TL/N: Thank you for the ko-fi, Rianya! This chapter should be the actual (randomly) scheduled release.
So, your bonus update will be released next week.
See you next week and enjoy!

Oh, and a quick question: Is a 70 USD pair of shoes considered a luxury item, or just within the normal price range (in US ofc)?

[Theo’s POV]


Ever since I can remember, I have been striving to be the next king of my country.
I have worked hard to become a man worthy of that position.


My grandfather and father were both capable rulers who were adored by the people.
Their skills were praised and acknowledged by everyone.


There was a time when the fact that I was going to follow in their footsteps weighed on me with tremendous pressure.


However, I respect both my grandfather and my father as kings and human beings, and for that reason, I have never considered it a hardship to work hard.


My brother Alec has a good ability to comprehend things and makes up for what I lack.


My mother loves me and raised me compassionately.


I am very grateful to those who educated me to be a good king.


I am very fortunate to be in such an environment.


I am learning and absorbing the knowledge necessary to be a king, and I am also working on my martial arts so that I will not be ashamed to be the king of the lion tribe.


I have spent the past 20 years in this way.


Then, just the other day, my uncle told me that he was bringing a spouse.


Moreover, he told me that his spouse who is also his “pair” is from the human race that is rarely seen anymore.


Let me be clear: I love humans.


I can’t answer why I love them, I only know that I love them instinctively.


I once asked my grandfather about it because he, like me, has an extraordinary attachment to humans, and his answer was the same as mine.


It’s a little different to say that I have the same attachment to humans that I have towards my two human family members.


When I was young, I remember that I was in love with my human mother.


I don’t remember if I was seriously thinking of marrying her or not, but now I don’t have such feelings.


No, of course, I like my mother, but that is “as” my mother.


And as for my younger brother, he is indeed a cute little brother whom I adore very much.
But a younger brother is just a younger brother.


I have seen people who looked like the human race in the town only a few times since I can remember.
But I could not speak to them and I thought I would have to continue to have agonizing thoughts about them for the rest of my life.


Then I came to meet my uncle’s human race spouse.


He had black hair and black eyes, a rare color, and although his face was not spectacularly beautiful, I could not take my eyes off of him.


A well-balanced arrangement of thin lips, a small nose, and round eyes on a face that is not too rough.


Here, I am terribly tickled to shelter him.
But such a man was treated as a sex slave.


I am truly repulsed by that rotten country.


I was able to sit near him at the family gathering, but I was so nervous that I had no idea what kind of face I should make.


Alex had always warned me that my face was intimidating, but what was I supposed to do?


I crossed my arms and tied my mouth as tightly as possible to keep people from realizing how I felt.


As I was doing so, he approached me.


He seemed to have misunderstood that I was unhappy and angry.


That is never the case! I felt like yelling at the top of my lungs.


Just as I was thinking, Alex and uncle made some outrageous revelations about me.


This is not good.
He might not like me.


Nevertheless, he – or rather, Chika-dono – smiled at me and spoke kindly to me.


I couldn’t stand it any longer.


My face turned bright red, and I think I was even shaking a little from excitement and joy.


What is this feeling? Is this what love feels like?


But I couldn’t discuss such things with anyone.


I watched him leave with regret from the bottom of my heart.


One day, a few days after he left, I received a call from my grandfather.


The content of the call was something I could not have wished for.


He asked me if I would like to live with my grandfather near the new house that my uncle and Chika-dono were going to build.


Who would be foolish enough to refuse?


If I live in the neighborhood, I would likely see Chika-dono more often, and perhaps I could even go to the house where he lives.


Without a moment’s hesitation, I accepted my grandfather’s offer.


The atmosphere between my uncle and my grandfather was a bit tense when they learned of this, but it was a minor problem if I could eat Chika-dono’s home-cooked food.


And I would never forget how delicious it was.


Above all, Chika-dono offered to let me touch his body.
An opportunity that I could never pass up.


The time that followed was like a dream.


The human I had been thinking about for so long was on my lap.


His soft hair, silky smooth skin, plump cheeks, and tiny ears all fascinated me.


I will never forget the feeling I had when he ate the keel fruit by my hand.


What a joy it was to feed such a small and delicate thing with my own hands.


The way he desperately chewed and swallowed it was so adorable.


My dream that was never meant to come true has come true with Chika-dono.


And now, in front of my eyes, Chika-dono is examining patients who come to him one after another and healing them if necessary.


Despite his young appearance, he is said to have better knowledge and be able to use healing techniques than anyone else in this health department.


The reason why I am here is that my uncle has asked me to come.


He told me to be careful not to let him perform any unreasonable procedures, and to check on any fools who might try to court him since he is a rare human race.


It was an offer I could not have wished for.


It was a very favorable reason to stay by Chika-dono’s side.


He works really hard, patiently listening to the endless complaints of his patients.
I don’t know all the details, but it seems that he diagnoses and treats them more accurately than anyone else.


I heard from Alex, who also appears at the Health Department as a healer and works with Chika-dono, that he is able to share with them the knowledge that they do not have.
This knowledge is all based on some kind of evidence that is both theoretical and convincing.


Alex even called Chika-dono a treasure of the Health Department.
I was very impressed to see Alex’s eyes shining as he said he would love to acquire that knowledge himself.


However, my dear Alex.


I wanted you to be my right-hand man and get involved in national politics…


Oh well, we can always talk about this again.


But as I continued to watch him examine the patients, I noticed that the carnivorous beasts, who must be particularly aggressive among the patients, were making advances on Chika-dono one after another.


This is unforgivable.


I decided to take up a position behind Chica-dono and glare at all the patients.


I am still the lion’s royalty, so this should have some effect.


After a while, Alex, who was running around busily, came up to me.


“Brother, please don’t threaten the patients with your evil look.
They are all frightened.”


“What do you mean? I’m just trying to prevent people from doing anything against Chika-dono, and I’m not trying to intimidate them.
I am simply observing the patients and assessing their personalities.”


“Nope… I think that expression of yours is too provocative for ordinary people.
Please restrain yourself a little more.”


With that, Alex quickly returned to his own work.


What the hell is this?


I’m just doing what I have to do.


The examination seemed to go well.
Even when the number of patients seemed to have decreased, I did not see anyone foolish enough to make a pass at Chika-dono.


Chika-dono did not seem to be acting recklessly as uncle had instructed him to do, and the morning examination ended without incident.


We ate lunch with Chika-dono and Alex.


The food was not bad at all, and the taste was satisfying enough to fill up my stomach, but now that I know Chica-dono’s cooking, it was not enough to satisfy my appetite.


I really envy my uncle who can eat that kind of food every day.


During the lunch break, I took Chika-dono to the waiting room of the Health Department and let him rest on the big sofa.
Gail had instructed me to make sure that he takes a nap in consideration of his physical strength.


After a while, I could hear him breathing comfortably, probably because he was tired from the unfamiliar environment and the busy schedule.


Isn’t this a good chance to take a good look at his sleeping face?


I moved closer and sat beside him, thinking that it would be just for a little bit.
Just for a little bit is okay, right?


I felt a little guilty, but I enjoyed watching his sleeping face.
When I ran my fingers through his hair and gently stroked his head, he mumbled about something and gave me a pleasant smile.


This is addictive, irresistible.


I couldn’t help but get greedy.
When I rubbed my fingers against his small hand, he squeezed my fingers back hard.


I was convinced when I see it.


I was in love.


It is the first love that has come to me in my 20 years of life.


But this lovely creature is already my uncle and Gail’s [pair]… No, I don’t mind that.


Fortunately, the Animus can have more than one mate, and I would like to be added to the list of mates to protect him.


I am the next king.
But with a human with high magical power like Chika-dono, we can surely hope for an heir.
So there should be no problem.


No, of course, I would have to confirm Chika-dono’s feelings as well.


As I was thinking about what to do next, an intimidating voice called out to me from behind.


“Theo, what are you doing?”


It was my uncle.


For some reason, the air around me felt heavy.


“Oh, uncle.
I was watching over Chika-dono as he fell asleep.”


I hastily let go of his grasping fingers.


“I see, then that’s all right.
Theo, don’t worry about Chika this afternoon.
Alex is going to take over the role.
It seems that your presence is disturbing the patient’s examination because they are frightened of you.
You’re going to have to help us do our job.”


What the hell!?


You want me to leave Chika’s side?


“Uncle! I did not frighten the patients.
I was just keeping an eye on the ruffians who were courting him.”


“Oh, all right, all right.
But no means no.
The problem is that we are really in trouble.
You’re going with us this afternoon.


Yes, sir.”


There was a forcefulness in his words that made me not able to say no.


Reluctantly, I left this place to Alex and went to my uncles’ office.


Of course, helping my uncles with their work would be a good learning experience, but there was no Chika-dono here.


Yes, that’s right.


I will talk about Chika-dono since uncle Gail is also here.


“Uncle, Gail, may I ask you a few questions while I continue my work?”


“Hmm? What kind of reverence is that? Sure.
I don’t mind.”


“What is it? Theodore-sama.”


I put down the papers I was working on and began to talk.


“Does Chika-dono intend to have a new spouse other than you, uncles? Chika-dono is a wonderful person.
Also, if he is a valuable member of the human race, many will look at him that way.”


I did not realize it at the time.
No, I really should have noticed.


That neither my uncle nor Gail had responded at all.


And that their expressions were becoming more and more expressionless, like the Noh’s face…


“With that in mind, I think it is better to have many companions to protect Chika-dono.
I just became aware of it.
I just realized that Chika-dono is my first love.
Even if I’m not his [pair] unlike uncles, I still want to protect him as my partner.
No, of course, I will confirm Chika-dono’s will.
But before I do that, I would like to ask uncles’–“


Uncle, who had not said anything until then, suddenly opened his mouth.


“Ah, Theo.
Do you have any official business in the near future that you really need to attend to?”


“No, nothing in particular?”


“Is that so? That’s good.”


Why was he suddenly being asked about official business?


“But that doesn’t matter.
Uncle, now is the time for Chika-dono’s–“


I was tapped on my shoulder from behind.


There stood Gail, smiling in a way I had never seen before.


“I understood very well how you felt, Theodore-sama.
I am sure Chika-dono will be very happy to see you.
But you understand that protecting Chika-dono requires a certain amount of strength, don’t you? May I have a duel with Theo-sama to confirm this?”


“I agree with you.
So, of course!”


“That’s fine by me too.
Then, let’s start with Gail and I’ll be next.
I’ll even give you some practice if you need it.
Let’s do it in the training hall, then.
I’m going to rent out the place so that no one can come near it.
You guys go first.”


My uncle’s face was full of smiles as he told me this, even more so than usual.


For some reason, the two of them have brought out their personal greatswords and daggers, which they usually use against magical beasts.


There are plenty of weapons for training in the training hall.
So why?


And why would they need to rent out the whole training hall? I kept thinking about it.


I really didn’t understand anything at that time.


Also, I… I can’t… talk about what happened to me at the training center.


No, something inside me tells me that I must not remember.


With those memories, I would never be able to rule a country as a king in the future.


I need to seal it deep into the recesses of my memory and lock it away so that I will never be reminded of it again.


If there is one thing I can tell you, it is that the guild officials found me that day in the training hall, where I had fallen unconscious and muttering “Please forgive me…” and “Forgive me…”, even though there was not a single wound on my body, and that they kept hearing screams that seemed out of this world.


I was unable to get out of bed for a while after that, and it would be some time before I fully recovered.


I had underestimated the depth of the bond between the “pairs”.


Especially about the attachment of the animas towards their animus [pair].


Perhaps, my uncle and Gail are special.


Thus, my first love ended as soon as I became aware of it.


However, my long-awaited encounter with the person of my destiny will come a little later.


And all because of none other than my first love, Chika-dono.



TL/N: That +++ are from the raws~ :v

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