BBYW Vol. 1 Chapter 7
Chapter 7 – The Conclusion of the Prank
“Lord Dyngir, the guests are here.”
“Oh, they’ve arrived?”
It was the day after the extermination of the horseback bandits in the Silfis territory and my return to the Maxwell castle.
Today was the day scheduled for the meeting with Baron Nommes and Sullivan.
“Well, it’s not like they’re important guests or anything, they can wait a bit longer.”
“Hmm…I wonder what kind of face the crown prince is going to make. When he realizes that the man he’s always looked down on is making him wait…”
“Oh really now. I suppose we could enjoy yourselves a bit more.”
Incidentally, I was presently *working out* with Eliza on the bed.
The current time was noon, but I didn’t really care about the time of day for my *workouts*. When I was back in my house, whenever I wasn’t working, I was usually together with the maids.
“What’s with you, Sakuya? If you have something on your mind, I’ll listen.”
The young girl, now looking at us with a jaded look on her face, was one of the maids working in the castle who came to announce the guests’ arrival.
Her name was Sakuya: she had black hair and black eyes, a rare combination in this kingdom. Her cold, strict expression clearly showed she did not find my behavior at all proper.
“I shall take your permission to speak then. Lord Dyngir, while you might be known for your vigor, to skip both breakfast and lunch to indulge in lustful acts cannot be healthy. I must ask you to take better care of yourself. Please understand the feelings of those who serve under you.”
“It is a servant’s duty to care for their master’s health. Please, at least have a light meal.”
Being scolded by a maid younger than myself, I couldn’t help but feel awkward.
I paused for a moment and sat on the bed.
“On the battlefield, it’s not rare to go half a day or more without eating, though.”
“This is your residence, my lord, not the battlefield. It would be an eternal shame for a maid to let the master starve.”
“Hmm…guess that can’t be helped. Bring me something quick, anything is fine.”
“Yes, my lord. I thought you might say that, so I have already made preparations.”
Sakuya took out a basket from who knows where and showed it to me. It contained toasted bread, bacon, slices of fruit, and more.
“Looks good, give it here.”
“Yes, if you will excuse me.”
I stretched a hand to grab the basket, but Sakuya dodged it and slipped inside the bed.
“…if you wanted to join in, you should have just said so.”
“To not speak of such matters openly is what they call gracefulness. Say aah, my lord.”
“Have some egg, then. Aah.”
Sakuya fed me, like a mother hen would do to her chick.
She was as expressionless as before, but her lips seemed to be curved in a faint smile.
“Thank you for the meal…so now it’s my turn.”
As expected, it didn’t end with just eating.
After the meal I had Sakuya as dessert. I took care of Eliza too, at the same time of course, forgetting about the passing time.
I completely forgot about my guests and relished repeatedly in my two partners.
“Sorry for the wait.”
I ended up playing with them until the house steward couldn’t stand it anymore and barged into my room. I put on some clothes and went to the waiting room.
There were three men in the waiting room, who each reacted to my arrival in their own way.
“…he really made us wait this long.”
The barely audible whisper came from the cause of the whole engagement breakup commotion, former crown prince Sullivan Lamperouge. Well, now that he’s been erased from the royal register, I should say “Sullivan Nommes”.
I hadn’t seen Sullivan in a few months: he looked a bit leaner than before. Maybe because of the long time he had to wait, I could see the humiliation on his face.
“O-oh no, sir, we must apologize for taking time from your busy schedule…”
The completely apologetic tone came from the bowed head of Baron Thomas Nommes.
The same man who had exhibited an impeccable prostrated posture when he came to apologize for his daughter’s misdeeds one month ago.
He also looked almost emaciated as he wiped copious amounts of sweat from his forehead.
The third guest was a young man in his early twenties.
“You are…the firstborn of house Nommes, right? Your name was…”
“Cray Nommes, young master.”
Cray Nommes was casually wearing an elegant formal suit: he looked quite different from his father in many ways. He took a nonchalant attitude while sending a criticizing look in my direction.
“Oh yes, now I remember. Sorry.”
“Oh no, there is no need for you to remember the name of the man that, because of his younger sister’s fiance, lost his inheritance rights, young master. None at all.”
“C-Cray!! Do not disrespect the young master!!”
Cray reacted to his father’s rebuke by shrugging and smiling wryly.
I see, Sullivan marrying into the Nommes’ family also meant that Cray lost his spot as next in line for the baron title.
Sullivan had been erased from the royal register, but Baron Nommes probably thought that since he still had royal blood in his veins, he had to nominate Sullivan as his successor.
“I must apologize for what you’ve been through. I will prepare a new job and house for you, Cray.”
“I’m thankful to hear that. I suppose it was worth it to come all the way here.”
I had met Cray Nommes a few times before on social occasions, but it was the first time we actually talked. He seemed to have a good head on his shoulders and was brave as well…pretty interesting guy,
(I might have actually found a hidden gem here. While Baron Nommes might have picked the wrong person as successor…)
After considering such thoughts, I formally asked the reason for their visit.
“So, to what do I owe the pleasure today?”
“Oh, yes…Sullivan, who married into the Nommes family recently, wished to formally greet you, my lord.”
After Baron Nommes spoke, Sullivan turned a fiery shade of red and glared at him. He was clearly infuriated to hear a mere baron address him without any titles or honorifics.
(Mph, if you get pissed over every little thing like that, you’re not going to last long around here)
I mentally scoffed at Sullivan, then replied in an affected tone.
“Oh my, I am grateful for your courtesy. You have an upstanding, polite son-in-law, Baron Nommes.”
Sullivan picked up what my words implied and his expression twisted even more.
Dripping sweat from his forehead, Baron Nommes looked at Sullivan and me.
Sullivan stared at the clenched fists on his lap for a moment and then eventually resolved to bow his head.
“…I must apologize for my past disrespect. As the successor to house Nommes, I’ll try…I shall strive to prove my worth…thus I…am at your service.”
“Yes, do your best. Let us do our utmost for the prosperity of the eastern provinces, together. You as the next baron of house Nommes, I as the next margrave of house Maxwell.”
Sullivan’s head was still lowered, so I couldn’t see his expression.
The fists clenched on his lap, however, were visibly shaking, surely out of anger and humiliation.
(Good, very good. You have finally realized your mistakes, haven’t you? The move I tried on the royal palace was really worth it.)
“Hahaha, let’s do away with the formalities and have some tea, shall we? I’m going to brew some for you.”
I felt a weight was taken off my chest and was in very good spirits as I took the teapot.
The man who insulted the margrave house as country bumpkins was now shaking and lowering his head to me. It was a joy to see and experience.
I had been working for this since the engagement breakup events.
All in order to drag down this ignorant son of royalty, make him crawl in the mud, and step all over him.
(That’s all folks, with this my debt is repaid.)
Feeling all merry and lighthearted, I personally made tea for the guests.
“Th-thank you very much.”
Baron Nommes took the cup with shaking hands and took a sip. He couldn’t endure the atmosphere, probably: the teacup clattered against his teeth. I wondered if he was even tasting the tea.
Sullivan, on the other hand, was still there with his head hanging down and wouldn’t even touch the cup.
“Ooh! Delicious!! This tea comes from the Trafalgar region in the south, doesn’t it?”
The exclamation of cheer came from Cray Nommes.
Of the three guests, one not only enjoyed the tea, but even guessed where it came from.
“Ooh, you can tell?”
“Yes, the pleasant temperature and climate there make it possible to raise high-quality tea leaves, it’s easy to tell. I enjoy them too, though I have never drunk fine ones such as these, naturally.”
“Hahaha, I love these leaves too. Here, have another cup.”
“Gladly, thank you.”
Cray and I had a delightful chat while enjoying the tea.
(I repaid my debt to Sullivan and even made a new tea friend. Today was a really fruitful day!)
“W-well then, we shouldn’t impose on the young master’s hospitality too long, we should be going now.”
Baron Nommes waited for the conversation between me and Cray to die down and proposed they should leave.
Naturally, he couldn’t wait to get out of this situation. It would be pointless to keep them, so I accepted.
“I see. Thank you and sorry for chatting so long, Cray.”
“Oh no, I enjoyed myself very much. Thank you for the tea.”
“Let’s drink again sometime. I have some good wine from the empire.”
“That will be an honor, young master. Until next time then.”
Cray and I said our goodbyes. Normally, guests would then simply leave.
One of them, however, still hadn’t stood up from his seat.
“Hey, it’s time for us to go. Sullivan?”
And that guest was Sullivan. Even if the baron, who had stood up already, nudged him to go, he wouldn’t move an inch.
“Sullivan, come on.”
After his father-in-law nudged him several more times, Sullivan finally stood up, slowly.
He weakly wobbled towards me, a face pale like a ghost.
There was no more humiliation in his expression. His eyes, void of all life, showed something like regret and obsession.
Sullivan’s sudden change made me wary he was up to something: I replied while gripping the hilt of my sword.
I prudently waited for his next move, ready for anything to happen, but Sullivan’s words took me completely by surprise.
“I’m sorry!! I’m really sorry for taking your fiancee!! I’ll apologize as much as you want, I’ll do anything you want, so let me be the crown prince again!!”
I was so surprised my body bent backward.
“W-what has gotten into you!?”
Baron Nommes was equally surprised: he shouted as if he had been bitten by something out of the blue.
“I cannot endure it anymore! The baron’s household or this province!! All my life, I was raised to be the king and nothing else!! I was never taught how to live as a penniless baron in the countryside!!”
As if something very important had snapped in his head, Sullivan’s expression now showed nothing but insanity.
“…it hasn’t even been a long time since you married into the baron’s family. You are quite frail, aren’t you.”
I sighed out of pity.
I did think that, sooner or later, he would come crying to me, but to think that he would do so at this time…
(If this guy becomes king, this country is done for. I had him kicked out of the royal family to teach him a lesson, but I guess it was a move much wiser than I expected.)
As I was relishing such thoughts, Baron Nommes started yelling at Sullivan.
“What foolishness do I have to hear! This *forsaken* marriage has been registered already! The ceremony is next week, for heaven’s sake! How can you think you could return to being the crown prince at this point? What would you do about Selena, anyway!?”
Sullivan started mumbling after hearing the name of his beloved. After looking around helplessly for a while…
“Selena, I…I’ll return her to Sir Dyngir.”
Yet again, Sullivan said something unbelievable.
Baron Nommes’ expression turned severe, naturally, so did mine.
Despite all the ruckus he raised about “true love”, now that he was in trouble, he betrayed her in a heartbeat.
He was truly nothing but scum, both as a man and as a human being.
Even if our relationship was no more, it was still irritating to see my ex-fiancee being treated as lightly as that.
Baron Nommes had been rendered speechless: in his stead, Cray raised his voice.
“Sullivan!! Do you even realize what you’re saying?”
Cray’s nonchalant attitude was no more: he was now sharply glaring at Sullivan.
“I-I mean, it’s not like I can help it!!”
Rebuked by his brother-in-law, Sullivan faltered a little but quickly started making excuses again.
“I never thought it would come to this! It was just a little slip, both getting with Selena and dumping Marianne! So why do I have to put up with all this!? It was just one mistake, one! I worked hard since I was a kid to become the king, and it’s all over because of one mistake? It doesn’t make sense!!”
That was definitely what Sullivan honestly thought.
Because of a temporary whim, a fickleness of the heart, he ended up causing a whole commotion. A rushed decision based on a crush: it certainly wasn’t a rare event during youth.
(I also had rather embarrassing feelings towards Eliza in the past. Nevertheless…)
Sullivan, however, had caused too much trouble for too many people in this commotion.
The fact that a provincial margrave and a duke’s families were the victims was the worst thing that could happen to him.
(If only he had kept the engagement breakup private, it might have been possible to pretend nothing happened…now that the scandal has spread, there is no going back.)
Even if Sullivan’s words had the tiniest shred of truth to them, not one of the people present would be moved by them.
No one could turn back the hands of time, after all.
“Just one mistake…yes, I suppose that’s true.”
“Y-yes! That’s right! Do you understand!?”
Sullivan’s face turned bright after hearing me agree.
—you utter fool.
“I guess it might not make sense to lose everything after one single mistake. But all this whining is not becoming of someone that is supposed to stand above others.”
“Someone that stands above others, be it a king or a local lord, sways the fates of many with a single decision. Retainers, soldiers, citizens…the lives of many depends on a single decision from them. A single mistake might cause a whole country to fall into ruin, depending on the circumstances. Someone that minimizes the importance of his decisions as ‘a single mistake’ isn’t fit to be the king.”
Sullivan probably failed to grasp the meaning of my words, as he just mumbled incoherently.
There is no cure for stupidity…realizing that these words were proven true just before my eyes, my lips twisted.
“Well, putting aside the difficult words…filthy scum like you is never going back to the royal family. It’s for this kingdom’s sake.”
“I’m a bastard too, but you’re worse. Just give up.”
Sullivan finally appeared to understand what I meant and turned beet red.
“I-I even bowed my head to you!! I, the crown prince!!”
“You’re not the crown prince anymore, right? It’s time to face reality, son-in-law of a baron.”
Sullivan’s hand went to the sword at his waist.
My eyes narrowed, and I exhaled sharply.
(He hasn’t realized his position yet, has he…this is hopeless. I guess I should just kill him.)
I decided to end the life of the foolish man before me.
Sullivan had been disinherited but was still of royal descent. If I killed him, there would definitely be a heavy penalty from the royal family.
However, we were in the eastern province. The area under the influence of house Maxwell. It would be all too easy to have one person’s whereabouts become unknown.
There were plenty of reasons why a demoted crown prince would *mysteriously disappear*, so we had plenty of excuses we could use with the royal family.
Anyway, I didn’t even need to draw my sword against scum like him. I just needed one arm to kill a snotty brat who hadn’t stepped on a battlefield his whole life.
I prepared a palm thrust to take care of his throat first, when—
“Please forgive uuuuuuuus!!!”
Baron Nommes prostrated himself.
He grabbed Sullivan’s and Cray’s heads, pushed them to the floor, and rubbed them against it too.
“Please forgive my son-in-law’s terrible disrespect!! His lack of learning is all my responsibility!! Please take my head in his stead!!”
A prostration that was as dazzling as ever. To think I would see such incredible prostrating in such a short span of time…
“My deepest apologies, my lord. My brother-in-law is regretting what he did, as you can see, so please grant us your forgiveness.”
“Gbah!! Ghah!! Guh! Y-you little…gheh!”
Thud, thud, thud, thud.
Cray smashed Sullivan’s head against the floor, over and over and over. Eventually, he started spraying blood from his face every time he raised it, as he gradually lost consciousness.
“Hahaha…out of respect for such an excellent apology, I will forget about what happened today. Well, how can I say this…good luck to you.”
“Our deepest gratitude to you, my lord!!”
“We are grateful from the bottom of our hearts…whoops!”
Cray gave one powerful final push to Sullivan’s head. It was probably the coup de grace to his consciousness: the pitiful former crown prince stopped moving completely.
“Oh my, looks like my brother-in-law drifted off to sleep because of fatigue. He was surely nervous because of meeting the young master.”
“That cannot do! We should take our leave quickly, lest we bother the young master!”
“…take care, both of you.”
The Nommes duo exhibited perfect coordination as they lifted Sullivan’s body and left the Maxwell residence.
Despite how little they resembled each other, there apparently was a great affinity between them. I felt that what I did ended up inconveniencing them too and regretted it a little.