64 A Saint in Silence
My fingers restlessly wandered through the soft, white fur of my yet nameless summon. It was almost half an hour ago that they had brought me here, but I still struggled to accept the cruel reality that had once again struck me down.
Maybe I never had a chance to escape. Maybe the king had long since decided to confine me here, in this gilded cage, but it was far more likely that it was me that had made it possible. If only I had gone in my human form since the beginning, maybe he would have treated me differently. Maybe I would never have said those disastrous lines.
«Why did I think it was a good idea to tell them about Shiro?»
Not only had I told them about her, but I had also shown them the figurine! It was only natural that they would ask even more questions.
In the end, it was the very same guard who had used the detection stone on me that sealed my fate. He revealed a single piece of information, one that I hadn't even thought of. By using the stone, he could not only see my race, my name and some basic stats but also my titles, the names given to us by the gods.
Each of my titles revealed something I considered private, something nobody should know aside of me. 'Maiden in Love' was gone forever, but there was still one that was far worse, at least today.
Class: Permanent; Passive; Cannot be turned off
Effect: Increases affinity towards nature and light type of magic; Increases affinity towards fox magic. Changes hair color.
Description: The daughter of Shiro』
I could have claimed that I had lied and Shiro was no goddess, but how could that have worked? Titles could only be awarded by the gods, and one of the gods had decided to name me the daughter of Shiro.
Naturally, this alone didn't mean Shiro was a goddess herself. She could very well be a different existence, a leader, an emperor, a saint, just somebody the gods had decided to be important enough to mention. It was my own words that had made driven me into the corner even further: I myself had called her a goddess. And it was me alone who had shown her to them.
The figurine itself was something that couldn't be from this world. It was too well-made, something that would be hard to replicate even in my homeworld. Every single strand of hair was perfect, her eyes shined in a lovely red, and her tail and ears were just like they had been when I saw her back then. Even her bust was bigger than mine, though only slightly – not that I cared.
She looked like a twin of mine, so much in fact that only Ofris and maybe Sahria could tell us apart if she were to color her hair to fit my own.
In the end, there was only one way for them to interpret all of this: I was not only the sole survivor of the Foxkin but also the daughter of a goddess. They called me a saint and gift of heaven, something sent to them to bring them health and fortune. And in their messed up heads, confining me in a palace was the best way to deal with this.
The place they had given me was far more than anybody could ask for. It had a large living room with a chimney, comfortable couches, a writing table and just the right lighting to make you feel comfortable to second you entered it.
There were four doors leading out of the room. One was connected to a slightly smaller bedroom, others lead to a bath and a study with a few dozens of books I wouldn't be able to read no matter how hard I tried. The last door had brought me, or rather us, into this room.
'Us' that meant me and the stranger sitting in front of me, on the other side of the table. He was fifteen or sixteen at most, had a well-trained body and bright blonde hair with green eyes to boot. This guy was the living example of a fairytale prince only that he was real and this wasn't a fairytale, at least to me. His title, prince of Aurent, was the real deal.
I could only guess what it meant that he was here. His father the king had tasked him with showing me to this room and keep me entertained, despite dozens of servants being available on a moments notice. There was no reason for him to send his heir instead, other than making him befriend me – or worse.
At least he was friendlier than his father. Not only had he arranged for a variety of snacks, sweets and drinks to be brought here, he had also formally introduced himself as Laurin Sebaar, son of Hensin Sebaar, thus confirming his status as the heir of the throne.
All of that couldn't change the fact how we had met, with him staring at my nude body after hearing me bark like a wild animal in my fox form. Even now, there was still a little red appearing on his cheeks whenever he met my eyes.
«Can't he at least pretend that didn't happen?!»
He couldn't. For minutes we just sat there, without speaking a single word. Only faint chewing sounds broke the silence, as both of us tried to block out the awkwardness by stuffing far too many of the snacks into our stomachs.
«Why don't you say something?!»
⊱————- Extra ————-⊰
Hensin: So what did she say? How was she like? Do you like her?
Laurin: I don't know...
Hensin: You don't know? You talked to her for hours!
Laurin: We didn't talk, really...
Hensin: What have you been doing all this time? Don't tell me-
Laurin: We did... nothing.
Hensin: By the gods! You are my son after all! And there I thought you would never grow up to become a man!
Hensin: I am so proud, my son. You-
Laurin: We ate snacks! We only ate snacks!
Hensin: ... snacks?