|Louise & Yuka K.|
| Book: Be Careful What|
You Wish For, Chapter 13
|Written by||Vanishing Trooper|
Be Careful What
You Wish For
Be Careful What
You Wish For
Be Careful What You Wish For
Author's Notes: I have good news and I have bad news.
The good news is that I managed to find a good cut off point between Ruukoto's character defining chapter and the start of the Tarbes invasion so…UPDATE! The bad news is that I got my hands on a copy of Yakuza 4 and I've been playing like a madman. This may or may not affect the release of the next chapter…who am I kidding…there's so much shit to do in that game I'm not even sure when I'll be able to seriously start on the next chapter.
For now though, please enjoy the chapter!
Disclaimer: Dead men's words hold no meaning on the Round Table.
Be Careful What You Wish For
"Fuga. Fuga Fuga?" The gynoid asked me from within its capsule. Ruukoto hadn't budged an inch from her capsule and was only observing me with her red eyes, likely scanning me to try to confirm the situation. Considering the question she posed to me, I was able to conclude that this was indeed the original Ruukoto...or a unit that had her memories or information at least.
"No, your assessment is accurate. Many things have happened since we last met, my current state is simply one of those things. In fact, you yourself look rather different from what I remember back when you were still under Reimu's employ." I replied, making Ruukoto blink at me a few times. Thin streams of light ran across her eyes for a few moments before she replied.
"Fuga. Fuga Fuga, Fuga." Ruukoto explained what happened to her in a prompt and logical manner. I nodded along with her explanation and was intrigued as who this Uzuki woman was and why she felt the need to make 'upgrades' on Ruukoto.
"Uzuki?" A voice from behind me said in confusion. I raised a brow and turned to see the others huddled behind me, obviously curious as to whom Ruukoto was. What intrigued me though was what Siesta had just said.
"You understood what Ruukoto said?" I asked Siesta to confirm if it was a fluke or not, turning everyone's attention toward her. The maid blushed as she shuffled uncomfortably from the sudden scrutiny. Nevertheless, she nodded meekly in reply.
"Interesting..." I muttered as I considered the ramifications of Siesta understanding what Ruukoto can say.
"Fuga?" The gynoid asked me while looking right at Siesta.
"Ah, yes. She's the great grand daughter of the man who you apparently arrived here with." I supplied and Ruukoto nodded at Siesta in acknowledgement.
"What the founder is happening?" Louise suddenly shouted. Ah, right...
"I assume that none of you, other that Siesta, can understand what Ruukoto is saying?" I posed the question.
"Is that what that woman's name is?" Guiche asked, suddenly interested that the Steel Goddess turned out to be a beautiful woman...or so he thought.
"Yes. So I can assume that Siesta is the only one who can understand it?" I asked again. Everyone looked at each other and were looking uncertain.
"Is 'Fuga' the only thing you can hear from it?" I changed the question and everyone, except Siesta, nodded.
"Very interesting..." I muttered with a bemused smile at the revelation.
"It would help if you shared what it is that you find interesting, Yuka. Why do you keep calling her 'it' anyway?" My master asked, her previous panic at pressing the 'Big Red Button' was replaced with growing irritation at being left out of the loop.
"Ah, of course. Let me introduce something that I haven't seen in over five-hundred years. This is Ruukoto, an artificially created android that was once in the service of one Reimu Hakurei. It suddenly disappeared after the Strawberry Crisis incident and Reimu didn't really put any real effort in finding it. She said that she thought that Ruukoto just fell in a hole and couldn't get out so she just shrugged off her loss and moved on with her life." I explained and everyone seemed to be torn between wondering what exactly Ruukoto is and feeling sorry for her by being abandoned by its master.
"Question!" Kirche suddenly spoke up like a student, complete with a raised hand.
"Kirche." I acknowledged her and bade her to continue.
"What's an 'Android'?" She asked the obvious question. I thought about it for a moment as I tried to figure out the best analogy for them to be able to understand what Ruukoto was.
"I'm not particularly certain about the absolute specifics but...the simple explanation for it is that Ruukoto is a very, very, very complex human-shaped golem. Also, 'Android' is only the general term for them. A more specific term for Ruukoto is 'Gynoid', a designation for Androids with particularly feminine attributes. Imagine a sentient, self-reliant, self-sufficient golem that can process information much faster and more accurately than any human. And in case you are wondering, yes, her physical prowess far outstrips regular humans as well...if I remember you are also armed, yes?" I explained and threw the question at the gynoid, ignoring the particularly flabbergasted expressions of Matilda and Guiche, our two golem users. I heard the familiar sounds that a computer could make while processing information coming from Ruukoto as more streams of light ran across her unblinking eyes.
"Fuga. Fuga Fuga Fuga...Fuga." Ruukoto replied after a few moments. I guess it can't be helped considering how long she had been in storage. I turned back to the others, Siesta specifically, before speaking.
"Can you convey what Ruukoto just said to the others, Siesta?" I asked her and she looked unsure as to what to do.
"Umm...I didn't really understand what she was talking about..." She reasoned as she looked between me and the Steel Goddess.
"Don't worry about that. I just want to know how much of her words did you understand...in the sense of not just hearing 'Fuga' over and over again." I clarified. The maid...well, the human one...remained silent for a few moments before nodding.
"Running diagnostics on all systems. Assessment: Current physical state is still below nominal operating temperatures. Unable to move until defrosting protocols are complete. Estimated time of completion...twelve-minutes and seventeen-seconds. Information processing and memory are operating within optimal parameters. No major problems found aside from minor memory fragmentation. Defrag already in process. Power systems working at one-hundred percent efficiency. No issues found on Erde-Kaiser Sigma Type Seven engine. No hazardous emissions or radiation detected." Siesta started before taking a moment to catch her breath.
"Most available weapon systems are offline. R-Teneritas, Blood Dragon Tooth, D-Shot, D-Scythe, F-Slayer, X-Buster, and Emulation: Fantasy Heaven are under level five security lock-down. Priority password release from Professor S. Uzuki required for lock-down release. G-Revolver, R-Cannon, R-Blade, and Anti-Material Sword 'Arondight' are available for immediate use. Status of special equipment 'Riser' is unknown. Status of special equipment 'G-Wing: Type-Zero' is confirmed and is ready for immediate deployment. Status of special equipment 'Artemis' is unknown. Status of special equipment 'Fantasy Seal' is confirmed but is under level five lock-down protocols as per restrictions against the use of Emulation: Fantasy Heaven." Siesta continued without any hint of hesitation in her words.
"Status of Overdrive System 'NT-D' is unknown. Status of Overdrive System 'Trans-AM' is unknown. Status of Overdrive System 'Level Six Shift' is under level five lock-down protocols. Status of Overdrive System 'White Noise' is confirmed and operable. Addendum: Ruukoto Unit One Version Four is operable but is under heavy restrictive use. Whew! That's all I heard." Siesta said, concluding her recitation of Ruukoto's earlier words...and she did it perfectly. I nodded in approval and glanced at everyone else who were looking at Siesta like she had just grown a second head, was made of gold, and was revealing national secrets.
"What was all that?" Louise finally yelled out after several moments of stunned silence.
"A perfectly translated version of what Ruukoto just said in Halkeginian. I must say, I am impressed that you memorized all of that after hearing it only once." I commended Siesta's skill at retaining information so well. The maid...yes, the human one...blushed at the compliment.
"Th-thank you, Mister Yuka. I got used to remembering things that were said to me because of all my responsibilites back at the academy." Siesta, as humble as ever, tried to play off her talent as simply something she developed for the sake of her job.
"Do you mean that all that information came from those few words from the gol-gynoid?" Professor Colbert asked in obvious surprise at how much information Ruukoto can convey with just a few 'Fugas'.
"Wait...how come the maid can understand what that Ruukoto says?" Kirche pointed out yet another obvious question.
"Well, for reasons that I've yet to understand myself, Ruukoto can only be completely understood by those from Gensokyo. Reimu confirmed this back during the Strawberry Crisis incident when she commented that Yumemi Okazaki and her assistant couldn't understand a word that Ruukoto said. Yumemi and her assistant, Chiyuri Kitashirakawa came from the outside world." I provided, earning even more confused looks from everyone aside from Louise, who was privy to information about Gensokyo.
"Don't think about it too hard, you'll just get a headache. The point is that only those from my home realm can understand the meaning behind Ruukoto's words." I stated. I left the question on how this Professor S. Uzuki managed to understand Ruukoto enough to be able to perform so many modifications on it for a later date.
"Does that mean that Siesta came from Gensokyo?" Guiche asked after following the logic in the conversation.
"Not exactly..." I vaguely stated, waiting for a certain someone to provide the answer.
"Descendant." And as expected, Tabitha provided the final piece of the puzzle.
"I see...Siesta has the blood of someone from your home realm which is why she can understand what that golem...gynoid...can say." Matilda reasoned out correctly.
"Amazing. So this being is also from your realm?" Professor Colbert asked, not even bothering to mask his interest with Ruukoto. Surprisingly, it was the gynoid itself that answered the question.
"Fuga. Fuga Fuga. Fuga." Ruukoto answered immediately while forgetting one important thing.
"You know that they cannot understand a word you're saying, right?" I pointed out to the maid...the robot one...and it blinked a few times before nodding.
"Fuga." It said before turning its attention to lifting its right arm up. It flexed its hand and arm a few times, making flakes of ice fall off.
"Siesta, explain." I gestured for Siesta to interpret what Ruukoto said into Halkeginian. After all, since I now know that she can understand the gynoid perfectly and relay that information word for word, I saw no reason why I should do such a menial task myself.
"Umm...well..." Siesta hesitated for a moment before nodding.
"Yes and no. Explanation: This Ruukoto unit is no longer using the version one frame that was used during the Strawberry Crisis incident. Current frame and components therein is the fourth version designed and built by Professor S. Uzuki. Only memory and core personality components and software remain. In conclusion: I am not the Ruukoto that once served Shrine Maiden of Paradise, Hakurei Reimu, not in the literal sense. However, my memories, personality, and line of thinking are still from my first frame. Physically, I am different. Mentally, I am the same." Siesta finished translating what Ruukoto said and gave a slight bow.
"Amazing...the concept of a sentient golem is completely unheard of, especially one that is as self-aware as this. To think that such a thing exists and is speaking to us right now...I'm speechless." Colbert muttered. I chose not to comment on the fact that he had a lot to say despite claiming to be speechless. Everyone seemed to share the sentiment of the good professor though. It was understandable, I may not have been the most technologically savvy being around but even I could understand that being faced with technology that should be impossible for the current level of your civilization can be a bit daunting. I guess that was why Ruukoto was referred to a 'Steel Goddess'. I suppressed a smirk at the thought of the 'Hisoutensoku' or a 'Lunarian Destroyer' wandering into this realm.
"So...what do we do with it?" Kirche suddenly asked. What indeed...
"That's a very good question. Obviously, selling Ruukoto off is out of the question and is non-negotiable." I pointed out, eliciting a groan from the Germanian.
"Why not?" The redhead drawled out. Obviously not happy with being unable to cash in the only thing that we found that was worthwhile...especially one as seemingly valuable as a maid-slash-combat gynoid.
"Too dangerous." Tabitha immediately answered with a serious expression.
"Correct. Regardless of the changes made on her physical appearance, Ruukoto is still something that originally came from my realm. The same realm where the Rawket Lawnchair...the 'Staff of Destruction' came from. The 'Staff of Destruction' is but a mere weapon. Ruukoto is a sentient golem that can hold its own against several denizens of my realm. Think about that for a second and think of what would happen if some warmonger got it...what if someone like you-know-who got it?" I explained, making sure not to say Cromwell's name to prevent further suspicions being voiced by Professor Colbert and to prevent Matilda from having another one of her fits. Of course, I was exaggerating on Ruukoto's destructive potential. As far as I remember, the only real danger about it was if it blew up because of it being Nuclear powered. However, considering the various weapon systems and special equipment that it has -available or otherwise-, I concluded that this 'Fourth' incarnation of the gynoid was much more combat oriented than it originally was.
"So now what?" Louise muttered the question and was met with silence.
"Well the obvious option would be to bring it with us. It's already...awake...so leaving it here won't do any good either." Matilda pointed out another important factor to consider. Thankfully, she didn't seem to have experienced any discomfort any my passing comment about Cromwell.
"Fuga." Ruukoto chimed in as it finally climbed out of its capsule before straightening out her maid outfit and brushing off some leftover frost on her hair.
"A proposal?" I echoed her words in question form. The gynoid nodded before looking at all of us assembled there and giving a polite and professional bow.
"Fuga Fuga. Fuga?" Ruukoto voiced its proposition before standing back straight and causing Siesta to gasp in surprise. I see, so that's what it was getting at...
"Siesta?" I called out to the maid...the human one...and nodded toward Ruukoto. Siesta blinked at me a few times before adopting a look of realization and nodding.
"Proposition for a compromise that would be mutually beneficial. Ruukoto version four's creator, developer, and previous employer are no longer available. This unit was designed for both servitude as a maid as well as a capable combat unit with many talents. In short: If I gain a new master, I will serve and protect him or her until their death. Is there anyone here that could use a unit such as this?" Siesta relayed Ruukoto's suggestion to the rest of our party.
"Me! Over here! I'll take her!" Kirche immediately exclaimed while raising her right hand high. I ignored Kirche and answered Ruukoto myself.
"You may serve my master, Ruukoto." I told the gynoid while gesturing toward Louise. I watched it turn her gaze from me to Louise, a raised brow was the only thing that indicated its wonder as to why I suggested that it serve Louise instead of me.
"Her name is Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière and I am her familiar, so it would be prudent that you serve her instead of me." I provided, earning a tilted head from the gynoid.
"Fuga? Fuga. Fuga?" It asked me as if it was a challenge to comprehend what I just told it.
"Yes. She summoned me through one of her realm's summoning rituals. No, I am not her servant. I am her partner and protector as well as providing assistance on improving herself in various aspects of combat." I explained. Ruukoto considered my words for a few moments before nodding and stepping in front of Louise. The gynoid was slightly taller than Matilda, likely because its shoes had high heels for whatever reason, which obviously meant that it was much taller than my master.
"Wh-wh-what do you want?" Louise suddenly said out in panic. Despite all her previous experience in both her training and at live combat, it seems that my master was still a bit jumpy when it comes to meeting someone new. It also helped that Ruukoto was staring down at her with its emotionless blood-red eyes, a few streams of light running across its eyes every now and then added to the effect. Ruukoto was scanning her...probably trying to figure out how such a small human girl managed to bind me of all things into a real summoning contract. She turned her gaze toward me before commenting on something.
"Fuga..." It said almost disinterestedly. I shook my head and gave it a flat stare.
"Of course it's not over nine-thousand. She's not Reimu nor is she Marisa." I stated with a shrug. It nodded one more time before setting her gaze back to my master.
"Fuga. Fuga?" Ruukoto said before bowing to Louise. My master looked at me in confusion and panic. I decided to translate the gynoid's words this time instead of asking Siesta to do so.
"This Ruukoto version four is ready to imprint itself for lifetime service under a new employer. I ask of you, are you my master?" I relayed Ruukoto's question to Louise. My master looked between my and Ruukoto in turn, which was already standing up straight, before scratching her head through her hat.
"Is it safe?" Louise asked me with a hint of uncertainty. I smiled at her and nodded.
"I wouldn't have suggested it if it wasn't. Despite what Ruukoto looks like, what it sounds like to you, and what it is capable of, it is a loyal servant and will add an extra line of protection for you as well as work as a personal maid." I replied. Indeed, the real reason why I wanted Ruukoto to serve Louise is because I wanted to make sure that she still has some form of protection if ever Matilda or I would be unavailable. Additionally, if Ruukoto's memory is still completely intact, it would allow me access to more Gensokyo-esque tea and snacks outside of Mugenkan...which is always nice.
"Alright, I'll be your master. What do I need to do, perform some kind of contract spell?" Louise gave her answer to Ruukoto before asking how to seal the deal. Ruukoto nodded before closing its eyes. I suddenly sensed a powerful energy spike coming from it. Its entire body gave off a soft white glow before subsiding, but the jump in energy remained. It wasn't magic...it was something completely different. Was it its power source? The gynoid's eyes opened and we all noticed that its lifeless red eyes were replaced with gentle blue eyes.
"Wh-what's going on?" My master suddenly asked. To her everyone's surprise, including my own, Ruukoto answered Louise question...in Halkeginian.
"Overdrive System 'White Noise' is in effect. Voice print recorded and archived. Greetings Mistress Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière..." Ruukoto said in a warm motherly voice that reminded me of Reimu's mother as it greeted Louise. It gave a perfect curtsy before continuing.
"I am Combat Maid Gynoid designation Ruukoto Unit-One Version-Four. To complete imprint of new master, please hold out both of your hands." Ruukoto stated with a warm smile that was completely out of character from the usually stoic gynoid...it was like a completely different sentience was speaking right now. It said that one of its Overdrive System was active. I decided that I needed to know more about this 'White Noise'...no...I needed to know more about this new and improved Ruukoto in general. As I pondered on how exactly I was going to do that, Louise dumbly nodded at the gynoid...probably too shocked with the display to resist...before holding out both her hands toward Ruukoto. The gynoid continued to smile warmly at Louise as it took both her hands and...
"Ooooww!" Louise suddenly screamed out as her face twisted in pain. On the other hand, Ruukoto simply maintained its warm smile as several streams of light ran across its eyes. It finally released Louise's hands and my master used this moment to walk back a few steps away from the gynoid. She looked at her hands before I felt a familiar spike of magic coming from her. Louise showed the palms of her hands to us, a small red dot at the center of each hand were visible.
"You hurt me!" My master roared at Ruukoto. The maid...the robot one...tilted its head to the side and placed a finger on its chin to indicate its confusion.
"I did not harm you Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière. I simply needed a blood sample for blood and DNA archiving as well as being able to introduce necessary nano-machines into your system." Ruukoto innocently said in the face of my master's accusations. A blood sample didn't seem too serious but...
"What do you mean by introducing nano-machines into Louise's body?" I asked it. Obviously, I wasn't particularly happy about Ruukoto suddenly injecting foreign substances into Louise's blood stream...especially machines...and my tone of voice made this clear.
"The nano-machines introduced into Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière's blood stream are non-harmful. They relay the mistress' vital signs and current location to me using an information transmission system developed by Professor S. Shirakawa which takes advantage of the fourth and tenth dimensions. Additionally, they are designed to perform micro-surgery and are able to repair any damaged or ruptured blood vessels to a degree to prevent internal bleeding. Do keep in mind that the scope of the nano-machines' ability to repair blood vessels are limited to small holes and cuts. Massive internal bleeding will be impossible to prevent if a major artery or too many blood vessels are compromised." It explained with a prim and proper smile. I nodded in understanding at all the benefits that those nano-machines just gave Louise. However...
"Understood. No need to call my master by her full name...Louise or Mistress should be enough. Also, do make it a point to consult us first before doing anything like altering my master's physiology...regardless of how minor or how beneficial it is." I informed it seriously, earning a nod from the gynoid.
"Acknowledged." It immediately responded with a warm smile.
"Yuka! What did that thing do to Louise?" Matilda cut into our conversation. I turned to her and saw that she had her wand in her hand and was standing between Louise and Ruukoto.
"It wasn't anything harmful. Ruukoto simply needed a blood sample from Louise to register her as its new master. The nano-machines that were introduced into her body will provide up to date information about Louise's vital signs such as her heart rate, her blood pressure, her breathing, among other things. Those things will also constantly transmit Louise's location directly to Ruukoto, which will make it impossible for Louise to disappear without a trace. No matter where she is or where she's taken, we'll be able to find her. And lastly, those things will help close up any wounds that draw blood, making Louise harder to kill." I explained. Hopefully it was enough to satisfy both Louise and Matilda. Thankfully, the former thief lowered her wand and put it away after giving one last glare at Ruukoto.
"So, I'm not going to die, right?" Louise asked both me and the maid...the robot one...as she wrapped her arms around herself.
"You will not die by my hand, Mistress. I am your loyal servant from now on and will do everything in my power to ensure your safety and comfort." It said in parting before it closed its eyes one more time. The same while glow wrapped itself around its body, its energy signature lowering to its previous levels, before it opened its eyes again to reveal Ruukoto's standard blood-red doll-like eyes.
"Fuga." Ruukoto said, once again adopting its previous speech pattern.
"Ugh! And here I thought we can understand it now..." Louise muttered after once again hearing nothing but 'Fuga' from the gynoid. I tapped Ruukoto on the shoulder, turning her attention to me, before leaning in close enough for me to whisper in its ear.
"I want detailed reports in all of your systems that can be disclosed without the need for any security confirmations. Power systems. Mechanics. Computer systems. Weapon systems. Special equipment and abilities. Everything." I stated before pulling back. The gynoid looked at me for a few moments as streams of light once again ran across its eyes.
"Fuga. Fuga?" I replied with a nod as it posed the question.
"I don't care how long it would take for you to write everything down. Make it happen." I insisted, earning another nod of acknowledgement from the gynoid.
"I assume that I had missed a few things while I was back home?" Monmon asked as she greeted our treasure hunting party near the academy's entrance.
"Monmon~! I am so happy to finally see you again my love~!" Guiche immediately exclaimed as soon as he heard Monmon's voice and saw her after he got off the carriage he was in. The young man ran toward his lover, only to be completely ignored by her. Monmon didn't even acknowledge his presence and simply walked past him.
"Quite the ensemble you have here." Monmon commented as we got off from our respective carriages. Because of the added members of our little group, we had to hire two carriages instead of one in order to accommodate everyone. Louise, Matilda, Siesta, Ruukoto, and I were in the lead carriage while Tabitha, Kirche, Guiche, and Professor Colbert rode in the second carriage.
"It's good to see you again, Monmon. I missed you." Louise happily greeted her friend with a hug. Monmon returned the hug and told my master that she had missed her as well.
"Hey there, Montmorency! Did you bring us back anything nice?" Kirche suddenly cut in as she and Tabitha walked up to the blonde.
"Nothing for you, certainly." Monmon flatly declared, earning a shrug from the Germanian.
"Welcome back." Tabitha greeted with a nod before turning her attention back to her book.
"It's nice to see you too, Tabitha." Monmon regarded the Gallian.
"Ah, Miss Montmorency! Welcome back." Professor Colbert greeted his student.
"Professor." Monmon returned the greeting with a polite nod.
"Hello there, Miss Montmorency." It was Matilda's turn to greet Monmon and the young woman gave her a meek smile.
"Hello again, Miss Matilda. I'm really sorry about what happened before and..." Monmon said, once again apologizing for the whole Love Potion incident.
"Don't worry about it. I don't hold anything against you." Matilda assured Monmon, who gave out a sigh of relief. I looked around and noticed that Siesta had already left, likely gone back to the servants' wing to report in.
"Fuga?" Ruukoto's question snapped me from my thoughts. The maid...the robot one...stood beside me and was looking at the interaction between Louise, Matilda, and Monmon with about as much visible interest as it could.
"She's one of Louise's friends. You can put her on the 'do not kill' list." I stated, earning a nod from the gynoid. I made it a point to instruct the maid...the robot one...to make sure that it would never go hostile to any of Louise's friends or the people she trusted...the ones that got the okay from me anyway. The list would likely be updated once we meet Louise's family but that would be something to take care of some other time.
"Fuga." Ruukoto acknowledged the order with a nod. The girl in question glanced at me before smiling and walking up to me and the gynoid.
"Hello Mister Yuka." She greeted with a polite bow.
"Montmorency." I returned the greeting with a curt nod while foregoing the use of her nickname. She blushed at bit at the sudden change in the way I referred to her but she quickly recovered before turning her attention to the gynoid beside me.
"And this is?" She asked while nodding toward Ruukoto. Considering the gynoid's physical appearance, Monmon seemed to have come to the conclusion that this was no ordinary maid.
"Fuga." The gynoid in question greeted the blonde with a polite bow.
"Fuga? What does that mean? Is that her name?" Monmon asked me in confusion at both the strange word and the strange way Ruukoto conveyed it.
"This is Ruukoto. It was once a resident of my home realm. Due to various circumstances, it managed to find its way here. It is currently serving under Louise as a personal maid and assistant. The reason why it says 'Fuga' is because it is how it is heard by anyone who either did not come from my home realm or does not have the blood of anyone who came from my realm." I introduced the gynoid to Monmon. The blonde eyed Ruukoto carefully before turning back to me.
"So she's as strong as you are?" Monmon asked, earning a soft chuckle from me.
"I don't think so. Most of its combat capabilities have been locked down for safety purposes but it can still outclass any ordinary human as far as physical and mental prowess goes." I explained, earning a thoughtful hum from Monmon.
"Just as long as she doesn't cause harm Louise or anyone else..." Monmon muttered before nodding toward Ruukoto.
"It's nice to meet you, I am Montmorency Margarita la Fère de Montmorency." Monmon formally introduced herself to Ruukoto.
"Montmorency is fine by the way..." I told gynoid, who nodded in response. Monmon raised at brow at me for the addition that I made.
"It tends to regard anyone with their full name every time it talks to them of referrs to them unless you specify it to do otherwise." I provided, earning a tilted head from Monmon in addition to her raised brow.
"Why do you keep calling her 'it'? I understand that she's a commoner but there's no reason not to treat her as a human being. Don't make it look like she's some form of furniture." Monmon asked me the most common question about Ruukoto so far. I raised my own brow at the way Monmon quickly went to the defense of Ruukoto's human rights...misplaced as it was.
"Obviously, I don't treat it like a human because it isn't one. Ruukoto, R-Blade please." I instructed the gynoid with a knowing smile. It was easier to simply show her what Ruukoto was instead of once again delving into another detailed explanation.
"Fuga." The maid...the robot one...answered before raising her right hand and holding it out to the side.
A robotic but feminine voice declared, I was still unsure if it was Ruukoto's voice or something else since it was destorted enough to not be distinct, before the gynoid's right arm glowed white up to its elbow. Ruukoto's right arm reshaped itself into a double-edged blade that gave of a blue hue around the edges and the tip. It really looked like someone took out the gynoid's forearm and replaced it with a sword...minus the handle.
"What the founder is that?" Monmon exclaimed while pointing at Ruukoto's R-Blade.
"It's Ruukoto's R-Blade, weren't you listening?" I flatly asked her. Monmon suddenly gave me one of those 'you know what I mean' looks before cautiously looking back to Ruukoto. It was at that moment that I noticed Guiche walking up to us after hearing Monmon's yell.
"Worry not, my love~! Ruukoto is completely loyal to Louise and would never harm any of her friends." Guiche declared while stepping in between Ruukoto and Monmon, showing just how safe it was by showing his back to the gynoid.
"Well?" Monmon asked me, completely ignoring Guiche once again.
"Ruukoto, Yuka, stop scaring Monmon." Louise suddenly cut in as she and Matilda approached us. Kirche, Tabitha, and Professor Colbert were already heading back inside the academy while the carriages we hired were already on their way back, leaving only us there. Louise eyed Ruukoto and I before settling her gaze on the R-Blade.
"Put that glowing arm blade thing away before you stab someone in the face." Louise growled at Ruukoto. The gynoid tilted her head to the side before lowering her right arm.
"Fuga Fuga." It said in response to my master's statement, earning a chuckle from me.
"And what seems to be so funny?" Louise asked me. I simply gave a shrug before responding.
"Ruukoto said that the probability of it accidentally stabbing someone in the face with R-Blade while it has full control over its body is astronomical. So much so that it would be far more likely for someone to die by getting stabbed to death with a wooden spoon." I provided, earning confused looks from everyone there...aside from Ruukoto of course.
"A spoon?" Matilda asked with a raised brow, possibly considering how such a thing would have been possible.
"Fuga." Ruukoto responded. Everyone looked at me expectantly as they waited for the translated version of the gynoid's reasoning.
"It's blunt. It would hurt more." I translated. Dead silence followed for a few more moments before Louise shook her head.
"Anyway, put that away. We're going back to my room." Louise said before walking back toward the academy with Matilda in tow.
"I'll come with you. I want to hear what happened while I was gone." Monmon said as she followed my master and her tutor.
"Go." I said to Ruukoto and it gave me a bow before following the three women.
"She's ignoring me...she's utterly ignoring me..." Guiche muttered in shock as he watched his lover walk away from him without even a single word. I was wondering if I should say something or simply walk away when Guiche decided for me.
"What do I do, Mister Yuka?" Guiche suddenly yelled out in despair.
"I am really the very last one you should ask advice from when it comes to love..." I stated flatly.
"But...but...but...how can I patch things up with her if she won't even listen to me?" Guiche asked me, completely ignoring my previous statement.
"Honestly, I don't really see why that is my problem. Figure it out for yourself, Guiche. Monmon should be at least worth that much to you." I said, reminding Guiche of our little talk before Louise and I left for Albion. It was then that I suddenly felt Derf stirring from its scabbard on my back. The sword emerged partially, just enough for it to be able to start talking.
"You should give her some space first. Going after her as soon as you two reunite will only remind her of the reason why she got mad at you in the first place." I raised a brow at the sudden input by Derf while Guiche simply gawked at it while blinking dumbly.
"Let her get settled in first. Let her get back into her usual routines. Approach her as a friend first and show her that you're more than just the damn playboy that was cheating on her for months on end. It will take a while, but if you really love her that much, it shouldn't be too hard." Derf continued its lecture with Guiche now listening intently. The young man suddenly furrowed his eyebrows before adopting a horrified look.
"I'm taking love advice from a talking sword..." He muttered at the realization on what was happening as he held his head in despair.
"Yes...how the mighty have fallen. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'll need to check on my master." I said disinterestedly before walking off, leaving the young man to his thoughts.
I climbed up the dormitory tower as I made my way back to Louise's room. I thought over what happened during our little treasure hunting trip while using my parasol as a walking stick. We didn't find any treasures during the trip per say. In fact, the only valuables we were able to get were those gold pieces and items that keep dropping off of those goblins whenever we killed them...most of which were simply junk. What we did find though...was Ruukoto. The gynoid's discovery was about as surprising as finding out that Siesta was a descendant of someone from Gensokyo. It didn't seem like her great grandfather had any youkai blood in him since her family's life spans seem to be those of regular humans. Regardless, I planed to have Ruukoto jot down as many things about it as it can possibly provide and give the information to Nitori for analysis. I wanted to know how much the gynoid has changed since the last I saw it and I want to know how to take advantage of any upgrades it had received while in the hands of that Uzuki woman. I was standing in front of Louise's door and was about to open it when...
"He did what?" Monmon's outraged roar came from within Louise's room. I raised a brow at the sudden outburst and heard a few more things from Louise's friend.
"That bastard! You were entrusted to him by your families! He was supposed to be your husband-to-be! Your rock! Your absolute constant throughout everything that life will throw at you! And he...he...he...I'LL KILL THAT BASTARD!" Monmon continued to rant as she started to sound more and more like Louise when she was angry. I shook my head at the odd thought before opening the door. Louise, Monmon, and Matilda were seated at the table in Louise's room while enjoying one tea. Ruukoto was standing behind Louise like any capable maid would just in case that my master would need anything.
"I'm afraid that you're already too late in that regard." I suddenly cut in, turning everyone's attention to me...except for Ruukoto which continued its vigil behind Louise, which was understandable since it should have been able to sense my presence the moment I stepped in front of the door to Louise's room.
"I've already made sure that the late Viscount Wardes regretted what he did to Louise in the few precious seconds he had left before his life was extinguished in a rather creative way." I said while placing my parasol on Louise's desk and propping Derf up against the wall before taking my hat off.
"Are you sure?" Monmon asked with narrowed eyes. I chuckled before giving her a warm smile.
"Matilda requested that no quarter be given to that man. After what he did to both Matilda and Louise...I saw no reason to do so either. Believe me when I say that his final moments were moments no living human should ever experience." I stated with the same smile. Monmon nodded in approval since she already knows how fierce I can be. None of them have ever actually seen me truly lash out in anger...hopefully, none of them ever had to. I then noticed that Ruukoto was now looking at me intently as if it wanted to say something.
"Yes?" I asked it, prompting the gynoid to bow before speaking.
"Fuga. Fuga?" It asked me with a tilted head. Ah, right...I suppose that those things would be needed.
"Valid concerns indeed..." I muttered as I rubbed my chin with my right hand.
"Do you mind letting us in on your little conversation?" Louise drawled out while looking between us with a raised brow.
"I asked Ruukoto to compile as much information about it as possible. I wanted it to write it all out so I can give it to an acquaintance of mine who is well versed when it comes to advanced machinery like Ruukoto." I explained. I am, of course, talking about Nitori and the kappa. They did make the Hisoutensoku after all.
"And why would you want to do something like that?" Monmon asked me before sipping some tea.
"I want Ruukoto's specifications analyzed to know everything I can about it. The reason why is so we can take advantage of all of Ruukoto's capabilities and make absolutely certain that it will not pose any threat to Louise or anyone else she holds dear." I replied with a smile, making my master blush and fidget in her seat.
"Fuga." Ruukoto argued with a tone that sounded almost like it was offended.
"I understand that you already said that you wouldn't to anything to harm Louise. However, I don't want to take any chances. Besides, if there isn't anything to be afraid of, then you have nothing to worry about, right?" I posed the question and Ruukoto immediately nodded in agreement to the logic.
"So what is this whole thing about concerns?" Matilda asked, managing to pick out a critical point that I only muttered out loud.
"As I previously stated, I wanted Ruukoto to jot down detailed reports about all its functions, equipment, and abilities. That would mean that it would need something to write on and something to write with and...if what it says is true...it will need to lot of things to write on and to write with." I explained. Louise made a thoughtful sound while taking small sips from her tea.
"Maybe you can ask Professor Colbert about it. The two of you seem to get along well enough and he should be more than happy to help if it's for the sake of learning more about Ruukoto." Louise suggested.
"Yes, that could work." I agreed with a nod.
"How can it write that fast?" Colbert asked in complete disbelief as Ruukoto meticulously jotted down its specifications on the parchment that was provided for it, it even drew detailed diagrams and schematics for its more delicate or advanced systems. The good professor jumped at the chance to learn more about Ruukoto when I asked if he can provide writing material for the gynoid to take down its specifications. We were led to the academy library where Ruukoto requested to see the kind of material it will write on and write with. After being provided a page of parchment and a bottle of ink with a fine feather pen, the gynoid specifically requested five-hundred sleeves of parchment and one-hundred and twently-two bottles of ink and five spare feather pens. I believe that the professor's brain actually stopped for a few seconds when the gynoid made its extremely specific request. Colbert even had to ask permission from Headmaster Osmond to acquire the necessary materials and thankfully, the old man was more than willing to help out especially after he saw Ruukoto personally...even going so far as referring to the gynoid as a 'Gift of the Universe'. And so, it came to pass that Ruukoto was provided the materials it needed to take down its information. Matilda dropped by and voiced her interest in knowing more about the gynoid as well. As a golem user, I supposed that it was only natural for her to be curious as to how Ruukoto worked as it might give her ideas on how to improve her own golemcraft. I asked her where Louise was and Matilda said that she was still with Monmon and they were sharing stories about the various happenings while they were apart. It seemed that the two of them had become the best of friends without me even realizing it.
"Ruukoto already compiled all the information it wanted to take down, the only thing it needed is a way to do so. If you recall, I already told explained that it is superior to ordinary humans when it comes to physical prowess as well as information processing. This is simply that superiority being displayed." I answered. Colbert nodded in understanding before walking up behind the gynoid to observe just how it was accomplishing what it was doing. Matilda took this time to pick up one one of the leaves of parchment that had been completely packed with detailed information about the gynoid's power source, the Erde-Kaiser Sigma Type Seven engine...it even had a drawing of the engine itself on the upper left part of the parchment along with several equations that seem to have been put there to prove the validity of the use of that power source. The former thief stared at the parchment intently before grimacing, I raised a brow as to why. I leaned in closer and that was when I noticed something about what words written on it.
They were in English, not Halkeginian.
"I see that even you have yet to decipher the English written language." I quipped with a smirk. Matilda turned to me and nearly yelped in surprise at our apparent proximity. Thankfully, she refrained from voicing out her surprise. Instead, she simply took a half-step away from me before pouting...yes, pouting...at me while blushing. I ignored the little voice at the back of my head...which, oddly enough, sounded like Marisa's voice complete with a '~ze' at the end of its sentence...that commented on how cute Matilda looked at the time. There was silence between us for a few moments before Matilda looked back to the parchment in her hand and then back to me.
"What do you mean by the 'English' language? I've never heard of such a language before." Matilda inquired, foregoing her previous embarrassment to know more about what was written on the parchment in her hand.
"English is a language from the outside world of my home realm. It originated from an island country of England which is not unlike your Albion...of course, England isn't floating in the sky. The reason why Ruukoto is writing in English is likely because it is the most commonly accepted language in the outside world. Gensokyo used to use it a long time ago, but it was abolished by Yukari in favor on the now used 'Common Language' because too many beings were coming into the realm using too many different languages. No one could understand what each other was saying. In the end, Yukari simply shifted the border of Languages so that anyone who came into Gensokyo could understand anyone else regardless of their native language." I explained. Matilda nodded in understanding before her expression darkened a bit.
"That Yukari seems to be quite powerful to be able to do something like that..." Matilda muttered to herself while staring at the specifications for the Erde-Kaiser Sigma Type Seven engine with a frown. I sighed before looking at the many bookshelves that lined the library. It wasn't as extensive as the libraries of the Scarlet Devil Mansion or the Yama's Archives but it seemed...adequate for the needs of school children.
"Yes, she is. Yukari is one of the handful of beings that can fight me to a standstill when I go full tilt. Although, it has been a very long time since I have been able to unleash that much power." I admitted with a chuckle as I reminisced about the days when the spell card rules weren't established yet.
"Do you miss it? Your home realm, I mean." The former thief asked me in a subdued voice. I gave a shrug before answering.
"Not really. I've lived in Gensokyo ever since I was born a youkai sixteen-hundred years ago. I've seen everything there is to see in that realm. The Hakurei Shrine, The Scarlet Devil Mansion, my own Garden of the Sun, the various human villages that have spread out over the centuries, the Bamboo Forest of the Lost, the eternal mansion Eientei, Youkai Mountain, the Forest of Magic, the Netherworld, the Temple of the Earth Spirits, the youkai village Mayohiga, the Hell of Blazing Fires, the heavenly realm of Bhava-Agra, the demon realm of Makai, the Lunarian capital on the dark side of the moon. If its in Gensokyo or connected to it, chances are I've already been there. Besides, it would be rather embarrassing for me to suddenly get homesick after I wished for a significant change in my life." I answered with a wry smile. Matilda stared at me for a few moments before tilting her head to the side.
"A significant change?" Matilda asked.
"Yes. As it stood, my life was rather boring before Louise summoned me. Nothing new was happening and I wished for something radically different to happen in my life. Interestingly enough, three changes did happen to me. Location, responsibility, and gender. Unexpected changes all around but I find the current experience quite novel." I replied. I then noticed that both Matilda and Professor Colbert were looking at me with expressions that gave off varying degrees of 'what did you just say?'
"Umm...I may have heard wrong but...did you say gender?" Colbert asked me with apprehension. I blinked at them a few times and the only sounds that can be heard in the library were Ruukoto's writing.
"Oh yes, you still don't know. I used to be a woman before Louise summoned me." I admitted and Professor Colbert suddenly looked at me with renewed shock and confusion. I tilted my head to the side in wonder when I suddenly heard a loud thumping sound to my side. I turned and saw Matilda on the floor, unconscious.
"You're kidding me…" Yukari voiced her disbelief after I explained to her and to Cirno what we found near Tarbes. I took Matilda back to Louise's room after she fainted, she didn't seem to have taken the news of my genderbending nearly as well as Louise previously had. When I arrived, Louise was already by herself and was talking to Derf about the Founder's Prayer Book and how to pry out more spells from it. When Louise asked what happened, I simply told her the truth and was rewarded with Louise calling me an idiot for not understanding a woman's heart even though I was previously a woman myself. In the end, I set Matilda down on Louise's bed and headed back to the library to check up on Ruukoto. By the time the sun had set, Professor Colbert has offered to provide us reading lamps to allow the gynoid to continue its work without interruption from the lack of light. It was at that time that Ruukoto pointed to one of the leaves of parchment that it had already finished writing. I picked it up and scanned through it to find that the gynoid apparently had five different vision modes that allowed it to see through nearly every spectrum of light. Naturally, night vision came as standard so it didn't really need a lamp to continue its work. I explained that tidbit to Colbert and he became even more amazed with Ruukoto than he already was. Although, judging from the sheer amount of material Ruukoto was taking down, it looked like the little robot maid that everyone forgot about had a lot of new things to amaze others with. Ruukoto managed to finish everything just as the clock turned midnight. We organized the reports and I guided it to the academy garden and into the door I made to be able to access Mugenkan. I still have my policy about not letting humans into my dream realm, aside from Louise of course, but Ruukoto was far from being a human so I allowed it inside if only to prove a point to anyone who wouldn't believe my story…like now, for instance.
"So you're telling us that Reimu used to own a Nuclear-Powered Robot Maid but she lost it and never bothered to look for it ever again. Five-hundred years later, you find it in a hidden Aircraft Hangar that had a protection enchantment that you couldn't muscle through. You find the Robot Maid and it turns out that it had all sorts of awesome upgrades and is now sworn to service under Louise, right?" Cirno asked for verification after she plotted out most of the important points on the subject.
"A rather abridged assessment, but yes." I responded. Yukari and Cirno looked at each other for a few moments before turning back to me.
"Pics or it didn't happen." Cirno challenged before folding her arms and leaning back. I responded with a smile that Cirno should have recognized as the smile I use when I have successfully suckered someone into a situation that completely favors me.
"Oh, I'll do you one better. Ruukoto." I called out to the maid and it walked out from the sea of sunflowers behind me with her reports in hand.
"Lily White on a stick! It's true!" Cirno exclaimed as she quickly walked up to the gynoid before looking studying its features.
"I don't believe it. It's really her…" Yukari muttered. I walked up to Yukari and gave her a knowing smile.
"You were the one who caused her disappearance from Gensokyo in the first place, weren't you?" I asked her, even though I already knew the answer.
"What ever makes you say that?" Yukari asked coyly as she opened her fan to cover the lower part of her face with.
"The only one in Gensokyo at the time that could do anything like making someone or something drop off the realm completely without a trace is you. What I want to know is why you wanted to get rid of it in the first place? From what I remember, it was quite helpful to Reimu back when it was still in her employ." I said as we watched Ruukoto and Cirno introduce themselves to each other.
"Ruukoto was too dangerous to keep. When I found out what its power source could do if it went nuts…I couldn't take that chance." Yukari answered. I guess that was fair. If Ruukoto's original Nuclear Reactor blew up, most of Gensokyo might have been completely destroyed and rendered uninhabitable for centuries.
"Well, I have good news for you. It does not use the same power source anymore." I provided to the border youkai while giving her a measured glance.
"And how is it powered now? Magic?" Yukari asked me and all I could do was shrug.
"I don't believe so. It says that it has something called an Erde-Kaiser Sigma Type Seven engine. I have no idea what that is and that's the reason for that large bundle of parchment in its hands." I answered while pointing at the gynoid and what it was carrying.
"You made it write down all its specifications. You want someone who actually knows something about that kind of thing to give it a once over. What brought on such a move from you?" Yukari asked me after correctly deducing the reason for all the parchment.
"Like you, I don't want to take any chances. If it's completely safe, I want to know what Ruukoto can do which would benefit Louise. Regardless, could you pass the reports on to Nitori? And make sure she doesn't get any ideas about making her own robot maids. The last thing you need is another Maid Revolt." I said with a chuckle when I remembered that particular incident. Thanks to that, Remilia has been giving more respect toward her maids without having to go through bouts of charisma breaking tantrums.
"I'll have Chen pass it along." She said with a smile before looking around.
"But Louise is taking her sweet time to get here. Is she still awake?" Yukari asked me.
"I'm not sure, I never went back to her room. I immediately came here with Ruukoto after it finished writing its reports." I said while rubbing my chin with my hand.
"Hey, don't tell me Louise is missing again." Cirno said with annoyance as she and Ruukoto approached us. My former student had actually originally requested for me to bring her to Halkeginia after Louise was kidnapped by Wardes so she could dispense, quote, 'Cold Justice' on Louise's then fiancé. I turned her down after stating that it was my fault that Wardes managed to take Louise without my knowledge so it was my responsibility to get her back. Cirno backed off but she still seemed to be sensitive about the safety of her junior.
"I don't think so. Ruukoto, can you tell me Louise's current location?" I asked the gynoid and it nodded once before several streams of light ran across its eyes.
"What's it doing?" Cirno asked with a tilted head in curiosity.
"Ruukoto had injected Louise with a package of nano-machines that monitor her vital signs as well as provide minor first aid and relay my master's location directly to it. I want to know if it can still track Louise even though we are currently not in Halkeginia anymore." I explained while nodding toward Ruukoto.
"You let it inject thrice-be-damned nano-machines into Louise?" Cirno asked me with a bit on an edge in her voice. I raised a brow at the sudden shift in her demeanor but I shrugged it off and answered her question.
"It was sudden and it was part of the ritual for Ruukoto to recognize Louise as its new master. Why? Do you have something against nano-machines?" I asked Cirno, who looked at me with a startled expression before grimacing and shaking her head.
"It's a long story…" The ice fairy said without any indication that she would tell that long story. I turned to Yukari for an answer but the border youkai shut her mouth and made a gesture with her hand that looked like she was locking her mouth with a key before throwing said key away. My lips are sealed, eh? I decided not to press the matter if Cirno really didn't want to talk about it. After a few moments, the gynoid's eyes lost the streaming lights and it nodded to me one more time before delivering its report.
"Fuga." Ruukoto stated. So Louise was still in her room at the academy dorms and her vitals suggested that she was sound asleep, that's good to know. I guess that this was just one of those nights when she simply did not show up.
"Are you sure about that? Technically, you're not even in that realm anymore. How can we trust your words?" Cirno asked skeptically as she folded her arms before leaning back. It was a natural question from my former student. Ruukoto normally should not be able to send or receive information to and from Halkeginia and Mugenkan. If it did manage that, it would mean that it had a system that could bypass the dimensional border between realms.
"Fuga Fuga." Ahh…I get it now.
The nano-machines introduced into Louise Françoise le Blanc de la Vallière's blood stream are non-harmful. They relay the mistress' vital signs and current location to me using an information transmission system developed by Professor S. Shirakawa which takes advantage of the fourth and tenth dimensions.
Ruukoto's words from when I first asked about the nano-machines echoed in my mind. So it seems that the transmission of information between Ruukoto and its nano-machines can bypass dimensional barriers because they use a completely different set of dimensional values to exchange information. Quite an innovation…S. Uzuki and S. Shirakawa…quite the minds those two had.
"I didn't understand half of all that science-y mumbo-jumbo that it said. Can we have Nitori have a look at it and give us a more layman's version of the explanation?" Cirno asked me with a pained expression. It seemed that my former student did not have advanced robotics or interdimensional quantum physics as her strengths.
"That's what the paperwork is for, Cirno. I've asked Ruukoto to take down as much information about itself so Nitori can analyze it in Gensokyo." I explained. Cirno eyed the bundle of parchment in Ruukoto's hands and nodded in understanding.
"Got it. I'm assuming that you want me to keep an eye on Nitori while she goes through all that information?" Cirno asked me with a smirk…one that I returned.
"Always fast on the uptake. Yes, I want you to make sure that the kappa won't start building their own versions of Ruukoto using its specifications." I instructed, earning a laugh from the ice fairy.
"I swear…if Nitori does make one, I have a sneaking suspicion that she's gonna name it Skynet or something." Cirno said while shaking her head. Good, this means that both Chen and Cirno will be making sure that Nitori doesn't do anything silly in the name of SCIENCE.
As we continued to converse about Ruukoto and the various happenings back in Gensokyo, I kept having a nagging feeling at the back of my head. It was as if I was forgetting something very important that I needed to check on soon.
Oh well…I'm sure it isn't anything pressing.
Agnès Chevalier de Milan, Captain of the Musketeer Squadron under the personal use of Princess Henrietta de Tristain was currently hurrying to her direct superior's personal chambers. Normally, such a thing would be an act of treason, especially for a commoner like herself. However, the young woman's strode across the halls of the castle with determination and purpose. She was personally chosen by her Princess to lead the new squadron of knights that consisted entirely of commoners and had no magic potential to speak of. The decision was largely frowned upon by the nobility, thus giving her squadron a stigma among knights as nothing more than a 'pet project' by the upstart princess. To be tested, used, and discarded when the time came. Agnès didn't give a damn about what the rest of the nobility thought about her and her subordinates. All she cares about was that the princess pulled her out of a pit of absolute despair and gave her life new meaning. She still had her own business to deal with eventually but that will not stop her from serving her country as best as she could.
The people must do everything for their country. The country must to everything for its people.
"Your Highness, it's me." Agnès called out after knocking on the door six times as she always did. She waited for several tense moments for her liege to answer, the report under her left arm felt heavier and heavier as the seconds passed.
"Agnès? Yes, you may enter." Henrietta stated in her usual tone of voice.
"Please excuse me." The young woman stated before entering. She had short blonde hair with trimmed bangs to prevent it from getting in the way of her aim. She had sharp green eyes that bore years of pain and hatred but also bore determination and loyalty. Her thin frame gave her a distinct feminine feel but it was usually overshadowed by her standard lightweight armor that she and her squadron utilized for quick, precision movements during battle. Her white cloak bore the unique standard of the musketeer squadron. It bore the weight of responsibility as well as the honor and the privilege of serving directly under her princess. Her no-nonsense demeanor didn't even flinch as she saw her princess casually drinking tea with Prince Wales Tudor. Only she and a handful of others in the palace actually knew that the exiled Albion prince was hiding in Tristain. Unfortunately, it seemed that they weren't the only ones who knew about it.
"Is something wrong?" Henrietta asked with worry. The Chevalier reprimanded herself for letting her emotion slip through her mask of professionalism. Agnès took a breath before offering the sealed envelope that contained most dire news.
"The Albion Fleet was spotted leaving nearly every military port they had and are currently on course for the village of Tarbes. Your Highness…I think…Albion just declared war." The young captain said with a grim tone. She wasn't sure if it was the news itself or the tone of voice she used but…her usually flawless princess suddenly dropped her cup of tea on her royal dress and she didn't even seem to notice it.