Suddenly, I had regained the memories of my previous life.
I was just your normal student majoring in magecraft, but because science and magic were far more developed in that world than they were here, that knowledge of mine had become extremely valuable.
When I realized that fact, I could feel emotions of surprise and excitement well up inside of me.
But what astonished me the most about this world was that it was very similar to a popular game from my previous life.
The maiden game that my sister loved, ‘Espressivo of Light and Darkness’ was about how the heroine– the daughter of a Viscount house, wins the hearts of a prince and various other gentlemen.
My older sister was a closet nerd and had nobody to share her thoughts with, so she pushed me to play the game instead since I was already aware of her hobbies.
I played it under such circumstances, but putting myself in the position of the popular, bright, and cheerful heroine was surprisingly fun for me.
But you see, there was a character who always got in the heroine’s way– the villainous daughter, Sophia. She was the daughter of the Rosenberg Marquis house, a genuine noble, and also the prince’s fiancée.
She had loved the prince ever since their first meeting, but he ended up falling in love with another girl– the heroine of the game, which in turn drove her into insanity.
“…why won’t you look at me?”
With that line, she would fall into darkness.
Yearning for him to notice her again, she commits various acts of harassment against the heroine as her love rival, but her excessive movements catch the prince’s attention in the wrong way, and he has her executed alongside her butler as punishment.
By the way, even if the heroine chooses a different route, the prince still falls in love with her, so Sophia will always lose her sanity in the end.
In the game, it was impossible for her to escape her fate of execution.
However, Sophia had a setting that easily invoked sympathy, such as how she was neglected by her parents who were always busy with work, or how she was constantly harassed by her household’s maids.
She was actually quite gentle, and it was only in matters regarding the prince that she went mad with jealousy, so despite being the villainous daughter, she was surprisingly popular.
Even I was one of her fans.
Backtracking a little bit, it seems I’ve become the butler who was executed with her.
My name in this life was Cyril, and I was born into a family of attendants who have served the Rosenberg Marquis house for generations.
I was destined to be killed alongside Sophia in the near future.
This wasn’t a joke.
Even though this was my second life, I was already destined to die, so with that in mind, I decided to use my knowledge of the game to avoid that outcome at all costs.
Honestly, it’d be easy for me to evade the execution by myself, but I was actually quite fond of Sophia, so if possible, I wanted to save her as well.
That’s why I was currently pondering as to how I might do that.
There were several things I could do to change her fate.
First of all, I could remove the cause of her personality’s distortion.
Due to her childhood environment, she became unstable to the point that she easily slipped into insanity from simple jealousy, so if the problems in her upbringing were removed, the worst case scenario could be avoided.
Next, I could polish Sophia’s charms.
If the young lady was cute enough to the point of even overwhelming the heroine, the prince wouldn’t forsake her, and with her not being deprived of him, the cause of her hysteria would be gone.
And last but not least was something that didn’t directly relate to her at all.
So when the time finally came, I would deal with it in secret.
That’s why my current goal was to achieve the first two objectives.
To that end, I needed to be by the young lady’s side, but Cyril only became her exclusive butler around the start of the game– when they’re about fifteen or sixteen.
If I waited until then, it would be too late.
Therefore, I decided to fully develop my abilities as a butler.
Usually a child would never be entrusted with such a position, but if I could show them my talents, then they just might make an exception for me.
With that in mind, I worked myself to the point of death, subsequently starting talks with my father– the current lord’s butler, and finally won the honour of apprenticing as Lady Sophia’s servant at the mere age of six.
Lady Sophia’s sixth birthday.
Her parents were too busy to celebrate it with her, so her adorable figure– which was adorned with a pale dress and surrounded by servants… looked very lonely.
Just like how a rose grown in a greenhouse would be distorted when exposed to the wind and rain– if left untouched, Lady Sophia’s heart would warp itself little by little.
That’s why I went ahead and knelt before her.
“Lady Sophia, it’s a pleasure to meet you, I’m Cyril.”
“Cyril is fine.”
“Yes, my lady. From today onwards, I’ll be apprenticing as your exclusive butler.”
My lady leaned backwards and tilted her head. An innocent question rising up in her amethyst eyes.
“Lady Sophia, a butler is someone who will take care of you while staying by your side.”
“You’ll stay… by Sophia’s side?”
“Yes, my lady. Whether it’s fun times, lonely times, or painful times, I will always be there for you. As your friend, I promise to protect you forever.”
My lady blinked. Was that a bit too hard for her to understand? That’s what I thought, but after a while her amethyst eyes began to shine.
“So then… will you celebrate Sophia’s birthday together with Sophia?”
“Of course I will. This year and every year after, I’ll continue to celebrate your birthday with you, my lady.”
The gift I then presented to her was a crimson rose– an item that symbolised the Rosenberg house.
It was noble and pretty, but it would wither without care. Such a rose was raised in a greenhouse, carefully treated to have its thorns removed, and then wrapped in a lace cloth.
This item represented my determination for Lady Sophia.
“Congratulations on your sixth birthday.”
“Thanks, Cyril! Sophia is so happy!”
My lady probably didn’t realise the deeper meanings I had in the rose, but even so, she gently embraced it and gave me a smile akin to a blossoming flower.
Seeing that beaming expression of hers, I vowed once again in my heart to protect this adorable little girl forever.
I had succeeded in opening my lady’s heart. However, the cause of its distortion still remained– the existence of the maid who bullied her.
Unfortunately, there wasn’t any corresponding recollection scene in the game, I only knew such a thing happened. Which maid it was, and what kind of harassment they committed was completely unknown to me.
So I needed to investigate and deal with this myself.
However, even with the memories of my previous life, to my surroundings I was still just a cheeky six year old kid that had somehow been hired as an apprentice butler. There were limits as to what I could look into on my own.
That’s why I decided to borrow the power of my father, the exclusive butler of the master.
I used his name and launched a secret survey of my fellow servants, saying that some of them were behaving in odd and suspicious ways, before finally locating the maid who harassed my lady.
The days flowed by, and then one afternoon full of gentle sunlight– my lady who was supposed to be having tea in the courtyard was running towards me with tears in her eyes.
Chasing her from behind was a maid with a slight scowl on her face.
“My lady, what happened?”
Her platinum blonde hair was full of leaves. First, I gently wiped away her tears with a handkerchief, and then carefully picked out the foliage tangled in her hair one by one.
Lastly, I petted her head and looked into her eyes before repeating my question, “What happened to you?”
“Did you know? Did you know? That maid was being mean to Sophia.”
“A ridiculous accusation. The young lady tripped over her feet and fell herself.”
After catching up, the maid made a troubled expression and appealed for her innocence.
My lady’s bruised face twisted into a scowl as she glared at the maid.
“Why would you say such a thing?! Sophia didn’t trip over Sophia’s feet at all!”
“Oh my, why would you lie like that? Ah… don’t tell me, are you embarrassed by the fact that you stumbled and fell?”
The maid calmly argued that nothing was wrong.
In truth, the people around us who gathered at the commotion seemed to believe her, and I could understand why. Maybe my lady detected that as well, because her amethyst eyes were shaking uneasily.
“Cyril… S-sophia didn’t fall on Sophia’s own. It really really was because the maid tripped Sophia, and this wasn’t the only time either…”
“It’ll be okay, my lady.”
I gently petted Lady Sophia’s head one last time, before directing a calm look towards the maid.
“You’re a maid serving the Rosenberg Marquis house, how dare you betray the master, no mercy will be shown for your transgressions.”
“Oh my, how mean. I’ve never done anything of the sort. Don’t you know that the young lady there often throws tantrums? Lady Sophia is lying to you.”
“S-sophia didn’t tell any lies! Sophia hates you!”
“See, there she goes again. Another tantrum.”
The maid calmly declared all that unfazed.
Her tied up hair was glossy, she seemed to be using expensive styling products.
Appearance-wise, she was the model maid. That’s why the surroundings were reacting the way they did. They trusted her words and grew disdainful at Lady Sophia for her emotional outbursts.
Looking at things objectively, it was only natural to assume that Lady Sophia was the one lying.
–but I knew that the harassment was real, and even despite that, with how much time I’ve spent with my lady, I knew she wouldn’t lie about something like this.
“Your dishonesty has upset my lady. I don’t know why you would do this, but you’re the worst.”
“…and? What do you want to do then? Are you going to tell on me? Think carefully about this, between a servant whose served this house for many years, and a child, who do you think they’d believe?”
The maid sure was confident.
True, I might’ve just been the son of a servant, but my lady here was legitimately the daughter of the master. Don’t tell me she was actually stupid enough to think that such a claim would work?
That was impossible, so she had to be bluffing, thinking it’d be easy to trick children like us. What a stupid idea, let’s show her what retribution looks like.
“I told you didn’t I? No mercy will be shown to those who betray the master. Asking who they would believe is a stupid question– guards!”
Some of the nearby guards approached at my signal and apprehended the maid to her clear confusion.
“W-what is the meaning of this?! What are you doing?!”
“–you’re being arrested for suspicion of embezzlement.”
I began listing the maid’s crimes.
“Despite being a maid that serves the Marquis, you’ve betrayed him. A life as a criminal slave would be far more fitting for you.”
“W-wait just a second here! Wait! What embezzlement?!”
“There’s no use trying to deny it. Did you really think no one would notice how the reports on the purchase values of consumable goods were falsified every time?”
The maid let out a small gasp.
That reaction of hers was practically an admission of guilt. Surprised murmurs came out from the surrounding servants who had taken her side.
“I-if it’s only an amount of money on that degree…”
“That degree… you say? It seems your sense of money is quite odd.”
The amount she embezzled might’ve only been a fraction of the initial total, however, the funds used to buy consumables for the Marquis’ mansion were incomparable to a servant’s salary. Even if it was only a small percentage of the whole, it wasn’t a quantity that could just be laughed off.
“E-even so, a criminal slave… that’s too much.”
“If you had only committed embezzlement once, it may have been too heavy of a punishment, but even then… there’s no way I’d overlook how you just lied and held my lady in contempt.”
“I-in that case, evidence…”
“You’ve just been convicted of the crime of embezzlement. Do you really think anyone here would trust you more than my lady or I? Why? Because you’re an adult and we’re just kids? That’s true. Because you’re a senior employee and I’m just a newcomer? That’s also true. However, you betrayed the trust of the master, so this is the end for you.”
Hanging her head, the guards dragged her away. Losing interest, I turned back to Lady Sophia.
“My lady, it’s all right now. There are no more bad maids who will bully you anymor– woah!”
But before I could even finish, Lady Sophia had jumped into my arms.
“Thanks, Cyril! Thanks for believing in Sophia!”
“…of course I did. I told you, didn’t I? I will always be there for you.”
From then on, I continued to stay by Lady Sophia’s side as I helped her grow just like the noble rose that symbolised the Rozenberg house.
“Today’s lesson is about how to hold yourself with grace. Straighten your back, and try to keep the nerves at the ends of your fingertips taut as you move your limbs.”
“Umm, uhh… like this?”
“Yes, exactly like that, my lady. You should more or less be just at the boundary between stillness and movement… in other words, move your limbs as if you were carrying heavy luggage with them.”
“Okay, Sophia understands~”
Some days, I taught her how to present herself as the daughter of a Marquis–
“Un, deux, trois, un, deux, trois. Walk elegantly and beautifully without changing the height of your waist or shaking your head. Yes, that’s it. That’s very beautiful, my lady.”
“Ehehe~ thanks. Sophia will work even harder!”
Some days, I taught her how to walk with grace.
I continued to educate my lady day after day just like that.
As she grew older, the classes changed too. I taught her how to sing, play violin, how to dance, brew tea, make embroidery, and etiquette.
You may think it was too much for a child, but Lady Sophia never complained.
On the contrary–
“Hey~ Cyril, I’ll do my best to meet your expectations, so please keep teaching me things from now on.”
She actually wanted me to teach her more things, and by the time we celebrated her tenth birthday, she was refined to the point that she could stand proud, without a single point to be ashamed of at her debutante.
To be honest, I didn’t expect the specs of a villainous daughter destined for execution to be so high.
…no, she’s actually not that good at learning things. There are probably many out there who could pick up the same things in a fraction of the time.
But Lady Sophia single-mindedly practiced whatever I taught her. She never complained, and continued to work at them again and again until she was finally able to do them properly.
She was a genius in putting in effort.
To make sure she never fell to ruin, I made sure to teach her all that I knew.
I taught her about the darkness of the nobility, how to negotiate, self-defense techniques to protect herself, and even some of the magic I had learned in my previous life.
Her posture was now suitable for a daughter of a Marquis, and her voice had been trained to easily allure others. Her silver hair that I brushed everyday was smooth as silk, and her skin now had a healthy glow to it from the daily beauty treatments.
My lady who was about to turn twelve was growing up into a talented angel.
“Cyril, can you comb my hair?”
“Yes of course, my lady.”
While I was gently straightening out her platinum blonde hair with a comb, I felt a gaze on me. Looking up, my lady was observing me through the mirror.
“Is there something wrong?”
“Fufu~ I’m just looking at your face, Cyril.”
“I don’t think there’s anything that interesting about it… come to think of it, aren’t you about to turn twelve soon, my lady?”
“Yes, will father or mother be able to celebrate it this year?”
“They’ve sent congratulatory messages and presents, but as for the party itself…”
The Marquis and Marchioness– her parents have been very busy lately and haven’t had much time to spend in the mansion. They might be able to have a celebration at another time, but they’ve rarely ever attended any of the actual parties on her birthday.
This was one of the reasons why Lady Sophia turned into the villainous daughter.
I was worried about my lady’s psychological state, but her reflection was showing a gentle smile.
“I guess it can’t be helped since they’re busy. More importantly, will you be celebrating it this year too, Cyril?”
“Of course, not just me, but all of the servants will be there to congratulate you.”
In the game, the villainous daughter was hated by the servants.
Her relationship with them had become strained because her remarks about the maid abusing her were recognised as lies, so I had made preparations in anticipation of that.
But in this world, my lady was actually loved by them.
“That makes me really happy, but… don’t forget, what matters to me most is if you’re there.”
“I’m honoured, my lady.”
Just like this, my lady had grown up knowing how to say flattery. In recent years, after guests from other houses had seen her during tea parties, the matchmaking requests sent in would pile up like mountains.
However, the master ended up refusing them all.
The Rosenberg Marquis house held considerable power and had no reason to make a poor political marriage. Furthermore, even if Lady Sophia’s parents weren’t home very often, the love they had for their daughter was actually very strong.
With that in mind, it seems like they intended to have her marry her desired partner instead.
However, soon she was going to meet the second prince Alforth and fall in love with him. In the game’s setting, it said that her father noticed this and that’s actually how their engagement was made.
When taking that into consideration, it only seemed natural that the marriage propositions of other houses were refused.
More importantly, with how beautiful my lady has grown, it should be easy for her to take the second prince’s heart. Or rather, even if she was silent, I had no doubts that he would initiate courtship on his own.
With my lady as she is now, there should be no predisposition for her to fall into darkness, and she should have more than enough charm to attract the second prince. In order to save Lady Sophia from her destiny, my initial goals had been achieved.
However, there was still one more factor to worry about.
It was the event where the heroine and the second prince would meet for the first time and fall in love.
The first prince’s birthday party.
During this celebration where Lady Sophia falls for the second prince, there’s a scene where the heroine gets involved with the son of a noble, but is then saved by the prince while he was hiding his identity.
Since he was currently there undercover, they had split up without even learning each other’s names. However, once the two are reunited at the school, they suddenly recall this moment and their love is reborn.
So I was going to crush this event.
If the fated encounter between the prince and the heroine was blocked, there would be absolutely no chance of the talented Lady Sophia having him stolen from her.
Finally, I was about to change the future where the villainous daughter falls into ruin.
–it was the first prince’s birthday party.
I was currently accompanying Lady Sophia.
But for some reason, I wasn’t here as her butler, but as her escort.
One would usually be escorted by their lover or their fiancé, but since children didn’t really have such partners, it was tradition for someone in the family to take this role instead.
If this was a normal situation, one of Lady Sophia’s family members would be doing this right now, but… her parents were busy.
So my lady ended up asking me to be her escort in their place, since I was already practically family.
–typically, something like this would never be acceptable.
I was born into a prestigious family that has served the Rosenberg Marquis house for generations, but I wasn’t a nobleman. It would usually be impossible for me to be my lady’s escort.
However, both my lady and I were still children.
Knowing how sought after she was, the master had decided it would be better to leave the role to a trusted servant rather than risk having a bad partner escort her.
As a result of various circumstances, a situation that was normally impossible was realised.
“Hey, Cyril. Do I look beautiful right now?”
“Of course you do. Lady Sophia, you’re shining far brighter than anyone else at this venue. Everyone here is undoubtedly mesmerised by you.”
“…but what about you?”
While walking beside me, my lady turned up towards my face. Looking at her profile, a shadow of the Lady Sophia who cried so much as a child seemed to appear for a moment.
“What about me?”
“You’re my escort, not anyone else. It doesn’t matter what the other gentlemen think. In regards to how I look right now, do I… captivate you?”
To give priority to her escort partner’s opinion.
…my lady is growing up.
“Of course I’m captivated by you.”
My lady nodded and smiled innocently at my response. At that action, sighs spilled from those who were paying attention to her. Lady Sophia was clearly the heroine of this venue.
With how beautiful my lady had grown, nobles started swarming to greet her, but nobility was a class-system, so those of lower rank didn’t dare to interrupt the conversations of those higher than them.
The meetings between Lady Sophia and the other nobles advanced smoothly.
Soon after, a strangely sparkling boy came to give his greetings.
His figure was exactly like that of what was shown in the game.
“…its Alforth, the second prince. Though it looks like he’s keeping his identity a secret.”
I whispered that into Lady Sophia’s ear, and as expected, she was surprised to have the prince greet her, even to the point of letting out a small, “Oh my.”
But just like how I had raised her, she was easily able to adapt to unexpected situations. With sophistication and grace, she welcomed the second prince with a curtsey.
“Ah- umm… I-I’m Al. Uhh… m-may I hear your name?”
“…of course, Lord Al. My name is Sophia, the daughter of Marquis Rosenberg.”
She didn’t curtsey this time, and gave him a carefree smile instead.
Alforth’s face immediately flushed bright red. While the prince had probably met many beautiful butterflies within his social circles, this was probably the first time he’s ever received the graces of an angel.
By the way, curtseys were only supposed to be for people who were ranked higher than yourself. In other words, Lady Sophia’s first greeting told the prince that she knew who he was.
However, because his identity was supposed to be hidden right now, he needed to ad-lib a bit.
Despite this, he still seemed to be enraptured by Lady Sophia’s beauty, and had been left dumbfounded.
However, the prince wasn’t being immature, his reaction was perfectly appropriate for his age. On the contrary, considering that he was only twelve, he was already more than mature enough.
He only seemed that way because Lady Sophia was mentally far beyond her years in comparison.
My lady has been working herself to death for the past six years now…
I felt deeply moved when I thought about how the first love of the girl I raised was finally about to begin.
“Umm, Sophia. Would you care to have this dance with me?”
“Uh, that’s a little…”
Lady Sophia sent me a troubled look.
Usually one’s first dance partner would be their escort. However, this person was the second prince, even if he was undercover right now. This was something that should be accepted without hesitation.
Plus, this was an invitation to dance from her first love. Even if this would usually be considered rude, I wouldn’t mind at all, or rather, I’d even push for it.
She had really been doing her best until now, so it should be fine for her to be selfish for once.
“Because this is a special invitation, you should dance with him.”
“…I guess you’re right. Okay, since Cyril gave his approval, one song should be fine.”
My lady made a somewhat lonely smile. However, that was probably just my imagination, because at the very next moment, she was wearing a smile fitting of the daughter of a Marquis.
“…Cyril. I’ll be back soon, so please wait for me.”
“Yes, of course.”
With my consent, the second prince then pulled her to the dance hall by the hand.
A silver princess and a golden prince.
The lovely appearance of the two gathered the gazes of all their surroundings. Embracing each other, they began dancing to the music in triple time.
The second prince was acting appropriately for his age– he was a little awkward, but Lady Sophia made up for it by doing the dance as it was intended, filled with grace. Sighs of exclamation leaked out in awe at her beauty.
Indirect lighting created with magic tools illuminated the hall.
Under such a light, my lady seemed to shine even more spectacularly. It was as if it was a god’s whim to bathe her in the spotlight.
In the game she was destined to be executed as the villainous daughter, but now she was undoubtedly the heroine of this venue. My lady had finally broken her fate.
And if my lady didn’t fall into darkness, I would inevitably escape from execution as well.
My initial goals had been fulfilled.
–but I was her butler. It was my job to make sure that she’s happy. For that reason, there was still work to be done, and with that in mind, I turned around.
My lady told me that she would be back soon, but there’s no way the conversation she’d be having with her first love would finish that quickly. Or rather, if they returned and I wasn’t there, they’d be able to slowly enjoy their time alone together.
I walked through the hall while thinking that.
The heroine of Espressivo of Light and Darkness should be somewhere in this venue. The second prince was currently captivated by Lady Sophia, so there wasn’t anyone here to help her.
I felt a little bad, the heroine shouldn’t have to suffer just so that Lady Sophia wouldn’t fall into darkness. I wanted to eliminate such possibilities.
Or rather, I was actually quite fond of the heroine. I couldn’t overlook the fact that she’d be involved with a degenerate noble son and just ignore her.
She was supposed to be somewhere in this venue… found her. Just in time too– isn’t something I should be saying while she’s currently entangled with the noble son.
Breaking in between them, I hid the heroine behind me.
“She obviously doesn’t like what you’re doing. Can’t you see that?”
“What?! Who the hell are you?! Don’t you know that I’m the son of Count Reed?!”
“Oh, so that’s who you are? In that case, I take it you wouldn’t mind if I sent a formal complaint to your father later then?”
“Wha-? T-that’s… urgh. That’s not necessary!”
Count Reed’s son then ran off in a hurry. He might be a degenerate son, but it looks like his parents were surprisingly tough on him to the point that he’d be troubled if they knew.
By the way, I only knew that because of the game. Even my line from before was just me copying what the prince said.
“Are you alright, my lady? …my lady?”
I turned around and called out to the heroine, but she didn’t respond despite how she was looking straight at me.
“My lady? Are you alright?”
“…eh? Ah, I’m fine.”
“Is that so? I’m glad that you’re okay.”
“–fue?! Ah, u-u-u-umm, that’s… t-thank you so much.”
A literal prince was supposed to save her, but I had twisted fate and ruined that chance encounter of hers.
If I meet her again at the school, I’ll try to support whatever romance she pursues. As the heroine, she should have plenty of potential love interests besides the prince.
“Now then, please excuse me.”
Although I tried to turn around and leave, the heroine had caught my sleeve.
“U-umm, I’m Alicia. The daughter of Viscount Lindberg. Can I ask you for your name?”
–oh? In the game, they should’ve separated without learning of each other’s identities… did fate change a little because of my interference?
Well… there’s no point in lying here.
“My name is Cyril.”
“No, I don’t have any titles. Although I may be dressed like this, I’m no aristocrat, just a mere butler.”
“Huh? A butler?”
“Yes. I apologise if that makes you feel uncomfortable.”
“Fue?! N-no, I’m a low-class noble myself, so that doesn’t bother me at all!”
Certainly, while its true that a Viscount house might be considered low-class when compared to Marquis or Count houses, it’s still a position far above the clouds from the perspective of ordinary people.
It’d be utterly boorish of me to say that though, so I just parried that statement with a smile.
“A-anyways… I actually don’t know anybody here… so if you’re okay with it, can we share a dance together?”
“…you want to dance with me?”
The heroine has a dance scene with someone mid-way through the game. She’d partner with the person who she had raised the most favourability with, entering their capture route afterwards.
…but no matter how similar this place was to the game world, this was reality. It was impossible for a noble daughter attending a party to have only danced once.
Given that, it was only natural for her to have danced with people that weren’t mentioned in the original work.
And actually, rather than that difference, the fact that she’s the one that gave the invitation surprised me far more. In this world, it wasn’t recommended for women to be the ones that asked others to dance.
However, the heroine in the game had a personality that didn’t care about things like that.
In my previous life, it was normal for women to take the initiative, so the heroine’s personality was probably set to match those values.
Realising that, I couldn’t help but feel like I was slowly being dyed this world’s colours.
“Or is it… no good?”
Her bluish eyes shook uneasily.
“No, perish the thought. My lady, may I please have this dance?”
I held my hand out to Alicia.
Although I was thrown off by her invitation, humiliating her by rejecting it was out of the question.
…now that I think about it, the rules of this world’s nobility were kind of annoying.
In any case, I somehow ended up dancing with the heroine.
After giving a bow, I drew her in close and we started dancing together in triple time.
Alicia’s face approached mine. Framed by her bluish hair, it was small, containing well balanced features like glossy lips and eyes you could easily lose yourself in.
As expected of the game’s heroine, she was adorable for her age. As I was just a bonus to the villainous daughter, I never would’ve gotten this chance normally.
While thinking it was a little troublesome, I gently took the lead. Dancing with Alicia was fun, but her skills were appropriate for her age and she ended up stepping on my feet three times.
I let it slide and just kept smiling… but now that I think about it, the second prince shouldn’t be that different than the heroine when it came to dancing.
My lady’s dance should be over by now… I hope that he didn’t step on her feet.
Afterwards, I reluctantly told Alicia goodbye and turned away to leave the dance hall.
And at that moment–
“…there you are.”
Suddenly, a cold voice rang out from behind me. Looking back in surprise, for some reason, Lady Sophia was standing there.
“I told you, didn’t I? ‘I’ll be back soon, so please wait for me’, didn’t you hear me? Why weren’t you there?”
“My apologies. I thought you would’ve wanted some time alone with the second prince.”
“Now why would you ever have that idea?”
Somehow, my lady’s words seemed to have a sharpness to them. This is the first time I’ve ever seen her so moody. Did the second prince step on her feet after all?
“My lady I–”
“…why won’t you look at me?”
–eh? Wait a second. Isn’t that the line Lady Sophia says when she falls into darkness as the villainous daughter after the second prince is stolen away by the heroine?
Why would she be saying that now?
……oh, is it that?
Did I accidentally take the prince’s position?
“Hey… Cyril, you said that you’d always be there for me, right? So why did you leave me alone? And when I finally found you… you were dancing with another girl.”
AHHHHHHH!!! It’s not like I don’t feel guilty about that!
Nonono, I still don’t understand this.
I took the prince’s position?! What’s with that?! Does that mean if I get along with the heroine, Lady Sophia will fall into darkness, become evil, and be destroyed with me?
There’s too many things here for me to process.
“Hey… Cyril, why aren’t you saying anything?”
“Well, you see… I helped her out when I saw that she was in trouble, so she invited me to a dance to show her thanks, that’s all.”
“…is that so?”
A little bit of light returned to my lady’s eyes.
“Yes, that’s right. I just couldn’t leave her like that.”
“So that’s how it was. You’re really kind, Cyril… but I only want you to be kind to me if possible…”
What’s with this destructive power?! Her embarrassed smile was like an angel’s. I know that I’m the one who raised her, but she truly was cute.
But… I was just a butler, while she was the daughter of a Marquis. Moreover, if I really had taken over the prince’s position, then the heroine might get involved with me in the future.
Is there anyway my lady could fall into darkness and be killed this way?
…no, let’s think about this calmly.
She should be fine. I brought up my lady so that she’d be able to cope with any manner of trickery. Even if she falls into darkness, any evils she commits would be impossible to reveal.
If it were my lady, then she’d surely be able to easily eliminate her target without anyone knowing.
–wait, then wasn’t I the one that would be killed?!
Oh, but I don’t think the heroine has fallen for me, so I should be fine… no, even if the she decides to pursue another romance besides the second prince, some reason to become jealous and turn evil was always found no matter what the route.
This isn’t good, if things continued at this rate– then I’ll be the only one killed.
Of all things, why did this have to happen?!
Written by Scarlet Rain (緋色の雨)
Translated by KuroInfinity at slothtranslationsblog.com