“Long time no see, Sister.”
It was almost midnight, just before the date changed.
My parents and I had come to visit the grave of ‘Big Sister Alice.’
It has been more than a year since we had last visited this place located deep in the backyard of the Jaime Castle.
Back then, I was bedridden when riding in a carriage, and even going back and forth was too much for my limited physical strength. Thinking about it now, things had changed quite a bit since then, as I was now surrounded by many people, having a good time, and coming and going as usual.
Time flew by so fast.
After the three members of my family offered a silent prayer, Alphonse and Connie, who had been waiting a short distance away, also came and offered a silent prayer.
While I was vaguely thinking that the members of the group during the Rouge incident were all here, my father opened his mouth sluggishly with a nervous look on his face.
“Oh, Alice…How is school life?”
“What? Well, it’s fun as always, you know?”
“Uh, yeah. That’s right…”
As I was tilting my head in confusion at Father’s awkward ice breaker that basically sounded like what a father who wasn’t used to talking to his daughter would say, Alphonse-san blew out.
“Pffft…that’s how you start it off?”
“Shut up!…Of course it’s hard to talk about, why are you laughing!?”
“No, well, it’s just the young lady was…”
The red hair of Alphonse, who’s shoulders we’re shaking and trembling, glowed fully in the moonlight. In response to this, my red-faced father’s light-ice hair seemed to fill the air softly as if in anger.
I had heard that they were childhood friends, and for a moment, I could see that relationship between them.
There were other people like this, weren’t there? The head of the family and the butler who are very different from the way they are normally. It was like seeing a glimpse of their school days.
In any case, this was about a cute story that I had never seen before, and that had never been witnessed.
However, it was such a difficult story to tell, even with this group of people.
In other words, the people who knew that I was from an orphanage and had been informed of the entire Rouge incident…And then there’s Uncle Oedipus and Sister Thulite, who also knew.
…Can it be?
Perhaps…?!? In front of me, who was fidgeting with joy, my mother gave up on my sloppy father and sighed.
“Enough already. I’ll tell her about it…”
“Are you going to talk?”
As always, Father was weak at improvisation.
Mother knelt down on both knees and took my hand.
After a few moments of hesitation, she took a few deep breaths and was about to open her mouth when I couldn’t help myself and jumped in.
“Am I getting a little sister!? Or a little brother!?”
Finally!!!!!! For some reason, my mother and father flinched greatly when I squirmed with joy.
And Alphonse was once again trembling while trying to hold his laughter when he saw me fluttering around.
Eh……? Is that not what this is about? As I continued impatiently, my mother quickly regained her composure and turned to me.
“N-No, Alice. Uh…The stork is—no the cabbage patch…I mean, the moon—um, er, uh…”
I withdrew my previous statement—she had not regained her composure at all. If I looked closely, I could see that her eyes were spinning.
Alphonse, whom I wasn’t looking at, continued the story.
“Alice-sama. Although it is a topic that I am hesitant to talk about…she is not pregnant yet.”
“Eh…? What, is that so?”
“Yes. Although, because Eleanor-sama has become very stable and healthy…the possibility is still there.”
Ahh. I see.
My mother was certainly beautiful to the point of being ethereal.
But that probably meant that she ate too little and was too thin…which means she was malnourished.
However, since she regained her mental health, was relieved of pressure, and, most importantly, was working on the Lyuke collaboration with Aunt Felicia, she had begun to eat more food…
In other words, her natural body cycle had returned to normal.
In any case, I was disappointed when I heard Alphonse, because I realized that this was not because I had a sister or a brother.
When Mother saw me, she looked up quietly this time.
“…Do you want a brother or sister, Alice?”
“I want one!”
I answered immediately. Yes, I want one.
After all, little brothers and sisters are so cute. Absolutely adorable.
To be honest, I was an only child in my previous life, so I couldn’t help but wish for them.
Well, in the words of my friends in the past, ‘They’re not cute at all, they’re just cheeky.’ That’s what they all said…But it was still a dream because I had never experienced it.
And then my father, who was still flinching a bit, spoke in a fearful voice.
“Alice…Alice, isn’t it complicated though? When I think about your circumstances and the hardships you’ve endured, I wondered what that tragedy was all for…Don’t you wish that we had never taken you in in the first place?”
“Tragedy…? Are you referring to that poisonous woman?”
“Poisonous…well, I guess that’s right.”
Hmm, I kind of understand what my father was trying to say. I understood why he was so concerned.
My father, who feared that my mother would die of shock after the death of my first sister Alice, took me out of the orphanage as a substitute and made me his child, according to the doctor’s mysterious observation that Mother couldn’t have any children after the first one.
As an extension of this complicated situation, I spent two years of my life being tortured by Rouge.
In other words, if it weren’t for my father and mother’s infertility problems, I wouldn’t have been taken from the orphanage, and I wouldn’t have been subjected to what Rouge did to me…
So wouldn’t it be sad and unsettling and uncomfortable to even hear about the possibility of them having a real child now? I guess that’s what they were worried about.
For me…It was more surprising how polite they were, as if they were afraid to check with me at this stage when they think they might have a child.
Of course, if I were just an innocent child, I don’t know how I would have felt about that fact.
But that’s just a postulation. I was the one who was currently here.
The only thing I wanted to focus on were the feelings Mother and Father had towards me.
If I were to put it more bluntly, I’d be happy as long as they didn’t have the unpleasant ‘I’m done with you, you’re in my way’ feelings that often accompanied such developments…Of course, that was if I could keep the memories of my innocent days up to the age of five sealed in the depths of my heart.
And in that regard, I had absolute faith in my mother and father, so there was no problem.
I’m sure that Alphonse-san sensed this objectively. But because Mother and Father couldn’t be objective, they felt that it was a big problem, and didn’t understand my feelings.
Normally, that would be enough for me to say that this situation was resolved.
But for the both of them, it wasn’t.
“…For me, if Father and Mother still love me, then I don’t care about the rest…Honestly, the inheritance seems to be troublesome, so it would be great if my brother or sister would take over instead of me…”
“Miss, your true intentions are showing too much.”
“Oops…But if my brother or sister could take over the territory, it would be the easiest of all.”
“I want a cute little sister or brother!!”
It was really true that I wanted a cute little sister or brother, but my desire had morphed into something more than that, and Connie’s follow-up was ruined. With this, my father and mother would not feel burdened.
That’s what I thought.
…Pushing aside such travesties, my father and mother embraced me.
Those deeply emotional voices and the hug were enough for me.
“…I can’t help it anymore. In that case, I insist on the right to be a godparent.”
“Ahh, of course.”
“Please don’t complain if I call them weird names like Gonzaburo or Sukebei.”
“Ngh…sounds unfamiliar, but I’ll deal with it.”
That part was just a joke. I sighed and spoke to the two sniffly voices that hugged me.
“Please love me as much as you can, okay?”
A voice wet with tears responded, “Of course.”
Well, I was happy enough with this trust alone…I patted their heads while thinking.
[Original Author’s Note] In the illustrations of the book version, Alphonse is an old butler with a beard, but due to various circumstances, that was a misunderstanding of the information, and it ended up that way. In the book version and the web version, I am going to leave him as a ‘red-haired, late twenties, childhood friend of the father,’ so please understand. I apologize for any confusion!
T/N: A very sweet chapter as we head into the Thanksgiving month (for those who celebrate it). I personally would love to see Alice doting on her little sibling, making the others jealous as the sibling idolizes his/her amazing elder sister, hehehe. I also couldn’t help laughing when the parents struggled to explain pregnancy to Alice–like she doesn’t know everything already.
I also hope people had a fun Halloween! Until next time~
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