Chapter 31 : Suspicion

Marquez, standing guard, welcomed Rembrandt as he emerged from Natalia’s room at the Viscount Olsen’s mansion.

“Rembrandt-sama doesn’t need to trouble himself to come here.”

While bowing to Rembrandt, his tone was somewhat reproachful.

“…I just wanted to make sure.”

“May I ask what you are confirming?”

“…”

Behind Rembrandt, who had silently climbed into the carriage, Marquez, who was serving as a guard and escort, raised his eyebrows.

“It was already such a big deal that we borrowed the shadow guard from the Marquis, but it’s been four months, but I still don’t really understand what he’s planning to do.
Well now, I’m stumped.”

And Marquez stared into Rembrandt’s eyes.

“What are you working to achieve, Rembrandt-sama?”

“…well, I wonder what it is.”

Rembrandt was the one who had asked Marquez to work for him, even if it was only temporarily.
Yet, in front of Rembrandt, Marquez let out a huge sigh.

“What part of this mission involves the Strydom family? I was ordered to guard Beatrice at the school, but now I don’t even know what that means.
I mean, the young lady hardly associates with the son of the Chamber of Commerce, does she?”

“…for now.”

“I work for the head of the Marquise of Strydom, in other words, Noyce-sama.
I have the responsibility to report this matter to Noyce-sama as well.
However…”

“So far, it looks to you like I’m moving the shadow guards for personal reasons, is that what you’re saying?”

“Yes, I’m afraid so.”

Marquez quickly adjusted his posture and looked at Rembrandt.

“A twisted love triangle between a Viscount’s daughter, Natalia Olsen, a Baron’s son, Alejandro Reyes, and Leopold Reinalpha, a Marquis’ son.
From an outside perspective, there is no element of the Marquis of Stydrom that should be involved there.”

“It is true that Miss Natalia and Alejandro are schoolmates of Lady Beatrice, but they only greet each other occasionally.
Although she has known Leopold since he was a child, he was as close to her as Edgar-sama, even to you.
So, why did you take action? You even used us, the shadow guards.”

Marquez’s normally cheerful demeanor was replaced by a frown, and he then turned to his temporary master with a very serious expression on his face.

He was probably considering whether he should continue to follow orders as a shadow guard, or whether he should report to his true master, the head of the Marquis of Strydom family.

“…tonight made you uneasy? Are you wondering if I’m in love with the daughter of the Viscount?”

“I just want the certainty that it’s for the Marquise of Strydom.
Otherwise, there would be no point in going on these missions as a shadow guard.”

“Then let me just say… all of this is for Beatrice.”

Apparently, the name was unexpected for Marquez.
His eyes widened.

“Beatrice, sama.”

“That’s it.”

In order not to have Beatrice’s life taken away from her like the last time.
This time, they will do everything in time.

“I should add, the only reason I haven’t brought up the report to my father until now is to gather evidence to see if Beatrice’s claims are correct.”

His own misbehavior must have made Marquez excessively anxious.
Certainly, one might conclude that he had a fantasy, breaking into a single woman’s room in the middle of the night.
But still…

I wanted to meet her just once.

I wanted to see her to make sure.

His sister Beatrice, the same person who stabbed and killed his sister, and also the friend who reached out to her.

Still, she’s a kind person, the woman Beatrice insisted on.

I wanted to find out what kind of woman she really was.

Perhaps Alejandro already put his people in Viscount Olsen’s residence, and also in the residence of Marquise of Reinapha.

So, since he already decided, he could only move at midnight, and that’s the reason why he came at this time of night.
Well, one might wonder why he was so concerned about Natalia, there is one reason.

“Sorry about that, Marquez.”

I may have underestimated the loyalty of the shadow guard to our Marquize.

With that in mind, he candidly apologized.

“…no, it’s not my place to intrude.”

“No, I think my father must be getting tired of it by now.
When I return to the mansion, I will report to him.
Depending on his judgment, I may explain the situation to you as well.”

“I understand.”

“Well, I think it’s even more confusing if you ask me.”

Then Rembrandt chuckled.

At that time, though, Marquez did not quite understand the meaning of what Rembrandt had said.

“Wait a minute… rebirth?”

“You can think of it as “having a precognitive dream”, but either way, it doesn’t change the fact that it sounds fishy.”

Rembrandt, who had made an appointment with Noyce as soon as he returned, went into his father’s office to talk with him for a while.
Later, Marquez was called back in and went inside as well.

Here, Marquez realized the meaning of Rembrandt’s words earlier.

Noyce also had a subtle expression on his face.

Certainly, they would not have been inclined to listen to Beatrice’s claims until they had some evidence of the suspicious activities of the Reyes’ Chamber of Commerce.
That’s how ridiculous it sounds.

Even so, for Marquez, and perhaps for Noyce as well, the explanation of “rebirth” was still difficult to accept as a reality.
However, the fact that Alejandro’s behavior was reported as confirmed, was enough to suppress their desire to refute it. 

Noyce also seemed to doubt Beatrice’s sanity at first.
Certainly, as Rembrandt claims, he would not have given permission to lend his shadow guard if he had been told about it first.

At this point, Noyce temporarily put the matter of lending the shadow guard on hold and turned his gaze on Rembrandt as the head of the family.

“Then, let’s leave aside the story of Beatrice’s life threatening event in her so-called “previous life” for a moment.
This time, is it in Marquise of Strydom’s interest to side with Leopold, or perhaps, more importantly, the Reinalpha family?”

“…does that mean apart from Beatrice’s wish?”

“Yes.
Our family is not so good-natured as to move five shadow guards to do charity work for the Reinalpha family.”

“Of course.
I have discussed this with Leopold.”

“Well.
Say it.”

“When everything is settled, our Marquis family intends to absorb the largest trading company in the country, the Reyes Trading Company.
The Reinalpha family will not interfere in this matter.
This is the condition for lending Leopold a hand.”

Noyce raised an eyebrow.

“So… not only the son, but also the current head of the family is black.”

“I can’t say for sure yet, but the son did all those things.
I don’t think we can say we don’t know anything about it.
At the very least, we could put them under our control.”

“I see.”

Leaning against the back of the sofa, Noyce pondered for a while.

“…but then again, isn’t it a bit much to sneak into a young lady’s room?”

I guess that was still a concern.

Indeed, he could have just asked the shadow guard to give her the letter and gift from Leopold.
There was no need for Rembrandt to go out of his way to do so in any way.

Rembrandt, however, apologized for his behavior.

“I am sorry.
I was a little concerned about the fact that Trice had opened up so much to her and that Alejandro was so obsessed with her.”

“Leopold’s love interest, you can’t get anywhere near that.
What he was interested in was someone Alejandro was obsessed with.”

“Yes.”

Then, after a pause, Rembrandt continued.

“His sister, whom Alejandro had been obsessed with in the past, seemed to have been killed by him.”

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