Four People, For the Sake of One Person: Irene
My daughter has offered to host a small evening party. The guests have already been decided, but there was something unusual about the whole situation. Especially hosting a part at a time like this.
After receiving confirmation, she decided to hold the party immediately in a few days. Hmmm, Irene is very impatient. Despite such a sudden evening party, of course, all the guests selected by Irene attended. There were several tea ceremonies, but it was the first evening party hosted by Irene. Indeed, when she asked them to join, she got a friendly reply. What is Irene planning to do?
I’m watching Irene exchanging greetings with aristocrats, trying to figure out the reason for the event because the organizer is my daughter.
My daughter, who usually tried to hide from others in the shadows, is currently actively chatting with them today.
…Even more unusual.
“By the way!”
The voice belonged to the son of a Count family owning internal territories. He realized he had attracted public attention, blushed, but continued.
“Recently, I’ve heard disturbing rumors… It seems that monsters will move more actively from now on.”
With his words, the noise became louder. How did you get here at all? The participants in the party were people from inland and remote areas. Moreover, there were no great aristocrats close to the Royal family. It’s safe to assume that this was an excellent place to incite people.
“Speaking of, there were many people who temporarily moved to another country…”
“I have problems…”
“Not if the Royal family also escapes…”
“Ladies and gentlemen!”
A majestic voice drowned out the noise. What a nostalgic sight. My late wife would also often rule the crowd with her beautiful voice.
“We are all aristocrats here.”
Someone placed down the glass. So, naturally, everyone gathered around Irene.
“And in the current crisis, we must take appropriate action.”
As she said that, she looked around amidst the silence. The clamor that was heard earlier seem to have subsided.
“Right, let’s welcome the monsters!”
“I remember training a long time ago.”
“Whatever happens, let’s make fine dust out of them…!”
They were aristocrats with warlike land territories. They had much enthusiasm because they, more than anyone in their class, were exposed to the threat of monsters. Irene responds to them with a bright face and a big smile.
“Well, this is wonderful! I will help you as much as the Dilaver family is able to!”
Thus, it can be said that the Duke’s family can intimidate the inner Lemaire; that the Duke’s family is under the protection of the outer Lemaire.
Most were unhappy with my daughter’s words, but the rest are just calmly looking at her.
However, I will not dare to either assert or deny her declaration.
What will all this lead to? Irene…
“What on earth are you planning to do, Irene?”
After the evening party, I immediately called my daughter to my office.
My dear daughter looks down indecisively. Warm green eyes alike to sunlight gracing through trees, graceful black hair comparable to the blackest of stones, with a face as lovely as the most beautiful flower. My daughter leaves a powerful impression and is very similar to my wife, who died a few years ago. I am ready to give whatever she wants… Usually, she wants something strange, but acceptable.
“Father, are you going to leave the country?” She looked at me expectantly.
I admire you, my daughter. I intended to leave in secret, but did you notice it? Does that mean the remarks she made during the evening party were aimed against me?
“You’re going with me, Irene. Isn’t that what you wanted?”
Irene once had a high fever when she was just three years old. She constantly said that she would die if she stayed here. No matter how many times I hugged her and repeated promised that nothing would hurt her, she refused to believe me. For some reason, seeing my child weep in fear of dying made me chose to be a father rather than a Duke.
I was surprised that high-ranking people liked the idea but ultimately left it alone. That way, they would protect my daughter even if I’m not there to oversee her, and it’s a good reason to go abroad… It was a miscalculation that the engagement to the prince, organized by His Majesty, fell through.
“But I want to stay here!”
This was a surprise. Why did my daughter suddenly say that she wanted to stay here? Nevertheless, it’s too late.
“I won’t hear any of it.”
“That’s because you can’t be in this country anymore. Why do you suddenly want to stay?”
Irene doesn’t know what to say in response.
I decided to always get the facts straight with my daughter… Well, I decided so when she suddenly abandoned the engagement with the Crown Prince.
“For no reason… It’s just that the Duke’s family can’t move abroad. They’re finally ready.”
“Abandonment of engagement with the Crown Prince… Engagement requests from many nobles… If there is such a reason, regaining our co-ranking will be a sufficient enough reason to go abroad with you. However, my younger brother will succeed to the title. “
“Besides, if you take advantage of this turmoil, you can untie your hands away from any further action.”
“I’m sorry, but it’s too late. I cannot allow you to have the luxury that you had before… But I can finally fulfill your wish that you don’t want to die here.”
I laughed, but my daughter still had a pale face… Now I’m thinking whether it was necessary to implement everything I did earlier…
I cautiously approached Irene as she stood up.
“What’s wrong, Irene…? Is the fear of death still wiping you out?”
I reached out to touch Irene’s shoulder, but my daughter wasn’t there. Hmmm?
“I’m sorry! I’m sorry! I’m sorry!”
While yelling so, Irene threw herself into my arms.
“Stop it! Irene!”
Although I tried to bring her to her senses, she stubbornly refused to raise her head.
My daughter gradually calmed down. While I was confused with her words, she continued to pronounce…
“I’m so selfish! Selfish!”
Irene continued to scream.
“I have no title! I have no sword! But I was still so selfish! I was crazy! I was sick! I was sick…”
Irene talked continuously while nursing a runny nose.
She’s all that’s left of my late wife…
“Nevertheless! I found something more important than surviving!”
“…It’s my first time hearing such things” Although I was a little hurt about not knowing such things beforehand, I urged her to continue.
“Not long ago, I realized one crucial thing… I’ve lived for 16 years, and there were a lot of important people I’ve cherished here… In Lemaire… I thought that I could finally live here even if I was a different person…”
…It’s challenging to hear. There were a lot of things that didn’t make sense, but in short, does Irene now want to live in Lemaire because there are important people she holds dear here?
“If so, then you should have told me that earlier.”
“Oh! Father! You are so gentle and kind…! I couldn’t say it! I was afraid that you would hate me.”
…I have seen her face covered with tears many times, and it seems that this is still my weak point.
“That’s why… That’s the reason why I couldn’t help but trample on father’s feelings!”
Irene grabbed my arm. There was no fear of death in her eyes. Nothing of the sorts. It was just a pure willful wish.
“I want to help Rururia by any means!”
She wiped away her tears that had begun to flow mercilessly. She took a deep breath, and stared at me.
And as she did, new tears started to appear from the corners of her eyes.
“Like Sara-san… I’m not smart… like Soran-kun… I can’t protect anyone… I can’t use magic!”
In the midst of her eternal sobbing, I couldn’t understand a single word she was saying.
“But, I still want to help her… Just as how she never turned her back on me!”
Irene started to calm down a little. It was probably because she finally said what she wanted to say.
“And, Father… It’s not just that I don’t want to die anymore. I want to live here. I want to live in this country…”
I closed my eyes and thought about it. Of course, I did try to leave this country for the sake of my daughter. But if Irene doesn’t want to, she doesn’t have to. I don’t know if I could get out of this current situation, but I still have to deal with those people. However, even if I assume that this was planned to support Irene’s story. My work has increased significantly… First of all, I have to contact my younger brother.
Thinking as far as that, I laughed bitterly: my daughter is very charming.
However, since Irene has decided to remain as a member of the Duke’s family, I have to train harder than ever.
That’s the path Irene chose.
“The situation will be tough even if I tried to recover it now. If I can’t deal with it, I’ll have to leave the country, no questions asked, all right?”
“Okay! Do your best!”
“You will take care of those people, right?”
“Yes! Do I have to many marriage requests? I will deal with that too.”
I can’t help but sympathize with the fact that although she’s trying to take over my affairs, I cannot give her absolutely everything, except for a few, in any case.
Well, as a father, I’ve calmed down more because at the very least, I don’t have to send my daughter elsewhere. Irene will stay at home all the time.
“As a countermeasure for this time, there is no problem in following that route from the evening party… But there are a few points to be corrected.”
“I will do my best as a member of the Duke’s family.”
She now has a face that expresses that she’s achieved her goal. With tears, nonetheless. It’s much better than a desperately-wanting-something-but-cannot-have-it expression.
“May I ask why you changed your mind all of a sudden? When you calm down, can you tell me properly?”
“…Of course! I won’t hide it anymore!”
…Anymore? Hide? All these secrets she’s disclosing to me now are completely unexpected. What are you doing, my daughter…
I couldn’t hide my frustration from my strangely cheerful daughter.
With a big smile on the beautiful face that she inherited from her mother, Irene was determined to tell me everything.
“I’ll tell you everything, father!”
…All of a sudden, I felt weak as I was listening to my daughter’s story.