Finishing our luxurious, but moderate meal for dinner, the adults began drinking liquor. My father has been in high spirits since the events this afternoon.(1)
Father is the type of person who normally doesn’t drink alcohol at home, though I would say he doesn’t like drinking it too much either, but well – there are probably those times you just feel like drinking.
Wanting to talk with Wolf a bit more, I decided to invite him to go to the mansion’s library and had him guide me there.
I had just the right topic I wanted to talk to him about.
Magical lights illuminated the library at night.
For a place that was highly flammable, magical lights were the best. There weren’t any worries of anything catching fire, and it could be sustained for a long period of time without oil. Furthermore, since it was unlike the unstable flickering flames, it was easier for me to follow the words in a book with my eyes.
Although it is a high-class item, it is a frequently used light fixture. Light is produced by exposing a palm sized orb inside the glass container to morning sunlight. During the night, this light is constantly used. It was simple to imagine it as rechargeable solar power.
The only problem with it is that unlike an electric light, you can’t turn it off with a switch. Since we lacked that flexibility, we would turn off the lights by covering them with thick blackout-like cloths.
Under those magical lights, we talked about each of our recommended books. Having said that, we actually did as we pleased – straying off to any topic that sparked our interest.
Although our freewheeling discussion was senseless, and any adult who listens in might call it nonsense, it was fun for me. Perhaps, it was fun for Wolf as well.
No one would have found fault with it, but somehow, we were both speaking softly. This excusable『night activity』of a child probably wouldn’t do any harm.
But for children like us, once the adults find out, they would try to put an end to it. If the adults noticed that we were doing something in the middle of the night, we would be told『children should go to sleep』, and then they would take away that precious time.
Those whispered conversations were soon cut short. At that moment, I directed the discussion to an important topic.
「Hey, Wolf... About our engagement...」
Caught off guard from my sudden words, Wolf could only respond 「Eh?!」while raising his voice.
「It’s about the engagement our fathers were talking about. It’ll be problematic in a lot of ways – I’m not sure if our fathers are serious about it, but in any case, I want to clearly declare my intentions」
Since I thought that I had built a fairly good relationship with Wolf, I wanted to be as open as I could with him.
When the part of『problematic in a lot of ways』was said, Wolf demanded to know what it was about.
My engagement with Wolf was, in truth, a slightly dangerous gamble for the Dukedom of Lilia. In the carriage, I hurled the question to my father and found out about his speculation.
That question was of course, whether it was right to get the Duke of Lilia’s only daughter – me – to marry into the other family.
Even though I couldn’t inherit my father’s court rank, my relatives could choose a husband for me – meaning to say, it would likely be a safer option.
Not accepting that reasoning, my father said『a capable person that could make such a judgment doesn’t exist』.
And then, my father asked whether he could use my youth as a gamble. Hoping for me to marry Wolf – the current minister’s son who had a good family, wit and his approval(2) – my father considered having the child of that matrimony, that is, his grandson, to inherit the title of Duke of Lilia.
In other words, I would have to have at least two children to succeed both lines of the Dukedom of Lilia and the Dukedom of Ranuncula; furthermore, he was betting on the possibility that I would be able to give birth to two sons.’
By announcing my engagement with Wolf, the number of people knowing about my father’s speculation would increase. Not only would there be opposition if two of the powerful families within the five Dukedoms were to bind together through this marriage, but even within my own family – my relatives would think that their own sons would be more appropriate as the next Duke of Lilia.
Personally, I also don’t feel satisfied with this explanation. After all, this isn’t my will.
But even so, I was grateful that my father explained the various circumstances to me. That was my father’s sincerity to me, and I must show that same sincerity to him. Meaning that, at the very least, I needed to oppose my father head on, in order for me to convince him.
Initially, Wolf’s personality would be difficult, thus, I prepared this evidence as a reason, but...
「Why don’t we cooperate?」
「Yes. Because this talk about engagement, frankly speaking, you oppose it too, right?」
Was he aware that he’s only been either repeating my words or pronouncing the syllable「Eh」since a while ago?
「I mean – I understand there are various circumstances regarding the lineage and the duke’s title, but they completely ignored our feelings in this. We’re only children. We don’t know who we’ll meet in the future」
Or to be specific, once Wolf begins school at the age of twelve, he was destined to meet with the soft golden-haired, emerald-eyed young girl. However, they would only meet six years later — because it will happen at the peak of our school life, this will be a talk for a later time.
「That’s why, I don’t think we have to follow through our parent’s arrangement to marry. But if we just turned down this engagement, wouldn’t our families just bring forward new proposal arrangements?」
「Hear me out on this. All we have to do is stop pretending that we are both satisfied with an engagement; I want you to bear in mind that if you ever want to marry someone else, I am willing to help you」
‘So please don’t stab me to death, okay?’, is what I didn’t say.
With utmost sincerity, I brought up the talk about coping with our engagement and consider the conclusions.
Wolf was better than how I imagined him to be – no, he was originally imaginary to begin with – therefore, he was an exceptionally good human that could rationally comprehend the conversation and understand the compromise.
「And, how about you...?」
That’s why, when the dark tone came out of Wolf’s voice, it was completely unexpected.
「Do you also have another person you want to get married to? Is that why you don’t think anything of me?」
Wolf’s hand stretched out, grabbing my wrist.
It wasn’t like the strength of his hold caused me pain, but since it was sudden – as if the hand had stretched out from the darkness, I felt shocked.
「... What are you talking about?」
In contrary to my attempt at shaking off his hand, the hold on my wrist only grew stronger, pulling us closer.
Even though I was taller, Wolf’s hands were remarkably bigger than mine. It was natural since he practiced with a sword, but surprisingly, even his grip was strong.
Unable to free myself from his hold, I got sucked into his deep violet eyes and was drawn closer.
「Saying that『We don’t know who we’ll meet in the future... 』,from the way you’re speaking, you’re taking away the possibility of me being your partner. That is why, I’d like to hear whether you’ve already had that so-called fateful encounter. Is there a man you like?」
His voice sounded as if he was questioning a lover caught cheating, so I was taken by surprise.
Absurdly, my face became red; at any rate, I denied his claims by shaking my head. So much so, that I could hear buzzing as I swung my head.
And so, Wolf who had been furious until now, eased up. I was a little startled to hear a sigh coming from him.
「In your case... how many men do you know in your life? No, it would only be natural for a duke’s daughter...」
「Eh? Are there any girls around you, Wolf? U-uhm, like a beautiful maid onee-san, perhaps? Or...」
Although he doesn’t have any friends, he might be leading an unknown life with a sex friend. And so, giving reign to my imagination, I made a revolted face.
「There’s no way that could be true. I’m innocent. But there are some people who take in servants as their lovers, and within the royal palace, the coming and going of these scandalous relationships between men and women reach my ears even when I don’t want to」
Talking about these love affairs, it was as if Wolf was pointing out that I grew up as a sheltered princess. The feelings of both a friend and a younger brother towards the unpredictable Wolf for some reason, made me remember his irritation from a moment ago.
Wolf’s hand, which was holding my wrist from the resulting chaos, still remained.
Although it didn’t hurt, somehow, it was making that spot on my wrist warmer. Not only that, his face is close.
Leveraging on my previous life’s memories, I wanted to say something that could startle him to let go. But I haven’t the slightest idea on what to say. Jokes? Information on health insurance?
In the game, Wolf was generally a bit fussy about everyone else except the heroine, so wasn’t he someone who hated women? It’s probably too late to say this. But how can anyone make such an excuse when he is this close.
I. Am. Confused.
Seeing my confusion, Wolf suddenly made a grown-up smile. Although I called it grown-up, it was somewhere closer to a nasty smile.
「In other words, you said those things without even having experienced those feelings」
I don’t want to hear that coming from a ten-year old! Ever!
「Rather than yearning for a prince from a story, it’s better to consider a man you can see in front of your eyes」
I also don’t want to hear that either! Whether it’s yearning for a prince or something else, I can always think of a chapter in a book, so this is unnecessary!!
「...I won’t cancel the engagement」
Declaring this clearly, Wolf finally unravelled his fingers from my wrist.
But before completely letting go, he stroked my wrist with his finger, taking care of the spot that was constrained before.
Ever since a while ago, I didn’t have any resistance to Wolf’s actions, and now my face was boiling red like an octopus. No matter what I said, it wouldn’t fit my current condition.
When Wolf stood up and said『Let’s return to our rooms』, I could only nod my head several times. At any rate, I feel that once I’m alone, I can calm down.
「Good night, fiancee-dono. Have a pleasant dream」
That’s why, I couldn’t complain when Wolf, after sending me to guest room, kissed me near the eye (possibly on top of the beauty mark under my eye) just before he left. (3)
I would say that the fiancé that my parent chose for me, was a yandere.
However, he was a person that was considerably difficult to hate.
(1)Author wrote it as: My father has been in high spirits since the news arrived.
Since there wasn’t any mention of other news, I assume it’s talking about the last chapter.
Forgetful-dreamer:I don’t know whether it was on purpose or not, but in the previous paragraph, her father said that “a capable person that could make such judgment (眼鏡) doesn’t exist”. But in this paragraph, the wording for “his approval” (父の眼鏡”: literally father’s glasses judgement) was talking about judgment – so her father was probably aware that he wasn’t capable person to judge and that’s why he’s betting? I’m confused. Author-san needs to make it easier to understand for stupid me...
Midori: I have my own interpretation of this, but it should be somewhere near to what the author had in mind. For the ‘capable person that could make such a judgement doesn’t exist’, it refers to the earlier part. Whether Licorice marrying into another family, or her marrying her own relative, is a ‘safer’ option. Her father is saying that there’s no one who’d be able to know for sure which one’s better.
The second part of the approval would refer to the father’s judgement of Wolf. From the father’s perspective, Wolf is a worthy person, and is fitting to be married to Licorice(something like that), so the children of Licorice and Wolf should be children of ability and skill, therefore, his plan of having two grandsons to lead both families would work with Wolf as the partner.
(3) I’ll be using it interchangeably with mole under the eye.
Please give your appreciation to midoriha “Midori” for the fast PR. The following chapters might be a bit slow, since I don’t have any other drafts that are completed yet.
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