Weekly chapters (2/2)
Enjoy the chapter and have a nice weekend everyone!
Chapter 42 – The Melancholy of Maria
Alan….no, Ares has returned to the Imperial Capital.
Hearing the news, Maria quickly dropped what she was doing without hesitation.
Maria lives and works in one of the largest establishments in the western district, the『House of the Black Rose』.
Maria was originally sold there as an [Apprentice Prostitute]. At that time, the owner of the block was an infamous miser and a fraud.
Her parents were tricked into borrowing money from him then when they couldn’t repay their debt, they were forced to sell her to the brothel.
Seeing Maria crying nearly every day, Kara, who also worked there, decided to help take care of her.
Kara previously worked as a hostess in a famous inn on the western district. Due to her bright and caring demeanor, she was a celebrity in the western district. The block owner had hired her to gain connections.
It could be said that Kara was nervous at first. A job working in a brothel; it was definitely not an ordinary job. However, after seeing the situation of the courtesans working there, she decided to accept the job. At that time, the courtesans were often forced to serve the guests because of the unreasonable owner. At times, Kara made the effort to protect the girls from him.
Maria was a beautiful girl. She had flaxen hair and healthy, wheat-colored skin. Her eyes captivated the soul. Therefore, the owner was eager to get a customer for her. But Kara always denied them all with the reasoning that she was still too young.
And then one day, a boy was hired as a bouncer for the『House of Black Rose』. Maria was attracted to him, as he was about the same age as her.
The boy, who introduced himself as Alan, was strangely loved by everyone. According to rumor, he was much stronger than other bouncers, despite his youth and smaller frame. He also got along well with the courtesans and before long, became the center of attention of the staff.
Then….a few months after he was employed.
Maria was ordered to serve her first customer, the boss who held control over half of the western district. But at that time, Maria was rescued…..by none other than Kara and Alan.
That boy killed the boss of half of the western district before the boss could even touch Maria. The owner of the establishment was also beheaded by the boy’s sword.
In the meantime, a mercenary called Balzac created a great stir in the western district by taking down the gang that controlled the district.
And thus, the western district reached a turning point due to the actions of Kara, Alan, and Balzac.
After that incident, Balzac became the boss of the western district, while Kara took the position of the owner of the『House of Black Rose』
The western district gradually developed under the supervision of Balzac and his men.
The『House of Black Rose』, under the ownership of Kara, evolved into the most famous brothel in the capital. A man could not force his way with money and power to obtain a lady in this establishment.
The lady needed to be willing to serve the man. This rule protected the courtesans and actually invoked a sense of exclusivity to the House of Black Rose.
Maria remained working in the『House of Black Rose』, albeit not as a prostitute. Kara had tried to send her back home, but she’d stubbornly refused and stayed.
There were two reasons why she decided to stay. The first was to help Kara. The second was because of Ares.
Alan’s true identity turned out to be『Ares』, the eldest son of Archduke Schwarzer. This little secret was only known to Kara, Balzac along with his aide Hans, and lastly Maria.
When she found out that he was the young lord of the Archduke clan….Maria was greatly shocked.
After spending time with him, she had fallen in love with him. However, when she found out about his background, she realized that her feelings would end up one-sided.
Our statuses are too different…. But if I stay in the『House of Black Rose』, I’ll be able to be with Ares who would continue to masquerade as Alan.
I can’t tell him my feelings…..but I’m happy as long as we are together….. Maria thought to herself.
…..until Ares suddenly disappeared.
With the laundry finished, Maria was about to go shopping when Barbara held her back….. that‘s when Maria finally met Ares once again.
[Ah, Maria. It’s been a while.]
Oh, that classic smile. Looking at his face always brings relief and warmth to my heart.
While thinking so, Maria acted contrary to her thoughts.
[Ara? If it isn’t the former bouncer-san. What brings you here?]
The dishonesty…..Maria was poisoning her own heart.
Even so, it’s as if Ares didn’t really care about the attitude. He approached without hesitation, smiling.
[Why are you angry? Have I done something wrong….?]
Good grief, it’s the usual Ares alright. Ignorant of other people’s feelings and never noticing.
[How about….. Disappearing without a word, then appearing back all of a sudden!]
I was trying to forget about him. But, when I had thought that I’d started to forget about him, why does he have to show up once again?
Maria was jealous of Ares.
Unaware of how she felt, Ares stepped further into the minefield.
[Eh? It’s because I had some business with Kara.]
Seeing how he said that so naturally, Maria was nearly overwhelmed by anger.
[Then, after I’d finished my business, I heard from Barbara that Maria was here.]
So it’s big sister Barbara’s work…..Maria sighed, then spoke.
[Forget about it then. What about today?]
[Nn, I’ll stay for today.]
[Is it really alright for you to stay in the brothel? Then…..how are Julius-sama and Sera-sama doing?]
[Julius is doing well….esteemed Mother….well, I’ll tell you about it later.]
Hearing that, Maria smiled.
[Are you sure you won’t misbehave?]
[I’ll manage somehow. For sure.]
[I owe a lot to Sera-sama….I won’t be your accomplice.]
[Eeー, how awful.]
Maria giggled at the childish Ares. She continued to ask questions.
[Why suddenly return to the capital?]
[Nn? His Majesty summoned me….there is a war.]
[You’ll be going?]
[Right. I was appointed.]
Maria became silent for a while. Ares did as well, patiently waiting for her to continue speaking.
[Sister Theta is not coming as well?]
[Nn? Why are you asking that?]
[Because coming here right after arriving at the capital without prior planning, she wouldn’t agree to it.]
Maria let out a mischievous laugh.
[If big sis Theta is here too, I’ll be able to bully Ares together with her like the old times.]
[What did you say!?]
Seeing frightened Ares’ face, Maria couldn’t help burst out laughing.
After the incident, Maria was allowed to stay in Schwarzer mansion for a while. Therefore, she’s familiar with Ares’ mother Sera and Theta.
After that, Ares and Maria walked back into the House of Black Rose, talking along the way.
Maria thought to herself: When we talk like this, it’s as if nothing has changed between us.
She then thought again. I knew it, after all this time….I still love him.
[You are late! Alan!]
[I thought you were going to be gone again this time!]
When they arrived back at the House of Black Rose, Ares was immediately swarmed by the courtesans.
In the midst of the commotion, Barbara whispered from behind Maria.
[Were you able to talk for a while?]
[Un….thank you, big sis.]
[What’s with that face? Well, just don’t do anything that you’ll regret.]
Maria gave it some thought. Certainly, I cannot match him in term of status. But…as long as I’m by his side.
However, destiny is not forged by itself. I have to think and create it for myself. Regardless if it’s a dream-like wish.
Maria then quit her job at the House of Black Rose and applied to become a maid in the Schwarzer mansion. Ares had nothing to say about it.
She’ll be Sera’s exclusive maid, one who would attend to her needs.
Also, there will also be some occasions where she’ll be working together with Theta….to attend to Ares’ needs.
[What’s with those two, showing off their combination tactics?]
By the way….
Her granddaughter would later become a famous author. One story she penned was based after her grandmother’s story.
Overcoming many difficulties including the difference in status to be together with a certain aristocrat. It was a wonderful story. Also, the part where she bullies the husband with the other wives was well received by women of later eras.
Below is Author’s note.
(Raizu’s Note: I think it’s important so I’ll translate it)
By the way, I received various feedback but it was frequently mentioned that the background story of the other characters was too long.
Many people would like to read the hero’s battle scene. Well, it’s not like I don’t understand their feelings.
But before the battle, there is always a lot of human drama. I would like to write that in detail.
In Arc 1, The Imperial Capital, the story will advance through other characters’ perspectives.
The full-fledged battle begins in Arc 2. If you cannot wait until then, please don’t continue to read. If you’re complaining about dropping this series, please do not hesitate to do so.
I like writing to the end and I will do so freely.
This time, I had many things to think about.
Some say that the mob character’s point of view is strange, others say I like this kind of narrative, it is fresh.
And there is a certain number of people looking forward to any development.
There were a lot of things. The number of views does not change … It may increase. In other words, there are so many people who are looking forward to this story every day.
Thank you very much for your warm comments. I was encouraged. There were comments that made my heart sink, but there were also comments that encouraged me.
With these warm comments, I was reminded that this is something that motivates me.
Thus, I will leave an opinion column. Thank you for your suggestions regarding typographical errors. That’s all I’m reading, I’m thankful.
It’s come a long way. Once again, thank you very much for your support. I continue to look forward to working with you all.