DB – Chapter 71

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Her Lips

 

“Oh~, welcome back~”
Guinevere was swamped with official documents, but she received Ria in the office.
She had a tired expression, but her eyes were sparkling. She had been staying up every night to fiddle with her golems, Ria also heard it from the court ladies.
“You have it tough huh.”
“No way. When doing your favorite thing, fatigue is something that gets tossed out the window.”
That might certainly be so.
Ria was someone who trained her swordplay to the point of vomiting blood in her previous life. Then there were things such as maintaining law that tired her out.
“I want to talk with you for a bit…”
“Right, I also wanted to take a little break… shall we take a bath together?”
“Ah, sounds good.”
Although these two looked like this, they both had hobbies that resembled the other’s. Loving baths were one of them.

The two entered into a huge bathtub filled with hot water.
Sending away the court ladies, the two were the only ones in the room.
Although Shizuna might feel danger to her body here, Guinevere knew that she wasn’t Ria’s preference.
Guinevere entered the bath with her hair wrapped in a towel, but Ria drifted in the tub as is.
“So, what did you want to talk about?”
“Carla.”
Ria spoke about Carla at Mardass Fortress.
“I see, it does seem like something that girl would do.”
It didn’t seem to be anything new for Guinevere.
With her huge breasts floating in the hot water, she said a strong sentence.

“Do you desire her?”
Ria gulped.
Guinevere correctly guessed what Ria was thinking. Did she have on such a lustful face?
“If you are serious, not conveying your feelings honestly is useless. Imprudent tactics are useless. However, if you seriously face her—”
With her finger, the queen held up some of Ria’s hair.
“That girl will respond.”

“I am a woman.”
It was a little late to say it, but Ria said it. Meanwhile, the queen simply laughed.
“So what?”
“You should understand too as the queen. Even at the best of times, women being together is looked at poorly, and she is a noble.”
With the queen silently urging her to continue, Ria spat out a dreary thought.
“She has an obligation to leave her bloodline. Am I wrong?”
Even if she’s called her wife, it would be necessary to part if another person came up. Ria always held this resolution.
“You’re wrong. You’re not wrong, but you’re wrong.”
The queen smiled mysteriously. Ria didn’t like the attitude from this person that knew Carla the best.
“How am I wrong!?”
Ria unintentionally raised her voice.
She admitted it.
She envied this woman.
This was a woman that knew Carla much better than herself.

“To be that angry, you must really like her…”
She warded off Ria’s intimidation with a simple shrug of her shoulders. This was really rare.
However, the smile that followed that up was gentle, yet somewhat lonesome. Her next words caused Ria to become speechless.
“I’ll tell you… that child’s secret.”
The queen looked at Ria as though piercing through her. It was a forceful glance. If she looked away, she would surely be scorned.
“That girl… cannot bear a child.”

 

*

 

Ria wasn’t certain of what happened after that.
By the time she’d realized, she was in her bathrobe with her hair practically not dried at all, sitting on the bed in her room.
This was the first time that she’d been shocked to this extent about a person other than herself.
“She doesn’t menstruate. The doctors say it is something natural.”
Something like that was said, but it already didn’t matter.
Ria couldn’t become a man.
Carla couldn’t bear children.
It was painful.
Why was it painful? Her not being able to give birth to a child was accepted to be natural. However, what about Carla?

Even without a child, a person can live. She had her own resolution. She even had a previous life.
However, Carla’s case was different.
She, after knowing that she couldn’t have children, decided to live for people other than herself.
That decision was something that only Guinevere had known.
It was something that she could only tell her best friend. Ria herself hadn’t known.
It was something she probably didn’t want to talk about, though.
Those who held Dragon’s Bloodline, could they live in perpetuity? This was something that Ria didn’t know, however…

“Ria?”
There was a knock at the door.
She knew who was it was.
Therefore, she didn’t answer.
“I heard that you’d called for me…”
Naturally, Carla entered the room and placed the documents in her hands on the desk. She walked up to Ria, who was still in her bathrobe.
“Your hair is still wet, isn’t it.”
Carla took out a handkerchief to start wiping down Ria’s hair when her arm was suddenly grasped.
Standing up, Ria restrained Carla, turned her around and pushed her down on to the bed.
“Ria?”
Even in such a situation, Carla’s eyes didn’t waver.
As though she could accept anything, such was her strength—or perhaps her negligence.

“I heard it from Guinevere… She said that you can’t have children.
Even she knew that her voice was awfully cold.
“Yes. That’s why I did not marry.”
Indeed, she was an eternal maiden.
She was the ideal goddess for a crooked man.
Beautiful, never growing old, infinitely overflowing with love, and conducts herself fairly.

The water dripping from Ria’s hair wet Carla’s face, who was still pinned down on the bed.
“You are my wife.”
This time, without reservation.
Ria placed her lips against Carla’s.
Once, twice, three times. The tip of her tongue parted her lips.
She traced out her tongue, as though savoring it. The sweetness was causing her to feel excited.
Under her body, Carla quivered with a start.

With a trailing note, Ria separated her lips from Carla’s.
A string of saliva connected the two.
“Some day…”
Ria moaned. As though in declaration.
“Some day, your body and mind will be mine. I will make it so that you cannot live without me. So that you think of no one but me.”
Saying it like a curse, Ria let go of her.
Carla remained lying in the bed for a while, but when she got up a moment later, she simply straightened her untidy hair.
And, still sitting on the bed, arranged Ria’s bathrobe that had become disheveled.
Just barely, the tip of her finger came into contact with Ria’s skin.
Of course it may have been a coincidence, but nevertheless Ria’s body shook from the delicately pleasant feeling.
“I live for my country and my people.”
Carla announced.
“And now, for you who lead them.”
Though it isn’t what she expected, it was, as far as Carla was concerned, a confession.
“Some day, I’ll allow you to captivate me.”
Bowing to Ria with what seemed like a parting threat, Carla left the room.

Ria didn’t know.
Just how intensely did Carla’s heart beat by her body being under Ria’s?
Ria didn’t know.
Just how much did Carla ruminate over the sweetness of Ria’s lips against her own?
Ria didn’t know.
Just how much Carla already loved Ria.
… Ria didn’t know.

 

*

 

A few days passed since then.
There was a report that the fortress stationed at the southern tip of Cordova that would be their bridgehead was being attacked by a large army of Cordovan troops.
Ria, with just the ogre and Casalia armies that were at hand under her flag, set forth to rescue it.
Of course, Carla followed.
“The enemy’s strength is around five military corps. Because it valued speed, their siege weapons and supply convoys are likely at a minimum.”
Fio’s report was brought by the beastkin from the Cordovan territory.
As they weren’t part of Cordova even around ten years ago and were being treated as a race entirely inferior to humans, they instantly offered their complete cooperation with Ogress.
Ria also responded to them by admitting each tribe’s head as a formal noble. As for how succession rights were handled among the tribes, Ria wasn’t going to look into that.

When Cordova’s army learned that troops that exceeded theirs were coming, they immediately retreated.
Although they didn’t know who its commander was, it was a wise judgement. At any rate, there were double their amount of soldiers. Moreover, 30,000 ogres.
They should have already understood from their current fight that they wouldn’t be able to win in a head-on collision.
“It’ll get a little troublesome from here on huh.”
Ria muttered that, but Fio sent out a lifeboat from an unexpected direction.
“But Ria-sama, according to Cordova’s military doctrine, in the case of meeting enemy troops, so long as there is no huge reason, they will definitely be punished for retreating without doing at least a single battle.”
“Interesting.”
Instinctively checking a document, Ria laughed. In a sneer.
“Cordova is causing systemic fatigue.” [1]
“Systemic fatigue? What’s that?”
It seemed that Fio didn’t understand what it meant that well, but Ria was able to sense it clearly.
When thinking about it, the Cordovan army’s movements and rules were being upheld, but they lacked the suitable military forces for it.
War was literally a fight for blood, by blood. It was a mistake to assume complete order and human reasoning.

Ria felt that this war might end unexpectedly early.
In the case of war, the quickest way to end it was to catch the statesmen.
“In addition to the beastkin, increase the human reconnaissance units as well. Moreover, spread rumors as much as possible in towns where humans reside.”
Cordova was simply a nation that had rapidly increased its territorial bounds, however, that didn’t necessarily mean that it had also seized its new territories’ public opinions.
Because of their oppression, if the previous feudal lords that left for the army returned, she felt that there was a large possibility of a rebellion occurring.
This time, Ria decided to end the fighting with Cordova quickly.

 

Footnotes:
  • 制度疲労 — If someone knows a better way to translate this… please let me know. Return

 


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