Chapter 88 – No escape


(Vanette’s PoV)

Every day, some strangers kept coming to bother me. They offered me useless flowers, since I could grow them better myself, and pointless sweets, because the ones I cooked were better… And of course, their confessions were absolutely worthless as well… They’re all getting in the way of my work!

Also, the men often brought their nephews and nieces with them… I had a hard time pushing those men out in those circumstances, as it could end up troubling the children, but… This was such a bother.

Right now was one of those times. There were some annoying men pestering me, while the children were happily eating the cookies that I baked for them…

“Vanette’s cookies are so delicious! I’m sure you’ll be a wonderful wife!” One of the children said, so I happily patted her head.

“I’ll be happy if Vanette becomes my wife.” One of the annoying men said.

“I have no intentions of making you happy.” I bluntly replied. This annoyance should just leave already…

And just as I thought that, the house’s door was suddenly opened. Michael came in through it, and his breathing was quite ragged, so he must have run a lot to get here.

I was worried about what was so urgent, so I hurriedly brought him a glass of water, and he drank it whole immediately, “Is everything okay? Was there any emergency?” I asked him.

However… Michael gave me a troubled look instead of answering.

Seems like it’s not something he can talk about in front of strangers, “Sorry everyone, but we need to have an important conversation, so I’ll need you all to leave.” I told everyone else on the room.

Luckily enough, they understood and decided to go away, leaving only me and Michael inside, so I took him to the back and asked, “Is everything alright?”

For now, I brewed him some tea to help him calm down, but he also chugged this one down in no time… This is worrying.

“Was the tea good?” I asked, trying to help him relax.

“Yes, it was delicious.” He told me, but… His expression was still quite troubled.

… I bet he’d be more at ease if it was the young lady that was making him tea right now.

“What is worrying you?” I asked him.

“Why do you think there’s something worrying me?” He asked me back.

“Well, your face shows it?” I replied.

He pouted a bit when hearing my comment, “Is it this obvious…?” He asked.

I giggled a bit before replying, “Well, I’ve been watching you since you were quite young, so it’s easy for me to notice.”

Michael stayed silent for a short while, but… Suddenly, he slapped his own cheeks, then grabbed my hands immediately after.

And right after that, he said something, but… His voice was too low, and I was too stunned at this sudden development, so I couldn’t quite understand it.

“W-what did you just say?” I asked him.

His face got beet red at this point… And then, he shouted, “I love Grandma, so please marry me!”

W… What? Did he just…

Okay, let’s calm down for a moment here… I freed my hands from his and poured some tea for myself, “Do you want me to refill your cup?” I asked him.

“Don’t just ignore my confession!” He exclaimed.

… I guess I didn’t hallucinate hearing those words after all.

Now what to do… As I stared into the distance, I drank some of my tea.

“Grandma?” Michael called out to me.

I gave him a troubled smile, “Is it that unpleasant for you if your ‘grandma’ might end up getting taken away by someone?” And asked him that.

… If his answer to this question is yes, I might just start crying… I’m scared of hearing what he’ll say next.

However… His answer was far from my expectations, “No, it’s not that! Grandma is my special person! I wanna have all of Grandma! I wanna hug, kiss and more!” He exclaimed.

I blinked a few times at that… Did he really…?

“I want to marry you, as a man!” He then said.

I’m having a hard time catching up to this… He has been by my side for a while now, and all this time, his feelings have been… Romantic?

“I really hate seeing that poster that uses Grandma as a model in the young lady’s store, but that’s because I don’t want you to model for anyone other than me! And also… I really want to brag about how beautiful you are to everyone, so like… What do I even do at this point!?” Michael said.

“What to do…?” I mindlessly repeated.

“I want Grandma to be my wife! I want to have the right to monopolize you!” He exclaimed.

“Wait, hold on for a second! Aren’t you skipping the lovers part before talking about marriage!?” I replied.

This is way too much! Slow down! I’m not ready for all this!

“I don’t want anyone to take Grandma away, so I want you as a wife, not a lover! I don’t want a relationship as uncertain as the one of lovers!” He exclaimed.

“Uncertain…?” I asked. How are lovers uncertain…?

“Yes! Like how men keep on trying to propose to the young lady even though she is engaged to Rud! I don’t want anyone to try getting close to Grandma like that, so I want to marry you!” He replied, “Even if I do know you have a person that is very precious to you, I can assure you that I love you more than he does, and I’ll definitely make you far happier than he possibly could!

“I’ll also live much longer than him, so even if you don’t choose me now, you can rest assured that I’ll keep on chasing you long after his death!”

Right now, Michael looked like a beast staring at his prey… He was quite different from the little Michael that I remembered.

“Please take a deep breath and think properly about what you’re saying…” I told him.

“I thought plenty while I was running here! Grandma is way too attractive and there will be too many rivals, so… Well… Does Grandma hate me perchance?” He suddenly asked. His voice became really anxious at this last part.

I don’t hate him, but I just can’t reply to all this. It’s too sudden… “G-give me some time.” I told him.

“Unreasonable!” As Michael exclaimed that, he moved his face closer to mine and kissed me… Then, as I was dumbfounded by this crazy development, Michael smiled and said, “I don’t want anyone to take Grandma away, so I’ll take all of you for myself!”

… Who is this person in front of me? Where is the cute innocent Michael that often came to visit…?

And why is he kissing me again now!? I slapped him this time, “Don’t push it!” I exclaimed.

“I thought it was fine since you said nothing about it?” He replied.

“I have my reasons!” I shouted.

Michael just giggled at that though, “I love your angry side too, Grandma.”

… You’re supposed to reflect on your mistakes, not get happy when seeing me angry!

“Michael, I don’t remember raising you like that.” I told him.

“Well, I don’t remember being raised by Grandma either.” He replied… What do I do now!? “So, Grandma, what’s your answer to my confession?”

I don’t get it… Why am I feeling troubled about this, even though I should have been happy for being confessed to by him…? Why do I feel… In danger?

Michael then muttered something in a saddened tone, but I couldn’t quite hear it… And after a moment of silence, he suddenly moved closer and started carrying me on his shoulder.

What the!? Why is he carrying me towards my bedroom!? “Wait, what are you doing?!” I exclaimed.

“I can’t wait anymore! I’ll take all of Grandma, to make sure that you can only think of me, and that you can’t think of any other man for any moment!” Michael replied.

This is bad… “I’m not thinking about other men.”

“Lies!” He exclaimed… I guess he won’t believe me if I don’t make it clear?

I was still scared of it, but… “I do love you, Michael.” I muttered in a very small voice.

Michael heard me though, for he stopped moving.

“Can you put me down?” I asked him.

He complied, then hugged me, “You’re not lying so as to get a chance to escape, are you?” He asked me. His voice was shaking and his eyes were tearful… It was really surprising to see how unstable he seemed to be right now.

“I really do love you.” I told him once again.

“Then can we stay together…?” He asked.

This is embarrassing… Agreeing would be the same as saying that I also want to hug, kiss and do even more like what Michael said, but… When seeing how anxious he is right now, I think I should tell him properly.

“I think we can stay together.” And as soon as I said that, he kissed me once more, “S-stop that…”

“I can’t stop! Mine and Grandma’s feelings match, so you’re mine!” And once Michael said that, his eyes once again started looking like the ones of a beast.

This is bad… How do I deal with that…?

To deal with a runaway beast, what I need is… its master?

The young lady might indeed be able to solve this problem… Yeah, this one is too much for me. Let’s ask the young lady for help.

As I made this decision, I ran away from Michael and dashed towards the young lady’s store.

Both her and the prince greeted me once I arrived, and the first thing that the young lady asked once I got close was, “Are you safe?”

After I nodded to her question, she continued, “I’m glad. I’m sorry that I put lady Vanette in danger because I did something I shouldn’t have…”

“Wait, it’s your fault?” His highness asked. The young lady blushed a bit to his question, which was cute.

“A-anyways, Michael must be chasing after Lady Vanette, so please stop him, your highness.” The young lady asked him.

“Eh? But I came to invite you to a date…” He replied.

“That means you have time for it.” The young lady stated.

The prince was disheartened to hear that, but he obediently went outside the store.

With this out of the way, the young lady took me to meet up with Mathilda… Once we knocked on the door, Mathilda hurriedly opened the door and asked, “Lady Vanette, are you safe!?”

“Ah, yes…” Her reaction was the same as the young lady’s… She heaved a sigh of relief once she heard me.

“I’m glad… Please come inside, then.” Mathilda told us.

Once inside, we sat down on some cushions and had some chamomile tea served to us.

“For now, try to drink this and relax, lady Vanette… You need to be calm in order to make proper decisions.” Mathilda told me.

“Well… I’m glad there was a place I could easily escape to. Michael… He tried closing the distance between us a bit too quickly…” I commented.

“That boy is just like his father… You should hit him when he goes overboard!” Mathilda exclaimed.

“Ah, well… I might kill him if I do that.” I replied.

“He has banshee blood inside him! He should be able to withstand a dragon slap!” Mathilda exclaimed, “Also…”

And then she started some really forced coughs… Did she say something she didn’t want to?

“Well, Michael might actually enjoy being hit by you…” The young lady then said something really strange, “Because he is a stupid M…”

I was… Surprised to hear those words. Even though I’ve known him since he was young, there are still things about Michael that I don’t know, after all.

The young lady then gave me some cookies, so I started eating them, “They’re quite wonderful.” I commented.

“Thank you.” The young lady replied.

… Then we stopped talking. I was hoping the cookies were going to work as a way of keeping the conversation going, but I suppose it’s hard to talk about trivialities when Michael is shouting as loudly as he is.

“Don’t get in my way!” Michael exclaimed.

“Look, I’d rather be on a date with Yulias instead of doing this, so don’t blame me, okay?” The prince’s voice made the young lady blush.

“And I’d rather flirt with Grandma instead of quarrel with you!” Michael replied.

“I get what you’re saying, but don’t you think you’re frightening her with your overeager flirting? She might hate you for that, you know?” The prince tried to tell Michael to slow down in a pretty convincing manner… I’m impressed.

“I don’t wanna be disliked, but you sure understand the desire for flirting with your loved one, don’t you!?” Michael exclaimed.

… There was silence for a while.

“I do understand it…” The prince said… Okay, never mind the impressed part. This guy is useless.

I wanted to ask the young lady what should we do next, but she was beet red by now… She’s way too cute.

“However, even if I do understand it, being impatient will lead her to dislike you.” The prince said… Well, he’s not entirely hopeless, I suppose.

“I want to have all of Grandma! I don’t wanna worry about her being taken away by anyone!” Michael replied.

“I am painfully aware of how that feels, but if you’re disliked, you’ll never have the chance of having children with her. What will you do if lady Vanette never allows you to touch her again?” The prince asked.

“Cry!” Michael instantly replied.

… Isn’t that answer a bit too stupid?

“Just like his father…” Mathilda sighed, “Looks harmless and maybe a bit annoying, but… Well, it might be a good idea to either hit him or run to the young lady when he goes overboard.

“Oh, and try to avoid asking any other man for help on pretty much anything. It’s a mistake that I’d rather not have you go through.”

“I shouldn’t… Ask another man for help?” I asked her.

“Not if you don’t want Michael to break a few bones of whoever helped you at least… His father once tried killing someone that he thought I was having an affair with, even though I had just needed a bit of their help with something…” Mathilda sighed once more as she said that.

“Too dangerous!” I exclaimed.

“Yeah, so… Well, try to avoid doing things that may cause trouble.” Mathilda told me.

… How did I end up liking this kind of person…? “I wonder if the prince will be okay then…”

As soon as I said that, the young lady immediately got up, rushed to the room’s door, opened it, then said to an employee, “Michael is causing trouble in front of the store. Tell Olga to take care of it.”

Soon enough, Michael was tied up and thrown at doorstep of Mathilda’s room. The exhausted prince was right behind him.

“Michael, disrupting the business is no good.” The young lady said.

“Young lady! Relying on the store manager is sly!” Michael exclaimed.

“I wish I had a store manager for me back then…” Mathilda commented as she stared at Olga’s back while he moved downstairs.

“Michael, you’re scaring lady Vanette.” The young lady told him.

“I was planning on taking it more slowly, but I don’t want Grandma to be taken by another man! You were the one who pushed me to do that, young lady!” As Michael exclaimed that, the young lady avoided his gaze… This was seriously her fault? I didn’t know what she meant when she said she did something she shouldn’t have, but this was a bit too much…

“I never said you should push her so hard that she’d get scared!” The young lady exclaimed.

Though she was still avoiding his gaze, so this statement wasn’t very convincing.

At this moment, the prince casually moved to the young lady’s side and hugged her. She was quite surprised by his sudden action, but the prince didn’t seem to mind that, as he turned his head towards Michael and said, “Isn’t this kind of thing enough to claim someone as your lover?”

“But I’m still worried that people will still try taking Grandma away even like that…” Michael muttered.

The prince seemed to be at a loss for words for a small while, but he eventually said, “Then what? Do you want lady Vanette to look like an old woman in front of anyone other than you?”

Can’t this… Actually work? I think it can.

Michael started muttering something about how I was cute even as an old lady, but I decided to ignore it and change my appearance to that of a grandma again.

And once I did it, Michael finally stopped glaring at me… Hopefully he calmed down at last.

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