Let’s Do It This Way
“Me? Lady Liselotte’s… Sister…?”
Finne blushed as she looked up at Liselotte to ask that.
『Why does this feel like it might lead to a misunderstanding!?』
『I don’t think she’s talking about becoming sisters in that sense… Well, then again, there was a yuri route between these two, so who knows?』
Feeling a grave sense of apprehension grip my heart whilst I listened to the voices of the Gods, I broke in between the two girls who seemed like they were getting swept up in an indescribably dangerous atmosphere.
“Then, does that mean you mean to take Miss Finne as an adoptive daughter of the Rifenstahl family?”
“Yes, that’s right. Well, father? Don’t you think it would be wonderful if the daughter of the uncle that father loved so much could one day succeed as the Marquise?”
When I asked Liselotte that, Liselotte turned the question back around on her father.
“I think that would be for the best as well. This position of Marquis should have been something my brother inherited, after all. But, well, to appoint the young lady as my successor would be… Ah, do you mean that her husband would be my successor? No, this house already has Baldur as… Ah, well, in any case, I’ll have to talk to Josefine first…”
When the Marquis mumbled out a vague answer, Liselotte glared at him sternly.
“That Baldur has already begun to court Finne.”
As Liselotte said that so confidently, I gawked at her in astonishment.
I didn’t know about that at all.
The Gods did mention something along those lines before, but the idea of someone like Baldur already falling in love with Finne was so far out into the realm of fantasy I didn’t give it a second thought.
“It may be difficult for the two of them to get engaged right away since they aren’t yet lovers. However, both Finne’s life and virtue might be at risk if you don’t appoint her as a successor straight away. If it is for his beloved Finne, Baldur would gladly give up his position as successor, so this ought to all be sorted out very quickly.”
Liselotte’s assertive words had a strange power of persuasion about them.
『No, but, isn’t this still just conjecture…? Well, I mean, even if we know it’s true, she hasn’t heard the fact that Baldur loves Finne from the horse’s mouth yet, I think. How can she be so sure of herself when she hasn’t even heard it from the person in question…?”
It was rare to hear Coebayashay sound so unsure.
“If Baldur can win over Finne’s heart, then there won’t be any problems. If he cannot, then that merely proves that he is lacking ability. That’s all there is to it. For the time being, let us welcome Finne into the main family both as father’s new daughter as well as the future Marquise.”
“That’s… quite right, isn’t it? I didn’t train Baldur to be a weak man, after all. Even if Finne marries another man, then I can have someone from the branch family act to assist her.”
The Marquis nodded at Liselotte’s words.
Then, Liselotte next turned to look at Finne and Miss Elizabeth, whose eyes were still wide in shock.
“If he loses here, then he should be thankful to even keep his position as a knight apprentice, don’t you think so? The kind of fool who could lose Finne to another man, wouldn’t it be unthinkable to consider such a person worthy of the Riefenstahl name?”
Liselotte said that with a cold smile on her face.
『You’re so cool, Liselotte!』
『Woaaaah, what a great evil line! Saying things like that with a smile! What a wonderful villainess! But behind those words you can definitely sense her love for Finne-chan and her trust in Baldur… Ohhh, it’s crazy! After all, Rize-tan really is the greatest!!』
Hearing Liselotte’s words, I shivered in excitement alongside both Endow and Coebayashay, as her father nodded with a wry smile on his face.
“Well then, Finne, now that’s settled, won’t you become my daughter?”
The Marquis posed that question to Finne.
“Eh, no, I… I’ve only ever lived as a commoner until now… and I never knew about my dad… Besides, despite everything, I’m still illegitimate, right!?”
As Finne was put on the spot and blurted that out, Liselotte motioned towards Artur, who was standing quietly behind her.
All Liselotte did was call out his name. That was all she did.
Yet, despite that, Artur stood to attention like he had been given a shock as he opened his mouth.
“Yes! When speaking about marriages, one thinks of the church! I am sure that I will find a record that states that Finne’s parents had a secret marriage and exchanged their vows before the heavens 16 years ago! I am sure I will find that to set the princess’ younger sister’s heart at ease!”
What’s wrong with Artur?
I felt a little bit of trepidation at the rapid change he had gone through since I last saw him only a short while ago, whilst I perplexedly listened to the reply that he barked out obediently like a well-drilled soldier.
The House of Richter, or more specifically his great aunt, currently headed this country’s Church. There were a lot of other houses that served under them in the clergy hierarchy.
If it’s Artur, if he sets out to find something, then he’ll find it. Even if it’s not there… To put it bluntly, he’ll have it forged.
“…There are also the Kingdom’s civic records. They may be some peculiarities since it’s quite an old record we’re looking for, but it would be worth searching for all the same.”
“Ah, yes, peculiarities. Such things can happen, can’t they?”
Liselotte very quickly picked up on what I was hinting at.
Although, as expected, it may be quite difficult to fabricate important national documents, it was another matter entirely to just have them disappear.
So even if I couldn’t forge evidence that they were married, I could make it impossible to prove that they weren’t either.
After hearing my words, Liselotte turned to Finne with a mischievous smile, like a child who had just succeeded in a prank.
“Finne, it seems that perhaps you really aren’t an illegitimate child after all? Well, in any case, if you were to be adopted into our house, the matter of your birth isn’t a serious problem for me.”
“Eh? Eh? Ehhh…?”
Finne looked at us in disbelief as she could barely keep up with where we were going at all.
Then, with one step… Liselotte closed the gap between herself and Finne.
“Finne, this isn’t about Baldur, I want you to think about this for yourself… Or, the thought of becoming my sister… Do you really hate it that much?”
“That’s not true at all! Lady Liselotte, you’re kind, beautiful, graceful, hard working and strong! And when you’re together with His Highness, sometimes you’re very tsun, but lately, the way you’ve been acting is really cute! It’s so cute I think it’s unfair! Um, to put it simply, I really love you!!”
When Liselotte posed that final question with a sad look on her face, Finne desperately shook her head as she yelled that out.
『What a dastardly ambush! As Finne pours praise on her, Liselotte is trembliiiiiiiiiiing!』
『This might be a dangerous situation. If His Highness isn’t careful, Liselotte really might be stolen away.』
I may be in trouble. I found myself nervously watching Liselotte, who was blushing furiously at Finne’s sudden attack.
After a moment of silence, I heard Finne continue.
“The truth is… I really do want to become Lady Liselotte’s sister. But, uh, becoming the next Marquise, that’s um, that’s a little scary to think about.”
As Finne said that, she held her shaking hands together in front of her chest. It seems she’s trying to settle down the trembling in her body, but it’s not having much effect.
“There’s nothing for you to be afraid of, because I’ll always be there to help you, Finne… Finne’s mother is also formerly the daughter of a Duke. So I am sure she will help you as well.”
“…Probably,” Liselotte murmured that last part quietly, as she took Finne’s trembling hands in her own and smiled softly.
I don’t know if anyone else heard Liselotte’s whisper, but I certainly did. Well, Miss Elizabeth certainly is eccentric when she isn’t wearing her mask as the Fairy Princess, but surely she would be of some help when she puts it on.
Seemingly not hearing Liselotte’s whisper, Finne called out her name as she looked up at her, those big eyes brimming with tears.
“Oh my… You won’t even address me as your sister?”
As Liselotte laughed happily, the tears finally poured down Finne’s face as she looked up at her sister.
“I… I’ve always been an only child! And because I’m always moving, I’ve never been good at making friends either! So… I’m so happy that I could meet you… Onee-sama!”
Finne looking up at her bashfully with tears spilling from her eyes was definitely cute.
It was cute, but… when I saw Liselotte jump up and down adorably shouting out “So cute! I’ve done it! At last, I finally have a cute and honest little sister!”, I felt deeply conflicted.
『The look on Sieg’s face seems very complicated…!』
『The fact that Liselotte is able to express herself without being tsundere should mean that she sees Finne as a sister only in the sense of being relatives, so he shouldn’t be too worried.』
Coebayashay told Endow that calmly.
I really wish you had kept that last part to yourself though, Goddess.
Our boy Sieg may be in trouble.