After trying to translate this chapter as soon as it came out, I realized that I don’t think I will be able to do it X”D so, I will release it when the chapter is ready, no regular update schedule though. Also, we actually enters the next are: Heroine with this chapter. Guess the matter about the spirit will be pushed back for a while.
A few months have passed since I failed the spirit contract.
I haven’t attempted to make the spirit contract a second time.
The reason is because I still don’t know why I failed to make a contract.
I also investigated it as much as I could by myself, and Al investigated as much as he could by making use of his connections, but we still haven’t found out the reason.
What if I fail again when I try to make a contract without knowing the reason I failed the first time?
When I thought so, it was quite difficult to challenge it for the second time.
“If I at least know the reason……”
If I know the reason why I couldn’t make a contract, it will be worth it to try once again. Since I don’t know the reason, I wouldn’t even know what I should do. How frustrating.
The fact that I failed making the contract was buried inside the heart of the people who was there when I attempted to make the contract that day, which were my father, Luke, Al, and I.
It was made a secret to my older brothers. After that incident, my brothers then asked me how the contract was, but my father glossed over it by saying that “We will try it on another opportunity because today is a bad day.”
Thanks to that, no one knows that I failed the spirit contract.
From the outsiders’ point of view, I am engaged with Al and danced with him on my society debut, and that must have appeared to be the very definition of happiness itself. But in fact it is not.
I want to know the reason why the spirit contract somehow failed. I want to make a contract perfectly the next time.
—My pride will not allow me to fail the second time.
While my character has improved a bit, not everything has changed. I, whose original stubborn personality has come out, was absolutely keen to succeed.
As I was spending my days like that, time went by, and before I realized it, it was almost the day when my friend Chloe will make her society debut.
Her society debut is six months after mine.
Along with Luke, I visited the orphanage after a long time absence, when I was alone with her, I asked about it.
I can’t say that I am experienced, I just had my society debut six months earlier than her. But I thought there must be something I could say to her as an advice.
When I brought up the topic, Chloe clapped her hands together with an expression as if to say that she was saved, and told me.
“Please, Lily! The evening party after my debut! I want you to attend it too!”
“The evening party? Alright, I don’t mind.”
I didn’t think that I would be asked to do that, but I smiled and nodded in assent.
I would like to grant my precious friend’s request, and I was planning to attend that evening party from the start anyway. The reason is that Al’s younger brother, Prince Wilfred, supposedly will attend the party, so Al has been told to attend the evening party too.
“If I have to go, then I’m going to bring you along. Because you are my partner, you know? Say, of course you will come, right?”
Of course I agreed.
Luke, who was listening to our conversation, had sighed while saying, “Milady, you’re seriously……” I was wondering what he was talking about, but I had mixed feelings whether I should ask him or not.
Anyway, when I said that I would attend, Chloe was visibly relieved.
“That’s great. Actually, I thought it would be rude to request something like this to you, who are the daughter of a duke, but after all I’m still worried.”
“Society debut is a special event. And the evening party after that too. It is only natural for you to feel anxious. I don’t think that everything will turn out fine just because I am there though.”
I can help her more if she is being bullied, but if her expectation is much more than that, I’m stumped. But, Chloe said with a smile, “You being there is enough for me.”
“Because I’m worried, I thought it would be great if I have a friend there. I didn’t think you would actually agree though, Lily. If you weren’t able to attend, Lily, I thought I would ask another friend, but I’m glad that you agreed……!”
She seemed relieved, maybe it wasn’t good of me to feel this way, but I was delighted for a moment.
I was happy to know that I was the first one to be asked by Chloe.
Chloe has many friends besides me. I knew that, and I didn’t mean to say anything, but Chloe is my only friend right now. I was happy that she was counting on me.
Although, because my foundation is not cute, my way of speaking became twisted.
“W-well……since you said that you’re worried, Chloe, then I will stay with you as much as possible.”
Wasn’t there a better way to say it? I regretted it a little, but I couldn’t take back the words I have said. While saying the opposite of what I meant, Chloe embraced me enthusiastically without any concern.
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I caught Chloe in a fluster. She, who is innocently rejoicing, is very enviable.
—I wish I could be a little cuter.
However, it’s difficult. Chloe’s straightforward character is her character by nature, and my unfriendly character is also by nature. I cannot change it just because I want to.
It couldn’t be helped, so I decided not to think about it anymore, I pat her back as I asked.
“Anyway, Chloe, who is going to be your partner for the evening party?”
“Yes, that’s right. Of course, you must have someone in mind, right?”
When I danced with my fiancé, Al, that first dance will be very important from then on. One’s position in society is determined by their dancing partner.
In that sense, I think mine is a perfect score. My fiancé is the First Prince. There is no man of suitable age that is better than him in this country.
In fact, after dancing, my previous followers gathered around me with smiling faces.
There is no doubt that they were looking at Al, who was behind me, through me.
When I asked the question, Chloe began to ponder about it
“Hmm, I have no fiancé, so maybe I should get my father to ask uncle……”
“Maybe, you say……but it’s your partner for your society debut, you know?”
Because Chloe is of marriageable age. Since society debut happens only once in a lifetime, she should be more interested in this. But it seems that she doesn’t care about it that much.
“That’s true, but what matters to me is the children of this orphanage. So I’m fine with my father making the arrangement for me……”
“Y-you’re taking this too lightly……”
“Is it not good?”
“That’s not what I mean……but, that’s right. You said you’re going to ‘ask uncle’, right? So, what is your relationship with that uncle?”
It may be better to have Chloe as calm as she is right now rather than being pointlessly nervous and jittery. I decided my course of action and asked for the identity of her ‘uncle’.
I don’t actually think that person is bad, but this is just in the unlikely event that he’s a suspicious person. Chloe doesn’t seem to care about her well-being that much, so I want to inquire about it just in case.
“He is my father’s younger brother whom I always indebted to.”
“I see. If that is the case, well……”
It’s a passing mark.
After hearing Chloe’s story, I was convinced.
There are quite a lot noble ladies who had brought their relatives to their society debut to act as their partner. It’s because one can ask them for free, and it will be difficult to cause strange rumors.
“There seems to be no problem then. That’s good. Ah, right, I think since it is you, Chloe, you’re going to be alright, but be careful with strange men.”
“Lily, you sound like a mother somehow.”
“……I’m worried because you’re so unreliable!”
I don’t want to be called a mother by my friend who is the same age as me. When I scowled at her, maybe Chloe thought that she went too far, she apologized to me.
“I know that you’re seriously worried about me, Lily. Because you are a kind person. Strange men, huh……I want to be careful, but I don’t know what a strange man like, so I will ask you if there is anything, Lily. Is that okay?”
“Of course. But, well, it’s fine. As long as I know who it is, I can ask my brother for rumors about that person.”
Since Victor-niisama works at the castle, he should be familiar with the information about nobles who enter and exit the castle. I wouldn’t be confident whether he would answer if it were a while ago, but now I think he would tell me if I ask him.
“Please leave it to me.”
When I confidently said that, Chloe listened while tilting her head.
“Brother? Come to think of it, you mentioned having a brother……”
“Yes, I have two older brothers. I’m the youngest of us three siblings. Just now I was talking about my eldest brother. He works as a civil official in the castle. Victor Beltran. You may also meet him somewhere, Chloe.”
When I brought Noel here for the first time, I told her that I have a brother. She said “How nice,” as if she was truly envious.
“I’m an only child. So I really envy those who have siblings.”
“Oh my, then, are you going to adopt your husband into your family? Since you would need someone to succeed the county.”
When I was wondering whether she would adopt her husband into her family if there is no older or younger brother, Chloe shook her head.
“No. My father is fine either way. If I get married into my husband’s family, my family inheritance will be transferred to my uncle whom I mentioned earlier.”
“I see. It may be quite difficult if you limit it to someone who can get married into your family. So it may be better not to narrow the selection.”
“Yeah, my father also said so. Whether it is the eldest son or the second son, if we have a good relationship with each other, I want to proceed proactively.”
If she aims at the second son or the third son who won’t inherit their family’s peerage, then she will be able to inherit her family inheritance, but that is not a certain thing. It is also highly likely that her marriage partner would be the eldest son.
—Chloe’s father thinks of Chloe.
The reason for not narrowing the options from the start is probably because he wants his daughter to choose a good partner by herself.
I think Chloe is a kind and nice girl, and her father also seems to be a good person. I understand how she’s able to grow up this way.
“Well then, let’s meet again at the evening party.”
“Yeah, thank you for today.”
As it was time, I said my farewell to Chloe and returned home with Luke, who had been waiting.
Then, it is finally the day when my friend makes her social debut.