The Wives’ Conference
Editor(s): Joker, Speedphoenix
Night had descended upon the inn where the four young women were gathered. Lefi, Leila, Lyuu, and Nell were standing by for yet another conference. They had conducted so many of them over the course of the past year that the total number had long become unknown. The children were normally present for the meetings as well, but not this time. They were already tucked away in bed.
“It has come time for The Wives’ Conference,” declared Lefi. “I see no topic to discuss but Yuki’s participation in the war effort. I take it that this excursion came not with any female encounters?”
“Master sure is good at catchin’ ’em as he goes, huh? I was real shocked when I found out they went ‘n made him an emperor! I ain’t sure how somethin’ like that coulda happened, but I’m glad he’s at least gone ‘n made it back safe ‘n sound.”
“It is their tradition. They have seen instating a demon lord as their head of state for many a generation,” explained Lefi. “But his new title matters not. He has stated himself that he shall remain but a figurehead, and I see no reason for him to manage the state. It is not within the bounds of his character.”
“Yes, but it does beg a question,” said Leila. “Do you think he has any lofty goals in mind for the future?”
“I’m real sure Master’s just wantin’ to go with the flow,” said Lyuu. “He’s always been ignorin’ people ‘n doin’ everythin’ his own way.”
“It is because he thinks not before he acts,” said Lefi. “There is no doubt that his new title is the product of another accident.”
“I-I’m sure there’s a little more than just that,” said Nell, with a wry smile. “He does at least know what he wants. Did you see how fired up he was for the wedding?”
“He was very excited,” agreed Leila.
“I know well that he wishes to bring you great joy, Lyuu.”
“L-let’s just stop ‘n leave it at that,” said the warwolf. “You girls are makin’ me blush.”
After everyone laughed at the red-faced maiden, Lefi spoke up again and brought up the second item on the agenda.
“There is a matter that has remained on my mind for many a month now,” said the dragon, as she turned to the maids, “And this is as good a chance to address it as any. Lyuu, Leila…”
“What is it?”
Lefi seemed serious, so they stiffened up and conducted themselves more formally.
“You need not address me so respectfully, both of you. You conduct yourselves as if I am your superior, but I am not. We are equals, and I consider you both as close friends, members of my family. If you feel as I do, then I wish for you to conduct yourselves as if we stand upon the same plane.”
Her words were solemn, lonely, even.
“It ain’t just you, Lefi! I’ve always felt like you were a real good friend and everythin’ and that you’re nothin’ shy of family! I-I’ll be tryin’ to start relyin’ you for more stuff so it starts shown’ better!”
“Lyuu, you’re making yourself sound like you’re lovers or something,” giggled Nell.
“Well… we’re all married, so I guess it ain’t that different. We kinda are, if y’start thinkin’ it.”
“I fail to see the logic in your argument,” said Lefi. “A-and do not suddenly begin clinging to me!”
“Huggin’ you feels real nice. You’re always real soft ‘n smooth.”
“I know exactly what you mean!” agreed Nell. “Lefi’s always been really nice and huggable.”
Lefi smiled wryly.
“I think I see where this is going,” said Leila with a giggle. “Did you want to get this matter sorted before any children are born?”
“T-that is correct.” The silver dragon responded to the smiling sheep-horned demon with a blush and a stutter. “It will not be long before we are mothers, and I see no benefit from maintaining a difference in status between us, as the mothers. It will not be good for their upbringing.”
“I can certainly see your point,” said Leila. “As embarrassing as it may be, I’ll also try to be less restrained.”
“Wow Lefi, you’re thinking about that already?” asked Nell.
“It’s startin’ to get real obvious why she was Master’s first wife. I’m gonna try real hard to step it up so I can be just like you, Lefi! You’re a real good role model!”
“I’ll try giving it a shot too. Let’s both try our best, Lyuu!” cheered Nell.
“The two of you are inspiring within me a sense of self-consciousness…” said Lefi, as she turned away from them. “Leila, there is another matter I wished to speak to you of.”
“Of course. What is it?”
“I must ask… what do you think of Yuki?”
“What do I think?”
“From what I have seen…” Lefi began explaining the question, slowly, awkwardly. “The two of you hold an amicable relationship. I do not know if I am jumping to conclusions, but I wish to inform you that we shall comply and push him towards acceptance if you wish for anything beyond what you share now.”
“I’ve always been a bit curious about how you felt too,” said Nell. “Oh and uhmm… you don’t have to tell us if you don’t want to.”
“I’ve been wantin’ to hear too,” said Lyuu.
Leila smiled in a troubled sort of way as she looked at the three curious faces glancing at her.
“Well… let’s see…” Leila paused for a moment to think. “I wouldn’t mind a husband, as I’m sure that such a relationship would bring me happiness, but I also wouldn’t mind not having one either. Staying single means I will have more time to myself and more time to pursue whatever I happen to find myself interested in.”
The sheep-horned demon’s lack of an immediate decision was uncharacteristic, something all three of the other girls noted as being unlike her.
“I do find My Lord rather attractive, but I’m already more than happy enough with the situation as it stands because of all the freedom it comes with. I understand that my disposition may be somewhat… degenerative, but it’s a part of who I am.”
“I believe… I understand,” said Lefi, who was clearly having a hard time deciding how she was supposed to take the other girl’s thoughts. “I cannot say that I am surprised, having known you for so long.”
“Well if that’s how she feels, then I guess we ain’t got no choice but to start tossin’ our hands up and leavin’ it at just that,” said Lyuu. “Just… I really gotta tell you this, Leila, but I ain’t real fine with the idea of you suddenly gettin’ bored of all the research you’re doin’ here, packin’ up all your stuff ‘n just leavin’ one day. ‘Cause you feel like family to me too!”
“Don’t worry, Lyuu. I used to be the type of person to dabble in all sorts of different fields and subjects, but coming here has given me the decision to finally settle on the specialization I would like to make my life’s work, with that being the ecology of dungeons and demon lords. I plan to stay here for the rest of my life, so long as you don’t mind.”
“Of course we don’t! We all love you, Leila!” said Nell.
“Indeed,” agreed Lefi. “Yuki has also grown dependent on you. You remain a reason that this house stands on its feet and you serve as a primary provider of the peace of mind we seek. We shall not reject you.”
“She’s right. The kids have already gone ‘n gotten themselves real attached to you too,” said Lyuu. “All of us are gonna want you to stay forever!”
“Thank you. It really does make me happy to hear that.”
A smile appeared on the sheep girl’s face. A heartfelt, blossoming smile.