On the day of the coming-of-age ceremony, most of the nobles who received the invitation from the Ajstain family arrived early and enjoyed the party. Contrary to people’s assumption that it would be simple, the huge banquet hall surprised them. In addition to that, I was amazed at the interior, which showed that a lot of effort had been put into it. The orchestra playing the music was also a senior orchestra from Viltria, a city of world-renowned artists. Their reputation was so great that it is hard to hear them play even once a year. The nobility could do nothing but wait with saliva on their mouths.
There was nothing wrong with having money. By paying a huge amount of donations and expenses, even a year of waiting time could be eliminated. It was surprising that such an orchestra was summoned for a coming-of-age ceremony. Even the tableware, cups, and at least a small utensil that contained food were of the highest quality known to be used in the imperial family. Even the same nobles, who had never seen a banquet of this level, each opened their mouths.
“Certainly, the Ajstain family must have been very wealthy. The Viltria city orchestra is also the same, but look at this pattern. I can’t stop admiring it”
“I didn’t expect this banquet because it was written that it would be held in a simple and easy-going way.
“It is said that the person who directly oversaw this coming-of-age ceremony was Lady Laurencia. They said that she was exceptionally intelligent since she was a child, but she must have had an exceptional artistic sense and dignity.”
“I’m thinking about getting a matchmaker right now. My son is about to become an adult this time…”
While everyone was gathering in groups of three or five and talking about this coming-of-age ceremony, a strange encounter was taking place at the back of the banquet hall. From entering the garden where there were few people, the man, Beralt, said annoyedly as he undid the button that strangled him.
“Why did you ask to see me in a place like this?”
Beralt, the kind and courteous man everyone knew, was nowhere to be found. His facial expression was distorted so wildly that he looked like a madman among a madman.
“It’s not very good in people’s eyes, oh my dear.”
The one who answered his voice was Ersia with a soft and friendly smile. She looked very lively today, unlike her usual expression of being tired and ill. Ersia smiled and clung to Beralt’s arm.
“It’s been a while since we’ve seen each other, right?”
Beralt felt the touch of his chest subtly and looked away.
“Is that your coming-of-age outfit?”
“Oh, this? That’s right.”
Ersia took a step back and turned around as if to take a good look, and she greeted him gracefully. When Beralt laughed, she giggled and clung to him again.
“How am I? Am I beautiful?”
“It’s ok, but I tore the dress to shreds because I did you a favor… Can you beat your sister with just a dress like that?”
“Hey, you worry about everything. You can see it. My sister has no dress. But I have. And people love me more.”
She patted her hair and smiled shyly. Beralt turned his head slightly at her dizzying scent and smiled.
“We’re twins. But the atmosphere is different. My older sister is strong and stubborn, while I’m a bit more feminine like this, and besides…”
Beralt cleared his throat as she deliberately pressed her breasts into his arms.
“Because I’m more lovely.”
“…Let’s skip that, anyway, since I’ve been asked this time, I need to help you gain an edge in a delivery deal coming up soon.”
“As much as you like.”
“And pay attention to your sister.”
“Certainly, she’s changed lately. She’s showing off her usual way of speaking and acting… Besides, her eyes seem to have become cold for some reason, and it’s strange.”
Ersia, who had been quietly thinking about Laurencia with her hand on her chin, raised her gaze.
“Maybe she noticed? Last year…”
“There’s no way that could be. If she noticed that, she wouldn’t have stayed still.”
“I mean. It’s disgusting to see my older sister and my grandfather hugging each other. What’s so precious, my.”
Beralt cringed as though she’s wounded, and he hugged Ersia, who clung to him. Ercia bent her neck with a languid expression. As their lips got closer and were about to touch, a loud shout came from the banquet hall.
Her quiet mood was broken, and Beralt frowned at her. After all, the night was getting closer. It’s when the main character appears. He couldn’t have her any longer. He took a wistful Ersia and entered through the back door of Hume. The two of them walked in the dark, avoiding people’s eyes, and sneaked a peek at what was happening in the hall. People were looking somewhere with exclamations. She rolled her eyes following people’s gazes.
There was a woman shining beautifully in the place where their eyes reached. Her dark hair and gold earrings caught her eye. Her emerald eyes gleamed beneath her, her long white neck, her slender collarbones and shoulders like the beauty of greenery.
Berylt asked involuntarily.
“What is that dress?”
Ersia called Beralt.
“Didn’t you get rid of that?”
“No. I saw it. But that one…”
Ersia’s twin sister, Laurencia, was shining more than anyone else at her coming-of-age ceremony wearing a beautiful dress made with great care. Her twin sister was seated next to her. So beautiful that everyone forgets that it’s not on.
The corner of Laurencia’s mouth lifted softly.
* * *
The colorful lights reflected the beautiful golden light. The black color was just a brooch used to give points. She used to wear a dingy dress made entirely of black fabric because she was a big sister, but she was different now. Everything was in my hands. The light emitted from the chandeliers and lights hanging here and there at the location I had directed was softly flowing through the cloth that covered them. The yellow dress that received all this light gave off a golden sheen as if it had been sprinkled with gold powder. In addition, the timing and location of his appearance were perfect. All of this was a coming-of-age ceremony for me.
I looked around. There was a mixture of surprise, admiration, and envy in their gaze.
It was not a coming-of-age dress that tends to be neat and clunky. It was a dress that showed off a beautiful and bold exposure, like a dress worn at an imperial banquet. People chatted with each other as if they were confused, but they didn’t react negatively. As if I was standing alone on stage, I looked around in the most elegant outfit and smiled. This place was the best stage I could have imagined.
“Thank you all for coming to my coming-of-age ceremony. I’m really sorry for the sudden change of venue. At first, the coming-of-age ceremony was going to be held at the venue in the main castle.”
I stopped talking and looked around. It was rewarding to try to dominate the crowd with my voice in a conference hall where a large number of people gathered. After my grandfather passed away, I stood in the conference room several times a day to explain business plans and give speeches to fill the void. I had to say it clearly and convey the meaning of the words properly. The voice had to reach the person on the far end. At the same time, it should not feel like an evil act. I should always be dignified and elegant. The Ajstain family, who were stigmatized for having bought their title with money, and who were engaged in vulgar commerce, always had to maintain their dignity in order not to be ignored by people.
The position of a noble lady didn’t help me at all. Each of them had to convince the nobility. For example, if you want to develop a mine in a certain territory, you had to promise the owner of the territory to invest. All I could do was raise my voice enough to cause blood to rise from my throat. It was fortunate that the efforts at that time were not in vain. My voice was clear.
“In the end, as you can see, it was held in the banquet hall that Countess Caronia poured all her strength into. There is only one reason.”
I smiled as I looked around at the people who were already distracted by my voice. It was to protect their dignity. Weren’t the people here the center of the empire?
I was good at making the other person feel good by not overdoing it. Because I haven’t done it once or twice. As proof of that, there were people who smiled and nodded, and people who responded, albeit in a small way. Horses were nobles, but they were also people after all. They liked flattery and was very satisfied with the best treatment.
“So I asked Count Caronia to rent his banquet hall like this. It’s a building I’ve never played in before, right? I sincerely thank Count Caronia and his wife for giving me the opportunity to use their banquet hall like this.”
The Count and the Countess were momentarily taken aback when they gracefully bowed slightly, but smiled warmly. Others praised Count Caronia for being so generous, and I laughed inwardly at the sound.
Generous… In order to rent this banquet hall, I promised to support the county’s 11-year budget. The butler said no, but it didn’t matter. If only I could rent this banquet hall for a few thousand gold coins.
“And I also want to thank the current Viscount Ajstain, my grandfather, for entrusting me with all authority. Thanks to my grandfather, I was able to have my coming-of-age ceremony in such a wonderful place.”
Grandpa, who was standing behind me, smiled. I laughed along too.
Thank you very much. However, expressing this in an official setting was, after all, acting. To emphasize that I was a lovely granddaughter, a granddaughter who knew how to be grateful, and that had outstanding abilities, and at the same time, passed all the credit to my grandfather to establish the family’s status. All of this was a thoroughly planned move to get people to judge me this way.
“Also, I have a lot to say, but I’ve learned that short speeches are good. So I won’t procrastinate. But if I have to tell you one more thing, I promise you the best party and an unforgettable coming-of-age celebration for me. To prove that, I brought in the principal orchestra from Viltria.”
I stretched out my hand and pointed to them. Each welcomed them with applause.
“Also, I would like to thank you for coming to my coming-of-age ceremony. I prepared a small gift, so please take it after the party.”
Everyone slurred at the word gift. Since ancient times, no one hates gifts, so I looked at the Viltria orchestra with a bright smile. With a nod, the stopped music gracefully started playing again. I spread both hands while looking around the crowd.
“Then, please enjoy the coming-of-age ceremony to your heart’s content.”
As the main character, I slowly backed away.
Along with the music, the finger foods that had previously occupied the table disappeared, and the main dishes filled the table. It was of the highest quality that even nobles who only dealt with the highest quality tableware, the highest quality food, and the highest quality could not easily access it. Everyone seemed preoccupied with eating excellent food, looking at exquisite tableware, and looking around the venue, which had fun entertainment in every corner. I looked around without losing my smile. It was to find Ersia, who was hiding somewhere.
It was actually somewhat expected that the dress would be damaged. People didn’t change. I was a person who couldn’t see how Beralt, Ercia, or anyone else was doing well.
The only thing Ersia had been dissatisfied with recently was the dress. So what she was going to do was obvious, and my plan to fight back was simple. Just make two dresses and throw one as bait. All management was done in my hands anyway, so there was no information leak.
Hello there! This is RJR. Thank you very much for reading.
Next post will be released on March, 17.
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