AIWTRO Chapter 48
From a very young age, Ludwig’s father taught his son:
“Remember. Your mission is not a trivial fight for supremacy.”
The war with the demons ended with a truce a long time ago, but assaults by demons still often occurred.
Ludwig was well aware of what it meant to be a member of a family chosen by the goddess in a cursed, drought-stricken land.
“Don’t let them down.”
The previous Grand Duke died from the injuries he sustained in the battle against the demons.
He died honorably, carrying out his family duties.
Before his death, he did not forget to leave his last advice to his son, who would now bear the heavy burdens of the head of the Grand Dukedom.
“Don’t let them down.”
“You must not forget your duty.”
“Don’t get caught up in a trivial battle for supremacy.”
Ludwig took his father’s last advice to heart.
The family and his duty was to defend the empire from the threats of the demons.
There was no reason to intervene in the nobles’ struggle for power, and so he didn’t.
The aftermath would be beyond control if the Parvis Dukedom decides to take a side.
Maintaining neutrality was also important to protect the family. After all, they were a family that trains the elite knights in the capital. They were a family perfect to serve the Imperial family.
In order to avoid conflict with the Imperial family, the Grand Dukes of the Parvis family stepped back from politics and remained neutral.
They didn’t dare talk about dangerous topics like battling for the throne.
So, there was no hesitation when Ludwig broke ties with his first wife and her family.
Even though he knew his first wife wasn’t barren, he remained silent because Count Weinberg, who took full advantage of the fact that he had made ties with the Parvis family, sold his name.
He wasn’t merciful enough to let go of the idiots who couldn’t heed to his warnings.
His first wife died shortly after she was kicked out, and her father also suffered anxiety and died. It was the desired result.
For a moment, his second wife and her family tried to raise their hand, but Ludwig did not become their ally. It would be too difficult if one became too powerful.
Not long after the birth of his son, the second Duchess died of postpartum fever. Fortunately.
It was obvious that her father, the Marquis of Edinburgh, was trying to build his power using his grandchildren, but he stayed within the allowed range.
Knowing how Count Weinberg behaved, the Marquis of Edinburgh acted subtly and carefully, aware of the fact that Ludwig had his eyes on him.
He tried to approach his grandchildren, Keira and Zichhardt.
‘While I can cut ties with my wife and in-laws, I can’t do that to my children.”
So, Ludwig kept his distance from the children while cutting off exchanged between the Marquis of Edinburgh and the children.
Showing affection for his children would do nothing but give them power.
It was just as his father taught him.
When Keira was seven, she fell ill. The child, of course, looked for her father.
Butler: “Her Ladyship refuses to rest.”
Ludwig: “Is she seriously ill?”
Butler: “She has a cold.”
“It would be better if she took her medicine and rested well.”
The butler looked flustered.
Butler: “B-but she’s your daughter…”
Ludwig: “Do you want me to go and sing her a lullaby? There’s no time to waste on such trivial things.”
Having been weighed down by duty all his life, he knew neither how to be loved nor how to give love.
Fortunately, the children grew up exemplary. Sometimes, his son would give him a rebellious look, but he stayed in line.
He was in a position of neglecting his children, but he was not without conscience enough to hope for their affection.
In fact, their affectionate gaze was budensome.
Just like it was now.
“I’ve taught a lot of students, but I’ve never seen anyone as accomplished as Her Ladyship! She might just surpass me soon. Haha!”
Her magic instructor grinned with pride even as he admitted his student could one day surpass him. It was obvious he wasn’t bluffing.
It was evidence that Keira was showing such excellent performance.
Ludwig turned from the wizard to his daughter.
A twelve-year-old girl with flushed cheeks smiled modestly, but her purple eyes sparkled as if hoping for something. Perhaps, a compliment or a pat on the head.
Although he was unfamiliar with that kind of gaze, it made him feel uncomfortable.
He had no idea how to approach or react to it.
Ludwig: “Well done. Effort is a great talent.”
Keira: “Thank you! I’ll try harder, Father!”
When his daughter looked at him with those eyes, there was always something he wanted to say.
He neglected the death of his first wife. He was a man who considered Keira’s mother’s death as ‘fortunate,’ yet why did she still see him as her father?
Every time he had the urge to say it, he couldn’t do it.
As time swiftly passed, Keira reached her coming-of-age. Throughout her coming-of-age ceremony, she looked ecstatic.
Why was she so pleased with the formal procedure?
He didn’t often have personal conversations, but he couldn’t help but ask this time.
Ludwig: “What makes you so happy? You’ll only get busier when you become an adult.”
Keira: “After the coming-of-age ceremony, I can officially help the family. I’m truly happy to be able to help you.”
Whenever he heard such words, he didn’t know how to answer, so he shut his mouth. He always shut his mouth.
How can you blindly wish for affection from someone who’s never given you a single hint of wamrth?
Is that how parents and children were?
For political reasons, he had neglected the death of his first wife. He never imagined that he could have a normal family.
Sometimes he would be racked with guilt, so he thought it would be better if his first daughter would become as indifferent and cold as her younger brother.
However, when he recalled the sudden change in his daughter, a corner of his heart tightened.
He himself couldn’t understand why.
If they had a little more time, things might have moved in a better direction.
But in the end, ‘that incident’ broke out.
“Nice to meet you, father.”
Platinum blonde hair and red eyes that resembled him. Features no one could deny their connection.
Cosette: “I am Cosette, daughter of former Grand Duchess Rowena and the eldest daughter of father.”
One day, she appeared in the capital, claiming that she was the real daughter of the Grand Duke.
In a low voice, Ludwig asked.
Ludwig: “You’re my daughter?”
Cosette: “That’s right.”
Ludwig: “Can you prove it?”
Cosette: “If you give me a chance, of course.”
Keira, standing close, gulped. It seemed that she wished Cosette be thrown out for saying nonsense lke a crazy woman.
Of course, Ludwig didn’t believe in this unidentified woman. But he believed in the prudence of the next Earl of Weinberg who had brought her.
He might be cunning, but he wasn’t stupid.
The real daughter of the Parvis family was bound to have undeniable evidence.
The Count, who could not know the fact, could not have carried on such a farce.
Ludwig: “Alright. The one who manifests the ability to communicate with Beatrice is my real daughter. I will allow you to stay in the mansion until the day the truth is revealed.”
He had to always keep in mind the prophecy that stated that only one elementalist will be born from the family. It was to prevent a disaster that would come in the future.
For Ludwig, the protection of the empire was and should have been above all else.
The prophecy was absolute. The disaster that the goddess foretold must be prevented.
That fact was more important to him than anything else.
That’s how he was raised, that’s how he lived.
“Nice to meet you, Father.”
Ludwig woke up with a start. He wiped down his forehead drenched with sweat, and rose his upper body.
He slowly looked around. Even in the dark, he could see the view of his bedroom.
Ludwig: “That dream again.”