When Fii turned around, she noticed the open curtains and then the frozen Doug. With this, she knew what had happened.
(Guess I’m totally busted, huh.)
Well of course. He had seen her naked, after all.
Doug’s face was bright red like a tomato, and his mouth flapped open and shut as he stood there.
On the other hand, Fii was mysteriously calm.
She did feel a little embarrassed, but perhaps she kept her cool because Doug was so shaken instead.
As Fii looked at Doug, whose brain had stopped working from all the panic, Fii boldly decided on her course of action.
First of all, it was a bad choice to hide her body. It would mean that she had something to hide.
Fii found out after she joined that there was no rule against females applying as knights, but the reason was actually because no woman in Orstoll had ever applied.
The whole system had been built with the assumption that all the knights were male.
If they found at, at worst she could be fired. At least, that was what she thought.
Fii recalled Conrad-san’s teachings.
The one she wanted was his teachings on negotiations and emotions.
Most people had two types of emotions.
The type that they vented outwards and the types that they took in from around them.
For example, when it came to laughing, it was separated into laughing because you found it funny, and laughing because you were influenced by others’ laughter.
For the latter, it was because they sensed from the environment that they should be laughing and reacted by finding it funny as well.
In other words, people’s moods were influenced by the atmosphere.
What this meant for human relations was an interesting consequence.
When it came to a misdeed, there were people who felt shy about it and people who did not.
Which of the two groups were scolded more?
Normally you would assume it was the people who were bold about their actions.
But that wasn’t always the case.
As long as you were bold enough, it was possible to infect others with the idea that ‘you did nothing wrong.’
And when you instead gave the idea that you had something to be guilty about, it could induce people’s anger instead.
In the end, sometimes people would be angrier at the reflecting party.
Perhaps it would be easier to put it in reverse.
Sometimes you would have something wrong done to you, but the other party was so bold that you even forgot you were supposed to react with anger.
It would only be upon later recollection that you would get mad.
Sometimes when you should have been angry, people around you treated it so naturally that you didn’t even know how to feel.
The atmosphere would influence your judgement on how you should have been feeling, and the result was that your emotions failed to coalesce into anger.
In other words, there existed the option of acting guilt-free to avoid somebody else’s anger.
Of course, there were caveats to this.
It would only work when the other party hadn’t coherently grown outraged yet.
If they were already angry beyond a certain point, being bold and unrepentant would only spur on their inner anger.
And once you had already played the card of being unrepentant, it would be impossible to gloss over the situation with apologies and reflection.
Because of that, one had to be careful in its use.
Most of the time, even if it meant legitimising their anger, it would be better to simply apologise and appease them.
But Fii had decided that now was an appropriate time to act boldly.
If Fii tried to hide anything, it would signal to Doug that she had done something to feel guilty of. She would become disadvantaged, and she couldn’t afford that right now.
At the moment, Doug was feeling purely embarrassment and panic. He hadn’t yet gained any reason to scold her.
If she was going to do it, now was the time.
Fii looked boldly at Doug without hiding her body and spoke as though it was no problem for her.
“Oh? So you’ve opened the curtains and come in, huh. Did you want to peek on me bathing or something?”
Hearing her words, Doug frantically shook his head as he blushed.
“AH-, THA-… N-NO-…”
“Hmmm. Then could you shut the curtains already? How long are you going to keep watching.”
Prompted by Fii, Doug shut the curtains in a fluster.
After that, for a while Fii could hear him staggering around and bumping into the walls before finally disappearing somewhere.
She had avoided the most immediate crisis.
Had he caused a fuss here, people might have come running in here, one after another.
She had removed any chance of that happening.
All she had to deal with now was Doug.
Since he had only just arrived here, he still had no close friends.
Because Doug didn’t have anyone he could speak to freely yet, for now her secret was safe.
(Before he has time to think, I need to teach him who’s really in charge…)
Wiping her body, Fii put on her apprentice knight’s uniform and quietly left the bathing area.