A Promise — However, I’m Not Sure I Can Keep It
“You want to go to school…..What are you saying? Your goal is to take Sophia with you, right?”
Patrick’s words confuse me.
“I told you I would give up on bringing Sophia with me.”
“Then, why do you wish to go to school?”
“Why? Because you swore on the honor of the Grances family name that you aren’t doing anything suspicious.”
“That’s true, but…”
“If so, there’s nothing you need to be worried about.”
So that’s what it is. He thinks he will be able to prove I’m doing suspicious things here. And then, he will be able to take Sophia with him.
He’s saying something so ridiculous with such a triumphant face. Doesn’t he feel at all ashamed? Yet he’s staring at me with a face like that?
Is it because he knows that I really can’t say no to him joining the school?
“So, what are you going to do? Will you let me join the school? Or will you just quietly give me Sophia? For me, it would be easier if you were to choose the latter.”
Th-this is annoying. Really, the annoying part is that no matter what I choose the results will be equally troublesome.
Honestly, I don’t mind the idea of accepting a noble into the school. After all, the goal is to continue growing the school. So, I had planned on accepting children from all over the country.
But this guy is the epitome of an arrogant noble. Patrick will almost certainly cause problems if he joins the school.
No matter how I look at it, this is a troublesome situation.
If I don’t allow him to join, he will tell the Marquis lies of what I’m actually doing here. On top of that, Patrick could use the fact that I refused to allow him to enroll here as evidence that I am actually doing suspicious things here.
I honestly wouldn’t care if I were to get a bad reputation throughout the country — or at least I’d like to say that. But, it would be bad if the Marquis was to get a bad opinion of me before we even met.
After all, I was the main reason for breaking off his engagement to Claire. Even if the reason for this was that the head of the Grances family had died, I’m still sure his opinion of me is already not great.
If he were to blame that on me, using Patrick’s words as a pretext, he could decide to punish me or begin exerting a lot of pressure on the Grances family to do as he wishes.
He may ask us to pay him some compensation. Or even worse, the only way he may forgive me is if I give him Claire and Sophia — if that were to happen, I’d have no choice but to face him head on.
I’m not going to say it would be impossible for us to win, but I’d rather it not come down to a fight. Therefore, I want to make sure the Marquis of Gramp is involved as little as possible.
In other words, it doesn’t matter if I accept Patrick here or send him away. Either choice will be troublesome.
To potentially become the enemy of the Marquis of Gramp or accept Patrick as a student. Asking which is better….I’d have to say the latter.
If I can get Patrick to give up on Sophia, I can buy myself some time to garner enough power to actually oppose the Marquis.
For the time being, I feel like this is the best option.
“There is one condition for you to enroll here. At this school, everyone is equal. If you cause any problems, you will leave the school. Do you agree to this?”
“I can agree to that. However, I will also require two people besides me to enroll as well.”
“My steward and personal knight.”
“That’s fine. Then, the place where you’ll be staying…”
“–Leon, there’s no way a nobleman will stay in the same dormitory as commoners.”
Unexpectedly, Alice, who had remained silent this entire time, spoke up.
Did she say, nobleman…..Alice would never speak like that. There must be a reason she’s talking like that.
“Alice, what do you think we should do?”
“How about the old Grances mansion?”
Th-that was dangerous. I almost couldn’t stop myself from laughing.
The old Grances mansion.
Unlike the student dormitories, there is no bath or water supply. However, there are still some luxurious amenities. And, even if it doesn’t reach the level of the student dormitories, the old mansion is fully furnished.
In terms of houses from this world, the old mansion is probably one of the nicest places to live — but, compared to the new houses I’ve built, it is easily the lowest quality residence available.
It definitely isn’t a suitable place for the nobility to live. Alice is honestly terrifying. I was thinking it would be best to behave myself, but this guy has really made me angry.
“Hmm, the mansion of the Earl. Is it worthy of me?”
“What? Is the mansion not in use? Are you trying to say I can’t use it?”
“It’s nothing like that, but….it will take an hour by carriage to get to the school from there.”
By the way, it is only a few minutes on foot from here to the dormitory.
“Hmm, well compared to living in a dormitory with commoners, that’s rather trivial. If there are no other problems, let me use that mansion!”
This is a dream come true for me. This will reduce the chances of him causing problems with the other students….Or at least I hope that’s the case.
“Then, you can use the old mansion. As for enrolling….it will maybe take a week? In that time we’ll also prepare the mansion for you.”
“Well, that’s at least a good start. I’ll leave for now and prepare for admission.”
Patrick said this and turned on his heel and left the room. The maid that Patrick had pushed passed to enter the room, panicked and followed after him.
We all watched him leave and then let out a sigh of relief.
“I’m sorry, I couldn’t deny him admittance.”
I bow toward everyone else.
“….As for that, I feel like it couldn’t be helped. He seems like the type of person that believes what he wants to believe.”
Alice said this after my apology. Sophia, Tina, and Lyanna all nodded as if to show they felt the same way.
“Thank you. I feel relieved hearing you say that.”
As I say thanks to everyone, I am also thinking about the future.
I had no choice but to allow Patrick to join the school, but I’m not going to take it easy on him. I intend to make him pay for everything he’s done.
As I was thinking this, Sophia held on tightly to me.
“Sophia? You don’t need to worry. You know I’ll protect you, right?”
“Yes, I believe in you. That’s why, umm…..I’m sorry, Leon onii-chan. It’s all Sophia’s fault.”
“Hm? Why are you apologizing?”
“Because the only reason that man came here, was to take Sophia.”
“Ah, like I said earlier, you don’t have to worry about that. The reason I made you my sister was to protect you.”
“But….because of Sophia, Leon onii-chan’s school will fall into disarray…”
“No, no, you really think it will be that bad!?!”
Patrick by himself could cause that much disorder in the classroom — I wouldn’t doubt it. As I was worried about this, Sophia kept staring at my face.
“I’m sorry, Leon onii-chan. That’s why I’ll make sure he never has a chance to cause problems for the school.”
“Wha-!? It’s alright, everything is fine! Everything is really okay!”
So please don’t suddenly lift up the edge of your skirt and pull the daggers out! I shouted this in my mind rather than saying it out loud.
“….Is it really okay?”
“It’s fine, it really is okay. If there are any problems, I can take care of them myself. You don’t need to worry, Sophia.”
Ah~, I was surprised. I forgot she has daggers strapped to her thighs. She’s become so much happier recently so I had started to feel relieved. But, I guess it could be dangerous if I’m not careful with her.
For now, I gently stroke Sophia’s head to comfort her.
“Uwawa~, Leon onii-chan, my hair will get messed up.”
Sophia surprisingly pulled away from me. I laughed a little and turned my gaze to Alice.
“Alice, sorry, but will you take over hosting the tea party?”
“That’s fine, but what are you going to do, Leon?”
“I have some future plans I need to discuss with Claire. Everyone, I need to leave for a bit, but please continue to enjoy the tea party.”
I was now sitting in Claire’s office. After hearing about what happened with Patrick, she let out a long, exhausted sigh.
“Even though I’m so busy, you came to tell me a joke like Patrick is joining the school?”
“No, umm…..Rather, it’s true?”
As Claire stared at me with her scornful eyes, I casually looked off into the distance. But, I can still feel her piercing stare. A single drop of sweat ran down my cheek.
“Is…Is it that bad?”
I can no longer stand the feeling of her eyes on me and turn to look at her.
“There will almost certainly be problems. It may be impossible for Otouto-kun to imagine, but in this world, it is impossible for the nobility to treat commoners as equals.”
“That’s….I understand that, but it should be okay. He’ll be kicked out if he uses his position to cause any problems.”
“I hope that’s true. First of all, did you think about Sophia? Will it be okay for her and Patrick to study together?”
“…..Well, to be honest, I’m feeling pretty anxious about that.”
I doubt he’d try to kidnap Sophia or anything that extreme, but I can’t deny the possibility that he will keep trying to make advances on her.
Sophia would become pitiable, and if the situation got worse, Patrick would become pitiful.
……I’m not trying to make a pun, but I’m more concerned with what Patrick would do.
“I’ll have Alice watch over Sophia for a while. Alice will be more than capable of using force to protect Sophia if necessary.”
“Alice? Well, her spirit magic is exceptional.”
“Yep, and recently she’s been improving her skills even more.”
She’s been using spirit magic every day to build the city of Muhle. This and the fact that she has been teaching me spirit magic every day using sensory magic is the reason I think her skills have improved so much.
I’m confident that I’ve improved some, but Alice is on a completely different level. I wonder what will happen if she continues to improve at this rate. It’s kind of a disturbing thought.
“…Well, it should be okay, probably. After hearing Otouto-kun’s story, it would have been hard for you to refuse him.”
“Is that because the Rodwell’s are a branch family of the Marquis of Gramp?”
“That’s right. The Marquis of Gramp holds a lot of power throughout the country. He’s someone you should absolutely not turn into an enemy. Even so, he probably already has a poor opinion of us after we broke off the engagement.”
With just three months before the marriage was meant to be official, we suddenly decided to break the engagement.
“This is a real pain.”
“It really is. That’s why you definitely can’t confront Patrick head-to-head.”
“Do you truly understand? You 100%, absolutely can not do that. You must absolutely not confront him in any way. Do you understand?”
…..Hmm? Why do I feel like it’s inevitable that this will happen?
Yes. I’m sorry.