The Marquis’ Amnesia 14.5
Chapter Fourteen and a Half: A Foolish Man (Will’s POV)
The man with dark blond hair and green eyes sat in front of me while fidgeting the whole time.
For a man his age, he had a tall and toned body. He was also good-looking. Apparently, before I lost my memory, we had met a few times in social circles. As such, it should’ve been our first meeting ever since I lost my memory.
To be reunited with Liliana as soon as possible, I cut straight to the chase.
“Thank you for graciously allowing me to visit on such short notice, Count Eighton.” As I spoke, I leaned on my seat and crossed my legs.
In response, Count Eighton’s trimmed eyebrows twitched.
“…Marquis Springfield, what kind of business do you have with me?”
Without even bothering to ask about his own daughter, Count Eighton also went straight to the point.
“Well, don’t be so hasty. I’m sorry, but can you dismiss all your servants from the room? I have a personal matter to discuss.”
The butler behind Count Eighton nodded, before leaving the room along with the two maids who previously prepared tea.
Frederick glanced at me. I shrugged, before waving my hand. Frederick shrugged before following after the rest of the servants.
After Count Eighton and I were alone, we returned to the topic at hand. Since a few minutes ago—no, even since I had arrived here, we had never made any eye contact. However, when I turned to look at something else, he’d sometimes stare at me in an expectant manner.
The night Liliana cried in my chest, I decided to get rid of her grief. Therefore, the very next day, I wrote a letter to Count Eighton, saying that Liliana would like to meet her brother. But for one reason or another, the count would always refuse. Thus, I summoned Alphonse and tasked the knights to gather information.
As a result of their careful examination, I discovered that a year ago, I decided to take over the large debt of Count Eighton. It was about 30 million rills in total.
But it didn’t end there.
The man’s astonishing lack of self-control had incurred him yet more debt. This time, it was 10.000 rills. Even as we spoke, he had generated about 500 rills more. The debts were caused by Count Eighton’s gambling addiction and the lavish spending of both his wife and stepdaughter.
Back when I first met with the count, I had committed the worst mistake of my life.
Without any interest in Liliana, I made the count write a loan and a pledge. However, I didn’t mention the repayment of the loan and set an indefinite period without interest. At that time, all I cared about was to get rid of those troublesome women. As such, I bought his daughter for 30 million rills. Upon checking with Arthur, he told me that for the past year, Count Eighton hadn’t even attempted to repay the loan.
Of course, there was a reason for that.
Instead of being straightforward, I offered the loan to the count in the form of financial support. I even said to him that it was in order to get Liliana to smile from the bottom of her heart. Almost immediately, the once reluctant count agreed.
“Count Eighton, where were you three nights ago?”
The count’s shoulders jumped up in a comical manner.
“W, why do you ask?”
Desperately trying to appear calm, Count Eighton tilted his head. He had failed to realize that he spoke in a high tone.
“A friend of mine spotted someone similar to you at the casino. Apparently, due to his enthusiasm, he had made quite a fortune from the roulette. Therefore, I’m wondering if we can talk about repayment.”
Immediately, blood drained from Count Eighton’s face.
“…Although, I also heard that said man lost quite a bit last night.”
The count’s eyes were swimming, while his legs were shaking constantly. I also didn’t fail to notice the restlessness of his hands. From the moment he refused to meet my eyes, he had already lost the game.
I raised my body, which had been resting on the backrest, and put my elbows on my knees. Then, I folded my hands, before resting my chin on top of them.
“…But isn’t that strange? When I offered to take over the debt, didn’t you promise to quit gambling and put your effort into territory management? I also have your signature.”
Count Eighton bit his lips to the point that they lost color. His entire body was trembling.
Resting my chin on my folded hands, I smiled graciously and tilted my head in return. Instead of answering, the trembling Count Eighton didn’t answer. The gritting of his teeth was all that I could hear.
“By the way, where’s your wife?”
“I see. I have to say, Ms. Margaret is quite beautiful.”
Although her beauty won’t even compare to Liliana’s—I added inwardly.
Count Eighton lightened up at that.
“I agree! Margaret is my pride! Not only is she as attentive and kind as her mother, she’s also a beauty! In every social event, she won’t fail to light up the whole room. Unlike my failure of a daughter, Margaret can assist you in the social circles! I’m sure that you’ll find her presence to be quite of a help!”
Without noticing that the tone of my voice had dropped, Count Eighton went on talking.
“That’s right! She also pays a lot of attention to fashion, as such, she always dresses perfectly! In that respect, she will not disgrace you in the slightest!”
Upon hearing that the other side of the corridor had grown noisy, I reached for the sword that was leaning against the sofa. I kept giving the same reply, but the idiot rambled endlessly. In an attempt to lift his ill-mannered other daughter up, he went out of his way to disparage Liliana.
“—Above all, unlike Liliana, she’s a beautiful and healthy girl. I’m sure that she’ll be able to conceive the perfect heir for the marq—Hyiiiie..!!”
In the end, I couldn’t put up with the annoyance and stabbed the sword right next to his face. Count Eighton’s eyes moved to stare at the end of my sword, where a sheet of paper was stabbed.
“…You’re so noisy.”
Meaningless sounds spilled from his mouth.
“It isn’t my place to say this, but I can’t forgive you for how you’ve mistreated my wife in the past?”
As I snorted, I yanked his dark blond hair.
“Do not misunderstand. Liliana is my wife. Liliana Catherine de Alwin-Lutherford—and because of that, she’s the Marquess of Springfield. She’s higher than you—be it in terms of title, position, or power. Did you realize that by insulting her, you’ve insulted me as well? I guess you don’t, hence you ran your mouth.”
“B, but why…? You’ve been so impressed with Margaret, too…”
The man only listened to the words that were convenient for him.
I yanked his hair again, and the pain was reflected in his green eyes.
No, seriously, how did he get this delusional?
While his outward appearance was neat-looking, the inside was rotten.
“So, in this letter, I wrote that I’ll help Liliana’s precious family.”
I was referring to the paper I had stabbed.
“T, that’s why, we are—”
“It’s also important for me to mention that Liliana only considers Cedric as her family. Therefore, by that letter, I’m saying that I’ll be helping Cedric Alwin.”
“W, what about me…?”
He worried about neither his daughter, nor his son—but of himself.
I was at the limit of my patience.
After forcing Count Eighton to stand up, I kicked his belly as hard as I could. At the same time, the knights rushed in. The count was thrown away, and hit the cabinet as he flew. The ornaments fell on him, making a loud noise.
Good. I wouldn’t want to dirty the clothes that Liliana had praised.
I heard an unpleasant noise and a peculiar odor pierced my nose. Count Eighton had vomited.
“K, Knight Captain!! I told you to have some self-restraint!!”
“If you break something in someone’s house, we’d have to provide a written apology!? The Vice Captain will get mad at us again!!”
Upon noticing the shards of the decorative places and the others, my two subordinates complained.
“Then I can just compensate for it. Just tie him up quickly! This devil, disguised as my father-in-law, had attempted to kill me! I’ll deal with him myself, so put him in the number four!”
“But he’s covered in vomit!”
“Well, there’s a pond in the garden. I’m going to fetch my wife. Where’s Al?”
I responded to my subordinates while sheathing my sword into the scabbard. While frowning, my subordinates stepped on Count Eighton to immobilize him. Then, they proceeded to tie him with a rope.
“The vice-captain went to protect Cedric. Although, by throwing him into the pond, won’t the smell get worse?”
“Then just dump the water from the well on him.”
I had perfectly memorized the floor plan of the house I ran upstairs to Cedric’s room, just as Elsa was attempting to unlock the door with a wire. Impatient, I cut down the door and jumped into the room. I was in agony, but at the very least I managed to reunite Liliana with Cedric.
“You hit me on purpose.”
“…I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
I blurted out a complaint to Elsa, who was sitting on the floor next to me, tearfully watching Liliana and Cedric embracing each other. As soon as I asked that, she showed an innocent smile.
Previously, when Elsa was about to hit Liliana’s sister, I got backhanded to the cheek. As a matter of course, it stung. Amidst the confusion, she must had done it on purpose. However, I was somehow aware that I wouldn’t win. As such, I wisely kept my mouth shut
I looked around the room to distract myself.
There were faded curtains, a stained carpet, a washed-out closet with one of the doors missing, along with a small bed. The two assholes must had given Liliana’s the worst room. There were two doors in the back. If the floor plan was correct, those were the shower room and the bathroom.
…They truly have no intention of letting Liliana out of here.
At the thought that Liliana had lived in such an empty room for fifteen years, I clenched my fists.
I managed to shake off my anger as I walked over to Liliana, and kneeled down beside her.
“Liliana, it’s going to get crowded in here, so let’s return to the mansion. Cedric is hurt too, isn’t he?”
If possible, I’d like to refrain from interrupting the reunion of the siblings. Regardless, it was obvious that the house was going to get noisy from now on.
At my words, Liliana suddenly looked up and looked into Cedric’s face.
“Cedric, Cedie, show me your injuries—Cedric…!”
Without answering Liliana’s call, Cedric’s small body collapsed and I quickly extended my hand to catch him.
Cedric was terribly hot, while short, labored, breaths were squeezed out of his thin chest. Through a gap in his shirt, I saw that his torso was wrapped in bandages. As I laid Cedric on his back, I put his tiny head on Liliana’s lap, and proceeded to remove the bandages.
Everyone gasped in unison.
The white bandage covering his entire back was smeared red. Moreover, there were red and black bruises on his thin arms.
I heard a faltering voice next to me, and I caught Liliana as she was about to fall over. I made her lean against me.
I bit my lips. I wished that I had kicked the count about three more times. Even better yet, cut off one of his limbs. However, such thoughts were unbecoming, especially considering that I was holding a child. Somehow, I managed to suppress the killing intent that threatened to overflow out of me.
I slowly exhaled.
“W, what do we do…? He’s injured to this extent…”
Terribly distraught, Liliana had a deep blue face. Tears glistened on her white cheeks.
I hugged Liliana and proceeded to caress her back.
“Everything’ll be alright, Liliana.”
Liliana was trembling—she must have been truly shocked.
“Frederick, you should call Morgan. Elsa, I’ll ask you to prepare the carriage at the entrance.”
“You can use my horse, I can just use another to return.”
Al ran his fountain pen on the notebook he had just taken out of his pocket, tore the page, before handing it to Frederick. Frederick received the note and slipped it inside his pocket. Afterwards, he left the room immediately.
Alphonse stripped the sheets from the bed and wrapped Cedric in it to lift him up. I also lifted up Liliana. In response, she wrapped her thin arms around my neck. Her shivering told me of both her anxiety and fear.
I turned to the exit and noticed that the door was missing. Said pitiful door was resting at the corner of the room. The culprit could either be Frederick or Alphonse. Either way, I found it understandable.
I turned to the way I had come, and hurried to the entrance. The knights, protecting the servants and searching for the remnants of the assassins, were busy coming and going.
As per the strategy, I made up Count Eighton as the assassin. It was the kind of strategy that took advantage of the fact that everything I said was absolute.
Still, I didn’t want Liliana to witness the moment when her father was dragged out by a noose. Therefore, I sent him off ahead of time. Nevertheless, I regretted the fact that I left Margaret at the butler’s hands, despite her crime of hitting my wife.
Soon, we got into the carriage, where Elsa was waiting for us. I sat Liliana down next to me, while Al lowered Cedric to her lap. Liliana immediately hugged her brother without a word. I put my arms around her thin waist to prevent her from falling off the seat.
“Lily, Cedric will be alright…”
Liliana barely nodded when Al got out of the carriage and told her that. Afterwards, Al looked at me.
“Well then, Captain, I’ll take care of the rest.”
I nodded in response.
“Then, I’ll leave it to you. Like I said before, put him in number four. After I’ve calmed down, I’ll go see him.”
“Alright, then I’ll close the door.”
After saying that, Alphonse closed the door. Immediately after that, Elsa knocked on the wall to signal the coachman. Then, the carriage began to move.
As the rattling noise of the wheels could be heard, I wordlessly embraced Liliana, who wouldn’t stop crying.
***T/N: I’m sure that there’s a special place in hell for someone like the count 🙂
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