Hope the previous chapter (April Fools’ chapter) managed to amuse you~
Here goes the real chapter 72!
I know that some people would name their children using their ancestors, relatives, closest people’s names… but…
I TOTALLY DIDN’T EXPECT THAT MY (PREVIOUS) NAME WOULD BE USED LIKE THIS, ALRIGHT?!
From how Clyde and Nicole talked about me (Reinst), I know that they were still thinking about me, and I was happy to know that… that they still remember me, that I actually mean something to them, but…
Not to the extent of naming their son after me!!
Yes, that’s taking it to another different level!
This is totally outrageous, okay?
Now, how should I face this nephew of mine?
I’m lucky that they didn’t decide his nickname with “Rein” or something like that, or I won’t be able to face this little kid with a straight face!!
I still hadn’t recovered from my shock when I noticed everyone was staring at me in silence…
Eh, w-what is it?
“Hey, Lyra, it’s your turn to introduce yourself!” Alt-nii nudged my hand.
“Eh? Ah, y-yes! It’s a pleasure to meet you. My name is Alrescha Lyra Hartmann, you can just call me Lyra. Congratulations on turning six!” I curtseyed.
When I raised my head after I introduced myself, what I saw right away was… this cheeky brat’s ridiculing smile!!
…At least, that was how his smile looked like in my head.
……Let me take back my words on how I said this child was angelic. Though it was only my hunch, but I still felt like being ridiculed! He must be laughing at me as I stuttered and forgot to introduce myself!
Excuse me, but that wasn’t necessarily my fault! It was all thanks to your name, it totally gave me quite a blow!
…I should have asked to read the invitation that my parents received. I should have at least asked about his full name. That way, I’d have come prepared!!!
“It’s about time for the party to start, right? We’d better return to the main hall,” Mom calmly said, breaking this awkward silence.
“Thank you for taking us around, Clyde-san. Then, Nicole-san, Ein, we will see you there,” Dad thankfully didn’t turn into his doting parent mode—he was all duke mode now.
The only thing that managed to catch my attention in this party even while I was drowning in my thought about Ein’s name was the appearance of the Grabberton family.
Let’s not mention Kania-san (Clyde’s mother) as she really doted on her grandson, naturally. Clyde’s expression turned so gentle when he looked at his mother and son smiling happily.
That smile diminished and changed into a more insincere smile when Father came up and spoke a few words. …I wonder what might it be?
Knowing Father, perhaps he tried to advise Clyde and Nicole with his ways—and focused on telling Ein to hold up the pride of the family. Perhaps… Clyde didn’t want his son to be taught that way. Nicole definitely didn’t want that, I knew her and her family after all. They were really a loving and harmonious family.
The Mother that I knew would definitely try to keep up her graceful and virtuous bearing, even when she felt otherwise deep down. I knew how she despised Clyde, she never liked him. …That was why Mother told me to stay away from him.
But this time, upon facing Clyde and Nicole, Mother’s virtuous face seemed to crack. She had this unpleasant expression—as if she couldn’t stand being here. I thought of this as something interesting to note, so I tried moving closer to them so I could eavesdrop something.
“Oh my, Dahlia-sama, you’ve come! One did not expect you would be so kind to come and see us as you used to be so busy. It’s been a long time since you last saw Ein, right?” Nicole surprisingly greeted her.
Dahlia-sama. Not Dahlia-san.
It was obvious how distant they were, judging from this alone.
“One could always spare some time when it’s this grandson’s sixth birthday. There’s no way I could afford not to see him on his special day,” Mother answered, she used her fan to cover her mouth as she spoke.
How should I describe it?
They were smiling, but their eyes weren’t smiling. It seemed like there was an aura of hostility… Eh? What’s the matter with Nicole and Mother?
Back when I was friends with Nicole, it wasn’t like Mother opposed her. Mother felt a little bit happy that I got acquainted with the heir of the Loera family, although Nicole was also friends with Clyde…
I wonder what caused this hostility to spark between them?
And from Nicole’s words, she implied that Mother never really came to pay a visit to Ein…
After that, it turned into verbal quarrel (sarcastically) between Nicole and Mother. They were saying courteous words, but there was a hint of hostility. Clyde would sometimes speak a few words of neutrality, while Ein… decided to talk with Domi!
I picked up some information like how Mother seemed to have avoided meeting Nicole, Clyde, and Ein—like when they visited during New Year, and so on.
In the end, I was most surprised by the fact that Mother lightly clicked her tongue after speaking with Nicole! Whoa, I never expected Nicole to be this amazing!!
Seriously Nicole, what did you do to be hated this much? Mother couldn’t just go to hate you like this just because you picked Clyde as a husband, right? …Or could she?
Suddenly, I felt like most of the nobles around me went even further away to give “this family” a privacy to speak, so I quickly ran off on my own, not wanting to be the only suspicious one!
Then, I went back to spend most of my time in the party to think about what might happen after I died between Mother and Nicole—for Mother to openly show her dislike like this… then, my ming wandered off to ponder about Ein’s full name again… No, to be more precise, his first name: REINell.
Was I too confident or narcissistic to think that his name was derived from my past self’s name? The coincidence was so obvious there…
……Or was I only being too conceited?
……The more I thought about it, the more I thought that it must just be me…… I was too sensitive when it came to anything related to my past self, after all.
Yes, let’s just leave it at that! No need to complicate stuff!! My brain would get fried at this rate!
“Hey, you’re that Lyra, right?”
When I attended this party, I thought of nothing except to see how my “nephew” looked like. I totally didn’t intend to curry a favor with him or whatsoever, much less after I felt he was ridiculing me.
However, the source of all troubles never failed to come after me.
Yup, there he was, the devil, Eine, standing right in front of me.
“You’re the Hartmann family’s only daughter, Alrescha Lyra Hartmann. Mummy and Daddy talked a lot about you.”
“…What did they tell you about me?”
“That Mummy and Daddy quickly took a liking to you. Not many could achieve that.”
C-could it be that this devil was actually jealous of me? Or he was only curious because I managed to grasp Clyde and Nicole’s interest?
“But I wonder what’s so special about you?”
–Before I could even respond, this little devil added a very stabbing sentence.
“What do you mean by that? Your Mum and Dad didn’t explain why they—uhm, based on what you said, liked me?”
“They told me why. But I couldn’t understand it, still, even after meeting you.”
“…Could you tell me why?”
“They said you’re such a brilliant girl. You resembled… the one who should be my aunt, if she were still alive.”
…As expected, Clyde and Nicole’s favoritism stemmed from the fact that I resembled Reinst—well, that couldn’t be helped. I was Reinst, after all.
“Well, I never knew your aunt, so I can’t explain why, too, sorry.”
…Based on facts, Lyra was born 7 years after Reinst died, so technically… yup.
“I expected you to be an extraordinary person, based on the stories Mum and Dad told me about my aunt. However, when we introduced ourselves earlier, it seemed that I had expected too much.”
…WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY THAT?!
It was only a slip of tongue—I meant, I was caught off guard!
Still, maybe Reinst wouldn’t make that kind of mistake, indeed. Ever since I became Lyra—no, the more time I spent as Lyra, the more carefree I became.
“So, I don’t get it. That’s why, I’m speaking with you again.”
Suddenly, I had an idea.
“This aunt you spoke of… Who might she be? Why did your Mum and Dad often tell you stories about her?”
Time to probe!
“Oh, she is Daddy’s sister, Mummy’s bestie. Died when she was young, I was told. She was a very superb girl who was the number one queen candidate at that time. Quick to learn, hardworking, and always calm. Her name is Reinst. Daddy and Mummy named me after her, in hopes that I would be as bright as her—quick to learn, hardworking, and always calm.”
Daddy and Mummy named me after her, in hopes that I would be as bright as her.
Daddy and Mummy named me after her…
Named me after her…
SO IT WASN’T JUST ME BEING TOO CONCEITED!!
THEY ACTUALLY NAMED REINELL AFTER REINST!!!
Even when my mind was in a chaos, I still tried to keep my smile on the surface.
And what’s with that, why did Clyde and Nicole have such a high impression of me?
If anything, I hated my old self. There were many things I wanted to change, but I couldn’t.
Since I thought about myself like that, how could they view me that highly?
…Still, there were people who envied me back then, too.
“Oh… That’s too bad you can’t see her…”
“Yep, that’s why I get curious when they mentioned you resembled her. But, I was disappointed…”
Aaah, this child took after Nicole in personality, I think… No, I saw Clyde’s personality in him too, but this straightforwardness… was totally Nicole’s.
I wished he could be more considerate though…
Then again, he was named after Reinst, and as Reinst, my EQ was so bad that I wasn’t considerate towards most people, too, so…
…Clyde, Nicole, perhaps you picked a bad name for your son… And I’m sorry for bearing a part of responsibility for it! (T__T)
“Well, I am not your aunt! I might resemble her in some ways, but we’re different people, so…”
I turned speechless after realizing what I just said.
I am not your aunt.
Technically, what I said was true—everything was true. But deep down, I knew I was definitely Reinst, so I was his aunt in some sense… but here, my words contradicted that.
It’s like… I’m telling myself that I’m not Reinst.
It felt weird upon realizing this.
“…Hm, I see…,” Reinell put his hand on his chin, as if he was pondering over something.
Eeeh, you’re just a child, stop acting all clever like this—wait, the Loera clan members are known to be intelligent people, and he will most likely be the next head—so…
“Hey, big sis! I have a riddle for you!” Reinell—okay, addressing him as Reinell made me feel itchy, so I’ll just call him with Ein or Eine—Ein suddenly changed the topic while smiling with his whole face—whoa, really, he looked completely like an angel like this!
“A riddle? Sure?”
“So, you are someone who wants to start a workshop and is hiring people to assist you while you are working. Two applicants come to apply for the job, and you have to pick one. The first one is a person who has studied in the field that’s needed for your workshop and so, he is quite experienced with this kind of job already. The second one is a person who has no prior knowledge, but is willing to learn for the job. Which one will you hire? Pick the best one for long-term investment!”
THIS CHILD?! WHAT KIND OF RIDDLE IS THAT?!
How did he learn of such a riddle anyway?
Oh wait, this is the Loera family’s kid we’re talking about!
The Loera clan is very talented and likes to dive into the economy world—which is why their territory is so wealthy… so, their kids were educated as such?
Still, it is something that requires only logic, so yeah…
I tried to ponder a bit before finally answering…
It was a tough one, as I thought both choices would have their own pro and contra, but still…
“I will hire the second one, the one who has no prior knowledge, but is willing to learn.”
Upon hearing my answer, Ein’s expression changed. It was evident that he was so surprised to hear my answer.
“Uhmmm well… We are hiring people to help us while we work, right? Having someone who’s already an expert in the field and who has experience might be good, but… that person would have developed his own way of work, right? If his way of doing things is different from how I want it, or if he suddenly argues with my opinion… it will make the work harder… While it might be good in terms of efficiency as we don’t need to train and educate him anymore, but it might not be good in the long go.”
“Meanwhile, the second person is like a blank sheet of paper that we can write anything we want. We can build this person to match the way we work. While it might be hard in the beginning as we have to train and educate him, but it will bear fruits in the long go. His workstyle will match us more, and since we educate him from zero, we will most likely have similar thought process… Oh, and debt of gratitude! This person will be more loyal as he saw that we were willing to instruct him!”
Yup, we’re just hiring assistant in this scenario, so we don’t necessarily need a person who’s already an expert. We only need a person that can be compatible with the way we work.
…Actually, I answered like that because in the past, I used to hate being in a teamwork with specific people—mainly others with similar skills or knowledge as me, but with different views, as we would argue… Meanwhile when I was teamed with not-top-ranking students but good-hearted ones, I was able to direct them to my liking.
An assistant was similar to team mates, right?
Well, I wasn’t sure if that was the right answer, but I gave a reasonable explanation, right?
At least, even if I got it wrong, I won’t be viewed as dumb.
Suddenly, Ein’s eyes sparkled.
“I changed my mind about you, big sis! Now I totally get why Mum and Dad saw you differently! It was a riddle that Mum and Dad asked me before—quite recently. I chose the wrong answer because I thought hiring the first person would be more efficient. Mum and Dad told me almost the exact same answer as you did!”
…Uh, bingo? So… I guessed correctly?
Clyde, Nicole, why did you riddle your child with this kind of thing—ah, the Loera’s way, I guess…
When I was living as Reinst, I was already trained and learned in the ways of swordsmanship, and now, as Lyra—Mom and Dad would teach me some magic, so…
For a child of Loera family, they tried to teach them logical thinking or reasoning… or business strategy like this? …Perhaps.
Among the four ducal houses of Riviera, the one with the least combat prowess was the Loera clan, after all. However, their excellence in other area (their heads) might make up for it. It was something that the other ducal houses didn’t possess, so I guess they were special in that way.
“How did you even think of that? Awesome!”
While I was still speechless, this little dev—nah, this cute “nephew” of mine continued to praise me.
…Seems like I managed to change this child’s opinion of me?
Well, this doesn’t feel so bad!
But… I couldn’t say that he only lacked experience, thus he couldn’t think of the right answer, right? …Ah, well, I’m technically older than him, but only by 2 years…
“Uhm… Just by experience and… what little knowledge I have?” I tilted my head, a little bit unsure.
“Cool! Teach me, big sis!”
“Teach me the secret to how you can think like that!”
How the heck am I supposed to teach something like that?
Also, it was nothing but a simple answer, so why did he suddenly become… like—this attached to me? Why did he suddenly like me?
Was it because I answered it exactly like how his parents did?
Or was it that and his parents’ bias towards me?
“Hmm, I’m not sure how I can teach you anything, so let me think about it.”
“Yeah! We may not be able to meet that often, but I will tell you when I meet you again, after I figure that out.”
We don’t have much opportunity to meet, so why bother worrying about it too much?
He’s just a kid, so let’s just give this answer for now~
…I feel bad for being sly in front of this kid, though, hohoho!
“The king and the crown prince have arrived—”
As soon as the announcement echoed within the hall, everyone was in an uproar and I could see people making way for the king and the crown prince.
Hmmm, Leticia and the queen didn’t come?
Ah well, we’re talking about Leticia here, the queen might be accompanying her because she was still too small to come to parties like this.
Anyway, what’s with the royal family being late to noble parties?!
…Then again, the king must be busy with lots of things… sorry for being inconsiderate!
After their grand entrance, the king and the crown prince—Titus-sama and Luca went to greet the star of the party—Ein.
It was also the first time for Ein to see both the king and the crown prince—the most influential figures in this country.
I could see him being more tense, yet he still managed to remember his etiquette as he introduced himself to them.
Ah, speaking of which, I made sure to move out of the way—to let Ein, Clyde, and Nicole talk with King Titus and Luca. It was like they were introducing their own sons to each other.
Nothing was wrong with this, as Ein would most likely be the next head of the Loera clan, so he must get acquainted to Luca, and likewise for Luca.
And just like that, I was saved from having to deal with my nephew~!
“Mum, Dad, now I know why you are interested in big sis Lyra! She could answer the riddle that you two gave me the other day—the one that I answered wrong—and she even managed to come up with similar explanations!”
After the party ended, Ein enthusiastically reported his findings to Clyde and Nicole.
Ein thought of that particular riddle as hard, and his parents also said so. However, a girl that didn’t receive particular education about economy and the likes of it (since she wasn’t part of the Loera clan) managed to give an accurate and detailed explanation.
Therefore, Ein was impressed by Lyra. Not to mention that he underestimated Lyra after she stuttered before, thinking that she was just a simple girl, nothing special.
There was also another thing that intrigued his interest…
“Also, also! Though I saw her stuttering in the beginning—when I observed her during my party, her etiquette and mannerism were amazing! Is that why you told me that she was similar to my aunt?”
At first, Ein was only curious about the girl his parents sometimes mentioned. And after meeting her, he developed a genuine interest on his own.
“Oh, you like Lyra too, Ein? I’m glad,” Clyde patted Ein’s head.
“Oh my, Eine, Mum will support you if you like Lyra-chan!” Nicole already gave her approval to this “daughter-in-law candidate”—even adding “-chan” behind her name. The more she addressed Lyra with “-chan”, the more she liked it.
Okay, I’m going to call her Lyra-chan the next time I meet her, then! Will she be surprised?
“I’m curious of her, Mum, Dad!” Ein innocently said.
He then pondered a bit before adding, “Oh yeah, can I make a request to you guys?”
“Hmm? Sure, what do you want, son? As long as it’s within our capabilities, we will give it to you,” Clyde said dotingly.
“I’ve decided on a school I want to attend, Dad!”
“Hee, which school?” Nicole asked.
“The same school as big sis Lyra!”
“Oh? Coincidentally, that’s also the crown prince’s school,” Clyde added.
“Eh, really?” Ein was surprised.
“So it’s like this,” Nicole pondered, “Okay, that’s nice, we can strengthen our bonds with the Hartmann family and also the royal family at the same time… It will surely be useful for Eine’s future!”
Nicole suddenly lowered her voice.
“I don’t want to be separated from you this soon, Eine…”
Ein was surprised.
“Mum, why would you think of that?”
“Well, Harmonia Academy isn’t that close from here. It’s going to take time to travel, so won’t it be tiring for you, Eine? The academy has a dormitory, but…,” Nicole stopped.
“Eeh, why can’t I just commute from home, Mum? Don’t we have a link with one of the teleportation service provider?” Ein smiled.
“…” Nicole and Clyde thought for a while.
“…We can’t?” Ein tilted his head as he looked at his parents with puppy eyes.
Teleportation service would definitely cost more than normal commute, so economically, using the service twice everyday would be…
…But then again, we’re speaking about the wealthiest clan in Riviera. Cost doesn’t necessarily become the problem, then…
“No sacrifice, no gain,” Nicole suddenly added.
Only a few seconds had passed, but she had finished calculating in her mind.
The Loera clan already has a link with the Grabberton family—the West territory, so it doesn’t matter even if Ein isn’t enrolled in my almamater or in a school in the North territory…
Harmonia Academy’s tuition isn’t that expensive, it’s an academy of high-quality, and Ein can learn a lot there as he will be able to socialize with the commoners who are enrolled there…
Lastly, the material investment seems to be worth it if we consider that Ein will be closer to the royal family. Plus, if Ein is fated with Lyra, then that’d mean we’re also investing in his relationship with his future wife…
“…Nicole?” Clyde had a bad hunch…
“What won’t I give to my beloved Eine? Sure, dear!” Nicole hugged Ein.
“Yaaaayyy, I love you, Mummyyyy!!” Ein hugged Nicole back as he smiled happily.
“……,” Clyde had a mixed feeling about it… He didn’t want to pamper his son too much, but what can he do? Ein is his and Nicole’s only son.
He ought to give the best things for this precious son.
“Alright then, we’ll have to prepare for your enrollment,” Clyde added.
“But before that, you have to sleep now, Eine. You still have your baptism ceremony tomorrow,” Nicole reminded.
“Oh, you’re right, Mum! I can’t wait to receive the blessings of the Spirit!”
“Don’t get too excited now, or you may not be able to fall asleep quickly tonight,” Clyde added.
“Okay, okay, I’ll go and prepare to sleep! Good night, Mum, Dad!”
Ein obediently went off to his maid’s side to go to sleep.
In the Hartmann residence, Lyra felt so relieved that she survived the whole (mental) ordeal, and that she wouldn’t have to be confused on how she should face Ein who seemed to be interested in her now. She seemed to have the ability to attract all sorts of troubles!
Still, Lyra was so relieved to the fact that she’d only meet Ein occasionally in noble parties, so she could just prepare herself at that time, to not give any opening that could make Nicole and Clyde be suspicious of her more than this (if Ein tells his parents about her, that is).
…But she has yet to learn what the future has in store for her… She has no idea, nor does she expect it…