My physical condition improved dramatically by the next day, and the doctor told me I would be okay so long as I didn’t overdo it. Meanwhile Will-sama came over and visited the mansion in order to ask me about how that lecherous……pervert……Count Damiel was being taken care of.
[Will]: “Hey, it’s a huge relief to see you all right Rose. I thought Sophia might collapse out of worry if she were to see you hurt, so I made her wait to see you until next time. I assume you’re going to be taking a little more time off from school though?”
[Rose]: “Thank you for your concern. And yes, the doctor asked that I rest for a little while longer.”
[Will]: “Well I’m sure the Duke, Germa-dono, and Prince Routh would insist on going with even if you did decide to go though.”
(…..uu, I can’t deny that.)
We waited until Father, Grandpa, and El arrived before Will-sama was finally let in on the details of the incident.
Father and Rudolph restrained Count Damiel in order to interrogate him about that “nice noble girl” he had mentioned.
However he never got her name. To make matters worse, she was wearing a hood which meant he never got a good look at her face either. The only thing he would ever recognize about her is her voice. Such a useless guy.
[Will]: “Just, the voice? …..did he give a description of what it’s like?”
[Father]: “According to Count Damiel, it was a girl with a cute, high-pitched voice. She apparently had a habit of dragging on the end of her sentences and repeated multiple times that he should make sure to give Rose the drug.”
[Will]: “So she was determined to drive Rose insane. But, why Rose? Well, it sounds like Count Damiel was a frequent customer of the dark auction even though we weren’t able to arrest him back then. I’m glad he was finally caught. ……although it’s frustrating that Rose got involved……”
Father looked down with a sour expression at his tightened fist.
[Father]: “It looks like Count Damiel has kept his eye on Rose for a long time now. Whoever this woman is, she somehow knew about his obsession.”
[Rose]: “This person must have some kind of grudge against me right? Otherwise why would they care so much about what happens to me?”
[Will]: “Yes, indeed. I myself can’t understand what anyone would have against Rose. …..However I’m willing to bet this kidnapping incident has something to do with the harassment at school.”
[Grandpa]: “Hm? Your Highness, what’s this about harassment at school?”
Having been fine with listening until now, Grandpa suddenly spoke up.
Yes there has been some some bullying at school which has spilled over at home with the spooky letters and that doll, but Grandpa and especially Father don’t need to hear about that.
[Father]: “……what’s going on?”
[Rose]: “……Father, I……”
[Will]: “Aren’t you still receiving those ominous letters? And then there’s that strange doll too. Rose, you were kidnapped. You have to talk to them about this.”
[Rose]: “…….you’re right”
Will-sama went ahead and told them everything from the light harassment at school that’s been going on for a while, to the eerie letters, to the doll with my name embroidered across it.
Allen left the room for a moment in order to grab the doll and letters we had saved so far.
[Grandpa]: “Rose, why did you never tell us about this?”
[Father]: “I would think Rose would have come to me about something this serious.”
Sitting by my side and taking my hand into his, El started talking with Father and Grandpa on my behalf.
[El]: “It’s because of how serious it is that Rose couldn’t talk about it. Please don’t be too hard on her.”
[Rose]: “…..I’m sorry Father. …..Mother has been having such a difficult time ever since Ribel was born…..and you’ve been so busy helping Rickert-oniisama prepare to take over. I didn’t want to bother you both with some harassment at school I thought I could take care of myself. And, it’s embarrassing to have the daughter to a duke be the victim of bullying.”
[Father]: “Rose…..sorry, I didn’t think about your feelings. But you need to understand that to us, you are our important daughter. So from now on, no matter how trivial a matter you think it is, let us in. Even if I am busy, I will always have time for you. Okay? You are more important to me than any duty I might have.”
Father stood from his seat and gently wrapped his arms around me.
When was the last time I talked to Father like this? If this incident had never happened, I might have never talked to him face to face like this again. I used to go to Father and Mother all the time when I was little, but between me having to start school and the time needed to take care of Ribel, I gradually started to drift away from them.
It was a little lonely, but I figured it couldn’t be helped.
However, I realized yesterday just how wrong I was. All my worries melted away when Mother and Father held me, and I felt the urge to act spoiled all of a sudden.
(I really was feeling lonely. My family in my past life never bothered with me, so I figured I would be able to handle being on my own in this world too. But in that world and this one, I guess I’ve always craved that love. Let’s be sure to have Mother and Father listen to me from now on!)
[Rose]: “Thank you Father.”
My heart overflowed as I hugged Father back.