WebNovel Sugar Apple Fairytale Vol 1 Chapter 7

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Chapter 7. The Path of the Royal Medal
On top of a low hill surrounded by a moat sat the enormous royal castle.
As if to gather eyes to the royals that dwelled within, the city streets extended
out from the castle in a radiating pattern. Buildings constructed from stone
filled every inch of s.p.a.ce between the streets.
The eight giant avenues leading to the royal castle were paved, spread with
stones.
The sugar sculpture festival was held on one of these eight streets, the widest
of them all, which led to the main gate of the royal castle: the Boulevard of
Triumphant Return. In the plaza located directly in front of the castle gate a
tent was pitched, and underneath it chairs were arranged on a raised platform.
These were the seats for the members of the royal family who would attend
the festival.
The people of the imperial city loved festivals.
For no other reason than to catch a glimpse of the royal family, the citizens
had flocked to the plaza.
Closest to the gazes of the onlookers sat the King and Queen in the seats
reserved for the royal family. Behind them were the royal princes and
princesses. Their dazzling vestments and regal appearance took Ann‟s breath
away.
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In front of the royal family‟s chairs, a number of tables draped with white
tablecloths were lined up side-by-side. On top of these tables, sugar sculptures
as big as a person‟s arms‟ width were placed in a row.
All of them should be richly colored and display fine workmanship.
However, at the moment, all of the sugar sculptures were covered with cloth,
so it was impossible to see what was underneath. In front of each sugar
sculpture stood the craftsman who‟d made it. Because they were appearing in
front of the king, everyone was decked out in their finest clothing.
Jonas was there as well, wearing a splendid fur vest.
The sugar sculpture festival was presided over by Earl Downing. He was an
elderly man who‟d displayed an uncommon shrewdness as the Minister of the
Interior during the reign of the previous king. He‟d retired from that post
already, but even so he was an old retainer who enjoyed the trust of the current
king as well.
The retainer confirmed that the sugar craftsmen were all lined up, and that the
royal family were all in their seats.
Earl Downing had just stood up to say the opening proclamation which would
begin the examination of the sugar sculptures.
Suddenly, there was a great commotion in one part of the audience.
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The sight that reached the old retainer‟s eyes as he glanced up with brows
furrowed to see what was going on was that of a box-shaped wagon charging
through the crowd.
“Watch out!!”
“Stop that wagon!!”
As the guards charged the wagon, the slender girl driving it yanked on the
reins, bringing the wagon to a halt. Then she jumped down from the driver‟s
seat and ran into the plaza, slipping through the guards‟ outstretched arms.
A black-haired young man followed behind her, as if protecting her.
The girl was headed for the tent where Earl Downing stood.
“Catch her!!”
One of the guards grabbed the girl‟s arm. However, the black-haired young
man protecting her kneed the guard in the stomach several times. The guard
went flying backwards.
To the girl whose arm had been released, he shouted, “Go!”
She was already running.
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The young man stood between the girl and the guards brandishing spears,
preventing them from chasing after her.
That‟s when the onlookers finally noticed the single, beautiful wing on the
young man‟s back.
“I won‟t let you lay a hand on that girl!”
“You‟re… a fairy?!”
The girl who was running full-speed towards the tent where Earl Downing
stood tripped just as she reached it. She lost her balance and pitched forward,
falling to the ground.
Even so, she raised her head and shouted desperately between pants, “I‟ve
observed that the sugar sculpture festival‟s opening proclamation has yet to be
made. In that case, it should still be possible to enter. I would like to
partic.i.p.ate in the compet.i.tion. I am a sugar craftswoman. My name is Ann
Halford. I don‟t have a hometown to declare.”
The guards who came pouring out of the tent pinned Ann down where she‟d
fallen and shouted, “You‟ve got a lot of nerve!!”
From behind Earl Downing, who watched this entire exchange with wide eyes,
came a cheerful, laughing voice.
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“My, my, just when I‟d thought that you wouldn‟t come, what a flashy
entrance!! You‟re an endless source of amus.e.m.e.nt, Ann!”
Ann‟s eyes opened wide in recognition of the familiar voice.
Behind Earl Downing stood the figure of a young n.o.bleman. He wore formal
clothing adorned with silver embroidery. This was without doubt the costume
of the Silver Sugar Viscount.
The person wearing it was a familiar-looking man with wild brown eyes.
“Hugh?!”
“Mercury. You know this girl?” Earl Downing asked Hugh.
—- Mercury?
Ann couldn‟t take her eyes off of Hugh‟s face.
—- Hugh Mercury?! The leader of the Mercury guild, and the current Silver
Sugar Viscount?!
“Yes. That girl is, as she says, a simple sugar craftswoman. There‟s no need to
worry. That fairy over there is this girl‟s bodyguard.”
At this, Earl Downing turned to the guards brandishing spears and raised his 
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hand.
“Stand down, all of you. This girl is a potential partic.i.p.ant.”
The guards surrounding Shall and the guards pinning Ann down obeyed his
order, and stepped back.
Ann got up and knelt where she was.
Earl Downing turned his gaze to Ann and said, “I can tell just by looking that
you‟re quite young. Yet in spite of your youth, you‟ve announced your intent
to partic.i.p.ate in the compet.i.tion. You must be quite sure of yourself. Who was
your teacher?”
“My mother. My mother was a silver sugar master.”
“I see. Then your pet.i.tion to partic.i.p.ate is in accordance with the guidelines.
However, you do realize that there is a procedure that must be followed in
order to apply?”
“Yes. I must announce my intention to partic.i.p.ate to Earl Downing, and then
the Silver Sugar Viscount will have me perform a simple demonstration in
order to verify whether or not I am a craftswoman whose skill is fit to appear
before his majesty the king. If I receive his approval, I will be allowed to
partic.i.p.ate.”
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“That is correct. Those procedures were completed yesterday. Furthermore,
his majesty the king is already seated, and the sugar sculpture festival is about
to begin. There isn‟t time to test your ability now.”
“I will complete the a.s.signment as quickly as possible. Please!”
Seemingly moved by Ann‟s desperation, Earl Downing turned to Hugh as if to
consult with him.
“What should we do, Mercury?”
“There isn‟t time to have her complete the a.s.signment now.”
Turned down flat. Ann chewed her lip and hung her head.
But Hugh continued on, grinning wickedly.
“However, Earl Downing. In a fortunate turn of events, I had the opportunity
to test this girl‟s skill the other day. I believe she is fit to appear before his
majesty the king.”
At these words, Ann raised her head. When their eyes met, Hugh winked.
Earl Downing nodded.
“Very well. If the Silver Sugar Viscount has acknowledged you, I will allow 
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you to partic.i.p.ate.”
Then he pointed to the table where the sugar sculptures were lined up.
“Have the guards carry your three barrels of silver sugar to the edge of the
plaza. Then add the sculpture you made to the others, stand behind it, and
await the judgement of the royal family.”
“Yes, sir. Thank you very much.”
Ann rose to her feet, bowed curtly, then brushed the dust off her clothes.
The curious gazes of both audience and festival partic.i.p.ants alike were all
fixed on Ann, who stood in the center of the plaza.
All of the sugar craftsmen partic.i.p.ating in the sugar sculpture festival were
decked out in their finest clothes.
When it came to Ann, however, she was wearing baggy, ill-fitting men‟s
clothing and her face and hair were both filthy. Her slender body appeared
excessively scrawny, and she looked far younger than her age. Furthermore,
she was accompanied by the most beautiful fairy any of them had ever seen.
Who on Earth is she? their eyes inquired, shining with curiosity.
Incidentally, the position where Ann was ordered to line up was right next to 
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Jonas.
Jonas watched the entire scene unfold with a tense expression on his face.
When Ann came to stand beside him, he put up a front of false bravado and
laughed scornfully.
“My, my, Ann. My clothes suit you surprisingly well. In any case, do you
even have a sugar sculpture?”
Ann glared at Jonas spitefully.
“You have my thanks. These clothes came in handy. And you needn‟t worry
for my sake; I have a sugar sculpture.”
“Then quickly line it up on the table. Where is it?”
“Here.”
Ann took a step forward and placed a small, cloth-covered ma.s.s on the white
table.
Bursts of laughter leaked out from among the onlookers and other sugar
craftsman who witnessed this.
Jonas, too, snorted derisively.
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“Well, I suppose that‟s the best you could have done with the time you had.
I‟m impressed with your nerve, Ann, for competing with that sugar sculpture
the size of a child‟s toy.”
Looking straight forward at the royal family‟s tent, Ann replied, “I‟m
impressed with you, too, Jonas, for entering a sculpture that someone else
made. You‟d think that there would be a limit even to your shamelessness, but
apparently not.”
“I have no idea what you‟re talking about.”
“The Silver Sugar Viscount. Do you honestly think you can deceive Hugh?
You should already know how sharp his eyes are from that night at the
doctor‟s inn.”
Jonas‟s expression faltered just a bit. But then he sneered and said with a
laugh, “I was surprised to learn that Hugh was the Silver Sugar Viscount when
I applied to partic.i.p.ate in the festival. He just became Silver Sugar Viscount
half a year ago. I bet he was just acting haughty that night at the doctor‟s inn
because he‟s a newly-appointed Silver Sugar Viscount. This time, when he
saw my sugar sculpture, he didn‟t say anything.”
“There‟s no way he doesn‟t know.”
“I wonder.”
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Seeing that Ann had placed her sugar sculpture in line with the others, Earl
Downing raised his hand and proclaimed, “Let the sugar sculpture festival
commence. I vow that the honor of the t.i.tle of Silver Sugar Master will be
awarded to the most outstanding sugar craftsman in the kingdom.”
The official in charge of overseeing the compet.i.tion signaled to the sugar
craftsmen.
“Craftsmen. Present your sculptures to his majesty the king.”
As these words were spoken, each of the sugar craftsmen removed the cloth
covering their sugar sculpture.
The onlookers let out a collective gasp at the sight of the gorgeous sugar
sculptures on display.
The king rested his weight on the armrest of his chair and gazed sweepingly
from left to right, not appearing to be particularly interested.
Then the king‟s gaze stopped. He stood up.
His gaze was focused in Ann and Jonas‟s direction.
—- Could it be, my sculpture caught his eye?!
Ann‟s pulse sped up.
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The king gestured to Earl Downing, then whispered something into his ear.
Earl Downing nodded then turned to Ann and Jonas.
“The two craftsmen over there; Jonas Anders and Ann Halford. Bring your
sugar sculptures with you; you may approach his majesty the king.”
Ann and Jonas‟s eyes met.
The onlookers tilted their heads and began to whisper to each other.
“That large, splendid one is appropriate. Its workmanship is far better than any
of the others. But why has his majesty ordered that a tiny sugar sculpture like
that be brought before him?”
“Well, we can‟t see it very well from here.”
Jonas got the guards to a.s.sist him in carrying his sugar sculpture up onto the
dais where the king waited. Then he knelt, his face stiff with nervousness.
Ann nodded to Shall, who stood behind her.
“I‟ll be back.”
Shall nodded in return.
Ann gently picked up the sugar sculpture, wrapping her hands around it, and
approached the king. Placing the sugar sculpture on a table set up on the dais, 
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she knelt as well.
The king rose smoothly and peered down at the sugar sculptures on the table.
“It‟s strange. Come here and take a look, Mercury,” the king called to the
Silver Sugar Viscount in a low voice.
Appearing at the king‟s side as summoned, Hugh nodded.
“The nuances of these two sculptures are so similar, it‟s as if they were both
made by the hand of the same sugar craftsman.”
At these words, Jonas flinched back in shock. Hugh‟s eyes lit up.
“Which sculpture do you prefer, your majesty?”
The king‟s eyes narrowed in response to Hugh‟s question. He gazed at the tiny
fairy.
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“I like this one better. It looks ethereal. As if it‟s about to break at any moment.
It‟s full of life. I‟ve never seen such a beautiful sugar sculpture.”
“Yes.”
“I think it‟s the best. What do you think? I think the sugar craftsman who
created this is fit to be a silver sugar master.”
Although she kept her face down-turned, Ann‟s pulse was racing, whispering
“Can it be? Can it be?”
However…
“That sugar sculpture is indeed magnificent, your majesty. But…”
The regal voice of the queen resounded from behind the king.
“But, your majesty, the task at hand was to create a large, spectacular sugar
sculpture that could serve as the focal point for a celebration. I am uncertain
whether the sugar craftsman who made this small sculpture also possesses the
ability to make a larger one. I feel that it might be best if you thought about
what qualities are necessary for silver sugar master.”
“That is true…”
There was a moment of silence. Ann‟s pulse increased in speed.
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“It‟s decided,” the king declared.
“I‟ve chosen. This sugar craftsman is fit to be named a silver sugar master.
What is his name?”
Earl Downing replied, “His name is Jonas Anders.”
“Very well. I hereby decree: I award the royal medal to the sugar sculpture
presented by Jonas Anders. The creator of this sugar sculpture will be this
year‟s silver sugar master.”
The crowd went wild.
Sensing Jonas raise his head beside her, Ann‟s whole body slumped.
—- I should have known.
“Ann Halford, you are dismissed. Jonas Anders, you are to remain here.
Guards, bring the three barrels of silver sugar that Anders distilled to me.
Those three barrels of silver sugar will be presented for the king‟s inspection,
after which the three barrels and your sugar sculpture will become a gift to the
royal family.”
“Yes sir.”
Jonas‟s cheeks flushed red with excitement, and his chest puffed out with 
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pride.
Stealing a sideways glance at Jonas, Ann bowed once to the royal family and
picked up her sugar sculpture.
Jonas‟s three barrels of silver sugar were brought before the king.
Just as Ann turned to leave…
“Wh-what?! What is this?!” Jonas shrieked in a manner not appropriate in the
presence of the king.
Without thinking, Ann turned back around.
Something leapt forcefully out of one of the barrels that been carried onto the
dais and placed in front of Jonas. At the sight of it, the king, Earl Downing
and Jonas all widened their eyes.
What had jumped out of the barrel was a fairy the size of the palm of a
human‟s hand. The fairy had silver hair and blue eyes. It was Mythrill Reed
Pod.
Ann sucked in a breath.
“What is the meaning of this, Anders?!” Earl Downing, having recovered
from his shock, shouted after peering into the barrel Mythrill had jumped out 
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of.
“One of these barrels is completely empty!”
“Th-that‟s ridiculous–”
In contrast with Jonas, who was fl.u.s.tered and confused, Mythrill prostrated
himself at the king‟s feet.
“Ahhhhhhh!! Forgive me, your most n.o.ble highness!! I am a worthless labor
fairy employed by Master Jonas Anders. My master totally sucks at distilling
silver sugar, and when he made the sugar sculpture for the compet.i.tion, he
was short of the required three barrels. So, since I have the ability to perform
minor optical illusions, he ordered me to make the barrel appear full. I was put
inside the barrel and brought here. But I was too afraid to deceive you, your
most n.o.ble, most majestic highness, and couldn‟t carry through with it!!”
With intensely exaggerated movements, Mythrill twisted his body pathetically
and broke into hysterical sobs. He even pulled out a tiny handkerchief that he
must have prepared somewhere and buried his face in it, wailing dramatically.
Ann was dumbfounded.
—- Why is Mythrill here? What is he doing?!
Then she realized.
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As he cried and carried on, Mythrill‟s stomach was protruding so far that it
looked like it was about to burst.
—- Don’t tell me, Mythrill… He ate an entire barrel of silver sugar?!
Ann couldn‟t figure out what Mythrill was doing inside the barrel of silver
sugar that Jonas had brought with him.
However, she could think of only one reason for the charade he was carrying
on.
He was doing it for Ann‟s sake.
He was trying to do something to help Ann, whose sugar sculpture had been
stolen.
Jonas stood up and, seemingly having forgotten that he was in the presence of
the king, and shouted, “This is a conspiracy!! It‟s that sugar craftswoman, Ann
Halford! She‟s the one using this labor fairy. The Silver Sugar Viscount
should also be able to verify this!! She and I are acquaintances. She‟s obsessed
with becoming a silver sugar master and has been trying to thwart me at every
turn! This has got to be part of her plan, too!”
Jonas roughly grabbed Ann‟s arm as she stared at him wordlessly, astounded
by his absurd claims. 
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“Come here, you coward!!”
“Ow!!”
Seeing Ann let out a cry of pain, Mythrill‟s face changed color and he leapt up
suddenly.
“Who are you calling a coward?! Let go of Ann, you b.a.s.t.a.r.d!!” Mythrill
shouted indignantly, completely giving up on pretending to cry.
At this, Jonas pointed a finger at Mythrill with a look of smug victory on his
face.
“Just look at that!! This woman and this fairy have been in on it together since
the beginning! Before anything else, we should kill this insolent fairy.”
“I won‟t let you do something like that!”
Infuriated by Jonas‟s words, Ann shook her arm free of his grasp.
Then she turned to face the royal family‟s tent.
Jonas saying that Mythrill should be killed had been the last straw; Ann
couldn‟t bear to stand by silently watching his acts of cowardice any longer.
“It‟s true that this fairy is a friend of mine. It‟s also true that he did all of this 
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for my sake. But there is a good reason. The sugar sculpture that this person,
Jonas Anders, entered into the compet.i.tion as his own was made by me. He
stole my sugar sculpture. This fairy was only trying to stop Jonas from using a
stolen sugar sculpture to become a silver sugar master.”
“That‟s a lie! I never stole anything!”
“You‟re going to continue to lie, even when it‟s come to this?!”
“Shut up!! You‟re the liar here!”
Ann and Jonas glared at each other intensely.
The onlookers, the king, and Earl Downing; everyone present was shocked
and bewildered by Ann and Jonas‟s words.
Which of them was the liar?
Only Hugh had an amused smile playing on his lips.
“Well then, shall we determine the truth of this matter, your majesty?” Hugh
said to the king, who was looking at Ann and Jonas with his face twisted in
confusion.
“We don‟t know which of these sugar craftsmen made this sugar sculpture.
Whoever made it is this year‟s silver sugar master, correct? In that case, let us 
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test and see who made it.”
“Hmm. Is there really a way to determine who made it? Mercury, if there
exists a way, go ahead and let‟s see.”
“Yes, your majesty.”
Hugh turned to a man standing beside him who appeared to be his servant, and
gave him an order. Then, leaving the king‟s tent, he approached Ann and
Jonas.
“I‟m going to have you do the same thing as that night at the doctor‟s inn. The
only difference is that this time you will have an a.s.signment.”
A small table was carried out and placed before the king. Two types of vessels
filled with cold water and the spatulas, rulers, and rolling pins of various sizes
that were necessary for making sugar sculptures were quickly laid out on top
of the table.
“This is the sugar sculpture that his majesty the king has chosen. It has little
b.u.t.terflies on it, right? These ones that are attached to the flowers. You will
make one of these right now, before his majesty‟s eyes. If we compare the
characteristics of the b.u.t.terflies you make now to the ones on this sculpture,
we‟ll know who made it.”
“Understood. I‟ll do it.”
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This was just what she was hoping for. Ann nodded immediately, but Jonas
went pale.
“What do you say, Jonas?”
When asked directly, Jonas nodded reluctantly.
Ann and Jonas lined up in front of the table.
From all around them, the curious gazes of the audience were focused on them.
From directly in front of them, the members of the royal family regarded them
with regal, subdued expressions.
Focusing on the silver sugar in front of her, Ann closed her eyes and took a
deep breath.
Suddenly, Ann felt a hot gaze on her back. Somehow, she knew that it was
Shall‟s gaze.
—- I’ll make the b.u.t.terfly. An unbelievably beautiful b.u.t.terfly that will make
Shall happy.
“Begin!”
Simultaneous with Hugh‟s command, Ann opened her eyes. She added cold
water to the silver sugar. 
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Ann began to knead the silver sugar to add glossiness to the dough.
—- I’ll knead it even more. I want l.u.s.trous wings. That’s right, I want to make
beautiful wings, just like Shall’s.
As soon as her hands touched the silver sugar, the clumsy noises that Jonas
was making beside her mysteriously faded from her consciousness.
Sweat was welling up on Jonas‟s forehead. He clicked his tongue now and
again.
Ann‟s fingertips glided over the silver sugar.
—- Even more beautiful…
Shall was watching. With just that, Ann felt a tremendous sense of peace and
calm come over her. Because of this, she was able to lose herself completely
in her work.
“That‟s enough.”
Ann snapped back to her senses at the sound of Hugh‟s voice.
Raising her head, Ann found that at some point Hugh had come to stand in
front of her. And standing next to him was the king, who‟d come down from
his tent.
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The king was staring fixedly at Ann and Jonas‟s hands.
Jonas‟s hands were trembling, and suddenly he sank to the ground right where
he was.
“Anders‟s b.u.t.terfly is not even worth mentioning,” Hugh observed.
The sugar sculpture that Jonas had been crafting up until now was formed into
the rough shape of a b.u.t.terfly.
However, that b.u.t.terfly clearly did not give the impression that it was about to
come to life and fly away at any minute. It was obviously of inferior
workmanship than those on the sugar sculpture the king had chosen.
Next, Hugh looked at Ann‟s hands.
“Halford‟s b.u.t.terfly… It resembles those on the sculpture that your majesty
selected. But, it‟s somehow different.”
Ann looked at her own hands.
Cradled between them was a beautiful b.u.t.terfly.
The wings were glossy and looked as if they were going to start beating at any
moment. Although it was an uncolored white b.u.t.terfly, its wings appeared
rainbow-colored as they reflected the light of the sun.
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The king furrowed his brows.
“What is going on here, Mercury?”
Shrugging his shoulders, Hugh laughed.
“I don‟t know. I wonder which of them created the sugar sculpture that your
majesty selected.”
The king looked at the b.u.t.terflies Ann and Jonas had made, comparing them.
“It seems clear to me which of them made the sugar sculpture I chose…”
“Then, between the b.u.t.terfly that Halford made just now and the ones on the
sculpture you chose, which does your majesty prefer?”
“Obviously Halford‟s b.u.t.terfly. Even more than the ones on the sculpture I
selected, it‟s… It‟s…”
Suddenly, the king made a shocked face, as if he‟d just realized something.
Then he smiled.
“I see. So that‟s what you mean; they really aren‟t the same.”
“Yes. So I can‟t say definitively which of them made that sculpture.”
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At these words, Jonas cut in, seemingly trying to grasp at what he saw as his
final chance.
“I– I can‟t do my best work unless I‟m working alone, in a quiet place!! If I
were allowed to take my time and work alone in a quiet place, I would be able
to replicate the sugar sculpture that his majesty chose. Honestly. I swear, it‟s
true.”
If it were proven here and now that Jonas had submit someone else‟s sugar
sculpture as his own, it would mean that he‟d tried to deceive the king. There
would be serious consequences. He might even lose his head.
“You‟re painful to watch, Jonas.”
At Hugh‟s words, Jonas‟s voice hitched up even higher in pitch.
“But I‟m not lying!! There‟s no proof that I‟m lying!!”
“You say that you‟re not lying?” the king asked quietly.
At the gravity echoing in his voice, the entire square fell completely silent.
Trembling, Jonas prostrated himself on the ground at the king‟s feet.
“I swear to G.o.d, I am not lying.”
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Next, the king looked at Ann.
“You aren‟t lying, are you, Halford?”
“No, sir.”
Ann continued to meet the king‟s eyes without hesitation. At this, the king
gave her a kind smile.
“If neither of you is lying, I don‟t know what to make of this. I can not deliver
punishment to the guilty without proof. Nor can I bestow glory. Downing!!”
“Yes!”
The old retainer appeared at the king‟s side immediately.
“It seems that this year there is no one suitable to be made a silver sugar
master. We‟re done here.”
The king turned around brusquely. Then, without even glancing at the
bewildered ministers of state and members of the royal family, he walked
leisurely out of the tent.
The onlookers turned to one another.
“What‟s going on?”
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“There won‟t be a royal medal awarded this year?”
“Won‟t they choose one of the other sugar sculptures?”
“But, the king has already left…”
“He won‟t change his mind.”
The king had chosen a sugar sculpture. Then he‟d departed.
However, it hadn‟t been determined who‟d made that sugar sculpture.
This was an unprecedented occurrence.
At this year‟s sugar sculpture festival, no one was chosen to become a silver
sugar master.
Wearing an expression of disbelief at the king‟s decision, the queen rose as
well. Then, glancing briefly at Ann, who stood motionless with shock, the
queen called Earl Downing over to her and, after telling him something, she
departed as well.
The sugar craftsmen were agitated, looking at each other in confusion, but
once they realized that the king did not seem inclined to resume the
compet.i.tion they gave up and began preparing to leave. 
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The audience began to disperse as well, all the while complaining noisily.
Earl Downing slowly made his way to Ann‟s side.
“Ann Halford. I have a message for you from the queen.”
Ann turned to him, eyes wide with surprise, and Earl Downing relayed
solemnly, “Her majesty requests that you return next year with a sugar
sculpture suitable for a celebration. She says that she is looking forward to it.”
Understanding the meaning of these words, Ann felt joy spread throughout her
chest. Her cheeks flushed.
“Yes. …Yes! Without a doubt. I will certainly come.”
“By the way, Halford. If you don‟t already have plans to sell that fairy
sculpture, might you sell it to me? My granddaughter will be getting married
soon, and I‟ve been looking for a splendid sugar sculpture for the occasion.
What do you say to 600 cres?”
600 cres. Six gold coins. It was such a large sum of money that just the
thought of it made her dizzy. With that much money, she could buy a new
wagon and two horses to go with it. For just a moment, the giant sum of
money made her hesitate. But finally, Ann shook her head.
“I‟m very sorry, Earl Downing. I‟ve already promised I‟d give it to someone 
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else.”
“I‟ll pay 600 cres for it…”
“…I‟m sorry.”
“I see. Well, it‟s unfortunate, but I suppose you couldn‟t have made a sugar
sculpture like that if you weren‟t at least a bit unusual, after all. By the way,
Mercury. I‟m leaving Anders to you. Deal with him appropriately, as Silver
Sugar Viscount.”
“Leave it to me, Earl.”
Hugh bowed exaggeratedly.
“Well then. I‟ll see you next year, Halford.”
With a final, gentle smile, Earl Downing turned and walked away.
Hand on hip, Hugh looked down at Ann and Jonas, who remained in the
center of the commotion.
“Now, then. Ann. Things have become quite a mess. What should I do? It‟s
been left completely to me to deal with Jonas as I see fit,” Hugh said in a
casual tone of voice.
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“Do you have anything you want to say to Jonas? Is there something you‟d
like me to do? I‟m not as nice as his majesty the king, you see. I‟m fine with
sending a mere sugar craftsman‟s head rolling.”
Jonas, who was still collapsed on the ground, twitched in surprise. Without
looking up, he began to tremble.
At some point, Salim had come up behind Hugh. He was looking at Jonas with
the eyes of a predator, staring down his prey.
Ann shook her head.
“Hugh… Silver Sugar Viscount-sama, I‟m grateful to you for supporting my
application to partic.i.p.ate this year.”
“Hey, hey, hey, don‟t lay it on so thick. „Hugh‟ is fine.”
Hugh gave her a light smack to the back of her head, and Ann shrugged her
shoulders sheepishly.
“I‟m really grateful, Hugh. Thank you. About Jonas, it‟s fine. There‟s nothing
I want to say to him. There‟s nothing I want to say, but…”
Based on his thoroughly defeated looking appearance, Jonas seemed to have
received more than sufficient punishment for his foolish actions. Furthermore,
no matter what she said now it wouldn‟t change anything.
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She had nothing she wanted to say to him. However, her chest was full of pent
up emotions.
“Stand up, Jonas,” Ann urged quietly, but Jonas didn‟t move.
“Stand up.”
When she said it again, Jonas stood up shakily, never raising his face.
Ann grabbed him by the lapels of his shirt.
“Jonas!! Look at me!!”
The moment Jonas‟s head snapped up, the palm of Ann‟s hand met with the
side of his face.
Jonas drew back reflexively, and Ann let him go. Then she smiled cheerfully.
“Ahh, that felt good! I really wanted to give a good smack! That‟s good
enough.”
“An appropriate punishment!”
Hugh let out a loud, heartfelt laugh. Behind him, Salim chuckled as well.
“Alright, then, we‟re done here!!”
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At Hugh‟s words, Ann bowed briskly to him. Hugh grinned and nodded to her
in return. Then the two of them simultaneously set off in separate directions.
Jonas remained behind, standing frozen where he was, his hand pressed
against the cheek that had been slapped.
Kathy came running up to Jonas. She gently grabbed onto the hem of his pants.
Ann searched throughout the square milling with people for a familiar pair of
black eyes.
A short ways away, she spotted Shall looking towards her.
With the sugar sculpture clutched in her hands, she slowly approached him.
“Thanks, Shall. I wasn‟t able to become a silver sugar master this year. But
I‟ll come here again next year. It won‟t be in time to send mama off to heaven,
but… But, I‟m sure mama will be able to make do with a sugar sculpture that
I‟ve put my whole heart into, even if I‟m not a silver sugar master.”
Even though she‟d been so insistent on becoming a silver sugar master this
year, now those feelings were so dim it was as if they‟d been bleached away.
That had been nothing more than her clinging to the desire to “send mama off
to heaven” because she missed her mother. She‟d merely been chasing after 
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one thing in order to evade another: her sadness and loneliness.
Once she‟d acknowledged that, her heart had become clear of the haze that
had been clouding her judgment.
She had the feeling she would finally be able to accept the reality of Emma‟s
death.
The reason why was because there were now a pair of black eyes in front of
her.
Even if Shall left after she gave him the sugar sculpture, the fact that he‟d
come back once to help her would remain. Somewhere in this world there
would always be at least this one person who, if even for a moment, had
shown her kindness. That was a miraculous thing. Ann felt as if she could go
on living, just knowing that.
Furthermore, from now on, Ann could chase after her own true future. The
future in which she would become a silver sugar master.
Not just for the sake of honoring her mother‟s memory, but as the future she
would chose for herself.
—- I want to become a silver sugar master. It doesn’t matter how many years
it takes…
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A new resolve was born in her heart.
—- I’ll become an even better silver sugar master than mama was.
“I‟ve found my enthusiasm again. It‟s all thanks to you, Shall. Thank you. As
promised, this sugar sculpture belongs to you. I‟m returning it.”
Ann‟s chest tightened with sadness at the thought that he would be leaving
now. However, clinging to the genuine hope that had at last been born inside
of her, Ann forced herself to smile.
Shall gazed at the sugar sculpture that she held out towards him. However, he
quickly looked away, pouting.
“It looks disgusting.”
“Huh?!”
Shall said to Ann, who was glaring at him, “With sugar sculptures, if the form
is good, the flavor will be too. If the form is mediocre, the flavor will be too. I
want an especially delicious sugar sculpture, made by a silver sugar master.”
“Wh-what?! Don‟t tell me you‟re not satisfied?”
“I‟m not satisfied.”
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“Then, what more do you want me to do?!”
After all this time together, why was he being so peevish all of a sudden?
Being stared at by Shall‟s beautiful eyes gave Ann a sweet sensation of
soaring
Suddenly, Shall said smoothly, “I‟ll get the sugar sculpture from you on this
day next year. I don‟t need it until then. I‟ll stay with you until you become a
silver sugar master and wait for it.”
Ann blinked.
“Eh… You‟ll stay?”
“Is that bad?”
Shall glared at Ann ill-temperedly.
“It‟s not… bad. Not at all. But… why?”
When asked why, Shall made an irritable face and seemed to be wracking his
brain for an answer. However, after a moment, his face softened as he seemed
to give in.
Instead of answering, Shall took Ann‟s right hand in his. Then…
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“Ann,” he called, his voice a whisper.
It was the first time he‟d called her by her name. At this, Ann felt heat well up
in her chest.
Shall gently kissed the back of Ann‟s hand. Tenderly.
It was like he was making some kind of vow.
Ann wasn‟t sure what the kiss meant. However, her heart was beating
impossibly fast.
Shall gazed at Ann.
—- Such beautiful eyes… They’re straight-forward, truthful…
Tenderness welled up inside of Ann, a feeling that was born inside of her for
the first time. There was something about it that was different from the love
you‟d feel for a friend.
That might have been her first love.
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Sugar Apple Fairy Tale Vol. 1 – Ginzatoushi to Kuro no Yousei.
 
 
Just then…
“Hey, did you see?! My once-in-a-lifetime performance!”
Together with his cheerful voice, Mythrill Reed Pod came hopping towards
them, cutting through the crowded square. Shall nonchalantly released Ann‟s
hand.
Mythrill took an exceptionally large leap and landed lightly on Ann‟s shoulder.
Happiness and shame welled up within Ann at the same time.
“Mythrill!”
Without thinking she grabbed Mythrill and hugged him tightly.
“I‟m so sorry! I‟m sorry, Mythrill! I‟m sorry I suspected for even a moment
that you ate the silver sugar. I was an idiot. I‟m sorry I couldn‟t continue
believing in you. Forgive me.”
“I-I-I-I-I‟m Mythrill Reed Pod! D-don‟t shorten it! Anyways, there‟s nothing
to forgive. If it weren‟t for your sake, I wouldn‟t have gotten the chance to
give such a magnificent performance.”
Although Mythrill had turned bright red, once he extracted himself from
Ann‟s arms he pridefully rubbed a finger under his nose. 
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“But I doubted you, even if it was only for a moment…”
“Hmph. Humans are all a bunch of idiots. It only makes sense that you‟d be an
idiot, too. So, I‟m not surprised that you misunderstood, and my resolve to
repay the favor I owe you hasn‟t changed. I‟m a fairy! If I gave up on
repaying my debts that easily, I‟d be ashamed to call myself a fairy.”
Mythrill‟s chest puffed out with pride even as he said something incredibly
rude.
“Once I realized that guy‟s evil plan, I thought I‟d teach him a lesson. That
guy really is a bad person. I thought I‟d teach him some humility, so I ate an
entire barrel full of his silver sugar!”
Mythrill started to laugh maniacally, but part way through he suddenly
moaned unpleasantly.
“As can only be expected when you‟ve eaten an entire barrel of silver sugar…
I think I‟m going to puke… Ugggh…”
Considering the way fairies ate, Ann had no guess what would come out of
where if one puked. However, since it appeared she was about to receive an
outrageous demonstration of exactly that phenomena, Ann took a step back
and braced herself.
“Well, I didn‟t end up being very useful… In fact, I have the feeling I ended 
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up putting you in tight spot…” Mythrill reflected in a small voice, even while
posturing arrogantly.
“That‟s not true. Thank you, Mythrill. But, how did you know that Jonas was
the one who stole my silver sugar? Did you follow after us in secret?”
“I was in your wagon the whole time.”
“Eh?”
When Ann turned to look at Shall in surprise, he shrugged his shoulders.
“After being suspected of stealing the silver sugar, Mythrill Reed Pod ran into
the back of your wagon and hid. He did indeed „disappear from your sight.‟”
“S-so that‟s what he meant…”
Jonas hijacked Ann‟s wagon with Mythrill hiding inside it, and in the end got
done in by him.
Mythrill snorted.
“Did you forget? In order to repay my debt, I‟ll follow you anywhere. I‟ll
follow you even to the depths of h.e.l.l.”
“But you‟ve already more than repaid the favor by teaching Jonas a lesson this 
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time.”
“Not yet! The repayment of my debt isn‟t going to be something like this!
You‟re going to let me repay you in a much more magnificent way.”
“Ahaha… A magnificent way…?”
Who knew what he had in mind. Ann was a bit worried.
Shall said dryly, “Have you ever heard of an „unwelcome favor,‟ Mythrill
Reed Pod?”
“Nope, sorry. Anyways, what are you doing with Ann? We‟ve arrived in
Lewiston already, so Ann should have compa.s.sionately set you free by now.
You‟re free to go wherever you want, right? So what are you doing here?!”
“There‟s something I want from this scarecrow.”
He‟d called her „scarecrow‟ again. Ann was disappointed.
—- When I thought I heard him call me ‘Ann’ earlier, could that have just
been a hallucination?
“You‟re a through-and-through rude fellow, Shall Fen Shall! No matter how
much Ann looks just like a scarecrow, and that‟s putting it kindly, don‟t keep
calling her „scarecrow,‟ „scarecrow‟!”
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“What‟s wrong with calling a scarecrow „scarecrow‟?”
“Y-you b.a.s.t.a.r.d! You‟re calling her „scarecrow‟ again!”
“You‟re the one calling her „scarecrow‟ over and over.”
“A-anyways! In this world there are things that are wrong to say even though
they‟re true! Like „scarecrow‟! It‟s not something to laugh about; it hits too
close to home!”
Ann laughed feebly.
“You guys… When will the two of you give me a break and realize that
you‟re both insufferably rude?”
Suddenly the two fairies seemed to come to their senses and stopped their
dispute, looking at each other.
—- I wasn’t able to become a silver sugar master this year. But the queen said
that I should come again next year. That’s enough.
An obsidian fairy who yearned for a delicious sugar sculpture…
And a water droplet fairy who wanted to repay his debt by force…
At the very least, Ann knew she wouldn‟t be alone anymore. 
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—- I’m not alone. Maybe I’ll be able to become a silver sugar master one day.
I’ve got my entire future before me. This is for the best.
Ann smiled.
“Well, I guess it‟s fine. Whether it‟s „crow‟ or „scarecrow.‟ I will make make
sugar sculptures for you guys. Beautiful, magnificent sugar sculptures. That‟s
all I can do.”
The sky was perfectly clear.
In the plaza of the imperial city, the sweet scent of many sugar sculptures
filled the air.
Chapter 7 — END
Sugar Apple Fairy Tale Vol. 1 – Ginzatoushi to Kuro no Yousei.
 
 
Author’s Note
h.e.l.lo, everyone. Nice to meet you. My name is Mikawa Miri.
This book is a re-worked edition of the piece that won the judges‟ choice
award in Beans‟s 7th annual novel compet.i.tion. When I first applied to the
Beans novel compet.i.tion, what I was most worried about was, “I haven‟t
violated any of the application guidelines, have I?” That‟s probably not what I
should have been worried about, but I was terrified that I would disqualified
without my story even being read because of a guideline violation.
After perusing the application guidelines, the item I was most worried about
was, “When converted to 400-character grid paper, the submission should be
more than 150 pages and less than 300 pages.” I wondered, “Does the
conversion include blank s.p.a.ces in the total number of characters?”
I wanted to ask someone, but I didn‟t have any friends who would know about
something like that. Furthermore, even if I did have one, there‟s no doubt this
is as stupid a question as “Teacher, do bananas count as snacks?”
What I eventually came up with was to make sure that I would neither fall
below the minimum page count nor exceed the maximum page count
regardless of whether or not indentations and blank s.p.a.ces were counted in the
total character number. After this I was relieved.
I streamlined the phrasing and whittled down the story.
Sugar Apple Fairy Tale Vol. 1 – Ginzatoushi to Kuro no Yousei.
 
 
Then when the paragraphs were formated, it was about 10 pages too short to
be a novel, so I determined it necessary to rework the story.
Because I was a little too cautious of the submission guidelines, the finished
product adhered to the guidelines but I got the feeling that it was a bit shorter
than a normal novel.
But, because I was allowed to rework the story before the commercial release,
I was able to add enough material to create a jam-packed story. I‟d be happy if
this release is even a bit better than the original submission.
I‟m extremely grateful to the judges who carefully read and selected the
ma.n.u.script that I fearfully, fearfully prepared and submitted. I also want to
express my heartfelt thanks to the people from the editing department and
everyone else connected with the screening process, for choosing my story
long before the ma.n.u.script ever made it to the judges.
Additionally, there‟s my editor, who has kindly, gently guided this hapless
author. I thank G.o.d a little every day for my kind editor. Thank you! Please
take care of me from now on as well.
Additionally, yet again, there‟s the ill.u.s.trator who drew the pictures in this
book for me, Aki-sama. I was ecstatic when I found out that she would be
doing the ill.u.s.trations. The Shall and Ann that she drew were truly amazing.
They‟re so lucky. 
Sugar Apple Fairy Tale Vol. 1 – Ginzatoushi to Kuro no Yousei.
 
  
Finally, there are the people who purchased this book for themselves.
If you weren‟t fond of this story, I‟m deeply sorry from the bottom of my
heart. Please laugh down your nose at me and forget all about it.
But if you were fond of this story, hooray! Thank you! I love you!
To everyone, let me say this again: thank you very much.
Mikawa Miri

———-

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