Being allowed entrance after showing the gatekeeper his invitation, Yaquel was escorted by Sajis who used his face to pass through the main entrance and enter inside the palace.
Not to mention the well-maintained flower beds and trees, the elaborately constructed fountain directly in front of the palace was graceful and spectacular, as if it symbolized the prosperity of the kingdom.
“Would you like to check out the garden on our way back?”
Sajis invited Yaquel, whose eyes were sparkling like a child while looking at the surrounding, to please him.
“Is it okay for me to enter it?”
“Yeah. Let’s ask for His Majesty’s permission later.”
Even though he’s already happy to see a wonderful scenery like this, being able to look at the garden is like a dream. Just that is enough for coming here to be worth it.
Yaquel stopped and bowed his head, saying, “Thank you very much.”
“What are you doing? Raise your head.”
“No, if Sajis-sama wasn’t here, I would have been so anxious and clueless. It would’ve been questionable if I could get here alone… And yet, I now think that I’m glad to be able to come to such a wonderful palace… It’s thanks to Sajis-sama’s company.”
Sajis was shot by Yaquel’s modesty in the heart. Most people would get carried away or become haughty if they’re backed by a noble like himself. In fact, he saw so many of such people until now that he’s sick of it. Despite that, Yaquel doesn’t show even a speck of that. For him, the carriage he was tired of riding, the palace he was tired of seeing, even the beautiful flowers and trees, all of which seemed very valuable to Yaquel felt fresh to him.
He should be the one expressing his thanks.
Sajis took Yaquel’s hand and tried to kiss the back of it.
“If it isn’t Sajis.”
Towards the voice who called him from the front, Sajis furrowed his brows for an instant while facing down.
I met someone I didn’t want to see…
“You Highness Hylm. It’s has been a while.”
Sajis only puts his hand on his chest while giving a bow to someone of higher status than himself.
The approaching man was a little taller and bulkier than Sajis, and his masculine and handsome looks were very similar to Alton.
“It really has been a while. You have also been noticeably absent even during the salon meetings.”
“Yes. I couldn’t quite find the time to do so.”
“Is that so? Everyone in the partied gossiped that you may have found someone. Right?”
There were quiet women On Hylm’s both sides and rear, and he brought that topic up to those women. They didn’t intrude with his talk with Sajis but, “You’re right, sir”, they agreed to Hylm instead.
“Are you Sajis’s companion? You don’t seem familiar, where are you from?”
Hylm turns his eyes on Yaquel and asks for his identity.
It would be quite memorable if there was a noble this well-built, but Hylm didn’t remember him.
“Yaquel, this person is His Highness the Crown Prince, Hylm. Introduce yourself.”
Yaquel was about to faint from Sajis’s introduction.
He was prepared to meet with His Majesty but he didn’t hear anything about meeting the Crown Prince. It took him eight days to prepare his heart to face His Majesty. However, it was impossible to make an immediate decent response to the unexpected meeting with the Crown Prince.
“I’m Yah,Yah, Ya, Yaquel Rogi, gino, sir.”
“You’re Yaquel? What’s your peerage?”
“Peerage… I have none, sir. I’m just a commoner.”
In response to his reply of being a commoner, Hylm visibly lost his interest and turned back to Sajis while ignoring Yaquel.
“Sajis. If you don’t come, the women will become noisy. And the quality of women will drop. Be sure to show up next time.”
“…Yes. I will participate as much as I can.”
“Please do that.”
Hylm said everything that he wanted to say and brought the women inside the palace without sparing a glance to Yaquel.
As if I’ll go.
The so-called youth and saint learning salon meeting that Hylm mentioned is publicly aimed at raising awareness of aspiring young people’s learning and arts, but in reality, it’s a gathering of young people with free s*xual standing to have rendezvous and org*es as much as they want.
Sajis also used to frequently participate in it, but he never considered joining again now that he met Yaquel.
“Sajis-sama? Are you alright?”
Yaquel, who was concerned over Sajis’s blatantly showed his offended expression, peeked at his face.
“I’m fine. Now, it’s about time. Let’s hurry.”
Comforted by Yaquel’s genuine worry for him, Sajis regained his composure headed towards the audience room.
As Sajis and Yaquel, who were allowed entrance to the audience hall, got on their knees and lowered their heads, Alton appeared and sat on the throne.
“Please raise your heads.”
The two raised their heads upon hearing Alton’s voice.
Yaquel forgot to breathe and stared at His Majesty the King who he’s meeting for the first time. His presence alone made him feel the personality and dignity of the king.
Alton allowed only one servant to remain and made the rest withdraw.
“Yaquel Rogino, I’m glad you came.”
“You don’t need to be that stiff, please be at ease.”
Yaquel bowed his head and raised it again.
“Yaquel. It’s alright. His Majesty isn’t trying to eat you. Just be yourself.”
Unable to watch, Sajis calms Yaquel down. Yaquel glanced at Sajis sideways, asking, Is it okay? Are you sure? Am I really gonna be fine? but seeing Sajis smiling gently, he finally managed to calm down.
“You’ve also worked hard, Sajis. You must really care about Yaquel to come here with him even though I didn’t even call you.”
“Hahahaha~, you’re refreshingly honest.”
Yaquel threw away the scary Alton he imagined upon seeing him laugh heartily.
Maybe, it’s truly alright. Maybe he wasn’t called there to be censured.
Yaquel felt that it won’t be scary just like what Sajis told him in the carriage earlier, and his rigid body relaxed.
“Let’s get straight to the point, I want to talk about why I called you here. I’m sure both of you are also curious about it.”
Sajis replied and Yaquel gulped.
“I investigated your relationship. While Yaquel works as a manservant in a brothel called Hana-Hana, Sajis as well as Guinn go there and pays you for your body. Is that right?”
Why is that… Why does His Majesty know that? Did Sajis’s escort spill it again? No, but Sajis-sama investigated Eunick’s case a few days ago and summoned his escort, he must have warned him that there won’t be a next time. If so then how… And should I deny that here for Sajis-sama’s sake? Or is it better to affirm it?
“You don’t have to hide it. I have investigated everything. Reno, please come out.”
When Alton called someone’s name, a boy appeared out of nowhere and stood beside Yaquel. Finally noticing his presence, Yaquel turned to his side.
“Mareido…?” (TN: Damn…. even I feel betrayed. ToT)
Calling his name, he showed Yaquel a familiar, reserved smile.
“Mareido is an alias. I call him Reno here. He’s an intelligence officer working for me.”
“Eeeh!? But Mare.. no, isn’t he still a boy…”
That’s right. If I remember correctly, Mareido is still 13 years old. Does the royal family make such a young boy undergo dangerous missions? That’s so unreasonable.
Yaquel was fine whether he’s Mareido or Reno. Rather than that, he couldn’t help but be more worried about such a tender-hearted and wise boy’s welfare.
“Yaquel-san. I’m sorry. I may look like this but I’m already 25 years old.” (TN: Le shock!)
Yaquel wanted to shout at Reno, who laughed with a ‘tehe’, from shock but he couldn’t do anything rude in front of His Majesty so he could only desperately bite his lip and endure.