Chapter 177: Younger Brother, Younger Sister (Luke’s POV)
“Kingdom is an unknown country even to us. I thought it was a free country that had nothing to do with us. It’s covered in a barrier and people don’t have to worry about being attacked by Hollows at night. It’s strange to see the next Prince of Kingdom playing with his brother.”
We were talking about how the absence and presence of the barrier actually affected the lives of the people, but between talking, we were concerned about our younger siblings. We glanced over at the four who were playing together happily and then Lloyd mentioned that.
Lloyd is the eldest son of the feudal lord, Stingler, and their fief bordered Wester. Like how we attend the Academy, he said that he was living in the capital of Farland, away from his fief, to attend school.
“They suddenly asked us to go to Kingdom, and I quickly came forward before anyone could decide what to do and was sent here.”
I could tell that Lloyd wasn’t a good listener from how lively he is. From the looks of it, his younger brother looked like a calm person, but also seemed like someone who would take action first. Then what about the other brother and sister?
“It’s true that parents wouldn’t let their kids out if they aren’t as lively as my brother. By the way, I’m my brother’s monitor,” Jasper Greyson said while smiling wryly. He’s the son of the northern most feudal lord in Farland. His brother, Lawk, certainly wasn’t considerate and kept the adults around him in suspense. But Lei is interacting with him and Prince Nico didn’t seem to mind.
“Only active kids or older kids can deal with Lawk though.”
Next to me, Gill looked at Jasper with an expression that was asking why he had brought Lawk along, but Jasper smiled wryly. Lawk hadn’t caused any problems yet. Lawk looked like he was having fun even though the children were playing active games, and he didn’t look like he was unhappy about anything.
“Kingdom has good successors. And, Luke’s sister is amazing.”
It was clear that Lei was in charge of the game even from a distance. Even though she was the slowest, she had advantages and wasn’t losing at all. I was a little worried though when she crawled under the couch.
“I believe that she survived because she takes initiatives. But, that’s not the only thing that’s charming about her. Would you like to hear about her charms?” I addressed the two Farland men while smiling.
“N-no, I can see them just from looking at her. Well, she’s really cute. And wild as well.”
“Really? How about a story about her and the Rug Dragon?”
They refused in an indirect manner, but it was a shame to not tell them about how cute Lei is.
“The real person is here, so it’s enough for me to see her.”
“That too, I suppose.”
Gill said nice things sometimes too. Lloyd and Jasper looked as if they were saved, so I left it at that for now.
Lei became Prince Nico’s playmate as soon as she returned to Kingdom, and Chris also joined their group, so my worries rapidly decreased.
Although I’d cared for her, I didn’t really understand Lei at the beginning of my 11th year, and when she returned at the end of my 11th year, I decided to just watch over her carefully. Every little thing she did kept me on my toes.
When Lei came back, I thought it was absurd to let her play with a violent three year old, even if he was royalty. But I had the opportunity to become their sensei, and I’m glad I got to see Lei and Prince Nico play with each other even if it was only for half a day, once a week.
Unlike I, who was tempted to meddle, Hans and Natalie felt uneasy, but they only watched as the two played, instead of butting in. Prince Nico was probably really energetic for a three year old. He’s smart and fast, but I often felt danger when he was playing with Lei.
Nevertheless, Lei never gave up, never lost, and was always ready to make suggestions. She played with him as well as calmed and humoured him. She’s weaker than him since she’s still a baby, and she slept a lot, much to the annoyance of His Highness, but Prince Nico learnt how to take things easy.
The royal family and the Four Marquises are equals. Or so people say, but it’s actually not like that. The Four Marquises are under the royal family. I didn’t have any special attachments to the royal family or anything.
The citizens and nobles may envy the powerful royal family and Four Marquises. But they don’t understand how it feels to be forced to do something you don’t want to do, and I believe that the royal family and Four Marquises are equal to them only because they can sympathise with that. Nevertheless, the royal family and the Four Marquises feel the same about protecting the citizens of Kingdom.
I finally believed that I would protect Kingdom with Prince Nicholas only after I became close to him. Lei, Prince Nico, Chris and I will grow up together in the future.
Strangely enough, the Four Marquis children were divided and gathered around Lei. It wasn’t just the Albans and Lisburns around her, but also the Molesey and Remingtons.
I couldn’t help but smile when I saw the four younger ones playing happily, and then glanced next to me. Of course, my friendship with Gill is the best.
“What is it?”
“Ah, I should have brought him with me,” Gille mumbled a bit boringly.
“Alistair. Isn’t it unfair that I’m the only one who doesn’t have a younger brother or sister?”
“He’s your uncle, isn’t he?”
“But still. He’s younger than me.”
Alistair probably wouldn’t like it, I thought.
Lei tottered, no, ran up to me and clung to my legs. She’s not the kind of girl to disturb adults or older people. I guess she’s tired. Prince Nico, who had followed Lei to keep an eye on her, naturally placed his hand on Gill’s lap and leaned back to rest.
“Are you hungry?” I asked the two in a way that also asked if they were done with playing.
The two repeated while rubbing their stomachs.
“Oh, I think I’m hungry.”
“Really?” Prince Nico looked at Lei in doubt. He probably wanted to say that she’s a glutton. It’s odd how Lei gets stubborn sometimes for no reason. I’m sure she’s hungry. I gave her another push.
“Then, do you want to play some more?”
“I’m hunwgry now.”
It’s cute how her willpower doesn’t last long.
“Then, I’ll ask them to prepare our meals,” Gill said, and Lei laughed in relief. Lei, good job. It’s fine for you to work this hard and be stubborn like that.