| In the vacant academy cafeteria, Millia met with her sister Lilim for the first in some time. In the cafeteria that only operated for lunch, they prepared their own tea an talked.
Lilim had to drop by the academy for the matter with the princess, so she stopped for a pleasant chat with her little sister Millia. But Millia suddenly asked about Rudel.
"Sis, what's going to happen to Rudel?"
"... His rights to succeed will be stripped away. Other than that, the academy and palace... there's a feud going on between them and the Arses House, so nothing's been decided yet."
Lilim faintly opened her eyes to confirm the darkening of her little sister's face.
"The palace is troubled to make a decision. Problem child or honor student... the king has surprisingly high expectations for Rudel-sama. Said he's an interesting boy."
As they talked over such things, Lilim began thinking over Cattleya's abnormal conduct in this case. Cattleya's hatred of Rudel was abnormal. From the documents to the reports, they were all so stained in personal opinion they couldn't be used in any judgement. So Lilim swapped out with her, and took over the messenger role.
As the dragoons had got themselves involved, she had to take care of further processing as well... Lilim had it hard.
And like that, the dragoon and high knight started into their investigations.
From the incident, Aleist had suddenly become the academy's hero. The result based around the overlap of a number of ulterior motives tied in directly to Aleist's popularity. Cattleya who used him, and Chlust who wanted to pin the crime on Rudel. But unaware of all that, Aleist enjoyed his situation.
"I love you, Aleist-senpai!"
"Please go out with me!"
"I like you! ... As a man."
This situation Aleist had wished for differed somewhat from his plans, but minding it not, Aleist happily played with his under and upperclassmen. He stopped coming to the classes he had attended before, and his grades dropped in proportion to his popularity level.
"This is it! This is what I was waiting for!"
Taking out the notes in his room, he started reading through them. A large number of the names had been crossed out, but even so, he looked over what was to come.
"After this, I win in the final tournament of the fundamental curriculum, and I meet the first princess! Even if the developments have changed so much, at this stage, Princess Aileen shoud still be... alright! I'm feeling motivated, so I'll start working hard tomorrow."
Princess Aileen who's name he spurted was Fina's elder sister. Within the setting where despite its size, the country of Courtois had no male heirs, the value of the princesses was high. If you married one, then just as Chlust said, you'd get close to the status of king.
Within this world, the Princess Aileen held a vital position called 'Main Heroine'. More beautiful than her little sister, blond with blue eyes, a peace-loving woman who was kind to everyone. It was said there wasn't a man in the lands whose heart couldn't be stolen by her smile. As she was doted on by her surroundings all her life, she had a position of a princess oblivious to the ways of the world.
Bud Aleist hadn't and couldn't notice. The heroine with such a perfect setting, Aileen's kindness was limited to humans. She loved peace so much, she was raised to be a woman whose thought often went too far... though it was true that unlike her sister, she was abundant in emotions, and she had no hidden side to her...
"Wait for me, my harem! This is the beginning of my era! I can't wait for what's to come in the next tournament!"
Aleist who looked up to such a princess. He was human, and he didn't hold any special prejudice. So he couldn't understand the princess' abnormality.
Under her private investigations, Sophina had come to the hospital under the name of an infirmary the Three Lords' eldest sons had been admitted. An especially splendid room within had become their hospital room. Before coming there, she had taken opinions from the classes concerned, and asked around about the individual called Rudel.
To be blunt, her opinion of Rudel was the worst! He received disciplinary action after hitting on every girl he could find in his first year of the fundamental curriculum! He went against his upperclassmen (challenged them to duels)! There was no end to his infamy. But the people around him would praise him, and never spoke ill.
That point alone caught Sophina's interest, but it was true the bad rumors overwhelmingly outnumbered the good.
"There's no doubt he's no good as a person. The tournament results make his grades look dubious, and more than anything, someone aiming to be a knight would n-never... h-hit on girls like that! Never!!!"
Sophina's face reddened strangely around that part as she entered the room of the three. What she saw there...
"And I'm saying, why does such a high-level theory have no application outside of petting!? I'm sure it will be useful outside of it!"
"Hey, if you lower a sword like that, don't you think it'll cut well? It's strange these techniques aren't used anywhere outside of petting, right? Isn't it strange, Rudel!?"
She confirmed the three of them in heated debate over a book titled, 'how to Pet Dragons'. In regards to that, Rudel refuted.
"This book has existed for quite some time, and there's no way I could tell you why the theories have never found use! In the first place, even I wonder why this book doesn't get better reviews... petting dragons fills them with happiness! It's the best thing in the world!!!"
"That's not the problem! The reason it's not reviewed is because of that title! Who would realize that book's worth after reading that title? I'd lose interest even before getting to its contents!"
Luecke offered an emotional rebuttal, and just before Rudel could give an objection of his own, he noticed Sophina was there. Eunias and Luecke also turned towards the knight who entered the sick room, unpleasant looks on their faces. Once they understood she was a high knight, they reluctantly questioned her.
"For a high knight to silently sneak into our room... what's your business?"
In regards to Eunius' cynicism, Sophina spoke.
"My humblest of apologies. I already spoke to the guards outside. When I tried to receive permission to enter, you were making quite a ruckus."
Her gestures were perfect as she bowed and answered. As expected of a high knight, the thought crossed their minds.
"I wish to speak with Rudel-dono over the matter with the princess. May I have just a moment of your time?"
As Sophina asked her question, Rudel who had gotten a tad emotional was struck by inspiration. If he could get those two to see the culmination of the theories in, 'How to Pet Dragons', then they would surely understand its value!
"Before that, could I have a moment of yours? There's something I need your cooperation with!"
"W-what? Well, if it's something within my bounds, then I mind it not. Though I'll be hearing you out afterwards."
Sophina gave a vague reply to his request. She would end up regretting that for the rest of her life. Wary of Rudel as she approached, she thought that even if he assaulted her, it would only add to his crimes.
"Please let me pet you!"
... Around ten minutes later, half in tears and unsteady on her feet, the form of a high knight was witnessed fleeing from the infirmary. Her face red and her gestures strangely erotic, the female knight Sophina left the room, but the three left behind...
"How about that!? That one wasn't perfect, but now you see how amazing... where are the two of you going? H-huh? Just listen to me!"
While Luecke ignored him and left the room, Eunius...
Gave one word before he left, and didn't come back for a while. In regards to that, Rudel spoke to himself.
"So even that was no good? Then I have to get better! I have to master it before I meet a dragon!"
He renewed his resolve.
Sophina wept as she burst into the princess' room. Her fluffy time with Mii interrupted, Fina's heart was tinted with rage... expressionless as she was.
"What happened? Did you get your hands on some information?"
(You really don't read the mood, do you! What do you think my fleeting moments of fluff are... even so, her face is red, and she's fidgeting around strangely, or how should I put it, why does she look so unsteady? Haha, if only she had cat ears and a tail in that state, it would've done it for me.)
"U-um, well... Rudel-dono was more than I had ever imagined. I'm sure the reports are mistaken... I'm going to report this to the palace, so i-if you'll pardon my leave!"
(I-I'll never forgive you... Rudel Arses!)
Seeing Sophina run from the room, Fina was certain her plan had succeeded. Oblivious to its failure, she started into her final preparations. She turned to her desk and began writing up a letter.
"What's wrong, princess? Suddenly writing a letter."
On Fina's actions, Mii who had been released from the fluffing approached. As Mii made light steps treading across the floor, Fina thought she would die from the cuteness.
"It's nothing, Mii. It may not be necessary, but I don't want to be negligent in the end..."
Saying that, Fina patted Mii's head. Mii seemed to be enjoying it. But!
(Hah, hah... just you wait, little kitten! Once I learn master's technique, I'll make you feel satisfied!!!)
Her tensions were at a dangerous level.