It was during the dinner time.
Lloyd came to the front of Ryan’s door and knocked on the door a few times.
“Big Brother, it’s me.”
He wasn’t sure how long he waited after he knocked, but he could hear the reply a little while later.
After getting the permission, Lloyd carefully opened the door and entered the room. It appeared Ryan was not the only one inside the room.
“Sister in law, it has been a while.”
“Oh dear… Sister in law… I’m so embarrassed.”
The woman who was called as the sister in law by Lloyd, the woman wearing a graceful dress, responded as she blushed.
“It has been a while since I saw you last, Young Master Lloyd. You look so different compared to how you were several years ago. I think it would be difficult to joke that you look like a child now.”
It was the name of the woman who was engaged to Ryan two years ago. To the people, she was a woman more well known as the daughter of the Mogared House.
“So. What is she like?”
After Lloyd and Annabelle greeted each other, Ryan quickly walked next to Lloyd and asked.
He was asking about Nainiae, the one who Riley brought in as a new servant.
“Well, she was as we expected.”
Lloyd shrugged with a confident face.
He didn’t have much to report.
As expected, that was all.
“It seems she is just a lass with nothing extraordinary about her. I went and took a glance at how she was doing in her sword training taught by Sera… It didn’t look like she was particularly good in her sword skill either.”
“Big Brother. You worry too much. If I must point out anything unique about her, there was a disgusting scar on her face that almost made me puke, and she is missing two fingers on her right hand.”
That horrible scar.
Those disgusting fingers.
Other than those, it could be said Nainiae had quite a fair face, but those problems were cutting down even that one good thing about her appearance.
“Honestly, even I think it is strange, and it makes me wonder too. I’m talking about why that runt Riley brought in a lass like that and made her work in the mansion.”
Lloyd continued as he shook his head.
Even on his second thought, he just could not get used to that face.
“Afterall, Riley’s taste in women was always a mystery. If he has a thing for something like that, well…that would explain why he brought in a lass like her and made her settle in the mansion.”
As if he was trying to say he had no idea that his brother born from a different mother liked that kind of woman, Lloyd murmured as he wiggled the corners of his mouth.
“I’m sorry I’m not able to maintain the expression on my face. I couldn’t help myself because it was so funny when I just thought about it.”
Lloyd was thinking about paying back Riley for making a fool out of him with the medal when he returned to the mansion from Solia.
Lloyd was thinking he would be able to make fun of Riley with this, so he was not able to hold himself from laughing.
“Still, it is so strange. I can’t shake the feeling that there’s something wrong with all this.”
“Seriously. Big brother, you doubt people too much. He isn’t called the Lazy Sword inside and outside the mansion for no reason.”
Having heard what his older brother said, Lloyd stopped laughing and shrugged.
It was because it looked like there was no need to mind it no matter how many times Lloyd went over it. He felt that there was no reason to worry about Riley or the lass named Nainiae that he brought.
“In that case, should I take a look for you as well?”
Lloyd was looking at Ryan, but after hearing the question, Lloyd turned his head toward Annabelle.
“Sister in law, would you like to?”
“Yes. It’s been a while since I visited Iphelleta mansion, so I have to greet Young Master Riley as well, so… Tomorrow, I can whenever I find the time.”
“Will you be all right?”
Ryan looked at Annabelle with a gaze of someone that genuinely worried about his beloved.
In response, Annabelle gave a refreshing smile and she put forth an expression on her face that said not to worry.
Nainiae’s schedule for the day was pretty busy during the morning when Ian was next to Riley.
“Now… Is it the right timing?”
“No. The tea is not quite brewed yet. Try again.”
With Sera supervising, Nainiae's maid training and tasks were completed within that time. Also, in middle of all these, she was also trained in swordsmanship.
“You will be losing your wrist if you did it like that. What do you think you should do?”
“If I lowered the angle a little…”
“Yes. A little further! You should lower it a little further!”
It was around 4 o’clock by the time all three things were roughly over, and that’s when she switched places with Ian.
From there, Nainiae served right next to Riley until it was time for bed.
Of course, she had to prepare magic lessons for Riley in middle of all these. She had the right to say that having two of her was not going to be enough to handle everything at the moment.
“You have done a good work, Mr. Ian.”
“Ugh. It would be fine if I continued to look after him.”
Nainiae switched places with Ian at the garden a little after 4 o’clock when she roughly finished most of her things for the day.
Nainiae sighed heavily and stood next to Riley after surviving a deadly gaze from Ian.
‘Is he sleeping?’
Under the garden tree’s shadow, Riley was lying down on his designated spot where he always slept during the day.
Nainiae quietly lowered her eyes and looked at Riley’s sleeping face.
He had his eyes closed, and she could hear a regular breathing that sounded like he was asleep. Together, they felt like they were protesting and saying not to bother him because he was taking a nap in middle of a day.
‘So, he is sleeping.’
He looked so relaxed.
It was making the person that watched him feel relaxed too.
Nainiae quietly smiled.
It looked like Nainiae was trying to do something.
Nainiae lifted her left hand.
She stood like that for a moment. As if she was trying to feel something, Nainiae started to look for something as she turned her head all over the place.
‘There is…no wind…’
With her hand raised, she confirmed that there was no wind around the area and carefully recited a spell to cast a One Circle level wind magic.
‘Would this be enough?’
To make sure she would not wake up Riley who was taking a nap, Nainiae whispered in a quiet voice to recite the spell.
It appeared she successfully cast the spell. Wind started to blow at her and make her hair wave in the air.
It was almost at the end of the spring season.
Because the summer was almost here, the sunlight was quite warm.
Therefore, the wind that was blowing right now was something to be welcomed very much.
Riley, who was taking a nap, started to smile. The corners of his mouth were tilting up to indicate he was happy about it. This was the proof.
It was around 5 p.m. Nainiae was quietly keeping her place next to Riley, but she moved her eyes to look at a woman who was walking towards them. It was because Nainiae heard her voice.
The woman was wearing a lavish dress with excess amount of lace. Even at a glance, it was obvious that the woman was a nobility, someone of a higher class than Nainiae.
‘This person is…’
Although Nainiae didn’t know her name, she knew who she was because Sera had explained about her before.
She was the daughter of a nobility family and also the fiancée of Ryan, Iphelleta House’s eldest young master.
“Oh my, oh my… Young Master Riley!”
It was a high tone voice.
It looked like she did it on purpose to wake Riley up from his nap.
“Oh my, Young Master Riley. It’s been two years since I saw you last, but you are still such a sleepyhead.”
Instead of lowering her voice, the woman was making it louder and louder. Having noticed this, Nainiae slightly furrowed her eyebrows.
However… She could not let it be noticeable.
It was because she was taught by Sera about it.
Annabelle, the daughter of a nobility family, took a step closer to Riley who was lying down.
Following the education she received, Nainiae lowered her head when her eyes met with Annabelle’s to express her respect toward Annabelle.
“He was born from Iphelleta family, yet he is so foolish…”
Nainiae still had her head lowered, but she could hear Annabelle’s voice.
She was definitely speaking ill of the young master that Nainiae served.
“After disgracing your own brothers in the family, you sure are shameless.”
She was pouring harsh words at Riley who was still asleep.
Nainiae lifted her head slightly to confirm the expression on Annabelle’s face.
Annabelle’s face was full of intense hate.
Nainiae lowered her head down so Annabelle wouldn’t notice. Nainiae’s eyes became violent.
She was not the type that could just stand and watch the master she served being badmouthed by someone.
Nainiae wanted to threaten the woman with a fireball right next to her face and force her to apologize.
“Excuse me, Young Master Riley? How about you get up soon? Aren’t you pretending to be asleep? Even if you were culled by the family, you should at least greet me, don’t you think? Where are your manners?”
Although Nainiae wanted to, she did not step in carelessly.
It was to practice the advice, ‘take a step back.’ Also, it was because there was a possibility of putting Riley in a difficult position if Nainiae took action right now.
Those were not all of her reasons.
‘If this keeps up, young master might wake up…’
She was also concerned she might interfere with Riley’s sleep. She didn’t want to do that when Riley appeared to be enjoying his nap.
She wanted to protect that leisurely expression on his face.
It looked like Nainiae concluded that things must not continue this way and decided to do something.
‘It looks like I won’t be able to use Sleep in this situation, so, to make it simple…’
Nainiae started to move her lips with her head still lowered.
“Seriously, if you resembled even half of Ryan…”
Nainiae successfully cast a spell quietly so Annabelle would not have heard it.
Sometime soon afterwards, Annabelle’s voice suddenly stopped.
Nainiae cast Silence, a magic that silenced the affected person so that the person would not be able to make any sound.
That was not all. Nainiae modified the spell in a unique way so the affected person will not notice that the person’s voice had become silent.
It was a magic that Nainiae thought of recently as she taught magic to Riley. She had been thinking hard recently about what kind of magic spells would be useful for Riley.
‘With this…young master won’t be woken up by her voice, and she won’t be pestering young master about her voice being silent either.”
After doing all that, Nainiae used search magic and confirmed there weren’t any eyes or ears spying on them from a hidden angle. Relieved, Nainiae sighed inwardly.
‘Young master is…. Good. He is still asleep.’
Nainiae gently smiled after checking that Riley was still in middle of sleep.
She was a Six Circles mage.
It was the next day.
With a wooden sword in her hand, Nainiae stood in front of a training dummy. She asked Sera who was standing behind her,
“Uh? Should I try swinging it?”
“Yes. You are starting to have proper form. So, I was thinking it’s time you really tried swinging the sword and hit the target as a practice.”
Sera answered as she nodded.
Nainiae’s face became somewhat confused and hesitant.
All this time, she had been learning the proper form for holding sword. It was the first time she finally got to swing it, and she could not quite believe that she was actually doing it.
It was different from how she managed to use the Light magic and have the sphere float on the palm of her hand.
“You should start with the first movement. You know that, right?”
Having heard Sera’s question, Nainiae nodded.
It felt like she was taking a test.
In her mind, Nainiae murmured that she must do well. She tightened her grip on the sword.
“At first, you should get a feel for it, so try striking it with all of your strength.”
Having heard Sera, Nainiae adjusted her stance and aimed the sword she held in her left hand at the training dummy.
She briefly took a deep breath, placed a foot to the front and moved her shoulder and arm to…
Along with her shouting, Nainiae’s wooden sword struck the training dummy.
Perhaps it was because she had a solid training in the basics. She had a clean form. Nothing in particular about her movement could be faulted.
There was not much else to it other than the fact that Nainiae was actually thinking about Riley’s movements in her head.
Sera’s eyes became large.
It was because the end result was far from what she expected.
The look on Nainiae’s face was not so different from Sera’s.
With a blunt sound, the training dummy’s upper body fell to the ground.
“This is… Why?”
Surprised, a question appeared in Nainiae’s eyes.
Nainiae did strike the dummy with all of her strength. However…
She did not expect the training dummy to be cut clean in half.
She figured it would make a ‘puk!’ noise and make her palm feel shaken up from the impact.
“By chance, did you use it?”
‘Is she talking about magic?’
Nainiae shook her head and answered no.
“No. I just…swung the sword. That’s all.”
With a look of disbelief, Sera stared at the upper half of the training dummy that was on the ground.
The dummy that was rolling on the ground had a flat surface as if it was proudly showing off that it was cut clean.
She almost felt sorry for the straw and wood frame.
‘…This is impossible!’
On the other hand, the someone who was hiding in the corner could not hide the shock from witnessing the training dummy that was cut in half.
‘W-Where did a monster like her...!?’
The one that was staring at Nainiae with a dumbfounded face and his jaw dropped was Lloyd, the mansion’s second eldest young master.
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