In “Altodestenia Kingdom”, receiving the recognition of the King, four dragon clans were granted status and honor, among them White Dragon Duke lives in a castle within the land he rules, called White Dragon Duke’s Castle also known as “Crystal Palace”.
Black Dragon Duke’s Castle, also known as “Obsidian Palace”.
Blue Dragon Duke’s Castle, also known as “Sapphire Palace”.
Red Dragon Duke’s Castle, also known as “Ruby Palace”.
The aliases of these four castles came from the four main magic beads – White Stone Beads (White Crystal), Black Stone Beads (Obsidian), Blue Stone Beads (Sapphire), and Red Stone Beads (Ruby), mined from all over the world as basic magic materials.
There is a history behind the style of these buildings; they are modeled after the king of this kingdom’s Heavenly Star Castle (also known as Diamond Palace).
In the eyes of many people, these four castles have reputations on the same ranking, except for those working under the four Dragon Dukes; they all felt that their own lords have the most distinguished castles in the entire kingdom, so as long as they all gathered in one place, they will naturally boast about the symbols of their cities. It is not an overstatement to say that the number of times this has happen is so often it has become a routine.
Among the four castles, White Dragon Duke’s Castle is located right next to a quiet lake. This lake is well-known as a habitat for spirits and is called Undine Lake.
Beside the lake is a port that is built on a large sum of manpower and budget – the facility is perfect in the fact that warships and other large ships can dock in and prepare – although, usually all sorts of sizes of ships dock in the port, but a large ship exclusive for the Duke’s family “Alumina”, now a transport for the Duke’s family to other cities, is docked on the other side of the port, all the other medium and small-sized vessels are on other wharves. But, today unexpectedly, only a few ships without purpose are dock there.
One woman is standing on the dock’s wharf.
“. . . whew.”
Her silver hair swaying in the wind blowing across the lake indicates her blood-relation with the White Dragon Duke.
Fair-white face with dazzling golden pupils inherited from her mother. Her mother, before the marriage with the White Dragon Duke, no, even after they became husband and wife, is regarded as having the most beautiful looks around.
The graceful figure with clothes adorned with white accessories, even the bards would sing about her beauty, was just like a goddess.
But, the expression that appeared on that face was a dark one.
She sighed and looked across the lake. If someone saw this, they might have the thought that she was going to commit suicide by jumping into the lake. In fact, she really has the thought of jumping into the lake. Although, she still has some rationality in her, restraining her from putting it into action, but the will to dispel that thought did not exist.
“ . . . Ah . . . really. . .”
‘If people can live based on rationality alone, if people can live based on wishes alone, wouldn't that be nice?’
As a daughter of a Duke that rules over a large territory, as a soldier of a kingdom, she has never act out her role. She has neither approved the value she has nor has she a reason to let others approved.
These ashamed-to-face-the-people thoughts have robbed her of all her cheerful expression.
She understands that, whether good or bad, the nobles have their obligation. To her, just this alone was enough to make her lose sight of the value of her own life. Once she thought of the problems that will arise if she was to take her own life, and the problems she will cause to other people, she loses the will to end her life.
She is the daughter of the White Dragon Duke; the majority of her life is built on the sacrifices others make, this is not about what she wishes, from the moment she was born, this has already been decided.
“ . . .”
Even so, she still thought of jumping into the lake many times, once she thought this world does not need someone like her, the idea of committing suicide does not easily disappear. Yet, when she was about to do it, the rationality inside her stop her from doing so. After repeating the struggle for some time, the indecisive her, lift her line of sight as if trying to change her depressing mood. Then, she looks around, feeling as if something is wrong with the side of the walls by the lake.
“What’s that? Some kind of suspicious item – no way, there shouldn't be anything explosives, but. . . ”
She thought about many possibilities for a moment, with eyes filled with doubt and alert, she concentrated on the center of the weirdness, in her mind, one of the military-used magic started – Far-sight magic, letting her mana channel along the magic.
What appears on her mind was something unlike the vision perceived in reality. What she saw was something that should not be possible, but was something that she could not completely deny. Wide-eyed, she took a deep breath.
Then, her breath stopped and the air she sucked in was spitted out.
“. . . Wh- !”
Was that a voice calling for someone, or was it a moan? The confused her could not remember what she said.