Lily and Al’s date continues. Enjoy the chapter!
“It’s alright. It’s something that has nothing to do with you. However, when you become my wife, think properly before you act. It is still okay now. But, when you become a princess, you will be in trouble if you act like you are now.”
“Because the action of the Crown Princess will be thought as Al’s will. I understand.”
“Yeah. That’s how it is. I’m saved since you catch on so quickly.”
Al nodded with a smile.
—Aah, it feels as if I will really marry him.
It makes me laugh.
Just a moment ago, I thought that I wasn’t suitable for him.
Even if I told myself up to that extent, as expected I want to marry Al.
While I was amazed by myself who immediately thought of that, I turn my eyes towards an alley casually.
“Hm? What is it? Lily……uwah.”
When I raised my voice, Al, who followed my gaze, was surprised.
Ignoring him, I stared at what I found in a corner of an alley.
In the corner of an alley that is off the main street. There is a cat in it. Its size is somewhere between a kitten and an adult cat. I guess it was originally a white cat, but it’s dirty and gray right now.
And the cat is so ugly that it surprised me.
The cat noticed my stare and let out a tiny mewl.
I feel like I heard its voice saying, “What, you also think I’m ugly?” and I blink my eyes in surprise.
Al called out to me, but I ignored that voice and approached the cat slowly. I don’t know why, but I feel like I was being drawn to that cat.
If it is a stray cat, it may escape.
That was what I thought, but while the cat glared at me, it is still crouching motionlessly in its place.
“Ah……are you injured?”
I noticed because I approached it, but the cat is injured all around its body. It is clear from its too-thin-body that it hasn’t eaten anything.
“You, you haven’t eaten any food? Are you unable to move because of your injuries? Perhaps, have you been bullied by humans?”
I rushed to the cat reflexively and the cat jumped back in surprise. It’s not enough for the cat to be able to escape, but I’m certain that it is wary of me.
“Lily, it’s dirty. It’s a stray cat. You don’t know what kind of disease it might have. It’s better not to touch it recklessly.”
“I know, but this child is injured. It’s very thin, I think it hasn’t eaten that much food. Perhaps, it is still a kitten.”
“A kitten? It looks like an adult cat to me though.”
“Its face looks very young, that’s why I knew that it is still a kitten. If we left it as is, it will probably die soon.”
It hasn’t eaten food as well. In its injured state, even its physical strength will be exhausted in no time.
I must protect it.
I try to hold out my hand gently so that I don’t scare the cat, but the cat just jumped further back.
“……don’t run away.”
“Lily, by any chance, do you want to help that cat?”
Al asked with a low voice. I nod while keeping my gaze on the cat so that I don’t lose my sight of it.
“I won’t overlook a living thing who is on the verge of death, I, I am not heartless.”
Besides, my family doesn’t even know this, but I like animals. My family, especially Yugo-niisama, doesn’t like animals so I’ve never said it, but I especially like cats. I am a cat-lover, there is no way I will let a cat dies anytime soon.
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“Come here……come here……”
When I desperately called out, Al asked me once again.
“……it is not that necessary to pick up such an ugly cat, is it?”
“In that case, all the more reason for me to help it. Because there is nobody who will help it other than me.”
If I abandon the cat because it is ugly, if I don’t help it right now, this child will surely die. I absolutely don’t want that to happen.
However, I also wonder at the same time.
If it were the previous me, no matter how much I like animals, I’m sure I would have abandoned this child just because it is ‘ugly’. Things that are not beautiful are not suitable for me, and I might not have put this child in my sight.
Even in such an obscure part of me, slowly, but surely I have changed.
“I will help it. After that, I will not throw it away.”
“Are you serious?”
When I nod to Al’s words, Al sighed and said, “I understand.”
“I will also help you in catching the cat. But, you are really such a good girl. To say someone like you a 『villainess』, I don’t understand my brother.”
Hearing what he said, a smile shows on my face.
Somehow I feel uneasy to be called a ‘good girl’.
“I was just thinking that I will surely ignore this child when I first met you. If you tell me that I am a good girl, it is surely thanks to Al. Because you were there and corrected me, I am now like this. If it were not for you, I surely wouldn’t change. I think that I wouldn’t be able to get away from becoming a 『villainess』.”
Little by little, I’m moving forward. I’m surely getting far away from becoming a 『villainess』.
But, it is still just 「a little bit」 far away and I will immediately return back to square one if there is some impetus.
For example, right now, if I let Al go, I will definitely return back to a 『villainess』 unnoticed. That’s how I feel.
“If Al is not with me it will definitely be useless. So, please stay by my side until I can say properly that I am no longer a 『villainess』.”
“……regardless of that, I have decided to be by your side.”
“……thank you very much. Anyways, it seems that the cat truly wants to run away, do you have any plan?”
My battle with that cat is still ongoing. If I try to get closer, the cat will jump backward. Its tail is swishing in caution and its stare is painful. If this continues as is, it will run away in less than a few minutes.
No matter how injured it is, I don’t believe that a human can chase a cat who runs away with full power.
“What to do……is there a way somehow……”
“Then, how about singing a song?”
Hearing the sudden suggestion by Al, I solidified as if he had hit my weak spot. Al told me while I keep the cat in my sight.
“You can just sing it a song……I assure you, your song strangely makes the heart feel at ease. The cat who is currently vigilant may also be coaxed.”
“No way, whether it will work or not—”
“Wouldn’t it be better to try than for the cat to escape without us doing anything?”
“Y-you’re right, but—”
“Your song is imbued with magical power. Since magical power is imbued in the song itself, it should work not only for humans but also for cats. Theoretically.”
“By theoretically, you mean……”
“If the theory is perfect, I think it’s worth a try.”
I stay silent and think about it.
Certainly, what Al said is reasonable. I should try it. But before this, I didn’t even think that I would sing for a cat.
I was hesitating to show off my song that was never good in a place like this.
Al told me who was like that.
“You want to help that cat, right? I don’t think you have time to worry.”
“Yes, you’re right. I will try it.”
He’s right. While I was troubled, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the cat wouldn’t run away.
I just want to avoid that, so I quickly changed my mind and began singing the song I sang in front of Al before in a low voice.
It’s short, just about a minute long.
I finished singing and looked at the cat. Is there any change? That would be nice.
Its tail that was swishing all the time fell down. Its eyes that looked angry turned considerably calmer.
The cat mewled and came close to me. It is quite docile as if its attitude just a moment ago was a lie.
The cat who came to my feet started rubbing its head against my feet. I hurriedly crouched down on the spot and caressed its head. The cat narrowed its eyes happily.
“……no, I think it’s ugly.”
“Al, please be silent.”
I have completely treated it like my own child, so I got angry that Al had bad-mouthed my child and glared at him.