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An unusual helmet and armor.
Who is that?
The smell of blood and mud along with the scent of various people came from the man.
After removing his gauntlet, the man opened the birdcage.
Zelle cowered and moved as far as possible from him.
The man spoke, “I came before announcing our victory.”
As soon as she heard the voice, Zelle stopped moving away from him. The man’s hands rose up to his helmet.
His dust-covered hands lifted the heavy helmet and revealed sweat-matted hair.
Lumares Valhayle. The commander-in-chief of the Roymonde Kingdom.
And news of victory.
Valhayle inserted his hand inside the birdcage and Zelle hopped onto his hand in excitement. He brought her out and placed her down on the table.
But why is he here?
Valhayle pulled something out from between the iron armor and the leather chest protector.
Zelle couldn’t breathe when she recognized it. It was a golden silk ribbon, a luxurious thing to be found in the gray warfield.
She saw the light-reflective silk of the ribbon and immediately realized that it was a royal item.
Valhayle laid the ribbon in front of Zelle with his rough hands and said.
“It’s one of the things Roheneim received on the celebration of the King’s birthday. I found it in their pillage storage.”
Zelle looked at the ribbon and recalled the glory of the dead dynasty.
Valhayle started tying the ribbon around Zelle’s leg. It was a ribbon too clean to be touched by a soldier’s dirty hands or to be tied around a dirty bird’s leg.
But Valhayle didn’t hesitate. Zelle didn’t resist either. Valhayle tied a not-so-elegant ribbon around Zelle’s leg and spoke.
“I was thinking during this battle that you could be… A gift from heaven. That perhaps you could be God’s message telling me to win this war and rebuild Roymonde.”
His voice was more agitated than usual. He stared into Zelle’s eyes and continued.
“This victory is yours.”
And without putting her back in the birdcage, he left the tent holding his helmet and gauntlet.
Zelle was silent. She felt the bustle of the camp and the excitement in it.
We really won.
A strong scent of blood remained where Valhayle was standing.
Zelle froze from that smell of death and the royal gift around her leg. She mulled over Valhayle’s words and…
For the dead Roheneim soldiers and the possible deaths of the citizens in the capital that would occur from this victory.
The weight of all of the deaths were contained in that single strand of the royal ribbon.
8th princess Zelleine bore the weight of death she caused for the first time and couldn’t help but sob at the entanglement of joy and despair.
After that day, Valhayle never tied her up nor did he send her away before meetings.
Seeing that, Zelle concluded that Valhayle withdrew his suspicion of her completely ever since the Vishen River Battle.
‘Wow, you seriously…’
She was at a loss for words.
You seriously suspected me the whole time until that battle? And that was why you wouldn’t let me listen in the meetings too?
After seeing me wounded by Granoir soldiers not only once, but 3 times?!
But Zelle soon forgot about the frustration of Valhayle’s suspicion because she was busy enjoying her freedom.
Zelle left the tent and flew towards the Vishen River where the soldiers were working.
She felt the warm sun on her feathers and flew lusciously. The pull of the ribbon flowing along the breeze felt nice.
The Roheneim soldiers were building a temporary bridge on the Vishen River downstream to connect the Western region and the Central region.
The water level went below the bank a day after the battle and the weather was perfect so the installment proceeded smoothly.
Zelle liked watching the process.
She spent her whole life hiding and avoiding things in the castle. So she rarely experienced anything outside the castle.
Zelle watched the installment of iron pillars and the machine building the bride. She mumbled internally.
‘I wonder when I will be back on messenger bird duty.’
It was frustrating but understandable that she had to be punished for disobeying a military order; however, it was unfair that that punishment wasn’t going to end.
‘Sure, the victory is mine as you say.’
Zelle grumbled as she chewed on a leaf of the tree she was sitting on.
After a long while of chewing, her head shot up.
Yes. I must go confront him. If I linger around him with something that looks like a confidential message, he’ll probably understand what it means.
Zelle flew towards the tent. When she entered the tent, she heard Sir Luke and Valhayle conversing.
“Granoir… I thought they would wait in the Central-Northern region until backup arrived, but they aren’t doing what we expected.”
“Yes. It’s not easy knowing that the Western region will be under attack instead. Lopecce has a lot to protect.”
Zelle landed on Valhayle’s armor which was hanging in one corner.
At that moment,
An unfamiliar bird’s cry came from somewhere. Zelle turned towards the source of the cry.
There was another bird in the birdcage she used to be in.
A brown-pattern and a slightly blue-tinted back feather unlike Zelle’s.
That’s a… Male cavier falcon?!
Zelle stared at the bird, dumbfounded. There was no other bird than her in this camp.
Then where did that cavier falcon come from? Was it captured recently? Is it a new bird to replace me?
A sudden feeling of betrayal overcame her body.
Zelle cried out in anger. Valhayle and Sir Luke, who were conversing softly, turned towards her at the same time.
You ungrateful, mean asshole!
“Gweck! Gwechhh!! Gweckkk!!!”
The eye of the bird in the birdcage widened. Zelle didn’t like its reserved posture and shining feathers.
Zelle glared at the bird with evil intent.
“That guy is truly something peculiar. I thought it got calmer nowadays but look at it now.”
Sir Luke spoke sarcastically. Valhayle looked between the bird in the birdcage and Zelle before he mumbled indifferently.
“Animals value their territory. It probably thinks the other bird intruded into its space.”
Sir Luke shook his head.
“I don’t think so. Territorial fights only happen between the same sex. They are different genders to begin with.”
Valhayle raised his brows.
Valhayle’s eyes slowly studied Zelle.
“Then perhaps it’s just being cautious of the new bird.”
I’m not! Zelle stomped her foot in frustration.
However, Valhayle looked at Sir Luke as if he was trying to get back to whatever they were talking about.
“It would be a pain in the neck if the West is conquered so I’ll command its citizens to evacuate to the mountain fortress.”
“Yes, sir. It would be best for the people to find shelter in the mountain fortress with all the resources just in case things go bad.”
Valhayle started scribbling away on a small paper. Zelle was still huffing in anger, but she decided to continue her tantrum after Valhayle finished whatever he had to do.
‘Look. Look what a rational and understanding bird… No, I mean, human I am! Are you really going to replace me with that bird?!’
While Valhayle rolled the piece of paper, Sir Luke brought the bird out of the birdcage. Valhayle started tying the confidential message around the male cavier falcon’s leg.
Sir Luke patted the bird, which was extending its leg out so that it was easier for Valhayle to tie the letter around its leg.
“Wow. Lopecce trained their bird well.”
Zelle watched this all in disbelief. Judging from what Sir Luke said, that bird must have been brought here from Lopecce.
At this rate, that bird would soon steal her contributions to the war. Furthermore, it would threaten her position as Valhayle’s pet bird.
Sir Luke clicked his tongue.
“It’s a shame that we have to return this guy.”
Zelle widened her eyes.
Eh? Return? To Lopecce?
So that means that bird isn’t our camp’s…
Zelle jumped to express her joy.
‘Yes, that was Lopecce’s bird. It wasn’t my competitor!!’
The world suddenly started looking different. Zelle watched Valhayle tie the confidential message around the bird’s leg with contentment.
Yes, if you know what I’ve done for you, you can’t do this to me.
Then Zelle observed the male cavier falcon without any feelings of anger from its head to its tail feather.
Hm… It takes quite good care of itself.
Zelle looked at the bird’s neatly shaped feathers and felt a little jealous.
To be honest, she didn’t care much about arranging her feathers. When Zelle continued to stare, the male cavier falcon started crying again.
Zelle realized that its cry contained friendliness.
Hmm. So I’m the same species after all, huh.
Well to think about it, to Zelle that bird was a potential competitor; but to that bird, Zelle was probably just a ‘bird’.
Then it cried the first time it saw me because it knew that I was one of its kind.
Zelle returned the bird with a sound.
After not-really-communicating with a bird, she could see that bird in a more objective way. Zelle looked at its wagging tail feather and clever eyes and thought,
‘Woah, it looks really dashing.’
…Huh, hold on. What am I thinking about a bird?
Valhayle dismissed Sir Luke with a new order and turned to face Zelle and the male cavier falcon.
“It’s loud now that there are two birds in the tent.”
Then he grabbed the male cavier falcon and strode towards the entrance. The cavier falcon turned to look at Zelle.
Zelle cocked her head.
Valhayle sent the bird and Zelle watched it until it was out of sight.
‘This must have been what it looked like when I flew away too.’
Valhayle’s voice interrupted her trance.
Zelle turned towards him. The mane was looking at her with his arms crossed and an oddly offended expression.
“What bothered you so much earlier?”
Zelle recalled the things she was going to yell about earlier. She also remembered that that was all resolved when the male cavier falcon left the camp.
Well, it’s still a mystery when he will let me back on messenger bird duty but…
Zelle felt a minuscule amount of trust from Valhayle, who was asking about her feelings. The trust of a man who knew that she wasn’t like any other bird.
Alright, that’ll do for now. Anyway, the only bird you would use as a messenger bird is me, right?
And I am the only one in the candidacy of becoming your pet, right??
Zelle landed on his shoulder, rubbed her head against his neck, and cried pleasantly.
Valhayle looked at her as if he was trying to discern her scheme.
But he soon gave up and sighed.
“What is this sudden change in behavior.”
On the surface, this was another scolding, but.
Zelle knew from his tone that he didn’t dislike when she did this.
Heh. Zelle smirked at her improving potential as a pet bird.
W-Wait. This isn’t it.
She grabbed her head.
‘I was just satisfied with my state as a bird…’
Zelle didn’t know if she should be happy or sad in this confusing situation.
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TL/N: By joining the discord group you will get updates on every release you keep up to in the woopread website and will be able to communicate with other fellow readers and translators! Also please join and make me and Cthulhu happi. 🙂 Thank you~
P.S. As embarrassing it is for me to admit… Those who are reading the manwha may have realized that the title is actually Carrier Falcon Princess… (I read it as Cavier because of the ridiculously fancy and small cursive title on the kakao webnovel cover page) sob Butttt I think it’s too late to change it now so I’ll keep it kek. Also to those who are wondering about the source of the imaginary bird named cavier falcon in the story, in the raw it actually says “Merne” (also a imaginary bird) so I just substituted all mentions of Merne to Cavier falcon (and I think it worked out well if not better so…) Anyway that’s the embarrassing story of how one translator misread a fancy cursive and how this novel/manwha’s title became Cavier Falcon Princess.