not to meddle in the affairs of my disciples. No, Ifa is not my disciple.”
“That’s fine, but …… in this case, isn’t it different again? Because who the slave girl is really thinking of is you, Seika-sama……”
“Even if it were a hundred steps.”
I sighed and continued.
“Ifa will soon be fifteen. She knows that she can’t choose a marriage partner based on likes and dislikes.”
“You have a good point, but she’s not of noble birth, you know. She may choose her husband out of love.”
“It’s because she’s not of noble birth. She can’t depend on her parents, it’s always better to marry somewhere with money. Besides……”
I added, after some hesitation.
“…… affection is something that comes later than you might think.”
Yuki ears perk up.
“Seika-sama, have you… experienced it by any chance?”
“Hmm …… well…
“Seika-sama, were you ever married …… before?”
“When I was young, but only briefly.”
Yuki suddenly cheered.
She then leaned forward and wound up as if she was excited.
“Really? I never heard of it!”
“That’s because I didn’t tell you.”
“Why didn’t you tell me such an important thing?”
“Well, I didn’t have a chance to …… and it’s not that important…….”
“I’m curious…. How old were you? What was your wife like? How did you get married? How did Seika whisper your love to her?”
I covered my ears.