As soon as Lucas returned to the house, he collapsed onto the sofa without even removing the sword belt from his waist.
“Hey? Please at least change your clothes before you lie down, Bocchama. You're going to stain the sofa!”
“Calm down, Onii-sama looks very tired...”
Charlotte, Lucas's little sister, soothes the head maid, who raises her silver-rimmed glasses in a reproachful voice.
Naturally, the head maid, who is usually harsh with Lucas only, cannot say anything more once this young and blind girl has said so.
“Haah... it can't be helped.”
Despite the reluctant sigh of the chief maid, Lucas lay down and looked around languidly.
The family members were all gathered in the living room. On the table was a tea set. It seemed that they had just finished dinner, and his father, mother, sister, and sister were in the middle of enjoying after-dinner tea.
“Ahaha! You look like you've been squeezed a lot.”
“Really, that girl is like a torture bailiff. Always picking on you. No wonder she hasn't married anyone.”
Lucas's lips twitched at his father's amused remark.
Well, that's obvious. After all, Lucas had been tortured for more than an hour after that, which had made him miss the dinner time.
Although this is not the first time that he has been unlucky, Lucas truly believes that the most unlucky thing is the fact that the hysterical woman is his boss.
“*Sigh*... She also said to me, 'I'll write down all your mistakes in the report! Be prepared!,' Really?”
“Ufufu, then, I'll ask His Royal Highness to crush that report.”
Lucas frowns and imitates Valerie's tone, and his mother, Bridget, smiles at him.
“Ahahaha, you have my apologies, little boy”
From behind the sofa, Lucas's big sister, Emilienne, comes to look into his face.
She made her black hair tied up in a bun and her face, though well-groomed, had no makeup on it. Her short, untidy and flabby clothes give her a disheveled appearance that one would not expect from an aristocratic daughter.
“Hmm... But Nee-chan haven't married anyone too...”
“...I really want to beat you up”
Her big sister is 18 years old like Valerie.
Normally, most children of noble families are married by the age of 12 at the earliest, or 16 at the latest.
In such a situation, being single at the age of eighteen can only be described as a great latecomer.
As a matter of fact, neither she nor Valerie are unpopular.
On the contrary. Both of them have been constantly approached with marriage proposals and have turned them down.
Valerie would be a great beauty if she didn't have her harsh personality. Emilienne also has a wonderful appearance, and she is almost a different person in and out of the house.
It is even said that the prestige of the ball party would be improved if either Miss Valerie of the House of Savignac or Miss Emilienne of the House of Vander could be invited.
Therefore, in the public's view, it is not that the girls are late, but that there are no men who are suitable for them.
It is really a bad situation because the two whom Lucas said that there are no suitable men for them are actually called the most beautiful women of their generation.
“Well, I don't know about that woman, but in nee-chan's case, the requirements for a marriage partner are too special.”
When Lucas followed up, Emilienne nodded her head.
“Yes yes, that's right. There aren't many men who can be marry into Vander family, a noble family of assassins, so it can't be helped, can it?”
The Vander Viscounts are an old, albeit not prestigious, family, but they have a secret face that they do not reveal to the public.
That is the 'assassination aristocrats'.
They are a family of assassins who have been running dogs of the royal family for generations, burying their enemies in the dark.
“By the way, Nee-chan, please don't screw this up so badly!”
Suddenly, Lucas looked at Emilienne with a stern look in his eyes as if he had just remembered something, and Emilienne scratched her head awkwardly.
“Ahaha, I'm sorry. I didn't expect someone to come before I finish feasting. I mean, why would anyone come at that time of the night?”
As a matter of fact, it was Emilienne who killed Amber, the Minister of Finance, on the orders of the Crown Prince Bastien this time.
It is true that Amber went too far. He embezzled huge sums of money, but covered up his misdeeds so skillfully that no one could find any evidence of his crimes.
Although his crime would have been atoned for by imprisonment and confiscation of his property, because of his cleverness, he was killed by a noble assassin.
Also, there is a rumor that Amber is the next target of the recently popular 'headhunt'. So, the crown prince, out of the goodness of his heart, sends the knights to protect Amber.
The plan was that when it was Lucas's turn to protect him, he would leave his post, while Emilienne would break into the room and kill Amber.
“If things are going to be like this, it would have been better if I had killed him myself”
“But if you kill him with a sword, you'll be the first to be suspected, no matter how much of a misguided fool you've been acting. There's an old saying that an ant's hole can collapse an embankment. So, we have to be very careful.”
When his father, Jonathan, said this gravely, Lucas shrugged his shoulders in exasperation.
“So, what's the use that I'm screwing up?”
“Don't be so mean. It's not like they know I killed him.”
The plan was to leave only a bloodstain, and Amber disappeared, but something unexpected happened.
A woman snuck into Amber's bedroom in the middle of the night.
She was a different woman from Ambert's wife, a so-called mistress.
Because of her shrill screams, Emilienne had to throw away the corpse she was in the process of disposing of and rush away.
“The murderer is now called the 'Human-Eating Demon'“
“Eh... that's so lame! Ahaha!”
“That's no laughing matter, Nee-chan. It's a real mess!”
Lucas's lips twitched, and his mother Bridget nodded her head.
“That's right, Emily. It's no laughing matter. A mistake is a mistake, and you will be punished for it.”
Bridget smiled at Emilienne who stiffened involuntarily.
“Yes, of course. For now, as a punishment, you're going to bathe with your father for a month from now.”
“Eh? Wait, wait, wait. Mother? I'm already 18. I won't do it!”
“...you don't have to be so angry.”
Emilienne screams, not caring about her father's hurt look.
“But where in the world is there a grown-up girl who takes a bath with her father? Nope! No way!”
“If you don't like it, it's not a punishment, is it?”
Bridget rebuked her, and the little sister Charlotte interrupted.
“That's right, Onee-sama. I've been 'patiently' sharing the room with Papa too, you know.”
The youngest daughter's unkind words hit her father's heart hard. His shoulders slump. Meanwhile, the mother turned her head toward Lucas as if she had just remembered something.
“Lucas. You are off duty tomorrow, aren't you?”
“Yes, but... what's the matter?”
Lucas is afraid that he will be asked to do something troublesome.
Then his mother tells him with an air of happiness.
“You have a guest tomorrow, so don't go out for fun.”
“Yes. A very important guest.”
Lucas raises his eyebrows at his mother, who smiles at him with a hint of a doubtful smile.
His father, who had recovered somehow, clears his throat and says with a heavy heart
“*Cough* The guest is... your companion.”
“Today, your marriage has been decided. The official announcement will be made after you return from the Ternoir expedition because it is at their request. Anyway, you have been registered as of today.”
This made Lucas jump up from the sofa.
That's right. He's going to be married into the family without him having applied for the marriage license. On the contrary, he is already registered.
Without his knowledge, he is now a married man.
“Stop! Wait a minute! I don't get it! You shit father!”
“What do you mean, 'shit father'?”
“Don't be stupid! I'm only 16!”
“Idiot! What does age matter? Emilienne and his husband will take over the Vander family. Sooner or later you'll have to be married off to someone else. And this is a very prestigious family. By all means, they've asked for you specifically. This is a rare opportunity!”
“What a mess! What about my will!”
“What kind of freedom does a son of a nobleman have? What will? Just make sure you are here tomorrow afternoon and do not make any mistake!”
A wedding with a stranger is a common event in aristocratic society.
However, it is a different story when it happens to him.
It is not that he has a partner in mind, but he would like at least some time to sort out his feelings.
As Lucas hangs his head involuntarily, his little sister and his half-smiling big sister pat his head as if to comfort him, saying, “It's okay, it's okay.”