19.2 Daughter and Sister
…So that’s how it was.
The death of the former viscount made everyone think that George had no choice but to take up the role of a provisional lord.
In truth, George had intended to usurp the viscount family from the beginning. Thus, he killed the former viscount—Anastasia’s father.
Anastasia was utterly shocked. Her face had lost all trace of color.
“…That’s an unforgiveable sin.”
Towards His Highness’ words, George laughed in scorn. Then, George unsheathed his sword. His Highness was distracted by his action.
George was grinning.
“In this case, the only option left is to kill His Highness, his fiancée, and Anastasia. Leave no witnesses, Balakirev!”
Suddenly, Balakirev quickly moved to grab his sword which had fallen to the floor.
In an instant, Balakirev was ready to fight.
The only capable fighter on our side was His Highness. Even though I had a dagger, I was hardly his match. Less so Anastasia.
On the enemy’s side were a soldier and a swordsman.
I was prepared to die. As long as I could die with His Highness, perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad…
…But, I still had something I wanted to do.
Together with His Highness, I was supposed to make the territory prosper…
Suddenly, there was a strange sound. When I lifted my gaze, blood had started spreading across the floor.
It wasn’t the blood of His Highness, or Anastasia, or mine…
Having had a sword thrusted through chest, George spat out a mouthful of blood.
Eventually, George collapsed with Balakirev coldly looking down at him.
“…My loyalty was dedicated to the former viscount. As you’ve killed that viscount, I must avenge him.”
Balakirev had killed George.
Eventually, George stopped moving entirely.
Thus, Balakirev respectfully knelt down before His Highness.
“Your Highness, please forgive the disrespect I’ve shown you so far. We need a guardian for the Viscount of Kholmogory.”
“Then, you will entrust it to me?”
“I am paying tribute to the courage of His Highness and his wife. I’ve acknowledged that you’re at the very least better than George.”
Behind those words, he must had meant that if His Highness was worse than George, he wouldn’t forgive him.
With that, we had succeeded on becoming Anastasia’s guardian. Iron ore would now be exported from Arkhangelsk.
George had countless charges upon his person. Even if he was an aristocrat, as long as the royal capital was informed of his death, considering all his crimes, it wouldn’t be a problem.
Most importantly, His Highness and I could return to Arkhangelsk safely.
With that, we could live our lives as lords once more.
His Highness and I stared at each other and smiled.
“This is also thanks to Alisa.”
“No, it’s the feat of His Highness.”
His Highness shook his head.
“If I were alone, I would have lost. Alisa took the courage to challenge Balakirev—hence, I didn’t die.”
However, without His Highness’ swordsmanship, he wouldn’t have been able to stand his ground against Balakirev, and I wouldn’t have been able to seize that opportunity either.
In other words, we managed to do it because we were together.
Because we were together, we were able to fight courageously.
Because we were together, we were able to win.
…About my relationship with His Highness, I’d like to take a step forward, as well.
But what would be the good step for that?
I wondered for a moment then whispered to His Highness.
“Let’s go home …Alex-sama.”
“Alright. …Huh? Just now, did you—”
“I just referred to you as ‘Alex-sama’ instead of just your nickname.”
I had forgotten to remove the honorific. Regardless, if it was my former self, I wouldn’t have been able to muster a word.
As of the present, I could do it naturally.
Because Alex-sama needed me.
Alex-sama blushed and smiled happily.
“That’s right. Let’s go back to our mansion, Alisa.”
After that, we safely returned to the mansion and began planning to export iron from the viscount territory through the port of Arkhangelsk.
The number of trade ships had increased, and thanks to that, the town returned to life. The mayor, Kokoshkin, seemed to be delighted.
The finances of the Margrave of Arkhangelsk had also improved considerably.
It couldn’t be said that the territory and the port had finally become prosperous, but it was still a huge step forward.
Thus, two months had passed.
The territory of the viscount, which was under the control of Alex-sama, had just begun to be rebuilt. The land had been so devastated, it wasn’t able recovered in a mere two months.
Nevertheless, the viscount’s lords were grateful to Alex-sama for eliminating the unreasonable taxes of George’s tyranny.
Anastasia, the original head of the viscount territory… had became our adopted daughter. Until her adulthood, Alex-sama and I had been instructed by the royal capital to take care of her as her parents.
Therefore, Anastasia lived in our mansion in Arkhangelsk.
In the future, once Anastasia finished growing and found a marriage partner, the title of the viscount would be returned to her.
In the meantime, it was our responsibility to enrich the viscount’s territory as much as possible and raise Anastasia.
“Mother Alisa is so kind, I love you.”
With a red face, Alisa hugged me in front of the fireplace of the mansion. Anastasia had grown to love me.
…Even though Alex-sama and I hadn’t gotten married, yet I somehow had a daughter.
However, I was very happy. I was quite fond of girls like Anastasia.
…On a side note, Balakirev cooperated with managing our territory.
He wasn’t a bad person, and as a senior vassal of the viscount family, he was capable of conducting a business. He was truly helpful.
Everything was going well. The only thing I was dissatisfied with was that I was so busy with the territory, my relationship with Alex-sama had barely made any progress.
While I could finally refer to him by his name, it had stopped there…
…However, I was sure that we would shorten the distance someday.
His Highness needed me, and I loved him. No matter what happened, we’d always be together.
An opportunity to improve the relationship between His Highness and I actually came immediately.
“…Lady Alisa, a guest has arrived.”
Felix came to the room with a knock and informed me that with a strange expression.
Felix, someone usually cheerful, seemed to be truly nervous.
Anastasia, who was on my lap, and I stared at each other.
“A guest? For Alex-sama?”
“No… it’s actually Lady Alisa’s guest. I mean, it is overwhelming…”
Felix showed a strained smile.
Who on earth is it?
Felix seems off…
“Actually, the person has already entered the mansion and is coming here—”
—the continuation of Felix’s words was drowned out by the vigorous opening of the door.
At the entrance of the room was a slender, beautiful, girl.
She had a lustrous brown hair and pale gray eyes that shone brightly. She looked like me, but was an entirely different entity than me.
She exuded a mysterious charm, and her loveliness was as bright as the sun.
The girl had a lovely smile that fascinated everyone.
“Yahoo, onee-chan, it has been a long time, how have you been?”
My sister, Elena, had appeared.
***T/N: I thought it was Mikhail, ready to steal Alisa away because he got secret crush on her…
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