「 I’m glad that I stayed over because Momoko-oneesama ordered me 」
While we’re having a peaceful dinner.
Torii Mariko-san speaks to Misuzu.
Adelheid-san, well, she’s eating and talking to Shou-neechan and Rei-chan.
Yeah, I think that Adelheid-san cant’ discuss it with anyone but the two professional bodyguards.
She will reject Michi and Edie as they’re only several years older, and so she can’t discuss with them honestly.
Shou-neechan is mature in that regard.
Shou-neechan went her way to welcome us because she’s worried about Adelheid-san.
That means Shou-neechan’s looking forward to hiring Adelheid-san.
She didn’t call out to the Anjou sisters, the other bodyguard.
She ignored Tendou Otome altogether.
「 Oh, what’s wrong? 」
Ruriko asks Torii-san with a smile.
Jii-chan listens to the conversation with a smile on his face.
「 I didn’t receive any scolding at the party. I was wondering why Kouzuki-sama and everyone looks like they have no leeway. I’m aware of Momoko-oneesama’s broadmindedness 」
Kaan Momoko-san, Momoko-neechan, is the young lady of Kaan house, a family that rivals Kouzuki house in scale.
She’s confident in herself and has a lot of composure.
She’s fearless, or should I say that…
Momoko-neechan treats Torii-san as a little sister and dotes on her.
「 But, it’s just the difference on family tradition 」
「 Seeing everyone so charming, it became clear to me 」
Torii-san looks at Agnes, and Mao, and the young girls sitting on the other side of the table.
「 In the bathroom and in the room after, these girls never speak too loudly, act violently, nor speak selfishly. It surprised me. What obedient children they are 」
「 Huh? To me, it looks like Agnes is playing around with everyone 」
I asked unconsciously
「 Indeed, they always enjoy what they have with a smile. However 」
「 Our relatives in Torii house have small children too, and we all gather together during New Year. They always make a lot of fuss. You won’t find anyone among them who sits down calmly. They cry, scream, fight, make a lot of noise saying “I want orange,” “I don’t want to eat carrots,” they always cause trouble 」
You mean ordinary children make more noise?
I never see Agnes and the girls do that.
「 I think it’s because Torii house was an upstart? Is that why the children aren’t disciplined? 」
「 If you bring them to that spacious bathroom, they will probably play around, splash water, and play pranks on the adults. It will be chaotic 」
「 Well, I think it’s because ours is only females 」
「 No, gender is irrelevant for children. My cousins have lots of mischievous children among women 」
I don’t know anything about socializing with relatives, and so…
I don’t understand what she talks about.
「 When the adults are having a serious talk, they will disrupt without a care…Seriously, they are all selfish 」
Torii-san said. Jii-chan;
「 Weren’t you like that when you were young? 」
「 Indeed, perhaps I was 」
She’s got this much freedom right now, I think she had more when she was a child.
「 That’s why I thought… Kouzuki-sama’s family probably had the children disciplined to not cause trouble to others, to not make too much noise, and to not disturb adults. That’s why Misuzu-sama and Ruriko-sama always show an earnest and serious attitude. It’s not because they have no composure, but it’s the kind of education they received, that was my inference 」
Yeah, Momoko-neechan shows plenty of composure and compared to that…
Misuzu and Ruriko show a serious character all the time.
「 Your inference has a few mistakes 」
「 Which ones is it? 」
Torii-san asks back.
「 First, we have a lot of problem children, even in Kouzuki house. Furthermore, also when they can hold back during kindergarten when they reach high school and university, some of them can’t discipline themselves 」
Oh, even among Jii-chan’s students.
Some are causing a lot of trouble.
「 In nobility, or should I mention wealthy families, disciplining their child is a hard task. When one has plenty of money, they start to spoil their children. And some parents can’t find the difference from doting their child to giving their child money. When they raise the child like that, the child will also raise their child the same way. That’s where the chain starts. For me, I had cases where I tell the 70-year-old parent to discipline their 50-year-old male child that was too undisciplined 」
Jii-chan is already 82.
He scolds the 70-year-old parent.
「 Kouzuki house disciplines their children, but is it different from your family? 」
「 Oh, it’s not. If that’s the case 」
Jii-chan stares at Torii-san.
「 However, if you belong in the head house, furthermore, you are the heir, it’s different. We have an overwhelming pressure to make sure that we observe our surroundings since birth 」
When people always watch you, you won’t do anything that will embarrass themselves.
To meet up the expectations of the people around you.
「 You need to receive praise that you are an honest and fair man, or you will lose the unity of the clan. And once there’s internal trouble, it brings the fall of the family. Especially when you are someone who stands above the Japanese people 」
Jii-chan continues his talk. Torii-san listens earnestly.
「 Kaan’s granddaughter, Momoko-kun, was it? She has an open-minded personality because she’s not the succeeding head despite being the daughter of the head family 」
Yeah, she has a male sibling that will inherit the clan.
「 If I recall, the man has an earnest and serious personality 」
Kouzuki Souji, who wants to become Ruriko’s husband, has a serious personality as well.
Kouzuki Satoshi, who will not become the successor, unless something lucky happens to him, has a carefree personality.
「 The environment, especially their situation shapes the personality of a person 」
Jii-chan looks at Misuzu and Ruriko.
「 Without the eldest son of the same generation among Ruriko and Misuzu, Kouzuki house raised them as the next successors. Therefore, they have a serious personality and borrowing your words, they show now leeway 」
「 No, well, forgive the rudeness 」
Torii-san bows her head.
「 No, I don’t mind. For Misuzu and Ruriko, hearing impressions that they are “serious, fair, and honest” is better than “composed, has leeway, and is generous” 」
「 Especially Ruriko, she has been serving Ruriko as her servant all this time, and so her servant-like personality can’t leave her 」
「 I’m sorry 」
Yoshiko-san bows her head to her grandfather.
「 No, it’s okay. Yoshiko will not be the successor of Kouzuki house as much as possible 」
Unless Misuzu and Ruriko were kidnapped or passed away.
Yoshiko-san is the eldest among Jii-chan’s granddaughters, but, she’s not a legal daughter of Jii-chan’s late eldest son.
Besides, Misuzu and Ruriko have supporters backing them from the clan, but, Yoshiko-san’s suddenly announced as the granddaughter, she has no backers.
I mean, Yoshiko-san lived and served Ruriko as a servant since her childhood, and so…
Nobody thinks that she will break her relationship with Ruriko and announce candidacy for succession.
「 However, when you show an easy-going look to your family, some fools will misunderstand 」
To prevent an idiot who would go at Yoshiko-san, thinking that it’s all or nothing.
「 Be careful with people who approach you. If you think that they’re suspicious, then don’t entertain them 」
「 Yes, I agree with Grandfather 」
Yoshiko-san speaks to Jii-chan respectfully.
「 By the way, as for the young girls you mentioned 」
Jii-chan points at Agnes and the girls.
「 Kouzuki house didn’t discipline those children. They are from Kuromori house 」
「 Then, they weren’t disciplined according to Kouzuki-sama’s instructions? 」
Kuromori doesn’t belong to the nobility, but they are better than the children of Torii house.
She thinks that they should be more unreasonable.
「 I mean, we don’t discipline our children that hard 」
Katsuko-nee smiles wryly as she speaks.
「 Even without telling them Mao-chan and Agnes-chan never do anything that troubles us. They also help out a lot 」
「 Yeah. Everyone’s like that! Nobody’s selfish 」
「 They were raised watching their parent’s backs 」
「 Nagisa-kun has a hard time putting the flower shop on track, doesn’t she? 」
She talks to Mao-chan.
「 Yes! Mama’s always working hard and is tired most of the time, and so Mao has to cheer her up! That’s why Mao can’t be selfish! When Mama’s sleeping, I stay quiet! When it’s time to wake up, I wake her up gently 」
Those were her thoughts.
「 But, Papa’s also here now, and so Mama’s much more energetic! Mao’s also energetic! Everybody is happy! 」
「 But don’t lose control. You need to look around to make sure that you don’t cause trouble to Papa and everyone! We can’t let other people get angry at Papa because of us 」
「 I know~ 」
「 Agnes always watches Yo-chan’s back 」
「 Oh? It’s not just Agnes-san. I also watch Onii-sama’s back and keep in mind to not embarrass Onii-sama 」
「 Me too. I’m sorry to say Grandfather, but I’m already at my limit on working hard for Kouzuki house. But, if it’s for Danna-sama’s sake, I can endure anything, and I will persevere 」
「 I mean, it’s not for Onii-chan’s sake, but we mimic Onii-chan. Agnes-chan and the girls, and I do the same 」
「 I mean, Onii-chan never lies and is serious when it comes to us 」
「 Indeed. During the party, Danna-sama’s always so reserved 」
「 Right. If it was any other man, then they would assert themselves and make a lot of clamors 」
Mana, Misuzu, Katsuko-nee.
「 Like, ordering Mii-chan to bring him water while all the other young ladies are looking 」
「 No, Ya-chan, what the hell? 」
「 I mean, you’re the fiance of the young lady of Kouzuki house, it’s common to get arrogant! Like “Hey, Misuzu, bring me sake, all the sake!” or “What about it, got complaints?” or something like that 」
That’s a stupid guy.
「 Or maybe, you won’t show yourself out of embarrassment because it’s an all women’s party 」
「 Despite all that, Kuromori-sama escorted Misuzu-sama all the time 」
Oh, they did say that.
It’s a party for the young ladies.
They see me as a quiet guy.
I see. Ordinary guys would try to assert themselves.
Or, they would be too embarrassed to show up.
「 But, I can’t leave Misuzu alone 」
There were too many events that unfold in the party today.
「 When there’s danger, I want to be there to keep her safe 」
「 You really are different. I don’t see any other man with that thought around me 」
Torii-san tells me.
「 Darling’s a lion after all 」
「 He’s the sole male lion in our pride. He looks after us to make sure that we’re out of harm’s way. It’s darling who checks whether Michi and I can fight an opponent or not 」
「 He’s the keystone of this family 」
「 Yeah. In the end, it’s Yo-chan. Yo-chan never looks down on his opponents after all. He always looks at the other party earnestly, think of how to deal with them, and he’s never optimistic. The sense of danger that this blessing can collapse from a single mistake is engraved in his mind 」
Nei speaks her analysis.
「 Thus, Yo-chan never forgets gratitude towards others, and he never depends too much 」
「 Just say that I’m a coward 」
「 I’m afraid that everyone in the family will hate me. That’s why I never do anything that will make them 」
「 Agnes too 」
「 Agnes is also afraid that Papa will hate her! Therefore, Agnes never does anything that will make Papa hate her. Agnes will always be a good girl! Agnes will do her best to stay cute! Agnes will do her best in studies too 」
Agnes feels she has no place to go if I leave her.
Therefore, she’s afraid that I will hate her.
「 That’s not it, Nii-san 」
Luna, you read my thoughts?
「 Agnes-chan’s love for Nii-san is genuine 」
Luna said. Agnes nods.
「 Also, the person who is afraid that the family will hate them and abandoned is Nii-san. Nii-san’s negative thoughts are handed to Agnes-chan, and so they feel nervous and think that she has to become a good girl 」
「 Then, it’s my fault? 」
If my negative thoughts influence them poorly, then…
「 Hmmm, I wonder about that? I think that tension is okay. Everyone can feel a sense of responsibility, thinking that they have to do something to keep the family safe 」
「 Yeah, I think it’s okay to stay like that 」
「 Yo-chan, you can’t help but have negative thoughts deep inside your mind. It’s the result of how Yo-chan lived, and I don’t think we can fix that right away 」
「 If my personality causes trouble to the family, then… 」
「 That won’t happen 」
「 Our family have people with various personalities 」
「 That’s right. Onii-chan’s negative thoughts concentrate on the personality that you want to protect the family, right? But, look, we have people in our family who just say, “Go! Go!” 」
「 Yes. We’re balanced out from the start. Earlier, Edie-oneesama and Michi are right, Onii-sama is our keystone, the man who ties up the family together, and so it’s okay to stay as heavy as that 」
「 Uhm 」
「 It’s not for me to say, but everyone does love Kuromori-san, and they don’t want Kuromori-san to hate them 」
Koyomi-chan isn’t my woman, and so she stands from a neutral position, she speaks from the results of reading everyone’s thoughts.
「 Then, uhm, the one most afraid that Kuromori-san will hate her is… 」
「 It’s Tsukiko-oneesama, she worries a lot 」
Tsukiko? She fears that I will hate her?
「 Yes. Tsukiko-oneesama loves Kuromori-san too much 」
「 The eldest of the Takakura sisters is the most stable, but her stability isn’t for the better? 」
Katsuko-nee asks Koyomi-chan.
「 Yes. Tsukiko-oneesama always pushes herself too hard. Also, Yomi-oneechan is easy to get carried away 」
I guess it wasn’t appropriate to bring the two there.
「 Don’t worry. Minaho-san’s with them 」
Shou-neechan tells me.
「 That’s right. She will surely notice if anything unusual happens to Tsukiko-san 」
「 Yeah got it. For now, I’ll talk to Tsukiko once I return there 」
「 Yes, thank you 」
Koyomi-chan bows her head.
「 See? It’s not Kuromori house, they all are from Kuromori house 」
Jii-chan tells Torii-san.
「 This young man had become the support of Kouzuki house before anyone noticed 」
「 Jii-chan, you’re also my Grandpa 」
「 Indeed. I’m also one of those you carry away 」
He speaks like he’s having fun.
「 But, I can sense the aspiration of this family. I never know any other group who has this much talent overflowing that help each other 」
「 Karen, from now on, you’re a member of this family 」
Misuzu speaks to Mizushima Karen, who sits on the servant’s table.
「 Don’t worry about it! Papa will make you happy! 」
Agnes smiles and speaks to Karen-san.
「 It will hurt at first, but it will turn to pleasure right away 」
「 It’s about time you resolve yourself. However, it’s to accept happiness 」
Jii-chan tells Karen-san.
「 Yes, after listening to everyone, I am confident that Kuromori-sama and everyone is kind people 」
Karen-san speaks timidly.
「 Please treat me well 」
She bows her head.
「 It’s okay! Agnes, Luna, and Koyomi-chan are with you 」
「 Me too! 」
Mana also smiles at Karen-san.
「 Misuzu, Ruriko, and you have another one 」
Well, it’s the number of pets I have to keep.
「 It’s great but also hard for you 」
He sends me a glance.
「 Oh, Danna-sama can take it, right? 」
「 But, Misuzu-chan, you also need to learn your limits 」
「 Then, want to increase it by two? 」
「 Let’s do so 」
Misuzu, Ruriko, you want to keep two pets?
「 Hey, girls 」
As soon as I tried to talk to Misuzu and Ruriko.
「 U-Uhm! 」
Adelheid-san stands from her seat
「 What’s wrong, Haiji? 」
Torii-san’s surprised, but…
「 Please let me join in!! 」
「 Allow me to join the family as well!!! 」