–Recently, the military seems to be in a uproar.
The planet the academy was based on had re-education and re-training facilities, which have been in full operation for the last few years now.
And it wasn’t just here either, apparently the majority of the Empire’s facilities were in a similar state as well.
Rumours have been spreading among the cadets that they were preparing for some great strategy or something.
Currently, I was a senior cadet in my sixth year at the academy.
Since she graduated earlier, I gave Tia permission to use my personal funds to form a patrol fleet, but I couldn’t help but worry if it was going well or not.
To be honest, I didn’t really know how much money I sent over because there were too many digits in my bank account, so I was actually looking forward to seeing what kind of armada was made.
I didn’t really have many opportunities to use it, so I ended up just throwing my money out there on a whim since I’ve accumulated quite a bit.
“…it’s already recovered.”
A percentage of the tax revenue was always redirected to my personal funds, but I always felt dizzy when I looked at it because there was so much.
And since there was always more capital gained than used, I didn’t really hold it at much value at all.
Recently, as an evil lord, I couldn’t help but think that it was useless to ruminate over money and how it should be used.
As I thought that, Wallace called out to me in a carefree manner.
“Liam, give me some pocket money.”
“Didn’t I just give you some last week?”
“It was all spent when I went out with some underclassmen while treating them.”
I felt my temper rise when I looked at Wallace, who was proudly boasting about how he played around outside.
This guy broke curfew and went out drinking with his juniors.
–with my money!
“Why do I have to prepare funds for you to play around with?”
“Because you’re my patron of cour– w-wait, that was just a joke, please don’t raise your fist! P-PLEASE STOOOPPP!!!”
After giving Wallace a good whack, he was grasping at his head with both of his hands in pain.
“You didn’t have to get so violent about it…”
“Seeing that you’re the only one having fun annoys me.”
“Then you should join us, Liam.”
“If I could, I would’ve already!”
–I wanted to play around as well, but I was still traumatised after knowing what happened to Peter.
What if I got the STD that made male genitalia explode?
It was just a venereal disease of a fantasy universe, but it still seriously scared me.
Even evil lords would be afraid of such an illness.
“…I’m afraid of my manhood exploding.”
Wallace burst into laughter after I revealed my true feelings.
“Is that why both you and Kurt never ‘played around’ during our days at the elementary school? Most STDs can be detected beforehand, and the ones that create explosions and the like are only the worst-case scenarios.”
“But that means it’s still possible!”
By the way, two cadets have exploded during my six years here at the academy.
Should I be relieved that it’s only been two, or be scared that there’s already been two?
But either way, if there was even the slightest possibility of it happening, I’d prioritise my safety and refrain from playing around just to be sure.
However, I still had the desire to do such things as all evil lords should.
“You don’t need to go all the way, you can still have fun just by drinking with the girls.”
“…I guess that’s true.”
Honestly, I didn’t think the bars were that interesting, but was wasting money that way that bad of an option?
I’d be misusing the taxes the people of my territory sweated to make for me.
–that sounded pretty great actually.
That was exactly what an evil lord should be like.
However, I seriously wasn’t interested at all.
As I troubled myself over this, Wallace asked me what I was planning to do after I graduated.
“By the way, where do you plan to go for your training after leaving the academy, Liam?”
“The imperial capital. Though apparently even high-nobles like myself have to do odd-jobs over there.”
If you were born as a high-noble, it was only natural to go to the most popular place for your training destination.
The same goes for Wallace, who was part of the royal family.
“What about me?”
“You’re coming with me of course.”
“Is it that? Did you just choose that place because deciding would be too troublesome?”
“…something like that.”
After hearing that he’d be returning back to the imperial capital, Wallace seemed like he was looking forward to it.
That’s when he reminded me of Kurt, who wasn’t here with us.
“Are you going to visit Kurt at the university?”
“Maybe during one of the holidays, wouldn’t he be busy otherwise?”
“No, it’d be better if you called out to him as soon as possible. He was really crying when he found out he’d be separated from you, Liam.”
When Wallace said that, I recalled how Kurt was in tears during the elementary school’s graduation ceremony.
Wasn’t he overreacting a bit, though?
“You really think he cares that much?”
“Yes, he does. Kurt would probably fall into depression if he found out you were there, and you didn’t reach out to him. Oh, and come to think of it, wasn’t Rosetta at the imperial capital as well?”
When Rosetta’s name came up, I suddenly felt my myself panic a little inside.
I didn’t really know how I should treat her.
“Would it be better if I called out to her as well?”
“…what are you worried about? She’s your fiancée.”
Despite Wallace saying that, I couldn’t help but feel anxious about my future life in the imperial capital.
◇ ◇ ◇
Meanwhile, at that time.
In the palace of the imperial capital, Rosetta was teaching the girls who had come there for their apprenticeships as their senior.
She was currently educating them on what mentality was expected of them while they were here.
“It’s prohibited to take domineering attitudes over your peers using the strength of your parent’s households. Because you’re here to train yourselves as apprentices, there will be no mercy shown if you break this rule, no matter who you are. ”
The girls tensely responded to Rosetta, whose bearing had become far more dignified compared to when she first arrived.
“–a promising response. I’ll do my best to teach you as much as possible as well.”
In order for one to be entrusted with teaching the other apprentices, one had to be highly evaluated in the workplace.
Since one could only watch over them until their training was completed, they wouldn’t be assigned to you otherwise.
The girls who used to ridicule Rosetta now seemed to be regretting it.
After disbanding the juniors, Cattleya approached in their place.
With the frustrating children now gone, she gave Rosetta her praise.
“When you first arrived here, I didn’t think you would make it, but I guess I was wrong.”
When Cattleya said so, Rosetta bowed while expressing her thanks.
“This was all because of your guidance, Lady Cattleya.”
“I might’ve helped, this was all because of your efforts. Be more proud of yourself.”
She worked harder than anyone else during her training, and now she was a maid recognised by everyone around her.
In the first place, Rosetta was used to working hard in harsh environments.
There’s no way her spirit would break at something of this level.
Cattleya looked towards the direction the girls fled.
“Now if only they’d follow in your footsteps.”
Although they generally behaved themselves during their apprenticeship, their evaluations weren’t that high.
Rosetta didn’t comment.
Seeing that, Cattleya smiled.
“…you’ve done well. For the rest of the year, I’ll leave the guidance of the juniors to you. Show them how it’s done, Rosetta.”
“Oh yes, I also have a message from my grandmother. It seems Count Banfield will be assigned to the imperial capital for his military training next year.”
“Darling will be?! Ah, no. Please excuse me.”
Cattleya laughed in response, giggling all the while.
“It looks like you have a good relationship. I heard that he’ll be spending two years here, but in that time, men can easily be roped in by their surroundings to ‘play around’ and do other bad things. –Rosetta, you should keep an eye on him.”
“Lord Liam isn’t like tha–”
“Men who never do so tend to build up stress. Even serious people can make mistakes, so hold onto his reins tightly, but don’t tighten your grip too much.”
Considering Liam’s position, it wouldn’t be strange for him to have several mistresses.
Or rather, when you think about the Banfield houses current situation, it’s actually troubling that he didn’t.
If Liam died, the candidates to become his heir wouldn’t be his direct line, but one of his relatives– or maybe even one of his predecessors.
It was a possibility that Amagi and Brian wanted to avoid at all costs.
Serena was of the same opinion, saying that the Banfield house should be succeeded by Liam’s descendants alone.
“You’re making an expression that says you’re not convinced. I understand your feelings, but it’s normal for one to only go for love after they’ve fulfilled their duties.”
Many noble daughters freely pursued romance after creating an heir.
In truth, after Liam’s mother and grandmother had their kids, they separately had families with their favourite partners on the side.
But Rosetta loved Liam, stories about what she could do after they had a child were irrelevant.
“Lord Liam is the only one for me.”
“…I’m actually quite envious you can say that so confidently.”
With those parting words, Cattleya left to return to her work.
◇ ◇ ◇
A luxury hotel in the imperial capital.
It was currently undergoing a sudden renovation.
Thomas was watching over the construction while the building manager explained the changes to the interior.
“We’re working as fast as we can, but I don’t think we’ll be in time for next year.”
Although it was a historic luxury hotel in the imperial capital, it had fallen into ruin in recent years.
“As long as it’s only the parts that Lord Liam won’t see that fall behind, everything should still be okay. More importantly, how’s the employees’ education coming?”
When Thomas first found this hotel, he was suspicious over how such an old thing could still be operating but–
“We’re reaching out to our former workers, but we still don’t have enough experienced personnel.”
“Hurry up and gather some then. After Lord Liam graduates from the academy, this will become his temporary base of operations.”
The manager replied with vigor.
From his strong response, one could easily feel his enthusiasm to not miss out on this opportunity.
This hotel wasn’t in disarray because not enough people stayed there.
The problem was that when they drove out a drunk and violent customer a few years back, the man turned out to be an aristocrat– and because they had quite the high standing, they ended up pressuring them as revenge.
If one turned a noble into their enemy, it was only natural for their business to collapse, no matter how popular the hotel was.
But conversely, as long as they had an aristocrat on their side, they could easily bounce back.
The manager double-checked with Thomas.
“By the way, for those who’ll be assigned to Lord Liam himself, is it really okay to select them by ability? Wouldn’t one’s appearance usually be used for the selection criteria?”
If he had a certain preference, they would do all in their power to find someone who matched it.
When the manager said so, Thomas shook his head.
“Lord Liam doesn’t even lay his hands on his mansion’s servants. He’s a really strict person, so rather than someone who matches his tastes, he’d have a better evaluation of you if you placed capable personnel that can show results at his side.”
To Thomas, Liam was the most virtuous of nobles.
The manager lowered his head.
“…I’ve seen many different aristocrats here in the imperial capital, but just from what I’ve heard, Lord Liam already sounds far better than all of them.”
“He might stand out a bit because of the crude way he speaks, but he’s actually quite benevolent. His enemies might be shown no mercy, but he’s highly tolerant of others. Manager, any extra treatment is unnecessary. As long as you do your job properly, Lord Liam will surely have a good opinion of you.”
The manager straightened his back and raised his face.
Preparations were being made in the imperial capital to receive Liam.
While Thomas was feeling relief at the fact that he was able to secure a proper residence for him, one of his subordinates rushed towards him.
“M-m-merchants of the imperial capital want to meet with you, president!”
“…what? Who exactly?”
It was quite unusual for a merchant of the imperial capital to want to see Thomas, someone who usually did business outside the region.
Normally Thomas would be the one requesting the meetings.
“It’s Elliot, the president of the Clave Company, and Lady Patrice, an executive of the Newlands Company.”
Thomas’ eyes widened.
“Both of them are big shots.”
The Clave Company wasn’t just any group of imperial merchants.
They were one of the biggest conglomerates in the Empire.
And while the Newlands Company had their head office in the imperial capital, they were an enormous group who did business all across the country.
Both of them were on a completely different level compared to Thomas’ Henfrey Company.
For the president and executive of two of the largest conglomerates to want to meet with the owner of a small business that only had a few stores across the frontier was unprecedented.
The manager seemed disturbed by this as well.
Both of them were practically celebrities.
“What’s their goal here?”
Because it was impossible for him to refuse their visit, Thomas immediately decided to convene with them.
Brian(´；ω：) “…Lady Rosetta is growing up, this Brian here couldn’t be happier.”
Written by Mishima Yomu/Wai (三嶋 与夢)
Translated by KuroInfinity at slothtranslationsblog.com