Arc 1, New Moon
Copulation was… So in other words, they had copulated.
Ernst once again couldn’t get a wink of sleep. Even though lately he had been able to sleep very well. The man’s words from last night reverberated in his head.
Men, as men, as adult men, with adult bodies, would copulate. After such a long time, Ernst became newly aware of this again.
The man said that for Grude people, if they both agreed to it, they would sate their desires with each other, didn’t he. Weren’t men also said to be like this? Why didn’t he realize that at the time?
Ernst went back to the library. Just what exactly was this ‘copulation’ that the man talked about, Ernst wanted to know.
The knowledge he’d acquired from the royal palace was useless. Ernst had been taught a few lessons about bedroom procedures. But, he was fairly certain that this wasn’t the intimacy that the rest of the world understood.
The lecturer had told him this:
So that his groin would become erect, the chamberlain would stroke it. It was best if Ernst stretched out on the bed and faced the ceiling.
After that was done, the noble lady would graciously seat herself over Ernst’s groin.
Now that Ernst knew the ways of the world, he wasn’t naive enough to believe that was all there was. Besides, that man wasn’t a noble lady.
His feet stopped, striking the ground with a fwap.
That’s right, he was a man, and Ernst was a man, too. How was it supposed to work between two men? It wouldn’t do for him to not even know that.
Ernst guessed that somewhere in this collection of books was one that held what he wanted to find out.
Romances seemed to be what the Lord from three generations ago preferred. However, they were the so-called ‘pure love’ stories. Those books that were like what a pure and innocent girl would like to read were utterly useless to him. Even though paper was so precious, someone had actually written down such worthless things.
Ernst went to the back of the library. These were what his predecessor had collected.
This person seemed to have been quite the hobbyist. Expert manuals on every topic were lined up. There wasn’t any organization here, either. Had he been interested in learning everything and anything, only to lose interest halfway and leave it unfinished?
Ernst peered at the spines of the books. It wouldn’t be strange for this predecessor of his to have at least one book on bedroom techniques.
Ernst checked over many books, his hands shaking, until his fingers paused over a single book.
There was something off about this book’s spine.
Even though it was gorgeously decorated, the spine gave way a little bit under the pressure of his fingers. The binding was poor compared to its ornamentation.
When he curiously pulled the book out, another book fell to the floor.
Ernst looked between the book in his hand and the book that had fallen.
It seemed like someone had taken the cover off of another book and used it to cover the fallen book. Ernst picked up the book on the ground and checked its cover.
“The Beastly You”
Ernst’s blue eyes stared at these words. He silently looked at the bookshelf, then grabbed the next book over.
Another book fell out with a thump.
The same for the next, the next, the next, and the next…
By the time twelve books had fallen on the ground, Ernst felt weak and had to sit.
“Steamy Entanglement” “The Night of the Beasts” “Relations between the Three of Us” “Satisfy Me”
Even Ernst, who had been estranged from society, knew what sort of books these were.
Ernst slightly teared up over his predecessor’s truly broad hobbies as he picked up one of the books. In any case, it should have the thing he was searching for.
And also, he thought, looking up at the bookcase.
There were still suspicious-looking book covers scattered around its shelves.
Ernst cringed every time he flipped a page, and whenever a drawing appeared, he shut his eyes. He had somehow finished one book, only to fall over on his hands and knees when he got to the second one.
The stimulation was far too strong.
He returned the books to their shelves and put everything back in place. The library didn’t seem to be cleaned often. It wasn’t hard to imagine that the successive Lords had ordered their servants to not approach the library, or the bookshelves.