About a month has passed since I was rescued from the Lonjar bandits led by Rabi.
However, for some reason everyone’s expressions are still stiff, perhaps because of the fact that I was kidnapped.
Seeing such a situation, I planned to do something.
“Yes. Why don’t we have a picnic at a nearby lake and enjoy the nice weather these days?”
I suggested a picnic to Kaiser, who was relaxing in the room to see how I was doing.
Then, when Kaiser heard my suggestion, he had a complicated look on his face.
“I’m very happy with this invitation, but…”
As he said this, he stared at my left hand.
The scars were still there, though faintly.
I smiled as I realized the significance of this stare and showed my left hand to Kaiser and repeatedly closed and opened my fingers to show him that I was perfectly fine.
“It’s all right. And as the doctor said, these scars will disappear in time.”
He smiled at that when I said so.
“…I understand. If Cecilia says so, then let’s go. Besides…if anything happens, this time I will protect Cecilia!”
Kaiser gently grasped my left hand and swore with a serious expression.
In fact, when I was kidnapped by Leader, Kaiser had tried to come along with Viktor to save me.
However, he still seems to be bothered by the fact that he reluctantly withdrew from the situation when Viktor threatened that it would interfere with my rescue if he came along.
For me, it’s enough that he even tried to come to my rescue…
I told him that, but he didn’t agree with me at all.
“Thank you very much. Then I’ll go talk to the rest of you about it.”
“…Eh? Aren’t you going with me alone?”
“What? I was planning to go with everyone from the beginning? No?”
“No, no, I’m not saying that you can’t, but…”
“Then it’s no problem. I’m going to go ask everyone now. I’ll contact you later with the details of the date.”
I said with a grin and left the room as if to hurry.
Then I invited everyone one by one to the picnic and got their approval.
However, at that time, they all said they wanted to go alone with me with a regretful look on their face.
To be honest, I thought it would be more fun if we all went together, but I couldn’t help but be confused about their reactions.
Then, on a perfect picnic day in mild climate, we got on the horse-drawn carriage and rode to the lake we had chosen.
“It’s a nice view!”
I dismounted from the carriage and gazed at the lake glistening in the sunshine and marveled.
“It really is.”
Nina was standing next to me, smiling happily and looking at the same lake.
I looked at Nina and cheered her on in my heart.
Nina, take this opportunity to get along with everyone!
In fact, one of the reasons for organizing this picnic was to help Nina and her targets make progress with each other.
It’s been a long time since the game started, but there hasn’t been any progress with anyone, and I’ve been getting worried about this situation.
So I thought it would be a good opportunity for me to do something about it, and that’s why I planned this event.
“Now everyone, I will take care of the lunch arrangements, so please be at your leisure for a while until we are ready.”
Dahlia smiled at us as we got out of the carriage, and we all took her up on her words and moved to the shore of the lake.
“Cecilia, there are some beautiful flowers blooming here. Come and see them with me.”
“Rather than that, Cecilia, why don’t you sit in the shade of that tree and read this book I brought with me?”
“That’s so boring! Sister Cecilia, why don’t you come play in that lake with me?”
“No, Cecilia, come with me for a walk around here.”
“Princess! I’ll borrow a horse, so if you’d like, you can come riding with me.”
“No, Lady Cecilia! Why don’t you leave the men alone and make a crown of flowers with me over there?”
“…Miss Cecilia, would you like to sit over there and talk with me while basking in the sun?”
Everyone said so, and then they all came to invite me out at once, and I was confused by their appearance.
“Huh? No, why me? I think this is the place to ask Nina out, don’t you?”
I said this to everyone in confusion, and this time they looked at me with a strange look on their faces for some reason.
“Cecilia…we’re inviting you to spend time with Cecilia, right? So why is Nina involved?”
When Kaiser asked me with a curious look, everyone else, including Nina, nodded their heads in agreement.
Then, at just the right moment, Dahlia called out to us.
“Everyone! We’re ready for lunch, so please come this way.”
“Oh, it looks like everything’s ready. Come on, let’s go!”
I said hurriedly, smiling affectionately as I distracted myself from the conversation, and took the initiative to head to where Dahlia was waiting.
“Hey, Cecilia!…It can’t be helped. Then shall we go too?”
I heard Kaiser’s dumbfounded voice from behind me, but I didn’t dare turn around.
So we went back towards Dahlia, and we each took off our shoes and sat down on the large blanket that Dahlia had prepared for us. Dahlia opened the lid of the large lunch box placed in the middle.
“…Wow! It looks delicious!”
I was staring at the contents of the lunch box with my shiny eyes as I let out an exclamation of admiration.
Because it contained sandwiches that were neatly and tightly packed.
And the sandwiches had a variety of fillings, brightly colored and very appetizing to look at.
“This is the one Nina-sama prepared for you.”
“What? Nina made that delicious sandwich for me!?”
“Yes…I don’t know if this will be to your liking, but it was an invitation and I wanted to thank you for making it.”
Nina’s embarrassed response to my question was so cute that I almost squealed.
Nina’s such a feminine girl, as usual! If I were a man, I’d definitely want to marry her! This must have struck a chord with the other capture targets!
So I glanced at the men, but…none of them seemed to be attracted to her.
Huh? None of them seem to be attracted to her. Why don’t you look at Nina like this and blush, or look at her like you love her or something?
I was puzzled to see the men reacting in a way I hadn’t expected.
In the midst of all this, Dahlia was opening the lids of the lunchboxes one after another and explaining the food inside.
When she opened the lid of the last lunch box, there was a commotion in the air.
What in the world is that…? Ah! That is—!!!
I froze in my tracks when I saw the contents of the last lunch box, because it contained an ugly looking rice balls, over-fried chicken and an omelet roll that was burnt in some places.
Hey, why is that here!?!?
I screamed loudly in my mind and turned my questioning eyes to Dahlia.
Then Dahlia met my gaze and smiled at me.
“This is the one Cecilia-sama made.”
At that moment, there was a shout of surprise from everyone and they all looked at me at once.
Then, terrifyingly, Kaiser asked me,
“Did Cecilia make this?”
“…Yes…Dahlia, why did you bring it? I told you that this was a mistake and that I would eat it alone when I got home, didn’t I?”
“I am sorry for the trouble I have caused you. But…it was not possible for me to leave the food that Cecilia was looking forward to for this day and that she had made so early in the morning. In fact, I wanted to bring it to everyone so that they could try it.”
“Dahlia… I can’t let everyone eat something that looks this bad…”
“This is good!”
Prince Leon’s sudden words startled me and I looked at him and he was smiling at me as he ate my fried chicken.
“I like this omelet roll as well, it has a flavor to my liking.”
Next, I heard Prince Alfeld’s voice and looked in that direction and saw him smiling as he ate an omelet he had stuck with his fork.
“Sure, it looks like that…but…I like it this way.”
Ghislan was chewing on a misshapen rice ball while saying that.
“Princess, don’t worry. It’s something several times better than what I made! Because for some reason, everything I make turns to charcoal!”
Viktor said to me, as if he was impressed as he ate what I had made, and I said to him in my mind ‘why!?’
“I’m confident that I can enjoy any food Cecilia makes. If possible, I’d like you to make it just for me next time.”
Kaiser smiled and brought an omelet to his mouth.
“It’s rather amazing how well you can cook! I’ve never even thought of making anything…”
Lady Lateia was a little depressed, but she was popping in one dish after another that I had made.
“I’m sure they are all very delicious, Cecilia-sama. If you would like, would you like to come and cook with me next time?”
With that, Nina invited me to join her as she smiled at me.
“Fufu, Cecilia-sama, I’m glad that I brought it.”
I thanked Dahlia and saw everyone smiling as they ate my food. I truly felt so glad I had come with them for a picnic today.
T/N: That was the last side story of Part 1! Next is Part 2~
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