Mariko takes a peek inside the room where a lady is waiting. Nidi explains that she’s the lady in waiting and not the Princess, who is resting in the back room. Niram notices Mariko hiding behind the door. She looks at him and quickly disappears. Niram’s face is blue and he calls out her name.
While running away, Mariko remembers the picture of the royal family that depicts a king and his many wives. She runs to the guards who prohibit her to enter further. They notice Mariko as Prince Niram’s close friend but question her gender since she is covering her head. They are interrupted by a lady in waiting, who has come out to see the commotion outside.
The guarded place is Princess Tara’s residence and the Princess has granted Mariko an audience. Mariko thinks that Princess Tara is beautiful. The Princess’s lady in waiting tells the Princess that Princess Mina has received her gift and asks her to join the dinner party. Princess Tara lays down lazily on the bed and says that she is not going and it is bothersome. Princess Tara tells Mariko, “I can’t believe that THAT Niram is going through all the trouble, even making you dress like a boy, and keeping you aside.” Hugging her pillow, Princess Tara dismisses Mariko saying that she just wants to see Mariko’s face. Mariko asks to talk with her a little bit more.
They see a man doing his salah and Princess Tara explains to a confused Mariko that it is a Muslim prayer. Princess Tara recalls that she and Niram used to secretly imitate this when they were little even though they are both Hindus. Mariko gets jealous hearing about their childhood story. Mariko wants to know how the Princess knows her. Princess Tara yawns and says that she has heard about Mariko from Auntie Krishna. Princess Tara continues to say that her father is the real big brother of Auntie Krishna. He is Jodhpur’s State King and Tara is his seventh daughter. When she was very small, she got chosen to be one of the wife candidates for Niram. Padma is her cousin so they are all childhood friends. Princess Tara starts falling asleep while Mariko urges her for 1 more question about Niram and Krishna. Princess Tara tiredly answers that Auntie Krishna has told Tara to persuade Niram to be on her side. Tara sleepily tells Mariko that it is bothersome and she doesn’t care who is her husband. Her real mother was born in a low rank family. Tara is the youngest and also brainless, so people talk bad things behind her back. In this world, lineage is everything. Tara wants a strong husband even if Niram doesn’t love her. As long as she is the first wife, she doesn’t care. Tara thinks that only morons get into love and like. Tara stares at Mariko who is absorbing Tara’s words.
Niram slams the wall surprising Mariko and Tara. Grabbing Mariko’s shoulder, Niram explains that Tara is just one of the wife candidates and if he stays as the second prince, he doesn’t need many wives like a king does. Grabbing both Mariko’s shoulders, Niram earnestly insist Mariko to look at his eyes.
Nidi appears to clarify that having many wives is not a king’s privilege but his duty. They need to build good relationships between the neighboring states in order to be in peace for a long time. Maintaining peace requires the king to take in as many wives as he can from neighboring states, and he has to produce strong and clever successors. This is not about politics or military power. Precisely, a king’s duty is to marry different religious princesses who each practices Hinduism or Islam or Sikhism. There are many people following different religions in their state and marrying those princesses also means getting protection from those religions.
Mariko’s face is expressionless. With all these overwhelming information, she feels like passing out, but she wants to say something. Niram, still holding Mariko’s shoulders, painfully tells her that even though he is the prince, he loves her and his feeling is real. Embracing Mariko, he continues that as a prince, he can’t run from his responsibilities and he can’t change the blood that runs in him.
Mariko thinks that she has to tell him that she understands. She pats Niram’s back and pushes him away. She faces the ground crying and yells, “No.” Niram consoles her and starts to plead. Mariko blocks her ears and announces that she’s never going to accept it. Niram asks her what he is supposed to do. Still crying, Mariko yells, “How should I know? I want you to love me. I want to accept it but I just can’t. Even though I know I can’t. I want you to only love me! I want you to call out my name first and not other girls’ name when I’m here in front of you. Niram, you dummy.” Niram blushes while tightly embraces Mariko.
Princess Tara starts laughing. She says that she knows Niram for a long time but to make such a face, that is her first time seeing. She says Niram looks like a lost child. A lady in waiting comes in to tell Princess Tara that they have gotten the approval to meet Krishna. Tara thinks that it is bothersome but she has no other choice. Her lady in waiting glares at Mariko and mentions that she will inform Queen Krishna about Prince Niram’s rude behavior to Princess Tara.
Before leaving, Princess Tara advices, “Mary, you shouldn’t trouble your “husband” too much. Wanting to be the only wife of a king, now, that’s an interesting thing to beg to the royal family.”
Mariko remembers that she is the one who is different in this country. While holding her hand, Niram tells Mariko that they will talk about this again after she calms down. Niram asks Tara to tell Krishna to meet him.
To be continued (Click here for the next chapter)
Okay, that was an anti-climatic meeting with the third wheel!!!! I actually like Tara’s character. She is a realist. “I love you. I like you. Only morons get into that stuff.” ahaha… (Love is blind after all.) That pretty much sums up her chill personality. Please get her a good husband who appreciates her way of life~~~~
Mariko’s emotional outburst is great though. I feel like the girl has been keeping everything inside from the beginning. She needs that kind of refreshing moment to claim back her man!! Way to go girl~
There are 9 more chapters to go. Will it be a happy ending? Stay tuned!