Aristocratic Daughters Volume 2 Chapter 2 part 1

Chapter 2: Progress

“Um, do you think I’m your handyman? It feels like you’ve been consulting me a lot lately whenever we meet.”
“I don’t think of you as a handyman…”
The next day during lunch break.
Byleth, sitting in the reading area of the library, felt the piercing gaze of Luna.
“Is that true? Then why do you come to me with so many inquiries?”
“If I don’t say it, then what? It might be embarrassing as someone a grade above you.”
“You’re good at avoiding things. If you’re willing to tell me, then I’d like to hear.”
Luna attempts to pick up a book. With an implied appeal of “I’ll read if you don’t tell me,” there’s no escape.
Byleth has no choice but to swallow his embarrassment and explain.
“…Well, it’s because I rely on Luna, and she gives me solid advice. She’s the best person to consult with.”
“I see… If you feel that way, then it’s fine.”
While Luna responds coldly with a bow of her head, her hands on the book tremble.
It’s probably not just imagination that she’s a little embarrassed.
“…So, it’s about your maid, right? That’s what you wanted to discuss?”
“That and also asking for your help in deciphering some unreadable text…”
“Unreadable text? I’m not sure how much I can help with that, but I understand. Please proceed.”
Nodding in agreement, they move on to the main topic.
“Thanks. So, it’s about Sia. I’ve been thinking I need to correct her habit of holding back a bit.”
“Go on.”
“Since we had some free time yesterday, we talked about Sia’s future. What she’d do if she got recommended to the palace. It’s a very likely possibility.”
“I see. So even if Sia gets recommended, she wants to continue serving as your exclusive maid?”
“Do you really know that?”
“I have plenty of information to make that judgment.”
“I see…”
Truly, Luna is clever. The conversation progresses smoothly without needing a full explanation.
“If she, being so talented, has decided that, then there shouldn’t be any problem.”
“No, there is a problem. Isn’t it normal to want to work at the palace? You could have a stable life, gain prestige, and maybe even catch the eye of important people who visit the palace. It’s not a place just anyone can work.”
“That’s true.”
Byleth doesn’t notice the meaning behind Luna’s ambiguous “true.”
“But Sia is willing to forgo those benefits to serve here. Until I find a partner, which I don’t know when that’ll happen. If she does that, she might miss her chance to get married.”
“That’s also a possibility. Usually, during the period of exclusive service, one cannot pursue romantic relationships.”
“Exactly! If that happens, it’ll be like I’m ruining Sia’s life…”
“You don’t want that.”
“Of course not. I’m deeply indebted to Sia, and I want her to be happy. I think I know her better than anyone.”
“…I understand.”
“It’s hard to say, but I don’t want her to hold back because she feels uncomfortable or considerate. It’s just…”
Though Sia isn’t related by blood, Byleth sees her as family.
He wants her to choose the best option for herself.
“So, this leads to wanting her to break the habit of holding back. If she weren’t holding back, she’d want to work at the palace, right?”
“Yeah, exactly.”
“I have one question. What made you think she felt ‘uncomfortable,’ ‘held back,’ or ‘considerate’?”
“Um, it’s really embarrassing to say it myself, but she said something like, ‘Just serving under Byleth-sama makes me very happy, and I want to continue serving you in the future’… see?”
“That’s truly embarrassing to say.”
“Don’t make fun of me…”
Without any intonation, Luna’s serious comment hits the mark.
After clearing his throat and changing his attitude in front of the expressionless Luna, Byleth resumes his explanation.
“Sia is still only sixteen, and she’s smart, so I thought she was just saying it out of temporary loyalty. To be blunt, her vision seems narrow…”
“If she could work at the palace, her loyalty would dissolve, and she’d wake up, right? And if she woke up, she’d probably think it was good that she chose this path herself.”
“That’s right!”
Luna verbalizes all of Byleth’s feelings.


As he nods in agreement, expecting affirmation, he hears something unexpected.
“I’m not certain, but I believe you’re mistaken about this.”
“Sia is a very admirable maid. She likely understands the benefits of working at the palace better than anyone.”
“A simple explanation, but if you can work at the palace, both you and the impression of the Saintford family will improve from the royal family and the surrounding nobles. There is a process of being instructed to serve as an exclusive maid.”
“I see…”
“Furthermore, depending on Sia’s efforts, your family may form a strong relationship with the royal family. Passing a maid is a kind of bridge, so it doesn’t seem like Sia would refuse such a chance. To put it bluntly for clarity, it means Sia is trying to waste the best return she can offer to her master.”
Byleth hadn’t even considered such benefits. Thanks to Luna’s wisdom, he learned.
“If that’s the case, there’s no reason not to accept it…? Sia is…”
“So, it’s evidence that she wants to serve you from the bottom of her heart. If she cares, she should try to work at the palace.”
Luna was presenting a reverse logic, but there was no room for rebuttal because it made sense.
“S-So, does that mean Sia was talking without considering her position as a maid or being careful? Was it all just my misunderstanding…?”
“That’s the only explanation. Sia probably said the most selfish thing in her life to make herself happy.”
Byleth responded as if he were facing an interviewer, taken aback by the sudden mention of a name.
“To you, she might seem weak, timid, and self-sacrificing, but in reality, Sia is someone who can express firm opinions to avoid regrets in her life.”
“T-That seems to be the case…”
“Sia is pitiful. She didn’t notice the best approach a maid could take.”
“Oh, um… th-that’s…”
“It’s not ‘oh, um… th-that’s.’ It’s pitiful. It may be a misunderstanding because she’s a maid, but if I were Sia, I’d be crying.”
“…I’ll talk to Sia again.”
“That’s the best course of action.”
Luna sharply focused her sleepy eyes as if she were siding with Sia.
And she secretly grasped the feather-shaped bookmark she had in her pocket.
Someone had conveyed their feelings alone—knowing that fact.
She was trying to dispel this frustration somehow.
“You should have more confidence in yourself. You’re more attractive than you think. Just understanding that a little more might dispel this kind of misunderstanding.”
“Th-Thanks. Just knowing you think that makes me happy.”
“Not at all.”
(It’s difficult to immediately adopt that mindset, but I firmly tucked those words into my heart.)
“Well, it’s a good stopping point. Shall we change the subject to something you can’t read?”
“Yeah. So, about the next part…”
At that moment, Luna had no idea.
That it would be another story that would pile on the confusion in her heart.
“Um, can Luna read these characters? I tried my best, but I couldn’t really understand… If I don’t understand them accurately, there might be misunderstandings during the meeting.”
It was an invitation letter Elena had taught her, but she understood that she had skipped some parts.
As she handed the letter over, she explained.
“Could you take a quick look?”
“Of course.”
“Thank you.”
Luna inserted a word and carefully opened the letter.
Then, she slowly raised her head, moving her sleepy eyes slightly.
“I see. It’s not surprising that you can’t read this. But it might be better not to rely on me for this.”
Luna, who usually had an indifferent expression, gave a surprisingly straightforward explanation.
“Given your position, you’ll probably have more opportunities to encounter such characters. It would be preferable to increase the number of times you handle them yourself to avoid difficulties in the future.”
“Y-Yeah, that makes sense. Thanks for the advice.”
“Make no mistake. I’ll continue to assist you. In this case, I will assist you with my power.”
“Haha, thanks a lot.”
Just being able to hear those words made him feel really reassured.
“So, what should we do? There are two options: either recite the written characters as they are, or summarize them.”
“The text is probably too formal, so could you summarize it for me?”
“Sure thing.”
Luna replied and lowered her gaze to the letter she held in both hands.
“The first part serves as a greeting to you, but it is unrelated to the main matter, so may I skip over that?”
“Yeah, that’s fine.”
Elena had also initially explained this part.
“This next part is the main subject. First, there is an expression of gratitude for accepting the consultation from the son, Alain-Leclerc. With this phrasing, it likely indicates there will be an in-depth discussion during the meeting.”

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