Romelia Senki Volume 1 Chapter 1 part 9

Engagements are sacred agreements in themselves. Since it’s broken unilaterally, there must be a reason for it. But “incompatibility of personalities” wouldn’t be enough.
 
But if they say a woman is loose, that alone can become a major reason to break the engagement.
 
“Will I be called for a virginity test?”
 
Virginity is especially important in royal marriages. As far as I know, you have to prove your virginity to several female officials before marriage.
 
While I’ve managed to maintain my purity so far, it’s still a little intimidating to expose my body in front of others.
 
“Miss Romelia, that’s not something a lady should say.”
 
My step mother scolded me again. Even though my body is that of a girl, my heart doesn’t seem to be anymore.
 
“I’m sorry.”
 
I apologize, but in reality they probably won’t do a virginity test, right? If I’m declared a virgin, there would be no reason to cancel the engagement. They’re probably just planning to spread rumors and then not do a virginity test because of Count Grahm’s reputation.
 
A tactic to look like a benefactor.
 
However, if they spread rumors about me, the father in high society would also feel wronged. I’m really not filial. But Father hasn’t said anything about it, which is even more puzzling.
 
What exactly is Father thinking?
 
But I don’t understand, so I stopped thinking about it right away because I have other things to do.
 
Although three years have passed, I have returned to my home in the capital city of Lionel, but I know I can’t stay here for long.
 
Because my engagement has been canceled, Father will lose his authority in the capital and won’t be able to stay there.
 
Originally, I thought he would immediately return to his true hometown – Count Grahm’s territory, Grahm – but he can’t do that.
 
After defeating the demon lord, the prince returned in triumph, and a great feast was held that lasted for several days.
 

Although I didn’t attend, Father, as a member of the Count’s family, could not miss the celebration.
 
It was an unprecedented grand celebration, and the whole nation was celebrating the birth of a hero, but Father couldn’t enjoy the celebration. It was impossible to enjoy.
 
Before the celebration, my engagement to Prince Henry was officially announced as cancelled.
 
This is a gnashing of teeth humiliation for Father, but he also can’t badmouth the prince who has achieved a monumental feat that will be remembered in history. No matter how angry he may be inside, he must put on a smiling face, mingle with the people, and attend the never-ending feasts every day.
 
When I was in the capital city of Lionel, I stayed in the mansion and did not go out even once.
 
Even though Father is going through a difficult time, as the main cause of this situation, I can’t just go around recklessly.
 
However, I didn’t want to waste time either, so while Father was away, I sneaked into his study and read through the documents related to the territory.
 
The large desk in Father’s study was piled high with materials.
 
The administration of the territory had come to a standstill during the days of the festival, and the work seemed to have piled up like a mountain.
 
I picked up one of the documents and began to read.
 
Our Grahm Comital territory, centered around the capital city of Gram, was divided into thirty regions. What I was holding in my hand was the entire financial record of the comital territory.
 
At first glance, it was clear that the territory’s overall tax revenues were on a downward trend.
 
Though not yet critical, the financial condition of our Grahm House did not look optimistic.
 
In particular, sales of Comital’s specialty porcelain and distilled spirits were declining.
 
The demand for luxury goods had decreased due to the turmoil of the war. It seemed that merchants with excess goods were pushing down prices.
 
Father tried, but he struggled with working capital. If there was a large amount of money, the finances could probably be improved, but there was no room to accumulate profits. Only small amounts could be invested gradually, which worsened the trend.
 
As a disloyal daughter, I should do something for Father.
 
After thinking about it for a while, I put the financial records back and looked for documents on the regional areas instead. After searching for a while, I found a report titled Cashew.
 
The Cashew region was at the eastern end of the kingdom and was considered a border area. Because it bordered other countries, it was directly ruled by the Commital House as a territory, but it was a small area with only one steward sent because of its low military and economic importance.
 
It was a very small region even among the comital territories, one that no one would pay attention to. But when I looked at the report sent from there, I found the situation quite interesting.
 

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Because of its remoteness, Father hadn’t examined it closely, and the financial manager had skimmed over the reports as well, since it wasn’t an important area. However, if one read them carefully, one could find anomalies. Further investigation would probably reveal all kinds of problems.
 
I gathered all the documents related to the Cashew region here and went to the archives to trace back through the past records and get everything I could about it.
 
When I returned to my room with the pile of documents and records, Grandma Cairo came into my room.
 
“Young Lady Rome, what are these documents?”
 
Seeing me holding the books and papers, Grandma Cairo was surprised.
 
“It’s nothing Grandma. Perfect timing, could you open the door for me?”
 
With both hands full, I asked her to open the door and walked into the room. My room was full of clutter and I weaved my way through it to get to the desk and set the documents down.
 
“What brings you here, Grandma? Did you need something?”
 
“Young Lady Rome, are you really going to sell all this?”
 
Grandma looked sadly at the pile of luggage. It was my old clothes, accessories and knickknacks from the past.
 
“No point in keeping clothes I can’t wear anymore.”
 
After three years of hard travel, I had grown a bit. My clothes from when I was fifteen no longer fit. More importantly, my interest in clothes and decorations had changed, and I was no longer as attracted to them. Looking to the future, I decided to sell everything but keepsakes and exchange everything for money.
 
“But for the Grahm Comital House to sell things…”
 
The grandmother was saddened by the blow to her image.
 
Certainly, nobles liquidating property didn’t sound good if it got out.
 
“I have my reasons, Grandma.”
 
I smiled meaningfully. There could be great profit in this.
 
“So you came to tell me that?”
 
If so, I wanted to finish this conversation with Grandma quickly. I wanted to go over the documents I had brought as soon as possible.
 
“No, someone from the Selor Company came.”
 
“Oh, is that so? Then please send them in.”
 
I asked my grandmother to pass on the message. The Selor Company was the noisiest, most prestigious big business in the kingdom. It was also our family’s supplier, and we had a good relationship. I had called them today to buy the things I wanted to sell.
 
While I was waiting in my room, a finely dressed, slightly stocky young man was led in by Grandma. He bowed his head.
 
“If it isn’t young lady Romelia. We at the Selor Company are deeply grateful for the opportunity to do business with you. I am Minervo, in charge of the negotiations this time.”
 
Minervo of the Selor Company greeted me somewhat dramatically.
 
“Thank you for taking the time. I’m surprised that the heir of the Selor Company himself has come.”
 
I remembered his name from the back of my mind. If I wasn’t mistaken, Minervo was the son of the chairman of the Selor Company.
 

 
“Of course. We are always in Lord Grahm’s care, so I have come myself to take care of the appraisal this time.”
 
Although Minervo was smiling, nothing was less trustworthy than a merchant’s smile.
 
“Please appraise the items to be sold here immediately. I will wait here.”
 
Hearing my words, Minervo nodded and proceeded to appraise the collected goods and calculate a price. In the room, I checked the documents and records of the Cashew region. Grandmother could have left, but perhaps she couldn’t accept that things from the villa were being sold and stayed in the room.
 
After a while, the appraisal seemed to be finished when Minervo spoke.
 
“My lady, I have completed the appraisal. As expected of the Grahm family treasures.”
 
Minervo flattered like a merchant, but I had no interest in such talk.
 
“So how much?”
 
I asked immediately. The amount was the most important thing in negotiations.
 
“About this much?”
 
Minervo wrote down a price far below the market value and presented it.
 
With my engagement dissolved, the demise of the comital house must be seen as a weakness to be exploited. Even though I knew they would take it, the price was still half of what I had expected.
 
They were merchants, of course. While I didn’t deny their creed of profit above all else, the desire to maximize it, to buy low and sell high to the point of near fraud, was unacceptable to Minervo. There had been many such merchants I had met on my travels. At first I was fooled, but after a few times I quickly learned to distinguish them. I also recognized Minervo at a glance.
 
“I see. Thank you for that.”
 
Pretending to be an ignorant fool, I took the paper and signed it. The deal was done.
 
“Oh, there’s one more thing I want you to buy. How much would that be?”
 
I took a box out of my desk drawer for him to look at.
 
It was a gray, stone-like object.
 
From a distance it looked like a stone, or maybe a giant fossilized egg. But I didn’t miss how Minervo’s expression changed the moment he saw it.
 
“Oh, this is…”
 
Minervo took the gray lump and examined it closely, nodding.
 
“A mineral, is it? No, how rare. Since there is a collector of strange minerals, I’ll buy it from you for two gold coins.”
 
“Ah, such a stone is worth two gold coins?”
 
Hearing Minervo’s words, Grandma Cairo beside me shouted in surprise, but I sighed and took it back from Minervo’s hand.
 
“It seems too early for you to be handling this.”
 
I looked at Minervo with irritation.

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