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About ten days have passed since Sango came to Peony Palace.

Her language skills had improved considerably. Although her listening skills were only a bit better, her speaking skills had improved considerably.

Her relationship with Konkon remained the same.

Hongyu thought Sango was a man and was planning to make her sleep with Princess Hoshi.

Although Konkon knew that Sango was a woman, she misunderstood that for some reason she came to the inner palace by lying about her gender.

Sango herself did not realize that she was mistaken for a man by Hongyu, nor was she aware of Konkon's misunderstanding.

Moreover, she thought that Hongyu was two or three years younger than her.

Sango was 20 years old while Hongyu was 25 years old.

Because she was younger than him, she turned a blind eye to the idea of ​​sleeping together.

‘But what will she think when she finds out about all the misunderstandings?’

No one knew yet.

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It's been a long time since she had been protecting Tanuki, the raccoon dog.

Everyone at Peony Palace said, "I don't know the owner." 

They also said that he had never heard of anyone keeping a raccoon dog as a pet.

“I asked about the raccoon dog at the inner palace meeting that took place today, but no one said they knew about it.''

Sango held the raccoon dog close to her chest and turned her expectant gaze towards Hongyu.

"Therefore, there are no hobbyists in the inner palace who keep a raccoon dog. Furthermore, the one you are holding is definitely a stray raccoon dog."


“It doesn’t belong to anyone.”

Hongyu looked away from Sango, who was looking at him with a sparkling gaze, and complained.

"I was embarrassed because of you. Everyone looked at me because I said I was protecting a lost raccoon dog."

"I-I'm sorry about that."

Even though Hongyu didn't seem interested in the raccoon dog, he made sure it wasn't someone else's property.

 Sango was truly grateful.

“So, uh-”

She knew it was selfish. However, She tried to ask without hesitation.

"I would like to adopt this dog."

"I told you, a raccoon dog is not a pet."

"But we can no longer release it into the wild."

It was a quiet raccoon dog. It never showed his fangs and it had a very gentle personality.

The raccoon dog was very attached to Sango and kept coming close to her.

The truth was that it was cute and she couldn't help it.

Before she knew it, it had become its master.

She stared at Hongyu, who was folding her arms and frowning, as if pleading with him.

If she was told no, she would have silently obeyed.

Hongyu was Sango's supervisor. Disobedience was not allowed.

Silence ensued in the room.

The raccoon dog barked, “Kuun!”

Unable to bear the increasingly sad atmosphere in the room, Hongyu let out a sigh of sadness.


“Do whatever you like with the raccoon dog.”

"Are you okay?"

"Yeah. In return, don't cause any trouble and listen to what I say."

"Yes, thank you. I will definitely listen to what you have to say."

Sango's expression suddenly changed from a depressed expression to a cheerful expression.

He lowered the tanuki, wrapped its left hand in its right hand, and raised it above her head in a bow. It was the highest salute in this country.

“Are you flattering me?"

"That's not true. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your generosity."

She looked up and met his eyes, he suddenly looked away.

Sango chuckled, thinking he was at an age where things like that were embarrassing.

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In the morning, a certain scroll was delivered from Konkon.

Sango picked up the scroll from the tray.

"What do you want?"

While muttering to herself, she pulled the string of the scroll and untied it.

It was an invitation to a gathering hosted by Princess Hoshi.

"It looks like a gathering will be held."

“Is this your first time at Peony Palace in three months?”

“I see.”

The event will take place in twenty days. The event was fairly close.

“We will put on a performance with everyone participating.”


Participation was only for those who wished to participate. Due to limited time, the number of participants was limited to five people.

“If there is a rush of applicants, we hold a selection meeting in advance.''

There were about 30 ladies in charge of Peony Palace. Every year, a selection meeting was held due to the large number of applications.

It was written that the selection meeting would be held in ten days.

“Are you coming or not?”

"No, I'm really scared. I'm sure I'll fail at the selection meeting."

“Would you like to practice together?”

"Eh...? Well, that seems a bit difficult..."

“It would be a waste to give up before trying.”

After being persuaded by Sango, Konkon also decided to apply for the Miyabi-kai's performance.

“What will you do?”

"Before,erhu was recommended to me, so I thought I'd try learning it.''

The erhu was a musical instrument played with two strings.

Seven-stringed, harp and others were the qualities the lady in charge of the Shogi Department said was easier than Erhu.

The erhu was a musical instrument made in some parts of the region, and was made in a special way. Since it was made from hardened snakeskin, there were not many craftsmen who could make it. It was an expensive instrument.

She explained about violins, she was told that the erhu was the hardest.

“Hello, can you play any instruments?”

"N-no, I'm not really good at it."

"Then let's do our best together."


His dark blue cheeks turned light pink.

Sango narrowed her eyes and smiled softly.

Sango ended up borrowing Konkon's personal erhu.

She said she had four items sent to her from her parents' home.

When the erhu was taken out of the box, it was completely different from the shape of a violin.

The part had a hexagonal body.

It had an elegant black color and it was made of bloodwood. The bow was a horse's tail. The bow hair was taut.

“Are there any precautions to take when handling it?”

"Well, apparently you shouldn't touch the tail of the bow. Oil on your hands will make it harder to make sounds."

“I understand. I'll keep it in mind to be careful.”

"Also, it's sensitive to direct sunlight and humidity, so it's best to avoid it if possible."


When Konkon was young, she played the erhu and Seven-stringed harp. Her father invited musicians to teach her but she was told that none of them were suitable for her, so she gave up.

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"All my sisters were good at it. I'm the only one like this..."

“But thanks to that, we can practice together then.”

"Ah... yes, that's right."

It was almost time to go to the Shogi club.

Sango and Konkon each carried an erhu in their hands and moved around.

In the ceremony department, three female officials were waiting for them.

"Well, nice erhu."

“However, there are many people who want to participate in Erhu’s Miyabi-kai, so it’s a hotly contested area.”

"It's impossible to memorize it in ten days."

Sango and Konkon were immediately dismissed.

“However, I will teach you how to play.”

“Maybe you have some talent.”

"Just try things out."

The ladies-in-waiting also headed to the training hall with erhu in hand.

"The basics are posture"

"I play the erhu while sitting on a chair."

“Keep your back straight, don't sit too deep, keep your knees slightly apart, and take only your left leg half a step forward.''

It was quite difficult just to maintain the posture she was told.

“Sango-sama, there is strength in your shoulders.”

“My knees are too wide.”

"Konkon, please close your gaping mouth."

The attention was relentless.

Once she had the correct posture, she would learn how to hold the erhu.

"Hold the bow gently in the palm of your hand, pinching it between your thumb and forefinger."

"Place the body of the erhu on your thigh and support it with your left thumb and index finger."

"Both of your faces are strained."

Because there were detailed rules, Sango and Konkon felt like puppets.

As if to match the movement, Sango slid the bow onto the string, and it made a hard, grinding sound like gears running out of oil.

"Oh dear"


“Everyone is like this at first.”

Sango and Konkon were both struggling.

They couldn't make a beautiful sound until the end.

Sango and Konkon slowly returned home feeling depressed.

“Sango-sama, the selection process may be difficult.”

"Well, this time it was short."

Sango muttered that she wanted Hanafuda.

“Sango-sama, is there anything you want?”


“Shall I tell my father and get it for you?”

Sango shook her head.

She accepted her caring and thanked her.

"I'm sorry. It's past."

"That's not true. Your kind words warmed my heart."

After that, they both headed to her room.

"Ah, Konkon. Can I borrow your erhu?"

"Yes, please. It's something I won't be using."

"Thank you"

She parted ways with Konkon in front of her private room. Free time until dinner time.

When she opened the door, the raccoon dog greeted her.


"Yes, I'm home now."

She was soothed by a raccoon dog looking up at her with clear eyes, the raccoon dog sat right next to her.

"Don't talk to a raccoon dog with a serious face."

Hongyu was sitting on a bamboo chair at the back of the room. He was apparently reading, holding an old book in his right hand.

“Were you practicing the erhu?”


“Would you like to participate in the Miyabi-kai?”


He asked her to play it, Sango sat down next to Hongyu.

She placed the erhu on her thigh and readied her bow.

Then, Hongyu bursted out.

"What happened?"

Hongyu looked away, feeling awkward.

His face was so stiff that he couldn't deny that he had laughed.

“Okay, just play quickly.”


She took a deep breath and exhaled slowly. In an instant, her concentration increased.

She put the bow on the string and tried to play the short melody she learned today, but all she could produce was a harsh sound like tearing silk.

Sango blushed and slowly glanced at Hongyu's face.

Hongyu covered his mouth and appeared to be holding back his laughter.

As if he couldn't hold back anymore, he bursted out laughing.

“Right before you started playing, you looked like a master of the erhu, but you’re so weak that you’re dying!”

"Today is my first time..."

Now that she thought about it, she couldn't remember being praised for playing the violin.

She got a passing grade on each assignment.

Just as she was looking down, Hongyu asked her to lend him her erhu.

“So, can you play it?”

"Well, it's just a bit."

Hongyu picked up the erhu and began playing.

It had a unique beautiful tone that was different from that of a violin, and the sound was glossy and melancholy.

It was completely different from the lively and fun erhu played by the ladies-in-waiting.

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When he stopped playing, Sango applauded him.

"That's amazing, Hongyu. You can receive many Hanafuda cards from Princess Hoshi!"

“That’s an exaggeration.”

"That's not true. She's really beautiful and her skills are amazing."

Hongyu looked away and pressed the erhu against Sango.

She could see that he was embarrassed, so Sango stopped teasing him and left him alone.

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