23. Peaceful Daily Life
The wedding of Gorman and Irena had passed, and peace returned to the Ragulen Family.
My brother was still busy going back and forth from and to royal capital. But as I started helping, he started to have some time for himself and the bags under his eyes receded.
My brother’s tendency to overwork himself is the reason why they didn’t disappear completely. I had already given up dealing with that side of his.
…For some reason, the knights were still helping us.
“…Oi, can’t you guys return to the royal capital already?”
Just before leaving for the royal capital, Alves stood at the door of the kitchen and stared at the knights.
Nevertheless, the knights went on cooking happily and grinned.
“Our vacation hasn’t ended yet, so we’ll be staying here for a while.”
“Besides Alves, this place is the best! The scenery is amazing, the climate is nice, and most importantly, your sister is cute!”
“There are no noisy royal sparrows, no noisy aristocrats, and there are so many sparring opponents! Everything’s just great!”
While laughing, the knights expertly handled the kitchen knives.
Although they had been cultivating a fairly large field until just a moment ago, they seemed unfazed.
…As expected of the knights of the kingdom.
It’s alright to praise them like that, right?
While putting a pot filled with water on the fire, I tilted my head.
Alves sighed deeply.
“…Who would’ve guessed you guys would enjoy field work and cooking that much.”
“It’s also because of the house. If not, I’d be long gone, already. Besides, Alves isn’t the only one who thinks we’re in the way.”
One of the knights, Ulysses, turned around and looked at me meaningfully.
“…Will Lord Phil be visiting today?”
“I think so. He’ll be joining me when I return home. So, you guys should leave.”
“Understandable. He’s been getting moodier lately. Even though I have no intention of getting together with your little sister. …Although, I do want to find a suitable partner for my little brother.”
“Oi, oi… isn’t your younger brother only 15-years-old?”
“14-years-old, precisely. Not like it’s a problem, right?”
Watching the knights laugh again, Alves ruffled his hair.
“Never mention a word of that to Phil. Otherwise, you and your younger brother will be sent to the frontlines.”
“Well, that would be a problem. Alright, I won’t say a word.”
Ulysses said that with a straight face, inciting more laughter from the knights.
…I really don’t understand what’s so funny.
I tilted my head as I put the vegetables cut by the knights into the pot.
After dark, Alves returned from the royal capital.
He was relieved that none of the knights pick him up partway. Meanwhile, I was glad he had returned before it was pitch black.
However, even if it had gotten dark, I might not have had to worry so much. After all, Phil was with him when he returned.
Perhaps due to exhaustion, Phil’s blue eyes were somewhat hollow.
“I’ve taken three days off, so I’d like to stay here.”
After saying that, Phil spread a rug in front of the fireplace and fell asleep.
He could sleep well, even with his sword still strapped to his waist.
For the time being, I draped a blanket over Phil.
…But, what about his meal?
Even so, it was rare for Phil to be so tired.
As I stared at his sleeping face and his long eyelashes, Alves sighed.
“Don’t worry, it’s more a mental fatigue than a physical one. It seems that he was being persuaded by his parents’ house.”
“Is that so?”
“All the way back, I kept telling him that I don’t want to hear any of it, but he still told me everything, anyway… he was told to get married quickly.”
Speaking of which, Phil did mention such a story.
Alves was single, and so were many of the knights his age. As such, I didn’t think it was weird for Phil to still be unmarried.
However, this might depend on each person’s family.
“…Is Phil going to get married?”
“A man who obediently agreed to get married as told wouldn’t be this tired.”
Alves started to eat.
My brother seemed tired, too. After eating at a tremendous speed, he was finished with dinner. Only a glass of wine was left on the table.
After I had put away the dishes, he left early.
“I want to take a bath.”
“I’ll prepare hot water, so wait a moment.”
“No, it’s okay. Normal water is fine.”
Then, he went out in no time.
Apparently, he was going to use water from the well as it was.
Winter hadn’t yet arrived, but at night, it got cold enough that a fireplace was necessary. I added firewood into the fireplace to warm up the room.
After confirming that the flames had grown, I stared back at Phil who was wrapped up under the blanket before the fireplace.
He seemed to have fallen asleep rather easily… But, would leaving him as he was until morning be alright?
As such, I decided that once my brother returned, I’d bring Phil to the room.
But before that.
“Phil, get up.”
I called out to him
A knight who has experienced actual battle will usually arise immediately, even if he was asleep.
I thought he’d immediately open his eyes, but that didn’t happen.
“Phil, if you get up, I’ll prepare a meal for you?”
He still didn’t stirred.
I sat by his side.
His silver hair, which had spread across the rug, was dyed in the colors of the flame in the fireplace.
A perfectly shaped nose, smooth cheeks, long eyelashes, and slightly rough lips.
…Is that a thin beard on his chin?
Suddenly, I noticed that a lock of his hair was about to fall onto his face.
Thus, I reached out for it. After I did, his eyes relaxed.
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