I can hear the sound of the garment as the maid's uniform was being worn again.
I was surprised at how quickly Marie put her clothes back on. Marie touched my shoulder to say I can take my hands away from my face and look again.
"It would be quicker to show you than to explain it to you."
I nodded and we walked out of the pose.
"I'll put it bluntly, the one who wants to kill Lady Ariarose is the minister of this country, Lord Balmunk."
"I think I've heard that before...."
"Yes, he's a friend of your father's."
Marie continued speaking.
"In the kingdom of Latculus, Balmunk, who is the minister of finance, and your father, Theseus Von Estark are famous. Balmunk the ruler and Theseus the warrior."
"So they are accomplices in this?"
"I don't know..."
Marie shakes her head.
"I don't know who exactly are the people who want Ariarose-Sama dead, but I do know that the ringleader of this whole plan is Lord Balmunk."
"I see, so you're at that stage of looking for suspects."
I can imagine my father's stern, honest and rough face.
He is a strict man with himself and others, and has a strong sense of loyalty to the royal family. It was hard to believe that such a person would be complicit in the murder of the princess, but it was a fact that he was a close friend of Balmunk. I clearly remember the face of Lord Balmunk, who frequented Castle Estark.
"Isn't it a bad idea to have the son of a suspect as an escort...?"
"Are you related to Balmunk?"
"Then there's no problem. Besides, Ariarose-Sama said you smell just like me."
"I don't wear perfume."
Marie laughs, then begins to tell me about Ariarose's past.
"Licht-Sama, did you know that the kingdom of Latculus is a magical land?"
"I'm sorry to see you think I'm ignorant."
"I've known it since I was a child. It's ingrained in me."
The Estark family is a family of magical swordsmen, a family that has produced the first court wizard for generations. It is not just the Estark family, but other nobles who know this as well.
The Kingdom of Latculus is a country founded by wizards, and most of its nobles are wizards.
The skill of magic and the amount of magical power are usually measured as a person's worth. Of course, being born into nobility does not mean that magical power is promised. Occasionally, a child is born who is called "incompetent". Most of the time, they are discarded as babies or banished like me.
"...The princess is what they call [Incompetent]?"
"I'm afraid so."
"I've never heard of that."
"It's a state secret. But she's not completely incompetent. She has a talent."
"What do you mean?"
"Licht-Sama, you know that in the world of magic there is fire, water, earth, wind, light and darkness."
"Even small children know that."
"Then what do you think of the seventh attribute?"
"I think you're trying to make fun of me, it's a fairy tale, and I think..."
The reason my words stopped in mid-conversation was because Marie's face was unexpectedly serious.
"...Are you telling me that the princess can use magic without attributes?"
"I find it impossible to believe you."
"The fact that she's still a princess is proof of that."
"... Unlike you, Ariariose is not the kind of girl who would lie."
"How mean you are."
I burst out laughing to ease the tension a bit and end the conversation.
"So you're saying that Balmunk is behind the princess's non-attributes?"
"Yes. Balmunk is a greedy minister, but at the same time, he may be trying to use Ariarose-Sama's magic potential for some kind of experiment."
"If he does something like that, the royals will hang him."
"True. But what would happen if Ariarose-Sama stopped being royalty?"
"You mean like... If she were cast aside?"
"Yes. For example, if a thief kidnaps you and steals your virginity, or you're involved in some kind of scandal that makes you look bad in front of the royals. They would be well within their rights to strip you of your privileges and you would no longer be royalty."
"I can't say you're exaggerating, since you were almost kidnapped by bandits."
"If you're in such a dangerous situation, why did you come to the northern city? It would be safer to remain in the royal capital. At least there won't be any bandits there."
"That's true. We would be safer in the royal capital, however, Ariarose-Sama has another weakness."
"And what is that?"
"Ariarose-Sama is too kind."
Marie said with much pride.
The expression on her face seemed to be serious, and not something she said out of simple flattery.
I am very concerned about the love and admiration this maid has for the princess.