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Chapter 140 – Dear Tenma, This is the First Hurdle VI
Since it’s been a while since my last update, the chapter will be a little longer (◎_◎;)
“T-then, as for our employee, I will introduce him to Lorenzo-sama as soon as I can contact my father.”
“I’m looking forward to it… By the way, Sophie-sama, there’s something I want to ask about the students you brought this time.”
Sophie had informed Lorenzo that she would bring students along on her visit through Luca, but perhaps Lorenzo actually found that annoying? When Sophie asked, Lorenzo denied it as he shook his head.
“There’s no such a thing. It’s just, I saw that nobody from the black star was invited.”
“Gerald-sama is currently busy carrying out His Highness’ order at the moment, so he declined to participate.”
“What about Keith Dudley?”
Sophie leaked, “Ah…” at Lorenzo’s words.
I see, it didn’t have to be Geragera. Keith Dudley could have been invited instead.
Keith was also among the people who greeted Sophie on her first day.
Since Sophie brought along a gold star, a silver star, and a copper star, she should have brought a black star in Gerald’s stead.
Is this bad? But that guy…
It wasn’t like Sophie was particularly hostile toward Keith.
However, since the incident at that dining hall, Keith became visibly stiff and frightened whenever he saw Sophie.
Why is he so scared of this lovely young lady?! Sophie managed to endure the urge to shout such things every time it happened, but what kind of expression Keith would have if she actually said it?
When Sophie was thinking so, Lorenzo made a different smile than before, perhaps because he misunderstood how Sophie took his question.
“If the black stars have behaved rudely, please contact me. I could ask the leader of the paladin order to apologize in their stead.”
“No! There’s no such a thing, so there’s no need to worry!”
Considering Lorenzo had five silver stars, he might have a connection with the paladin order, but Sophie strongly shook her head when the scale went beyond the academy and directly to the paladin order.
Maybe… Lorenzo-sama hates the black star?
When Sophie glanced at Lorenzo, he still wore his beautiful smile as he was staring at Sophie.
Sophie did her best to respond with a smile at his gaze that seemed like it was looking at a rare animal.
Sophie was a little tired, but as the discussion ended and she left the room, Lars’ group was waiting in a corner a little away from the laboratory.
After entering the carriage that carried them to the academy, Sophie thanked the three for their participation.
Lars and Firth still had a bad complexion, but they seemed relieved when they saw Sophie with her usual expression and they relaxed their cheeks as they said, “Thank you for your hard work, Sophie-sama.”
“Marcus, what’s with that paper bag?”
Marcus, who stood beside the other two, was holding a large paper bag for some reason.
Sophie wondered even more since Marcus didn’t have it when they first came to the laboratory, so she couldn’t help but point that out.
“Ah, you mean this. It’s fruit.”
“I got it from the gold star young masters. It’s their thanks, they said.”
Apparently, Lars bought it from a stall earlier for him. However, Sophie couldn’t understand why a gold star thanked Marcus.
“I taught those young masters how to ride horses yesterday. Luca couldn’t handle all of them at once, after all.”
“Young masters, you mean there are other people in addition to Lars?”
According to Marcus, everyone from the gold star had participated. Gold star people wouldn’t ride horses if it wasn’t already a hobby or for entertainment. For a gold star, the value of a good horse didn’t come from being good to ride on, but from being good to carry their carriage of goods.
“Why did they request it again?”
It was Lars who answered Sophie.
“When I mentioned that not only Sophie-sama was good at handling horses but also at riding them, all of them said they wanted to learn. Well, I couldn’t move properly due to muscle aches back then, despite having requested the matter to Luca-dono, so I only watched as he taught everyone how to ride, though…”
Certainly, Lars still moved awkwardly even now.
Even so, he still had enough guts to climb that mountain, albeit halfway, despite being part of the gold star, which barely did any proper exercise. As long as he continued to exercise in the future, he would become a fine young man as he grew up.
“Even so, it’s amazing for Marcus to agree to take care of all of them.”
Marcus, who belonged to the copper star, probably didn’t think of gold stars as good fellows. Moreover, Marcus wasn’t the type of person who would do that to earn favors from gold stars.
“I intended to refuse in the beginning. Handling aristocratic young masters is troublesome, after all. But after seeing that, I couldn’t help but pity them.”
“What do you mean by that?”
“It’s the appearance of a man who tried to put effort into learning after their pride as a man was crushed by a woman.”
“Oh my, that’s a terrible story.”
—Eh, does this ojou-san not notice she is that woman in question? Or is she just playing dumb?
Even as Marcus said his sarcastic remark, Sophie only put her hand on her lips and wore an expression of pity, so it seemed that she really didn’t notice she was the woman in question.
When Marcus looked at Sophie with a dismayed expression, Firth muttered, “Horse, is it…?” with a sigh as he wrinkled his eyebrows.
“I haven’t been good at handling horses ever since I fell when I rode one…”
Silver stars had even fewer opportunities to ride horses compared to gold stars.
For silver stars who were basically busy reading books and doing research, they wouldn’t develop the hobby of riding horses, especially considering the high risk of injury, so they wouldn’t be interested in it.
“Besides, don’t you find the eyes of horses scary?”
From Sophie’s perspective, she found the horse’s big eyes to be lovely.
“I’m not good with those eyes either. They are so big and I have no idea where they’re looking, it feels as if they see and judge everything about me…”
Firth’s negative opinion was met with agreement from Lars.
“I can understand that feeling a little. When they glance at me, then immediately look away, it makes me feel like being denied; that’s enough to hesitate about riding them. Most of the time, those horses would hate being ridden anyway.”
The two of them seemed to be so unnerved by horses that they began to click with each other in a depressing atmosphere.
I did ask them to get along well, but I can’t be happy if they clicked in this kind of situation…
To change the atmosphere, Sophie made a follow-up with as bright a voice as possible.
“Horses are sensitive to human emotion, so they would be scared if you are scared of them. Let’s see, if it’s a gentle mare instead, I guess both of you will have an easier time riding them?”
It’s true that stallions looked better in a standing position, but Sophie suggested they ride mares instead since they would be more compatible with them. Lars acted like a yes-man and nodded strongly.
“I understand! I will ride on a mare instead!”
“Sorry, young master, we don’t have any mares with us.”
It was Marcus who replied so.
There were several mares in the copper star in the past, but since mares were valuable for breeding, stallions with problems such as harsh temperaments, poor appearance, and weak legs were supplied to the copper stars in the mares’ stead.
“Besides, even if the mares have a laidback attitude, they are surprisingly sensitive. They would be in a very bad mood if they get angry.”
Just like human women, mares were also troublesome according to Marcus, which made Lars’ eyes widen.
“That means, if I get used to handling mares, I’ll make myself better at handling women as well!”
“Young master, you are surprisingly optimistic.”
Lars, who had a wide range of optimism and pessimism, suddenly felt motivated. As Marcus felt impressed, Sophie nodded beside him with an understanding expression as she said, “Creatures known as women are delicate, be it humans or horses.”
“Which part of ojou-san is delicate?”
Since Marcus had witnessed how Sophie casually dismantled a bird without any change in her complexion, he couldn’t help but raise such a question.
“Oh my, Marcus! To think you can’t understand the overflowing delicate feeling from this appearance. It must be the harmful effect of growing up in a male society!”
Marcus could understand how bold Sophie was exactly because he grew up in a male society, though. Marcus felt like she would rush at him to question his words if he said that, so he made a perfunctory gesture as his reply instead.
They shouldn’t speak unnecessarily toward women, be it to humans or horses. Such was the greatest defense that men were capable of.
“Uh… um, could you teach me how to ride a horse as well? I also want to give it a challenge.”
Firth requested Marcus, seemingly motivated by Lars’ words.
While Luca agreed after a little confusion, Marcus said, “I told you we don’t have any mares,” as he raised his right hand to stop them, but Sophie said, “It is okay,” to stop Marcus.
“Marcus, you don’t know what Lars’ family is?”
“Hah? Doesn’t he hail from a viscount family?”
Marcus heard it when Lars introduced himself during the self-introductions on Sophie’s first day and still remembered it, but it seemed that Marcus had no idea how much money the Rydholm family held.
If Lars just said a word of request to his father, he could easily donate several horses with far better quality than most black stars’ horses.
Firth was also the firstborn of a count family. His wasn’t a family with financial difficulties, so they had money to spare.
“I wonder how many more horses could fit in the stables of the copper star?”
As Sophie began to count the number of horses in the copper star’s possession, Marcus didn’t understand what Sophie meant and had an unconvinced expression.
At a later date, there were many beautiful horses seen roaming leisurely in the stables managed by the copper star.
In the end, it wasn’t only Firth, but the whole silver star faculty also requested teachings from the copper star. In exchange, new stables were built along with brand-new harnesses that arrived one after another.
As Marcus saw that, he sighed.
“Aristocrats are just…”
The greatness of money and power that changed many things in just a few days made Marcus sigh in exasperation.
However, the thing that bothered Marcus the most was,
“Ojou-san, I beg you, can you stop taking care of the horses?”
The figure of the girl who held the purple star cleaning the stable wearing pants—
Thank you for reading, rating, and bookmarking this series. m(__)m
Finally, it seems we can go back to the story of the black stars soon. (´・ω・｀)
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