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Chapter 102 – The Young Lady Named Sophie Linier ~ Lars Rydholm’s Worship IV ~
Lars had three fiancées until now, but all of them ended up breaking it off eventually.
In order to hide his low attitude, he often only spoke with words that strengthened his self-esteem, which had made his fiancées uncomfortable, and when they finally got too disgusted by that, they chose to break the engagement.
This repeated three times, which gave birth to rumors that the reason the eldest son of the Rydholm family was unable to hold a stable engagement, despite his family fortune, was due to his bad personality.
Lars thought he’d changed earlier but now he felt depressed again, and a dark cloud spread in his mind. As expected, I am an insignificant existence, thought Lars as he sighed.
“Ah, that’s right. There’s another book.”
Lars recalled that there was a thin book slipped in “The Essential Condition to be a Popular Man!” and put it in front of him.
Its title was “It’s a Flower, Whether it Blooms or Buds.”
Unlike the other book, it was a neat and cute title. The contents of it were completely different, describing the story of two young ladies of aristocratic families. After reading a few pages, Lars was completely absorbed in the story.
He used to make fun of the romance novels that spread in society until now, but the story here only depicted aristocratic young ladies, and due to the absence of handsome male characters that would have protected the heroine, Lars could read it without feeling inferior.
The contents of the story proceeded as such: Margaret, who was born as the fifth daughter of a count family, had always hid her face with her hair due to her withdrawn personality, and that made her not loved much by her family.
However, she exchanged greetings with Rose, the daughter of a duke family, during a tea party, which made Margaret long for Rose and inspired her to become a person who could stand beside Rose.
She abandoned her weak self and worked hard in her studies, especially in poetry, embroidery, and dancing. Her efforts paid off and she managed to get admitted to the girls’ academy where only talented girls could enroll in.
She found the figure of her beloved Rose there. However, Rose didn’t remember Margaret at all. Although Margaret understood in her heart that her insignificant self who belonged to a lower pedigree wasn’t worth being committed in Rose’s memory, sorrow still pained her chest.
Even so, Margaret never gave up. She wanted Rose to remember her face and name.
For that sake, she was determined to do her best—
The page ended there.
“W-where is the continuation?!”
Obviously, there were no more pages even as he turned the book over.
He wanted to read more and got up from his chair, but he realized it was already dark outside the window. As he checked the clock in panic, it was already 2 o’clock in the middle of the night. Apparently, he was so absorbed in the story, he forgot to take his dinner. There was no way he could ask for the continuation at this hour.
Lars sat back in his chair and stared at the two books then read them again. After reading them for the second time, he was thinking about what love was until the sun rose.
Margaret’s dedication, which was similar to love, toward Rose was a pure feeling that sought no reward. What would happen to this feeling after this? Would it remain pure and beautiful, or would it become muddy like a stagnant swamp?
“I’m sure it won’t become muddy! It will stay pure!”
As Lars understood that believing was also love, he learned that he finally understood what love was thanks to the sweet book.
His heightened emotion didn’t allow him to rest and instead of even attempting to rest, Lars wrote his impressions about the two books.
With that in hand, Lars went out early in the morning to apologize to Sophie.
Even if he wasn’t forgiven, he would try it over and over—
After that, so much to his astonishment, Sophie easily accepted his apology, and Lars proceeded to seek her counsel about his life.
He started with the cancellations of his engagements with his fiancées.
If it was Lars from before, it would be the topic that he wouldn’t want to touch the most, but he wanted to hear a woman’s opinion about it.
Besides, since Sophie had written that book, Lars felt like he didn’t need to hide his inferiority complex anymore, so he spoke out about his weakness and felt the release from it.
When Lars uttered the miserable stories of his three canceled engagements, Sophie put her delicate finger on her mouth and said in exasperation,
“Oh my, that just can’t be helped. Women at marriageable age might close their eyes to some extent toward the flaws of their partners, but for the girls at that age who want more dreams and fantasies than reality, having a man with strong self-esteem, who didn’t seem to treat them preciously, to be their fiancé, it might drive them to the point of committing suicide.”
“Committing suicide… you say?”
Is it that big of a deal?! Thought Lars at first, but when he thought back about it, there was certainly a daughter of an aristocratic family who belonged to a higher pedigree than his family, but considering the fortune of the Rydholm house, the engagement should have been quite attractive to her parents.
But since the girl’s side still chose to cancel the engagement despite that, perhaps the girl in question actually was mentioning she would consider suicide if the engagement continued.
“Isn’t that too much of a logical leap?”
“I couldn’t say all women are like this, though. However, women are creatures that seek sympathy. Yet if her partner not only disregarded or disagreed with her, but also denied and even insulted her, there is no way any woman would come to love such a man. It might sound silly for men, but for a young lady’s glass-like heart, the idea of spending the rest of her life with such a man would make them like a tragic heroine forced onto a path of thorns. It would make them think they were carrying the world’s unhappiness on their back.”
“A tragic heroine…”
That meant Lars would be the villain in that story.
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