Reborn as The Underdog First Prince Volume 1 Epilogue + Afterword

It took around a week to walk from the foothills of the mountain ranges to reach the kingdom.  
It took us a little less than three months from the time of our departure to the time of our return to the kingdom. 
Whether one views that as long or surprisingly brief is a matter of perspective.  
Incidentally, Todd himself felt it took a bit too much time. 
Stopping by the kingdom’s city on the mountain range side first nearly caused major trouble.  
For some reason a suspicious looking group wearing odd clothing and barbarian cavalry clearly made themselves visible approaching.  
The town alarm bells warning of the annual barbarian raids rang out, and stationed troops began taking out weapons to prepare for the attack.  
If the noble governing that town didn’t happen to be acquainted with Todd, things could have gone badly.  
By directly visiting his estate and explaining the situation, they managed to avert the worst case scenario.  
Haruto and the others had supposedly already returned ahead of them, but they had apparently headed straight to the royal capital without saying anything in particular.  
The townsfolk’s animosity towards the mountain people was considerable, so Todd immediately decided to pass through the town heading straight for the royal capital where they resided.  
Unlike the trip there, they no longer needed to disguise themselves as a troupe of traveling performers or anything.  
With Todd taking point they sent word to each area, proudly returning triumphant after subjugating the barbarians.  
At first there were also people who clearly didn’t believe it, saying things like the Alchemy Prince was just boasting. But that only lasted until they actually saw him in person. 
Seeing the youthful yet sharp-featured Todd despite being only twelve after going through battle, the battered armored Reinbach, and the mountain people actually following Todd, everyone’s attitude somehow amusingly changed.  
The mountain people were shocked at the unfamiliar scenery, besieging Todd and the others with questions to explain everything they saw.  
Especially the highly inquisitive Ho asked what’s that about everything whenever he had a moment free, to the point of being annoying.  
Incidentally, Totila and the other banished mountain people were not among their party.  
After deciding on a meeting point they were waiting on standby elsewhere.  
Taking some more time, moderately accepting and declining invites to banquets and parties, Todd finally returned to the royal capital.  
Used to the familiar atmosphere, he left matters regarding mountain people and everything else to Reinbach then rode off alone on Shiranui.  
At first he slipped through between startled people but lacked speed that way.  
Worried about colliding with anyone he switched to leaping from roof to roof heading straight for the familiar royal palace.  
In his impatience urging himself on he found himself arriving right in front of the royal palace before he realized it.  
And as expected…or rather clearly, troops had gathered starting from the city guards all the way to the royal guards to capture the suspicious intruder headed towards the palace.  
“You there! What business do you have at the palace!?” 
“Sorry, it’s me, me.”  
“……Your Highness Todd!?” 
“I’m back, hasn’t word already gotten around?” 
“Er… Yes, we were all awaiting Your Highness’s return. His Majesty the King awaits, please head immediately to the audience chamber…” 
“Oh right, explanations to Father can come after. There’s somewhere I need to go first.”  
Apologizing to the royal guards trying to stop him, Todd entered the palace grounds shedding Shiranui first on his own two feet.  
Once inside the entrance, take the path straight ahead past the inner garden to the right.  
Opening the third door led to… 
The figure of Edward, looking even more dazzling with features further sharpened after three months apart.  
His long narrow eyes were beautiful, and his profile visible from this side seemed like a work of art. 
“Yo, Edward. Were you a good kid while I was gone?” 
“…Big brother!” 
The deeply moved Edward stood up from his chair.  
Perhaps throwing off his posture standing up so suddenly, he nearly toppled over but managed to maintain his footing by swinging out his arms to stabilize himself.  
Once his body settled he immediately ran out again, clinging to Todd. 
The clothes Todd currently wore could by no means be called neat.  
While he had been mindful in his own way, what he wore was the same thing as when they had departed.  
What’s more he had worked up quite a sweat after moving around in Shiranui just now.  
Frankly, he was probably rather stinky. 
“Sorry, I reek right now so maybe save hugging for after I’ve bathed…”  
“Big brother, I heard! You really… You truly accomplished it!” 
“Yeah, well…it did take some time though.”  
Seeing he wouldn’t listen to anything Todd said, he obediently decided to hold Edward.  
But when he tried to wrap his arms around him, unconsciously his hands froze in place.  
And he found himself unable to move as if frozen solid.  
The reason soon became apparent.  
Over the course of this expedition Todd had killed many people.  
While the sacrifices were undoubtedly necessary, the fact remained his hands were still stained with blood.  
Should he still embrace Edward with these blood-soaked arms? 
Such thoughts were what paralyzed Todd. 
“Big brother, tell me all about it! I want to talk to you about so many things too. Really, so many many things!” 
“Yeah, that’s fine but…” 
But seeing his little brother gazing up at him, agonizing over something like that seemed foolish.  
He had pondered and taken action fighting Totila out of fear of conquest by the mountain people.  
He held no regrets over the result…nor should he. 
He had fought in order to protect himself and his whole family.  
So he didn’t need to worry about petty details like that.  
For now he could simply share the joy of their reunion with Edward and that was enough— 
scene transition 

“Hey, Edward.”  
“Yes, what is it big brother?” 
“Can I…still remain as your reliable big brother?” 
Todd had spent four long years working to bring happiness to himself and those around him.  
Disregarded as the Alchemy Prince fool by others, without paying heed to all the nobles who had extolled him now turning their backs. He had marched straight ahead for powered armor development.  
And now finally his efforts had borne fruit in the result of subjugating the mountain people.  
“With this, I’ve hopefully made the world recognize my excellence a little. As a brother worthy of your admiration, Edward.” 
“Y…Yes, big brother has always been…” 
“Big brother’s home!” 
“He came back!?”  
“Oniichan! !” 
Shifting his gaze sideways from Edward, somehow having caught wind of his return his younger siblings had gathered as if waiting in ambush.  
Everyone was surprised Todd was present, pointing their fingers at the two embracing.  
“Welcome home big brother, I believed you would come back waving your success!”  
“Big brother…please bathe first.” 
“I wanna hug too!”  
Enethya approaching speaking in a manner like a princess awaiting a knight’s return.  
Takeru’s face twisted in disgust at Todd’s powerful stench even from afar. 
Anastasia who probably thought they were just playing a group hug game clung onto Todd’s back along with Enethya.  
“Ye…yeah, I’m back.” 
Putting strength into his back, he lifted up the two girls.  
Seeing Todd’s face flushed bright red from the effort, his siblings laughed.  
Edward separated from Todd, spreading his arms wide like a scholar announcing his research findings.  
“Big brother—This too is one result of your efforts. Everyone admires you, and we’re all able to get along so well like this. Royals who should be jealous and hating one another are instead able to spend time happily like this. Things like this just don’t happen normally!” 
He hadn’t been able to hear the answer to his earlier question til the end.  
But it seems Todd can still remain…as Edward’s reliable big brother.  
He had gained many more companions than he expected, and never imagined even Totila who should have been a hated villain character would become an ally.  
This world that resembled yet wasn’t a game constantly brought about completely unexpected developments.  
(But for me and those around me, as well as characters from the original work I loved. If everyone including them, the kingdom citizens, and mountain people can achieve happiness—I’ll seek out that grand route known only to me no matter how difficult.) 
Feeling the warmth of his siblings’ bodies, Todd strongly felt his return while thinking that.  
His journey had only just begun—. 


Nice to meet you if it’s our first time, and long time no see otherwise.  
I’m known as Shinkosei, active posting works on Shousetsuka ni Narou. 
This might be sudden, but I wonder if everyone has seen or watches works of the genre called ‘robot anime’? 
Personally I watch them quite a bit. I especially love Sunrise works, grew up watching Guren Lagaan and Code Geass, then got even more hooked as an adult with series like Daimbai and Bai Faiza.  
Seeing interesting works sparks a creative impulse to try making such things themselves. While thinking someday I’d like to write a story featuring robots fighting dramatically, time flowed on. And deciding eh why not give it a shot, this Kemase Inu was born. Since I figure many may read the afterword before finishing the main story, I’ll avoid touching on contents here too much. (I myself am actually that type as well.) I hope you’ll see just how much effort Todd puts in til the end.  
Now changing topics completely, when you’re trying to focus on something how do you usually go about it? For me, the first thing is putting my environment in order. Even now if I’m at home I end up fiddling with my smartphone, so I’m currently holed up in a cafe having chucked said smartphone onto my bed writing this afterword. I always find it amazing seeing people clacking away on laptops in cafes without giving in to smartphone temptation.  
Of course concentration still fails even in cafes at times. Loud talk about things like the state of prices lately dampens my spirits. Feeling like striking up cheerful talk rather than depressing stuff lately, I find myself wanting to keep my gaze up these days.  
Since when I can’t focus I immediately change locations, my monthly cafe bills have been skyrocketing recently. And it’s all because of prices lately of course… (Giant boomerang) 
I occasionally get told by friends, “Instead of going to so many cafes why not try keeping costs down at a coworking space or something?” Apparently it’s places gathering salarymen remote workers and such. The term itself sounds cool and I do want to check them out once, but somehow the barrier for entry feels high and I haven’t set foot in one yet.  
Cafes still feel best in the end. Humans just can’t change that easily I suppose.  
Getting serious again, apologies for the late thanks.  
Editor O-san, thank you for discovering this work. Also huge gratitude to Bungeisha for the go sign. Thanks to having the flexible idea of [Narou robot story…why not?] this work now sits on store shelves.  
Illustrator DaiExt, handling even robot designs probably not common for light novels, you have my deepest appreciation.  
And most of all, thank you to you holding this book now. If something remains in your heart, as the author there is no greater joy. Well then, til we meet again in Volume 2.

TLNOTE: “Well then, till we meet again in Volume 2” is a big lie, at least for the moment. It’s been 2 years, and there’s still no Volume 2 in sight. This novel fooled me several times with that cover (the girl is not the heroine, and the giant robot is not only human-szed but it’s actually a power armor). Despite that, I quite enjoyed the novel. That’s all from me. See you again in another place, another time.

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