Chapter 15: I Have Two Choices (Plans) for My Life
After the second confrontation with Miss Charlotte was over, boring days followed.
As always, His Highness Prince Garrett sent me a bouquet of flowers with a pleading message, so recently my room feels cramped.
I cannot blame the sender, however, since I was applying healing magic to the dying flowers as part of my training in magic control.
Combining the knowledge and magic I had cultivated in my previous life, some of them became preserved flowers, which only added to the excess.
At any rate, I decided to give the preserved flowers I made to my aunt, who loves new things.
If my aunt, who is a duchess, likes them, they will be a hit product with a high sales if I commercialize them.
I’ll consider starting up a new industry after returning to the territory.
There are two career paths I am considering.
One was to remain a spinster in the territory managed by my father and live a comfortable life in the countryside.
The other was to move to the Kingdom of Shium and start a business from scratch.
Father, the Marquess Howard, has several titles.
One of them is the Viscount of Clay, which is not so big but has a rich barony.
I have been in charge of managing the Viscount Clay territory for several years now, and have been working with the local people to develop a small business of producing and selling products based on my ideas.
The first product was a cushion, a byproduct of my magic control training, improved and made available to the public.
It all started when I was having trouble disposing of the beads of magic I had made as basic training and combined them with my embroidery, which is a favorite past time.
The resulting cushion was fluffy and comfortable, and because it was mixed with my healing magic, it became very popular among my family members as a “cushion to bring your spirits up”.
Later, I received an order from my aunt who wanted to use it as a gift.
However, she had gained 3 kg in a month and wanted a regular bead cushion, not a cushion infused with magic.
The customer was so pleased that she ordered even more.
Although the cushion was well received, my main job is as a student.
I didn't have enough time to respond to the orders, so I decided to turn it into a business.
Since it was the off-season for farming, I asked local women to manufacture cushions using fine particles similar to beads.
After thorough quality control and sales channels were established, the brand quickly became a very popular product.
Thanks to this, the Viscount Clay estate was greatly enriched and is now generating considerable profits.
Sooner or later, I intend to move to the neighboring Kingdom of Shium with the personal wealth I have acquired in this way.
If David takes over the house, I would be able to stay in the Viscount's territory.
I had planned to eventually give up my status, emigrate, and start a business.
The only reason why I chose the Kingdom of Shium is because women are making inroads into society.
The order of succession to the throne is not tied to gender, with priority given to the eldest child, and there are many opportunities for women to play an active role, as well as many female business owners.
I plan to make a living by commercializing the “bear repellent” which I developed recently, as well as the “preserved flowers” that I have just developed.
Discussions with my parents are also in progress.
Aside from my reluctance to marriage, neither of them opposed the idea.
Although, they seem to prefer I live a comfortable life in the Viscount's territory, as they’ve cancelled my most recent plan to go to the Kingdom of Shium.
One day, I was invited to a tea party by the queen.
It was more like an invitation, or rather, an abduction, since my mother dressed me up and took me to the royal palace.
Queen Margaret and Mother are close friends.
The topic of conversation seemed to be the annulment of the engagement, which was about to reach its conclusion.
As the fiancée of His Highness Prince Garrett, I have been invited to the queen's private tea parties before.
It had been about six months since the last time we had met during the school's long vacation.
The queen, smiling serenely with her glossy honey blonde hair, has a beautiful face and deep blue eyes that are a perfect match for those of His Royal Highness Prince Garrett.
Although she is the mother of two princes, she is a miraculous beauty whose age has not changed over the years.
“Thank you for inviting me here today, Queen Margaret.
You are in excellent health, I see.”
I sat down and made a formal greeting, and the Queen smiled broadly and went right to the point.
“Oh no, this is a private occasion, so you may call me mother-in-law.
“Lady Margaret …”
Mother gave me a questioning look.
The fact that she skipped ahead to the obvious suggests this really is a private occasion.
“Oh, my dear, I am looking forward to being Rebecca's mother.
I can't help but wonder if it's still going to happen.”
The queen lightly brushed off her best friend's gaze and pressed me for an answer.
The queen, smiling softly, is very beautiful, but the strength in her eyes that refuses to give her away, is indeed a woman who reigns supreme in a country.
Even though she said it was a private occasion, the other party is still royalty.
One wrong move and I would be guilty of disrespect.
Even so, I had no intention of giving up my life plans.
“I am not qualified.
I know you have heard about the graduation party, Your Highness, but I am not enough to support His Highness Prince Garret.
There were many people there.
After what happened, I don't think I should be allowed to stay by His Highness' side.”
“That's just because Garrett was a fool.
He should have put aside his strange pride and dealt with the situation together with you … Young men should be protected from themselves, this is what happens or if they are entrusted with a job they want to accomplish on their own.
And to top it all off, he uses this as an excuse to run away from you.
Even as my own son, I am truly ashamed.”
“My queen! There is no such thing.
His Highness Garret takes his royal duties very seriously.
The fact that I have not been able to establish a relationship of trust with him to consult with you is proof of my inadequacy-”
I was interrupted by the queen's hand that she quickly raised, so I stopped talking.
“Oh, don't worry about it.
I’m was just trying to be mean.
This whole thing started with Garret's immaturity, and now the royal family owes the House of Howard a huge debt.”
In this case, the Howard family did a good job of preventing a curse from being placed on the royal family, thus linking hopes for the birth of a new saint.
In fact, this attempted cursing incident had developed into a major problem that shook the country and had to be handled in secret, but that's a long story, so I'll skip it for now.
Anyway, the Howard family has sold its debt to the royal family.
Since there was also the matter of the graduation party, it would be easier for them to break off the engagement if they wanted to—as opposed to the other way around.
“My queen, I am pleased to inform you that I am now in the process of discovering my innermost self.
Now I know what I'm really like.
It is unbecoming of a noble, but I am a stubborn and foolish girl who can only be with the one she loves…
Please allow me to return to my estate and live in peace.
If you are offended by my rudeness, I swear to you that I will give back my name, leave the country, and never disgrace you again.”
When I made a sincere appeal, the queen smiled and dismissed my plans.
“I see, retire to your domain? Going to another country?
What are you talking about? I can't allow you to do that.”
Mother nodded strongly at that and voiced a bit of excitement.
“I figured since you said you wanted to remain celibate for the rest of your life, that was one way to live, but oh dear, you want to be with the one you love, don't you?”
Uh… queen? Mother? Are you drifting in some strange direction?
“Yes, I know!
You are too good for Garrett.
Even if we were to push for a marriage, it will not end well.
At this point, I don't care as long as you're not that idiot.
There are many other promising young men with royal connections.
I am sure you will find someone you love.”
Just because I’m no longer engaged to His Highness Garrett, doesn’t mean that I am looking for someone else to marry.
I didn't expect to be taken at my word like this, I was caught off guard …!
“Uh … um… Your Highness.”
“After your social debut, there will be a ball hosted by me.
I'll be your hostess.”
My shoulders slumped helplessly in front of the Queen and my mother as they cackled with excitement
By the way.
I know this is not important information now, but — the engagement between His Highness Garrett and I was easily called off that day.
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