Albert Ke no Reijou wa Botsuraku wo go Shomou desu 2-5
So far, Mary has been living most of her days trying her best not to be concerned too much by Lilianne and Karina, unlike how it generally goes in the game.
This wasn’t out of her being all like “I’ve had enough of these otome games!” or “I want to be away from the mob!” or anything like that, it was simply her usual low motivation, something like “I’m going to go back to Carelia in one year from now anyway.” Moreover, the reason she came to study abroad was so she could learn business administration for the sake of eventually running the Migratory Bird Bowl Shop. She had no intention to be poking her nose into other people’s problems.
To make it worse, she was feeling like a square peg in a round hole, so she wondered whether it would be best to keep a low profile.
This is why she tried to not cause too much stir around the academy, and while she was not going too out of her way in order to not stand out so much, that’s how Mary was spending her student life.
Because of that, Mary was just another ordinary academy student. Although she would still get some special treatment from time to time simply because of being the daughter of the Albert family, she had no intention to show off.
That’s why she had nothing to do with any of the drama of the academy, such as the popular and beautiful members of the student council, the ace of the sports club, the young playboy teachers, or the transfer students that suck up to them and the girl students that have fallen in love with them.
Still, sometimes two of those students would look at Mary from a distance and whisper things like “How did she avoid the Northern Lands?” and “What happened to the drill?” to themselves while she wasn’t paying attention.
However, Mary’s “not trying to keep a low profile but still living a rather plain and simple school life” soon came to an end as soon as she started being followed around by Parfett.
The young woman whose fiancée was stolen by the transfer student, and the young woman who handed her fiancée over to the princess. With those two being together, it was impossible to avoid the curious eyes of the other students. Besides, unlike Parfett, Mary was the daughter of the Albert family, and any disrespectful gossip about her is capable of making enemies with not only her family but even with the neighboring countries as well. And yet, she could hear most of those relatively ‘inaudible whispers’. Needless to say, no matter how low their voices are, gossip always finds its way to the people concerned.
“I’m so sorry, Lady Mary…”
She was holding her textbook with both hands close to her chest, and soon lowered her head so as to prevent the eyes of everyone around her see her in her sorry state. Parfett had apologized as if she were scared of Mary, who in turn ended up replying with a sigh.
“People are saying all sorts of things about you because you’re hanging out with me…”
“Hey, it’s not like I was planning to hang out with you. You’re just walking next to me, that’s all, right?”
That must have felt like a slap across the face since Parfett took a gulp of air and stood still on the spot. Her already pale complexion went even whiter, and her eyes started to well up on tears. Her lips were shut so tightly, and her eyebrows were drooping down so much, that it made her look even weaker than usual.
She looked as if she would crumble at any moment.
This caught Mary completely off-guard.
“Oh, don’t cry! You can’t cry because of this!”
“But… I’ve caused you so much trouble, Lady Mary… That’s why. But I get all anxious when I’m by myself…”
Mary was utterly confused at Parfett’s state. Her eyes could almost no longer hold her tears from falling. She knew there were many frail girls around who had probably been sheltered away from the world, but she never thought someone would be this frail.
She had never talked to someone as frail as Parfett in her life, so she had no idea how to talk to her. But when it came to those around Mary, they simply weren’t subtle enough. Unexpected things like this would only cause Addie and Patrick to respond in unexpected ways, and Alicia was simply unable to read this kind of situation. Either of them would end up hurting her more regardless of how frail she was. But careless remarks were quite capable of crushing her heart.
“I-I don’t really mind whether you’re here or not. Either is fine by me.”
“Well, yeah… From your point of view, someone like me is…”
“I don’t mean it like that, I really don’t mind you walking beside me! And I didn’t know how people could talk about you breaking your engagement with Patrick like that.”
“Yes… but it’s true that Lord Gainas has dumped me… Lord Gainas…”
“Stop letting your own words hurt you!”
Mary hurriedly yelled at Parfett, who was sniveling so hard that she seemed to be about to burst into tears.
Parfett seemed to be quite hard to handle. To make things worse, she was petite and cute as a little puppy, and carelessly causing someone like her to cry would stir Mary’s feelings of guilt much harder than anything she would have to face when dealing with Alicia.
That’s why Mary politely -and almost unconsciously- refrained from saying something superficial, and instead told her “Keep calm, don’t cry, don’t be sad, listen to me.” It was an unprecedentedly gentle gesture in Mary Albert’s history.
“I don’t particularly mind having you around, no matter what anyone says. And about your engagement with Patrick being called off… I’d say that, as long as it doesn’t cause you any real harm, just let them blabber about it as much as they want.”
“Poking their nose into those matters is a very unrefined thing for them to do, so you shouldn’t be ashamed of yourself.”
After saying that, Mary started walking again, saying “Well, let’s get going”, to which Parfett opened her eyes astonishingly before a subtle smile appeared in her teary-eyed face, and started to walk behind her.