“Milady said that Your Grace wouldn’t just pretend to care for her.
And after that, she said that she knows how Your Grace’s order was a warning for other people not to come after the family.”
“…And what of it”
“Milady thinks strongly of you, Your Grace.
Truthfully, in the past, Milady refused to trust and rely on Your Grace, and she was very uncomfortable about your help.
Instead of you, she relied very much on Young Duke Killian.”
Though disapprovingly, the duke grimly nodded in agreement with Graham’s explanation.
He didn’t like that it was the truth, but it was.
In response to the duke’s silent agreement, Graham continued speaking with more confidence.
“However, I believe that Milady has changed her mind since the last two incidents.
She has started to trust Your Grace, and started to rely on you.
As evidence, hasn’t she accurately grasped Your Grace’s true intentions with the wanted order that you had issued for Hargan If she didn’t trust and have faith in you, then it would have been impossible to grasp those sincere intentions.”
Isn’t that so
The duke nodded again, awkwardly.
Picking up his momentum from this, Graham continued.
“In any case, Your Grace, I believe that Milady has now become more grounded because of her newfound trust in you.
To the point where it’s not needed to be so angry at every rumor that would arise.
Besides that, I believe that Milady’s obsession with Young Duke Killian has decreased a little ever since she’s come to rely on Your Grace.”
Hoh, this, goodness.
‘That sounds quite reasonable.’
The longer he listened to Graham, the more the duke couldn’t help but admire the butler.
Really, a man of ability!
As expected, the duke had an eye for choosing his people.
‘And yes, I see that Roella has now decided to trust me and rely on me.’
“That basta— ahem.
Still, I’m worried that she’s opening her heart to people too quickly.”
But unlike what the duke uttered, the corners of his lips kept twitching up.
Seeing this, Graham smiled happily.
“What is it”
“Just to comfort Milady, why don’t you have dinner with her”
No matter how grounded she seems now, she must still be very affected by the rumors.
And more than that, if you eat together with her, you can personally see if she’s really changed.”
“That’s quite reasonable.”
The duke closed the folder of the documents he had been arranging just now, then he soon got up from his seat.
As the father who Roella was relying on, he felt that he had to step up this time.
He wasn’t expecting or intending anything else.
He would just go and make sure that Roella had really changed.
Yes, of course.
But as the duke was about to leave his office, Graham called out to him, and he had to stop in his tracks.
With somewhat of a pleased grin on his face, Graham pointed towards the clock on the wall.
“…There’s still a long way to go before dinnertime.”
“It’s only three o’clock in the afternoon right now.”
With an awkward gait, the duke returned to his seat.
* * *
‘Dinner suddenly Why though’
I glanced over to the duke, puzzled.
Since the last time I faced him at his office, it’s the first time I’m seeing him this close again.
Roella herself had crazy good looks, so it’s only natural that her father, the duke, was also crazy good-looking.
For generations, the descendants of the Brietta Duchy all worked as paladins, and the duke himself was no exception.
So with that kind of background, despite already being middle-aged, the duke also had a huge muscular physique.
With a robust figure to match his sharp facial features.
Dark blue eyes and his neatly styled navy hair.
‘Now that I’ve gotten a closer look, Roella really resembles her dad, huh.’
Especially those eyes that looked languid, but were actually acutely sharp.
As I was taking a furtive glance at the duke, I soon had to look down because his sharp blue eyes suddenly turned towards me.
Forget being handsome.
The man’s frightening.
‘…Looks like I’ll be having indigestion, stat.’
It was a few hours ago that the head butler suddenly came to my room and asked, ‘Milady, what do you think about having dinner with His Grace’
Of course I wanted to say no.
Who the heck wants to have a meal with someone who’d ensure that you’ll have an upset stomach
However, the fact that the duke’s secretary had come to me personally to ask this…
‘It’s a direct order, is what it means.’
When your superior tells you to have a meal together with him, it’s impossible to refuse.
And if, for example, your superior tells you that you’re going out mountain climbing—even on a precious weekend—you’ve got no choice but to follow.
Wasn’t that the lamentable virtue of a subordinate
Furthermore, the duke was my boss who personally had a say in the matter of my finances.
He’s not just a superior in terms of work hierarchy.
In the end, I had to say yes.
Complete with a smile, of course.
That’s how the suffocating dinner came to be.